[Thomas Sankara webSite]                                    http://thomassankara.net/spip.php?article924’We are heirs of t...
government to publicly recognize that AIDS was a major threat to Africa.It is very essential to recognise that the emphasi...
building. That is why we say that Che Guevara is also African and Burkinabè.”On Oct, 15 1987 Thomas Sankara was assassinat...
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thomas sankara: 'we are heirs of the world's revolutions' lessons from thomas sankara by akinyemi adeseye (teekay akin)

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Discurso de thomas sankara un gran hombre que fue asesinado por querer dar derechos a su pais africano

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thomas sankara: 'we are heirs of the world's revolutions' lessons from thomas sankara by akinyemi adeseye (teekay akin)

  1. 1. [Thomas Sankara webSite] http://thomassankara.net/spip.php?article924’We are heirs of the world’s revolutions’ : Lessons fromThomas Sankara by Akinyemi Adeseye (Teekay Akin)samedi, 15 mai 2010 / Bruno JaffréThomas Sankara ‘We are heirs of the world’s revolutions’ :Lessons from ThomasSankara, (December 21, 1949 – October 15, 1987) the leader of Burkina Faso’s popularrevolutionary government from 1983 to 1987.Akinyemi Adeseye (Teekay Akin)Wednesday, 05 May 2010It is very vital to look at the role that we Africans play in our own liberation, and the role of the“liberal” Western imperialisms in thwarting them.Nobel Prize Winner, James Watson made some racist comments, where he alleges that Africa isunderdeveloped because Africans are more stupid. He is of course exploiting his celebrity to putmore weight to ideas that run counter to the overwhelming scientific accord, although the topic isnot even within his own area of professional capability. However, his offensive views do create apopular reverberation, because Africa and Africans are nearly always reported as victims, andAfrican affairs are typically factually reported or fictionally portrayed only as they impact on whitepeople.In 1987 the French government engineered a coup d’état that overthrew Burkino Faso’s socialistgovernment led by Captain Thomas Sankara : one of the most progressive governments thatAfrica has ever seen. A week prior to his death on Oct. 15, Sankara had made a speech that said :“while revolutionaries as individuals can be murdered, you cannot kill ideas.”Captain Sankara was a left-wing and popular army officer with a captivating charismatic lifestyleand politics also driving a motorcycle and playing the guitar in a Jazz band : He was a prominentnational figure.In 1981, the government run by the military invited Sankara to take up the position of Secretaryof State for information, a short while after he discovered that the government was not working inthe interest of the people, he resigned. A subsequent coup in 1982 gave Sankara the office ofPrime Minister. In May 1983 during Jean-Christophe Mitterrand’s alleged visit to Ouagadougou,Sankara and two other ministers were arrested and placed under house arrest, all of them beingmembers of the Communist Officers’ Group” (Regroupement des officiers communistes - ROC).A popular uprising in Sankara’s support resulted to a coup led by ROC member, Blaise Compaorémade Sankara president in August that year.A record of remarkable progress was experienced in the subsequent four years within the country,including Sankara renaming the country from the colonial name of Upper Volta to Burkina Faso“The Land of Upright Men’’. The government’s main policies were centered around fightingcorruption and government privileges ( selling most of the government’s fleet of Mercedes Benzcars and making Renault 5 ; cheapest car sold in Burkina Faso at that time, the official car),averting famine, encouraging reforestation, education, health and women’s rights.“The revolution and women’s liberation go together. We do not talk of women’s emancipation asan act of charity or because of a surge of human compassion. It is a basic necessity for thetriumph of the revolution. Women hold up the other half of the sky.” he noted.It is worthwhile to note his great accomplishments in the area of women’s rights, including a largenumber of women in his socialist government, banned female circumcision, condemned polygamy,promoted contraception and improved the status of the average woman which was and still is anunprecedented policy priority in Western Africa.His government, the Rassemblement Démocratique et Populaire was also the first African
