vendredi 31 août 2012

Europeans, too different to agree *

         Than the gap between the economic performance of EU countries, it is the cultural gaps between the Europeans who are the main obstacle to the creation of a truly homogeneous community. It is therefore not surprising that we have so much trouble to build it.
Many have tried to unify Europe. All there are broken teeth: Attila, Charlemagne, Napoleon, Hitler. The latest attempt is that of the European Union. Which has not made Flamberge wind, Europe has become, since the end of WWII, continent pacifist, but harmless means such as goodwill, common institutions, laws and regulations .         
 The euro is the last and probably the most daring of these initiatives in favor of a unified Europe.
The origin of modern European political project, even if the focus has been on since the beginning of the economy. Community coal and steel industries was to leave for the war in the context of the nation-state to prevent new conflicts.
         National economies were to meet in a single market without borders and gradually converge towards each other.
The project was not based simply on the supremacy of the economy but also on the idea that economic rationality would allow the emergence of a common understanding in other areas in order to create a set that looks like United States of Europe.

The most complex region of the world.

The economy has undoubtedly played a decisive role when it came to Europe in the shelter of the war, and in this sense, European cooperation has been a great success since 1945.
Economic cooperation but not enough for what we build today, the euro crisis teaches us that this cooperation has its limits, which are actually historical and cultural. Because Europe is undoubtedly the region of the world that is more complex.
In a space small, more than 300 million people are trying to form a union when it is not necessary to go far to not understand what the other is saying, to find people who eat and drink things that we do not know who sing other songs that celebrate other heroes who maintain another but also with respect to time, other dreams and other demons.
But underlying these differences are never or rarely mentioned. Are masked by a discourse in which all Europeans appear naturally welded to the rest of the world, while a Swedish will probably have more in common with a Canadian or a New Zealander with a Ukrainian or Greek.
It is likely that this is primarily due to our cultural differences - not political or economic - that European history is littered with war and violence, starting with the most terrible wars that humanity is known, and which were at the bottom as European civil wars.
Yet it seems that all this is forgotten or repressed. Or unknown. So that the European discourse that we used daily - the flag, Beethoven, Eurovision ... - has little to do with our European reality, he should rather be pure propaganda for a project that will not hear about cultural differences or mental, which are yet far deeper than our financial or material differences.

The Europe we do not want to believe.

In reality, it was not until the European crisis to open the eyes of the gap between rhetoric and reality. To our amazement, the crisis has shown us people who never paid taxes, which felt that others had to pay their debts to their place of despotism and accusing those who tended their hand. We did not know the existence of such Europeans and we do not believe it.
         This is the reality, and this is long as it lasts.
Who, outside experts, knew a year ago what clientelism? I have a friend who is a minister of Croatia since the beginning of the year.          This is not a ministry of leading, but still. I asked how many permanent staff are on the list of employees of the Ministry. Five cents. Five hundred? It seems a lot for a country like Croatia. How many employees would you need to develop the policy it intends to pursue?
The answer sounds like a thunderclap: thirty. "And you're thinking to dismiss the other 470?" Minister looks at both empathetic and mocking the north of the Alps simpleton that I am (without blond provided). No. Because she did not want to play with his life.          Especially since she has a son who goes to school on foot every day. And an accident can happen so quickly. Even when my girlfriend has left office, nearly 500 officials will continue to make every day in offices that do not exist to do a job that does not wait. They affect only wages exist in the real world.
That looks like our Europe. And note that the North is not strange that the South East that is not less than the West, and vice versa. It's all about perspective. Europe is neither more nor less than a honeycomb extremely fragile, composed of specific cultural, historical and mentally. No European really looks like another. And yet, we prefer to see a Europe not as a beam but as a honey pot, ready to eat.

* Article by Richard appeared in the newspaper Dangens Nyheter in Stockholm on 22 August 2012.

* Richard Swartz is a Swedish journalist and writer born in 1945 in Sweden. Based in Vienna since 1976, he has long been the correspondent of Eastern Europe Swedish daily Svenska Dgbladet and worked in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and Süddeutschde Zeitung. Since 2009, he writes for the editorial pages of Dangens Nyheter. He is the author of several books, including "Room Service, (Essays, The New Press, 1998) ", a collection of stories that have been translated into several languages.

jeudi 30 août 2012

Switzerland: The Holy Grail or the chamber pot of Adolf Hitler.

This is a section or rather a pot with fantastic figures which we do not really know what that can mean: bas-reliefs depicting warriors and gods. Its particularity: it is solid gold and it was drafted into the lake Chiemsee in Bavaria. It weighs 10.5 pounds.
         In 2005, a businessman buys it for 300,000 euros. He has a curious scenario in his head to pass it for the Holy Grail, the cup of Christ who gives eternal life. But here we're not in Hollywood but in Zurich, Switzerland.
         His script is not intended for the cinema, but a lot of money with his false Grail. He has seen and reviewed Indiana Jones films and speaking of the Grail. There will be a pigeon to bite the grain.

A scenario worthy of Hollywood?

         He begins by associating a group of investors by promising phenomenal gains.
         The Grail that gives eternal life any old European millionaire does not dream?
 With "ad hoc promotion, experts believe it could reach $ 1 billion,"
says he.
         In the country of
Nursultan Abishuly Nazarbayev, country of black gold,  who did not dream of eternal life? This is Svetlana K., the Kazakh falls, the first in the trap and loose the first million. Follow other "simpletons" who invest in the Grail, waiting for the day "J".
Its owners, ensures a gross income of 24,000 CHF per month.
         Enough to pay his debts and lead the good life in Zurich and offer a dream vacation until the game is discovered. The Supreme Court of Zürich condemns appeal him to 18 months imprisonment. And payment of amounts due.

But where does this mysterious object?

