Conflict In Chad, 1975 To Present: A Central African Tragedy CSC 1984 SUBJECT AREA Strategic Issues WAR SINCE 1945 SEMINAR Conflict in Chad, 1975 to Present: A Central African Tragedy Major David H. Henderson, USMC 2 April 1984 Marine Corps Command and Staff College Marine Corps Development and Education Command Quantico, Virginia 22134 Table Of Contents List Of Figures iii Chapter I. Introduction 1 II. Background of the War, 1920-1975 3 Physical characteristics of Chad 3 The people of Chad 8 Pre-indendepnce, 1920-1960 11 French influence 11 Political developments 14 Post-independence, 1960-1975 17 Tombalbaye's rule 17 north-south antagonisms 19 government maladministration 19 Rebellion 21 Government response-French intervention 23 The armed forces of Chad 25 organization 25 performance of the armed forces 28 Tombalbaye's response to rebellion 30 Tombalbaye's relations with the armed forces 31 The armed forces role in government 32 Tombalbaye's distrust of the armed forces 33 II. Transition of War to War for Personal Power, 1975-1978 37 The Military Coup, 1975 37 The Supreme Military Counsel, 1975-1978 39 The rebel organizatons, 1975-1978 41 Hissene Habre's Second Liberation Army 41 The Claustre Affair and its results 42 Abba Siddek's FLP 44 Goukouni Odeddei's FAN 46 III. The War for Personal Power 1978-1983 48 Reconciliation Governments, 1978-1979 48 Transition Governments, 1979-1980 53 The first transitional government 54 The second transitional government 54 Expulsion of Habre 55 Libyan intervention, 1980 57 Libyan military support 58 Merger of Libya and Chad 58 Expulsion of Libya, 1981 60 Chapter Habre's Return, 1982 61 Governmental organization 62 Southern secession 63 Goukouni's Offensive, 1982-1983 64 Government in exile 64 Libyan involvement; the fall of Faya-Largeau 65 No further advances 67 Governmental Response 68 Military assistance 68 Recapture of Faya-Largeau 69 Goukouni's Offensive Renewed 70 Rebel seige and recapture of Faya-Largeau 72 French intervention 73 Stalemate 74 IV. Analysis 76 V. Conclusions 85 End Notes 87 Annotated Bibliography 93 List of Figures Figure 1. Map of North Africa 4 2. Map of physical geography of Chad 6 3. Map of climate regions of Chad 7 4. Map of policital subdivisions of Chad 36 Introduction Black's Law Dictionary defines a "state" as "a people permanently occupying a fixed territory bound together by common-law habits and custom into one body politic exercising, through the medium of an organized government, independent sovereignty and control over all persons and things within its boundaries."(1) The independent state of Chad is in the north-central portion of the African continent. That state, since gaining its independence from France in 1960, has had none of the characteristics attributed by Black's Law Dictionary definition of a "state." Its geography, peoples, history, and susceptibility to the whims and direction of other more powerful states, has rendered Chad not a true state, but rather a location on the planet where individuals and groups spend their lives. Modern countries must recognize the distinction between the actual Chad and the ideological, nonexistent "state" of Chad, when determining policy relative to it. States which fail to do so risk involvement in a quagmire which makes American involvement in El Salvador seem to be but a mere Sunday outing. The military professionals of modern states who find themselves involved in operations involving Chad or other third world states must also recognize this situation, for any response must be tailored to the peculiar situation addressed. Military action intended to influence an independent state as defined by Black's may not have the desired results when directed at the entity called Chad. Clausewitz has told us that war is merely an extension of politics, and the politial background of Chad seems to doom it to continuing war. This paper will examine the war in Chad as an example of a lesser developed third-world country in which the United States may become, or be tempted to become, involved in military action. This paper will attempt to show that the nature of the conflict in Chad does not invite such involvement, in that the personal war in Chad may be unresolveable by military means. Chapter I Background of the War 1970-1975 Physical Characteristics of Chad The physical and historical settings for the Chadian conflict are unremarkable as African histories go, but they are important in that they totally portend later events. Chad was formerly a part of French Equatorial Africa, a poorly fertile portion of the Sudanese Savannah belt. (See Figure 1.) A relatively large country, the nation extends approximately one thousand miles on the north-south axis, and averages about five hundred miles from east to west. Chad suffers from an acute lack of physical resources in spite of its size. Like many sub-Saharan African nations, Chad is landlocked. The nearest possible Harbor in Porthercourt in eastern Nigeria, more than sixteen hundred kilometers away. From Lake Chad on the western-central border of Chad, the land rises gradually in the south and east to plateaus and ridges, and in the north to arid plateaus and extinct volcanoes. Therefore, Chad forms a bowl-like depression, with Lake Chad as the reservoir of the runoff from the sides of the bowl. In northern and central Chad, no permanent rivers or streams flow and summer rainfall is collected by seasonally dry stream beds, or wadis. The Chari and Lagone rivers in southern Chad contain water year round, though flow Click here to view image is sluggish in February and March. (See Figure 2.) The climate of Chad varies extensively from north to south, and the climatic differences and resultant population and economic distribution have played a major role in Chadian politics. Three major zones of climate and population exist: the subtropical south, the Sahelian central zone, and the northern Saharan zone of true desert. The southern zone, a natural savanna, is the farming region of Chad. It receives adequate rainfall--thirty-five to fifty inches per year--and is generally warm. Even in January, the usual temperature is above 80 degrees farenheit. The central zone north of the Chari river contains farming areas wherever swamps or wells provide moisture in excess of the normal twenty-five inches of rain per annum. Cattle grazing, however, is plentiful, and often is combined with subsistence farming. The central area includes the area up to the north of Lake Chad and Abeche, between 14 degrees North and 16 degrees North. There, the scattered greenery gives way to dry steppe land, with the northern half of Chad becoming tribe desert, an extension of the Sahara. Here high temperatures--90 degrees Farenheit during the coolest months--and only trace amounts of rain for the whole year limit human existence to tenuous subsistence surrounding small oases or wells. Antelopes, gazelles, and ostriches, have adapted to these dry conditions, and they lay claim to this region for the most part.(1) (See Figure 3.) Click here to view image Chad is bordered on the north by Libya, the neighboring country most actively involved in Chadian domestic strife in recent years. To the east lies Sudan, and to the south the Central African Republic. Cameroon and Nigeria lie to the southwest. Nigeria and Niger share Chads western border. Most of Chads borders are artificial, drawn by former colonial powers with little or no regard for natural demarcation or barriers. (See Figure 4.) Libya's and Niger's border with Chad run along open desert areas, as does the northern third of the eight hundred forty five mile border with Sudan. Other borders are also artificial or along ill-defined topography, such as the Nigerian border which wanders through the changing islands and water courses in the middle of Lake Chad. Similarly, Chad's internal borders outline prefectures, of which there are fourteen, divided into subprefectures then counties. Like water, productive alluvial soil is found mostly in southern Chad, becoming more scarce to nonexistent as one moves north. Known mineral deposits, though scarce, follow an identical pattern, though uranium is said to exist in the Aouzou strip, along the northern border with Libya. The People of Chad The climate and physical geography of Chad which vary from north to south have also been the primary determinant of demographic patterns. Larger numbers of people live in the south in the more abundant rainfall areas; the population density diminishes as one moves north. Localized population increases are in direct proportion only to increases in local sources of water. Communications, including telephone and telegraph facilities, roads, and other travel means between these areas are poor to nonexistent. Hense, communications of any sort between the various areas of the country have always been extremely limited. Those generalization aside, however, it should be recognized that all population statistics found from various sources have been rendered at least questionable if not obsolete by the prolonged drought of the late 1970's and by the even more prolonged civil war in Chad. A total population figure of 4.32 million was estimated in 1978, and that number was probably close to valid in 1980. However, former annual growth rates and even distribution patterns have probably been altered since that time.(2) Ethnic diversity as a characteristic of Chadian population, however, has not changed. Populations have historically shifted from east to west and north to south along trade routes through Chad, blending and forming even more diverse populations. The 1971 edition of the area Handbook for Chad(3) lists thirty-three different major ethnic groups found in the country, the largest of which comprises only 24% of the population. However, those peoples may loosely be divided into three major groups. The nomads of Chad's dry, northern areas include the Arabs and the Toubous. These two ethnic groups, both of which are caucasian muslims, formerly made their livelihood not only from nomadic herding, but also from slaving raids, preying upon the black tribes to the south. The Arabs, also found in small numbers throughout the country, are the second largest ethnic group of Chad. The warlike nature of the Toubou tribes has continued to affect Chad even into modern times. The sedentary or semisedentary people of the central Chadian Sahel region reflect their location at the crossroads of centuries of African migrations. Twenty-three of the thrity-three major ethnic groups referred to previously(4) reside in central Chad. Despite historic and geographic differences, the peoples of central Chad have maintained an historic affinity with the northern nomads, due to economic exchanges during the normad's migrations south and the predominance of the muslim religion in both regions.(5) The sedentary ethnic groups of the south, predominately the Sara group, have traditionally been skillful farmers; they have consistently resisted Islam, and either remained faithful to traditional African religions or become Christians. This has contributed a further difference between these peoples. The southern tribes, especially the Sara, were able to exploit the more abundant natural potential of their lands. In addition, the southern peoples more quickly adapted to European settlement. Beside this ethnic and religious division, the southerners have traditionally been politically separate from northern Chad. Until 1946, the southern prefectures were part of the French state of Oubanqui-Chari, which was a state separate from French Equatorial Africa (Afrique Equatoriale Francaise) from whence came the more northern portions of Chad. Pre-indepence Chad, 1920-1960. French influences. Europeans, especially the French, began to exercise interest and influence in the northern region of Africa in the mid-1800's. This principally stemmed from an attempt to unite French northern with central and western African colonial holdings.(5) Southern black populations, freed from the slaving and raiding depredations of the north, welcomed the French and their colonial innovations in southern economics, politics and education. The southern Sara tribesmen took advantage of state and mission schools, and began to become part of the government administration and to enter the political arena. The southern blacks were rewarded by economic investment, as opposed to the almost complete lack of economic assistance to the north. The French found no coherent political structure to contend with in southern Chad, and this eased the process of assimilation of the south into the French way of life. The lack of traditional authorities over the southern blacks was to differentiate southern response to Western governmental ideas from the response of the more northern peoples. Like the south, the north also lacked an effective political structure when the initial French intervention occurred. However, both Toubou and Arab nomads in the north had strong tribal allegiances; hence they resisted the forced imposition of the alien French culture and institutions. Therefore, the French government in the north consisted of a military regime dedicated to preserving order.(6) Central Chad was a completely different problem area. It combined the traditional independence of the north with political and social organization already more advanced when the French arrived. French innovation, such as the exercise of police power by colonial forces rather than chiefs or sultans, weakened the old tribal power structure as exercised by the old leaders. This process destroyed what could have been a valuable tool to control native populations, had the French used the leaders' powers for French ends. In the first thirty years of the twentieth century, France was unable to effectively centralize the government and eliminate regionalism and tribalism in Chad, in part because France lacked the administrative machinery to exercise its central colonial administration.(7) The French also failed to recognize the influence and importance that tribal chiefs and sultans retained in northern and central Chad, even when they had been reduced in French eyes to mere figureheads.