Following up on this week’s new U.S. engagement with Africa, some observers say the United States needs to change not only its policies but also its mind set for dealing with Africa.
In Washington, nearly 50 African heads of state have been holding talks with the U.S. administration in what’s being seen as a gear-changing summit. U.S. President Barack Obama harkened back to his visit to Africa while talking of his vision for future relations.
The economic performance of Africa since the turn of the twenty-first century has been impressive, even in the aftermath of the global financial and economic crisis. That success has clearly emboldened African leaders to set their own terms in relations with the U.S. and others.
At such an extraordinary gathering of leaders many are wondering why the continental peace and security issues of Africa were not given greater attention. The fierce fighting in Libya, for example, was not a main agenda item for discussion.