The US president is expected to schedule a summit soon to strengthen ties between his country and Africa. Ridiculous technique? His counterparts nevertheless remain fond of these meetings …
The neo-Pan-Africanists insist on repeating it in their galvanizing diatribes: that Africa in search of humanist development expect nothing decisive from the Oval Office of the White House which hosted, without the slightest Afro-loving flamboyance, a Kenyan son. However, after President Trump’s snub towards the continent, the coming to power of Barack Obama’s former right-hand man seemed to announce a presidential mandate tinged with respect for Africa, both in declarations of intent and in the cast of an administration champion of diversity.
Similarly, the freshman Joe Biden had sketched a project for a summit of African heads of state comparable to that organized in 2014, when he was vice-president. Last February, the day after a speech on US foreign policy, the 46th President of the United States even sent a video message to the 34th African Union summit, citing a possible face-to-face visit to the African Union. next summit of the pan-African institution.
A year after the election of the current president, things seem to be clearer, even without a timetable. And if Biden doesn’t come to Africans, maybe Biden will bring Africans to him again. Privilege of age in an African culture that values the elders? Many African heads of state are older than the 79-year-old Rican Commander-in-Chief …
Washington is aware of losing ground in Africa, especially against Beijing.
It was in Abuja, this Friday, that Antony Blinken – reputed to be a connoisseur of Africa – announced the forthcoming organization of a meeting to strengthen the ties of the United States with the continent: “President Biden at the ‘intention to host a summit with American and African officials to pursue a high-level diplomatic policy (…) which will transform relations and make effective cooperation possible ”. The US foreign minister was on his first visit to sub-Saharan Africa as secretary of state.
Competition from Moscow and Beijing
Is the United States giving in to the Russian, Japanese, British or French competition which prizes these recurring high masses with African leaders? In a few weeks, China should hold a meeting in Senegal. And Washington is aware of losing ground in Africa, especially against Beijing.
In 25 to 30 years, one in four people in the world will be African
Blinken did not specify the date of this possible United States – Africa summit. As for its provisional content, will it go beyond the traditional management of economic crises and declarations of good intentions on “peace” and “living together”?
Monday, in the interview he gave to Young Africa, the US Secretary of State unveiled the priority African subjects for his country: the perceived decline of democracy, persistent insecurity in the Sahel, the management of the crisis around Western Sahara, investments in infrastructure, inclusive growth and , behind the scenes, climate and health issues… “In 25 to 30 years, one in four people in the world will be African” chants Antony Blinken.
Let’s hope that the possible African-American jamboree that is coming up will not end up in a choir of incantations …