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Old December 7th, 2012, 11:02 PM   #21
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One important difference is between outsiders intervening in conflicts alreade ongoing or underway or outside intervention creating conflicts. I am a bit of a sceptic towards the view the later was the norm, since it too easily lead to an idea all the world lived so peacefully before some "westerners" came and messed it up.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 04:16 AM   #22

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But the US didn't start any of those wars. They were all Civil Wars that the US got involved in. *

*Iraq being the exception.
Most of these wars were more or less local or regional conflicts which were multipled by a factor of 100 or more after US/Western involvement turned it into an International proxy war against the evil communists trying to take over the world.

Today with Communists gone, Westerners intervene to spread democracy against evil dictators, with the same result of tranforming petty local conflicts into full blown total war.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 06:16 AM   #23

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The American people are never consulted if we want to get involved, it
is always the action of a few politicians and yet, we the people always pay the price.
This could be said for most of us though, TJ, not just the West either.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 08:37 AM   #24

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Ancientgeezer, in response to your previous comment that the Vietnam war was not in fact caused by Western interference is only partially true. It certainly wasn't caused by the U.S., but the French probably have something to due with it considering it had been their colony for 58 years prior to the outbreak of hostilities. I doubt there would have been an Independence movement in Vietnam if it had never ceased to be independent.

But, one could just as easily blame Japan for transferring power to Ho Chi Minh. In which case, I suppose it would be eastern intervention that caused the war.

Now in response to your response (?) to me, I have never personally been to Africa. You got me! I have had a chance, though, to get to know a couple that have worked in Ethiopia for the last 30 years. To be clear, they were Lutheran missionaries from the heart of Texas and I really doubt they had read the Little Marxists Guide to the Big Evil Capitalist World. What they saw was a population that was stuck between a rock-and-a-hard-place. The foreign banks that came in to offer "development" loans to farmers issued them only to farmers that switched their main cultures to a cash-crop. To be clear, they were referring to patterns they had seen in the last decade. Understandable, right? They need to make a profit. In the part of Ethiopia where my acquaintances had started a school, the main crop was cotton. Now you can say this is just business, and only a commie could find something objectionable to this, but the fact remains that without the influence of largely European banks it wouldn't happen.

And yes, it is Rwandan, Congolese, Sudanese armies that rape, kill, torture and mutilate genitals these days. The only white guys you're likely to see are U.N. troops twiddling their thumbs. But these things don't happen in a vacuum. You might say that blaming colonialism for today's Africa is infantile and just the same old song and dance, but what you seem to be suggesting is that it's legacy doesn't have a bearing on African politics today. That seems to be a much more indefensible position.

Last edited by Cadell; December 8th, 2012 at 08:45 AM.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 09:47 AM   #25

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The Congo must be the most fascinating and horrific example of proxy warfare ever. It began with the assassination of lumumba and continues to this day. It looks something like
Kinshasa /Zimbabwe/Angola vs. British American proxies_Rwanda Uganda/M23 with China more or less neutral but leaning in favor of the first group geopolitically.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 03:03 PM   #26

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And just to make things clear, the vast majority of the Mining interests in the Congo are more or less western interests working hand in hand with African elites in Rwanda and Uganda., not Chinese:


It is only rarely that journalists in the press are brave enough to point out the role of these mining interests, like here--:

'
The M23 rebels are nothing more but professional miners using the force of arms to conduct business. They ethnically cleanse villages in the Kivu province to start mines and sell the biproducts to western corporation through African Middlemen in Rwanda and Uganda. 6 million so far have died.

The western media regularly describes them as rebels with legitimate grievances. Only God knows why. Some in the west, go so far as suggesting creating a new independent country out of the mineral rich Kivu province with the M23 as a government as part of the solution.

The International community forced the Congolese government to make M23 part of the Congolese army in the name of peace. M23 are three things. A rebel group, a branch of the Rwanda army and part of the congolese army. Deliberate chaos and anarchy if you ask me.

here is another list of multinational corporations who would benfit the most from a a new independent Kivu state:
'
"Traxys, OM Group, Blattner Elwyn Group, Freeport McMoran, Eagle Wings/Trinitech, Lundin, Kemet, Banro, AngloGold Ashanti, Anvil Mining, and First Quantum."

