by New Frame
Johannesburg, South Africa
June 6, 2021
The social devastation of mass unemployment renders South Africa a non-viable society for millions. Something must give.
Unemployment in the United States peaked at 24.9% during the Great Depression. On the eve of Adolf Hitler’s ascension to power in 1933, unemployment in Germany was at 24%. The protests that launched the Arab Spring in 2011 were ascribed, in part, to what the International Labour Organization called an “extremely high youth unemployment rate of 23.4%”.
Abby Martin speaks to Eugene Puryear to discuss the big picture of US imperialism in Africa: From the Berlin Conference to the subversion of liberation movements to neocolonial puppets and the current sprawl of AFRICOM “counterterrorism.”
Abby Martin’s Empire Update wraps up the last week in US imperialism: Biden breaks major campaign promise to punish Saudi Arabia for Khashoggi murder; US & France extend war in Africa; Bolivia and Venezuela defy US Empire; major bloodshed on the horizon in Afghanistan.
The Empire Update for Nov. 23 covering the Grand Finale of Trump’s promise to end the Afghanistan War; what’s really behind the Somalia troop withdrawal; US-backed monarchy sparks new potential war in Africa; State Department takes new action for Israel against BDS movement; and potential for Trump to start war with Iran on his way out.
October 15, 2020, was Thomas Sankara’s 33rd death anniversary. On this day, he was murdered by imperialist forces at the tender age of 37. A Pan-Africanist, internationalist and Marxist, he was committed to the total liberation of the oppressed masses from the clutches of imperialism. Instead of bourgeoisie nationalism, Sankara believed in radical nationalism: a combination of anti-imperialist courage and unabashed humanism that pushes for revolution instead of neo-colonial settlement. Thus, he belonged to a pantheon of African revolutionaries like Amilcar Cabral, Samora Machel and Patrice Lumumba who understood the necessity of adopting socialism for the fundamental transformation of their respective societies. Looking at the short life of Sankara, one can’t help but be moved by the way in which he emerged through the anguish and aspirations of millions of Burkinabe civilians and commanded a radical project of socialist transformation.
A black American writer, J. Saunders Redding, describes the arrival of a ship in North America in the year 1619:
Sails furled, flag drooping at her rounded stern, she rode the tide in from the sea. She was a strange ship, indeed, by all accounts, a frightening ship, a ship of mystery. Whether she was trader, privateer, or man-of-war no one knows. Through her bulwarks black-mouthed cannon yawned. The flag she flew was Dutch; her crew a motley. Her port of call, an English settlement, Jamestown, in the colony of Virginia. She came, she traded, and shortly afterwards was gone. Probably no ship in modern history has carried a more portentous freight. Her cargo? Twenty slaves.
David Sheen is an independent journalist and filmmaker born in Canada, now reporting from Israel/Palestine. His work focuses primarily on racial tensions and religious extremism. In 2017, Sheen was named a Front Line Defenders Human Rights Defender, the only person in Israel to receive that honor in a decade.
President of the Republic of Namibia, Dr. Hage Geingob, discusses how his country, which achieved independence from neighboring apartheid South Africa in 1990, is now fighting for justice and economic emancipation from global banks, corporations and foreign governments seeking to extract the developing country’s natural resources.
This time of year Mediterranean beaches are the destinations of choice for many European holidaymakers; it’s also the beginning of the busiest time of year for the people smugglers based in Libya and elsewhere along the North African coast. July to October is their peak season — during this time in 2016 around 103,000 refugees were crammed into unsafe boats, often in the dead of night, and cast off into the Mediterranean Sea.