Post-Colonial Moment: Debt Relief for Africa

UK Prime Tony Blair is in Washington to announce a joint initiative with President Bush to pledge $674 million in aid to Africa. Most of the aid will be spent on famine relief in Ethiopia and Eritrea and other humanitarian needs in Africa. The US is critical of Britian's plan to give the continent full debt relief and relaxed trade subsidies. However the US is being criticized by development experts for not giving enough aid.

But other questions come to mind: Is it the responsibility of the West to dig Africa out of its dismal economic hole? Some would say that the reason Africa is in the bad sharp it is in because of European colonialism of the past which has evolved into globalization today. However, looking at the history of dictatorships, from Idi Amin to Mobutu Sese Seko to Robert Mugabe to countless others, the problems faces the continent seem to partially be the blame of corruption within its own ranks. Is it Africa's responsiblity to fix its own problems?


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