13 January 2014
Current events in South Sudan are most complex and harrowing, with peace much needed. The articles below, two by ACAS members, provide a range of useful information and viewpoints to help understand and guide action:
The Political Struggle in South Sudan: Peace, Democracy and Reconstruction instead of war
HORACE G. CAMPBELL
CounterPunch, JANUARY 10-12, 2014
Has South Sudan passed the tipping point? No signs of a ceasefire as violence intensifies
Eric Reeves Pambazuka 2014-01-08
South Sudan: Reflections on Crisis
AfricaFocus Bulletin January 13, 2014
17 December 2013
Four updates shared by Sarah Milburn for ACAS, three from Amnesty International team in Bangui
and the fourth by Louisa Lombard:
14 December 2013
November 27, 2013 Central African Republic: Whose Responsibility to Protect? (Reposted from sources cited below)
AfricaFocus Bulletin Editor’s note:
“In the Central African Republic, the scale of the humanitarian crisis is undeniable; the threat of even greater escalation of violence and chaos is real. And there is a consensus that greater international action is essential. But the questions of who does what when, and who pays, remain unanswered. France is sending additional troops to reinforce the African peacekeeping force now in place, but the processes for funding and coordinating African Union and United Nations multilateral actions are still in slowmotion mode….” read more
5 December 2013
The Association of Concerned Africa Scholars salutes the life of a great fighter for freedom, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. We send our condolences to his family and to the people of South Africa. He stood unflinchingly for the achievement of fairness, equality and a social peace predicated on justice. He inspired us all with his courage and steadfast dedication to freedom for all, and we are honored to have been associated with the causes to which he dedicated his life. Hamba gatle, Madiba.
19 November 2013
The ACAS annual business meeting will be at 6:30 on Thursday, Nov. 21 at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Baltimore. Check African Studies Association program for room information.
The ACAS-sponsored panel is “Foreign Capital Flows into African Agriculture: Implications and Alternatives,” chaired by Jeanne Koopman. Friday, Nov. 22 from 2:45 pm-4:30 pm.
A second ACAS-related panel is “Security and the Military in Africa,” chaired by David Wiley. Friday, Nov. 22 from 10:00 am – 11:45 am.
24 April 2013
We are saddened by the passing of South African scholar Ben Magubane. Many ACAS members knew and worked with Ben as both a scholar and activist, particularly during his many years in the United States. His daughter, Zine Magubane, wrote this obituary. Also, this hour-long interview with Magubane by Cape Town historian Sean Field is available on the African Activist Archive website. Magubane discusses his activism in the United States (at 41:28 and 45:02). Magubane also recalls his impoverished childhood in and around Durban, his initial university studies, scholarship to the United States, and work and life at the University of Zambia, where he was close to Oliver (OR) Tambo and Jack Simons.
1 February 2013
ACAS member Carl LeVan has posted on his blog, “Momentum Builds Against Drones in Africa,” which provides valuable reporting on the broad debate about the use of drones. LeVan also highlights a January 17 letter to President Obama from 33 organizations, including the Association of Concerned Africa Scholars, that opposes the use of drone strikes in targeting militants in Africa, arguing that “current and future military operations will harm U.S. and African interests and communities.”
12 December 2012
Today, 221 academics and scholars of Africa in the United States sent a petition to President Obama to take action to protect civilians in the conflict zone of eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The petition was released by the Association of Concerned Africa Scholars (ACAS), since 1977 a national organization of professors and other specialists on Africa.
The press release quoted Noah Zerbe, political scientist at Humboldt State University and co-chairperson of ACAS: “According to the International Rescue Committee, with more than 5 million killed in this disordered nation in the last 14 years, the conflicts there are the world’s deadliest documented conflict since WW II, yet it has not had the attention it needs.”
The scholars are calling on President Obama to take bilateral actions and actions through the United Nations to protect civilians in the conflict zone of eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Specifically, the petition calls on the President to use U.S. influence at the UN to provide the MONUC forces with the mandate and resources to protect civilians, to sanction Rwanda and Uganda for any support to militias there, to use the SEC to enforce the Dodd-Frank Act on conflict minerals, and to fully implement the “Obama Act” of 2006 on the Congolese Army for their contributions to the disorder.
Scholars who would like to join ACAS in policy-oriented research and action on this issue and other issues concerning the U.S. military role in Africa may contact David Wiley (email@example.com), chair of the ACAS Demilitarization Task Force.
19 November 2012
2012 marks the 35th anniversary of the founding of the Association of Concerned Africa Scholars! ACAS is holding a strategic planning session on Wednesday, November 28 at 8:30-10:30 pm in Room 413 of the Marriott Philadelphia Downtown Hotel in Philadelphia, in conjunction with the African Studies Association (ASA) annual meeting. The ACAS annual business meeting is on Thursday, November 29 at 8:30 pm in Salon K.
ACAS and the ASA Current Issues Committee are co-sponsoring a Roundtable on Friday, November 30 at 2:30: The 2012 American Elections and their Implications for U.S.-Africa Policy, chaired by Elizabeth Schmidt
ACAS is sponsoring three panels:
IX-E-6 (Sat 8:30 am) Research Frontiers: Analyzing African Land Grabs, with Carol Thompson as Chair and Jeanne Koopman as Discussant
XI-N-27 (Sat 2:30 pm) Militarizing Africa: Historical Perspectives (Part I), Chaired by David Wiley
XII-N-28 (Sat 4:30 pm) Militarizing Africa: African Studies, AFRICOM, & Current US Security-Focused Foreign Policy (Part II), Chaired by David Wiley
24 April 2012
A resource for teachers, React and Respond: The Phenomenon of Kony 2012, is now available on the ACAS webpage Resources on Uganda, the LRA, and Central Africa. The teachers’ packet is written by Barbara Brown (Boston University Africa Studies Center), John Metzler (Michigan State University Africa Studies Center), Patrick Vinck (Program for Vulnerable Populations at Harvard Humanitarian Initiative), and Christine Root (ACAS). Please share it with social studies teachers in your community. We also have been adding other materials to this ACAS Resources page.