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BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism

Donuel 25 Feb 18 - 12:13 PM
Senoufou 25 Feb 18 - 12:25 PM
Iains 25 Feb 18 - 12:47 PM
robomatic 25 Feb 18 - 01:05 PM
Iains 25 Feb 18 - 01:08 PM
bobad 25 Feb 18 - 01:37 PM
David Carter (UK) 25 Feb 18 - 01:42 PM
bobad 25 Feb 18 - 01:44 PM
wysiwyg 25 Feb 18 - 08:28 PM
Mrrzy 25 Feb 18 - 10:25 PM
BobL 26 Feb 18 - 02:45 AM
Senoufou 26 Feb 18 - 02:48 AM
David Carter (UK) 26 Feb 18 - 03:43 AM
David Carter (UK) 26 Feb 18 - 03:53 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Feb 18 - 04:20 AM
Big Al Whittle 26 Feb 18 - 04:20 AM
Senoufou 26 Feb 18 - 04:32 AM
Donuel 26 Feb 18 - 06:11 AM
Mr Red 26 Feb 18 - 06:44 AM
Mrrzy 26 Feb 18 - 07:47 AM
Senoufou 26 Feb 18 - 08:13 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Feb 18 - 08:32 AM
Senoufou 26 Feb 18 - 08:50 AM
bobad 26 Feb 18 - 09:02 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Feb 18 - 09:18 AM
Senoufou 26 Feb 18 - 09:30 AM
Jim Carroll 26 Feb 18 - 10:45 AM
wysiwyg 26 Feb 18 - 01:08 PM
wysiwyg 26 Feb 18 - 01:18 PM
keberoxu 26 Feb 18 - 02:06 PM
Iains 26 Feb 18 - 03:17 PM
robomatic 26 Feb 18 - 08:25 PM
Thompson 27 Feb 18 - 04:47 AM
Senoufou 27 Feb 18 - 05:33 AM
Iains 27 Feb 18 - 05:45 AM
Hrothgar 27 Feb 18 - 06:51 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Feb 18 - 07:02 AM
Senoufou 27 Feb 18 - 07:24 AM
Iains 27 Feb 18 - 07:51 AM
Mrrzy 27 Feb 18 - 08:33 AM
Senoufou 27 Feb 18 - 08:57 AM
Rob Naylor 27 Feb 18 - 09:21 AM
Senoufou 27 Feb 18 - 09:55 AM
robomatic 27 Feb 18 - 11:23 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Feb 18 - 12:00 PM
Iains 27 Feb 18 - 12:39 PM
Roz 27 Feb 18 - 04:45 PM
robomatic 27 Feb 18 - 08:45 PM
Thompson 28 Feb 18 - 08:41 AM
wysiwyg 28 Feb 18 - 10:00 AM
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Subject: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Donuel
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 12:13 PM

That's what the movie Black Panther is about, say the critics giving the movie high acclaim. 4.5 Stars $500 million box office.
I never knew there was an alternative non racist super hero.
I guess I better go see it.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 12:25 PM

Well, it's set in 'Wakanda', a mythical 'African' country.
There are 54 countries in the real Africa, and I wonder which ones they feel 'suffered' colonialism?


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 12:47 PM

At least we are in a post colonial age, and the Africans have their countries back. What about the Native Americans?


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:05 PM

REUNITE GONDWANALAND!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:08 PM

I doubt there is a whole lot of it outcropping these days. It would be more trouble than it is worth.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: bobad
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:37 PM

At least we are in a post colonial age, and the Africans have their countries back.

Except for North Africa of course.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: David Carter (UK)
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:42 PM

Whats that supposed to mean bobad? Which North African countries are still colonies? Or are you just complaining that those countries now follow a different religion to the ones they had before, in which case this is true of everywhere.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: bobad
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:44 PM

The indigenous people of North Africa were the Amazigh people before they were colonized by the Arabs.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 08:28 PM

Much of Africa's wealth is still not held/ controlled by Africans.

