- North Africa
Gaddafi’s case for one African army
One-Africa advocate, Libyan Leader Muammar Gaddafi has urged the African continent to assemble a one-million-strong defense force capable of defending itself from China and NATO.
Speaking at the World Festival of Black Arts and Cultures in the Senegalese capital city of Dakar, the one-Africa advocate reiterated his vision after he described the continent as "prey that all the world’s wolves want to devour" by monopolizing its mineral resources or fisheries.
"National militaries alone cannot save countries. Africa should have one army with one million soldiers. The joint force would guard the borders and seas, protect Africa’s independence and confront NATO, China, France, Britain and other countries," Gaddafi was quoted by reporters in the Senegalese capital.
"Down with imperialism! Africa must unite, so that we do not again become serfs or slaves. It is necessary to establish a unity government for the African continent and that Africa has one army.”
Gaddafi’s one-Africa ambition is admired by many but not shared by the continent’s biggest powers. Many African leaders, especially in the bigger economies, are skeptical; they are not prepared to cede sovereignty to an African bloc only a few decades after wresting it from their colonial rulers.
Gaddafi, however, proffers little or no kind words for such leaders.
The Libyan leader, who has been in power for 41 years, said African leaders who "do not want to put in place a single African army" were "agents of imperialism, myopic, or traitors who do not think about the future of the continent."
Believing that an African unity government is the only way Africa can develop without Western interference, Gaddafi told African leaders to “leave home, abandon their countries and go and live in the capitals of the capitalist, imperialist countries which once occupied Africa."
The Libyan leader is considered by certain African leaders as a champion of the developing world. He has donated millions of dollars in aid to certain African countries from his country’s oil-exporting revenue.
Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade added clout to Gaddafi’s call, saying: "We ask, here and now, for the establishment of the United States of Africa, the only solution to free our peoples and ... make Africa a major cultural, economic, political and social whole which will be respected.”