Monday August 3rd, 2015, 7:21 pm (EDT)

Dear Reader,

We place these articles at no charge on our website to serve all the people who cannot afford Monthly Review, or who cannot get access to it where they live. Many of our most devoted readers are outside of the United States. If you read our articles online and you can afford a subscription to our print edition, we would very much appreciate it if you would consider purchasing one. Please visit the MR store for subscription options. Thank you very much. —Eds.

Imperialism and Anti-Imperialism in Africa

Horace Campbell is professor of African American studies and political science at Syracuse University. He is the author of Global NATO and the Catastrophic Failure in Libya (Monthly Review Press, 2013), as well as Rasta and Resistance (1987) and Barack Obama and 21st Century Politics (2010).
One of the most serious errors, if not the most serious error, committed by colonial powers in Africa, may have been to ignore or underestimate the cultural strength of the African peoples. —Amilcar Cabral1

When international media were broadcasting live video footage of Tunisians gathering in hundreds of thousands in front of the central office in Tunis of the long-terrifying ministry of home security, chanting in one voice “the people want to bring down the regime,” something had already changed: ordinary people realized they could make huge changes.2 Weeks later, the Egyptian uprising removed the Mubarak regime that had been entrenched in power for over thirty years. Fearmongering, police violence, exploitation, and rigged electoral systems could not stop the wave of protests. The neoliberal forms of imperial rule that had destroyed the hopes of the liberation movements were under attack. In order to counter the possibilities for a massive breakthrough at the popular level, the Western forces mounted an invasion of Libya using the mantra of humanitarianism to disrupt, militarily, political and economic life in Africa. Later in collusion with the counter-revolutionary forces in the Egyptian military, Western imperialism sought to roll back the gains of people in the streets of Tunis and Cairo. NATO, as the force for the defense of the financial oligarchs, sought to squash all forms of anti-imperialism in Africa, but the NATO intervention and its catastrophic aftermath only strengthened the resurgence of anti-imperialist ideas among the peoples of Africa.3

This article will be published in full on Monday, August 10th

NOTE: E-subscribers may login using the form in the right column of this page. Current associate and print subscribers will soon be given unique user names and passwords to access this (HTML) content. If you would like a password right away you can contact MR (subscription inquiry). However, current associate and print subscribers may also simply use the archive user name and password (located at the back of each issue&emdash;credentials are good for three months hence) to view PDF versions of this and other articles in this issue by browsing the MR Archives Website.