[R-G] Susan Rice is Bad News for Africa
fentona at shaw.ca
Wed Dec 3 11:01:27 MST 2008
Susan Rice is Bad News for Africa
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
"Rice revealed herself to be an apostle of George Bush's War on
If you believe that Barack Obama will pursue a policy in the Horn of
Africa that is substantially different than that of George Bush, you
are in for a deep disappointment. Only weeks after Ethiopia's U.S.-
instigated invasion of Somalia almost two years ago, Susan Rice,
Obama's choice for Ambassador to the United Nations, endorsed the
aggression - an atrocity that has resulted in the displacement of 1.5
million Somalis and impending starvation of 3.5 million more.
Rice is a proponent of so-called "humanitarian military intervention"
- but supports a U.S. Somalia policy that created "Africa's worst
humanitarian crisis," according to the United Nations.
There is every reason to believe she will counsel the next president
to continue George Bush's policies in the Horn of Africa. In January,
2007, while Ethiopian troops attempted to crush Islamists who had
brought a brief period of relative peace and stability to Somalia, and
U.S. air and sea forces pounded the countryside with missiles and
bombs, Rice revealed herself to be an apostle of George Bush's War on
Somalia (and the so-called War on Terror in general). Rice told the
PBS News Hour that U.S. collaboration with the Ethiopian invaders was
justified by what she called America's "counterterrorism imperatives,"
which she said "really are real in the context of Somalia." In Rice's
words, "We have to go after the terrorist cells where we find them."
The Bush regime gave no estimate of how many persons with ties to Al
Qaida were operating on Somali soil, but the number appears to have
been very small. The main goal of the Americans and their Ethiopian
allies was to crush the government that had been created by Somali
Islamists. The Islamic Courts regime, as Abukar Arman writes in the
journal Global Politician, operated "schools, hospitals, and for six
months before the occupation removed every checkpoint in Mogadishu and
brought a semblance of peace." Two years after the invasion, the
Islamists have retaken much of southern and central Somalia, and the
Ethiopians appear poised to withdraw - after killing, starving and
displacing millions in partnership with the United States.
"On Darfur, Rice is more bellicose than Bush."
The "humanitarian" component of Susan Rice's militarism is quite
She has long been a super-hawk on punishing Sudan for its behavior in
Darfur. Back in October, 2006, Rice declared, "It's time to get tough"
with the government in Khartoum." In a Washington Post column, she
advised the Bush regime to give Sudan "an ultimatum: accept
unconditional deployment of the U.N. force within one week or face
military consequences." (explain China and oil and Israel)
On Darfur, Rice is more bellicose than Bush. She sees no contradiction
in calling for military action against Sudan, supposedly to end a
"humanitarian crisis" in Darfur, while simultaneously backing a savage
U.S.-Ethiopian assault that causes an even larger humanitarian
calamity in Somalia. Rice claims to seek safety for civilians in
Darfur, while supporting a total absence of security for Somali
civilians. Darfur is a military/political convenience for "real-
politic" operatives like Susan Rice. As Bruce Dixon wrote in his
November 2007 BAR article, "If stopping genocide in Africa really was
on the agenda, why the focus on Sudan with 200,000 to 400,000 dead
rather than Congo with five million dead?" (See "Ten Reasons Why ‘Save
Darfur' is a PR Scam to Justify the Next US Oil and Resource Wars in
"Her sole concern is projection of U.S. power by any means - or
pretext - that is available."
Rice's behavior in Africa has always been morally inconsistent. She
was a member of Bill Clinton's National Security Council during the
1994 Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi minority. Later, she "swore"
she would go "down in flames" if necessary to prevent future
genocides. But after her promotion to Assistant Secretary of State for
Africa, she failed to publicly advocate action against U.S. allies
Uganda and by then Tutsi-ruled Rwanda - the main perpetrators in an
ongoing war that his killed millions
Susan Rice's brand of "humanitarian intervention" is a farce, a
pretext to justify military aggression under the guise of preventing
human suffering. She has amply demonstrated that her sole concern is
projection of U.S. power by any means - or pretext - that is available.
Rice embraces a policy that causes mass death and starvation in
Somalia and ongoing genocide in Congo. Although she's no blood
relative of Condoleezza Rice, on African issues she seems headed in
the same direction as the current Secretary of State.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford at BlackAgendaReport.com
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