[PDF / Epub] ✅ Poisoned Wells: The Dirty Politics of African Oil Author Nicholas Shaxson – Buyprobolan50.co.uk

Poisoned Wells: The Dirty Politics of African Oil Each Week The Oil And Gas Fields Of Sub Saharan Africa Produce Over A Billion Dollars Worth Of Oil, Yet This Rising Tide Of Money Is Not Promoting Stability Or Development But Instead Is Causing Violence, Poverty And Stagnation Poisoned Wells Exposes The Root Causes Of This Paradox Of Poverty From Plenty


10 thoughts on “Poisoned Wells: The Dirty Politics of African Oil

  1. says:

    OILS NOT WELL Posioned Wells is the first book by the author of that excellent exposition of Tax Havens Treasure Islands The subject of this book is the experience of West African oil producing countries, with particular focus on the question of why these repositories of vast mineral wealth have not been able to direct their wealth into meaningful and sustained development.While there is certainly a degree of generalising on these countries experiences, the format the book takes is that o OILS NOT WELL Posioned Wells is the first book by the author of that excellent exposition of Tax Havens Treasure Islands The subject of this book is the experience of West African oil producing countries, with particular focus on the question of why these repositories of vast mineral wealth have not been able to direct their wealth into meaningful and sustained development.While there is certainly a degree of generalising on these countries experiences, the format the book takes is that of focusing on a particular individual, and relating the story of each country through their experiences Shaxsons Motley crew are the flamboyant Nigerian musician and somewhat singular opposition figure Fela Kuti, and his fellow Nigerian Dokubo Asari, a militia leader from the Niger Delta region Equatorial Guinea s assasinated opposition politician Pedro Motu, and the same countries president Obiang Ngeuma Angola s Abel Abraao, a journalist trapped for months in Kuito under UNITA seige Gabons authoritarian dictator Omar Bongo Andre Malongo, the Congo Republics former reform minded leader Fradique da Menezes, the president of Sao Tome e Principe who talks the talk of reform, like so many modern politicians in and out of Africa, while walking the familiar path of corruption and wasted opportunities.The part on the Norwegian born though French based investigating magistrate Eva Jolly brilliantly illustrates the Neo Colonial dimension with regard to the countries under Shaxsons eye, and is one of the highights of the book, perhaps because I was unfamiliar with the story of France s former African colonies and the powerfull corrupting influence of monies syphoned from them into the French political system the Russian Canadian Israeli French Arcadi Gaydamak represents the kind of wheeler dealer observers of the international arms trade will be familiar with From the U.K there is Global Witness, an NGO that has done much work shedding light on where the oil revenues have gone.This is not as accomplished a work as Treasure Islands , but is still of great interest and presumably, being published in 2007, still relevant The author does occasionally make dubious statements, for instance that politics and economics are seperate in the developed west The relationship is certainly not the same as that of a primary product exporting nation but still intimately intertwined Otherwise he makes explicable the apparent paradox of oil riches and lack of development going hand in hand, the role played by Tax Havens including the U.S and the U.K in West African corruption, and the zero sum game that the fight for access to oil revenues, often between different ethnic groups, descends into The book ends with Shaxsons one size fits all solution with regard to corruption paying out the revenues directly to citizens, an idea that he promotes withzeal than seems wise in an otherwise thoughtful book.A book that, despite a few reservations, I have no problem recommending to readers interested in the Political Economy of Oil, Africa or the problems that face Post Colonial States Other books of interest on the subject of oil politics would include The Next Gulf London, Washington and Oil Conflict in Nigeria and Fuel on the Fire Oil and Politics in Occupied Iraq


  2. says:

    This was an insightful read into how, in the absence of strong measures to ensure good governance, African oil wealth has, for the most part, only generated corruption The author looked at each country that had, up to the time of publication, discovered oil within its borders or near its shores and examined the role multi nationals, international persons of influence and political or military leaders played in diverting the wealth from going toward the greater good of all the people Shaxson This was an insightful read into how, in the absence of strong measures to ensure good governance, African oil wealth has, for the most part, only generated corruption The author looked at each country that had, up to the time of publication, discovered oil within its borders or near its shores and examined the role multi nationals, international persons of influence and political or military leaders played in diverting the wealth from going toward the greater good of all the people Shaxson makes the point that oil corrupts and great oil wealth corrupts absolutely but the adoption of transparent banking practices andopen political processes in ALL countries including the United States, Luxembourg, France and other places traditionally identified as tax havens can eliminate some of itsextreme expressions.I found this book highly informative and very readable If you want to know about some of the modern problems afflicting the continent today, about the greed of too many of its rulers and about how other countries are or have been complicit all in the pursuit of oil then read this book


  3. says:

    I liked the book, easy to read and very interesting about the politics of oil in africa i m not sure i agree with him that the real issue is corruption or with his recommendation for how to fix it, but I learned a lot Plus, I met the author here in Amsterdam and he s super nice and very knowledgeable.


