Signs of the Times – part 17

Signs of the Times – part 17


Originally posted March 20, 2012.


Quotes of the Times:

“Protecting the free flow of natural resources from Africa to the global market is one of Africom’s guiding principles.”   Vice Admiral Moeller, speaking at Africa Command Conference (Africom), Fort McNair, Feb. 18, 2008.


“Through Africom, the United States is seeking a foothold in the incredibly resource rich central African block a a further manoeuvre to aggregate regional hegemony over China.  The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is one of the world’s largest regions without an effectively functioning government.  It contains vast deposits of diamonds, cobalt, copper, uranium, magnesium, and tin while producing over $1 billion in gold each year.  It is entirely feasible that the US can considerably increase its presence in the DRC under the pretext of capturing Joseph Kony.”  Nile Bowie, Merchandising and Branding support for US Intervention in Central Africa, March 14, 2012.


We are living in the era of social media.  We saw the power of social media in the so called “Arab Spring” – now the Empire is striking back – it’s a case of “if they can do it, we can do it too.”

If you have not heard of “Kony 2012,” then you are probably of the older generation and not readily familiar with social media.  But don’t be too alarmed, because the younger generation had never heard of Joseph Kony either.  That is, until recently, when a video about Joseph Kony was let loose on the internet and it immediately went “viral” (i.e. got into every corner of the internet – and viewed by millions).

Just a few days ago, the only people who knew Joseph Kony well, were the people of Central Africa, especially the people of Uganda, and especially the people of Northern Uganda.  For more than twenty years Joseph Kony and his “Lord’s Resistance Army” terrorised Northern Uganda, forcing young boys to become child soldiers and forcing young girls to become sex slaves.  Joseph Kony was/is a particularly brutal and nasty individual, but he was allowed to function and even to flourish without serious interference or active opposition – he was just another of many warlords in that part of the world – and even warlords like Joseph Kony can be useful to those who seek power, or those who want to preserve power.

Eventually, Joseph and his thuggish, ill-named army were driven out of Northern Uganda and into the Congo, and apparently he now resides in the Republic of Central Africa [in a reduced and weakened circumstance, in other words, he is not much of a threat any longer].  Which makes the next chapter in the life of Joseph Kony somewhat incongruous, namely, why would the American Government offer the Government of Uganda military assistance to track down Joseph and either kill him or capture him, if he is no longer a threat to Uganda, and is not even in Uganda?  The first contingent of US troops arrived in Uganda in October 2011 – and everyone knows he is not even in Uganda.  The answer is because Uganda has just recently discovered oil.

In addition to oil, the whole Central African region is a well-known treasure chest of mineral resources.  China is already there investing in the area and building infrastructure to exploit the resources.  America is not happy to have rivals in the area.  We have already observed the Chinese losing out to the Western Alliance in Southern Sudan and Libya [China had to evacuate over 30,000 workers from Libya and leave behind over US$20 billion in investments when the Western Alliance took over in Libya].  Something similar is about to happen in Central Africa.

In 2007, the US Government set up a new military command called Africom, to direct this process in Africa.  The purpose of Africom, in the words of its commander, is to protect “the free flow of natural resources from Africa to the global market.”  Translation:  “We are here to seize the resources.”   The Kony video is, a not so subtle ploy, to galvanize public opinion, so that the objectives of Africom can be achieved.  The situation is full of irony:  US public opinion is decidedly in favour of pulling troops out of Afghanistan, Iraq and other theatres of war – whereas the Kony video is trying to get the public to demand troops be sent to Uganda and elsewhere in Africa.

The Kony video is not about the suffering of Africa – the agenda behind the video is not to help Africans.  Recently, there was a public viewing of the video in Uganda, attended by several thousands (many of them victims of Kony’s atrocities), which nearly resulted in a riot.  What astounded the people was the call to wear T-shirts with Kony’s face (to publicise the anti-Kony campaign).  To the Ugandans this would be like asking Americans to wear T-shirts printed with the face of Osama bin Laden after 9/11.  There are at least three main objectives behind the video:


  1. To galvanize American and world-wide support for American military intervention in Central Africa.
  2. When American military boots are on the ground the Chinese (who are already there) will be compelled to leave – as they were in Southern Sudan and Libya – “thanks for building the road into the Congo we’ll be using it now.”
  3. To ensure the re-election of Barack Obama. It is no accident that this video appears in an election year.  The similarities between the Kony 2012 campaign and Obama’s 2008 election campaign are quite striking – the message is: “if you want Kony gone, you need to re-elect Obama.”  [This will become more evident.  The anti-Konyites are asked to register on social media sites (and even to contribute money) as they register they will be fed additional propaganda and the Kony campaign will be linked to the Obama campaign].


On the Iranian crises front:  Israeli news agencies are reporting on a speech made by Benjamin Netanyahu in the Israeli Knesset on March 15.  Some of Netanyahu’s colleagues reportedly said that it sounded “like a preparation speech for attack.”  What makes this assessment even more realistic and relevant is the fact that these same news services reported that for the first time Netanyahu had achieved a cabinet majority of eight to six for an attack on Iran, without prior American approval.  In other words, prior to March 15, the Israeli Government would only attack Iran if America approved (and presumably participated – not something the Americans want to do in an election year).  However, that has now changed, now Netanyahu has the approval of his government colleagues to make a unilateral strike.  The Iranian crisis has just ratcheted up another notch, and the Middle East has just become a much more dangerous place.

God bless, Bruce Telfer.


For more information on “Kony 2012,” a useful video to watch is at:

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