dimanche 3 février 2013

Proud to be French !

 It is not often that I sing France's praises but once in a while, I allow myself to be proud to be French.
In March last year, a coup d'état in Mali allowed Muslim extremists, helped by the Touareg nomads, to seize power in that French-speaking African country. 
The UN proved to be impotent to remedy to the situation. As the conflict went on, the Touaregs,

who have a legitimate cause to defend, were overpowered by the Islamists, who then imposed the "charia" law. People started to flee some regions of the country and take refuge where they could, like here in a mosque in Mopti.
The extremists started a state of terror, going into houses to check that women were veiled and imposing a strict separation of boys and girls in schools.
 In some parts of the country, they cut off, in front of the crowds, the left foot and the right hand of  people whom they considered to be thieves, then impaling the feet and hands amputated for the edification of the Malians. People caught smoking or drinking alcohol were flagellated in public and women who were considered adulteresses were lapidated. 

They also destroyed sacred  monuments and burned priceless ancient texts in Timbuktu.
Earlier this year, France took matters into their own hands and deployed the French army to reconquer the territory, helped by some African forces. 
They managed to liberate the country almost entirely and put to back into place its rightful president.
Yesterday, François Hollande went there for a visit and was welcomed like a hero, which in a sense he was !


Though I am a fierce pacifist, I cannot but be proud of our soldiers, who managed to liberate people from a regime based on terror and the blind enforcement of a law funded on ignorance of the true meaning of the Scriptures. Everybody knows that there isn't one religion on Earth who advocates contempt for other human beings and the Malians are now free to go back to practising Islam in peace and respect.
So well done to our boys ! Let's hope that the situation goes on improving itself and that the country will be totally free very soon ! Let's also hope that the French hostages will be liberated !
I'll leave you with a photo of a French and a Malian soldiers united to guard the entrance of a mosque in Timbuktu, which if you're a blog follower, you'll know is one of my "Shangri-la" though I've never been there (and probably never will !). When weapons only serve to protect and allow people to practise their religion as they wish, we can only rejoice.
If only life showed us pictures like that more often ....
Let's love and respect each other !
XXXX S.B.

16 commentaires:

  1. Beautiful post and well said! If only all conflicts could come to a resolution like this. I would be proud to be French too. How sad that the worst atrocities are happening in the name of god and religion! No God would approve of such horrors.
    Thanks for sharing this!

    xo
    Kim

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    1. I wasn't sure about this post but I felt so strongly about what happened in that country that I coudn't hold it !xo

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  2. Thank you for this very informative post, and Well Done France! I was reading in a weekend newspaper about the saving of antiquities and precious documents from the ancient library in Timbuktu. Apparently some were destroyed - shocking.. As you say, no religion on earth approves of this behaviour. It is good to have this information as it is not widely reported to us in the antipodes. Love and respect is a good motto for the week! Have a good one Silver Bunny xx

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  3. SB, thank you for this post. I had read about it in the news but your post makes it feel more personal.

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    1. Hi, Susan, lovely to hear from you again ! I just feel that we forget about Africa too often ; sometimes it's like the continent didn't even exist !!xx

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  4. The destruction of lives, heritage and culture is truly terrible. Let's hope that things will now be better for Mali! I too have always wanted to go to Timbuktu. I am so sad for the burning of the books and manuscripts, especially since many of them had not been catalogued so no-one really knew just what information they had and what light they would have cast on the history of the region. I agree with an earlier commentator that no God would approve of all the horrors the people went through!

    Melusine xx

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  5. I agree with your comment that we forget about Africa too often...it's so riveted with problems, that one hardly knows which way to go. The hideousness of the violent acts assaults the soul. It's hard to believe there are boys who dare to fight the injustices.

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    1. I totally agree with you when you say we don't know which way to go ; unfortunately our governments seem to feel the same way. A lot of African countries used to be French of course and I think we feel very guilty about the state these countries are in since they claimed their independence. And yet, of course, it was the only way to go !

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  6. Thank you for this post. It is all too easy for the world to forget about Africa as we focus on "economies"! The UN is frequently useless, sadly. Well done France!! You should feel proud. It is amazing how cruel the human race is to each other.
    Have a wonderful week,
    Jennifer

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Jennifer ; have a lovely week too !xx

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  7. I have the name of your blog on the side of my blog and just noticed the title of your current post – so I came to read it. I am pleased I came as it is a very nice post. Here in the US we don’t hear much about what is happening in smaller countries of Africa. I have read that officials have confirmed that during the 10-month occupation of Timbuktu by the Islamist fighters they have destroyed up to 2,000 manuscripts in the Ahmed Baba Institute – this is a terrible loss. It is good for France to have stopped stop these vandals and criminals.

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    1. I didn't know the exact number of destroyed manuscripts ; it makes me sad and furious at the same time. Je viens d'ajouter votre blog à ma liste et je vous remercie de m'avoir mise sur la vôtre. A bientôt ! S.B.

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  8. I agree it would be easier without war but when you hear of people being tortured it's wonderful that something was done to prevent further harm
    xoxo
    SC

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