AFRICA DIALOGUE LECTURE SERIES-UNIVERSITY OF PRETORIA
DR PIETER MULDER: National Leader of the Freedom Front
21 October 2002
The question put to me today is: “What is the role of the Afrikaner in a Multicultural South Africa?”
In trying to answer the question, it would be a mistake to create the impression that I am answering the question on behalf of all Afrikaners. No one can claim that. The opinions of a diverse community, as diverse as the Afrikaner community, can never be put in simple yes and no boxes. My answer will be based on my research on the issues under discussion and on my personal experience as a politician, having contact with Afrikaners from all spheres of life.
For more than 300 years Afrikaners played a prominent role and often a dominant role in South Africa. That changed in 1994. After 1994 Afrikaners went through different phases as I experienced it. I broadly distinguish three phases. I call them the Honeymoon phase; the Boetman phase and the present Pessimism phase.
In the Honeymoon phase some Afrikaners felt jubilant and positive about the changes while others felt betrayed -- betrayed by all their leaders, whether it was Mr FW De Klerk, Dr Ferdi Hartzenberg or Gen Constand Viljoen. Rightly or wrongly-- each of these leaders’ followers had different expectations of what will happen after 27 April 1994. Their expectations were clearly not met.
This was followed by the Boetman phase (from Boetman is die Bliksem in) -- a period of blaming and anger. Blaming each other for the past, for the negotiations and for the increasing frustrations they were experiencing. I believe that this period has now ended.
At present Afrikaner frustrations are building up and they are in a pessimistic phase. Conversations will be on affirmative action, on crime, universities and language policy. Politically there is an atmosphere of disillusionment, of apathy and passivity. The risk of this is that some do not any more see solutions for their frustrations through constitutional or parliamentary means.
The question is often asked: “Do Afrikaners not complain unnecessary?” Prof Susan Booyens of UPE believes that the frustrations of Afrikaners about the ANC government are completely unjustified (Article in Pretoria News 9 Oct 2002).
At my public meetings most of the questions are about black racism in Zimbabwe; about unfair affirmative action decisions that ended or changed a career; about the reasons why the government want to Anglicise all Afrikaans schools and universities. Whether these questions are based on facts or not, are not important. Why? Because history has taught us that people do not react on facts but on their perceptions of a situation. They even make war against each other on their perceptions of each other. The Russian writer Solzhenitshen wrote on perceptions and war: “You do not fight me on what I am, but on what you think I am.”
When pres Mbeki argues silent diplomacy on Zimbabwe, Afrikaners hear silent approval and a commitment to repeat this in South Africa. When Minister Asmal argues access at schools and universities, Afrikaners hear lord Milner in 1902 that tried to destroy their language and schools. When pres Mugabe says that this is his Zimbabwe, Afrikaners hear that there is no place for whites in Africa. Some black people agree with these perceptions. There is no difference between the intolerance of a white or a black racist.
We must fight and resist these one sided perceptions. My message to Afrikaners is that they must learn that all black leaders are not the same. In the same instance, black people must learn that all Afrikaners are not the same. People and politics are just not that simple. Stereotyping is always dangerous.
3. LANGUAGE AND CULTURE.
The other side of the argument is that it will also be a mistake to dismiss all of these Afrikaner complaints as only perceptions. In this prof Booysen is wrong. Farm attacks (SA murder rate 50 from 100 000, farm rate 287 from 100 000), pressure on Afrikaans schools, Universities and community radio stations are real and no perceptions. From the government side there is promises but very little action on language and cultural issues. Let me give some examples:
In Chapter 9 of the present South African Constitution nine institutions are created. The heading of the chapter reads: “State Institutions supporting constitutional democracy”. This chapter created the Human Rights Commission; The Commission for Gender Equality; etc. Two years after the 1996 constitution was enacted, eight of the nine Chapter nine institutions were in place. Six years later it is still only the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities that is not in place. Why?
More than three years ago a draft bill on a language policy for the government was drafted after long discussions and many consultations. Three years later and, according to the Minister of Arts and Culture, the Bill is still being circulated between government departments. Why the delay? (A reliable source told me that some departments first want to create a de facto language situation that favours English as their only language before they put it de iure into a language policy.)
Article 6(5) of the Constitution established the Pan South African Language Board. For the past eight years the board effectively argued that it could not do what the constitution expects it to do because it has no real powers. After many promises in committee and in Parliament by the government to address the board’s concerns, nothing happened.
