Category Archives: Africa

The Forgotten Genocide of Black Peoples

Another BBC Documentary explaining how black civilizations and peoples were “erased”…

I had read some time ago an account of a European “explorer” in the 18th or 19th Century who travelled through Southwestern and South Africa destroying evidence of brick and stone buildings and towns such that he could justify that Africans had never developed any form of advanced civilization – but can’t find the reference at the moment.


Posted by on October 24, 2015 in Africa, American Genocide, Black History


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Were the First Americans Black?

Fascinating documentary from the BBC. I doubt anything like this would make American TV.

Research in Brazil now suggests that the earliest settlers in America were not the Native Americans who came from Asia, but another group arriving 30,000 years earlier as part of the migration of people(s) from East Africa which settled parts of South Asia now known as Negritos, and Australia as the “Aborigines”.

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 24, 2015 in Africa, Black History


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Ebola as an STD

Wow.. This is scary relative to the ability to control the disease! Get “well”, go home and be with your wife, and give the disease to her.

Ebola Hiding in Semen for Almost a Year

The Ebola virus can remain in the semen of survivors for up to nine months after the symptoms develop, according to new evidence published in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The study performed in Sierra Leone, one of the West African countries hit the hardest by Ebola, involved 93 men who had been infected between two and 10 months prior. Each of the men were tested three times: in the first three months of their illness, between four to six months after it began, and between seven to nine months later.

One hundred percent of the men’s semen tested positive for Ebola in the first three months and 65 percent tested positive after four to six. But what researchers found next rattled them: 26 percent of men had Ebola in their semen between seven and nine months after they were infected.

“These results come at a critically important time, reminding us that while Ebola case numbers continue to plummet, Ebola survivors and their families continue to struggle with the effects of the disease,” said Bruce Aylward, the World Health Organization’s special representative on Ebola. “This study provides further evidence that survivors need continued, substantial support for the next 6 to 12 months to meet these challenges and to ensure their partners are not exposed to potential virus.”

Prior to the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, which infected more than 28,000people, research on how long the virus remained in bodily fluids was inconclusive thanks to the virus’s high mortality rate (up to 90 percent) and little medical access to the villages previously affected. With a mortality rate in this epidemic hovering between 60-70 percent, researchers have begun to study the phenomenon on a larger scale.

The new findings have prompted the WHO to release an updated statementasking Ebola survivors to either refrain from sexual activity or observe safe sex for nine months or more.

While it’s unclear why some of the participants were able to rid themselves of Ebola sooner, scientists hope that further study will reveal potential new therapies to ensure the safety of all in West Africa. (Nine new Ebola cases were recorded in September.)

The more than 8,000 male survivors of Ebola now have a clear roadmap for how to keep themselves and their partner’s safe—one that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention hopes they will utilize.

1 Comment

Posted by on October 16, 2015 in Africa, Uncategorized


Tags: , , , ,

The Man Who Killed Simba

Fury Erupts After Walter Palmer Is Named As Cecil The Lion’s Killer

Outcries could be heard around the globe after a Minnesota dentist was identified as the man who killed Zimbabwe’s beloved Cecil the Lion.

Dr. Walter Palmer was named by the Telegraph as the man who paid $55,000 to hunt the famous 13-year-old animal, luring him out of Hwange National Park with dead meat, piercing him with a bow and arrow, and then following him for 40 hours before shooting him dead with a rifle. Cecil was ultimately skinned and beheaded.

Outrage ensued. People tweeted death threats directed at Palmer and posted contact information for his Bloomington, Minnesota, dental practice, BuzzFeed wrote. The Yelp page for his practice was flooded with over 6,000 reviews, lambasting Palmer for his actions and resulting in a one-star rating.

He closed his dental practice and shut the blinds at the office, but that did not stop people from leaving stuffed animals and notes outside the building in memory of Cecil, Fox’s Minneapolis station KMSP reported.

Cecil was wearing a GPS collar as part of an ongoing research project with the University of Oxford, according to the Guardian. After he was killed, the collar was removed.

“Palmer shot Cecil with a bow and arrow, but this shot didn’t kill him,” Johnny Rodrigues, chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force said. “They tracked him down and found him 40 hours later when they shot him with a gun. The hunters then found that the dead lion was wearing a tracking collar, which they unsuccessfully tried to hide.”

Palmer released a statement to the media, claiming he thought his hunt was legal:

I hired several professional guides, and they secured all proper permits. To my knowledge, everything about this trip was legal and properly handled. I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favorite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt. I relied on the expertise of my local professional guides to ensure a legal hunt. Again, I deeply regret that my pursuit of an activity I love and practice responsibly and legally resulted in the taking of this lion.