(8) An attempt was made to put the sultan's powers to work for the French only in the 1930's, when sultan's powers were increased by colonial authorities. A partnership between the French and the sultans existed eventually but then only to resist the rise of the Sara politicians in the south. The chieftans as well as the French recognized in the 1930's that the rise of southern, Sara dominated nationalism in local politics was a threat to the political power exercised by the French and the northern and central tribal leaders. In the 1930's, the French restored many powers to the chiefs. The powerful chiefs of central and northern Chad then became even more jealous of their own authority, and resisted any attempts to develop national feelings among populations within the border of what would become Chad. They also resisted any attempts to develop any allegiances to political governments. The rise of the southern politicians, and the simultaneous decline in the authority of the southern chiefs, on the contrary, and resulted in large part to the French policy of forced cotton cultivation in the south. The black peasants of the south were forced to grow cotton, and abuses by the southern chiefs made the peasants' plight nearly that of slavery. French efforts to end those abuses ended the power of the chiefs in southern Chad; this gave the Sara politican a ready constituency when the individual farmer, vice the chieftancy, was championed in the south. Thus, the southern population, free of the traditional tribal authorities which still restrained northern populations, were able to support and identify with the concept of a national political authority. French efforts to improve the economy of Chad fell victim to the ethnic diversity of Chad. Thus another potential unifying factor failed to come into being. Cotton, the main source of income in Chad, was limited to the southern regions of the country where the climate and nature of the population permitted for its cultivation. Livestock, a potentially rich source of income, was a limited resource, in spite of numerous French efforts to introduce disease-resistant breeds and modern husbandry methods. Cattle ownership in the north was a status symbol, not merely an economic measure, yet the French never recognized that fact; thus the colonial rulers were never able to effect truly modern cattle raising practices. Smuggling of livestock and fish catches out of the country continued to be practiced on a large scale. Such smuggling operations entailed a double loss for the government, through the lost export taxes, and by pitting the government against regional entrepreneurs. Once again, the failure of the French to effectively administer the colony, and their failure to recognize local conditions in their efforts to unify Chad increased, rather than lessened, the diversification of the Chadian people. Political developments. The political developments in Chad during years of French colonization likewise failed to consider and counter the diversity of the people and environment found within the boundaries of Chad. In 1910, northern Chad joined with Gabon, Oubangi-Chari, and Moyen-Congo (Middle Congo) in the formation of the federation of French Equatorial Africa (Afrique Equatoriale Francaise--AEF) along the lines of French West Africa. The AEF was mismanaged, or rather, not managed, by the French until 1946. For example, in 1928 forty-two percent of Chad's administrative subdivisions were without official administrators.(9) In 1946, after World War II, the new French constitution made Chad an overseas territory of France, and made the Chadian residents French citizens. Chad elected its own territorial assembly with limited powers, and elected delegates to the government of the French Republic The 1946 changes, however, had only minimal effect on real politics in Chad. Power still rested in France, and governmental administration, such as it was, was still heavily dependent on the French. Chadian Africans only began to be trained for civil service in 1955. The Chadian Democratic Union (Union Democratique Tchadien--UDT) was the dominant political force in Chad, but it was itself largely dominated by European members.(10) Only in the 1950's did local political powers and tensions begin to develop, especially regarding elections to the Assembly. During the 1950's political parties engaged in rapid shifts, splinterings, and mergers in order to obtain majorities in the Chadian parliament, which resulted in party name changes which became confusing even for the parties involved. After the fall of the Fourth French Republic in 1957, Chad, by resolution of its Assembly, became an autonomous republic under the French community. The year of 1959 reflected the lack of political unity in the country. Four provisional governments came to power in Chad. The fourth was installed with Francois Tombalbaye, a Sara, as its Premier. His attempts to achieve national unity culminated with the creation in Chad of a sole political party, dominated by southerners, the Union for the Progress of Chad (Union pour le Progres du Tchad--UPT). Efforts to unite Chad with the three former colonies of the AEF failed, and on August 11, 1960, independence was granted to Chad.(11) When the French departed Chad in 1960, they left the country full of splits, factions, and divisions, which became the roots of the chaos which has existed since that time. As stated by the authors of Conflict in Chad. "The frontiers bequeathed by France to Chad when it became a sovreign state in 1960 were simply a frame inside of which there was nothing to hold the country together; hence there was no incentive to defend those frontiers. An unbalanced economy was matched by a lopsided political development--a small sector of prosperity in a generally subsistence economy paralleled a political consciousness largely restricted to one ethnic group and one area. During a half century of rule, France had done nothing constructive to develop a national sentiment among Chadians except to give them a political framework that could be used if they had the will to do so. The withdrawal of the French administration removed the one unifying force in the country."(12) If "blame" for the conditions in Chad upon its gaining independence in 1960 must be assessed, the French must certainly shoulder most of it, if not all. During French rule, there had coexisted military rule in the north, theocratic sultanates in the center and east, and direct civil administration in the south. All of these factors tended to support tribalism, regionalism, and religious differences. The conditions in Africa itself, and the conditions left in Chad by France, were noted by Kenneth L. Adelman, who stated some of the underlying causes of African conflicts in general. Those causes he identified were: 1. the historical truth that decolonization is a painful, often conflict-inducing process, 2. the ludicrous boundaries which have been woven into the political fabric of Africa, and 3. the extreme poverty of most of Africa and past historical events which have left black African states in extremely weak and vulnerable positions.(13) Going into the 1960's, Chad exemplified all of those conditions. Post-independence, 1960-1975. Tombalbaye's rule. The first fifteen years of Chadian independence, from 1960 to 1975, were marked by the essentially one-man rule of Francois Tombalbaye. A protestant mission-educated teacher of the Sara tribe, Tombalbaye epitomized the qualities of the Sara tribe which gave them an early lead in the control of Chadian economic and political affairs. In 1954, at the age of thirty-four, he began his political career with his election to the Territorial Assembly. In 1959, Tombalbaye assumed control of the government in Chad without resorting to violence. Tombalbaye used what has been called a "coup d'etat by telegram,"(14) or the simple expedient of sending a telegram to the former Prime Minister, Gabriel Lisette, which forbade him to return to Chad after Lisette's being in Israel attending a symposium. Tombalbaye thus assured that his position within the newly-formed Progressive Party of Chad (Parti Progressiste Tchadien--PPT) was solid. Tombalbaye and the PPT, which had originally gained power and influence by siding with the peasant tobacco farmers in the south of Chad, could boast of strong organization not only in the cotton belt, but also in Muslin areas in Bathia, Guera, and Chari-Baguirmi. Opposition to the PPT in the National Assembly decreased after Tombalbaye assumed power, and a single party system was implemented in 1962. This occurred over the strong objections of politicians from the north, and conflict ensued. Five northern politicians were arrested in March, 1963 because of their objections to the adoption of the Sara-dominated single party; and in September of 1963 rioting at Fort-Lamy and in the Salamat Prefecture followed attempts to arrest other northern leaders who opposed Tombabaye and the PPT. North-south antagonisms. The sultanates and Muslim northerners, who traditionally had seen themselves as more socially advanced than the southerners, now were in a position exactly opposite from that which they had regarded as traditional. They were now under the political control of southerners who had been heretofore regarded by the northerners as merely a group of pagan blacks, and a source of slaves and income. Division between smaller ethnic units of the north continued. For example, the Toubou tribe remained apart from the Muslim sultanates. However, traditional antagonisms between the northern and southern ethnic and political groupings were to be further aggravated by the governmental administration imposed by the southern--dominated government. Governmental maladministration. The major cause of the first rebellion, which erupted in 1965, was primarily maladministration by the regional and local governmental authorities.(15) Complete responsibility for the sad state of local governmental administration is not usually placed by observers on Tombalbaye and his regime. It was, however, Tombalbaye who had filled the administrative positions almost exclusively with southerners. It has often been stated that Chadians from the north had not been trained or prepared to assume those duties upon France's precipitous departure, and therefore only the southern, Sara-dominated tribes could act as administrators to fill the positions vacated by the French. Though often given as a reason for the complete Sara domination of those administrative billets in the early 1960's, previous commentators make little if any mention of the chances that the Tombalbaye government would have installed great numbers of northern administrators even had they been available. It must be remembered that in the early 1960's when the posts were being filled, Tombalbaye and the PPT were just then consolidating their control over Chad. Political appointments remain a powerful tool for politicians in any country. Whatever the main cause of the filling of most governmental positions with Sara officials, the effects of the Sara administration were clear to President Tombalbaye and foreign observers alike. The southern administrators came from a society without stratification; few of them took the time or expended the effort to develop an understanding of or a respect for the northern social systems. The northern societies had retained their hierarchical character because of the limited contact of the north with the changing societal organizations of the outside world. Corruption was rampant among the southern administrative officials. Anti-Sara sentiment grew strongly in the northern areas, and the black Muslim peasants and herders of the mountainous central region rose up against the officials and soldiers sent there to collect taxes. This enmity arose not only because the collectors were Sara, pagans, or Christians, but because the taxes were unfairly high, made so by political corruption and inefficiency. "In the face of the countless abuses, humiliations, and discriminatory practices attributed to Sara rule, the insurrection eventually reached a regional scale."(16) In 1966, an organized revolutionary resistance organization, the National Front for the Liberation of Chad (Front Nationale de Liberation du Tchad-FROLINAT) was formed. Because of the fractionalization of Chadian peoples and politics up to this time, the FROLINAT was a collection of multiple armed factions united only by their opposition to Tombalbaye. Their educations, religious views, regional origins, and ideologies ranged to all extremes; thus the ensuing rifts in FROLINAT solidarity, which began almost with its formation, existed throughout FROLINAT's existence. It was clear that the members of FROLINAT knew only what they did not want: Tombalbaye. Rebellion. Armed insurrection to the Tombalbaye government thus began, often supported by Libyan assistance. On November 1, 1965, unarmed peasants were fired on in Mangaline by government troops in response to a riot against tax collectors. Fleeing to the hills in fear of government reprisals, the rebels also drove the outlying government officials into the towns for safety. Rebel bands, seizing on the subsequent lack of government authority in the areas vacated by officials, attacked military and administrative posts, killed local chiefs, and stole cattle. The arrival of the secretary-general of FROLINAT, Ibrahima Abatcha, with his North Korean-trained military leaders, transformed the peasant revolt into a revolutionary movement. FROLINAT armed forces were recruited and given minimal military training. Branches of FROLINAT were also opened abroad, notably at the Islamic University at Beida in Libya, where Chadian students were indoctrinated. The northern Toubou region of Chad is known as the "Bet," named for the three provinces of the area: Borkou, Ennedi, an Tibesti. The Derde, or tribal leader, of the region, on advice of Libya's new leader, Colonal Khadafi, instigated a rebellion known as "the BET revolt." Like other aspects of the rebellion, the nature of the true instigating factor is unclear. However, it is clear that even inter- Touban quarrels were aggravated by the revolt; furthermore, like FROLINAT, it too was not a unified regional struggle.(17) In 1965, concurrently with the BET revolt, Ibrahima Abatcha was killed in fighting with government troops in eastern Chad. His death was a blow to FROLINAT from which it never recovered, in that he was probably the one leader around whom the various FROLINAT factions could have united due to his abilities as both a field commander and a politician.