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This is easily the best book I have read in recent times. In fact, I bought This US in 2015 and read it twice. When I came back to India I wanted to buy a personal copy and lend it to my friends to share the pleasure of reading it, but then the price was prohibitive. Now that Amazon helped me to buy it in affordable price, I have no hesitation to give it 5 stars
I focus on Africa at my work and I’m from Egypt myself. However, was always looking for a book about how and why Africa and Africans are still suffering despite all the resources they have and despite they all are liberated from the white man rule - or so I thought. Highly recommend if you are interested into Africa and finance and how the ecosystem there works.
The book almost read like a thriller. A very depressing one. Nothing I read about Mugabe surprised me, but Mandela's legacy was hugely disappointing. He left behind no worthwhile successor, and the lot of most black South Africans should have improved much more than it did. Colonialism has found a different way to continue to suck the blood out of Africa, with the complicity of local vampires. It makes me shudder how we treat people who dare flee poverty and risk their lives for a better future.
Tom Burgis hat ein Buch über postkoloniale Raubzüge in Afrika geschrieben, das man einem Reporter der Financial Times gar nicht zutraut. Er beschreibt die angelsächsischen, chinesischen und israelischen Netzwerke, die an dieser Ausplünderung des zugleich reichsten und ärmsten Kontinents beteiligt sind. Er nennt auch die afrikanischen Ganoven in Regierungsämtern, die daran beteiligt sind und das endliche Vermögen ihrer Völker in rauschhaften Parties verschleudern. An einer Stelle beschreibt er sogar, wie die Rohstoffgewinnung Afrika am Aufbau von Handwerk und Industrie hindert und vorhandenes Handwerk kaputt gemacht hat. Beeindruckend. Bis Herbst 2021 nur in Englisch lesbar, dann erst auf Deutsch. Uneingeschränkt empfehlenswert. Bis dahin kann man über Afrika auf Deutsch Grill und/oder Gütter lesen, die das Thema ebenfalls systematisch angehen.
Fantastic book that gives you a remarkably detailed look into the looting machine (literally the mechanisms, events and individuals that enable the systematic, kleptocratic theft of wealth).
If you live in a rich, stable country thinking that this does not affect you, you are mistaken. Kleptocrats around the world are the reason why your western quality of life is decreasing. They are the reason that asset values are escaping the realms of what your own income can provide you with. The stolen money is spent in stable democracies is for example one of several reasons why London real estate is unaffordable for the masses. I wish Tom Burgis touched on that but there was already too much to explain about the looting machine itself. Fantastic book and I will probably read it again soon.
I recently went to Nigeria and this helped me to understand the current and ongoing state of affairs much better.
Tom Burgis's book should be mandatory on the desk of every official in the international bodies who deals with Africa. It is eloquent, lyrical at times, and totally devestating. Here is real, front line reporting at its very best. Which is what marks the book out from others on the topic. Tom Burgis gets people to talk to him who have spoken to few, if any, outsiders at all. People in the Delta gangs in Nigeria; the General. People in the Futungo in Angola, the officially sanctioned kleptocracy. High officials in the Congo, Niger, Ghana. Humans are a pirate tribe, and no ones worse than the pirates in your own home port. They terrorise the sea and loot the land about them. Africa has finally escaped Imperial colonialism only to fall victim to Capitalist colonialism, some of it by people, the Chinese, only recently liberated from centuries of poverty themselves. Here is the intimite history of human rapacity retold for a new generation. Years ago, I remember working in a trade paper in a building opposite the Sunday Times in Gray's Inn Road. The building belonged, as did several other nearby, to a Nigerian 'entrepreneur'. That was 1983 and the looting of Nigeria, and the conversion of so many of its real entrepereneurs into crooks just to survive the local environment in Nigeria, was all too well established. No record of modern Africa is complete without Tom Burgis's book. Read it and weep, but dont despair. The way out of this new curse is visible and isd in the hands of the international bodies. Help Africa and Africa will help itself. .
It has always been a paradox: Africa is so rich in resources, but always remains poor. Why is that? This book suggests that the richness of resources might actually be feeling or "driving" the corruption which results in some unscrupulous locals and foreignors "looting" most/all benefits, while leaving the local population poor, if not actually destitute.
Elsewhere, in TED talks, we are reminded that Africa does not want charity! It merely wants a chance to participate in global commerce and work its way up, like most other (esp. 1st world) countries. It is very hard to do, if someone keeps stealing all of the benefits and profits.
I read this book a few years ago but I remember a lot. The analysis is supported by many case studies. It keeps away from the easy trap to blame all the issues of African countries on the former colonial country. It shows the corruption at the head of most states and describes it as the main reason why despite considerable mineral resources most countries are poverty ridden. I recently ordered this book for the son a a friend who is a young journalist, because I think it is a compulsory read to understand Africa. Congratulations to the author.
A superbly written account of the looting that goes on in natural resources dependent African countries. From Angola to Nigeria, Congo, Guinea, Niger, Zimbabwe, South Africa and many more, a heartbreaking, disgusting and mind boggling account of the destruction of lives by African leaders and few elites African and foreign due to massive looting of the commonwealth. At times, the book reads like a thriller, hard to put down. As a Nigerian and someone with knowledge of the oil and gas industry, the book touched on issues that we in Nigeria live through daily. I am yet to read a better account and analysis of the suffering corrupt despots, middle men in the resources business, banks and multi nationals inflict on hundreds of millions of innocent Africans. A must read for anyone interested in why Africa is what it is and why it will take a long time for African countries to escape the resources curse. Five stars.
stunning and eye opening book that rips open the belly of corruption in resource rich SSA countries. The Chinese are late comers to the game but have managed to catch up and in a lot of cases bypass the incumbent "old" colonial powers. Would have liked to seen a little more on the corruption taking place in the Francophone SSA countries as this really does (did?) go to Presidential level and would have balanced out some of the Anglo detail. End of the day it is thievery and the countries involved will all have hell to pay come the day of reckoning and that day hopefully is on the horizon for the poor who pay the cost. A fine and readable book .