         Switzerland holds many mysteries. I do not know if Sion in Valais has something to do with the covenant of the Jews of Zion. 
The Egyptian Coptsîc Church already tried to recover the relics of Saint Maurice, when a Catholic Federal Councillor is appointed in Bern.
         Basel is the only Catholic diocese in the world to vote its bishops in the world.
         Ecône near Martigny, Valais, is the seat of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X, the traditionalist Catholic opponents of the Pope since 1970.
         The Pope  even has the duty to pray for the Aletsch Glacier in the towns of Fiesch and Fieschertal in the Upper Valais does not melt.
         500 Papal guards guarding the Vatican and ensure the safety of the Holy Father come exclusively from the Valais and Basel are selected according to immutable rules since the sixteenth century.
         If Pilatus Mount, the hill overlooking the city of Lucerne, seems to have hosted Pontius Pilate, the Roman procurator who condemned Jesus Christ. Why would not the Grail landed in Switzerland and all other mysterious treasures of the world?
         It was in Switzerland that was the legal custodian of the copyrights of Adolf Hitler and Nazi dignitaries, the Vaudois François Genoud.

 The chamber pot of Adolf Hitler.

         The scammer of Zürich knew and told anyone who would listen: he possessed the Grail. This cut mythical supernatural powers meant to ensure that led behind bars.
         In any case, until proven otherwise, nobody was able to clarify the origin of the gold cup. 
The mystery remains!     
         Some think it is an object of worship Celtic, others believe that it is a forged under the Third Reich. On the shores of Lake Chiemsee in Bavaria, where the container was recovered, the Grail has been dubbed simply "The chamber pot of Adolf Hitler."
         We do not ignore the obsessive quest of eternal power which haunted the Nazi dignitaries ... Would they not be forged to fool Adolf Hitler they have finally found the Holy Grail that would ensure thousand years reign of the Third Reich?

mardi 28 août 2012

Suicidal missions of the United Nations.

 "He who seeks adventure meet, to the extent of his courage. He who seeks the sacrifice will be sacrificed to the extent of its purity "Dag Hammarskjöld in Milestones.

         When Inkontanyi the dreaded militia of Mwami of Rwanda, Kigeri Rwabugiri IV (1853-1895) were preparing to attack a foreign country, they sent a scout to advance mission in the country to attack. Knowing that he would never come alive, he was called "the sacrificial hero." He was handsome, single, a bit suicidal. Her parents and friends were informed in advance for prayers, tears ... and the posthumous honors.

Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN sacrificial hero, Syria.

         The O. N.U. sends "the sacrificial hero" in Syria in the person of Algerian Lakhdar Brahimi. There a few days, the Nobel Peace and Honorary Secretary General of the UN, Kofi Annan of Ghana, has thrown in the towel by saying that the mission to protect civilians is based on whatever the price to pay . But how high should we set the ceiling on suicide missions?
         Brahimi new UN mediator and the Arab League to Syria, said Friday he is "flattered, touched"
but also "scared" by the mission ahead, after his meeting with the Secretary General of the UN Ban Ki-moon.
         According to Ban Ki-moon, Lakhdar Brahimi will be "essential task to bring Syria peace stability and the promotion of human rights."

         Since the outbreak of the uprising against the regime of Bashar al-Assad in March 2011, the violence did not break.
         The fire started in Deraa, and Hama. Victims of violence  are now 25,000 dead, mostly civilians, according to the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights (OSDH), and forced more than 200,000 Syrians to flee to neighboring countries, according to the High Commissioner for Refugees of the UN (UNHCR).
         No end in sight due to the divergence between the West on the one hand claiming the departure of Bashar al-Assad, and the Russians, China and Iran on the other hand that promote dialogue between the government and opposition.
         What can Lakhdar Brahmi, the retired 78 years to bring peace to the country endangered?
"The world disgusts us"
chanted demonstrators in Deraa and they are right. We live in a pathetic world!

Dag Hammarskjöld, a hero whose sacrifice did not  guarantee peace in the Congo.

         October 24, 2010, I described the circumstances in which death is the first victim of impossible missions of the UN, the second Secretary-General of the United Nations, Dag Hammarskjöld (1905-1961), resulting in death, six Swedish crew's aircraft, the DC-6 B Albertina, shot by European mercenaries in Ndola (Zambia) September 17, 1961.
         In his team were also German-American ethnologist, Heinrich A. Wieschhoff, American Vladimir Fabry American William Ranallo, Miss Alice Lalande, the American Harold M. Julien, French, Serge L. Barrau, Swedes Hjetle, and P. E. Persson.
         He knew the character twisted Moise Tshombe, he knew surrounded by "Ugly Belgian
", desperate to retain power in Congo.
He knew that his mission was dangerous and that he would probably never living in Katanga. He decided only by his conscience to perform this task "Impossible"
because the bomb was hidden in the undercarriage of the aircraft. He had escaped the explosion, a mercenary was instructed to liquidate him ... more Moise Tshombe be ready to make his prisoner and demand the withdrawal of ONUC Katanga.
         "The mission was dangerous physically and politically delicate. Moise Tshombe, the puppet of the Belgians and British were surrounded by a mob International paid to torpedo the efforts of the UN to bring peace to the Congo, "
says Sture Linnér, his diplomatic adviser to the Congo, years later.
         His Christian faith could not only guarantee him survival, a miracle that has never occurred. Therefore, he prayed silently during night flight Kinshasa-Ndola. Which allowed the general Norwegian Bjorn Egge to identify his body was his favorite book "The Life of Jesus,"
he holds in his right hand bleeding. which had slipped the text of his oath April 10, 1953.
         He came to inaugurate the Peace suicide missions of United Nations.

Alioune Blondin Beye, who died tragically in a plane crash suspect in the name of peace in Angola.

