From the Editor’s Keyboard

Neo-Colonialism, the Last Stage of imperialism

16 May 2007 at 14:02 | 571 views

"Foremost among the neo-colonialists is the United States, which has
long exercised its power in Latin America. Fumblingly at first she
turned towards Europe, and then with more certainty after world war
two when most countries of that continent were indebted to her. Since
then, with methodical thoroughness and touching attention to detail,
the Pentagon set about consolidating its ascendancy, evidence of
which can be seen all around the world."

By Dr. Kwame Nkrumah,first president of Ghana. This article was first written and published in 1965.

The mechanisms of neo-colonialism
In order to halt foreign interference in the affairs of developing
countries it is necessary to study, understand, expose and actively
combat neo-colonialism in whatever guise it may appear. For the
methods of neo-colonialists are subtle and varied. They operate not
only in the economic field, but also in the political, religious,
ideological and cultural spheres.

Faced with the militant peoples of the ex-colonial territories in
Asia, Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America, imperialism simply
switches tactics. Without a qualm it dispenses with its flags, and
even with certain of its more hated expatriate officials. This means,
so it claims, that it is `giving’ independence to its former
subjects, to be followed by `aid’ for their development. Under cover
of such phrases, however, it devises innumerable ways to accomplish
objectives formerly achieved by naked colonialism. It is this sum
total of these modern attempts to perpetuate colonialism while at the
same time talking about `freedom’, which has come to be known as neo-

Foremost among the neo-colonialists is the United States, which has
long exercised its power in Latin America. Fumblingly at first she
turned towards Europe, and then with more certainty after world war
two when most countries of that continent were indebted to her. Since
then, with methodical thoroughness and touching attention to detail,
the Pentagon set about consolidating its ascendancy, evidence of
which can be seen all around the world.

Who really rules in such places as Great Britain, West Germany,
Japan, Spain, Portugal or Italy? If General de Gaulle is `defecting’
from U.S. monopoly control, what interpretation can be placed on
his `experiments’ in the Sahara desert, his paratroopers in Gabon, or
his trips to Cambodia and Latin America?

Lurking behind such questions are the extended tentacles of the Wall
Street octopus. And its suction cups and muscular strength are
provided by a phenomenon dubbed `The Invisible Government’, arising
from Wall Street’s connection with the Pentagon and various
intelligence services. I quote:

`The Invisible Government ... is a loose amorphous grouping of
individuals and agencies drawn from many parts of the visible
government. It is not limited to the Central Intelligence Agency,
although the CIA is at its heart. Nor is it confined to the nine
other agencies which comprise what is known as the intelligence
community: the National Security Council, the Defense Intelligence
Agency, the National Security Agency, Army Intelligence, Navy
Intelligence and Research, the Atomic Energy Commission and the
Federal Bureau of Investigation.

`The Invisible Government includes also many other units and
agencies, as well as individuals, that appear outwardly to be a
normal part of the conventional government. It even encompasses
business firms and institutions that are seemingly private.

`To an extent that is only beginning to be perceived, this shadow
government is shaping the lives of 190,000,000 Americans. An informed
citizen might come to suspect that the foreign policy of the United
States often works publicly in one direction and secretly through the
Invisible Government in just the opposite direction.

`This Invisible Government is a relatively new institution. It came
into being as a result of two related factors: the rise of the United
States after World War II to a position of pre-eminent world power,
and the challenge to that power by Soviet Communism...

`By 1964 the intelligence network had grown into a massive hidden
apparatus, secretly employing about 200,000 persons and spending
billions of dollars a year. [The Invisible Government, David Wise and
Thomas B. Ross, Random House, New York, 1964.]

