By Mueni wa Muiu, Guy Martin (auth.)
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Extra resources for A New Paradigm of the African State: Fundi wa Afrika
The indigenous inhabitants of Carthage were Berbers. In 814 BCE, the Phoenicians who settled in Carthage called it Kart Hadasht (new city). By the sixth century BCE, Carthage was an independent state that had created an empire in North Africa. It traded with cities on the Western coast of Italy. Because it had a small population, Carthage’s defense and security were entrusted to mercenaries. Libyans—referring to all North African Berbers west of Egypt—constituted the bulk of these mercenary armies.
In 1484, Ali built a new capital city at Ngazargamu, on the river Yobé. In 1570, the most famous of the kings of Bornu, known chiefly for his military campaigns, Mai Idris Alawma, came to the throne. Equipped with firearms—and with the assistance of Turkish military instructors—Mai Idris Alawma subdued all his neighbors, defeated Tuareg tribes, and reconquered Kanem (now settled by the Bulala clan). An agreement was concluded between Bornu and the Bulala, allowing the latter to retain 40 A New Paradigm of the African State their independence and—for the first time in the history of the Western Sudan— clearly demarcating the border between the two territories.
The foreign policies of the kings of Axum focused on two key objectives: to control the African outlets of the Red Sea trade, and to bring the South Arabian land routes of the trade into the Axumite sphere of influence. The prosperity of the state depended very much on the lucrative Red Sea and Indian Ocean trade. The collection of duties on the trade provided kings with the revenues to support military campaigns and to afford the outward trappings of power. Goods traded included cloth, glass stones, soft copper (used for making cooking utensils), and iron ore (made into spears).