Christophe Ayad, journalist at Le Monde and host, Hakim Khaldi, researcher, Célian Macé, journalist at Liberation and Rony Brauman, former president of MSF speak during a debate questioning the relevance and the related dilemmas to interventions in countries plagued by radical groups. MSF 50th anniversary festival in Pantin, June 2021.
In the media

Looking back on Rony Brauman's "Activist of Humanitarianism" career.

Rony Brauman

Medical doctor, specialized in tropical medicine and epidemiology. Involved in humanitarian action since 1977, he has been on numerous missions, mainly in contexts of armed conflicts and IDP situations. President of Médecins sans Frontières from 1982 to1994, he also teaches at the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI) and is a regular contributor to Alternatives Economiques. He has published several books and articles, including "Guerre humanitaires ? Mensonges et Intox" (Textuel, 2018), "La Médecine Humanitaire" (PUF, 2010), "Penser dans l'urgence" (Editions du Seuil, 2006) and "Utopies Sanitaires" (Editions Le Pommier, 2000).

France Culture

Rony Brauman looks back on his humanitarian career in the France Culture program "A voix nue". This series of podcasts (recorded in French) of 5 episodes entitled "Activist of Humanitarianism" is an opportunity for the former president of MSF to retrace the key events that have marked his career and explains - while trying to move away from the Bourdieusian biographical illusion - how his political commitment has structured his vision and his practices of humanitarian action. 

Episode 1 : « Waking up to the fights »

Born into a Zionist family, Rony Brauman was initiated into extreme left-wing activism with his legs and his fists as his first weapons. Between intellectual apprenticeship and street fights, he recounts an intense political awakening that is still full of questions.

Episode 2 : « Care across borders »

From his first contacts with medicine, Rony Brauman kept a fascination for the hospital. But it was when he became a bush doctor in Benin and then worked in refugee camps in Thailand that he understood his vocation: to provide emergency care.

Episode 3 : « Humanitarianism in movement »

At the beginning of the 1980s, humanitarian work became more organized. Rony Brauman took over as head of Médecins sans Frontières in 1982. The first years were turbulent, with strong internal debates and an impressive increase in the number of fields of action.

Episode 4 : « The lesser evil : aid and its dilemmas »

How to act as a humanitarian worker when aid is instrumentalized? When one becomes aware of the possibility of doing more harm than good despite oneself? Since the famine in Ethiopia in the 1980s, this question has never left Rony Brauman.

Episode 5 : « Overcoming compassion »

Since the beginning of the 1990s, wars have been waged in the name of humanitarianism. Rony Brauman is not an absolute pacifist and has himself called for armed intervention on several occasions, but he is opposed to the use of humanitarianism as a pretext for war. 

All episodes of the podcast "Militant de l'humanitaire" are available on France Culture.