Tuesday, October 21, 2008

New Power, Same People Getting Screwed

I was gonna post this harrowing, honest account of African miner exploitation a while back but it kind of got lost in the shuffle. I dug it out and read it again today and I thought it definitely bore revisiting.

Basically, it's a first hand account of a journalist's near death escape from an incensed throng of African miners who were terrified that negative press would deprive them of their jobs, and thus their very existence.

"Out of desperation, much of the continent is selling itself into a new era of corruption and virtual slavery as China seeks to buy up all the metals, minerals and oil she can lay her hands on: copper for electric and telephone cables, cobalt for mobile phones and jet engines - the basic raw materials of modern life."

If you can look past the fact that this western journalist's view may be skewed (he says, "China's cynical new version of imperialism in Africa is a wicked enterprise." New? Doesn't sound that different to the good ol' fashioned British version, to me) then it's a rigorously outspoken and informative good read.

They kept this shit quiet during the construction of the Olympics facilities, didn't they?

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