by Dr. Kwame Osei
Global Research, April 17, 2011
With the ongoing civil war in Ivory Coast seemingly close to an end it is appropriate to tell the REAL untold story of the crisis in Ivory Coast and inform our readers of the REAL issue(s) behind the situation in the country.
I have heard many commentators on this subject and the bulk of them rant about the fact that the situation in the Ivory Coast is about elections that were supposedly won by Alassane Ouattara and that he is “the internationally recognized president of Ivory Coast” and that Laurent Gbagbo refuses to stand down because he thinks he won the elections – this in itself is flawed because according to a report from a US senate committee that went to Ivory Coast to monitor the elections complained of voter irregularities in areas that were pro-Ouattara
However the deception about the elections is the line that the western media is peddling and experience informs us that when it comes to the western media and Afrika we must be very circumspect of the agenda of the western media who have nothing but disdain for Afrikan people.
That said it is very simplistic to say that the situation in Ivory Coast is solely as a result of undisputed elections and is giving the public a much skewed view of the actual situation.
The REAL issue behind the current impasse in the Ivory Coast is a battle relating to French imperialism and control of the Ivory Coast. What this actually means in reality is that on one hand you have Gbagbo who is against French imperialism in Ivory Coast and championing the cause of Pan-Afrikanism and on the other hand you have Ouattara who one could say is very accommodating to safeguarding French interests in Ivory Coast.
This history lesson dates back to the late 1950's when the winds of change were beginning to sweep across the Afrikan continent as a result of Ghana gaining independence and the momentum of the Afrikan liberation movement.
Charles De Gaulle who was French president at the time knew that the winds of change sweeping across Afrika would also strike those countries that were under French colonial/imperial rule.
Therefore recognizing this De Gaulle made an insidious move by insisting that he would only grant Francophone countries their independence from France if they ceded up to 90% of ALL their revenue to the French Treasury in Paris and also that the CFA Franc must be fixed to the French currency, the French Franc making it easier for French companies to conduct business in Francophone Afrika.
The readership must be reminded that the Francophone countries in Afrika have huge mineral resources like enriched uranium, gold, diamonds, bauxite, chrome, oil and gas that are crucial for French industry.
Since the Francophone countries were eager for their political independence from Paris, some of their leaders naively signed up to this draconian measure and others who knew of the consequences of this reluctantly signed up to this measure.
Therefore once they had put their signature to it the newly “independent” Francophone states in Afrika were forever enslaved to French economic interests.
These interests meant that French companies operating in Francophone states had free access to these markets, had easy access to government contracts and perhaps more shrewdly these French companies did not pay any taxation to the respective francophone states and repatriated their vast earnings back to Paris.
Those Francophone states like Burkina Faso's Thomas Sankara who resisted this draconian legislation were severely dealt with in the form of economic sanctions and/or military coups d'état.
Gbagbo who is a student of history knows of this diabolical arrangement that has had an adverse effect on the economic emancipation and development of Francophone states and vowed to reverse this arrangement – he also wanted to nationalize key industries free from French control.
It is also important to recognize that Ivory Coast is THE world's biggest producer of cocoa which is the main ingredient for confectionery goods like chocolate and pastries and the French confectionery industry is worth billions of Euro's a year – making control of the cocoa industry a key target of French imperialism.
The French political elite knows of Gbagbo's agenda and has used any means at its disposal including influencing national elections to deny Gbagbo from implementing his agenda which if he had succeeded would have a catastrophic effect on the French economy.
This would manifest itself in that other Francophone states in Afrika would follow Gbagbo's lead and demand economic emancipation which would send the French economy into permanent recession since the massive revenue that Paris receives to fund its social and economic programmes would no longer be available and that is why the French and their western allies are supporting Ouattara.
Proof of this French support for Ouattara manifests itself with French helicopters bombing Gbagbo's forces (circa France TV 24hour news cable channel) and more blatantly that the so-called rebels that are attacking the presidential palace are in fact White French mercenaries (circa you-tube video footage).
The question one must ask is why are the French supporting Ouattara.
Well, Ouattara is a former employee of the IMF/World Bank, is western educated and trained and therefore is seen as a safe pair of hands by the French and their western cousins'.
When as it appears that Mr. Ouattara assumes overall control of the country it will mean that French and western imperialism has won the day and Ivorian and Afrikan economic emancipation been dealt a severe blow.
Global Research Articles by Kwame Osei