  2. 2. government to publicly recognize that AIDS was a major threat to Africa.It is very essential to recognise that the emphasis on reforestation made Burkino Faso’s socialistgovernment one of the world’s pioneers in encouraging and promoting sustainability anddefending the environment.Earlier In October 1984, Sankara used the avenue of the United Nations General Assembly tospeak on behalf of and for the exploited, subjugated and oppressed of the world. “I am here tobring you fraternal greetings from a country…whose seven million children, women, and menrefuse henceforth to die from ignorance, hunger, and thirst,” Sankara said.“I make no claim to set forth doctrines here. I am neither messiah nor prophet. I possess notruths. My goal is…to speak on behalf of my people…to speak for the great, disinherited people ofthe earth so disparagingly named the Third World. I wish to explain the reasons for our revolt,even though I may not succeed in making you understand them.”As Mary-Alice Waters noted : « Speaking before the United Nations in 1984, he linked the freedomstruggle of the people of Burkina Faso to the centuries of revolutionary struggle from the birth ofcapitalism to today—from the American and French revolutions at the end of the eighteenthcentury to the great October Revolution of 1917 that “transformed the world, brought victory tothe proletariat, shook the foundation of capitalism, and made possible the realization of the ParisCommune’s dreams of justice.” We are the heirs of those revolutions, »he saidSankara voiced the determination and dignity of the people of one of the poorest countries ofimperialist-ravaged Africa—one that then had the highest infant mortality rate in the world, anilliteracy rate approaching 98 percent, and an average life expectancy of 40 years. He reached outto, and spoke on behalf of, all those the world over who refuse to accept the economic bondage ofclass society and its consequences, including ecological devastation, social disintegration, racism,and the wars of conquest and plunder inevitably and lawfully wrought by the workings ofcapitalism itself. Sankara knew such conditions are not “natural” phenomena, but the products oftoday’s imperialist world order.He explained that the world order and imperialism can be fought and must be destroyed. Hebelieved like Che Guevara did, in the men and women so proudly and haughtily dismissed by therulers of the imperialist world, as a revolutionary he did not think that man is “an incorrigible littleanimal, capable of advancing only if you feed him grass or tempt him with a carrot or whip himwith a stick.A world built on different economic and social foundations can be created not by “technocrats,politicians or wise men’’ but by the masses of workers and peasants whose labor, joined with theriches of nature is the source of all wealth, by the ordinary human beings who transformthemselves as they become an active, conscious force, transforming their conditions of life,Sankara noted and the revolutionary government he led set out along this course, mobilizingpeasants, workers, craftsmen, women, youth, the elderly, to carry out a literacy campaign, animmunization drive, to sink wells, plant trees, build housing, and begin to eliminate the oppressiveclass exploitation on the land.Sankara stood out amongst leaders of the struggles for national liberation in Africa in the last halfof the twentieth century because he was a socialist. “We are open to all the winds of the will of thepeoples and their revolutions, and we study some of the terrible failures that have given rise totragic violations of human rights,” he said. “We take from each revolution only its kernel of purity,which forbids us to become slaves to the reality of others.”The battle against the encroachment of the desert is a battle to establish a balance between man,nature, and society. As such, it is a battle that is above all political, one whose outcome is notdetermined by fate….As Karl Marx said, those who live in a palace do not think the same things, nor in the same way,as those who live in a hut. This struggle to defend the trees and the forests is above all a struggleagainst imperialism. Imperialism is the arsonist setting fire to our forests and savannahs, Sankaranoted.On Che Guevara he said : Che Guevara taught us “we could dare to have confidence in ourselves,confidence in our abilities,” He instilled in us the conviction that “struggle is our only recourse.”He, Sankara insisted, was “a citizen of the free world that together we are in the process of
  3. 3. building. That is why we say that Che Guevara is also African and Burkinabè.”On Oct, 15 1987 Thomas Sankara was assassinated along with twelve other officials in a coupd’état organised by his former colleague, CompaoréReferring to Sankara’s assassination, Ulises Estrada said he was “convinced that the hand of hisassassins was guided by imperialism, which could not allow a man with the ideas and actions ofSankara to lead a country on a continent so exploited for hundreds of years by internationalimperialism, colonialism, and neocolonial governments that do their bidding.Furthermore he said “Sankara’s political ideas will endure, like those of Patrice Lumumba of Congoand Amílcar Cabral of Guinea-Bissau, also assassinated by traitors at the behest of the empire.”Estrada concluded by saying that someday the peoples of Africa will realize “the dreams ofAgostinho Neto, Sékou Touré, Julius Nyerere, Gamal Abdel Nasser, and so many others who leftan indelible mark on history.”“While revolutionaries as individuals can be murdered, you cannot kill ideas.” – Thomas SankaraSource : http://www.elombah.com/...Akinyemi Adeseye (Teekay Akin)

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