World View: Viral Video Shows Francophone Cameroon Soldiers Killing Women and Children

Kidnappings multiply in Cameroon's restive anglophone region

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Viral video shows Francophone Cameroon soldiers killing women and children
  • Cameroon continues on path to full-scale crisis civil war

Viral video shows Francophone Cameroon soldiers killing women and children

Screen shot from video shows soldier pushing blindfolded woman with baby to the ground, just before he shoots both of them dead.
Screen shot from video shows soldier pushing blindfolded woman with baby to the ground, just before he shoots both of them dead.

A horrendously graphic video that has gone viral on social media depicts Cameroon Francophone (French-speaking) government soldiers in uniform blindfolding, shooting, and killing two women, as well as the two babies that they are carrying. One of the uniformed men says in French that it is a heavy burden executing people but they do not have another option.

According to Amnesty International:

The Cameroonian authorities’ initial claim that this shocking video is fake simply doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. We can provide credible evidence to the contrary. Given the gravity of these horrific acts – the cold blooded and calculated slaughter of women and young children – these hasty and dismissive denials cast serious doubt over whether any investigation will be genuine. It is imperative that a proper, impartial investigation is undertaken and those responsible for these abhorrent acts are brought to justice.

The claim by Cameroon’s government that a “proper, impartial investigation” will be conducted is not credible, in light of repeated atrocities by the Francophone government over the last two years.

These government atrocities began in November 2016, when the Francophone (French-speaking) Cameroon government security forces began beating and killing peaceful anti-government demonstrators in the South Cameroons, the Anglophone (English-speaking) regions of Cameroon. The demonstrators were protesting systematic bias, discrimination, and marginalization towards Anglophones by the Francophone government. For example, schoolteachers in the Anglophone regions were forbidden from teaching any courses in English.

The Cameroon government, led by 85-year-old President Paul Biya, has stepped up the torture, slaughter, and other atrocities continually since then, with numerous videos and reports on social media documenting the atrocities. The level of atrocities ticked up considerably in October, when the Anglophone separatists demanded independence for the Southern Cameroons, calling it Ambazonia.

There have been numerous videos posted on social media showing atrocities committed since then. Another video, posted by the BBC, is a compilation of verified videos from social media accounts showing everything from torture to entire villages being burned down. Africa News and Amnesty International and YouTube – Extrajudicial execution of women and children and YouTube – BBC – Cameroon military atrocities, village burnings

Cameroon continues on path to full-scale crisis civil war

It is increasingly clear that the Francophone government in Cameroon is conducting genocide and ethnic cleansing of the Anglophone people in the Southern Cameroons. Hundreds of thousands of people have had to flee their homes, and tens of thousands have fled across the border into Nigeria. Nigerians who used to conduct business in Southern Cameroons are now abandoning their businesses and returning home in droves.

Cameroon’s last generational crisis war was the “UPC Revolt,” 1956-1960, which was a bloody civil war by communists attacking the French government in the Cameroun colony. It has now been exactly 58 years since the ending climax of the UPC Revolt. Generational Dynamics research has found that 58 years is the minimum and most common time period from the end of one crisis war till the beginning of the next, since 58 years is exactly the point where the survivors who were traumatized by the war almost all disappear (retire or die), all at once, and are replaced in positions of power by younger generations of people with no personal memory of the atrocities of the previous crisis war, and therefore have no fear of starting a new one.

Because of the flood of Anglophones from Cameroon entering Nigeria, some Nigerian activists are urging Nigeria’s government to try to mediate in Cameroon, even though Nigeria has to deal with Boko Haram and bloody fights between farmers and herders that have been widely reported in the news. Abdul Oroh, a lawyer and civil rights activist from Nigeria, summarizes the situation:

Specifically, the Francophone Cameroon is trying to dominate and super-impose itself on the Anglophone Cameroon. They had two legal systems but there is a policy of assimilation which is threatening to obliterate the Anglophone culture and legal system. One of the lawyers told me that as a lawyer, if you file a case at the Ministry of Justice in Cameroon, unless it us written in French, they won’t treat the case. What you now do is to go and look for somebody who can translate it into French. There is so much anger and bitterness in that country.

We were under military rule when we intervened in apartheid South Africa. We were under military rule when we stepped out to restore democracy in Sierra Leone and Liberia. We have been carrying out peace-keeping operations, not just within but even outside Africa. We are talking about our immediate neighbors whose citizens are pouring into our country as refugees on daily basis. These refugees are putting pressures on our lean resources. If we don’t help them to solve that problem, it will continue and could get to a stage when it could even become a threat to our own security too. So, it is not a question of moral right because human lives are involved in this conflict. It is true that we have our own challenges but I am not saying we should deploy our troops there to help one side to defeat the other side. I am saying we should help them to get to talk, negotiate peace and resolve their differences amicably.

Unfortunately, from the point of view of Generational Dynamics, attempts to mediate and negotiate will not work. What is happening in Cameroon is the beginnings of a generational crisis civil war. A crisis war is a force of nature that cannot be stopped until it burns itself out, typically after around five years, with an explosive genocidal climax of some kind that horrifies everyone so much that it brings the war to an end. Cameroon is nowhere near that explosive climax at this time. New Telegraph (Nigeria) and AFP and Deutsche Welle and Task and Purpose

Related Articles

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Cameroon, Southern Cameroons, Anglophones, Francophones, Paul Biya, Amnesty International, Ambazonia, Liberation Movement of Southern Cameroons, UPC Revolt, Nigeria, Abdul Oroh
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