Monday 29 August 2016

OF CHASING SYMPTOMS? (US Diplomacy, Murders and Reactionaries)


Kajit J Bagu (John Paul), PHD (Edinburgh).


And so, many were concerned that John Kerry visited the Fulani/Muslim Sultan in Sokoto, met with 'Northern Governors' only and with the President behind closed doors in a rare US high level visit to Nigeria!

In the meantime, some profoundly gruesome pictures accompanied tales of 'Fulani attacks' in Enugu within a short space of time.

Simultaneously it would seem, some Kaduna State indigenes under the banner of SOKAPU assembled in black with banners saying no to grazing reserves, and 'stop the killings'.

Zamfara completes my circle of 'symptoms' with accounts of the murder of an 'infidel' Christian, along with about 7 Muslims as 'collateral damage', for being in a house where the 'infidel' was shielded. His crime was something along the lines of insult to Islam!

These four incidents all led to the raising of concerns, or constituted the raising of concerns such as the protest against grazing reserves. But what do these concerns have in common from an epiphenomenal (what proceeds from what) perspective?

For one, I suppose that I might be entitled to call them all reactive, and thus reactionary, rather than proactive. To be reactionary often also amounts to 'waiting for the manifestation of things long in motion'. How does this 'reactionarism' play in each of these cases?

First on Kerry's visit, the reactionary bit locates itself at various levels, first in being blissfully ignorant, or nonchalant about how the West constructs and views power relations in 'the dark continent' as they call it. It lies in a complicit ignorance of what is central to Eurocentric philosophies of identity, power and race as pivotal to the construction of what it calls 'civilisation' in the mould of Modernity and the New World Order. It makes no sense to the reactionaries that Barbarians always rank ahead of Savages in western political philosophy. In this case, being reactionary or behind the tides is what happens when Kerry does precisely what agrees with long established patterns of Eurocentric foreign policy of the USA, itself a European colonial offspring.

With the Enugu murders and the outcry they generate, the SOKAPU protest against grazing reserves (including the protest in Plateau and the Booing of Deputy Governor Tyoden in COCIN Church) and killings in southern Kaduna, as well as the Zamfara murders, a consistent pattern of reactionary predispositions is remarkable.

This says a lot about the people in this colonially crafted and structured 'Nigerian' system!

What does it say?

Yes, it says much, much more than I can type here. But at least you can take one lesson away: there seems to be a profound aptitude for chasing symptoms. This perhaps indicts the capacity of first, those who we may call 'rulers', then the intellectuals/thinkers and lastly, civil society in this post-colonial construct.

It'll take a volume to outline these perspectives and realities. Perhaps that's why we undertake a Cognitive Justice Peacebuilding Ambassadorship training for six weeks at the Foundation for the Move(ment) for Cognitive Justice (MCJ).

Certainly, those who should solve problems, or facilitate their being solved, need the right levels of consciousness, awareness, knowledge, skills and tact. Otherwise, as Einstein implies, how can the same level of consciousness solve the problems which were created from it?

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