It is no secret that 14 African countries today are still under the French colonial tax (The 11 Components of the French Colonial Tax in Africa), and that every year, France takes home upwards of 500 billion dollars (Africa is funding Europe!) from its currency imposed upon those countries. After all, France has no gold mines on its soil but yet is the 4th world producer of gold, gold coming from Mali, while Mali is among the world’s poorest countries on the planet. It is also no secret that Mali has been trying to free itself from this colonial tax (The French Colonial Tax at the Heart of Mali-France Tensions), and has been working tirelessly to revoke at least 8 of the 11 rules. With the unrest in Burkina Faso brought by the Jihadists from the north who were well protected by the French army brought in to protect Burkinabe interests, but who instead have created further unrest in the area, it is no surprise that Burkina Faso has joined forces with Mali, and now Guinea, to create a strategic axis which will focus on military and trade agreements between the 3 countries. Although we do not particularly trust the Guinean leader, we applaud the union between the two brothers Mali and Burkina Faso, faced with sanctions from the puppet organization that is ECOWAS. We also applaud this ‘federation’ which will give Mali and Burkina Faso access to the sea via Guinea, thus opening up these land-locked territories to further trade. Enjoy excerpts below from the People’s Dispatch; check out also the write-up on AfricaNews.
Like Thomas Sankara said, “La patrie ou la mort, nous vaincrons!”
The three West African countries, all of whom have recently undergone military takeovers amid rising public anger against France, have agreed to a Bamako-Conakry -Ouagadougou axis, with enhanced cooperation on matters ranging from trade to the fight against insecurity.
As France is getting ready to withdraw its troops from Burkina Faso by the end of the month, signs of a possible realignment in the region are emerging with a tripartite meeting between the foreign ministers of Burkina Faso, Mali, and Guinea—Olivia Ragnaghnewendé, Morissanda Kouyate, and Abdoulaye Diop—held in Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou on February 8 and 9.
The leaders discussed a range of issues, “in particular the success of the transition processes leading to a return to a peaceful and secure constitutional order,” and, importantly, the “revitalization of the Bamako-Conakry-Ouagadougou axis” to make it a “strategic and priority area” on matters including trade and economic exchanges, mining, transport, roads and railway links, and the “fight against insecurity.”
The communique issued following last week’s tripartite meeting condemned the “mechanical imposition of sanctions which often fail to take into account the deep and complex causes of political change,” adding that these measures “affected populations already battered by insecurity and political instability,” “undermine sub-regional and African solidarity,” and “deprive ECOWAS and the AU of the contribution of the three countries needed to meet their major challenges.”
While calling for “technical, financial, concrete, and consistent support” for security efforts and the return to a normal constitutional order, the three countries have agreed to “pool their efforts and undertake joint initiatives for the lifting of the suspension measures and other restrictions.”
A great light has joined the stars. His Majesty, Jean Paul Yitamben, Chief of Batcheu Village, in Cameroon, has changed dimensions, and now graduated to be an ancestor to guide our paths. A great Economist, Teacher, Historian, Father, Brother, Husband, Friend, has moved on. Like Behanzin, before and many other kings, he devoted his life to the service of his community and his people. The fight has changed! Local kings are no longer deported, but kingdoms and cultures are still fragmented, crushed under the load of ‘fake’ modernism assisted by “administrations” (excrescence of colonialism) which are at the service of foreign forces to continue the work of the annihilation and/or spoliation of the African identity.
Descendant of great kings before him, Jean Paul Yitamben was an avid historian and a perfectionist who tirelessly sought perfection in everything he did. Meticulous to a letter, he did not tolerate half-done work. With his wife, world-renowned social entrepreneur, Gisele Yitamben, he worked tirelessly to empower women in micro-finance, less-privileged youth to find jobs in our tough local economies, and more importantly he affected the lives of countless others outside of his own village, community, city, and beyond. The aborted Kugwe village Palm oil and indigenous development project in the North West Region of Cameroon is a clear example.