Pambazuka - Conflict minerals: Cover for Western mining interests?

The Chinese, ironically, are much more transparent and straightforward when it comes to dealing with the Congo and extracting its mineral wealth. notwithstanding the silly attempts at propaganda by the BBC host, he presents the facts that speak for themselves:




The Chinese offered to the Congo something similar to the same deal that the japanese offered to China some 30 years ago. Massive loans to develop indutry and using sales of mineral resources to pay off that loan through an Escrow account. The IMF and the Canandian government intervened, especially after the Congolese government kicked out the Candian frim Firs Quantum I believe.

'They were able to reduce the 9 billion dollarloan to 6 billion---depriving that underdeveloped country of 3 billion dollars worth of desperately needed investment and infrastructure.

Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and Hong Kong News and Business.

Last edited by mansamusa; December 8th, 2012 at 03:15 PM.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 04:08 PM   #27

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Originally Posted by Gudenrath View Post
It is certainly true that the rest of the "West" does sometimes sit on the sidelines and cheer and let the US do all the work, but far from every time this is the case regarding US foreign intervention. There are actually quite a lot of instances where it is all US foreign policy and a lot of the "West" are not particular thrilled that the US is doing whatever "dirty work" it is they are doing. Iraq is a good example.
Yet somehow, interventions by other powers always seem to go ignored or overlooked. The US is hardly the only power going around "meddling" and causing problems. France, China, various African nations, it's just what nations do.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 11:32 PM   #28

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Ancientgeezer, in response to your previous comment that the Vietnam war was not in fact caused by Western interference is only partially true. It certainly wasn't caused by the U.S., but the French probably have something to due with it considering it had been their colony for 58 years prior to the outbreak of hostilities. I doubt there would have been an Independence movement in Vietnam if it had never ceased to be independent.

But, one could just as easily blame Japan for transferring power to Ho Chi Minh. In which case, I suppose it would be eastern intervention that caused the war.
It was actually the British and Indians that reoccupied Vietnam at the end of WW2. One could say that Americans interfered as McArthur’s edict that no areas under Japanese control should be liberated until after he had personally accepted the Japanese surrender in Tokyo allowed a six week period when the Viet Minh were able to stage a coup, depose Bao Dai and proceed to murder as many non Communist Vietnamese nationalists, members of the middle classes, officials and mixed-race Vietnamese as they could get their hands on.
The Anglo-Indian forces together with the still-armed Japanese put down the Viet Minh insurrection in the South and the Chinese Nationalist Army deterred their further activity in the North before the handover to the French. The Viet Minh then entered into negotiations with the French regarding self-government and independence and, whatever one thinks of the French, the Vietnamese conducted negotiations in bad faith and aimed only at gaining a breathing space until they could re-launch their guerrilla war.
During the war with the French, the Viet-Minh “liquidated” some 80,000 civilians as “enemies of the revolution” and mortality of PoWs was 95%. When a deal was eventually made for French withdrawl and to partition the country, over a million Vietnamese walked South to escape Vietnamese Communism despite armed intimidation to get them to stay. They were right to be worried, in the period 1953-1956 Viet Minh reforms included the liquidation of 170,000 landlords and the deaths of between 600,000 and 800,000 peasants by various means.
American involvement (as well as that of other countries) should be seen in the light of the communist “enlightened” rule in the North. A rule that they extended to the South after 1975 with perhaps a further half-million being summarily executed, “re-educated” or worked to death in labour camps.
Of course had America not “interfered” the Communists could have just bumped of all of these people in one go without all of the expense of the Third Indo-China War.
The advantages to people of non-interference by Western countries can be seen in Cambodia, Bosnia, Congo, Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Ruanda, Liberia and plenty of other places where the corpses are no doubt grateful for being left alone.





Quote:
Now in response to your response (?) to me, I have never personally been to Africa. You got me! I have had a chance, though, to get to know a couple that have worked in Ethiopia for the last 30 years. To be clear, they were Lutheran missionaries from the heart of Texas and I really doubt they had read the Little Marxists Guide to the Big Evil Capitalist World. What they saw was a population that was stuck between a rock-and-a-hard-place. The foreign banks that came in to offer "development" loans to farmers issued them only to farmers that switched their main cultures to a cash-crop. To be clear, they were referring to patterns they had seen in the last decade. Understandable, right? They need to make a profit. In the part of Ethiopia where my acquaintances had started a school, the main crop was cotton. Now you can say this is just business, and only a commie could find something objectionable to this, but the fact remains that without the influence of largely European banks it wouldn't happen.

