Eastern Congo


Swahili people from Stanleyville (now Kisangani in D.R. Congo): These Waswahili were originally from Zanzibar, most of them were traders and slavers (they enslaved those from mostly the eastern and central congo region and created a short lived sultanate). Most people made no distinction between the Omani Swahili speaking Arabs from Zanzibar and the Waswahili from Zanzibar who lived in Congo at the time, so they were all called Arabs. Waswahili were referred to as Arabs mainly by Europeans and sometimes both Omanis and Waswahili were referred to as “Ngwana” by the local population. The “Baswahili/Muswahili” identity was introduced later on in Congo’s history


DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO. 2012-2013. Produced in North and South Kivu. Film stills from The Enclave by Richard Mosse. [2/13]

The Irish photographer filmed strange footage of the country using a special surveillance film once used by the military. Picking up invisible infra-red rays given off by plant life, the film makes any greenery show up in ‘bubblegum’ pink, meaning guerilla soldiers could be spotted among the leaves.

Civil war has been happening in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo for many years. Since 1998, the nation has seen 5.4 million war-related deaths.


How can anyone in this world hate this man?

Violence warned over US dropping conflict minerals rule
By ABC News

Increased violence and corruption in central Africa could be the result of the recent decision by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission not to enforce a rule requiring American companies to report their use of conflict minerals, warn Congolese civic groups, rights groups and U.S. senators.

“The conflict minerals rule has played a critical role in reducing violence in mining areas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,” said U.S. Sen. Chris Coons, D-Delaware, who recently signed a letter with five other Democratic senators urging the SEC to uphold the rule.

The conflict minerals reporting rule, part of the Dodd-Frank financial regulations law, has largely been successful in ensuring that minerals worth trillions of dollars don’t benefit armed rebel groups blamed for human rights abuses, a coalition of groups from Congo and southern Africa told the SEC in a series of public comments earlier this year. In an opposing view, some business groups in the U.S. dismissed the regulation as ineffective and an unnecessary burden.

In April, acting SEC chairman Michael Piwowar said his organization will no longer enforce the 2012 rule that requires companies to verify their products do not use tantalum, tin, gold or tungsten that have been mined or trafficked by armed groups in Congo and other central African countries. Although the SEC is independent from the Trump administration, Piwowar was designated as acting chairman by Trump, and the SEC’s action appears to be in line with the president’s view that the government should reduce regulations of company operations.

In addition to the SEC action, Republican legislation to roll back the Dodd-Frank law, expected to pass the House in coming weeks, would repeal the conflict minerals rule. The bill’s prospects in the Senate are unclear.

Armed rebels and criminal gangs have been funded for decades by the illicit trade in Congo’s minerals, estimated to be worth $24 trillion, according to the U.N. The minerals are essential ingredients in smart phones, laptops, tablets and other high-tech products.

Dropping the conflict minerals rule implicitly supports conflict in the Great Lakes region, Leonard Birere, president of the Coalition of Anti-Slavery Civil Society Organizations in Goma, Congo, told The Associated Press in an email.

“The activity of the armed groups in the mining sites had decreased substantially as well as their capacity for violence” due to the conflict minerals regulation, Birere said.

Some leading American companies also support the conflict minerals regulations. “Apple believes there is little doubt that there is a need to enhance gold trading due diligence,” the company wrote in its 2016 conflict minerals report to the SEC…

Congolese groups have a nuanced understanding of the conflict minerals rule. When the regulation was introduced in 2012, many U.S. companies pulled out of Congo.

“All sectors of our economy were suffocated or very nearly ground to a halt,” wrote a group of 31 civic organizations in eastern Congo to the SEC. But eventually the rule helped to cut off funds for armed groups and reduce child labor in mines, according to the coalition, the Thematic Working Group on Mining and Natural Resources.

The crackdown on illicit mining succeeded in reducing opportunities for armed groups to exploit the illegal trading of minerals, according to a report last year by the U.N. panel of experts monitoring sanctions on Congo.

Eastern Congo has experienced insecurity for decades from a myriad of rebel groups. More than 16,000 U.N. peacekeepers are based in the Congo with one of the world’s most aggressive mandates to defeat militia groups.

The conflict minerals rule “undoubtedly contributes to reducing the rate of crime and human rights violations, including rape of women and exploitation of children in mining areas,” 41 Congo-based non-profit organizations related to natural resources wrote to the SEC . “All these efforts and progress will be destroyed if the U.S. government decides to contradict itself.”


DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO. 2012-2013. Produced in North and South Kivu. Film stills from The Enclave by Richard Mosse. [6/13]

The Irish photographer filmed strange footage of the country using a special surveillance film once used by the military. Picking up invisible infra-red rays given off by plant life, the film makes any greenery show up in ‘bubblegum’ pink, meaning guerilla soldiers could be spotted among the leaves.