Yitamben was very methodical. He had so many great projects! He worked to bring solar power to his village, sent local village women to be trained in India on how to become solar engineers at a time when it was not yet common. He sent others to Australia and Denmark, and was the first in the area to organize the ‘quinzaine’: two weeks of sports competitions to encourage local pride, and distribute prizes to the winners, encouraging children to strive in education; awarding scholarships to youths, and prizes to mothers and grandmothers. He was ahead of his time, in sub-Saharan Africa where millions of people have low access to electricity, firewood and charcoal are the main source of energy for cooking meals, representing three quarters of total energy demand; Yitamben brought in improved households (foyers améliorés) which are more efficient and better for environmental protection. He brought in international collaborators because he sought a great place for his village and his people. Let us build on Yitamben’s strength!
His biggest fight was that of his village. See, colonization did not stop in 1884, or in 1960 with the advent of pseudo-independences, it is well and alive and waxing on even stronger than before. The fight is not open, but like in Libya in 2011 or Mali today, the goal is still to fragment, to divide and conquer; to break into thousand pieces and loot local wealth while crushing the spirits of the indigenous populations. The overall objective is still the destruction of local initiatives to take the land and resources; it has not changed.
The fight at the level of Chief Yitamben’s village is an ample microcosm of what happens at the national or continental level in Africa: when a land is rich, or when the enemy covets the area, he promotes in-fighting among brothers (Ethiopia – Eritrea, Sudan – South Sudan), division over boundaries (Cameroon – Nigeria over Bakassi, Tanzania – Malawi over Lake Nyasa/Malawi), and division over resources (DRC – Rwanda).
Remember that in the time of Behanzin, after his deportation, the tactic used was to install Agoli-Agbo as a puppet King; one who was not chosen by the traditions of the land, but by Europeans to help in weakening and eradicating traditions, and promoting divisions (Côte d’Ivoire where Alassane Ouattara was installed by French war tanks in 2011).
The fights that occurred over 100 years ago in Dahomey kingdom, or other parts of Africa, are still ongoing, albeit on a smaller scale (and big scale as well). Villages are divided, fragmented, and local institutions weakened. The governments which, in most African countries do not serve the locals but foreign forces, are complicit in the destruction of African traditions and institutions. Yitamben believed that it was possible to change the tides of time, by at least awakening his own people against division. He fought tirelessly for unity, and against division; adamantly refusing the fragmentation orchestrated by some of his people helped by a complicit administration with colonial instincts. He could not understand how his people could let themselves be used to destroy their very own land. He was a force to reckon with. He had a titanic strength; but it is a difficult fight.
Proud warrior, you have placed the bricks on its foundation, and the task will be completed. You tirelessly gave yourself for it. The fight continues. O great warrior! Your legacy lives on!
When we have lost a leader, we need to look forward, and build for future generations.Yitamben had a strong presence, was so confident, and so generous in sharing his time, resources, and knowledge.
So long brother, father, husband, friend, … May your seeds bear lots of fruits. I will remember your laughter, your big smile, your intelligence, your fight for perfection, and above all your teachings. I feel so privileged to have had you in my life, and received your teachings. You showed us the way. Now we have to carry on your light.
Yesterday, the West African bloc ECOWAS has lifted the economic and financial sanctions against Mali’s military government after the promise that Mali will hold elections in February 2024. The move has been celebrated by many Malians who have been struggling under the restrictions and the global rise in fuel and food costs. As many applaud the lifting of sanctions, it is important to analyze why ECOWAS might have changed its mind: a) the countries in the West African block were not aware of how much weight Mali had in the region and the impact to their economies, and were all suffering from the Mali embargo, and thus are scramming to have Mali rejoin its ranks; b) With sanctions lifted, it will be easier for terrorists groups (armed by foreign forces) to travel back into the country easily, as there will be less control; c) a few days ago, the Spanish minister threatened Mali with a NATO intervention to protect European interests in Mali, which he later denied; d) France just moved its troops to neighboring Niger (another puppet). How convenient that the sanctions are lifted a few days after this minister’s outburst, and right before France’s troops move to Niger. Thus, knowing that ECOWAS is France’s puppet in the region, the lifting of sanctions is rather something to be skeptical of, and distrust entirely. No one should fall for this ECOWAS turncoat tactic… Mali should keep its guard high, and we should all pray and fight for the freedom of Mali and Africa as a whole!