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 10:25 PM

Reunite Gondwanaland... good one!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: BobL
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 02:45 AM

Ethiopia and Liberia escaped the mixed blessing of European colonization. They don't seem to be much the better for it.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 02:48 AM

The scourge of many independent African countries is corruption.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: David Carter (UK)
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:43 AM

And, as we read recently bobad, the indigenous people of the UK were probably dark skinned and builders of stone circles before they were colonized by the Beaker people. Countries in North Africa have been free of colonization by people from the Middle East since the end of the Ottoman Empire. And the Ottomans were not Arabs. The Berbers assumed the religion of the invading people, much as the British did with that of successive waves of Christian invaders.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: David Carter (UK)
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:53 AM

And, bobad, according to Wikipedia the Muslim forces which invaded the Iberian peninsula in the 8th century were mainly Berbers. Known in English culture as Moors.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 04:20 AM

"The scourge of many independent African countries is corruption."
Goes a little further back than that Sen - the Colonial powers fought tooth and nail to ascertain that the newly-independent contries were placed in a "safe pair of hands" - for safe read "compliant to their former masters"
"Problem " leaders were (often violently) opposed and even murdered if they embarked on disapproved of policies - Patrice Lumumba being a case in point - Kwame Nkruma was deposed by British and other backed forces while h was out of the country
Britain's interference in Ireland is still present
I would highly recommend the life changing 'King Leopold's Ghost', which describes the slaughter of up to 10 million Belgian Congolese in pursuit of rubber, by the Belgian King - a horror story of African Colonialism at its very worst
I got a buzz when I learned that it was a humble Scouser shipping clerk who brought that particular monster to his knees
I agree entirely about the corruption of national leaders, but it's far too easy to take those leaders out of context and forget why who put them there and kept them in power
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 04:20 AM

i suppose we were lucky in who colonised us. they built roads and cathedrals etc.

we'd still be building useless bits of crap like stonehenge if we hadn't been colonised.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 04:32 AM

I agree Jim that the recent history of colonial Africa is woeful. But I rather meant that to this day there are elected Heads of State who are incorrigibly corrupt. It's a repeated pattern of election, corruption, rebellion, deposition, newly-elected 'reformer', corruption again and so on. And while this toxic cycle is repeated, the population suffers in dire poverty, disruption of already fragile services and even civil war. (eg Gbagbo in Ivory Coast)
Although the colonials helped themselves to resources, at least the countries may have been better organised and run. They kept the lid on things (in their own interests of course) and they built modern infrastructures such as transport, sanitation, water supply, communications, hospitals and schools etc. I know this is so in the case of the French in Ivory Coast.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Donuel
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 06:11 AM

Big Al your comment reminds of life of Brian.
"What did the Romans ever do for us"


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Mr Red
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 06:44 AM

The probability is that their would have been local fiefdoms and kingdoms, much like now. And maybe one or two locales would have evolved an egalitarian democracy, but the odds are against that. Human nature would prevail! The West didn't invent greed!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Mrrzy
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 07:47 AM

Taking care of your family = corruption in European eyes, not in the eyes of people actually taking care of their families.

Isn't Liberia the only "country" in the whole continent that wasn't colonized?

Remember the national boundaries were drawn by Europeans to cross existing ethnic boundaries so the people of a nation would never unite against their colonizers as they belonged to different what were called tribes at the time. Togo is narrow, but it's half Ewe and half Twi. Calling them all Ivorians did not make everyone in the Ivory Coast the same peoples.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 08:13 AM

But 'taking care of your family' at the expense of a country's economy is corruption in anyone's book. One can't be dipping into the communal pot to obtain an excellent lifestyle for one's nearest and dearest. Especially when the nation depending on this pot is largely deprived and poverty-stricken. You're right though Mrrzy, any Ivorian in power's family would expect him to distribute wealth liberally among them!

There are many tribes in Ivory Coast (and indeed in most African countries). Gbagbo exploited this fact by trying to divide off the northern part of the country (which he claimed was actually within the territory of Mali!) since the peoples up there did not support him. My husband, a Senoufo, was worried his ancestral village in the north would be cut off from the rest of Ivory Coast in a sort of No-Man's-Land. While the French were in charge, these things were well managed and at least the country was stable.

