Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Why Obama is Going To Africa

Posted by on Jun. 26, 2013 at 3:23 PM
  • 17 Replies

Here's an interesting article -

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/26/opinion/bergen-obama-china-trip/index.html?hpt=hp_t4

Editor's note: Peter Bergen is CNN's national security analyst and a director at the New America Foundation.

(CNN) -- There is a one-word subtext to President Obama's trip to Africa: China.

After 9/11, the United States became embroiled in more than a decade of wars in Asia and the Middle East. As a result, U.S. engagement in Latin America and Africa largely atrophied.

Meanwhile, China saw an opportunity. China has now displaced the United States as the largest trading partners of two key Latin American countries, Brazil and Chile.

Peter Bergen
Peter Bergen

China's economic rise is particularly marked in Africa; it quietly surpassed the United States as the continent's largest trading partner four years ago.

Sino-African trade is now estimated to be $200 billion a year and is expected to rise to $325 billion in the next two years.

While the conventional view has long been that Africa is largely a motley collection of economic basket cases, in fact, according to the most recent IMF figures, five out of 10 of the world's fastest-growing economies are in Africa.

Indeed, South Sudan, Libya and Sierre Leone are the globe's top three economic hot spots with projected 2013 growth rates of 32%, 20% and 17% respectively.

As if to underline the importance that the Chinese see in Africa, within two weeks of assuming office in March 2013, the new Chinese president Xi Jinping visited two of the three African countries Obama will be visiting on his African trip, Tanzania and South Africa.

China is the largest trading partner for both of those nations.

Read this: Obama 'plays catch up' in Africa

Seemingly as a result of its substantial investments and trade in Africa, China is well liked on the continent. A 2007 Pew Research Center survey found 92% of respondents held favorable views of China in the Ivory Coast and Mali, and between 67% and 81% held favorable views in Kenya, Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania and Ethiopia.

Pew noted that these favorable views of China come at the expense of the United States: "China's influence is almost universally viewed as having a more beneficial impact on African countries than does that of the United States."

In other words, the United States has considerable catch up to play in Africa.

In 2012 then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton toured Africa and made what many assumed to be a not-so-thinly veiled swipe at China, which is heavily involved in African mineral and oil extraction: "The days of having outsiders come and extract the wealth of Africa for themselves, leaving nothing or very little behind, should be over..."

Obama is likely to avoid any criticism of China but he has chosen to visit Senegal, Tanzania and South Africa, countries that are all relatively functional democracies, and he is likely to dwell on the issues of good governance and respect for human rights in his public remarks, which will serve to subtly remind Africans that these are issues that the United States puts more value on than does China.

But the real message Obama will be signaling is that America isopen for business with Africa. In Tanzania, the president will have a closed meeting with some two-dozen leading American and African CEOs. And, according to Jennifer Cooke, an expert on Africa at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, "some 500 business leaders will join the president at various points in his trip to assess the opportunities for themselves."

Perhaps they may conclude, as the World Bank did last year, that "Africa could be on the brink of an economic takeoff, much like China was 30 years ago, and India 20 years ago."

And if that happens, the United States, of course, would want to be part of this story.

by on Jun. 26, 2013 at 3:23 PM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 3:43 PM
1 mom liked this

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 

jaxTheMomm
by Platinum Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 3:46 PM
2 moms liked this

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.


Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 



LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 3:51 PM
1 mom liked this

It is an unnecessary waste of tax dollars at a time when he is telling Americans to sacrifice and tighten their belts.  He should be setting the example, not playing "do as I say, not as I do".  I do not care that it is "budgeted" (and I think that, along with the "but other Presidents did it toooooo!!" are bullshit lame excuses), that is far too much money to be "budgetted" to a vacation for his wife, kids and extended family members on the American dime at a time when most American's are living paycheck to paycheck.   


Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.

 

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 

 

 


 

\

Communication is a two way street.  Don't expect me to listen to you if you refuse to listen to me.  We will never move forward until we all listen to EACH OTHER!!

jaxTheMomm
by Platinum Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:00 PM

Michelle will be hosting events as well.  While I'm sure some family fun activities are planned, this isn't really a vacation.