On Monday May 2, 2022, Mali rescinded the defense treaties linking it to France. Remember that, as part of the colonial tax forced upon the Malian people by France (and all other 14 past French colonies in Africa), there is one rule which links Mali to France via defense agreements where France is supposed to help Mali in case of external attacks. As we have seen, France has not held its part of the bargain, instead funding and letting jihadists proliferate on the Malian territory and committing abuses against the local populations. Thus, the government of Mali decided to break off from its defense accords with former colonial ruler France, condemning “flagrant violations” of its national sovereignty by the French troops there. “For some time now, the government of the Republic of Mali notes with regret a profound deterioration in military cooperation with France,” spokesman Colonel Abdoulaye Maiga said in a televised statement.
The decision to rescind the French defense agreements is an awesome decision, and it is about time! The remaining 14 countries still held under the rule of France via the colonial tax should rise up to say NO!… stand up as one man to say NO MORE!… ENOUGH is ENOUGH! … and stand alongside Mali.
#6. Right for France to pre-deploy troops and intervene military in the country to defend its interests
Under something called “Defense Agreements” attached to the Colonial Pact, France had the legal right to intervene militarily in the African countries, andalso to station troops permanently in bases and military facilities in those countries, run entirely by the French….
France just confirmed that it will withdraw its troops from Mali, 10 years after starting the fight against insurgency in the region. They will most likely go park their troops in neighboring countries like Niger, Burkina Faso, Mauritania? Who knows?… but we know that France has not spoken its last word… it is impossible for them to let go of the gold (after all, they are the world’s 4th producer of gold), uranium, diamonds, bauxite, of Mali just like that. Below are excerpts from an article from RFI.
France and its allies in its anti-jihadist operations in Mali have announced announced they will begin withdrawing troops after nearly a decade fighting a jihadist insurgency in the country.
“The political, operational and legal conditions are no longer met to effectively continue their current military engagement in the fight against terrorism in Mali,” [maybe France and its allies can no longer loot in peace] said a joint statement signed by France and European and African allies, announcing a “coordinated withdrawal” of French, European and Canadian forces. The decision applies to both the Barkhane counter-terrorism force in the Sahel and the 14-member European Takuba force that France had been trying to get off the ground.
France deployed troops against jihadists in Mali in 2013, but the insurgency was never fully put down [because the insurgents were funded by none other than…]. Some 2,400French soldiers are currently in the country as part of the Barkhane and Takuba operations. Relations between France and Mali have deteriorated after the military junta went back on an agreement to organize elections in February, and instead proposed holding on to power until 2025 [Let the Malian people decide their own destiny].
France and other countries have also accused Mali of using the services of the Wagner Russian mercenary group, which they say is incompatible with their mission [This is against rule #10 of the colonial tax France is imposing African countries, which state that no African country should have other military partners other than France unless authorized by France – The French Colonial Tax at the Heart of Mali-France Tensions].
… The countries [the allied forces] will continue “joint action against terrorism in the Sahel region, including in Niger and in the Gulf of Guinea” [oh, oh, Africa is in trouble!].
French President Emmanuel Macron said that Niger had agreed to host European forces fighting Islamist militants in the Sahel [does Niger really have a choice?… remember The 11 Components of the French Colonial Tax in Africa? plus the Niger president is a French puppet].
He also said the remaining forces would provide further assistance for countries in the Gulf of Guinea [let’s invent new troubles everywhere so we can loot in peace, and not pay a dime to the local populations]. “These states are increasingly exposed to efforts by terrorist groups to implant themselves in their territory,” Macron told a press conference in Paris Thursday, shortly before traveling to Brussels for a two-day EU-Africa summit.
