The American Architects Of The South-African Catastrophe

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Ilana Mercer via The Mises Institute,

Yes, it has happened. A mere 23 years after the 1994 transition, in South Africa, to raw ripe democracy, six years following the publication of a wide-ranging analysis of that catastrophe, Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons for America from Post-Apartheid South Africa, a Beltway libertarian think tank has convened to address the problem that is South Africa.

The reference is to an upcoming CATO “Policy Forum,” euphemized as “South Africa at a Crossroad.” One of the individuals to headline the “Forum” is Princeton Lyman, described in a CATO email tease as having “served as the U.S. Ambassador to South Africa at the time of the transfer of power from white minority to black majority.” At the “Forum,” former ambassador Lyman will be discussing “America’s original hopes for a new South Africa and the extent to which America’s expectations have been left unfulfilled.” (Italics added.)

The chutzpah!

The CATO Institute’s disappointment in the South Africa the United States helped bring about is nothing compared to the depredations suffered by South Africans, due to America’s insistence that their country pass into the hands of a voracious majority. Unwise South African leaders acquiesced. Federalism was discounted. Minority rights for the Afrikaner, Anglo and Zulu were dismissed.

Aborted Attempts at South African Decentralization

This audacity of empire is covered in a self-explanatory chapter of Into the Cannibal’s Pot, titled “The Anglo-American Axis of Evil,” in which Lyman makes a cameo. (It’s not flattering.) From the comfort of the CATO headquarters, in 2017, the former ambassador will also be pondering whether “growing opposition will remove the African National Congress [ANC] from power.” The mindset of the DC establishment, CATO libertarians included, has it that changing the guard  —replacing one strongman with another — will fix South Africa, or any other of the sites of American foreign-policy interventions. 

So, what exactly did Princeton Nathan Lyman do on behalf of America in South Africa? Or, more precisely, who did he sideline? 

Ronald Reagan, who favored “constructive engagement” with South Africa, foresaw the chaos and carnage of an abrupt transition of power. So did the South Africans Fredrick van Zyl Slabbert, RIP (he died in May 2010), and Dr. Mangosuthu Buthelezi. The first was leader of the opposition Progressive Federal Party, who, alongside the late, intrepid Helen Suzman became the PFP’s chief critic of Nationalist policy (namely Apartheid). The second was Chief Minister of the KwaZulu homeland and leader of the Zulu people and their Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP). At the time, Buthelezi was the only black leader with any mass following who could act as a counter to the ANC. These men were not “lunch-pail liberals” from the West, but indigenous, classical liberal Africans — one white, one black — who understood and loved the county of their ancestors and wished to safeguard it for their posterity.

Both Buthelezi and Slabbert had applied their astringent minds to power-sharing constitutional dispensations. Both leaders were bright enough to recognize democracy for the disaster it would bring to a country as divided as theirs; they understood that “a mass-based black party that received enough votes could avoid having to enter into a coalition and could sweep aside the minority vote.” Thus, Buthelezi espoused a multi-racial, decentralized federation, in which “elites of the various groups” would “agree to share executive power and abide by a system of mutual vetoes and spheres of communal autonomy.” Paramount to Buthelezi was “the preservation of the rights of cultural groups and the protection of minorities.” Slabbert studied a “new system that entrenched individual rights, encouraged power-sharing through a grand coalition of black and white parties, and gave a veto right to minorities in crucial issues.”

Although he eventually threw his intellectual heft behind simple majority rule, in better days, Slabbert had spoken with circumspection about “unrestrained majoritarianism,” expressing the eminently educated opinion that, were majority rule to be made an inevitable corollary of South Africa’s political system, the outcomes would be severely undemocratic. It’s worth considering that even Zimbabwe for its first seven, fat years of independence, allowed “white members of parliament [to be] elected on a special roll to represent white interests.”