(18) Following Abatcha's death, a prolonged struggle for leadership of the FROLINAT occurred. By 1968, the armed insurrection had widened. Four of the country's fourteen prefectures were involved, and at least six others were touched by the rebellion. At this time, armed factions abounded throughout Chad. Goukouni Oueddei had been named "secretary for the interior" of the rebel armies in the BET, now called the Second Liberation Army or the Forces Armees du Nord (FAN). The east-central army of FROLINAT was represented by the Orthodox FROLINAT led by Abba Siddik. El Hadj Issoha had consolidated his position of leadership of the First Liberation Army. These armies often defeated government forces in the field, but were most effective on the village level, organizing anti-government militia and conducting political education. Along the Sudanese border, the Chadian Liberation Front also operated, not as a part of FROLINAT. All these rebel armies had formed for the sole purpose of overthrowing Tombalbaye. Governmental Response. French intervention. Governmental reaction to the ever-widening revolution was mixed and ineffective. In 1965 Major Noel Odingar, a Sara graduate of the French military academy, took the post as commander of Chadian armed forces; this further strengthened the Sara domination of the government. That same year, Tombalbaye attempted to resolve the problem of incompetant administrators by castigating them for their performance. Their conduct and their actions after the Mangaline riots showed the political liability that the administrators were, yet it took strong external pressure from France to force Tombalbaye to take even limited reform action. By March, 1965, the small Chadian armed forces were over-extended dealing with the rebellions; thus Tombalbaye was forced for the first time to request French intervention to dislodge Toubou forces who had taken a government post in the Aouzou strip from Sara troops. The French counterinsurgency effort, which lasted in various forms until 1979, was an effort which may be best characterized as having good intentions for the people of Chad, but which was made in support of the wrong leader. The French, as a condition to their involvement, required Tombalbaye to accept a mission to study administrative reform (MRA). Prepared by chairman Pierre Lami, the MRA report recognized that Tombalbaye would resist making fundamental changes which were necessary to administrative reform, but would instead continue to treat opposition by a policy of mass arrests. The monetary cost of French participation in Chad, the effect of French casualties on the home front, and the negative reaction of some African countries to French intervention tended to make France wary of continued involvement with Tombalbaye. However, other factors combined to support the policy of Paris: French military successes against the rebels, fears of anarchy, and a threat to French interests in Africa. Thus the French government continued to be committed. The MRA, however, was never allowed to accomplish the reforms it recognized as necessary. Restoration of traditional and canton chiefs' authority was recommended by the MRA, but was never adopted. Many other MRA reforms never were completed. The French had delayed the fall of Tombalbaye, but had failed to require that the reforms needed to permanently end the revolt be made. However, the character of the revolution, which had originally begun as a North-South, Muslim-Christian revolt, soon changed in the early 1970's. The Armed Forces of Chad. Organization. The role of the Chadian armed forces from independence in 1960 until the overthrow of the Tombalbaye regime in 1975 was marked by attention and neglect, professionalism and disgrace, nationalism and reliance on foreign powers. In 1961, the building of the armed forces began around a nucleus of approximately two hundred officers and men. The officers had for the most part received their military training in French schools, and both officers and men had served previously in the French army.(19) During this period, most of the commissioned and noncommissioned officers were French. Though the numbers in service were small, one ethnic group, the Sara, did have a military tradition based on extensive service with French forces. The Sara tribesmen had provided the major portion of the African soldiers in the French army since the First World War; they had also rendered extensive service to the French Free Forces in World War II. At the end of 1940, two African battalions composed almost entirely of Sara tribesmen, under the command of Colonel Jacques Leclerc, were marshalled in a base in Chad under the Free French flag. In operations against the Italians at Mourzouk, Libya, the African forces were successful. Later the force seized the entire Fezzan region of southern Libya and crossed the desert to North Africa in a spectacular military operation. The Second World War gave Sara Chadians A measure of pride in their armed forces, and a positive regard for military forces in general. The economic benefit to the Chadians from military operations in World War II was also significant, from both wages and military supply activity going through the country. The Sara continued to serve in the French army, and large numbers of the tribe served with French forces in Indochina from 1946 to 1953, and in Algeria from 1954 to 1962. The Sara veterans did not participate in the insurgent movements of the 1960's and early 1970's, because the movements were centered on northern and northeastern prefectures. Thus, when the Chadian army expanded in response to the insurgent movements, it was to the Sara that the Tombalbaye regime turned for additional forces. This further strengthened the influence of southerners on the country's institutions, in conjunction with the southern economic and political dominance. The numbers of Sara in uniform swelled. In 1966, French forces had departed from the BET, and guerilla warfare had begun in the central prefectures. In response, the formerly small Chadian army was increased to a seven hundred man infantry battalion.(20) The force had formerly been equipped with only light weapons, but now a light artillery unit was raised and equipped to support the battalion. An aircraft squadron was also established; the Chadian Squadron (Escadrille Tchadienne). It consisted of one hundred men, one DC-3 cargo aircraft, three light observation aircraft, and two helicopters. By the late 1960's, the Chadian armed forces were divided into the Territorial Guard (later called the Garde Nationale et Nomade), the Surete Nationale, the gendarmerie, and the regular army.(21) (See Figure 5.) The regular army had increased to four infantry battalions, and there was even a miniscule Chadian naval unit on Lake Chad. In 1969, the armed forces contained about four thousand men. The great majority of these men were from southern tribes, as were all of their officers except for two Arab lieutenants. Even though the northern tribes were raised with warlike traditions, they were never attracted to military service. The Surete was in effect a national police force, which had evolved from a similar French organization which had operated in the AEF. The duties of the Surete were normal police duties; the organization included a Presidential Palace Guard, a vice squad, and the National Police Academy. Agents of the Surete were uniformed and carried light weapons. For situations requiring more forces, the Surete had its own para-military units, the Chadian Security Companies (Les Compagnies Tchadiens de Securite--CTS) which had light infantry weapons, including mortars. The National Gendarmerie was a similarly organized police force, organized into mobile platoons, and equipped with rifles, machine guns, and pistols. National Guard units were also in service throughout Chad, mostly serving guard duties or ceremonial duties in Fort-Lamy. The National Guard had a strength of about three thousand five hundred in 1971.(22) Performance of the Armed Forces. The quality and performance of the Chadian armed forces from 1960 to 1970 was not good, even though the Chadian soldiers had previously proved their ability when properly led by French officers. From a purely military point of view, military operations against the guerillas in the 1960's were effective. It must be recognized, however, that this was in large measure due to French forces which had been recalled to Chad in the late 1960's. This recall resulted from a military agreement between France and Chad which gave Paris the responsibility to provide for defense from external and internal threats to Chad's security. Large amounts of training and equipment were also provided by France. But in 1971, French forces had begun a phased withdrawal from Chad. The military gains made by the armed forces had not compensated for the political liabilities the Tombalbaye regime incurred from the military actions. Rather than reducing guerilla activity, actions of the armed forces often increased the contempt Northerners held for the Sara-dominated government. Another liability was the fact that French intervention had given substance to FROLINAT charges that Tombalbaye was a "stooge of the French imperialists."(23) Any previous progress made in creating national pride and unity among the diverse ethnic groups in Chad was turned against the regime when French forces arrived to assist in the fight against the revolutionaries. Another more serious liability was a result of the nonprofessional conduct of the military forces. Most actions, by both the national army and the forces of the French Foreign Legion stationed in Chad, had been search and destroy operations directed against guerilla forces. However, the pacification of rebel strongholds by the southern forces was often accomplished with excessive brutality and unnecessary bloodshed. Often more damage was done to civilians than to guerillas. Sara troops in the BET or other northern areas were in a strange land, among peoples who likewise seemed foreign to them. Accordingly, the army behaved like an army of occupation, hence the local people treated them like occupying troops. In the town of Faya-Largeau, children of army troops had to be sent to school under military escort because of the ill-feelings of the local populace.(24) The soldiers were seen by the indigenous population merely as servants of a remote government, whose more visible duties included assisting the despised tax collectors and foreign governmental administrators. The strict control measures levied by the one-party government were also enforced by the army and/or the closely affiliated national police forces. The army reacted to the feeling of the local population with harassment, including a prohibition on the wearing of turbans and a ban on meetings of three or more persons.(25) Tombalbaye's response to rebellion. Tombalbaye's relationship with the northern ethnic groups had deteriorated from the mid-1960's into the 1970's. This was due to the inept administration of his government, and the operation of his Sara dominated armed forces. Even inter-Sara opposition to the regime was arising as early as 1972.(26) Tombalbaye's inept control of the government is illustrated by Tombalbaye's revision and promotion of the "Yondo" rites of the Sara. This was instituted by Tombalbaye as a result of his new-found "Africonism." Initiation into these rites by all Sara adolescents and all candidates seeking admission to the bureaucracy or appointment to public office was made compulsory. These rites involved subsistence in the wild for weeks at a time, and harsh and painful psychological and physical torture. The unpopularity of this action was most apparent among the younger and more urbane population whose support Tombalbaye so desperately needed. As inept as Tombalbaye's policies proved to be, they were but one aspect of the situation in Chad at the beginning of 1975. The condition of the country at that time may be summarized by a quotation from the Institute of International Studies: "Among the most formidable of its internal handicaps have been its landlocked situation; frequent changes in its political frontiers; vast desert areas; a small, unevenly distributed population of diverse origins, religions, and ways of life; strong and often conflicting tribal and regional loyalties; traditional chieftancies of widely varying scope and authorities; and an almost total lack of internal communication...these impediments to national unity have been compounded by an unresponsive, often repressive government, and a plethoric, inefficient, and sometimes corrupt bureaucracy. Moreover, Chad's known economic resources are so inadequate and underdeveloped as to foster chronic dependence on external aid simply to maintain the administration, the armed forces, and the public services."(27) Tombalbaye's relations with the armed forces. Dissension emerged in the early 1970's throughout Chad, and the dissension was not limited to the rebel factions alone. When the overthrow of the Tombalbaye regime occurred in 1975, it arose from what was perhaps to many an unexpected quarter. A union of army and gendarmerie units, on April 13, 1975, moved against the presidential palace and replaced Tombalbaye with a civilian-military junta. Because of the somewhat unexpected nature of the coup d'etat, a closer examination of Tombalbaye's relationship with his armed forces prior to the coup is called for. The armed forces' role in government. Though the armed forces were an important part of President Tombalbaye's retention of power after open rebellion against his government had begun to rock Chad as early as 1966, the armed forces were not an important part of the governmental machine. In the early 1970's, the French reazlied that the army was growing apart from Tombalbaye, so the French military pressured Tombalbaye to give the Chadian military a greater voice in the affairs of the country. The French realized that Tombalbaye must retain the support of his armed forces to remain in power. The army commander-in-chief as a result was taken into the politburo of the PPT, and there was official urging for army conscripts to participate in civic activities. Those acts may have improved Tombalbaye's relations with the army, but those improvements were soon countered by later actions. Tombalbaye had been consistent in taking firm action whenever a plot to overthrow his regime was fancied, and in June, 1973, Tombalbaye confined General Felix Malloum, the Army Chief of Staff, to his quarters after his arrest on unspecified charges, based probably on suspicion of his association with the Toubou rebel leader, Hissen Habre.(28) Though Malloum's arrest was certainly important in understanding the army's feelings for Tombalbaye, it is also important to note that between 1971 and the 1975 coup, Generals Jacques Doumro and Neque Djogo, as well as other army officers of lower rank, had also been arrested on similar charges, often unfounded.(29) Tombalbaye's distrust of the armed forces. During the early 1970's Tombalbaye's distrust of his army manifested itself in other ways. Certain units of the army received preferential treatment, Israeli and French instructors were hired to train the army in skills it should have had, and Tombalbaye even hired Moroccans as his personal body guards. The army, too, was dissatisfied with the government. The size of the regular army in the 1970's was about eighteen hundred. While that was larger than the twelve hundred man gendarmerie, the army had become smaller than either the National Guard or the Nomad Guards, each of which had grown to about two thousand. On April 7, 1975, Tombalbaye charged that "the army... is becoming the least effective of all our armed forces.... It resolutely ignores the power of the civilian authorities.... Our army must change radically for the honor of our country and to save our country from a humiliation which is becoming unbearable."