The Resister wrote:Were you aware that Black slaves were Blacks that were captured by their own race and sold to slavers? Do you realize that if the slavers had not bought those people, they would have become the main ingredient in a soup de jour by their own countrymen? I've never researched to find out what motivated some Blacks to sell their own countrymen into slavery and if you ask that question in Sierra Leone, you only get greeted with skepticism and silence.
Firstly: their "own countrymen"? - Africa was not divided into modern nation-states until the 19th or even 20th century. Secondly: cannibalism was never widespread in Africa at any time in its history. And thirdly: the reason they enslaved their enemies was the same reason why the ancient Romans enslaved their own neighbours and enemies - they were captured prisoners of war. If you fight a civil war or a tribal war in pre-modern times, and you win a battle, then this immediately creates a problem - what do you do with the enemy soldiers whom you have captured? If you release them, they will likely fight against you again, and they might win the next time. If you kill them, then this is a terrible waste of human labour power (not to mention being rather unpleasantly inhumane). No, the most sensible and humane course of action is to enslave them. This is what the ancient Romans did, it's what the ancient Greeks did, it's what the ancient Assyrians did, it's what pretty much everybody did. The Africans of the 16th to the 19th centuries were no different. The losers in any inter-tribal (or even infra-tribal) conflict were literally sold down the river, to those weirdly-dressed pasty-faced guys in the coastal fort who would pay for slaves with gold or ivory. It made perfect sense at the time.