France Debunks “Misrepresentation” Of Its Troops In Blockbuster Hit ‘Wakanda Forever’ 2

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The depiction of French soldiers in Black Panther 2 has angered France’s ministry of armed forces. In November, President Emmanuel Macron stressed that today “influence” is a “strategic priority”.

Sébastien Lecornu condemned Sunday (Feb. 12) what he called a “false” representation of his nation’s military from Marvel Studios.

A scene in the 2-hour-41 min film features bound French military personnel after they were dragged into a UN meeting by the Dora Milaje, Wakanda’s elite corp.

In the storyline, the men were arrested during a secret mission to a Wakandan base in Mali where they tried to steal vibranium, a fictional resource, mostly found in Wakanda.

The French military personnels who can be seen in the movie wore outfits that resemble those who real-life soldier from the counterterrorism Operation Barkhane wore.

The French minister’s tweet included a tribute to 58 real-life French soldiers who died in Mali.

The defence ministry told AFP that France was not calling for withdrawal or censorship of a work of art.

Battle of influence

After nearly 10 years in Mali, Operation Barkhane personnel had to leave Mali on the request of the authorities last year.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was released last year as France’s suffered a redeployment in the Sahel which is plagued by jihadi violence.

The minister’s comment which came months after the movie hit theatre are  in line with the nation’s new diplomatic strategy.

In November, President Emmanuel Macron stressed that today “influence” is a “strategic priority”.

The multiplication of so called anti-France protests in countries across the continent -including Central African Republic, South Africa, Chad, Burkina Faso or Niger- is seen by some experts as a signal of an increasingly contested role in some African affairs.

“We face a steamroller that plays with the perceptions of local people who are in existential difficulty” from war and famine, a French military source acknowledged earlier this month.

 

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