Here, from the very citadel of neo-colonialism, is a description of
the apparatus which now directs all other Western intelligence set-
ups either by persuasion or by force. Results were achieved in
Algeria during the April 1961 plot of anti-de Gaulle generals; as
also in Guatemala, Iraq, Iran, Suez and the famous U-2 spy intrusion
of Soviet air space which wrecked the approaching Summit, then in
West Germany and again in East Germany in the riots of 1953, in
Hungary’s abortive crisis of 1959, Poland’s of September 1956, and in
Korea, Burma, Formosa, Laos, Cambodia and South Vietnam; they are
evident in the trouble in Congo (Leopoldville) which began with
Lumumba’s murder, and continues till now; in events in Cuba, Turkey,
Cyprus, Greece, and in other places too numerous to catalogue

And with what aim have these innumerable incidents occurred? The
general objective has been mentioned: to achieve colonialism in fact
while preaching independence.

On the economic front, a strong factor favouring Western monopolies
and acting against the developing world is inter-national capital’s
control of the world market, as well as of the prices of commodities
bought and sold there. From 1951 to 1961, without taking oil into
consideration, the general level of prices for primary products fell
by 33.l per cent, while prices of manufactured goods rose 3.5 per
cent (within which, machinery and equipment prices rose 31.3 per
cent). In that same decade this caused a loss to the Asian, African
and Latin American countries, using 1951 prices as a basis, of some
$41,400 million. In the same period, while the volume of exports from
these countries rose, their earnings in foreign exchange from such
exports decreased.

Another technique of neo-colonialism is the use of high rates of
interest. Figures from the World Bank for 1962 showed that seventy-
one Asian, African and Latin American countries owed foreign debts of
some $27,000 million, on which they paid in interest and service
charges some $5,000 million. Since then, such foreign debts have been
estimated as more than 30,000 million in these areas. In 1961, the
interest rates on almost three-quarters of the loans offered by the
major imperialist powers amounted to more than five per cent, in some
cases up to seven or eight per cent, while the call-in periods of
such loans have been burdensomely short.

While capital worth $30,000 million was exported to some fifty-six
developing countries between 1956 and 1962, `it is estimated that
interest and profit alone extracted on this sum from the debtor
countries amounted to more than 15,000 million. This method of
penetration by economic aid recently soared into prominence when a
number of countries began rejecting it. Ceylon, Indonesia and
Cambodia are among those who turned it down. Such `aid’ is estimated
on the annual average to have amounted to $2,600 million between 1951
and 1955; $4,007 million between 1956 and 1959, and $6,000 million
between 1960 and 1962. But the average sums taken out of the aided
countries by such donors in a sample year, 1961, are estimated to
amount to $5,000 million in profits, $1,000 million in interest, and
$5,800 million from non-equivalent exchange, or a total of $11,800
million extracted against $6,000 million put in. Thus, `aid’ turns
out to be another means of exploitation, a modern method of capital
export under a more cosmetic name.

Still another neo-colonialist trap on the economic front has come to
be known as `multilateral aid’ through international organisations:
the International Monetary Fund, the Inter-national Bank for
Reconstruction and Development (known as the World Bank), the
International Finance Corporation and the International Development
Association are examples, all, significantly, having U.S. capital as
their major backing. These agencies have the habit of forcing would-
be borrowers to submit to various offensive conditions, such as
supplying information about their economies, submitting their policy
and plans to review by the World Bank and accepting agency
supervision of their use of loans. As for the alleged development,
between 1960 and mid-1963 the International Development Association
promised a total of $500 million to applicants, out of which only $70
million were actually received.

In more recent years, as pointed out by Monitor in The Times, 1 July
1965, there has been a substantial increase in communist technical
and economic aid activities in developing countries. During 1964 the
total amount of assistance offered was approximately 600 million.
This was almost a third of the total communist aid given during the
previous decade. The Middle East received about 40 per cent of the
total, Asia 36 per cent, Africa 22 per cent and Latin America the

Increased Chinese activity was responsible to some extent for the
larger amount of aid offered in 1964, though China contributed only a
quarter of the total aid committed; the Soviet Union provided a half,
and the East European countries a quarter.