In 2006, Palmer pleaded guilty to killing a black bear in Wisconsin outside a permitted zone, NBC noted. He was given three years’ probation and a $3,000 fine.

Almost 400,000 people have a signed a petition on Care2 demanding justice for Cecil.

Leave a comment

Posted by on July 29, 2015 in Africa, American Greed


Tags: , , , , , , ,

President Obama Cuts a Step in Kenya

The singers are a group called Sauti Sol, and the song is Sura Yaku. Sauti Sol is a hugely popular group in Kenya, whose music is now reaching across the region into Uganda, Tanzania, and throughout eastern Africa. The dance is called the Lipala, and historically it has been a pre-wedding dance. Sauti Sol has turned it into the latest Kenyan dance craze.

Another major hit this year has been Neria, which I believe is a marvelous demonstration of these guys incredible vocal talents…


1 Comment

Posted by on July 26, 2015 in Africa


Tags: , , , , , , ,

Senegal is Free of Ebola

The West African country of Senegal has managed to do something the US hasn’t despite all our vaunted medical facilities, science, and training…

Clear their country of Ebola.

Of course they are probably far to intelligent to have Faux News type conservatwits whimpering and wailing to the rafters getting in the way of the people who could contain the disease.

A view of the Capital City – Dakar

Senegal is free from Ebola, WHO says

The West African nation of Senegal is free of Ebola, the World Health Organization declared Friday, congratulating the country on the diligence that enabled it to repel the threat.

Senegal had only one case, a man who had entered the country by road from Guinea, where he’d had direct contact with an Ebola patient.

The government’s response included identifying and monitoring 74 close contacts made by the man for signs of infection.

It also introduced prompt testing of all suspected cases, increased surveillance at entry points to Senegal and nationwide public awareness campaigns, the WHO statement said.

The patient recovered from Ebola and tested negative for the virus on September 5, the statement said. He’s since returned to Guinea.

Since then, 42 days have passed — double the maximum known incubation period for the virus — without another case, allowing Senegal to be declared free of Ebola.

When the case was first detected, WHO treated it as a public health emergency it said, sending a team of epidemiologists to help local health officials and international partners such as Doctors Without Borders manage the situation.

“The most important lesson for the world at large is this: An immediate, broad-based, and well-coordinated response can stop the Ebola virus, carried into a country in an infected traveler, dead in its tracks,” WHO said.

WHO sounded a note of caution, however, given that Senegal shares a border with Guinea, a hotspot for the disease along with Sierra Leone and Liberia.

“While the outbreak is now officially over, Senegal’s geographical position makes the country vulnerable to additional imported cases of Ebola virus disease,” it said.

Wrestling is the National Sport of Senegal

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2014 in Africa


Tags: , , , , , , ,

Mandela’s Legacy

If you have been close to any News source today then you know that ailing former leader of South Africa Nelson Mandela has passed away.

A lot of people will be talking about his life and struggles, and apt comparisons to Ghandi and MLK – but one of the key things that probably won’t be discussed much is his accomplishments in modernizing and opening SOuth Africa’s economy to the formerly oppressed. That may well be his greatest accomplishment – to mold a country back together after a century or more of dysfunction …

During Apartheid the South African economy was held up by the twin mineral riches of gold and diamonds. Unfortunately those mines are pretty much played out. Besides trying to create a system wherein black Africans shared in the economy with their white counterparts the country needed to restructure the basis for i’s economy in terms of producing new goods to trade. Doing so meant breaking up the Apartheid Plantation system wherein whites owned 95% of the arable land in the country, slicing off a portion (not all) of these holdings into community corporations which could develop businesses. This launched the South African wine business into world competitiveness. It also allowed the country to develop regional trade relationships for manufactured goods and agricultural products. The result was that the income level of both white and black South African rose significantly.

The country still has a long way to go. One of the principal problems is a massive influx of immigrants from other parts of Africa who want to share in South African’s success. The formerly black Township of Soweto swelled from 3 million to nearly 20 million  people today in the last 15 years. The result of this is a 25% unemployment rate, despite a relatively healthy economy.

Rest in Peace President Mandela, and look proudly what your country has accomplished, your Long Walk is ended.

Remembering Nelson Mandela’s Unsung Economic Legacy

Nelson Mandela, who died Thursday at age 95, was the most important leader in South Africa’s history and one of the global giants of his time. What people often overlook, however, is the role Mandela played in building up Africa’s largest economy. Nearly as consequential as Mandela’s moral example was his skill in managing the transition from apartheid without widespread violence, repression, or economic collapse.

