ARMED CONFLICT AND ETHNIC CLEANSING
“Conflict minerals; diamonds and gold from the Democratic Republic of the Congo have been responsible for the armed cleansing of approximately 5,000,000 people.”
SUSTAINABLE DESTRUCTION: FAILED POLICIES
By Irwin FordThe list of armed conflicts world wide is extensive. A great deal of focus of course is directed toward the Middle East, Israel and Palestine. Even though we generally categorize our armed conflicts as World News, it may also be fair to categorize them as Economic or Business section features. Global Economics does not exist without its evil twin, Militarism.
In our metamodern world perspective on armed conflict around the world, let’s not forget Africa. Most media sources present good daily coverage, but the level of public discourse devoted to Central African issues compared to Middle Eastern issues is much less prominent.
Ethnic and religious armed cleansing has been at the root of most conflicts in man’s history. It’s no wonder the Antithiesm movement is growing in popularity. Famine and land disputes for resources in Central and Western Africa have the combatants categorized under religious designations as if one is more deserving than the other. Islamic fundamentalists and extremists are waging war against the villagers of Darfur and Western Africa as much as they are in Iraq and Syria.
In the Congo at least 54 armed groups are operating and approximately 3,000,000 people, mostly children have been displaced since the conflict. Islamic backed Boko Haram is active in Nigeria as Nigeria receives criticism of its handling of the group’s abduction of 276 school girls. In Somalia, al-Shabaab is still alive and well after several U.S. drone strikes took out some of their leadership and Sudan’s pro-government militia, the Janjaweed continues to wreak havoc in Darfur. (From the IISS Armed Conflict Survey: 2015)
Conflict minerals; diamonds and gold from the Democratic Republic of the Congo have been responsible for the armed cleansing of approximately 5,000,000 people. The consumerism escalating with mobile devices fuel much death in Central Africa; as we love our mobile phones, we don’t realize that much of the mining for those minerals is done by forced labor at gunpoint. The tantalum capacitors found in many small electronic devices today are manufactured from the mineral Coltan, mined exclusively from the Congo. Supply and demand is another justification for corporate profits and quite often the means justifies the bottom line.
Africa, a much larger landmass than many maps will accurately scale, is home to incredible resources, wildlife and diverse cultures. With so much at stake and the ongoing destabilization on the African continent, it’s easily understood why we would not want to get involved in that quagmire any time soon.
China and the U.S. are quietly maneuvering for Africa’s oil and other resources. Some projections have China being the number one oil importer in the metamodern world by 2020. With a future of impending declines in oil production and the current refusal to act with any sense of urgency to put newer energy technologies online, it would not be implausible to consider armed conflict between us in the years to come. Until then, China and the U.S. will engage with subtle aid and assistance where and when the economic sustainability and military superiority of their beneficiaries is equitable with their desires.
Sam Childers, characterized in the film Machine Gun Preacher and played by Gerard Butler is a modern day hero to many children in Africa. Sam has done some things he’s not proud of, but after a series of life changing events he found his humanity in the last place he expected, through the fellowship of his church. The film is an inspirational story about a troubled and violent person who was able to find value in his life during a critical period of armed conflict in Africa by fulfilling a mission to do good for the displaced children of war torn Africa.