Why is France so scared of thousands of Wagnerians in Mali
, by Alexander Staver for Topwar.ru. 01/10/2021.
2021, in my opinion, changed our perception of time. In any case, this happened in international relations, in politics, in the economy. What took months or even years in the recent past can now happen in literally counted days. Agreements that have been drafted recently for months and even years can now be concluded in just a few days.
For a long time I did not return to the topic of Wagner PMC in Mali. I confess that I did it deliberately. I really wanted to see how President Macron would behave in a situation when it turns out that behind France's back are not so much friends as rivals and competitors.
Will France be able to resist the onslaught of the United States or will it obediently go into the crowd of allies of the same insignificant importance for the United States?
Alas, the French state turned out to be much weaker than many thought. And Macron is not de Gaulle at all. Beautifully indignant and stamping its foot, Paris quickly forgot everything and completely restored relations with Washington. Ambassadors are back at their workplaces. France's interests again coincide with those of the United States."This is our cow and we milk it"
The recent session of the UN General Assembly in New York turned out to be quite interesting not in the session hall, but in the margins, on the sidelines. It was especially curious to follow the work of Russian Minister Sergei Lavrov. How and with whom he meets, what he talks about, what predictions he makes.
But today we are interested in Africa.
The topic came up during the talks between Sergei Lavrov and the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell. Borrell understands perfectly well that one should speak honestly with "Mr. No", without lying. That is why I expressed my thought quite directly. As Lavrov said in an interview with RIA News, he argued that Russia should not work in Africa, that this is the place of Europe."As Josep Borrell told me, you better not work in Africa at all, because Africa is our place. That's exactly what he said."
Naturally. The main thing is not in Europe's ambitions, but in why such a serious and experienced diplomat as Borrell was actually forced to issue an ultimatum to Russia?
More on this below, simply because I really want to recall a few words from the answer of Minister Lavrov.
Sergei Lavrov laid siege to the European official. And he beautifully expressed his "fu" to such non-diplomatic directness from the head of the EU foreign policy:"It would be better to synchronize the actions of the European Union and Russia with regard to the fight against terrorism." "And not only in Mali, but in the whole Sahara-Sahel region."
“And to say“ I am the first here, so you leave here ”- firstly, it is insulting to the Bamako government, which has invited external partners. Secondly, you can't talk to anyone like that.""How much milk does a cow give?"
So why did Josep Borrell try to frighten Russia in the person of Minister Lavrov?
Is Mali worth it to press the Russians so roughly, “losing face”?
What is it about Mali that Europe wants to fight for?
I will not describe the volumes of minerals that have already been explored and can be mined. Gold, bauxite, hydrocarbons, uranium, diamonds. This is not a complete list of what lies in the land of Mali. But it is quite difficult to mine it today due to the unstable situation.
To understand the volume of minerals, it is enough to say that, for example, the volume of gold in Mali is estimated at almost 1% of the world's reserves. The same bauxite there are 3% of the world's reserves.
Can you imagine what this small country could become if the situation stabilizes and deposits are developed?
But it seems to me that the most delicious piece is uranium.
What has already been explored in Mali is not yet so large, but there are huge deposits nearby in Niger.
In short, continuing to quote the Soviet cartoon, France "needs such a cow herself" ...Why doesn't the Mali government trust the French?
Carried away by the topic of PMCs, we somehow forgot the reason that pushed Bamako to seek help on the side.
The presence of the French army, and a little later the armies of other states, was initially based on the decision of the UN Security Council. Numerous detachments of jihadists not only destabilized the situation in the country, but also threatened to seize uranium deposits in Niger.
Now let's listen to what the Prime Minister of Mali Shogel Maiga said from the rostrum of the UN General Assembly:“As a result of the [French] operation Barkhan, the country of Mali is faced with a fait accompli. When our country was left to its own devices without warning, we found ourselves forced to find ways and means to better ensure the country's security. Both independently and with the support of our partners.
What is this very operation "Barkhan", to which the Prime Minister of Mali refers?
In fact, Barkhane is a Paris-planned halving of the army in Mali by 2023. Let me remind you that there are 5 French soldiers in Mali now. It is clear that the reduction of the contingent is critical for Bamako. Of little use from 100 thousand, even less will be from 5 thousand.
The howl raised by the French and their allies over PMCs looks pretty funny.
The French military were afraid of one thousand (!) Civilian PMC employees?
Moreover, the PMC will do exactly what a private security firm is supposed to do - to ensure the safety of top officials of the state and the training of local security forces.
It seems to me that there is more international politics here.
Paris is confident that PMCs are just a vanguard of Russia, which will pave the way for Russian diplomats, Russian businessmen and the Russian military in Mali.
Europe fears a change in the course of the Mali government to a pro-Russian one.
It is not for nothing that the European press draws attention to the fact that the country's prime minister is a graduate of a Russian university, and the defense minister has completed an internship in Russia."Russia's soft power worked."
Simply put, everything is as usual. From a sore head to a healthy one. The Europeans again blame their own miscalculations on the "hand of the Kremlin" and "the treachery of Putin."Interim conclusions on the situation
The cries of the West about the appearance of Wagner PMCs in Africa are based on the understanding that the colonial policy of Western countries towards African states is failing. The peoples of Africa are beginning to understand all the insidiousness of Western politicians who, in fact, rob their countries with the hands of local elites without shame and conscience.
PMCs, including PMC "Wagner", have long been present on the African continent.
These companies are from different countries, with the most diverse contingent. Some are really engaged in protection, some - perform the role of mercenaries in the armies of numerous tribes, but they are there and have been for a long time.
The reason that Africa is waking up today and beginning to squeeze the Western countries out of their own countries is, first of all, in the crisis of the West itself.
What is happening today in France, the United States, Britain and other Western countries is pushing African leaders to seek new allies and defenders.
And Africans have little choice. Either the global West or the global East, including China and Russia. On the one hand, Africa has tried Western "love", and on the other hand, today it is difficult for even the richest countries to do without money and protection.
The world is changing, as I have written many times, and very dramatically. States are creating new alliances, new military blocs, new international organizations, in which there are no obvious leaders and masters.
And it's not about the United States, Russia or China. The point is the collapse of the old world order and the birth of a new one.
We will soon see new economic monsters, new regional, scientific and production leaders. We have already observed this, but for some reason we quickly forgot. We have forgotten Japan, Taiwan, Korea, China, which literally in the blink of an eye burst into the forefront of the world.
The time is coming for a change of leaders
Africa today is so promising in this respect that it is no longer possible to ignore it.