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The end of American history begins in America | Racism

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Therefore, good Brutus, be prepared to hear.

And since you know you cannot see yourself

So well as by reflection, I, your glass,  

Will modestly discover to yourself  

That of yourself which you yet know not of.    

Cassius, in Shakespeare’s Julius Cesare (Act 1 Scene 2)   

Has the American experiment failed and ended? Are we on the cusp of a post-American world? In the late 1980s, Francis Fukuyama, a bureaucratic functionary at the US Department of State, had declared, with much pomp and ceremony, that “history” had ended and America was the triumphant trophy of liberal democracy. Had he inadvertently played a satirical spoof to the end of American history itself?   

A mere quarter of a century later, with Donald Trump leading the United States in one calamity after another, people have begun speculating the very end of America.  

While North American and Western European observers are deeply concerned about the end of the American empire, the rest of the world oscillates between a sigh of relief at the prospect and a sense of wonder and amusement as to what exactly this “ending” means. Will it be with a big bang or just a pathetic whimper? And while we are at it, when, prithee do tell, did this “leadership of the free world” begin, for it now to end, except with brute military might and a constellation of military bases around the globe to exercise it? 

In a thoughtful recent essay, End of Empire, the eminent American historian Andrew Bacevich has put forward his argument as to why he believes “the sun has set on the American empire“.  

As a cogent critic of American imperialism, Bacevich’s surgically precise and honest conclusion is now corroborated by the massive uprising against structural poverty and endemic racism setting the streets of major urban areas on fire from coast to coast.    

“The era of US dominion has now passed,” Bacevich observes, “So Americans can no longer afford to indulge in the fiction of their indispensability, cherished in elite circles […] Subordinating the wellbeing of the American people to ostensible imperatives of global leadership – thereby allowing racism, inequality and other problems to fester at home – has become intolerable.”  

What Bacevich outlines in this crucial essay is a constellation of facts – of racism and poverty at home and pathetic and dysfunctional attempts at world domination – that much of the world and in fact, most Americans themselves have known, but which today, during the presidency of Donald Trump and this criminally negligent handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, has been thrown into stark relief.   

Was this America ever a leader or just a bully? Did it ever have the moral authority to shepherd a terrorised Earth?    

Between Fukuyama’s pompous and absurd prognostication and Bacevich’s bold and brilliant insights, we may now wonder when did America begin and where is it wending.  

What happened to the American Century?    

America as an experiment is failing. Perhaps it was destined to fail from its very beginning. An idea that began with the genocide of Native Americans, thrived on the sustained course of African slavery, extended its genocidal and racist foregrounding to generations of immigrants who came to its shores to toil and suffer so that the white supremacist settler colonists prosper and enrich generations after generations, had to pay for its continued sins at some point. 

That America is failing is not a new idea or a recent discovery. It is just that over the last three years, in the course of Trump’s presidency, this fact has become glaringly clear for the whole world to see. This particular president has exposed not merely his own personal vulgarity and criminal charlatanism, but also, far more importantly, the self-destructive forces that have shaped and defined this country long before he assumed office. The viral racism to which Trump caters, and to which millions of Americans respond favourably, and which is the undoing of America, arrived in America from Europe like all other diseases the settler-colonialists brought with them.   

Every country and every clime has its own peculiar political disease. Egypt has given birth to el-Sisi, Russia to Putin, China to Xi, India to Modi, Brazil to Bolsonaro, Myanmar to Aung San Suu Kyi, Iran to Khamenei, Syria to Assad, ad nauseam. But the point here is the mighty and powerful US and its particular brand of imperial corruption and hubris marking its final dissolution into nullity.    

The open discussions about the end of the American experiment, of course, predate Trump. David S Mason’s The End of the American Century (2009) is a typical example of such analysis in which we read about the various interrelated phases of social, economic and global unravelling of the US that had begun with World War II. In his essay, The End of the American Century (2019) George Packer considers the span of the American diplomat Richard Holbrooke’s life (1941-2010) as the period of the height of American empire, after which things began to fall apart.   

Meanwhile, the delusional imperialists at the political core of the US were busy thinking otherwise. The Project for the New American Century (PNAC) was a neoconservative scheme based in Washington, DC in the late 1990s triumphantly declaring the victory of US-led neoconservative and neoliberal projects, promoting, as they put it, “American global leadership”. Led by William Kristol and Robert Kagan, all those PNAC characters today look positively ridiculous in their delusions.   

