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Mandela, pacifist or rebel?

Perhaps it’s a false contradiction. But today there are many who stress the pacifist message with which South Africa’s Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) emerged from prison in 1990, while few put an emphasis on his rebellion against apartheid, including armed rebellion, which landed him in prison. ...

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HOLLYWOOD MEETS HISTORY

“Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom,” the film biography of anti-apartheid leader and South Africa’s first Black President Nelson Mandela, will be released Dec. 25. Idris Elba and Naomie Harris will star as Nelson and Winnie Mandela, respectively. (Above) Elba is pictured with Winnie Mandela at the memorial service for Nelson Mandela who joined the ancestors Dec. 5. COURTESY PHOTO ...

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Veteran music giant was the ‘voice of lightness’

Composer, singer and dancer Pascal Tabu Ley Rochereau passed away this week in a Belgian hospital where he had been undergoing treatment for a stroke. Pascal-Emmanuel Sinamoyi Tabu was born in what was then the Belgian Congo in 1937 (or 1940, depending on the source). He led the Orchestre Afrisa International and was considered one of the greatest Congolese musicians of all time, pioneering the musical genr ...

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Caribbean told ‘pray’ for divine intervention to overcome economic issues

Pray! That’s what people in the Caribbean may have to do as they fight off the effects of economic stagnation or decline at a time when many of them are saddled with mountains of debt that place them on the list of the world’s most highly indebted countries. That suggestion about divine intervention came from the Economist, a leading weekly news publication widely circulated in the United States, Canada, Eu ...

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Setting the schedule for 2014 international trade

I write this article from the beautiful shores of the Dominican Republic. We have assembled here for our second PanAfrican Entrepreneurship Conference. We first came here in 2006 and really enjoyed it. Now, we have a much larger agenda and are focused on exactly what the 1.2 billion persons of African descent need to do to further our quality of life and improve our economic power. We can’t just run around ...

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My chicken story

The mighty Mississippi River is one of America’s greatest rivers — so I was taught by my geography teacher way back in Africa, when I was in grade school. How can I ever forget the Mississippi? Although I had at that time never set foot on American soil, I one day got my fill of the Mississippi in my spelling class. ...

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Racist Dutch tradition comes under fire

When Santa Claus comes to town in Amsterdam, it’s not a cluster of elves leaping around the robust figure in red waving at cheering children and adults. The dancing figures are “Black Petes” — white Netherlanders in blackface wearing Afro wigs. Servants of St. Nick, they are variously Black Pete playing music or singing; Black Pete on horseback; Black Pete on stilts and Black Pete climbing up the façade of ...

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Mozambique facing another civil war?

The news out of the southeast African nation of Mozambique has been disturbing. After a 21-year period of peace, Renamo — the notorious Mozambican National Resistance — has announced it is breaking its pact with the ruling Frelimo (Mozambican Liberation Front, the movement that led the struggle for independence from Portugal). Skirmishes have commenced with the government and government forces have moved in ...

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