(30) The mandatory "Yondo" initiation rites were not popular with even the Sara members of the army, and the army was beginning to show frustration with the protracted guerilla war, fought far from home for most soldiers. In a speech after the overthrow of the government, army leaders were quoted to have referred to, "...useless spilling of the blood of compatriots in their constant loyalty to the national cause, and the heavy losses they had to bear in the process." In the early 1970's Tombalbaye may have hoped to strengthen his standing with the army. As stated above, he began to allow political voice to the army, but he concurrently removed some of the few professionally trained officers. These officers, coincidentally, were among the few who could have mounted action to overthrow the government. One explanation for Tombalbaye's actions against his army lies in agreements he had concluded with Sudan and Libya in 1972 and 1973. Following a state visit to Tripoli in 1972, Tombalbaye signed a treaty of alliance with the Libyan government. A similar agreement was concluded with Sudan in 1973. Secure in the assurance of Libya's Khadafi that no further aid would pass to the FROLINAT, and secure in his relations with the Sudan, Tombalbaye may in the mid-1970's have felt that his borders were at last secure. Because the regular army was entrusted with border security as its main mission, he could then safely reduce the size of the army and purge from among its officer corps several potentially powerful competitors. This view is consistent with his having recruited foreign bodyguards for his personal safety and with his strengthening his internal security forces at the expense of his army. In any case, Tombalbaye's intent, whatever it may have been, was not to come to fruition.(31) Click here to view image Chapter II Transition of War to War for personal power 1975-1978 The military coup, 1975. The coup began in Boraho, some thirty five miles north of the capital. (The capital had been formerly called Fort Lamy; now it was called Ndjamena.) On April 13, 1975, Lieutenant Dimtolaum and his men from the army barracks in Boraho drove to the capital; there they were joined by men from the gendarmerie's Compagnie Tchadienne de Securitie (CTS). The gendarmerie's participation in the coup is not surprising, because its commander and his aide, Colonel Djimet and Major Kyttiga, had been arrested on April 2, 1975, when the gendarmerie had suffered some FROLINAT prisoners to escape. Colonel Djimet and his aide were accused of aiding the escape. At about 5:00 a.m. the army and gendarmerie troops stormed the presidential palace. The presidential special security guard forces stoutly resisted and heavy casualties were sustained on both sides. A light artillery attack was reported to have been conducted by the army forces. Army General Noel Odingar arrived with additional forces and assumed command. The fighting ceased by 8:30 a.m. when Colonel Selebiani, commanding officer of the Chadian Security Company, issued an appeal by radio to his troops to surrender to General Odingar "in order to avoid a useless blood bath."(1) General Odingar, using his authority as interim commander, sealed off all roads to the capital and imposed a curfew on the city. Tombalbaye, who had by now changed his first name from "Francois" to "Ngarta" as a result of his new-found loyalty to his African heritage discussed previously, died later of wounds he had received in the fighting. A military communique issued after the fighting stated that Tombalbaye's regime had operated on the principle of dividing the country in order to rule. It further alleged that discrimination against various facets of the society had stirred animosity between the country's tribes and had caused the useless spilling of blood.(2) That communique also stated that the president had previously ridiculed and humiliated the military, and had caused continual deterioration of Chad's economics and politics. Junior military officers who had thus seized control of Chad soon turned that power over to more senior officers. General Malloum, the former Army Chief of Staff who had been placed under arrest by Tombalbaye, was released from confinement, along with Colonel Djimet and Major Kyttiga of the gendarmerie. It was revealed at that time that they had suffered torture at the hands of security guards while confined. Other alleged atrocities by the Tombalbaye government were also revealed at this time by the new government. The Supreme Military Council, 1975-1978. After the coup which overthrew Tombalbaye, rule in Chad was vested in the newly formed Supreme Military Council (Conseil Superieur Militaire--CSM), headed by General Malloum.(3) The CSM selected four commissioners, including military officers and civilians, to operate the government's daily activities.(4) The immediate activities of the CSM were unexpectedly conservative. Though the political organizations of the government, the National assembly and political parties, were disbanded, no major vendettas or purges were effected. In May, the government sent teams throughout the country to explain to the Chadian people the reasons for the coup, and to disseminate the CSM's promise of a new constitution and democratic elections. Previously existing foreign committments were also ratified, and curfews and travel restrictions were lifted within three days. On April 20, General Malloum issued an appeal to Chadian exiles and rebels to join with the new government by stating: "Our compatriots in the rebellion had been fighting an unjust regime.... The moment has come to reintegrate the exiles into Chad's life."(5) Initial expressions of support for the new government were not lasting. Rebel leaders who expressed support for the CSM immediately after the coup soon changed their opinions. It soon became apparant that much of the initial enthusiasm was not for the new government, but rather for the fact that Tombalbaye was gone. Reforms promised by the government were slow to materialize, and political prisoners were released only in small numbers initially. The military retained control of economic programs and strikes were forbidden. Most importantly, only minimal progress was made in allowing additional northern and Muslim participation in the government. Many of the laudatory programs of Malloum's control were negative in nature, in that they were in the form of terminating abuses of the previous government. Such reforms included termination of the numerous arbitrary arrests Tombalbaye had previously made frequently.(6) Another factor prevented more popular support for the CSM: the allegation made in several quarters that the French had been responsible for, or played a part in, the coup. Evidence of French involvement did exist at the time. The French commander of the Chadian National Guard and Nomadic Guards, was also the Director of Information Services. He was also a close advisor of Tombalbaye, and in a position to have known in advance of the coup. His failure to warn Tombalbaye, and the failure of the 2,000 French troops in Ndjamena to come to Tombalbaye's aid when requested, may have indicated at least a decision by the French that the coup attempt should be allowed to proceed. The French government was in a position to be unhappy with Tombalbaye for his failure to settle the war, for his mandatory yondo initiation rites, and for his failure to resolve the issue of French hostages being held by Hissene Habre's Second Liberation Army since April, 1974.(7) Charges of being a lackey of the French had been made against Tombalbaye, especially upon his request for French military assistance in 1966. Such charges in newly-nationalized Chad caused great dissatis-faction against him. Those same charges when made against the CSM could only have reduced the new government's popularity in the eyes of the people of Chad.(8) The rebel organization, 1975-1978. Popularity of any government in Chad from 1975 throughout the rest of the 1970's would have been transitory in any case, however, in 1975, for while the reins of the national government were seized by General Malloum and the CSM, the ever strengthening rebel forces were also being factionalized into divergent groups. That factionalization is at the root of the Chadian conflict as it exists in 1983; it is therefore worthwhile to shift attention from the national government's activities and examine in greater detail the background of the revolutionary movements in Chad and their activities during the 1970's. Hissene Habre's Second Liberation Army. By 1975, three armies had descended from the revolution of the 1960's; each claimed to be the legitimate representative of the FROLINAT uprising. The first of these, Hissene Habre's Second Liberation Army, operated in the BET area, under the name of the the Forces Armees du Nord (FAN). Habre had been born in 1942 into the Aushaza clan of Toubous, from the Boukou area of Chad. After attending primary school, he was appointed to an administrative post in the French colonial adminstration; here he favorably impressed the local French commander, Colonel J. Chapelle. Habre later in Paris earned a university degree in the social sciences as a result of a scholarship obtained for him by Colonel Chapelle. He returned to Chad in 1971. But after only a brief period of government service, he journeyed to Tripoli where he joined the FAN faction of the FROLINAT. Soon Habre was sharing command of the FAN with Goukouni Oueddei. In 1972, after departure of the French, those FAN forces recommended successful military operations. Habre had, for himself and his army, a source of income; revenue was raised by extracting a "duty" from caravaners, merchants, and smugglers trading with Libya. Because of the limited needs of his army--food, fuel, and fire arms--only he, of all the rebel leaders, could claim financial independence from external sources and interests. The Claustre affair and its results. Habre's incursions into money raising resulted in one incident in 1974 which would have a serious impact on his relations with other rebel leaders, on foreign relations with Tombalbaye's government, and on Habre's relations with his followers. On April 21 of that year, five Europeans working in Chad were kidnapped for ransom by Habre's forces.(9) The original target of the kidnappers was probably a Doctor Staewen, a medical missionary who happened to be related to West Germany's president.(10) Foreign adverse reaction to the kidnapping was initially based on publicity which arose from that relationship. However, after the kidnapping, Habre discovered that a French archeologist also kidnapped, Madame Francoise Claustre, was the wife of the director of the French MRA in Chad. The French media were to exploit her three year's captivity; the rebel cause was made known to the world as a result of what became known as "l' affaire Claustre." The financial results of the affair were disappointing to Habre. Large ransoms were paid, but modern arms and ammunition purchased with the ransom money were never delivered.(11) Cash and medical supplies were received, however, from both the French and West German governments. A serious split between the French and Ndjamena governments resulted from the Chadian government's handling of this affair; this split may eventually have been a part of the reason for the French refusal to support Tombalbaye when the 1975 coup occurred. The Chadian government's inability to react to the kidnapping may initially have been due to fears for the hostage's safety. The French daily, Le Monde reported on April 26 that "in order to preserve the lives of the hostages," Chadian forces, already on alert because of the matter, did not intervene.(12) Later, however performance indicates that it was the simple incompetance of the government which prevented some resolution, as no meaningful action was taken or attempted by the government at any time. In 1975, this French-Chadian governmental split carried over to the new CSM government, when in October, French authorities called on the International Red Cross to send observers to verify Madame Claustre's condition. The Chadian government denounced such action, and accused Paris of violating Chadian airspace and delivering "war material" to the rebels.(13) "L'affaire Claustre" also had a divisive impact on FROLINAT and the rebel leadership. Habre's personal power and ambitions were reinforced by the incident, hence his intransigence on other matters increased. Jealousies of other rebel leaders were concurrently increased by Habre's rise in power. Also, many of Habre's supporters became convinced that he was using the ransom money for his personal gain. A basic disagreement over how the matter should be handled caused the first fatal rift between Goukouni and Habre. In short, the affair caused aggravation of a factionalization which had already become widespread across the entire spectrum of Chadian affairs. Abba Siddik's FLP. The second of the three major rebel armies to operate in Chad in 1975 was Abba Siddik's Forces Populaires de Liberation (FLP), which operated along the Sudanese border in the northeast of Chad. Siddik had been born in 1924 of a Chadian father and Central African mother. He had been minister of education in pre-independence Chad, but had quarreled with Tombalbaye and went to Paris to study surgery. Siddik was a diplomat, not a rebel field commander, and was one of the original founders of FROLINAT. In 1970, his personal influence was such that FROLINAT named him, without an election, its secretary-general. However, upon the French military's departure from Chad in 1971, his moderate politics were disavowed by many more radical members of FROLINAT. Siddik refused to call for elections within FROLINAT, and the Second Liberation Army (FAN) refused to recognize his claim to the office of Secretary-General. But Siddik had retained Libyan support, and FROLINAT members in Libya who rejected Siddik were arrested. This fragmentation soon proved fatal not only to Siddik's personal power, which waned from that time forward, but also to his reformist goals. Siddik and Habre ever developed a united front against the Malloum government. One reason for the split between Siddik and Habre may have been personal. Siddik, a diplomatic armchair general, was ever jealous of Habre's well-earned reputation as a valiant guerilla leader.(13) Siddik was ignored in the negotiations leading to the release of the Claustre hostages, and in 1977 Siddik was eventually ousted from control over his army. Goukouni Oeddei's FAN. Goukouni Oueddei, a third rebel leader who exercised great influence in Chadian developments in the 1970's and 1980's, was the son of the Toubou Derde who in 1969 revolted against the Tombalbaye government, with Libyan encouragement. Goukouni had been commanding the FAN forces when Hissene Habre joined him in 1971. The split between Goukouni and Habre began with a dispute over FAN's relationship with Libya and the Claustre affair should be handled. The two matters were interrelated.