Although aid from socialist countries still falls far short of that
offered from the west, it is often more impressive, since it is swift
and flexible, and interest rates on communist loans are only about
two per cent compared with five to six per cent charged on loans from
western countries.

Nor is the whole story of `aid’ contained in figures, for there are
conditions which hedge it around: the conclusion of commerce and
navigation treaties; agreements for economic co-operation; the right
to meddle in internal finances, including currency and foreign
exchange, to lower trade barriers in favour of the donor country’s
goods and capital; to protect the interests of private investments;
determination of how the funds are to be used; forcing the recipient
to set up counterpart funds; to supply raw materials to the donor;
and use of such funds a majority of it, in fact to buy goods from the
donor nation. These conditions apply to industry, commerce,
agriculture, shipping and insurance, apart from others which are
political and military.

So-called `invisible trade’ furnishes the Western monopolies with yet
another means of economic penetration. Over 90 per cent of world
ocean shipping is controlled by me imperialist countries. They
control shipping rates and, between 1951 and 1961, they increased
them some five times in a total rise of about 60 per cent, the upward
trend continuing. Thus, net annual freight expenses incurred by Asia,
Africa and Latin America amount to no less than an estimated $1,600
million. This is over and above all other profits and interest
payments. As for insurance payments, in 1961 alone these amounted to
an unfavourable balance in Asia, Africa and Latin America of some
additional $370 million.

Having waded through all this, however, we have begun to understand
only the basic methods of neo-colonialism. The full extent of its
inventiveness is far from exhausted.

In the labour field, for example, imperialism operates through labour
arms like the Social Democratic parties of Europe led by the British
Labour Party, and through such instruments as the International
Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU), now apparently being
superseded by the New York Africa-American Labour Centre (AALC) under
AFL-CIO chief George Meany and the well-known CIA man in labour’s top
echelons, Irving Brown.

In 1945, out of the euphoria of anti-fascist victory, the World
Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) had been formed, including all
world labour except the U.S. American Federation of Labor (AFL). By
1949, however, led by the British Trade Union Congress (TUC), a
number of pro-imperialist labour bodies in the West broke away from
the WFTU over the issue of anti-colonialist liberation, and set up
the ICFTU.

For ten years it continued under British TUC leadership. Its record
in Africa, Asia and Latin America could gratify only the big
international monopolies which were extracting super-profits from
those areas.

In 1959, at Brussels, the United States AFL-CIO union centre fought
for and won control of the ICFTU Executive Board. From then on a
flood of typewriters, mimeograph machines, cars, supplies, buildings,
salaries and, so it is still averred, outright bribes for labour
leaders in various parts of the developing world rapidly linked ICFTU
in the minds of the rank and file with the CIA. To such an extent did
its prestige suffer under these American bosses that, in 1964, the
AFL-CIO brains felt it necessary to establish a fresh outfit. They
set up the AALC in New York right across the river from the United

`As a steadfast champion of national independence, democracy and
social justice’, unblushingly stated the April 1965 Bulletin put out
by this Centre, `the AFL-CIO will strengthen its efforts to assist
the advancement of the economic conditions of the African peoples.
Toward this end, steps have been taken to expand assistance to the
African free trade unions by organising the African-American Labour
Centre. Such assistance will help African labour play a vital role in
the economic and democratic upbuilding of their countries.’

The March issue of this Bulletin, however, gave the game away: `In
mobilising capital resources for investment in Workers Education,
Vocational Training, Co-operatives, Health Clinics and Housing, the
Centre will work with both private and public institutions. It will
also encourage labour-management co-operation to expand American
capital investment in the African nations.’ The italics are mine.
Could anything be plainer?

