Trained for the majority by the Soviet military intelligence services, the political police chiefs of the Polisario worked out in 1979 a handbook entitled “manual of intern propaganda for civil populations" largely inspired by the “Soviet art of Brainwashing”, created under Joseph Stalin in the Thirties.
The conditioning of the populations starts by a simple postulate: the child does not belong to his mother, but to the Polisario. It is necessary for him to be prepared to handle the weapons. For that, the same speech is repeated every morning and the teachers check at the end of the day if the lesson is well integrated.
The phase n°1 relates to absolute obedience to the political police chief of the Polisario in charge of the zone. The chief, according to the “Handbook”, is “guaranteeing respect of the revolutionary doctrines”. About the age of six, the child is separated from his mother in order to “forge him an independent spirit” and later, he will be sent either to Cuba or to the “training centers of the revolution” located in the periphery of the camps.
The phase n°2, for the children from 6 to twelve, relates to the instillation of a feeling of revolt, and this, thanks to the multiple deprivations, the fault, according to the handbook “of the enemies of the revolution”. Obedience is set up in cardinal virtue within the young guerrilla in order to prepare their spirit, through long meetings held in the open air, no matter how the climatic conditions are.
Around twelve years of age, phase 3 of the program starts. It consists of teaching to the child how to identify, within the ONG present on the spot, a potential “godfather”.
the “Handbook” stipulates: “The political police chief will have to locate, within human associations or ONG present on the zone, “a weak” element (motherless woman, foreign doctor,) and will assign to the junior the mission of approaching him, in order to make him a “tutor” who will undertake part of his higher education, to take him along on holidays, or to provide him an operational base of support in his country of origin”. “For that, the junior will have to use all the possible means, and will harness himself to create an emotional tie with the target”. This phase is crucial, because the humanitarian organizations present in Tindouf represent a considerable source of income for the executives of the Polisario. Around 16 years, the juniors considered to be more “ripe” by the political police chiefs are mainly sent to Cuba to continue their training on “fundamental revolutionary fighting”. It’s taught to them how to seek potential supports and to organize fundraising for the Front through local associations.
The juniors who failed the phase 3 are recruited within the Polisario Front to ensure the administrative tasks like the management of the humanitarian aid.
The aid at its arrival is divided into two batches: The perishable basic food products and the non perishable ones.
The perishable basic food products are given to the political police chiefs of the various camps, who decide on their distribution according to the local allegiances. The second batch contains the nonperishable food products which are then classified according to their commercial value. These products are distributed between the various intermediaries charged to sell them in local markets close to Tindouf or in north Mauritania. The benefit of the sales is shared among the hierarchy of the guerrilla.