The Amazigh or Imazighen (Berber) and the Phoenician Punics
The Phoenician colonies in North Africa started out as peaceful, trading presence among the Amazigh original inhabitants of the region. These colonies, though initially inhabited by Phoenicians from the eastern Mediterranean, became a mix of the two peoples as they intermarried with the local Amazigh.
The Amazigh, as well as the Punic Phoenicians, who survived the Roman subjugation of the region are credited with preserving the Phoenician language up till the time of Saint Augustine in the 5th century. Further, traces of the Phoenician alphabet are evident in the Tamazight (Berber) alphabet called Tifinagh.
The presence of the Berber in North Africa today is a living proof that the "Arab World" is not made up of 325 million Arabs. In fact, pan-Arabism is an unfounded heresy forced down the throats of people conquered and subjugated beginning with the advent of the Arab conquest in the 7th century. The Amazigh, much like the overwhelming majority of the people of this (Arab) "world," belong to a wide variety of ethnic groups that are different in blood, tradition, language, literature, art and history, and should not be lumped together as a single people.
Who and what are the Amazigh (Berber)?
by an anonymous person nicknamed montecarlo Nov 23 2002
The Amazigh which means "free humans" or "free men" are known to the world as Berbers. In fact, the word Berbers is offensive to these ancient inhabitants of north Africa and the Sahara desert. The name "Berber" is another one of many peccadilloes of the Romans who threw names at people left and right. They, along with the Greeks referred to every people they could not understand with the same unintelligible Berber language whether they were in the East or the West.
The majority of the Moors in medieval "Arabic" Spain were actually Berbers, who had adopted the Arabic Moslem culture and Arabic as their written language. Even today the Berbers are ethnically -- but far from politically -- the dominant part of the populations of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Mauritania. Isolated Berber-speaking groups are found all over North Africa, from the Atlantic in the west to Egypt in the east. A colorful nomadic Berber tribe, the Tuaregs, whose male warriors wear blue dresses and indigo-colored veils, still roam the Sahara desert.
Moslem yes, Arab no
It may come as a surprise to hear that the North African Moslem countries Morocco and Algeria are, in an ethnic sense, not Arab nations at all, but ...Read More at http://berberosaharan.com/-news-53.html