Ouattara (new President) has done very little in the way of getting everyday life sorted out for the ordinary folk. The streets are shoulder-high in uncollected rubbish, public transport is appalling and healthcare virtually non-existent. A dead body can lie in the street for days, rotting and bloated, before the fire brigade (!) carts the corpse away. The French would never have tolerated such situations.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 08:32 AM

"But I rather meant that to this day there are elected Heads of State who are incorrigibly corrupt. "
Politicians run in dynasties Sen
Once that dynasty is challenged the West steps in and makes sure the newbies jump back into line
Britain has as much of a track-record in interference in African politics as does the U.S. in Latin America and Asia.
Both have found that the "safest pair of hands" are those who are the most corrupt and therefore manipulable.
Some of the most corrupt African leaders have invariably been those supported by the West
The most vicious and corrupt African administration in my lifetime was the Apartheid South African regime - fully and actively supported by Britain until it eventually fell under the weight of its own excesses
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 08:50 AM

I'm rather ignorant about South Africa, as I'm familiar only with parts of West Africa. Actually, it seems that other flourishing economies are now getting in on the act. The Chinese and Lebanese are making great strides in investment there, which does mean employment and development, but I have no doubt their own interests will come first, and back-handers offered to the corrupt politicians.

I knew a Senegalese family whose main breadwinner worked for the Lebanese in a biscuit factory in Dakar. The conditions were awful and no health protection was even considered. The poor man's lungs were ruined by chlorine; he'd been told to go right inside the huge mixing machines and clean them with bleach. His skin had huge white patches, and he coughed incessantly. He was being poisoned to death for profit to earn a few frCFA a week. Foreign investors exploit pitilessly it would seem.

I also had a very enlightening conversation with two ghastly white South Africans who told me they regretted that they could no longer employ 'Blecks' (that's how they pronounced it!) for about five pounds a week to work on their farm. I said nothing but just listened. One learns a lot that way...


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: bobad
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 09:02 AM

Countries in North Africa have been free of colonization by people from the Middle East since the end of the Ottoman Empire.

Tell that to the Amazigh of Morocco who, unlike the dark skinned indigenous people of the UK, are still around and still suffering oppression by their colonizers.

North Africa’s Amazigh or ‘Berber’ people say their matriarchal traditions and native language are under threat from Arab elites and burgeoning Islamism.

In Morocco, home to the largest population descended from the region’s original inhabitants, activists blame the dominant contemporary Arabic culture as well as imported religious extremism and ideologies aligned with Islamic State. “Women’s groups always speak of ‘the Arab woman’ but we are not Arab women — we have an Amazigh culture, language and identity which has nothing to do with the Arab woman from the Middle East,” Amina Zioual, President of The Voice of the Amazigh Woman told Women in the World.North Africa’s Amazigh or ‘Berber’ people say their matriarchal traditions and native language are under threat from Arab elites and burgeoning Islamism.


https://womenintheworld.com/2016/03/24/matriarchal-traditions-in-north-africa-under-threat-from-islamists-and-arab-elites/


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 09:18 AM

'Blecks'
A bit off topic, but when I had my first hip replacement operation some years ago I was told on the morning of the operation that I wan't getting the knock-out treatment, but an epidural - which filled me with a degree of horror (a longer story)
I was visited by the anesthetist who was a South African white who began ranting about "The Blecks"
I was about to launch into an argument, but thought the better of it when I realised that it probably wasn't a good idea to fall out with your anesthetist on the morning of a major operation]
Bobad
The Bedouins of Israel fare no better under the administration there
An argument for elsewhere, no doubt
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 09:30 AM

Hahaha Jim! It may have ended in euthanasia, not anaesthesia!

I really have to bite my tongue when confronted by racist rants, but I've learned to 'shut up and listen' because you get a jolly good idea of how these people's mindsets work.

I was chatting to another white South African in Tesco car park (he worked with the Click-and-Collect team) I mentioned that, by his accent, he was South African, and he started off on how the country has changed with The Blecks in charge, blah blah. I had to try not to dissolve in giggles when my extremely 'bleck' husband rocked up, having got us a trolley. I introduced him, "This is my husband," and the chap scuttled away as fast as his racist legs would carry him. I bet he told his wife later he'd had an 'Oh no! moment' that morning!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 10:45 AM

I have to say that one of y great mentors as a young man was a white South African who had fled the Apartheid regime and settled in Liverpool where he ran abookshop
Another great influence was the father of a singing friend, Basil Davidson, and expert on African politics and a truly great man
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 01:08 PM

Liberia was colonized at one point a bit like the US "colonized" "its" West-- when US freed slaves settled there, thereally were indigenous people of color already there who were not 100% thrilled.

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 01:18 PM

Pardon autocorrect typo above: //there already were//

"...The Americo-Liberian settlers did not relate well to the indigenous peoples they encountered, especially those in communities of the more isolated "bush", They knew nothing of their cultures, languages or animist religion. Encounters with tribal Africans in the bush often developed as violent confrontations. The colonial settlements were raided by the Kru and Grebo from their inland chiefdoms.

