The military success and efficiency of the chadian military should not overshadow brutal practices and human rights violations. Western supporters of the chadian military including France and the United States should not turn a blind eye to the impunity and injustice and their long-term consequences. The global and political capital being offered to Idris debbie in exchange for Chads military interventionism is neither effective nor just.
The longer term consequences of the militarization of both regional and domestic politics in chad must be considered. In 2010 when Chad and Sudan signed the peace agreement that brought an end to the five-year war. few people expected this landlocked country would soon become an emerging regional power.
In less than a decade however Chad has radically changed its status on the regional and global scene. Chad is now a key ally of France and the United States within the framework of the war on terror.
John has a long history in meddling in regional politics but has recently appeared eager to assert itself as original military power with the blessing of its western allies. In 2013 the charging military played a decisive role during the french led action in mali.
Recharging army also participates in the military operations against boko haram as part of the multinational joint task force which it provides 1/3 of its troops about 3000 soldiers out of 8,700 soldiers.
The aim of this writing is twofold first I provide background information on the charging army while this army is now considered one of the best in the region little is known about its composition and the way it is governed in this respect I argue that the successful of offensive operations lead by the charging army should not overshadow it’s all too common brutal practices and the lack of accountability.
Secondly I argue that the key question is not only who is the best to do the job in the sahel and sahara but also what are the impact of the militarization of international interventions in the region. Charles all eyes turn to ignore the human rights violations and the on democratic practices there such as the recent election of idris derby in a disputed election the support given by france and the us to the military’s of child and other partner countries, to turn a blind eye to the wiltern way that impunity and injustice of late could have serious long-term consequences for nigeria.
The blind spots of Chads military interventionism
In Mali as in the lake Chad Basin the Chadian army has been praised for its effective offensive operations. The way the supposed qualities of this army are described reactivate the old cliche of the Chadian desert warrior who, already in the colonial period was a source of fascination for the French military.
Behind this picture however then lies a less glorious realities chadian forces also enjoy a reputation in chad and in the central african republic for the brutality and human rights violations.
In april 2014 Chadian forces had to withdraw from the United Nations multidimensional integrated stabilization mission in the Central African Republic because of accusations that they had killed 30 unarmed civilians, moreover Chad has a long history of interference in the Central African Republic and there are reports of financial and military support being given to the seleka rebels.
In Mali, allegations of rape and sexual violence has been levelled against Chadian soldiers. In 2016 Chadian soldiers from the MUMISMSA were accused of killing a civilian herder. Little is known on the fighting against Boko Haram. The chadian army has recently realised that public relations matters and journalist who reported on fighting in nigeria where embedded.
however those who witnessed the operations of the charging army took of serious human rights violations human rights violations are all too common during military operations whether the troops come from african or european countries. Such abuses are unfortunately not mere accidents. As far as gender based violence sexual violence and sexual exploitation are concerned, the root causes include the promotion of a militarized masculinity and the small number of women involved in the military. The Nigerian military, one of the most professional in Africa have thousands of female service members fighting alongside their male counterparts. The same cannot be said of others. MINUSMA is composed of 8578 male soldiers and only 125 female soldiers. Of the Chadian contingent of 1074 soldiers, only 13 are female.
The Chadian army has a poor human rights record abroad and at home. While it is true that this army is composed of former rebels, the rebel past of the soldiers does not explain their practices after their integration into the regular forces. More important is the fact that abuses committed by the military leaders are not punished. Impunity has become a fully-fledged mode of government.
A two class army
Despite 25 years of announcements and unfulfilled projects, the chadian armed forces have never been seriously reformed. In 2011, a major census was organised and 14,000 soldiers were dismissed. However, the armed forces continue to recruit far in excess of what is required by a response to regional threats.
The chadian army is de facto composed of two armies the ordinary army known as the ANT, and the presidential guard, which was renamed the general directorate of security services for national institutions (DGSSIE). In 10 years the number of DGSSIE troops have almost doubled a report by the sweet national assembly is a case study in sandy g s s i e put have about $14,000 soldiers in them.
The DGSSIE is the elite force of the army and constitute the core of the chadian forces deployed abroad. There is a gap between the treatment of the DGSSIE guard and that reserved for other bodies. The DGSSIE receives disproportionate funding in comparison with the rest of the army. It is much better equiped and its troops are trained. Members of the DGSSIE are also nuch better paid than those of the ANT. The DGSSIE depends on the presidency and is not under the command of the army’s General chief of Staff.
Idriss Deby retains a clear personal control over the DGSSIE. The elements of the DGSSIE are recruited from the Zaghawa andthe Bideyat and to a leser measurw frim the Girans and the Arabs. Key positions are held by officers close to Deby. One of Debys sons, General Mahat.at Idris Deby was appointed head of the DGSSIE in April 2014.
A militarized armt
The Chadian army (both the DGSSIE and the ANT) has been militarized. The hierarchy has not disappeared but there is a considerable vagueness about the missions and responsibilities of the officers. Those who make the decisions are not always those wgo according to official tects, should be taking by them. For example, Chad was not able to provide a chart of registered battalion commanders even though this was necessary if the country was to benefit from an assistance program from the us government.
Oil money and defence spending
Why past and recent reform programs have had limited impact oil money has transformed the armed forces defence spending per capita and as a percentage of gross domestic product has grown fast for the past 10 years.
The first oil related income was a bonus paid by the oil consortium in 2000 at least $4.5 billion of this signature bonus paid by chevron was spent on weapons. In the following years Chad radically defied the world bank which had agreed to back the Chad-Cameroon oil project on condition that the profit went towards development and long-term poverty alleviation of the people. The Bank invested massively financially and politically in the project. It had however underestimated the regimes capacity to skirt external pressures. The original mechanisms for monitoring oil revenues that was imposed in 1999 was already dismantled in 2006. Idris Deby argued that security was an important condition for development. Arms import were five times higher in 2004-2008 than in 1999 -2003.
between 2006 and 2010 child became the third largest importer of arms in sub-saharan africa appearing for the first time among the top ten defence spenders the army acquired war planes attack helicopters tanks and missiles and became one of the best equipped on the continent. Since 2008 the military parade of 11 august (Chadian independence) are an opportunity to to put on display Chads military power.