Director Research for the Future
GRACE Africa Research
Remember the golden rule:"If you do not understand a phenomena, study the effects."That may require a long time focus and careful, unemotional observation.And that is exactly what we as researchers are trained to do.If we study the situation in Angola, it is easy to see in hindsight that the escalating "tribal" violence, served the oil and diamond industry.And it gave those industries such an opportunity to build a power position that they ruled the country, at least when I was there in 2000.I would not be surprised if they are still ruling the country.When I studied the economic situation in Brasil in 1987 (I lived there from 1985 - 1990) when there was a 3% inflation rate and therefore also a 3% overnight interest rate, I learnt that this situation did indeed benefit a certain party: the heavy metal industry.When I arrived in in April 1990, it only took me 6 months to conclude that a third force (that was instigating "black on black violence") did indeed exist as so many black intellectuals claimed.This was later proven to be so.We all know who benefited from that.One word of caution / consolation here: whilst it is possible that just as in , an escalating genocide is happening in at the moment, it is also possible that the media exaggerates. Remember the media is owned. There is really no way how we can really find out what is happening unless we go there. And I would not advise you to do this.Study now and ponder who benefited from the genocide.It is an old, old story I am afraid, already known to the Romans: "Divide and Rule".That is how they built their empire.You have read the book: Confessions of an Economic Hitman?How to "live" with this insight, how to share a planet with such power lust / greed / destructive mind sets, is something we all have to find a personal answer to as awake, aware and socially responsible persons living on this earth.One of my personal strategies is this: as I know that the personal is politics, I examine myself whether I have the behavior that is causing the destruction, in me; whether I have this in some measure in my life towards other people:Do I have power lust?Am I greedy?Am I prejudicing against other people, based on gender, ethnicity, class?And then I work with myself so that at least my frequency does not increment the frequency that is damaging the world.And then I get on with what my hand has found for me to do, so that I continue to contribute positively to the world that I hold in front of me all the time: where all human beings are sovereign, aware and loving themselves and each other.I have very often in activists seen the very characteristics that have caused the problem they are fighting.Such incoherence, such impotence, such misguided passion.Now a personal word of caution to you:Although I understand your despair, getting emotional will not get you anywhere. What you need is focus and discipline and self love.