National Press Club

My Battle of Algiers: A Memoir

March 14, 2006

About This Video

Run time: 51 minutes

Mr. Morgan talked about his book My Battle of Algiers: A Memoir, published by Collins. In this memoir Pulitzer Prize-winner Ted Morgan recalls his service as a young officer in France's bitter war in Algeria. A native of France, Mr. Morgan was working as a journalist in the United States in the mid-1950s when he received his conscription notice. Following a brief posting to a regiment in the Algerian countryside, he was transferred to Algiers, arriving just in time for the Battle of Algiers, which featured history's first "systematic use of urban terrorism." Mr. Morgan spent much of his talk explaining why, in the preface to his book, he refers to the war in Iraq as "unwinnable." He compared what the Iraqis are going through today with what the Algerians went through when fighting the French. Mr. Morgan also addressed the use of torture and its effectiveness in both Algeria and Iraq. He responded to questions from members of the audience. This event was a fundraiser to benefit the Eric Friedheim Library at the National Press Club.