Thiaroye: A French Massacre in Senegal

I just learned of the story of the Thiaroye massacre by French forces on African troops which occurred during the night of 30 November to 1 December 1944. African soldiers who had fought alongside French people to liberate France of the Nazi menace, were shot by Frenchmen, for asking for their pay! Can you believe it! They were promised a pay, they fought for France in France to liberate France, and when they got back to Senegal they were not paid; so they asked for their pay, and they were shot! Even the French president François Hollande in October 2012 had to acknowledge this atrocity… of course, he just acknowledged it, and never apologized! As you can see, France has committed some of the greatest atrocities in this world, but no one says a word, well because it is against Africans, so ‘it does not count’? Even today, they continue, with the FCFA, impoverishing and living off of Africans’ sweat! The great Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene made a movie about it!

5 thoughts on “Thiaroye: A French Massacre in Senegal

  1. Thank you for expanding on this discussion about the Thiaroye Massacre. I had never heard of it until I saw Camp de Thiaroye this year.Shame on France for not apologizing or even giving reparations to Francophone Africa. It’s just so petty as well as inhumane because the African soldiers were asking for pay that they were rightfully owed just like their white solider counterparts. It’s like in America where Black soldiers were lynched IN UNIFORM when they came home from both World Wars and they never got the benefits of the GI Bill (fast track to get jobs, housing, pay, education, etc.) like their white compatriots. The Axis powers certainly did bad things which no one would argue against, but the Allies did bad things to people who fought for those nations and I’m not just talking about the Soviet Union.

    “As you can see, France has committed some of the greatest atrocities in this world, but no one says a word, well because it is against Africans, so ‘it does not count’?”

    I couldn’t have said it better myself with how the world perceives these tragedies, sadly enough. If this happened to European nations, then everyone would scream and people would record this on all the history books. Speaking of which, French textbooks didn’t even have the Thiaroye Massacre in it which I learned when I researched things for my Camp de Thiaroye review.

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    1. Thank you Ospreyshire for your comment. I did not know that the Black soldiers came home and never got the benefits of the GI bill like their caucasian counterparts. That is terrible! I am speechless! There are so many injustices like that committed against us! Why should these men who fought with their everything, and in some cases, lost everything (a limb, mental peace, and more) be denied the same as their other counterparts? It is outrageous.

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      1. No problem, Dr. Y. I didn’t know about those things until a few years ago since they never talk about that in history classes. It’s nothing new from an American standpoint. Even the first fatality of the American Revolutionary War was a Black man named Crispus Attucks. The African-American community has been patriotic in different wars, but they were always shortchanged for their service.

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      2. You’re welcome. To be fair, he’s rarely if ever mentioned when it comes to the history books here in America. This did happen during the Revolutionary War and Crispus Attucks died during the Boston Massacre which helped kick off the American Revolution to begin with.

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