Over the years, many militants and rebel groups have propped up across Africa: the Al-Shabbab, the Tuareg Rebels (Mali), the Lord’s Resistance Army (Uganda), the National Liberation Forces (Burundi), The West Side Boys (Sierra Leon), Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FLR), the Congolese Revolutionary Movement (DR Congo) the Somali Pirates, Boko Haram (Nigeria), The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Nigeria) and many more.
Shockingly, many of them have often been spotted carrying very sophisticated weapons RPG-7, ZPU, and many weapons that can take down planes (anti-aircraft missiles). These are not weapons that could be manufactured in Nigeria, Somalia nor Uganda. Therefore how do these militants receive the weapons? Some of the answers are not far-fetched.
During NATO’s war in Libya (2011), France and Qatar under the UN’s watch delivered weapons in large quantities to the rebels whom the Western press often referred to as “activists” and “revolutionaries”. In addition to the weapons, the rebels also received communication equipment which facilitated and coordinated their movements across the continent smoothly. Since many of the rebels consider themselves to be “allies”, who are working for a common purpose, it wasn’t difficult for some of the weapons that were delivered to rebels in Libya to be quickly mobilized and smuggled to other rebel groups in the West African region. It was recently reported that large amount of weapons from Libya have been found in Nigeria.
Al-Shabaab rebels with large quantities of RPG missiles
In fact, the nature of weapons that are currently in the rebel’s hands are too sophisticated and expensive that the cost may run into hundreds of millions of US dollars. Is it a wonder that these rebels were able to recently capture many towns and cities in the Central African Republic, where they ordered many government forces to surrender? Rebels in the Central African Republic, with a population of about five million, is notorious for unrest including coups, army mutinies and rebellions.
But how could the rebel fighters, many of whom are often wanted for prosecution get the ability to buy those expensive weapons in such large quantities with impunity? No matter how rich the rebel leaders might be at any point, their continues ability to afford the weapons in large quantities for such a very long period of time would be impossible to imagine, if they have no form of foreign sponsorship and the corporation of a few puppet politicians here in Africa.
Libya: The Looting Continues Amid Crises
For the past one year, Libya, one of the most economically viable countries in Africa has been thrown into chaos and civil war: a war which was supposed to have brought about so-called democracy. Instead, the chaos has spread far and wide, resulting in loss of many more lives that go unreported. But for the recent incident at the US Embassy Benghazi, the state of Libya had always remained a mystery to those in the western world as the media continues to spread lies rather that the truth. We had been made to believe that Gaddafi was dead and the people now dwell in peace and harmony, enjoying democracy whiles weapons flow on the streets like the river.
Under normal circumstance, one would expect that the parties to the conflict would have run out of weapons and prompt an immediate ceasefire. However, since war is a big business that often profits the arms industries, weapons will never run short in the troubled country. There will always be those that will ensure the conflict is prolonged for as long as profitable.
In spite of this, the corporate media will never want the world to know the reality on the ground.
Foreign-Funded NGOs and The Spread of Terrorism In Africa Recently, the Nigerian Tribune had it that Boko Haram receives funding from different groups from Saudi Arabia and the UK, specifically from the Al-Muntada Trust Fund, headquartered in the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia’s Islamic World Society.
Under normal circumstance, African leaders should have been treated this news as a very serious issue and given a critical attention by the Federal Government of Nigeria. But of course the Western mainstream media is not interested in this revelation. After all, whose interest does it serve in the West for their media to highlight that many of their so-called NGOs are indeed sponsors of terrorism in Africa?
In another instance, a Nigerian military task force stormed a militant hideout in the city and recovered six assembled bombs and another one under construction, Lieutenant Iweha Ikedichi told reporters. The bombs were made with drink cans and a drum of around 50 litres. This is an indication that the terrorists in Nigeria currently have experts who know how to assemble bombs. The fact that the militants can now manufacture bombs right in Nigeria in itself is a clear indication that outside forces are at work in the troubled country.
But the question still remains: who supplies them with intelligence? Who provide these rebels with funding and logistics? Do the rebels have the freedom to place such order for large quantities of weapons without any help from those in authority? The answer is not far fetched. After all it is well known that rebel leaders such as Charles Taylor was secretly funded and supported by certain Western countries, this rebel leader unleashed serious chaos Across the West African region for many years.
Therefore one should ask, why does the western intelligence always have prior knowledge before such bombs explode in Nigeria and elsewhere in Africa? Is there anybody in the rebel groups that coordinates programs with foreign intelligence agencies? If that is the case, why can’t such information rather lead to the successful arrest of these militants instead of merely specifying targets they often select for such attacks?
It is high time Africans begun finding answers to some of these questions. Until then, let us pretend we have no idea and continue to stay unconcerned and watch while these rebel groups gradually take over our once peaceful continent, and spread the chaos, instability, wars and many more wars across Africa.
Honourable Saka is the project coordinator for Project Pan-Africa (PPA). Visit PPA at: www.projectpanafrica.org and make your voice heard on the most pressing issues in Africa. You may E-mail him at: email@example.com. firstname.lastname@example.org