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10:59AM

Wikistrat post @ CNN-GPS: Millennials shaping foreign policy with Kony 2012?

Editor’s Note: The following piece, exclusive to GPS, comes from Wikistrat, the world's first massively multiplayer online consultancy.  It leverages a global network of subject-matter experts via a crowd-sourcing methodology to provide unique insights.


The Kony2012 Youtube sensation has triggered a secondary op-ed explosion, as “real experts” sound off - mostly negatively - about having their sacred analytic turf encroached upon by celebrity endorsers and ADHD-addled “slackivists” who’ve merely clicked a couple of buttons (Like! Donate!) before moving on to the next viral sensation.

There’s nothing more disturbing to the national security intelligentsia than having American foreign policy crowd-sourced, especially when those allegedly apathetic Millennials are preemptively arguing for aU.S.military intervention.

Doesn’t America’s biggest-ever generational cohort realize that the country is tired of performing global police work?

This week’s Wikistrat crowd-sourced drill looks at the Kony2012 video phenomenon, offering several reasons why it signals something new and important in U.S. foreign policy debates – and not.

Read the entire post at CNN's GPS blog.

References (1)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.

Reader Comments (1)

As an African I feel very strongly about the Kony video and if that is the best your millenials have to offer, then it means that they appreciate the outside world and its intricacies even less than their parents. It is a cause for deep concern.

An assumption in the video is that Americans can solve the World's problems by "doing something". In fact, in many circumstances, the World is better off if America left it alone. There is no evidence that either Iraq or Afghanistan are better off after US intervention.

In addition there is a shocking lack of knowledge of the true situation on the ground. Kony hasn't be a threat to Uganda since 2006 and last year the US sent special forces on the hunt for Kony. Kony is more of a Congo DRC problem than a Ugandan problem.

There is also a failure of communication. The West has traditionally not bothered to communicate with the African people (why bother talking to Africans when you have Oprah and George Clooney?). What you may not be aware of is that there were violent reactions to this movie (stones were thrown at the movie set) in Uganda.

Your millenials seem to be continuing the fine tradition of pointedly refusing to have a conversation with the African people. (A larger Middle Class means that more Africans have something to say).

It isn't your father's World or even your father's Africa. There is a new generation of more aware, better educated and more opinionated Africans. This video will change absolutely nothing on the ground.

Teju Cole (a Nigerian writer) wrote "Seven thoughts on the banality of sentimentality" (and his views are shared by millions of Africans).

His words:

"1- From Sachs to Kristof to Invisible Children to TED, the fastest growth industry in the US is the White Savior Industrial Complex

2- The white savior supports brutal policies in the morning, founds charities in the afternoon, and receives awards in the evening.

3- The banality of evil transmutes into the banality of sentimentality. The world is nothing but a problem to be solved by enthusiasm.

4- This world exists simply to satisfy the needs—including, importantly, the sentimental needs—of white people and Oprah.

5- The White Savior Industrial Complex is not about justice. It is about having a big emotional experience that validates privilege.

6- Feverish worry over that awful African warlord. But close to 1.5 million Iraqis died from an American war of choice. Worry about that.

7- I deeply respect American sentimentality, the way one respects a wounded hippo. You must keep an eye on it, for you know it is deadly."

March 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMaduka

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