(14) In 1976, Libya had issued new "official" maps, which showed expanded borders to include more than fifty two thousand square miles of territory which had been previously considered part of Algeria, Niger, and Chad. Of that area, thirty seven thousand square miles had been formerly shown in Chad.(15) This area, on Libya's southern border, was known as the Aouzou strip. Unlike most of Chad, economically important mineral resources are located in the area, including iron ore, phosphates, and uranium. Goukouni considered Libya's help in the fight to overthrow the government to be more important than the immediate cessation of Libya's claims to the area. Goukouni also opposed Habre's handling of the hostage negotiations, when Habre had continued to raise the ante after every ransom payment. Goukouni therefore willingly ignored Libyan territorial claims to the Aouzou strip for the immediate future and accepted Libya's aid in the hostage negotiations. On October 18, 1976, FAN's war council met at Yebbi-Bou; there Goukouni's supporters expelled Habre from the FAN, and made Goukouni their commander-in-chief. Habre took with him a few hundred loyal supporters and the name of the FAN; he then moved his oranization east-central Chad. Chapter III The War for Personal Power, 1978-1983 The splitting and merging of the rebel forces and factions continued throughout the 1970's; by 1979 an "alphabet soup" of factions and splinter groups existed in Chad. As Virginia Thompson and Richard Adloff succinctly commented in 1981: "In the course of the FROLINAT's evolution, idealogy has been in short supply, and the accent has been on compromise.... Fragmentation of the FROLINAT leadership, which has characterized it from its inception, was due far less to differing ethnic, regional, or ideological goals than to personal rivalries for power."(1) Reconciliation Governments, 1978-1979. The government during the years after the coup did not succeed in uniting the factions in Chad. General Malloum was a Sara from the same province as Tombalbaye; (2) but he also recognized that the failure to unify Chadians was in spite of his efforts to unite the north and south through attempts to include representatives of various factions in the government. The first of many efforts at national reconciliation was therefore made in August 1978. The reconciliation attempt resulted from a December, 1977, meeting of the heads of various Chadian factions held in Libreville, Gabon, under the auspices of Gabon's President Bongo. Goukouni and Siddik had both made demands on Malloum as conditions for their participation in a government; however Malloum considered them unreasonable. Malloum rejected the demands, and began negotiations with Habre, who had been more realistic and flexible. Since his expulsion from Gouhouni's FAN, Habre had recruited followers from eastern Chad and enlisted the support of Sudan. He was therefore in a position to bargain with Malloum; thus, in February 1978 an agreement to form a new government was announced. Habre would be prime minister and General Malloum the president. Northerners and southerners would be evenly represented in the new government. The agreements which constituted this plan included political and economic reform; they were also probably based upon the military stalemate which had existed for some time. Malloum could provide a functioning administration and an internationally recognized, if unelected, government. Habre was in command of a loyal, well-armed, and disciplined fighting force which he had resurrected from FAN troops and soldiers previously loyal to Siddik who had not been able to support his ever-increasing ties to Libya. The threat of Libyan expansion into Chad was, in fact, one area of total agreement between Habre and Malloum. Moreover, Habre was becoming ever more acceptable to the French government because of his strong anti-Libyan attitudes; this was in spite of the role Habre had played in the Claustre affair. Unfortunately, the areas of agreement between Habre and Malloum were eventually outweighed by their differences. The charisma and military record of Habre gave him a discernable edge in popularity, even with southerners who were swayed by his consistent record of opposition to Libya. Habre's opponents in the government were thus posted to minor posts or transferred back to France. Habre was also appointed to membership on the Conseil de Defense et de Securite in spite of Malloum's desires to reserve those seats for CSM officers.(3) Goukouni meanwhile in 1978 had ended any hope of uniting Habre or the FAN with the remainder of the FROLINAT. He would also prove unsuccessful even in uniting other splinter armies of the FROLINAT, unwilling and unable to participate in the new government, and with lavish Libyan supplies of Soviet arms, Goukouni in early 1978 commenced a southward offensive which was stopped short of Ndjamena only by intervention of the French air force. This action however benefited only Habre, because it showed Malloum's dependence on France and Goukouni's on Libya. This defeat further exacerbated conflict between Goukouni's Arabs and Toubous, showing again the invalidity of depiction of the civil war as merely a struggle between northerners and southerners. In 1979 the new-born government of national union collapsed as a result of hostilities between Malloum and Habre, when on February 12 Habre's forces attacked the government army at Ndjamena. After two days of bloody fighting, the national army was in full retreat to the south, and Habre controled the capital. The resulting confusion inspired additional rebel action throughout the country. The newly formed Third Liberation Army defeated government forces in the west, while the First Liberation Army, now operating independent of Goukouni's FAP, gained control of Biltine and Ouaddi provinces in the east. Goukouni's FAP took advantage of the defeat of government forces and arrived in the capital in time to prevent the complete destruction of Malloum's army. During this confusing round of inter-rebel fighting, the French forces in Chad were conspicuous only by their refusal to intervene. Though much popular French opinion still disapproved of Habre due to his kidnapping of Madame Claustre, many French military officers recognized Habre's qualities as a military leader.(4) The defeat of Malloum's forces in Ndjamena had serious consequences among the southern Sara populations of Chad. Lieutenant Wadal Abdelkadu Kamougue, Malloum's gendarmerie commander, had fled south with his forces and united many of the former government troops who had fled in the same direction. The feelings of southerners after the loss of the capital to northern forces was further incensed by the hundreds of Sara civilians left in Ndjamena and massacred by Habre's men. Retaliatory action against Arab populations in the south left between eight hundred and two thousand dead.(5) Non-Sara southerners reacted to that violence in Mayo-Kebbi, a southern province, and a further four hundred civilians were killed there in anti-Sara violence. The southern prefectures then appointed in May 1979 a Sara-dominated de facto government, the Comite Permanent, as a separate political entity. It was headed by Kamougue, who had taken the place of Malloum as the dominant southern representative.(6) Though Kamougue had previously been a vociferous opponent of Libyan intervention in Chadian affairs, he recognized that the south must have assistance to stave off what he perceived as an imminent northern incursion into the region. Kamougue thus visited Tripoli and obtained arms from the pragmatic Khadafi, who stood ready to assist any force opposed to a strong central government in Ndjamena.(7) The first attempt at formation of a strong national government had thus failed. Rather than the union of nationalistic Chadians forseen by Malloum, no one faction controlled Chad. No group apparently was strong enough to militarily force itself on any other. Habre's attempts to do so had resulted in a shifting of the power equation to equalize power among ever more disparate factions in the country. The inability of the French or the Libyans to impose their will and/or control over Chad had been exposed to Chadians as well as the world. Into this void now stepped Nigeria; Loagos would now attempt to reconcile the parties in Chad. Transition Governments, 1979-1980. Nigeria, which borders Chad to the southwest across Lake Chad, responded to the conditions in Chad by arranging for another conference of reconciliation in March 1979. These included the major warring parties in Chad,(8) who at this time were the following: 1. General Felix Malloum and the armed forces of Chad (Forces Armees du Tchad--FAT) 2. Hissene Habre and the armed forces of the north (Forces Armees du Nord--FAN) 3. Goukouni Oueddei of FROLINAT, with the remnants of the old FAN (Movement Populaire du Liberation du Tchad--FPLT). The first conference was held in March 1979 in Kano, Nigeria. It achieved an arrangement for a cease fire, the demilitarization of the capital, and formation of a transition government. Nigerian troops were also sent to Ndjamena to monitor the cease-fire, thus introducing another foreign element into the nation. Another Kano conference was held on April 1 to develop a means to implement the first agreements. Civil violence in Chad, however, continued to erupt. Relations between the parties and Nigeria had also begun to deteriorate, partly because of the heady conduct of Nigerian troops in Ndjameria. Additional parties also were invited to participate in the conference. The first transitional government. A new transitional government came from the conference on April 29, 1979. Of the participants in the new government, eleven were northern Muslims and ten were southerners. Goukouni became the Minister of the Interior, and Habre the Minister of Defense. General Djogo, the southern representative who had eclipsed Karmougue at the conference as the chief southern representative, would be the vice-president and commander-in-chief of the armed forces. At Nigeria's "urging," Mohamat Choua Lol, a member of the MPLT and a protege of Habre, was to be president. Formation of an apparently representative government once more did not end the war in Chad. Libya, angered by the exclusion from the government of Ahmat Acyl and other Libyan supporters, promptly formed yet another rebel party, the Front d'Action Commune Provisoir (FACP), to challenge the new government. Nigeria, angered by the fact that the government was not to be under the complete influence of a Nigerian puppet, withdrew its forces from Chad and banned oil sales to the country. At the urging of Nigeria and Chad's six neighbors, an additional conference was held in Lagos, Nigeria, on May 25. Discord and fighting continued, however, and by mid-summer, the end of the Lol government was at hand. The second transitional government. The fourth Nigerian-inspired conference was held at Lagos in July 1979. AlI the leaders of Chad's military forces were represented, even leaders of splinter groups. A second transitional government emerged and optimism again ran high. Goukouni was named President, Kamougue Vice-President, and Habre Minister of Defense. For the first time, the Government de Union Nationale Tchadienne (GUNT) represented all the major diverse factions, was well balanced between northerners and southerns (thirteen to eleven), and had proteges of the neighboring governments in substantially equal proportions. Units from all the warring armies joined to form a national police force. French forces were asked to withdraw as an "obstacle to peace" in Chad, and they commenced their departure on September 2. The accord reached by the new government, GUNT, ended like its predecessors; it crumbled in spite of its auspicious beginnings. For although the leaders of the various factions each espoused desires for national unity and freedom from foreign influence, other factors prevented this: the personal ambitions and animosities of the leaders, the conflicting foreign sponsors, the differing regional and ethnic backgrounds, the general fear of a strong central government, and the worsening economic situation in Chad. All of these were all to prove stronger than the Government of National Union. Expulsion of Habre. Sporadic violence among the Chadian factions continued throughout 1979. This erupted into fighting between Habre's FAN and troops of Goukouni's FAP on March 22, 1980 and shattered any remaining pretense of agreement between the parties. About four hundred whites were evacuated from the capital by French military aircraft on March 24, including West Germans, Dutch, French, Lebanese, and all the members of the American embassy staff, including the American ambassador.(9) The remaining French troops in Chad and the contingent of Congolese troops sent there in January of 1980 by the Organization of African Unity did not intervene in the fighting. As of March 25, the death toll was estimated to be in excess of seven hundred, including three members of the French detachment. Five separate cease-fires were negotiated by April 5, when the president of Togo personally exercised diplomacy between Habre and Goukouni. But by April 9, fighting had resumed and additional troops had reached Ndjamena. Kamougue's army joined Goukouni's forces, who had previously been reinforced by Acyl's soldiers. Goukouni held the northern half of the city, and Habre held the southern half, but the forces were then stalemated. Neither side was able to gain the advantage. The French and Congolese withdrew completely from the country.(10) Habre was formally dismissed from his post as Defense Minister on April 25 by the Assembly, convened by Goukouni , Kamougue, and Acyl. In the face of France's departure from Chad and the inability of African states, through the OAU, to prevent the chaos in Chad, the war spread. By midsummer it had expanded beyond the capital, and by October 1980 the conflict had reached into the BET. By early December the FAN forces in the BET were surrounded, Faya-Largeau had been taken by the FAP and FAC, and Habre's supply lines to Sudan were being cut.