Review of the Book - Europe and Africa - Similarities and difference in Security Structures.
Byline: Anis Bajrektarevic and Giuliano Luongo
"For the past few centuries, Africa lived fear but dreamt a hope of Europeans ... From WWI to www." In this one short statement is the essence of the 6 th book on geopolitics of prof. Anis Bajrektarevic: 'Europe and Africa' just released by the US publisher NOVA. This time professor is co-signing book with his junior researcher from Italy, Guliano Luongo, who is a Director of Africanistic studies at the Rome-based Institute for Geopolitics (IsAG).
The book combines in a unique way both the past and the presence of two continents, which are quite different - in almost every aspect - now, but which were deeply interconnected during the colonial past - with Europe influencing Africa and Africa planting the seeds of influence on Europe that will be unveiled many years after.
The book concentrates on security structures of both the 'Old' and 'Forgotten' continent, trying to answer the question why Europe is multilateral and Africa still bilateral in this field. To this end, Prof. Anis and his coauthor dive into the historical experiences and look in them for causes of today's developments, and future prospects of Afro-Med and Euro-Med.
Special emphasis is put on integration processes in Europe and Africa and the reasons why Africa is far away from its own pan-continental organization (despite the current state of the EU and several attempts to put into life something similar to the EU in Africa). Asian security structures and the reasons why they are asymmetric, did not escape the focus of prof. Anis and Giuliano, although they are primarily dealing with Europe and Africa, always searching - with good reason - for the roots of today's situation in the European past, and its footprint on Afro-Asian soil.
The central message of the book is formulated in the following quotation: "For a serious advancement of multilateralism, mutual trust, a will to compromise and achieve a common denominator through active coexistence is the key. It is hard to build a common course of action around the disproportionately big and centrally positioned member which would escape the interpretation as containment by the big or assertiveness of its center by the smaller, peripheral members."
Sometimes, big means populous and young; the world's 10 youngest populations are all in Africa, a continent with a 40% of people under age of 15. And their future is not waiting, but brewing. Better than anything else the authors formulate their 'philosophy' in the sentence: "Our history warns. Nevertheless, it also provides a hope."
Hope is based on knowledge. And whoever wants to seek and grasp, should read the book 'Europe and Africa'. It explains not only what happened in the past, but also what and why is happening today. And this is why this book is 'much needed' for our common Future of History.