French Woman Says Hopes For Algerian Peace Dim
'No solution would really be a good one'
A young French woman, recently back from two years in Algeria, expressed dark pessimism about the prospects for any effective settlement of the French-Algerian crisis at the International Seminar Forum last night.
Mme, Colette Cordebas, professor of Economics at Grenoble University, maintained that "No solution--either French or international--would be really a good one. Any solution will make a lot of people unhappy."
Mme, Cordebas, who lectured at the University of Algiers in 1959-60, added that the beginning of the period of peace in Algeria will prove even more trying than the current negotiations aimed at ending the strife, now in its seventh year.
Noting the recent attempts to establish sovereignty in the Sahara, Mme. Cordebas discussed the proposal to make a partition along the 35th degree parallel. This division of sovereignty, she addded, will probably prove as difficult as negotiating the peace itself. She added that although Algeria needs Saharan oil, the expense of digging for it may prove excessive.
In a quick survey of internal development in Algeria, Mme. Cordebas analysed the social revolution which is destroying the old tribal base, and which has witnessed the growth of the immediate family as the unit of social life. Many of Algeria's young men have studied in Metropolitan France, she explained. When they return home, their opinions tend to take precedence over those of the tribal chief.
Mme. Cordebas asserted, too, that Algeria is developing a left-wing elite trained under fire of the battle. She predicted that an independent Algerian government will be far to the left of the government of Tunisia and Morocco.
The main body of opinion in France, she added, supports President de Gaulle in his attempt to end the war. But the army, she said, remains firmly devoted to the goal of Algeria Francais.