Algeria: The One-Day War

After weeks of bluster and sporadic bloodshed, Algeria's Politburo Chief Ahmed ben Bella last week finally ordered his troops to seize the new nation's rebellious capital.

Within hours, motorized columns carrying 16,000 regular troops were rolling northward along three roads toward Algiers. Then they ran into roadblocks set up by defiant troops of Wilaya 4, the military district that includes Algiers and the surrounding region. As their trucks squealed to a halt, Ben Bella's troops embraced their foes at the barricades and sat down to drink coffee together. "Dear brother," one of...

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