Private Military Companies Continue To Expand In Africa


The recent coup in Niger threatens to unleash more private military and security companies on a continent where they have become steadily more powerful in recent decades.

In the wake of the July 26 coup in Niger, the world’s spotlight has once again turned to the expansion of private military and security companies (PMSCs) across Africa. Following the removal of the relatively pro-Western government, Niger’s new military rulers asked Russian PMSC Wagner to help defend against a possible military intervention by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken warning of the PMSC seeking to exploit the instability.

In a continent marked by decades of post-colonial turmoil, PMSCs have steadily gained influence, evolving from their historical role as mercenaries into powerful, corporate-driven forces. As the Sahel region continues to grapple with instability and conflict, the strengthening of PMSCs, both domestic and foreign, will continue to reshape Africa’s security in profound and unpredictable ways.

Africa’s experience with PMSCs dates back to the decolonization period after World War II. Though mercenaries had been steadily sidelined in conflicts for centuries, rag-tag groups of privateers emerged as shadowy accomplices to colonial powers, aiding in suppressing rebellions and fomenting unrest while providing a degree of ambiguity. Britain’s “Mad Mike” Hoare and France’s Bob Denard came to exemplify this era through their active involvement in military operations that undermined the sovereignty of African states.

The end of the Cold War ushered in a new chapter for PMSCs. With millions of demobilized soldiers seeking employment and civil conflicts on the rise in the early 1990s, these entities evolved into more corporate forms. The South African PMSC Executive Outcomes (EO), founded in 1989 by Eeben Barlow, gained notoriety by accepting contracts to protect energy infrastructure in Angola and to fight Sierra Leone’s civil war.

Pressure from South Africa’s post-apartheid government led to the disbandment of EO in 1998. But other PMSCs had emerged, including Sandline International, also financed by EO backer Anthony Buckingham and Canadian businessman Rakesh Saxena, that helped gain control over mineral rights in Sierra Leone. And after Washington began to lean heavily on PMSCs during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the taboo of using them was broken.

Existing in a legal gray zone, PMSCs have leveraged their strategic capabilities worldwide—no more so than in Africa. Fragile government institutions, powerful criminal and militant groups, international power struggles, and competition over Africa’s natural resources have nurtured an environment supportive of a growing network of PMSCs. Across the continent, they are used to secure energy facilities, government buildings, and private infrastructure, protect local actors and foreign personnel, and provide police and military training, intelligence, and active fire support to governments and corporate clients.

Through entities like the colossal PMSC Wagner, Russia has found an unconventional and effective way to assert influence in Africa’s security landscape. In the Sahel region, Russian PMSCs have filled a void left by departing French military forces and capitalizing on local anti-French sentiment in recent years.

Amid shifting allegiances, Wagner underscores how Russia’s indirect power projection allows the Kremlin to wield substantial influence without deploying conventional military forces. Wagner’s activities are believed to span across Mali, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Angola, Madagascar, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Burkina Faso, Chad, the Central African Republic (CAR), and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Other Russian PMSCs, such as RSB Group, Moran Security Group, and Patriot, also operate across Africa.

At the center of Russia’s PMSC network in Africa stands Yevgeny Prigozhin, Wagner’s financier. The Russian tycoon celebrated the success of the coup in Niger and declared Wagner capable of handling the situation, though the Russian government declined to support it. Despite Prigozhin’s longstanding quarrels with the Russian military, which culminated in his insurrectionist march toward Moscow in June, Prigozhin was recently seen meeting with African dignitaries on the side of the Russia-Africa summit in St Petersburg.

As the Nigerien government grapples with its situation, Wagner could again act as a Kremlin surrogate, safeguarding Russia’s interests by filling the security vacuum left by the ousted French military. Already, there are fears that Niger may halt uranium exports, vital to both French and EU supplies, and forcing the West’s attention to the country. Russian media has criticized Prigozhin since his rebellion and officials have downplayed state connections to Wagner’s activities in Africa. But Prigozhin’s ongoing role in Africa suggests the Kremlin is relying on smoke and mirrors to obscure its true motivations.

Beyond Russia, numerous Western PMSCs have embedded themselves within Africa’s security. Unlike Russia’s PMSCs, most do not operate on the frontlines of conflict and primarily operate in security and training roles, though do coordinate with official military deployments. French PMSC Secopex made headlines in 2011 when its founder was killed in Libya during the country’s revolution, and it remains unclear as to what the PMSC’s role was.

Secopex had also been involved in the CAR and Somalia, while Corpguard (also created by the co-founder of Secopex, David Hornus) has been involved in training the Cote D’Ivoire’s military.

Other French PMSCs, such as Agemira, are active in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Though French-owned, Agemira is registered in Bulgaria to take advantage of the country’s lack of regulation and transparency. The UK’s Aegis Defence Services is believed to have worked in 18 African countries, while G4S, Erinys, and Olive Group are also active in Africa.

U.S. PMSCs have been active across the continent since the 2000s, with MPRI, CACI International, and Academi (previously the notorious Blackwater) among the most notable. Others, such as DynCorp, have provided training and logistical support to Liberia, Sudan, and Somalia, while Triple Canopy has been active in Niger. AdvanFort Co in turn offers anti-piracy maritime protection in East and West Africa. Germany’s Xeless and Asgaard are also active in Africa, with the latter having operations in Sudan, Libya, Mauritania, and Egypt.

PMSCs have increasingly begun to operate in the same conflict zones. Somalia, which lacked a functional state for more than two decades, provided fertile ground for PMSC expansion. PMSCs from the U.S., UK, China, UAE, and even Norway have helped Somalia train its official government forces and provide maritime protection from piracy and terrorism and ensure stability. But in Libya, PMSCs from or backed by Russia, France, the UK, the U.S., Turkey, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and more have all been sent to the country since 2011 to exploit the chaos and advance their interests.

Active in Libya, Turkey’s SADAT group has also signed deals to train African troops while pitching itself as a Muslim alternative PMSC for Islamic-majority countries. The UAE-based Black Shield Security Company was accused in 2020 of promising Sudanese citizens security contractor jobs but instead sent them to conflict zones in Libya. Other UAE PMSCs have been active in East Africa, including in Somalia, while China has developed a multitude of PMSCs to secure its Belt and Road projects in Africa. Israeli PMSCs have their own African operations.

