Wednesday, September 05, 2007

TONIGHT ON THE TERRORDOME: The Ravaging of Africa, Parts 1 of 2

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From time to time, media personalities in the West discuss the difficulties faced by Afrikan countries in achieving economic, social and political stability and prosperity. Sometimes ordinary citizens tackle the same issue.

What’s all too common is the notion, conveyed overtly or covertly, that the agonies faced by the continent are entirely homegrown. That if Afrikans would only stop complaining and blaming European civilisation, they could achieve much more than they have. Indeed, such sentiments were made recently by no less than French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who went so far as to say that calls for Afrika to resume its historical greatness are useless, since according to him, no such greatness ever existed, because “Africans have never really entered history.”

It’s terrifying to know that a man of such stunning depths of ignorance controls one of the world’s most powerful militaries and a stockpile of hundreds of nuclear weapons. Yet such attitudes are common enough right here in North America. The next time you hear the sentiment that Afrikans should simply “get over it,” meaning the holocausts of slavery and imperialism, the murder of scores of millions and the continued plunder of the continent, you might want to remind the speaker that Ireland took more than 800 years following English conquest to achieve economic, political and social stability, and Northern Ireland has only just recently entered an uneasy peace. And despite English tyranny against and exploitation and murder of the Irish, Ireland never faced the comprehensive destruction that Afrika faced by Europe.

Tonight we’ll hear parts one and two of a documentary examining the effects of European imperialism on the Afrikan continent. Part Two, “Economic War,” focuses on how the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have destroyed the economies and social sectors of Guinea, Zambia, Kenya and South Africa. But we begin in Part One, “Militarizing Afrika,” which describes how the United States fomented the devastating war in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and engineered the Ethiopian invasion of Somalia. The series is written by Asad Ismi and produced by Kristin Schwartz.

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