On Aug. 9, in Sacramento, the ANSWER Coalition (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism), All African People’s Revolutionary Party, Sacramento Area Peace Action and Sacramento County Peace and Freedom Party stood with the people of Niger demanding their right to self determination in the face of foreign military intervention.
In Niger, 43% of the population live on less than $1.19 a day while also enduring human rights violations at the hands of uranium mining corporations that the French ruling class requires for nuclear energy.
Meanwhile, massive military spending in the country prioritizes corporate interests instead of the safety and security of Nigeriens. Niger has three U.S. bases with one being the largest U.S. drone base in the world. These bases, close to the sites of imperialist resource extraction on the African continent, are of strategic importance to the U.S. government,
To the U.S. and French ruling classes, the new push from Mali, Burkina Faso and now Niger to kick them out of the region would mean the loss of colonial influence. The consequences of that NATO intervention in Libya are still felt today as rebels funded to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi now look to establish a religious fundamentalist regime across the Sahel, taking advantage of pre-existing fault lines and conflicts.
While the media in this country expresses fear for the safety of the ousted president Bazoum and his family, nothing is said of the rest of the country. The people of Niger are struggling: past governments have made them dependent on foreign aid and unable to build themselves up. The media calls this “democracy” but in reality it is neocolonialism; taking resources from a very rich continent while calling its people poor and uneducated.
All revolutionary and progressive people should stand in support of African liberation from French neo-colonialism in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and all of Africa. Peace-loving people must oppose the narratives that the U.S. military and its allies must intervene in sovereign countries and say no more proxy wars for resources and corporate influence.
Protesters at the August 9 demonstration called upon everyone to denounce our tax dollars being used for military interventions when we need money for social services here. Anti-imperialist people should support the people of Niger’s right to build their infrastructure to meet their needs.
No more money for wars! Money for housing, education and health care!