And yes, it is Rwandan, Congolese, Sudanese armies that rape, kill, torture and mutilate genitals these days. The only white guys you're likely to see are U.N. troops twiddling their thumbs. But these things don't happen in a vacuum. You might say that blaming colonialism for today's Africa is infantile and just the same old song and dance, but what you seem to be suggesting is that it's legacy doesn't have a bearing on African politics today. That seems to be a much more indefensible position.
As I started this reply the 1978 film “The Wild Geese” came on TV, so I watched for the first time in 30 years. There is an excellent scene between Hardy Kruger playing a South African Mercenary and Winston Ntshona as the Imprisoned African President that they were rescuing. The scene is quite lengthy and has a lot of meat, but the line most pertinent is Ntshona’s “On this continent, Freedom is just a word for a new oppressor.”

If you wish to travel to any of the dumps and sewers North of the Limpopo, you can do a lot worse than Addis Abba. It’s a nice city and the Ethiopians are nice people although the countryside is reputed to be extremely dangerous, but then that’s just what the FCO and the US Dept of State say and what do they know? Not many tourists and aid workers were killed in the last few years.
Here’s some things that you probably don’t know about the country.
  • Until 1942 some 40% of the population were slaves.
  • For the past few years the country has been Africa’s second largest producer of maize and biggest producer of wheat.
  • The country has the highest population of livestock in Africa.
  • It is the world’s sixth biggest producer of Coffee and the third largest of Arabica.
  • Ethiopia is a medium-rainfall country often exceeding 1200mm per year. The last three years have seen a precipitation of 850 mm on average, this compares to Ireland’s 750mm last year. It receives even in dry years thirty per cent more than South Africa, three times that of Botswana and more even than lush, verdant Malawi. The country’s rains feed seven major rivers, not least the Blue Nile.


So why are they always hungry, complaining about water and holding their hands out for cash? US$3.5. billion in government to government foreign aid plus another US$600M in private aid in 2010.
Of course rainfall varies by region and sometimes the rains come late or early, so it would seem a pretty sensible idea to prioritise reservoirs and dams to trap runoff, and reticulation systems, boreholes and wells in lower rainfall areas. Such systems have been planned since the 1920s, but they never quite seem to happen with any success. The deep boreholes sunk by the Italians during their brief colonial rule were filled in by the returning Ethiopians out of spite. Irrigation schemes that have been implemented have mainly benefited the semi-state former collective farms and the many projects aimed at rural areas seem to run out of money after the consultants have been paid, the Mercedes Benz’ purchased, the International symposiums held and the award winning films made. The country also has virtually no roads (check google earth) and no reason to build them until some evil foreign mining company comes along and needs one to reach a mining concession. With poor communications the movement of foodstuffs from production area to market is difficult and expensive and in the past has been controlled by gangsters.
Simple question. Ethiopia produces 50% more grain products than the self-sufficient, higher-producing and exporting South Africa, yet in most years has to import grain.

As far as private loans from European banks are concerned, I would be not only surprised but astonished if this was so, as foreign banks are not permitted to operate commercially in Ethiopia. A few of the majors like HSBC, Citibank and Commerzbank have representative offices, but they do not operate commercially. You may be thinking of the African Development Bank, which again does not deal directly with borrowers in any African Country but through localised development banks of which at least one exists in each contributory nation.
As far as the cash crops are concerned, cash crops are essential for developing countries otherwise standards of living cannot rise and incomes for re-investment cannot be made. The trick is to prevent monoculture or the diversion of resources away from food production. A surplus of food products is also a cash crop in its way.
(Hot news! It appears that Starbucks is trying to corner the Ethiopian coffee market. The evil American company, already in trouble for fiddling its taxes in Britain has made Switzerland the world’s biggest coffee importer—we can guess why.)
What is happening in Africa that should concern International agencies is the buying up of arable land by foreign concerns for food production using advanced methods aimed at the export market. Such production will be cheaper and more efficient than the small scale farmer and uses up the developing country’s export quota.

