- It is obvious that the West would activate its agents to stop the rise of an “Emerging Africa”
The western world is at the top of the list when it comes to illustrating the depths of hypocrisy. It is already widely accepted that the western world is largely to blame for the phenomenon of climate change. And now that these countries have attained their economic zenith, they are suddenly realizing that they need to battle climate change. In addition to that, the Russo-Ukraine war has ignited the importance of a resource-rich continent named Africa. Gasping for oil and energy supplies, the Western nations have started a new scramble for Africa. But who will be hardest hit by this nebulous Western agenda? Obviously, it is the poor and backward African nations that are yet to realize their developmental goals.
To this end, the West has employed the most idiotic tactic to put African countries Mozambique, Namibia, and Botswana on the back foot. It is clear that the West wants to keep these countries as their property and to prevent their political and economic development. United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken recently visited three African Union (AU) member-states in August in an attempt to rejuvenate ties. German chancellor Olaf Scholz tried to gain the support of the African nations during his first visit to Africa in May. Even, French President Macron journeyed to Africa in June to “renew relationships” with the continent. But all their attempts to woo the African nations have failed miserably. This has prompted the gas-starved greedy Western countries to plunder African oil and hinder African development trajectory.
Rich at the cost of poor
The richest countries in the world, primarily those in the west, have so far contributed disproportionately to global warming. Even though wealthy nations like the United States, Canada, Japan, and much of western Europe make up only 12 percent of the world’s population today, they are responsible for half of all greenhouse gases that have been released into the atmosphere over the past 170 years due to the burning of fossil fuels and industrial activity.
Overall, the western world has achieved its goal at the expense of the exploitation of natural resources worldwide, particularly in Africa. You see, Africa’s surface conceals a wealth of extremely valuable mineral resources. Nearly 1 billion tonnes of minerals worth $406 billion were mined on the continent in 2019. The United Nations estimates that roughly 30% of the world’s mineral reserves, 12% of the world’s oil, and 8% of the world’s natural gas reserves are located in Africa.
As a result, these countries have a fantastic opportunity to develop by using these natural resources. And now that these African countries desire to develop economically by reaping the benefits of their natural resources, the West is attempting to prevent them from achieving their objectives by using their agenda of fighting climate change. Western think tanks have long been used as instruments to further the foreign policy goals of Western nations. Furthermore, the timing of the research at a time when African countries are making significant strides toward becoming dependable global suppliers of oil and gas cannot be merely coincidental.
To be clear, Western nations have long attempted to obstruct the ascent of Africa using non-state actors like NGOs, think tanks et al. The West would never benefit from an assertive Africa. Africa’s enslavement served as the foundation for the riches of western nations. The rapid development of the so-called developed countries invariably depended upon what Andre Gunther Frank called the “development of underdevelopment” of poor countries across the world and notably Africa and more specifically Sub- Sahara and East Africa. Make no mistake, the recent report cautioning Africa about exporting its oil and gas resources should only be seen in this context.
In a recent incident, the western-backed religious leaders are making sure that Mozambique, Namibia, and Botswana oil project undertaken by a Canadian company, Reconnaissance Energy Africa (ReconAfrica), is being halted and the countries are not able to reap the benefits of this project.
Hidden agenda of the West
Religious leaders are calling the project—a sin. “The project is a sin, and a serious one,” a recently retired Anglican Bishop of Namibia said. Another Bishop said, “Jesus said, ‘I have come so that they may have life and have it abundantly.’ He would never be on the side of anything that has the potential to destroy life, to destroy the environment in which people live. I have no doubt that Jesus would find a way of pulling the carpet under the feet of those who are still wanting to engage in the exploration of fossil fuels.
“I would like drilling to stop, this company to pick up its machines and go.”
Others have also given reasons for halting the project. For instance, according to the inhabitants, the deltaic region is a platform to communicate with spirits and gods. They claim to have an emotional bond with the area. Well, this is a completely absurd justification for stopping the project. Although TFI does not intend to offend anyone’s religious sensibilities, there must be a logical justification for this explanation.
However, despite ReconAfrica’s claim that its exploration offers no contamination danger, these religious leaders warn that drilling in Namibia may affect subsurface water sources. Mwanyengwa Shapwanale, head of communications for ReconAfrica’s Namibian subsidiary says the company is working with the Namibian government “to make sure that not only are we in line with what is expected from us to protect the environment, especially the water, but also to make sure that we go the extra mile.”
Namibia has, however, “insignificant” greenhouse gas emissions when compared to those of wealthier nations. Less than 4% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions originate from all of Africa. And now that these African countries are emerging from their protracted slumber and moving towards economic development, it is obvious that the western world would activate its agents in the region to thwart these nations’ emergence.
There is a terrorist organization called Al Shabab in Mozambique, active in its region of Cabo Delgado. It started its reign of terror five years ago and is involved in dozens of massacres and brutalities. It must be noted here that this is a different Al Shabab than the one existing in Somalia. Affiliated with ISIS, Al Shabab emerged in 2017, its main purpose is to establish the Sharia law, get rid of formal education, remove healthcare and annihilate the government. Over the years, Al Shabab has murdered thousands of people. Its presence in Cabo Delgado makes it a region prevalent with bloodshed and terror.
