Why is Africa the Poorest Continent in the World? By Jason Ford

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(Africa has the most natural resources and the most gold [%54], yet next to none of it goes to any African nation)

I’m surprised but not entirely shocked by the uninformed answers to this question. Most are unintentionally racist, with answers mentioning low IQ, laziness and lack of ability. However this disinformation isn’t accidental. Demonetization of Africa helped sell the ideas leading to Africans current state. The above person “” answered it perfectly. “It’s the “poorest” because it is the richest in the world.”

Sysops: African has the most natural resources of any one continent. Europeans learn how to conquer in the new world with the conquest of the Aztecs in the Americas. African depictions in Europe change from Noble people to savages (on purpose). Europeans and Arabs plotted to take the wealth from African Kingdoms, European Kingdoms politically exploited weak relationships between African kingdoms, this caused infighting then eventually lead to war and the west African slave trade, the land was then annex and colonized, the notion of Africans being poor and a slave class is taught throughout Europe and the world to justify what was done to the continent.

Pre-Colonization:

Africa has diamonds, salt, gold, iron, cobalt, uranium, copper, bauxite, silver, petroleum, and other natural resources, the most of ANY continent, . One of the first known Universities in the ancient world was in Africa ,. In Europe, following the dark ages, disease and over population pushed Europeans to explore the rest of the world. Previously most interactions with Africans were amicable. Shakespeare wrote stories about the noble Moore (Othello). Greeks and Romans requested literature from Timbuktu that contained mathematics and helped philosophers with their theories. Africans were welcomed and treated as equals in many European countries, people such as Kenneth the Black from Niger, a sailor, whom settled in Scotland married into a Scottish Clan.

Because of its implications this story it has been dismissed as local folklore by some historians, however due to DNA evidence the folklore is being re-investigated, , .

The Conquest:

Most of Western Europe suffered from disease, unemployment, over-farmed land, social instability, and because of this many viewed Africa as an opportunity to exploit. Around the late 1500 and early 1600 the narrative of the noble African began to change. Africa was viewed as a threat because of its wealth and during this time Europeans also began trade with Asia. The Chinese had gun powder and invented a rudimentary Gun. This gun was refined into a musket and a canon. During this time in the New World Cortez defeated the Aztecs with guns and a relatively small number of men. The concurred land was rich in gold and helped make Spain into a Superpower.

Spain becoming a superpower was too much of a temptation to be overlooked by other European Kingdoms. The French, British, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, and others learned to art of conquest by causing infighting among the Native American Kingdoms in the Americas. Once distracted it was easier to conquer them. Many took notes and applied their knowledge to African Kingdoms. European kingdoms made agreements with other African Kingdoms to fight against their African rivals. When the rival were defeated the people were enslaved and the land colonized. Most African Kingdoms were fine with the slavery however they didn’t like the colonization because it wasn’t part of the agreement. At this point the African Kingdoms viewed this as a act of betrayal and an act of war.

Historically different African Kingdoms would partner to defeat a common enemy however since many allowed/encouraged their neighboring Kingdoms to be defeated it greatly weakened their fighting posture. The Mali empire in particular failed because of this technique. Their land was eventually colonized however they didn’t fall until 1892. Ethiopia was the only Kingdom to successfully fight off the Europeans colonial powers.

Liberia was founded by African-American/Afro-Caribbeans/Afro-Latinos/former slaves however this was largely do to European intervention.

The Scramble for Africa:

Once Africa was basically defeated a period began when European Kingdoms decided on how Africa would be divided. This was called the “Scramble for Africa”. Slavery was always present in Africa, Europa, Asia, and the rest of the world, however the African slave trade sought to dehumanize African into a beast of burden status, for major profit. Some Africans were captured and put into European Zoos.

(This wasn’t limited to Africans.)

The concept of Race was popularized in Europe and taught as science. It stated whites (Europeans) were superior to all and the “Negro” was more closely related to the monkey than a Human . It was taught that “Negroes” were the product of mixing with troglodytes (cave men) and other non-humans. (This concept was still popular in modern times until DNA evidence recently showed that all non-Africans are part Neanderthal, .)

(The depiction of how cave men acted and looked drastically changed even-tho the basic evidence related to “cave men” remained the same, this is an example of Institutional bias, which is influence by the concepts of race.)

This concept helped to sell the notion that colonization and racism was ok and part of the natural order.

Even some Europeans that didn’t partake in the conquest of Africa were considered lesser people (The Irish and Slovak people were often criticized).

All of the European colonial powers divided Africa up into sections, many of these sections were not along their original kingdom boundaries (Very important in relation to modern African Conflicts). The wealth Western society enjoys today is directly related to the wealth acquired during this period,

Independence (Decolonisation of Africa) – to Current day:

Due to moral pressure and some economic pressures by native Africans many African nations gained their Independence by in the 1950’s 60’s and 70’s. Independence was a double edged sword, it give many countries their freedom however most of the infrastructure was designed to remove wealth from their country and not to maintain it. Many of the deals made with European countries to gain independence essentially continued to hand over the majority of the natural resources to their former colonial powers (the price of freedom). Today most of these countries are poor. Some agreements like dual citizenship with their former colonial countries did aide in education with some citizens however it did nothing to reverse the centuries of exploitation and subjugation (both past and current).

One notable lasting hindrance to progress in many African nations is unresolved ethnic differences. When Europeans divided up the land they destroyed a lot of the existing culture and forced people who were ancestral enemies to live in the same land. To make things worse, introducing the concept of Race to Africa, also created an offshoot of racism called colorism. Colorism is when a group of people favor certain characteristics (usually Euro-centric features) over whats considered non euro-centric. This is best documented in the Rwandan Genocide.

During Rwandas colonial period the historical lands of several tribes were divided into one country known today as Rwanda. Rwanda was owned by the Belgians. During this time the Belgians (and many other European countries) Became fascinated by several “race” related books. One of these books was released by National Geographic in 1918 called the Races Of Europe. It introduced the concept of sub-races (These concepts also influenced Hitler). The Belgians noticed some Rwandans had straight noses vs wide ones, some had long faces instead of round ones, some had light brown skin instead of dark brown skin. The Belgians give preferential treatment to people that had “noble” features. In particular the Tutsi ethnic group were taller, and had a straighter nose and were slightly lighter in complexion. They were afforded a better social class than the Hutu and and Twa ethnic groups.

Once Rwanda won its Independence tensions continued to boil. The Tutsi ethnic group continued a system founded on Colorism and tribalism that was blatantly encouraged by the Belgians. Similar to America and South Africa, if a person of a lesser class (Hutu, African-American, Black South African) was accused of committing a crime they would statistically be giving a harsher punishment than a person from a higher class (Tutsi, White-American, White Afrikaner). That eventually lead to the Hutu people carrying out mass genocide on the Tutsi population. . Because of these histories many African nations have inner turmoil because if the colonial periods. Many African leaders post-independence have stronger tribal allegiances opposed to National allegiances, this explains some of the corruption that has plagued many African nations. Africa has made many strides and many nations are in positions to make even bigger strides however because of the centuries of exploitation and colonialist most nations are not as rich as they should be.

Source: Quora

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