What should be noted about Africa and its food supplies is what has happened to the continent’s population.
The arrival of Western colonists boosted food production and improved health to the extent that an estimated population in 1860 of 80 million for the entire continent had grown by 227 million by 1950, just as colonists were beginning to leave. In 2010 that population was 1067 million—five times higher with virtually no improvement in food production until the early 1980s. In fact, in many countries food production collapsed as commercial farms were nationalised and returned to hoe and stick production. There are innumerable case studies. A farm recently featured on a BBC documentary about the safari industry in Kenya supported 600 people and earned its European owner £250,000 per year in 1960 money. Today it supports just 8 people at a subsistence level. The very recent and glaring negative examples of Zimbabwe can go without saying.

Last edited by Ancientgeezer; December 8th, 2012 at 11:38 PM.
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Old December 8th, 2012, 11:36 PM   #29

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Originally Posted by mansamusa View Post
And just to make things clear, the vast majority of the Mining interests in the Congo are more or less western interests working hand in hand with African elites in Rwanda and Uganda., not Chinese:
'
The M23 rebels are nothing more but professional miners using the force of arms to conduct business. They ethnically cleanse villages in the Kivu province to start mines and sell the biproducts to western corporation through African Middlemen in Rwanda and Uganda. 6 million so far have died.

The western media regularly describes them as rebels with legitimate grievances. Only God knows why. Some in the west, go so far as suggesting creating a new independent country out of the mineral rich Kivu province with the M23 as a government as part of the solution.

The International community forced the Congolese government to make M23 part of the Congolese army in the name of peace. M23 are three things. A rebel group, a branch of the Rwanda army and part of the congolese army. Deliberate chaos and anarchy if you ask me.

here is another list of multinational corporations who would benfit the most from a a new independent Kivu state:
'
"Traxys, OM Group, Blattner Elwyn Group, Freeport McMoran, Eagle Wings/Trinitech, Lundin, Kemet, Banro, AngloGold Ashanti, Anvil Mining, and First Quantum."

The Chinese, ironically, are much more transparent and straightforward when it comes to dealing with the Congo and extracting its mineral wealth. notwithstanding the silly attempts at propaganda by the BBC host, he presents the facts that speak for themselves:



The Chinese offered to the Congo something similar to the same deal that the japanese offered to China some 30 years ago. Massive loans to develop indutry and using sales of mineral resources to pay off that loan through an Escrow account. The IMF and the Canandian government intervened, especially after the Congolese government kicked out the Candian frim Firs Quantum I believe.

'They were able to reduce the 9 billion dollarloan to 6 billion---depriving that underdeveloped country of 3 billion dollars worth of desperately needed investment and infrastructure.

Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and Hong Kong News and Business.
It is quite amusing that Marxists, bedwetters and fellow travellers accuse “Western” companies of “looting” the natural resources of developing countries. Clearly, if the inhabitants of a developing country knew how to prospect for minerals, dig a mine, operate a mine, process the ore and transport it to market and could pay for all this, they would do so. If a mining company could not make profit, they would not operate in a country and they do pay royalties to the host country—how those royalties are used is not the preserve of the mining house.
To understand the current state of play in the mining business you should know that there are two types of mining—infrastructual mining, either underground or open-cast and artisan mining.
The first requires massive financial investment—and I mean MASSIVE, the second is carried out in the spirit of Klondike, Barberton or the 49ers. The big infrastructural mines in places like Katanga, Kolwezi and other areas have been trashed many times, either by nationalisation or by unrest.
Now here is a question to you. You are the CEO of a mining company. Are you going to invest a billion dollars in a mine operation in a country where your investment could be stolen or destroyed at any time? In the old days you could rely on the colonial power to protect your investment in exactly the same way your investment in the USA, Australia or Europe would be protected. Alternatively you may trust a government whose stability is guaranteed by the influence of a reliable power, or you might choose to buy the government yourself if the price is right as the late Tiny Rowland often did.
A basic law of the universe is that if you have something valuable, someone will try to take it away from you and the same is true of mining.
Since the end of the Mobutu regime, no one group has fully controlled anywhere much outside Kinshasa or Lubumbashi for more than a few months at a time. Supposed political parties are just individual Mafiosi by another name and they live like any other Mafiosi—by stealing and fixing anyone who gets in their way. A few of the large infrastructural mines have been kept going by the major mining houses buying protection or in a few cases supplying their own. Companies like BHP, Anglo, Rio Tinto and Xstrata are mainly too big for the Mafiosi to mess with, although some have tried. The majors are also reluctant to be seen to be involved in so called “conflict minerals”. That is where the plethora of small companies with changing names mentioned in MANAMUSA’s video come in. These companies are not setting up major mining operations but using the artisan miners to exploit cobalt, tantalite, gold and platinum deposits. If one reads their prospectuses, a surprising number have investors from China. In a few cases they are taking on the temporary operation of existing infrastructural facilities that cannot be operated by the beneficial owner There is big money at the moment, but not enough for the majors to risk serious long-term investment.
In any case, it doesn’t matter who digs the minerals out of the ground, the minerals market world-wide is controlled at present by Glencore and if anyone wishes to mess with them, just read CEO Simon Murray’s biography.
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Old December 9th, 2012, 04:25 AM   #30

