Like Syria, Burundi is a war-theater between the China/Russia axis and US/EU axis.

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There is no doubt that the US-led unipolar global order is facing stiff competition from East. BRICS block, especially Russian and China, so far presents to the US the most difficult challenge since US’ rise to global supremacy.

China and Russia’s competition for political and economic power on an international political scene has in fact led to a marriage of convenience between US and some traditional nemesis like France. After Ukraine- where Russia’s Putin, by a large measure, emerged as a force not to ignore, now we have Syria.

No doubt, Russia is setting a geo-political agenda in the middle east, and the US is undecided on how to respond to him.

Syria is not alone. Deep down in the center of sub-Saharan Africa, Burundi is Middle East’s Syria. Burundi’s pre and post election political maneuvers, violence, attempted coups, are a result of this bipolar fight for global supremacy. Nowhere can it better be illustrated than in the UNSC when Russia and China protected President Nkurunziza against the wrath of the US and EU allies. What lies at the center is not only resource war (control of Burundi’s Nickel and Eastern DRC), but political leverage. Since day one, through Rwanda, US and her allies have allegedly committed acts aimed to bring Nkurunziza’s government to its knees. It didn’t come as a surprise when Luc Michel, today, accused the US and Belgium, of fuelling the Burundian conflict.

Burundi is not taking things lightly, having so far expelled Rwanda’s diplomat and asked for replacement of Belgian’s ambassador to Bujumbura- Marc Gedopt; to which Belgian foreign minister described as “unacceptable”.

Todate, Syria and Burundi are two international hotspots where two global blocks are tussling it out for global superiority. To understand how political events are likely to play out in Burundi, keep a close watch at the Middle East. Russia and China are increasingly becoming global players the US can’t simply wish away yet the US is hell-bent on maintaining her global hegemony. None can tell with exact precision whether some political compromise may be reached or an all out war in Syria (and by proxies in Burundi) will follow. None can tell with exact precision if the US will back off on both hotspots. My bet is that the US has more to lose in the Middle East than in the Great lakes region. How the USA reacts to Russia in Syria and how Russia reacts will have a bearing on Burundi. That is how global politics and economics can be as complex as a cobweb.

Didas Gasana

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