Algeria

Algeria on fire

Issue section: 
Issue: 

In getting rid of their dictator of 20 years, Algerians showed the power they have. Chinedu Chukwudinma looks at the history of workers’ struggles and assesses the possibilities for the future.

Revolution has again struck North Africa as the mass protests in Algeria forced dictator Abdelaziz Bouteflika to resign on 2 April. Despite this victory, Algerians have continued to demonstrate and are now demanding the removal of the entire regime.

Assia Djebar (1936 - 2015)

Issue section: 
Issue: 
 Assia Djebar

Assia Djebar, one of Algeria's most gifted writers, died on 6 February. Sheila McGregor celebrates her life and her part in the struggle for independence.

Born as Fatima-Zohra Imalayène in Cherchell in 1936, Assia Djebar took her pen name to save her parents from embarrassment when she wrote her first novel, La Soif (Thirst).

Algeria's bitter struggle for freedom

Issue section: 
Author: 

Fifty years since Algerian independence Ian Birchall looks at the uprising that forced the French to leave

In July 1962 Algeria achieved independence after a bitter war lasting over seven years. Some 300,000 Algerians died to win their nation's freedom. The war was fought brutally on both sides, but the need for a violent independence struggle was deeply rooted in the violence French imperialism had imposed on Algeria for over a century. As philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre wrote, "It is not their violence, but ours, turned back."

Champion of the Wretched

Issue section: 
Author: 

Fifty years ago this month Algerian psychoanalyst and revolutionary Frantz Fanon died - just as his most famous book, The Wretched of the Earth, was published. Leo Zeilig looks back at Fanon's extraordinary life and the lessons his groundbreaking work has for us today

Frantz Fanon was born in Martinique in 1925; thirty six years later he was buried in Algeria. In his short life he became one of the greatest proponents of Algeria's extraordinary revolution.

Outside the Law

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

French Algerian director Rachid Bouchareb spoke to Simon Assaf about his new film on the Algerian war of independence, Outside the Law

The Algerian national liberation struggle plunged France and its Algerian colony into a bloody war that has scarred both countries. Rachid Bouchareb's Outside the Law is the story of Algerian immigrants to France who were drawn into the National Liberation Front (FLN), the Algerian national movement. The war, and the scale of the repression recently admitted by France, is part of a history France attempted to bury.

Algeria: torture last time

Issue section: 
Author: 

When Algerian journalist Henri Alleg published his account of being tortured at the hands of the French colonial regime it became an instant bestseller. Ian Birchall tells us why the book is still as relevant today as it was 50 years ago during the Algerian War of Independence.

More than 50 years ago France was fighting a vicious colonial war in Algeria. The enemy were so-called "terrorists", North African Muslims who wanted national independence. Many episodes from that war have striking parallels with the world today.

Henri Alleg was editor of Alger Républicain, the only daily newspaper in Algeria to oppose the French colonial regime, and a member of the Algerian Communist Party. In 1955 Alger Républicain was banned and the following year it was decided to intern most of its contributors. Alleg went into hiding.

Path of Greatest Resistance

Issue section: 
Author: 

Bush and Blair's denunciation of Iraqi insurgents as 'criminals' and 'terrorists' recalls the experience of the French Resistance and the Algerian war of independence.

There is nothing new about the situation in Iraq. Ever since imperial powers have imposed their rule on other peoples, there has been resistance. And since the occupying powers have superior weapons, those fighting back use unconventional methods, breaking the rules that their oppressors would like to force on them. This meant guerrilla fighting of some sort. Already in the 1840s a British military commander in India moaned that rebels were 'cruel bloodthirsty cowards' who hid and ran rather than give the British 'a little honest fighting'.

The Rebel's Weapon

Issue section: 

In 1961 Frantz Fanon, a leader of the Algerian National Liberation Front, wrote the inspirational book The Wretched of the Earth. French socialist, philosopher and writer Jean-Paul Sartre wrote an extended introduction to Fanon's important work. Here we reprint extracts from Sartre's essay calling on the French left to support the Algerian struggle and see it as their own.

Have the courage to read this book, for in the first place it will make you ashamed, and shame, as Marx said, is a revolutionary sentiment. As a European, I steal the enemy's book, and out of it I fashion a remedy for Europe. Make the most of it.

Their Struggle Belongs to the World

Issue section: 
Author: 

From June 1956 to October 1957 the Algerian liberation struggle was fought in the capital, Algiers. Tom Hickey looks at the history and its representation in The Battle of Algiers.

The Battle of Algiers represents one of the pivotal moments in the Algerian war of independence. Directed by Gillo Ponticorvo, it captures the social and political conditions of the nationalist revolution: the rationale for the use of terror by the nationalist forces, the logic that drove the French army of occupation to use torture, and the relationship between political and military considerations in conditions of war.

Subscribe to RSS - Algeria