Washington Destroyed South African Federalism Before It Began

In his tome, Partner to History: The US Role in South Africa’s Transition to Democracy (2002), Princeton Lyman, the American Ambassador to South Africa from 1992 to 1995, records the active role Americans performed in the transition to democracy, especially in “dissuading spoilers” — the author’s pejorative, it would appear, for perfectly legitimate partners to the negotiations. One such partner, introduced above, was Buthelezi; another was military hero and former chief of the Defense Force, Constand Viljoen.

Avoid “wrecking the process”: This ultimatum was the message transmitted to the Afrikaner general and the African gentleman, loud and clear. The United States, with Lyman in the lead, failed to lean on the African National Congress (Nelson Mandela’s goons) to accommodate a federal structure. It promised merely to hold a future South African government to its “pre-election commitments, including shared power and the protection of minorities.” Until then, the skeptical Buthelezi was instructed to trust the ANC to relinquish the requisite power. Enraged, Buthelezi threatened to take his case to the American people and “spotlight” the knavish confederacy between their government and the ANC. (Then, Republicans were generally with Buthelezi, Democrats with the ANC. These days, both parties are with the ANC.) Being the man Prime Minister, F. W. de Klerk was not, Buthelezi rejected the pressure and overtures from the West. “I am utterly sick of being told how wrong I am by a world out there,” he wrote to Lyman. The dispensation being hatched was “an instrument for the annihilation of KwaZulu.”

Viljoen, who represented the hardliner Afrikaners and the security forces, believed de Klerk had abdicated his responsibilities to this electorate. He planned on leading a coalition that would have deposed the freelancing de Klerk and negotiated for an Afrikaner ethnic state. Likewise, Buthelezi, whose championship of self-determination had been denied, was fed up to the back teeth with being sidelined. He and his Zulu impis were every bit as fractious as Viljoen; every bit as willing to fight for their rightful corner of the African Eden. For setting his sights on sovereignty, the Zulu royal and his following (close on twenty percent of the population) were condemned as reactionaries by the West (and by CATO’s point person).

Hardly a dog of an American commentator missed the opportunity to lift his leg in protest against Buthelezi, for making common cause with Afrikaner decentralists and against the ANC. “Wreckers” is how the gray eminence of American newspapers — The New York Times, also known as “Pravda on the Hudson” — dubbed the two leaders and the millions whom they represented. The two, alleged the Times in a 1994 editorial, were locked in an “unscrupulous alliance to disrupt the first elections in South Africa in which all races will have a vote.” Following the might-makes-right maxim — and committing a non sequitur in the process — Times editorialists demanded that the leaders of these African and Afrikaner ethnic minorities relinquish demands for sovereign status because their political power was at best “anemic.” Meanwhile the Times dismissed Buthelezi as a puppet in Pretoria’s blackface minstrelsy.

This was drivel. Buthelezi, a crafty leader who had rejected “the ignoble independence accorded to other homelands” within apartheid’s framework, was never a collaborator. Understand: For two centuries Africans and Afrikaners had been clashing and alternately collaborating on the continent. Shaka (1787–1828), Dingane (1795–1840), Mpande (1798–1872), Cetshwayo (1826–1884) — Buthelezi was heir to these Zulu kings who had been wheeling, dealing, and warring with Boers well before the inception of The New York Times.

Masters of mass mobilization, the ANC used the political tinderbox ignited in the ramp-up to the first democratic elections to great effect in discrediting the security forces, and claiming that the apartheid government was fomenting the intra-ethnic violence between Inkatha (Zulu) and the ANC (Xhosa). But while the ANC accused the security forces of arming Inkatha, the latter faction blamed the security forces for allying themselves with the ANC, especially when Zulu hostels and squatter camps were raided in response to ANC pressure. For the National Party government, the ongoing ethnic conflict was a lose-lose proposition.

But not for the savvy ANC.

Nelson Mandela harnessed the situation by accusing Prime Minister de Klerk of “either complicity or of not caring enough about black deaths” to stop black-on-black violence. The foreign press helped fuse fact with fancy by transmitting this claim, later to be dismissed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. (That body eventually determined that there was “little evidence of a centrally directed, coherent and formally instituted third force.”) Nevertheless, a constellation of unfavorable circumstances was aligned against Buthelezi, who capitulated in the end.

