re posted from EXECUTIVE INTELLIGENCE REVIEW
This article appears in the August 25, 2023 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Free Niger, Africa and France
From Their Occupiers!
The following statement by Jacques Cheminade, President of the Solidarité & Progrès political party in France, and a former candidate for the presidency of France, was first published by the Schiller Institute in France. Links have been added to this English translation.
August 15—Let’s be clear from the outset: war-mongers in Paris and ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) must immediately cease their neo-colonial activities, and France must no less immediately demand the dissolution of NATO. It is only on the fulfillment of these two conditions that the Sahel countries and France will be able to establish win-win relations, all exercising their full sovereignty.
I write this without expecting any immediate miracles, but absolutely committed to persevering. I am convinced that we will succeed. For I know that our world is tilting toward the global East and South on the eve of the August BRICS Summit in South Africa, which will be a decisive step toward a new, fairer world order.
In this context, at a time when Africans intend to take control of their own destiny, the French government is parading around like a Françafrique zombie. Having itself been occupied by the financial oligarchy, it can only behave as an occupier in turn.
During my 2017 presidential campaign, I called on France to drive out its financial occupiers and break the stranglehold of the CFA franc. This is what gives me the right to speak today on behalf of our common future as peoples to be liberated.
The path to follow is simple if we have the political will to free ourselves from the grip of domineering ideologies:
1. Bury Françafrique [the French colonial overlordship] once and for all, not with empty words but dismantle it with concrete actions. Not military or economic domination, but cooperation and co-development instead.
2. At the international level, act for peace and security through mutual development, following the route mapped out by the cooperation between BRICS member countries and China’s BRI (Belt and Road Initiative). It’s no longer a question of a colonizer/colonized face-off, but of multilateral cooperation, including for France, with China, Russia, Brazil, Türkiye and India, all defined by mutual economic development, which is the new name for peace. No more CFA franc, now de facto the CFA euro, but national currencies issued by national banks, backed by public credits for human development.
3. Some French senators have said, “We should have had development brigades for schools, water and food. Not just the France of robocops driving around in armored cars.” Let’s take them at their word, here and now. Let’s offer African countries (free to accept them or not) real projects decided by and with them, with the participation of their peoples. Let’s be clear on this point: I’m convinced that the captains, lieutenant-colonels, and colonels of African armies, together with their soldiers, represent the interests of their peoples far better than “elites” elected under various undemocratic influences.
4. Africa must no longer be a chessboard for financial speculation, effectively handed over to armed terrorist groups. We must help armies, civil servants, and police forces combat the drug trafficking that causes states to disintegrate and destroys the nation’s people. The main war must be waged against the all-out money laundering engaged in by the major Western financial establishments. The war must have as its first target the corrupting financial mafia at the top in the Western metropolises.
5. It is no longer economically or humanely tolerable that the French-speaking countries of West Africa are among the poorest in the world, and the most deprived in terms of public health, education, access to clean drinking water, and electricity. It is no longer acceptable that more than 80% of Niger’s population has no access to electricity, even though that country has some of the richest uranium deposits in the world. Those who understand the importance of civil nuclear energy for the world to come, can not allow the continued treatment of Niger as a colonial source of cheap plunder and embezzlement.
Utopian? No, I’m optimistic, and with good reason. First and foremost, let me repeat that the world is moving toward a fairer order of mutual development. For a long time, Lyndon LaRouche, along with his friends and collaborators in the Schiller Institute, have been laying the foundations for a development policy for Africa, against the IMF and the Washington consensus. Yes, we were rejected, as were the African leaders fighting for their people, but today a new light is shining in this dramatically changing world. Africa’s youth population, the largest in the world, has immense expectations. This is an immense opportunity, provided we give them a future by helping to train them to be engineers, researchers, and skilled workers in every field, from space to rural development and medicine.
At the end of July, our associate was one of the few Western guests at the Russia-Africa Forum in Saint Petersburg. He took part in the enthusiasm for a new approach, beyond colonialism and neo-colonialism. Not against France, but on the contrary, to ensure that France takes its rightful place in the world to come, provided that our peace movement and the reason of the world’s leaders succeed in preventing war. I myself have long studied the ideas of Cheikh Anta Diop. Today, I hope that in the awakening of Senegal and France, the university that bears his name will truly become the living expression of everything he hoped for. The time seems right for this dialogue of civilizations and cultures.
I can see the question coming: Is it reasonable, and possible, to believe you with the current French government and the presidency of Emmanuel Macron? If we think in terms of a fixed world, the answer is no. Solidarité & Progrès, and the Schiller Institute are playing their part in the dynamic toward the world to come. The first, as a political party in France, the other as a source of inspiration and action worldwide. The sound of war drums can be heard in the distance. Those who choose not to hear them, can’t stop them coming closer.