OPINION

January 26, 1960

FRENCH OF ALGERIA: Paris, 26 – In Algeria, where rebels are barricading streets, tension is reaching a peak as it spread to more and more towns. The military and its leaders are standing by, watching the rebels and their families on the move. Prime Minister Michel Debre, who arrived last night and left early this morning, obviously having achieved nothing, spoke of a «strange war» in which no one knew which side was the stronger. The question now is what President General Charles de Gaulle will do, as he continues to express his desire to enact a policy of self-determination. Will he act in this direction, will he be forced by the French in Algeria to find a compromise to save his reputation or will he go down, taking the Fifth Republic with him? Today, the unwillingness of the army to impose the government’s will became even more evident. According to a report by Agence France-Presse, the two leaders of the rebel French colonists, Pierre Lagaillarde and Joseph Ortiz, emerged from the barricades to talk to the commander of the French forces. The report was officially denied by the French military command. No doubt the latter has been communicating with Paris all day, while the rebels erect barricades and stage patriotic demonstrations.