First Northern Africa, Now Southern Africa

Three and four years ago, when I was giving Planet In Distress seminars, I would point to a food insecurity map of Africa and say of the countries that were indicated as food insecure, “This is where we will see conflict next.”  All the food insecure countries at that time were in Northern Africa.  As it happened, those are the exact countries that we saw conflict in, accompanied by the southward spread of forces propelled by a radical Islam ideology.

Now we are seeing tremendous food insecurity in Southern Africa.  The country of South Africa, for instance, has wilted under drought and has a tremendous shortfall in its maize (a relative of corn) crop.  Next door, in Botswana, things are also not good.  Just last week we had reader Tumo Galeragwe write in the comments section of this blog, ” This year in Botswana there is barely any hope that there will be a ploughing season, it is extremely hot and barely any rain? water supply for the capital city is a serious concern as the dam is empty and because of low rains, the chances of filling the dam are slim, the consequences are severe…? we are just counting on the mercy of the Lord!”  By every measure, things are grim in Botswana.

In the mid-section of Africa, especially on the east coast, the situation is grimmer still.  In Ethiopia, more than 10 million people are on the verge of famine due to a tremendous drought.  Problems are not limited to these few countries.  In fact, according to Maplecroft (an international security and risk-assessment organization), some 75% of the countries on the continent fall into the “high” or “extreme” risk category.

To date, the spread of radical Islam into the heart of Africa has been made vastly easier by societal disruption resulting from natural phenomena (drought, food price spikes, etc.) combined with poor governance and weak social institutions.  Now, we are seeing a similar pattern set up for the southern part of Africa, though differing social fabrics and customs may inhibit a rapid spread of radical Islam throughout Southern Africa.  What is known is that radical Islam is already well established in the country of South Africa, and so it seems exists at one level or another in pretty much all of Southern Africa.

Keep an eye on Africa.  The drought effects associated with El Nino seem to be destined to persist for another year as this record-breaking El Nino shows little sign of weakening and making a hasty retreat.  But even without the destructive boost of El Nino, the social fabric of Africa is tearing in many places, and  the suffering and brutality are heart-wrenching.

I’ve said it many times and I will say it again:  The conditions that Christ said would exist just before His return (Matthew 24:6-8) are being manifested in many countries around the world.  Uniformly, it is the countries with weak social institutions and weak governance that first collapse under the onslaught of these conditions, giving way to lawlessness (Matthew 24:12) and terrible suffering.  We are seeing more than 20 countries that have completely fulfilled the prophecies of MAtthew24:6-8, and we look set to rapidly expand that number.  Those who live in rich and well-organized nations should be rendering aid to those  in need while at the same time pouring resources into proclaiming the Word of God.  The troubles that today are in poorly organized countries will soon enough be strongly present in rich and well-organized countries.

Scott Christiansen