Schlagwort-Archive: al Qaida Islamic Maghreb

Al-Qaida´s Abu Yahya Calls For Algerian Revolution

by Florian Flade

In a new video release, Al-Qaida´s Libyan ideologue Abu Yahya al-Libi calls for a Islamist uprising in Algeria to topple the regime of Abd al-Aziz Bouteflika who rules the North African country since 1999. The new 28-minute video speech is titled „Algeria and the Battle of Patience“.

Abu Yahya is seen sitting in front of a curtain, dressed in a white robe, talking about Algeria´s past, the French occupation and the need for the Muslims to get rid of the ruling regime.

„France has withdraw its army but France´s greed remains and her plans in Algeria live on like deadly poison“, the Al-Qaida commander claims. Abu Yahya further says that the revolution that has toppled the regimes of Tunisia, Egypt and Libya has to spread to Algeria in the wake of implementing a Shariah state.

The „Arab Spring“ did in fact not effect Algeria to the extent of a regime change. Eventhough Algerian police admitts there have been about 11,000 protests in the country in 2010, this year the Algerian people were not able to organize a uprising big enough to topple Bouteflika.

One reason might be the very vivid memories of Algeria´s long and bloody civil war. Political unrest and instability for many Algerians means violence, death and suffering. The status quo therefore is seen as a lesser evil.

On the other hand, the ruling Party „Front of the Socialist Forces (FFS)“ has shown signs of adapting to the changing situation within the country. The regime does not leave any space for opposition partys to act and reduced all the political elements in the country to be spectators of the regime´s policy.

„Plus ça change plus c’est la même chose“ – is a slogan shared by many Algerians when it comes to politics.

Even with the Jihadist element of the „Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb“ (AQIM) formerly the „Salafist Group of Preaching and Combat“ (GSCP) the latest Al-Qaida call for a Algerian revolution will not result in any political mass movement.

Tunisia´s Historic Revolution…Without The Jihadis

The main goal of the North African Islamist movements was and still is: oversthrowing the secular, Western-backed rulers and regimes of the Arab countries – a requirement for establishing a Sharia-based Taliban-style Islamic State. An overthrow of an Arab leader is a quite rare event in itself but an overthrow of a regime by the people is even rarer. This is just happened in Ben Ali´s Tunisia. Academics, doctors, lawyers and people of other professions took to the streets, a protest that resulted in the run-away of the President and its notorious family clan.

Human rights activists, political opposition and scores of unemployed youth demanded the resignation of President Ben Ali for years. Now their goal has been achieved within a few weeks of – partially – violent protest. But what about the other element of Tunisia´s opposition to the ruling family – the Islamists? They also worked for years to topple Ben Ali´s regime.

Blogger colleague Aaren Zelin has written about the question of Islamist´s involvement in Tunisia´s „Jasmin -Revolution“. He describes how the North-Africa terror network „Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb“ (AQIM) is trying to use the political situation in Tunisia and turning it into an Islamic Revolution – without any effect.

„The uprising, after all, fulfills a top jihadist goal, but it also rebukes their belief that only violent and pious struggle can bring down a man like Ben Ali“  – Aaron writes. Calls for Jihad were silenced when Tunisia´s people took to the streets. Radical Islam has not played any role in the historic revolution in this Maghreb-State – „In Tunisia at least, the jihadist call to arms has rarely seemed less relevant.“

Read Aaron´s article „Jihadists: The Wallflowers of the Tunisian Uprising“ here