In 2014, the Nigerian government began hiring PMSCs to help defeat the Boko Haram insurgency. One of them, Specialized Task, Training, Equipment, and Protection (STTEP), was also set by EO’s Barlow and saw significant success that helped grant it additional contracts. Other modern South African PMSCs include Osprey, Blackhawk, and Dyck Advisory Group, the latter of which was hired by Mozambique to combat Al-Shabaab militants but was accused of killing civilians indiscriminately by the UN in 2020.

The use of PMSCs in Africa is likely to expand. They often offer African governments a quick, relatively inexpensive, and tailored way to manage crises instead of relying on ineffective state forces. PMSCs also enable international companies to protect themselves without relying on the fanfare of official military deployments by working with another corporate entity.

Nonetheless, this raises questions about sovereignty, a recurring issue in a continent where it has consistently been violated since African countries won their independence. The monopoly on the use of violent force by their police and military institutions has been steadily eroded by criminals, militants, foreign countries, and increasingly, PMSCs.

The dangers of commodifying security are evident. Foreign companies and powerful local actors can afford security, while the core issues of instability in countries or regions are not addressed. Furthermore, instability is often used by outside forces to their advantage. Many Africans also end up working for PMSCs outside the continent because they are cheaper than recruits from other parts of the world.

Furthermore, PMSCs, and the governments and companies that employ them, remain largely uncommitted to stronger regulation. The Montreux Document aimed to enforce greater rules for PMSCs, but has been criticized for its limited scope and lack of binding nature. Other countries, including the five members of the UN Security Council, have refused to ratify the UN International Convention Against the Recruitment, Use, Financing, and Training of Mercenaries.

Criticism of PMSCs in Africa is growing. In February 2023, the African Union (AU) commissioner for political affairs, peace, and security, Bankole Adeoye, called for the “complete exclusion of mercenaries from the African continent.” But U.S. PMSC Bancroft Global had already been hired by the AU to assess the risk of Somali forces trained by Blackwater founder Erik Prince to continue operating in the country.

These entities epitomize globalization. Aegis Defence Services was acquired by Canadian company GardaWorld in 2015, while DynCorp was bought by Amentum in 2020. Academi and Triple Canopy merged in 2014 to form Constellis Group, while Triple Canopy has outsourced work to Peru-based PMSC Defion International. Erik Prince, through the Hong Kong-based Frontier Services Group, has helped China train its own PMSCs for use in Africa and elsewhere. G4S was meanwhile bought by Allied Universal in 2021 and is now North America’s third-largest private employer. Allied Universal itself is owned by institutional investor Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and private equity firm Warburg Pincus.

Many PMSCs provide legitimate and needed security for civilians and government officials. But considering the wide-ranging motivations, means, and methods of so many PMSCs on the continent—and increasingly in the same spaces—it is critical for Africa’s governments, leaders, and populations to consider how comfortable they are in allowing this rapidly developing global PMSC network to continue expanding in their own backyards.


John P. Ruehl

Author Bio:

This article was produced by Globetrotter.

John P. Ruehl is an Australian-American journalist living in Washington, D.C. He is a contributing editor to Strategic Policy and a contributor to several other foreign affairs publications. His book, Budget Superpower: How Russia Challenges the West With an Economy Smaller Than Texas’, was published in December 2022.


Bookmark and Share

How The US Supreme Court Became An Arm Of The Republican Party

Professor Khiara M. Bridges worked with students from the Reproductive Rights and Justice seminar she taught last semester on an amicus brief for an abortion rights case the U.S. Supreme Court will hear in March. Photo:

The court is making decisions based on the GOP platform, not the Constitution, says legal scholar Khiara M. Bridges

The U.S. Supreme Court, whose current ideological leanings are extremely reactionary, has spearheaded a broad national regression on human rights. Indeed, the United States is a global outlier on multiple fronts (the only wealthy nation without a universal health care system and number one in firearms per capita, to name just a few), and some of the latest Supreme Court rulings (on abortion, guns and affirmative action) are turning the country into “a global pariah.”

How do we make sense of these utterly dangerous developments? First of all, why is the Supreme Court acting like the executive committee of the Republican Party? Are there even clean legal arguments upon which its rulings are based? In this exclusive interview for Truthout, renowned law professor and anthropologist Khiara M. Bridges, who specializes in the intersection of race, class, reproductive justice and law, shares her insights into the issues raised above and offers some legal remedies that she believes will help achieve racial justice and equality in the 21st century.

Bridges is a professor of law at UC Berkeley School of Law. Her scholarship has appeared in scores of prestigious publications, including the Harvard Law Review, the Stanford Law Review, the California Law Review, the NYU Law Review and the Virginia Law Review. She is the author of Reproducing Race: An Ethnography of Pregnancy as a Site of Racialization (2011), The Poverty of Privacy Rights (2017) and Critical Race Theory: A Primer (2019). On July 12, 2022, Bridges testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee about the fallout from the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade.

C. J. Polychroniou: Race, class and gender have functioned as organizing principles in the development of U.S. society and culture from the very beginning and continue to shape social identities to this day. Your own work, as a professor of law and an anthropologist, focuses on the relationship between race, class and gender in the context of reproductive rights and law. Can you briefly discuss this relationship and explain what intersectionality has to do with efforts to create a more equitable and just world for ourselves and future generations?

Khiara M. Bridges: I will try to answer your question by explaining why I was drawn to the study of the intersection of race, class and gender in the context of reproductive rights and law.
When I was in law school, I was struck by the way pregnancy and motherhood were described in Supreme Court cases. On the whole, the court talked about pregnancy and motherhood in celebratory terms. They were conceptualized as good for the pregnant woman, her family, her community and the nation as a whole. Language idealizing pregnancy and motherhood could be found even in cases in which the court protected the right to terminate a pregnancy. For example, in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, in which the court affirmed its holding in Roe v. Wade that the Constitution protected the right to terminate a pre-viability pregnancy, the court writes:
‘As with abortion, reasonable people will have differences of opinion about these matters. One view is based on such reverence for the wonder of creation that any pregnancy ought to be welcomed and carried to full term no matter how difficult it will be to provide for the child and ensure its well-being. Another is that the inability to provide for the nurture and care of the infant is a cruelty to the child and an anguish to the parent.’

