While the fate of Algeria remains undecided, three men stand uneasily at the centre of a political see-saw in Algiers - M.
GV market in Algiers
SV people in market
LV INT Gen. Challe walks to desk and sits
SCU Challe seated
LV Gen. Massu in office
SCU ditto answers phone and looks at papers on desk
CU Gen. Massu
LV M. Delouvrier
CU statue "Marianne"
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Background: While the fate of Algeria remains undecided, three men stand uneasily at the centre of a political see-saw in Algiers - M. Paul Delouvrier, France's Delegate-General for Algeria, General Maurice Challe, Commander-in-Chief, and General Jacques Massu, "super prefect" of the Algiers region and idol of French parachute troops. All three received their present appointments in Dec. last year, after General de Gaulle came to power following the Algiers uprising of May that year.
M. Delouvrier and Gen. Challe were forcefully reminded of their delicate position only last month when they went to lay wreaths at the Algiers war memorial. The day previously President de Gaulle - in Paris - had made a further statement proposing a liberal settlement of the Algerian problem, and this was badly received by the European extremists in Algiers.
On the route to the memorial they chanted "De Gaulle to the gallows", "the Army to power", and "Delouvrier resign and go to Guinea" (The state which a year ago left the French Community). A big protest meeting in the Forum, scene of the historic events of May, 1958, was only narrowly avoided.
M. Delouvrier was previously a distinguished economic and financial expert, and Gen. Challe had an outstanding career with the Free French air force and the French resistance during World War Two. He played an big part in constructing the electrified barrier between Algeria and Tunisia.
General Massu was at the centre of the insurrectionary movement in Algiers in May 1958.
He was enthusiastically cheered by the huge crowds which filled Algiers' Forum when the Algerian Committee of Public Safety - of which he was chairman - assumed independent powers. He later resigned the chairmanship following one of Gen. de Gaulle's decrees.
Known as the "Pere des paras", he is one of the most decorated officers in the French forces, fighting with Gen. de Gaulle's army in World War Two. Later he directed the French airborne operations at Port Said in 1957, and took part in the campaign against the Algerian rebel movement.
The Statue of "Marianne" does not symbolise a strong French Republic for Algiers, but poses a big and seemingly insoluble question.