Sunday, 03 June 2007
Africa: Blair Too Late!
By Paul I. Adujie
Are you as affronted as I feel? Blair’s pretentiously hollow charity for Africa is offensive!
Blair and Bush, in a choreographed and orchestrated manner, made the usual loud noises of proclamations and pronouncements about the dire conditions on the continent of Africa. And for anyone who has not followed Blair and Bush’s emptily meaningless relationship with Africa, they must be realize that the Blair and Bush announcements that were made a couple of days ago, were not the first time that these duo, were engaging in loud talks that will be followed with no actions whatsoever! And NO ACTION!
Blair, now in the twilight of his tenure and at the jaws and manacles of history, he suddenly seeks to redeem himself with loud, but clearly hollow, empty and pretentious eleventh hour advocacy for Africa! It is now common practice for the cynical and moral compass deprived, to rushed to announce Africa’s conditions as their concerns, even as they do absolutely nothing after those over publicized announcements!
Blair’s actions becomes even more outrageous and extremely offensive, measured against his long tenure of office as prime minister. Bearing in mind that he has been the prime minister of Britain for 10 years! Ten whole years! 1997-2007; During which time, lots of money still left Africa to Britain! Blair now suddenly remembers Africa?
Almost simultaneously, Blair’s partner in Iraq debacle and quagmire, was mouthing the same vacuous promises of charity for Africa! Promises, promises and more promises without actual delivery! We are hearing a new and bigger promise of help?
Now that he has less than thirty days to vacate 10 Downing street seat of power in Britain, he remembers the “needy” peoples of Africa? Now that Blair can be of no use!
Blair and Bush are the tied mountain climbers that must climb and fall together, and they have been at it again in the last few days! Falling together in their vacuous charity for Africa loud pronouncements!
Blair is notoriously known in Britain as Bush’s poodle or lapdog, this, due to Blair’s unthinking and sleep-walking-like support for Bush’s wrong-headed foreign policies. Policies that led to the invasion and occupation of Iraq, which in turn has produced and induced the persisting horrors, barbarities, deaths and destructions in Iraq
The Iraq debacle and quagmire has effectively obliterated what could and would have been Blair’s political legacy. Blair, who leaves office on June 27, 2007, is grappling for redemption like a drowning man holding on to weak straws, any straws. And he suddenly remembered the high profile value of his pretentious charity towards Africa.
Blair’s mired political legacy is already thoroughly thrashed and tarnished, due to his self-inflicted policy blunder in his support for Bush over the Iraq war, a needless war of distraction, a war of choice, a war based on frauds and illegalities that were known to Blair and Bush from the very start.
What else is new you might ask. Bush promised $15 billion dollars in aid package for Africa and the Caribbean, only several years ago and nothing came of the promise! Now again, Bush is loudly announcing additional $30 billion dollars aid for Africa. No action was taken to deliver on the promised $15 billion dollars. Bush has now morphed into a bigger giver? even as he did not deliver on promised smaller gift?
But for the undiscerning members of the American and African public, the belief will be, that more is being done in addition to the prior promise. But, the $15 billion dollars never left America!
Why would anyone believe Bush’s new announcements doubling the amounts from $15 billion dollars to $30 billion dollars, just like fraudulent tricksters who would promise to double your money and double your pleasure! Blair and Bush are money doublers! What deceitful rulers they are!
These sorts of deceits by Blair and Bush, making loud announcements, are calculatingly undertaken as feel-good stunts for publicity; These are such a disservice to those really in need in Africa. Making these sorts of loud announcements that are empty and hollow and bereft of honor, without real intents and willingness to fulfill the dire needs of the truly needy in Africa and around the world, is truly cynical and sad!
It is believed that the so-called donor fatigue arises from these sorts of grand scale announcements of charity, announcements that are never followed with actual donations. The belief that so much have been done already, when in fact nothing has been done at all, after all these big announcements are made, no action is taken.
Imagine how often the American and British taxpayers and public, have been bombarded and inundated with loud announcements of billions of dollars being poured out as earmarks to Africa, ever so often! And at the end, there are no measurable results or outcomes.
This is because the impression is created by America and Britain, all the same, to the deceitful effect that, so much has been done and that so many billions of dollars have been devoted to Africa already! When in fact, no money has been provided or spent as loudly promised and widely publicized.
The members of the public in America, Britain and even in Africa, then start to wonder and think of Africa as some sorts of basket case! They start to see Africa as if a bottomless pit! They then think of Africa very negatively. They think of Africa situation as fetching water with a basket which is clearly a waste of time and efforts, hence the onset of donor fatigue. Huge monies are promised and not delivered, those listening then start to wonder why the calamities and catastrophes remain unresolved, despite the “billions of dollars” Well, the billions of dollars never arrived! There is a complete disconnect, between what is promised and what is actually delivered or translated into action.