(11) Libyan intervention, 1980. Foreign intervention in Chad also continued. On June 15, Goukouni and the Chadian governments' had signed a mutual defense treaty with Libya; however limited publicity made the global press ignore this event because of Habre's control of the national radio and press, which had focused on Habre's military successes. Habre's attempts to thus develop his own reputation and support were to act to his detriment in the long term, because Libya had, through the summer and fall of 1980, been preparing to send arms, troops, and planes to Goukouni's aid in accordance with that treaty. In December the FAT and the FAP, backed by Libyan arms, tanks, airpower, and manpower, stormed Habre's forces holding Ndjamena. After a week of bitter fighting, on December 16, government and Libyan forces entered the capital. Habre and his forces were then forced to flee to Cameroon across the Chari river. Though their presence was accepted and Habre was given an audience with President Abidjo, political asylum was not granted. The Habre forces were disarmed and lodged in refugee camps which had been established to accept the flow of refugees from the fighting in Chad. Other FAN forces in east-central Chad were defeated and either dispersed to their homes or displaced to United Nations refugee camps in western Sudan. Libyan military support. An estimated two thousand five hundred Libyan troops participated in the assault on Ndjamena, but the Libyan role caused only minor consternation among the interested parties. The Libyan participation prompted only a warning from the French government against further "intervention of armed foreign elements" in Chad.(12) At a meeting of the OAU in Lagos, Nigeria, on December 23-24, the OAU group refused to call for Libyan withdrawal from Chad, for fear of angering Libya. President Goukouni and Libya, for their part, denied the presence or assistance of Libyan troops in Chad; they would admit only the presence of "advisors." These claims by the same parties would be heard again. Merger of Libya and Chad. International and African apathy to the Libyan involvement in Chad was shaken on January 6, 1981, however, by the announcement of the intention of Libya and Chad to merge, or at least to "work toward the goal of total unity."(13) The announcement of the merger shocked several of the more important members of the OAU, and aroused fears of Libyan intentions regarding other African states.(14) Senegal and Bambia broke off diplomatic relations with Libya, as did Sudan on June 25. Nigeria greatly increased its military spending and strengthened its defenses in its northern areas. The threat of Libyan aggression upon African states was recognized by the United States, and was declared to be a "direct threat along Sudan's border and creating great worry among other states bordering Chad."(15) Egypt clearly demonstrated its concern by acknowledging that it had been supplying Habre's newly constituted forces with small arms and ammunition. Cairo stated that it feared Khadafi's move into Chad was a prelude to an attempt to destabilize Sudan on Egypt's southern border.(16) The French were also alarmed by the announcement. France strongly condemmed for the first time the Libyan incursion into Chad; Paris also offered to provide arms and troops to strengthen the forces of Chad's neighbors, in a sudden hardening of its previously vacilating policies in northern Africa.(17) French military forces in the Central African Republic, Gabon, Sengal, and the Ivory Coast were reinforced.(18) France's toughened stance and the sudden interest of the United States in Chad's affairs may have been explained in part by the U.S. State Department's revelation on March 13 that Soviet military advisers had been sent to Chad two months previously to assist Goukouni's government.(19) Though the Soviet news agency, Tass, denied the allegation,(20) the charge was consistent with French reports on January 30 that Soviet pilots had flown at least some of the Libyan military jets in Chad. The Egyptian government also stated its belief that the Libyan adventure into Chad was Soviet inspired.(21) The Sudan also denounced the Soviet role in Libya. The OAU, finally spurred to action by the merger announcement, convened its Chad subcommittee on January 14, 1981. A condemnation of Libya as the violator of the August, 1979, OAU agreements on Chad was obtained from all thirteen members present at the conference for the first time. Expulsion of Libya, 1981. In the fall of 1981, Goukouni was still fighting Habre's forces, which were receiving support and aid from Egypt and Sudan. President Goukouni believed that he could declare the rebels to be beaten in September 1981; he further stated that now the rebel forces opposing him were "Sudanese irregulars."(22) However, four-thousand troops were estimated to be in Habre's new army in Sudan as of October 18, 1981,(23) and Sudanese army and air forces were assisting their defense against Libyan attacks on FAN base camps in Sudan. The African and international opposition to the announced merger had begun to pressure Goukouni, who now referred to the plan in terms of a partnership, vice a merger. On 29 October, due to Goukouni's perception of his army's strengths, world opinion, and renewed French military assistance,(24) and in spite of Habre's increasing strength, Goukouni demanded the immediate withdrawal of most Libyan forces from Chad.(25) French President Francois Mitterand also approved an OAU proposal that an African peace-keeping force be sent to Chad to replace the Libyans. That proposal had previously died when few African nations showed interest in supplying the needed forces. Khadafi's response to Goukouni's request was positive, probably due to his desires to accede to the chairmanship of OAU and his awareness that refusal to abide by Goukouni's wishies would reduce any chance he might have to obtain that post.(26) Libyan forces began immediate withdrawal from Ndjamena and the Chari-Baguirmi region. Plans were announced to have all Libyan forces out of the country within one year.(27) On December 22, the first OAU peace-keeping forces arrived, seven-hundred Zairian paratroopers. Nigeria and Senegal also added troops to this force, and the United States allocated twelve million dollars to support those contingents with nonlethal equipment and transportation support.(28) Habre's return, 1982. Hissene Habre, meanwhile, had continued the build-up of his forces in Sudan; his forces had taken control of ten towns in the eastern part of Chad, thus controlling most of Ouaddai and Biltine provinces on the Sudanese border. His successes were partly due to the cessation of Libyan military activity, once the decision to withdraw from Chad was announced 29) and to the capture by FAN of large quantities of Libyan military equipment. Moving west in December 1981, FAN captured the towns of Ourn Hadjer, Ati, and Faya-Largeau. An OAU cease-fire proposal in February 1982 failed. Fighting intensified, and the FAN's drive to Ndjamena commenced. At the end of May, government forces had taken defensive positions around the capital, but these were weakened when Lieutenant Colonel Kamougue's forces left Ndjamena to quell a rebellion in the south of Chad. On June 7, the FAN entered Ndjamena and in only three hours had secured control of the city. (30) No opposition was encountered from the OAU peace-keeping forces, whose orders were to fight only in self defense. Goukouni having lost the support of his army, boarded a canoe and crossed the Chari river into Cameroon, thus duplicating Habre's actions in 1980. Habre's offensive had begun when Libyan troops were withdrawn from Chad in 1981, and the victory was assured in 1982 when Libya refused Goukouni's last-minute requests for assistance.(31) Governmental Organization. On June 19, Habre formed a new Council of State. He declared the body to be temporary, to be replaced by a representative government at some later date. The council, drawn from officers of the FAN, included 18 commissioners and 12 vice-commissioners. This body was dissolved on October 21 when Habre was sworn in as President of Chad, and a thirty one-member cabinet was appointed. Habre also formed a National Consultative Council consisting of two represent- atives of each of Chad's fourteen prefectures an the capital city.(32) The cabinet was also intended to begin the process of reconciliation, and included both adversaries and former allies.(33) Southern secession. The new government confronted a difficult task in forming a united nation, or any actual nation other than the international legal charade called "Chad". The basic lack of resources in Chad, combined with a long drought and twenty years of civil war, had made Chad the poorest country in Africa; indicative of this was the fact that nearly one-quarter of its four million inhabitants existed at starvation level. The government proved equal to this task. Lieutenant Colonel Kamougue in the south, meanwhile, still had forces under arms, and many southerners were threatening secession from Chad due to their opposition to the northern Habre. Kamoughe's plans to secede from Chad and form and independent Republic of Logone were foiled by desertions among his FAT forces. FAN troops pressed south against Kamougue, and FAT troops defected in increasing numbers. Kamoughe himself was driven to take refuge in Cameron, while FAN and FAT forces were united in December of 1982 to form a new national army, the Forces Armees Nationales Tchadiennes (FANT). The gendarmerie was dissolved and replaced by military police, and compulsory military service was dictated. International aid quickly arrived in Chad to assist with the famine and disastrous economic situation. The United Nations and the International Red Cross supplied aid, though fighting in the south and roads muddy from much-needed rain caused delays in distributing the food. Aid of over one hundred seventy million dollars from over seventy states was pledged to the reconstruction of Chad. The situation finally appeared bright for Chad's future, but former-president Goukouni once again had become a rebel, and prosperity for Chad was again a distant goal. Goukouni's offensive, 1982-1983. Government in exile. During the fall of 1982, Goukouni and his loyal armed followers attempted to regroup in Northern Chad. Habre claimed, with adequate justification, that the rearming of Goukouni's forces had once again occurred with the military and financial assistance of Libya.(34) Libya also had aided in the recruiting of new soldiers for Goukouni, by arresting up to fifteen-thousand Chadians working in Libya and sending them to training camps to join Goukouni's army. Habre concurrently restated Chadian claims to the Aouzou strip "annexed" by Libya; he further stated his intention to drive the Libyans from Aouzou, by military action if necessary. On September 20, the Libyan government denied that Aouzou was Chadian territory and accused Chad of interference with Libyan internal affairs. Combining with eight of eleven of the factions which had composed the old GUNT, Goukouni on October 28 formed a new, fifteen-man National Peace Government of Chad. Goukouni was of course named the leader of the new government. Habre sent reinforcements to Faya-Largeau in January 1983 to resist an expected attack by Goukouni's forces.(35) The stage had now been set for an end to the temporary lull in the fighting for control of Chad. Libyan involvement; the fall of Faya-Largeau. In February 1983, the offensive by Goukouni's National Liberation Army (FAL) began. A FANT force operating one hundred and fifty miles north-east of Faya-Largeau was defeated by Goukouni's FAL on February 20, and suffered over one hundred twenty dead in the battle. Unconfirmed reports from Libyan press and radio also claimed clashes in other areas of Chad. Additional defeats of FANT were also reported throughout the early months of 1983. From the first, Libyan involvement, with the intent of the overthrow of Habre's regime by Goukouni or Libyan forces was recognized by Chadians and western observers alike.(36) Doubts about the ability of Habre's forces to withstand Goukouni's and Libya's aggression caused him to seek additional grants of military equipment from western nations as well as other Arab African states. Chadian officials were dispatched in mid-February to the Central African Republic to attempt to relieve military pressure on Chad's forces in the south. An agreement was obtained for the Central African Republic to dispatch forces to Chadian border areas where Libyan-backed dissidents were formenting revolution. On March 17 Chad requested assistance from the United Nations Security Council to remove Libyan forces from the Aouzou strip by requiring the two countries to submit the disagreement to the International Court of Justice in The Hague for a binding settlement.(37) Though Khadafi's government had previously allowed that court to settle a boundary dispute with Tunisia, he refused to submit to such resolution, claiming that Libya did not recognize the Habre government as the legitimate government of Chad.(38) On May 17, the Ndjamena government reported heavy fighting with Libyan troops and "their mercenaries" (39) near Faya-Largeau. Military aircraft were claimed to be still operating from the town, despite Goukouni's claims that the town had fallen. French president Mitterrand issued a statement saying that France could not accept Libyan or any other foreign intervention in Chad.(40) That minimal French support alone, however, did not deter Goukouni and the Libyan forces. On June 25, the Chadian Embassy in Paris announced the fall of Faya-Largeau.(41) Subsequent reports were to reveal that Libyan fighter planes assisted the rebel atack, staged by fifteen hundred to thirty five hundred rebels assisted by twelve hundred to five thousand Libyans.(42) No further advances. Control of Faya-Largeau and thus about one-third of Chad placed Goukouni's forces in a substantially stable position in the country, but their further advances were curtailed by two factors. First, the road to Ndjamena, though controlled in part by Goukouni's forces, still was blocked by two government strong points at Salad and Moussoco. Before those garrisons could be asaulted, the government garrison at Abeche in the east had to be taken, as it had been in past rebel advances on Ndjamena.(43) However, threatening rains risked any assault on Abeche because of the lack of paved roads from Faya-Largeau to Abeche, and the subsequent threat to the mobility of motorired columns. A probable second factor stalling the advance was the diplomatic maneuvering of Habre. A United Nations Security Council debate had been requested, and the President of Gabon, Ormar Bongo, had been requested to arrange cease-fire talks with Goukouni as he had done previously.(44) Though these efforts were unsuccessful, France, on June 26, sent its Minister for Cooperation and Development, Christian Nucci, to Ndjamena as an expression of France's support for the Habre government. The support of the French, who had large and modern forces stationed throughout northern Africa, possibly prevented any plunge by Goukouni or Libya until success was assured. Governmental Response. Military assistance. Not content with providing merely moral support, however, Mr. Nucci announced on June 28 an intention to immediately ship to Habre's forces emergency arms aid to provide a defense against the sophisticated weapons provided to Goukouni's forces by Libya. France would ship thirty-five tons of military supplies to Chad, including anti-tank weapons and surface-to-surface rockets.