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OBAMA and His African Root..

By: Chris Onyishi  

 Published January, 13th, 2010

I wrote this article around 14th November, 2008 some ten days after Obama was declared the winner of the November election.  With the trend of things, I now feel more strongly than ever before with my position that Africans jubilation was not a very well thought out one.  His action on Nigeria about Farouk Mutallab’s insurgence, even when the father had shouted out, is imminent with a lot of things to come to Africa within his tenure as America’s 44th President. Here we go.

First, I must agree that history was made on 4th of November, 2008 as it relates to American Democracy.  For the first time, someone with a Caucasian mother and African father became the president of USA.  I was one of those who - wished for it but - didn't think it was going to come very soon.   

I also thought that Obama did not have the kind of experience an American president requires.  I hinged this on his campaign slogan which read "The Change We Need".  I also thought that saying he will sit with people like Iranian leader who once was quoted as saying that Israel is a stinking corpse was being very naïve. And saying that he will carry out a selective taxing system is also neither here nor there.

I also thought that he was being very simplistic by saying that the war in Iraq and elsewhere was not necessary. In all, I summarized that he was just capitalizing on the economic crises and was singing a one-dimensional song which most Americans wanted to hear, at this point, irrespective of how potent his own solutions were or would be if eventually he became the president.

Now that he is a president in waiting, it will be necessary for me to, again, x-ray some of the points I made then.

Firstly, I agreed that America is the strongest nation in the earth today. I was dragged into believing this because of what is perceivable by everybody. The reaction to the elections in USA is usually worldwide as if it is a worldwide election. Any thing that happens in USA usually takes an awesome dimension and people leave what happens in their own territory to talk about US phenomenon each time. And this is understandable from the point of view that American is the only nation where most families around the world have a representative or more.

Most of my brothers, friends and professional colleagues who go to America usually begin to talk big after some years of sojourning in USA. They all agree that it is a land where all things are possible. The only ones who come back worse off or who do not come back again are those who were obviously not good or who felt that the Gods own country is a place you go and angels serve you food. SO, here again, I imagined that when once you are good and reasonably realistic, your rise and greatness is assured in USA. This does not obtain in most other African and developing nations. And this has been further confirmed by the election of Obama. I did also measure that against most developed nations where you won’t even dream about that or even in Nigeria where it may be difficult for a Hausa man to become the governor of an Igbo state, or a Yoruba man becoming the governor of a Hausa state or an Igbo man becoming the governor of a Yoruba state, etc.

Most wars in places like The Great Congo, Somalia, Ethiopia, Mali, Chechnya, etc, have a lot to do with who rules who. And it was amazing how Kibaki was declaring public holiday in Kenya to celebrate Obama. Can any one understand that or what point he wanted to make. If Obama’s father was still in Kenya and contested election with Kibaki, would he have succumbed to defeat or would he have chosen the gorilla option? Of course all of us know what he would have done.

Obama understands the American system, peripherally, and he cashed into it to make the history we all know may not even be possible in our own countries very soon. I have always thought the founding fathers of America resolved to put a structure that will make America rule the whole world for as long as this civilization lasts. I argued that this structure is not founded on morals of using American wealth to develop another nation except if that in itself will make America even stronger. It is founded on the principle of let America grow even if it means let every other person die. One remembers what happened when American forces blew up a Russian commercial aircraft carrying many civilians (over two hundred and thirty) on the allegation of espionage during President Reagan’s administration. Reagan had told everybody then that it was “an unavoidable accident”. What ever that meant! So it’s something like no free lunch.

Let’s look at this extract from an internet publication, on the great masonry:

"Not only were many of the founders of the United States Government Masons, but they received aid from a secret and august body existing in Europe, which helped them to establish this country for a peculiar and particular purpose known only to the initiated few. The Great Seal is the signature of this exalted body - unseen and for the most part unknown - and the unfinished pyramid upon its reverse side is a trestle board setting forth symbolically the task to the accomplishment of which the United States Government was dedicated from the day of its inception."

We will begin to see that as soon as Obama is initiated, he will be radically different from what most people had thought. If he does not continue in the line of former American leaders, then America is bound to collapse and when that happens, another supper power will emerge and continue the role America has been playing, rightfully or wrongfully. So this is why I was not carried away when most people were jubilating over his victory or even all the events that built up to his election. I had told my self that Obama was essentially going to be another American president supervising world affairs and not world president supervising American affairs.