         As Dag Hammarskjöld in 1961, the UN Special Representative in Angola, Alioune Blondin Beye, Malian lawyer was killed with seven of his colleagues. The Togolese Koffi Adjovi, Chadian Mr. Beandegar Dessande, the Senegalese Amadou Moctar Gueye, Nigerian Ibikunle Williams, Portuguese Alvaro Costa and their drivers, the South Africans Jason Hunter and Andrew McCurrach, June 26, 1998 in a plane crash in Côte d'Ivoire.
         "A man of peace dynamic and dedicated" according to the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan.
         He was on a mission to seek diplomatic support to the peace process in Angola. Lawyer and expert in international law, he was Foreign Minister of Mali from 1978 to 1986 and top part of the African Development Bank (AfDB) before being appointed Special Representative of the United Nations in Angola.
         "When Boutros Boutros Ghali, then Secretary General of the UN one day he phoned to tell him he wanted to appoint him as his Special Representative in Angola," he told the widow that night, he told me: “It is a suicide mission. "
         "But despite the complexity and difficulty of the mission, he accepted and jumped on a plane to New York without hesitation. Because he was a man of faith to which the sense of honor and the requirement of a job well done had value oath, "said his widow, Kadiatou Sali Beye on the tenth anniversary of his death on July 8 2008.
         Upon his arrival in Angola in June 1993, the war between the government of Angola Jose Eduardo Santos and the rebel National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) Jonas Savimbi resumed. He managed to convince both sides to resume talks after a year of tough negotiations signed by the Lusaka Protocol in November 1994. It required all the diplomacy of this man of peace and conviction to bring the protagonists to meet their commitments.
         Ivorian villagers who witnessed the incident said they saw the twin Blondin Beye to explode in midair. But aviation experts have confirmed that the aircraft met the safety requirements. So there was an explosive device edge. Who benefited if this crime to Jonas Savimbi who had an interest to continue a war that had made his fortune? The survey which investigated?
         The first anniversary of his tragic death with his colleagues in New York, Secretary-General Kofi Annan was content to pay a tribute to the "fallen colleagues in the service of peace"
and hoped that one day the Angola united and in peace, and finally they do not die for nothing.

Sergio Vieira de Mello, the last crossover.

         Before the building of the United Nations Commission in Geneva throne bust the last UN envoy in Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello, United Nations Award in the field of human rights in 2003.
         In 2011, the Italian city of Bologna has dedicated a new place a modern. The former High Commissioner of the United Nations Human Rights is the last martyr of peace in Iraq August 19, 2003. He was born in Rio de Janeiro March 15, 1948.
         "He was afraid and did not want this mission impossible"
according to New York Magazine. Why did he finally agreed to be Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq in May 2003 after 34 years of distinguished career at the UN?
         Especially under the direct influence of  american President George W. Bush and his Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that Iraqi extremists particularly disliked?
         And Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of the terrorist organization Al-Qaeda could claim proudly explosion of the Canal Hotel in Baghdad as saying "Vierira Sergio de Mello was murdered because he was a crusader who extract part of the land of Islam (East Timor). "
Certainly, he was Special Envoy of UNHCR in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in 1993, the Special Representative of the General Secretary for the Great Lakes region in Africa and in Kosovo in 1999, in Dili, East Timor in 2002, but it did nothing to see his last mission in suicide bombs of Al Qaeda in Baghdad in May to August 2003!
         Indeed, he was killed in the bombing of the Canal Hotel in Baghdad with 20 other members of his staff August 19, 2003, at work. Before his death, this brilliant doctor in philosophy from the       Sorbonne, son of a diplomat who had been around the world under the banner of the United Nations was considered a potential candidate for the post of Secretary General.
His successful career was never broken. Nothing can be forget Gilda Vieira de Mello, the beautiful smile that lit up the UN and the world, his son Sergio who rests in the cemetery of the kings in Geneva.

vendredi 24 août 2012

Democratic Republic of Congo: Ten key points to understand the war in North Kivu*

(From Goma) Since April, the rebel M23 boosted the cycle of war in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The last one ended there only four years. Dead and displaced have now even hundreds. Today is a new personality conflict but also a political and economic war.
Why a new war in the east of the DRC?

         The official release of this new war is the formation of a rebel group, the M23. An armed force that conducts fighting in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo since April.
         This movement consists mainly of Congolese Tutsi backed by Rwanda as an official report of the UN. These Congolese Tutsis claiming they get under the presidency of Mobutu in 1972. Despite this, some remain attached to their ethnic origin and does not really equate the country.

The claims of M23.

         Since 2009, the National Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP) armed group became a political party, an ally of the presidential majority. They work together in the search for peace in the face of uncertainty that still exists in the east.
         On 23 March 2009, the CNDP and Joseph Kabila, President-elect since 2006, signed agreements in Goma. The Head of State is committed to integrating the rebels into the regular army, to recognize their rank and integrate the CNDP in the government. After the reappointment of Kabila last November, the CNDP denounces non-compliance with agreements made.
         This new political party comes then M23 (March 23 movement), an armed faction that wants to see commitments with Joseph Kabila met. This is the beginning of a new war in the DRC. Ironically, in 2009, the CNDP was incorporated into the regular army.
         M23's first claim is compliance with agreements of 23 March. Other applications came then add:
  the return of Tutsi refugees who are in Rwanda and Tanzania, for example;
  protection of the Tutsi people against the FDLR (Hutu armed group that threatens the Tutsis).
         Part of the population fears that the rebels want the annexation of Kivu and some surrounding areas. Their objective would be that Tutsis have a land of their own. A sort of "Tutsiland."
         Two weeks ago, the clarification of conditions governing the election of Joseph Kabila, who is suspected of having won the election by fraud, has complemented the long list.

The predicament of Joseph Kabila.

