Sunday, February 22, 2015

Art and Self-Care

The following is the transcript of a recent email interview I had with Emm Roy, artist and creator of Positive Doodles about art and self-care. She can be found on Facebook as well as on Twitter.

1. What made you interested in art?

I’m excited about how we experience and relate to the universe. I want to know, feel and experience as much as possible, and it makes it difficult to focus. I’ll see something and I’ll think it’s the best thing ever, but then five seconds later I’ll see something else and I’ll fall in love with that too, so it’s hard to pay attention.

It made school difficult for me as a kid. Learning was important to me, but I couldn’t pay attention in class, so I didn’t do well. My dad wanted to help so he researched a few alternate learning methods. We tried several things until we realized that doodling and cartooning worked for me. I can’t learn anything just by sitting still and listening to a teacher, but I can learn by creating and interacting with the information I’m receiving.

I spent my childhood drawing because it was the only way I could focus and learn at my maximum potential, and the habit stuck with me into adulthood. To this day, I can’t sit still. It’s not enough for me to experience life. I also have to create something in response to what I’m experiencing. I get restless when I’m not making art.

2. How did you start Positive Doodles and what are some of its goals, if any?
It was a diary blog that took a positive turn and eventually became a positivity blog. My goal is to share simple positive messages in a cute way. I make all my posts with one specific person in mind (usually myself or one of my friends), but I’m grateful that there are others who enjoy them too. I also have a second goal which is to make art more freely accessible to the general public, but that one is proving to be harder to pull off.

3. How did you come to use art as a form of self-care?

Completely unintentionally. Art helps me cope and express myself, but that’s usually not my goal when I sit down to work. It was different when I started as a kid, but now I sit down with the intention to create, and all the other stuff (self-care, self-expression, stories, discussions, etc.) comes after. It’s a very fluid and natural process.

4. You also keep something of an art diary which is for public viewing. What made you want to keep a personal diary in art form and how do you feel about discussing personal issues on such a public forum?

My family has a history of mental illness. I have family members who don’t talk to each other because of it. Some of my loved ones lost jobs and relationships because of it. Despite all this, it’s not something we talk about. It’s like a secret shame we carry. This isn’t something unique to my family. It’s a consequence of living in a culture that fears and stigmatizes mental illness.

If someone had talked to me when I was younger about mental illness and how it runs in my family, I might have understood what was happening when I started suffering from it. I might have been less scared or felt less alone. Most importantly, I could have gotten treatment. Instead, I was in my twenties when I was finally diagnosed.

My childhood self needed someone to talk to her openly about mental illness. That’s what I do on my diary blog: I talk openly about all the things I wish someone had talked to me when I was younger. I know I can’t go back and help my childhood self, but there are others out there still struggling, and I want to let them know they aren’t alone.

I have no problems with discussing things publicly. I ask friends and family for permission before I mention them in anything, but that’s about the extent to which I censor my blog.

5. Why do you think that many people seem not to use art, in any if its forms, as a way to aid in their well-being? Would you say that self-care is something that is heavily rejected in US society?

Art itself is a form of self-care. Whether you’re making art for fun, to make a statement or to pay the bills, you’re working towards fulfilling a need. I don’t know why some people prefer not to make art. Maybe they don’t enjoy it. Maybe what I get from art, they get from something else like science or sports. Maybe they don’t have the time. Maybe it’s something else entirely. I imagine every person has their own reason(s) that’s personal to them.

I don’t think self-care is heavily rejected. I think the problem is that for many, self-care hasn’t been offered as a possibility. After working, paying the bills, taking care of personal relationships, taking care of your kids if you have them, dealing with problems and doing everything else you have to do, there often isn’t time left. Most mainstream self-care conversations I’ve seen focus on things like “buy yourself something nice” and “take a long bath”, but those things are easier if you have money. A lot of self-care tips are like that; they ignore class differences. Some even ignore health differences. As a result, a lot of people are left out of the self-care movement through no fault of their own.