Civil war has been happening in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo for many years. Since 1998, the nation has seen 5.4 million war-related deaths.

Nearly 500 dead pulled from Sierra Leone mudslide: coroner

FREETOWN (Reuters) - Rescue workers have unearthed 499 dead bodies since last week’s devastating landslide near the Sierra Leone capital Freetown, the city’s chief coroner told Reuters on Sunday.

One of Africa’s worst flooding-related disasters in years occurred when the side of Mount Sugar Loaf collapsed on Monday after heavy rain, burying parts of Regent town and overwhelming relief efforts in one of the world’s poorest countries.
Authorities this week buried 461 bodies in quickly-dug graves in the nearby Waterloo cemetery, near the site of a mass burial for victims of the Ebola crisis that killed 4,000 people in the former British colony between 2014 and 2016.
Thirty-eight more bodies were found on Sunday, said chief coroner Seneh Dumbuya, bringing the official death toll to 499. They were being sent for immediate burial, he said.
The Red Cross said on Friday that over 600 are still missing.
An increasingly desperate search continued on Sunday on the steep hillside under the wet red mud, as the likelihood of finding survivors was all but extinguished.
Authorities said they were concentrating on digging up bodies to stop fluids from contaminated corpses getting into the water supply and spreading disease.
“We are doing all we can to ensure cholera does not break out,” said Samuel Turay, an official at the health ministry.
The threat of deadly landslides is growing in west and central Africa as rainfall, deforestation and urban populations rise, experts say.
On Thursday, a landslide in remote eastern Congo crushed the mud houses of a lake-side fishing village, potentially killing over 200 people, a local official told Reuters.

(Reporting By Christo Johnson in Freetown, writing by Edward McAllister; Editing by Richard Balmforth)


DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO. 2012-2013. Fighters and victims of the Kivu Conflict; often both at the same time. Produced in North and South Kivu. Film stills from The Enclave by Richard Mosse. [13/13]

The Irish photographer filmed strange footage of the country using a special surveillance film once used by the military. Picking up invisible infra-red rays given off by plant life, the film makes any greenery show up in ‘bubblegum’ pink, meaning guerilla soldiers could be spotted among the leaves.

Civil war has been happening in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo for many years. Since 1998, the nation has seen 5.4 million war-related deaths.

Ben Affleck gave a presentation to elementary school children in LA on Thursday (February 9, 2017) about his work with the Eastern Congo Initiative.

He was joined by his mother Chris Boldt, a retired public elementary school teacher, who gave a presentation on education in Uganda. 

The visit was organised by the non-profit organisation KidUnity, as part of their service learning and civic leadership programs.

Jennifer Garner gave a presentation to the group in January about her advocacy work with Save the Children.

Source 1 | 2 | 3


okay so what i’m about to say is probably going to piss everyone off and i’m totally prepared to receive any hate messages people feel like sending. i’ll probably deserve them. this is building upside inside and i have to let it out before i explode and i came back to this account because i have no other real outlet.

so full disclaimer i’ve been a huge Ben Affleck fan for years and I think because of that, well actually no I’m quite certain that because of that, I’m not looking at this scenario with full objectivity, but I just feel people on social media have been acting completely ridiculously about this scenario (but before you lose it, NOT in regards to the Hilarie Burton thing, which the reactions are legit and which I’ll address later)

Okay so for starters: I hate twitter culture. Whenever anything happens people are always like “WHY hasn’t so-and-so tweeted anything about this yet?” and I find that SO stupid. Like why do you expect every celebrity to be at their computer or their phone 24/7 and why do you demand they post their opinion/praise/condemnation immediately? Like to me that just reeks of entitlement and narcissism. You are not entitled to a celebrity’s time or words.

so on that note, the Weinstein thing comes up and immediately people are demanding Ben (and many others) make statements which I already think is gross and then when he finally does release a full condemnation everybody rails against him anyway. Like, I hate all this “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” stuff. You can’t just leave people with no winning options.

and the claims are like “well he knew the whole time.”  but like I don’t see any receipts for this. he knew the man, his bff is matt damon and he dated gwyneth paltrow but like none of that truly PROVES that he knew anything. Once again we have this “trial by twitter” thing going which I just find so repulsive. It’s Nancy Grace-ish.

now if there really are receipts for this i still think it was unfair how all of a sudden people were acting like weinstein’s crimes were entirely ben’s fault. If he knew could he have stopped him? Maybe. Maybe not. Like, it was not ben affleck’s or matt damon’s or gwyneth paltrow’s or hillary clinton’s responsibility to take out harvey weinstein. it was not their fault he did these things and it’s so unfair they should share the blame. And like somehow ALL the attention got focused onto ben instead of the actual mass rapist that started the discussion, which I think was just atrocious.

and weinstein was the guy who made him famous by getting good will hunting on to the screen, so I don’t know, I think it’d be pretty scary to publicly turn around and bite the hand that fed you even after all these years later. Cowardly? Maybe. Human? For sure. 

