ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Algérie, Mali: le tonnerre d’un monde éteint (édito)
by Patrick Apel-Muller
Translated Wednesday 23 January 2013, by Gene Zbikowskiand reviewed by
“The action of French troops and the African armies which are to join them will not have a meaning unless it is transcended by powerful investment in a new sharing of wealth with Africa, with the end of looting and the solution of this debt through massive development aid, through the choice of an Africa freed from the ball-and-chain that hinders its growth and restrains its youth,” states Patrick Apel-Muller in the Jan. 18 editorial in l’Humanité.
What proves more than this hostage-taking the irrefutable failure of Western policies of these past years? The brutality of free-trade globalization has brought Mali to bankruptcy, has brought its young government to dereliction, and has brought the population, reduced to poverty, to doubt the country’s future. The World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank have behaved like a debt collection company in seizing its meager resources. In the north-west, the French intervention broke open Kaddafi’s arsenals and allowed Qatar to arm katibas of religious extremists and brought about the linking-up of Islamic fanatics. The sinister specter of French imperialism has restrained the mobilization of the continent, worried at seeing the resurgence of the former colonial power. To this distressing picture must be added the American machinations which have favored – relayed by their allies in the Persian Gulf – Salafist enterprises, preferring the Green terror to the Red peril. Today, we deplore the oppression that has fallen upon the inhabitants of Timbuktu and Gao, we worry for the hostages, we follow, with difficulty, the Algerian operations and the fighting in Mali… We are right, but what a waste!
These bloody convulsive movements are to be added to the list of charges against the world order. These convulsive movements also demand that we not remain at the level of a good military conscience in the face of the jihadists or of the apparent consensus at the United Nations. There is a serious risk of becoming bogged down; northern Mali and the Sahel zone may become a very threatening abscess for world peace, a toxic melding of high inquisitors and Mafiosi. Algeria may again be bloodied by terrorist throat-cutters. In the Western countries, there will be no lack of new crusaders to agitate the perspective of a new war of civilizations, which is also dear to Al Qaeda. So, let us not lock ourselves into warlike postures.
The action of French troops and the African armies which are to join them will not have a meaning unless it is transcended by powerful investment in a new sharing of wealth with Africa, with the end of looting and the solution of this debt through massive development aid, through the choice of an Africa freed from the ball-and-chain that hinders its growth and restrains its youth. It is on this condition alone that we will soon be able to see the drama of the natural gas complex of Tigantourine as “the thunder of a dying world,” in the words of the poet Jean Tardieu.