With these facts, it is understandable why Afrikaners see Min Asmal as a second Alfred Milner and believe that the government wants to eliminate Afrikaans.
In Afrikaner circles the debate at the moment is on all these frustrations; on the role of the Afrikaner in a multicultural South Africa and on the best strategy to address Afrikaner problems. Strong arguments and emotional debates are part of this.
4. NATION BUILDING
Nation Building, the National Agenda and the National Interest are words being used in every political speech. What puzzles me is that very little is said, or allowed to be said, on what exactly is understood by using these words. It is political very incorrect to question the meaning of any of these words or to try to argue about them. I think it is time to debate these issues.
Is there only one recipe for nation building? Do we have the right recipe for nation building in South Africa? Is nation building just stumbling from one international sports event to the next? Why did nation building fail in several African states with comparable language and ethnic set-ups? What happened in these states when nation building failed? Is it possible to avoid conflict when nation building fails? Is successful nation building possible without the consent of all the parties involved? Is nation building only between individuals or do groups play a dominant role? If some are winners and other losers, is that successful nation building? The best recipe must be a situation where everyone feels a winner with no losers.
5. WINNERS AND LOSERS
In 1910, putting four British colonies together formed the Union of SA. Many Whites saw it as a victory. For different reasons Black people and some Afrikaners saw it as a defeat. Nine years later these groups each sent their own delegation to the peace talks at Versailles. The Afrikaner Boer delegation asked for their freedom and that the Boer republics be reinstated. The ANC delegation asked for political rights. Both were denied. In 1910, there were political Winners and Losers.
In 1961 Afrikaners won a referendum and created a Republic -- revenging their defeat at British hands in 1902. In 1961 a new president was elected. Blacks and a young Nelson Mandela reacted with armed resistance. In 1961, there were political Winners and Losers.
And the negotiations and election in 1994? Were there only Winners? Any opinion poll under Afrikaners today will tell you that the majority of Afrikaners believe that the ANC was the winner and Afrikaners the losers. No amount of propaganda on the South African miracle or hindsight truths will change that.
I believe win-win solutions for South Africa’s problems are possible and can easily be reached. But then the different role players must be realistic in their approach and be sensitive to the other side’s perceptions and problems.
After eight years in the “New South Africa” -- what do Afrikaners talk about while standing around the “braai’-fire? There, where they are alone, and need not be politically correct? They speak of crime and the cruelty of the latest farm murder. They speak of feeling like strangers in South Africa. How Afrikaners are unfairly blamed for everything that goes wrong.
What do Black people talk about when they are on their own? They say that Whites are ungrateful and prof Susan Booysen is right. Whites should have had a Nuremberg hearing. Mbeki is far too soft with these White exploiters and that Mugabe is right. It is interesting to note that Black criticism is just as sharp towards coloured and Indian/Asian people
These views and perceptions are hardly the recipe for a win-win solution in South Africa. What is happening between the different groups in South Africa? Are we moving away from win-win solutions and towards conflict? This will be to no one’s benefit.
We must all remember—if the South African ship goes down, we all go down with it. If South Africa is seen as a forest and it starts burning, all the trees will burn. There is no way that this group or that group will not be burnt and hurt in such a situation.
6. INTERNATIONAL LESSONS
Let us look at the world and try to understand how we can avoid conflict in South Africa and understand the realities of this new century. In “Genetic Seeds of Warfare” the authors estimate that peace comprises only 8% of the entire recorded history of mankind. Over the last 5 600 years, there have been 14 500 wars. Only 10 of 185 generations have known uninterrupted peace. Humankind has managed to achieve only 268 years without war in the past 34 centuries. This is not a very good track record. A cynic said: War is like love—it always finds a way!
Writing in 1993 Ted Gurr and his collaborators found that in 1990 one-sixth of the global population belonged to the 233 groups in 93 states identified in their Minorities at Risk study. They also found that every form of ethno political conflict had increased sharply since the 1950s: non-violent political action by the 233 communal groups more than doubled in magnitude between 1950 and 1990, and violent protest and rebellion both quadrupled. Probably between 70% and 80% of deaths in conflict since 1945 were caused by ethnic violence.
In the post cold war era community conflicts have emerged as the single most serious threat to peace. Of the 27 notable conflicts that afflicted the world in the year 2000, 25 were within countries between communities—and not between countries. With the demise of the Cold War, the politics of ideology came largely to an end to be replaced by the politics of identity. We went from cold war to hot peace!
