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Africa and the Decline of American Primacy

Hisham Aidi | December 29, 2021

The Biden administration has recently begun unveiling the broad contours of its African policy. If the Trump administration had disparaged African states, imposing a travel ban that affected African states, and denounced Chinese-supported infrastructure projects as “debt traps,” the Biden administration has sought to present itself as different from its predecessor. On November 18 2021, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken gave a speech outlining US’s new African strategy, and warned of China’s growing influence on the continent, without mentioning the Asian state by name. Aware that African states do not want to be made to choose between the US and China, he the American diplomat spoke at the headquarters of ECOWAS in Abuja, Nigeria, Blinken spoke in allusions: “I want to be clear: the US does not want to limit your partnerships with other countries. We want to make your partnerships with us even stronger. We don’t want to make you choose.”