The World Watched

The World Watched

US-VOTE-DEBATEUnbelievable coverage of the debate in the African media, and I’m struck by how often reference was made to both candidates’ “reluctant” pledge to support the outcome. In Africa respect for the outcome of a democratic election is never taken for granted.

Many Africans understand for perhaps the first time in modern history, Americans are wondering the same.

Across Africa there’s fear not of Trump but rather of the millions of Americans who support him.

Read more

CITES Senses

CITES Senses

elephantgraphsMore than two thousand ardent scientists and advocates are in Johannesburg today preparing for next year’s CITES. Historical treaties like the Geneva Convention may actually effect our daily lives more noticeably but only CITES has attracted such global consensus that enforcement is aggressive and routine.

Today horse trading like you’ve never seen is going on, but in the end unlike so much else in today’s troubled world, everybody really will come together.

Sound nice? Yes, it is, but there’s still this one thing….

Read more

Earlier and Earlier

Earlier and Earlier

Photo by Nancy Haley.
Photo by Nancy Haley.

No, we aren’t quite as lucky as we thought. Science often does that to our ego: A rash of exciting new evolutionary studies has put the kibosh on the notion that we’re all descended from a single small group of Africans who left Africa 60-75,000 years ago.

Well, what d’ya know. It was fun for a while thinking we survived by the skin of our skin, and anyway we’ve now got something that will convince Mike Pence of evolution, right?

Read more

Flying Where?

Flying Where?

tcrwandairEvery country wants an airline, its own airline, and how that airline works characterizes the country as a whole.

In a month Rwandair begins flying a new modern Airbus 330, the ninth modern aircraft in its fleet. Today, the third iteration of Air Tanzania begins as the first of two new turbo prop aircraft are delivered from Canada. I wouldn’t rush to buy tickets on either airline. Here’s why:

Read more

A Horrible Choice

A Horrible Choice

congotravailsThroughout most of the continent today, Africans confront a horrible choice: Peace & Prosperity… or Freedom & Democracy. Seventeen demonstrators dead overnight in the DRC’s capital, Kinshasa, is today’s best example.

Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and the DRC are located in the Lake Victoria area, and each one sits on lots of precious natural materials like rare earths and gold amounting to enormous wealth. But only Rwanda has fully exploited this. Why?

Read more

Test for Tanzania

Test for Tanzania

grantprotestwashingtonTanzanian tourism is crashing following the country’s refusal to apologize for wrongly jailing an elderly California couple on trumped-up charges of giraffe poaching.

Thousands of dollars in bribes went to jailors, judges and other officials before Jon and Linda Grant were released from three days in a horrific Dar-es-Salaam lockup last March. Thursday, U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier took the couple to Washington “to clear things up,” but Tanzanian officials barred them from entering the embassy.

Tanzanians have a very short time to get this right before suffering enormous losses economically and diplomatically. The details of this incident are going viral.

Read more

Snake Oil or Nukes?

Snake Oil or Nukes?

pastorbannedAmerica has never lacked of snake oil salesmen, but following South Africa’s banning of Steven Anderson it’s clear that we better start realizing they might be something dangerously more than just conmen.

The Tempe, Arizona, Baptist minister decided if Barack Obama won’t cleanse South Africa of “sodomites .. drinking booze .. and terrorizing God’s people,” he will. Well, guess what: South Africans are doing what we and our ratings-greedy journalists and weak-kneaded politicians won’t: Stopping American extremism.

Read more

Democratic Disease

Democratic Disease

gabon and polioRotary Charity and Gabon Wealth, two very different issues this morning that teach a similar lesson: you can’t buy success.

The oil rich country of  Gabon remains unsettled this morning following contested elections and days of violence.  A third case of the presumed eradicated polio was confirmed this morning in Nigeria.

Two extremely different African tales share an amazing similarity. Both of them were completely predictable and for the same reason.  Let’s start with Gabon.

Read more

Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day Weekend

RaisedFist1

Today starts the “Labor Day” weekend holiday in the United States. America’s May Day is officially celebrated Monday.

Labor Day marks the end of summer when friends and family gather for the last summer barbecue. It vies with Christmas and New Years Day to be the least worked day in the U.S.

Vacations end, schools reopen, the fall sports season begins (especially American football), the culture season with operas and symphonies begin in the great cities, and everyone prepares to return to serious, long work weeks.

If ever a holiday marked the turning of a season, it’s Labor Day. Read more