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Thread: Keeping an eye on Africa

  1. Link to Post #41
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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Quote Posted by Iloveyou (here)

    Wall of Masks, IFAN Museum, Dakar © Bess Sadler
    I used to have one of those: a JuJu mask (intended to keep off evil spirits) which was presented to my father in Nigeria when he was working there and was made honorary chief of the local tribe.

    After my parents both passed, I no longer have it (I gave it to a close family friend), and sadly I no longer have a photo of it either. It was black, and rather more fearsome than any of the above, with horns like a depiction of the Devil. (But apparently, it was on our side. )

    We had quite a few items like that, which I've only ever seen in museums. There's a wonderful museum in Paris called Musée du quai Branly, which I'd strongly, strongly recommend to anyone visiting Paris who's interested in Africa.

    The exhibits there are stunning, fascinating, and beautifully presented. I went there in 2006 with Kerry Cassidy, and I kept saying to her: "Oh, we've got one of those, and one of those, and one of those..."

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  3. Link to Post #42
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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    In 1989 I was in Nairobi, Kenya for a couple of weeks. I was staying in a small guest house a couple of miles from the city center.

    Every day I walked down the long road to the post office and market, and walked back. And every day I passed a beggar who was sitting on a dirty blanket at a street corner.

    This man's arms and legs were shriveled. He could not walk. He wore a loincloth. He sat on the ground, and crawled around on his blanket. He had nothing at all.

    But each time I passed by - twice a day for 14 days - he was surrounded by people. They were laughing, joking, having fun. The little beggar-man was always happy. His face was permanently wreathed in smiles. This was where the party was at, all the time, every day.

    He was the man. I never once saw him other than enjoying life to the full. His friends - many of them - clearly loved him dearly.

    This experience changed me profoundly. Every day I wondered at this man and his friends. One of my greatest regrets is that I never approached him to say hello.

    Ten years later, I returned to Nairobi. I tried hard to find him. I wanted to give him something to thank him for his great contribution to my life. I could not. I assume he had died.

    I can never tell this story on stage or in an interview: I would not be able to keep it together. That little African beggar, bless his eternal soul, taught me that one does not have not have things to be happy: one only has to create one's own joy with the people one loves. In the context of this, little else matters.

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Some time ago I was researching the Dogon people (probably in part where my Mali interest is, along with its overall history) and I came across this video. Check out his channel, it's a hidden gem:



    Also very cool:
    Last edited by Strat; 13th May 2019 at 03:51.
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    And all the sinners saints

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa


    Source: Watch on Vimeo

    (13:30)
    All music was banned in northern Mali in 2012 by Islamist militants. But musicians such as Khaira Arby refused to accept it. The last ... years have seen a collective of musicians taking Mali's rich musical heritage across the outskirts of war-torn Mali and into neighboring Burkina Faso on a grand Caravan of Peace – an offshoot of Mali’s famous Festival in the Desert.



    Malian musician Afel Bocoum on the meaning and importance of traditional Malian music which goes way beyond just being an artform or entertainment.

    __________________________________________________ __________________


    Blaming it all on ethnic violence?

    More than 150 killed in Mali's „hunter-herder clashes“ (March 2019)

    Attackers dressed as traditional Dogon hunters targeted Fulani herders in the villages of Ogossagou and Welingara in Mopti region.


    Dogon people have often accused the Fulani of bringing their cattle onto their farms and destroying their crops. This has historically led to tension and at times violence between the groups, but competition over resources was frequently resolved by negotiation. But the militant Islamist conflict that began in northern Mali in 2012 and spread to central areas by 2015 brought more instability, weapons and a lack of government control into the region.

    The Dogon, who have been victims of militant attacks, accuse the Fulani of aiding the jihadists. Meanwhile, the Fulani say that the Dogon self-defence groups have been armed by the government, and are carrying out atrocities against them, which is denied by the authorities.

    Dan Na Ambassagou, which means "hunters who trust in God" in the Dogon language, is an association that was formed from local self-defence groups.

    There have been accusations that it has been involved in a number of the attacks on Fulanis last year, but it has denied this. Likewise, it was accused of being behind Saturday's attack as the perpetrators were dressed in traditional Dogon hunting gear.

