Wednesday, April 11, 2012

RIP Ahmed Ben Bella

Ahmed Ben Bella “1918-2012”, the revolutionary hero of the war of independence in

Ahmed Ben Bella in June 2011
Ahmed Ben Bella in June 2011
Algeria and first Algerian president after independence has passed after long illness in Algiers today.

He ruled Algeria for two years only “1963-1962” before his once trusted friend and minister of defense Houari Boumedienne led a coup against him. For 20 years Ben Bella was under house in Algeria . He later left Algeria to France and Switzerland as self-exile outside the country.

Despite the fact that Boumedienne helped Egypt a lot during the war yet I can’t forget or forgive what he had done with Ben Bella. Of course Boumedienne was not the most democratic ruler in Algerian , in fact the man enforced the military rule mindset there.

Public Domain footage : Ahmed Ben Bella deposed

In his self-exile Ben Bella supported democracy in Algeria and was against the continuous military rule there. He was also against the cancellation of the parliamentary elections. He returned back to Algeria as an old man wishing better for his country.

He ended his life as Pro-Democratic moderate Islamist politician after being a nationalist leftist as a young man. I think his ideas changed by the change of time and experience

I am proud that my late grandfather “May Allah bless his soul” was from the early Egyptian journalists that met and interviewed with that a smiling Algerian man with bright eyes till they became friends. 

Mohamed Ahmed Ben Bella was from the last true Arab African nationalists in my point of view. I wished that I had the opportunity to interview him.

I know my grandfather “may Allah bless his soul” had a rare collection of photos from Ben Bella , I will try to find it and upload it insh Allah. Anyhow I complied couple of photos showing him in different stages from his life.

Rest in Peace Ben Bella , May Allah bless your soul.

Here is an old documentary in French about brother “Ben Bella” or Le frere Ahmed Ben Bella


  1. You mentionned that Boumedienne helped Egypt after the 1967 war.That's true.He was grateful that Egypt under Nasser helped with arms,trainning and political support the Algerian Liberation War.This was the direct motive for France's joining the Tripartriate Agression in 1956.Ben Bella and his fellow liberators made their first visit to Egypt right after Independence.They all toured Cairo with Nasser in the Presidential convertible.Jamila BouHreid was also there.

  2. I'd like to add that Ben Bella was a brilliant negotiator. Not many people would have had the nerve to maintain his intransigence, and in the end (in 1962) he got everything he demanded.

  3. mahdia benbella is his daughter and not his step daughter


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