On April 20, 2021, as he was preparing to commence his sixth term in office, it was officially announced that Chadian President Idriss Déby Itno had died on the battlefield. He was immediately and unconstitutionally replaced by his son, General Mahamat Idriss Déby, at the head of a fourteen-strong transitional military council, to great international acclaim. This contribution attempts to spell out what this series of events and Déby’s career can tell us about current Chadian politics and the nature of the Chadian state more generally.

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