Discover more from Andrew Korybko's Newsletter
Politico’s Piece On The Russo-Franco Competition In Africa Ignores Local Countries’ Agency
This outlet’s two explanations for “How Moscow chased France out of Africa” are twisted despite this dramatic declaration in and of itself deserving praise for breaking through the “political correctness” that shapes the “official narrative” in the West nowadays. Politico can’t admit it, but the truth is that Africans independently reject France’s neo-colonial hegemony.
Politico should be praised for explaining to the US-led West’s Golden Billion in late February “How Moscow chased France out of Africa” since the prevailing “official narrative” over the past year has hitherto claimed that Russia is on the strategic backfoot all across the world. Nevertheless, this outlet should also be criticized for ignoring local countries’ agency by claiming that “Paris is pulling back, under pressure from Russian disinformation and Wagner Group mercenaries.”
“Russia’s Newfound Appeal To African Countries Is Actually Quite Easy To Explain”, which the preceding hyperlinked analysis does in detail by focusing on the ways in which Moscow has served to comprehensively enhance its regional partners’ sovereignty in the New Cold War. In short, the Kremlin helps African countries like the Central African Republic, Mali, and perhaps soon Burkina Faso defend themselves against French-exacerbated Hybrid War threats to their national models of democracy.
Russia’s documented track record of success in the first two of those countries bolstered its “Democratic Security” credentials, hence why the rest of the continent is eagerly exploring similar such security-focused partnerships with it, which could presumably entail privileged economic quid pro quos for Moscow. The mutually beneficial aspect of their contemporary relations has resulted in African countries understandably preferring the Kremlin over the Elysée Palace.
What Politico smears as so-called “Russian disinformation” is actually just the amplification of “politically inconvenient” facts and analyses that expose Paris’ neo-colonial hegemony over Africa. The objectively existing and easily verifiable basis upon which Russian-connected individuals and outlets, both those formally linked to Moscow like RT as well as those whose relationship with it is only speculative like some bloggers’, interpret current events explains why folks support their perspectives.
It's veritably not the case that these people are victims of so-called “Russian disinformation” since that condescendingly implies that they lack any agency to independently arrive at their own conclusions about the issues that most directly affect their lives. The innuendo is that they also don’t have the proper media literacy to discern the difference between various information products, which carries with it racist overtones whenever a non-African outlet like Politico suggests anything of the sort.
As for the part of their piece blaming Wagner for France’s unprecedented setbacks in its self-declared “sphere of influence” in the year since the start of Russia’s special operation, this narrative also implies a lack of any agency, albeit on the state level instead of the social one like the earlier narrative does. What’s being suggested is that public representatives allegedly don’t have their country’s best interests in mind, with only their Western and especially French counterparts being able to decide that for them.
Like with the previously debunked narrative, this one also reeks of racist overtones irrespective of Politico’s intent. Taken together, this outlet’s two explanations for “How Moscow chased France out of Africa” are twisted despite this dramatic declaration in and of itself deserving praise for breaking through the “political correctness” that shapes the “official narrative” in the West nowadays. Politico can’t admit it, but the truth is that Africans independently reject France’s neo-colonial hegemony.