August 29, 2023•690 words
🇳🇪 Please advise why the Council on Foreign Relations is publishing Russian talking points and slanderous lies about France in their publication Foreign Affairs. This publication is supposed to be an academic journal.
"For decades, France has used corrupt and sometimes even illegal practices to secure cheap access to Nigerien uranium for its nuclear power industry, leaving Niger unable to profit from its exports." This statement is not true. A French company owns a few uranium mines in Niger. The company is not corrupt and does not engage in illegal practices. The uranium industry can not generate enough wealth to provide for the over 27 million people that live in Niger. The industry can and does provide for the Nigeriens that work for the uranium production company. Their employees have healthcare and are paid well - they live better than most Nigeriens. The company does pay taxes and Niger earns revenue from those taxes - that's how the uranium industry works in every part of the world. I believe the Nigerien state was also given a stake in the company as a gift - that does NOT happen in other parts of the world. The uranium produced in Niger by the French company is not cheap as the author claims. The uranium is a lower grade and therefore is sold at the market price, which is a slightly lower price than higher grades of uranium. Also only a small portion of the uranium is used to power France's nuclear power industry. Only 10% of France's nuclear fuel comes from Niger - that is just 1/10 of the nuclear fuel that France uses for nuclear energy for those of you who don't understand math - aka socialists and communists.
If I was the French president I would sue the journalist and the publication for libel on behalf of France. It's one thing for Disney to portray France as an evil villain in a movie that takes place in a fictional world, but it's quite another for a journalist to make those claims in an academic journal and present it as fact.
And here is another misrepresentation of reality in Hannah Armstrong's article: "The junta appears interested in partnering with Moscow, but to date, Moscow has remained equivocal." The Niger junta has claimed that they do not want to partner with Wagner or Russia, because the USA has not given up on the country yet and sent an envoy to speak with them. Russia, on the other hand, via the Kremlin-financed Wagner Group, has encouraged the junta to partner with them, and the junta's civilian supporters equate the junta with Russia because of Russian disinformation and influence campaigns - hence all of the Russian flags at the rallies. The USA is trying to encourage the military junta, some of whom have worked closely with the USA in the past, to do the right thing, which is to restore the constitutional order and the democratically elected president. We hope to convince the junta to do this without the need of military intervention.
This journalist claims she is an expert on the region, but she is clearly not. However, she may qualify as an expert in Disney's fictional universe, which was sponsored by China by the way.
These kinds of misrepresentations are one of the reasons private investors are keen to stay away from the region. If they start any kind of business in the region they will be falsely accused of all of the region's problems by the anti-capitalists. Making false allegations about one of the few companies willing to take a risk in the region is not doing the country or the rest of the region any justice. It contributes to the cycle of poverty in Africa.
The Council on Foreign Relations is expected to provide discourse on foreign affairs that is based on reality, not fiction. Misrepresenting the USA's closest allies is extremely damaging to the organization's reputation and credibility, as well as to US-France relations. xo
Read more about Orano, the French uranium company operating in Niger, and everything they are doing for the Nigerien people. https://www.orano.group/en/nuclear-expertise/orano-s-sites-around-the-world/uranium-mines/niger/responsible-mining