BLOGGING (2): THE US EMBASSY GHANA AND AFRICOM

Posted on April 3, 2013

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madinghana spots a trawler off Cape Three Points, Western Region, Ghana

madinghana spots a trawler off Cape Three Points, Western Region, Ghana

This is in follow up to my last post entitled “Blogging”; I had suggested you go to the US Embassy Ghana Facebook page to see my latest post by friends about the US Embassy.

First, about the two pictures that begin and end this post, recently I took a little holiday and visited my ole ole friend Rod McLaren who also carries the title Nkosuohene, Nana Amoako Agyeman, at his son’s ecolodge ESCAPE THREE POINTS. One day we went to Cape Three Points light house and there predictably was a fishing trawler not that far off shore!
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Now to the subject of this post….On the New Republic app under one of my selected topics Ghana, I saw an associated press article entitled, “US to invest US$1.2 for Ghana police academy”

Here is the lead:

“@ANYINASE, Ghana (AP) — The United States embassy in Ghana’s capital says the U.S. is investing over $1.2 million to construct a training center for the marine unit of the Ghana police. U.S. and Ghana officials broke ground for the National Marine Police …”

and here is the whole article as it appeared on Yahoo News.

So I posted the link on my http://www.facebook.com/christopherscott page with the comment:

“and don’t forget illegal fishing inside Ghana’s seven mile limit..huge trawlers and factory ships can be seen from land daily”

So then I go to the US Embassy Ghana Facebook page to post the same comment and lo and behold the item is NOT THERE!

NOT EVEN A PICTURE OF THE CEREMONY AT ANYINASE!
Why no local celebration of this major support on the US Embassy Facebook page that has near 20,000 thousand Ghanaian friends?

Naive me then posts on their wall something like “You neglected to post an item on US support construction of a training centre for the marine unit of the Ghana police. I just wanted to add the importance of protecting Ghana’s inshore fishery from foreign over-fishing.” Something to that affect….

Well, that comment with the article never appeared either!

Now if you read to the end of the article there is mention of that no-no American initiative AFRICOM that has met widespread resistance over the years here in Ghana and internationally. AFRICOM involved the relocation of the African Command from Stuttgart, Germany to the Sub-Saharan region and Ghana in particular.

On my blog roll for madinghana, there is a site called Crossed Crocodiles that focuses a lot of attention on AFRICOM. The blog carried the democracyinaction.org page Resist AFRICOM where you can find events, about AFRICOM, resources, news, organizations.
Interesting that the last news item posted was 05-06-2010. But go to the site and read about the implications for Ghana and the sub region….Here’s a comprehensive article from the Crossed Crocodiles Blog-a top post-on the subject of Ghana and AFRICOM from 2008 just before former president George Bush’s visit to Ghana.

I wonder why the democracyinaction organization stopped posting news on the resistance?

What I care about are the poor fishermen of Ghana. I am told that Ghana’s inshore fishing industry is the third largest employer in Ghana and imagine how devastating it would be if there were no more fish and a moratorium on fishing was imposed. I have seen first hand the impact of a moratorium in small isolated fishing communities along the Lower North Shore of Quebec where I taught school. No cod=no livelihood…Think how that would destabilize Ghana. Here’s a YouTube effort called “Illegal Trawlers at Cape Three Points”made by Nana Rod which dramatically captures the situation. It was filmed in 2010, but nothing, absolutely nothing, has changed.

And I wonder how much the US Embassy Ghana ie the American government cares about the fishing industry or, in a nutshell, is it all about police/military training and equipping over democracy? Yes, it’s “the piracy, illegal arms, narcotics and human trafficking” (Ghana’s war on terror) that gets mentioned, that forwards the agenda …..that’s what gives legitimacy in supporting this marine unit training facility. And of course, we all are aware of the American interest in the off-shore oil and other African natural resources. Perhaps that is the real raison-d’etre for AfriCom and for the training dollars.

And I care about democracy too, free speech and transparency. That’s why I blog!

Nana attempting to get photographic proof of inshore fishing violation by foreign trawler

Nana attempting to get photographic proof of inshore fishing violation by foreign trawler

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