Through Algerian eyes, Palestine in 2021 is a vision of Algeria before 1962, before independence from French colonial occupation.
Palestinians’ fate of mass killing and ethnical cleansing, lands’ confiscation and forced exile, imprisonment and torture, racism and apartheid has a familiar feeling of déjà vu for Algerians.
When France occupied Algeria in 1830, it became, by decree, part of France, a land for settler colonialism. Colonial authority welcomed millions of European settlers on the land of Algeria while it was ethnically cleansed from its legitimate owners.
In order to make room for new French settlers, Algerians, the owners of the land, were supposed to disappear… in silence.
And colonial France did its best to make us disappear by any means possible by any crimes against humanity possible. Consequently, colonial France killed, massacred or forced to exile whoever dared resist occupation. Entire tribes were annihilated and their lands were confiscated to be given to newly come settlers. Insurgents were hunt down, imprisoned and tortured, their houses destroyed, their families confined in concentration camps… Apartheid regime ruled in cities. Algerians were forbidden to live in European neighbourhoods and were allowed to settle only in shantytowns at the suburbs. Even beaches, were open exclusively for European settlers, and forbidden to Arabs … and dogs.
Despite all this endured oppression, Algerians did not disappear from their land nor did their religion, language, culture and identity. With an outstanding resilience, our people resisted subjugation. Since 1830 each generation bequeathed the struggle against french colonial occupation to the next generation, until, a century later; millions of martyrs later, we finally won our independence in 1962.
At the end, we Algerians did not disappear, but the French settlers … did. They did disappear from our land.
Because, we Algerians, look at Palestinians’ struggle through the lens of our own struggle for liberation from French colonial occupation, we believe that Palestinians’ resistance against colonial occupation of their land is legitimate. We have no doubt that the remarkable resilience of the Palestinian people, their ability to resist, generation after generation, since 1948, Zionist colonial occupation of their land with courage and determination, will finally lead them to victory and independence…
… to liberate Palestine… all Palestine.
With the will of God, Palestinians will not disappear from their land … as Algerians did not… but illegitimate Zionists, racist settlers will surely do as French settlers did disappear from the land of Algeria.
Photo credits DZ and PL flags DZ flag in Jerusalem