Following a pattern previously set by the ICFTU, it has already
started classes: one for drivers and mechanics in Nigeria, one in
tailoring in Kenya. Labour scholarships are being offered to Africans
who want to study trade unionism in of all places-Austria, ostensibly
by the Austrian unions. Elsewhere, labour, organised into political
parties of which the British Labour Party is a leading and typical
example, has shown a similar aptitude for encouraging `Labour-
management co-operation to expand . . . capital investment in African

But as the struggle sharpens, even these measures of neo-colonialism
are proving too mild. So Africa, Asia and Latin America have begun to
experience a round of coups d’etat or would-be coups, together with a
series of political assassinations which have destroyed in their
political primes some of the newly emerging nations best leaders. To
ensure success in these endeavours, the imperialists have made
widespread and wily use of ideological and cultural weapons in the
form of intrigues, manoeuvres and slander campaigns.

Some of these methods used by neo-colonialists to slip past our guard
must now be examined. The first is retention by the departing
colonialists of various kinds of privileges which infringe on our
sovereignty: that of setting up military bases or stationing troops
in former colonies and the supplying of `advisers’ of one sort or
another. Sometimes a number of `rights’ are demanded: land
concessions, prospecting rights for minerals and/or oil; the `right’
to collect customs, to carry out administration, to issue paper
money; to be exempt from customs duties and/or taxes for expatriate
enterprises; and, above all, the `right’ to provide `aid’. Also
demanded and granted are privileges in the cultural field; that
Western information services be exclusive; and that those from
socialist countries be excluded.

Even the cinema stories of fabulous Hollywood are loaded. One has
only to listen to the cheers of an African audience as Hollywood’s
heroes slaughter red Indians or Asiatics to understand the
effectiveness of this weapon. For, in the developing continents,
where the colonialist heritage has left a vast majority still
illiterate, even the smallest child gets the message contained in the
blood and thunder stories emanating from California. And along with
murder and the Wild West goes an incessant barrage of anti-socialist
propaganda, in which the trade union man, the revolutionary, or the
man of dark skin is generally cast as the villain, while the
policeman, the gum-shoe, the Federal agent - in a word, the CIA -
type spy is ever the hero. Here, truly, is the ideological under-
belly of those political murders which so often use local people as
their instruments.

While Hollywood takes care of fiction, the enormous monopoly press,
together with the outflow of slick, clever, expensive magazines,
attends to what it chooses to call `news. Within separate countries,
one or two news agencies control the news handouts, so that a deadly
uniformity is achieved, regardless of the number of separate
newspapers or magazines; while internationally, the financial
preponderance of the United States is felt more and more through its
foreign correspondents and offices abroad, as well as through its
influence over inter-national capitalist journalism. Under this
guise, a flood of anti-liberation propaganda emanates from the
capital cities of the West, directed against China, Vietnam,
Indonesia, Algeria, Ghana and all countries which hack out their own
independent path to freedom. Prejudice is rife. For example, wherever
there is armed struggle against the forces of reaction, the
nationalists are referred to as rebels, terrorists, or
frequently `communist terrorists’!

Perhaps one of the most insidious methods of the neo-colonialists is
evangelism. Following the liberation movement there has been a
veritable riptide of religious sects, the overwhelming majority of
them American. Typical of these are Jehovah’s Witnesses who recently
created trouble in certain developing countries by busily teaching
their citizens not to salute the new national flags. `Religion’ was
too thin to smother the outcry that arose against this activity, and
a temporary lull followed. But the number of evangelists continues to

Yet even evangelism and the cinema are only two twigs on a much
bigger tree. Dating from the end of 1961, the U.S. has actively
developed a huge ideological plan for invading the so-called Third
World, utilising all its facilities from press and radio to Peace

During 1962 and 1963 a number of international conferences to this
end were held in several places, such as Nicosia in Cyprus, San Jose
in Costa Rica, and Lagos in Nigeria. Participants included the CIA,
the U.S. Information Agency (USIA), the Pentagon, the International
Development Agency, the Peace Corps and others. Programmes were drawn
up which included the systematic use of U.S. citizens abroad in
virtual intelligence activities and propaganda work. Methods of
recruiting political agents and of forcing `alliances’ with the
U.S.A. were worked out. At the centre of its programmes lay the
demand for an absolute U.S. monopoly in the field of propaganda, as
well as for counteracting any independent efforts by developing
states in the realm of information.

