Say It Ain’t So, Joe

Joseph Kabila, president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, is supposed to leave office today, but he has refused to hold elections and seems intent on staying put. This article in African Arguments, by two researchers at The International Crisis Group, looks at the country’s difficult economic state, which ICG calls both a cause and consequence of political instability.

N.B. My dissertation advisor would yell about putting a single variable on both sides of the equation.

DRC Photo Essay

In addition to Jeffrey Gettleman’s article in the New York Times today, there is also a remarkable photo essay of photographs by Richard Mosse of the ongoing war (anarchy) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It was shot on infrared film, lending an eery, surreal cast to the images of war and fertile landscape and thereby drawing the viewer to take another look at images that might otherwise look like many that came before them.RichardMosseInfra

Rape in Congo

See this horrific article on rape in Congo-Kinshasa, with attached photo essay and video. Not many people have heard of it, but 4 million people are thought to have died in Congo in the 1990s. This article doesn’t address that scale of death, or the fact that rape also sows the time bomb of AIDS. Some African armies are thought to practice rape as an official tactic. It’s an explosion of death that goes off well after the armies have withdrawn.