Obama’s first stop on his three-country African tour was the West African state of Senegal, where he took time to visit a former slave fort on Goree Island, a World Heritage site located just offshore from Dakar, the country’s capital. In an image that went around the world, he was photographed framed in the fort’s infamous Door of No Return, through which untold numbers of black African captives went to board the slave ships bound for the Americas. Obama described his Goree Island visit as “a very powerful moment.”
“This is a testament to when we’re not vigilant in defense of human rights what can happen,” said Obama afterward.“Obviously, for an African American president, to be able to visit this site gives me even greater motivation in terms of human rights around the world.”
It is tragic, however, that the “greater motivation in terms of human rights” his Goree Island visit gave him did not motivate Obama to take the opportunity to denounce the inhuman Arab slave trade that currently plagues Africa, thereby promoting the human rights of its black African victims as well as giving them hope.
Ironically, Obama would not have had to stray far from his African tour’s itinerary to do so. Just across Senegal’s northern border in Mauritania, for example, the anti-slavery organization SOS Esclaves estimates that there are about 500,000 black African slaves in the country’s population of 3.1 million. Their masters are the Arab and Berber Mauritanians, who share only the same Islamic religion with their chattel. Unlike the slaves who went through the Door of No Return, though, who were often captured in the old-fashioned, village-burning slave raid (as currently occurs in Sudan), the Mauritanian African slaves are the product of a system that has kept them in a state of bondage going back, in some cases, several hundred years." http://frontpagemag.com/2013/stephenbrown/afr...