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Gbagbo: How The Mighty Fall! 

By Azore Opio

Let me begin with you, Laurent Gbagbo, with an old English rhyme;
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

And so it was with you, the latest Humpty Dumpty after Mubarak and Ben Ali. Not all your armoured vehicles and army could put you together. Other Humpty Dumpties are in line waiting to take the great fall!

Your intrinsic greed, together with the ordinary African leader’s superlative idiocy, quickly establishes your ilk among the all-time classics of comic actors in the history of Africa.
You will remember, Monsieur Humpty Dumpty Gbagbo, that the Egyptian Old Kingdom, the Chou Dynasty, the Hittite Empire; Athens, Rome, even Britain, whose superpower finally eroded, show, repeatedly, that the mighty can fall. I am talking History here, which I assume is your specialty. Outrageous arrogance, hubris if you like, has crashed many men out of grace with their own greatness.

I won’t bother you with Niccolo Machiavelli’s "The Prince", because I presume too, that you are aware of its contents concerning power. And the stubborn great African despots who fell before you; Amin, Bokassa, Mobutu, Robert Guei (your countryman), Doe, the rag-tag soldier just next door, and many others, for lack of space.

When the death knell rang for you, instead of looking the conflict squarely in the face and delving deep into it to scrutinise the assumptions underlying the situation and finding completely new and innovative solutions; playing the cards shrewdly, as it were, you assumed a bull-headed, dogged and determined stance only characteristic of certified fools. Why didn’t you strike a deal, as any insightful politician often does, with Ouattara, even if his father came from Burkina Faso? You ask the Nigerians, all their former heads of state; some of them soldiers, including Ojuwku of the Biafran State infamy, if you like, are still living inside their country and enjoying their freedoms!

It is difficult to imagine that you, Gbagbo, born in the village of Mama on May 31, 1945, UN’s age mate, so to speak, a PhD from the Paris Diderot University (Université Paris Diderot, aka Université Paris 7 – Denis Diderot), a History Professor and once Director of the Institute of History, Art, and African Archaeology at the University of Abidjan, a trade unionist, a refugee in

France and all the like, could fail to think even like a rat mole which constructs outlets in its burrow. Did you imagine that you were going to live in the bunker forever? What about provisions and ammunition? Water? Medication? What could possibly teach your esteemed group of reprehensible intelligentsia other than falling the way you did?

Once again, permit us to congratulate you for holding on to your presidential seat with virtually your last breath. It is a grand paradox. What might have plagued such a man as you, Professor of History, so much; bitten your heart so acutely that you were never at peace with your intellect, until innocent and unarmed citizens perished for no just cause? Your actions seem to affirm that History teachers are comically bogus parrots; hollow drums and the least penetrated by History.

The French and the UN virtually denuded you in front of the world public and you could not do anything about it, let alone your big mouth, say anything about it. It is too much of coincidence that every other African leader behaves much in the same way as the last one. Stooges like you Gbagbo, and Ouattara, of course, have always been pampered pets.

From early times, colonialists saw that some butts were better that other butts. They knew that neo-colonial pet dogs have nothing to do but keep their masters happy; doing their bidding. They do not do any work. The white master wants big, black, handsome, well-behaved dogs for pets. They breed even ugly ones to look beautiful and to be gentler than other dogs.

Ouattara, your cousin, if you wouldn’t mind, also a PhD, was born on January 1, 1942, in Dimbokro, Ivory Coast, to a father from Burkina Faso. A Drexel University graduate in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, married to a French Jewish, Dominique Nouvian Folloroux, in a 1990 wedding officiated by the then Mayor of Neuilly-sur-Seine, Nicolas Sarkozy, now France’s President. Ouattara now is the better stool pigeon. He was fitted with a voting fraud bankrolled and overseen by the UN.

And now the UN, why is Ivory Coast such a special; why you don’t you step in all the other countries where vote robbers cling to power? You have, on occasions, found yourself to blame for leaving behind you, political chaos in your "colonies"; Somalia, Palestine, Cyprus, Iraq, Afghanistan.

Although they founded you as an international organisation in 1945 to maintain international peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations and promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights; you seemed to have worn a donned cloak now; the cloak of a war monger. It would be naive to ignore the fact that since 1945, you have assisted in negotiating more than 170 peace settlements that have ended regional conflicts. Not forgetting your recent victory in Ivory Coast, of course. But you have had your fair share of useless failures.

First, you are primarily a forum where countries’ relatively powerless spokesmen, argue for or against issues. And typically non-peaceful dictators use these forums to delay and complicate issues in their favour. These empty debates have never resolved a single issue, but direct military actions, clandestine negotiations and threats, have had the only real positive effects for change. Just like in Ivory Coast.

And that is why you might want to amend your constitution to upgrade your powerless and pacifistic stance in a world filled with war-mongering dictators and include a military clause to enable the UN rout dictators without having to bicker in New York as innocent people perish. You will also like to cut down on the veto powers of founding fathers; China, France, Russia, the UK and the US.

As for the Gbagbos, remember that the white master thinks only about his own needs and not about the needs of their dogs. As you may have guessed, the sad fact is that in many cases, when the dog grows old and can no longer do the work they were originally meant to do, or they show signs of becoming more intelligent than the owners, they have to be given away. Or, if it were in the Tole of Cameroon, slaughtered for the soup pot.

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