ALGERIA: It's Here!

In the desert town of Touggourt, French officials and a sprinkling of carefully chosen Algerians stood in a railroad freight yard ringed by three fences of barbed wire and guarded by soldiers. "This achievement will astonish the world," said Max Lejeune, France's Minister of the Sahara. Engineers threw open the valves of a 6-in. "baby" pipeline, technicians stepped forward to fill souvenir bottles. "It's here! It's here!" shouted jubilant officials. The first oil from the Sahara was on its way to France.

The French had gone to considerable trouble and expense to make the celebration possible. Sahara oil has become...

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