Gambia’s former President Yahya Jammeh left the country in the wake of the invasion of The Gambia by ECOWAS-backed Senegalese forces. Mr Jammeh lost democratic elections after twenty-two years in power to Adama Barrow, who was sworn into office some 150 miles outside The Gambia—in Senegal.

Mr Jammeh challenged the results of the elections and called for ECOWAS judges in a litigation against what he deemed were gross election malpractices. But as a result of the ECOWAS-backed Senegalese invasion, Mr Jammeh boarded a plane to Guinea, thanks to The Presidents of Mauritania and Guinea who brokered a useful peace deal amidst the turmoil of an invasion.

Mr Jammeh will travel on to exile in Equatorial Guinea. Still yet, there are “no guarantees mentioned by ECOWAS which would indicate whether he would be subjected to extradition back to Gambia or to Europe as was done to former Liberian President Charles Taylor in 2003. After an ECOWAS intervention, Taylor was sent to Nigeria for a brief period and then in contravention to the agreement, he later wound up in The Hague for a Special Tribunal on the War in Sierra Leone.”

Why would Mr Jammeh’s fear of extradition be answered through an armed invasion by a nation that literally engulfs The Gambia in geography? Why would ECOWAS, an economic community without the mandate to use military force in any nation, back Senegal in a one-sided show of force? To understand why Senegal would dare invade a sovereign nation, one must appreciate the tectonic shifts in the business of war newly taking shape across the continent of Africa in general.

Moreover, many of the same West African states which demanded the invasion by Senegal have themselves experienced “numerous coups carried out by the military. Others have been involved in counter-insurgency operations within their own borders that remained absent of outside interference by neighboring states.” So why the ECOWAS show of force in The Gambia? In addition, ECOWAS itself does not have the mandate to intervene in any nation in the region for any reason except to ensure the protection of civilians in case of a humanitarian crisis. Are imperialist forces at work?

Considering that 86 percent of the foreign trade by Gambia is conducted with Britain and EU states, and tourism constitutes at least 40 percent of its hard currency earnings, it is difficult to see how concise and consistent diplomatic pressure wouldn’t have been more pragmatic against Mr Jammeh, especially in a country where majority of the people farm and fish. The imperialist governments abroad are surely in a position to place serious sanctions on the Jammeh administration without the necessity of an invasion. So why didn’t they?

The United States is the sublime factor. It is a business interested only in invading nations. And for what? To promote democracy and the rule of law – or so they claim. The outgone administration of President Barack Hussein Obama signed in May 2016, a renewed military cooperation agreement with Senegalese President Macky Sall. “The U.S. and Senegal signed a defense cooperation deal. The deal, according to Global Risk Insights Dot Com was ‘an upgrade of an existing agreement dating from 2001, and only entails increased access for U.S. military deployment in case of humanitarian crises, such as the Ebola crisis, and to contribute to the battle against terrorist groups in the region.'”

More recently the U.S. has invaded Libya, sodomized its leader, Muammar Gaddafi, and returned the prosperous nation to pre-historic pre-Gaddafi status: poor. All in the name of restoring democracy. Libya remains a failed state as two waring terrorist factions vie for total power. This is how Washington likes it – total chaos; so they can manage the chaos with a sophisticated management protocol that siphons money and resources from the poor in Libya into globalist elite hands in the West.

The nature of this story continues on in West Africa and in particular, The Gambia.

Although Senegal claims to be party to ECOWAS, Senegal’s army is more a U.S. military outpost in West Africa than a representative for ensuring or restoring democracy under ECOWAS tutelage in any given country. Essentially the Senegalese deal with the U.S. can be interpreted as the direction and strategy of the U.S. Africa Command, AFRICOM.

One can’t help but raise a cursory eyebrow at Operation Flintlock, which is coordinated by the U.S. Army Africa (USARAF), and which has been conducted in Senegal over the last few years. Washington attempts “to project these operations as merely training exercises requested by Senegal. Nevertheless, when interventions such as the developments in The Gambia manifest, it is quite obvious that they are part and parcel of a neo-colonialist project to guarantee the dominance of Washington in regional military affairs.”

World Politics Review published an article on November 12, 2015 by Peter Dorrie emphasizing that Washington’s policy “has led to some strange bedfellows. Cameroon’s president, Paul Biya, has been in power 33 years, while Djibouti’s Ismail Omar Guelleh and Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni also show no signs of stepping down after decades in power. Of the 10 countries hosting U.S. surveillance assets, one is classified as ‘worst of the worst, five as ‘not free’ and four as ‘partly free’ by Freedom House’s 2015 Freedom in the World index.  U.S. military assistance in the form of training and materiel is also going to regimes that routinely use their security forces against their population, contributing to the drivers of terrorism. To make things worse, many of these countries could actually finance these programs themselves, if only their corrupt political elites did not squander their national wealth.”