There are a total of 25,000 foreign troops currently deployed in the Sahel region, including the UN peacekeeping mission MINUSMA established in 2013 and an EU military training mission, the EUTM Mali, along with the Barkhane operation and the Takuba forces [Despite all these forces deployed, insurgencies still manage to flourish?… I wonder why? maybe because the insurgent is paid by … the ‘savior’?]. …
ColonelAssimi Goïta,the president of Mali, recently addressed his people, the Malian people. I was moved by his humility, and depth. We should all aspire to do our part, and support our leaders, and more importantly remember that change starts with each one of us. If we want change, we each have to lend a hand, because it starts with us. We don’t have to wish for martyrs, but start one brick at a time. We are grateful forAssimi Goïtawho is trying to bring back dignity to the Malian people, and pray that he can reach his goal, this goal which is ours, and blesses the entire African continent. We pray for him, and countless Malians, and citizens who are standing up. This is a fight for our freedom, our humanity, our dignity… Enjoy! The original is onAfrik-plus.Translated to English by Dr. Y.,Afrolegends.com
“I am a mortal, I am not perfect. I am aware of that. History will judge me one day, but in the meantime I just ask for your support. I did not choose this destiny. It imposed itself to me. God knows what He is doing.
I will go all the way but if I die before reaching our ideal, continue the project without me and lay the groundwork for change with my blood and my flesh.
Tensions are escalating between France and Mali as the French ambassador was expelled from Mali and given 72 hours on Monday to leave the country. How did we get here? In reality, Mali has been in disarray since Libya fell in 2011… and has never recovered since then (“Le Mali en miettes. A qui le tour?” de Chems Eddine Chitour – “Mali in pieces. Who is next?” by Chems Eddine Chitour). France came in to “offer” her support to fight the djihadists in the north of the country. Today, as a result, the country is split into pieces, countless Malians have died, and France is now world producer of gold… mind you that France does not have an ounce of gold on her territory, but rather has been pillaging the mines of Mali, disrupting the peace in the region, and getting the “International community” to support her efforts in the plundering of the golden Mali (Africa is funding Europe!). Remember that Emperor Kankan Musa of the Empire of Mali, which encompassed part of modern-day Mali, distributed so much gold during his pilgrimage to Mecca in 1324 that it took a decade for the Egyptian economy to recover.
Mali has been in pieces… after the coup that got rid of France’s puppet IBK (Bye Bye IBK: Mali Coup), and the military coup that brought the Colonel Assimi Goita to power. Faced with 80% of its territory occupied by foreign forces and terrorists, and in order to regain the sovereignty of its lands, Mali has sought the partnership of Russia, which France has screamed against – remember The 11 Components of the French Colonial Tax in Africa which denies Africans the right to other military or economic partners without France’s approval? Well, France is angry that Mali has turned to Russia for help in regaining its territory… The time for us being doormats is over France… We have the right to our dignity! We have the right to choose the partners that can help us in our visions, a vision which seeks the well-being of our communities.
Just last week, France’s puppet organization that is ECOWAS (CEDEAO) placed unbelievable sanctions on Mali, closing borders, banking, etc… How can an African organization act in such a way against a sister country, if it is not serving the interest of the enemy?
I live you here with a more recent timeline published on Al-Jazeera. Bear in mind that it is not told from the eyes of a Malian or an African, so it is biased. For the full timeline, please go to Al-Jazeera.
On August 18, 2020, a group of Malian soldiers led by Colonel Assimi Goïta overthrew elected President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, who was facing angry protests over the government’s failure to stem the violence. The coup is seen as a blow to French President Emmanuel Macron, who had supported Keïta and sought to improve relations with former colonies in Africa.
On March 30, 2021, in a rare criticism of French forces in Mali, United Nations investigators accused the French military of being responsible for the killing of at least 19 civilians at a wedding party in central Mali in an air raid three months before. France denied the findings, saying its forces targeted an “armed terrorist group” and that it had “numerous reservations about the methodology used” in the UN investigation.
On May 25, Goïta pushed out a civilian-led government appointed to oversee a transition period, plunging the country into further uncertainty. He was named interim president on May 28.
In reaction to the power grab, France suspended its joint military operations with Malian forces on June 3 “awaiting guarantees” that civilians return to positions of power.
