For Karl Marx, there was an historic necessity for States to wither away in anticipation of an idyllic communist society capable of auto-regulating economic imbalances and empowering the masses. The towering revolutionary author of Das Kapital would have been flabbergasted to see his prophecy realised, not under the flagship of communism, but that of the globalisation of the … [Read more...] about Toward an African energy doctrine
The late President Mobutu Sese Seko of former Zaire once declared that the North African countries, which pride themselves on their Arabic descent, should be excluded from the then Organization of African Unity. Mobutu's rule was, of course, deeply flawed, but he was not alone within the pan-African movement in such thinking. The antagonism between the blacks of sub-Saharan … [Read more...] about Overcoming Africa’s North-South Divide
Ever since the Berlin conference of 1883, which Belgium’s King Leopold II called “the sharing of Africa’s cake,” the West has assumed exclusive rights over sub-Saharan Africa. But, while centuries of struggle to end colonial rule and apartheid have not changed this much, now Western influence is being challenged by China, which likewise covets Africa’s rich reserves of minerals … [Read more...] about China’s Grand Africa Strategy
Ever since the Berlin conference in 1883 in what Leopold II, the king of Belgium, had dubbed “the sharing of Africa’s cake”, Western countries tend to have assumed exclusive rights over the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Centuries of struggle for political and economic freedom to free themselves from colonial rule, remove apartheid and win their independence did not change … [Read more...] about China explosive drive into sub-Saharan Africa
Why are the countries of sub-Saharan Africa the poorest in the world? One reason is the set of ill-designed development strategies that the IMF and the World Bank have implemented in the region for nearly half a century. But the centuries-old culture of leadership that is ingrained in many African societies has played an equally disastrous role. Indeed, the overwhelming … [Read more...] about Sub-Saharan Africa’s Leadership to Nowhere
Institute for peace support and conflict management (IFK) Africa-Workshop January 26th to 27th, 2006: Sorting Out the Mess: Wars, Conflicts and Conflict Management in West Africa To assess the expectations West Africa can look forward to from Europe, there is, first, the need to understand the root causes of the problems that have beset the populations and the … [Read more...] about West African expectations of Europe
Sub-Saharan Africa's appalling poverty and living conditions have been exposed repeatedly through television and the Internet. But these agonizing pictures represent only the symptoms of an underlying - and largely unreported - malady: capital flight. Capital flight stems from myriad causes: debt servicing, the awarding to foreign firms of almost all contracts financed by … [Read more...] about Starving for Capital in Sub-Saharan Africa
It takes a threat to oil supplies to get world leaders to pay attention to Africa . Usually neglected by globetrotting statesmen, the continent recently saw visits from US President George W. Bush, Chinese President Hu Jintao, Brazil 's Lula Da Silva, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and many other world leaders. Their public comments were typically devoted to development, … [Read more...] about Africa ‘s Oil Rush
The success that US President George W. Bush and his special envoy, former Secretary of State James Baker, had in getting Iraq's foreign debts canceled or rescheduled shows what can be done when a policy is backed by political will. The contrast with Africa's debts could hardly be starker. Just three years ago, Jubilee 2000 made news when civil society groups, rock stars, and a … [Read more...] about Africa’s Debt Dilemma
France's unchallenged political, economic, and military domination of its former sub-Saharan African colonies is rooted in a currency, the CFA franc. Created in 1948 to help France control the destiny of its colonies, fourteen countries--Benin, Burkina-Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Togo, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Bissau … [Read more...] about How the French Plunder Africa
The African Union, which replaced the Organization for African Unity (OAU) in 2002, is trying to reproduce the European Union's institutions and ways of acting. But copying the EU blueprint means that nothing has been learned from the past and that nothing is being done to avoid the pitfalls Europe has endured. The biggest flaw in the EU model has been its reliance on a … [Read more...] about Should Africa Follow the EU Model ?
Background The yearning for regional cooperation and economic integration in Africa was born in the United States within the pan-African movement in the 19th Century and has been kept alive ever since among the masses, the elite and the members of the Diaspora. This hope is so compelling that all African leaders have felt obliged to put it heartedly or opportunistically on … [Read more...] about The African Union : A need to go back to the drawing board
Background The yearning for regional cooperation and economic integration in Africa was born in the United States within the pan-African movement in the 19th Century and has been kept alive ever since among the masses, the elite and the members of the Diaspora. This hope is so compelling that all African leaders have felt obliged to put it heartedly or lukewarmly on their … [Read more...] about How best can the EU support the new AU Key Questions for Contact Person
NEPAD, the last plan to kick-start Africa's economic development adopted by the OAU in Lusaka (Zambia) on July, 11, 2001, is articulated around investment in the key sectors of infrastructure, agriculture, health and education. The plan is to be financed by the international community and through private capital flows, mainly from the multinationals. In choosing this way of … [Read more...] about NEPAD : the wrong plan ?
The Heads of African States, some of whom would not hesitate to shun an OAU meeting but would rush to meet the French President at the bi-annual gathering, display everlasting dependence whose foundations are made up of a scar and a web. Nothing illustrates better the incapacity of Francophone African leaders to break away from the former coloniser than the declaration, in … [Read more...] about Franc Zone must go