Sunday, January 22, 2017

Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Buhari’s Gambian Gambit As Borno Burns

I agree mostly, but not entirely, with Gloria. I would not emphasize the Russian fake news or wikileaks. Those folks wanted to hate Hillary, and didn’t need many excuses.

The real reasons were 4 and 5, plus 8 years of democrats generated a reaction, just as 8 yrs of republicans often generates reactions. But I want folks on this list to notice that race, racism, racialist reasons, as Gloria mentioned,  were a very real factor. Half the country is biased against muslims and minorities, or, to say it better as Gloria did, a hard core of 35-40%, and another percentage who is indifferent to racial bigotry because they don’t live with any minorities. That’s very true of people living in the rural areas, more than those in suburbs or cities. They came out in droves, whereas minorities, the most vulnerable, did not come out in droves, and that turned the election.

 

For me gloria’s fifth point says it all. It is very very dispiriting to see the truth in her point, and it sets the agenda for progressive people to try to turn that tide in a positive direction. We will do it, somehow. The marches yesterday—we had a big one in my home town of lansing—keep us going with the hope that we can turn it around, and leave a better legacy for our children than rule by the super rich and alt-right bigots.

ken

 

Kenneth Harrow

Dept of English and Film Studies

Michigan State University

619 Red Cedar Rd

East Lansing, MI 48824

517-803-8839

harrow@msu.edu

http://www.english.msu.edu/people/faculty/kenneth-harrow/

 

From: usaafricadialogue <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com> on behalf of "Emeagwali, Gloria (History)" <emeagwali@ccsu.edu>
Reply-To: usaafricadialogue <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Date: Sunday 22 January 2017 at 20:17
To: usaafricadialogue <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Buhari’s Gambian Gambit As Borno Burns

 

I believe that  we have just seen  ECOWAS and West Africa at their best.

Congrats to all  regional  actors, in this case.

 

If Trump is bad, why is he POTUS? This is Chidi's question. 

Here is  a  recap:

 

1. In any other part of the world, Hillary would have been recognized as the winner with 2 million votes  more than Trump. Trump won because of the archaic electoral college system in place.

 

2.  Russian intervention in support of  Trump, by liaising with WIKILEAKS,  at a crucial moment, is a factor that is still being investigated.

 

3.  FBI intervention through James Comey   at a crucial, defining moment, was detrimental to Clinton. 

 

4. Trump was able to cultivate a hard core of    of about 35% to 40% of the electorate,  many of whom were  underemployed, racially motivated and determined voters. This was a plus  for the campaign but may not have been sufficient for a win without 1, 2  and 3.

 

 

5. The US does not have in place  at this point in time, disqualifying criteria for  neo-nazis, racists,  fascists, misogynists etc.Lobbyists,  campaign strategists, donors and so on,  also have predominant roles. This particular election produced a team of billionaires in government.

 

 Remember that Trump's rallying call  is America First. Don't expect support for IPOB. In fact PEPFAR (AIDS treatment) funding may well be at risk.

 

GE

 

 

Professor Gloria Emeagwali

Professor of History
History Department

Central Connecticut State University

1615 Stanley Street
 New Britain. CT 06050
www.africahistory.net

 

 


From: 'Bayo Omolola' via USA Africa Dialogue Series <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Sent: Saturday, January 21, 2017 8:19 PM
To: usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Buhari’s Gambian Gambit As Borno Burns

 

Dr. Kperogi, your concern about the role of Buhari in The Gambia prompts some questions that you may want to answer:

 

1. Is Nigeria a member of ECOWAS, and does its president under an obligation to perform a role in such a circumstance?

 

2. Are there not many Nigerians in The Gambia?

 

3. Should not the president and government of Nigeria care about Nigerians, even if it is only one Nigerian living in the country?

 

3. Does it mean that if Nigeria is still dealing with Boko Haram, the country should not play its role in other necessary aspects?

 

4. Is Buhari that kind of person that does not care for welfare and good discipline of all Nigerians?

 

5. Should Buhari be blamed for loving Nigeria and caring about the regional role of Nigeria in which many people are after their pockets and selfish pursuits?

