Download E-books The Wonga Coup: Guns, Thugs, and a Ruthless Determination to Create Mayhem in an Oil-Rich Corner of Africa PDF
By Adam Roberts
In The canines of War, Frederick Forsyth successfully defined an test by means of mercenaries to overthrow the govt of Equatorial Guinea — in 1972. And the chain of occasions surrounding the evening of March 7, 2004, is a unprecedented case of existence imitating art—or, not less than, lifestyles imitating a Nineteen Seventies thriller—in virtually uncanny aspect. With a solid of characters worthwhile of a remake of Wild Geese and a plot as mazy because it was once not going, The Wonga Coup is a story of venality, overarching self-importance and greed whose instance speaks to the issues of the whole African continent.
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Extra resources for The Wonga Coup: Guns, Thugs, and a Ruthless Determination to Create Mayhem in an Oil-Rich Corner of Africa
A British newspaper as soon as summed up Mann as ‘a complicated personality, half thrillseeker, half businessman, who mined Africa’s wars for profit’. Tim Spicer, a colleague within the deepest army undefined, referred to as him a ‘good mate … an exceptional sailor and skier and a completely reliable game …’ A jovial, social animal, a part of the prosperous South African suburban scene, Mann had no cause to imperil his newly settled way of life. yet he was once tempted via information of a discovery that rivalled the explanation Frederick Forsyth had purported to justify the coup opposed to Equatorial Guinea in 1973. Africa, total, has a convenient provide of oil. Its recognized reserves are small in comparison with the center East: it can have a hundred billion barrels of crude, approximately similar to in Kuwait on my own. however the continent is poorly explored. As new expertise is used to check its land and seabed, recognized reserves have risen quick. a few western businesses wish for giant discoveries in dry spots like Madagascar and in elements of east Africa. yet they don't seem to be merely trying to find oil. Africa has an invaluable offer of traditional fuel. Nigeria on my own could have 17 million cubic metres (200 trillion cubic ft) of gasoline that is slightly exploited. became Liquefied usual fuel (LNG) by way of ‘deep cooling’, it truly is of a top quality that matches American shoppers. ‘You can plug west African fuel direct into the North American gasoline pipeline system,’ says an excited hydrocarbon specialist. Already huge amounts of African fuel are being pumped north to Europe. due to the fact terrible African international locations eat little power, also they are able to export nearly every little thing pumped out of the rock. specialists speak of a brand new ‘scramble for Africa’, specifically for mineral and hydrocarbon assets. Oil corporations from wealthy international locations have earmarked countless numbers of billions of greenbacks for ‘upstream’ African improvement (that is, discovering and pumping out the oil and fuel) within the subsequent couple of a long time. The continent has one in particular useful sector. the wider west African quarter is quickly expanding output: the main confident estimates point out it could actually export 6 million barrels of oil an afternoon by way of 2010. This comprises one zone defined through white labcoat-wearing specialists, in technical jargon, as ‘one of the oiliest patches within the world’. that's, the armpit of the continent, within the Gulf of Guinea in the midst of that is Equatorial Guinea. For years all was hoping for an important oil discovery. Spanish prospectors within the Nineteen Eighties came upon not anything. Then a tiny Texan outfit, Walter overseas, struck fortunate in 1991. The bonanza begun, officially, in October 1996 with a solemn act of inauguration on the first advertisement oil box, presided over by way of Obiang and the administrative vice-president of Mobil Corp, Paul Hoenmans. A decade later the rustic exports a few 350,000 barrels of oil an afternoon. At a price of $50 a barrel, that's worthy over $6 billion every year. not anyone is bound what reserves exist, yet there is one other billion barrels of oil to come back, plus four trillion cubic ft of gasoline, from Equatorial Guinea. the rustic has a tiny inhabitants – at a squeeze you may healthy all people right into a huge soccer stadium – and many oil.