More than a year ago, a movement called Barakat was created to protest against Bouteflika’s fourth term. Here I have to say that I hadn’t believed in this movement which failed to gather the people around it. Anyway, the movement’s members demonstrated a few times in Algiers and the police was always there to stop/arrest them. At that time, Ennahar newspaper and TV campaigned for the sick man who’s become the country’s president for the fourth time and had therefore been very harsh on Barakat. As can be expected from media which lack professionalism and deontology (let’s be clear, this is not specific to Ennahar), Ennahar used all means to discredit the movement (cf. this video on Amira Bouraoui) and, as an information outlet, never protested against the fact this movement and other Algerian opponents were denied their right to demonstrate and were faced with violent police forces.
Today, we no longer hear of Barakat and we hear even less the president they fought, and the police can still use violence whenever it felt like it. So yesterday, the police assaulted two EnnaharTV journalists in Bechar while they were doing their job. One would expect the democrat champions to protest and show solidarity with the journalists but that would be being coherent… Instead, a (former?) member of Barakat tweeted (joked ?) about it and said he stood with the police. Click on the above image and you’ll see some Algerian Tweeples’ reaction all agreeing with him. So yes, if you believe a newspaper is trash and it supports your opponents and it has been harsh on you then forget your democrat’s principles and applaud when its journalists are prevented by the police from doing their job.
We keep hearing people from the Islamist side speak about and criticize those Algerian men and especially women who are supposedly influenced by the West, who have forgotten their traditions and religion, who soiled the pure Algerian country and whom “we” should banish in a way or another. This is of course a non tolerant discourse but what do you expect from those ugly Islamists?!
Then you read an editorial in El Fadjr newspaper written by Hadda Hazem, a democrat and a feminist and, well, you name it. The text, titled “the price of patriotism” tells us the story of a woman who led a great and wonderful life in Canada (I spare you all the exaggerations) and, out of patriotism, decided to come back to Algeria “to help out”. The thing is the woman has been mugged and is now staying in her house afraid of getting out. See you idiots, she comes back home to help you and you mug her… And then, out of the blue, writes a lot of gibberish including the below which says something like ‘our pure and clear beaches and the blue of their skies are now soiled by jilbabs, burkinis and beards”.I guess you’ve noted the similarities between the wording used by this democrat and those Islamists she hates and whom she believes to be worse than her.
This is not new in Algeria but these two examples happened both yesterday so I couldn’t not notice. And I keep wondering when those pretending to be democrats and liberals would really be up to their pretensions.
The guy from Barakat writes in his bio on his blog, “Laïc, anti islamiste et anti cons qui se coincent entre les deux” translating into “Secular, anti Islamist and anti idiots that get stuck in between“. The man tells you that he’s against you in all cases except if you are like him. And you are even an idiot if you are neither with him nor with the Islamists.
I am tired of this binary and unidimensional representation of the Algerian landscape. I say enough with it. I say it in English and, my contribution to the dardja in school debate (in which this binary representation is the norm) , also in dardja, so barakat, yezzi, khlass, YONAMARE!