Here, even in its defense of the constitutional right to abortion, the court speaks about pregnancy and motherhood in radiant terms. In this framing, the abortion right deserves recognition and protection because when pregnancy occurs during a disadvantageous time in a person’s life — when they do not have the means to provide for the child’s emotional and material needs — it is “cruel” to the infant and causes the parent “anguish.” In my reading, the court still conceptualizes pregnancy as a blessing. The court recognizes a constitutional right to abortion simply because this blessing may occur at a bad time.

The fairly laudatory presentation of pregnancy and motherhood in the court’s jurisprudence sits in diametrical opposition to the way that some people’s pregnancies are spoken about in political discourse. When I was in law school, the nation had just spent the two immediately preceding decades talking about “welfare queens” — implicitly Black women who were imagined to have babies solely to increase the size of their welfare checks. “Welfare queens” were decidedly bad for the nation; they drained public finances while producing children that were the country’s future criminals and “welfare queens” themselves. I was in law school during a period of time in which politicians were arguing that welfare beneficiaries should be required to take long-acting reversible contraception, or to undergo sterilization, in order to receive financial assistance from the state. Essentially, politicians were talking about poor people’s reproduction as if it were a social problem that needed to be solved. This was, again, the complete inverse of the way that the court spoke about pregnancy and motherhood.

I was fascinated by the inversion. And race and class explain the opposition. They explain why some people’s procreation is celebrated, and other people’s procreation is denigrated. And that’s really the lesson of intersectionality. Intersectionality offers a framework for understanding the complexity of social life. It recognizes that power is exerted along many different axes in the U.S. — race, class, sex, gender identity, sexuality, ability, immigration status, religion etc. And intersectionality simply submits that privilege or subjugation will look different at the various intersections of those axes of power. So, for example, sexism when it intersects with race privilege will look different than the way it looks when it intersects with race un-privilege. The form that sexism, patriarchy and misogyny have taken for affluent white women is the command to reproduce at all costs. The form that sexism has taken for Black women, especially when they are poor, is the demand that they avoid reproduction at all costs.

And so, intersectionality cautions that as we engage in efforts to create a more equitable and just world, we have to be careful not to allow one group’s experiences with an axis of power to stand in for everyone’s experience with that axis of power. If we do, our efforts will be liberatory only for some.

Critical race theory was developed in the 1980s but has become a hot-button political issue for today’s conservatives in the U.S. What is it about critical race theory that has become such an obsession for Republicans, and why is it coming up now?

You are absolutely correct to note that critical race theory was developed in the 1980s. It was created by law professors who were trying to figure out how it came to be that dramatic racial inequality endured even though the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s had forced the nation to bestow formal racial equality onto people of color. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 both had been passed. These were monumental pieces of legislation. Nevertheless, when these incipient critical race theorists looked around at the social landscape in the 1980s, they saw that people of color were still at the bottom of most measures of social well-being. Black people, particularly, were incarcerated at higher rates than white people; they were poorer than white people; they were sicker than white people; they died earlier than white people. So, the law professors who created critical race theory wanted to think about how this dramatic racial inequality could coexist with formal racial equality. That is what critical race theory sets out to do. It is an advanced legal theory that attempts to think through the relationship between law and continuing racial injustice in a post-civil rights era.

Of course, this is not what the Republican Party is talking about when they invoke “critical race theory.” Conservative pundits and politicians say that critical race theory is being taught in K-12 schools. They say that it is “Marxist.” They say that it proposes that all white people are racist and all Black people are oppressed. Essentially, their description of critical race theory bears absolutely no relationship to actual critical race theory — the advanced legal theory that law professors began developing in the 1980s. Essentially, the Republican Party has co-opted the term, and they are using the struggle to rid so-called critical race theory from public life to accomplish the goal of silencing any talk that suggests that racial inequality remains a problem and that race still matters in the U.S. today.

I think that it is important to keep in mind precisely when the Republican Party began talking about critical race theory. The GOP’s fixation began in fall 2020 — right after the country had a long, hot summer of racial protests in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. If you recall, optimists that summer were saying that the country was having a “racial reckoning.” Then, in the fall, the Republican Party began claiming that critical race theory was being taught everywhere — to federal employees, kindergartners and everyone in between. The timing is no accident. It seems pretty obvious that the Republican Party created a bogeyman out of critical race theory to stop whatever racial reckoning that was happening at the time and to undo any gains — legislative, political, discursive — that racial justice advocates had managed to achieve that summer.

Finally, it is important to understand the intentionality behind the creation of “critical race theory” as a bogeyman. Most scholars thinking through the Republican Party’s co-optation of the term “critical race theory” credit Christopher Rufo, a conservative activist, with putting so-called critical race theory on the Republican Party’s radar. In March 2021, Rufo tweeted:

‘We have successfully frozen their brand — “critical race theory” — into the public conversation and are steadily driving up negative perceptions. We will eventually turn it toxic, as we put all of the various cultural insanities under that brand category.

The goal is to have the public read something crazy in the newspaper and immediately think “critical race theory.” We have decodified the term and will recodify it to annex the entire range of cultural constructions that are unpopular with Americans.’

Very rarely do the villains explicitly and publicly reveal their nefarious plans. In this case, the villain did just that.

The Supreme Court’s Republican-appointed majority has issued a series of ultra-reactionary rulings on a number of critical issues such as voting rights, affirmative action, gerrymandering, abortion, gun control and campaign finance. Are these rulings based on clear legal arguments, or are they in fact driven by political preferences and ideological biases? For example, there seems to be very little consistency in the Supreme Court decisions on guns and abortion.

I think that it is hard for anyone to say with a straight face that the court’s recent decisions are based on clear, consistent legal principles. I believe that anyone paying attention sees that the court has been issuing decisions that are consistent only in the sense that they consistently align with the Republican Party’s political platform.

Read more

Bookmark and Share

What’s Happening In Niger Is Far From A Typical Coup

Vijay Prashad

On July 26, 2023, Niger’s presidential guard moved against the sitting president—Mohamed Bazoum—and conducted a coup d’état. A brief contest among the various armed forces in the country ended with all the branches agreeing to the removal of Bazoum and the creation of a military junta led by Presidential Guard Commander General Abdourahamane “Omar” Tchiani. This is the fourth country in the Sahel region of Africa to have experienced a coup—the other three being Burkina Faso, Guinea, and Mali. The new government announced that it would stop allowing France to leech Niger’s uranium (one in three lightbulbs in France is powered by the uranium from the field in Arlit, northern Niger). Tchiani’s government revoked all military cooperation with France, which means that the 1,500 French troops will need to start packing their bags (as they did in both Burkina Faso and Mali). Meanwhile, there has been no public statement about Airbase 201, the U.S. facility in Agadez, a thousand kilometers from the country’s capital of Niamey. This is the largest drone base in the world and key to U.S. operations across the Sahel. U.S. troops have been told to remain on the base for now and drone flights have been suspended. The coup is certainly against the French presence in Niger, but this anti-French sentiment has not enveloped the U.S. military footprint in the country.