Come to think of the ECOWAS states, including Ghana, that backed Senegal’s illegal invasion of The Gambia, one can only gawk at some of the worst atrocities being committed against citizens. In Nigeria for instance, Boko Haram is wreaking havoc. Instead of concentrate on finding the Chibok Girls, the Buhari-led Nigerian government was more interested in invading a sovereign nation, the Gambia, a nation which posed no threat to the regional stability of West Africa—but which Boko Haram poses that threat.

Until the Economic Community of West African States “develop a foreign policy that is genuinely independent of imperialism and neo-colonialism these ongoing military exercises and interventions will become common place to keep the nations in check. It will spell the factors that will continue to destabilize the region and foster its underdevelopment.”

The invasion of The Gambia was not only illegal, it has undoubtedly set a bad precedent in West Africa and beyond.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Narmer Amenuti shares with us his insightful misgivings about what has transpired in The Gambia. He calls Mr Jammeh’s leaving The Gambia today a great day for the people of The Gambia – thanks to the Presidents of Mauritania and Guinea. But he rises against the invasion by Senegalese forces, backed by ECOWAS.

    Part of his reason is simply that the invasion was unwarranted. Plus, it was illegal. And above all that neither Senegal nor ECOWAS had the mandate to invade. Perhaps the most serious charge of all is that Narmer feels the “invasion” was orchestrated by USAFRICOM itself, and that it serves to set a precedent for what AFRICOM can now do in West Africa and beyond.
    Please send your candid comments and enjoy, as always.

  2. Interesting perspective. The rhetoric out there is different. Massive support has been given the ECOWAS forces to go in and get Jammeh out the “Gbgabo way”. If I’m to draw any insight from your analysis my interpretation would be that Jammeh may not have played ball with regards to the further stabilization of AFRICOM? Can it be said that the location of The Gambia is critical to the formation of Military Strategy per AFRICOM? My imagination runs wild….What has transpired via ECOWAS has pros and cons, how do we deal with both to a meaningful end?

  3. No doubt Esi Arhin Turkson, the Gambia is of major strategic importance. It makes the navigation of the Gambia through the heart of Senegal more navigable with ease from the Atlantic and deeper into the interstices of Senegal. From there military assets can reach Bamako easy and then to the Nile and finish. Small boys are dead!!!

  4. Either you haven’t played ball, or your usefulness as an idiot has expired or that you are becoming more a liability. Esi Arhin Turkson Either way, when the men decide, the boys die. That’s why it’s important to become a man and spot these things from far away before they take over your family house.

  5. In addition to this astute analysis by Narmer, my friend, NATO’s first operation in Africa had occurred 12 years earlier in May of 2005 when the bloc transported African Union troops to the Darfur region of Sudan, at the crossroads of a war-riven region comprised of the Central African Republic, Chad and Sudan.

    NATO has since deployed warships to the Horn of Africa and the Gulf of Aden, with Operation Allied Protector, and NATO announced that it was dispatching British, Greek, Italian, Turkish and U.S. warships to the area for a new mission, Operation Ocean Shield. These operations don’t consist of mere surveillance and escort roles but include regular forced boardings, sniper attacks and other uses of armed and often lethal force.

    Africa has been colonized. Only the blind is yet to see it. And they will never see it because they are blind!

  6. Spot on commentary. It is a sad fact that many of us do not take a little time to analyse current events in light of the historical record, instead latching onto the latest meme propagated by ” the main enemy” and its so called indepedent and objective media.
    It is refreshing to see someone who consistently applies logic and rational inference to unmask the hidden realities of the world we live.
    Kudos Narmer!!

  7. Brother Narmer Amenuti as usual excellently puts into our Grandmother Africa perspective the geopolitical analysis given by Brother Abayomi Azikiwe, an awesome Pan-Afrikan revolutionary journalist whose works I have great critical appreciation, respect and admiration for. Those doubting the Euro-Amerikkkan imperialist scheme out of which the plot for the USAFRICOM invasion of Gambia has long ago been hatched, only for the puppet-mercenary errand gangs of ECOWAS-backed Senegalese soldiers to carry out by proxy, can think again! Of course, those deliberately choosing ignorance or blindness to evil, which must include those on the payroll of USAFRICOM and other agencies of the White Supremacist military-industrial complex of Global Apartheid Racism expressly for the purpose of spreading the Big Lies of Euro-Amerikkkan Imperialism for hoodwinking the gullible not to see the realities of the Recolonization of Afrika happening right before our very eyes, can still be in denial! Reading some of the commentaries and postings of the ECOWAS Jackboots cheer-leaders on Facebook, I cannot help thinking about similar Africans of their ilk in the past who provided similar atrocious arguments in defence of the European chattel enslavement and colonization of Afrikans!

