Ending Zaire's `Eternal Crisis' and Positions for Advantage from Mobutu's Fall
NATIONAL WAR COLL WASHINGTON DC
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The words crisis and chaos have been so closely associated with central African giant Zaire for so long that they form part of the countrys informal appellation. The literature about Zaire, from V.S. Naipuls 1981 book, A New King for the Congo Mobutu and the Nihilism of Africa to Michael Schatzbergs 1991 tract, Mobutu or Chaos is the literature of despair and despondency. So many observers, in fact, have been writing in increasingly alarming terms of the Zairian tragedy for so long that it is all but impossible to find a positive assessment of the countrys prospects. But Zaire is too important for Africas future -- and, in the long term, given its size, riches and population, for the worlds future -- for us to fail to make the necessary intellectual and economic investment now to ensure a stable, prosperous future for the country. What is more, it is the contention of this paper that the power or powers which move to take up Zaires cause stand to gain a great deal a favored economic and strategic position in Africas richly endowed center, and the sort of sense of humanitarian accomplishment that all modern democratic powers appear to crave.
- Government and Political Science