Notes on Bloodshed in the Ivory Coast

Laurent Gbagbo

Roger Porter

I just want to take this time to remind people that while America is still rejoicing over the recent political overthrow in Egypt and supporting the next one in Libya there are still people being murdered at will in the Ivory Coast. At least 400 hundred human beings have been killed in that small West African nation since the presidential elections in November but you would be hard pressed to find a front page article on the topic or see the media saturated with images of the conflict. There is no Western Alliance helping to restore any semblance of peace there and you won’t hear people talking about it at your local Starbucks. You won’t hear students debating about it on your local college campuses either.

For the Ivory Coast is a black African country, and even worse still, a black African country with no oil. Therefore there is no reason for any capitalist superpower to get involved. Even the murder of 7 unarmed women protesting the refusal of former president Laurent Gbagbo to cede power failed to create global outrage. Maybe it’s because Gbagbo isn’t the prototypical bad guy like Muammar Gaddafi. Maybe he doesn’t talk as loud or dress as conspicuously. Or maybe it’s because the infamous brown paper bag test (initially used in the Pre-Civil war south to denote the more acceptable shades of black) is being used to dictate American foreign policy. You be the judge.

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