Shrinking & Suffering

Shrinking & Suffering

trumpbudgethitsafricaIf there’s anything at all good in Trump’s “skinny” budget it’s that Americans might start paying attention to the sweeping power of their government. The draconian cuts will indeed effect each and every American but the budget will also lay waste much of the rest of the world.

That’s quite uncomfortable to most Americans who either don’t know or don’t care how they effect the rest of the world. A Kenyan analysis shows how the Trump budget will devastate the continent, exponentially increase suffering and death and likely lead to war. Kenyan analysis shows that the Trump budget will lay waste the continent, exponentially increase suffering and death and likely lead to war.

Read more

The Wall Grows

The Wall Grows

banlaptoponairlinesThe first bricks of the wall – not just facing Mexico but around all of America – were laid today and neither the courts nor Congress can stop it.

At 3 a.m. this morning Homeland Security banned personal electronics from the airline cabins of 9 Muslim airlines. Last weekend a conference in California for African investment petered out because every African who applied to attend was denied a visa.

Trump is the front man. The engine behind him is slipping into gear with the certainty and finesse of a Benz.

Read more

Evil Unleashed

Evil Unleashed

catsawaymiceplayWhen the cats away the mice will play. In this case the mice are multiple emerging nations like Myanmar, or Zimbabwe and Cameroon in Africa, countries with a record of citizen abuse but which have no strategic interest to world powers. The cat is the west, Britain and the U.S. mostly.

Since Brexit followed by Trump, these abusive countries have become more so. They’re being left “to their own devices,” devil-be-damned. Cameroon is the best example.

Read more

Fake Buddies

Fake Buddies

bestbuddiesThe Tanzania government yesterday fired nine journalists for disseminating a completely fake story claiming that Trump had praised the Tanzanian president as an “African hero,” republished from a completely fake news outlet called the “Fox Channel.”

The article suggested Trump admired John Magufuli, the Tanzanian leader, for his hard ball techniques in advancing his agenda which many observers believe grossly oversteps the Tanzanian constitution.
Read more

OnSafari: Drones!

OnSafari: Drones!

Drone in the Serengeti.897.McCallWe’d found the migration, dozens of lion, hundreds if not thousands of elephant, and we were in the Seronera Valley towards the end of our safari watching a leopard hunting.

Normally leopard hunt at night, but there was no doubt as this magnificent rather stubby female stalked through the thick river’s edge foliage diagonally towards us. We couldn’t see what she was stalking, but her behavior was undeniable.

Read more

OnSafari: The Vast Serengeti

OnSafari: The Vast Serengeti

Lemuta Picnic.897From mid-morning when we left Olduvai Gorge to when we rejoined the main road from Ngorongoro to Seronera, we were off-road in the middle of nowhere. I saw one distant group of Maasai with goats and not a single other car, not even a dust plume of a far distant vehicle or far away donkey convoy for 30 miles. It was us, the overwhelming Serengeti and 150,000 white-bearded gnu.

We lunched on a kopjes 1500′ above the vast newly green Lemuta Plains with new storms threatening above. We took more photos of one another I think than anyone took of the 30 lions we’d so far seen! Behind and below us was about 300 sq. miles of Serengeti dotted from horizon to horizon with wildebeest.
Read more

On Safari: Crater Lions

On Safari: Crater Lions

LionWithCub.640.apr14.mmichelAs she dragged the wildebeest from where it had been killed we could see that much of it had yet to be eaten, despite her belly which looked ready to explode.  She stopped often, panting and hyperventilating not from the exertion of the pull but from her insides trying to digest 50 pounds of unchewed meat.

She had to get a drink.  If lions don’t flood themselves with water after gorging themselves their gastro-intestinal system freezes up and they die.

Read more

OnSafari: The Leopard Stalks

OnSafari: The Leopard Stalks

Photograph by Mariam McCall
Photograph by Mariam McCall

The Manyara forest was thick and opulently green after several weeks of sometimes heavy rains. The leaves on a dozen kinds of giant trees were newly green and spread wide opened, glazed as if waxed. Where there had been dust in the road there were now numerous puddles and muddy ruts with fresh, ginger-like smells.

A family of about 150 baboons wouldn’t even leave the track as we came along, so confident were they of their place in that blossoming jungle.
Read more

OnSafari: White Wizadry

OnSafari: White Wizadry

whitebaboonCan you see what we saw today?

Forgive my poor little sure-shot photo at 60 meters, and I’m sure my clients got much better, but I wanted to race to print with this. I’ve seen and photographed all sorts of unexpected animals: white lions, silver lions, white giraffe, the weird almost white zebra I wrote about last week, even a white wildebeest. But never though I’d see an … albino baboon.

Read more

OnSafari: Reef Woes

OnSafari: Reef Woes

zanzibar reefIt was a splendid morning in Stone Town with calm winds and few clouds that might be suggesting the monsoon is changing and the farmers will soon have rain.

It couldn’t have been a better day for flying. I was scheduled on Zanair to Arusha, which cancelled and put me on TropicalAir to Arusha, which cancelled and put me on AirExcel to Arusha where I arrived 15 minutes early than originally scheduled! Oh, Africa how I love thee! Except…

Read more

OnSafari: Matemwe

OnSafari: Matemwe

7.auctioneersFew vocations worldwide are as threatened as that of the fisherman. I’ve seen it with Lobster fishermen in Nova Scotia, cod fishermen in Boston, salmon fishermen in Alaska and today the fishermen of Matemwe, Zanzibar.

I followed the fishermen of Matemwe Village, today. A wonderful guide, Omari, took me in his pretty fancy boat with its 20 HP engine, a virtual yacht compared to the ngalawas working the reef.

Read more