The onset of donor fatigue hence, which arises from the belief that so much have been done without positive results, the truth is, not much has actually ever been done. And there are specific evidences on no delivery or the absences of delivery on promises that were made to Africa
Bush’s language as he made his loud announcements was very revealing of the true state of affairs. At his announcement of “additional” billions of dollars to his prior hollow promises to Africa without action, he said, “Africa like other developing countries” countries? Africa is not a country! And I wondered, how much ignorance about Africa is really out there? The last time that I checked, Africa is a continent and not a country as Bush portrayed. The only thing about Africa that begins with a C, is continent, certainly not country! Mr. Bush, Africa is a continent perhaps?
Ironically and very curiously too, America never climb podium to announce real aid to Israel, a country of 5 million people only; Israel receives more than $5billion dollars every year, this amount of $5billion dollars a year, is outside and exclusive of other assistance to Israel, such as economic, military aid etc. Israel population pales in comparison to the almost one billion people of Africa! And yet, Israel receives more aids years and it is not advertised and over publicized! America actually delivers billions of dollars in aids, yearly to the state of Israel without corresponding public aplomb. Africa is advertised and nothing is delivered to Africa! What a cynical joke at Africa’s expense!
The frequent advertising of these hollow announcements of aids to Africa, thus leads to the so-called donor fatigue. Whereas, there is no donor fatigue regarding Israel, a country that actually receives promised, and unadvertised aids!
Whereas, megaphone announcements and pomp always accompany promises of aids to Africa, promises of aids that never meet with actual actions and follow up. America’s billions of dollars in aids to Israel is never subject to public debates and extraordinary hoopla and scrutiny that is visited on Africa
Africa is continent of about 60 countries with almost a billion people, meaningful aid would translate to better lives for the needy in the African population.
Presently, the average man on the street in America, Britain and even in Africa, have been barraged and bamboozled with repeated loud announcements of billions of dollars in aid for Africa, when in fact, no such thing has actually occurred by way of actual actions, beyond mere loud proclamations and pronouncements! In fact, when checks are made, or the records are examined, the evidence reveals that there are no follow-up actions after the usual feel-good public ceremonies.
Why must Africa remain the butt of these cynical jokes? Why must Blair and Bush, two obviously self-destruct rulers, two rulers, who are clearly lame duck rulers, offend us with these idle loud pronouncements about charity for Africa for which Blair and Bush have demonstrated insincerity at every turn?
Blair has barely 20 days left as ruler of Britain and Bush, with his Iraq war ravaged policies and tenures, both of them are just yanking our chains for their voyeuristic and distasteful pleasure at Africans’ expense!
Let me be clearer about what is at stake here. Africans deeply appreciates genuine and true friendship and partnerships. Africa prefers respect for our humanity, respect for our dignity. Those in America and Britain with sincere desire to partner with Africa, should begin such, with some indication that we Africans deserve respect and dignity, as accorded other recipients of foreign aids outside of Africa.
Blair and Bush together, have squandered and wasted over $400 billion dollars and counting, to produce monumental tragedies and immeasurable blunders in Iraq. Bush and Blair have squandered and wasted human treasure, financial treasure, the have caused the shedding of oceans of blood and tears! Blair and Bush have together, caused the combustion of $400 billion dollars, enough wealth to eradicate and eliminate poverty in Africa, America, Britain, Palestine and everywhere in between! Poverty, hopelessness and a sense of worthlessness and desperation, spur violence and “terrorism” worldwide.
America and Britain must keep their vague and hollowly empty promises of handouts and insincere charity to themselves and leave the name of Africa out of their cynical charade
We see through the falsities of un-kept promises!
America and Britain may actually do more practical things, things that are sure to benefit Africa, America, Britain and the rest of the world. America and Britain should remove trade barriers, and allow free and fair trade to be the rule, rather than the exceptions. America and Britain should begin by removing trade barriers, subsidies to their farmers or agricultural sector and remove subsidies to steel producers. They must allow real free trade with Africa. Africans are tired of the charade, the hollowness and emptiness of perennial promises, promises that are never kept, and promises that were never intended to be kept anyways! Africans are tired of unfulfilled and broken promises. Africans are grateful nonetheless, to those who remain genuinely engaged in true undertakings, dedicated to the advancements of human conditions in Africa.
Africa needs genuine and humane partners, true and sincere friends, otherwise, Africans want to be left alone!