    But Dan Na Ambassagou says the association was not involved."We have nothing to do with this massacre which we utterly condemn," it said in a statement. "Anyone can wear hunters' costumes, they are available in the markets.
    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-47694445

    Regional news for Mali

    https://www.antiwar.com/regions/regions.php?c=Mali
    Last edited by Iloveyou; 14th May 2019 at 11:12.

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Meanwhile in Burkina Faso, Mali‘s Southern neighbour, a Pandora's box of ethnic tensions has opened up - in a country once considered a beacon of coexistence and tolerance in West Africa.

    Attacks by Islamist militants, military operations, and waves of inter-communal violence have left hundreds dead and tens of thousands displaced since January 2019, triggering an “unprecedented” humanitarian crisis that has caught many by surprise.

    https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/n...e4bJyye0uxMM54


    __________________________________________________ __________________



    Exposing The Inhumane Conditions Of Burkina Faso's Gold Mines(2016)


    Blaise Compaoré with First Lady Chantal and the Obamas 2014


    Gold Dust: Under Blaise Compaoré's leadership, Burkina Faso's unregulated gold rush has had a devastating effect on mining conditions. This report digs deep into the industry, exposing the corruption beneath Compaoré's ruling.

    Compaoré, president of Burkina Faso from 1987 to 2014, a top associate of President Thomas Sankara during the 1980s, and in October 1987, the leader of a coup d'état during which Sankara was killed.

    Sankara’s foreign policies had been centered on anti-imperialism, with his government eschewing all foreign aid, pushing for odious debt reduction, nationalizing all land and mineral wealth, and averting the power and influence of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Quote Posted by Bill Ryan (here)
    The best trip of my life was in December 2000 when I crossed the Kalahari desert in Botswana in a 4x4: A most magical place. As many reading this may know, I spent most of the first 8 years of my life in Nigeria and then Ghana, and it feels I have Africa in my blood.
    Bill, I love reading your stories and I‘d love to tell some of mine, too. I sent travel reports home - in my mothertongue, German - using all the richness and possibilities of language to get things across. Any attempt to do that in English or to translate anything always ended in linguistic disaster Here is beautiful Mount Kenya Nationalpark instead.








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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Quote Posted by Iloveyou (here)
    Here is beautiful Mount Kenya National Park
    Ha. I was there, climbing Mount Kenya in 2003. It's a very dramatic environment, straight out of Lord of the Rings.

    Some photos:














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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    (Mt Kenya, continued)














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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    xxxxx

    Islam in West Africa

    In West Africa, under the influence of African traditions Islam has developed in a very different way than in Asia or the Middle East. North Africa has been conquered by violence, West Africa also through scholarship and trade.

    In the ancient kingdom of Ghana Saharan Muslim merchants were not permitted to stay overnight in the city. The Ghana Kings benefitted from Muslim traders, but kept them outside centers of power. In the following centuries the contact between Muslims and Africans increased. African kings began to allow Muslims to integrate. Many rulers combined local practices with Islam. Although Islam became the state religion in a diverse and multi-ethnic empire, the majority of the population still practiced their traditions. Mystical Sufi brotherhood orders played an integral role in the social order of African Muslim societies and the spread of Islam. In Senegal, there‘s the saying that the population comprises 95% Muslims, 5% Christians and 100% Animists.


    Many West African countries face massive problems: high level corruption in the first place, lack of basic infra-structure (roads, water supply, sewage system, electricity, waste management), unemployment, lack of education, no legislation against rape and domestic violence, teen pregnancy, female genital mutilation, child labour, human trafficking - but Islam is not among them.

    Except you equate Islam with Muslim Brotherhood, Taliban, AQIM, IS, Boko Haram, Ansar Dine, various other jihadist groups and ... nothing else. Who had financed, trained and supported those groups? What are the connections to the US- and European Deep State Organisations? The UK government identifies 74 Islamist terrorist groups in detail. Is that all rooted in Islam in general? Or was the UK deep state (among others) involved?

    https://assets.publishing.service.go...oscription.pdf


    The population of the West African countries I visited
    are Muslim to 75-100 percent. You would never guess it.



