Global Black History

How France Continues Slavery & Colonialism in the 21st Century


The average French citizen works 30 hours a week, takes siestas after their lunch break, visits coffee shops and spends considerable time at their favorite restaurant all the while looking down upon the average African. What they don’t know is that their government supports their lifestyle through stealing from former French colonies in Africa. Perhaps they know but also don’t care that a huge amount of the money spent on them comes through oppressing other people. While this issue has been highlighted before it deserves more attention because its consequences are far reaching.

Here is how France is stealing from African countries. Read more at

The former colonies have to pay a “colonial debt.”

Former French colonies were forced to pay for the country’s infrastructure that France took credit for building during colonization. The amount of this debt varies depending on what country is paying the debt and how its infrastructure was developed. More times than not the amount of debt is designed to frustrate and bankrupt the new independent nation.

France can automatically confiscate the African country’s national reserves.

The former African French colony must deposit its national monetary reserves into France’s central bank. France has held the national reserves of these 14 African countries since 1961: Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Togo, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Guinea Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Chad, Congo-Brazzaville and Gabon.

In fact, more than 80 percent of the foreign reserves of these African countries are deposited in so-called “operations accounts” controlled by the French Treasury. Two declared independent African banks – BEAC (Banque des Etats de l’Afrique Centrale) and BEACO (Banque Centrale des Etats de l’Afrique de l’Ouest) have in practice no monetary policies of their own. The countries themselves do not know, nor are they told how much of the pool of foreign reserves held by the French Treasury belongs to them as a group or individually.

Only a limited group of officials knows exactly the amounts of these operations accounts, where these funds are invested. France carefully hides this and other details from any African bank or government. However, it is estimated that France now holds nearly $500 billion of African countries’ money in its treasury and will do anything to keep it. Moreover, the African countries do not have access to this money. France allows them to access only 15 percent of the money in any given year. If they need more than that, they have to borrow at commercial rates from the remaining 85 percent of their own money that is held hostage by the French Treasury.

In addition, France places a limit on the amount of money the countries may borrow from the reserve. The limit is fixed at 20 percent of their public revenue in the preceding year. If the countries need to borrow more than that, France vetoes it. The former President of France, Jacques Chirac said the French people should accept the fact that a large amount of the money in their banks comes precisely from the exploitation of former colonies on the African continent.

France claims the right to exploit any natural resource discovered in the country.

France claims it has the first right to buy any natural resources found on the territory of its ex-colonies. The African countries are also not allowed to seek other partners freely.

France forces African countries to give preference to French interests and companies in the field of public procurement and public biding.

According to government contracts, French companies must be considered first. Only after that can Africans connect with other foreign companies. It doesn’t matter if the African countries would benefit from a partner outside of France. As a consequence, in many French ex-colonies all the major economic assets are in French hands. For example, in Côte d’Ivoire French companies own and control all the major utilities – water, electricity, telephone, transport, ports and major banks. The same situation exists in the field of commerce, construction and agriculture.

France claims an exclusive right to supply military equipment and training to African military officers.

Through a sophisticated scheme of scholarships, grants and “defense agreements” attached to the Colonial Pact (the document that sets up the common currency for all Francophone countries – the CFA Franc), African countries send their senior military officers for training in France. The situation in Africa now is that France has trained and nourished hundreds, even thousands of traitors. They are activated when France needs them to commit another coup d’état or create a disturbing political situation inside Africa.

France claims a right to deploy troops and intervene in the African country to defend France’s interests.

Under the conditions of defense agreements and the Colonial Pact, France claims a legal right to intervene militarily in the African countries and also deploy its troops permanently on their military bases.

The African countries are obliged to make French the official language of the country and of education.

The “Francophone” cultural and educational system, with several satellites and their affiliates, is supervised directly by the French minister of foreign affairs. African people are pressured to speak French instead of their own languages. That is extremely limiting. It has been suggested that if a person only speaks French, they will have access to less than 4 percent of humanity’s knowledge and information.

France’s former colonies are forced to use the colonial currency FCFA (the CFA franc).

This evil setup acts as a milk cow for France. It has been condemned by the European Union, but France is not ready to get rid of such a system that drains the African countries of their wealth and brings to about $500 billion annually to the French treasury.

