HISTORY: BIRTH AND EVOLUTION OF THE NATIONALIST MOVEMENT
The economic, social and moral consequences of colonization had a heavy impact on traditional Algerian society, causing imbalances and resentments from which the movements of political demand drew strength, first of all that of the Young Algerians (1911) who demanded a more rapid implementation of the assimilation. From the first postwar period to the 1954 uprising, the Algerian nationalist movement in its various components went through a slow and profound evolution that led it from the initial moderate positions, inclined to collaboration with France, to radical demands, the premise of the armed struggle. Among the exponents of moderate nationalism, which demanded the implementation of assimilation, were the emir Khālid, nephew of ʽAbd al-Qādir, Ferḥāt ʽAbbās, organizer of an Association of Algerian Muslim students. Of a more radical attitude and initially influenced by the French Communist Party was the North African Star organization (1923), founded by Messali Hadj among the emigrants in the Paris region, which became the Algerian Popular Party (PPA) in 1937. In 1931 the Council of the Ulema of Algeria was formed which, chaired by ʽAbd al-Ḥamīd Bādīs, called the Algerian people to the values of the religious and cultural tradition, the basis for the affirmation of their dignity. The impossibility, even on the part of the government in the popular front in power in France in 1936, to implement even modest and gradual reforms, which were opposed by the French of Algiers organized since 1920 around the Congress of the French elect of Algeria, little by little he also pushed the originally moderate nationalist movements to abandon the assimilationist perspective and move towards the request for a regime of protectorate or union with France on the basis of internal autonomy. government of Vichy, concluded agreements with representatives of the United States, who on the other hand also established contacts with representatives of the Resistance to ensure support for the allied landing on November 8, 1942. After a complex evolution of relations between the various exponents of the currents making headed by Giraud and De Gaulle, the French Committee of National Liberation was created in Algiers on 3 June 1943, later recognized as a provisional government, headed by General De Gaulle. In those critical years for France, the Algerians hoped in vain to obtain concessions. On 10 February 1943 the “Manifesto to the Algerian people” was published, a denunciation of colonialism and demand for effective participation of Muslims in the government of their country; the “Manifesto” was followed by the exposition of a precise program of reforms to which the French authorities did not heed. The increasingly conscious and accentuated nationalistic aspirations and the growing discontent with the economic difficulties led to violent and bloody riots in eastern Algeria in 1945, repressed with extreme energy. The French Parliament, reaffirming the assimilationist program now rejected by Algerian nationalism, approved on 20 September 1947 a new organic Statute for Algeria (French overseas departments, endowed with financial autonomy). From that moment the preparation for the uprising was intensified. The anti-French guerrilla warfare began on the night of November 1, 1954: Ahmed Ben Bella. Initially underestimated by the French leaders, the guerrilla organization, which received aid from Arab countries, could spread to most of Algeria, binding the local population more and more to itself, with propaganda or threats; the attacks and demonstration actions multiplied, highlighting the impossibility for France to control the country. According to listofusnewspapers, the French of Algeria, which a growing sense of insecurity and distrust of the central government led to organize counter-terrorist actions, on the other hand stiffened in the intransigent defense of French Algeria.
HISTORY: THE 1958 UPRISING AND INDEPENDENCE
The dramatic Algerian situation, which had repercussions in France with serious political-parliamentary difficulties, resulted in Algiers, on 13 May 1958, in the insurrection of the intransigent nationalists (ultras) which led to the crisis of the IV Republic and the coming to power of General De Gaulle. While the Provisional Government of the Algerian Republic (GPRA) was constituted in Tunis on 19 September, De Gaulle announced on 3 October the “Constantine Plan”, a grandiose five-year program of economic and social development, and tried to slowly start a solution difficult problem. However, he had to take into account the energy with which the residents and the French military in Algeria resisted any prospect of abandonment and had to face, in April 1961, a further reactionary attempt (conspiracy of the generals) – manifested through the rebellion of some elements of the ‘army led by Challe, Zeller, Jouhaud and Salan – whose failure later led to the OAS (Organization of the Secret Army) the forces that had violently opposed the decisions of the French government on the Algerian problem. Finally, in February 1962 De Gaulle explicitly recognized Algeria’s right to self-determination; a month later, France and GPRA reached the Evian agreements. The independence of Algeria was proclaimed on 3 July 1962. Ahmed Ben Bella was proclaimed President of the Republic and head of the single party FLN (National Liberation Front), but was deposed three years later (June 1965) by a coup d’etat which brought to power a Council of the Revolution chaired by Colonel Houari Boumedienne, which gave impetus to the program of socio-economic reforms and placed the country among the non-aligned within the progressive Arab current. Upon Boumedienne’s death (1978), the Party Congress appointed Bendjedid Chadli as president (February 1979). At the beginning of his third term (1989), faced with the deterioration of the country’s economic and social situation, he introduced a reform of the Constitution: the new charter offered guarantees for a multi-party system and eliminated the reference to “socialism”, reducing to the role of the army is purely defensive. The new Constitution was approved in February 1989 by over 73% of Algerians, demonstrating that a strong area of intolerance to the “socialist” regime had grown in the country. Faced with the persistence of a serious economic crisis, political reforms alone did not succeed in regaining the consensus of Algerian society for a management group which nevertheless attempted to renew itself. The general rehearsal of this situation took place during the administrative elections of 1990, the first that took place freely in Algeria from the moment of its independence. The Islamic Salvation Front (FIS), strongly influenced by the fundamentalists, won the consultations by winning over 54% of the votes. In this way a phase of great instability and bloody clashes with the political opposition was opened, which was increasingly hegemonized by the fundamentalists.