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Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
It is quite amusing that Marxists, bedwetters and fellow travellers accuse “Western” companies of “looting” the natural resources of developing countries. Clearly, if the inhabitants of a developing country knew how to prospect for minerals, dig a mine, operate a mine, process the ore and transport it to market and could pay for all this, they would do so. If a mining company could not make profit, they would not operate in a country and they do pay royalties to the host country—how those royalties are used is not the preserve of the mining house..
Looting is quite an appropriate term for it. WEstern mining corporations are shameless about underpaying and underpricing in the Congo. The royalties paid are often a pittance, and dont come anywhere close to covering environmental costs etc.

And you are correct. No company would make massive investments in a country without profits to be made. And profits for Western companies has been the one never changing constant in the Congo despite the Chaos and anarchy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
To understand the current state of play in the mining business you should know that there are two types of mining—infrastructual mining, either underground or open-cast and artisan mining.
The first requires massive financial investment—and I mean MASSIVE, the second is carried out in the spirit of Klondike, Barberton or the 49ers. The big infrastructural mines in places like Katanga, Kolwezi and other areas have been trashed many times, either by nationalisation or by unrest.
Now here is a question to you. You are the CEO of a mining company. Are you going to invest a billion dollars in a mine operation in a country where your investment could be stolen or destroyed at any time? In the old days you could rely on the colonial power to protect your investment in exactly the same way your investment in the USA, Australia or Europe would be protected. Alternatively you may trust a government whose stability is guaranteed by the influence of a reliable power, or you might choose to buy the government yourself if the price is right as the late Tiny Rowland often did.
A basic law of the universe is that if you have something valuable, someone will try to take it away from you and the same is true of mining.
Since the end of the Mobutu regime, no one group has fully controlled anywhere much outside Kinshasa or Lubumbashi for more than a few months at a time. Supposed political parties are just individual Mafiosi by another name and they live like any other Mafiosi—by stealing and fixing anyone who gets in their way. A few of the large infrastructural mines have been kept going by the major mining houses buying protection or in a few cases supplying their own. Companies like BHP, Anglo, Rio Tinto and Xstrata are mainly too big for the Mafiosi to mess with, although some have tried. .
The most prominent example of someone who tried to mess with Western Mining interests in the Congo was Patrice Lumunba. We all know how that turned out.

Westrn mining interests are happy with the ongoing chaos in the Congo. It means that they are able to make their massive profits without having to pay any signifigant amount of royalties and by underpricing the value of the minerals over there. the Western governments are quite happy to assist them in that regard.

Any strong or stable government in the Congo would do the quite obvious Nationalize the Mines, demand a higher price for the minerals being extracted from the country. It is in the interests of these mining companies to have a weak divided state constantly besieged by rebels. or have their own private paramiltary forces more well paid and stronger than that of the government.

Venezuela and Bolivia or even Russia's Gasprom are examples of what is the most inevitable outcome of a strong stable government in the Congo.



