For those who believe Africa was decolonized decades ago, it’s time to wake up from dream-world. True, colonial European powers no longer impose direct rule on African nations, which are nominally “independent.” But those European countries, beaten back from their African colonies in the second half of the twentieth century, had no intention of losing their investments or access to Africa’s vast mineral wealth. So, with the help of groups like the CIA, Europeans and Americans covertly recolonized the continent, with bribes, murders, loans, privatizations (aka looting) and the installation of western-friendly regimes.
The latest and most noxious of these colonial iterations is the U.S. military’s AFRICOM, although a French oligarch “controls 16 West African ports through bribery and influence peddling,” as Margaret Kimberley recounted in Black Agenda Report, December 1. “Canadian companies control gold mining in Burkina Faso, Mali and D.R.C.…British soldiers are still stationed in Kenya.” So the west never stopped strangling African nations. In this effort, the vile 1961 assassination of Patrice Lumumba was key. Needless to say, the CIA was involved up to its eyeballs.
As Congo’s first freely elected leader after the Belgian rout, Lumumba made the honest mistake of trusting western democratic ideals. Then, when he discovered they were phony,
— source counterpunch.org | Eve Ottenberg | Dec 31, 2021
The sun was rising over one of the richest mineral deposits on Earth, in one of the poorest countries, as Sidiki Mayamba got ready for work.
Mayamba is a cobalt miner. And the red-dirt savanna stretching outside his door contains such an astonishing wealth of cobalt and other minerals that a geologist once described it as a “scandale geologique.”
This remote landscape in southern Africa lies at the heart of the world’s mad scramble for cheap cobalt, a mineral essential to the rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that power smartphones, laptops and electric vehicles made by companies such as Apple, Samsung and major automakers.
But Mayamba, 35, knew nothing about his role in this sprawling global supply chain. He grabbed his metal shovel and broken-headed hammer from a corner of the room he shares with his wife and child. He pulled on a dust-stained jacket. A proud man, he likes to wear a button-down shirt even to mine. And he planned to
— source washingtonpost.com | Todd C. Frankel | Sep 30, 2016
An appeals court has ruled the Securities and Exchange Commission cannot force companies to disclose whether minerals in their products come from the war-torn country the Democratic Republic of Congo because the mandatory labeling would violate the companies’ freedom of speech. Human rights groups have long pushed for mandatory labeling of so-called “conflict minerals” in order to allow consumers and investors to avoid fueling the bloody conflict through the purchase of their products. The mandatory labeling became law as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act. But this week, a court ruled in favor of corporate trade groups seeking to overturn the measure.
human dont have freedom of speech. only companies have that.
Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act itself got repealed. thats what act means.
Joe Emersberger interviewed Justin Podur regarding his new book about a conflict few understand thanks to, among other things, “Africanist” scholars.
Joe Emersberger: Your book is aimed at understanding the war in the DR Congo that killed an estimated 5 million people since 1998.
Justin Podur: I see it as about a fifteen year event that began in 1990 when the RPF [led by Paul Kagame] invaded Rwanda. That ended, arguably, sometime from 2003 to 2006. It was the same people fighting for the same general reasons. There were breaks, never very long breaks, in the fighting.
JE: Your book spends a lot of time refuting “Africanists” – the supposed experts who are like the Middle East specialists whom Edward Said called “Orientalists”.
Podur: Said didn’t coin that term. That’s what those people called themselves – the tradition started with a group of scholars whom Napoleon brought to Egypt when he invaded. That tradition continued of Western scholars being the ones to explain and interpret the East. In recent decades, scholars from
— source counterpunch.org | Jul 31, 2020
On Jan. 17 1961, the African leader and first head of government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Patrice Lumumba was brutally murdered in a heinous crime that after almost 60 years remains unsolved; yet his legacy endures spreading across free peoples in Africa and the world.
Lumumba led the Democratic Republic of the Congo to independence on Jun. 30, 1960 after more than half a century that the country became “private property” of Belgium’s King Leopold II since 1880 and then a Belgian colony since 1908.
The African leader wanted the decolonization of his country but even more, he wanted to totally eradicate the European colonialist power present in Africa, pushing out the abuse and plundering that the continent had suffered for centuries.
— source telesurenglish.net | 17 Jan 2020
An international advocacy group has launched a lawsuit against some of the world’s largest tech companies for the deaths and injuries of child miners in Congolese cobalt mines. International Rights Advocates brought the case on behalf of 14 Congolese families whose children were killed or injured while mining for cobalt. The metal is key ingredient in the rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that power most electronic devices. The defendants named in the suit include Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Tesla and Google’s parent company, Alphabet.
The lawsuit accuses those companies of “knowingly benefiting from and aiding and abetting the cruel and brutal use of young children.” It has not been tested in court.
Siddharth Kara, a public policy lecturer at Harvard Kennedy School, has been looking into the conditions at Congolese cobalt mines for years. His research is the foundation of the lawsuit.
— source cbc.ca | John McGill | Dec 17, 2019