Impressions of South Africa

I had first heard via talk radio that things weren’t going so well in South Africa. This was about four years ago.

This past summer, I heard a little more about the Farm Attacks, and became very concerned. As I started looking into it myself, I noticed that when you pull on one thread, sometimes it is an entire garment that unravels; this was very apparent with South Africa.

In this post, I do not provide links. I highly encourage you to do your own research, and to THINK FOR YOURSELF about what you find.

These are my impressions. They are based on information derived from a variety of sources:

1) official reports by
a) the South African government,
b) other national governments,
c) supranational organizations such as the United Nations and the African Union, and
d) non-governmental organizations (some of which meet in conjunction with government officials);
2) news articles from many different sources, in many different countries, and from many different perspectives;
3) podcast and talk radio segments from diverse sources;
4) emails, direct/personal messages on social media, discussions in forums and on social media (both public and in closed groups); and
5) others.

People with whom I have interacted privately include government and law enforcement officials, members of civil society and academia, and citizens, not only from South Africa, but from neighboring countries, as well, and people from around the world who have something to add.

So, here’s what I have come up with.

First and foremost:

1) Americans do not need to lecture or save the people of South Africa, or anyone else, for that matter. Instead, we need to partner with them and learn from each other.

2) The basic premise (quoted in my last post) upon which America is founded is very sound indeed:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

This should be a model for all people everywhere; when I say we should learn from each other, I think this is something America has to offer.

3) Farm Attacks are a real phenomenon, and are distinct from ordinary crime (which is incredibly high in South Africa).

Farm Attacks started out as a means by which the ANC’s military (terrorist) wing put pressure on the Apartheid government. After the end of Apartheid, the attacks continued. It got to the point where Nelson Mandela, who by this time was the President of post-Apartheid South Africa, prioritized Farm Attacks and rural security. But later, things changed.

A special rural police group, known as the Commando system, had been reasonably effective in addressing rural security. This system had historical origins going back a long way. In part because of this history, it was disbanded. But, the disbandment occurred despite recommendations by experts that the Commando system not be disbanded, at least not until something else was ready to take its place. Furthermore, Farm Attacks were not only deprioritized, but stopped being considered as a separate category of crime; instead, they were mixed in with other crime in aggregated statistics. This had the result that they could not so easily be distinguished from the high crime rate that characterizes South Africa. And, let’s be clear: on average, South Africa ranks just below most of the world’s war zones for a rate of violent deaths (homicides, murders), but some jurisdictions within South Africa, taken by themselves, rank higher – much higher, many times higher!

The disbandment of rural security, the deprioritization of the crimes, the aggregation of the statistics… it all looks like a pattern of conduct, a deliberate policy of the government to push commercial farmers (predominantly those of European descent) off their land, possibly via proxy, while maintaining plausible deniability.

So, murderous Farm Attacks, with gratuitous violence and torture, appear to have the implicit nod of consent of the government.

At this point, I really started digging. I mean, I began digging like a dog in his backyard when he thinks he smells something good: sniff, sniff, sniff, dig, dig, dig… run around with a wagging tail… sniff, sniff, sniff, dig, dig, dig… occasionally stop to wet on something.

Here’s what I came up with, in no particular order – and some of it may seem pretty far afield from the Farm Attacks (but I have stopped believing in coincidences):

Crime: South Africa is a crime capital. It has long had a high crime rate. Its violent death rate ranks it just under Afghanistan (a war zone), but some parts of South Africa, especially certain urban districts, have murder rates (and rape rates) that make Afghanistan look tame by comparison. Corruption is rampant there. South Africa also is a world leader for economic crime (I never would have imagined that). On top of that, the infrastructure is under attack; gangs of thieves brazenly steal critical components from electric power and water utilities, from commuter train rail networks… the stolen items, including ferrous metals and copper, get sold as scrap, and employees on the commuter lines face armed robbery and murder on the job, even though protected by security guards!

Government officials in some localities pointed out that this is an attack on the very fabric of society. Local governments could collapse under the pressure and, if that happens enough, South Africa could become a failed state. The more information I get on crime and related topics, the more I think this is a very real concern; it is not overstated, nor is it sensationalism.

South African Police: Cops in South Africa are getting killed in the line of duty at a very high rate. It’s bad; they can’t even protect themselves. Also, the suicide rate among the South African Police Service (SAPS) is more than 70 times the South African average. Law enforcement there face well-equipped, murderous syndicates and cartels; often, the police are outgunned and outequipped. Also, some of the criminal gangs have gunmen who are remarkably well-trained, while SAPS equipment is sometimes never procured, or is procured but disappears, due to corruption. Bravery alone does not level the playing field; no offense to SAPS, but in many cases, they can only hope to win by outnumbering the bad guys. On top of that, there are serious corruption problems within South African law enforcement. Criminal gangs sometimes have very good intelligence on police operations. Some cops sell out; it’s that, or get murdered brutally without making a difference (and their family is threatened, too). Some cops are exhausted; others are lazy. For the honest, brave cops, risking their lives to do their jobs, they have insult added on top of injury by being lumped in with the bad cops. No wonder there is PTSD and a high suicide rate!

