Tag Archives: Democracy

The Performance Of ‘Democracy’

The elections went off without a hitch. The polling stations opened on time, the people walked, waiting and cast their ballots. The observers and monitors performed their responsibilities. The election commission provided all the necessary facilities, services, support, guidance, training and management needed to complete the process. Civic groups remained vigilant, and some like Le Balai […]

They Called Them ‘Riots’, And The People ‘Rioters’

There have been outbreaks of violence against Mr. Compaoré at least six other times since 1999, most recently in 2011, with government buildings defaced and protesters taking to the streets. Mr. Compaoré has always managed to stay in office through a combination of negotiation, conciliation and restrained use of firepower. The New York Times, October […]

Death Of A Native Son

We must dare to invent the future. Thomas Sankara [2007a, 141-144] On the night of October 15, 1987, in a cemetery on the outskirts of the city of Ouagadougo, a group of soldiers arrive by truck, and begin frantically digging in the earth. Their bodies attack the hard ground with shovels, as other men stand […]

Investigations And Interrogations–Risk As A Job Requirement

Norbert Zongo is emerging as the untold story of this revolution. Media coverage of the uprising against the Blaise Campaoré regime focused on the way images, words and ideas of Burkina Faso’s young, revolutionary, Marxist leader, Thomas Sankara, continued to inform and influence the younger generation of Burkinabé. It was Sankara’s image that you could […]

An Indomitable Faith From The Most Inhospitable Space

“My father was a hero of the revolution that bought Thomas Sankara to power.” Ousmane gingerly hands me his father’s commemorative medal, given to him by Thomas Sankara himself, in recognition of his contribution to the struggle. “I am proud of his legacy, and his sacrifices and proud to continue the struggle in my own […]

An Incomplete Triump

“Don’t shoot, you cannot kill ideas!” Surrendering Cuban revolutionary, after the failed attack against the Moncada garrison, Cuba. Within hours of Thomas Sankara’s assassination, the French government sent messages of congratulations to the coup leadership. But the job was not as yet done and within hours of his assassination they begin destroying Sankara’s economic and […]

Revolutions As Incomplete Acts Or The Work Is Just Beginning

“People say that have we have won,” He says pensively. “I fear that there may yet be defeat in our victory.” I am sitting in Zinaba’s one room apartment. Papers, file folders, books, pamphlets, computer print-outs, newspapers, magazines and what appear to be photocopied versions of books lie strewn over every flat surface. The bed, […]

Reimagining Society

“This is a somewhat troublesome man, [this] Thomas Sankara.” Francois Mitterrand, 1986 Fanon had warned that bourgeois anti-colonial nationalism was really only aimed at capturing the structures of colonialism for its own benefit. He had argued that the goal of the bourgeoisie’s project was “…to transfer into native hands those unfair advantages which are the legacy […]

Hollywood And War Or How The Silver Screen Is Also An Obfuscating Veil

The program does not go far enough, to be honest, but I was pleasantly surprised to see a news channel taking on the question This of course is a subject well covered in some interesting books. The few come immediately to mind and that I consider interesting because they examination of the close collaboration between […]

The Transformation Of Pathology Into Pathos Or The Military Does What It Does And It Does It Well

The construction of a narrative that turns our attention to our ‘boys and girls’ and their ‘struggle’ and ‘traumas’ in the field is precisely what the US military’s ’embed’ program was designed to do; transform what is necessarily a violent, bloody and inhumane act of war into a cleansed, carefully managed, ‘precision-guided’, bloodless conflict. To […]