6. What advice do you have for people who aspire to use art in a radical fashion? How can we support your work?

Here’s my advice: make the art you want to make. If nobody likes it or if it doesn’t make money, at least you’ll have done what you wanted. Don’t worry if it’s weird or ugly. When it comes to art, those things are good. So are mistakes. Work hard. Don’t sell yourself short. It’s okay to share your insecurities about your art, but keep in mind that captioning your work with “This sucks. I don’t even know why I’m sharing it” doesn’t encourage anyone to look at it. If you ever need to take a break, it’s okay to take one.

Anyone who wants to support my work should check out my positivity blog:

Information about how to find me elsewhere is on the blog.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Colonialism, Coups, and Conflict

Courtesy of Al Jazeera

Colonialism, Coups, and Conflict: The Violence in the Central African Republic

Originally published as a two-part series on

The Central African Republic is currently awash in media coverage regarding the ongoing sectarian violence and general upheaval in the country. While many outlets have discussed the situation in the CAR, there have been few fully encompassing analyses of the violence that it in a proper historical context and discuss the interests of some of the countries that are in the CAR such as France or Chad while others are watching from afar, yet still interested, such as the United States. The violence in the CAR is unprecedented and worrisome; however, historically this is nothing but another unfortunate and bloody chapter regarding the instability of the country.

A History of Violence

The CAR is a former French colony, with the country having gained its independence soon after a 1958 French constitutional referendum which dissolved France’s African holdings.[1] The first president, Barthélemy Boganda, died in a March 1959 plane crash and power was transferred to David Dacko who oversaw the CAR’s declaration of independence on August 13, 1960 and established a one-party state by 1962.

Unfortunately, Dacko’s days were numbered. In 1965, Jean Bedel Bokassa, who was a colonel in the CAR military, “was plucked by France to overthrow the Central African Republic's first President, his cousin David Dacko, when Mr. Dacko began establishing close ties with China.”[2] Bokassa was chosen due to this fierce devotion to France and his anti-Communist stance. After overthrowing Dacko in a bloodless coup, Bokassa quickly broke off relations with China and took on a multitude of titles, which would eventually culminate in his declaring himself king in 1977. In addition to changing the CAR’s foreign policy, Bokassa also suspended the constitution and dissolved the National Assembly, allowing him free reign to do as he pleased.

Though he showed increasingly strange behavior as time passed, the French still maintained good relations with him, even going so far as to congratulate him when he declared the CAR an empire and took the title of emperor.

However, the French eventually turned their backs on him[3], due to his increased yearning to decide foreign policy on his own, and helped to put Dacko back into power via a coup against Bokassa in 1979.
In 1981, elections took place and Dacko emerged victorious over challenger Ange-Félix Patassé, but charges of fraud remained. Just months later in September, Army Chief of Staff General André Kolingba seized power in a military coup. While, there was a coup attempt against him involving Ange-Félix Patassé[4], the coup failed and Patassé fled to the Togo, eventually coming back in the early ‘90s.
Kolingba operated what was essentially a military dictatorship into the 1990s due to a new constitution in 1986, which “provided him a single-party state and six-year term as president.”[5] This aided him in the 1988 elections as opposing political parties were not allowed to participate.
Following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990, a pro-democracy movement sprouted and blossomed in the CAR, with Kolingba’s response being to detain many pro-democratic protesters. However, Kolingba eventually agreed to free elections, after having come under pressure from “countries like the United States and France, but also agencies and organizations like the UN.”[6]

