The National Network on Cuba, The Black Alliance for Peace, and Lowcountry Action Committee strongly condemn the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) airstrikes in Somalia reported to have killed 2 Cuban doctors. We demand the U.S. release all information about the bombing to Cuba and the victims’ families. Cuba has deployed more than 600,000 health workers to 165 nations over the last six decades on medical missions. Two Cubans serving in Kenya, Dr. Assel Herrera Correa, a specialist in general medicine, and Dr. Landy Rodriguez Hernandez, a surgeon, were kidnapped there in 2019 and held in Jilib, southern Somalia.
French newspaper Le Figaro cited an unnamed diplomatic source over the weekend who alleged that the US backstabbed France during Acting Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland’s trip to Niger. The piece is paywalled but was summarized here. France reportedly fears that the US might tacitly recognize Niger’s interim military-led government in exchange for being allowed to retain its bases. Should that happen, then the US would proactively replace France’s security role in the Sahel before Russia/Wagner has a chance to. This concern is predicated on rational calculations.
A new leader has emerged in the uranium-rich West African state of Niger just two days after the elected head-of-state, President Mohamed Bazoum, was toppled by his special forces. On July 26, the presidential guard took over the residence of Bazoum and other key government buildings including the national media. Colonel-Major Amadou Abdramane spoke for the newly established National Council for the Safeguard of our Homeland (CNSP), saying that the president had been detained. Abdramane later claimed that the government had been seized by the presidential guard due to declining security and the economic and social conditions prevailing in the former French colony of 25 million people.
Since the end of the 19th century, European development has been based much more on the plundering of African lands and the buying and selling of its people. In addition, many African men enlisted to fight in the wars of their colonizers: thousands of soldiers from that continent participated in both “world” wars. After this confrontation in the Global North the effect was imminent. An anti-colonial wave swept across Africa, to which France, Britain, Belgium and Portugal, as well as other imperial powers, responded according to their political and economic circumstances.
Thank you all for joining us as we pay tribute to Chris Che Matlhako, a comrade and friend. I first met him in 2018 at the First International Conference Against US/NATO Military Bases, which was held in Dublin, Ireland. I chaired a panel on the US Africa Command, AFRICOM, and Chris was a participant along with Paul Pumphrey and Ann Atambo. It was my first encounter and only in-person encounter with him, but it was very meaningful to me. It played an important role as I learned more and more about internationalism, especially as it pertains to Africa. This is a small portion of Chris’ remarks for that panel, “There are US bases, compounds, port facilities and fuel burners in 34 African countries, including in regional hegemons Kenya, Ethiopia, and Algeria.
Since April 15 hundreds of thousands of people have been dislocated in the Republic of Sudan, a strategically important state and a member of the African Union (AU). The two military structures which have dominated the body politic for many years have now turned against each other leaving the country in an unprecedented social crisis. Reports from inside Sudan indicate that over 500 people have been killed in the fighting between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF). Thousands of others have been wounded, seriously injured and traumatized as their homes have been damaged along with the loss of jobs, the diminishing healthcare services and the disruption of communities within Khartoum, Omdurman and other areas throughout the vast country.
The U.S. military’s incredibly secretive African Command, or AFRICOM, has been steadily growing over the past 15 years – and with almost no media coverage. The Pentagon keeps a lot of the details about AFRICOM secret. What we do know comes from leaked documents and fragmentary evidence, like the dozens of secret killer drone bases, the many murdered civilians, or the bring-your-mistress-to-work parties the AFRICOM commanders have on Thursdays (complete with giraffe liver-pâté hors d’oeuvres). Here’s how the military explains AFRICOM: “U.S. Africa Command, with partners, counters transnational threats and malign actors, strengthens security forces and responds to crises in order to advance U.S. national interests and promote regional security, stability and prosperity.”
President Biden "brought" leaders of selected African nations to the United States for a summit to “demonstrate the United States’ enduring commitment to Africa," the White House claims. But just days before the meeting, the Biden administration imposed more economic sanctions on members of some excluded nations, a likely attempt to send a warning of what happens to those who do not comply with the US' imperialist demands. The Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) organized a week of actions to coincide with Biden's summit. Clearing the FOG speaks with Rose Brewer of BAP's Africa Team about the long history of US intervention to exploit Africans, steal resources, and suppress liberation movements and how this comes home to impact people and social movements in the US.