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Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
The majors are also reluctant to be seen to be involved in so called “conflict minerals”. That is where the plethora of small companies with changing names mentioned in MANAMUSA’s video come in. These companies are not setting up major mining operations but using the artisan miners to exploit cobalt, tantalite, gold and platinum deposits. If one reads their prospectuses, a surprising number have investors from China. In a few cases they are taking on the temporary operation of existing infrastructural facilities that cannot be operated by the beneficial owner There is big money at the moment, but not enough for the majors to risk serious long-term investment.
In any case, it doesn’t matter who digs the minerals out of the ground, the minerals market world-wide is controlled at present by Glencore and if anyone wishes to mess with them, just read CEO Simon Murray’s biography.
There is a viable alternative to the exploitation of the Congo by Western Corporations . The chinese provoided such an alternative. And WEstern elites are hell bent on fustrating it, unsurprishingly because it is athreat to their dominance in the Congo. In the Chinese deal featured in the BBC program, the interests motivating the IMF and the US to derail the Barter agreement was a shady deal conducted by a Western mining frims in tenke Fungurume

They were attempting to protect gains made in a very shady deal during a transitional regime. :


Quote:
The most important contract at issue was for the immense copper mine at Tenke Fungurume, with reserves roughly twice the size of those ceded to the Chinese project.

During negotiations with the transitional regime in 2005, Western owners achieved enormous reductions in the entry fees and shares they had to set aside for the local partner under the original agreement concluded in 1996.

In 2005, the DRC negotiators on the Tenke Fungurume project blithely agreed to reduce the fee from $250 million to $50 million (which was an additional payment to $50 million that a predecessor company paid in 1997), and reduce their country's share from 45% to 17.5%. The reduction in share by the DRC represented the surrender of revenues from 5 million tonnes of copper - worth at least $30 billion - over the life of the mine.

By contrast, the 2008 Chinese deal promised a signing bonus of $350 million and a 32% share going to the DRC side, which included the parastatal mining company Gecamines and a somewhat mysterious local partner.

The appearance of impropriety was, if anything, exacerbated by the participation of the US government in the Tenke Fungurume talks.

The World Bank had mandated a moratorium on new mineral contract negotiations pending a legal review of existing contracts and Tenke Fungurume was apparently flagged as problematic.

The US government apparently ignored the ban. Indeed, it looks like the US government helped push through a renegotiated deal with the transitional regime in order to obtain more favorable terms, and a more solid legal footing than the project, as a relic of the previous dictatorship, originally possessed.

At the DRC's request, the Carter Center reviewed the 2005 minerals contract mess and painted a dispiriting picture of greed, opportunism, and apparent self-dealing at the expense of one of the poorest countries on earth: [5]
Nevertheless, according to information from Congolese and international sources, the US Embassy lobbied for the DRC government to sign the agreement with Phelps Dodge, the US mining company.

There are several reports that the embassy's political officer and temporary Charge d'Affairs was personally engaged in urging the President's office to sign. At the very least, there was no indication at any time that the US was concerned with the request for a moratorium. In fact, the ICG's [International Crisis Group's] July 2007 report notes that US officials attended a signing party hosted by Phelps Dodge upon conclusion of its contract, demonstrating unambiguous disregard for the moratorium.
There's more:
The same official that is said to have actively lobbied for Phelps Dodge retired from the State Department in 2006. In September of that same year, she became "Vice-President for Government Relations, Africa" for Phelps Dodge, whose only major African interest is Tenke Fungurume. This official's important role at the US embassy and the timing of the move have fueled suspicion on the part of DRC government officials and others regarding the interests of Western governments.
Despite its dismal provenance and calls to delay commitments until the pending contract reviews were completed, the Tenke Fungurume deal received a further seal of approval in the form of sizable investments from Western public financial institutions - $250 million from the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation, 100 million euros (US$136 million at today's rate) from the European Investment Bank and another $100 million from the African Development Bank.
Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and Hong Kong News and Business.
There is nothing farfetched about saying that the only thing WEstern elites care about when it comes to intervention in the Congo is securing their corporate interests. The rebels in the Congo are ultimately linked to the geopolitical allies of the US and Great Britain. M23 is essentially a militia owned by the Rwanda Government, whose military along with that of the Uganda has close ties to the US.

Both the leaders of these countries I believe were trained militarily in the US. And came to power with military assistance of the US. A signifigant portion of their budgets are also supplied by the British and the Americans.