Most of them staunch Zionists, they had translated the pathological colonial interests of Israel into US foreign policy and called it “a new American century!”. Before they were all exposed for their pitiful banality, they had convinced George W Bush and Dick Cheney of their prophetic missions. They destroyed an entire country, Iraq, with criminal intent, propagating their delusional myth of “American leadership”.   

Today, there are sober Americans like Martin Kaplan who in his 2017 essay Trump and the End of the American Century mourns the decline of US leadership, denounces Trump, and then concludes: “We all must respond to the unexpected and depressing challenge of the United States forsaking its historical democratic and human rights leadership, both internationally and within the United States.” But what leadership, the rest of the world may wonder, when, how?  

The ruling caste of the US – from its slave owner founding fathers to its current president – have been the unqualified source of misery inside and outside of the country. The ending of the calamitous delusion of that history is not something to be mourned.       

The world after the American empire 

A mere 20 years ago the cleanshaven neoconservative gangsters thought they were about to rule the world. Three years into the Trump presidency, amid disastrous public health failures that have exposed millions of Americans to a deadly pandemic, the very economic and human foundation of their republic is going to pieces. Massive social protest aims at an irrevocable dismantling of American racism. Streets of Oregon, Seattle, Oakland, Chicago and New York look like scenes from a military coup in Guatemala or Chile. Meanwhile, like a tinpot dictator American racism made us believe could only emerge in Asia, Africa or Latin America, the US president is dismantling the US postal system to be able to cheat and get himself re-elected.  

America’s aggressions, brutal militarism, and disregard for people’s democratic will around the globe have now come full circle and boomeranged into its domestic affairs. With Trump and his Republican followers “kneecapping” the post office, as former President Obama put it, to suppress votes and guarantee the president’s re-election, the US is now en route to an election as ridiculous as the ones we have witnessed in Syria, Egypt or even Iran in the past.   

The post-American world will paradoxically liberate America from its own dangerous delusions and bring American people back to the bosom of humanity at large. America will only be liberated when it comes to terms with its irredeemable racist history and dismantles all its racist institutions. And the coast to coast uprising we are witnessing today is aiming to do just that: to retrieve the repressed republican aspirations of the best of Americans and use them to dismantle the imperial arrogance of the worst.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial stance.      



Source – www.aljazeera.com

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Charles Mbire gains $1.2 million as stake in MTN Uganda rises above $51 million

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Ugandan businessman and MTN Uganda Chairman Charles Mbire has seen the market value of his stake in MTN Uganda surge above $51 million in just two days, as the share price in the leading teleco company increased by a single digit.

The single-digit bump in the share price caused the market value of Mbire’s stake to gain UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million) in less than two days.

The million-dollar increase in the value of his stake came after Uganda’s largest telecom company delivered the country’s largest-ever IPO through the listing of 22.4 billion ordinary shares on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE).

Upon completing the largest IPO in Uganda’s history, MTN Uganda raised a record UGX535 billion ($150.4 million) from the applications that it received for a total of 2.9 billion shares, including incentive shares.

As of press time, Dec. 7, shares in the company were trading at UGX204.95 ($0.0574), down six basis points from their opening price this morning.

Data gathered by Billionaires.Africa revealed that since the telecom company registered its shares on the Ugandan bourse on Mon., Dec. 6, its share price has increased by 2.5 percent from UGX200 ($0.056) to UGX204.95 ($0.0574) as of the time of writing, as retail investors sustained buying interest long after the public offering.

The increase in the company’s share price caused the market value of Mbire’s 3.98-percent stake to rise from UGX178.45 billion ($49.96 million) to UGX182.86 billion ($51.2 million).

In less than two days, his stake gained more than UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million).

In a statement after the successful listing of MTN Uganda’s shares, Mbire said the IPO shows the confidence that Ugandans and other investors have in the company, its brand and strategic intent.

“We commend all the regulators for their support in our work to become a USE-listed company and to comply in a timely manner with the listing provisions of the national telecommunications operators’ license,” he said.

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350 million (debt free).

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350. ( debt free).

He is into communications-revenue assurance-cement-distribution-oil services-real estate-oil exploration and logistics.

Source: Billionaires Africa

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2-year-old dies at Arua hospital as nurse demands Shs 210,000 bribe

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A two-year-old child died at Arua Regional Referral hospital after a nurse, Paul Wamala demanded a bribe amounting to Shs 210,000 before carrying out an operation. 