Because of feeling set apart and superior by their culture and education to the indigenous peoples, the Americo-Liberians developed as a small elite that held on to political power. It excluded the indigenous tribesmen from birthright citizenship in their own lands until 1904, in a repetition of the United States' treatment of Native Americans. 

Because of ethnocentrism and the cultural gap, the Americo-Liberians envisioned creating a western-style state to which the tribesmen should assimilate. They promoted religious organizations to set up missions and schools to educate the indigenous peoples.. ..."

Sound familiar!?!

One could say that the US colonized Liberia because of policy encouraging the "go back to Africa" manner of dealing with those "uppity" free Black Americans it suddenly had to contend with.

(If you look for info about colonization from the history written by the colonizers, the whole truth is not in that side of the record!)

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberia

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: keberoxu
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 02:06 PM

Colonialism or no colonialism,
I fear that the powerful nations of the day
would still have found Africa
a profitable source for the slave trade.
It's sickening to think of,
but there were prosperous nations that needed the manpower
(and woman power, and maybe even childpower?)
and even without engaging in a colonial relationship,
those powers would have traded in human flesh
to meet their labor force requirements.

We forget how very recent abolition is in history.
Slavery has been a fact of human civilization for many thousands of years.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:17 PM

colonialism is just a restricted context for exploitation, if merely considering the negatives. Exploitation has existed since man got up and walked. The early factories of the industrial revolution were not a worker's paradise. They did not replace cottage industry to give the workers better conditions, quite the reverse.child exploitation

" If Africa had not suffered Colonialism" This phrase rather suggests a situation that once existed"
Put Neo on the front of colonialism and has anything really changed.
More a case of the multinationals raping and pillaging with the tacit acceptance of the old colonial masters, aided by American hegemony


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: robomatic
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 08:25 PM

No solutions here, but variations:
I second the importance of remembering the incredible depredations of King Leopold on the Congo. The book by Hochschild can be found online. It wasn't a true case of colonization, not that this justifies a thing. King Leopold treated the Belgian Congo as his private domain, which he depoiled with no trace of conscience. The story of this despicable treatment of millions of human beings was a cause celebre of its day, the unmasking of it through close attention to rail shipments reads like a detective novel, reminiscent of the "dog who did not bark".

Another book, less historical, but no less memorable, is "Shaka Zulu" by E.A. Ritter. The version that I read took a sympathetic look at Shaka and the Zulus but it told of massive bloodshed by Shaka and his generals who set out to form their own empires at the expense of their neighbors. Genocide is definitely indicated.

Then there are non-European colonizers/ destroyers, such as Genghiz Khan; The Huns, various intra-Chinese warlords, the Tartars, and the Rus who fought the Tartars.

I don't think the Celts and their Druidic elements would have much positive to say about the Romans and Christians who wiped them out in large numbers. I don't think the Babylonians would have much nice to say about the Assyrians (or have I got that the wrong way round?) Nor the Carthaginians the Romans, the Byzantines the Turks, or anyone in the Near East or North Africa the Ottomans (see what I did there?) And try and find a Zoroastran in Iran, now. They're there, but they take some finding. I don't think they shrank voluntarily.

Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul not Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works?
That's nobody's business but the Turks!


Does that make what went on in Africa okay? No but Africa's a HYUGE place with a lot of players, and it's not a surprise that a lot of folks got in their business. After all, we all came from there at one time or another, and went to Europe and got in the Neanderthals' business.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Thompson
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 04:47 AM

There was a brilliant book about the colonisation of Africa, came out a few years ago, The Scramble for Africa.

Colonisation is never good: look at the 1580s and onward in Ireland: English and Scottish 'undertakers' came in, having bought or been granted the property of Irish families, and asset-stripped the land - first the trees, sold and exported to Britain en masse, then any other resources. They stood to their arms for the following centuries; for the occupiers hatred was their survival tactic, for the occupied, corruption became the only way to survive. Not good for a country.

I read an interesting figure a couple of years back: in India, the wealthiest cities (at the time), loaded with gold and pearls and perfumes and spices and silks, were where the East India Company set up, and where the British maintained their centres of power. These are now the poorest cities in India.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 05:33 AM

What always made me furious was the attitude that the poor, ignorant, primitive peoples needed our help to become civilised/Christianised. There was a frightful hymn I remember as a child that went:

"Over the sea there are little brown children'
Fathers and mothers and babies dear."