On June 10, French President Emmanuel Macron announced a major “transformation” and drawdown of France’s military presence in the Sahel where about 5,100 soldiers – across Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger – operate under its Barkhane operation [no wonder France can afford to have 35-hour week for its workers, or even confine them forever… their riches come from Africa].
France decided on July 3 to resume its military operation in Mali, as well as its advisory missions.
On September 14, France warned Mali against a deal with Wagner as reports emerged the country’s military government was close to hiring 1,000 mercenaries.
A spokesperson for the Malian defence ministry said his country wanted to “diversify its relationships” on security grounds.
On October 5, Macron called on Mali’s military to restore state authority in large areas of the country. “It’s not the role of the French army to fill in for the ‘non-work’, if I may describe it, of the Malian state,” he told French media. …
Mali’s Prime Minister Choguel Kokalla Maiga said on October 8 that he had evidence that France was training “terrorist” groups operating in the country. Maiga said French troops had created an enclave in Kidal, a town in the desert region of northern Mali, and handed it over to a “terrorist group” known as Ansar al-Din, allegedly linked to al-Qaeda.
On December 15, French forces left the city of Timbuktu, marking the scaling down of France’s intervention in northern Mali which had started in 2013 when it helped beat back groups advancing towards Bamako.
France and more than a dozen countries condemned on December 24 the deployment of Wagner mercenaries [i.e. the international community = gang of thieves] – one of the first official acknowledgements by Western capitals of the stationing of fighters from the Russian firm. Mali’s government has denied this, saying the Russian troops are in the country as part of a bilateral agreement.
… On January 7, Russian soldiers were deployed to Timbuktu to train Malian forces at the base vacated earlier by French troops.
On January 9, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) imposed a trade embargo on Mali after the military government postponed elections for up to five years, despite promising to hold a vote by February [ECOWAS = puppet arm of France in Africa].
Two days later, on January 11,France, the United States and the European Union backed the West African bloc’s sanctions [of course… the United Nations of thieves]. With borders closed, the military government branded the sanctions an “extreme … and illegal embargo against our people” and organises mass protests. …
Denmark sent 105 military personnel to Mali on January 18 to join a European special forces mission, known as Takuba, that was set up to help Mali tackle armed groups [see… International Gang of Thieves]. It said its troops had deployed after a “clear invitation” from Mali.
On January 24, the Malian government called on Denmark to “immediately” withdraw its contingent of special forces deployed alongside French and international troops. Denmark’s withdrawal was a headache for France, which had staked much on “Europeanising” its Sahel intervention.
On January 27, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian lashed the [Mali] military transitional cabinet’s “irresponsible” decision, calling it “illegitimate”. And in remarks published on January 30 in the Journal du Dimanche newspaper, the French foreign minister accused the Wagner group of plundering Mali’s resources in exchange for protecting the military government [the pot calling the kettle black]. “Wagner uses the weakness of certain states to implant itself … to reinforce Russia’s influence in Africa,” Le Drian added.
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso — The long-awaited trial on the killing of Thomas Sankara, Burkina Faso’s influential leftist leader killed more than three decades ago, has been suspended as a result of the West African country’s recent coup.
The trial has been paused until the constitution is reestablished, a lawyer for the prosecution said Monday.
The suspension comes one week after a military junta overthrew President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, suspended the constitution and dissolved the national assembly.
Prosper Farama, one of the lawyers for the Sankara family called the suspension a good thing that would respect everyone’s rights. “We have to be patient until the constitution is reestablished for things to be legal,” he said.
… Fourteen people are being charged for Sankara’s killing, including former President Blaise Compaore, who ousted Sankara in a 1987 coup. Compaore is charged with complicity, undermining state security and concealing corpses, according to military documents seen by The Associated Press. He’s being tried in absentia, as he has been in exile in Ivory Coast since he was toppled in 2014.
… “As young Sankarists, we are very worried about the suspension of the trial,” said Passamde Occean Sawadogo a singer and activist. “We remain vigilant so that nothing can jeoparidze the trial’,” he said.