If you don't like it, complain to your senators - I believe they are the ones that set the budgets well in advance.

However, if this can make inroads into a developing African trade economy, it's going to make the US a lot more dineros in the long run.

By the end of the year, I will have been on four international trips for work & vacation.  I don't begrudge them this.

*shrugs*

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

It is an unnecessary waste of tax dollars at a time when he is telling Americans to sacrifice and tighten their belts.  He should be setting the example, not playing "do as I say, not as I do".  I do not care that it is "budgeted" (and I think that, along with the "but other Presidents did it toooooo!!" are bullshit lame excuses), that is far too much money to be "budgetted" to a vacation for his wife, kids and extended family members on the American dime at a time when most American's are living paycheck to paycheck.   


Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.


Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 







Luvnlogic
by Silver Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:01 PM
2 moms liked this
Uh uh, he just wants to ride an elephant and spend our money. Plus, I heard "Shelly" is bringing her "senior staff" daughters who are obviously being paid high level salaries. Oh...one last thing, all my "we hate Obama" websites are reporting that they're having Air Force one retro-fitted with diamond encrusted toilets. They're all entitled and classless!!

** How's my far-right impression? Lol **
LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM

My Congressmen are well aware of my disgust with it, as well as for any over the top amount budgetted to send the First Family on "business trips" with the POTUS.  But you see, this is a debate and discussion board, so I am also posting my disgust here, in a thread you started in order to discuss the matter. 

 

Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Michelle will be hosting events as well.  While I'm sure some family fun activities are planned, this isn't really a vacation.

If you don't like it, complain to your senators - I believe they are the ones that set the budgets well in advance.

However, if this can make inroads into a developing African trade economy, it's going to make the US a lot more dineros in the long run.

By the end of the year, I will have been on four international trips for work & vacation.  I don't begrudge them this.

*shrugs*

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

It is an unnecessary waste of tax dollars at a time when he is telling Americans to sacrifice and tighten their belts.  He should be setting the example, not playing "do as I say, not as I do".  I do not care that it is "budgeted" (and I think that, along with the "but other Presidents did it toooooo!!" are bullshit lame excuses), that is far too much money to be "budgetted" to a vacation for his wife, kids and extended family members on the American dime at a time when most American's are living paycheck to paycheck.   

 

Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.

 

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

\

Communication is a two way street.  Don't expect me to listen to you if you refuse to listen to me.  We will never move forward until we all listen to EACH OTHER!!

mikiemom
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM
1 mom liked this

He is taking his family because that is what is expected of State visits for dignitaries. I get that ya'll folk who live in trailors in the middle of podunk america can't comprehend what a state visit entails. They are equivalent to our royal family, yes the wife, the kids - the mother-inlaw and his nephew get to go. If this were a white republican president no-one would be batting an eye. They sure didn't when Bush took his wife and two daughters to Africa.

jaxTheMomm
by Platinum Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:08 PM

And of course, that is your right to do so.  Never said ya couldn't.

I think you are missing the larger point and overall goal, but ok.

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

My Congressmen are well aware of my disgust with it, as well as for any over the top amount budgetted to send the First Family on "business trips" with the POTUS.  But you see, this is a debate and discussion board, so I am also posting my disgust here, in a thread you started in order to discuss the matter. 


Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Michelle will be hosting events as well.  While I'm sure some family fun activities are planned, this isn't really a vacation.

If you don't like it, complain to your senators - I believe they are the ones that set the budgets well in advance.

However, if this can make inroads into a developing African trade economy, it's going to make the US a lot more dineros in the long run.

By the end of the year, I will have been on four international trips for work & vacation.  I don't begrudge them this.

