France 24 has done itself a huge favor in running stories critical of France’s involvement in her former African colonies.
For the better part of four decades, France has been accused of murky dealings in Françafrique including propping up dictatorial regimes, facilitating corruption, and human rights abuses.
Many of France’s actions over the years have come dangerously close to American actions in Iraq, which-for a news network who owes its existence to global outrage over American meddling in the Middle East- could be a thorny conflict of interest. In order to have any credibility whatsoever in the United States and United Kingdom, France 24 must be as critical of France’s actions in places like Chad and Cote d’Ivoire as it is of American actions in Iraq.
Fortunately, it has.
Coverage of the current situations in Chad and Rwanda, where there are legitimate claims of French misbehaviour, has been remarkably evenhanded.
France 24 has even reported Rwandan claims that France was tacitly complicit in the 1994 Rwandan genocide, arming and training its perpetrators.
Such claims are controversial, but well-founded.
By broadcasting them France 24 is building its credibility, vital to its success in the Anglophone world.