September 12, 2013: Strategy Page
Over the last four months some 12,000 troops have been sent to the Tunisian border. There, sixty new outposts and small bases were established and have apparently succeeded in preventing any of the Islamic terrorists active just across the border from entering Algeria. Tunisian forces have been searching for this group (of at least 30 armed men) but have only encountered them a few times since January. The terrorists have staged some bombings and ambushes but have apparently devoted most of their efforts to not getting found. Algeria fears that if the Tunisian forces get too close the Islamic terrorists will try to escape via Algeria. Some of the Tunisian terrorists are believed to have been men who were in northern Mali and fled the French-led January offensive.
The government has come out in opposition to any foreign intervention in the Syrian civil war. Algeria has long called for an end to violence in Syria, but only through negotiation. While many members of the Algerian dictatorship would like to see the Assad family retain power in Syria, it is more important to keep the "Arab Spring" movement out of Algeria. So far, the "old revolutionaries" (the families that led the 1950s war against the French colonial government) continue to run Algeria, and exploit it for their own benefit. This has been going on since the French left in the early 1960s. They do this via rigged elections and a very efficient security force. Using government power to cripple opposition parties does not always work. For example, in 1992 Islamic parties won an election that would have given them control of the government. The military staged a coup to halt that, which triggered fifteen years of Islamic terrorism. Although the Islamic terrorists were defeated, they were not destroyed, and a few hundred terrorists and supporters keep the killing going, if just barely. While the government has the edge, as long as the nation is run by an unpopular dictatorship, there will continue to be unrest.
September 10, 2013: Algerian Islamic terrorist Mokhtar Belmokhtar has shown up in a new video, refuting claims that he was killed. Belmokhtar is infamous for organizing the January raid on a natural gas facility in southern Algeria that got 70 people killed (including all the attackers). Last month he announced the formation of a new Islamic terrorist group ( Al Mourabitoun) that merged African Islamic terrorists (mostly from Mauritania) with the largely Algerian and other Arab men Belmokhtar had been leading. Belmokhtar likes to let people believe he is invincible. That began when Belmokhtar survived fighting Russians in Afghanistan during the 1980s. After that he fought, and lost, an Islamic terrorist uprising in Algeria during the 1990s. After that he joined al Qaeda and carried out several attacks. Last year he split from al Qaeda and formed another Islamic terror group in Mali. He soon had to flee the French-led invasion of northern Mali and is now believed to be in Niger or Libya.
September 8, 2013: In two incidents 110 and 50 kilometers east of the capital security forces killed two Islamic terrorists. Weapons and ammo were seized in both incidents.
September 5, 2013: In a rural village 300 kilometers east of the capital some 300 people demonstrated about water shortages outside a government building. Police were called and 19 people were arrested while breaking up the crowd. There are more demonstrations like this as people demand more from their corrupt and often incompetent government.
August 31, 2013: Tunisia announced restrictions on border crossings with Algeria and Libya. Local authorities would have to vouch for anyone coming in or going out. This is all about preventing Islamic terrorists up north in the Atlas Mountains from getting out and for stopping anyone from Libya coming to the aid of these terrorists.
August 28, 2013: Three soldiers were killed and four wounded west of the capital (Ain Defla province) by a roadside bomb. The army patrol was searching the coastal hills for Islamic terrorists believed hiding there.
August 25, 2013: Just across the border in Mali French troops arrested a senior al Qaeda leader (Mousbaa Nadir) who was thought to be hiding in Algeria.