In 1993, Ange-Félix Patassé was elected president of the CAR. The instability of the country continued with three different army mutinies in April, May, and November of 1996. The first munity occurred when some 400 soldiers demanded paychecks, with soldiers “[entering] the homes of business executives, demanding money and vehicles and beating those who refused.”[7] It would be proper to note here that the governments that have ruled over the CAR have generally been extremely corrupt, with the IMF/World Bank noting in 2013 that on a regional level, corruption was hindering the growth of many Central African states.[8] According to Transparency International, the CAR is near the bottom on a list of the least-corrupt states, ranking 150 out of 175.[9] It was, in part, due to corruption and larger economic problems, which led to army members not being paid.
In May of 1996, the army mutinied again as they accused Patassé “of transferring the army's armory to his presidential guard.”[10] In order to put down the mutiny, Patassé requested aid from the French and they eventually sent 1,000 soldiers and 100 special forces commandos.[11] The mutiny eventually died down with a ceasefire being negotiated.
After the April and May mutinies, Patassé “formed a new government that included Kolingba supporters, but the country's main opposition groups refused to join the coalition.”[12] However, a third mutiny in November still occurred as soldiers took advantage of Patassé being out of the country. Once again, the French came to his aid as they “rapidly deployed patrols throughout the city to protect key points and provide support to the Presidential Guard. Additional French Foreign Legion troops were flown into CAR from Chad to supplement the 1,750 soldiers already stationed in the country.”[13] The mutiny was eventually put down, but had threatened to devolve into ethnic conflict.
These mutinies were stirred up by Kolingba, who “is from the Yakoma group, which is part of the Ngbandi ethnic group found on the banks of the Obangui river in the south.”[14] When Patassé first came to power, the military was mainly made up of soldiers from Kolingba’s ethnic group. In response, Patassé “created militias favoring his own Gbaya tribe and did not bother to pay the Yakoma-dominated regular army,”[15] which actively contributed to the mutinies. A final rebellion occurred in 1997, but was put down by a pan-African force.
The troubles didn’t end for Patassé as in May 2001; Kolingba 
sponsored an unsuccessful military coup which set off a series of events that ultimately led to Patassé’s removal. After the coup attempt, the president accused his Army Chief of Staff, François Bozizé, of involvement and fired him on October 26, 2001. Bozizé rallied troops to resist his sacking, but was ultimately forced to leave for exile in southern Chad. These events deeply split and weakened the CAR armed forces—the Central African Armed Forces—dividing it between Patassé and Bozizé loyalists.[16]
Overall, Patassé’s time as president was problematic for the country, not only due to the mutinies and attempted coup, but also due to the fact that “the CAR underwent economic collapse, losing what was left of its institutional capacity to provide social services for its citizens, and increased its dependence on external aid for survival” and Patassé “built up the Presidential Guard at the expense of the army, further ethicizing the state security forces.”[17]
In October 2002, Bozizé launched a coup; however Patassé was able to beat him back with the aid of Libyan forces. Gaddafi had backed the CAR government since 2001, “in return for a 99-year monopoly on extracting the republic's vast reserves of diamonds, gold and other minerals.”[18]
However, in 2003 when Patassé was out of the country in Niger, Bozizé swept into the capital with 1,000 troops and took control.[19]

In December 2004, voters in the CAR accepted a new constitution which “
provides for a five-year presidential term, renewable only once, and the appointment of the prime minister from the political party with a parliamentary majority.”[20] Quickly following this change was the 2005 presidential elections in which Bozizé ran as an independent and won. Out of this election came the rise of the Peoples’ Army for the Restoration of the Republic and of Democracy (APRD), led by Jean-Jacques Demafouth, and made up mainly of former Presidential Guard members. Another group that came out of the elections was the Union of Democratic Forces for Unity (UFDR), which “is made up largely of the mainly-Muslim Gula ethnic group” and “includes men who helped Bozizé overthrow Patassé in 2003 but who subsequently felt disgruntled with the lack of recompense.”[21] Both of these groups are from the northern region of the CAR and have actively fought against the Bozizé government.
This rebellion had occurred due to economic and political weakness within the CAR government. Bozizé had little power outside of Bangui, the capital, “while extreme poverty and a lack of both strong government institutions and economic development have contributed to declining support for the government among CAR citizens.”[22] Citizens from the north are generally anti- Bozizé and accuse him of “favoring southerners since taking power, of failing to uphold democratic commitments, and of delaying implementation of promised political and economic reforms.” The rebel groups actively fought the CAR government, for example in 2006 it was reported that an escalation in fighting between the APRD and government troops caused 70,000 people to flee the country.[23]
In order to bring an end to the fighting, a comprehensive peace agreement was brokered in 2008[24] and quickly followed up an Inclusive Political Dialogue that same year. The Dialogue “called for the creation of a government of national unity; the holding of municipal elections in 2009, and legislative and presidential elections in 2010, which actually took place in January and March 2011; the creation of a national human rights commission; the launch of a program for the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) of former combatants.”[25]
However, the goals of the Dialogue never came to fruition:

