Tag Archives: Mali

Canada’s end run for seat on UN Security Council

Canadian government’s appeasement of U.S. imperialism

By TONY SEED

François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs, travelled to New York on June 13 ahead of the vote on Canada’s bid for a seat on the United Nations Security Council which has roused much concern and opposition at home. He is being deployed, according to Global Affairs, for four days “to engage with various ambassadors and permanent representatives to promote Canada’s commitment to peace and security, climate change, gender equality, economic security and multilateralism.” Champagne’s schmoozing to get votes lubricated with “aid” dollars is the end run for the self-serving, much-hyped bid of the Trudeau Liberals to restore Canada’s tarnished record on the world stage. [1] Continue reading

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Warship Watch. Canada deploys two warships to West Africa

By TONY SEED

Canada has deployed two warships, HMCS Kingston and HMCS Shawinigan, to West Africa  – “to work with partners & allies to enhance maritime security + stability” in the Gulf of Guinea,” in the words of Vice Admiral Ron Lloyd. Maritime Forces Atlantic (MARLANT) stated the aim of “ West Africa today, is to work with African nations to build partner capacity, promote maritime security, and foster relationships in the region.” None of this has to do with the defence of Canada. Continue reading

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Hail African Liberation Day! No to foreign intervention in Africa

(First posted on this blog in 2014. Canada recently announced its military intervention in French-occupied Mali under the pretext of “peacekeeping.”)

May 25, Africa Liberation Day, is celebrated, as it has been since its inception in 1958, by the peoples of Africa, the African diaspora and all progressive people to mark the victories achieved in, as well as the continuing struggles for, the complete liberation and independence of the African continent. The African continent and its peoples have made many advances in the past half a century and recent years have seen the mighty struggles of the people of Egypt, Tunisia, South Africa, Nigeria and elsewhere for their empowerment. But the imperialist system of states, headed by the governments of Britain and the other big powers, continue to thwart the aspirations of the peoples of Africa for total liberation. – TS Continue reading

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For your information: United Nations Stabilization Mission in Mali

Protest in Cairo, Egypt, January 8, 2013, against French intervention in Mali.

The UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) was established by an April 2013 Security Council resolution following France’s intervention in January of that year. The official mandate of the mission as established by the UN Security Council was to support political processes in that country and carry out a number of security-related tasks. The Mission was tasked to “support the transitional authorities of Mali in the stabilization of the country and implementation of the transitional roadmap.” In 2014 the mandate was expanded to “focus on duties, such as ensuring security, stabilization and protection of civilians; supporting national political dialogue and reconciliation; and assisting the re-establishment of State authority, the rebuilding of the security sector, and the promotion and protection of human rights in that country.” Continue reading

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New scramble for Africa: Spurious justifications of Britain, France and the EU for intervention in Africa

WORKERS’ WEEKLY 

Placard reads: “Loving Freedom, reduced to slavery. Europe is an accomplice to crimes.” Protest against slavery in Libya outside Libyan Embassy in Paris on November 24, 2017.

The annual Anglo-French summit meeting took place on January 18 with a high-level meeting at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst between Prime Minister Theresa May and President Macron. Although the summit’s agenda was presented as wide-ranging, it was evident that increasing military activity and what is referred to as security co-operation was at the heart of the meeting. What was particularly evident, was increasing intervention in the affairs of African countries by France and Britain both to prevent what is described as the threat of “Islamist-terrorism” in the Sahel and to establish the borders of the European Union (EU) firmly in that region allegedly to control the flow of migrants to Europe and prevent modern forms of slavery. Continue reading

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New scramble for Africa: No to expanding Canada’s military presence in Africa

By ENVER VILLAMIZAR

On March 19, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland announced that Canada would be sending a task force of an as-yet undetermined number of troops and Chinook and Griffon helicopters to join the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) for a one-year deployment. The announcement in fact expands Canada’s military involvement in Mali and the Sahel region of Africa which has been ongoing since 2010.[1] Continue reading

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Germany and the militarization of West Africa

BERLIN/N’DJAMENA/BAMAKO (October 14) – Berlin is using today’s visit of Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, to enhance its rapidly growing military influence in West Africa. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s trip to Africa early this week has already revealed Germany’s growing military importance on the African continent. According to reports, a “change” can already be noted, particularly in Mali. Traditionally within France’s exclusive sphere of influence, the EU, “fundamentally under German leadership,” is now increasingly determining that country’s development. The German government is also expanding the Bundeswehr’s activities and the supply of military hardware to Niger and Chad, along with the construction of a military base in Niger’s capital Niamey. Berlin is also seeking to obtain influence in the war against Boko Haram in Nigeria. The first agreements on support measures had already been reached with Nigeria last year. Germany is enhancing its network of influence in West Africa by increasing the deployment of expeditionary troops, the establishment of military bases and by supplying military aid. This could possibly reduce France’s traditional political and military predominance in its former colonies.

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US empire: The outpost that doesn’t exist in the country you can’t locate

A base camp, an authoritarian regime, and the future of US blowback in Africa. NICK TURSE*

Admit it. You don’t know where Chad is. You know it’s in Africa, of course. But beyond that? Maybe with a map of the continent and by some process of elimination you could come close. But you’d probably pick Sudan or maybe the Central African Republic. Here’s a tip. In the future, choose that vast, arid swath of land just below Libya.

