On Feb. 12, 2018, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees reported that there were 4.49 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Democratic Republic of Congo and 630,500 refugees in neighboring countries. The IDP population had nearly doubled in the previous year alone, mainly as a result of clashes and armed attacks. This week I spoke to Swiss Congolese historian and activist Bénédicte Kumbi Ndjoko about recent developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The answers to the problems are all wrapped together in the beautiful writing of Coates, a man whose politics are still forming, but on such a large scale that these criticisms must come with an urgency, as West delivered them. I respect West magnificently for his actual work in activism, both historically and currently. If Coates is to continue being called the voice of my people, he has to move from being a traditional intellectual who walks the line of academic and objective writer into the space of organic intellectual that he likely sees himself as, who is activistic in nature.
What is happening in America and Europe bears study and reflection. On the surface, we see a rightist drift, as fearful, resentful publics empower forms of politics that promise safety, especially regarding terror attacks that have blown up and bloodied world capitals recently. If we look closer, however, we see how economic insecurity, driven by the investor class, has waged an austerity war against working-class and poor people. For economic insecurity begets political insecurity.
It’s hard to imagine that the country that controls so much nuclear firepower and drops so many bombs every day is unwilling to educate its children and house its own people. As much as I would like to see zero poverty in the United States, I know that the political will for such policies is just not there today. This, despite the efforts of thousands of people just like me all over the country to alleviate the unnecessary suffering of the poor in the U.S.
One possible explanation that makes the notion of “Inclusive Capitalism” so au courant could be that a critical mass of people are now “on to” the robber barons and the governments purchased by them; these “democratic” governments specialize in representing the robber barons and not the people who “elect” them. Could it be that there are finally enough among the masses of people who are acutely aware and so refuse to fall for the old divide and conquer trick?
International journalist and freedom fighter correspondent Gerald Perriera speaks on world politics four years after the assassination of Qaddafi and two years after Chavez, covering Libya, Eritrea, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Venezuela, Guyana, Mali, Niger, France, the U.S. and more. “Libya is a failed state,” Perriera observes, since Qaddafi’s Jamahiriya was destroyed, with several factions and many militias “all doing their own thing.” Some 3 million Libyans who supported Qaddafi now live in exile. Libyans throughout the country demonstrated against the death sentence for Qaddafi’s son, Saif.
Another young, unarmed Black man, Kenneth Harding, has been gunned down in broad daylight. He was shot numerous times in the back as he fled, his empty hands held in the air. His crime had been a simple train fare evasion for which San Francisco police executed him in the street.
The racism of the American “war on drugs,” especially in the South, is notorious. So is the racism faced daily by Palestinians. In Atlanta, a university program allows these two manifestations of racism to feed off each other and community activists are organizing to shut the program down.
On March 15, Salvadorans headed en masse to the polls and by 9:30 that night Mauricio Funes, presidential candidate of the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), had been elected the very first leftist head of state in the country's history.