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April 19 2014

From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Sat Apr 19 2014, 12:55:00

The International Crisis Group (ICG) published on 16 April 2014 a commentary titled "Losing Hearts and Minds in Kenya" by Cedric Barnes, ICG Horn of Africa project director. Barnes concludes that Kenya's roundup of Somalis looks like collective punishment of a minority group that will only marginalize and radicalize Somalis.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Sat Apr 19 2014, 11:33:00

The Satellite Sentinel Project (SSP) published on 25 April 2014 a warning concerning the mobilization of Sudan Armed Forces in the Nuba Mountains, South Kordofan. SSP suggests the mobilization is designed for an assault on Sudan Revolutionary Front bases in the Kauda Valley.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Sat Apr 19 2014, 11:15:00

Tadias Magazine did a brief review of a new book titled Black Ethiopia: A Glimpse into African Diplomacy, 1956-1991 by Belete Belachew Yihun. Published by Tsehai Publishers, it deals with the diplomatic legacy of Haile Selassie.

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April 17 2014

From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Thu Apr 17 2014, 21:55:00

Washington-based Brookings published a commentary on 14 April 2014 titled "Xi Jinping's Africa Policy: The First Year" by Yun Sun, visiting fellow at the Africa Growth Initiative.

Yun Sun argues that China under Xi Jinping has assertively enhanced its direct involvement in Africa's security affairs, possibly even abandoning it long-term "non-interference" principle to protect its overseas economic interests. Instability and conflicts in Africa have increasingly become a direct challenge to China's economic interests in Africa.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Thu Apr 17 2014, 11:22:00

There has not been a lot of good news coming out of Somalia in recent years. Pambazuka News provided a positive account on 16 April 2014 titled "British Teacher's Heroism versus al-Shabaab's Barbarism" by Bashir Goth. It involves the donation of a kidney by a 53-year old British teacher to a young Somali girl.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Thu Apr 17 2014, 08:43:00

South Africa's Institute for Security Studies (ISS) published on 17 April 2014 a commentary titled "Somalia: Why Orthodox Aid Policy Must Give Way to Battlefield Reality" by Peter Fabricius, foreign editor of South Africa's Independent Newspapers. The commentary draws on remarks by Norway's special envoy to Somalia, Jens Mjaugedal, who expressed deep concern about the inability of the Somali government to deliver services to the Somali people.

You can also hear Mjaugedal in a seven minute podcast prepared by ISS.

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April 16 2014

From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Wed Apr 16 2014, 20:06:00

Brookings published in April 2014 an extensive analysis titled "Africa in China's Foreign Policy" by Yun Sun, a fellow at the Henry L. Stimson Center in Washington. The author notes that given the low priority of Africa in China's foreign policy agenda, African issues rarely reach the highest level of foreign policy decision making in the Chinese bureaucratic apparatus. She also emphasizes, correctly in my view, that there is a constant tension between the narrow, mercantilist pursuit of economic interests in Africa and that pursuit's impact on the overall health of the Sino-African relationship and China's international image.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Wed Apr 16 2014, 15:23:00

Foreign Policy in Focus reprinted a piece on 15 April 2014 titled "AFRICOM Goes to War on the Sly" by Nick Turse, managing editor of TomDispatch.com. Although the title of the article in my view overstates the role of the U.S. military in Africa, the piece does pull together wide ranging, if limited, U.S. military activity in Africa.

The author concludes that the U.S. military is "pivoting to Africa." (As compared to earlier years, yes; as compared to Asia, no.) He notes the the U.S. military averages far more than a mission a day on the continent, conducting operations with almost every African military force, in almost every African country, while building or building up camps, compounds, and contingency security locations. While the author identifies U.S. military activity in a ...

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April 15 2014

From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Tue Apr 15 2014, 19:42:00

London-based Chatham House published a summary of a 24 March 2014 discussion titled "The Impact of Sino-African Cooperation on Africa's Development" by Liu Hongwu, director of the Institute of Africa Studies, and Zhan Shu, research fellow at the Institute of Africa Studies, Zhejiang Normal University.

The message from the two Chinese scholars is that China's economic development over the past 35 years puts it in a unique position to counsel African countries on their own development. Chinese influence on the continent is increasingly not just economic or industrial, but about the best path of development--the China Model.

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From The Official Blog of Amb. David H. Shinn Tue Apr 15 2014, 13:08:00

I have been compiling since 2006 a bibliography of China-Africa relations in connection with my research and publications, including the co-authored China and Africa: A Century of Engagement, published by the University of Pennsylvania Press in 2012. I have tried to include material covering the early history of China-Africa relations as well as that which has appeared over the past ten years. The bibliography now runs 157 pages, which is, I believe, the most comprehensive China-Africa bibliography available primarily in English.

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