Repeating Past Mistakes?
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As the previous page in this section has noted, public pressure1 at G8 Summits and elsewhere have helped bring some of these issues to the fore. Yet,
- Partly due to poor media coverage, lack of full democratic accountability of the rich country leaders, and a number of other factors, not much has actually been done, despite rhetoric.
- The rich countries remain in controlling position, demanding (some might say bribing) poor countries to follow certain practices.
- At the same time, the underlying causes of poverty and unequal trade are never brought up (for it would show the rich countries causing too much injustice to the poor2.)
Will this Summit also be accompanied by a lot of media coverage but a repitition of past practices?
On this page:
Change must come from within, too
Various African commentators have noted that while public protest in the West is welcome, real change will have to come from within. That is,
- There is a risk that even the protests will be along the lines of telling Africans how to get out of their problems
- Instead, what Africa nations really need is to be allowed to stand on their own feet and be allowed to solve their own problems, and where needed, as an equal to outsiders provding much-welcomed assistance.
- Aid is not a matter of charity; it is justice (as much of the poverty, debt and resulting deaths of millions is due to unfair debt imposed by former imperial and colonial countries on newly independent states to repay colonial costs).
- If that outside assistance, even from protesters, is more like prescriptions and continually implies that Africa cannot help itself, then it feels like old colonial style paternal attitudes, which would not be as welcome.
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