The African Nations and World Solidarity

The African Nations and World Solidarity

The African Nations and World Solidarity

The African Nations and World Solidarity

Excerpt

This is a courageous book. In their desire to appear infallible, political leaders seldom admit their mistakes, except perhaps in reminiscences after retirement. Here, however, we find a responsible African statesman -- the Prime Minister of Senegal -- publicly acknowledging the miscalculations that culminated in the dissolution of the Mali Federation on August 20, 1960. "Taking our ideal for a reality," he writes in the Epilogue, "we thought we had only to condemn territorialism and its natural product, micronationalism, to overcome them and assure the success of our chimerical undertaking." The author even admits that the Senegalese people diagnosed the viability of the Federation more accurately than did the leaders.

In the present African context, in the present world context, it takes courage to voice unpleasant truths. It is not easy for an official of an emergent African nation to view colonialism objectively; to advocate economic solidarity with the former Metropole and the rest of the world; to refuse to govern by anti-imperialist slogans. Nor is it easy -- or popular -- for a nationalist leader to point out the dangers of narrow nationalism; to avoid extremism; to recommend a program of austerity and co-operation.

Like most African leaders, Mamadou Dia is a socialist . . .

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