Troops of the 101st Airborne at Ft. Campbell, Ky. getting ready for deployment to West Africa.
Well, the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history is ravishing the West Africa nations of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. These nations, fantastically rich in mineral resources and timber are among the poorest in the world, their wealth not controlled by their own people but by Western corporate interests.
The three West African countries where Ebola is today wreaking havoc, while rich in resources, rank among the world’s poorest. The former French colony of Guinea is the world’s top exporter of bauxite, the raw material used in making aluminum, and also has plenty of gold, diamonds, uranium and offshore oil. Sierra Leone, a former British colony, and Liberia have significant reserves of rubber, iron ore and diamonds. Virtually all of the raw material is carted off by foreign corporate giants.
Before the Ebola outbreak, Liberia had one doctor per 70,000 residents; Sierra Leone one per 45,000; Guinea one per 10,000. Only a small percentage of the population has access to proper sanitation. Though there are major rivers in the region, the lack of water treatment facilities leaves much of the population with little access to clean water. The majority ekes out a living on less than one dollar a day, and half the population is illiterate.
The region has some of the world’s highest maternal as well as infant mortality rates; children regularly die of malnutrition and easily treatable conditions like pneumonia and diarrhea. Now, the overstretched and overflowing hospitals and treatment centers have turned into deathtraps. Public health has further collapsed: malaria and other medical conditions are being left untreated while pregnant women are giving birth on the streets.
The most servile of America’s neo-colonial states is Liberia; The U.S. hold over Liberia began when the country was carved out in the early 19th century, as black freedmen and freed slaves from the U.S. were shipped there to establish the Republic of Liberia. Since then, black American colonists and their descendants (America-Liberians) have held sway over the indigenous population. In the 1920s, the Firestone Rubber Company effectively took over Liberia and ran it like a slave plantation.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was elected president in 2005 after the overthrow of Charles Taylor in a 12 year civil war with a promise to end corruption and rebuild the country. Sirleaf was the only African head of state to offer territory for the U.S. to establish a headquarters for its Africa Command (Africom), which operates out of Germany. She handed over more than a third of Liberia’s land to private logging, mining and agro-industrial enterprises without a thought as to the people living communally on it.
Western nations, including the U.S. are now in panic mode as a number of Ebola cases have appeared among us. The response is of course – protect us, screw them!
There has been no massive effort by the West to bring in the doctors, nurses, epidemiologists to West Africa. The handful of volunteers is clearly insufficient to stem the crisis.
We’re sending troops. They will build hospitals (sure they will) which may be ready sometime in the next year or 18 months. Right now, clean hospital tents and MASH units would do. But first we will build a Command Center for AFRICOM at the Monrovia Airport. That’s more important. Oh, and no U.S. troops will come in contact with Ebola victims.
I guess the troops are there to shoot the virus. Or shoot any mobs rushing the yet to be built hospitals for treatment. Or maybe they are there to protect our corporate interests in the resources (and make sure the Chinese don’t get them) and put down any “insurgencies” when the local governments inevitably fall. I mean really; do you think our military gives a rat’s ass how many Africans die from Ebola? Or can do anything to stop it?
The commie Cubans send doctors. Yup. Medical “boots on the ground” in Sierra Leone. The Communists.
Our Nobel winning President responds with the military – again. Meanwhile Republicans are holding up funds because his policies are too “Afro-centric” and he’s not doing enough to protect “us”.
Big-Pharma companies are salivating – a vaccine could be sold to the military as another weapon against “bio-terrorism” – a stock pile worth a few billion as a starter. And it could be field tested on real humans overseas! What a deal.
There is little humanity left among us. Money doesn’t just talk – it screams at the top of it’s lungs.
The Africa Concert – Harare, Zimbabwe – 1987