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  • Lotan Diker

Congo's all-out wars

Africa has been a bloody continent for many decades, and it seems that the situation is not going to change. The poor eastern Congo is bleeding from wars against armed militias, over a hundred of them murdering hundreds of thousands of people. On the one hand, a country rich in precious resources, especially minerals that are critical to the process of producing technological devices, and on the other, a weak government that fails to control the armed gangs.

It all started in 1994, when a civil war broke out in neighboring Rwanda. Ethnic cleansing was carried out there, which deported about two million citizens to Congo, which was peaceful at the time. They integrated well into it but kept loyalty to the countries from which they came. They managed to get a lot of money and weapons and decided to take over the east of the country while overthrowing the rule of the elected president Mobutu. This caused the First Congo War, between different armed groups that resulted in a change of government. After the overthrow of the corrupt ruler, there was an expectation of an era of peace and stability. This expectation was soon replaced by a bloody war, even more than the first. Congo wanted to expel all foreigners from its territory, but neighboring Uganda and Rwanda did not see this favorably. Congo is too rich in minerals to give up easily.

In August 1998, the African World War broke out, between different countries that formed coalitions for and against the Congo. The war was accompanied by almost unimaginable war crimes and hundreds of thousands of dead. Over five million people died in the battles, one of the most brutal wars of the second half of the 20th century.

The West decided to intervene, because the war damaged the mining of minerals, and it was stopped. But the central government is so weak, especially after the huge losses, that in the east of the huge country rebel organizations have started to grow like wild weeds. In a country the size of Western Europe and close to a hundred million inhabitants, it is difficult for a weak government to control vast areas. Two-thirds of the inhabitants live below the poverty line of five dollars a day, even though it is the largest exporter of diamonds in the world.

Congo is mainly a story of exploitation, of the neighboring countries and the West that enjoys low rewards because of the enormous corruption in the country. Rich international corporations do not give adequate conditions to the miners who work for them, which makes the business extremely profitable.

Rwanda is accused of supporting rebels to undermine and weaken the government and control minerals in the rich east of the country. Which especially upsets the current government that is already threatening an all-out war and stockpiling weapons, supporters, and an army.

One of the largest and richest countries in the world is torn apart by civil wars and endless regional wars, a kind of bloody loop that does not stop. We don't currently see a cure for the dangerous situation, but only more waves of refugees who will flee the bloody country.



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