The previous Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr Boutros Boutros-Ghali said "that ethnic conflict poses as great a danger to common world security as did the cold war." He added: "No country today, and particularly multi-ethnic countries, can afford to ignore ethnic conflict". (In paper to the National Defense University, Washington DC Nov 1993).
Most of these conflicts, in turn, had their roots in the inability of ethnic, cultural or religious communities to coexist peacefully. Tensions between communities within the same societies most often arise when such communities believe that their core interests are being threatened or that their basic rights are being ignored. Such tensions are aggravated when the communities in question are also minorities, and are, or feel, powerless against a majority to secure what they perceive to be their reasonable interests. Minorities and majorities across the globe still clash over such issues as language rights, religious freedom, education curriculae, land claims, regional autonomy and national symbols. The politics of language and self-determination – decisions on which languages to use in political, judicial and educational institutions, regional autonomy – are in many states at the heart of conflict between minority groups and the majority populations.
Surprisingly little has until recently been done to formulate an authoritative, generally acceptable definition of a “minority”. Francesco Capotorti, Special Rapporteur of the UN Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities, in 1979 proposed the following definition of a minority: “A group numerically inferior to the rest of the population of a State, in a non-dominant position, whose members –being nationals of a state – possess ethnic, religious or linguistic characteristics differing from those of the rest of the population and show, if only implicitly, a sense of solidarity, directed towards preserving their culture, traditions, religion or language”
In this sense, the term minority embraces three distinct groups:
1. The first and most common are national minorities. Such a minority consists of a group that is numerically smaller than the rest of the population, its members display ethnic, religious or linguistic characteristics different from those of the rest of the population; and they are committed to safeguard their culture, traditions, language or religion. Among the numerous examples are the Kurds in Turkey, Serbs in Bosnia, Tamils in Sri Lanka and Afrikaners in South Africa.
2. Ethno-cultural minorities, in the second place, are often immigrants and refugees and their descendants living on a more than merely transitional basis in countries other than those of their origin. The Turks in Germany and Pakistanis in Britain are some examples.
3. Indigenous peoples, finally, share all the characteristics of national minorities but have an additional distinguishing feature: they are accepted as the original inhabitants of their countries. The Aborigines in Australia, Maoris in New Zealand and the San in South Africa are cases in point.
7. DEMOCRATISATION AND THE NATION STATE.
Two interlinked phenomena have also profoundly shaped and complicated the modern world: First, the spread of democratisation and secondly the collapse of Marxist-Leninist systems, leaving only the Peoples Republic of China, Vietnam, North Korea and Cuba. Of the 190 plus states in the world some 140 are, at least nominally, democratic, though to be sure, the quality of democracy in many is decidedly shaky.
The coincidence of democratisation and violent ethnic conflict in Eastern Europe has led some to wonder whether ethnic conflict is not the inevitable result of the end of authoritarian rule, whether in Europe or Africa! Democratisation creates political space for minorities. Such conflicts are aggravated when the minorities feel powerless to secure their interests against majorities through democratic means.
As part of this transition from the politics of ideology to the politics of identity, the role and functions of the nation-state are also being critically re-examined. The classical European concept of the “nation-state” appears increasingly anachronistic: over 90% of the 190 plus states in the world contain minorities—in many cases more than one.
Many tend to forget the relative recentness of the modern nation-state. It is worthwhile recalling Massimo d’Azeglio’s comment about Italian unification in 1871: “We have made Italy; all that remains is to make Italians”. Nation building as part of the democratising process has also led to serious backlashes, especially among minorities on the periphery of newly independent states.
8. WHAT ABOUT AFRICA?
What about Africa? In Africa, this situation is worse than in most parts of the world. Between 1960 and 1982 military coups effected changes of power in some 55% of sub-Saharan states. The saying “Power corrupts” can be adapted here to “Power delights, Absolute power, delights absolutely”! The legacy of arbitrarily drawn boundaries gives rise to situations such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo where over 250 ethnic groups exist. According to Ted Gurr sub-Saharan Africa has the greatest concentration of minorities at risk – 74 groups and over 42% of the regional population.
The sad truth is that in many African countries the fate of minorities is fragile. The most extreme case is in central Africa where the Tutsi minorities are continually under threat of genocide. Other marginalized people are the Twa people that were targeted for extinction alongside Tutsis. The Ogoni and Ijaw minorities in Nigeria and the Sahrawi people in the Western-Sahara are other groups under threat.
An old African slogan was: “For the nation to live, the tribe must die". This slogan was used in Mozambique and in some other African countries for nation building purposes and oppressing of groups. Prof Kole Omotoso, as a Nigerian, asks the question whether it must be called nation building or nation destruction. According to him, it cannot be “nation building” because the African nations are already there- “state building” may be a more correct description.