Hours after the coup was stabilized, the main Western states—especially France and the United States—condemned the coup and asked for the reinstatement of Bazoum, who was immediately detained by the new government. But neither France nor the United States appeared to want to lead the response to the coup. Earlier this year, the French and U.S. governments worried about an insurgency in northern Mozambique that impacted the assets of the Total-Exxon natural gas field off the coastline of Cabo Delgado. Rather than send in French and U.S. troops, which would have polarized the population and increased anti-Western sentiment, the French and the United States made a deal for Rwanda to send its troops into Mozambique. Rwandan troops entered the northern province of Mozambique and shut down the insurgency. Both Western powers seem to favor a “Rwanda” type solution to the coup in Niger, but rather than have Rwanda enter Niger the hope was for ECOWAS—the Economic Community of West African States—to send in its force to restore Bazoum.

A day after the coup, ECOWAS condemned the coup. ECOWAS encompasses fifteen West African states, which in the past few years has suspended Burkina Faso and Mali from their ranks because of the coups in that country; Niger was also suspended from ECOWAS a few days after the coup. Formed in 1975 as an economic bloc, the grouping decided—despite no mandate in its original mission—to send in peacekeeping forces in 1990 into the heart of the Liberian Civil War. Since then, ECOWAS has sent its peacekeeping troops to several countries in the region, including Sierra Leone and Gambia. Not long after the coup in Niger, ECOWAS placed an embargo on the country that included suspending its right to basic commercial transactions with its neighbors, freezing Niger’s central bank assets that are held in regional banks, and stopping foreign aid (which comprises forty percent of Niger’s budget). The most striking statement was that ECOWAS would take “all measures necessary to restore constitutional order.” An August 6 deadline given by ECOWAS expired because the bloc could not agree to send troops across the border. ECOWAS asked for a “standby force” to be assembled and ready to invade Niger. Then, ECOWAS said it would meet on August 12 in Accra, Ghana, to go over its options. That meeting was canceled for “technical reasons.” Mass demonstrations in key ECOWAS countries—such as Nigeria and Senegal—against an ECOWAS military invasion of Niger have confounded their own politicians to support an intervention. It would be naïve to suggest that no intervention is possible. Events are moving very fast, and there is no reason to suspect that ECOWAS will not intervene before August ends.

Coups in the Sahel
When ECOWAS suggested the possibility of an intervention into Niger, the military governments in Burkina Faso and Mali said that this would be a “declaration of war” not only against Niger but also against their countries. On August 2, one of the key leaders of the Niger coup, General Salifou Mody traveled to Bamako (Mali) and Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) to discuss the situation in the region and to coordinate their response to the possibility of an ECOWAS—or Western—military intervention into Niger. Ten days later, General Moussa Salaou Barmou went to Conakry (Guinea) to seek that country’s support for Niger from the leader of the military government in that country, Mamadi Doumbouya. Suggestions have already been floated for Niger—one of the most important countries in the Sahel—to form part of the conversation of a federation that will include Burkina Faso, Guinea, and Mali. This would be a federation of countries that have had coups to overthrow what have been seen to be pro-Western governments that have not met the expectations of increasingly impoverished populations.

The story of the coup in Niger becomes partly the story of what the communist journalist Ruth First called “the contagion of the coup” in her remarkable book, The Barrel of the Gun: Political Power in Africa and the Coup d’états (1970). Over the course of the past thirty years, politics in the Sahel countries has seriously desiccated. Parties with a history in the national liberation movements, even the socialist movements (such as Bazoum’s party) have collapsed into being representatives of their elites, who are conduits of a Western agenda. The French-U.S.-NATO war in Libya in 2011 allowed jihadis groups to pour out of Libya and flock into southern Algeria and into the Sahel (almost half of Mali is held by al-Qaeda-linked formations). The entry of these forces gave the local elites and the West the justification to further tighten limited trade union freedoms and to excise the left from the ranks of the established political parties. It is not as if the leaders of the mainline political parties are right-wing or center-right, but that whatever their orientation, they have no real independence from the will of Paris and Washington. They became—to use a word on the ground—“stooges” of the West.

Absent any reliable political instruments, the discarded rural and petty-bourgeois sections of the country turn to their children in the armed forces for leadership. People like Burkina Faso’s Captain Ibrahim Traoré (born 1988), who was raised in the rural province of Mouhoun, and Colonel Assimi Goïta (born 1988), who comes from the cattle market town and military redoubt of Kati, represent these broad class fractions perfectly. Their communities have been utterly left out of the hard austerity programs of the International Monetary Fund, of the theft of their resources by Western multinationals, and of the payments for Western military garrisons in the country. Discarded populations with no real political platform to speak for them, these communities have rallied behind their young men in the military. These are “Colonel’s Coups”—coups of ordinary people who have no other options—not “General’s Coups”—coups of the elites to stem the political advancement of the people. That is why the coup in Niger is being defended in mass rallies from Niamey to the small, remote towns that border Libya. When I traveled to these regions before the pandemic, it was clear that the anti-French sentiment found no channel of expression other than hope for a military coup that would bring in leaders such as Thomas Sankara of Burkina Faso, who had been assassinated in 1987. Captain Traoré, in fact, sports a red beret like Sankara, speaks with Sankara’s left-wing frankness, and even mimics Sankara’s diction. It would be a mistake to see these men as from the left since they are moved by anger at the failure of the elites and of Western policy. They do not come to power with a well-worked out agenda built from left political traditions.

The Niger military leaders have formed a twenty-one-person cabinet headed by Ali Mahaman Lamine Zeine, a civilian who had been a finance minister in a previous government and worked at the African Development Bank in Chad. Military leaders are prominent in the cabinet. Whether the appointment of this civilian-led cabinet will divide the ranks of ECOWAS is to be seen. Certainly, Western imperialist forces—notably the United States with troops on the ground in Niger—would not like to see this torque of coups remain in place. Europe—through French leadership—had shifted the borders of their continent from north of the Mediterranean Sea to south of the Sahara Desert, suborning the Sahel states into a project known as G-5 Sahel. Now with anti-French governments in three of these states (Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger) and with the possibility of trouble in the two remaining states (Chad and Mauritania), Europe will have to retreat to its coastline. Sanctions to deplete the mass support of the new governments will increase, and the possibility of military intervention will hang over the region like a famished vulture.