(45) United States military analysts were also becoming concerned about the threat to Chad. It was perceived by United States observers that Libya's objective was the ultimate penetration of Sudan, thus threatening southern Egypt. Previous military probes into Egypt from Libya resulted in costly defeats for Libyan forces. A strike from Chadian territory further south, however, would strike both Sudan and Egypt where their military forces were less concentrated. The Libyan military threat was seen as substancial, including approximately three thousand tanks, five hundred fifty five modern combat aircraft, thirty armed helicopters, twenty tank battalions, and fifty five thousand men. Even with Libyan logistic difficulties, the personality of khadafi, unrestrained by foreign influence, was seen as making such an attack on Sudan and Egypt possible.(46) Accordingly United States assistance, again in the form of non-lethal military supplies, was sent to Chad.(47) The emergency aid, valued at approximately ten million dollars, was composed of clothing, food, and military vehicles. An American statement indicated that small arms and other weapons could follow, and that the aid was considered necessary to prevent Libya from establishing in Chad a regime favorable to Libya and then using it as a base for subversion elsewhere in Africa.(48) Recapture of Faya-Largeau. On July 30, government forces, fortified by United States and French moral and materiel support, recaptured the town of Faya-Largeau from the rebels. The attack surprised the three thousand well supplied and entrenched rebel troops there by being launched under the cover of a dust storm on the western approaches to the city where the defenses were heavy but were lightly manned. The battle took four hours, and produced twelve hundred thirty prisoners.(49) Though the Libyan press agency JANA claimed on August 1 that Habre had been killed in an artillery barrage near Faya-Largeau, (50) the report proved later to be false. Government forces were, however, under Habre's personal leadership, driving the rebel forces north from Faya-Largeau, towards the town of Kirdimi, fifty five miles north. Faya-Largeau then began to suffer extensive aerial attack on June 30 from Libyan aircraft. Large sections of the town were being destroyed, and civilian and military casualties were beginning to rise. Government troops in the city were without anti-aircraft guns or weapons, and little action could be taken to prevent the assaults. Though Libya denied the attacks, western intelligence confirmed them; thus both the United States and France hurried to supply anti- aircraft weapons to Faya-Largeau.(51) The first French anti-aircraft guns arrived in Ndjamena on August 2, and were deployed to Faya-Largeau the next day, along with French instructors to assist the armed forces with the weapons. The United States also rushed thirty Redeye and Stinger anti-aircraft missiles and three U.S. Army instructors to Chad to assist in the defense.(52) The three U.S. advisors were to be in Chad only long enough to show the government soldiers how to use the weapons against Libyan aircraft.(53) Aid also arrived in Chad from other quarters, when the President of Zaire, Mobutu Sese Seko, sent on August 2 sixteen hundred troops and six aircraft to Chad to assist Habre's forces. These forces were ferried into Chad by twenty six trips of U.S. Air Force C-141 Starlifters.(54) Goukouni's offensive renewal. The aid received by Chad the first week of August, 1983, did not prove to be sufficient to stop the rebel and Libyan forces. Khadafi, in response to Goukouni's defeat at Faya-Largeau, had ordered a Libyan force of four to five thousand to assist Goukouni to retake the town. The Libyan force and Goukouni's rebels were equipped with tanks, armored personnel carriers, long-range 130mm field artillery guns, multiple rocket launchers, and SA-9 anti-aircraft missiles. Air support to the rebels was provided by Soviet-built TU-22 bombers, SU-22 close air support fighters, and Mirage F-1's.(55) In spite of repeated requests by Habre for French air intervention; none was forthcoming, thus air raids on Faya-Largeau continued with increasing ferocity. Heavy air assaults, including attacks with phosphorous bombs,(56) continued to strike, and the raids were extended to the town of Qum Chaluba, about 200 miles southeast of Faya-Largeau. The government forces on the ground, at the mercy of the air attackers, could not hold their positions. On August 5, it was reported that the town of Faya-Largeau had been cut-off and Quam Chaluba had heen retaken by the rebels. Additional rebel forces with Soviet T-62 and T-72 tanks were also moving into Chad from the northwest.(57) Continuing government pleas for French military intervention continued to probe fruitless. The United States, however, dispatched to the Sudan on August 6 AWACS aircraft and F-15 fighter escorts. Their purpose was to monitor the situation in Chad and thereby assist the Chadian forces, but such intelligence asistance seemed to be to little avail without aerial or ground combat support. French forces, long the guarantor of Chad's existence, had not been deployed to the country throughout the Libyan interference. The disptach of United States aircraft to Sudan, though of little immediate military help, helped prompt the French to action, which once more was to quiet the guns in Chad. On August 5, an editorial in Le Monde (58) characterized the American deployment as undermining French credibility in North Africa, because Paris appeared unwilling or unable to guarantee the security of the former French colonies. Rebel seige and recapture of Faya-Largeau. While waiting for French combat assistance, Chad's forces in Faya-Largeau finally yielded to the rebel attack. Up to one-third of the three-thousand Chadian troops surrounded in Faya-Largeau were reported dead, wounded, or captured. Casualties were evacuated from the town at night when the unpaved airstrip could be used, but evacuation ceased when the airstrip was finally put out of action by rebel shelling. One reporter on the scene observed, "The rest [of the wounded] lay in the sun, often without water, and die.... There were virtually no medical facilities in the north, and even a relatively minor wound would become serious very quickly."(59) Under a murderous, virtually non-stop air attack, those soldiers who could get out of Faya-Largeau and other northern positions retreated on August 10 to set up a new defensive line some two hundred miles south.(60) The American-supplied Redeye and Stinger missiles were the most graphic display of United States support for the Habre government; however the actual effect of the missiles on the military situation was not as great as the symbolic effect. Twenty to twenty five of the missiles reached the defenders at Faya-Largeau, but no Libyan aircraft was shot down with the missiles and they were withdrawn before Faya-Largeau was captured. It was not ascertained whether any had actually been fired, nor was it determined whether the failure was due to technical problems or insufficient training of the Chadian forces. One source speculated that battery problems in the launching mechanism may have Prevented their employment.(61) French intervention. In any case, American political pressure proved more valuable than the missiles. As a radio commentator over the Paris Domestic Service stated on August 10, "The Americans were the first to show their presence in the Chad region. One has the slight impression that Paris has had its hand forced a bit. The Americans succeeded in making out that France was not doing enough with regard to Chad. With false candor, the White House yesterday expressed the hope for appropriate decisions by France in the Chadian war. Furthermore, there are French-U.S. consultations...one knows that certain of the French trainer-instructors arriving in Ndjamena are indeed going to have to handle the information supplied by the American radar planes. The Americans want to derive political benefit from the affair by imposing themselves on Africa as the determining factor in the decisions to be made if harsh blows should be struck." The French response, dubbed Operation Manta, began on August 10. The first unit, thirty French Marines from the 8th Marine Paratroop Infantry Regiment, crossed the Chari River into Ndjamena from their base in Kousseri, Cameroon, where they had been stationed some weeks previously to be able to assist in the evacuation of foreigners from Ndjamena should the need arise. Reinforcements from the same regiment and from the 1st Marine Infantry Regiment arrived that same day. The operation was described by the French as a training evolution and soon French Transal transport planes began to arrive in Ndjamena with forces, food, supplies, and weapons. Those forces, and others which began arriving in Chad at that time, were equipped with individual weapons, anti-tank missiles, rocket launchers, mortars, tactical vehicles, and the Olifant radar system, which is a ground surveillance radar.(62) Original plans to send only a force of five hundred French Marines to Chad were soon revised. Operation Manta by the third week of August had thus grown to involve some three thousand French troops,(63) four Mirage F-1 fighters, four Jaguar fighter-bombers, two KC-135's, sophisticated anti-aircraft systems, five figters from Zaire, and a new french commander, Brigadier General Jean Poli.(64) Stalemate. By the end of August, the forces had ended major fighting in Chad. The rebels had continued to build-up arms and forces in Faya-Largeau and had repaired damage to the airport there. French forces, however, had deployed on an east-west line north of Abeche in "defensive" positions. They were still described as "instructors" to the Chadian forces.(65) The French assertions that attacks on French forces would result in actions "not limited to defensive actions" were to stalemate the fighting in Chad. Habre's forces would be involved in minor actions, such as repelling an attack against its outpost at Qum Chalouba on September 2, (66) however the insertion of French forces, and the consequent threat of a Libyan war with France ended for the present time the military threat to the government of Hissene Habre. Chapter IV Analysis The civil war in Chad has continued for over twenty years. It has advanced from peasant riots to the present standoff of local forces and of troops of foreign powers using some of the world's most advanced technological weapons. Casualty figures on all sides run into the thousands, and the total cost in human misery is uncounted, if not uncountable. To focus attention upon the length, depth, and breadth of the war, however, without understanding the changes in the character of the conflict, would be to miss the main conclusions which may be drawn from the conflict. Clauzewitz, the father and master of modern military theorists, explained in On War what has seen become to most of us self--evident: "War is merely an extension of politics."(1) That axiom is illustrated throughout the Chadian civil war, as may be expected of third-world wars and revolutions, most of which have historically been won or lost based on political grounds notwithstanding the military power balance between the contestants. Yet behind that analysis lie other questions which must be asked in order to understand the war in Chad. Whose politics? Politics of persons, groups, or states? What groups or states? In that regard, to what extent has Chad itself existed as a "state," as opposed to a physical location of persons? In 1960, the answer to those questions was relatively uncomplicated. Upon receiving independence from France in 1960, Chad was a "state," in law and in actuality. But the process of disintegration commenced immediately. Much of the fault for that disintegration is found in the physical attributes of the country. The land and people were poor, and the cultural and social organizations within the country were not in step with the historical moment of the late 20th Century. The government left by France had the form of a representative government, but the people ruled by that government could not meet its needs. A democractic, elected government, if it is to function over a pluralistic society, requires an educated and representative populace in which there is essential agreement on the form and goals of the state. The needs of all elements of a diverse society are not protected merety by the imposition of the form of a "representative" government, when large elements of that society have no true representatives. Such was the case in Chad's early years of independence. Because of the artificial borders, the contrast between northern and southern areas was striking. The southernmost prefectures had produced the country's nearest thing to economic prosperity. The south was also composed mainly of blacks who practiced Christianity, African religions, paganism, or combinations of those religions. The north, on the contrary, was composed of Moslems and warlike nomad African tribes. They had traditionally made a living not from the poor country itself, but rather from trade with and slaving depredations upon the southern blacks. The northern low opinion of the southern populations was heavily influenced by that tradition. The French dominance over Chad until 1960 did not make progress in reducing the differences which existed between northern and southern Chad. Rather, the north was often ignored by the French and allowed to continue as it had throughout history, while French and western influences were developed in the south. Two reasons account for this attention to southern Chad: the first and most important was the economic fact that French cotton came from southern farms. The French, like other imperial powers, asked not what they could do for the colonies, but rather what the colonies could do for the empire, and they therefore put French efforts into the area from which they were receiving a monetary return. The second reason, related closely to the first, was the nature of the people in south Chad. Less tied to tribes and chiefs, the southern populace more easily adapted to the western governmental way of life. They were thus more readily adapted to the French offers of modern existence. (In fairness, it must be remembered, however, that those same offers were made to the Northerners, though to a lesser degree.) The character of the southern economy and people, in contrast with that of the north, set the stage for the effects of the post-independence government. Francois, later Ngarta, Tombalbaye was the essence of the southern government. His initial attempts to unify and nationalize all the Chadian people were limited by those condition in Chad which he confronted when the French departed. The economic base remained in the south. Those Chadian educated and prepared for governmental leadership and administrative functions came from the south. The soldiers of the armed