Buthelezi was the intellectual bête noire of the communist ANC — and one of the few leaders in South Africa to mine the Western canon widely and wisely for what it teaches about liberty and the dangers of centralizing political power. He cited with characteristic passion and poignancy, in July 2009, a poem (“The Second Coming”) that W. B. Yeats wrote in January 1919:

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned …

In contrast to what South Africa became, the United States is a country where the constitution was supposed to thwart the tyranny of the majority. This averting was meant to occur by means of a federal structure, in which powers are divided and dispersed between — and within — a central government and the constituent states. Yet the Americans sided with the ANC — the consequence of which has been the raw, ripe rule of the mob and its dominant, anointed party. 


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Is-Be's picture

Russia might have to wait.

I hope so. The question is "Does Russia have weapons of mass destruction?"

Good luck with the R selected species. You didn't have much luck in Somalia.

Megaton Jim's picture

The niggers will kill the whites, then the niggers will fuck everything up even worse than they already have. Then, when the West is too weak to do anything about it, China will take over Southern Africa and wipe out any niggers in the way of land and resources. Shortly thereafter, the niggers will come begging YT to save them from "da yella debbil!"

Singelguy's picture

Rhodesia, aka Zimbabwe, all over again.

ipso_facto's picture

The Clinton Administration supported the ANC (Communists) which focused on black rule.  Communist blacks and the country went to hell.  Go figure.

Ms No's picture

I told you Bitchez there was something weird in the air this weekend.  It's best to just stay home.  I think it's a combination of first welfare check weekend, Afghani heroin shipment weekend and full moon.  It goes without saying that the world is a circus before any addition factors are applied.



Arnold's picture

Your assessment is correct.

I felt a wave of some sort go through on Thursday.

And I am no Chris Dakota.

snodgrass's picture

Blacks can't run a government. They are too stupid to do so. All of Africa is a fuckin mess and so is any city in the US run by negroes. S. Africa used to be a first world country under whites. Now it's a third world shithole and on it's way to being a fourth world country.

SmittyinLA's picture

Newsflash ZH crashing the South African economy was the objective from day 1, why else transfer all the wealth to a black mob than to later bankrupt the state and collect the assets when they predictably default?

Africa is USSR Communist Looting 101, the black mobs were tools for theft from back mobs

DaveA's picture

This was pre-ordained the moment, centuries ago, that whites invited blacks to come work on their farms, ranches, mines, and homes. Because whites and blacks are fundamentally different species.

White people only reproduce when and to the extent that they are mathematically certain their children will have enough resources to enjoy their parents' standard of living. Blacks breed like rabbits, letting starvation and disease dispose of the surplus population.

At first, whites were a majority where they settled because the only blacks were a few small bands of hunter-gatherers. The black population exploded as white technology conquered hunger and disease, while the white population declined as non-elite whites could not compete with cheap black labor.

Whites could have solved this problem decades ago by not employing blacks, but as the old joke goes, white South Africans would rather be murdered in their own beds than have to make them.

Old Codger's picture

Yet another failed, communist,  state.

When the ANC took over SA was producing 800 TONS of gold a year, by far the biggest on the planet.  It is less than 200 tons now!


foxenburg's picture

I was living in Johannesburg in the nineties when Mandela was released and the grounwork prepared for the election for handover of power from whites to blacks. There was a clever Government media campaign.....the word EGBOK started appearing everywhere and nobody knew what iit means. Endless discussions and guesses on TV  newspapers. Then just before the election they a by now somewhat hyysterically curious population what EGBOK meant. It was headline news:




what a laugh that turned out to be.

hooligan2009's picture

ponders why sub-saharan and west african countries are not advertizing for the return of black professionals from the Western world and South Africa.

