Thomas Hobbes once said that the state of nature is a state of war. Do stable and strong governments keep us out of war? Does it matter if it is a democracy or a dictatorship?
In the Central African Republic things are falling apart. Since a March 2013 overthrow of government this country has seen atrocities carried out on its citizens by Christian and Muslim extremists. In a region that has long been a crossroads of culture and recently managed to live in peace and tolerance, competing power and greed have once again gone unchecked. There is no government. Chaos reigns in a brutal state of nature and Thomas Hobbes words are all too real.
The United States government is offering $100 million in support of French led African Union peace keeping troops. Samantha Power is the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and the highest ranking U.S. official ever to visit the country. She has promised an additional $15 million in humanitarian aid. The unspeakable violence that plagues this region must be stopped if there is any hope of bringing stability.
Exploitation in Africa has roots in European colonialism. The struggle for stable government is like the struggle of a family that has generations of abusive relationships. The children of abusive parents grow up to be abusers themselves. If violence is cyclical, there is always hope that with enough awareness and commitment the international community can help break the cycle and restore peace.
This is the age of awareness. The media and technology of the 21st century has such potential to encourage global citizens to be a part of the solution to the worlds most pressing problems.