Mandela believed strongly in the link between economic and political progress. Soon after his release from prison, Mandela argued that there must be “a fundamental restructuring of our political and economic systems to ensure that the inequalities of apartheid are addressed.” At the core of white minority rule had been the “homelands”: a system that kept almost half of South Africa’s population confined to semi-independent or supposedly sovereign states without the freedom to move or look for jobs in the rest of the country. The collapse of apartheid meant the end of those restrictions. The myriad legal restraints that prevented blacks and “coloreds” from gaining promotions—or access to jobs at all—were removed as well. From a state made up of 11 “countries” and three legally distinct racial groups—all with markedly different rights to move, work, and invest—South Africa became one economy. Think of it as opening borders to mass migration under the worst possible circumstances.

The dismantling of the homeland system, however, was by no means a certainty in the early days of Mandela’s presidency. The supposedly “sovereign” homeland of Bophuthatswana, home to 2.5 million, and semi-autonomous Kwazulu both threatened civil war over the dismantling of the homelands.  Relations between the African National Congress and the Zulu Inkatha Freedom party have remained tense—and sporadically violent—since the end of apartheid. But national unity and economic stability were both preserved largely through negotiation and compromise.

South Africa’s gross domestic product growth rate, meanwhile, picked up considerably under Mandela. Economic growth rose from less than 1.5 percent from 1980 to 1994 to slightly under 3 percent from 1995 to 2003. Despite the sudden influx of internal migrants with the legal right to compete equally for jobs, average personal incomes for white South Africans increased by 62 percent from 1993 to 2008, according to University of Cape Town economist Murray Leibbrandt. Average incomes for Africans themselves increased even faster—by 93 percent over that period.

As educational opportunities expanded, secondary enrollment rates increased from 50 percent to 70 percent from 1994 to 2005. The government also rolled out a range of infrastructure services: The proportion of the country that cooked using electricity from the mains climbed from 45 percent in 1993 to 73 percent by 2011, for example.

South Africa has become an increasingly important source of economic opportunity for its neighbors. South African investment accounts for around 70 percent of intra-regional investment flows. Imports from the Southern Africa Development Community—the regional trade block which South Africa joined upon its independence—climbed from $16.3 billion in 1993 to $68.7 billion in 2006. The number of migrants in South Africa—nearly all from other countries in the region—increased from 3.3 percent to 3.7 percent of the population between 1990 and 2010. There are now approximately 3.3 million SADC nationals living in South Africa; remittances from those migrants back to their home countries amount to close on $1 billion a year, according to South Africa’s FinMark Trust. The trust reports a 2005 survey of Zimbabwean remittance recipients in which more than half of respondents “agreed that they would have grown sick with hunger” in the absence of remittance payments.

Some tragic mistakes were made by President Mandela and his successors. The HIV/AIDS crisis and the government’s late and sporadic response to it shaved years off life expectancy. In 1993 4 percent of pregnant women in the country were HIV-positive. That climbed to 28 percent 10 years later, before finally leveling out. Today, a little more than one in 10 of the population is HIV-positive. Unemployment has remained stubbornly high—around 25 percent—and the gap between rich and poor is still wide. In 1993, the average white had an income more than nine times the average African. By 2008 that had dropped—but only to a little less than an eightfold income gap according to analysis by Leibbrandt.

Progress against poverty was even slower than these figures might suggest. That’s because inequality within the African population grew rapidly for the first decade of independence—a trend arrested only by the rapid expansion of social safety net programs in the last few years. (About 30 percent of South Africans benefited from social grants in 2010—up from 13 percent in 2002). Poverty in South Africa remains almost uniquely an African phenomenon. All but six percent of whites have piped water in their homes, for example, while two-thirds of Africans lacked access to it.

It’s worth considering the alternatives. At independence, South Africans looked north to Zimbabwe as a reasonably successful model of how things could work out after a difficult transition to majority rule. They’re extremely lucky that South Africa, under Mandela’s guidance, took a different path. Starting in the 1990s, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe ordered land “reforms” that took property from white farmers and awarded it to his cronies and henchmen, slashing output as a result. By the turn of the century, Zimbabwe’s inflation rate was heading over 100 percent; by 2006 it would top 1,000 percent. Zimbabwe’s economy remains in a state of punch-drunk torpor.

Some may be disappointed that Mandela failed to create an African lion to challenge the East Asian tigers in terms of growth and poverty reduction. But the nonviolent absorption of a considerable majority of the population into an economy from which they had previously been excluded, all while incomes and access to services improved and civil rights were respected, was an incredible accomplishment—one that owes much to Mandela’s leadership. Let’s hope his successors preserve that legacy.


Posted by on December 5, 2013 in Africa


Tags: , , , , , , ,


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 222 other followers