         During moulting CNDP armed group into a political party, Joseph Kabila is close to Bosco Ntaganda, an influential figure in the movement. But since July 13, 2012, the International Criminal Court (ICC) filed a second arrest warrant against the former general and newly re-elected president's support.
         Joseph Kabila is thus torn between the international pressure that weighs against Bosco Ntaganda and the difficulty to abandon his ally. This explains the policy that leads blurred vis-à-vis the M23 since April.
         Yet, in the face of international pressure, loose Joseph Kabila ally and demand his arrest that he was "tried in the DRC."
         Without supporting the war the armed group, it does not officially said the fight against the rebellion.
International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), which exists since 2000, has been reopened following this new war.
         As president, many expected a strong stance taken against the rebels. Kabila is now in a difficult situation. He can not deny the M23 which was widely supported in the elections but can not justify their rebellion given the atrocities carried out.

Rwanda's role in this war.

         According to a UN report, the M23 is supported primarily by the Government of Rwanda and Uganda minor degree. A large part of members of the M23 are Congolese of Rwandan origin. Kigali shows solidarity with them. But it is not only ethnic sympathy that Rwanda supports the rebellion. Kigali has a strong interest in maintaining security situation in the eastern Congo.
         Apart from the satisfaction of seeing destabilized the DRC, Rwanda sees its economic interests. Instability at the border facilitates trafficking including those minerals such as cassiterite. It is rare and necessary in the manufacture of mobile phones. The war also facilitates the passage of all kinds of goods such as livestock.

Where fighting is taking place?

Kivu area of ​​wealth.

         The unstable region affected by the war in the Congo is the Kivu region integrated into the Great Lakes region. This area is on the border with Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda and Tanzania.
         The fighting took place mainly in North Kivu, a land very important economic issues. It has large mineral resources including gold, cassiterite and oil. This region is also rich in naturally occurring methane gas in Lake Kivu. Agricultural wealth of this fertile land are also coveted.
Openly, the M23 is not seeking economic issues in the region.

Positions of the M23.

         Currently, the M23 is based Kibumba, 25 km north of Goma. Presence near the capital of North Kivu worries. If Goma fell, the administration of the region is officially in the hands of the rebels. It would be a new phase in the war against the M23 would have all the cards in hand to "balkanize" the Congo as feared national opinion.
         Nevertheless, they hold this position for more than three weeks, while little or nothing would prevent them from walking on Goma. Many residents and observers argue that the rebels are already in the city. They have installed their families more reason not to create a bloody conflict in Goma.

What are rampant armed groups in eastern DRC?

         Many "negative forces", as called Kinshasa rampant in eastern DRC in addition to the M23. They participate directly or indirectly in fighting economic and political stake in the DRC. Difficult to make an exhaustive list. There are formal groups that have claims and there are around a nebula of bandits who enjoy and participate in the instability looting and killing.
         Among the groups clearly presented there the Mayi-Mayi who counts himself several factions within it. Initially, they are indigenous fighting to defend their land. But in a rule of law that has an army official, Kinshasa can not accept such a force.
         These groups are also retains the Democratic Liberation Forces of Rwanda (FDLR), the Rwandan Hutu rebels based in eastern Congo since 1994. Today, they are regularly responsible for atrocities in the DRC mainly.
         These armed groups according to the UN and NGOs do not hesitate to maim, to kill, rape and enlisting children and young people in their gangs.

Who benefits from this war?

The regular army: the FARDC.

         The eastern DRC is an area where access is difficult. The roads are almost non-existent, cut through areas of dense forest. Groups of the regular army are set in cities, villages and rural areas. These are very accessible, they become masters of their territory.
         The army officers enjoy while agricultural and mineral wealth, set up taxes, rights of way. The justification of the presence of soldiers in different countries: protecting people rebellions. Unless they get richer on the backs of people and have no interest in the war stops.
Some observers even argue that part of the army would be in the hands of Tutsis. Figures: over thirty nine generals are Congolese Tutsis.


         Policies also have their interest. Detached from the central government, the regional leaders agree with the army, raise their taxes too, receive percentages resources on their territory. In the event of termination of the war, this kind of behavior would not be possible.
Kinshasa today places her voice hardly in Eastern Kivu. Since the beginning of the war Joseph Kabila has not made such Goma. A strong sign of abandonment by some.

Non-governmental organizations.

         NGOs have been established for many years in Goma and more broadly to the east. Their presence is sometimes questioned by local people. According to them, it is not in the interest of MONUSCO and other organizations that the war continues. A return to calm mean the end of missions.

Multinational companies.

         Most affected economically in the global war are without doubt the multinationals.
         The documentary "Blood in the Mobile", denounces the vicious circle in which large firms are involved. Director Frank Piasecki Poulsen, became interested in the case of Nokia, which has major interests in cassiterite mines in Walikale. He could not find concrete evidence of the involvement of the international firm, however, heavy suspicion on it.
        Companies usually benefit from instability to buy minerals at low prices. Minerals they use in manufacturing their phones for example. Of profits, observers assume that part is reinvested in the arms to support the instability in the region.

What is doing the international community?

         The international community is currently very silent. It will soon be twenty years ... The only concrete actions are sending humanitarian (Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, Handicap International ...) in the early years of conflict in eastern Congo.
         Goma has become a nest of humanitarian organizations and may be the second largest employer in the city after the state. However, their action concretely verifiable on the ground seems limited. Refugee camp on the outskirts of Kanyarushinya near Goma have benefited in two weeks that a distribution of biscuits.
         The international community is also present with MONUSCO military: 17,000 well-armed peacekeepers are present in the zone. However, their mandate limited to a defensive role.

What is the status of forces?

