Postcolonial Security: Britain, France, and West Africa's Cold War

ISBN : 9780198843023

Marco Wyss
352 ページ
156 x 234 mm

In light of the discrepancy between Britain's and France's postcolonial security roles in Africa, which seemed already determined half a decade after independence, this book studies the making of the postcolonial security relationship during the transfer of power and the early years of independence (1958-1966). It focuses on West Africa, and more specificially the newly independent states of Nigeria and Cote d'Ivoire, which rapidly evolved into key players in the postcolonial struggle for Africa. Based on research in fourteen archives in Africa, Europe, and the United States, Postcolonial Security comparatively investigates the establishment of formal defence relations, the disintegration of the Anglo-Nigerian 'special relationship' and the Franco-Ivorian 'neo-colonial collusion', the provision of British and French military assistance to their former colonies and the competition they faced from West Germany and Israel respectively, and the Anglo-American partnership in Nigeria and the Franco-American rivalry in Cote d'Ivoire. It demonstrates that whereas Britain was rapidly and increasingly pushed out of and replaced in the Nigerian security sector by western competitors, France succeeded in retaining its military foothold and pre-eminence in Cote d'Ivoire. Informed by postcolonial approaches, Postcolonial Security argues that while London's Cold War blinkers and Paris's neo-imperial agenda were part of the equation, the postcolonial security relationship was ultimately determined by the Nigerian and Ivorian elites, which in turn responded to their local and regional circumstances against the background of the Cold War in Africa.


Part I: Postcolonial Defence
1 The Anglo-Nigerian Defence Agreement
2 The Franco-Ivorian Cooperation Agreements
Part II: Neo-colonial Collusion?
3 The Demise of the Anglo-Nigerian Special Relationship
4 The Ivorian Regime and the French Security Guarantee
Part III: Military Assistance
5 British Leadership Questioned
6 A French Prerogative
Part IV: The United States
7 British Partner
8 French Rival


Marco Wyss (FRHistS, FHEA) is the Director of the Centre for War and Diplomacy and Reader in International History and Security at Lancaster University, a Research Fellow at the University of the Free State, and an Associate Fellow at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies. He is the editor of the International Journal of Military History and Historiography, and co-editor of Brill's New Perspectives on the Cold War book series. He is the author of Un Suisse au service de la SS (Alphil-Presses universitaires suisses, 2010),Arms Transfers, Neutrality and Britain's Role in the Cold War (Brill, 2013), and co-editor of Peacekeeping in Africa (Routledge, 2014),Neutrality and Neutralism in the Global Cold War (Routledge, 2016), The Handbook of European Defence Policies and Armed Forces (Oxford University Press, 2018) and Europe and China in the Cold War (Brill, 2018).