Algeria Celebrates

Fireworks above Sidi Fredj,in Algiers, 4 July 2012. (Photo Louafi Larbi. Reuters)

A different 4 July fireworks: this one happened on the evening of 4 July in Algiers to start the celebration of today’s (5 July) 50th anniversary of Independence. Algeria will celebrate for a whole year, the government has so ordered.  No comments: it would take a full book-length essay to so much as approach the complexity, the joys, the horrors of those fifty years. After the state-ordered fireworks (from China), the (Lebanese) entertainment and mantle for president Bouteflika (how old, he? who was already active during the 8-year war of independence… & still runs the show), after all that, whereto? For when the Algerian spring? (Though the Algerians, having seen  in the late eighties how a slight “democratic” opening can bring in the one organized force worse than the 1-party systen, namely the religious fanatics, which in their case led to a decade of insane blood-letting, are weary of such possibilities. ) Which reminds me of one of the great Algerian’s writers — poet & novelist Kateb Yacine’s — “last testament,” a warning that still needs to be heeded even as a active search for more pluralistic democratic means of governing need to be fought for.


Ps. Just found the video below which shows the “mantle” mentioned above & more details of the on-going celebrations:


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1 Response

  1. Poo says:

    Whether there is a god/God? or not He/She would be best advised to keep his/her people out of government. Good government requires efficient and economical administration. Good religion requires faith. Who really has any faith in the administration of government these days?Congrats to Algeria but look ahead. The past is dead and “sorry” is merely a word albeit not a 4 letter one.

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