I think this is a VERY significant development:
When Israelis Prime Minister Netanyahu and Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold talk about a “confluence of interests,” they generally refer to a commonality of interests with the Arab countries in the region that is behind the unprecedented, but discreet, cooperation with them.
That term, however, is also used when explaining why precisely now – nearly 30 years after Yitzhak Shamir was the last sitting prime minister to visit Africa – Israel, as Netanyahu puts it, is returning to Africa, and Africa is returning to Israel.
Interestingly, Shamir's six-day, four country tour took him to western Africa – Togo, Cameroon, Liberia and the Ivory Coast – while Netanyahu's five-day, four-country hop takes him to the east: Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia.
The main common interest revolves around security issues. Three of the four – Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia – are facing terrorism from Islamic extremists, and Rwanda is concerned about a spill-over effect.
These countries are afraid that what has happened in Libya, Mali and the Ivory Coast could happen to them as well.
For this reason they are interested in forging stronger ties with Israel. It is not all about getting water, energy and agricultural know-how, but it is also very much about getting Israeli knowledge and assistance in how to combat terrorism.
These countries, and other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, are more concerned with questions of homeland security than they were some 20 years ago, and they see Israel as one country with a great deal of experience – and technology – in this field .
One of the reasons for this enhanced concern is the break-up of Libya, and the negative forces that it unleashed on its neighbors – Mali and Chad.
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Although we are spending a lot of money in Africa, the returns are very small. African nations can see that our "war on terror" has been ineffective, while Israel's war on terror has been quite successful.
If the Israelis someday control a substantial portion of Africa's wealth, this will become a bipolar world again, ruled by the BRICS and the Israelis.
So, why are we still supporting these people? They are NOT our friends.