Originally posted by Kocolicious:
You know when folks make comments like this "When war destroys a country's economy and infrastructure, there's no quick fix," he says. "Significant improvement in Congo's health and mortality will require years of unwavering commitment from the government and the international community and substantial financial investment. Sadly, the humanitarian crisis in Congo continues to be overlooked and funding remains disproportionate to the enormity of need...(BBC news 1/28/08)." Comments like from whitefolks reminds me of the same kind of talk during the Rwanda crisis. Now, one of Congo's natural resources is gold...right? As is Rwanda's? Then why is the WORLD ignoring a similar plight? And the reason why I mention "gold" is cuz that's all MASSA care about. What's in it for him. Oil in the middle east. Surely there are natural resources in both countries[Rwanda and Congo] that can influence him to send troops...the way he sent troops in Iraq...and is potentially thinking about sending troops in to Iran.
I guess it's WAY too late for Rwanda. But Congo...I know I know I'm just being hopeful. BUT! the bottom line is MASSA care less if the crisis involves BLACKFOLKS....all he care about is what will benefit HIM in the long run. I guess there isn't enough GOLD to make him consider Congo.... I read somewhere that over 3 millions people have died there since the 90's. Somehow....in all this....I feel so powerless
This has been bothering me all day. BTW...I've ALWAYS hated the name CONGO...as a little girl I remember watching Tarzan and the term CONGO always indicated something bad, dark, ugly and primitive. Anyway...
The instability is going on because
it benefits the West already...
They never go in to bring 'peace', the multinationals are in their resource raping already. THE GEOPOLITICAL STAKES
OF THE INTERNATIONAL MINING COMPANIES
IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
MINING CIVIL ENGINEER
TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH
Albert Caquot once said: "Our thirst for knowledge finds itself quenched, above all, in those synthetic works, which are put at our disposal by the generous endeavors of an enlightened mind. Through these works, we are able to grasp, in an overview that is logical and rigorous, a group of human competencies at a given moment."
To all those who are fighting against intolerance, and who, by their daily life, struggle for peace and happiness among all the peoples of the world, we are dedicating this brief overview of the geopolitical stakes of the international mining companies in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), for it is multidimensional and the main cause of the ills, which are devastating the Great Lakes Region in Africa during this second millenium after Jesus Christ.
Freedom is one of the virtues, which makes man capable of seeking the truth throughout the ages, using his intellect. It happens that, sometimes, this truth hurts, comes out of its well no matter how deep it is... and that martyrdom results from it. Happy is that very one who gives his life for liberty, for the truth, for peace, for equality of opportunities and for all the many other human values, which are trampled upon by the eccentricity of economic interests.
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a geological scandal, especially in the South-east Katanga region where are found the world biggest copper reserves, which are not yet exploited, in what is called in English the Copper Belt and which extends to Zambia.
In 1978, DRC was the first producer of this red metal, with 500,000 tons a year. This production reached 30,000 tons in 1985, as a result of a bad upkeep of the mining infrastructures of the major mine of Kamoto in Kolwezi, a section of which collapsed in September 1990 while its production represented 33% of the company, GÃ©nÃ©rale des CarriÃ¨res et des Mines (GECAMINES), major supplier of foreign exchange for the public Treasury of Congo-Kinshasa.
This lack of upkeep, along with the absence of modernization of the mining infrastructures were generalized not only because of the fall of the copper prices but particularly because of the bad management of the State portfolio by the successive governments of the Mobutu regime.
All the information contained in this document is intended for anyone who wants to closely follow the evolution of the chaotic situation, which is raging in the Great Lakes Region. This data comes from my proper experience in the field, from my research and from numerous other sources.
DRC is also a geopolitical scandal with its flares-up in its quest for political stability since April 1990. This has incited the big transnational mining corporations to turn their backs against it and to go and invest elsewhere during the last few years, especially in Zambia, Chile and ex-USSR.
THE MINING COMPANIES TO THE ASSAULT OF DRC
How to explain this sudden upsurge of interest by the mining companies for this region of Central Africa? And in light of the known transactions, how is the future exploitation of the resources of the Great Lakes Region of Africa shaping itself under this new authority? The answers are to be found in the dynamics of two (2) converging actions:
The First Action:
It consists of pressures put forth by international financial institutions on the countries of the region, so that they repay their debts.
In fact, several developing countries contracted enormous debts from a great number of international financial institutions, such as the World Bank and the IMF, and they are not able to meet their obligations. In many of these poor countries, the national assets and international aid were wasted by dilapidation policies, as in ZaÃ¯re for example under the Mobutu regime.
The fall of the prices of raw materials, along with the drop in production of certain raw materials, the carelessness and corruption of governments put these developing States into difficult situations vis a vis international investors. In order to make them live up to their debt repayment schedule, the international institutions compel them to implement a set of economic policies, which generally can be summarized into three (3) unpopular decisions:
1) Deep cuts in State services, especially basic social services (education, health);
2) Privatization of State enterprises;
3) Currency devaluation, whose impact on the population standard of living has always been underestimated.
The Second Action:
It deals with the deep transformation of the world mining industry of the last few years. The mining transnational corporations benefit, in turn, for their expansion from the privatization of State enterprises. The 1970's were, in fact, characterized by the nationalization of industrial sectors, especially those, which were linked to the exploitation of natural resources; these nationalizations were made an integral part of the national development strategy of a great number of African countries.
The reverse movement started in 1993; 18.5% of the overall value of the world mining production (with the exception of oil) was in the hands of the State enterprises. In 1994, this ratio was about 16%, and it was anticipated that, in 1996, it would only be 14%.
It was first in the developed countries that privatization of the mines was the most important. From June 1995 to May 1996, US $2.2 billion were spent for the acquisitions of this type of enterprise. This represented almost the double of the previous year. The share of the mining industry of the Western countries, which belonged to the States, diminished thus of about 40% during this period. In comparison, this reduction was only about 6% in the developing countries. In these countries, the exports of raw materials accounted, for the most part, for the State revenues. Here, the socio-political troubles associated with privatization were, by far, much more important than elsewhere.
This is what explains the fact that, after a first wave of privatization, stronger and stronger criticisms were heard in the developing countries. Agreements, which were negotiated for a long time, were delayed. Several countries of the South were, from then on, inviting "investors" not to purchase State enterprises any longer, but rather to come and create new ones. The financiers, who seek to get a quick turn-around profit on their initial investment, were not very much interested in this. It is in this context that we should examine the recent great interest in the Great Lakes Region of Africa.
Thus, behind the drama under which Central Africa has been living since 1990, immediately following the end of the Cold War, there is an important stake for the transnational mining corporations. Mining resources in other countries of the world have already been heavily exploited, not to say exhausted, and those, which are being exploited, are associated with such tremendous costs.
The great financiers of this world, hunters of mineral resources, have their eyes targeted on Central Africa where discovered mineral deposits are still virgin or ill exploited and likely to open markets to big capital gain investments.
The collapse of the USSR left an open market and has also thrown the planet at the mercy of international finance capital. The disappearance of the communist world put an end to bipolarity, which arose from World War II, thus quickly favoring the rise to power of the multinational corporations, whose expansion and strategies today can no longer be stymied.
In order to ensure their investments, these financiers need a customized economic and financial policy. That is why the mining transnational corporations are fighting over the most juicy bits and pieces in one or the other part of Central Africa, and this in keeping with the political tendencies or "rebellions", which are associated with them and sometimes even created by them.Complete article