[N]early five years later, the overwhelming feeling is bitter disappointment: the inclusive government was never put in place; the 2011 elections took place but, according to observers, were marred by many accusations of fraud; the state disintegrated further; the “grey zones” outside state control expanded; most of the agreed essential reforms were never implemented; and the attitude adopted by both the government and rebel groups meant the demobilisation, disarmament and reintegration (DDR) program never saw the light of day for combatants in the north east.[26]

This, coupled with the fact that democratic rule had effectively ended due to Bozizé’s authoritarian ways and “conditions inside the CAR rapidly declined as economic under-development, nepotism and corruption fostered dissent and emboldened political opponents,”[27] led to Bozizé’s ousting in 2013 by rebel group Séléka and the installment of its leader, Michel Djotodia, as interim president.
However, to talk about Séléka, there needs to be a discussion regarding the ongoing sectarian violence involving Muslims and Christians.
Sectarian Violence
While the CAR is home to several different ethnic groups, historically speaking “the CAR has no significant history of sectarian conflict or deep-seated religious enmity.”[28] So, then, why is this violence occurring? In order to discuss that, one must discuss Séléka and Michel Djotodia.
The Guardian reported in December 2012 that Séléka had formed and that among their demands was “the implementation of the recommendations of the inclusive political dialogue, which was held in 2008 among government, civil society, the opposition and the rebels; financial compensation for the rebels; the release of political prisoners; and the opening of an investigation into the disappearance of former CPJP (Convention of Patriots for Justice and Peace) leader Charles Massi and other ‘crimes.’”[29] Thus, it can be seen that group formed, at least partially, in response to the failed political dealings with the CAR government.
Religiously, Séléka members “were recruited from Muslim communities settled in CAR or in the ‘three border areas’ (Chad, Sudan, and CAR).” The formation of the group aided in the heightening of sectarian tensions as
While Séléka fighters have notional inclinations for political Islam, they share a strong sense of communal identity and a will to avenge previous CAR regimes and their beneficiaries identified as Christians (not much of a discriminating factor, as the CAR population is more than 75% Christian). Lay Muslims in CAR today are less likely to be harassed by the Séléka, and most often, there is cooperation. The whole Muslim community is therefore perceived as supporting the Séléka and hostile to the core Christian population.[30] (emphasis added)

This anti-Christian bias was revealed soon after the group took control of the capital. The Congressional Research Service reported in May 2014 that “once in power, Séléka leaders presided over the collapse of an already fragile state, and they oversaw brutal attacks on rural Christian communities in the northwest, Bozizé’s home region.”[31]
In response to this violence, the Christian communities formed anti-balaka (anti-machete) militias and began to fight Muslims. The Christian militias attacked the Muslims viscously, with “scenes of cannibalism and the dismemberment of Muslims by Christian mobs in Bangui”[32] prompting France to send 2,000 soldiers into the country and the UN to send 12,000 peacekeepers.[33]

In January 2014, Michel Djotodia stepped down as President[34], following pressure from Chadian president Idriss Déby. Djotodia was soon replaced with Catherine Samba-Panza, the former mayor of Bangui.[35]

However, this raises the question: What interest does Chad have in the Central African Republic? And for that matter, are there any other interested parties?