“For the nation to live, the tribe must die”. The realities in many African countries were that because of conflict and various other reasons, everything except the tribe died. From discussions during a visit to Ethiopia, it became clear that the new slogan for the new century in Africa is "For the nation to live, the tribe must live."
The challenge for both African policy-makers and academics is how to transform the politics of identity along more benign routes from violence and exclusion to peaceful co-operation and accommodation. Ethnic conflicts in Africa do not mean that ethnic identity itself needs to be eliminated, but rather that ethnic conflicts need to be managed and transformed so that ethnic identification can serve a constructive rather than a destructive role in African societies.
Pres Mbeki’s NEPAD Programme places emphasis on democratisation of African states. The European experiences suggest that democratisation is likely to spark ethnic conflicts where ethnic tensions had previously been latent. If ethnic conflict management and democratisation are two of the most important challenges facing Africa at the moment, it makes sense that their impact on each other should be carefully considered. When democratisation is encouraged in Africa, there should be an awareness of the impact it can have on ethnicity, and when ethnic conflict is managed in Africa, the impact of ethnic conflict on the democratic process should be given attention.
In an article on ethnic conflict, Esman states that elites at the political centre are primarily concerned with maintaining the boundaries of the system for which they are responsible. By refusing to countenance cultural or institutional pluralism, central elites seek to build a homogeneous nation. Ethnic pluralism is tolerated and eventually legitimated only when ethnic groups demonstrate a refusal to accept either assimilation or subordinate status and when the central elites are unwilling to pay the price in conflict and violence that enforced assimilation or structural subordination may bring. Ethno regional demands are thus a challenge--an unwelcome challenge that elites at the centre would prefer not to have to cope with, but to which they find it necessary to respond.
What political techniques show the most promising results in minority accommodation and in addressing self-determination claims? While it is doubtful if any single formula exists for all situations, there are at least certain lessons that can be learned:
1. Attempts to “flatten the ethnic landscape” not only will not succeed, but almost certainly they will provoke a backlash, often violent. Only the tribes did not die!
2. A winner-takes-all, conflicting style of politics has nowhere in the world of divided societies produced sustained and consolidated democracy.
3. The crystallisation of permanent majorities and minorities, with the minorities consigned to powerlessness forever, is not only undemocratic but also liable to provoke anti-systemic backlashes. Democracy should be judged, not by how it handles the majority, but the minority.
4. Minorities, which pose no political threat and are economically useful, we expect to be protected or at least left unmolested. Unfortunately all too often “economically useful” minorities are targeted as scapegoats for policy failures and, of course, as a means of gaining votes. There are obvious echoes of this in Zimbabwe and the Asian crisis in Uganda under Idi Amin.
5. Where minorities are interspersed all over the country, some degree of consociationalism, power sharing and ensuring that cultural rights are protected and that minority groups are represented where political decisions are taken.
6. If minorities are territorially located, then the most hopeful approach is autonomy, devolution or federalism. Nigerian federal options and the present Ethiopian constitution are examples of this approach.
In Western and Eastern Europe the constitutional debate is about the protection of minorities and the granting of cultural autonomy and self-determination to groups without disturbing the ideal of a bigger national and European unity.
In Europe governments bend backwards to accommodate the problems of 68 000 German speakers in Belgium or 65 000 French speakers in the new Swiss Canton Jura; creating new Parliaments for Scotland and Wales.
Prof Karel Doehring from the Max Plank Institute in Germany summarised their research on this when he said during a visit recently: "It is clear to us that the nations, peoples and communities of Europe do not mind to become part of the larger European fruit salad as long as everyone is allowed to maintain his own identity by remaining either a banana or an orange within that fruit salad."
10. SOUTH AFRICA.
And in South Africa? Is prof Doehring’s fruit salad the recipe? Is a win-win solution still possible?
In 1900 Alfred Milner tried the “flatten the ethnic landscape” solution. He said: "If 10 years hence, there are three British to two Dutch, the country will be safe and prosperous. If there are three Dutch to two British, we shall have perpetual difficulty". He then proceeded to force English down the throats of Afrikaners. (Star 17/7/85 p.16)
He did not succeed. The opposite happened. He united the Afrikaner, motivated and strengthened them, and we know the political history from there.
