Central Africa | Wilson Center

Central Africa

Changes in U.S. Policy on Africa in the New Administration: What will it mean for AFRICOM?

U.S. policy is dictated by global political and economic realities as well as domestic U.S. policy priorities. Not only is President Obama faced with the stark reality of an America perceived by many to have lost its moral compass in an increasingly multi-polar world where American power and resource capacities are dwindling and its leadership role being challenged, but the priorities of policy and resource allocation must remain for the short and near-terms on the domestic economic crisis, the two unpopular wars he has inherited and traditional national interest priorities.

Democracy and Peace-building: Re-thinking the Conventional Wisdom

This article, which is a systematic analysis of the practical experiences of theauthors in facilitating workshops to help resolve African conflicts, argues that we need to think again about how we both conceptualize and operationalize peace-building techniques. As the Iraq debacle may be said to show, to impose a peace settlement and democratic government institutions on a state and people after a war does not, by itself, work.

Cameroon's 2011 Elections: Stakes, Risks, Opportunities

Kah Walla, a presidential candidate in the 2011 elections in Cameroon will be discussing the obstacles and opportunities facing the country in the months preceding the elections. Walla is running against incumbent Paul Biya, who has been in power for 26 years.

Please note:
This event is by invitation only, but will be webcast live.
The event can be followed online by clicking here.

The International Criminal Court and Africa

Of the five cases currently being reviewed by the International Criminal Court (ICC), all are based on alleged war crimes committed in African countries. The list of countries involved in ongoing trials includes Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Central African Republic, Kenya and, most recently, Sudan. Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the first prosecutor for the ICC spoke at the Woodrow Wilson Center on September 15 at an event organized by the Africa Program of the Wilson Center, Amnesty International and Citizens for Global Solutions.

Day II: African Growth and Opportunity Act Civil Society Forum 2010

Friday, July 30
9:00 - 9:15 am Keynote Speaker: Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA), Ways and Means Committee

9:15 – 10:30am Panel I: Textiles and Beyond
Steve Lande, Former Professor of Trade Policy, Georgetown University
Jas Bedi, Chairman, African Cotton Textiles Industry Federation
M. Monyane, Vice Chairman, Lesotho Textile Exporters Association
Navdeep Sodhi, Partner, Gherzi Consultants
Moderator: Tony Carroll, Partner, Manchester Trade

10:15 Coffee Break

Day I: African Growth and Opportunity Act Civil Society Forum 2010 "A Decade of Progress in Bridging the U.S.-Africa Trade Gap"

Please see the attached documents below for both the notes on the proceedings of the event and the powerpoint presentations made over the two days.

Thursday, July 29

8:15 – 8:45am Registration and Breakfast
9:00 – 9:30am Welcome and Introduction of Speaker, Steve McDonald, Director, Africa Program, Woodrow Wilson Center
Keynote Speaker: Senator Benjamin Cardin (D-MD), Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Truth and Reconciliation Processes – A Global Assessment

This program was the second of a two-part series examining truth and reconciliation processes that have emerged in response to mass violence and atrocities. The first part, held at the Visions Theater the previous evening, centered on Rwanda's particular experience, using, as a discussion vehicle, Anne Aghion's new film that tracks the return to his community of a Rwandan Hutu believed to have been involved in the 1994 genocide.

"In Rwanda we say….the family that does not speak dies"

This film screening will be held at Visions Theatre.

The film will be followed by a panel discussion with:

Anne Aghion, director and producer, "In Rwanda we say…";
Shamil Idriss, Search for Common Ground;
Lars Waldorf, former Human Rights Watch, Researcher in Rwanda, 2002-2004;
Antoine Rutayisire, Rwanda National Unity and Reconciliation Commission;
Moderator: Gayle Smith, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress, and former Special Advisor to the President and Senior Director for African Affairs (NSC).

Sexual Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Venantie Bisimwa, the Coordinator of Réseau des Femmes pour la Défense des Droits et la Paix (RFDP), a network of women's organizations based in Bukavu; and Jeanne d'Arc Chakupewa, the Coordinator of Réseau des Femmes pour la Développement Associatif, a collective of 44 women's organizations based in Uvira, gave a detailed report of an ongoing investigation into sexual violence against women and girls in South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The two organizations are partnered with the London-based International Alert.