Kenya

That 'Anti-Colonial Luo Tribesman'

And, no, I don't mean Obama, though Newt Gingrich (channeling Dinesh D'Sousa and his Forbes piece) has called him that, I mean a real Luo--and one of the people with great influence upon me as I was growing up.

His name was Alphonse O'Kuku. I first met him in 1963, and last saw him in 1990, not too many years before he died.

Helplessly Hoping

One of the legacies of colonial rule in Africa is the modern nation-state. Before the European colonists imposed their preconceptions on Africa, there were no “countries,” as we in the West know them. Instead, there were areas of influence and prerogative, borders being gray areas of negotiation and understanding often without specific geographic delineation. With fairly light population, there was room for everyone.

ABC's Digital Correspondents

Last fall, ABC News began an experiment with “digital correspondents,” young reporters who were handed equipment and sent to live in under-covered areas of the world. The program is a cheap way of replacing the old,unwieldy news bureaus that have all but disappeared and are a substitute for “parachute” journalism where reporters land, get a story, and leave.

Kenya... Wither Goest?

My interest in Africa began at eleven, when I met a Kenyan who was studying at Antioch College. Alphonse Okuku was living with the Ernest Morgan family, the founders of the little boarding school, The Arthur Morgan School (named for Ernest's famous and influential father), I was attending. Ernest and Elizabeth's son Lee brought Alphonse down to the school sometime in the fall of 1963. I was fascinated by the young man, who seemed so idealistic and pure.