The report on the memory of colonization and the Algerian war commissioned by the Élysée from the historian Benjamin Stora and submitted to Emmanuel Macron in January 2021 had been received very freshly, it is the least we can say, in Algeria. Where a minister had described him as “non-objective” and where some had it accused of “putting victims and executioners on the same level”. And if, since then, the climate has calmed down somewhat, the report on the same questions that the director of the Algerian national archives Abdelmajid Chikhi was to write is still non-existent. No doubt it will never see the light of day.
When we learned that on June 4, President Tebboune received Benjamin Stora, bearer of a message from President Macron, and had a long discussion with him, we were surprised. What did they say to each other? Barely back in Paris, the historian wanted to talk about it to Young Africa.
Capcov: Why did you undertake this journey? ? At the invitation of the Algerians on the occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of independence? At the request of President Macron?
Benjamin Stora: Everything just happened. The rector of the Great Mosque of Paris Chamseddine Hafiz invited me to accompany him to Algeria on the occasion of the anniversary of independence. I discussed this invitation with the Elysée adviser with whom I work on memory issues. I was then told that they were going to take advantage of the opportunity to send me a message from the French president to his Algerian counterpart. I then warned the Algerian authorities and they invited me to meet the president.
Algeria – Benjamin Stora: “After the Evian agreements, everyone remained on their guard”
It was a surprise ?