The Rif War was an armed conflict fought from 1921 to 1926 between the colonial power Spain and the Berber tribes of the Rif mountainous region of Morocco. Led by Abd el-Krim, the Riffians at first inflicted several defeats on the Spanish forces by using guerrilla tactics and captured European weapons. After France's military intervention against Abd el-Krim's forces and the major landing of Spanish troops at Al Hoceima, considered the first amphibious landing in history to involve the use of tanks and aircraft, Abd el-Krim surrendered to the French and was taken into exile.
In July 1909 Spanish workers constructing a rail-bridge providing access to iron mines near Melilla were attacked by Rifian tribesmen. This incident led to the summoning of reinforcements from Spain itself. A series of skirmishes over the following weeks cost the Spanish over a thousand casualties. By September the Spanish Army had 40,000 troops in Northern Morocco and had occupied the tribal regions to the south and southeast of Melilla.
The military operations in Jebala, in the Moroccan West, began in 1911 with the Larache Landing.