On Wednesday, June 27 in Nanterre, a suburb in France (about seven miles from Paris), 17-year old Nahel, a colonized North African, was shot by the colonial French biker police.
The French bourgeois media working with the police immediately launched a campaign of slander and demonization against Nahel.
All categories of the French bourgeois media pulled together and flooded the news with the narrative that the killing of 17-year old Nahel was an act of self defense by the police because, “Nahel rammed a car into the police officers.”
Nahel did not have a criminal record, but the media emphasized and insisted that he was known to the police.
The media, the police and the French government were hoping that the outcome of their seemingly permanent propaganda would remove any sympathy towards the victim, his family and toward the colonized African working class in France.
When the video of the cowardly police killing of Nahel emerged, everyone was able to understand the intensity and the scope of the organized deceit between the bourgeois media, the police and the government to defend and cover up the murderous thugs.
Nahel never rushed a car at the police. And neither of the two police agents were ever in any danger! It was rather the opposite!
The video exchange between the two French cops indicates, without ambiguity, their intent to murder Nahel, who stopped the car as instructed by the police. The cops parked their two motorbikes behind Nahel’s car and walked along the car on the driver’s side.
One cop said to Nahel, “Don’t move or I‘II put a bullet in your head.” The second officer ordered, “Shoot him.”
The murder of Nahel was not an accident waiting to happen nor the act of one rotten bad apple inside the police State, but a reflection of a colonial mode of production, which defines the relationship between the colonized and the colonizer.
In May 2020, I reported in The Burning Spear newspaper on another police murder in France: “In mid-April, police murdered Mohamed Gabsi, 33, in the south of France. The father-of-three died after cops were videoed viciously dragging him along the ground during a curfew.
“On April 18, resistance flared up with colonized youth demanding justice for a 30-year-old Arab man critically injured and in a coma after an unmarked police car rammed his motorbike, leaving him in agony on the sidewalk as crowds of Arabs gathered in anger.
“The police attack went viral on social media and residents can be seen accusing the police of deliberately opening the door of their vehicle to hit the biker.”
In the same article, we also shared the views of Mohsen Troudi, a North African worker, on colonial poverty and police violence in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, a town which is just an 18 minute drive from the town of Nanterre, where Nahel was murdered: “We are the ones carrying the country these days. We are the ones still working to keep the economy going. But the state doesn’t respect us and doesn’t give us the means to live decently….
“If this goes on, Villeneuve-la-Garenne will become the epicenter of a new French suburban revolution…
“We have a young guy who lives here who was shot at eight times because he refused to be checked by police. We have many such cases.”
In France, all colonized people still remember the great anti-colonial rebellion of 2005, when Africans burned down nearly the whole of France–following the police pursuit and murder of two African teenagers, Zyed Benna, 17, and Bouna Traor, 15.
The two Africans from Mali and Algeria respectively were electrocuted at a power station where they took refuge in an attempt to escape the French colonial police.
According to the study carried out by French sociologists, “The police and the gendarmerie in France [killed] by shooting 50 percent more than the German police, and 37 percent more than Great Britain [England and Wales] and that in Germany, there has been one fatal shot in ten years for refusing to comply, compared to 16 in France for a year and a half.”
Rebellion reflects the fall of France
Understanding the gravity of the situation, Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, and Grald Darmanin, the interior minister, rushed to the media to spin the situation and pretended to care about the lives of the colonized and poor peoples.
To buy time and diffuse any social outrage, the ruling class charged the killer police officer with “intentional homicide by a person holding public authority.”
But this was too little and too late. The African workers were already in motion to seek justice for themselves by themselves.
Nahel’s murder is a concrete expression of the primary contradiction in the world between oppressed and oppressor nations.
The principal cause of the murder of Nahel is not a conflict between races, religions or civilizations. This murder has its origin in a colonial mode of production that put Africa and Europe at opposition since 1415 when the Portuguese first invaded Ceuta in today’s Morocco and initiated Europe’s collective assault on Africa.
This collective assault by Europe on Africa serves as the basis for the kidnapping of Africans for forced labor in Madeira Island, off the Atlantic coast, captured by the Portuguese in 1419, where Africans were colonized in sugar plantations by 1425.
The colonial mode of production is the cornerstone of the conflict between oppressor nations and oppressed nations. It is also the basis of the conflict between dominant nations. That is why rebellions of the colonized West Africans and North Africans displaced the Ukrainian conflict from the main news in France and throughout the world.
France does not depend on Ukraine for its economic, political and cultural success, but it depends on Africa and African people for everything. The rebellions of colonized Africans in the center of France is an existential question for the vicious colonial power.
Down With Colonialism!
Hands Off Uhuru!
Hands Off Africa!