         The balance of forces, either side of the regular army FARDC or the rebels of the M23, is difficult to assess. The army does not want to communicate about it. Military secret.
         From what we can see, the FARDC does not seem strong position. The state has not paid its soldiers for several months.
According to humanitarian missions, there would be many abuses by the FARDC in combat zones, including the looting that can be linked to poverty.
         In Goma, the eighth regiment before, every day, women soldiers come to claim the balance of their husbands. The soldiers are little or poorly equipped. The army in the east, is not a professional army experienced but it is composed of many young men came to the prestige of the uniform. Command of the units is not always held by competent men, it is simple to buy his grade.
         The side of the M23, it is not much easier to make an accurate assessment of the strike force. However, the rebels backed by Rwanda and Burundi according to UN reports. Jean-Louis Ernest Kyaviro, spokesman for the governor of North Kivu, said that vehicles, weapons and men pass the border regularly to increase the strength of the M23.

Population, first victim.

         This war has mainly affect civilians. Most visible are the dead which obviously we do today has no balance. Thomas Aquinas Mwiti, responsible civil society Kivu, announces the estimated 350,000 displaced since the beginning of the conflict. Nothing in the camp Kanyarushinya, authorities identify 13,600 refugees.
         These displacements are not without consequences. The refugees live in very difficult conditions. A Kanyarushinya, they do not have access to safe drinking water and sanitation are particularly uncomfortable, 28 latrines for the entire camp.
         The war also affects the local economy. The food prices increased sharply especially as Rutshuru, agricultural region, provides more grain because of the fighting on the territory and the departure of farmers. Prices rise because of the lack of taxation but also the different products by the army and the authorities in transit. The people of the east are also affected by mass unemployment. These various elements exacerbate global poverty populations.

A neutral international force, to do what?

         After Kampala, the International Committee of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) met in Goma to decide the terms of the creation of a neutral international force.
         The idea is to create a new military force to support peacekeepers to quell the rebellion of the M23 and to eliminate all negative forces throughout the territory.
         After three days of negotiations between experts, military leaders and ministers, he decided that a force of 4,000 men will be created to stabilize the border in eastern DRC. To ensure its neutrality, it was decided that it would not involve Congolese soldiers, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi.
         So which countries send men? Other states in the Great Lakes region or the Congo - Brazzaville, Angola, Kenya, Sudan, Central African Republic, Tanzania and Zambia.
         Ntuba Lwaba, Executive Secretary of the ICGLR, recalls that the door is open to all who wish to help the Congo.

Two months for the force is on the ground.

         This force should be funded by the UN and the African Union. The ICGLR was given one month to this force is on the ground. Experts have prepared a document for quick action, urgent and effective cessation of hostilities announced Ntuba Lwaba. Within very optimistic, given the logistics of creating such an army. A neutral international force which makes a more skeptical.
         Several demonstrations took place in front of the hotel Ihusi, where the summit was held to demand the extension of the mandate of MONUSCO rather than sending yet another armed force on Congolese territory.
         Youth, women came to remind politicians that the consequences of their decisions affect the population.
         Some observers also criticize the neutral force. The choice of parking including soldiers. Rutshuru, Walikale, Masisi, Blessed are not at the border. While eyes were on Hotel Ihusi Goma, the war continues. On the night of August 15 to 16, "jeep and nine men went to Rutshuru," he says. A war with multiple players and issues.
         Now the end of the instability in a short time in the DRC seems complicated as the implications are great. The beginning of the return of calm will certainly go through a deliberate policy on the part of the Congolese state and the population.
-------------------------------------------------- ------------------
* Article of the journalist Charlotte Gosset appeared in Rue89, Le Nouvel Observateur, August 22, 2012.

jeudi 23 août 2012

Venezuela: President Hugo Chavez African and proud of it ...

"When we were children, we were told that we had an earth mother Spain. However, we found out later in our lives, in fact we had different mothers lands. And one of them is undoubtedly Africa. We love Africa. And every day, we are more aware of the roots we had in Africa ... Racism is very characteristic of imperialism and capitalism. Consequences of Hurricane Katrina have to do with racism, it is no doubt. Hatred against me also related to racism. Because I have a big mouth and frizzy hair. I am proud to have such thick lips and curly hair these because they are African. "Interview aired September 20, 2005.

         For those who are wondering what Hugo Chavez speaks: he is Metis Indians, Spaniards and Africans. Indians themselves are of mixed black (the original inhabitants of America 56,000) and Asians (arrived - 3000). Indians moreover, have cultural and religious traits of African origin. The Matriarchy and totemism are the most prominent features from the Nubian Egyptian civilization in Antiquity.

mercredi 22 août 2012

Ten points on the leadership of African women *

In ruling accomplished, Betty Mould Iddrisu book 10 lessons the main women's leadership in Africa and the challenges facing women to reach the top and stay there.
There is a harsh reality attached to women's leadership in Africa. I dreamed and I lived. Gradually, women have ignored the historical barriers that were in place until recently, barriers that limited their ascent to the highest peaks of power and leadership in important sectors of society.
To have the audacity to aspire to heights that few women have achieved can be satisfying, but also be indicative of mixed experiences, unique perspectives and occasionally inexplicable disappointment.

1° Not enough Summit at national and regional level.

Even with the best success of all time, with two women presidents, a prime minister women and women who hold 19.7% of seats in parliament across the continent, everyone will agree that the number of women in the upper echelons of politics - symptomatic female representation in other sectors of society - is distressing in terms of fairness and democratic principles of participation. There is no doubt that there have been significant moments of success that should be proud of.
Rwanda, South Africa and Mozambique are among the countries with the highest percentage of women in parliament. However, there is still a long way to go. I climbed over the course of my progress in the leadership and hard reality has emerged.
We must always acknowledge the valuable contribution of the middle and lower levels, but we must be at the high table to participate, contribute and share the power that shapes our destinies national and regional.
Maybe we are making significant progress, but I know with certainty that the status quo is neither fair nor acceptable.

2° A steep and greater difficulties to stay on top.

