Monday, April 19, 2010
You Won't Get This Elsewhere.
"I developed an interest in colonialism in Africa at a young age after reading "Something of Value" by Robert Ruark. It was written in the late '50's and concerned the Mau Mau wars in Kenya during that time. It is a work of fiction and a great read on that level. More importantly, it is as good a description of the Mau Mau's early struggles against colonialism one can find. Ruark followed up with "Uhuru", meaning "freedom", in the early '60's. Another great work of fiction, it is the better of the two novels in my opinion, and charts the final struggle against the British in Kenya in the '60's.
Ruark gives equal treatment to both sides in these novels, but it is clear that it is his opinion that so far as the races and cultures involved, the twain shall never meet. He was correct in his assessment.
Throughout the '60's I watched with interest as Britain turned its African colonies loose one by one. WWII had devastated the British economy and after the war the country was firmly in the grip of hard line socialists whose policies prevented the British economy from fully recovering. The country simply could no longer support its colonies. In addition, British socialist theories of "social justice" required that the downtrodden folks in the colonies be freed.
As a result, Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia), Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), and Kenya were turned over to native governments in the early 1960's.
The primary industry in Northern Rhodesia was mining. Not being tied to the land, most whites simply left when conditions under the new government became unbearable. As a result, Zambia went back to the jungle.
In Southern Rhodesia and Kenya, the primary industry was farming. Most of the farmers had been there about three generations and had turned unproductive land into extensive farming and ranching operations. Southern Rhodesia declared its own independence and established a white government. After several years of sanctions imposed by the UN, Britain, and the US, not to mention an ongoing guerrilla war, the white government gave in and a black government was established.
The result is that the white population has dropped from around 270,000 to 40,000 with most of those remaining being elderly people who were born and raised there as well as a few very rich whites who are allied in business ventures with black politicians. The government seized most of the white farms, around 5,000 of them, a few years ago and gave the land to blacks. The result of that move is that most blacks in Zimbabwe are now starving. The economy has been totally destroyed with a loaf of bread, providing one can be found, costing 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollars. What was once called "the breadbasket of Africa" is now a poverty wracked cesspool.
Whites in Kenya fared somewhat better. The white population has only been cut in half since the imposition of black rule; however, most of the white farmers lost their land due to government policies and emigrated. The various tribes there occasionally tie up and kill each other and economically the blacks, except of course for the politicians, are no better off than they were under colonialism.
Which brings us to South Africa. The Dutch, or Boers, have been in South Africa for 400 years. Contrary to what you may have read or heard, other than Hottentots living in caves along the coast and a few scattered tribes inland, there were very few blacks living in the part of South Africa first settled by the Dutch. The Zulus were far to the north. Over a period of 300 years, the Dutch moved north and the Zulus, conquering other tribes along the way, moved south. In addition, hundreds of thousands of blacks moved into the area controlled by the Dutch for the jobs the Dutch provided.
At some point, I don't remember precisely when, the English conquered South Africa and colonized it for many years. The Dutch remained and many English moved to the country. The Brits gave up South Africa after WWII and white, Dutch rule was established. This quickly evolved into the system of apartheid so denigrated around the world.
Blacks had no role in the government, had to sit in the back of the bus, suffered discrimination in jobs, and underwent various other indignities enforced by a white minority which was terrified of black rule. Nonetheless, the country became the most prosperous on the continent, spewed out geniuses such as Dr. Robert De Bake from its educational system, and had one of the highest standards of living for both races anywhere in the world but the US. At the same time, thousands and thousands of blacks from surrounding countries under black rule migrated to South Africa. They didn't mind sitting in the back of the bus because they knew they could feed their families and wouldn't be slaughtered because they were in the wrong tribe so long as the whites ruled the country.
Well, thanks to the US, Britain, and several other European countries, sanctions were imposed against South Africa, our only real ally on the entire continent, which were far more stringent than any we were responsible for against Saddam Hussein or Iran. White rule collapsed and the blacks took over the government in 1994.
For the past 16 years, South Africa can proudly proclaim the highest murder rate on the continent, or perhaps I should say the highest recorded murder rate. Most African countries do not keep adequate records, if any. They also have the highest AIDS rate and the standard of living for almost all blacks is actually lower than under apartheid. And now, as you will see in the below article, the government is thinking about seizing the white farmers' land.
Robert Ruark didn't think that the white settlers in the former British colonies discussed above would give in to black rule because they knew that to do so would ultimately lead to disaster. I didn't either. We were both wrong, at least so far as the whites giving up. The predicted disaster mostly certainly did ensue.
The Boers, however, are a different breed. They make up a higher percentage of the total population than whites anywhere else in Africa. Furthermore, unlike the British settlers, they have nowhere to go. They have been there four hundred years. We may see a terrible tragedy unfold in South Africa before it's over.
And for what? So smug Americans and Europeans can sit back and congratulate each other for bringing about black rule? Black rule is rapidly returning the most civilized and progressive country on the continent to the jungle, just as it has in the former British colonies in Africa. Furthermore, the ANC, the ruling political party in South Africa, was funded, founded, and governed by unabashed communists.
The ANC, as well as the much lionized Nelson Mandela, who is a product of the ANC, are no friends of America, yet without us, Mandela would still be languishing in prison.
Personally, I think sub Saharan Africa was better off under colonialism. The colonial powers did not allow the tribes to slaughter each other and saw to it that they were fed during famines. Today, they kill each other by the hundreds of thousands (Rwanda, Nigeria, and the Sudan are examples) and starve by the millions. The only people to profit from "freedom" are the ruthless dictators and tribal chieftains who took the place of the colonial rulers. They live quite well, thank you.
So as we wave good bye to the last civilized country in all of Africa, let's not forget that a large part of the cause of its demise was politicians in this country pandering to the black vote as well as regular folks here who pander to their own need to be relevant by imposing their view of life on others whether they want it or not....which is, I think, precisely the criticism they have leveled at colonialists."
Most of you probably had no idea what the situation in South Africa was, or what the history of the area really was. All you get from the major media sources are stories designed to sway you to the politically and socially correct mind set of those who would have you as their slaves.