Why don’t the Mythbusters bust the myth about Western Sahara?

We tend to see things that we have heard mentioned many times, but have no first-hand knowledge of, as truths. Some times consciously, other times subconsciously.

We believe that cars explode when they hit the ground after having tumbled of cliffs. We believe that Jesus was nailed to the cross by his hands. And we believe that the vikings had horns on their helmets. We also tend to sort of believe that things we haven’t heard of do not exist or occur.

But all three of these propositions are in fact myths, however widely held they might be. They have been disproved by the Mythbusters, a popular TV programme that tests the credibility of well-known myths, and scientists, respectively. And many of the things we are unaware of actually happen, even though they get no mention in the media (where we get most of our information from).

All this certainly holds true for the conflict in Western Sahara – a country that Morocco has colonised for over 35 years, whilst illegally selling off their resources and brutally suppressing the population. This Western Saharan conflict is happening regardless of the fact that we are generally unaware of it – a little like the refrigerator light that automatically turns of when we close the fridge door.

But the widely held view that the occupation of Western Sahara is sort of okay, at least a long as the EU makes a healthy profit from it from e.g. the fisheries agreement between the EU and Morocco, should be tested and busted. For it is obvious to anyone who has bothered to grasp the conflict that this view is a myth.

And actually, we don’t really need the Mythbusters to bust it because the UN, the International Court of Justice, and many others with them have being busting it continuously since 1975. Most of us have just not heard about this and choose to remain in the realm of either the myth or of ignorance.

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