African women suffer from systemic biases in their journey to the top. First, we do not take us seriously because men believe that women are inherently less competent.
Cases of sexual harassment in education and the workplace, which inhibit the advancement of women to the top, are well documented. Moreover, the duties of motherhood can be overwhelming if not carefully managed.
Most men believe that women must take the main responsibility for the family. It follows that working late, attending seminars on weekends, business trips overseas, which both contribute to every worker on the way to the top, are often very difficult for young wives and mothers who work.
Reach the upper third is rare and when you succeed you have to face hostility and doubts about your skills because you're a woman.
A woman working at the top worst a man to prove his skills and yet it continues to be faced prejudice and hostility rooted for his role as patron and leader in a work environment dominated by men.

3° Without support you can not succeed.

Policy, the companies or the party is cruel and unforgiving usually nothing. This is nowhere more evident than for women in Africa. Since it is estimated that a woman's role is to support her husband and family, blows and insults policy, which generally characterize public leadership are not acceptable to the family of a politician and the Women are seen as bringing "shame and dishonor" to their families.
Women leaders and politicians need the support of their sisters, mother, grandmother, aunts, schoolmates and can not progress without the active support and expressed.
It is generally considered that women do not support each other and the experience of many women confirm this harsh reality. This requires a lot of inner strength and a rhinoceros skin.

4° Too many obstacles to overcome in spite of progress in several key areas.

Despite remarkable progress, despite the many advances and a growing awareness and acceptance of women's leadership in Africa, there are too many obstacles to women's leadership and ascension.
Traditional African society is still locked in a myriad of barriers designed to keep women in a subordinate status in society. Customary practices, hostile and cruel against women, access restricted to studies that prevents a girl to go and stay in school, endemic poverty that affects rural women farmers are obstacles that help to keep away from active leadership on the continent.
Most legal obstacles preventing their progress has been overcome or abolished on the continent, particularly in the past thirty years.
The challenge is to get rid of another age perceptions of the role of women in society and this can only happen with time and a positive attitude. We are moving forward, but I know for sure there are still many obstacles to overcome.

5° Traditions should not hold us back. They can serve as catalysts.

         Traditions are not supposed to be stagnant. They can be used as instruments of change. This change is usually induced by the women themselves. Some aspects of African tradition trying to keep women silent, subordinated second-class citizens, while many others welcomed the dignity and sanctity of womanhood.
Although I am aware of the many deleterious aspects of our traditions, I've always seen and used the cultural dimension which allows to tradition and as a catalyst for positive change: to allow, to legitimize and promote women in African leadership.
Culture can be used to hold us back, but we can also form the cultures so that they are liberating. However, much of the African traditions, which may have their roots in history and glorious cultures were recovered by men to ambush women, to prevent them from realizing their full leadership potential.
But I also know that we can find the strength and opportunities in the values ​​and dynamism in many of our cultures.

6° Education, although desirable, is not everything.

Higher education is desirable, but is not a pre-condition for successful female leadership on the continent. Education provides automatic recognition in society because it allows women to have a certain cachet.
However, although I can not emphasize enough the importance it has for every woman leader, I also know that formal education is not sufficient in itself to provide all the necessary tools for survival and success in the upper echelons of leadership. Especially the lack of education does not disqualify a woman and does not prevent excel.

7° Nothing replaces hard work, courage and determination inside.

Given the inherent skepticism about the ability of women to succeed in Africa, it simply means that women leaders must work twice as hard.
The road to success is fraught with challenges that require a tremendous amount of courage and determination not to deviate. I know with certainty, with or without special challenge, hard work is imperative inevitable for successful leadership.
In view of the specific challenges of prejudice and skepticism against women leaders, the African woman leader has no choice except to work hard and with determination.
Whatever his qualifications or his charm, his motivation or his spirituality, a female leader in Africa must work harder than their male colleagues, if she wants to count a little bit.

8° Crucial network.

Complaints abound throughout Africa that women leaders do not contribute to improving the status of women in society.
But only a woman who has been at the top and did his best to make a difference can truly understand the difficulties of being the only one of its kind at the top.
Women leaders need and must develop their networks and alliances based and civil society in order to meet the needs of women at the grassroots and leadership. She is so lonely at the top of the scale, but I know that networks larger and more solid the base, professional and civil society allies provide a powerful force which surely rely on.

9° Regardless of your skills, experience and power, there are challenges that you confirm.

You're always seen as a "woman leader" and not just a "leader". You are an African, a citizen and a leader, your "femininity" is predefined measurement company about your leadership.
Therefore, the challenge of being a woman leader is multiplied because you are an African woman. But the harsh realities of women's leadership in Africa are numerous: the under-representation of women in politics and among the leaders at all levels, negative traditional and cultural practices and cruel, the subordinate status of women, lack of education and degree of poverty are challenges to overcome to reach the leadership.

10 ° Yes! African women can!

If there is one thing I've learned and what I believe without a doubt, is the ability of women to lead in any area and at all levels. We continue to excel in the same way as men. We can continue to stumble along the way as well as men. We can even fail from time to time, just as men have failed in history. But I know with certainty that we are able, we have the right and we can certainly lead the continent. Yes we can!

* Article Mrs Betty Iddrisu Mouloud-published PAMBAZUKA No. 250 of 23 July 2012.

* Mrs. Betty Mould-Iddrisu is one of Africa's most accomplished leaders. She studied law at the University of Ghana, Legon / 1973-1978) and at Schooé of Economics London, Great Britain (1978). She was Attorney General, Minister of Justice and Minister of Education in the Republic of Ghana. She was also Director of Legal Affairs and Constitutional Commonwealth Secretariat and lecturer of law. She was at the forefront of the struggle for gender equality for 30 years. She is very motivated for a new generation of African women in leadership says and professional. Mrs. Betty Mould Iddrisu is currently a lecturer, consultant and activist on issues of law, policy and gender justice, very popular at international level (- 
). She is married to the banker Alhaji Mahama Iddrisu, member of the Council of State of Ghana.

dimanche 19 août 2012

United States: The mother of Barack Obama, a black slave down!

