Is genetically modified cotton really the new “white gold”?

Is genetically modified cotton really the new
In an interview with Jeune Afrique (French) Jean-Paul Sawadogo, the head of the national textile association of Burkina Faso, “Sofitex”, touts the advantages of genetically modified (GM) cotton.  Burkina Faso has been the first (and so far only) West African country to allow GM cotton onto domestic fields ten years ago. By now, GM cotton is something of the norm in international cotton production. In 2009, 49% of the worldwide total area planted with cotton used GM cotton. As countries like the USA and Australia grow almost exclusively GM cotton and have a high productivity, one can safely assume that well ...

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World Politics Review: Mali’s Tuareg Rebellion Puts Region at Risk

World Politics Review: Mali's Tuareg Rebellion Puts Region at Risk
As the fighting between the Tuareg rebels of the National Movement for the Liberation of Awazad (MNLA) and the Malian army enters its third month, there are few indications that the conflict will be resolved in the near future. On a military level, the advantage lies with the well-equipped and experienced Tuareg fighters, many of whom are veterans of earlier rebellions and the Libyan civil war. Using long-range guerrilla tactics, mainly surprise attacks launched over distances of hundreds of miles with four-wheel-drive pickup trucks, they have sacked at least seven Malian garrison towns so far, including one this past weekend. The ...

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A way forward in Uganda

A way forward in Uganda
The internet has erupted over the Kony2012 video, produced the advocacy group Invisible Children. It has gone viral instantly, collection over 75 Million views until now, but has also drawn vicious criticism from other NGOs, researchers and (perhaps most importantly) Ugandans. While everybody agrees that the video is an incredible piece of marketing, the critics argue that it distorts the realities on the ground, advocates for a military (non)solution and disregards Ugandan agency. I’m squarely on the side of the critics after seeing the video. But this won’t be another post explaining you what’s wrong with this publicity stunt (others do this ...

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WarIsBoring: Africa Round-Up

WarIsBoring: Africa Round-Up
Burkina Faso Ten people were killed in clashes between neighboring communities in Guenon, a village about 80 kilometers south of the capital Ouagadougou. According to reports by state media, the deaths resulted from a dispute about the position of the local chief, who at the moment is a member of the Akonga ethnic group. This is a longstanding grievance of the Liliou group, who have pleaded for a chief of their own. Tensions escalated over the weekend, when the son of the current chief was killed with nine further people dying and about 100 houses burned down in the ensuing fighting. Usually ...

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