 

While your argument expresses your sentiment, the general public would expect fairness and objectivity. I hope that it will sound great if you spare time to visit The Gambia and know that the country has many Nigerians -professionals, business men and woman, and other Nigerians whom The Gambia has accommodated to make their own living in their own minimal ways. Perhaps you have visited the country and found that Nigeria really does not have anything to do with the mediation effort that Buhari performed on behalf of Nigeria/ECOWAS. In the city and rural areas of The Gambia Nigerians who could not find jobs at home but found in The Gambia. Certainly, it looks you need some data on The Gambia. Perhaps you will use a different lens to view Buhari after seeing the data.

 

 

If you have never visited The Gambia, I would advise that you google Yoruba Community in The Gambia and Nigerian community in the country, call the Department of Education of the country, call the Embassy of Nigeria in the country. Do any or all of these to obtain necessary information. As small as The Gambia is, it has its high share of Nigerians proportional to its size. Buhari's name should not be dragged in any mud of complaints because he engages in the Gambia-related mediation and intervention. Nigerians may bear some consequences if Nigeria does not play its role in such a situation. I lived in the country and know the implication of the impasse for Nigerians. 

 

Bayo Omolola, Ph.D.

Lecturer

Department of World Languages and Cultures

College of Arts and Sciences

Howard University

Washington, DC

Tel. 202-806-6224

 



 Show original message

 

On Saturday, January 21, 2017 2:50 PM, Farooq A. Kperogi <farooqkperogi@gmail.com> wrote:

 

My column in today's Daily Trust on Saturday:

 

By Farooq A. Kperogi, Ph.D.

Twitter: @farooqkperogi

 

Gambians are our West African brothers and sisters who deserve our help in their hour of need. I get that. But no one can truly help the other when they are themselves in need of help, when they are wracked by internal turmoil. President Buhari has no business being in Gambia’s business while his country burns.

 

Imagine for a moment that Nigeria's current president were a man called Goodluck Jonathan (or, for that matter, any southern Christian), and the military “mistakenly” dropped a bomb on hapless internally displaced Boko Haram victims, killing scores of them and critically injuring many more. Imagine again that such a president didn't deem it worth his while to visit the state where this grievous tragedy happened, but instead chose to go to another country to resolve the country's political differences. What would we northern Muslims be saying by now?

 

Well, something close actually happened in late 2014. At a time Boko Haram captured Mubi, Adamawa's second largest town and former Chief of Defense Staff Alex Badeh's hometown, Goodluck Jonathan chose to travel to Burkina Faso to resolve the country's political crisis. The public denunciation that followed that presidential indiscretion was swift and massive.

 

This was what I wrote in my November 8, 2014 column titled, "State of Emergency Amid Worsening Boko Haram Insurgency": "Amid the heartrending humanitarian disaster that Boko Haram has wreaked on Mubi, the president chose to travel to Burkina Faso to 'resolve' the country’s political crisis. Which sane person goes to put out another person’s fire while his house is up in flames? I have never seen a more cruelly insensitive and clueless response to a grave national crisis than this in my entire life."

 

Buhari's situation is actually worse. The military he is commander-in-chief of, not Boko Haram, was singularly responsible for “mistakenly” killing scores of vulnerable, hungry and serially cheated IDPs, and all he has done is issue a “regret” through his Twitter handle. He didn’t physically travel to Borno State to condole with and comfort the people. He is more concerned with and consumed by what is happening in the Gambia than the humanitarian tragedy that is unfolding in his own backyard.

 

To be clear, I don’t think the Nigerian air force deliberately targeted the IDPs. I don’t see what purpose that would serve. It is entirely reasonable to agree that it was genuinely an accident. But it’s a monumental, unprecedented national disaster nonetheless. It should have invited a solemn presidential national broadcast, not a mere tweet, which we all know the president didn’t even compose.