Cabo Delgado is a resource-rich region; it has huge deposits of ruby and natural gas. In fact, forty percent of Rubies’ supply in the world comes from Cabo Delgado. It is also the third-highest holder of natural gas reserves in Africa. Therefore, South Africa, Botswana, and Mozambique know that if a Western player gets involved in Cabo Delgado’s affairs, then instead of helping them counter Al Shabab, it will instead start financing and arming the Islamist group and will create a deal with it to seal the region’s rich resources. Botswana, South Africa, and Mozambique made a far-sighted decision in keeping their distance from the West as they are familiar with the West’s tactics.
Mozambique, South Africa, and Botswana show how to exploit the West
In order to curb this menace, South Africa and Botswana extended their assistance to Mozambique in its battle to eradicate Al Shabab from its land. These nations decided to deploy their military forces in the Cabo Delgado region as they know that Mozambique will have a safe future if Al Shabab is completely defeated resulting in a comparatively peaceful Africa. It is a new phenomenon in Africa where countries are not depending on Western nations for their security and are also rejecting the politically-influenced UN Peacekeeping missions. The countries are coming together to defeat the menace present in a nation even if the insurgents present in a country does not affect other countries.
The instances from Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of Congo are enough to prove this phenomenon. On one hand, Eritrea helped Ethiopia to tackle the West-backed TPLF menace, and on the other, Kenya and other nations deployed their forces to tackle the M23 insurgents. The governments of Mozambique, South Africa, and Botswana also decided to not seek the help of the West. Because they realize that allowing it into their territory would further escalate the problems instead of improving the security situation because of the West’s nefarious agendas.
African countries are employing the same tactics used by rich countries to fulfill their goals. One of the main objectives of foreign policy is to find the weak points of countries and exploit them for your own profit. Recently, Mozambique has been successful in this attempt and is now reaping the benefits of exploiting the West. Recently, President Filipe Nyusi announced that Mozambique has begun exporting its liquefied natural gas (LNG) which is being produced in the northern region of the nation. This is the first shipment of gas to Europe under a long-term contract with a British firm, BP. The plant which is in the region of Cabo Delgado of Mozambique is operated by an Italian energy corporation called Eni.
Now, you must be thinking, if Mozambique did not want to establish a military relationship with the West, then why is it forging economic ties with it? The answer is simple, this is diplomacy and Mozambique is employing it successfully in its foreign policy. President Nyusi clearly knows when to use the US and Europe to further his nation’s interests. Nyusi is using the helplessness of Europe after the Ukraine-Russia conflict to sell gas to Europe. Mozambique is allowing the West to enter only those sectors which incentivize both parties while giving minimal or no strategic advantage to a foreign power.
Mozambique, which possesses 100 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves, is in the 14th spot in the world and has reserves that will last 1,546 years. It is showing the way, other African nations, how treat the US and Europe. And that is by not letting them into one’s territory but using them for political and financial gains, which is something that they have been doing with Africa for decades.
Africa turns self-assertive
In the wake of global protectionism brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, Africa has begun to comprehend the significance of self-sufficiency. Additionally, the crisis that wreaked havoc on Europe due to its excessive dependence on Russian energy sources has only served to incentivize African countries to commence reducing their reliance on Western countries. Recently, there were reports about the Central African countries including major oil producers like Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Gabon, Chad, Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Congo Republic agreeing to establish a regional oil and gas pipeline network in an effort to boost their energy security and move toward economic self-sufficiency.
Moreover, both Uganda and Tanzania are also building the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project, stretching 1,443km (896 miles) from Lake Albert in western Uganda to the Tanzanian port of Tanga on the Indian Ocean. Today, the European nations are being hoisted by their own petard. Now, Africa has the negotiating leverage to steer any proposed agreement with the West in a way that benefits it. African countries have made it crystal clear that they will not allow Western countries to continue plundering them.
On the economic front too, several African nations have decided to tread upon the path of self-sufficiency, without any interference from the west. For instance, several landlocked countries are now carrying out agreements with countries on the African coastline so as to ease their logistics, thereby reducing dependency on the west. Ethiopia and Somalia are one such examples. These developments tell us that more and more African countries are moving away from the dominance of the West which is looking at any chance to enter Africa so that it can establish its monopoly over them. African unity will promote peace and prosperity, not warfare and misery.
African political and economic systems have always been undermined by global political and economic systems, lagging behind in global socioeconomic and political advancement for ages. Africans have long put up with the discriminatory treatment they receive from international think tanks like Carbon Tracker. These organizations have historically had a substantial bias in favor of wealthy and developed countries. They function as an aristocratic organization where the rules are written by and for the developed countries of the world. Therefore, African nations should regard any reports from these prejudiced organizations with prudence.
Source TFI Global