Africa in the Western mirror… - ABDULLAH MURADOĞLU

Africa in the Western mirror…

The “Summit of the African Union” had assembled yesterday in Addis Ababa, the capital city of Ethiopia. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu participated in the Summit on behalf of Turkey. Until the 1970’s, the “Africa” folder of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had been empty. As the deceased Mahmut Dikerdem, who had been assigned to Ghana as an ambassador in 1964, stated, there were no diplomats in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who has knowledge of “Inner Africa”, other than “Ottoman Northern Africa”. In the past 10 years, vast distance had been covered, and Turkey had become a significant actor, who cannot be disregarded, in Africa. In 2005, Turkey had been accepted to the African Union as an observing member, and in 2008, as a “strategic partner”.

The idea of the “African Union” was formed by Africans in order to fight against colonialist countries together. This idea materialized when the colonies regained their freedom and transformed into an organization in 1963. Even though the African Union is a useful platform, it cannot be said that it had been successful in ending the conflicts. The colonialists had left behind such a map, that, it’s really difficult for Africa to make both ends meet. Many of the members of the African Union were fragments of the problem, due to being formed on awry maps drawn by Westerners. Let’s see what Prof. Ali Mazrui, a world renowned African expert, who is an American of Kenyan descent and who passed away last year, said:

“Including the civil wars in the regions, where Muslims reside, in general, all the civil wars in Africa have an ethnical purpose. We can include African nations, where Muslims are minorities, like Angola, Zimbabwe and Zaire to the list of countries, where the ethnically purposed civil wars take place. The colonialist Western countries, which divided Africa and then drew artificial borders between some of Africa’s regions, are responsible in the first degree for the never-ending civil wars in Africa that are based on ethnic reasons. Aside from the civil wars, the Westerners are also responsible for the settlement of white people in countries like South Africa and the exploitation of those countries.”

The deceased Mazrui stands completely correct. Let’s have a look at Somalia, where bombs recently exploded. In 1884, colonialist forces divided the Somalia peninsula into five separate regions. Britain had taken the northwest and northeast borderland. France had taken “Djibouti”, while Italy colonized the southern part of Somalia. Ethiopia had also taken the west side of Somalia as a compensation for their cooperation with the colonialists. In the post-colonial period, Britain had given most of their regions to Ethiopia and Kenya. Because of this communion, Somalians mobilized and fought against the colonialist powers. In 1960, when they had gained independence, they had spent all of their resources in order to recover all the lost lands. As Dr. Afyare Abdi Elmi states, the main reason behind the Somalia government’s bankruptcy should be sought in the war Ethiopia and Somalia conducted in 1977 over the “Ogedan” region.

Westerners are also responsible for the tumult in Somalia nowadays. With the US being in the first place, all the interventions made by the Westerners, in the name of bringing “order”, had made things worse. There used to be a traditional legal system in Somalia, which was used to resolve domestic conflicts. Following the West’s interventions, this system collapsed. Westerners didn’t allow the communities, who lived in the Islam geography, to complete their natural political developments. By means of supporting despotic regimes, they’ve rendered communities immovable. As a result of these policies, the violence and radicalism gained a platform. Since the West hasn’t completely confronted their colonialist past and their policies following that, they still seem to be unable to understand what’s happening in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia.

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