 

It’s true that even well-trained military personnel like America’s have had occasions to accidentally bomb wrong targets in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. But we are talking here of a nation’s military accidentally bombing its own fellow citizens in their own country—and in their weakest and most helpless state!

 

A Facebook friend of mine by the name of Solomon Wise captured the tragedy this way in his comment on my wall: “Ravaged by Boko Haram and forced to live in an IDP camp in their own country where Govt officials steal their food. Now mistakenly bombed.” This caused me to shed a tear. Call me a wimp if you like, but it did make me cry.

 

Now, a presidential national broadcast to mourn this tragedy and a personal visit by the president to give emotional strength to the bereaved won’t bring back the lost lives, but it would show respect for the dead and show that the president cares and takes responsibility for the fatal error of the people he is commander-in-chief of. In no serious country in the world would a president fly to another country in the face of this unexampled tragedy and ask his Chief of Staff to represent him in condoling grieving families.

 

I am not by any means minimizing the horrendousness of other humanitarian tragedies that the president has unwisely chosen to justify (such as the bloodcurdling military mass murders of Shias in Zaria) or ignore (such as the absolutely condemnable butchery in southern Kaduna and Agatu), but the accidental bombing, by the Nigerian military, of the survivors of Boko Haram’s unspeakable savagery amid the unconscionable governmental neglect they already suffered deserved a swifter, less insensitive, and more humane response from the commander-in-chief.

 

There is no way to sugarcoat it: Buhari's response is at once clueless, cruel, and condemnable. Unfortunately, it fits a pattern that is emerging in his attitude to and relationship with the poor. He has a profoundly ice-cold contempt for the poor.

 

Although he has traveled to virtually every continent in the world and has budgeted hundreds of millions of naira this year to travel to even more countries, he has never visited the theaters of Boko Haram insurgency. He simply sits in the luxury of Aso Rock and proclaims the “technical defeat” (whatever in the world that means) of Boko Haram and talks to soldiers on the front lines via closed-circuit television.

 

What would it cost the president to pay a symbolic visit to the northeast—and elsewhere? When he was soliciting votes from potential voters, he traveled to every state except Yobe. He campaigned in Borno and Adamawa, which were gripped by a fiercer confrontation with Boko Haram than now.

 

Why won’t the president visit Borno now, especially in light of the quick succession of tragedies that have hit the state? Before the “accidental” bombing of IDPs, a University of Maiduguri veterinary medicine professor and 4 others were murdered by a 7-year-old Boko Haram suicide bomber.

 

Well, you know, the victims are poor, unknown people who are of no consequence to the president. When former Vice President Atiku Abubakar’s daughter got married in Adamawa, the president braved out the “odds” (never mind that he says he has “technically defeated” Boko Haram) and physically attended the wedding ceremony. Nobody represented him. He even said his wedding-induced visit gave him a glimpse of the suffering of the people of the state and caused him to shed tears, hopefully not crocodile tears.

 

Had a humanitarian tragedy struck Adamawa, you can bet your bottom naira that the president won’t personally go there. Apparently, poor people don’t matter—unless their votes are needed as ladders to climb to power. Perhaps a rich, politically connected Borno man should marry off his daughter and invite the president. Maybe that is what it would take for the president to visit Borno. All people who want the president’s presence in their states should replicate this stratagem.

 

It appears that, for President Buhari, who had been falsely thought of for years as a defender of the talakawa, only the rich matter.  That’s why he attends rich people’s festive occasions outside of Abuja and instructs his media aides to issue presidential birthday wishes on the occasion of rich people’s birthdays, but picks and chooses which tragedies involving poor people he comments on or commiserates with.

 

To be fair to Buhari, most, perhaps all, Nigerian politicians deeply disdain the poor. We only thought Buhari was different. He obviously is not. Sad.

