In November, the @nytimes published an article about efforts in Asia to fight back COVID. They mentioned specifically 3 countries (Hong Kong, Korea and Japan) and outlined long histories of policy implementation by health officials in these nations trying to combat infections
In the article, an epidemiologist from Hong Kong university is interviewed, an infectious disease specialist at Korea university in seoul is quoted, and there is a direct statement from the president of the Japan medical association. (this is important)
The strategies of local officials and leaders are outlined and nuance is applied to the successes and failures that officials in #hongkong #southkorea and #japan face in fighting back this deadly disease.
The pictures in the article are of people wearing masks on public transport and one photo features a thermometer at the door of a business. The authors of this article are people who live and work in the countries they are reporting on.

This is good journalism.
In contrast, the @nytimes's article about COVID in Africa (The CONTINENT) features the following experts: a professor at New York University, a local registrar in a town in Nigeria, next the owner of a local funeral parlor from the same town in Nigeria....
The next expert is a director of international org. Doctors Without Borders who is the voice behind the article’s only acknowledgement of African policies that curbed the spread of covid, his input is quickly discarded for the more exciting news about secret outbreaks in Sudan
And quickly we are assaulted with a comment from a researcher at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine whose “toes curl” when anybody implies African nations have been spared.
The first photo in the African article features a corpse wrapped in plastic, then later in the article a picture of a casket. While thousands more died in Asia from covid, the article I opened with about SKorea, Hong Kong and Japan, features 0 corpses.
The @nytimes, like countless others in Western media, has a tradition of "journalism" which takes place in an Africa without leaders, without public health officials or activists. It takes place in a vacuum of knowledge and strategy. Africa has no thinkers or planners
In Western Media, Africa has no epidemiologists, infectious disease specialists, no academics, no local journalists or medical associations are quoted. Just a vast maw of African horror witnessed only by the brave souls at the UN and the Africa bureaus of western papers.
It is well documented that Western media love negative coverage when discussing Africa. A study once found that in a 40 year period of reporting on African issues, the New York Times, an average of 73% articles provided decidedly negative images of Africa. This has consequences
The New York times is very influential, and is often what papers all over the world reference when writing on foreign events in general. Moreover, the NYT has demonstrable influence on direct action that governments take in response to disasters and other crises.
Appearing in the New York times corresponded to an additional $52,000 per article towards humanitarian aid for victims of the 2004 Tsunami in South Asia, for example. Think of the direct actions taken in foreign nations &their support from the Western public. #manufacturedconsent
Thus it becomes clear that there is at least one industry invested in the repeated emphasis of disaster in Africa, and moreover in the idea of Africans being ill-prepared and in need of rescuing.
An article that cites African leaders, individual nations or any experts from local universities would make NGOs obsolete, or at least bring into question the massive amount of aid being funneled “to Africa” via international aid agencies.
There are thousands of foreign NGOs in Africa and there's money to be made and soft power to be expanded. And such a scheme does not go well with input from the hundreds of universities on the continent, 50+ ministries of health, numerous government bodies and so on.
Western writes who insist on portraying Africa as a place of failure and no leadership, participate in the White Savior Industrial complex all other manner of systems that keep nations from the Global North in positions of dominance over their “former colonies.”
COVID coverage in Africa ignores reality to instead reach for any other explanation that squares with a continent devoid of brains. Most writers lean on vague ideas about “genetics” and “immunity.” It smacks of “the tenacious physical traits of the negroid race” style thinking.
I cannot think of any other way to explain a decided refusal to acknowledge the actions of nations like my native Botswana which, through strict lockdown measures instituted as early as February 2020, managed to keep COVID deaths to 45 by January 2021.
It appears even as its own healthcare system is brought to its knees & exposed as a hollowed out shell of its former self, America’s media need a world where Africa can produce no solutions, can give no knowledge and is devoid of the power to positively influence the world
Sources aka #receipts!
Asia Article:…
Africa COVID article:…
Study on Africa in the NYT:
Paper on NYT influence in US govt:…
Tsunami NYT donations:…
If you found this useful, I'm glad! I wasn't able to place it in the right publication so I'm happy you found it here. If you're the payin' kind, feel free to donate late-night-grad-school-coffee-money to $Siyandawrites on #cashapp. Otherwise, forward ever backwards never