On the relevance of some of the wars America has been involved in, and which Obama thought was a wasteful venture, I did say that if those wars are not fought outside of America, they will be fought inside America. I did also say that what makes America thick is what naturally attract hatred to her. We also have heard Obama in the recent time say he will haunt down Osama Bin Laden and kill him. This statement will not be tolerated by the likes of the Iranian leader: Ahmadinejad. We also found out that when Obama was responding to world leaders who stretched hands of fellowship to his expected government, the Iranian leader was not mentioned as one of those he responded to. So he has started being cautious with his statements even before being sworn in and all these are the true character of American leaders Obama was distancing himself from during campaign.

We have also heard political pundits interpret what he meant when he said he will sit down with every leader irrespective of their standing with American state and her foreign policy. They argue that he did not say he will agree with them. Just that he will sit down with them and talk. So what sense does that make. And we realized that after the election result and Obama was declared winner, he immediately started receiving security reports - just as the sitting president – his approach to issues changed. It was not by accident that the designers of the American system gave such a long gap before a winner (a president elect) is sworn in while he receives some security briefing. If it looks like he will not be an American president within this period, anything is possible.

On the image or ego of African Americans, I was humble at discussing this each time so that it will not look as if I am not concerned. But frankly speaking, if you look at how Africans govern themselves back in Africa, no one will be comfortable of allowing any African an opportunity to mess up anything. But here again, as I said before, I am always encouraged by knowing that if you distinguish your self in whatever you are doing in America, you will be trusted and you will be given opportunity and you will not be discriminated against. Douglas Wilde, Rice, Powel, Obama, Wimphry, Jesse Jackson, Andrew Young, David Dinkins, etc are just a few cases.

And when Obama was making his victory speech in Chicago, we heard how he introduced his wife and then his two girls whom he said are welcomed to the white house on the basis of their new “status” as the first kids. So, Obama himself is also conscious of a status he and his household has acquired from that moment and will acquire as soon as they pack into the white house by January next year. Will that status mean he is already discriminating against African Americans or his Caucasian root? No, I do not think so. He is only stating the fact the way it has turned out to be. He also, in the victory speech, said that the fact on ground may not be tackled within “one year, not even in one term”. So Obama, the politician, is already becoming his real self and when a dose of the great masonry pill is given him, the real American president he will become will become more evident.

I also argue that most super structures in developed nations are sustained by recourses unfairly tapped or forcefully acquired from developing nations. And so long as these superstructures must be maintained, any leader from such nations are not playing by God’s rules and it does not look as if Obama will reverse this trend be him black or red. I may not even be surprised if Obama pushes his all blue government to declare OPEC a terrorist organization if oil prices climb again. So when we rejoice that a black man or a colored man has been elected as a president of a supper power, in this case number one super power, we are only clamoring for a “CHANGE WE DO NOT NEED”. After all, we can live in our Africa and develop her to a point where it is no more fashionable to go where we begin to complain that we are marginalized or discriminated upon.

His election may favor a few of our brothers and sister sojourning there by way of improved American economy as a state, but it may not be in the interest of a larger Africa and other nations from where Obama will keep tapping resources to sustain the American dream or whatever it is referred to. If there is anything to gain from American experience it is that we should ask our selves some questions. Can we emulate the American system and begin to imbibe country first? Should people - House of representative - be lavishing a whopping 2.3 billion naira to acquire cars in a country where a greater majority are lavishing in hunger and deprivation? Can we conduct free and fair elections where victors stretch hand and vanquished succumb and also stretch hand of fellowship? Is their anything fundamentally wrong from beings living in Africa and who are dominantly black skinned?

My position is that it is only when God and God alone make decision on mankind that I start jubilating. If men make laws for their selfish interest, it does not tickle me. If a black man or a red man or a white man rules the world so long as he rules or leads with the fear of God, I am comfortable. It does not make any sense to me that my father is ruling and he does not rule with the fear of God. And for as long as God does not occupy the central position in all our activities, mankind will ever know no peace. It maybe too early to know if Obama will actually rule with the fear of God or not. If he rules or leads with the fear of God , and most other leaders or rulers too, mankind will know peace and it is only then that we will begin to rejoice that we have gotten the “CHANGE WE NEED”. Anything less than that will mean that we have as usual gotten a “CHANGE WE DO NOT NEED” and there will be nothing to rejoice about.

Chris Onyishi.
Lagos Nigeria

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