And then people bring up casey, and like, i don’t think it’s fair to blame him for that either. it’s different when it’s family. he could very well believe casey is innocent, as families typically do when a loved one is accused. like my brother once got in trouble for something very inappropriate he said online and it was terrible of him to do and he deserved the consequences he got but like i still felt bad for him, cuz he’s my brother. it’s not just super easy to turn around and throw a beloved sibling under the bus. I dunno, maybe that’s just me being a shitty person again.

But then we get to the Hilarie Burton event and I can not and will not and do not want to defend that. Some ben fans go as far as to claim the video doesn’t show anything but I think between her reaction, his reaction and the way her shirt kinda flicks shows that AT BEST, he poked her boob, which is still unsolicited and unwanted touching of a sexual nature. That is awful and he should never have done that and he should be ashamed.

that said people bring this up to him repeatedly, and so he gives out an apology which subsequently gets people railing on him AGAIN when that was exactly what they were demanding he do. like what exactly do you people want from him??? a longer apology? why, you would be hurling criticisms at him regardless of what he said anyway. you wanted him to @ her? I dunno I don’t feel like she would want to be scrolling through twitter and then suddenly @-ed by the man who groped her. plus I don’t think she would accept any apology he gave anyway, which of course i would never blame her for. 

(also for what it’s worth the reporter in that other video people are spreading around where she’s sitting on his lap has come out to say that it was completely consensual and he was not inappropriate with her at all, which I think needs to be signal boosted. with THAT said he also says many admittedly problematic things throughout that video)

like I just find it so revolting how people on social media, twitter in particular, act like savage accusatory bloodthirsty hounds towards others on social media and refuse to be satisfied by ANY action this person takes to try and make amends. You can’t just leave people in no win scenarios. It’s all just. so. ugly.

And these videos and accusation are quite old - which is not not not an excuse and he should be held accountable for sure - but I can’t help feel bad because I just don’t think 2017 Ben Affleck is like this at all. He hasn’t been jocular and cocky and boorish like that for years, I don’t think. Plus he’s struggling with alcoholism. And he does good things in this world, like his work in the Eastern Congo. So i find it kinda sad that his career is definitely going to be ruined now (I highly doubt he’ll ever be allowed to be Batman again for starters) when I thought he was working his way up to becoming a real good person. That’s probably just me being a stupid fanboy, I guess.

I hope nothing i’ve said has hurt anybody out there who is a victim of assault. If I have you can explain it to me if you feel comfortable, or you can angrily call me a terrible person, I feel like I deserve that too.

If anybody wants to have a civil conversation about this, even if just to explain how I’m totally wrong, I am completely open to that. Or if you want to hit me with the full outrage I am ready and willing to accept that too, no complaints. I expect a lot of ‘yikes’ reactions. Sometimes I feel like I’m “woke” but other times I feel like just a clueless idiot. so yeah. fire away.

The Gift of Death

Pathological consumption has become so normalised that we scarcely notice it

“People in eastern Congo are massacred to facilitate smart phone upgrades of ever diminishing marginal utility. Forests are felled to make “personalised heart-shaped wooden cheese board sets”. Rivers are poisoned to manufacture talking fish. This is pathological consumption: a world-consuming epidemic of collective madness, rendered so normal by advertising and the media that we scarcely notice what has happened to us.

When every conceivable want and need has been met (among those who have disposable money), growth depends on selling the utterly useless. The solemnity of the state, its might and majesty, are harnessed to the task of delivering Terry the Swearing Turtle to our doors.

Bake them a cake, write them a poem, give them a kiss, tell them a joke, but for god’s sake stop trashing the planet to tell someone you care. All it shows is that you don’t.”

Source: George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 

en-tonos-pastel  asked:

Hi, I found your blog just a while ago and I really like it. Would you please help me to find a word that can express something similar to " I forgive but never forget"???

Ilunga is a person who is ready to forgive any abuse for the first time, to tolerate it a second time, but never a third time.

In June 2004, “ilunga”, which comes from the Tshiluba language (a Bantu language spoken in south-eastern Congo, and Zaire), and in the opinion of 1,000 linguists, was deemed the world’s most difficult word to translate.

The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naive forgive and forget; the wise forgive but do not forget.
— Thomas Szasz