Cameroon – France’s `Guatemala’ (first of a series)…

View from the Left Bank: Rob Prince's Blog

 

Ruben Um Nyobé, Félix Moumié, Ernest Ouandié, Albert Ndongmo…

Here in the USA these names ring virtually no bells. Not very many bells ring in France either, although given France’s role in squishing Cameroon’s legitimate anti-colonial movement – it took France 15 years – all of these should be household names. But in Africa, particularly the Cameroon where more than half a century after all of them were killed (minus Ndongmo), their memory as principled nationalists, as fallen leaders of their country’s independence movement from France, remains fresh, even vibrant, this despite efforts to slander their reputations and the movement for which they sacrificed their lives.

The gap between French rhetoric about supporting decolonization and its frenetic attempts to maintain economic and political control of its former colonies, especially in Africa could not be greater. There is a french word for this gap between the ideals of 1789 on the…

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