Algeria: Battle of the Bens

Everyone was reaching for comparisons. The wife of a foreign diplomat described Algeria as a sort of "sophisticated Congo." Paris-Match suggested that dissident Mohammed ben Bella may well become another Castro.

The two opposing Moslem F.L.N. factions opened up on each other with everything but bullets. While moderate Premier Benyoussef Benkhedda tried to spread his influence from Algiers to the southeast, his bitter rival, radical Vice Premier ben Bella, entered western Algeria for a triumphal march to Oran. After a brief stop at Marnia, his birthplace near the Moroccan border, Ben Bella and his ever-lengthening motorcade drove on...

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