A Black Corps D'Elite: An Egyptian Sudanese Conscript Battalion with the French Army in Mexico, 1863-1867, and in Subsequent African History
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BeschreibungThis is the story, recorded in detail for the first time, of an exotic incident in African-American relations in the mid-nineteenth century. Secretly, on the night of 7-8 January 1863, an under-strength battalion of 446 officers and men with one civilian interpreter sailed from Alexandria, Egypt in a French troopship for service with the French expeditionary force in Mexico. They were being dispatched by the ruler of Egypt at the urgent request of Emperor Napoleon III to replace French troops who were dying of yellow fever in unacceptable numbers in France's ill-fated 1863-1867 campaign to establish an imperial presence in Mexico. Most of the Sudanese troops had been forcibly acquired by the Egyptian government, which avoided the stigma of slavery by emancipating them at enlistment and holding them as military conscripts for the rest of their working lives. The French command at Veracruz was ill-equipped to receive this utterly un-French battalion. The reasons for this lay possibly in restricted attitudes, which made little provision for understanding the ways of non-European people. Even so, a sense of common humanity ultimately prevailed. In four years of patrolling and campaigning together, the Sudanese were never goaded into mutiny and the French developed a permanent admiration for their African allies. A Black Corps d'Elite follows these Sudanese soldiers as they embark on their journey and describes in detail their experiences in a distant and extremely foreign land. Hill and Hogg frame this story with unsurpassed descriptions of how the French and the Mexicans viewed Sudanese fighters, and how the conscripts' participation in this war was received in contemporary American andEuropean circles.
Untertitel: Sprache: Englisch.
Verlag: MICHIGAN STATE UNIV PR
Erscheinungsdatum: Mai 1995
Seitenanzahl: 214 Seiten