Who does know where Chad is?  That answer is simpler: the U.S. military.  Recent contracting documents indicate that it’s building something there. Not a huge facility, not a mini-American town, but a small camp. Continue reading

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Africa: Remember this war?

The fighting in Mali is yesterday’s passing news for much of the monopoly media. The Royal Canadian Air Force together with the US Air Force, which now has forces in over 30 African countries – Germany too was involved – has been continuously flying military supplies and other equipment to support the French military intervention.

That mission, although not officially wrapped up, has disappeared from view, reports the Ottawa Citizen’s military reporter, David Pugliese.

Not for the French though. Its forces bombed positions in northern Mali on the weekend, the BBC reported. Continue reading

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US’s back-to-the-future military policies in Africa

For the third time in the past year, the Harper War Government has deployed Special Forces to Africa, this time to Nigeria, under the guise of humanitarian intervention. Nick Turse* elaborates Obama’s new model for expeditionary warfare.

Lion Forward Teams? Echo Casemate? Juniper Micron? You could be forgiven if this jumble of words looks like nonsense to you. It isn’t. 

It’s the language of the U.S. military’s simmering African interventions; the patois that goes with a set of missions carried out in countries most Americans couldn’t locate on a map; the argot of conflicts now primarily fought by proxies and a former colonial power on a continent that the U.S. military views as a hotbed of instability and that hawkish pundits increasingly see as a growth area for future armed interventions.

Since 9/11, the U.S. military has been making inroads in Africa, building alliances, facilities, and a sophisticated logistics network. Continue reading

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Britain has invaded nine out of ten countries in the world

“The analysis of the histories of the almost 200 countries in the world found only 22 which have never experienced an invasion by the British.” So are Mali, Chad and Belarus next then? (In fact, since early 2013, Britain has been intervening militarily on the side of the French, who are using airlift supplied by Canada and the USA to intervene in Mali.) In this connection, it is sobering to reflect that leading British politicians openly justify or even celebrate the crimes of colonialism. Tony Blair infamously stated that the British Empire was a “remarkable achievement.” Gordon Brown declared that Britain should stop apologising for colonialism, although nobody has been able to find any evidence of such an apology. David Cameron prefers to speak about colonialism in terms of the great “benefits” that Britain gave to the world in the 19th century and declares that overall, Britain’s “contribution” was a “good one.” The crimes of British colonialism in India alone resulted in the deaths of over 20 million from famine alone.

Stephen Harper,For his part, Stephen Harper, echoing the Cameron approach, shamelessly hails the “benign” “benefits” of the British Empire, sponsors lavish royal visits and restores “royal” to the navy and air force. It is unfashionable, Mr. Harper acknowledges, to speak of colonial legacies as anything other than oppressive, although there is no evidence of any Tory official speaking against British oppression: “But in the Canadian context, the actions of the British Empire were largely benign and occasionally brilliant.” Speaking as a colonialist, British magnanimity, he acclaimed, ensured the survival of French culture;  Québec is an oppressed nation without the right of self-determination but with a culture that is Québecois and not French, which is a language. British approaches to the aboriginal population, “while far from perfect, were some of the fairest and most generous of the period.” The Beothuk and Mi’kmaq will be pleased. So far as the native peoples are concerned, of course, the “approaches” were genocide. which was “far from perfect”: apart from the Beothuk, the First Nations actually survived, a testament to their resistance.

21 of the 22 countries that have not been invaded by Britain

21 of the 22 countries that have not been invaded by Britain

Jasper Copping, The Telegraph (Nov. 4, 2012 ) – EVERY SCHOOLBOY used to know that at the height of the empire, almost a quarter of the atlas was coloured pink, showing the extent of British rule.

But that oft recited fact dramatically understates the remarkable global reach achieved by this country.

A new study has found that at various times the British have invaded almost 90 per cent of the countries around the globe. Continue reading

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Africa: Battleground for NATO’s 21st century Strategic Concept

By RICK ROZOFF*, Stop NATO

(May 20, 2011) – THE WAR by major North Atlantic Treaty Organization member states against Libya is in its third month and has been conducted under the official auspices of NATO for the past fifty days.

According to the military bloc’s daily online tally [1], Alliance military aircraft have flown over 7,200 missions and more than 2,800 combat flights since NATO inaugurated so-called Operation Unified Protector on March 31.

The world’s only military alliance stands to match or exceed the 78-day duration of its air war against Yugoslavia in 1999 if not to deploy troops in Libya in what could expand into protracted combat and occupation roles like those in Afghanistan and adjoining nations where the Pentagon and NATO will mark the tenth anniversary of their invasion this October 7.

Recently Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko “Pointed out that the operation in Libya is becoming the first actual litmus test for NATO’s new strategic concept,” [2] a reference to the latest Strategic Concept adopted by the 28-nation alliance at its summit in Lisbon, Portugal last November, the first in this century and since that endorsed at the Washington summit in 1999 when NATO was waging its first war (against Yugoslavia) and incorporating its first post-Cold War recruits (the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland).

The war against Libya was also the test case for U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), the first overseas military command launched by the Pentagon since the end of the Cold War (its predecessor, Central Command, was created in 1983), whose Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn was in charge of bombing runs and cruise missile attacks in and a naval blockade of Libya from March 19-30. Continue reading

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