World View: Soldiers of Central African Republic Commit Gory Lynching
This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com
- Another gory lynching in Central African Republic, this time by soldiers
- China struggles to import food from around the world
- U.S. challenges China on South China Sea claims
Another gory lynching in Central African Republic, this time by soldiers
Soldiers in the Central African Republic, the ones who are supposed to
bring peace to the CAR, brutally lynched a man on Wednesday, right at
the end of a ceremony for the new president, Catherine Samba-Panza.
Speaking to the assembled soldiers, Samba-Panza said they would be
paid salaries for the first time in five months, and said:
I would like to renew my pride in those elements of
FACA [Armed Forces of the Central African Republic] who are here
and to ask them to support my actions wherever they
As soon as she left, soldiers grabbed a bystander, accused him of
being from the Seleka militia, and then lynched him with knives and
bricks, kicking him to the ground, stripping him to his underwear, and
stabbing him over and over. Attempts to save the man only made the
mob even more furious. All of this took place in front of reporters
from AP, AFP, and Reuters.
What makes this different even from the conflict in Syria is its raw,
personal, man-to-man brutality. In Syria, you have the genocidal
monster president Bashar al-Assad conducting "industrial strength"
torture and extermination on his own civilians. The war in Syria
might well end if al-Assad stepped down. In the case of al-Qaeda-linked jihadists, you have mass murder through bombings of markets and
mosques, and some tortures and individual murders.
In CAR, this kind of lynching is going on now across the country by self-directed individuals. What makes today's story unique is that
it's done by soldiers in front of international reporters. The only
other country where this level of personal viciousness is occurring is
Burma (Myanmar), where Buddhist mobs are slaughtering entire Muslim
As I've explained several times, CAR's last generational crisis war was
the 1928-1931 Kongo-Wara Rebellion ("War of the Hoe Handle"), which
was a very long time ago, putting CAR deep into a generational Crisis
era, when a new crisis war is increasingly likely. This is
because all the survivors of that war are long gone, and nobody
in the younger generations has any personal memories of
Many people are describing the CAR war in religious terms, as Muslims
versus Christians, and that's true to an extent. However, there's no
evidence that religion has anything to do with it except to identify
members of the two groups. There have been no stories of
priests or imams telling their respective "flocks" that they should go
out and kill people. This is a raw ethnic/tribal war, with the mass
hatred and lynchings coming from ordinary people, not from their
politicians or their clerics. Week after week it's building into
a new generational crisis war of ghastly proportions. National Post (Toronto) and Telegraph (London)
China struggles to import food from around the world
With memories of Mao Zedong's Great Leap Forward of the late 1950s when tens of millions of Chinese died of starvation still in the
minds of many Chinese, almost nothing concerns Chinese officials more
than food security and food self-sufficiency. Yet with a huge and
growing population and demand for food, in the face of fast-depleting
water, land, and labor resources, China is actually less
self-sufficient, and depends on food imports, especially from the
United States, to feed itself.
To better safeguard the country’s food security, China is trying to
diversify its food imports away from the US, to build its own global
food supply system by investing in overseas agricultural resources.
In Central Asia, China leases or controls hundreds of thousands of
hectares of farmland in Tajikistan and Kazakhstan.
In 2012, China contributed $1 billion to a joint Russia-China fund to
invest in agriculture and timber in Russia, leasing 600,000 hectares
of land and 800,000 hectares of forests.
China is expanding agricultural trade with Europe, especially leading
food exporters in France, the Netherlands, and Germany. An interesting
footnote to the continuing political confrontation in Ukraine is that China
has loaned $3 billion to Ukraine to develop its agriculture, in return
for which, Ukraine exports corn to China.
From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, China is headed for
both a world war and an internal civil war. The internal war would be
triggered by unemployment or food shortages, as has happened
repeatedly in China's history. S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS)
U.S. challenges China on South China Sea claims
Philippine President Benigno Aquino recently called on world leaders
not to "appease" China and drew a parallel to the 1938 decision to
give Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland to Adolf Hitler's Germany. This is
the same point that I've been making for several years, when I referred to China's "Lebensraum" policy. China is claiming vast areas of the
South China Sea, including regions that that have historically
belonged to Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines,
and has threatened to use its vast military power to threaten and
subdue any neighboring nation that disobeys its orders.
Last year, the Philippines decided to challenge China's claims by
submitting the case to a United Nations tribunal for adjudication.
China contemptuously denounced that attempt, saying that everything in
the South China Sea belongs to China, and nobody but China has the
right to decide what belongs to China.
On Wednesday, Danny Russel, the US assistant secretary of state for
East Asian and Pacific affairs, said:
Any Chinese claim to maritime rights not based on
claimed land features would be inconsistent with international
China could highlight its respect for international law by
clarifying or adjusting its claim to bring it into accordance with
international law of the sea.
I believe that the reference to the phrase "claimed land features"
means that if the James Shoal is right off the coast of Malaysia, and
thousands of miles from China, then that region belongs to Malaysia,
not to China.
Tensions have been growing in the South China Sea because of China's
military belligerence. Russel's statement is certain to bring new
angry denunciations from the Chinese. AFP
Permanent web link to this article
Receive daily World View columns by e-mail