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Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

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  • Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

    I've always wondered why a diaspora community never formed in Algeria when it did in many other Arab states (and France, of course)? Was it the climate? Did the European colonists not want to admit too many sale arméniens? In hindsight, it's a good thing Armenians didn't settle there since they probably would have been targeted during the Algerian independence movement.

    Supposedly, Isabelle Eberhardt was of partial Armenian ancestry (though her "Armenian-born" father had a decidedly un-Armenian surname).

  • #2
    Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

    Armenian diaspora communities all throughout North Africa, with the exception of Egypt, are virtually non-existent to my knowledge.
    Azerbaboon: 9.000 Google hits and counting!

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    • #3
      Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

      Originally posted by TomServo View Post
      I've always wondered why a diaspora community never formed in Algeria when it did in many other Arab states (and France, of course)? Was it the climate? Did the European colonists not want to admit too many sale arméniens? In hindsight, it's a good thing Armenians didn't settle there since they probably would have been targeted during the Algerian independence movement.
      Probably there were a number there until independence, but, during the real Algerian genocide, all those considered not to be ethnic north Africans were told they had two options "the suitcase or the coffin".
      Plenipotentiary meow!

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      • #4
        Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

        Originally posted by TomServo View Post
        Supposedly, Isabelle Eberhardt was of partial Armenian ancestry (though her "Armenian-born" father had a decidedly un-Armenian surname).

        "Armenian by birth, and at one time a priest in the Orthodox Church, Alexander Trophimovsky had undergone a dramatic change of heart, been defrocked, and was now an athiest, anarchist, nihilist, at war with society, religion, art, and just about everything except science. It could be that he rejected paternity in the same iconoclastic spirit: that would explain why Isabelle was surnamed Eberhardt"


        Explorers Extraordinary, p180.

        BTW, Compared to the chapter about her in this book, the Wikipedia article is just Islamist propaganda (or is just typical Wikipedia).
        Last edited by bell-the-cat; 06-05-2013, 09:45 AM.
        Plenipotentiary meow!

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        • #5
          Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

          Originally posted by Federate View Post
          Armenian diaspora communities all throughout North Africa, with the exception of Egypt, are virtually non-existent to my knowledge.
          Yeah, there were probably a few Armenians here and there but they never really formed a community and most probably assimilated. The Moroccan actress Nadia Farès was born in Marrakech to an Armenian mother and Moroccan father but she lives in France now.

          Originally posted by bell-the-cat
          Probably there were a number there until independence, but, during the real Algerian genocide, all those considered not to be ethnic north Africans were told they had two options "the suitcase or the coffin".
          In college I was taught that this was decolonization.

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          • #6
            Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

            Originally posted by TomServo View Post
            Yeah, there were probably a few Armenians here and there but they never really formed a community and most probably assimilated. The Moroccan actress Nadia Farès was born in Marrakech to an Armenian mother and Moroccan father but she lives in France now.


            In college I was taught that this was decolonization.
            The whinging lefties in British media got all upset when Jonathan Meades called it a genocide.

            http://thedabbler.co.uk/2012/01/jona...ive-interview/

            PT: Isn’t revisionism on the subject of Algerian independence contrarian?

            JM: Revisionism! Look, I’m merely declining to follow what the French call la pensée unique… the consensual wisdom – though quite how consensual… The Algerian decolonisation was a catastrophe. It still,erm, resounds… half a century later. De Gaulle’s behaviour was grotesque. He abandoned over a million of French citizens.

            PT: Who took the law into their own hands.

            JM: Peh! A few. Sure.

            PT: You appear to sympathise with them.

            JM: (Shrugs) To a degree yes. With their plight certainly. The general indifference to it was…the hostility they faced. Imagine the outcry if a million muslims were told to leave their homes in a European country and get out on pain of death. La valise ou le cercueil. Pack your suitcase or end up in a coffin. More likely a mass grave actually. The pieds noirs are like Northern Irish protestants or Serbs or white Rhodesians… victims of liberal bigotry. Routinely portrayed as quasi-fascist. Targets of what Pascal Bruckner calls the racism of the anti-racists. Easy meat for half-witted comedians.

            PT: That’s not what I was getting at. You appear to sympathise with the OAS. A murderous right wing terrorist organisation. Whose leaders were executed.

            JM: Victor’s justice. The methods were reprehensible. Sure. But their position was unexceptionable. They were hardly right wing. More a coalition of nationalists of various political colours. They did have a point – look at Algeria’s subsequent history…

            PT: They had a point! Really? Why drag this up all these years on?


            JM: It’s not a question of dragging it up. It’s never sunk so to speak.

            PT: Does it impact on France today? I think not. You’re furtively nostalgic for colonialism.

            JM: It’s nothing to do with nostalgia. Algeria could have remained a French department. The majority of its citizens, they wanted it to. But de Gaulle treated with the FLN – a minority of extremists. As soon as they came to power they exacted a terrible revenge on those who hadn’t supported them. Unspoken genocide.
            Meades, in that TV program, and with a little bit of tongue-in-cheek, said De Gaulle allowed the genocide because he wanted to be fashionably anti-colonial in order to get invited to all the good parties in America (the ones held by the Kennedys). Which really does sum up the superficial nature of post WW2 France - a culturally unimportant country full of show and posturing but no real substance.
            Plenipotentiary meow!

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            • #7
              Re: Algeria and the Armenian diaspora

              I know the French-Armenian politician Patrick Devedjian was against Algerian independence and insisted that France continue its "civilizing mission" there.

              He has said that as an "Oriental Christian" he feels obligated to fight against the "onslaught of Islam." He was part of a French far-right group in his youth.

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