 

Farooq A. Kperogi, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Journalism & Emerging Media
School of Communication & Media

Social Science Building 

Room 5092 MD 2207

402 Bartow Avenue
Kennesaw State University

Kennesaw, Georgia, USA 30144
Cell: (+1) 404-573-9697
Personal website: www.farooqkperogi.com

Twitter: @farooqkperog

Author of Glocal English: The Changing Face and Forms of Nigerian English in a Global World

"The nice thing about pessimism is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised." G. F. Will

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Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Buhari’s Gambian Gambit As Borno Burns

I believe that  we have just seen  ECOWAS and West Africa at their best.

Congrats to all  regional  actors, in this case.


If Trump is bad, why is he POTUS? This is Chidi's question. 

Here is  a  recap:


1. In any other part of the world, Hillary would have been recognized as the winner with 2 million votes  more than Trump. Trump won because of the archaic electoral college system in place.


2.  Russian intervention in support of  Trump, by liaising with WIKILEAKS,  at a crucial moment, is a factor that is still being investigated.


3.  FBI intervention through James Comey   at a crucial, defining moment, was detrimental to Clinton. 


4. Trump was able to cultivate a hard core of    of about 35% to 40% of the electorate,  many of whom were  underemployed, racially motivated and determined voters. This was a plus  for the campaign but may not have been sufficient for a win without 1, 2  and 3.



5. The US does not have in place  at this point in time, disqualifying criteria for  neo-nazis, racists,  fascists, misogynists etc.Lobbyists,  campaign strategists, donors and so on,  also have predominant roles. This particular election produced a team of billionaires in government.


 Remember that Trump's rallying call  is America First. Don't expect support for IPOB. In fact PEPFAR (AIDS treatment) funding may well be at risk.


GE



Professor Gloria Emeagwali
Professor of History
History Department
Central Connecticut State University
1615 Stanley Street
 
New Britain. CT 06050
www.africahistory.net



From: 'Bayo Omolola' via USA Africa Dialogue Series <usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com>
Sent: Saturday, January 21, 2017 8:19 PM
To: usaafricadialogue@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Buhari's Gambian Gambit As Borno Burns
 
Dr. Kperogi, your concern about the role of Buhari in The Gambia prompts some questions that you may want to answer:

1. Is Nigeria a member of ECOWAS, and does its president under an obligation to perform a role in such a circumstance?

2. Are there not many Nigerians in The Gambia?

3. Should not the president and government of Nigeria care about Nigerians, even if it is only one Nigerian living in the country?

3. Does it mean that if Nigeria is still dealing with Boko Haram, the country should not play its role in other necessary aspects?

4. Is Buhari that kind of person that does not care for welfare and good discipline of all Nigerians?

5. Should Buhari be blamed for loving Nigeria and caring about the regional role of Nigeria in which many people are after their pockets and selfish pursuits?

While your argument expresses your sentiment, the general public would expect fairness and objectivity. I hope that it will sound great if you spare time to visit The Gambia and know that the country has many Nigerians -professionals, business men and woman, and other Nigerians whom The Gambia has accommodated to make their own living in their own minimal ways. Perhaps you have visited the country and found that Nigeria really does not have anything to do with the mediation effort that Buhari performed on behalf of Nigeria/ECOWAS. In the city and rural areas of The Gambia Nigerians who could not find jobs at home but found in The Gambia. Certainly, it looks you need some data on The Gambia. Perhaps you will use a different lens to view Buhari after seeing the data.


If you have never visited The Gambia, I would advise that you google Yoruba Community in The Gambia and Nigerian community in the country, call the Department of Education of the country, call the Embassy of Nigeria in the country. Do any or all of these to obtain necessary information. As small as The Gambia is, it has its high share of Nigerians proportional to its size. Buhari's name should not be dragged in any mud of complaints because he engages in the Gambia-related mediation and intervention. Nigerians may bear some consequences if Nigeria does not play its role in such a situation. I lived in the country and know the implication of the impasse for Nigerians. 

