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China-Africa strategic partnership
Over the past decades, China helped build 19 schools, 38 hospitals and several stadiums with 760,000 seats in Africa, Bo said, citing statistics of the Commerce Ministry which is responsible for China's foreign aid.
Schools, medical facilities and assorted infrastructures on their own hardly qualify as strategic.
African leaders needs more than those from China to ensure the perpetuation of their power. And China needs also to protect their investment ie sites of energy and mineral resources.
What's get left out of the minister's press briefing is the hugh market that Africa is for China's arms and military hardware. The trades in military equipments and weapons also offset the costs of acquiring all those resources for China. And create a sort of dependent relationship, one that the Africans will find refreshing from all those other aids from the west thats almost always tied to niggling "conditions" of human rights and open transparent government.
Nothing much has changed from when its during the Cold War, when China would supply arms to their favorite guerilla forces and marxist governments on the continents.
The difference is now, with the demise of the Soviet Union and perceived neglect by the US, China has almost the entire continent to itself. The French(read NATO) is one of the few significant competition left, but really not a whole lot at that.
With its stated policy of non interference in others sovereign affairs, China faces fewer moral inhibitions than its western counterparts.
That means jets and radio jamming equipments for Mugabeland, helicopter gunships the Sudanese found very useful in Darfur, the supply of arms to both warring sides of the Eritrea-Ethiopia conflicts in the 90s.
China also sends military advisers and maintains peacekeepers in Africa, the better to familiarize their military personnel with the terrains of possible future conflicts. And to pave the way for further security cooperation and arms deals.
P.S. The minister comes with impressive revolutionary pedigree. His father, Bo Yibo, who died just last year had been one of the CCP Greats, who led the party in Shanxi. China has gotten very refined and sophisticated in exporting their revolution worldwide. If you didn't know better, you would think its one of capitalist.
[ Last edited by diaboloist at 2007-3-14 05:07 PM ]