Algeria: The Government Starts Another Revolution

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September 19, 2007: So far this month, there have been four terrorist bombings, leaving over fifty dead. The police have made arrests, and believe that a group of Islamic radicals based in mosques, which had been recruiting suicide bombers for Iraq, is largely responsible. The government doesn't like to go around raiding mosques and arresting clergy, but it's obvious that there are still some imams who believe violence is the only way to fix the countries problems. The government isn't making much progress with the economy, with most young men (under 30) are unemployed, and there's a severe housing shortage. The sad thing is, that a religious dictatorship wouldn't help. Iran has one, and still has the unemployment and housing problems. The clergy are as corrupt as the politicians, once they are in power. It's the corruption and lack of civic spirit that causes the economic stagnation. That's why West European corporations prefer to establish new factories in East Europe or Asia. The Middle East and Africa are too corrupt and chaotic for businesses to flourish. The leaders in Algeria, and the rest of Africa, refuse to recognize this, that they are the problem.

Meanwhile, down in Mali, a rebellion by Tuareg tribesmen, who refused to accept a peace deal last year, continues out of control. One army base, near the Algerian border, is cut off because the rebels have mined the few roads in the area. But the army is slowly moving in, while the besieged base is re-supplied by air. The government calls the remaining rebels "bandits," and there's a certain truth to that. The Tuareg have long lived by their own law, and smuggling and raiding. It is feared that some of the tribes have helped Islamic terrorist groups, either for money, or just to further antagonize the government. The Tuareg tribes are present throughout eastern Mali, southern Algeria and western Niger. The rebellion is centered in Mali because the government there has regularly lied to the Tuareg, and reneged on promises.

 

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