African Leaders Send Message to Clinton

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be visiting Africa beginning Wednesday, and the presidents of Senegal, Rwanda, Botswana, and Liberia have sent her a clear message to ponder on the trip. In an article in Forbes, the presidential quartet demands "partnership, not patronage.” They expect Clinton to commit to ramping up the U.S.’s efforts to prosecute illegal offshore accounts, where many choose to deposit their money earned through corrupt means. The leaders also echo a complaint heard from much of the developing world—that the U.S. must reduce its agricultural trade subsidies, which put African countries at an unfair disadvantage. (This complaint has always proven a tough sell given the powerful agricultural lobby in the U.S.) The leaders' article also calls for President Obama to expand the AIDS-relief program begun during the George W. Bush era. America's first black president has excited Africa like never before, they say, now is the time for "substantive action that realizes [his] promise."