To Hell In A Handbasket's picture

The usual suspects crying about perceived white injustices. Give me a fucking break. It's the whining of whites crying about the fucking loss of minority rule. Even Roach admits there is no genocide, but the THREAT of genocide, if rhetoric is to be taken seriously. I mean, how many people on ZH, call for all sort of horrors to be committed against blacks? Does any black community, or their supporters make claims of an impending threat of genocide?

As for White Rose? She is just another race hating bitch who has found a voice complaining of the loss of minority rule and corrupt government, while giving the impression corrupt government is the exclusive preserve of blacks. lol

The secret to these race baiting idiots is what they omit. At no stage do they go into any depth of the serious injustices faced by the MAJORITY blacks. They also completely omit the fact whites own almost 80% of the land, while we are only 9% of the fucking population. I mean, where is the perspective?  Roach & Co also omit the zero move by whites on voluntary land reform, which is an oxymoron and the equivalent of asking Turkeys to vote for Christmas. We are not voluntarily giving up none of our stolen bounty.

I'm a regular visit S.A and reported I was there last year and there is not racial harmony. The question is, where is there racial harmony? Given the recent history of South Africa, it is doing well. 

Quatermain's picture

You may visit South Africa regularly but you are ignorant if you seriously think that there is no white genocide occurring, doos.   I was there during the transition in the early 90"s.  I saw the vilification of Buthelezi and the US duplicity in the entire process.  The strong arming of Bophutatswana by the ANC is not even mentioned.  I also witnessed the inevitable decline that "majority" rule brings on the continent.  Like the British in Rhodesia, the US hitched their wagon to the lead communist, Mugabe and Mandela respectivly.  It has taken longer for SA to slide into the abyss as it had the better infrastructure and larger white population to provide the civilizing effect.  But it is indeed sliding into the abyss.  The injustices you espouse are occuring to the majority blacks are being imposed by majority blacks.  The whites own the majority of the land in the form of farms which is the only reason the entire sub continent is not starving to death.  The average black that can remember, particularly in the rural areas, will say that the country was better off under Apartheid.  This fiasco will end up making Venezuela look like a picnic.  Blacks do not have an exclusivity on corruption in government but they certainly eclipse the previous white governments in that realm.

To Hell In A Handbasket's picture

It is not genocide, it is a criminal and law and order issue. The statistics speak for themselves in the fact that black juries, do not acquit fellow niggers when charged with the murder of whites. This is a fact. The S.A police force and the judiciary, do not refuse to prosecute, but hammer blacks criminals when the occasion arises. We don't complain that we won't get a fair trial in court and that they'll acquit their own. So where are we hard done by? Life is not fair and many ethnic minorities in Europe will attest to this fact, but compared to them, we have life good.

I also went to the Democratic Alliance central London meeting with Mmusi Maimane, as the main guest and yes, Nirvana is not in S.A, but neither is it the picture you paint. The common theme with people like you is "LIFE UNDER APARTHEID WAS BETTER FOR THE BLACKS"  lol.  So let me ask you a question, when there was power shortages, which areas got cut off? I could give another 30 examples, but I guess that you get the picture. Life was not good.

For the sake of argument, you seem to acknowledge the 80% land ownership by us while only 9% of the population and them owning 15% while almost 78% of the population as a fucking non-issue. The fact as you acknowledge that the black leadership, not only fuck over their fellow blacks, but whites as well, as somehow a race issue? Do you know the debt apartheid S.A accrued while in power, that the ANC was FORCED to take on? There was no debt relief at all. ZERO! the Rothchilds wanted their debt paid. How much of the vast precious and strategic rare metal mines were transferred to to the S.A? Jesus Christ man, we gave them around 8% and we got to keep the rest of the resources. 

