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The Great Age of African Coup D'etat Seen Through the Calamitous Adventures of One African General

April 09, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 158

Following the armed seizure of power in the Mountain Capital unspeakable things occurred. Those that did and could read crystal balls were not surprised. The networks and the dailies had a day of it. They competed for headlines and fought for a scoop. Whatever they got the journalists hurled with the fury of the great Achilles hurling his spear at the great Hector by the Gates of Troy. Throughout the country death and destruction spread like bush fire in the dry season..

An orgy, the networks said again and again, during the hour long evening news broadcast. Age old tribal animosities bound to boil over once White control was lifted, well dressed well fed network commentators said.

The ebullient General was in his elements. Well over six foot tall, no seaman, but in a seaman's naval uniform; he was a figure to look at. Wonderfully naive and totally a novice, he reveled in the media blitz. When newsmen called him the Strongman of Africa and playfully hailed him: Big Daddy in line with his newly assumed name (Dada), he grew ecstatic. He took to their words; none of which was meant of course. He loved the sound of his name on White lips. He wished his old mother still lived. She loved the sight of him standing next to White officers on the parade grounds.

Rumors were flying in the Capital that White troops had planned the coup and helped the General to power. When only weeks later the Queen laid out a banquet for the General, and when on his way back from London the Israelis laid out the red carpet and gave him a 21 gun salute at Tel Aviv the gloves seemed to fit.

Now as he watched himself on television, as he saw his own image and name repeated again and again, he hollered all of a sudden and to no one in particular. Who knows Nyerere? Who knows General Al Bashir, General Said Bare, or John Gareng? Tell me who knows them? Who is Olusegun Obasanjo? See me Lakayana with my Spear. To the great alarm of those around him the General grabbed the ceremonial spear and shield on display at State House and danced the war dance of his own people. It was a furious and energetic dance.

Sweating and panting he put down the spear. Who knows that lot? See my name and face are everywhere, he boasted. But in this the General spoke the truth, nothing but the truth. Day and night, morning and evening, the media was filled with his name; the broad outlines of his massive face filled the screen. That very week, Newsweek and Time Magazine had him on the cover. It was a feat he shared only with the likes of Sir Winston Churchill, Mao Stung, Grace Kelly and Frank Sinatra. And there his moon face beamed. It was a face to charm a babe in arms.

From the capital of the modern world came the ultimate symbol of Western learning and Western curiosity. The National Geographic arrived in a flurry, in its own jet plane, camera blazing as so many guns in a war zone. It lost no time but headed straight for State House in a convoy heralded by sirens. Its endorsement carried live that night on that evening's broadcast, when everything was still in a state of flux in the Mountain Capital, gave the new regime a much needed boost.

Of the illiterate General whose barbaric character was even then beginning to emerge, the erudite editors of the Magazine wrote: here is a great African Statesman and reformer! They splashed colorful pictorials of naked tribesmen across the exclusive pages of their expensive publication and affirmed that the General was going put the tribesmen in trousers end millennia of human nudity.

Africa, or at least one part of it, watched dumbfounded. A grand conspiracy, or so it seemed, designed to remove African leaders one by one and replace them by uncouth lowly men, accustomed to service under White Commanders in Imperial armies. It was the great age of the coup de tat on the continent. Not a year passed without one Government or the other falling. Each fall sent shudders and shockwaves across Africa. And each fall was accompanied by what looked like celebrations in Western Capitals.

In their learned journals colonial scholars advanced a theory that talked of movements and stages. Stage one, the African country achieves independence. Stage two, the country replaces White army Commanders with Black army Commanders. Stage three, the new African led army overthrows the government. One African President, the most autocratic and the least nationalistic, kept his country's army eternally White lead.

Now from the old Empire, hard upon the heels of the men and women of the National Geographic hurried a Baroness of the old lines, pure of blood. As was now the norm she headed straight for State House in armed convoys heralded by a siren of course. Everything was cheap in Africa. An honored state guest the Baroness fell in love as soon as she saw him, with the splendid manhood of the Black Giant. Her royal highness had a body and was a woman of great passions. In the General she met a man of great fire and endless desire. It was a match made in heaven. The rumble in the jungle was never so real.

But the Baroness was no ordinary woman. She was a woman of great learning. In between her African Safaris and adventures she penned down a portrait of the great man. It was a labor of love. A great African, Othello the Moor, Alexander the Great, the comparisons were endless. International adulations soon fetched results. One evening out of the blues, the General went public with his own fresh mint doctrines that for good measure he named the Great Lakes Doctrine. For those that have not heard of the place, Mountain Capital is situated at the northern tip of the Great Lakes Region.

There were rumors making the rounds in the Mountain Capital that the irrepressible and World renowned Professor of Modern African Studies at the prestigious Great Lakes University had drawn and drafted the document. When the final product went on air suspicion gave way to beliefs. The evening's broadcast at prime time was in the General's own coarse and uneducated voice. But the broadcast bore all the signs of the Professor's flamboyance and bombast.

We will divert the mighty waters of the Nile and let it flow into the Indian Ocean. We will blow up Mount Kilimanjaro. The rubble from the Mount we will fill the valleys of the Rift. p'Bitek

The next morning, headlines across the great Metropolitan papers and news broadcasts, were a firestorm. The great Powers could not believe what they heard. Good heavens! They screamed. Is the fellow insane? What is the matter with him? Statesmen of the World fumed and rebuked the General. But from London to Paris to Washington, their action contradicted every word they spoke.When the General would have run out and when his regime would have collapsed they kept him supplied even as blood flowed.

Whisky and electronics to keep the boys satisfied, tanks and automatic weapons to keep the people in check, technicians and advisors to keep the system oiled. The system!

In the early decades of African independence the coup d'etat was commonplace and it brought horrendous sufferings.in its wake. Read this article and learn what happened? How it happened? And why it happened? John Otim is a writer and political analysis.http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_Otim

Source: EzineArticles
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