Vijay Prashad

Author Bio:
This article was produced by Globetrotter

Vijay Prashad is an Indian historian, editor, and journalist. He is a writing fellow and chief correspondent at Globetrotter. He is an editor of LeftWord Books and the director of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research. He has written more than 20 books, including The Darker Nations and The Poorer Nations. His latest books are Struggle Makes Us Human: Learning from Movements for Socialism and (with Noam Chomsky) The Withdrawal: Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and the Fragility of U.S. Power.


Bookmark and Share

Oppenheimer Paradox: Power Of Science And The Weakness Of Scientists

Prabir Purkayastha – Photo: Newsclick

The new blockbuster film on Oppenheimer has brought back the memories of the first nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima. It has raised complex questions on the nature of the society that permitted such bombs to be developed and used and the stockpiling of nuclear arsenals that can destroy the world many times over. Did the infamous McCarthy era and hunting for reds everywhere have any relationship with the pathology of a society that suppressed its guilt over the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, substituting it instead with a belief in its exceptionalism? What explains the transformation of Oppenheimer, who had emerged as the “hero” of the Manhattan Project that built the atomic bomb, to a villain and then forgotten?

I remember my first encounter with American guilt over the two atom bombs dropped on Japan. I was attending a conference on distributed computer controls in Monterey, California, in 1985, and our hosts were the Lawrence Livermore Laboratories. This was the weapons laboratory that had developed the hydrogen bomb. During dinner, the wife of one of the nuclear scientists asked the Japanese professor at the table if the Japanese understood why the Americans had to drop the bomb on Japan. That it saved a million lives of American soldiers? And many more Japanese? Was she looking for absolution for the guilt that all Americans carried? Or was she seeking confirmation that what she had been told and believed was the truth? That this belief was shared even by the victims of the bomb?

This is not about the Oppenheimer film; I am only using it as a peg to talk about why the atomic bomb represented multiple ruptures in society. Not just at the level of war, where this new weapon changed the parameters of war completely. But also the recognition in society that science was no longer the concern of the scientists alone but of all of us. For scientists, it also became a question that what they did in the laboratories had real-world consequences, including the possible destruction of humanity itself. It also brought home that this was a new era, the era of big science that needed mega bucks!

Strangely enough, two of the foremost names of scientists at the core of the anti-nuclear bomb movement after the war also had a major role in initiating the Manhattan Project. Leo Szilard, a Hungarian scientist who had become a refugee in England first and then in the United States, sought Einstein’s help in petitioning President Roosevelt for the United States to build the bomb. He was afraid that if Nazi Germany built it first, it would conquer the world. Szilard joined the Manhattan Project, though he was located not in Los Alamos but in the University of Chicago’s Metallurgical Laboratories. Szilard also campaigned within the Manhattan Project for a demonstration of the bomb before its use on Japan. Einstein also tried to reach President Roosevelt with his appeal against the use of the bomb. But Roosevelt died, with Einstein’s letter unopened on his desk. He was replaced by Vice-President Truman, who thought that the bomb would give the United States a nuclear monopoly, therefore, help subjugate the Soviet Union in the post-War scenario.

Turning to the Manhattan Project. It is the scale of the project that was staggering, even by today’s standards. At its peak, it had employed 125,000 people directly, and if we include the many other industries who were either directly or indirectly produced parts or equipment for the bomb, the number would be close to half a million. The costs again were huge, $2 billion in 1945 (around $30-50 billion today). The scientists were an elite group that included Hans Bethe, Enrico Fermi, Nils Bohr, James Franck, Oppenheimer, Edward Teller (the villain of the story later), Richard Feynman, Harold Urey, Klaus Fuchs (who shared atomic secrets with the Soviets) and many more glittering names. More than two dozen Nobel prize winners were associated with the Manhattan Project in various capacities.

But science was only a small part of the project. The Manhattan Project wanted to build two kinds of bombs: one using uranium 235 isotope and the other plutonium. How do we separate fissile material, U 235, from U 238? How do we concentrate weapons grade plutonium? How to do both at an industrial scale? How do we set up the chain reaction to create fission, bringing sub-critical fissile material together to create a critical mass? All these required metallurgists, chemists, engineers, explosive experts, and the fabrication of completely new plants and equipment spread over hundreds of sites. All of it is to be done at record speeds. This was a science “experiment” being done, not at a laboratory scale, but on an industrial scale. That is why the huge budget and the size of the human power involved.

The U.S. government convinced their citizens that Hiroshima, and three days after that, the Nagasaki bombings led to the surrender of Japan. Based on archival and other evidence, it is clear that more than the nuclear bombs, the Soviet Union declaring war against Japan was what led to its surrender. They have also shown that the number of “one million American lives saved” due to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as it avoided an invasion of Japan, had no basis. It was a number created entirely for propaganda purposes.

While the American people were given these figures as serious calculations, what was completely censored were the actual pictures of the victims of the two bombs. The only picture available of the Hiroshima bombing—the mushroom cloud—was the one taken by the gunner of Enola Gay. Even when a few photographs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were released months after the nuclear bombings, they were only of shattered buildings, none of actual human beings.

The United States, basking in their victory over Japan, did not want it to be marred by the visuals of the horror of the nuclear bomb. The United States dismissed people dying of a mysterious disease, what the United States knew was radiation sickness, as propaganda by the Japanese. To quote General Leslie Groves who led the Manhattan Project, these were “Tokyo Tales”. It took seven years for the human toll to be visible, and only after the United States ceased its occupation of Japan. Even this was only a few pictures, as Japan was still cooperating with the United States in the hushing up of the horror of the nuclear bomb. The full visual account of what happened in Hiroshima had to wait till the sixties: the pictures of people vaporized leaving only an image on the stone on which they were sitting, survivors with skin hanging from their bodies, people dying of radiation sickness.

