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From French: Armée de Libération Nationale

ALN commanders

ALN army abroad

During the Algerian War, the armed wing of FLN, the main Algerian nationalist movement.
ALN had effectively two levels of organization. The soldiers operating inside Algeria operated as guerilla units. The troops abroad, in Morocco and Tunisia, were organized into a regular army, consisting of some 30,000 soldiers. The latter groups performed actions into Algeria, but was far less involved in fighting than the guerilla units.
For a few years after the Algerian War, some of the guerilla units would represent influential political groups, but would be effectively defeated around 1965. It was groups emerging from the foreign army that would take control over Algeria, with the coup of Houari Boumedienne, but the successors of the local guerillas would exercise large regional power.

1946: While under house arrest in France; Messali Hadj together with Ferhat Abbas forms the democratic group MTLD.
1947: Young members of MTLD form the Secret Organization, OS, which collects arms and money and organized a network of cells throughout Algeria.
1949: A terror attack by OS is undertaken in Oran.
1954 March: 9 former members of OS forms the CRUA, the Revolutionary Council for Unity and Action.
November 1: CRUA changes its name to FLN, and forms its military units into the ALN.
1956: With a barbed wire fence built along the borders to Morocco and Tunisia, ALN's foreign contigents are hindered from making swift and effective attacks into Algerian territory.
November: A French campaign against ALN strongholds in the mountains, effectively destroys much of the power of the guerilla units.
1962: With the establishment of Muslim independent Algeria, ALN are converted into the armed forces of the new nation.
1965: The ALN leadership from the Algerian War, with Houari Boumedienne in front, stages the armed coup against President Ahmed Ben Bella.

By Tore Kjeilen