Friday, April 24, 2015

When the Europeans began partitioning Africa, did they make any errors in judgment when drawing political boundaries? And is the current civil unrest the fault of the Europeans?

“[Nigeria’s] tangled postcolonial history of civil war, civil violence, and frequent military coups d’état is a result of the boundary-making decisions by British, French, and Germans as they divided up the Niger River basin area before World War I.” Is this entirely accurate? What of human decision-making?

First I would state the original error of European powers, was the idea that they had any right to partition parts of Africa off at all. It was not their land; and thus any boundaries they drew would be false.

Second, while European intrusion and confusion in Africa did lead to turmoil, as many of my classmates have said, we cannot blame the past for our present actions. Current African warlords and warring people groups cannot blame Europe for their state of turmoil. Let us remember that there was already civil war within African states before Europeans barged in.

Lastly I would just like to state that I am not saying the European partitioning of Africa did not lead to civil unrest, I am simply saying that it is not the sole contributor.

Thus, in my opinion all European partitioning action in Africa was wrong, just as the civil wars that followed is wrong, but neither can blame the other completely for the results of their actions.