Algeria | Wilson Center

Algeria

Algeria’s Slim Chance for Civilian Rule

After twenty years in power, Algerian President Abdelaziz Boutefika is the latest Arab leader to succumb to a popular uprising of massive discontent, bowing on April 2 to the street and his own military’s demand that he resign immediately.  Four other Arab strongmen met the same fate for the same reason in 2011, and each time the result has been short-term political chaos (Tunisia and Egypt) or long-term civil war (Libya and Yemen).  

The Algerian Revolution and the Communist Bloc

CWIHP e-Dossier No. 62

The Algerian Revolution and the Communist Bloc: Evidence from the Algerian National Archives

 

by Pierre Asselin, Professor of History, Hawaii Pacific University
February 2015

 

American Policy in the Maghreb: Counterterrorism is Not Enough

U.S. policy toward the Maghreb countries is presently driven above all by security concerns. Although three of the four countries—Morocco, Tunisia, and Libya—have experienced considerable political change since 2011 and Algeria is on the verge of a succession crisis with potentially significant consequences, the United States is not deeply involved in these transitions. Exhausted and disappointed by failed nation-building efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States seems to be moving toward the opposite extreme, neglecting political transformations to focus on security.

U.S. Report on Religious Freedom in Middle East

            Blasphemy and apostasy laws were applied in a discriminatory manner in several Middle Eastern and North African countries in 2012, according to a new report by the U.S. State Department. “These laws are frequently used to repress dissent, to harass political opponents, and to settle personal vendettas,” Secretary of State Kerry said on May 20. In Saudi Arabia, activists were reportedly arrested and charged with apostasy and blasphemy. Under Egypt’s new constitution, prosecutors pursued cases against individuals for denigrating religion.

Learning Politics in Tunisia

Two years after the uprising that forced President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali into exile, Tunisians are slowly coming to grips with the reality of politics in a pluralist system where opposition is real and the outcome of political contestation is not predetermined. The process is slow and somewhat uncertain, and it would be premature to conclude that Tunisian politicians have fully embraced not only the concept of democracy but also its concrete implications.

Report: Female Workforce Participation 25 Percent in Mideast

            Women in the Middle East and North Africa are more educated than ever before, but their participation in the workface is 25 percent – about half of the world average, according to a new report by the World Bank. “Often what stands between women and jobs are legal and social barriers,” said Manuela Ferro, Director for Poverty Reduction and Economic Management in the MENA region. But even some educated women lack the relevant skills currently in demand.

Human Rights Watch: 2013 World Report

            In early February, Human Wrights watch released its new World Report. The following are excerpts from chapters on Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey and Yemen.

Algeria

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