Algeria: Blood on the Sand

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October 27, 2006: Now Algerian Islamic terrorists are fighting turf battles with tribes in adjacent nations. This month, about a dozen Algerian Islamic terrorists and Tuareg tribesmen have been killed in skirmishes in neighboring Mali. While Algerian Islamic terrorists have been defeated, there are nearly a thousand of them still active inside Algeria and adjacent countries. Many have set up camps in nations adjoining Algerias southern border, which is in the Sahara desert. Here, there are long borders with Mali (1,376 kilometers), Mauritania (463 kilometers, and Niger (956 kilometers). American Special Forces have been training troops in some of these adjacent countries, on counter-terrorism techniques, and how to more effectively patrol these long borders.

In Mali, the Algerian GSPC terrorists have been feuding with Tuaregs tribesmen belonging to the Democratic Alliance for Change (DAC), a former rebel group which is no longer at war with the Mali government, but is still around as a political organization. The DAC and GSPC have been shooting at each other, and each death generates a retaliatory attacks. The Tuaregs are related to the Berber peoples of North Africa, who are thought to be a branch of the same people who lived in ancient Egypt. The Tuaregs and Arabs don't get along, which is one of the causes of the battles with the GSPC groups who have moved into the border area. Another cause is the GSPC being labeled a terrorist group by the United States. The Tuaregs noted the U.S. providing assistance to the Mali armed forces, and did not want to be tagged as allies of Islamic terrorists.

October 12, 2006: An FIS politician was shot dead in the capital. This appears to be a deliberate attack, and may indicate a feud within the FIS, which is an Islamic conservative group that has made peace with the government. In the past, radical factions split off from the FIS, to become Islamic terrorists.

September 21, 2006: The merger of the Algerian Islamic terrorist group GSPC, into al Qaeda, now provides GSPC more resources in exile, while providing al Qaeda with hundreds of experienced terrorists. Thousands of GSPC operatives have fled Algeria for refuge in Europe and North America. While most have given up Islamic terrorism, some have not. Increasingly, counter-terrorism operations are coming across Algerians.

 

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