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More from @SiyandaWrites

21 Jan
How. Please tell me how. I’m begging you please. How can you talk about the economic “success” of countries like England, US and France and Spain and so on without once — EVEN ONCE — mentioning slavery, colonization, theft and corruption. Please I just want to know how sway.
I’m not trying to be edgy. I genuinely want to know why people talk about Christianity, western culture, strong institutions or whatever as being behind their “success” without mentioning - I don’t know - decades of free money. Free labor. Free resources. Paid for with brutality
Then when you bring this up it’s like you’re some kind of radical activist or whatever when it is pointing out simple, honest-to-god economic theory.

If you don’t pay for something then you can accumulate as much as possible. That feels reasonable, right?
Read 10 tweets
19 Jan
Watching the Tiger Woods doc, I just felt intense pity for someone who seems to have willingly starved themselves of Black camaraderie and its many joys.
Its difficult to comment on an adult's life, one I know quite little about. But imagine spending your whole life without the counsel of your kinfolk. That's the true tragedy to me.
Watching the doc with my Af-Am and Af friends, we just kept shouting "all you needed was one Black friend. just one!" The friends he had in that doc were really something else
Read 10 tweets
8 Nov 20
Last month it was “the Africans have strong genes” now they’re saying this. What if I told you it’s much simpler?

You were outgoverned and outpolicied by the countries you presume yourself superior to. It’s not that deep fam.
How long will you punish yourselves with this stuff? Instead of learning something from others that could save your own country’s life?

No! it has to be something *cultural* and *genetic* because otherwise you would have thought of it first, right? What a tragedy
You can’t just sit down and study what Asian health ministries did; what African healthcare systems did - no! You’d rather your people died thinking they are better off than those “s*hole countries.” This is very very sad.
Read 5 tweets
28 Oct 20
I truly cannot fathom how an academic can go into an interview and claim that social media is responsible for college aged people’s depression and not mention even once the weight of staggering student loans. I crazy?
How do people go on public forums and talk about anything else but the economic life of generation z? I heard this social psychologist blame “safe spaces” for increased depression in college aged people. I almost fainted.
We’re talking about a generation of people who may never get out from under their student debt. By 2015 Americans owed a total of 1.41 trillion $ in loans for school. Then this guy’s gonna go on radio and say talking about microaggressions is making people soft. Wtf is happening
Read 8 tweets
2 Jul 20
I’m beginning to suspect that “misunderstandings” like this are actually on purpose. 🤔

The mission seems to be making activisits seem ridiculous and arbitrary. Nobody asked for this but they frame it like we did & then groups like #blm lose credibility for nothing.
That’s the only thing that explains all these weird concessions. Like when that publishing company decided to reissue classic books with Black people on the cover.

They “concede” to something imaginary & then huff “what more do these people want?” as if this was part of demands
Every week there’s something new. “Global Pizzeria Franchise stops selling black olives to prevent offense to racial groups” is some random **** you’ll find on these new sites regularly. At this point it seems like outright mockery. If you believe Black activism is stupid say so
Read 10 tweets
11 Jan 20
Sometimes I think this is the biggest hurdle to jump in modern politics; freeing people from the false identification with the wealthy. It is truly important that we share a single economic reality
And it’s wild how embedded this misidentification is in corporate media. Business news is written from the perspective of shareholders and CEOs. Rarely those whose lives are shattered by things cutely named “streamlining” and “synergising” or whatever.
If firings are mentioned it’s to point to them as a *solution* to some problem that exists in only the minds of those who are upset by a 0.5% drop in profit margins or something equally ridiculous.
Read 6 tweets

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