Foreign Interests


Chad is a neighboring country and has been involved in the internal politics of the CAR for quite some time.

President Déby sponsored Bozizé’s rebel movement and “capitalized on this behind-the-scenes power grab by enabling his forces to operate in the north of the CAR to eliminate Chadian rebel groups using the territory as a staging ground for attacks.”[36] A main reason for Déby’s interest in the CAR is security reasons. There has been a large amount of activity of Chadian rebels in the CAR and “many [Chadian rebels] who took part in the attacks from 2008 to 2010 on N’Djamena and Abéché sought shelter in the north-west of the CAR, which was virtually untouched by Bangui’s authority”[37] and some even linked up with CAR rebel groups, eventually forming Séléka. There were accusations that Chad backed Séléka in order to draw the Chadian elements of the group deeper into the CAR and thus stop them from launching attacks into Chad.[38]
Another interest of Chad is oil. “’Chad is drilling oil from that border region and it's actually a shared oilfield with CAR,’ [Enough Project’s field researcher Kasper] Agger said. While there is no drilling on the CAR side yet, Chad has high interest in keeping tight control over the area.”[39]

Thus it is no wonder that Chad is keeping a close eye on the CAR, even if they did withdraw their troops earlier last year.[40]
The CAR’s former colonial power also has interests at stake, which stem mainly from Bozizé’s rule.

Right before he was overthrown, in 2012 Bozizé called on the French to aid him in beating back the Séléka rebels.[41] This call went unanswered of course and this was mainly due to problems with the CAR government and with CAR-China relations. A 2009 U.S. diplomatic cable noted that

The constant frustrations facing French commercial giants such as Total and AREVA are well known. While France used to count on the CAR as a valuable reserve of uranium, it is very clear that the double dealing of the Minister of Mines, among others, in renegotiating contracts is pushing the French beyond even their normally generous limits.[42]

While France does have “extensive interests in Africa, in oil, minerals, infrastructure projects, telecoms, utilities, banking and insurance,” “its market share is being eroded by competition from China, Brazil, India and others.”[43] Bozizé actively worked with the Chinese, to the ire of the French. It was reported in December 2012 that “in March and April 2012 that the South African company DIG Oil had been awarded two exploration contracts and that a Chinese company had also obtained such authorization”[44] to explore for oil in the CAR. He was quite wary of the French, noting in a December 2012 speech that he was being attacked due to giving an oil exploration contract to the Chinese, saying “We gave them [the French] everything. Before giving oil to the Chinese, I met Total in Paris and told them to take the oil; nothing happened. I gave oil to the Chinese and it became a problem. I sent counselor Maidou in Paris for the Uranium dossier, they refused. I finally gave it to the South Africans.”[45] Due to his dealings with the Chinese and other problems, the French were disinterested in propping up Bozizé and thus let him fall.

In 2013, the French did send in troops to aid in the peacekeeping, along with African forces[46], but drew their forces down in January 2014 from 2,000 troops to 800 noting that UN peacekeepers had arrived.[47]

United States

The US sent their UN ambassador Samantha Power to the CAR in late 2013 to appeal for peace.[48] It should be noted that Power wants the US to intervene more and “has made a career out of scolding the U.S. for not intervening around the world enough,”[49] such as in her magnum opus where she lamented that the US didn’t intervene to stop the Armenian genocide during the First World War. In fact, she is quite fond of the ‘Responsibility To Protect’ doctrine and “was one of the driving forces behind the United States intervention in Libya.”[50] So an eye should be kept on her, knowing that she may push for further US intervention.
So far the US has sent delivered aid to peacekeepers[51], airlifted African troops into the CAR[52], and sent troops to support the US embassy resuming its activities[53], but not much else.

