(1. infamous gathering in session)
TODAY MARKS the 134th anniversary of the conclusion of the infamous 15 November 1884 – 26 February 1885 European leaders’ Berlin conference on Africa.
Cake and genocides and plunder
The gathering was chaired by German Chancellor von Bismarck to formalise the pan-European seizure, planned occupation, and irrepressible exploitation of the gargantuan riches of the African World which Leopold II, the génocidaire king of the Belgians, described predatorily as “this magnificent African cake”.
It was indeed to “secure for ourselves [Belgians] a slice of this magnificent African cake”, Leopold II’s own haunting words, that this monarch and his private forces and those of the Belgian state and others elsewhere in Europe carried out a devastatingly reprehensible 30-year trail (1878-1908) of genocide against Africans in the Congo basin in which they annihilated 13 million constituent peoples (Isidore Ndaywel è Nziem, Histoire générale du Congo: De l'héritage ancien à la République Démocratique, Paris: Duculot, 1998: 344).
The following countries attended the Berlin meeting: Belgium, Holland, Britain, France, Portugal, Ottoman “empire”, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria-Hungary, Denmark, Czarist Russia, Sweden-Norway, United States.
The catastrophic aftermath of this Berlin-assembly, essentially its state’s genocidist architecture (genocide in the Congo basin by King Leopold II [BELGIUM], Herero genocide [GERMANY], Nama genocide [GERMANY], Berg Damara genocide [GERMANY], Igbo genocide [BRITAIN-FULANI-led NIGERIA], Rwanda genocide [FRANCE-RWANDA STATE] Darfur genocide [THE SUDAN STATE], genocide elsewhere in the Sudan [THE SUDAN STATE] genocide in the Democratic Republic of the Congo [DRC STATE/LEAGUE OF STATES IN REGION & ELSEWHERE... ]) is the bane of contemporary Africa which the peoples, themselves, not anyone else, must dispense with to survive.
THIS “dispense with to survive” precisely encapsulates the historic goal of the Biafra freedom movement in southwestcentral Africa, the continent’s most peaceful restoration-of-independence movement and one of the preeminent of its kind in the world, whose imminent victory constitutes a strategic breakthrough for African freedom since the Berlin cataclysm.
(2. infamous gathering in session: to formalise the pan-European seizure, planned occupation, and irrepressible exploitation of the gargantuan riches of the African World – “this magnificent African cake”)
(Oliver Nelson Septet, “Stolen moments” [Nelson, tenor saxophone, Freddie Hubbard, trumpet, Eric Dolphy, flute; George Barrow, baritone saxophone; Bill Evans, piano; Paul Chambers, bass; Roy Hayes, drums; recorded: Van Gelder Studios, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, US, 23 February 1961])
Twitter @HerbertEkweEkwe*****Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe is author of the recently published The longest genocide – since 29 May 1966 (2019) (https://re-thinkingafrica.blogspot.com/2019/01/published-longest-genocide-since-29-may.html)