My previous book review was dedicated to the now International Star Kamel Daoud. It was almost a year ago and, back then, Daoud was a LQO newspaper chronicler known by a few Algerians. Eleven months later and after some TV appearances in France, a lost Goncourt, a threat by a Salafi clown and a Goncourt First Novel Prize, Daoud has become Algeria’s best author and specialist in all social, Islamic and political questions… abroad.
I still believe that Daoud wouldn’t have been acclaimed that much (in France) and certainly not awarded a penny had he not written something related to Albert Camus and had his political opinions been different. For his novel is boring most of the time just like his chronicles (you can disagree) which are also sad and depressing (you must agree). Today Daoud Continue reading →
Yesterday was Bouteflika’s birthday. He is 78. The president threw a party to celebrate it and invited many guests. PoF source, who was among them, contacted us earlier this morning to share the below information. They made little sense and I cannot tell if it was because they were drunk (they sounded both drunk and tired) but they’ve always proven reliable. According to our source, the initial plan was to hold a bigger party. All Tlemcen was to be invited and the whole thing was supposed to last seven days and seven nights non-stop. But as crude oil price remained low, the party’s been reduced to a single night and only Nedroma people were invited. Even the huge fireworks had been cancelled. Continue reading →
One of my friends sent me a link to a Kabyle song they liked and asked me to translate the lyrics so they could understand their meaning. I did find the lyrics online (Google spares us a lot of efforts) and as I like the song myself I thought why not share it on the blog. Not only this; I admit that I lack the energy/motivation to write a proper post and wouldn’t like to see this blog vanish.
Last month, Europe and the Western world in general were ‘shocked’ by the terrorist attacks on journalists from the comic magazine Charlie Hebdo and the kosher supermarket. As usual following such events, we were graced by numerous ‘peaceful’ demonstrations and such like ‘democratic’ paraphernalia to mark the contrast between the civilized West and the barbarian Muslim world. Not to mention the huge mediatisation of the events. Many Western leaders gathered in Paris and participated in the demonstration. The slogan of the demonstration was ‘Je suis Charlie’ (I am Charlie). In the aftermath, Continue reading →
Al Huffington Post published yesterday an article about the Algerians living in the USA. I didn’t find the article particularly interesting (I don’t seem to find anything really interesting in the Huff Post) and I believed this article should have been in the online aggregator’s French version rather than in the Algerian (yet in French) one. But at least this article pushed me to write this post which I wanted to start a few weeks ago after I’d watched the interview given by Joan A. Polaschik, US ambassador to Algeria, to APS.
In the video above, Mrs. Polaschik says that her focus will be on three areas: promoting security and stability in our region, strengthening economic and commercial ties between the two countries, and strengthening the bonds between our two peoples. APS journalists were more interested in the former two and this is why I am dedicating this post to the latter item. Continue reading →
The video in the above link takes us back to earlier this year when Sellal justifies Bouteflika’s fourth term candidacy by the fact Angela Merkel was at her third term as chancellor and says Germany is not better than us. Sellal’s humour is famous (his latest being this one in Egypt) but the man was serious about the elections which led to Bouteflika’s “victory” despite his physical condition. Continue reading →
A majority of Algerians is glad that the country didn’t experience anything remotely close to the so-called Arab Revolution, despite some attempts here and there. Many, under the influence of the Wantoutrism effect, even take pride in having escaped countered the global conspiration against us.
But saying so means the country is in deep stagnation, or stability as the Algerian rulers would call it. You’d say stagnation – sorry, repeat after me, stability, stability, stability is better than violence and unrest and you wouldn’t be wrong but I still hate to think that we’re stuck and nothing is moving forward in Algeria. Also, I felt a bit jealous of all these countries that had their colour revolutions, tulips revolution, Jasmin revolution, umbrella revolution, etc. with symbolic places such as Tahrir or Maidan. So I looked again and guess what? Algeria has had its revolution too, the Ticket Revolution. Continue reading →
Seeing the policemen gathered in demonstrations these past days, many children in Ghardaia and Algiers might have shouted “Yemma la police!” just like the little Omar did in the excellent series “The Fire” based on Mohamed Dib‘s famous trilogy.
Police presence in demonstrations is not unusual in Algeria. I have mentioned in my previous post the many protests taking place in the country and, almost every time, the authorities made sure these protests didn’t go out of control and contained them with an important police force. The policemen presence was sometimes so overwhelming that their numbers looked bigger than the demonstrators’ (cf. last April’s Barakat demonstrations).
The policemen’s repression and sticks were always there regardless of Continue reading →
Last month, the inhabitants of the city of Bejaia and most of its valley have been left without tap water. It appeared that the water was blocked by the people living near the Tichy Haf dam. These people wanted to complain about their village’s road’s poor state. The same dam was blocked in 2012 by another village because they wanted access to natural gas, stable electric power and… tap water.
And dams are not the only to be blocked in Bejaia. The RN9 (linking Bejaia with Setif) and RN26 (linking Bejaia with Bouira) roads are blocked every now and then. Blocking a road is so easy and safe: You want a school, you want democracy, you want to get rid of your mayor or neighbour, your girlfriend dumped you? Worry not, grab a wheel or two, a friend if possible and put them in the middle of the road. You don’t even have to burn them. And worry even less, the police and gendarmerie won’t bother you. Continue reading →