In South Africa today I hear new Alfred Milner voices, Black and White. They are afraid to acknowledge the cultural and language diversity of SA. They are afraid to admit that it must be accommodated—ignoring the overwhelming international evidence in support of accommodation. They believe the only way to reconciliation and a new loyalty to South Africa is to suppress these differences and rally around English. For the majority of Afrikaners and many other South Africans this is not acceptable and is causing resistance at the moment. It is difficult for Afrikaners to understand why Afrikaans, as a privileged language in the past, must be penalised and lose its position – not to a less privileged language but to a hiper privileged language, English.
Surely nation building is subject to consent of and among all the parties involved.
In the negotiations between the Freedom Front and the ANC before 1994 one of the prominent ANC leaders said that Afrikaners made a mistake in 1910 when they negotiated the Union of South Africa, and excluded black people. He then added that it caused us 80 years of trouble. We must not make the same mistake, was his conclusion. I agree: If Afrikaners or any other minority group are excluded in the future political dispensation for South Africa, we make the same mistake.
In an article (23/9/96) in the Economist they address the issue of diverse societies as follow: "The trick in a successful society is for minority citizens to be able to feel that they are more than one thing at once: to be able to feel American and black, Scottish and British, an Orthodox Christian and a Bosnian, a Muslim and an Indian"
The same goes for South Africa. South Africa is not an either or country, either a South African or an Afrikaner. It is an and-and country. For peace and harmony it must be possible to be both. If we do not succeed to get this balance right, there will be no sun and no rainbow in our future.
The constitution at present strongly emphasises one side of the coin -- South Africa as one country and one nation. This is only one side of the coin. The other side of the coin is the cultural and language diversity in South Africa. A balance between the two is the final answer for South Africa. It seems that because of South Africa's Apartheid past, the government keeps avoiding these issues and hopes they will go away.
According to the ANC the South African constitution gave final effect to the ANC Freedom Charter as adopted in 1955. Yet the Freedom Charter makes specific and clear references to ethnic minorities. “There shall be equal status in the bodies of state, in the courts and in the schools for all national groups and races” the Charter asserts; “all national groups shall be protected by law against insults to their race and national pride; all people shall have equal rights to use their own language and to develop their own folk culture and customs”.
Bishop Tutu started calling South Africans the rainbow nation. The beauty of a rainbow is the harmony between the different colours. But there is one very important condition for a rainbow to exist. The sun must shine. Without the sun no rainbow is possible. In South African political terms the sun that we so desperately need is economic growth and political stability. Economic growth to create jobs and an inclusive political deal that satisfy all and therefore creates political stability. If we do not succeed in these two objectives, there will be no sun and no rainbow.
Then the "Rainbow” will be an accurate description because scientifically the rainbow is defined as: “A temporary intangible optical illusion.”
After the ANC addressed these problems of minority languages and Afrikaans, mother tongue education as well as self-determination, the ANC will be surprised to see how much Afrikaner energy will emerge to support and help resolve the country’s problems.
The Government must make its choices. Is the Afrikaner part of the problem or part of the solution? The Afrikaner cannot be wished away. Self-determination and minority rights for those who want it (and as successfully applied in many other countries around the world) must become part of the South African political solution. It must include cultural and territorial self-determination. In spite of the fact that it will lead to a win-win situation, it is also a modern and well-developed option. Let us not redesign the wheel.
This option allows for a win-win situation -- for the ANC to transform, to redistribute and to affirm. But it also offers Afrikaners enough scope to be an Afrikaner in Africa, to exercise their culture and feel comfortable and not disempowered.
Maar ek wil ook met die Afrikaners praat. Oplossings kan nie van net een kant kom nie. Vyf opmerkings:
1. Ek wil praat met Afrikaners wat hoop dat Suid-Afrika so gou as moontlik in duie stort. Die onderliggende van hulle argument is dat die ou Suid-Afrika herstel sal word as alles in duie stort. Dit werk nie so in Afrika nie. Nêrens in Afrika is die ou bewind herstel daar waar alles in duie gestort het nie. Wat wel gebeur is dat die inflasiekoers na 200% spring, dat die middelklas ekonomies daardeur vernietig word en dat die militêre sterkman as diktator oorneem. Andersins gaan so 'n land in 'n lang uitgerekte burgeroorlog in. Dit is negatiewe denke, wensdenkery en bring geen oplossing nie.
