What led to the current African poverty?

Nov 2018
West Covina
I say that Africa was the original homeland of humans, humans who hunted animals but otherwise had nothing to do with them. Some humans migrated out of Africa and spread across Asia and Europe. Tens of thousands of years later, some of those humans in distant continents began to domesticate animals. And eventually Africans began to acquire domesticated animals from people in other lands. But the idea of taking wild animals and domesticating them was never a big part of most ancient African cultures.

Zebras can be trained. But no living zebra is descended from hundreds or thousands of generations of domesticated ancestors, that itself is enough to make present day zebras wilder than horses. And Zebras are probably less easy to domesticate than horses, so even after hundreds of generations of being domesticated they would probably not be as easy to use as horses.

Elephants are not domesticated. Animals have to be bred in captivity for many generations to be domesticated, and most captive elephants were captured from the wild.

As for training African elephants, the Carthaginians used extinct North African elephants in war. It is unknown whether those elephants were Loxondonta africana, Loxodonta cyclotis, or a separate species. During the Hellenistic age, the Ptolemys of Egypt imported elephants from Eritrea for their armies, presumably Loxondonta africana, Loxodonta cyclotis, or a separate species. The Romans used elephants for war and civilian purposes. Caesar's famous elephant coin required many different dies to produce the countless thousands of coins. And some examples of the elephant coin show generic elephants, some show clearly Asian elephants, and some show clearly African elephants.

In the 6th century, "Byzantine" ambassadors were received by the Axumite king of kings in a chariot pulled by elephants, more likely to be African than Asian. The Axumites invaded and conquered part of South Arabia, and then their governor made himself king. King Abraha sent a failed expedition to Mecca using one or more war elephants, which is dated to The Year of the Elephant, believed to have been about AD 570. Soon after, also about AD 570, the Sassanid dynasty invaded and conquered Yemen, and there may have been battles with Sassanid Asian elephants fighting Abyssinian African elephants.

The drawing by Matthew Paris of King Henry III's royal elephant indicates that it could have been an African elephant. Matthew Paris and the Elephant at the Tower

As I remember, in 1875 the Sultan of Zanzibar was visiting London and walking through Hyde Park, site of the zoo, and was terrified to suddenly see an African elephant walking through the park! The Zanzibarians believed that African elephants were ferocious, savage, and untameable, which might have been due to Zanzibar being the center of the ivory trade.

The African elephant was Jumbo himself. Thousands of children rode on the back of Jumbo, and countless thousands of children bought buns and handed them to Jumbo.

There have been many other tamed or trained African elephants. Since exportation of Asian elephants has been banned, more and more circus and zoo elephants are African elephants.

Elephant Interaction
Asian elephants haven't at all been domesticated carthaginians had to continually capture wild elephants driving the north african elephant to extinction