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French Somaliland

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Khadra Ahmed

on 15 March 2014

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Transcript of French Somaliland

Modern French Somaliland
Goods & Commodities
Politics, Economy, Society
Political Results of French Imperialism
French Somaliland
Economic Results of French Imperialism
Social results of French Imperialism
Due to Djibouti's climate and desert geography, it is not plentiful in natural resources.
This colony was more service based due to it's strategic position on both the Red sea and Suez Canal. It was used more for trade and transportation.
It did however, have small oil and coal reserves which they used and sold to ships. They also possessed metals such as gold and minerals like salt, which were just cherries on top for the French.
Friday, March 14, 2014
Vol XCIII, No. 311
European Imperialism
French Somaliland
Reasons for Imperialism
French Somaliland
1.Due to Djibouti's position on the horn of Africa, the French saw it as a great opportunity to create coaling and re-supplying stations for ships. These stations were essential for trips to India. This allowed the French to profit from other european travelers.
African Imperialism
Modern Day Somaililand
The French Colony
French Somaliland was first colonized by the French in 1883 and the colony was established till 1887.
Post-colonization, the land was owned by Somali and Afar sultans. Once the French showed interest, the Sultants sold their land to the French through multiple treaties.
Sultan derives from the arabic word "sultah" which means "authority" and "power". ةسلط
2. Another reason the french were interested in Djibouti was due to the opening of the Suez Canal. The British already had co-ownership of the canal with the British.

The Suez Canal is an artificial waterway in Egypt that connects the Mediterranean and Red Sea.
Once again, Djibouti's location has it at the beginning of the canal. Since the Canal played a huge role in international trade, the French were able to benefit economically by trading and selling with international ships.
Italian and British Somaliland joined to create Somalia
French Somaliland became it's own independent country called Djibouti
A huge impact on modern Djibouti society is it's official language. Just like Canada, Djibouti honors Arabic (which is the main language) as well as the minority language,French. This allows for a more diverse society.
Italian and British Somaliland
French Somaliland
The Horn of Africa was divided into 3 different sections:
British Somaliland
Italian Somaliland
French Somaliland
As you can see, Italy colonized the larger part of Somalia, while the France had the smallest part.
There was constant competition for African land between these European countries and even Ethiopia
The first permanent french administration was established in 1894-1967 by Léonce Lagarde.
How was the Colony Established ?
Though they're no longer a French colony, Djibouti's shipping ports are still their main source of revenue
They've developed a transshipment center and is the principal port for exports and imports to and from Ethiopia
Due to shipping ports there was a heavy influence to create free trade policies
Though Djibouti's shipping center is highly developed thanks to it's past colony, many other sectors are left undeveloped and weak. This adds to the high unemployment rates
The government still receives subsidies from both France and Arab oil companies, so there isn't a strong sense of independence from France
3. Another motive to establish the colony was the Imperial Ethiopian Railway. This railway traveled from eastern Ethiopia all the way to the port of French Somaliland. The railway also played a part in trade and increased the colony's economy drastically while it was working
As you can see, the land is quite dry making it no fit for agriculture
The Afar people are the minority of Djibouti who have a heavy rooted past with nomadism, which brought them to Somalia. They're culture is also heavily based on the desert.
The Issa Clan originates from Somalia, making them the obvious majority of Djibouti. They are a sub-clan of another Somali clan called Dir. The Issa is the biggest sub-clan of the Dir
If you take a look at Djibouti's neighbors (Somalia), you can tell Djibouti is way more stable as a country. This is all thanks to the French military, has located their biggest military base in their former colony.
The French Military promotes regional security & also peace in the Middle east
Ever since the colonization of Somali French land, France has caused a rivalry between the two main ethnic groups.
Not too long after Djibouti gained independence, the Afar people revolted against a heavily Issa based government. This turned into a war which not only set back the development of Djibouti, but also required the French to take action.
As you can see, Djibouti still has strong ties to the french government, which can be a good thing, but it can also set back the independence of the country.
Somalia is torn by war, poverty, and a lack of government
Djibouti's famous Shipping Port
With the colonization of French Somaliland came the introduction of Christianity. In a heavily Muslim Society this adds diversity as well as another religious choice for Djiboutians.
Like many colonized countries, there is tons of poverty found in Djibouti. When the French colonized Djibouti, the majority of the funds were going to France, just like a transnational corporation

Léonce Lagarde on a stamp. He was responsible for both original naming of the colony.
French Somaliland was first named Côte Francaise des Somalis from 1894-1967.

In 1967 the colony was renamed to "Territoire français des Afars et des Issas." or "French Territory of the Afars and Issas. This was done in attempt to please the clans living in the colony.
French Somaliland finally gained independence on June 27th, 1977
A celebration in Djibouti for independence day
Due to french Imperialism and manipulation there were many wars and disputes between the Issa and Afar clans. The French manipulated both clans in order to help the colony grow. This is one of the reasons why it took so long to gain independence as a country.
The clan wars are similar to the war between the Hindus and Muslims in India (not as violent)
The city of Djibouti isn't so bad.... For those who can afford it
Like many African countries, poverty strikes many Djiboutians
A modern day picture of the Suez Canal
An old painting depicting the appearance of the Imperial Railway in 1894
Djibouti Flag
A modern day city in Djibouti
A city in Djibouti during Colonization
"Unité, Égalité, Paix"
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