This week's editor

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Adam Ramsay is co-editor of OurKingdom.

Algeria post-election: The democratic struggle continues

Steadfast in the face of a witch-hunt and physical attacks against their members, the Barakat citizen's movement will not give up the call for peaceful democratic transition, Karima Bennoune reports on the post-election challenges that lie ahead.

Why these Algerian elections are essential

Caught between the dynamic of the Arab Springs and that of the destabilization of the Sahel, the Algerian trajectory remains profoundly uncertain. Since its stability is essential for Europe, the stakes of the April presidential elections are high. 

Algeria’s presidential elections: a litany of failures by the political class has wasted a golden opportunity for change

Taking place sixty years since the Algerian revolution, today’s presidential elections presented the perfect occasion for the country to turn a new leaf after decades of mismanagement and stagnation. Instead, a litany of political and moral failures by the political class has turned a golden opportunity into a wasted one.

North African diversities: Algeria in flux

Algeria’s circles of power and their relationship to a complex society and history are hard to grasp. Francis Ghilès describes his own route to understanding the country in the post-independence era, when the heavy legacy of the past mixed with the confident idealism of the present.

Algeria: voices for democratic transition cannot be silenced

In the six weeks since the citizens Barakat movement for a free and democratic Algeria was founded it has moved from cyberspace onto the streets. The voices calling for democratic transition are being heard. Pro-democracy activist Louiza Chennoub spoke to Karima Bennoune

The birth of the Barakat movement in Algeria: Every generation needs hope

"The government did not expect there would be such a vigilant civil society. They thought we were dead, but we were in convalescence".  Ahead of next week's elections, Amira Bouraoui co-founder of the Barakat (Enough!) movement, told Karima Bennoune about the new citizens' movement to establish democracy in Algeria

Algerian elections and the Barakat movement: "We are saying no to submission"

President Bouteflika and his team broke the people as a whole and Algerians as citizens. Mustapha Benfodil, founding member of the new Barakat ( Enough!) Movement, spoke to Karima Bennoune about the awakening of the tradition of activism and the search for consensual politics.

“We have managed to draw the Algerian regime into a confrontation with its own people”

Sidali Kouidri FilaliSidali Kouidri Filali is a 35 year old civil servant and blogger who has chosen to campaign with Barakat to « defend his country ». He estimates that this time, the Algerian regime, trapped in its own “cocoon”, will not survive the contestation:  an interview.

For Aziz Smati on Valentine's Day

In honour of the determination of people like Algerian TV producer, Aziz Smati, who was shot exactly twenty years ago today, we must support all those who wield song against suicide belt, and wage art against fundamentalism, writes Karima Bennoune

Pour Aziz Smati, pour la Saint Valentin

Pour rendre hommage à la détermination de gens comme le producteur Algérien Aziz Smati, qui était victime d’un attentat il y a exactement 20 ans, il nous faut soutenir tous ceux qui opposent des chansons aux ceinture d’explosifs et luttent par l’art contre l’intégrisme, écrit Karima Bennoune

Bring it on! Russell Brand and revolution

The revolutionary left denounces Russell Brand, but the poor know he is right. His lack of a proper alternative doesn't hurt his analysis of what is wrong. People must realise how many skills are available on the street that should be used to replace the old, corrupt system.

Seeking safety in Algeria: Syrian refugee women’s resilience

For many Syrian women in Algeria, the gendered experience of violence and displacement has been compounded by the discrimination they now face as women refugees, says Latefa Guemar.

This week's window on the Middle East - November 5, 2013

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, Orientalism and decentralized repression: the case of Egypt.

Algerian-Moroccan relations: between tensions and hopes

How the two sides can find a workable arrangement that doesn’t look like a climb-down by either party remains to be seen, but as things stand, the ingredients for further escalation are all too present. 

This week's window on the Middle East - October 25, 2013

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, Egypt's most powerful man tries to tame the media.

Algeria: Bouteflika strikes back

As next year’s presidential elections loom larger on the national horizon, the country seems to be heading towards a political non-event.

Your fatwa does not apply here

Democratic and secular voices in Muslim majority countries have too often been sacrificed by the left in the west in the name of anti-imperialism and identity politics. The authoritarian movements of the far right, which democrats of the South oppose, must be recognized for what they are, Karima Bennoune tells Deniz Kandiyoti.

Tunisia’s turning point

Tunisia’s second high-profile political assassination highlights the gravest shortcoming of the nascent Islamist government: the inability to contain the violence that increasingly threatens Tunisia’s fragile transition  - a violence set to divide loyalties and destroy social cohesion, foreclosing any prospects of a viable democracy or a stable society.

What Algeria 1992 can, and cannot, teach us about Egypt 2013

In the weeks after the 1991 elections, official Algerian rhetoric too was replete with appeals to the popular will and the promises of a swift and total return to democracy. Promises that, two decades on, have yet to be fulfilled. 

Algeria: the real lessons for Egypt

For all its problems, Algeria never became an Islamic state. Like Algerian progressives in the 1990s, Egyptian progressives now have to carve out the space to construct a credible alternative under the shield of the new transitional process, and simultaneously challenge the military’s human rights abuses

This week's window on the Middle East - July 10, 2013

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, What Algeria 1992 can, and cannot, teach us about Egypt 2013

Algeria 1992 and Egypt 2013: the moral costs

While there are too many differences between the two historical contexts for us to panic, the parallels are too numerous to ignore. An excerpt from the longer version of this article – for which, see here.

Algeria twenty years on: words do not die

This year marks the twentieth anniversary of the Algerian jihadists war on culture. Those who waged the intellectual struggle against fundamentalism in Algeria throughout the 1990s received little support internationally. Karima Bennoune pays tribute to those who fell in the culturicide, and warns of the urgent need to remember 

Algérie vingt ans plus tard : les mots ne meurent pas

Cette année marque le vingtième anniversaire de la guerre menée par des djihadistes algériens contre la culture. Karima Bennoune rend hommage à ceux qui sont tombés dans ce culturicide et appelle à l’urgente la nécessité de ne pas les oublier.

Algeria: When the Rivers Turned Black

Fundamentalist mass murder of Algerian people of letters in the 1990s was an intellectocide, in the tradition of totalitarian culture wars. Today, official limits on expression benefit fundamentalist ideas. This is the second death of Algerian intellectuals, says Mustapha Benfodil

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