“I remember me as a kid, just being raised around people in a third world country and not having the oppor-tunity to become what I became today.” French says. “It’s so crazy how I ended up in the States and made it happen.” His whole life since leaving has been predicated on the belief that he escaped, but in Morocco, it’s clear that the reality is more complicated. In Casablanca, Karim Kharbouch might’ve become one of his cousins: a young, successful citizen of the world. Instead he went to America, was abandoned there by the man who was supposed to take care of him, and became French Montana. “Whatever he did has made me who I am,” he says about his father. For that he’s both grateful and more than a little sad.