Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Every distance is not near.

Bob Dylan wrote that ...

They say ev'rything can be replaced,
Yet ev'ry distance is not near.
So I remember ev'ry face
Of ev'ry man who put me here.
I see my light come shining
From the west unto the east.
Any day now, any day now,
I shall be released.

I guess the song means different things to each of us, as does a lot of art.
Geography is like art, isn`t it? The world itself could be considered the ultimate artistic creation..
Ask the average person, ask yourself even:

"How far away is Africa?" In terms of miles? From Spain?

11 miles. Just eleven miles. People and goods travel back and forth daily in small boats, large boats, airplanes, and already, there are plans and contracts in place to drive a rail tunnel under the straights of Gibraltar.
Progress indeed, direct train links from Casablanca to Copenhagen, from Marrakech to Moscow.
By hydrofoil, even now the journey takes only a few minutes, from the "Enlightened West", to the "Dark Continent".

Perhaps one could be forgiven for thinking that after leaving "Caucasian" Europe, that suddenly all those whose homes are made in Africa are dark-skinned, and given to nomadic herding and tribal living.
No, not at all, though as one travels towards the South of Morocco, skin tone darkens, and almost magical encounters begin with Bedouin and other tribes people.

"Mealtime in Morocco"

The University of Al Karaouine in Fez, Morocco is the oldest university in the world with its founding in 859.

One should note also that the people of Morocco are not physically dissimilar to those of Portugal and Southern Spain.
As is well chronicled, Portugal and Spain were both a part of the Moorish Empire (from the eighth `till the fifteenth century.)

Often hidden from history is the interaction at that time between the Celts of Western Europe and the Moors of the Barbary coast. Many are the "red haired Algerian", or the "dark-skinned Spaniard".

Slaves were captured and traded between the Seafarers of North Africa and medieval Europe, amongst sailors and the peasantry, there was at times little formality in the question of procreation.
As often as not, a case of lust and opportunity , rather than love and marriage.

Absolutely nothing to do with governments or religion, just good old-fashioned animalistic procreation.

So it seems (imo) a good thing that the Moroccans have begun the process of application to the European Union. Perhaps Algeria will follow suit, I understand Libya is also interested, and that the Turks are well on the way to joining up.
Is there a downside? Is all this a plot to produce a single global government/currency? Who are these people who wish to see the Political and Social union of Africa and Europe?
Should my taxes help to fund the infrastructure/people of the "third world"?

Well it`s fine by me. Beter than war isn`t it?
After all, the human race originated in Africa, it is the ancestral home of every human being on this planet.
Africa is my long-ago ancestral home, your home, we should care for it, nourish it and protect it.

The picture shows part of the Al Karaouine university and Mosque, which still serves the population of Fes.
Bless `em all, Amdullah.


betmo said...

it is common sense that a stable world that works together for the benefit of the planet would be more successful. if we could just find a cure for greed.

landsker said...

Wasn`t greed in the list of sins, between avarice and sloth, with gluttony, lust and pride, and wrath following all!
I think it was Fidel Castro who said that what we do and think is more important than what we have.