Bayo Omolola, Ph.D.
Lecturer
Department of World Languages and Cultures
College of Arts and Sciences
Howard University
Washington, DC
Tel. 202-806-6224



 Show original message


On Saturday, January 21, 2017 2:50 PM, Farooq A. Kperogi <farooqkperogi@gmail.com> wrote:


My column in today's Daily Trust on Saturday:

By Farooq A. Kperogi, Ph.D.
Twitter: @farooqkperogi

Gambians are our West African brothers and sisters who deserve our help in their hour of need. I get that. But no one can truly help the other when they are themselves in need of help, when they are wracked by internal turmoil. President Buhari has no business being in Gambia's business while his country burns.

Imagine for a moment that Nigeria's current president were a man called Goodluck Jonathan (or, for that matter, any southern Christian), and the military "mistakenly" dropped a bomb on hapless internally displaced Boko Haram victims, killing scores of them and critically injuring many more. Imagine again that such a president didn't deem it worth his while to visit the state where this grievous tragedy happened, but instead chose to go to another country to resolve the country's political differences. What would we northern Muslims be saying by now?

Well, something close actually happened in late 2014. At a time Boko Haram captured Mubi, Adamawa's second largest town and former Chief of Defense Staff Alex Badeh's hometown, Goodluck Jonathan chose to travel to Burkina Faso to resolve the country's political crisis. The public denunciation that followed that presidential indiscretion was swift and massive.

This was what I wrote in my November 8, 2014 column titled, "State of Emergency Amid Worsening Boko Haram Insurgency": "Amid the heartrending humanitarian disaster that Boko Haram has wreaked on Mubi, the president chose to travel to Burkina Faso to 'resolve' the country's political crisis. Which sane person goes to put out another person's fire while his house is up in flames? I have never seen a more cruelly insensitive and clueless response to a grave national crisis than this in my entire life."

Buhari's situation is actually worse. The military he is commander-in-chief of, not Boko Haram, was singularly responsible for "mistakenly" killing scores of vulnerable, hungry and serially cheated IDPs, and all he has done is issue a "regret" through his Twitter handle. He didn't physically travel to Borno State to condole with and comfort the people. He is more concerned with and consumed by what is happening in the Gambia than the humanitarian tragedy that is unfolding in his own backyard.

To be clear, I don't think the Nigerian air force deliberately targeted the IDPs. I don't see what purpose that would serve. It is entirely reasonable to agree that it was genuinely an accident. But it's a monumental, unprecedented national disaster nonetheless. It should have invited a solemn presidential national broadcast, not a mere tweet, which we all know the president didn't even compose.

It's true that even well-trained military personnel like America's have had occasions to accidentally bomb wrong targets in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. But we are talking here of a nation's military accidentally bombing its own fellow citizens in their own country—and in their weakest and most helpless state!

A Facebook friend of mine by the name of Solomon Wise captured the tragedy this way in his comment on my wall: "Ravaged by Boko Haram and forced to live in an IDP camp in their own country where Govt officials steal their food. Now mistakenly bombed." This caused me to shed a tear. Call me a wimp if you like, but it did make me cry.

Now, a presidential national broadcast to mourn this tragedy and a personal visit by the president to give emotional strength to the bereaved won't bring back the lost lives, but it would show respect for the dead and show that the president cares and takes responsibility for the fatal error of the people he is commander-in-chief of. In no serious country in the world would a president fly to another country in the face of this unexampled tragedy and ask his Chief of Staff to represent him in condoling grieving families.

I am not by any means minimizing the horrendousness of other humanitarian tragedies that the president has unwisely chosen to justify (such as the bloodcurdling military mass murders of Shias in Zaria) or ignore (such as the absolutely condemnable butchery in southern Kaduna and Agatu), but the accidental bombing, by the Nigerian military, of the survivors of Boko Haram's unspeakable savagery amid the unconscionable governmental neglect they already suffered deserved a swifter, less insensitive, and more humane response from the commander-in-chief.

There is no way to sugarcoat it: Buhari's response is at once clueless, cruel, and condemnable. Unfortunately, it fits a pattern that is emerging in his attitude to and relationship with the poor. He has a profoundly ice-cold contempt for the poor.