On a regional level, the US is interested in the CAR not just for any of its vast resources, but specifically oil. A 2013 Brookings Institution report entitled Top Five Reasons Why Africa Should Be a Priority for the United States noted that “significant new discoveries have prompted the [International Energy Agency] to anoint sub-Saharan Africa the ‘new frontier’ in global oil and gas” and “the emergence of new oil and gas producers in the region presents potential benefits for U.S. national security interests, if this new found wealth is managed appropriately […] Several countries could also potentially become oil suppliers to the US, further diversifying the sources of US imported oil.”[54] 

The US concern with African oil is nothing new as it was noted in 2002 that

Already, 15 percent of the United States' imported oil supply comes from sub-Saharan Africa. Oil experts predict that the amount of oil the United States receives from the prolific fields of Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea and Angola will double in the next five years.
"African oil is of strategic national interest to us and it will increase and become more important as we go forward," Walter Kansteiner, assistant U.S. secretary of state for African Affairs, said during a July 2002 visit to Nigeria – the largest oil producer in West Africa with an estimated 24 billion barrels in reserve.[55] (emphasis added)

Just as with the French, the Americans are also concerned about China. From that same Brookings report:
China’s engagement in Africa has profound geopolitical implications for the U.S. global strategy. […] China is looking beyond the traditional pursuit of economic benefits and aspires to increase and solidify its strategic presence through enhanced political, economic, diplomatic and academic resources. The failure to perceive and prepare for China’s moves would be dangerous, unwise and potentially detrimental for the United States in the near future.[56]
So, the US is concerned with resources, but all the more so due to a major competitor that is actively making moves in the region.

More recently, in January 2015, the UN stated that it had found evidence of ethnic cleansing done by Christian militias against Muslims[57], giving confirmation to the alarms that had been raised in June 2014[58] and even before that in late 2013.[59] Unfortunately, the violence is only continuing.


[1] The Encyclopedia of Earth, Central African Republic,

[2] Howard W. French, "Jean-Bedel Bokassa, Self-Crowned Emperor of Central African Republic, Dies At 75," New York Times, November 5, 1996 (
 [3] Royal African Society, Central African Republic,  

[4] Kaye Whiteman, “Ange-Félix Patassé Obituary,” The Guardian, June 14, 2011 (

[5] J. Tyler Dickovick, The World Series Today: Africa 48th ed. (Lanham, Maryland: Stryker-Post Publications, 2013), pg 158

[6] German School of Athens, The Situation in the Central African Republic,

[7] New York Times, Central African Soldiers Continue Their Mutiny, (April 21, 1996)

[8] Moki Edwin Kindzeka, “Central African Growth Hindered by Vast Corruption,” Voice of America News, December 2, 2013 (

[9] Transparency International, Central African Republic,

[10] Norman Kempster, “Americans Evacuated From Central African Republic,” Los Angeles Times, May, 22, 1996 (

[11] CNN, French Drawn Deeper Into Central Africa Mutiny, (May 22, 1996)

[12] Portland Community College, Central African Republic,

[13] Institute for Security Studies, Crisis and Response in the Central African Republic: A New Trend in African Peacekeeping,  
[14] BBC, UN Steps into CAR Ethnic Tension, (June 12, 2001)

[15] Global Security, Central African Republic-Background,

[16] Human Rights Watch, State of Anarchy: Rebellions and Abuses Against Civilians,

[18] The Economist, Rebellion in Central Africa: No Pay, No Peace, (October 31, 2002)

[19] The Economist, Central African Republic: A Popular Coup, (March 20, 2003)

[20] IRIN, Central African Republic: New Constitution Adopted, 15 to Vie For Presidency, (December 20, 2004)

[21] IRIN, Central African Republic: Who’s Who With Guns, (June 17, 2009)

[22] Kelly Campbell, “Central African Republic, Chad, and Sudan: Triangle of Instability,” United States Institute of Peace, December 1, 2006 (

[23] Angola Press, 70,000 Refugees Flee CAR Into Cameroon, Chad¸ (October 15, 2006)

