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Geography Archives: Ethiopia

Lessons from History: The Case against AFRICOM

  Africa has historically been less of a priority to U.S. foreign policy planners than other regions, such as the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and Latin America.  This was certainly the case when George W. Bush took office in 2001.  But during the course of his tenure, “Africa’s position in the U.S. strategic spectrum . […]

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 Kholoud

Lebanon: Fair Deal for Domestic Workers?

BEIRUT, 16 April 2009 (IRIN) — Eighty Ethiopian women have been in Tripoli Women’s Prison in north Lebanon for over a year, accused of not having a passport which was either taken from them when they started as domestic workers, or which they never had in the first place. Most were arrested on the street […]

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A Call to End All Renditions

Binyam Mohamed, an Ethiopian residing in Britain, said he was tortured after being sent to Morocco and Afghanistan in 2002 by the U.S. government.  Mohamed was transferred to Guantánamo in 2004 and all terrorism charges against him were dismissed last year.  Mohamed was a victim of extraordinary rendition, in which a person is abducted without […]

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Somalia: Daunting Challenges

  The parliament broadened by the Djibouti peace process elected Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, chairman of the executive council of the Islamic Courts Union, as President of Somalia.  The Ethiopian occupation alone had failed to shore up the Transitional Federal Government, so Washington had to try a new tack.  Al Jazeera’s report, however, indicates trouble […]

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Is “Good Leadership” the Panacea for Somalia?

Granted, the Somali political conundrum is multifaceted in nature.  And, one of these facets, indeed the most frequently cited element perpetuating Somalia’s violence and anarchy, is the lack of good leadership capable of ensuring good governance.  According to the official account, this very element is what toppled the Transitional Federal Government (TFG). The indicators of […]

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What Did the Bush Administration Receive for Financing AFL-CIO’s Solidarity Center?

  In 1997, the AFL-CIO established the American Center for International Labor Solidarity by merging its four regional institutions that had operated around the world.  Solidarity Center stated its mission: “to help build a global labor movement by strengthening the economic and political power of workers around the world through effective, independent and democratic unions.” […]

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Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism, 1883-1918

Rediscovering Hubert Harrison

  “Our community is expanding: MRZine viewers have increased in number, as have the readers of our editions published outside the United States and in languages other than English.  We sense a sharp increase in interest in our perspective and its history.   Many in our community have made use of the MR archive we […]

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Africom: From Bush to Obama

“Our community is expanding: MRZine viewers have increased in number, as have the readers of our editions published outside the United States and in languages other than English.  We sense a sharp increase in interest in our perspective and its history.   Many in our community have made use of the MR archive we put […]

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“Africa COMMAND” Spells Colonialism

  For years, the U.S. never considered Africa as a priority foreign policy agenda.  The only context in which Africa came up in Washington was for preferential trade as in AGOA (Africa Growth & Opportunity Act) or in AIDS funding from PEPFAR (President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief) and of course humanitarian assistance.  Despite its […]

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Revolutionaries to Race Leaders: Black Power and the Making of African American Politics

From Black Power to Ethnic Politics: Class Contradictions of Black Nationalism

Cedric Johnson.  Revolutionaries to Race Leaders: Black Power and the Making of African American Politics.   University of Minnesota Press, 2007. Cedric Johnson‘s Revolutionaries to Race Leaders traces the ideological cooptation of one of the twentieth century’s most vibrant social movements.  The Black Nationalist resurgence of the 1960s and 1970s demanded nothing short of self-determination, […]

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Sub-Saharan Africa and China

China Still a Small Player in Africa

“What I find a bit reprehensible is the tendency of certain Western voices to . . . raising concerns about China’s attempt to get into the African market because it is a bit hypocritical for Western states to be concerned about how China is approaching Africa when they have had centuries of relations with Africa, […]

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Fermenting Revolution

Brewing Trouble: How to Drink Beer and Save the World

Christopher O’Brien.  Fermenting Revolution: How to Drink Beer and Save the World.  New Society Publishers (November 2006), 275 pages. Beer, like so many other products, is largely in the hands of giant corporations.  Therefore, drinking beer can often enrich the same systems of power we as activists are fighting against.  Fermenting Revolution: How To Drink […]

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Making Sense of Chad

The war for Chad is not over.  It is likely to become more bloody and involve a wider humanitarian disaster before any solutions can be grasped.  The next week will be critical for the future of the country — and for the wider region, including Darfur, as well. Last weekend’s battle in the Chadian capital […]

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The Black Jacobins 70 Years Later

  This year marks the seventieth anniversary of C.L.R. James’s The Black Jacobins: Touissaint L’Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution.  This classic account of the Haitian Revolution of 1791-1803 is one of the greatest books in the twentieth century.  Its title refers to the Jacobins, the most radical element within the French Revolution who propagated, […]

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Confronting US Imperialism in Somalia

  Towards the end of 2006, US-backed Ethiopian forces, with the direct support of American air power, rolled into Somalia to oust the Union of Islamic Courts that had restored peace and security in much of southern Somalia during their brief reign of power. The illegal invasion and occupation of Somalia that installed a puppet […]

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Africom: The New US Military Command for Africa

On 6 February 2007, President Bush announced that the United States would create a new military command for Africa, to be known as Africa Command or Africom.  Throughout the Cold War and for more than a decade afterwards, the U.S. did not have a military command for Africa; instead, U.S. military activities on the African […]

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PNU’s Coup: How Can Kenyans Fight Back?

  PART ONE From the look of things, it would appear that we are still a long way from resolving the serious post-election crisis that is gripping and almost crippling Kenya. Even after Raila Odinga and the Orange Democratic Movement considerably softened their pre-conditions for internationally mediated talks with their opposite numbers by dropping their […]

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The State of Iraq

Target the Weakest Link

CHAIN OF DISASTERS & THE WEAKEST LINK The only thing that Bush’s “war on terror” has spread faster than disaster and misery has been opposition to its means and ends.  Six years into this self-righteously promoted crusade, Washington is more isolated internationally than ever.  Within the U.S., the Commander Guy’s approval rating has fallen below […]

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