Thomas C. Mountain
January 26, 2011
Newly discovered oil, an IMF henchman and good old fashioned election robbery are the ingredients of the west's latest electoral coup attempt, this time in the west African country of the Ivory Coast.
The real winner of the Ivorian election was President Gabagbo, who as required under the Ivorian Constitution, was declared the victor by the Ivorian Constitutional Court, the only party empowered to do so by Ivorian law. The west's attempt to install their own puppet as President is part and parcel of the western policy of "crisis management" used to control Africa and exploit its resources.
Very few readers outside of the Ivory Coast have any background in this matter so lets start by reviewing recent Ivorian history.
For decades the French supported Felix Boigny ruled Cote D'Ivoire. During his reign the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and its evil twin the World Bank forced one of their local henchmen upon Boigny as his "Prime Minister", Monsieur Ouattara.
During this time an Ivorian academic named Laurent Gabagbo came to the fore as a spokesperson for a popular movement opposed to the rape and pillage imposed on the Ivorian people by the draconian social spending cuts mandated by the IMF and World Bank. Professor Gabagbo was soon thrown into prison with much of the credit for such laid at Prime Minister Ouattara's door.
After the death of President Boigny in 1993 an election was held, previous to which Ouattara had lost an internal power struggle and left the country, going back to working directly for the western financial mafia.
By 1999 relations between the new Ivorian president and the French and USA had grown increasingly tense and that year a military coup supported by the west overthrew the elected government. Behind the scenes pulling the strings was Ouattara and his western godfathers.
By 2002 the western policy of crisis management had lead to a nasty civil war between northern and southern Ivorians. This conflict developed into an ethnic/religious based war with eventual President Laurent Gabagbo leading the south, mainly Christian and Ivorian nationalist movement versus Ouattara with his western overlords funding his operation based in the north and a more muslim, high percentage of immigrants demographic.
The west, mainly the French, have sided openly with the northern based rebellion and the French air force went so far as to bomb the Ivorian military supporting Gabagbo. A stalemate developed with the south lead by Gabagbo and the north under the control of various local warlords
After years of international pressure, the French and USA, along with the UN, forced another election in the Ivory Coast which was held at the end of 2010 with the two main candidates being Ouattara and Gabagbo.
Before the election the polls predicted a victory for President Gabagbo. While vote counting was under way, several hundred thousand votes from northern Ivory Coast where Ouattara has his base of support were challenged by President Gabagbo's camp and subsequently disqualified by the Ivorian Constitutional Court who declared President Gabagbo the winner. Under the Ivorian constitution, the Election Commission can only tabulate and pass on its findings to the Ivorian Constitutional Court which is the sole power allowed to declare the winner. As such, under Ivorian Law President Gabagbo won the election.
The western supported "independent election commission" disputed the Ivorian Constitutional Court ruling, having marched from a meeting with the USA and French ambassadors to a press conference to declare Ouattara the real winner. The west, with the support of the UN in-Security Council announced that they, not the Ivorian Constitutional Court would declare the winner, and proceeded to try and install Ouattara as president. The Ivorian people in the south were outraged and declared their support for Ivorian sovereignty and the leadership of President Gabagbo in large demonstrations.
Ouattara, the "Independent Election Commission" and their western handlers tried to play hardball, refusing to allow a review of the disputed votes, refusing to even talk to Gabagbo. President Gabagbo prepared to wait out the crisis, continuing to operate as he has done for several years as the leader of at least the southern half of the Ivory Coast.
Ouattara, with all the international recognition seemed to suffer from delusions of grandeur and called for a nation wide general strike.
When the next day made it apparent that Ouattara couldn't even mobilize support amongst his base in the north for the strike it became clear that he was little more than what he was, another African puppet dancing to his masters tune. Ouattara recently called for another general strike, which failed miserably, again.
Ever more desperate, Ouattara, who remains holed up in a 5 star hotel protected by thousands of UN "peacekeepers" and a combat alert French Air force ten minutes away, has repeatedly called for a military invasion of the Ivory Coast and his installation as "the rightful President of the Ivory Coast". Gabagbo remains calm and the standoff continues.
Compared to the rest of west Africa the Ivory Coast historically has been fairly well off economically. Not only is the Ivory Coast the cocoa capital of the world, large offshore oil deposits have been discovered which have the potential to turn the Ivory Coast into even more of an economic and political power in the region.
The Ivory Coast is surrounded by neighbors who have fallen victim for many years to a series of wars and ethnic cleansing resulting from decades of "crisis management" imposed on them by the west. Millions have fled their homelands for reason of economic turmoil compounded by periodic civil wars and have been settling throughout the Ivory Coast for decades now. With the north having the highest percentage of immigrants, up to 40%, some 25% of the people living in the Ivory Coast today are non-citizens. Living and working in an adopted land are one thing, holding an Ivorian passport and voting in an Ivorian election is another matter. The pre-election polls conducted of documented Ivorians reflected the results announced by the Ivorian high court, and only a flood of suspect last minute votes from areas with high concentrations of non-Ivorians allowed any pretense of an Ouattara victory.
Ouattara's western handlers now realize that the only way to remove Gabagbo would be by force and the only force capable of doing so, no matter the bluster by Nigeria's President Bad Luck Johnson, is the French army and air force, a sizable contingent of which is stationed on Ivorian soil.
Even the French peacock Sarkozy seems to have realized what a disaster it would be to have the French military killing Africans and is loath to order such. The UN "peacekeepers" are mainly from Bangladesh and of little more than symbolic use. Time seems to be on Gabagbo's side with Ouattara alternating between taking a military invasion line and trying other, behind the scenes efforts to destabilize the southern Ivory Coast.
About the only weapon in the west's arsenal against the Gabagbo government are financial and economic sanctions, both of which have been imposed. Even this has been resisted with the director of the West African Central Bank, the main center of financial transactions in the region, resigning over western pressure to cut off funding to the President Gabagbo's government.
Cracks have begun to appear in the seemingly unanimous support for the western coup attempt, with President of Angola pointing out the obvious legality of Gabagbo's victory due to the ruling of the Ivorian Constitutional Court. So far the so called "free press in the west" has continued their propaganda campaign on behalf of the attempted coup and maintained a white out of the basic facts in this conflict.
If the Ivory Coast, at least the southern, Gabagbo lead part, can withstand these attacks for the next months, possible years, it is seems that the Ivory Coast electoral coup attempt by the west has failed. As for all the talk in the west about "supporting democracy in Africa" one only has to remember the west's support for the completely bogus Ethiopian 99% election victory by Meles Zenawi, the most hated man in the Horn of Africa if not the entire continent. With over a dozen "elections" slated in Africa over the next year or two stay tuned for more "buy, rig or steal" electoral coups, all part of the west's "crisis management" policy in Africa. In other words, create a crisis and then manage or manipulate such the better to loot and pillage Africa's natural and human resources. When it comes to "democracy" nothing seems to be to low for the increasingly desperate attempts by the former colonial powers in the west and their godfather in the USA to continue imposing their rule on Africa. For without Africa's oil and mineral wealth the western economies will slowly grind to a halt, leaving Europe and the USA little choice but more futile attempts to enforce what was once their unchallenged rule.
Thomas C. Mountain
thomascmountain at yahoo dot com
Thomas C. Mountain is the only independent western journalist in the Horn of Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006