    Well, there are mosques (mainly simple mud-brick buildings) at every corner. The call for prayers will wake you up before sunrise. You see people wash their face, their hands and feet in a torn plastic bucket and kneel down on a mat or a piece of cardboard for prayer. It might just be a security guard on duty in front of a bank. Or the taxi stops in the middle of nowhere and everyone gets out to do their prayers, men at one side of the road, women on the other.

    Women are all over the place in public, in sub-Saharan countries they show much of their beautiful brown skin, they breastfeed their babys in public, their movements are particularly beautiful, self-assured and body-centered. They are dressed in colorful traditional African or Western style. Very rarely I saw a Muslim woman in black veil, never a burqua. Three West African countries had banned the production and sell of burquas, two more consider ban and ten others support it (by 2016).

    In Freetown, Sierra Leone (it has a Muslim population of 78% (officially, locals say 50:50) you find many Christian churches and schools all over the city. The mini-bus-taxis and trucks are colorfully painted with the slogans Allah-Is-Great, Mother-Blessing, God-Is-My-Shepherd, Mother-Love and Good-Luck-To-Us-All.

    In most West African countries all Muslim and Christian holidays are official holidays. Alcohol is sold in many shops and restaurants. There are discos and bars (mainly in urban areas) where the youth, young women and men, have fun. There are many intermarriages. Despite often terrible economic circumstances people radiate a kind of vitality and joy, you barely find elsewhere.

    There are strong indications that Islam can be - and in fact is - widely practiced in a non-dogmatic way. Islam is indeed able to coexist peacefully in a climate of tolerance with non-Islamic societies. There’s actually proof. In case anyone thinks: that’s the exception: this applies for 16 states and 360 million people in West Africa. Only Mauritania is different. It is the single non-laical state, an Islamic Republic in the region.

    Sharia is not Islam, generally. It is a fundamentalist interpretation of Islamic law, an extreme interpretation of Islam. In point of fact, in Timbuktu, Mali, which they control, the jihadist group Ansar Dine have profaned and destroyed tombs and mausoleums of Timbuktu Islamic saints which are remembrance places for local population. They destructed seven of the sixteen mausoleums of Muslim saints of Timbuktu.

    The peaceful and respectful coexistence of Muslims and Christians in West African countries may be at one end of the spectrum, with fundamentalist, political Islam and Islamist terror (sponsored by the West?) at the other. I‘ve the impression that between those extremes there lies a wide range of possibilities, how Islam is interpreted and practized in daily life.

    https://muslimsinafrica.wordpress.co...can-countries/


    Senegal: Model for Interfaith Peace


    Senegal is a Muslim-dominated country where a Christian minority is well respected and has lived peacefully with the Muslim majority for ages. Larry Nesper, associate professor of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, talks about a trip to Senegal to find out about the Christian-Muslim relations (2010/9:50)



    -Christians are a 5% minority, Islam in Senegal is entirely Sufi

    -Senegal tradition of Teranga (hospitality) is a deeply engrained value taught at home and in school

    -the first Senegalese president was Christian, the second and third were Muslim, married to Christian wives

    -many children of the (small) Muslim middle-class are educated in Christian schools

    -an example is set by prominent religious families. They see no problem with mixing religions in one family

    -if one parent is Christian and the other Muslim, their children will choose their religion when they grow up
    Last edited by Iloveyou; 27th May 2019 at 22:23. Reason: spelling

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa







    Group of Ankole cattle. Kiruhura district, Western Region, Uganda © Daniel Naudé

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Justin Wren (MMA fighter) has become known for his charity work with the pygmies in the Congo. He drills wells. In this video Cris 'Cyborg' (MMA fighter) does her part:
    Just as every cop is a criminal
    And all the sinners saints

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa



    text deleted . . .
    Last edited by Iloveyou; 2nd November 2019 at 03:07.

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Learn of the astronomy of the Bantu & Saan people.

    Quote Posted by Star Tsar (here)
    Astronomy Cast

    Episode 533 | Indigenous South African Astronomy

    Streamed & Published 5th June 2019

    Let's move to another continent this week, and look at the astronomy that was going on in southern Africa in ancient times. (Starts @ 8:40).

