'Dazzling, Shining, Beautiful...'

26 Sep 2005
Africa is an adventure, says Bono, answering readers questions in the New York Times.

Here's one of the questions - hit this link below to read the rest.

Where do you see the continent of Africa in 10 years?
- Angela M. Slape, Saint Louis, Mo.

A. Africa is a dazzling, shining, beautiful continent full of smart,
spiritual people. We need to stop thinking of this continent as a burden,
and start thinking of it as an adventure. The truth is that Africa is also
an opportunity for us, a chance to show the world what we in Europe and
America stand for at a time when the world really needs to know. Every
nation has its hour of need; the rebuilding of Europe after the second World
War was only possible because America came to our rescue with the Marshall
Plan. The metaphor only goes so far, but if we can get a comprehensive plan
like that for Africa it will help create the conditions for Africans to help
themselves. Then, in the next decade, there could be an AIDS vaccine, and
malaria vaccine; we could be buying our clothes from African companies,
eating African chocolate, drinking African coffee processed in Africa rather
than Switzerland. There's a lot of work to do to get there but it's
possible. If not in 10 years, then in our lifetime.

Working on this stuff should not just be a moral imperative for our leaders,
there's a political imperative coming. In dangerous times, post-9/11,
America needs a strategic partnership with Africa. Forty percent of the
population of Africa is Muslim. In a world where distance no longer
determines who our neighbors are this is not just heart, it's smart. It's in
our interest as well as theirs.

Read all the questions and answers.

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