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  • Dictators as Gatekeepers for Europe: Outsourcing EU border controls to Africa

    Dictators as Gatekeepers for Europe is a detailed journalistic account of how the EU is attempting to limit mobility within the African continent as a matter of the EU’s domestic policy agenda, hence the title hinting at the many agreements (with Turkey, Libya, Sudan) aimed at blocking migrants from approaching the European continent. The new “Berlin Wall” not only encircles Europe, but also generates a proliferation of militarised borders in Africa. …To summarise, the authors argue, Europe desires protected borders and open markets. The novelty is the amount of material that this book contains about African desires and strategies, both as a continent and as single states. This, in particular, makes the work a collection of extremely valuable directions of research. In fact, Africa, if one were to simplify the continent’s intentions, is depicted as aspiring to the exact opposite of Europe, namely open borders (with the African Union aspiring to free movement within the continent) and protected markets (protected from Western corporate predatory strategies). Moreover, contrary to the narrative of aid according to which the West “helps develop” Africa, the figures quoted by the authors suggest the opposite: while Sub-Saharan Africa receives $134 billion a year in development funding, $192 billions flow out of Africa, with $46 billion in profit for major corporations and another $35 billion vanishing in tax havens (218). by Oana Pârvan.