The other part of the nuclear bomb was the role of the scientists. They became the heroes who had shortened the war and saved one million American lives. In this myth making, the nuclear bomb was converted from a major industrial scale effort to a secret formula discovered by a few physicists which gave the United States enormous power in the Post War era. This was what made Oppenheimer a hero for the American people. He symbolized the scientific community and its godlike powers. And also the target for people like Teller, who later on combined with others to bring Oppenheimer down.

But if Oppenheimer was a hero just a few years back, how did they succeed in pulling him down?

It is difficult to imagine that the United States had a strong left movement before the 2nd World War. Apart from the presence of the communists in the workers movements, the world of the intelligentsia— literature, cinema and the physicists—also had a strong communist presence. As can be seen in the Oppenheimer film. The idea that science and technology can be planned as Bernal was arguing in the UK, and should be used for public good was what the scientists had embraced. That is why the physicists, at that time at the forefront of the cutting edge in sciences—relativity, quantum mechanics—were also at the forefront of the social and political debates in science and on science.

It is this world of science, a critical worldview collided with the new world where the United States should be the exceptional nation and the sole global hegemon. Any weakening of this hegemony could only happen because some people, traitors to this nation, gave away “our” national secrets. Any development anywhere else could be only a result of theft, and nothing else. This campaign was also helped due to the belief that the atom bomb was the result of a few equations that scientists had discovered and could therefore be easily leaked to enemies.

This was the genesis of the McCarthy era, a war on the U.S. artistic, academic and the scientific community. For a search for spies under the bed. The military industrial complex was being born in the United States and soon took over the scientific establishment. It was the military and the energy—nuclear energy—budget that would henceforth determine the fate of scientists and their grants. Oppenheimer needed to be punished as an example to others. The scientists should not set themselves up against the gods of the military industrial complex and their vision of world domination.

Oppenheimer’s fall from grace served another purpose. It was a lesson to the scientific community that if it crossed the security state, no one was big enough. Even though Rosenbergs—Julius and Ethel—were executed they were relatively minor figures. Julius had not leaked any atomic secrets, only kept the Soviet Union abreast of the developments. Ethel, though a communist, had nothing to do with any spying. The only person who did leak atomic “secrets” was Klaus Fuchs, a German communist party member, who escaped to the UK, worked in the bomb project first in the UK and then in the Manhattan project as a part of the British team there. He made important contributions to the nuclear bomb triggering mechanism and shared these with the Soviet Union. Fuchs’ contribution would have shortened the Soviet bomb by possibly a year. As a whole host of nations have shown, once we know a fissile bomb is possible, it is easy for scientists and technologists to duplicate it. As has been done by countries as small as North Korea.

The Oppenheimer tragedy was not that he was victimized in the McCarthy era and lost his security clearance. Einstein never had security clearance, so that need not have been a major calamity for him either. It was his public humiliation during the hearings when he challenged the withdrawal of his security clearance that broke him. The physicists, the golden boys of the atomic era, had finally been shown their true place in the emerging world of the military industrial complex.

Einstein, Szilard, Rotblatt and others had foreseen this world. They, unlike Oppenheimer, took to the path of building a movement against the nuclear bomb. The scientists, having built the bomb, had to now act as conscience keepers of the world, against a bomb that can destroy all humanity. The bomb that still hangs as a Damocles sword over our heads.

Prabir Purkayastha

Author Bio:
This article was produced in partnership by Newsclick and Globetrotter.

Prabir Purkayastha is the founding editor of, a digital media platform. He is an activist for science and the free software movement.


Bookmark and Share

U.S. Leaders Are Split On China Policy

Richard D. Wolff – Photo: YouTube

On the one hand, U.S. policy aims to constrain China’s economic, political, and military development because it has now become the United States’ chief economic competitor and thus enemy. On the other hand, U.S. policy seeks to secure the many benefits to the United States of its companies’ trade with and investments in China. U.S. debates over “decoupling” the two countries’ economies versus the milder version of the same thing—“de-risking”—exemplify, on both sides, U.S. policy’s split approach to China.

The difficult reality for the United States is economic dependence on the world’s number two economy that deepens with China’s relentless march toward becoming the world’s number one. Likewise, China’s stunningly rapid growth over recent decades entangled it in a complex economic codependence with the U.S. market, the U.S. dollar, and U.S. interest rates. In stark contrast, neither the Soviet Union nor Russia ever offered the U.S. economic opportunities or competitive challenges comparable to what China now does. In this context, consider World Bank 2022 data on GDPs in Russia, Germany, China, and the United States: $1.5 trillion, $3.9 trillion, $14.7 trillion, and $20.9 trillion, respectively.

The political right wings of both major U.S. political parties and the military-industrial complex have long prevailed in shaping how U.S. mainstream media treat the country’s foreign policies. Over the last decade especially, the media has increasingly accused China of aggressively expanding its global influence, of authoritarianism at home, and of policies targeting the United States. Over recent decades, big business interests promote a quite different U.S. foreign policy prioritizing profitable coexistence between the United States and China. U.S. policy splits and oscillates between these two poles. One day Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase bank and U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen go to Beijing to support mutuality of interests while at the same time, President Biden labels Xi Jinping a “dictator.”

The history and legacy of the Cold War accustomed U.S. media, politicians, and academics to traffic in hyperbolic denunciations of communism plus parties and governments they link to it. Right-wing political forces have always been eager to update anti-Soviet, Cold War logics and slogans for use against China’s government and Communist Party as continuing villains. Old (Taiwan and Hong Kong) and new issues (Uyghurs) mark an ongoing campaign.

Yet as the Cold War wound down and then collapsed with the USSR’s demise, Nixon and Kissinger reconnected with a China already launched on an economic development surge that never stopped. Capitalists from the system’s old centers in the G7 (Western Europe, North America, and Japan) poured investments into China to profit from its relatively much lower wages and its rapidly growing internal market. Over the last 50 years, consumer goods and capital goods flowed out of factories in China to markets around the world. China became deeply entangled in global supply chains. Exports from China brought an inflow of payments in U.S. dollars. China lent many of those dollars back to the U.S. Treasury to fund its growing budget deficits. China joined Japan as the two major creditor countries of the United States, the world’s greatest debtor country.

China’s investment of its accumulating dollars in U.S. Treasury bonds helped to enable the fast-rising U.S. national debt over the last half-century. That helped keep U.S. interest rates low to fuel U.S. economic growth and its recoveries from several economic crashes. China’s relatively low-priced exports reflected its low wages and active government development supports. Those exports to the United States helped prevent inflation over most of those years. In turn, low prices reduced pressures from employees for higher wages and thereby supported U.S. capitalists’ profits. In these and still other ways, U.S.-China connections became deeply embedded in the functioning and success of U.S. capitalism. Cutting those connections would risk very adverse economic consequences for the United States.