Hundreds of people of African descent convened this past weekend at two events that aimed to be the people’s opposition to the Biden administration’s U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, which is taking place this week amid a military buildup to enforce the summit’s security in Washington, D.C. The summit is described as a four-day event (Dec. 12-15) that is designed to foster economic opportunities and reinforce the United States’ alleged commitment to human rights and democracy. It is the first summit of its kind since 2014. “I look forward to working with African governments, civil society, diaspora communities across the United States, and the private sector to continue strengthening our shared vision for the future of U.S.-Africa relations,” U.S. President Joe Biden is quoted as saying on the summit’s website .
The Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) recognizes the “U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit'' — scheduled to take place in Washington, D.C. December 13-15th — as nothing more than collusion between neo-colonial powers and U.S. attempts to advance and maintain dominance over the continent. Liberal elements of U.S. civil society will preoccupy themselves with the issues they think should be addressed at the Summit, claiming to act in the best interest of Africa or, as with the Summit of the Americas held earlier this year, attack those who they say do not deserve to be invited. Such dispositions presume the U.S. has honest intentions for Africa and legitimizes/obscures its real interests and role. Convened on the heels of Human Rights Day which is held every December 10, the Black Radical Human Rights and Peace Traditions must center the historical record of the U.S. in Africa and the geo-strategic interests it is committed to upholding.
On 17 October, the head of US Africa Command (AFRICOM), US Marine Corps General Michael Langley visited Morocco. Langley met with senior Moroccan military leaders, including Inspector General of the Moroccan Armed Forces Belkhir El Farouk. Since 2004, AFRICOM has held its ‘largest and premier annual exercise’, African Lion, partly on Moroccan soil. This past June, ten countries participated in the African Lion 2022, with observers from Israel (for the first time) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). Langley’s visit is part of a broader US push onto the African continent, which we documented in our dossier no. 42 (July 2021), Defending Our Sovereignty: US Military Bases in Africa and the Future of African Unity, a joint publication with The Socialist Movement of Ghana’s Research Group.
Ten years ago, I embarked on a quest to answer that question at TomDispatch, chronicling a growing American military presence on that continent, a build-up of both logistical capabilities and outposts, and the possibility that far more was occurring out of sight. “Keep your eye on Africa,” I concluded. “The U.S. military is going to make news there for years to come.” I knew I had a story when U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) failed to answer basic questions honestly. And the command’s reaction to the article told me that I also had a new beat. Not long after publication, AFRICOM wrote a letter of complaint to my editor, Tom Engelhardt, attempting to discredit my investigation. (I responded point by point in a follow-up piece.)
October 1, 2022 is the 14th anniversary of the launch of the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM). Yet, jihadist terrorist violence on the African continent has increased since the founding of AFRICOM and NATO’s destruction of Libya resulting in civilian casualties and instability, which the West has used as pretext and justification for the continued need for AFRICOM. Since its founding, coups carried out by AFRICOM-trained soldiers have also increased. That is why the Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) is organizing an International Month of Action Against AFRICOM in October. This is an effort to raise the public's awareness about how the presence of U.S. military forces exacerbates violence and instability throughout the continent.
On April 26, 2022, the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) announced that they had set up an office in the US Embassy in Lusaka, Zambia. According to AFRICOM Brigadier General Peter Bailey, Deputy Director for Strategy, Engagement and Programs, the Office of Security Cooperation would be based in the US Embassy building. Social media in Zambia buzzed with rumors about the creation of a US military base in the country. Defense Minister Ambrose Lufuma released a statement to say that “Zambia has no intention whatsoever of establishing or hosting any military bases on Zambian soil.”
The Biden Administration's recent decision to return U.S. troops to Somalia represents another effort on the part of the U.S. to deny agency and independence to African people. On the 59th commemoration of African Liberation Day, the Black Alliance for Peace expresses its unequivocal opposition to this redeployment. The 500 U.S. troops sent to Somalia are the latest to violate that nation’s sovereignty. As is the case with all U.S. interventions, the underlying reasons are not only depraved but also indifferent to the constant suffering of African people caused by western-induced militarism and war. The reintroduction of the U.S. military (AFRICOM ) on the ground is related to a dispute between Somalia and the U.S. oil company, Coastline Exploration Ltd, over the validity of an oil exploration agreement.