The father of the current U.S. President, Barack H. Obama is the Kenyan Barack Obama Sr. (1936-1982), son of Onyango. His mother is a white American, Stanley Ann Dunham (1942-1995) daughter of Stanley (1918-1992) and Madelyn Dunham (1922-2008). But what we did not know until now, she has black blood.
In an article in the New York Times, July 30, 2012, genealogists Ancestry. Com claim to have evidence to show that Ms. Stanley Ann Dunham down a black ancestor of the seventeenth century, from Cameroon and Angola, by the name John Punch.

John Punch was he Cameroonian or rather Angolan?

The  A.D.N. of John Punch is part of haplogroup which is commonly found in Cameroon, while the majority of Africans deported to America on Portuguese ships before 1640 were either captured in Angola is the Kingdom of Kongo (now Bas Congo DRC, Cabinda enclave of Angola and Congo Brazzaville). At this time, no slave came from Cameroon today. Therefore, John Punch was probably Angolans, not Cameroonians.
         He is all part of the first Africans brought to Virginia in the seventeenth century and were among the servants under contracts "indentured servants," because we do not speak about "slaves" in North America (this is not yet the United USA). Especially in the Southern America, the status of the human person is defined according to the color of his skin. Africans were mentioned in the documents by the term "Negroes", a Portuguese word that appears in the English language only in the sixteenth century. Portugal was the only European country then involved in the slave trade.

He became famous thanks to his innovative condemnation.

"In 1640, Mr. Punch, then servant bound by an indenture (for planter Hugh Gwyn), fled from Virginia and went to Maryland. At that time he was captured, and with two white servants (and were brought to Jameston then tried and convicted), and this is what has led some historians to consider him the first African to have been legally sanctioned slavery, years before Virginia passed laws allowing me slavery " write professors Linda Heywood and John Thornton of Boston University.
"The identure" close to "indentured" was then in the British American colonies the dominant contractual form of agricultural workers in the plantations.
This involved a period of temporary easement during which a person is committed to working on the land of a settler in exchange for his journey and sometimes obtaining a freehold land at the end of the contract.
This contract could be applied to the original white workers as black workers, even if the sources are lacking to determine whether the two groups enjoyed the same conditions.
The court applied to John Punch was innovative in two ways: it introduced the idea that a man of the colony of Virginia could be sentenced to a state of servitude for life, a concept that was later explained in a text dating from 1661.
It also established that the laws of the colony of Virginia applied differentially depending on whether one was considered a Black or White as a. As of this date, this principle is applied repeatedly in court decisions Virginian to extend to all areas of social life.
The combination of these two principles, slavery and racial differentiation, was consecrated by the Code of Slavery, adopted in 1705 by Virginia.

From Bunch …to John Punch

"President Obama is the great grand-son of John Punch, was the first African to be documented enslaved for life in the American colonies., "Wrote Joseph Shumway, a genealogist at
The white mother of President Ann Stanley Dunham is a direct descendant of the first known slave in the American colonies through a family name Bunch.
"We discovered through D.N.A. testing performed on family members Bunch, their direct ancestors of African origin ... Finally, we were able to establish a connection with the first Bunch family members and a gentleman named John Punch "adds Joseph Shumway.
Regarding the difference in names - Punch with a "P" versus Bunch with a "B", the researchers say it is not unusual that the name is written as it sounds in 1637.
"We are extremely confident in the conclusion that we reached. (...) In the early seventeenth century, racial attitudes in the colony of Virginia were of a different nature than they later became ... Laws prohibiting intermarriage were established in the seventeenth century (....) Over the generations, the family of Obama's mother continued to intermarry with white and white became for all purposes useful, "he says.
President Barack Obama is the first in a line of seven generations who moved from Virginia, Tennessee, Arkansas and finally Kansa which moved her great-grandmother, Leonora McCurry and where were born his grandmother Madelyn Payne mother and his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham.

Obama, the prototype of the universal man ...

In a previous article, we described the complexity of racial, cultural, religious of the current occupant of the White House. From its origins, we will one discovery.
"At that moment, he understood the Luo clan and tribal Obamas English and Welsh and Scottish and Irish and German white side of his family. And now we discover something more! "Maraniss writes his biographer who traveled to Kenya and Indonesia to research the influences that shaped Barack Obama. He said that the roots of various American president make it difficult to categorize.
"Because of the color of his skin, he is African American. (...) But on a cultural level, he is not African. He had to learn. He ... has never been easy to categorize. This is part of the attraction and the mystery of Barack Obama.”
          And ... his mother now finds itself with origins Angola or Cameroon.
He is the prototype of the universal man, who tomorrow will erase the notion of skin color, national boundaries and embody globalization.
         As in the song "Lily" Pierre Perret "he has the color of love, against which nothing can be done"

dimanche 12 août 2012

Africa: Ah, these fantasies of White! *

For the title, always use the words "Africa", "Dark Continent" and "safari". Your caption can include the words "Zanzibar", "Masai", "Zulu", "Zambezi", "Congo", "Nile", "large", "sky", "shadow", "drum" "sun" or "another time". Terms such as "guerrillas", "timeless" or "primitive" and "tribal" are also very useful. Recall that, in the lexicon, the term "people" refers to Africans who are not black, while "the people" means black Africans.

         Never choose the photo of an African "westernized" for the cover of your book, unless this is a Nobel laureate. An AK-47, a torso with prominent ribs, naked breasts: this is the winning formula. If you absolutely want to include an African on the cover, ensure he is in costume Masai, Zulu or Dogon. In your text, talk about Africa as if it was a single country. A country hot and dusty with rolling grasslands, impressive herds of animals and tall and thin people who are starving. Or a country crushed by scorching heat and populated by people who eat very small primates.

