History and Problems in Africa South of the Sahara
European Colonization When word of Africa’s wealthy kingdoms reached Europe, they began trading with Africans in the 1200s. trade posts & way stations set up along coastal areas by 1600s & 1700s, extensive trade of gold, ivory, textiles, and enslaved workers by 1800s, region seen as source of raw materials for industries
Berlin Conference of 1884-1885 divided Africa into more than 40 European colonies (mainly Britain, France, Portugal and Germany) by 1914, all of Africa except Ethiopia and Liberia under European control no regard for ethnic homelands when boundaries drawn
From Colonies to Countries Europeans introduced new crops, legal systems, basic schooling, roads, and medicine—mostly benefiting Africans Euro commercial and labor practices caused hardships and great loss of life Africans soon demanded a share in government and launched independence movements by the mid-1900s
faced difficult challenges after independence colonial economies met European needs not African no models for democracy adopted the political boundaries set earlier by colonial powers rival ethnic groups struggled for power, civil wars erupted
Problems in Africa Ethnic Conflicts—stem from colonial pasts
Nigeria 1914—British formed colony of Nigeria from several smaller ethnic territories in north, Islamic influences in south, traditional religions or Christianity
1960—despite differences, Nigerians united to resist British rule and gained independence by 1967, Eastern Region secedes from Nigeria and civil war breaks out—1 million casualties in war military officials rule afterwards 1998—Nigeria returns to civilian rule; free elections held by 2000, tensions increase again between Muslim & Christian communities
Somalia Plagued by famine & civil war United Nations had sent in relief/food for Somalians in the 1990s relief packages were being taken by militia groups involved in civil war US sent peacekeeping troops to help the United Nations aid workers
o On October 3, 1993 elite units of the U.S. Army's Rangers and Delta Force were ambushed by Somali men, women and children armed with automatic weapons and rocket- propelled grenades. The Rangers were pinned down in the most dangerous part of Mogadishu, Somalia and taking casualties.Rangersrocket- propelled grenades
What had started out as an operation to capture warlord Mohammed Farah Aidid-- turned into a tragic firefight that lasted seventeen hours, left eighteen Americans dead, eighty four wounded and continues to haunt the U.S. military and American foreign policy.firefight movie “Black Hawk Down” chronicles the ambush in Mogadishu
Rwanda o 1994—800,000 people die in 100 days during ethnic cleansing (genocide) o April 6, 1994--Rwandan President Habyarimana and the Burundian President are killed when Habyarimana's plane is shot down near Kigali Airport. Hutu extremists, suspecting that the Rwandan president is finally about to implement the Arusha Peace Accords, are believed to be behind the attack. The killings begin that night.
o Hutu ethnic group begins killing Tutsis in April of 1994 o tens of thousands of Tutsis and other Rwandans become refugees and try to flee Rwanda—enter Tanzania, Burundi, Zaire o no country in the world does anything to stop the genocide, including the United Nations o mid-July 1994-- Although disease and more killings claim additional lives in the refugee camps, the genocide is over. An estimated 800,000 Rwandans have been killed in 100 days.
Sudan—2004-2005 o 2 million people on the verge of starvation—plagued by droughts & civil war o decade of civil war between Muslim Arab government & Africans drought has caused the nomadic Arabs to move to more arable lands where Africans are farmers; straining relations between two groups
o Over 50,000 Africans have been killed by Arab militia known as Janjaweed who receive financial and military support from the Sudanese government o hundreds of women being raped o President Bush and former Secretary of State Colin Powell have called it genocide o tens of thousands are refugees, suffering from starvation and malnutrition o no US troops have been deployed