The incident happened on Saturday, after Aron Nabil, a two-year-old child was referred to the hospital for an operation after he was diagnosed with intestinal obstruction, a medical emergency caused by a blockage that keeps food or liquid from passing through the small intestine or large intestine.

According to the relatives of the child, Wamala allegedly asked them to initially give him Shs 30,000 to buy medicines to commence the procedure. He however returned shortly asking for an additional Shs 180,000 from the relatives.

Emily Adiru, a resident of Osu cell, in Bazar Ward, Central Division, and a relative of the child says although they paid money to Wamala, he abandoned the child without carrying out the operation. According to Adiru, Wamala later refunded Shs 200,000 through mobile money, after she threatened to report him to the police.

“They told us this boy needs an operation which was supposed to be done in the morning on Sunday at around 7 am. They took him inside there, some doctor came from the theatre, he called one of us and said, we should pay Shs 70,000 for buying medicine to start the operation. We paid the Shs 30,000 [but] after paying the Shs 30,000, after some minutes, the same man came and opened the door and called us again, and told us we should pay another Shs 100,000. We also paid the Shs 100,000 and we thought it is finished. We were outside there waiting for our patient to come out [but] then this man came back again and said we should pay another Shs 80,000,” said Adiru.

Although the operation was later carried out after a 7-hour delay, the child didn’t make it, and relatives attribute the death to negligence. Miria Ahmed, a concerned resident wonders why such incidents have persisted at the facility which is supposed to service the citizens.

“Is the problem the hospital, is it the management or it is the human resource that is the problem in the hospital? A small child like this you demand Shs 210,000 for the operation? Well, if the money was taken and the operation is done, I would say anything bad but this money was taken and the small boy was abandoned in the theatre,” she said. 

When contacted Wamala refused to comment on the allegations. Dr Gilbert Aniku, the acting hospital director says that the hospital will issue an official statement later since consultations about the matter are ongoing.

Arua City resident district commissioner, Alice Akello has condemned the actions of the nurse saying she has ordered his arrest so as to set an example to the rest. The case has been reported to Arua regional referral hospital police post under SD reference No:05/30/05/2022.



Source – observer.ug

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Mexican president’s Mayan Train dealt new legal setback | Tourism News

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Activists say the planned tourist train will harm the wildlife and natural features of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has been dealt the latest setback to an ambitious plan to create a tourist train to connect the country’s southern Yucatan Peninsula.

On Monday, a judge indefinitely suspended construction on a portion of the project, known as the Mayan Train, saying the plans currently do not comply “with the proceedings of the environmental impact evaluation”.

The ruling follows a legal challenge by activists who said they were concerned the 60km (37 mile) portion of the train that would connect the resorts of Playa del Carmen and Tulum would adversely affect the area’s wildlife, as well as its caves and water-filled sinkholes known as cenotes.

The original plan for the disputed section was for an overpass over a highway, but the route was modified early this year to go through jungle at ground level.

The federal judge cited the “imminent danger” of causing “irreversible damage” to ecosystems, according to one of the plaintiffs, the non-governmental group Defending the Right to a Healthy Environment. In a statement, the group said that authorities had failed to carry out the necessary environmental impact studies before starting construction of the section.

Lopez Obrador had announced the ambitious project in 2018, with construction beginning in 2020. The roughly 1,500km (930 mile) cargo and passenger rail loop was presented as a cornerstone of a wider plan to develop the poorer states and remote towns throughout the about 181,000sq km (70,000sq mile) Yucatan Peninsula.

The railway is set to connect Caribbean beach resorts with Mayan archaeological ruins, with authorities aiming to complete the project by the end of 2023. The plan is estimated to cost about $16bn.

The project has split communities across the region, with some welcoming the economic development and connectivity it would bring. Others, including some local Indigenous communities, have challenged the project, saying it could not only disrupt the migratory routes of endangered species, including jaguars, tapirs and ocelots, but could also potentially damage centuries-old Mayan archaeological sites.

The National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism, the government agency overseeing the project, has said that it expects to “overcome” the latest challenge and that work should continue after an environmental impact statement is finalised. It said the Environment Ministry was currently reviewing its environmental application for the project.

For his part, Lopez Obrador has insisted the railway will not have a significant environmental effect and has accused activists of being infiltrated by “impostors”.



Source – www.aljazeera.com

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