12 March 2018

The Progressive Project: Re-Colonizing Africa

The film The Black Panther has been taking Hollywood by storm. Progressives in particular are excited:
The film is set in Wakanda, a fictional technologically advanced country in East Africa which was never colonized. For people of African descent, the kingdom of Wakanda finally brings a searing question—what if the colonists hadn’t arrived and Africa had been allowed to develop unencumbered by international influence?—to the big screen.
Is it true? Would an un-colonized Africa have given the world an advanced, high-tech utopia?

We at TWCS are not so sure. 

Two generations after colonialism ended, alarmed that Africa seemed to be sinking rather than swimming, Tony Blair gathered a 17-person commission to examine the question:

When former colonies across the globe began in the 1960s to prepare themselves for independence, nobody was that worried about Africa. The anxiety was all for Asia. 
That was barely four decades ago. Today Africa is the poorest region in the world. Half of the population live on less than one dollar a day. Life expectancy is actually falling. People live, on average, to the age of just 46. 
… Africa is the only continent in the world which is stagnating. Why has it fallen so far behind?
African poverty and stagnation is the greatest tragedy of our time. Poverty on such a scale demands a forceful response. … Africa requires a comprehensive ‘big push’ on many fronts at once.  
Investing for economic growth means rebuilding African health and education systems, many of which are now on the point of collapse.

From the World Food Conference in 1974, at which Henry Kissinger declared 'In ten years no child shall go to bed hungry,' to the UN Millennium Summit in 2000, which vowed to end world hunger by 2015, Westerners have long been wringing their hands over this continent.

A Wakandian renaissance?  On the contrary, it seems the further colonialism recedes into the past, the more desperate Africa's situation becomes. 

Fifty years after independence, then, Tony Blair, Bob Geldof et al. have in effect produced a 464-page manifesto calling for...

...the re-colonization of Africa. 

On what do we base this claim?