Mali, Algeria, Somalia, Libya, Congo, Egypt – Africa burns as The West launches yet another war for the control of natural resources and political domination.
It comes with a dreaded irony that fifty two years ago this week, President Dwight D. Eisenhower used his farewell speech to the nation to warn the country against the rise of what he called the military-industrial complex.
Sadly, his words, though they became iconic and well-remembered, were not heeded and his warning is now more relevant and critical than ever.
It is the coming together of vested interests across the military, politics and multinational corporate giants that dictate war is a booming business, especially in a time of western economic crisis.
“Tribalism and religion has always been exploited as a pretext to economic and imperial ambitions. We have always known this but how quick we are to forget”
Yamin Zakaria’s piece, titled “The Massacre of Muslim Civilians is always: ‘Self-Defence’ but never Terrorism” explores the nuances of who the media frame as terrorists. Although written about recent events in Gaza, you can easily replace “Palestine/Gaza” with so called “Militants/Islamists” that are the bogey terms in Mali & Algeria.
Former British soldier and now staunch opponent of the governments imperialist agenda, Joe Glenton was quick to point out the critical role of China in Mali.
Perhaps we should remember the role of Margaret Thatchers son, Mark “Scratcher” in the failed coup d’état attempt in Equatorial Guinea, along with his Etonian old boys, amongst them former British Army officer and mercenary Simon Francis Mann.
And as I sat here writing this, with the Channel 4 News playing in the background, Krish Guru Murthy, happens to mention in passing that “British mercenaries, the Stirling Group – are the on ground in Algeria offering advice & assistance”, of course it was mentioned in passing, as if it were purely irrelevant.
You can read more about the Stirling Group and how they were established in a brilliant expose by documentary maker Adam Curtis on his blog.
Or if you have time, I’d recommend you watch the documentary “The Mayfair Set” below:
As French war planes bomb Mali, there is one simple statistic that provides the key context: this west African nation of 15 million people is the eighth country in which western powers – over the last four years alone – have bombed and killed Muslims – after Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and the Philippines.
“across the countries which directly border Mali, there are sizeable assets at stake in the form of mines and gas fields….Niger supplies 7.5 per cent of the world’s uranium according to the World Nuclear Association, much of it to France”
Is it little wonder that President Hollande’s economic crisis back home in France is causing “French utility companies to cut costs and sell assets to shore up their balance sheets hit by high debt”
In fact, France are actually so broke that the French foreign minister Laurent Fabius has been going cap in hand to gain funding for their war, from non other than……“Rich Arab Gulf states in The Emirates”
“NATO’s strategic interests in North Africa, described in 2007 by State Department adviser J. Peter Pham as “protecting access to hydrocarbons and other strategic resources… a task which includes ensuring against the vulnerability of those natural riches and ensuring that no other interested third parties, such as China, India, Japan, or Russia, obtain monopolies or preferential treatment”
While our politicians crow about no “boots on the ground” we judge by their past form, and boy do they have it, after all, what were the SAS doing in Libya less than a year ago?
“Gaddafi approving an ‘agreement in principle to support the campaign for the candidate for the presidential elections, Nicolas Sarkozy, for a sum equivalent to 50 million euros (£40 million)”
The man that put the bullet into Gaddafi’s head was French secret service, sent by French President at the time Nicolas Sarkozy.
To ensure Gaddafi would never make it to an open court and start talking about his cosy relation with western leaders.
Other former western leaders, including ex British Prime Minister Tony Blair, were also extremely close to Gaddafi, visiting him regularly and helping to facilitate multi-million pounds business deals.
Maybe Gaddafi’s overthrow broke all kinds of local ethnic, tribal and commercial bargains and power-broking arrangements that the experts at the FCO never understood?
Not that the politicians will ever admit that their disastrous actions in Mali have had anything to do with Algeria, even if Kofi Annan says it does.
At the heart of the issue is a simple underlying factor.
“It’s the way money works that has locked us into an inevitable collision of two mutually exclusive operating principles. A manmade requirement for infinite growth that collides with a man-sustaining and unyielding finite planet resources”
The lands that are portrayed as “The Third World” are heavily rich in natural resources. What they lack is the technology owned by the western nations to extract and commodify the abundance of mineral wealth that lies a few metres below their feet.
This is why our Government has allowed dozens of multinational companies a full and access privileged access to the heart of our so called democratic process.
The minister for trade Lord Green launched the “strategic relations” initiative in July 2011, giving 38 companies, including oil, telecoms and pharmaceutical giants, a direct line to ministers and officials.
Companies such as Google, Vodafone & Starbucks are paying little or no UK tax and making “sweetheart” deals with tax authorities. Why is it that Petro giant Shell has met with high ranking ministers within the Business, Culture, Energy and Climate Change departments, with at least 56 official meetings in the last 18 months?
The often crowed myth of us being a representative democracy is a lie. We are not a democracy, we are a plutocracy.
A plutocracy in which we see the coming together of military and economic interests to gain what they crave the most – money.
Add into this devilish mix of self interest is the media. In the run up to the Iraq invasion, Rupert Murdoch and his 175 newspaper editors worldwide all backed Bush’s policies in the Middle East, and were prominent in whipping up a frenzy to go to war.
So next time you switch on your television and are watching government propaganda on the BBC, and you see a group of Africans burning your flag, ask yourself this one simple question:
Who said imperialism was dead?
As usual – I welcome your comments below or you can reach me via Twitter @HotterThanCurry