'No one in the congo has benefited form the ridiculous amounts of aid spent on UN peace keepers who essentially aguard these mining interests, except fpor the predatory elite where Western mining interests feature most prominently. Lumumba was naive enough to invite the UN to protect him, we all saw how well that worked out. I think in the recent elections the UN spent a billion dollars to conduct elections.

The bad debts that WEstern Banks piled on top of the congo with their cold war ally Mobutu is also shamelessly used as leverage via Vulture Funds, Where you have hedgefunds purchasing the bad debt of 3rd world derivatives market and growing these bad debts for the sake of profit. a hellish plague that the Chinese and the new Congolese governmnet have to deal with:

Quote:
China's problems are, on the other hand, definitely not solved.

The IMF's obsession with working out debt owed to the Paris Club creditors has done nothing to address the disposition of $5 billion of DRC debt held by non-Paris Club entities including, to Beijing's horror, vulture funds, the private investment firms and hedge funds that buy the liabilities of poor countries on the brink of debt relief.

DRC's particular curse is FG Hemisphere, a fund that, for an undisclosed sum, bought up $30 million worth of bad debt contracted by the Mobuto Sesi Seko regime in 1980 with Tito's Yugoslavia on a failed hydropower scheme. Through litigation, FG Hemisphere managed to grow this debt into an award of $100 million.

By virtue of the Hong Kong presence of a wholly owned subsidiary of China Railways, one of the Chinese partners in Sicomines, FG Hemisphere obtained a favorable judgment in Hong Kong blocking China from paying - or the DRC from receiving - $100 in million signing fees for the copper project until FG's award had been paid.

As usual, in the Western press there is considerably more handwringing about the damage that the financial derivatives markets would suffer if the activities of vulture funds were curtailed, than there is concern over the economic and developmental travails of the DRC if the payment is delayed.
Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and Hong Kong News and Business.
We Know well enough that the defining feature of the African economic malaise is the debt overhang. The highest in the world where poverty stricken governments are made to spend close to 100% of their revenues on debt financing as a result of bad debts made by Western banks .Naturally ordinary Africans must pay the price of bad debt not innocent banksters. Africans give away several times more in debt servicing to Western Banks than waht they receive aid. the debt is 337 dollars per head of population as oppossed to aid which was 31 dollars per head of population as of 2003 --Contours of the World Economy, Angus Maddison

The lack of infrastructure and helath crises in Africa is due to givernment revenuse being spent on debt as opposed to heathcare and infrastructure.

Leaders in the Congo who are honest and savvy enough to deal with the the WEstern looters and mauraders-- throough arms twisting-- are kicked out by WEstern institutions. One of these men is the Congolese Mine minister: Victor kasongo. He apparetly messed with the Western Mining interests by kicking out one of these gilded parasites or modern day vampires :

"In a move seemingly designed to curry favor simultaneously with Western mining interests and the IMF, Kasongo, the mining industry hard-charger characterized by Richard Behar [7] as "By all accounts ... a sharp and honest reformer" is gone.

Also gone is the office he held, all in the name of "efficiency", as Businessweek reported on February 20 [8]:
Victor Kasongo, the vice minister of mines, had his position cut.

The move reduces the number of ministerial positions in the government to 43 from 54 "for more efficiency," and aims to limit expenditures as Congo tries to qualify for a World Bank and International Monetary Fund debt relief program, a statement accompanying the order said. Kasongo was the public face of the mines' ministry and the man behind the recent review of all of Congo's mining contracts that resulted in the cancellation of a $553 million copper and cobalt project with Canada's First Quantum Minerals. "
We know the history of White/European/Western Mining and Corporate interests in South Africa and Latin America. Why should it be different in the Congo? They murder and abuse and enslave people and take part in deposing governments. M23 reads like their little brother.

The congolese Government especially with that above mentioned barter agrement with the Chinese are showing clear signs that they intend to use their resources for the development of their country. Western elites along with their likeminded friends, Like Nkunda the former wrlord heading the M23 are not happy about it:

"Most unnerving, a demand to renegotiate the China contract also appeared in a manifesto by Laurence Nkunda, the ferocious Tutsi warlord who rampaged through eastern DRC last year and at one time seemed to threaten the rickety foundations of Kabila's government."

I suppose this is one of the legitimate grievances that the Western media attributes to these little beasts.

Last edited by mansamusa; December 9th, 2012 at 04:44 AM.
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