[24] Uppsala University, Comprehensive Peace Agreement,

[25] Global Security, Central African Republic- Francois Bozize,

[26] International Crisis Group, Central African Republic: Priorities of the Transition, (June 11, 2013)

[27] Armada Global Inc, Central African Republic: Conflict and Instability, (October 2013)

[28] Stephanie Burchard, “The Central African Conflict Is About Far More Than Religion,” Think Africa Press, February 26, 2014 (

[29] The Guardian, Rebel Union In Central African Republic Raises Humanitarian Concerns, (December 12, 2012)

[30] News 24, Fear Reigns In CAR’s Capital Bangui, (December 31, 2012)

[31] Congressional Research Service, Crisis in the Central African Republic, (May 14, 2014)

[32] Daniel Flynn, “Gold, Diamonds Feed Central African Religious Violence,” Reuters, July 29, 2014 (

[33] Euro News, UN To Send 12,000-strong Peacekeeping Force to Central African Republic, (October 4, 2014)

[35] Andrew Katz, “Central African Republic: Meet New President Catherine Samba-Panza,” Time, January 23, 2014 (

[36] Frank Charnas, “The Chad Jihad Threat,” The National Interest, June 21, 2013 (

[37] Celeste Hicks, “Chad: Déby’s Misstep in the Central African Republic,” Think Africa Press, January 27, 2014 (

[38] Celeste Hicks, “Central African Republic a Crisis Too Far For Chad’s Regional Security Ambition,” World Politics Review, April 7, 2014 (

[39] Priyanka Boghani, “Chad and France Are Really Not Helping the Central African Republic Right Now,” Global Post, May 20, 2014 (

[40] Al Jazeera, Chad to Withdraw Troops From CAR Mission, (April 3, 2014)

[41] BBC, Central African Republic’s Bozize in US-France Appeal,
africa-20845887 (December 27, 2012)

[42] Wikileaks, French-CAR Relations Seriously Strained, (June 17, 2009)

[43] Brian Eads, “France Is Slowly Reclaiming Its Old African Empire,” Newsweek, October 30, 2014 (

[44] Global Voices, Who Wants to Overthrow the Central African Republic’s Francois Bozize? (December 30, 2012)

[45] Kumaran Ire, “French Troops Intervene in Central African Republic, Seize Bangui,” World Socialist Web Site, December 9, 2013 (

[46] Nima Elbagir, Faith Karimi, Laura Smith-Spark, “French Troops Begin Operating In Central African Republic As Violence Worsens,” CNN, December 8, 2013 (

[47] Fox News, France to Pull 1,200 Troops From Central African Republic, (January 14, 2015)

[48] NPR, CAR Atrocities Must Be Answered, Says U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power, (December 22, 2013)

[49] Richard Spencer, “Samantha Power and Paul Wolfowitz-Separated At Birth,” Taki’s Magazine, March 8, 2008 (

[50] Alexander Abad-Santos, “Samantha Power Has It All,” The Wire, June 5, 2013 (

[51] Jon Harper, “For US Forces, Delivering Peacekeepers To Central African Republic Is No Easy Task,” Stars And Stripes, January 22, 2014 (

[52] Julia Barnes, Adam Entous, “US To Fly African Troops Into Conflict Zone,” Wall Street Journal, December 9, 2013 (

[53] Hayes Brown, “Why There Are Now US Troops In The Central African Republic,” Think Progress, September 12, 2014 (

[54] Brookings Institution, Top Five Reasons Why Africa Should Be a Priority for the United States, (March 2013)

[55] The Center for Public Integrity, The Curious Bonds of Oil Diplomacy, (October 6, 2002)

[56] Brookings Institution, March 2013

[57] Reuters, Ethnic Cleansing In Central African Republic, No Genocide: UN Inquiry, (January 2015)

[58] Al Jazeera, UN Report Disputes Genocide Claims In CAR, (June 6, 2014)

[59] David Smith, “Unspeakable Horrors In a Country On The Verge of Genocide,” The Guardian, November 22, 2013 (