"Two hundred different languages," he said, "spoken inside the borders of a so-called country invented by Belgians in a parlor." — Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
What can we expect following another ruling class victory in the U.S. elections? Just enough relief for the (upper) middle class to keep it aligned with the capitalist corporate security state.
Deception is at the heart of American governance. Want to fight a war that is none of your business? Elect a peace candidate for President, like Woodrow Wilson, Lyndon Johnson, or Barack Obama.
The ignorance of the American electorate is so vast that the databases that keep track of it are a major contributor to global warming. Among the darkest of dark areas is U.S. policy in Africa. Mitt Romney and Barack Obama seemed to talk about African policy when they debated about the successful assassination of U.S. embassy officials in Libya. The candidates agreed that while it is a fine thing for the U.S. to kill anyone who disagrees with us in Africa, it is a horrible crime for anyone in Africa who disagrees with the U.S. to fight back. That is the level of sophistication that the typical undecided voter can comprehend.
Your average African citizen, of course, is no better informed than your average American. By all accounts many if not most Africans love Barack Obama, or at least love the concept of an ethnically part-African man running the most powerful nation in the world.
Africa, of course is a big place. It has many nations, and most of those nations were carved up by European colonial powers with no regard to ethnic lines or even natural geographic boundaries. Africa includes the ancient city of Alexandria and numerous new cities that have arisen in the past hundred years, as well as vast rural areas, some of them densely populated, while others are nearly deserted.
What is U.S. policy in Africa? Aside from killing anyone who disagrees with U.S. policy in any way (which is only a means to an end) our policy is to maximize corporate profits while gaining as much political control as possible. Right now there are three concrete objectives being pursued.
The most visible objective is the destruction of Anti-American forms of Islam. Islam is the new communism. It is important to realize that President Obama and friends do not care about the degree of radicalness. Radical Islamists who support the American agenda, like the dictator of Saudi Arabia, are fine. Moderate Islamists, or even secular cultural Islamists, are not fine if they support a local nationalist or anti-corporate business agenda. Nor is brutality, in itself, considered to be anti-American. Brutal pro-U.S. regimes, like the U.S. puppet government of warlords in Somalia, are promoted. The former, moderate, peaceful Islamic Courts Union of Somalia was considered insufficiently pro-America, and so was destroyed.
One item of this week's African news is a threat by Uganda to pull out of Somalia. As if Somalia did not have enough problems, the U.S. has paid the brutal governments of Uganda, Burundi, Ethiopia and Kenya to invade Somalia. Uganda has, nevertheless, been accused of aiding a rebellion in the Congo. The brutal warlords who rule the Congo are considered pro-U.S., so aiding a rebellion against them is not allowed.
Extracting wealth from the Congo is an age-old game, with a history well worth studying, though I can't take the time to recount it here. Today Americans think we are a generous people who send our excess food to starving people in Africa, to nations like the Congo. But the U.S. no longer has food surpluses. Our over 330 million citizens slurp up more food than the U.S. can produce, even in the eco-damaging manner used here.
We need our diamonds and our minerals, which traditionally have been dug out of Africa with little benefit to the natives. Controlling mining and oil extraction remains the second U.S. objective. The third, and newest, objective is to create giant American-style farms where ever possible in Africa. These farms will not feed hungry Africans. They will employee a few native workers, while throwing many more off their land. The food will be sold to the highest bidder in international markets, which means to the United States, Japan, China or Europe.
Let any African stand in the way of U.S. businessmen, be they a local war lord, national dictator, or democratically elected Prime Minister, and the United States Department of State and its adjuncts, the CIA and Marine Corps, will treat them like a pothole in the road that needs to be paved over. Bribes are always tried before bullets. We can even show dictators how to have elections they can be guaranteed to win, with opposition parties that seem to offer a choice but really don't. We borrowed those skills from the British Empire in 1776 and have honed them for over two centuries now.