Archive for April 16th, 2012

16/04/2012

A U.S. Military Command to Grab Africa’s Natural and Mineral Resources

Human Wrongs Watch

By Robert Lacville – TRANSCEND* – In 2008, George W. Bush authorized the creation of AFRICOM, the Pentagon’s African Command. Why?

**A retouched image of Seal of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM)

A paper written in 2002 by the influential, right-wing think tank Heritage Foundation, proposed that the Pentagon should create a unified command structure to assure American interests in Africa.

“With its vast natural and mineral resources,” wrote Heritage Foundation, “Africa remains strategically important to the West, as it has been for hundreds of years, and its geostrategic significance is likely to rise in the 21st century.”

According to the National Intelligence Council, “the United States is likely to draw 25 per cent of its oil from West Africa by 2015, surpassing the volume imported from the Persian Gulf”, the study reported.

The interests of the USA could be assured, wrote the authors, by using local allies to fight American battles. Any objective observer analyzing wars in Congo, Somalia, South Sudan, Libya, and now in the Sahara Desert might conclude that the Heritage Foundation strategy has been put into practice with great success for the USA.

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16/04/2012

Kenya – Gold Fever Creates Harsh Working Conditions, Few Local Benefits

Human Wrongs Watch

By Brian Dabbs, Lolgorien, Kenya, Think Africa Press – Kenya’s gold mining industry creates harsh working conditions, environmental degradation and few local benefits.

A gold miner at an informal mine in Migori.

A few steps from an archaic, poorly-reinforced goldmine shaft plunging three hundred feet into the abyss, Christene Adongo toils away at her own small repository along Kenya’s Migori gold belt.

Weathered and fatigued by the early afternoon heat, the 52-year-old strikes stones hour after hour with a metal hoe to locate the elusive, glistening gold particles.

Adongo will not be reaping the benefits, however, of the highly lucrative, largely untouched reserves in southwest Kenya’s Nyanza Province. Her repository, her livelihood for the day, is a four-feet in diameter pit on the site of the unlicensed goldmine. With few other options for income, Adongo is targeting $3 in wages after 12 hours of excruciating labour.

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