Other interviews were conducted in the U. Rone a visa but it was not forthcoming. Many private individuals requested anonymity because they had relatives living in government-controlled areas of southern Sudan or in northern Sudan.
The causes of famine in Africa The rains fail and so the food runs out - surely this is what causes Africans to starve to death, plain and simple.
Drought only kills because it lies at the end of a long tunnel of human neglect which begins deep in the heart of the West. POVERTY Nobody starves to death if they have money - journalists and aid workers visiting famine zones do not starve; nor do merchants or government employees in towns nearby.
But this is true of countries too - the desert states of the Gulf are more infertile than any African country but nobody starves there because they are awash with cash. The bitter background to every famine in Africa is the poverty of the country suffering it - and the Western societies that are so unprepared to share their opulence.
Developing countries do not have the resources to be able to insure themselves against famine. The goods they sell on the world market fetch ever less on the world market - in the average world market price of the primary commodities on which poor countries depend was just 70 per cent of what it was in and just 43 per cent of what it was in Then imagine yourself having to repay with it the interest on a debt you incurred a decade ago.
Conflict makes people more prone to famine because: It disrupts their traditional ways of coping with food scarcity, which might range from gathering wild plants to migrating in search of work. It destroys market centres and transport links, which are prime military targets.
It stops people cultivating their land - for years, any field work in Eritrea and Tigray has had to take place at night, while in Angola the UNITA rebels have indiscriminately scattered land mines across the countryside. It turns ordinary people into refugees: It brings about long-term economic decline, as the infrastructure is destroyed and foreign investment collapses.
The number of African countries with a free press can, unfortunately, be counted on the fingers of one hand.
We mutter about the real freedom of a Western press owned by billionaire entrepreneurs but we are still forunate compared with the African citizens who have to make do with endless grey propaganda about the achievements of the government or the movements of The Leader.
The climate of public opinion in India is one reason why mass famine is a thing of the past there - Indian political leaders would never get away with having allowed a famine to happen. African countries have less resources than India to play with - and a less developed middle class. But if the behaviour of President Mengistu of Ethiopia had been monitored by a free press, would he have been able to spend more than half the annual budget on the military?
It has a high iron and aluminium content which makes it turn hard on exposure to sun and air - and when devegetated it bakes into a concrete texture which is impossible to cultivate and absorbs no rain.
But all of these factors are worsened by overfarming, overgrazing and deforestation, which often have political causes. When the best land is taken for export crops, peasant farmers growing toad tar local consumption are forced to work less fertile land too hard.
One billion tonnes at topsoil are lost tram the Ethiopian highlands each year. According to UN estimates. While across, the Sahel belt the Sahara desert is said to be moving southwards at a rate at about five kilometres a year. This means adequate butter stocks of food, together with a code at action that can be implemented when the danger signs start appearing.
It is almost always crop failure two years running which causes famine on the scale of Ethiopia and Sudan at present, so there is usually enough warning.
It is just that the warning signs are habitually and callously ignored, both by local administrators and by Western governments.
It tips people over the brink into starvation - hut they are only balanced on that brink because at all the neglect that has gone before. This article is from the August issue of New Internationalist. You can access the entire archive of over issues with a digital subscription.Famine has been declared in regions of South Sudan's Unity State, in the world’s newest country, which has been embroiled in conflict since its independence.
Largely located in the northern regions of the country, the famine is affecting , people with a further one million at risk. The Derg addressed the Wollo famine by creating the Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (RRC) to examine the causes of the famine and prevent The combined effects of famine and internal war had by then put the nation's economy into a state of collapse.
However, according to Peter Gill, in his book Foreigners and Famine: Ethiopia. The immediate causes of this famine lay in Mao Zedong's ill-fated attempt to transform China from an agricultural nation to an industrial power in one huge leap. especially rural areas.
The Netherlands was able to escape most of the damaging effects of the famine, though the s were still difficult years there. In the lates and. Millions of people are facing starvation across East Africa, South Sudan and Yemen.
Oxfam is on the ground providing food, clean water and sanitation. Make a . Famine in Ethiopia: Of Wars, Droughts and Flawed Aid. January 24, Food Crisis. From tough climate and damaged environment to underdeveloped agriculture and wars, the many root causes of famine in Ethiopia are waiting to be tackled altogether.
Politics and the environment. The Cause of Ethiopia's Recurrent Famine Is Not Drought, It Is Authoritarianism Many experts relate Ethiopia's cyclical famine with the country's dependence on Rainfed smallholder agriculture.