         Do not bother too detailed descriptions. Africa is huge, with 54 countries and 900 million people too busy to be hungry, to die, to make war and to emigrate to read your book. The continent is full of deserts, jungles, hills, savannas, and many other things, but your reader will strut, so get in to descriptions romantic and evocative enough waves.

         Do not neglect to note that Africans have music and rhythm in the skin, and eat things no other human being would feed. Move over rice, beef and wheat; the monkey brains is a delicacy African choice, and the goat, snake, worms and other maggots, and game of all kinds. And be sure to show that you are yourself around the table to eat these dishes without turning of the eye, without missing a chance to tell how you learned to appreciate them - because you love Africa.

         Some taboos to avoid at all costs: ordinary domestic scenes, love between Africans (unless there is a death in your story), references to African writers or intellectuals, mention of school children which are not affected by yaws or Ebola fever or by girls who have not undergone genital mutilation.
         Throughout your story, adopt a tone heard, which will link of complicity with the reader, that exudes intonations of sadness, on "I expected so much that ..."
         Display your impeccable immediately open mind and declare at the first paragraphs to how much you love Africa, tell how you fell in love with this land that is now part of yourself. Africa is the only continent that we can love, so enjoy. If you are a man, throw yourself headlong into the sweltering heat of its virgin forests. If you are a woman, compare Africa to a man in the distant Saharan disappearing into the sunset.

         Africa is a continent that can only complain, worship or dominate. Whatever the angle at which you choose, you should definitely give the impression that without your intervention and your indispensable book, Africa is doomed to disaster.

         For your African characters, draw in the gallery of naked warriors, loyal servants of, diviners and seers, travel guides polygamous incompetent and prostitutes with whom you have slept. The faithful servant always behaves like a boy of seven years and must be ruled with an iron hand, he is afraid of snakes. He is good with children and you always results in his convoluted family histories. The wise old man necessarily comes from a noble tribe. He has rheumy eyes and vibrates to the rhythm of the Earth.
         The modern African is himself large and thief. He works at the visa, and refuses to grant work permits to qualified Westerners who yet so love Africa. This is an enemy of development. And he took advantage of systematically his government post to put spokes in the wheels to the Gentiles expatriates, with their practicality, just waiting to establish NGOs or protected natural areas.
         Or he is an intellectual educated at Oxford became a politician murderer strapped in elegant English suits. Cannibal or a champagne lover, whose mother is a healer who draws rich makes the tricks of the country. Among your characters, do not forget the starving African, who wanders the refugee camp half naked and the benefits expected from the West. Her children have flies on eyelids and swollen belly, and she has breasts flattened and dried. She must have seemed to have touched the depths of despair. She can have no past, no history. This kind of digressions spoils the drama of the moment. Some groans are always nice effect. In the dialogues, she must engage primarily nothing of herself, but only about her (unspeakable) suffering.
         Do not forget to cram in the table a warm and caring matron, who has a booming laugh and cares about your welfare. Call her simply Mama. Her children are all delinquent. All these characters are swarming around your main hero for the showcase. Your hero can they provide expertise, wash them, feed them. She picks her up a sling load of kids and he saw death up close. This hero,  will be you (in the case of a witness) or a star or an aristocrat of breathtaking beauty and a bit tragic, which has since been converted into animal rights.

         You will also consider some portraits of evil Westerners take model on Afrikaners or employees of the World Bank. When you approach the theme of exploitation by foreigners, speak about Chinese and Indian merchants. Remember that he is the West which is responsible for the situation in which Africa finds itself. But do not go into much detail.

The greatest taboo: show dead or suffering white.

         Studded your text with images brushed in broad strokes. Do not make your characters as people who love to laugh, do everything they can to send their children to school or merely seek to make ends meet in ordinary conditions. Use them instead to shed light on Europe or America from an African perspective. The characters should be colorful, exotic, but empty inside, and their history should lead to no dialogue, no conflict and no resolution, no frills or depth that may confuse the cause.

         Describe in detail the naked breasts or genitals mutilated, or oversized genitals. Or genitals of any kind. And corpses. Or better, naked corpses. And more specifically naked decaying corpses. Keep in mind that a text in which people look filthy and miserable will be treated as "deepest Africa", and that's exactly the words you need on your banner coverage. That this does not put you above uncomfortable because, after all, you all to help these people to obtain aid from the West. The biggest taboo when writing about Africa is to describe or show dead or  whites who suffer.

         The animals, however, should be treated as complex characters. They talk and they all have names, ambitions and desires. They also have family values: see those lions who know so well pass on their knowledge to their children! Elephants are loving. The females are feminists copies, and proud of male patriarchs. Like gorillas. Never speak ill of an elephant or a gorilla. Sometimes elephants attack the property of the people, destroy their crops and kill men. In any case, always take the side of the elephant. The beasts have focused distinguished youth of good family. Hyenas are however an easy target.
         After the militants of the jet set and aid workers, ecologists are people that are most important. Do not go picking a quarrel with them. You must be invited in their nature reserve or "protected area". They are your only means to achieve your interviewer activist of the jet set. A photo of environmentalist-like hero in book cover is often wonders to boost sales.
         Any White with khaki Saharan Africa in which once had an antelope or a farm home is an ecologist whose primary objective is to preserve the rich heritage of Africa. When interviewing you, especially not ask him any question about the amount of subsidies he touches; seek not to know how he relates his game. And never ask how much he pays his employees.

         You will also provide a club called The Tropicana, where mercenaries are found, the evil new rich Africans and prostitutes and guerrillas and expats. Always end your book with a quote from Mandela saying something about rainbows in the sky or rebirth. Because you love Africa.
*Binyavanga Wainaina’s article.
Born in 1971 in Nakuru, Kenya, Binyavanga Wainaina, a writer and journalist, has won the 2002 Caine prize for African literature with his novel, Discovering Home. He became famous in 2003 based in Nairobi one of the first African literary magazine, Kwani (