Another Danger to Uganda: ICC?
Real Dangers to Uganda: AFRICOM, oil, militarization, and the ICC. It seems that in the list of real dangers to Uganda, the ICC has to be included. These four interdependent factors seem to work together to serve as the real dangers to Uganda.
#AFRICOM2012, Stop the real threat to Uganda
“Similarly, given the massive civilian devastation wreaked by recent US military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is likely that most Africans would say ‘no thank you’ to the offers of justice from the barrel of American guns. This is especially the case given that many of these law enforcement operations may be carried out not by uniformed US soldiers, but by US-contracted private security firms who anticipate a boom in business thanks to AFRICOM. Given the near total lack of accountability that private contractors have enjoyed in Iraq and Afghanistan, this should also give human rights and peace advocates considerable pause for thought.
Finally, regardless of how the proposed cooperation works out in practice, there is the underlying issue that, for people in many areas of the world, the idea that US military force is the chosen instrument of global justice makes a mockery of the violence and devastation they have suffered at the hands of US military intervention. The ICC’s pandering to the US military is an insult to all those in the US and around the world struggling to hold the US military and its mercenaries accountable. The quest for global accountability will only become more difficult if the US military is appointed by the ICC as the chosen agent of global justice instead of being a force that itself needs to be held accountable.”
Real Dangers to Uganda: AFRICOM, Oil, & Militarization
#AFRICOM2012, Stop the Real Threat to Uganda.
For a critical deeper analysis and understanding of the relationship between AFRICOM & continental Africa, particularly in relation to Uganda, refer to the chapter “AFRICOM: Militarizing Peace” from Adam Branch’s powerful book,“Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda” (Oxford, 2011).
Adam Branch is senior research fellow at the Makerere Institute of Social Research, Uganda, and assistant professor of political science at San Diego State University, USA. He is the author of “Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda” (Oxford, 2011).His work has focused primarily on the politics of human rights intervention in Uganda.
Excerpts from the chapter can be found online (Pages 216-239).
“Since the launch of the so-called War on Terror, U.S. foreign policy toward Africa, and security policy in particular, has been oriented around a number of different, often conflicting, but also overlapping agendas that ultimately led to the establishment of AFRICOM in 2008” (218).
”Counterterrorism, however, has not been the only security agenda competing for preeminence, and some analysts argue that it is, in fact, only a cover for the real interest driving American policy in Africa: access to Africa’s resources, in particular oil and to a lesser extent natural gas and other forms of mineral wealth, of increased importance with China’s rapid entry into the continent. Much has been made of the increasing U.S. dependence on African oil, expected to reach 25 percent of U.S. imports by 2015, and of the subsequent revaluation of Africa’s strategic importance for the United States. The United States is pursuing Africa’s oil through a diverse set of means, including building the security capacity of African states so that they can provide the needed security and stability to ensure access to resources with or without direct U.S. involvement; positioning U.S. forces in or around Africa in preparation for military contingency operations to counter extreme threats to oil supplies when African states fail to fulfill their security tasks; and even, at times, undertaking development projects in communities negatively affected by resources extraction to prevent them from disrupting access. The pursuit of oil is the dimension of U.S. interests in Africa that has evoked the most critical attention, with some arguing that the United States intends to use its ‘unprecedented military strength’ to create a ‘full spectrum dominance’ in order to guarantee access to the resource” (219).
“Despite criticism, militarism has only intensified under President Obama: in 2009, the budget for AFRICOM was tripled, and a new military emphasis was seen in several ambassadorial appointments, including Uganda’s. In 2010, $763 million was allotted to AFRICOM, whereas the State Department’s Africa Bureau’s operational budget had a $226 million allocation” (223).
“As importantly, this flexibility and lack of permanent bases allows the United States and African states to avoid transparency and public opposition to Africa’s militarization. The dependence onlily pads instead of formal bases allows U.S. officials and African governments to deny that the United States even has military bases in Africa” (225).
“The State Department in 2008 announced more than $1 billion worth of contracts in Africa for the next five years would go up to four military contractors. The absurdity of American-paid mercenaries being sent to teach Africans about human rights and good governance has not gone unnoticed, nor has the danger that their presence represents democracy and peace” (226).
Twitter account is back!
@UNCOVERtheNIGHT is back on twitter! We were able to activate our account again. Please be sure to follow us to keep up to date with all of our posts: pictures, videos, articles, etc. Apwoyo and sorry for the confusion!
(NOTE: It turns out it wasn’t a conspiracy, but just that we replied to too many tweets in one day. Oops!)
Peace song from Northern Uganda.
“The Moon is Bright” - Chinese Young Stars, part of The Acholi Music Project.
*Click on the link, then press play on the page to listen to this beautiful, hopeful, & peaceful song. (There are also downloadable lyrics).
“Brother come home.
The moon is bright…
Kony come back home.
It is time to work for forgiveness,
the time is now.”
Just because “Kony2012” is over, does not mean that you should stop learning, asking, and reading. Please refer to our Info-Kit for more information.
We can become more than just a countermovement, if we do as Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon says in “Making Sense of Kony”:
“If you feel drawn to the situation in Northern Uganda, then think about how and if your skills can genuinely contribute.If you wish to lobby your own government, think about whether promoting the military action proposed by Kony 2012 is the best form of intervention. You may wish to consider other options: lobbying around patent rights for medications, or lobbying for a more equal trading system. There are many areas of critical concern for African countries in which outsiders can become productively involved.”
UNCOVERTHENIGHT is in the midst of brainstorming what that would look like. Shoot us an email if you have any ideas. If not, just keep informing yourself & stay tuned for more details!!!