It continued in the vein that the message should be swiftly conveyed to them that 'God is near'. So patronising and condescending.

I suppose no colonisers will undertake the activity unless there are excellent pickings for them. In Africa for example (India too) there is/was a wealth of oil, timber cash crops, minerals etc etc combined with extremely cheap labour. Very tempting for greedy exploiters.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 05:45 AM

Not forgetting land of course. Australia, US, Canada..............

A small example of misdeeds below.
http://blog.nativepartnership.org/treaties-made-treaties-broken/


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Hrothgar
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 06:51 AM

Cynical bastard alert.

If the African people suffered so badly under their brutal colonial masters, why are so many of them now trying to get into the home countries of those brutal colonial masters?


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 07:02 AM

"Cynical bastard alert."
Cynical indeed
Try - because of the unstable and impoverished conditions left behind by the retreating Imperial powers
The world is still up to its armpits in the blood from post coonial confilcts, and will continue to be for a few generations to come if present policies are pursued
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 07:24 AM

Hrothgar, I wonder if you have visited an African country? It's rather a shock the first time, especially if it's a very poor one, or a very poor region. Even after many, many visits, I'm still horrified and saddened by the things I see. The people there see 'The West' or 'Europe' portrayed on TV or in newspapers and long to escape their poverty, even semi-starvation. My husband was one of them.
I wouldn't blame anyone in those circumstances for risking all (even their lives in some cases) to get out of it and seek a better existence.
I still maintain that nowadays elected African politicians exacerbate the poverty by grabbing with both hands most of the financial gains to be had in their position, and do nothing to ameliorate the suffering. They just don't seem to care. To me, they're no better than the old colonials in their greed and indifference.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 07:51 AM

"Trickle-down economics, also referred to as trickle-down theory, is an economic theory that advocates reducing taxes on businesses and the wealthy in society as a means to stimulate business investment in the short term and benefit society at large in the long term. It is a form of laissez-faire capitalism in general and more specifically supply-side economics. Whereas general supply-side theory favors lowering taxes overall, trickle-down theory more specifically targets taxes on the upper end of the economic spectrum"

Go to Africa and see firsthand how well this stunning economic theory operates in the real world.

I suppose Rhodesia was much better off once those nasty colonials went home and the megalomaniac Mugabe took over.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Mrrzy
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 08:33 AM

The point I was making about corruption/family is also what happened with native Americans in a lot of places, I understand. Almost any really poor people have as an ethos that things are shared rather than owned. You give me a salary that seems OK or even small to a coloniZER, I the coloniZED will see it as unbounded riches that I could not possibly just keep to myself. It would be a crime not to share, in my book, and it would be a crime *to* share in theirs.

Not corruption by my standards, no matter how many times you explain to me that my cousins don't get any because they are not employees.

And cousin is broadly defined, too.

Hi ELiza!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 08:57 AM

Hello there Mrrzy! :)

I do understand what you mean about families wanting their 'cut'. My husband has an enormous family (more than sixty people in the courtyard alone, in little shanty shacks) as they're Muslims and the men have two, three or even four wives apiece, with all the resulting children. Whenever he goes home (the last time was last Spring for his father's funeral) he's positively besieged by family members begging for handouts.
When he visits his ancestral village up in the north, it's even worse.
The entire village tags along wherever he goes, expecting gifts. One old man asked for a 'European tractor'! They honestly think he's won the Lottery, and has millions to dispense.
It's pitiful, but can get very annoying. He's a school cleaner not a multi-millionaire.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 09:21 AM

Senoufou: I'm rather ignorant about South Africa, as I'm familiar only with parts of West Africa. Actually, it seems that other flourishing economies are now getting in on the act. The Chinese and Lebanese are making great strides in investment there, which does mean employment and development, but I have no doubt their own interests will come first, and back-handers offered to the corrupt politicians.

The Chinese in particular are virtually annexing parts of Africa. I've seen it at first hand in Angola and Sudan, but it's happening elsewhere too.

They go in with offers of loans for development projects. The projects are managed by the Chinese, who often bring in their own nationals to do even some of the most basic work, employing far fewer locals than they could. At a price of course, as the loans are used to repay the costs of the imported labour.

The collateral for the loans is the country's natural resources....typically oil land gas in the areas where I work, but also including gold, precious stones and other minerals. And the backhanders are enormous.