Although he has traveled to virtually every continent in the world and has budgeted hundreds of millions of naira this year to travel to even more countries, he has never visited the theaters of Boko Haram insurgency. He simply sits in the luxury of Aso Rock and proclaims the "technical defeat" (whatever in the world that means) of Boko Haram and talks to soldiers on the front lines via closed-circuit television.

What would it cost the president to pay a symbolic visit to the northeast—and elsewhere? When he was soliciting votes from potential voters, he traveled to every state except Yobe. He campaigned in Borno and Adamawa, which were gripped by a fiercer confrontation with Boko Haram than now.

Why won't the president visit Borno now, especially in light of the quick succession of tragedies that have hit the state? Before the "accidental" bombing of IDPs, a University of Maiduguri veterinary medicine professor and 4 others were murdered by a 7-year-old Boko Haram suicide bomber.

Well, you know, the victims are poor, unknown people who are of no consequence to the president. When former Vice President Atiku Abubakar's daughter got married in Adamawa, the president braved out the "odds" (never mind that he says he has "technically defeated" Boko Haram) and physically attended the wedding ceremony. Nobody represented him. He even said his wedding-induced visit gave him a glimpse of the suffering of the people of the state and caused him to shed tears, hopefully not crocodile tears.

Had a humanitarian tragedy struck Adamawa, you can bet your bottom naira that the president won't personally go there. Apparently, poor people don't matter—unless their votes are needed as ladders to climb to power. Perhaps a rich, politically connected Borno man should marry off his daughter and invite the president. Maybe that is what it would take for the president to visit Borno. All people who want the president's presence in their states should replicate this stratagem.

It appears that, for President Buhari, who had been falsely thought of for years as a defender of the talakawa, only the rich matter.  That's why he attends rich people's festive occasions outside of Abuja and instructs his media aides to issue presidential birthday wishes on the occasion of rich people's birthdays, but picks and chooses which tragedies involving poor people he comments on or commiserates with.

To be fair to Buhari, most, perhaps all, Nigerian politicians deeply disdain the poor. We only thought Buhari was different. He obviously is not. Sad.

Farooq A. Kperogi, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Journalism & Emerging Media
School of Communication & Media
Social Science Building 
Room 5092 MD 2207
402 Bartow Avenue
Kennesaw State University
Kennesaw, Georgia, USA 30144
Cell: (+1) 404-573-9697
Personal website: www.farooqkperogi.com
Author of Glocal English: The Changing Face and Forms of Nigerian English in a Global World

"The nice thing about pessimism is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised." G. F. Will

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USA Africa Dialogue Series - My Heart Hemmed In: by Marie NDiaye (Author), Jordan Stump (Translator)

https://www.amazon.com/My-Heart-Hemmed-Marie-NDiaye/dp/1931883629

My Heart Hemmed In:

Release Date: July 11, 2017

Marie NDiaye has long been celebrated for her unrivaled ability to make us see just how little we understand about ourselves. My Heart Hemmed In is her most powerful statement on the hidden selves that we rarely glimpse—and are often shocked by.

There is something very wrong with Nadia and her husband Ange, middle-aged provincial schoolteachers who slowly realize that they are despised by everyone around them. One day a savage wound appears in Ange's stomach, and as Nadia fights to save her husband's life their hideous neighbor Noget—a man everyone insists is a famous author—inexplicably imposes his care upon them. While Noget fattens them with ever richer foods, Nadia embarks on a nightmarish visit to her ex-husband and estranged son—is she abandoning Ange or revisiting old grievances in an attempt to save him?

Conjuring an atmosphere of paranoia and menace, My Heart Hemmed In creates a bizarre, foggy world where strange coincidences, harsh cruelty, and constantly shifting relationships all seem part of some shadowy truth. Surreal, allegorical, and psychologically acute, My Heart Hemmed In shows a masterful author giving her readers her most complex and compelling world yet.


Editorial Reviews

About the Author




Funmi Tofowomo Okelola

-In the absence of greatness, mediocrity thrives. 

http://www.cafeafricana.com

On Twitter: @Bookwormlit
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