A 70-Year-Old Cold Case: Assassination in Algiers

From MEI Editor's Blog Tue Dec 25 2012, 01:34:00

Today, Christmas Eve, marks the 70th anniversary of an assassination in Algiers in 1942 that still is veiled in mystery, speculation, and conspiracy theories: though there has never been any dispute about who pulled the trigger. And though set in an Arab country, these conspiracy theories are not the product of Arab coffeehouse gossip at all. All the players are European or American.

Christmas Eve, 1942: only a few weeks after the Allied Operation Torch landings in French North Africa in November, the Allies have consolidated their hold on Morocco and Algeria, and are gearing up to battle the Germans for Tunisia. They had gained control of Vichy-controlled Morocco and Algeria in part by cutting deals with the local Vichy leadership and with Admiral Jean Louis Xavier François Darlan, former head of the French Navy and until the Torch landings Vice President of the Council in Vichy France, second only to Marshal Petain and Minister of Defense, Interior, and Foreign Affairs. By sheer chance Darlan had been visiting his ailing son in Algiers when the Allies landed, and he proceeded to maneuver to proclaim himself as High Commissioner of North Africa. In that capacity he won recognition from the Allied commander, General Eisenhower. Instead of becoming a prisoner of war, he found himself running the place with the Allies' blessing. This infuriated the local French resistance, it infuriated Charles de Gaulle and the Free French, and it did not sit well at all with Winston Churchill and the British,who unlike the Americans had never recognized the Vichy regime.

Admiral Darlan

[view whole blog post ]
 See More    |     Report Abuse

You might also be interested in the following news stories:

Burkina Faso:   Tahar Cheriaa, à l'ombre du baobab - L'homme qui rêvait du cinéma en Noir et Blanc (news)
L'Observateur Paalga
26 February 2017

Le documentaire Tahar Cheriaa, à l'ombre du baobab, de Mohamed Challouf était très attendu à Ouagadougou. Il a été projeté au ciné Nerwaya dans ... [read more]

Africa:   Tunisia to Participate in Joint Military Exercises With France, U.S. and Germany (news)
Forum on China-Africa Cooperation
24 February 2017

The Tunisian army has scheduled a series of joint military exercises in 2017, with the collaboration of some European countries and the United States, Belhassen Oueslati, spokesman of Tunisian Defense ... [read more]

Tunisie:   Le Parlement adopte la loi sur la dénonciation de la corruption (news)
Radio France Internationale
24 February 2017

Le Parlement tunisien a approuvé mercredi soir la loi sur la dénonciation de la corruption, un texte très attendu, six ans après le soulèvement contre la dictature ... [read more]

blogAfrica is allAfrica.com's platform to help you keep an ear on the African blogosphere. We draw diverse voices from around the world who post regularly and insightfully about African issues. Bloggers, submit your blog's rss-feed!