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Mapping the casualties of the French army outside of France since 1945

In this post, Dr. Vincent Hiribarren (Lecturer in World History, King’s College London) describes how he made a map of the casualties of the French army outside of France since the end of the Second World War, as well as the aims of his project. Why count French dead soldiers between 1945 and today? This map displays the number of French soldiers who died outside metropolitan France between 1945 and the end of 2013. It is directly based on a similar map created for the United Kingdom and published in The Independent. The present map includes soldiers dead during the colonial period (Madagascar, Indochina, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Cameroon) and losses in other wars such as Korea or conflicts that took place after 1962. The purpose of this map is to show the importance of colonial conflicts since the end of World War II. Of course, the Cold War or the war against terrorism are not to be neglected either. In addition, this map shows that France is involved in numerous conflicts on behalf of the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union or to honour bilateral agreements signed with former colonies. Strikingly, Africa is at the heart of […]

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Hollande and Africa Policy

In this post we feature a new article on François Hollande’s Africa policy by Prof Tony Chafer (Professor of Contemporary French Area Studies, University of Portsmouth). This article was published in the November 2014 issue of Modern and Contemporary France. Studies of French Africa policy have traditionally focused on its neo-colonial basis and the often corrupt nature of the relations it engendered because of the connivances of semi-official and unofficial networks and covert practices that characterised it. These are often referred to in the literature as la Françafrique. In seeking to understand François Hollande’s Africa policy this article moves away from a neo-colonial, Françafrique analytical framework and instead seeks to engage with the continuity versus change debate in French Africa policy through the lens of geopolitics. The three central themes of Hollande’s Africa policy—security, partnership and trade—are analysed, focusing firstly on the French interventions in Africa, notably in Mali, since 2012, before discussing French engagement with African regional organisations, such as the Economic Community of West African States, and the increasing importance attached to economic and trade links. The article ends with a brief survey of some of the challenges facing French Africa policy. A full version of this article is currently available […]

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