Lots of pretty bad Anglophone commentary on #Algeria these days, but this one in Newsweek has got to be (among) the worst.

A thread.


I’m a strong believer in sticking in your lane.

@GordonGChang should probably have done so.

His latest on #Algeria is all over the road and recklessly so.

Let’s start with the second sentence. First, #Algeria didn’t "create" the crisis with #Morocco

Second, I’m not sure Algiers sees it as much of a crisis.

Never a good sign when the first expert quoted on a piece about #Algeria is from #Morocco

(In fact, no Algerian experts are quoted in the entire piece. Because why even bother.)

OK. Moving on.

The dispute between #Morocco and #Algeria is important because “Algeria is becoming a pawn for two disruptive powers, #Russia and #China.”

I don’t know too much about Algerian diplomacy, but from what I can tell, it’s hardly ever been a pawn or done another power’s bidding.

In fact, quite the opposite: #Algeria never does what anyone wants it to, much to everyone’s frustration.



Here we are! Western Sahara.

The Trump administration’s Western Sahara stance, “effectively block[ed] Algeria’s access to the Atlantic Ocean.” Err what?

I thought this canard had long been plucked and cooked up in a juicy cassoulet.

Oh. Lordy.

Going downhill fast.

“Morocco removing…armed elements of the Polisario.”

Where did Morocco “remove” them to?

But fear not! Their removal “opened up trade routes with #Mauritania and sub-Saharan Africa.”

I’m assuming that Mr. Chang thought the Morocco-Mauritania border was closed by Polisario for decades (not days) prior to the Trump administration’s decision to recognize Moroccan sovereignty over the disputed territory?


Jeez, and the article can’t even get things right when it is almost right.

No, Algeria’s economy has not “been sliding since 2018.”

It’s been sliding since 2014.


Mr. Chang should also have updated his piece.

Whether or not Algeria’s leadership is “lashing out,” it certainly has more than “only one direction in which it can do so.”

The Quai d’Orsay would like a word.

Ah. Here we go!

#Algeria is “now laying the groundwork for an attack on #Morocco.”

Oh, FFS.

(Not the Front des Forces Socialistes, really “for f*ck’s sake.”)

No, Algeria is not going to attack Morocco. It doesn’t need to. Sahara Blend is at US$83.73/bbl. Pas mal!

“Algeria has acquired six Kilo-class submarines if it ever wanted to try to impose some kind of blockade or mine Moroccan ports."

Or, I don’t know, if it ever wanted to intercept an Israeli submarine in its territorial waters. Or whatever...

Wait, so it’s menacing when #Algeria buys anti-tank missiles, but it’s NOT menacing when #Morocco buys tanks?

Isn’t Morocco the one going around “removing” people?

I’m confused.


This whole quote from a former Trump official is just too good:

“General Secretary Xi seeks dominance over Africa, and Morocco stands in the way of his master plan. That's why Xi is weaponizing Algiers, as Communist China's client state, to threaten Morocco.”

Hey, @Lamamra_dz , Did you know that #Algeria is a client state of “Communist China” and Beijing’s attack dog against #Morocco?

Neither did I!

@Lamamra_dz Hey, now!

I think we're coming to the finale!

#Algeria is a “ticking time bomb” and “the most unstable country in North Africa after #Libya.”

@Lamamra_dz Really?

Because last I looked the Algerian government has been pretty stable.

Sh*t, even the government’s critics say that the New #Algeria is exactly the same as the Old Algeria.

And the Old Algeria was pretty dang old!

And there you have it, folks.

Some pretty ludicrous, ungrounded, hysterical, alarmist stuff from @GordonGChang

It’s fine to be anti-China. I don’t have a dog in that fight.

But, for crying out loud, don’t drag in another country that you have never visited and about which you know nothing in order to try to advance your agenda.

That’s irresponsible.

You should know better.


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