The United States sought, and still seeks, with considerable success,
to co-ordinate on the basis of its own strategy the propaganda
activities of all Western countries. In October 1961, a conference of
NATO countries was held in Rome to discuss problems of psychological
warfare. It appealed for the organisation of combined ideological
operations in Afro-Asian countries by all participants.

In May and June 1962 a seminar was convened by the U.S. in Vienna on
ideological warfare. It adopted a secret decision to engage in a
propaganda offensive against the developing countries along lines
laid down by the U.S.A. It was agreed that NATO propaganda agencies
would, in practice if not in the public eye, keep in close contact
with U.S. Embassies in their respective countries.

Among instruments of such Western psychological warfare are numbered
the intelligence agencies of Western countries headed by those of the
United States `Invisible Government’. But most significant among them
all are Moral Re-Armament QARA), the Peace Corps and the United
States Information Agency (USIA).

Moral Re-Armament is an organisation founded in 1938 by the American,
Frank Buchman. In the last days before the second world war, it
advocated the appeasement of Hitler, often extolling Himmler, the
Gestapo chief. In Africa, MRA incursions began at the end of World
War II. Against the big anti-colonial upsurge that followed victory
in 1945, MRA spent millions advocating collaboration between the
forces oppressing the African peoples and those same peoples. It is
not without significance that Moise Tshombe and Joseph Kasavubu of
Congo (Leopoldville) are both MRA supporters. George Seldes, in his
book One Thousand Americans, characterised MRA as a fascist
organisation `subsidised by . . . Fascists, and with a long record of
collaboration with Fascists the world over. . . .’ This description
is supported by the active participation in MRA of people like
General Carpentier, former commander of NATO land forces, and General
Ho Ying-chin, one of Chiang Kai-shek’s top generals. To cap this,
several newspapers, some of them in the Western ;vorld, have claimed
that MRA is actually subsidised by the CIA.

When MRA’s influence began to fail, some new instrument to cover the
ideological arena was desired. It came in the establishment of the
American Peace Corps in 1961 by President John Kennedy, with Sargent
Shriver, Jr., his brother-in-law, in charge. Shriver, a millionaire
who made his pile in land speculation in Chicago, was also known as
the friend, confidant and co-worker of the former head of the Central
Intelligence Agency, Allen Dulles. These two had worked together in
both the Office of Strategic Services, U.S. war-time intelligence
agency, and in the CIA.

Shriver’s record makes a mockery of President Kennedy’s alleged
instruction to Shriver to `keep the CIA out of the Peace Corps’. So
does the fact that, although the Peace Corps is advertised as a
voluntary organisation, all its members are carefully screened by the
U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Since its creation in 1961, members of the Peace Corps have been
exposed and expelled from many African, Middle Eastern and Asian
countries for acts of subversion or prejudice. Indonesia, Tanzania,
the Philippines, and even pro-West countries like Turkey and Iran,
have complained of its activities.

However, perhaps the chief executor of U.S. psychological warfare is
the United States Information Agency (USIA). Even for the wealthiest
nation on earth, the U.S. lavishes an unusual amount of men,
materials and money on this vehicle for its neo-colonial aims.

The USIA is staffed by some 12,000 persons to the tune of more than
$130 million a year. It has more than seventy editorial staffs
working on publications abroad. Of its network comprising 110 radio
stations, 60 are outside the U.S. Programmes are broadcast for Africa
by American stations in Morocco, Eritrea, Liberia, Crete, and
Barcelona, Spain, as well as from off-shore stations on American
ships. In Africa alone, the USIA transmits about thirty territorial
and national radio programmes whose content glorifies the U.S. while
attempting to discredit countries with an independent foreign policy.

The USIA boasts more than 120 branches in about 100 countries, 50 of
which are in Africa alone. It has 250 centres in foreign countries,
each of which is usually associated with a library. It employs about
200 cinemas and 8,000 projectors which draw upon its nearly 300 film

This agency is directed by a central body which operates in the name
of the U.S. President, planning and coordinating its activities in
close touch with the Pentagon, CIA and other Cold War agencies,
including even armed forces intelligence centres.