  8. “Reading some of the commentaries and postings of the ECOWAS Jackboots cheer-leaders on Facebook, I cannot help thinking about similar Africans of their ilk in the past who provided similar atrocious arguments in defense of the European chattel enslavement and colonization of Afrikans!” Spot on Kofi Mawuli Klu. I am flabbergasted! ANd I am sure there were quite a large number of them during the slave trade who justified the sure subjugation of their brothers and sisters by any means necessary!

  9. INTERESTING RELATED FACEBOOK CHAT:
    Kwame Yeboah
    Kwame Yeboah: Look, you guys will have to decide what liberation of Africa means. Is it hating everything western and loving everything eastern or being able to channel our own path. Please help me here. For a long time, we fought Western Imperialism and allowed Africa to be theater for western and eastern war rehelsals. We fought with good reasons because the imperialism we knew were mostly coming from the West. They imposed slavery on us, partitioned our continent and imposed colonial and neo-colonial regime on us that is impeding our humanity and development. But for how long our we going to be so stupid to think that it is okay with whatever is happening to us so long as the perpetuator is not western.
    Like · Reply · 1 hr
    Kwame Yeboah
    Kwame Yeboah Look at the Gambia situation. With Jamme being intransigent, it is only a travel ban by London to save her citizens that is “undermining the economy of the country”? Barrow is “an imperialist mole”. Fine, who was Jamme? He had 22 years, what did he do?
    The writer seems to be annoyed with Taylor being sent to The Hague. I don’t like the Hague and what it stands for. But I did not also like Charles Taylor living like a king in Nigeria after destroying Liberia and the whole West Africa. With our present situation, is okay if no western soldier or diplomat is in African? We sit down and do nothing but when a situation happens and our people are saved from catastrophe, that is when we complain about the HELP coming from the West. Shame.
    Like · Reply · 58 mins
    Kofi Mawuli Klu
    Kofi Mawuli Klu Brother Kwame Yeboah, no Injustice done by anybody from anywhere can ever be acceptable in or outside Afrika! That is why the age-old colonial practice of European Imperialism to opportunistically misuse contradictions amongst Afrikan and other peoples to violently divide and conquer must also be recognised, exposed and counteracted! Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah, Frantz Fanon and Amilcar Cabral have written quite well long ago on this matter. A more thorough revolutionary discourse and tackling of this phenomenon can be found in the excellent classical work of Mao Ze-Dong “On Contradictions”! Studiously reading is a must for all those who want to contribute intelligently to genuine Changemaking in and beyond Afrika! …unless, of course, the choice is to become one of the AHI (Narmer Amenuti) who want to act without the Wisdom of our Ancestors!
    Like · Reply · 1 · 51 mins
    Kwame Yeboah
    Kwame Yeboah Theory is only a guide that is meaningful if applied to concentrate situation on the groud in each situation. It has become a refuge to blame our messes and stupid behaviors on the West. Do nothing and when things become very bad, blame the West. The more you can coat your write-up with quotations from progessives ancestors the better it is to show you are the one who knows what is best for our people. Non-wholistic thinking by people who are more revolutonary than the system is more dangerous than imperialism. Good analysis is not going to help anybody without concrete action.
    Like · Reply · 34 mins
    Kofi Mawuli Klu
    Kofi Mawuli Klu Lest I forget, Brother Kwame Yeboah, you very well know that not all Afrikans all over the World are sitting down and doing nothing only to complain about “HELP coming from the West”! Many, particularly Activists from communities and sections of our most impoverished kith and kin throughout the continent and diaspora of Afrika, are taking huge risks to do a lot, indeed still paying with their liberties and lives for doing things that go unrecognised! Remember the Marikana miners? Check out not only Abahlali baseMjondolo (AbM) but also the #FeesMust Fall movement of students and even school children in Azania/South Africa today! I have very good Gambian Brothers, including some educated and trained as Young Pioneers in Ghana during the government of Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah, who have sacrificed immensely and continue to work painstakingly at the grassroots for the cause of Revolutionary Pan-Afrikanism, whom the ECOWAS-backed intervention of USAFRICOM has marginalised and may now even be threatening! There are Scribes at Grandmother Africa who are daring to think, write and do things many fear to do and therefore hide away mutely in their elitist comfort bubbles! A good number of Afrikans I am working with at home and abroad, even young people from direly impoverished backgrounds and other ‘Wretched of the Earth’, are going to extraordinary lengths of self-sacrificing effort to get things done with very scarce resources, sometimes with grossly inadequate material facilities, including in and beyond Ghana! Security concerns prevent us from revealing too much! Remember when I appealed to you some time ago to help buy and donate books to some young people in Ghana trying to set up and run Pan-Afrikan Study and Action Groups in their educational institutions and communities and the response …?
    Like · Reply · 11 mins

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