A War without Images?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014: 10:45 AM
Room: Booth 50
Oral Presentation
Sad HADDAD , Saint Cyr Military Academy, France
A “war without images”? : Secrecy, information and communication during the war in Mali

As the international operation is still under way in Mali since January 11th 2013, the French armed forces played a huge role in the defeat of the jihad’s fighters. From the first days of the French commitment (i.e Operation Serval) to the Mali presidential polls (August 11TH 2013), this paper will deal first with the information and communication policy conducted by the French forces during this new “war on terror” both on the political and organizational sides (political discourses and structures). Is the war in Mali a “war without images and without facts” as French and foreign reporters described it? How the French authorities dealt with this traditional dilemma: the (French) people’s right to be informed and the need of secrecy, especially on the front line?  Based on the analysis of the political an institutional discourses and on interviews, this paper will explore all these questions.