Skip to comments.South Africa Since Mandela
Posted on 12/18/2012 6:33:55 PM PST by MinorityRepublican
IN 1994, shortly after Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as the first president of all South Africans, one of the local newspapers ran an interview with him under a huge, boldface headline: MANDELA: IM NOT MESSIAH. That this would be considered banner news testified to the degree of myth and the unreality of expectations that attended the man.
Mandela is now 94 and hospitalized, recovering from gallstone surgery and a lung infection, the latest echo of the tuberculosis he suffered during his years in the dusty contagion of prison on Robben Island. He may linger in the hospital, or he may be discharged to continue his largely oblivious old age at the retirement house he built in his native Transkei. Either way, this is an apt time to think a few thoughts about what Mandela bequeathed his people, for better and for worse.
Mandelas most valuable gift to South Africa was a culture of patient compromise. He did not triumph over apartheid by spending 27 years in prison and then cashing in his moral superiority. He triumphed by spending 27 years in prison and then doing an elaborate deal with the men who put him there a deal that temporarily protected the jobs, the lands and the industrial wealth of the white minority, a deal that made the disenfranchised majority wait patiently for their reparations, a deal that minimized the flight of white capital and expertise and averted a prolonged blood bath. He was, in short, a politician, of a sort that was rare in the African National Congress then and is in woefully short supply today, here and in Washington: a politician with high purpose, a clear eye on the future, an immense generosity of spirit and deep reserves of discipline and resourcefulness.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Mandela took South Africa from one of strongest economies in the world to third world status, IMO
A marxists and genocidal leader who...
My own take is that he did the best that he could from an impossible position; most of the ANC were Marxist hotheads who were eager for a bloodbath (even his wife was a cold-blooded killer).
IMHO his Truth and Reconciliation Commission was a brilliant idea.
Very true, but SA is but a third world shell of its former self regardless of his best intentions. Not as bad, yet, as Mozambique or Uganda, etc. but on that spiral down.
I fear when Mandela dies...
Only because it is going to become the biggest, most stomach-turning Hollywood and Political pander-fest you can imagine. Every annoying public jerk-off and tart from Matt Damon to Kim Kardashian to Hillary Clinton is going to want to be seen on TV crying about South Africa’s Jesus Christ has just died.
That is very true. My take is that it is the entire history, both pre- and post-Apartheid, is what brought SA to its current state. Mandela tried to break the cycle but he failed.
BTW I’m not sure how many FReepers are aware of the fact that the Apartheid system was implemented by socialists. It was created in response to trade union demands to keep black workers out of the best jobs. To my own country’s shame, Apartheid was modelled on Canada’s Indian Act which is still in force.
That's what took my own father's life last year. His oldest brother served in the Royal Canadian Navy and was exposed to TB in Murmansk, and my father contracted it from him after his return. It took away half his lung, and over the last couple of years his lung became badly infected. I guess the moral of the story is that no matter who you are, great or small or somewhere in between, you are still human and subject to the same ailments.
I agree with you on that. I do have a lot of respect for him, but he also has a lot of failings. Had he died even 30 years ago, Hollywood would have portrayed him as someone who was deeply flawed but accomplished great things. Today they’ll airbrush his faults. That is actually worse for both Mandela and Hollywood because the most inspiring stories are about imperfect people who achieve great things.
Agree, but he has already been declared to be a saint, apparently. The facts don’t enter into it.
Mandela was in jail for a bombing campaign, not a Selma march. And anyone interested in his supposed pacifist nobility should look up the ANC’s gun running through the ‘Africa Overland’ front operation, which continued even after he’d given assurance it had ended, as part of the ‘peace and reconciliation’ effort and transition to one man, one vote.
How will the White House ever make up for Hillary Clinton's remark that "WE came, WE saw, HE DIED!" when Momar Gaddafi was tortured, abused, and murdered as a POW? What gaffe will VP Biden make at the funeral?