Media Blog

The Other African Revolution

The Guardian reports from the Ivory Coast:

Militiamen loyal to Ivory Coast’s incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo massacred 37 west African immigrants, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday, the latest in a series of xenophobic atrocities.

The killings took place in Bedi-Gouzan, in the west, a day after combatants loyal to Gbago’s rival and internationally recognised Ivory Coast president, Alassane Ouattara, captured the nearby town of Blolequin, the watchdog found.

“Witnesses in Ivory Coast told Human Rights Watch that armed men, some in uniform and others in civilian clothes, massacred the villagers, presumed to be Ouattara supporters, possibly in retaliation for the capture of nearby areas by pro-Ouattara forces,” its report said.

Many of the attackers, who spoke English, appeared to be Liberian, while the majority of victims were immigrants from Mali and Burkina Faso.

At least four cars carrying pro-Gbagbo militiamen attacked the village, witnesses said. They were armed with automatic weapons, rocket-propelled grenades and machetes.

The witnesses said the militiamen killed the immigrants inside their homes and as they attempted to flee. They pillaged and burned houses, looting any items of value, including motorcycles, money, televisions, mattresses and clothing.

A 28-year-old Malian man told Human Rights Watch: “At around 3pm we heard the sound of heavy trucks coming and ran into our houses. The men fired into the air, then started breaking down the doors‚ saying: ‘Fire, fire’ and ‘You’re rebels, we’ll kill all of you’.

“We heard shots, and screams. They were killing people; my family and I were cowering in our home. After breaking down my door they screamed that I should give them money or they’d kill me. I gave them all I had – 84,000 CFA, and the keys to three motorcycles. I begged them not to kill me. I was terrified‚ but it saved my life. The commander said: ‘If it wasn’t for this money, you’d be dead.’”

The man added: “But not everyone had money‚ they killed a Burkinabé man in front of me‚ and later in a nearby house, I saw them kill five women‚ just a few metres away. They screamed: ‘Give us money!’ The women pleaded, saying they didn’t have any, then they shot them: three inside the house, two just outside.

The rest here.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Yes, They Are Coming for Your Guns

At the Democratic-primary debate in Houston last night, Beto O’Rourke formally killed off one of the gun-control movement’s favorite taunts: The famous “Nobody is coming for your guns, wingnut.” Asked bluntly whether he was proposing confiscation, O’Rourke abandoned the disingenuous euphemisms that have ... Read More
White House

Politico Doubles Down on Fake Turnberry Scandal

It's tough to be an investigative reporter. Everybody who feeds you a tip has an axe to grind. Or, alternatively, you find yourself going, "I wonder if . . . ?" You put in your research, you talk to lots of people, you accumulate a huge pile of information, but you still haven't proved your hypothesis. A wise ... Read More
Culture

Four Cheers for Incandescent Light Bulbs

It brought me much -- indeed, too much -- joy to hear of the Trump administration's rollback of restrictions on incandescent light bulbs, even if the ban will remain in place. The LED bulbs are terrible. They give off a pitiable, dim, and altogether underwhelming "glow," one that never matched the raw (if ... Read More
White House

Rachel Maddow’s Turnberry Tale

To a certain kind of Rachel Maddow viewer, there are few more titillating preludes to a news segment than the one she delivered Monday: “If you have not seen it yet, you are going to want to sit down.” Maddow’s story began, as many of her stories do, with President Trump, this time focused on his hotel ... Read More