Africa: Many Hills to Climb

For the month of November, the current and 25th anniversary issue of World Policy Journal is free.  Michelle  Sieff on Africa, its diversity and its prospects:

Africa in 2033 will look somewhat like Africa in 2008: it will still face challenges, but different challenges than today. Internal wars, such as in Sudan, will no longer be the primary threats to the security of Africa’s populations. Instead, transnational organized crime syndicates and radical Islamist groups will become the greatest threats to civilian life in Africa. But there are positives too: economic growth will continue, democracy will spread, though its progress may be halting and unpredictable.

Today, some 50 years after the beginning of the independence era, Africa is far more complicated than the image of Africa in the popular imagination. All too often, Africa is still seen as the basket-case continent of Darfur and Zimbabwe, of “blood diamonds,” “resource curses,” and “poverty traps.” In reality, however, Africa is a humdrum continent, and is part of the general trend towards economic and political progress shared by other parts of the world.