You could say they've taken over some of the worst aspects of the Western colonial era. Most Sudanese and Angolans I've spoken to loathe them as "they're more racist than most Westerners ever were".


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Senoufou
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 09:55 AM

They have indeed 'taken over some of the worst aspects of the Western colonial era' Rob, I've seen their depredations in Senegal. And they have scant respect or care for the indigenous people. But the African politicians are culpable too. After all, they could negotiate far better deals if they were more honourable and less corrupt.

Poor poor Africa, it seems it's regarded merely as a large sweet shop just waiting for greedy folk to bust in the door and help themselves to all the toffees. (Or have the door unlocked already by dishonest, bent security guards!)


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 11:23 AM

It is way too simplistic to say that colonization is always bad. Viz that Monty Python sketch about the Romans.
India was united by the actions of the English.
I'll never forget a talk by a Hawaiian of Polynesian extraction at the Bishop Museum who was no fan of the Christian colonizers who mandated that Hawaiians give up the sexually expressive sides of their cultures, but said on balance it was worth it because they brought the written word (maybe she meant written Word).

I do not feel that justifies anything, but pretty much every culture that COULD colonize, DID colonize, from earliest times. One possible exception might be the Chinese, who we know had a strong, vital, technical and literate culture thousands of years ago, and did not extend it beyond their continental territory.

But they appear to be making up for it, now.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 12:00 PM

"It is way too simplistic to say that colonization is always bad. Viz that Monty Python sketch about the Romans."
It is not simplistic to say that no country should have control of another's people, culture or economy
That is intrinsically wrong and has long been proven so
It implies that one group of humans is naturally superior to the other
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Iains
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 12:39 PM

"It implies that one group of humans is naturally superior to the other"
Nope. Just smarter and better technology!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Roz
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 04:45 PM

I feel that one important aspect of colonialism that this thread has not yet addressed is the consensual aspect of it. In my mind, and I'm no anthropologist, the difference between 'exploration' and 'colonialism' is the fact that colonizers stay where they're not wanted and plunder resources.

Iains, I would also say rather than smarter or better at technology, maybe it is more correct to say they were more willing to be cruel.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 08:45 PM

Jim Carroll:
You state your case with your customary brevity and more clarity than usual. I say that colonization is not always defined as you state. Sometimes colonization occurs on untenanted land. As to the cases where cultures conflict, I don't think that it is possible to be objective. The histories we have that approve of the colonizers were, of course, written by the colonizers.

Churchill's comment sort of applies here: "The problems of victory are more agreeable than those of defeat, but they are no less difficult."

We live in an era where the colonized (who have survived) have their own voice, and surprise, surprise, much criticism ensues.
But other colonizers left no survivors at all.

I'm going ahead and repeating myself. Sometimes the colonized have begrudging admiration for the colonizers. I am no fan of missionaries, but the Polynesians got the written word and ran with it. I have heard Indians credit the British Empire for the legal system, the infrastructure, the common language, that has given them an incredibly powerful and largely democratic country which has the power to go its own way and the ability to colonize its one-time colonizer.
The Romans might have been the ones who gave the English the idea of empire by incorporating them into theirs.
The English clearly defined much of the world that is able to stand on its own: Canada, The United States, Costa Rica, Australia, New Zealand. In so doing they transcended culture, race, and religion, and passed along the elements of a global society that has enabled this very thread to be formed over vast distances and read by people with vastly different backgrounds.
On the other hand, and it is an important-as-hell other hand which you will not listen to except maybe now that I've predicted you won't listen, it might make some people feel superior for a small amount of time. One side might feel superior because of technical / military accomplishments, the other might feel superior due to literary pretensions and the sheen of victimhood, but ALL are prey to unintended consequences. Chaos always gets a wedge in!


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: Thompson
Date: 28 Feb 18 - 08:41 AM

Wait till someone comes in to take your home and exploit your land without your consent; when that happens, you can look down your nose and make moral judgments.

Wait till the Arctic melts and the people of the Northern Hemisphere are flooding south and pleading for refuge; then you can look down your nose and patronise them for wanting to go to these other countries.


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Subject: RE: BS: If Africa had not suffered Colonialism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 28 Feb 18 - 10:00 AM

Keberoxou, re "...Slavery has been a fact of human civilization for many thousands of years...."

Not CHATTEL slavery. Not BRED slaves. Not slavery with no path to freedom as part of the institution. Chattel slavery has a distinct and more recent history of its own.

~S~


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