During TV coverage of the 27 Algerians who have been stranded in a French Airport for several weeks, a French political scientist and a columnist has argued that "Algerians should be proud to have been colonized by the French;" thus prompting a strong backlash online.
Il faut dire aux Algériens :— Guillaume Bigot (@Guillaume_Bigot) April 10, 2021
Nous, Français, sommes fiers d’avoir été colonisés par Rome.
Vous Algériens devriez être fiers d’avoir été colonisés par la France.#LaMatinaleWE pic.twitter.com/GN1zW67iPU
Translation: "We must say to Algerians: We, the French, are proud to have been colonized by Rome. You, Algerians, should be proud to have been colonized by France."
In his remarks on CNews TV, Guillaume Bigot, a member of the Popular Front, compared the Roman occupation of France back in 125 B.C. with the 132-years-old French colonization of Algeria, which has been deemed as a violent military control resulting in more than 1 million Algerian deaths.
Following the TV interview, Bigot shared a video of the remarks on Twitter repeating his statement, in which he urged the Algerians "to feel proud" about the fact that there were colonized by France before gaining independence in 1962.
Absolutely sickening. A French political scientist declared on the French equivalent of Fox News: "We must say to Algerians:— Rim-Sarah Alouane (@RimSarah) April 10, 2021
We French are proud to have been colonized by Rome.
You Algerians should be proud to have been colonized by France." pic.twitter.com/CafEqxn8Ic
Go check with the Parisians who were starving, along with Resistance fighters who were raped, tortured, shot, how proud they felt after Germans rolled into town and colonized them for a while.— Jeff Pearce (@jeffpropulsion) April 11, 2021
Some of those vets were later sent to Algeria and didn't feel proud over that either. https://t.co/oQvihRjcOu
In response, social media users widely shared the video describing Bigot as "a typical European colonialist" who not only "justifies colonialism, but also defends it as a good deed."
My paternal grandmother saw her friend’s baby being ripped out of her mom’s pregnant belly during the war so no, Algerians have every right to fight their colonial past. This is racist and paternalistic bullshit. https://t.co/IKbwCCIuwP— Johannatrainer (@jmvtrainer) April 11, 2021
Online people called on Bigot to apologize for his statements, saying that Algerians and any other nations that have suffered European colonization had every right to fight the occupation that had killed numerous innocent native people in their own homelands as they resisted the foreign forces that arrived in search of resources and wealth.
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