    Last edited by Star Tsar; 6th June 2019 at 05:23.
    I for one will join in with anyone, I don't care what color you are as long as you want to change this miserable condition that exists on this Earth - Malcolm X / Tsar Of The Star

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Top 10 richest men in Africa 2018



    Aliko Dangote, Nigeria 14.1 bn USD, cement

    Nicky Oppenheimer, South Africa 7.7 bn USD, diamonds

    Johann Rupert, South Africa 7.0 bn USD luxury goods

    Nassef Sawiris, Egypt 6.6 bn USD construction

    Mike Adenuga, Nigeria 5.3 bn USD telecom, oil, gas

    Issad Rebrab, Algeria 4.0 bn USD telecom

    Naguib Sawiris, Egypt 4.0 bn USD telecom

    Mohamed Mansour, Egypt 2.7 bn USD diversified

    Koos Becker, South Africa 2.6 bn USD media, internet

    Patrice Motsepe, South Africa 2.4 bn USD. mining

    (for comparison: the ten richest US billionaires
    own between 50 and 131 bn USD each)

    more . . .

    Aziz Akhannouch, Morocco 2.2 bn USD petroleum
    Yasseen Mansour, Egypt 2.1 bn USD diversified
    Strive Masiyiwa, South Africa 1.7 bn USD telecom
    Othman Benjelloun, Morocco 1.6 bn USD banking, insurance
    Mohammed Dewji, Tanzania 1.5 bn USD diversified
    Youssef Mansour, Egypt 1.4 bn USD diversified
    Michiel Le Roux, South Africa 1.2 bn USD banking
    Stephen Saad, South Africa 1.2 bn USD pharmaceuticals
    Desmond Sacco, South Africa 1.1 bn USD mining
    Christoffel Wiese, South Africa 1.1 bn USD retailing

    (only two out of ten listed are black people)

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Quote Posted by Iloveyou (here)
    By the end of the fourth week I suddenly noticed the worm sticking his head out and gliding out of my chest smoothly, plus the feeling of two hands holding it. So now where to put it?
    That's interesting. I know of 3 different times when this happened in the bible. That is, demons removed from someone and transferred into animals. Fascinating stuff.

    Quote Posted by Iloveyou (here)
    Be it physical, mental or spiritual pain and suffering, Africa may be a great, great place to find healing, in Our Mother‘s Arms. Whenever the time is right.
    I always thought it'd be neat to make a documentary where I go around the world and contact healers/shamans or whatever to see if they can fix my health issues. Good excuse to travel.

    I saw a doc like that a while ago where a small boy traveled with his parents to seek healing. They eventually found it from (I think) a mongolian shaman. Was like flicking the lights on. Neat stuff.

    At this point I'd try almost anything. It's the logical thing to do, I did the traditional western medicine route and look where I am now.
    Just as every cop is a criminal
    And all the sinners saints

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Once you’ll document your healing way, you‘ll do it. Time is on your side. The key is focus, whenever possible, when there are good days. To plan and envision and feeling so happy and proud because it is already achieved. On good days.

    Will look up the documentary on the boy and his parents

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Inner No-Man’s Land: traveling in remote places

    Traveling in remote places on your own, without touristic infra-structure requires three things: collecting as much information as possible in advance, behaving reasonably and according to local customs and the most important point imo: identifying, reoccupying and clearing up your personal stretch of inner No Man’s Land.

    These are regions of your inner landscape which you have abandoned (for various reasons) long ago. You have withdrawn, fled the place and left it to bandits, robbers, highwaymen (in terms of energy). A wild piece of land, where you‘ve given up your right. But still, it‘s yours and you are responsible.

    I‘m very well able to define my boundaries, draw a line and say a clear and undisputable NO. At least I thought so. Though at times I found myself in the most uncomprehensible, ambigious situations. I did set my boundaries straight and communicated clearly, but often too late, out of an irrational fear of being unfriendly or a misunderstood, false kind of tolerance. I’ve not only let people invade my personal space and take (to a certain extent) advantage of me, I still gave them more than they demanded, freely (body contact, money, attention, aknowledgement) - which I had never done in my familiar environment.

