Amirouche Aït Hammouda
(1926-1959)
   He was a Kabyle and one of the early historic leaders of the Algerian resistance to French colonialism. He was born in the village of Tassaft Ouguemmoun in Greater Kabylia. Before the liberation struggle, he was influenced by the Association of Reformist `Ulama (learned doctors of Islamic law) and the Mouvement pour le Triomphe des Libertés Démocratiques (MTLD). In 1948, he joined the Organisation spéciale (OS), and he was arrested in 1950 during the French repression of the early forms of Algerian resistance. In 1952, he was released and relocated to France, where he mobilized the Algerian immigrant communities against French colonial practices.
   It was during the war of independence that young Amirouche gained his famous reputation. Aït Hammouda, whose nom de guerre was "Amirouche," founded his own guerrilla group in eastern Kabylia. He became the leader of Wilaya III with about 800 fighters, and it was Amirouche who provided security for the Soummam Valley Congress in August 1956. Eventually, he was captured and killed by the French during a fierce firefight in March 1959. As a result of Amirouche's exploits and legend, he became a symbol of the Algerian struggle of independence. He is celebrated in songs and revolutionary chants in the Kabyle collective memory.

Historical Dictionary of the Berbers (Imazighen) . . 2014.

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