The African countries are obliged to send France an annual balance and reserve report.

Without the report the African countries cannot get money from the reserves of the France central bank. Also, the central banks of ex-colonies are controlled and managed by the France central bank.

The African countries are prohibited from entering into any military alliance.

The African countries in general have military alliances with their ex-colonizers. Moreover, France forbids the Africans from looking for any form of military cooperation and protection outside of that offered by the French government.

The African countries are obliged to ally only with France during a situation of war or global crisis.

More than a million African soldiers contributed to the defeat of Nazism and fascism in World War II. However, this contribution is often ignored or underestimated. Since World War II, France has taken into consideration the fact that Africans may be used in the case of any military threat or war expectation. France has been addicted to looting and exploiting Africa since slavery. There are still French military bases and soldiers in Africa under the pretense of protection. But in fact they are there to control and oppress the local citizens. For example, why are there still 450 French soldiers in Côte d’Ivoire who are able to control a population of 20 million people?


That is a perfectly good question but here is what has happened to all the leaders who tried to stop France’s domination over their countries.

When Sékou Touré of Guinea decided in 1958 to get out of French colonial empire, and opted for independence, the French administration in Guinea destroyed everything in the country which represented what they called the benefits from French colonization. Three thousand French left the country, taking all their property and destroying anything that which could not be moved: schools, nurseries, public administration buildings were crumbled; cars, books, medicine, research institute instruments, tractors were crushed and sabotaged; horses, cows in the farms were killed, and food in warehouses were burned or poisoned. The purpose of this outrageous act was to send a clear message to all other colonies that the consequences for rejecting France would be very high.

Sylvanus Olympio, the first president of the Republic of Togo, a tiny country in West Africa, found a middle ground solution with the French. He didn’t want his country to continue to be a French dominion, therefore he refused to sign the colonization continuation pact De Gaule proposed, but agreed to pay an annual debt to France for the so called benefits Togo got from French colonization. It was the only conditions for the French not to destroy the country before leaving. However, the amount estimated by France was so big that the reimbursement of the so called “colonial debt” was close to 40% of the country budget in 1963. This led to a dire financial situation so Olympio decided to that the country needed its own currency. On January 13, 1963, three days after he started printing his country own currency, a squad of illiterate soldiers backed by France killed the first elected president of newly independent Africa. Olympio was killed by an ex French Foreign Legionnaire army sergeant called Etienne Gnassingbe who supposedly received a bounty of $612 from the local French embassy. Olympio’s dream was to build an independent and self-sufficient and self-reliant country. But the French didn’t like the idea.

On June 30, 1962, Modiba Keita , the first president of the Republic of Mali, decided to withdraw from the French colonial currency FCFA which was imposed on 12 newly independent African countries. For the Malian president, who was leaning more to a socialist economy, it was clear that colonization continuation pact with France was a trap, a burden for the country development. On November 19, 1968, like, Olympio, Keita will be the victim of a coup carried out by another ex-French Foreign legionnaire, the Lieutenant Moussa Traoré. In fact during that turbulent period when Africans were fighting to liberate themselves from European colonization, France would repeatedly use many ex Foreign legionnaires to carry out coups against elected presidents:

  • On January 1st, 1966, Jean-Bédel Bokassa, an ex-French foreign legionnaire, carried a coup against David Dacko, the first President of the Central African Republic.
  • On January 3, 1966, Maurice Yaméogo, the first President of the Republic of Upper Volta, now called Burkina Faso, was victim of a coup carried by Aboubacar Sangoulé Lamizana, an ex-French legionnaire who fought with French troops in Indonesia and Algeria against these countries independence.
  • On 26 October 1972, Mathieu Kérékou who was a security guard to President Hubert Maga, the first President of the Republic of Benin, carried a coup against the president, after he attended French military schools from 1968 to 1970.

In fact, during the last 50 years, a total of 67 coups happened in 26 countries in Africa, 16 of those countries are French ex-colonies, which means 61% of the coups happened in Francophone Africa.

The sad part is that this treatment of former African colonies is not limited to Africans. Haiti, a small nation on the island of Hispanola that revolted against slavery was also forced to pay reparations by France and continues to suffer because of French policies.


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