Foreign Policy Blogs

Africa Quick Hits

Your faithful scribe is leaving the country for about a week and as a consequence I may not be able to blog. I thus want to leave you with a lot of links from South Africa and Africa generally to take you to the weekend. I’ll be back next week.

According to The New York Times “A confidential United Nations report says the government of Sudan is flying arms and heavy military equipment into Darfur in violation of Security Council resolutions and painting Sudanese military planes white to disguise them as United Nations or African Union aircraft.” I am baffled as to why this would come as a surprise to anyone. This has been Khartoum's pattern from the outset — say whatever it takes to get loose of criticism and what always prove to be empty threats. A few days later back away and forge onward with the tyranny.

South Africans are feeling pretty good about their pasting of England to advance to the semi-final round of the Cricket World Cup. The Brits? Somewhat less thrilled. (And South Africa's Baby Boks advance to the Under-19 World Championships Finals.) Sports do not mean everything but they surely mean something, and South Africa has reason to feel good about the state of sport in the country and what it means for South Africans.

Zimbabwe's Independence Day celebrations leave some wondering what, precisely, there is to celebrate. It's a pretty trenchant question.

The Nigerian elections are in danger of succumbing to chaos. This weekend's presidential elections will go forward as planned even as violence breaks out and some seek postponement. 2007 seems a long way from the generally positive tone that surrounded the 1999 elections that seemed to indicate the emergence of some semblence of sanity to Nigerian politics. It seems that this election has been mishandled at nearly every turn, possibly out of a sense of misplaced confidence that the country was on the right track. maybe the presidential election will turn out ok, but as a general rule, elections with this much chaos in the run-up tend not to go well, and the perception, in any case, will be that it was corrupt from the outset.

Foreign shores beckon. I will post as I can.