    Nothing bad ever happened to me. People in West African countries are as vital, joyful, peaceful, open, honest, helpful and hospitable as it can get. I just managed to put myself in uncomfortable situations.

    Finally, by watching myself and what I did from outside I came to understand this concept of No Man’s Land. I guess most of us have such abandoned regions, we are more or less aware of it, but maybe don‘t want to know ... In our daily routines and familiar surroundings we might deal with it very well. In foreign countries and cultures they mark our weak points and vulnerabilities.

    For a foreigner (who is neither a tourist nor member of an organisation/company), in Africa everything is a matter of negotiation. You will not be cheated, but if you are not absolutely clear about your own intentions and about what drives you, exactly that will show up. Each moment of weakness will cost you. Your own inner ambiguities are on display, unrelenting and merciless. They have immediate consequences.

    The overwhelming majority of interactions were honest, kind and people did not take advantage of me even if I seemed to invite them to do. There were those others who helped and allowed me to learn and grow (hopefully).

    So far my personal experience.


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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    The Sahel in flames

    Violence spreads in formerly stable West African countries

    A surge in violence across West Africa’s Sahel has displaced hundreds of thousands of people and left thousands dead since January, as Islamist militants with links to al-Qaeda and so-called Islamic State extend their reach across the region at a time when they are losing ground in their Middle Eastern strongholds.




    https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/s...ding-militancy


    After the Big Players having put the boot into Latin America, the Middle East and North African countries, West Africa has been targeted openly for quite some years now. Countries with decades of relatively peaceful existence after their initial years of struggle following independence. Mali and Burkina Faso are among them. A wave of violence has spread over formerly stable countries.

    Mali has been embroiled in conflict since Islamist militias seized the north of the country in 2012 before being pushed back by French troops in 2013. A peace agreement signed in 2015 by the Bamako government and armed groups has failed to restore stability (like anywhere else in the world). In Burkina Faso it started last year.

    Fighting between al-Qaeda-linked extremists, self-defence militias, and government soldiers had displaced tens of thousands of people in central Mali and left hundreds dead (2018). In March this year 157 villagers had been killed in a massacre, in June there was another village massacre with 95 dead. These are just the worst in numbers among many.

    Unidentified heavily armed men on motorcycles and pick-ups are surrounding the villages and firing at people. That‘s what witnesses say. Officially everything is blamed on century old tensions and ethnic violence. Though all that bears an explicitly different signature.

    The real instigators of ISIS etc.
    http://projectavalon.net/forum4/show...=1#post1296037

    What are they up to in West Africa and why now?

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    Avalon Member Star Tsar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Learn about modern South African astronomy if you will...

    Quote Posted by Star Tsar (here)
    Quote Posted by Star Tsar (here)
    Astronomy Cast

    Episode 533 | Indigenous South African Astronomy

    Streamed & Published 5th June 2019

    Let's move to another continent this week, and look at the astronomy that was going on in southern Africa in ancient times.

    Episode 534 | Modern South African Astronomy

    Streamed & Published 14th June 2019

    Last week we talked about some ancient south African astronomy, so this week we'll talk about the state of modern astronomy in the southern part of Africa, which happens to be a great place with nice dark skies and a great view into the heart of the galaxy.

    I for one will join in with anyone, I don't care what color you are as long as you want to change this miserable condition that exists on this Earth - Malcolm X / Tsar Of The Star

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    Default Re: Keeping an eye on Africa

    Very nice talks about astronomy, Star.

    Indigenous astronomy starts at 9:00. She talks about the SAN people (called ‚Bushmen‘) and the BANTU people, and the stories they tell about the sky and the stars in relation to their lives.

    Do you know, how the Milky Way was created? It was created by a girl of an ancient race who scooped up a handful of ashes and fire, and threw it into the sky. There had been edible roots cooking in the ashes which made for the red glowing stars . . .

    Modern astronomy starts at 11:00. It is about the ‚Royal Observatory of the Cape of Good Hope‘ in Cape Town and an observatory next to the village of Sutherland, 370 km north-east of Cape Town, consisting of fifteen different domes on a plateau with no light pollution.

    https://www.saao.ac.za/science/obser...es/sutherland/

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