Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni tests Obama in Africa
KPFA News, 04.08.2012
Yoweri Museveni, the U.S.A.'s principle ally in the military mission reported to be about hunting down East African warlord Joseph Kony, has outlawed opposition, testing Obama in Africa.
KPFA Weekend News Host Cameron Jones: Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni is the U.S.A.'s principle ally in the U.S. military operation to hunt down minor East African warlord Joseph Kony, which was applauded in the record breaking viral Youtube video KONY 2012. However, this week Museveni and his Cabinet outlawed the country's nonpartisan, nonviolent Activists for Change Coalition, which has been protesting soaring food and fuel prices, government corruption, and election fraud since February 2011. KPFA's Ann Garrison spoke to Milton Allimadi, Ugandan American Editor of the New York City-based Black Star News, about Museveni’s attempt to outlaw his opposition, and about his just published report that Invisible Children, makers of KONY 2012, have been spying for the Ugandan government.
KPFA/Ann Garrison: Milton Allimadi, could you tell us what Americans should most understand about Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni outlawing the opposition coalition Activists for Change?
Milton Allimadi: Well, first of all, Americans should understand that this country should not be supporting the Ugandan regime. This is a test not only of democracy in Uganda, and in Africa, but it's also a test of the credibility of the Obama Administration. In Egypt, in Syria, in Libya, when people started protesting, the United States came out very forcefully and said that the governments should not suppress popular demonstration. In Uganda, we have this loud, deafening silence. The U.S. has not said anything critical since Ugandans started protesting. This silence, Ugandans see as an endorsement of the suppression, sometimes with violence, killing, by the Ugandan regime.
KPFA: How effective do you think this ban on the opposition is likely to be?
Milton Allimadi: I won't be surprised to see those protests continue and ultimately I think we will see in Uganda the same things that we saw in Egypt, where even though President Mubarak had been there about 30 years, and had a huge army supported by the United States, street popular protest drove him from office.
KPFA: And what do you think this is going to mean for the U.S. Special Forces in the region applauded by Invisible Children in the viral video KONY 2012?
Milton Allimadi: Ugandans question that video. We here at the Black Star News criticize that video because we believe it had ulterior motives. Number one, the LRA is no longer in Uganda. It's in Central African Republic. And it's there for a reason. Between 2004 and 2006, the LRA had been negotiating the end of conflict with the Museveni regime. And in fact they assembled their fighters in Congo, in a camp near Garamba and what happened was that the Museveni regime attacked those camps with helicopters, using U.S. logistical and intelligence assistance. And that's why the LRA was driven into Central Africa, where both the LRA and Museveni's soldiers are actually now committing atrocities against civilians, in Central Africa.
But the other reason why the Ugandans were critical of the deployment of U.S. troops in the region that is being promoted by Invisible Children's KONY 2012 is they believe the deployment actually helps shore up the Yoweri Museveni dictatorship. And now, in the course of doing our own research at the Black Star News, we've discovered Invisible Children has been spying on behalf of the Ugandan regime and actually provided information that led to the arrest of many Ugandans who are accused of being members of a new anti-Museveni insurgency, and many of them are protesting their innocence. And we obtained this information through official memos written by U.S. Embassy officials in Uganda that were leaked by Wikileaks, and that's what we're publishing today as well.
KPFA: That was Milton Allimadi, Ugandan American Editor of the New York City-based Black Star News. His report, "Invisible Children, Makers of Kony 2012 Spied for Ugandan Regime - Wikileaks," was posted to the website of the Black Star News, blackstarnews.com, just before this newscast began.