But Obama was already doctrinaire at a very early age — and ill-informed or misinformed on both history and economics.
His statement in “Dreams from My Father” about how white men went to Africa to “drag away the conquered in chains” betrays his ignorance of African history.
The era of the Atlantic slave trade and the era of European conquests across the continent of Africa were different eras.
During the era of the Atlantic slave trade, most of Africa was ruled by Africans, who sold some of their slaves to white men.
European conquests in Africa had to wait until Europeans found some way to survive lethal African diseases, to which they lacked resistance. Only after medical science learned to deal with these diseases could the era of European conquests spread across sub-Saharan Africa. But the Atlantic slave trade was over by then.
There was no reason why Barack Obama had to know this. But there was also no reason for him to be shooting off his mouth without knowing what he was talking about.