Back to The Battle of Algiers

Why the Pentagon offered a screening of the recently re-released film.

Last Friday’s re-release of the 1965 film The Battle of Algiers has rejuvenated interest in comparing the Iraqi resistance to other insurgencies. In an August 2003 “Culturebox,” Charles Paul Freund discussed the Pentagon’s decision to screen the film as a primer on the dangers of military occupations: “So who ultimately won the battle of Algiers? No one.” Earlier this year, Christopher Hitchens attacked the “pseudo-knowing piffle from the armchair guerrillas” who wish to equate France’s bloody retreat from Algeria with America’s future in Iraq.