Realm of immediacy and its corollary, spontaneity, the Internet is also the repository of archives that some would sometimes like to see disappear. Among these gravediggers of youthful mistakes are the supporters of the current head of the Italian government, Giorgia Meloni, confronted as they are with a video of their passionaria calling the fascist dictator Benito Mussolini a “good politician” in 1996.
Morocco-Italy: when Giorgia Meloni drank tea with the Polisario Front
Another interview with Giorgia Meloni has just come out of the digital drawers… from the month of January 2019. The community managers of the far-right party “Fratelli d’Italia” post an interview where the Italian politician criticizes, to the applause of an audience, the presence of France in Africa. On the Italian channel LA7, Meloni unfolds a CFA franc note which she presents as a “colonial currency” intended to exploit “14 African nations”, in particular children from Burkina Faso who “slip into mining tunnels” for a gold which “ends up largely in the coffers of the French State”.
— Eva Vlaardingerbroek (@EvaVlaar) November 19, 2022
Re-uploaded on November 18 by the American extreme right, the video demonstrates the opportunism of the nationalist international. Because a diplomatic crisis has just opened between Paris and Rome, after the verbal ping-pong around the ship “Ocean Viking” on which there were illegal immigrants from Africa.
In addition to being a cheap spade in the direction of Emmanuel Macron, Giorgia Meloni’s compassion for Burkinabè children appears to be less an outburst of Afrophile humanity than an attempt to demonstrate the effects of French policy on migratory vocations . Once again, the distress of certain Africans is exploited in European-European debates intended, in fineto cross the route of the same migrants that we claim to pity…
Migrants: the drift of feelings
In addition to ideological opportunism, the video demonstrates the uninhibited use of “alternative truths” dear to populists. Even in 2019 when the deposit, in a French Treasury account, of 50% of the foreign exchange reserves of CFA franc user countries had not yet been repealed, there was no question of a “tax” such as Meloni denounces him. The sums deposited and in question were never absorbed by the said French Treasury.
Admittedly, initially called “franc of the French colonies of Africa”, the CFA is an anachronistic heritage of the colonial past of France. But approximate excesses are of little use to appeased attempts at monetary change. As for the example of the mines whose wealth would go mainly to France, it was scarcely better documented. If the exploitation of gold benefits the Burkinabè GDP scandalously little, it is because the exports of the precious metal are made first of all for the benefit of Switzerland, India, Uganda, the United Arab Emirates or from Belgium. But not from France, yet the target of this video viral.