The niggers got jobs, which they were working anyway and paltry tax receipts. this was all under an American negotiated peace deal. But the real kick in the nuts for the niggers was when they first refused the deal. The Oppenheimer's and associated Jewish owners of the strategic resources, did not only just threaten, but guaranteed to IRRADIATE ALL THE MINES WITH NUCLEAR WASTE,  leaving it unusable for over 100K years, if the niggers never let them keep their bounty. This is well documented, but do Cato and the Mises institute bring this up? Yeah I thought so. I'll leave it there, because to explain the history, ills and future of S.A would take several books. The problem I have with white South Africans, is that you do not understand the concept of what it means to be a minority in another persons country. Niggers have been documented living in England since pre-1500's and they'll always be foreign. So get used to it, unless you wish to apply double standards.



Quatermain's picture

I never said Apartheid was Nirvana, only that it was a better deal than the blacks have today as far as economic stability and crime are concerned.  The land issue may be an issue du jour but the "solution" will provide starvation as it always does in Africa.  As far as being a minority in "another personss country" it is the result of black fecundity and is completely related to the infrastructure supplied by the white government.  Without that there would be no black majority.  Percolate on that.  talk about killing the goose that laid the golden egg, this is it.   Read your history, there were virtually no blacks in what is now SA when the Cape Colony was established.  Lastly , yes it is genocide and you are indeed a doos if you do not see that.  As the main guest at the Democratic Alliance meeting you have told me all I need to know about you.    

hidflect's picture

The majority of blacks in SA are not even native to the country but fled there over time from surrounding nations where their lives were in miserable jepoardy.

To Hell In A Handbasket's picture

Bullshit and you know it. This is the same type of justification horseshit used by Israeli Jews, when trying to rewrite history with the native the Palestinians, are nor really Palestinians at all but Jordanians and Arabs who just happened to settle in Palestine. Get real.

Vin's picture

Without white culture, blacks descend into their self-made hell.  They have no "civilization".

To Hell In A Handbasket's picture

I partly agree, but it is their hell and their country and that's what all of their detractors forget. But the fact remains we have life better there, than the niggers have in the west. Any other take on that, is reverse PC bullshit

IE: My children when in S.A won't be harassed by the local police, or picked upon by the local police, or arrested for drug use while the same police turn a blind eye to black drug use. They won't be shot due to an imaginary fear of life, or assaulted because they were cheeky and rude. They don't need to bow down and show the police unquestionable respect. They wont be stopped and searched and neither will the legal system punish them harder for the same crimes blacks commit. Nor are our children cattle for a S.A prison industrial complex making niggers rich, and providing them jobs.

The only thing I have to moan about is an incompetent government, government corruption and cronyism which is universal on this planet, a shocking crime rate and the continuance of affirmative action, even though it was instigated to balance out years of injustice and favouritism towards us. Outside of that, we have a life the niggers could only imagine in the west. We own most of S.A, it didn't cost us a penny, yet we are still moaning of some imaginary genocide. If we keep using the word genocide, it will soon have the same meaning as calling somebody racist. None at all.

Loucleve's picture

If it werent for the whites, genius, the blacks would still be living in huts.  with no electricity and no written word.  read the book Out of America - a Black American  Confronts Africa - byh Keith Richburg (an  AP reporter who lived all over the continent.)

the entire sub suharan Africa is a disaster.  They are dying to get into Europe for a reason - they are incapable of subsisting in a modern society without white supervision.  why do you think they want black kids in white schools?  left to their own devices it is chaos, that is why.

facts can be most difficult things.

aldol11's picture

james watson did not think africa would ever have a chance , look it up

quasi_verbatim's picture

All this talk of the Lost Country agitates the mind, and is futile.

South Africans know what it is to lose a country; Americans are finding out.

allthegoodnamesaretaken's picture

White people not Jews bettter learn, Rothschild's Jews plan on getting rid of them.  A few sabbath Goys may be allowed to live, the rest are just toast.  South Africa, what is happening to white people there is just a prelude of what is going to happen to all of us.  Payng the Rothschild's to destroy them, white people are creating their own misery with their allowing of lies to be told on them, with their allowing their school systems to be run by Jews.  This is not the time nor the place to say it all, white people can know the truth, so sure of himself is the Jew he has posted the truth everywhere, it is just that the well fed white people don't care, yet.  Soon, it will be too late, better wake up now.