Central African Republic: Another 'looting war' on the model of the Congo-Kinshasa next door

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

Like this article? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

The key to the bloody crisis worsening in the Central African Republic (CAR) does not lie in the armed conflict between Christians and Muslims, as encapsulated and repeated ad nauseam by our corporate media linked to powerful interests in NATO/OECD countries -- including mining giant Canada.

This key is to be found in the geo-strategy of the CAR, a country as large as France, its former colonial master, and rich in little-exploited resources (diamond, gold, uranium, oil, hydro-electric potential, agriculture, and vast arable lands up for grabs).

Appropriated by France at the carving up of Africa in Berlin (1884-1885), and subjected to the rule of the "France-Africa" military-economic-political complex over half a century of fake "independence," the CAR has been brutally sucked into the vortex of the post-Cold War tempest let loose in Somalia in the early 1990s, and metastasized in Rwanda-Burundi, in the DRC (Congo-Kinshasa), in Mali, in Libya, and which continues to spread all over Africa.

Since the 2013 coup d'état engineered by Muslim members of the Armed Forces claiming equal rights for their community (which makes up only 10 per cent of a population of 5 million), the CAR has registered more than 6,000 dead, and more than one million refugees and displaced persons, in a war fed by corporate interests and weapons from Libya's 2011 looted arsenal.

A friendly and tolerant people united beyond religious, language and ethnic differences has been polarized between Christians (anti-Balakas) and Muslims (Selekas) -- in the same "divide and rule" pattern that has partitioned Sudan, the CAR's neighbour to the north, and that pits Hutus against Tutsis in Rwanda and Burundi. The Seleka is now even talking of "partition" of the CAR.

This "theatre of the macabre" is being played out even as NATO ($1.2 trillion in annual military expenditure) is deploying on the African continent a special command called Africom. What for? To ensure the continued looting of Africa -- and to counter emerging China, India, Russia, Brazil, Iran, which are building vital infrastructures in exchange for oil, gas and minerals, but without mobilizing a single soldier!

In a classic replay of the "arsonist fireman" scenario dating back to Licius Licinius Crassus of Roman Empire fame, the barbaric slaughter of civilians in the CAR is just what NATO/OECD powers need to justify their "humanitarian intervention" based on the infamous, Canadian-inspired R2P or Responsibility to Protect doctrine.

The French overlords were first to arrive, with Operation Sangaris, to be soon replaced by a UN force called the Minusca. Remember how the R2P doctrine opened the way for French-U.S.-Canadian intervention in Haïti in 2004, quickly replaced by a UN force called Minustah -- which is still there, even though it's mired in scandal and controversy.

By the way, the "humanitarian imperialists" then kidnapped elected President Jean Bertrand Aristide and air-dropped him in the middle of the night in... the Central African Republic.

The CAR scenario has been exposed, deconstructed and denounced by the UN Experts' Group in its successive and ongoing reports on the looting wars in the DRC-Kinshasa. The CAR now finds itself shunted onto the same bloody and destructive path: an interim régime blessed by NATO/OECD powers, rushed and badly organized "elections" (set for mid-October), and a plan to disarm and demobilize the militias -- a corporate- and NATO-friendly blueprint that is sure to stretch far into the future, and to "normalize" the bloody destabilization of a country with such a vast potential for the development of its people and of its neighbours.

Jooneed J. Khan is a journalist and human rights activist. A shorter version of this article was first posted on Auvidec.

Photo: UNHCR/S. Phelps/flickr

Like this article? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

Related Items

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.