Choke Point Bab el-Mandeb: Understanding the Strategically Critical Horn of Africa
The Horn of Africa is one of the most strategically critical regions in the world with the narrow passage where the Red Sea joins the Indian Ocean, the Bab el-Mandeb, being a potential choke point for much of the worlds commerce.
Almost all of the trade between the European Union and China, Japan, India and the rest of Asia passes through the Bab el-Mandeb everyday. Up to 30% of the worlds oil, including all of the oil and natural gas from the Persian Gulf heading west passes through the Horn of Africa daily.
Who controls the Horn of Africa controls a major chunk of the worlds economies and whether you and I understand it, the CIA, MI6 and all the western intelligence agencies know all to well just how critical the Horn of Africa is to their national interests.
To make my point, lets say Somalia was a strong, united, independent, well armed Islamic country and in seeing the NATO attack on Libya, declared that no EU or USA bound shipments of cargo, oil or natural gas would be allowed to pass through the Bab el-Mandeb as long as the NATO bombardment of Libya was continuing.
How long would the EU economies be able to hold out without the energy supplies from the Persian Gulf or the vital Asian imports? Is it even conceivable that the USA and its NATO allies would allow a scenario such as this to develop?
Understanding this is crucial to understanding why the western powers conduct such a criminal policy in the Horn of Africa.
The USA, still the world’s lone superpower, has a policy of using local enforcers, policemen on the beat, to do its dirty work in areas of the world of critical importance to its interests.
In South America the USA uses Colombia as its local gendarme or strongman to try and keep the region in line. In West Africa the USA uses Nigeria, in the Middle East, Israel and in East Africa the main USA mafioso enforcer is Ethiopia.
Every year the USA and its western underlings pour some $7 billion into keeping the Ethiopian regime headed by the former Marxist-Leninist guerilla leader Meles Zenawi afloat making Ethiopia one of the most aid dependent countries in the world and a rival to Israel as the largest recipients of western aid on the planet.
For this the USA can order Meles Zenawi to send his army to invade Somalia in the name of the “War on Terror” in 2006. Earlier, in 2000, Ethiopia invaded Eritrea, again at the urging of the USA. Today, the USA is paying the salaries of some 10,000 Ethiopian Army “peacekeepers” deployed around Abeye, the oil producing region on the border between north and South Sudan.
For these and other crimes in the service of Pax Americana Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi has a permanent “get out of jail free” card, or blanket immunity. He has at least a billion dollars stashed in his mainly London bank accounts for the not so distant day when he boards his final flight out of Addis Ababa.
Whether it was former Brit PM Tony Blair anointing Meles Zenawi as chair of the short lived Africa Commission to the Obama White house arranging for Meles to stride the stage of the latest G-20 meeting of world leaders, Ethiopia must appear for all the world to see to have the unqualified backing of the western bankster regimes.
With the largest, best equipped army in Africa, including weapons from North Korea, Ethiopia has a job to do and first and foremost it is to make sure that the region surrounding the Bab el-Mandeb choke point remains firmly under western control.
For he who controls Bab el-Mandeb has his fingers around the throats of both the EU and Asia’s economies. Today the USA’s grip on the region is increasingly in doubt, for the Ethiopian regime is ever closer to the day of its demise and what comes after Meles Zenawi’s departure could shake the world as we know it.
Choke Point Bab el-Mandeb is strategically critical in today’s world and just how important can be judged by how careful the western media is in covering the region. Almost nothing is allowed in the news that might hasten the day of Meles Zenawi’s departure. Meles must stride the G-20 stage once again for all the world to see that he remains the anointed defender of western control of the Bab el-Mandeb and Pax Americana must seem to be firmly in control of one of the most strategically critical maritime passages in the world.
The day the USA loses control of the Bab el-Mandeb may very well mark the end of the USA’s days as the worlds lone superpower and it’s control of the world as we know it.
Thomas C. Mountain is the only independent western journalist in the Horn of Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org