African governance, Americo - Liberians, Bongo family Gabon, CSIS Africa Note, J. Gus Liebenow, Liberia 1985 election, Liberia civil war, Liberia PRC, Mauritania, military rule in Africa, Monrovia, Samuel Doe, Togo dictatorship
In my last review of a CSIS monthly Africa note (a fascinating historical trove of newsletters), I commended the author of a 1983 piece on Zimbabwe for presciently identifying many of the issues that continue to dominate Zimbabwe’s political landscape. I cannot say that the author of a piece on Liberia’s prospects for a return to civilian rule in the same year exhibited as much foresight.
I have never been particularly fond of the author of the piece, J. Gus Liebenow. His work, Liberia: The Evolution of Privilege, is a seminal academic text on Liberia. However, I feel that his critical take on the Liberian ruling class, a group descended from black Americans, completely ignores the institutional racism that they faced for well over a century of independence (I expound on this here).
My distaste for Continue reading