In developing countries, the USIA actively tries to prevent expansion
of national media of information so as itself to capture the market-
place of ideas. It spends huge sums for publication and distribution
of about sixty newspapers and magazines in Africa, Asia and Latin

The American government backs the USIA through direct pressures on
developing nations. To ensure its agency a complete monopoly in
propaganda, for instance, many agreements for economic co-operation
offered by the U.S. include a demand that Americans be granted
preferential rights to disseminate information. At the same time, in
trying to close the new nations to other sources of information, it
employs other pressures. For instance, after agreeing to set up USIA
information centres in their countries, both Togo and Congo
(Leopoldville) originally hoped to follow a non-aligned path and
permit Russian information centres as a balance. But Washington
threatened to stop all aid, thereby forcing these two countries to
renounce their plan.

Unbiased studies of the USIA by such authorities as Dr R. Holt of
Princeton University, Retired Colonel R. Van de Velde, former
intelligence agents Murril Dayer, Wilson Dizard and others, have all
called attention to the close ties between this agency and U.S.
Intelligence. For example, Deputy Director Donald M. Wilson was a
political intelligence agent in the U.S. Army. Assistant Director for
Europe, Joseph Philips, was a successful espionage agent in several
Eastern European countries.

Some USIA duties further expose its nature as a top intelligence arm
of the U.S. imperialists. In the first place, it is expected to
analyse the situation in each country, making recommendations to its
Embassy, thereby to its Government, about changes that can tip the
local balance in U.S. favour. Secondly, it organises networks of
monitors for radio broadcasts and telephone conversations, while
recruiting informers from government offices. It also hires people to
distribute U.S. propaganda. Thirdly, it collects secret information
with special reference to defence and economy, as a means of
eliminating its international military and economic competitors.
Fourthly, it buys its way into local publications to influence their
policies, of which Latin America furnishes numerous examples. It has
been active in bribing public figures, for example in Kenya and
Tunisia. Finally, it finances, directs and often supplies with arms
all anti-neutralist forces in the developing countries, witness
Tshombe in Congo (Leopoldville) and Pak Hung Ji in South Korea. In a
word, with virtually unlimited finances, there seems no bounds to its
inventiveness in subversion.

One of the most recent developments in neo-colonialist strategy is
the suggested establishment of a Businessmen Corps which will, like
the Peace Corps, act in developing countries. In an article on `U.S.
Intelligence and the Monopolies’ in International Affairs (Moscow,
January 1965), V. Chernyavsky writes: `There can hardly be any doubt
that this Corps is a new U.S. intelligence organisation created on
the initiative of the American monopolies to use Big Business for
espionage. It is by no means unusual for U.S. Intelligence to set up
its own business firms which are merely thinly disguised espionage
centres. For example, according to Chernyavsky, the C.I.A. has set up
a firm in Taiwan known as Western Enterprises Inc. Under this cover
it sends spies and saboteurs to South China. The New Asia Trading
Company, a CIA firm in India, has also helped to camouflage U.S.
intelligence agents operating in South-east Asia.

Such is the catalogue of neo-colonialism’s activities and methods in
our time. Upon reading it, the faint-hearted might come to feel that
they must give up in despair before such an array of apparent power
and seemingly inexhaustible resources.

Fortunately, however, history furnishes innumerable proofs of one of
its own major laws; that the budding future is always stronger than
the withering past. This has been amply demonstrated during every
major revolution throughout history.

The American Revolution of 1776 struggled through to victory over a
tangle of inefficiency, mismanagement, corruption, outright
subversion and counter-revolution the like of which has been repeated
to some degree in every subsequent revolution to date.

