I'm now worried about those tourists:

InstaPundit, sage of Knoxville, has been concerned for some time about the disappearances of (now more than thirty) foreign tourists in the south of Algeria. It's been one of those Bermuda triangle stories, which became fascinating recently when a band of Bedouin nomads rode into one of the cities in Algeria and reported finding a secret complex of tunnels in the desert. Since then it has come to appear that the tourists are being held hostage by Islamists who have sought them as hostages against Western involvement in Algeria.

The Algerian government is now responding, and so it is just now that I'm becoming worried. The Algerian government, you see, is rather French. El Moudjahid, an Algerian newspaper, presents the account of the government's reply:

. Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Pr�sident de la R�publique, a re�u, mercredi au si�ge de la Pr�sidence, M. Juergen Chrobog, secr�taire d�Etat aux Affaires �trang�res de la R�publique f�d�rale d�Allemagne et envoy� sp�cial du chancelier f�d�ral, M. Gerhard Schro�der.
L�audience s�est d�roul�e en pr�sence du ministre d�Etat, ministre des Affaires �trang�res, M. Abdelaziz Belkhadem et du ministre d�Etat, ministre de l�Int�rieur et des Collectivit�s locales, M. Noureddine Yazid Zerhouni, ainsi que de l�ambassadeur de la R�publique f�d�rale d�Allemagne � Alger, M. Hans-Peter Schiff.
M. Chrobog est porteur d�un message du chancelier f�d�ral au Pr�sident Bouteflika.
Got that? The whole first paragraph is nothing but: The President met, at the President's seat, with the German Secretary of state for foreign affairs and a bunch of other ministers whose ranks and titles are recited at great length. Did they do anything? Yes! The German brought a letter and gave it to the President and ministers. That's what the whole paragraph says.

And what did the letter say? Only this: "L�Allemagne satisfaite des efforts d�ploy�s par l�Alg�rie pour retrouver les touristes disparus." That is, "Germany is satisfied with the efforts to recover the lost tourists." Doesn't Germany have a Marine Corps? Maybe they'd like to borrow ours for a few hours?

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