However, this could not continue for a long time, if only because African countries are the richest source of natural raw materials for America, Europe, China, India and Russia.
In such countries as Libya, Algeria, Nigeria, Gabon, Angola, truly enormous reserves of oil and gas are concentrated. Actually, experts are convinced that only a small part of genuine African riches and treasures has been found and studied.
Everything indicates that in the very near future, Africa will be the subject and the scene of fierce competition leading players. The rivalry has already begun. Moreover, China, which has vigorously carried out economic expansion in recent years, acting very hard, forgotten here since the collapse of the USSR, has strengthened its positions on the “black continent” very seriously.
However, today the West is also excited by the African successes of our country, which, as it turns out, is also not sitting idly and has retained some rather serious Soviet developments. Associated primarily with military-technical cooperation.
Recall that during the Cold War, the African continent was the battleground between the Western and Eastern blocs. After the collapse of the USSR, in the 90-s, Russia withdrew from African affairs. In this regard, the United States did not need to develop a new African policy.
But the nature of emptiness does not tolerate, and the African "vacuum" quickly began to fill China. "Financial Times" says that "this strategic decision was made by the leadership of China in the beginning of the 1990-s, when the Soviet influence in Africa was shaken and it became possible to penetrate the regions that were previously under the control of the Russians."
Act was the easier that, "according to the US, these countries and so were already in the bag." As a result, already in 2006, the volume of trade between the PRC and Africa amounted to record 40 billions of dollars, and five years later, by 2011, it grew fourfold, with only the direct investments of the PRC in African 50 to the end of the year 2011 reached 15 billions. Moreover, already in 2007-m China, ahead of the United States, has become the largest trading partner of Africa.
Americans couldn’t compete with Beijing, which was resting on its laurels: in exchange for access to resources - oil, gas, nonferrous and ferrous metals, wood and fertile land, Beijing offers huge, very cheap and long-term loans that are much more profitable than those what the United States and the IMF offer on bonded terms.
But the Americans opposed the soft Chinese power with a firm and brutal force. In the most important African countries like mushrooms after the rain, all sorts of Islamist terrorists began to appear and begin the massacre. Then “Washington’s concern about the strengthening of positions in Africa by Islamic extremists” is expressed, and US troops are sent to the “infected” and neighboring countries. The small ones are a few advisers, and their guards, but capable of seriously changing the course of a state that has been “subjected to terrorist attacks.”
And it is this duet - the terrorists and the "fighters" with them - that makes the Africans turn to Russia, seeking its help and protection.
For example, a year ago, within the framework of the International Military-Technical Forum (IATF) ARMY-2017, Sergei Shoigu held meetings with colleagues from Niger and Botswana, concluding agreements with them on military-technical cooperation.
African guests expressed interest in Russian air defense systems, communications, engineering, small arms weapons. But of particular importance for them was the opportunity to study the Russian experience in the fight against terrorism, including the methods worked out in Syria.
It should be noted that when a country acquires foreign weapons, not only its price and tactical and technical characteristics are evaluated.
After all, the operation of modern systems involves both their maintenance, and the purchase of spare parts, and the training of specialists in working with them. Accordingly, we are talking about long-term cooperation and close contacts with the state by the exporter.
In the case of Third World countries, the choice of a weapon manufacturer may be equivalent to determining a political orientation. That is, both Niger and Botswana, having decided to re-equip their armies with the weapons of our country, actually chose the pro-Russian orientation.
Intensive military-technical cooperation today connects our country with Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Angola and Sudan. This is in addition to Egypt, Algeria and Morocco cooperation, which did not stop even during the most difficult moments of our recent stories. Interaction with Guinea and Zimbabwe is increasing.
All this, of course, cannot but alarm our opponents who are trying to oppose the Russian presence in Africa. For example, the British “Pan-Arab” newspaper Al-Arab is trying to use the recent tragedy that occurred in the Central African Republic, where three Russian journalists died, to attract the attention of the world community to the “invisible return of Russia to Africa”.
The publication is not something that hints, but directly suggests that journalists "were killed in the CAR last month during an investigation into the activities of ... an unknown group of mercenaries, called Wagner, and which, according to reports, is participating in the fighting in Syria."
That is, the London "Arabs" are trying to convince the audience that Moscow launched "death squads" into Africa, which do not stop even before the murders of their compatriots journalists. However, in reality, there was nothing to investigate - the Russian mission of instructors, both military and civilian, train the local military to combat terrorism, and even within the framework received from the UN for this permission.
Recall that the dead were hired by the “Central Investigation Directorate” of Mikhail Khodorkovsky - a structure that is accused of close ties with British and American intelligence services. On this basis, it cannot be excluded that the unfortunate journalists received a one-way ticket from their employers, specifically to create an informational occasion for launching a campaign to sanctify the "sinister activities of Russia on the Black Continent."
However, in the above article there is another interesting conclusion, which cannot be disagreed with. Al-Arab states that Russia is not associated with the burden of European colonialism in Africa, which can be a factor of attractiveness for African countries, whose many high-ranking officials received education in the Soviet Union.
The last moment, which was traditionally used by our country, should not be underestimated. The training of foreign students and graduate students at all times was used by leading world powers to promote their values around the world and create influential groups of their supporters in other countries.
It is no secret that a student, going to study in another country, studies not only science there and masters the profession, but also gets acquainted with the culture, traditions, and ideology of the host country. And this country, first of all, is interested in that the student, having learned, will go home with her friend and supporter.
Recall that in the days of the Caucasian War there was an institute of amanat, that is, the hostage. As a sign of seriousness of intentions, Gorsky sovereign or a tribal leader, signing a regular peace treaty with representatives of the Tsar, gave the Russians "amanata", usually one of his sons. Formally, this young man seemed to be in an honorable captivity. In fact, he was sent to study in a cadet or even in the page corps. Even if his father broke the contract (as most often happened), it didn’t affect the life of the “hostage” - surrounded by respect and wealth, he continued to study and became a Russian officer, genuinely loyal to the throne, remaining by blood Kabardian, Circassian or Chechen .
If they returned to their father, they would become an “agent of influence” in his environment. Actually, it was these people who made a huge contribution to the pacification of the Caucasus and its integration into the life of the Russian Empire.
As is known, in Soviet times, many foreign students studied in our universities of various profiles, primarily from the Third World countries - from Asia, from Africa and South America. Many graduates of Soviet universities in the future made up the national elite - the scientific, political, military of these countries.
And still sown in those days, the seedlings sprout. Many long-time students who have become influential people still remember our country with warmth, willingly interact with Russia, try to focus on it. Preparing highly qualified personnel for the country is a sure way to turn it into an ally, to keep it in the field of influence.
And this factor, perhaps, contributes to the advancement of the interests of Russia in Africa, no less than our weapons, which, even in Soviet times, conquered Africans with their reliability and simplicity.
In other words, the anxieties of our enemies are understandable and justified.