The Russian Revolution during the period of Intervention, 1917 to
1922, appeared to be dying on its feet. The Chinese Revolution at one
time was forced to pull out of its existing bases, lock stock and
barrel, and make the unprecedented Long March; yet it triumphed.
Imperialist white mercenaries who dropped so confidently out of the
skies on Stanleyville after a plane trip from Ascension Island
thought that their job would be `duck soup’. Yet, till now, the
nationalist forces of Congo (Leopoldville) continue to fight their
way forward. They do not talk of if they will win, but only of when.

Asia provides a further example of the strength of a people’s will to
determine their own future. In South Vietnam `special warfare’ is
being fought to hold back the tide of revolutionary change. `Special
warfare’ is a concept of General Maxwell Taylor and a military
extension of the creed of John Foster Dulles: let Asians fight
Asians. Briefly, the technique is for the foreign power to supply the
money, aircraft, military equipment of all kinds, and the strategic
and tactical command from a General Staff down to officer `advisers’,
while the troops of the puppet government bear the brunt of the
fighting. Yet in spite of bombing raids and the immense build-up of
foreign strength in the area, the people of both North and South
Vietnam are proving to be unconquerable.

In other parts of Asia, in Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, and now the
Philippines, Thailand and Burma, the peoples of ex-colonial countries
have stood firm and are winning battles against the allegedly
superior imperialist enemy. In Latin America, despite `final’
punitive expeditions, the growing armed insurrections in Colombia,
Venezuala and other countries continue to consolidate gains.

In Africa, we in Ghana have withstood all efforts by imperialism and
its agents; Tanzania has nipped subversive plots in the bud, as have
Brazzaville, Uganda and Kenya. The struggle rages back and forth. The
surging popular forces may still be hampered by colonialist legacies,
but nonetheless they advance inexorably.

All these examples prove beyond doubt that neo-colonialism is not a
sign of imperialism’s strength but rather of its last hideous gasp.
It testifies to its inability to rule any longer by old methods.
Independence is a luxury it can no longer afford to permit its
subject peoples, so that even what it claims to have `given’ it now
seeks to take away.

This means that neo-colonialism can and will be defeated. How can
this be done?

Thus far, all the methods of neo-colonialists have pointed in one
direction, the ancient, accepted one of all minority ruling classes
throughout history - divide and rule.

Quite obviously, therefore, unity is the first requisite for
destroying neo-colonialism. Primary and basic is the need for an all-
union government on the much divided continent of Africa. Along with
that, a strengthening of the Afro-Asian Solidarity Organisation and
the spirit of Bandung is already under way. To it, we must seek the
adherence on an increasingly formal basis of our Latin American

Furthermore, all these liberatory forces have, on all major issues
and at every possible instance, the support of the growing socialist
sector of the world.

Finally, we must encourage and utilise to the full those still all
too few yet growing instances of support for liberation and anti-
colonialism inside the imperialist world itself.

To carry out such a political programme, we must all back it with
national plans designed to strengthen ourselves as independent
nations. An external condition for such independent development is
neutrality or political non-alignment. This has been expressed in two
conferences of Non-Aligned Nations during the recent past, the last
of which, in Cairo in 1964, clearly and inevitably showed itself at
one with the rising forcesof liberation and human dignity.

And the preconditions for all this, to which lip service is often
paid but activity seldom directed, is to develop ideological clarity
among the anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist, pro-liberation masses
of our continents. They, and they alone, make, maintain or break

With the utmost speed, neo-colonialism must be analysed in clear and
simple terms for the full mass understanding by the surging
organisations of the African peoples. The All-African Trade Union
Federation (AATUF) has already made a start in this direction, while
the Pan-African Youth Movement, the women, journalists, farmers and
others are not far behind. Bolstered with ideological clarity, these
organisations, closely linked with the ruling parties where
liberatory forces are in power, will prove that neo-colonialism is
the symptom of imperialism’s weakness and that it is defeatable. For,
when all is said and done, it is the so-called little man, the bent-
backed, exploited, malnourished, blood-covered fighter for
independence who decides. And he invariably decides for freedom.