Mariah Carey Celebrates Angola’s Dictator, his Family, and Their Ill-Gotten Wealth

On Sunday, December 15 American pop star Mariah Carey performed a two-hour concert at a gala for the Angolan Red Cross. The glitzy show was sponsored by Unitel, a mobile phone company. Angola has been ruled since 1979 by dictator José Eduardo dos Santos. His billionaire daughter Isabel owns Unitel and is also president of the Angolan Red Cross.

“Mariah Carey can’t seem to get enough dictator cash, reportedly more than $1 million this time. Just five years ago she performed for the family of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Now, she goes from private performances to public displays of support and credibility for one of Africa’s chief human rights violators and most corrupt tyrants,” said HRF president Thor Halvorssen. “It is the sad spectacle of an international artist purchased by a ruthless police state to entertain and whitewash the father-daughter kleptocracy that has amassed billions in ill-gotten wealth while the majority of Angola lives on less than $2 a day,” said Halvorssen.

In their brutal three-decade rule, the dos Santos family has exploited oil and diamond wealth to build total control over all branches of the government, the military, and the courts. Dos Santos has ordered the deaths of many politicians, journalists, and activists who protest his rule, yet has largely evaded external criticism.

Mariah remained in Angola long enough to perform two concerts. She joins Jennifer Lopez in repeatedly performing for human rights violators. Lopez recently peformed at the birthday celebration of the dictator of Turkmenistan; after pleading ignorance, it was revealed that she had collected more than $9 million in looted wealth from other dictators and their cronies.


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