Algeria-Morocco: The undisclosed causes of a diplomatic squabble

The Algerian regime shall not let go. In 40 years, it has spent over $250 billion to finance its diplomatic squabble with neighboring Morocco over Western Sahara.

Analysts explain this rage against Morocco by the very nature of the Algerian regime which has not changed since the era of the late Houari Boumediene.
Officially, Algerian leaders claim their country’s neutrality in the Western Sahara conflict saying it opposes Morocco and the Polisario Front. But on the ground, a lot of evidence and clues demonstrate Algeria’s direct involvement in this protracted territorial dispute.

In addition to that, the Algerian regime stands as a zealous defender of “oppressed peoples’ just causes and rights to self-determination,” but at the same time, it denies, through the resort to force, these same rights to linguistic, cultural and political self-determination to its Kabyle and Mozabite populations.

Just recently the Algerian city of Boumerdès hosted a so-called “Summer University for Polisario executives,” to which over 500 separatists, including some fifty individuals from Western Sahara, were invited.

Upon their return to Morocco, Customs agents seized in their luggage Algerian and Polisario flags, propaganda leaflets, uniforms of the Algerian army, amounts of money in hard currency etc. All the items seized leave no doubt as to the true intentions of those who provided them to the fifty Sahraouis.

Moreover, many senior Algerian officials do not hide their support to the Polisario and proclaim their hostility to Morocco. Some officials have even stated publicly and repeatedly that the Western Sahara issue was a top priority of their foreign diplomacy.

As long as the oil windfall is not exhausted, as long as the oil rents replenish the slush funds of the Algerian army and of the military intelligence services, and as long as the power is held by the military-political oligarchy, Algeria will carry on its backstage diplomacy and lobbying manoeuvers and will continue supporting the Polisario and its militia.


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