*shrugs*

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

It is an unnecessary waste of tax dollars at a time when he is telling Americans to sacrifice and tighten their belts.  He should be setting the example, not playing "do as I say, not as I do".  I do not care that it is "budgeted" (and I think that, along with the "but other Presidents did it toooooo!!" are bullshit lame excuses), that is far too much money to be "budgetted" to a vacation for his wife, kids and extended family members on the American dime at a time when most American's are living paycheck to paycheck.   


Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.


Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 











LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:13 PM
1 mom liked this

 Yes, because anybody who dares not see things YOUR way must be living in a trailor park.  *eye roll*  What a childish accusation!!

$100M is too much money to be spending on the First Family traveling to Africa.  I don't care what color that First Family is.  And yes, I absolutey did object when extravaggent amounts were spent on Bush, on Clinton, on the first Bush and even on Reagan. It is ridiculous.  They are not royalty.  We do not have royalty in this country.  They are  elected officials.  . 


Quoting mikiemom:

He is taking his family because that is what is expected of State visits for dignitaries. I get that ya'll folk who live in trailors in the middle of podunk america can't comprehend what a state visit entails. They are equivalent to our royal family, yes the wife, the kids - the mother-inlaw and his nephew get to go. If this were a white republican president no-one would be batting an eye. They sure didn't when Bush took his wife and two daughters to Africa.


 

\

Communication is a two way street.  Don't expect me to listen to you if you refuse to listen to me.  We will never move forward until we all listen to EACH OTHER!!

LoveMyBoyK
by Ruby Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 4:15 PM

 No, I am not "missing" it, I disagree that his wife, children, mother in law and nephew are necessities to accomplish the goal.  Not when they all come with huge staffs and security needs that cost the American taxpayers a shit ton of money we can't afford right now. 


Quoting jaxTheMomm:

And of course, that is your right to do so.  Never said ya couldn't.

I think you are missing the larger point and overall goal, but ok.

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

My Congressmen are well aware of my disgust with it, as well as for any over the top amount budgetted to send the First Family on "business trips" with the POTUS.  But you see, this is a debate and discussion board, so I am also posting my disgust here, in a thread you started in order to discuss the matter. 

 

Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Michelle will be hosting events as well.  While I'm sure some family fun activities are planned, this isn't really a vacation.

If you don't like it, complain to your senators - I believe they are the ones that set the budgets well in advance.

However, if this can make inroads into a developing African trade economy, it's going to make the US a lot more dineros in the long run.

By the end of the year, I will have been on four international trips for work & vacation.  I don't begrudge them this.

*shrugs*

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

It is an unnecessary waste of tax dollars at a time when he is telling Americans to sacrifice and tighten their belts.  He should be setting the example, not playing "do as I say, not as I do".  I do not care that it is "budgeted" (and I think that, along with the "but other Presidents did it toooooo!!" are bullshit lame excuses), that is far too much money to be "budgetted" to a vacation for his wife, kids and extended family members on the American dime at a time when most American's are living paycheck to paycheck.   

 

Quoting jaxTheMomm:

Probably because 1. that's one of the perks of being pres (and it's all budgeted) 2. it guarantees press coverage and 3. it honors the countries they will be in.

 

Quoting LoveMyBoyK:

Okay, that is fine -- good, even.  Now why does he have to take his wife, kids, mother in law and nephew along to accomplish that?  That is what is pissing people off -- not OBAMA going to Africa for foreign relation purpuses but that he is having to take ALL the additional security and staff to accomodate three children and two mothers.  Anybody who thinks there is no vacation plan in here is blind and has their head stuffed in the sand.  YOu don't bring your mother in law to work with you, you bring her on vacation with you.  He may well get work done while he is there, hell, he is EXPECTED to get work done while he is there ... but Americans should NOT be paying for his entire family, including members of his extended family, to be there with him.   NOT when he is simultaneously telling Americans that we need to make sacrifices and tighten our belts. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

\

Communication is a two way street.  Don't expect me to listen to you if you refuse to listen to me.  We will never move forward until we all listen to EACH OTHER!!

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

close Join now to connect to
other members!
Connect with Facebook or Sign Up Using Email

Already Joined? LOG IN