Saturday, February 13, 2016

Amilcar Cabral: the Son of Africa!

Amilcar Cabral: the Son of Africa!

Amilcar Cabral was assassinated on January 20, 1973. He is one of the greatest leaders of the 20th century! Cabral was a philosopher, a revolutionary, a leader. He fought a brilliant war against the Portuguese in Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde. Cabral realized that the power-base of a movement was the people; “How is it that we, a people deprived of everything, living in dire straits, manage to wage our struggle and win successes? Asked Cabral! His was the people’s movement. Modern weapons of war, terror, and other trickery could not defeat a determined people. He was charismatic; his leadership skills were unparalleled. Part of Cabral’s genius is revealed by his ability, even as an outsider, to bring together more than seven different ethnic groups to join into a powerful movement. Cabral was a thinker; he titled one of his speeches: “The Weapon of Theory.” The very title of the speech speaks volumes. Ideas, theory, are an important weapon in any struggle. Cabral studied colonized identity and class within the context of the liberation struggle. Culture, he argued, was important and necessary component of the struggle. He sought “re-Africanization” of the African elite in the efforts to build a mass popular culture. Sadly, like many other instances in African history, assassin's bullets ended his life. A fellow African pulled the trigger that killed Cabral. The assassins worked for PIDE, the Portuguese secret service. The assassination failed to achieve their main objective: subverting the struggle. Guinea Bissau declared independence on September 24, 1973.

© Azaria Mbughuni

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