U.S. skeptical that Joseph Kony is willing to surrender himself

Joseph Kony

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—According to news reports, elusive rebel leader Joseph Kony, is said to be in contact with the president of the Central African Republic to discuss his surrender. Deutsche Welle reports that on Thursday, Central African Republic president Michael Djotodia confirmed that talks with Kony over a possible surrender were underway.

With his Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), Kony fought a brutal war against the Ugandan government in the north of the country for some 20 years before fleeing into the jungles of central Africa.

However, on Thursday, a statement was issued by the US State Department, saying US officials have little reason to believe that Kony is part of the LRA group currently in contact with CAR officials.

“Many times in the past, Joseph Kony and his senior commanders have used—and we believe will continue to use—any and every pretext to rest, regroup, and rearm, ultimately returning to kidnapping, killing, displacing and otherwise abusing civilian populations,” the State Department said.

Realistically, it would not be in the interest of African nations to have Joseph Kony surrender because once he is arrested, the West will then focus its attention on prosecuting leaders within Africa for committing atrocities and human rights violations against their own citizens.

The continuous search for Kony makes African leaders relevant because the West has to depend on them, and also provide the necessary resources and weapons, just like the war in Somalia is beneficial for African nations because the continuous fighting makes the peace-keeping forces relevant to the West, since the West is the one financing and maintaining the forces fighting within Somalia.

The rationale of the West’s involvement is that if fighting and civil strife ends, then the U.S. interests in Africa will be secure, therefore in order to establish a footprint in Africa, the West has to ensure that the atmosphere in Africa is conducive for implementing the plans they have for the Continent.

African leaders are not stupid. They see beyond the veil, and in order for Africans themselves to protect their own domestic interests, they have to make sure that the atmosphere is uncomfortable for the West to want to set up camp permanently, which explains why Africa always seems to have pockets of fighting every now and then, in different regions.

These pockets of fighting, on one hand, are simply mechanisms to keep the West at arm’s length to prevent Africa from being re-colonized by foreigners, yet on the other hand, the atmosphere is safe enough for foreign investors, tourists and expats to live peacefully on the Continent, without trying to impose their will over native Africans.