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Political Writings$
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Simone de Beauvoir, Margaret A. Simons, and Marybeth Timmermann

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036941

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036941.001.0001

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Preface to Djamila Boupacha

Preface to Djamila Boupacha

(p.272) Preface to Djamila Boupacha
Political Writings

Simone de Beauvoir

, Marybeth Timmermann
University of Illinois Press

A twenty-three-year-old Algerian woman and liaison agent for the FLN was imprisoned, tortured, raped with a bottle by French military men, and it’s considered ordinary.1 Since 1954, in the name of suppressing rebellion, then of pacification, we are all accomplices of a genocide that has claimed over a million victims; men, women, old folks and children have been slaughtered: gunned down during search-raids, burned alive in their villages, throats slit or bellies ripped open, many tortured to death. Entire tribes have been left to starve and freeze, at the mercy of beatings and epidemics in the “relocation camps” which are in fact extermination camps—serving also as brothels to the elite soldiers—and where more than five hundred thousand Algerians currently await their death. During the course of the last few months, the press, including even the most circumspect papers, has been full of horror stories: assassinations, lynchings, violent racist attacks on Arab immigrants; manhunts in the streets of Oran; corpses by the dozen in Paris, hanging from trees in the Bois de Boulogne and along the banks of the Seine; maimed limbs and blown up heads; bloody All Saints Day in Algiers....

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