How France maintains 14 African countries Under slavery

By on November 27, 2012

“those in the U.S. antiwar movement who once idolized Monsieur Chirac should note the obvious. France, too, is an imperialist country, constantly creating new enemies among weak, humble people who resort to whatever means are available to resist their oppression. The French president, like the American, has a lot of blood on his hands” – Gary Leupp – Bloody Intervention in Côte d’Ivoire

Source: C’ERA UNA VOLTA – 13/09/2012 From Italian public tv channel Rai 3

The United Nations elected to abandon its neutrality as a peacemaker, deciding to be a partisan belligerent in the Ivorian conflict.

France used its privileged place in the Security Council to position itself to play an important role in determining the future of Côte d’Ivoire, its former colony in which, inter alia, it has significant economic interests. It joined the United Nations to ensure that Ouattara emerged as the victor in the Ivorian conflict.

This addressed the national interests of France, consistent with its Françafrique policies, which aim to perpetuate a particular relationship with its former African colonies. This is in keeping with remarks made by former French President François Mitterand when he said, “Without Africa, France will have no history in the 21st century,” which former French foreign minister Jacques Godfrain confirmed when he said: “A little country [France], with a small amount of strength, we can move a planet because [of our]…relations with 15 or 20 African countries…” – President Thabo Mbeki, What the World Got Wrong in Cote d’Ivoire

Why Ivory Coast? Why not Chechnya?
Posted on Wednesday, December 04 @ 08:17:19 AST
Topic: Africa Focus
 by George Alleyne, Newsday TT“O, it is excellent
To have a giant’s strength; but it is tyrannous
To use it like a giant”: Shakespeare, “Measure for Measure”.France’s military intervention last weekend in its former West African colony, the troubled Ivory Coast, in which rebels are battling Government troops, is an extension of its belief that it has the right to dispatch troops to any of its one time colonies in the event of disaffection there.The publicly voiced excuse that the troops were sent to evacuate foreigners provokes the question: Why has France not sent troops into Chechnya, where a war for Independence from Russia is still being waged after several years? Or, why has France, in pursuit of its expressed purpose of evacuating foreigners, not sent troops into Colombia, Peru for example?France, which as a leading European coloniser of North and West Africa, was known more for its deindustrialising of its African possessions and its literal wiping out of hundreds of thousands of Africans during its colonial rule of several African States, comes across as believing in might is right in its intervention in the Cote d’Ivoire!

This is the same country, which trumpeted to the world that it had introduced the FIDES Programme (the equivalent of the British Colonial Development and Welfare) to develop its colonies industrially to prepare them for Independence. It boasted of spending millions of francs for the development of these territories, principally for the praise and adulation of fellow European nations.

The Guyanese historian, the late Walter Rodney, would point out in his classic. “How Europe Under-developed Africa”, (Page 233), published in 1989, that less than half of one percent of the funds under the FIDES Programme had actually been devoted to industrial development. France seized and/or gained control of prime areas of Africa, Ivory Coast (then known as Cape Lahou), Algeria, Senegal, Guinea et cetera, deindustrialised them and forced them to become importers of French goods.

Why did France not intervene against the atrocities committed by Belgium in the Congo in the 19th and 20th centuries? Instead, it turned the proverbial blind eye. It was left to an American newspaperman, of African descent, George Washington Williams, who, appalled at the wanton murder, forced labour, torture and massacre of Congolese people, spoke of them, feelingly, as “crimes against humanity”, and gave the world a new phrase.

Lindsay Hilsum, in an article published in the Times Literary Supplement on May 23, 1997, captioned “In the Land of the Lion King”, wrote of Williams’ futile appeal to King Leopold of Belgium.

How could France have raised its blood-stained hands in affected horror and intervened, militarily, in the Ivory Coast recently, when from 1830 to as late as the 1950s the French had wiped out hundreds of thousands of Algerians, whose principal crime was fighting for their right to be free. Mark Twain, the celebrated American author, would describe the French action in Algeria as “barbaric”.

Frances Ghiles, in an article, “Another Savage War”, published in the Times Literary Supplement of February 6, 1998 (Page 36), would note that the birth of Amnesty International, in the 1950s, had arisen out of French brutality of Algerians in the latter’s war of Independence. I take no pleasure in writing this. But from time to time I have found the need to set the record straight (forgive the cliches) on European colonial involvement, brutal and barbaric, in East, West, North, South and Central Africa, India, China, the Caribbean, the Americas, the Middle and the Far East.

The Ivory Coast, along with many another West African country, had a thriving trade in textiles with Europe, as well as with areas other than their own. With the entry of Europe into the textile exports equation, cloth exports were done via European middlemen — John Thornton, “Africa and the Africans in the Making of the Atlantic World, 1400-1800”. Thus began the sidelining of African entrepreneurship.

In turn, Walter Rodney had referred to the active canoe trade between the Ivory Coast (then Cape Lahou) and the Gold Coast, today known as Ghana. When the Ivory Coast, even as the world’s foremost producer of cocoa, gained its Independence, the massive poverty there meant that nationals would be fighting for the crumbs. The FIDES Programme, touted as aimed at encouraging industrial development in the Ivory Coast, had failed as it had been meant to fail.

The French military intervention in which French nationals and Lebanese were airlifted, showed who was ‘boss’. The Lebanese must have been pleasantly surprised. They knew that France would not have dared mount a similar expedition in Southernmost Lebanon.



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