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“The abandonment of African refugees by the West risks feeding Russian imperialism”

Many commentators, analyzing the clues of the situation of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and the questions they raise are inclined to point to the advent of a new world order, a fractured, upset, unbalanced world, fearing for its future, settling into a lasting state of war, with its economic, social, political and human consequences, the outcome of which is difficult to predict?

What contrasts between the “values” developed over time by Mr. Putin’s speeches, relayed by the apocalyptic images of death and destruction in the cities and villages of Ukraine or even in the terrifying images of the famous May 9 parade in Moscow, offered to us by television as a signature of the times, and the ambition of Robert Schuman’s Declaration, whose anniversary we were celebrating on that same 9th of May. He proposed the pooling of coal and steel by the former belligerents of the Second World War to overcome the antagonisms which had undermined European peace.

The “graveyard” of the Mediterranean Sea

We, countries of the West, well entrenched behind our experiences forged during decades of cold war, we already know what we have to lose by giving free rein to the follies of totalitarian regimes. Today the search for freedom seems to be a luxury for Western democracies. The world is the closed field of a struggle for power, for supremacy, as in the best times of the cold war.

It is not a question of fraternity, equality and justice, but of the fight for domination which is widespread on all continents. But what largely compromises peace is that we never really meet the frustrations of the populations of the south of our hemisphere. We welcome thousands of Ukrainian refugees with open arms and it is good that it is so. Considering what they have suffered, we can never do too much for them: they are typical victims of Putin’s imperialism.

But these populations rejected in the “cemetery” of the Mediterranean Sea, as Pope Francis says, and often received in dribs and drabs by European countries can think, while the ordeal, the ordeal of misery, of hunger, of food insecurity and violence are not spared them in the countries from which they come. Recognize rightly that Westerners are of a rare injustice towards them in the discrimination that they very often practice against them. They legitimately question us about the correctness of our behavior with regard to these developing peoples.

European self-examination

If we are not careful Russia will end up championing all categories of poor versus rich with its denunciation of the aggressive will of the western world. Europe must examine its conscience. The peoples of Europe have suffered greatly under regimes which undermined the fundamental aspirations of humanity, such as the search for peace and justice and freedom, no less than respect for international law.

If we are unable to hear the expectations of those who are suffering today and meet them with generosity and determination, then chances are that a new world order will emerge in our history, an order dominated by the Russians and some other imperialist power from their regained influence in Africa and where the West appears to be abandoning Africans and especially refugees to their fate, an order that will prolong a state of war and violence on the African continent.


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