forces came from the south. And Tombalbaye, a southerner himself, viewed that as natural. In a few short years, the corruption and ineptitude of Tombalbaye's government began to evoke northern opposition to that government. It was then that the lack of effective northern participation in the government began to show. The government could not correct the problems because it lacked input from the north. Even the French, when requested by Tombalbaye to assist with his anti-revolutionary programs, recognized that the Sara-dominated, southern-weighted governmental machine must re-tool to respond to northern needs and desires. The armed insurrection was surpressed by the French military, but the true cause of the rebellion was aggravated when Tombalbaye continued to entrench his southern power base in response to the northern challenge. This stage of the revolution illustrates a well-known weapon of guerilla movements everywhere which is seldom adequately met by the government in power. Guerilla action, especially when escalated to the stage of paramilitary guerilla action, has traditionally further entrenched the governmental power and policies which initially helped cause the revolutionary movement in the first place. Those charged with countering the guerillas often are heard to say that movement to correct the government's failings can begin only when the physical threat to the government ends. Too often, however, the physical threat cannot be completely extinguished, and governmental frustration with the threat results in repressive measures which only aggravate the causes of the rebellion, rather than correct them. Such was the situation in Chad during the late 1960's and early 1970's. The French recommendations for governmental reform were not implemented, the military actions against the rebels were causing more animosity against people affected by them, and the French, long described by even the government as a foreign, neo-colonial threat to Chadian independence, were once more invited back into Chad. They remained a constant, visible reminder of the government's powerlessness. Superimposed upon this scene was a transformation of one of the principal actors in the drama. Tombalbaye, by his numerous arrests of opposition leaders and by his personal leadership of the Sara, who led the various arms of the government, had transformed what had initially been the government of a struggling new nation into Tombalbaye's personal power base. No longer was it the drama of a new--born representative government struggling for the right of majority rule. Tombalbaye was now struggling for his personal power. Tombalbaye's actions were exemplified by his requirement of Yondo initiation rites for all persons in governmental posts. This transformation marked the end of war of ideas in Chad, between north and south, and began what has continued to be a struggle of individuals striving for personal power. Even the influence of other governments on the war has been based less on the ideology of the players than on the power each player held at the time and who their opponents were. The feuds within the ranks of the rebel leaders holding power were also based on personal conflicts rather than ideology or firm allegiances. Habre and Goukouni, who began their struggle as allies in the Moslem north, fighting against the southern government, profess no ideological differences which have remained constant. Goukouni, a professed Chadian nationalist, was willing to exchange valuable Chadian territory with a prospective source of economic wealth, the Aouzou strip, for Libyan support. Habre, in his struggle for personal power, was guilty of kidnapping, extortion and the murder of thousands of civilians. Habre nonetheless joined forces with the government and General Malloum in 1978 to legitimate his power in world eyes. He then allied himself with Goukouni in 1979 to overthrow his former governmental ally. Goukouni in 1980 ousted Habre, and once more aligned himself with Libya to meet the military threat Habre then posed. In 1981, Goukouni traded Libyan military support for French, in an effort to ingratiate himself with the French, North Africa, and world opinion. That move was a miscalculation by Goukouni, because the offended Khadafi withdrew his forces before French and OAU military forces could take their place. Then Habre, now aligned with Sudan, seized power once more in 1982. Goukouni, once more a rebel, has again aligned himself with Libya in his quest for personal control over Chad. Neither Habre nor Goukouni has been willing to negotiate with the other in pursuit of a greater good for the country. Amidst the continual changes and realignments in the then-ruling governments and rebel forces, foreign nations have since 1960 played a major role in the power struggle in Chad. It is interesting that though the struggle has been a personal struggle, wherein the parties involved "used" various nations as it suited their needs at the time, those nations involved have also switched allegiances between parties as it suited their national policies at the time. The French position has been complicated by French internal politics; thus different Chadian parties have enjoyed French support. As might have been expected, the French initially supported the new government of Chad; Paris continued that support even when it became clear that Tombalbaye's government had become his personal power base. The decrease in French support for Tombalbaye was necessary for the successful coup. Such lessened support, due to French politics or to the request of those in power in Chad from time to time, has been a precondition to military changes in power in Chad. Presently, French support lies with Habre due to his anti-Libyan stance and the pressure of North African Francophone states who support Habre for the same reason. Habre's reputation and background engender opposition in France, however, even today. Khadafi, the personal leader in Libya, has maintained a clear and consistent policy in Chad. That policy pursues recognition of Libyan claims to Aouzou and establishment of a weak central government in Chad under the control of Tripoli. Libyan support has been given to many different rebels and rebel groups who were challenging any sitting central government of Chad. Acyl Abrat was Khadafi's favorite until Acyl's death in 1982, but Libyan support has gone to both Goukouni and Kamouque. The United States, whose allegiance has been felt in Chad only recently, has like Libya followed a consistent policy. The criterion for American assistance has been opposition to Libyan involvement. Habre, long and consistently anti-Libyan, was favored when he was in power, yet Goukouni was recognized diplomatically when he expelled the Libyans in 1981. But the United States encouraged Egyptian and Sudanese support for Habre at the same time,(2) and has supported, and encouraged French support for Habre since his return to "power," i.e., control of the capitol. Chapter V Conclusions The politics of the Chadian conflict have been confusing and complex, due in large part to the transformation of the war from an anti-governmental rebellion into a personal power struggle. A further complicating fact has been interference by more powerful modern states with momentary interests in the affair. The limitation of military force in conflicts where political entities and allegiances flux from day to day is clear. Military force must be supported by an individual, movement, or government which itself derives support from its people. A military force cannot exist in a vacuum. Since 1975, the government of Chad has been based upon personal power, and has not been based on "a people." It has not operated in or from "a fixed territory," and has not been "bound together by common-law habits and custom into one body politic." It has not "exercised independent sovreignty and control over all persons and things within its boundaries." Until a government of Chad with a suitable power base and nationalistic program is able to do these things for a sufficiently lengthy period and help create a nationalistic unity, the powers within Chad will continue to be a personal one; an entity of international law, but only a mirage of an independent state. The rebellion will continue, at the whim and mercy of external forces and states, with personalities and personal factions continuing to be the most important and disruptive elements. End Notes Introduction 1. Henry Campbell Black, Black's Law Dictionary (West Publishing Company, 1968), p. 1578. Chapter I 1. Harold D. Nelson, ed., Area Handbook for Chad (Supt. of Documents, 1972), p. 14. 2. Karl Von Clausewitz, On War. (n.p.) 3. Nelson, p. 44. 4. Nelson, p. 44. 5. Virginia Thompson and Richard Adloff, Conflict in Chad (Institute of International Studies, Univ. of Calif., Berkeley, 1981), p. 6. 6. Thompson and Adloff, p. 7. 7. Nelson, p. 34. 8. Thompson and Adloff, p. 10. 9. Nelson, p. 34. 10. Nelson, p. 37. 11. Nelson, p. 41. 12. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 21-22. 13. Kenneth L. Adleman, "African Security, Facts and Fantasies," Comparative Strategy, 1 November 1980, p. 26, passism. 14. Thompson and Adloff, p. 23. 15. Nelson, p. 122. 16. Rene Lemarchand, "Chad, the Roots of Chaos," Current History, December 1981, p. 416. 17. Thompson and Adloff, p. 55. 18. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 51-54. 19. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 45-46. 20. Nelson, p. 225. 21. Thompson and Adloff, p. 46. 22. Nelson, p. 226. 23. Lemarchand, p. 416. 24. New York Times, 16 October 1974, p. 4. 25. Thompson and Adloff, p. 47. 26. Lemarchand, p. 417. 27. Thompson and Adloff, p. 1. 28. "What Happened in Chad?", West Africa, 21 April 1975, p. 442. 29. Thompson and Adloff, p. 48. 30. Charles Monaghan, ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1975), pp. 258-259. 31. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 46-49. Chapter II 1. Monaghan, p. 259. 2. Monaghan, p. 259. 3. Monaghan, p. 281. 4. Thompson and Adloff, p. 65. 5. Monaghan, p. 282. 6. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 66-67. 7. Monaghan, p. 322. 8. Thompson and Adloff, p. 43. 9. Henry J. Schulte, Jr., ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1974), p. 423. 10. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 62-63. 11. Thomspon and Adloff, p. 63. 12. Schulte, p. 423. 13. Monaghan, p. 920. 14. Thompson and Adloff, p. 70. 15. Bob Hollingsworth, ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1976), p. 696 Chapter III 1. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 63-64. 2. "Machets Diars," West Africa, 21 April 1975, p. 445. 3. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 79. 4. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 85-86. 5. Lemarchand, p. 436. 6. Lemarchand, p. 436. 7. Thompson and Adloff, p. 88. 8. Thompson and Adloff, pp. 89-90. 9. Stephen Orlofsky, ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1980, p 221. 10. Orlofsky, pp. 311, 390. 11. Thompson and Adloff, p. 137. 12. Orlofsky, p. 965. 13. Thompson and Adloff, p. 139. 14. Oye Ogunbadejo, "Quadaffi's Northern African Design," International Security, Summer, 1983, p. 161. 15. U.S. Department of State, "Challenge to Regional Security in Africa: the U.S. Response," Current Policy, No. 431, October, 1982, p. 2. 16. Stephen Orlofsky, ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1981), p. 199. New York Times, 16 March 1981, p. 4. 17. Thompson and Adloff, p. 140. 18. New York Times, 10 January 1981, p. 3. 19. New York Times, 15 March 1981, p. 4. 20. Orlofsky (1981), p. 199. 21. Orlofsky (1981), p. 200. 22. New York Times, 19 September 1981, p. 4. 23. New York Times, 19 October 1981, p. 3. 24. New York Times, 28 October 1981, p. 3. 25. New York Times, 31 October 1981, p. 2. 26. Ogunbadejo, p. 161. 27. Orlofsky (1981), p. 803. 28. U.S. Department of State, p. 2. 29. Robert Fraser, ed., Keesings Contemporary Archives, 27 August-3 September 1982, p. 31677. 30. Stephen Orlofsky, ed., Facts on File Yearbook (New York, 1982), p. 442. 31. Time, 21 June 1982, p. 47. 32. Fraser, p. 31680. 33. Orlofsky (1982), p. 830. 34. U.S. Department of State Bulletin No. 2078, September 1983, p. 50. 35. The Guardian, 4 January 1983, n.p. 36. New York Times, 28 February 1983, p. .3. 37. New York Times, 18 March 1983, p. 2. 38. New York Times, 18 March 1983, p. 2. 39. New York Times, 18 May 1983, p. 4. 40. New York Times, 24 June 1983, p. 3. 41. New York Times, 26 June 1983, p. 4. 42. New York Times, 30 June 1983, p. 2. 43. New York Times, 26 June 1983, p. 4. 44. New York Times, 26 June 1983, p. 4. 45. The Economist, 2-8 July 1983, p. 33. 46. New York Times, 30 June 1983, p. 2. 47. Leon Dash, "Foreign Intervention Unlikely to End War in Chad," Washington Post, 30 August 1983, p. 15. 48. The Economist, 23-29 July 1983, p. 32. 49. The Economist, 6-12 August 1983, p. 27. 50. New York Times, 3 August 1983, p. 3. 51. New York Times, 2 August 1983, p. 2. 52. Wall Street Journal, 4 August 1983, p. 2. 53. New York Times, 4 August 1983, p. 2. 54. Chester A. Crocker, "Reagan Administrations Africa Policy: A Policy Report," Current Policy No. 527. November 1983, p. 2. 55. U.S. State Department, Special Report Number 111, p. 4. 56. New York Times, 5 August 1983, p. 3. 57. New York Times, 6 August 1983, p. 1. 58. Le Monde (Paris), 5 August 1983, p. 1. 59. Tiem, 22 August 1983, p. 34. 60. Time, 22 August 1983, p. 34. 61. Baltimore Sun, 12 August 1983, p. 2. 62. Paris AFP English broadcast, 1413 GMT, 10 August 1983. 63. Paul Webster, Hartford Courant (Hartford, Connecticut), 19 August 1983, p. 1. 64. The Economist, 27 August-2 September 1983, p. 22. 65. The Economist, 27 August-2 September 1983, p. 27. 66. The Economist, 24-30 September 1983, p. 33. Chapter IV 1. Carl Von Clausewitz, 2. Margaret A. Novicki, ed., Africa Report, September- October 1983, p. 29. Annotated Bibliography Books Nelson, Harold D., ed.g Area Handbook for Chad. Superintendant of Documents, Washington, D.C., 1968. A collection of relevant background material concerning Chad, including historical data and geographical data. Though the book was dated, the historical material was excellent, and much of the geographical data was also of use. Thompson, Virginia, and Richard Adloff, Conflict in Chad. University of California, Berkely, Institute of International Studies, 1981. A recent and well written study of the revolutionary conflict in Chad, beginning with historical material as it relates to the present conflict, and analyzing the causes and history of the war. An invaluable background of the fighting since 1981. Periodicals "Facts on File Yearbook", New York, 1974-1983. This collection of current events, compiled from news media sources worldwide, was of great assistance for understanding the later years of the conflict, because it compiled the events relating to Chad in a concise manner.
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