Below is a description of the great city of Ségou (pronounce Segu) in Mali by the Scottish explorer Mungo Park in 1795. Here he describes the city’s population density, dynamism, architecture, and even their ways of life. He amply describes the roominess and surprised sturdiness of Ségou’s canoes which could host 4 horses. Mungo Park is simply astounded by the greatness of the civilization he encounters there, and concludes, “the crowded population and the cultivated state of the surrounding country, formed altogether a prospect of civilization and magnificence, which I little expected to find in the bosom of Africa.” Note that the city is surrounded by high mud walls probably similar to the Tata of Sikasso: an African Fortifying Wall.
Sego, the capital of Bambarra, at which I had now arrived, consists, properly speaking, of four distinct towns ; two on the northern bank of the Niger, called Sego Korro, and Sego Boo and two on the southern bank, called Sego Soo Korro and Sego See Korro. They are all surrounded with high mud walls ; the houses are built of clay, of a square form, with flat roofs ; some of them have two storeys, and many of them are whitewashed.
Besides these buildings, Moorish mosques are seen in every quarter ; and the streets, though narrow, are broad enough for every useful purpose, in a country where wheel-carriages are entirely unknown. From the best enquiries I could make, I have reason to believe that Sego contains altogether about thirty thousand inhabitants. The king of Bambarra constantly resides at Sego See Korro ; he employs a great many slaves in conveying people over the river, and the money they receive (though the fare is only ten cowrie shells for each individual) furnishes a considerable revenue to the king in the course of a year. The canoes are of a singular construction, each of them being formed of the trunks of two large trees, rendered concave, and joined together, not side by side, but end ways ; the junction being exactly across the middle of the canoe ; they are therefore very long and disproportionably narrow, and have neither decks nor masts ; they are, however, very roomy ; for I observed in one of them four horses, and several people crossing over the river. When we arrived at this ferry, with a view to pass over to that part of the town in which the king resides, we found a great number waiting for a passage ; they looked at me with silent wonder, and I distinguished, with concern, many Moors among them. There were three different places of embarkation, and the ferrymen were very diligent and expeditious ; but, from the crowd of people, I could not immediately obtain a passage ; and sat down upon the bank of the river, to wait for a more favourable opportunity The view of this extensive city ; the numerous canoes upon the river ; the crowded population and the cultivated state of the surrounding country, formed altogether a prospect of civilization and magnificence, which I little expected to find in the bosom of Africa.
Given that Africa is the cradle of humanity, it totally makes sense that it would also be the place where some the world’s largest sea creatures hail from. The excerpt below from the Guardian reveals that the Sahara was home to some of the world’s largest sea creatures. Enjoy!
Scientists reconstruct extinct species using fossils found in northern Mali from ancient seaway
Some of the biggest catfish and sea snakes to ever exist lived in what is today the Sahara desert, according to a new paper that contains the first reconstructions of extinct aquatic species from the ancient Trans-Saharan Seaway.
The sea was 50 metres deep and once covered 3,000 sq km of what is now the world’s biggest sand desert. The marine sediment it left behind is filled with fossils, which allowed the scientists who published the study to build up a picture of a region that teemed with life.
Between 100 m and 50 m years ago, today’s arid, boulder-strewn northern Mali “looked more like modern Puerto Rico”; the sun shone on some of the earliest mangroves, and molluscs lined the shallow seabed, according to Maureen O’Leary, the palaeontologist who led the study.
The study also formally named the geological units, literally putting the area on the geological map for the first time, showing how the sea ebbed and flowed over its 50 m years of existence, and building up information about the K-Pg boundary, the geophysical marker of one of Earth’s five major extinction events, in which the non-avian dinosaurs became extinct.
With 1.6 m catfish, 12.3 m sea snakes and 1.2 m pycnodonts – a type of bony fish – O’Leary and the other scientists developed the idea that in the late Cretaceous and early Paleogene period, the animals were experiencing gigantism.
Evolutionary biologists have long talked about the phenomenon of island gigantism, where species that live on small islands can sometimes develop very large bodies, possibly because they have more resources or there are few predators, or both.