“No person can put a chain about the ankle of a fellow being without at last finding the other end fastened to their own neck.” Frederick Douglas
Dear All – I wanted to share this piece about the new military base the United States is working to establish on the African continent AFRICOM. AFRICOM is currently located in Germany while the United States looks for a country willing to host the base.
One of AFRICOM’s primary functions will be to train and equip African militaries to “legitimize” and “professionalize” soldiers. The history of U.S. military training has resulted in devastation and violence as a result of the infusion of weapons and training into unstable areas of the world. During the Cold War, the U.S. provided weapons and training to governments which were willing to help fight the ideological war against communism, regardless of their human rights or good governance standards. This was devastating in Latin America where thousands of citizens disappeared, were killed, tortured, and unjustly imprisoned.
AFRICOM represents a broader shift in U.S. foreign policy – a foreign policy that places an emphasis on defense above diplomacy. Many feel that it is an attempt by the United States to contain some of the newly rising trading partners like India or China instead of relying on solid international relationships to promote mutual flourishing. In essence using the people and resources of Africa to defend the United States against rising Asian economic powers – how does this help Africa to flourish?
If we continue to approach the world in fear and with a mindset of control we will lose the very thing we say we are preserving – safety. For as Frederick Douglas wrote, the shackles we are putting on the rest of the world surely lead back to our own lives.
Check this site out, especially the embedded YouTube video and history of the AFRICOM situation as well as the chance to sign up to receive e-alerts about this issue. Peace Liz
FSPA JPICC Coordinator
8th Day Center of Justice
205 W. Monroe
Chicago, IL 60606