Moreover, many proposals favoring such cutting are ineffective and ill-informed fantasies. If the U.S. government could force United States and other multinational corporations to close up shop in China, they would most likely move to other low-wage Asian locations. They would not return to the United States because its wages and other expenses are too high and thus non-competitive. Where they do go will entail sourcing inputs from China, already their most competitive producer. In short, forcing capitalists to leave China will help the United States minimally and hurt the Chinese minimally as well. Closing off the China market for U.S. microchip-makers is likewise a faulty fantasy. Without access to the booming Chinese market, U.S.-based companies will be uncompetitive with other chip-makers based in countries not closed out of the Chinese market.

U.S. capitalism needs the inflow of most Chinese exports and needs inclusion in China’s markets. U.S. megabanks need access to China’s fast-growing markets or else European, Japanese, and Chinese banks will eventually outcompete the U.S. banks. Even if the United States could force or maneuver G7 banks to join a U.S.-led exit from China, China’s banks and those of its allies in India, Russia, Brazil, and South Africa (the BRICS) would control access to the profitable financing of China’s growth. In terms of aggregate GDPs, the BRICS are already a bigger economic system, taken together, than the G7 taken together, and the gap between them keeps widening.

Were the United States to pursue its resumed Cold War crusade against China—economically, politically, and/or militarily without nuclear warfare—the results could risk major dislocations, losses, and costly adjustments for U.S. capitalism. With nuclear warfare, of course, the risks are still larger. Other than extreme parts of the U.S. right wing, no one wants to take such risks. The United States’ G7 allies surely do not. Already they are imagining their desired futures in a bipolar world split between falling and rising hegemons and perhaps counterhegemonic groupings of other nations. Most of the world recognizes China’s relentless growth and expansion as the major dynamic of today’s world economy. Most likewise see the United States as the major antagonist tilting against China’s rise into a global superpower position.

What many observers of the China-U.S. clash miss are those of its causes and shapers located in the extreme tensions and contradictions besetting the employer-employee class conflicts within both superpowers. Those class conflicts in the United States respond to this basic question: whose wealth, income, and social position will have to bear the major burden of accommodating the costs of declining hegemony? Will the redistribution of wealth upward across the last 3-40 years persist, be stopped, or be reversed? Are rising labor militancy across the United States and the quasi-fascistic resurging U.S. right wing foretastes of struggles to come?

China’s remarkable ascension rapidly transformed a rural, poor, agricultural economy into an urban, middle-income, and industrial economy. The parallel transformation in Western Europe took centuries and occasioned profound, bitter, and violent class struggles. In China, the transformation took a few decades and was likely the more profoundly traumatic for that reason. Will similar class struggles erupt there? Are they building beneath the surface of Chinese society already? Might the Global South be where global capitalism—the system defined by its employer-versus-employee productive core—goes finally to play the endgame of its profit-maximization fetish?

Both the United States and China display economic systems organized around workplace organizations where a small number of employers dominate a large number of hired employees. In the United States, those workplace organizations are mostly private enterprises. China displays a hybrid system whose enterprises are both private and state-owned and operated, but where both types of workplace organizations share the employer-versus-employee organization. That organization typically features the employer class accumulating far more wealth than the employee class. Moreover, that wealthy class of employers can and usually does buy dominant political power as well. The resulting mix of economic and political inequality provokes tensions, conflicts, and social change.

That reality is already well established in both the United States and China. Thus, for example, the United States has not raised its federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour since 2009. Both major political parties are responsible. Yellen gives speeches bemoaning the deepening inequalities in the United States, but the deepening persists. In the tradition of blaming the victim, American capitalism tends to fault the poor for their poverty. Xi Jinping also worries openly about deepening inequalities: likely more urgent in nations calling themselves socialist. Even though China has taken significant steps to reduce its recently extreme economic inequalities, they remain a serious social problem there too. The U.S.-China clash depends as much on each nation’s internal class conflicts and struggles as it depends on their policies toward one another.

China adjusts to the twists and turns in the United States’ split policy approach. It prepares for both eventualities: cutthroat competition abetted by intense economic nationalism possibly including military warfare or a conjointly planned peaceful economic coexistence. As China awaits the United States’ decisions on which way to guide the United States’ economic future, China’s growth will likely continue, matching and then surpassing the United States’ global economic footprint. China’s stunning economic growth success across the last 30 years secures China’s remarkable hybrid economy of private and state enterprises supervised by and subordinated to a powerful political party. An anxious world awaits the next chapter in capitalism’s always dangerously uneven mix of class and national struggles.

Richard D. Wolff

Author Bio:
Richard D. Wolff is professor of economics emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a visiting professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, in New York. Wolff’s weekly show, “Economic Update,” is syndicated by more than 100 radio stations and goes to 55 million TV receivers via Free Speech TV. His three recent books with Democracy at Work are The Sickness Is the System: When Capitalism Fails to Save Us From Pandemics or Itself, Understanding Socialism, and Understanding Marxism, the latter of which is now available in a newly released 2021 hardcover edition with a new introduction by the author.

Independent Media Institute

Credit Line:
This article was produced by Economy for All, a project of the Independent Media Institute.

Bookmark and Share

Niger Is The Fourth Country In The Sahel To Experience An Anti-Western Coup

Niger –

At 3 a.m. on July 26, 2023, the presidential guard detained President Mohamed Bazoum in Niamey, the capital of Niger. Troops, led by Brigadier General Abdourahmane Tchiani closed the country’s borders and declared a curfew. The coup d’état was immediately condemned by the Economic Community of West African States, by the African Union, and by the European Union. Both France and the United States—which have military bases in Niger—said that they were watching the situation closely. A tussle between the Army—which claimed to be pro-Bazoum—and the presidential guard threatened the capital, but it soon fizzled out. On July 27, General Abdou Sidikou Issa of the army released a statement saying that he would accept the situation to “avoid a deadly confrontation between the different forces which… could cause a bloodbath.” Brigadier General Tchiani went on television on July 28 to announce that he was the new president of the National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (Conseil National pour la Sauvegarde de la Patrie or CNSP).

