Saturday, November 10, 2012

From Algiers began the road to the liberation of France, Europe, and the World

70th anniversary of the Allied landings in North Africa

Dozens of people, mostly from the diplomatic community accredited in Algiers, took part yesterday in a ceremony jointly organized by the US and U K embassies at the Military cemetery of Dély Ibrahim in Algiers.

The ceremony was held in order to commemorate Operation Torch dated  November 8, 1942, during which more than 100,000 Allied troops landed in North Africa. The graves are so well aligned and the protocol was well set.  It was indeed a military ceremony. The Algerian Republican Guard took part to this ceremony.
Most of the 527 soldiers who are buried in the cemetery of Dély Ibrahim are mostly British, but there are also citizens of the Commonwealth (Australians, Canadians, New Zealanders, Indians). Their names are Fletcher, Scott Hancock, or Jarvis. They came from far to die on Algerian soil. Their graves tell a page of our history. Several speeches  were then delivered to the memory of the soldiers killed in the fighting against the Nazi and Vichy regimes.
U.S. Ambassador Henry S. Ensher has, from the outset, said that this celebration is to cultivate the memory of one of the largest operations of World War II. For his part, Ambassador of United Kingdom in Algeria, Martyn Keith Roper, chose to recite a poem in honor of fallen soldiers. Then, flowers were deposited on the monument erected on top of the cemetery. Various delegations composed mainly of military attachés will succeed to stand  and make the military salvation.
A delegation of the Algerian Army (ANP), consisting of four officers,attended this ceremony. Invited to speak,retired General Medjahed Abdelaziz, former director of the Military Academy of Cherchell, reiterated the strategic importance of the landing in North Africa that allowed Allied forces to win the war less than three years, while the Algerians will, themselves, be deprived of their liberty for 20 more years.
General Medjahed, who paid tribute to all freedom fighters, recalled the sacrifice of 45 thousands of Algerians who lost their lives during the day of "Liberation", May 8, 1945.
The Algerians, he added, therefore know better than anyone the importance and joy of living free. He also recalled that, in the wake of Operation Torch, the Algerians were affected by heavy losses as a result of bombing by the Luftwaffe in the East of Algeria.. General Medjahed also evoked the memory of U.S. President Wilson, who had stated in 1918 the principle of self-determination while people of Palestine and Western Sahara are still deprived of this right enshrined in international law .
A young Algerian academic, Abderrahamane Moussaoui, a native of the town of Messelmoun (near Cherchell)  where was held on October 23, 1942, a clandestine meeting between General Mark Clark and members of the French resistance, insisted on the need to restore and preserve this memory.
He revealed that this charming site, loved by General Clark, has to this day a monument with the inscription "Here begins the road to the liberation of France, Europe and the world."
 By: Mohamed Sherif LACHICHI
 Liberte, 11 November 2012.

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