When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.



Au Revoir Françafrique? Macron Tries To Bury The French Colonial Mindset In Africa

French President Emmanuel Macron has outlined a new policy for France's relationship with Africa, recognizing the need for a departure from post-colonial mindsets. But he faces challenges at home and abroad.


PARIS — One cannot accuse Emmanuel Macron of being unaware that Africa has changed — and that France's approach to the continent must change too. As early as his election in 2017, the French President expressed this sentiment in a speech to students in Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso, and reiterated it last year at the Africa-France Summit in Montpellier, where he once again spoke to the younger generation.

He has finally outlined the contours of a new policy that breaks with a colonial past, which is still not forgotten, before embarking on an important trip to Central Africa (Gabon, Angola, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo) on Wednesday.

The problem is that changing direction is particularly difficult when burdened with the weight of colonial and post-colonial history, as well as France’s misguided old reflexes.

Watch VideoShow less

Africa's Real Risk For The Future: Brain Drain

The best and the brightest, those with real vision for the future, are more likely to leave their native African countries that continue to be mired in short-term fatalism, corruption and lack of development.


Sixty-six years after Ghana became the first independent country in Africa, the continent continues to struggle with the same problems. There is a lack of a development plan, and the way of life remains "living as you go" — a lifestyle with no plans, no goals and no legacy.

Live today, eat today, without looking at the long term — unless it is another United Nations program that aims to fulfill a Western agenda with no prior local understanding, analysis or context.

Several already well-known problems include lack of water, basic sanitation, lack of respect for individual and civil liberties, corruption and the uneven rule of law that exempts rulers and public administrators from criminal responsibility.

But the biggest problem is the loss of intellectuals and leaders. This brain drain is a result of the following factors: a lack of appreciation for local citizens, and their persecution when they respond and bring to the table discussions about specific problems.

Keep reading...Show less

Lourenço's Turn, The Past Hanging Over Angola's New President

João Lourenço succeeds José Eduardo Dos Santos, who ruled with an iron fist since 1979. But Dos Santos has been busy keeping his hands on the levers of power.


For the first time since 1979, Angola has a new president. João Lourenço was the obvious candidate to succeed José Eduardo Dos Santos: His long rise — first through the military, where he became general, and later through the People's Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), the governing party since the country's independence from Portuguese rule in 1975 — concluded in his easy victory in the election held on Aug. 23, 2017.

Keep reading...Show less

Jailed Hip Hop Star Leads Democratic Movement In Angola

A new wave of democratic protests has been spreading across Africa, from Angola to Burkina Faso and beyond, as several long-time leaders look to extend their rule for as long as they can, often defying their country's own constitution.

Front and center in these popular movements have been several prominent hip hop stars. The French-language weekly Jeune Afrique reports that Luaty da Silva Beirão, a 33-year-old Angolan rapper has now been kept in preventive detention for four months — well above the 90 days allowed by law.

Keep reading...Show less
Christophe Châtelot

An African City Tears Down Its History To Build A "New Dubai"

LUANDA - The curtain will soon be rung down for the last time at the Elinga Theater in Angola’s capital, Luanda.

The theater, where many rebellious artists got their start, holds an important place in Angolan culture. But it will soon be destroyed, its pink walls reduced to rubble by bulldozers. Like so many old buildings in the heart of the Angolan capital, it fell foul of real estate promoters attracted by the oil business. A former Portuguese colony, Angola is the second-biggest producer of oil in sub-Saharan Africa.

Watch VideoShow less