Liberal Democrats shamefully all voted for the “Countering Malign Russian Influence Activities in Africa” Act—seems like relic from bygone era
During the Cold War, the U.S. government invoked the pretext of Russian interference to justify a range of crimes, including the assassination of Congolese Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba, the overthrow of Pan-Africanist hero Kwame Nkrumah, the arrest of Nelson Mandela and intervention in the Angolan civil war.
Just when we thought that that era had passed, the House of Representatives on April 27 passed the “Countering Malign Russian Influence Activities in Africa” Act by a 415-9 vote.
The bill in part would direct the U.S. Secretary of State, using “detailed intelligence,” to identify in Africa “local actors complicit in Russian activities.”
The U.S. in turn may very well seek to punish those actors through economic sanctions or even regime change. “Russian aggression” is generally being invoked to justify greater U.S. intervention in Africa, including the expansion of the Africa Command (AFRICOM) and U.S. military base network across the continent.
Exceptional Show of Bipartisan Support
The Nay votes for the “Countering Malign Russian Influence Activities in Africa” Act all came from Republicans. Supposed progressive stalwarts like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Barbara Lee, Ro Khanna and members of the “Squad” all voted Yea.
The main sponsor of the bill, Gregory Meeks (D-NY), is Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
After passage of the bill, he voiced his pride in the “exceptional show of bipartisan support,” which he said “demonstrated how Putin’s war in Ukraine, and the Kremlin’s corrupt and illicit activities in Africa to fund war and other exploits have worked to unify Congress and the international community.”
Meeks continued: “As we continue to apply pressure on Putin and his agents for carrying out war crimes throughout this unjustifiable war of aggression, we cannot forget that the Russian Federation will continue to seek avenues through which it can pilfer, manipulate, and exploit resources in parts of Africa to evade sanctions and undermine U.S. interests.”
“The United States not only stands with the people of Ukraine, but with all innocent people who have been victimized by Putin’s mercenaries and agents credibly accused of gross violations of human rights in Africa, including in the Central African Republic and Mali. This bill enlists the resources of the State Department and other federal agencies to examine the Russian Federation’s malign activities in Africa and hold those complicit in these activities to account. The United States will not sit by and watch Putin’s war machine attempt to gain strength to the detriment of fragile states in Africa and elsewhere.”
While the Russians have been involved in some shady operations, many African countries have had long-standing positive ties to Russia and benefitted from its support for African liberation movements during the Cold War—in contrast to the U.S.—including in South Africa.
Meeks’s comments mostly offer a form of projection in that they accuse Russia of trying to exploit Africa’s resources when this is clearly something that the U.S. has done far more extensively and for a much longer period than Russia.
AFRICOM founder Vice Admiral Robert Moeller admitted that one of the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM)’s guiding principles was “protecting the free flow of natural resources from Africa to the global market.”
The “Countering Malign Russian Influence Activities in Africa” Act will be used to justify flagrant infringements on the sovereignty of African countries. It attempts to use the Russian bogeyman—like in the Cold War era—as a pretext for neocolonial expansion.
The rhetoric surrounding the bill fits with the larger demonization of Vladimir Putin and Russia, which is a desperate ploy by the U.S. ruling elite to try to mobilize the public against a foreign enemy at a time of growing economic crisis and threatening civil discontent.
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About the Author
Richard Dunn is a retired construction professional, trained in Architecture and Energy Management.
He’s been a social justice activist since 1968 and was particularly active with the Walter Rodney defense demonstrations.
Richard is an author, a contributing columnist to newspapers, an editor for a music industry magazine and operates a social justice website.
Richard can be reached at: email@example.com.
Just an excuse to fund CIA coups.
Demonizing Russia with the Ukraine lies, is no different than demonizing Arabs with the 9/11 lies.
Does this website still hide the Jew run 9/11 deception?
Is this website run by nasty Jews?
Why is the USA, Russia, Ukraine all run by nasty Jew Billionaires?
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[…] New Bill That Passed House Reinvokes Old Russian Bogeyman as Pretext For More U.S. Intervention in A… […]
It is so sad to see Africa again suffering from external big power intrusion, harking back to the so-called “Scramble for Africa” in the late 19th century. In this very late stage of capitalism, imperial competition threatens the very existence of all humankind. Besides CAM, another American-based excellent NGO trying to counter this is World Beyond War and its co-sister Roots Action. All power to your arms!
Usually congress is very divided with about 50 % voting no and about 50 % percent voting yes. The fact that 98 % voted yes and 2 % voted no leads me to believe that there were genuine reasons for voting yes on this bill. It is not is if they are all a bunch of dummies. Many of them are highly intelligent and thoughtful.
Thank you for this article. All very well, but having spent 7 years in Geneva in close contact with the United Nations, I am 100% certain the situation described by Richard S Dunn is and has always been purposely created by the five friends/colleagues who direct the UN Security Council: US, Russia, UK, France, China). Without competition, without criticism, without verbal attack, the war industry cannot prosper. I have sat at the same table with American and Russian politicians and diplomats much enjoying each other’s company, agreeing on things they’ll disagree in public. In short, a comedy, a parody, a very tragic game that we, the innocent voters, have to pay for.
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These weakling liberals make me sick, and then they sit around and wonder why people are attracted to authoritarianism when they stand for nothing, have no ethics, have no leadership skills, just fall in line like the cheap dominoes they are.