9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
This book taught me the true history of my country,
This review is from: Algeria: France's Undeclared War (Making of the Modern World) (Hardcover)
I think that the book provides a deep, complete and objective analysis of the Algerian War. I have never read such a comprehensive study on the issue and I hope that it will be translated into Arabic, Berber and French, and studied in all schools in Algeria and France. I wish I read it in the 1970s-1980s when I was eager to understand fully what happened as I was questioning many other historical accounts and interpretations of the Algerian War. Before reading this book, I also couldn't find balanced books that discuss the impact of the war on all Algerians, including French and the Jews. I didn't want to finish reading it but unfortunately it came to an end. I showed it to my students and keep recommending it to my friends.
Although the book went into too many details, it is easy to read as it is cleverly split into different sections. The writing style and the scientific analysis of the events are outstanding. The book also tries to discuss the discrepancies between the claims of the French and the Algerians, such as, for example the number of causalities in different atrocities, including the events of 8th May 1945.
However, I think that there are some issues that are missing and other claims that are difficult to verify. In particular, the book could have included, in addition to the revolts of Emir Abdelkader, the insurrections of Lala Fatma M'Soumeur and El Mokrani, on page 14. The claim that Amirouche has really committed the crime on 13-14 April 1956 in Ihadjedjen (stated on page 173) is controversial as the recent book by Said Saadi "Amirouche : Une vie, deux morts, un testament, une histoire d'Algérie" claims that he was not in the area. I think that one of the big achievements of Abbane Ramdane is his ability to unite all the Algerians behind the FLN, independently of their ethnicity and political affiliations. The book of Khalfa Mammeri provides a good analysis of such achievements. Finally, in the post independence Algeria, the book could have discussed more the revolts in the Kabylia region, well before the 1988 riots mainly in Algiers, because of the restrictions of freedom of speech.