Recently Guardian journalist Gary Younge reminded me of an interview he did with FW de Klerk, the last Apartheid President of South Africa in 1999 while De Klerk was promoting his self-serving autobiography, “The Last Trek, A New Beginning.”It’s worth repeating Gary’s right-on take on De Klerk’s view of the end of the Cold War and Apartheid, now that De Klerk is traveling around the world picking up cheques to tell people how he liberated black South Africans (the  crowds inviting him also believe that: on Monday next week he’ll speak at London’s National Liberal Club on “”The Impact of the Fall of the Berlin Wall on South Africa and the World”):

The recent history of South Africa according to FW de Klerk goes something like this: a white minority government, ruled by a series of benevolent dictators, was keen to devolve power to the black majority as equal partners. Some white extremists meted out a degree of racial injustice and neither the blacks nor the rest of the international community were interested in the deal. So the white rulers decided the most reasonable and fair thing to do was give up their power and hand it over to people they had previously seen fit to put in prison. They were led by Nelson Something-or-other – a nice chap, although he could get uppity on occasions and proved something of a disappointment to those keen on establishing a democratic, non-racial country …


Further Reading

The price of contamination

Legal cases against foreign multinationals in the Central African Copperbelt seek justice for decades of pollution. But activists should also investigate the historical legacies of colonial mining companies.

Remembering Emma Gama Pinto

To those who did not know Emma Gama Pinto, she was just “the wife of Pio Gama Pinto,” the Kenyan anticolonial fighter, but to those who knew her, she was fearless in her own right.