why exactly is there a difference?
I do not have a copy of the African version. This past year,* however, I have been praying the Liturgia Horarum
in Latin. The differences between the Latin editio typica and the ICEL American publication are striking. For example let us look at the Antiphon at Compline last night (Monday).
In Latin it reads:
"Tu, Domine Deus, patiens et multae misericordiae" (You, Lord God, [are] patient and merciful [literally: much mercy]). The phrase is a direct reference to the fifteenth verse of Psalm 85 (86), the very Psalm used in Compline on Monday night.
In the America translation of the Liturgia Horarum
the Antiphon reads:
"O Lord, our God, unwearied is your love for us." The phrase does not even correspond to the fifteenth verse of the English
translation of Psalm following it (i.e.: "You, God of mercy and compassion"). This is to say nothing of the Latin or the actual Hebrew sentiments which the antiphon was supposed to be based off of.
The American edition noticeably differs in the insistent rendering of "misericordia" (literally: mercy) as "love," and "iustitia" (literally: justice) as "upright." The Collects (i.e.: the specific closing prayers at the end of the Office/beginning of Mass) are screwey from top to bottom. Sometimes the ICEL version doesn't even references anything
from the Latin original.
* Actually, exactly a year ago this Sunday.