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|“||While revolutionaries as individuals can be murdered, you cannot kill ideas.||„|
|~ Thomas Sankara a week before his death.|
Thomas Isidore Noël Sankara (December 21th, 1949 - October 15th, 1987) was a French African Marxist and Pan-African revolutionary and president of Burkina Faso. He was responsible for the Revolution of Upper Volta and responsible for taking many tribes into concentration camps.
Born in Yako, French Upper Volta, he spent his early years in Gaoua and spent school in Bobo Dioulasso. When he was an adult, his mother wanted him to be a priest but he decided to go to the military where he saw the many problems in French Upper Volta and this leads him into learning about Marxism.
He went into the military at the age of 20 in 1966 to a military camp in Madagascar, where he trained to become a Military officer. In 1971 and 1972, he witnessed and was inspired by the uprising against Philibert Tsiranana and his government. This is also where he was learned and inspired by Marxism and Leninism and inspired to liberate Upper Volta. When he got back from Masacascre in 1974, he partook in the border war between Upper Volta itself and Mali and because of his presence, he was hailed as a hero by the people. Years later, however, he would acknowledge it as "useless and unjust" due to how it played out.
In 1976, he trained as an officer for the Commander Training Centre in Pô. During the presidency of Saye Zerbo, he and other military officers formed the group the Regroupement des officiers communistes or ROC, with members such as Henri Zongo, Jean Bastiste Boukary Lingani, Blaise Compaoré, and Thomas Sankara himself. At this point from September of 1981 to November 2nd, 1982, he became the Secretary of State for Information in the military but he resigned due to the anti-labor laws. In January of 1983, he became a Prime Minister but was dismissed 5 months later on May 17th and placed under house arrest along with Henri Zongo and Jean Bastiste. He was visited by Jean-Christophe Mitterrand before the arrest.
On August 4th, 1983, a coup d'etat resulted in Thoma Sankara being the President of Upper Volta, renaming it Burkina Faso in 1984. As president, he managed to fix up Burika Faso by setting up proper education, helping the poor with proper sufficiency, gave women more rights (e.g. banning the African tradition of female genital mutilation and forced marriages upon women) and illegalizing polyamory/polygamy. However, during his reign, he put landowners into labor camps, unfairly fired 2,500 teachers over a strike in 1987, broke the Agacher strip law about sovereignty by causing a war in Mali on December 31st, 1985 (which directly/indirectly the death of 100 people).
The crimes committed by Thomas resulted in Amnesty International and many other humanitarian groups such as the UN criticized Thomas Sankara for his dictatorship, him being responsible for the deaths of Mali citizens and creating the Popular Revolutionary Tribunal laws, which they outline the fact that most criminals where humiliated by the people and how it didn't conform to the humanitary standards. He was accused of violation of human rights and it was evidence through a study where it shows about how much rights due Thomas Sankara's regime has, which resulted in none.
Death and Legacy
On October 15th, 1987, the USA and the CIA teamed up Sankara's former associate, Blaise Compaoré and started a coup d'etat against Thomas Sankara. He was executed, his body dismembered and buried in an unmarked grave. Charles Taylor was revealed to be the orcastrator by former Liberian warlord, Prince Johnson.
After his death, all his policies were reversed by Blaise Compaoré and rejoined with International Monetary Fund and World Bank in order to fix Thomas's impact on Upper Volta.
- During his time in Ouagadougou, he briefly joined a band called "Tout-à-Coup Jazz".
Thomas Sankara in Real life heroes wiki