posted on Jul, 20 2005 @ 04:58 AM
Before I start with this one, let me say I could be way off base. I could be overestimating America's interest in opening up mineral resources in
Africa, I could be severely underestimating the ability of efforts by America and friends to break the stranglehold that the IMF and others keep on
African nations, and there is a chance that India could use their relations with much of East Africa to hijack any progress there and deliver a good
part of the benefits to themselves or even China if they so chose.
This scenario however works on a view of the future economic situation as a struggle by Western nations to remain competitive with China by
manipulating trying to depress the price of raw materials and keep a steady flow of those resources to alternate producers such as India, Taiwan,
Mexico, etc as opposed to China. I'm glossing over certain concerns (such as military interventions and peace keeping) for the most part to focus on
the potential for a Western push to build an economic community in East Afica, but don't think that I don't realize how much time, effort, and money
it will all take. I'm looking at a 100+ year outlook where those investments may be worthwhile. However plausible this idea is, and regardless of
whether or not it is actually carried out, I do tend to see purpose when our attention is called to any given situation. Given the attention being
drawn to Sudan, I tend to think that we have plans of some sort there, and the following is what I would be pushing for by way of military and
financial assisstance if I were running the show for Western governments- especially the US.
I've long believed that colonialism in Africa is only over in name. The system works very much like it always did. The colonies export raw materials
at the profit of a few wealthy rulers, who then turn around and spend their wealth on buying finished goods from the ruling power, with very little
money remaining in the colonized nation or working to the benefit of the people there.
We have African nations growing tea and coffee instead of food because the wealthy there make more money on that- then they spend that money on buying
products from us, since there isn't much being produced domestically. Of course this severely chokes the ability of the common man to eat, or of the
nation to build infrastructure to increase production and thereby better the lot of the common man, but that's OK because it's easiest for the West
and ensures the power of the ruling class in the nation in question.
That is changing though, and I think the fact that the West is paying any attention at all to the Sudan (especially America's recent warming up to
the new government there) is an indication of the coming change. China can export more goods for less money than America, and this will allow China's
to continue to dominate the world economy from the demand side no matter how many new resource markets the US manages to open up through it's covert
activities and war efforts (such as the move we made in Afghanistan to open up the flow of Turkmenistan's natural gas).
America now must build local economies and strong diplomatic ties in resource-rich areas, thereby limiting China's ability to carry out the
neo-colonial trade practices I described above, and thus keeping new resource markets (especially those in Africa) open and neuteral.
North-East Africa is a good place to start, and we are going to work our way right down the East Coast of the Dark Continent, all the way to Zimbabwe,
Mozambique, and possibly South Africa. (South African participation in BRICS may make that tougher unless we can pull India and Brazil, as well as
Brazils neighbors, more towards our side)
Our interest in Sudan could go one of several ways, but it seems the most likely may to be support the seccession of the 10 automous provinces in the
south, as well as their acquisition of the Blue Nile and South Kordofan provinces. Blue Nile is home to a hydroelectric grid which supplies more than
half of Sudan's power, and Kordofan along with the rest of the South contain significant gas and oil reserves, possibly sufficient to meet all of
Sudan's needs if fully exploited.
These areas will be dependent on Kenya, as well as Eritrea via Ethiopia for access to the sea, and they are far more likely than the arabized Islamic
North to enjoy good relations with their neighbors to the South.
Our probable goal seems to be that once the media has drawn sufficient attention to Sudan, there will be a push to change the subject from Darfur to
the South, gain independence for the South, and forge an economic community between Southern Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda- hoping that economics
will begin to overshadow ethnic rivalries.
With proper development of irrigation systems and entrepeneurship, Southern Sudan can more than supply food for itself and its more mountainous
neighbors, with a little help from what arable land its neighbors do possess. Southern Sudan and Eithiopia also possess sufficient hydro-electric and
thermal energy to help Kenya overcome it's power shortage and begin to industrialize Kenya's coast, which could potentially become a hub for trade
With Southern Sudan being used as the granary of the region it will be necessary for transportation industries to be further developed in neighboring
nations, especially the Northern area of Kenya and South Eastern Ethiopia- where mountains do not pose such an obstacle to movement.
Once the regional economy is providing sufficient food, contruction, and electricity, the battle is half won. It will be time to send in our companies
to exploit their mineral wealth and get a return on the investment. This is where the move South comes in as well. In addition to cheap local labor,
our mining operations will likely want cheap local hardware as opposed to having parts shipped in from the West.
Tanzania- one of the poorest countries on Earth. more than half to the GDP is from agriculture, but only 4% of the land is arable. They've got plenty
of mineral wealth- especially gold, and plenty of land. If they had the electricity and the aid, they've got plenty of workforce and plenty of room
for industrial growth. If the infrastructure existed for the import of electricity from Sudan and Ethiopia, they'd need to develop an industrial base
to pay for their imports. They've got the stability- perhaps amazingly considering their demogaphics- all that is needed is available resources from
neighboring countries which could be bought with aid to stimulate development.
When the infrastructure of this community reaches Tanzania, the next stop is Mozambique- and then we finally get our access to Zimbabwe. Granted it
will probably be 50 years before we've gotten this far, that may be about as soon as we can really do anything about them.
Of course on top of this all there is the huge problem of AIDS, especially when you get further South. Frankly I have no idea what we're going to do
about it. As far as I'm concerned, we're looking at the inevitable economic collapse of most of the heavily infected nations unless compulsory
testing, sterilization, and quarantine are instituted, and I see that happening only shortly before hell freezes over. That may prove to be a serious
barrier to much of this scenario, especially anywhere beyond Tanzania.