  4. says:

    A really interesting book about the dirty politics of African oil the role that oil money has played in enabling some of the worst African dictators Obiang, Abacha, etc and creating incredibly distorted societies where, for example, the Gabon has the world s highest per capita consumption of French champagne, alongside desperate poverty The author is a reporter, and it reads like journalism, which is a strength and weakness neat, lively stories but without scholarly rigor and with sign A really interesting book about the dirty politics of African oil the role that oil money has played in enabling some of the worst African dictators Obiang, Abacha, etc and creating incredibly distorted societies where, for example, the Gabon has the world s highest per capita consumption of French champagne, alongside desperate poverty The author is a reporter, and it reads like journalism, which is a strength and weakness neat, lively stories but without scholarly rigor and with significant holes in data Each chapter is an exploration of the effect oil wealth has had on an African country, told around a central character Fela Kuti in Nigeria, for example But its pretty much the same story in every chapter oil is found corrupt and autocratic leaders get grossly wealthy and stash it all in overseas banks the scramble for a share of the spoils ignites conflict, usually along ethnic tribal lines massive borrowing during the boom years leads to a debt hangover when prices fall inflation caused by the influx of hard currency makes other industries uneconomic so dependency on oil increases Western companies and greedy individuals take advantage of the country s resources especially the French by far the most venal and the 90% of the country s population that aren t drinking from the trough of oil wealth actually become worse off, because of all of the above the oil dries up and everyone wonders where all the money went Its not a new story, but its told in fascinating close up detail My main criticism of the book, and its VERY annoying at points, is that the author can be sloppy and there is a lot of innuendo thrown around where he can t actually prove a point Fancy cars outside the police headquarters in Angola mean, wink wink, that they re stealing the oil revenues they probably are, but its still sloppy he juxtaposes the value of a slave cargo leaving Congo Brazzaville 200 years ago with the value of an oil tanker leaving today not actually making the analogy which would be grotesque but encouraging the reader to make it he throws in the non sequitor fact that Riggs Bank has a Bush cousin on the Board and also launders Obiang s oil money, from which we re supposed to draw some sort of conclusion There are a number of counterarguments that could be made to the overall premise of the book the main one being that many countries around the world have managed their natural resource wealth in a way that does not create the horrible effects seen in his book but I accept his main point that oil, in Africa, has generally beencurse than blessing Its told in this book as a story about oil, and how it produces bad governance, but it could easily be told as a story of bad governance, with a sidebar about oil Its a shame the book was written in 2007, because if it was written now I suspect there d be a much big focus on Chinese oil companies, which have become major players in recent years, and that story has not been well and extensively told yet


  5. says:

    I tried and tried, but I just couldn t manage to finish this Even so, I am giving it three stars because it s informative and well written, but There s far too much detail in here for someone seeking a general overview of the topic I d have needed a degree in contemporary African politics to keep all the places and people straight I also didn t like the structure of the book, where each chapter is about a person who is somehow tied to or embodies the evil that oil has wrought in a partic I tried and tried, but I just couldn t manage to finish this Even so, I am giving it three stars because it s informative and well written, but There s far too much detail in here for someone seeking a general overview of the topic I d have needed a degree in contemporary African politics to keep all the places and people straight I also didn t like the structure of the book, where each chapter is about a person who is somehow tied to or embodies the evil that oil has wrought in a particular African country And be sure there are no happy ending with oil wealth in Africa, unless you happen to be one of the handful of corrupt political elites whose pockets it is lining


  6. says:

    This book on the exploitation of Africa details the natural resource curse on Africa that because of its abundant oil minerals, the corrupt elite flourish with no incentive to keep the people happy What differentiates this book from other working papers studies is the author s reporting experience in a vast swathe of the continent which he uses to write 10 case studies, one on each country While the solution he proposes may seem idealistic today Alaska type distribution of royalties to each This book on the exploitation of Africa details the natural resource curse on Africa that because of its abundant oil minerals, the corrupt elite flourish with no incentive to keep the people happy What differentiates this book from other working papers studies is the author s reporting experience in a vast swathe of the continent which he uses to write 10 case studies, one on each country While the solution he proposes may seem idealistic today Alaska type distribution of royalties to each citizen , it may still work in one s lifetime Quite interestingly written without losing rigour


  7. says:

    Certainly not an academic text by any means The author, a journalist, was clearly looking for a storytelling outlet where he could be less than poltically correct You kind of get the feeling he s not always telling the whole story Still, the book is an entertaining peek into the world of African oil and governance Nicholas Shaxton has the appropriate experience to guide the reader on a journey through this dark world and his writing is fairly solid.


  8. says:

    This is aanecdotal overview of the rush for African oil to exploit by outside corporations and countries It is an easy read and a good intro I am preferring otheracademic books on the subject.


  9. says:

    Shaxson has undeniable cred in the world of African oil He has a million stories and as many leads on corruption in that world but the names, countries and scandals most of which are complex defeated me I couldn t keep them separate I quit 2 3rds into the book.


  10. says:

    very good


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