Very good news. The end of colonialism was a disaster around the world. Growing East and South Asian interest in Africa promise to return SysAdmin work to the farthest reaches of the globe:
Chinese Boots on African Soil – Online Africa Policy Forum
BUKAVU – Holed up behind barbed wire and sandbags, two soldiers gaze over the green landscape of Congoâ€™s Kivu Province. The forested hills around them are silent, but they are guarding a hub of activity. Meticulously stationed military vehicles surround a few dozen troops marching around a flag planted in the middle of a dusty parade ground â€“ a Chinese flag. â€œWe are here to maintain order and regional stability,â€ explains a young lieutenant in impeccable French. Deployed in the resource-rich heart of Africa, this army unit forms only a small part of the Chinese troops that have been sent to six different African states.
Perhaps in 2014 we will finally be back up to the level we were at in 1914, when things went sour.
Of course, this promising article includes its fair bit of stupid. In typical eurospeak, “unilateral” means “not being governed by the United Nations.”
All of Chinaâ€™s troops in Africa are participants in United Nations peacekeeping operations under UN mandates â€“ in contrast to the 1,400 or so U.S. troops deployed unilaterally in the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA), part of the Bush Administrationâ€™s Global War on Terror.
These are good first steps for China.
But I’ll be happier when China’s operating in Africa with the same “unilateralism” as the United States.
(Hat-tip to Nykrindc for sharing this article on Google Reader.)