The Ambazonia War: The Shortcut to the Negotiation Table
Like every other war in history, it will finally end with a truce no matter how long the fighting lasts. There will be some kind of negotiation at the end. There are two ways to that negotiation both camps are currently using with neither of them solid, in my opinion: One is to keep fighting until both sides are exhausted and call for negotiations themselves and the second is to keep fighting until a third party imposes a ceasefire on the two camps. That third party could be some powerful international organization or country.
Option one is the option we are currently engaged in without any idea of how long it might take to get to the end. In terms of numbers, strength, resources and skill to resist long-term battle, La Republique du Cameroun is sure to win using this option. In fact it is their preferred option because at the end of it, the conquer of the people and territory they have always wished for would have been finally accomplished once and for all. Ambazonia Restoration Forces on the other hand have a lot to lose in this option: The battlegrounds are on their territory, the fleeing population is theirs and the loss of property is theirs. Sooner or later whatever resources they have will dwindle down to nothing in a shorter time span compared to the situation in the opposite camp. This option from all analyses is not a favorable option for Ambazonia and should be strongly discouraged. Unless there is serious proof of the availability of resources necessary to support a long-term battle, this option is to say the least suicidal.
Option two is what Ambazonia pro-Independence fighters wished for from day 1 since the revolution started. They knew option one was not a favorable option for them and so went straight for option two with the hope that some third party intervention could bring them full victory or at least some partial victory. They were counting on the solidity of the truth of the arguments backing their cause. Unfortunately, they learnt soon that the world was not one governed by truth and fair play as they had thought. International organizations like The United Nations, The African Union, and The Commonwealth of Nations have sympathized with the cause but shown how far they can go in this kind of crisis. Powerful countries around the world that know the origin and history of the crisis very well have also sympathized with the cause but shown that they have more to benefit from the current La Republique du Cameroon than from Ambazonia. These two facts point to the bitter conclusion that third party serious intervention to broker peace might only come if the interests of those third parties in the region are threatened. Other than that, the current crisis even though openly condemned by everyone on a daily basis, might just be the beginning of new good business for the stakeholders that be. After all, the lawless state of the region now creates perfect room for crime, ruthless exploitation of the region, shady deals as well as grab-and-run practices and the longer that lasts, the more the malpractices thrive.
From the above analysis, we can all see that following option one means following the wish of La Republique du Cameroun to their victory, which is what Ambazonia Restoration Forces are doing now. Following option two means a little hope for Ambazonia if only there is some very tactful strategy put in place. That tactful strategy, far from being a soft solution or a walk in the park, is the shortest way to the negotiation table.
The bottom line of the whole war is the rich natural resources of the territory of Ambazonia. Had Ambazonia been barren land, no tricky fake union between the two countries would have ever taken place to start with. There wouldn’t be any Ambazonia war. Whatever powers profit from these resources would kill to the last insect to maintain possession over them. Forget the loss of lives on both camps everyday. Forget the abductions, kidnappings and mass arrests. They are mere drama for the distraction of the masses whereas the bottom line remains untouched. The exploitation of profitable resources continues to belong to those who have owned them for decades. The day this source of profits and livelihood is hit, negotiations will take place the next day whether both camps like it or not.
So dear advocates of armed conflict, homeland defense, block-by-bock, dialogue, negotiations, ceasefire, armistice, truce or whatever you want to call it. Put in place meaningful strategies that move the revolution towards a win-win ending not strategies aimed at creating sensational news headlines and more social media heroes. No matter what you do, as long as the umbilical cord from mother Ambazonia – the breadbasket, to the baby is still connected and functioning nothing serious in the name of negotiations will take place and whatever does take place will crumble soon.
The rationale behind killing one to three armed forces from La Republique du Cameroun only to have an entire village of thousands of Ambazonians evicted into the forest, with some losing their lives in the process, others arrested and all leaving their property behind for destruction, doesn’t make a lot of sense considering the plethora of intellectuals in Ambazonia. Ambazonians can do better than that kind of thinking if they stop focusing on grandstanding and aggrandizement all over social media while misfiring in terms of strategy on ground zero. Wake up and smart up Ambazonians if the goal is really to win.