2. Daar is ook Afrikaners wat hulle verlekker in alles wat verkeerd loop in Suid-Afrika. Hulle persoonlike frustrasies met die nuwe Suid-Afrika lei daartoe. Natuurlik het hulle rede tot frustrasies. Die feite is egter dat as die Suid-Afrikaanse skip sink, sink ons almal daarmee saam. Daar is geen manier waarop ‘n bos kan brand en jy as ‘n doringboom ongeskonde daar uit kom terwyl al die Eikebome afbrand nie. Dieselfde geld vir Suid-Afrika. Staan op jou reg en veg vir dit wat jy glo, maar bly verantwoordelik en gebalanseerd.
3. Afrikaners het hulle na die kontinent Afrika vernoem — tog sukkel hulle om met die werklikhede van Afrika vrede te maak. Natuurlik het ons Europese wortels en verbintenisse — maar die toekoms van Afrikaans en die Afrikaner sal nie in Europa of in Australië bepaal word nie, maar in Afrika en in Suid-Afrika. Daarom die ideaal en droom om hier ‘n eie toekoms uit te kap en ‘n rol te speel in Suid-Afrika en Afrika. Ons kinders kort ‘n droom om hulle te motiveer en sinvol vir die toekoms te laat werk. Die armste man is nie die man sonder ‘n sent nie, maar die man sonder ‘n droom!
4. The Afrikaner’s ideals and its future in South Africa could never be built on a racist approach and by bullying others. Self-determination and minority rights have nothing to do with racism but is not afraid to recognise the realities of ethno-cultural diversity.
5. Self-determination and minority rights must become part of the South African constitutional solution. Not selfish self-determination, which places the Afrikaner in any position of special privilege and sees this as a solution; not isolationist self-determination which seeks to form a "Laager" and thereby hope to escape from those realities of the new South Africa. Not dishonest self-determination which serves as a kind of "camouflaged Apartheid". I repeat -- Self-determination has nothing to do with racism but is not afraid to recognise the realities of ethno-cultural diversity. It must be realistic self-determination and minority rights, based on functional international examples, the kind which offers security for the language, culture, education etc. of Afrikaners and other groups. Through achieving these goals, which merely constitute the very basics of cultural breathing space, it opens the way for Afrikaners to move out and play an important role in South Africa and in Africa.
12. NEW AFRIKAANS MOVEMENT
At the moment I experience a new energy and movement in Afrikaner circles. Maybe we are starting to leave the pessimism phase. I am convinced we are seeing the beginning of a new Afrikaans movement. It is still difficult to define and describe it. The arts festivals in Oudshoorn, Potchefstroom, Nelspruit, Windhoek and now even in London is part of it. New Afrikaner intellectuals and leaders appear. Leaders that were not known or prominent before 1994. The group of 63, the new MWU-Solidarity labour union, the FAK and ATKV addressing the issues of the day and changing their old conservative Afrikaans images with new initiatives. Mr FW de Klerk discovering group rights and dr Frederick Van Zyl Slabbert, Breyten Breytenbach, and Carel Boshoff IV agreeing on various issues.
If you subscribe to certain discussion groups on the Internet you will get the feeling of the new energy and emotions and how strong Afrikaans speaking people really feel. I do not think the ANC leadership really understand this or are fully aware of it. If you only talk to the Broederbond , as some of the ANC leaders does, and if you do not read any Afrikaans newspapers, as most of the ANC members of Parliament do, you will not be aware of this or understand it.
I am from Africa and proud of it. My grandfather was kommandant Pieter Mulder that fought the British in the Anglo Boer war. He was a rebel in 1914 and was put in jail for freedom as he saw it. I am a modern Afrikaner and an African. My language is not spoken anywhere else in the world. The future of the Afrikaans language and of the Afrikaner will be decided in South Africa – not in Australia, London or Canada. More than 85% of all Afrikaners will not leave the country or are not in a position to leave the country.
If there is place in the North of Africa for Arabs with their religion and “different” culture and cruel slave history then there should also be a place for Afrikaners in the South of Africa even though black intolerants call them Euro-Africans. All that Afrikaners ask is to be themselves in Africa. Is that too much to ask?
All races in South Africa are yearning for peace and harmony. To achieve this goal requires a solution between the minorities and the majority. Such a solution must create a win-win situation for all. With statesmanship, leadership and the political will on both sides, win-win solutions can be obtained — resulting in hope, harmony and prosperity for all in South Africa. This is in line with international trends and is realistic. In this way, political opponents can both be winners. With extremism and polarisation, we will repeat the mistakes of Zimbabwe and some other African countries and will be fighting each other for the next twenty years in win-lose political battles. How stupid. With wisdom, win-win solutions in South Africa are possible. Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.
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Originally posted HERE