09 December, 2010
Does the Pope shit in the woods?
If we set to one side the danger of retribution against individuals whose identity might be compromised by these releases, what difference does the current stream of wikileaks make? Do they really tell us anything we didn't already know or should have suspected? Is there anybody, aside from professional Black victimists and White liberals totally immersed in delicious post-colonial guilt, who actually believes that the Chinese involvement in Africa is altruistic, that it is any less self-interested than the involvement of the European powers in the colonial and post-colonial periods?
The cable, published by the Guardian newspaper, quotes Johnnie Carson, US Assistant Secretary for African Affairs, who had been meeting oil company representatives in Lagos.
He describes China as "a very aggressive and pernicious economic competitor with no morals".
"China is not in Africa for altruistic reasons," he says. "China is in Africa primarily for China."
If there are any such, they're surely in for a rude awakening. The Chinese attitude to the rest of the world is bolstered by 5,000 years of inward-looking racial arrogance. They may be the African kleptocrat's temporary friend while he is still useful to them, but once he's extracted your minerals and settled his peasants on your arable land, Johnny Chinaman will simply consider the African a pest.