The coup in Niger follows similar coups in Mali (August 2020 and May 2021) and Burkina Faso (January 2022 and September 2022), and Guinea (September 2021). Each of these coups was led by military officers angered by the presence of French and U.S. troops and by the permanent economic crises inflicted on their countries. This region of Africa—the Sahel—has faced a cascade of crises: the desiccation of the land due to the climate catastrophe, the rise of Islamic militancy due to the 2011 NATO war in Libya, the increase in smuggling networks to traffic weapons, humans, and drugs across the desert, the appropriation of natural resources—including uranium and gold—by Western companies that have simply not paid adequately for these riches, and the entrenchment of Western military forces through the construction of bases and the operation of these armies with impunity.

Two days after the coup, the CNSP announced the names of the 10 officers who lead the CNSP. They come from the entire range of the armed forces, from the army (General Mohamed Toumba) to the Air Force (Colonel Major Amadou Abouramane) to the national police (Deputy General Manager Assahaba Ebankawel). It is by now clear that one of the most influential members of the CNSP is General Salifou Mody, former chief of staff of the military and leader in the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy, which led the February 2010 coup against President Mamadou Tandja and which governed Niger until Bazoum’s predecessor Mahamadou Issoufou won the 2011 presidential election. It was during Issoufou’s time in office that the United States government built the world’s largest drone base in Agadez and that the French special forces garrisoned the city of Irlit on behalf of the uranium mining company Orano (formerly a part of Areva).

It is important to note that General Salifou Mody is perceived as an influential member of CNSP given his influence in the army and his international contacts. On February 28, 2023, Mody met with the United States Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley during the African Chiefs of Defense Conference in Rome to discuss “regional stability, including counterterrorism cooperation and the continued fight against violent extremism in the region.” On March 9, Mody visited Mali to meet with Colonel Assimi Goïta and the Chief of Staff of the Malian army General Oumar Diarra to strengthen military cooperation between Niger and Mali. A few days later on March 16, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Niger to meet with Bazoum. In what many in Niger perceived as a sidelining of Mody, he was appointed on June 1 as the Nigerien ambassador to the United Arab Emirates. Mody, it is said in Niamey, is the voice in the ear of Brigadier General Tchiani, the titular head of state.

Corruption and the West
A highly informed source in Niger tells us that the reason why the military moved against Bazoum is that “he’s corrupt, a pawn of France. Nigerians were fed up with him and his gang. They are in the process of arresting the members of the deposed system, who embezzled public funds, many of whom have taken refuge in foreign embassies.” The issue of corruption hangs over Niger, a country with one of the world’s most lucrative uranium deposits. The “corruption” that is talked about in Niger is not about petty bribes by government officials, but about an entire structure—developed during French colonial rule—that prevents Niger from establishing sovereignty over its raw materials and over its development.

At the heart of the “corruption” is the so-called “joint venture” between Niger and France called Société des mines de l’Aïr (Somaïr), which owns and operates the uranium industry in the country. Strikingly, 85 percent of Somaïr is owned by France’s Atomic Energy Commission and two French companies, while only 15 percent is owned by Niger’s government. Niger produces over 5 percent of the world’s uranium, but its uranium is of a very high quality. Half of Niger’s export receipts are from sales of uranium, oil, and gold. One in three lightbulbs in France are powered by uranium from Niger, at the same time as 42 percent of the African country’s population lived below the poverty line. The people of Niger have watched their wealth slip through their fingers for decades. As a mark of the government’s weakness, over the course of the past decade, Niger has lost over $906 million in only 10 arbitration cases brought by multinational corporations before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes and the International Chamber of Commerce.

France stopped using the franc in 2002 when it switched to the Euro system. But, fourteen former French colonies continued to use the Communauté Financiére Africaine (CFA), which gives immense advantages to France (50 percent of the reserves of these countries have to be held in the French Treasury and France’s devaluations of the CFA—as in 1994—have catastrophic effects on the country’s that use it). In 2015, Chad’s president Idriss Déby Itno said that the CFA “pulls African economies down” and that the “time had come to cut the cord that prevents Africa from developing.” Talk now across the Sahel is for not only the removal of French troops—as has taken place in Burkina Faso and in Mali—but of a break with the French economic hold on the region.

The New Non-Alignment
At the 2023 Russia-Africa Summit in July, Burkina Faso’s leader, President Ibrahim Traoré wore a red beret that echoed the uniform of the assassinated socialist leader of his country, Thomas Sankara. Traoré reacted strongly to the condemnation of the military coups in the Sahel, including to a recent visit to his country by an African Union delegation. “A slave that does not rebel does not deserve pity,” he said. “The African Union must stop condemning Africans who decide to fight against their own puppet regimes of the West.”

In February, Burkina Faso had hosted a meeting that included the governments of Mali and Guinea. On the agenda is the creation of a new federation of these states. It is likely that Niger will be invited into these conversations.


Vijay Prashad and Kambale Musavuli

Author Bio:

Vijay Prashad is an Indian historian, editor, and journalist. He is a writing fellow and chief correspondent at Globetrotter. He is an editor of LeftWord Books and the director of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research. He has written more than 20 books, including The Darker Nations and The Poorer Nations. His latest books are Struggle Makes Us Human: Learning from Movements for Socialism and (with Noam Chomsky) The Withdrawal: Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and the Fragility of U.S. Power.

Kambale Musavuli, a native of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), is a leading political and cultural Congolese voice. Based in Accra, Ghana, he is a policy analyst with the Center for Research on the Congo-Kinshasa.


This article was produced by Globetrotter

Bookmark and Share

  • About

    Rozenberg Quarterly aims to be a platform for academics, scientists, journalists, authors and artists, in order to offer background information and scholarly reflections that contribute to mutual understanding and dialogue in a seemingly divided world. By offering this platform, the Quarterly wants to be part of the public debate because we believe mutual understanding and the acceptance of diversity are vital conditions for universal progress. Read more...
  • Support

    Rozenberg Quarterly does not receive subsidies or grants of any kind, which is why your financial support in maintaining, expanding and keeping the site running is always welcome. You may donate any amount you wish and all donations go toward maintaining and expanding this website.

    10 euro donation:

    20 euro donation:

    Or donate any amount you like:

    ABN AMRO Bank
    Rozenberg Publishers
    IBAN NL65 ABNA 0566 4783 23
    reference: Rozenberg Quarterly

    If you have any questions or would like more information, please see our About page or contact us:
  • Like us on Facebook

  • Archives