Heroin: South Africa has become a major transshipment point for heroin from Afghanistan on its way to Europe (and elsewhere). Since 2001, poppy production in Afghanistan has gone up. It used to be that the poppies were shipped elsewhere for refining into heroin. Now, though, the refining occurs in Afghanistan, and product quality is very good. Movement used to be via the Balkans to Europe. However, with increased policing along that route, traffickers now also ship it to the coast of Pakistan or Iran, and from there load it onto seagoing vessels, often dhows. These take the drugs to Africa’s east coast. Increasingly, the heroin is moved down to the southern part of Africa, often unloaded at small ports on offshore islands, or onto small boats that take it in to the coast. From there, it goes along the road network – and South Africa has a good road network – and later gets transshipped to Europe. South Africa also has excellent commercial ties to all destinations where they might want to send the heroin; and, there is good financial infrastructure to move the money around. Finally, the rampant corruption allows drug traffickers to operate comfortably.

Also, keep in mind that as heroin gets trafficked through some place, it becomes available in that place for a lower cost, due to availability. For example, there is leakage: a trafficker pays a corrupt official with product instead of money. The result is that addiction goes up. Understand, addicts get money to buy their drugs through street crime. So, robbery, burglary, carjacking, mugging… it all goes up as addicts are desperate to get their fix. And, in South Africa, heroin is mixed with other drugs; different communities each have their own concoction, all known by different names – many in civil society do not realize they are facing the same problem.

Rival gangs fight over trafficking routes and turfs for distribution; the murder and violent crime rate goes up and foreign gangs move in. Even decent, honest criminals have trouble making ends meet; there goes the neighborhood.

Socialism: A socialistic government responds to society problems by taxes in order to provide services. Those who produce get taxed; those who don’t get subsidized. There is a net movement from working and producing to taking government hand-outs. Much of the money disappears into the pockets of dirty politicians; corruption is an additional tax that everyone pays, and it’s a hefty tax in South Africa.

Demagoguery: People seeking political power look for scapegoats to blame. They blame foreigners for the crime; xenophobia kicks in, and many good, honest people, who are actually working and contributing, get victimized. (The drug dealers have guys with guns protecting them, and have paid off the police and important politicians; they are only in danger from rival gangs.) This is where the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) come in; they (together with many in the ruling African National Congress) blame South Africans of European descent, seeking to murder the Boer, Afrikaner and others and take their property.

Proxies: Let’s not forget the ruling ANC had Julius Malema as the head of its youth league, and knew of how he used to sing “Shoot the Boer”. Despite this, they decided to give Malema and the ANCYL military training at South African military installations. (Recall, the Nazis and communists have all enjoyed providing military training to their youth organizations.) Later, Malema takes these guys and forms his own political party; as I said before, I have stopped believing in coincidences.

Economy: Of course, they also threaten to nationalize foreign businesses. All of this creates political chaos which, in turn, is very bad for the investment that South Africa needs to get its economy going. And, anyone doing business in South Africa has to consider the added costs of security. After all, though businesses pay taxes, the police can’t protect them. Indeed, the tax money that does not get stolen may wind up getting spent on equipping the people who are going to take their business away from them if the next couple of elections go the wrong way. The hashtag #InvestSA – not even! Another hashtag #MeetSouthAfrica – tourists are getting targeted now, too, by criminals.

Meanwhile, poor people are trying to make ends meet. One relic left over from Apartheid is that often, blacks live in places that are quite a distance from the places where they work. So, they have to commute. They do this from a dangerous neighborhood, to a dangerous place, and going through dangerous places on their way. Remember, too, the issues with the commuter trains – sometimes, people lose their jobs because they can’t get to work because someone stole a key part of their means of transportation. And, while they are away, their families are in this neighborhood full of drugs and street crime.

On top of that, the Farm Attacks have driven many South African farmers out of business; others are paying a great deal for better security. All this results in rising food costs (on top of rising fuel costs, etc.) which the poor in South Africa can least afford.

The commercial farmers do have a network trying to call attention to their situation; who is helping these poor black people dealing with the crime in their communities, the dangers and uncertainties of their commute to work, and so on? Google “South Africa squatters camps” and odds are you will see pictures of the many white people who are now one very small step away from being homeless (maybe they’re already there); but, remember, blacks are suffering terribly, too, and there are camps full of them, as well – more than 5 million of them, that is 385 blacks for every white, living in “informal dwellings”.

Mineral resources: Though down from its peak, South Africa still produces diamonds, and is the world’s fifth largest producer of gold; also, it is the world’s third largest exporter of coal, and is the world’s largest producer of chrome, manganese, platinum, vanadium and vermiculite. China is South Africa’s major trading partner, and is the world’s largest consumer of iron ore; South Africa is China’s third biggest supplier. There are some offshore oil reserves, and potential for non-conventional production of oil and gas ashore. There’s a whole laundry list of important minerals in South Africa’s geologically rich land.

Genocide: Some blacks seem to think whites are cry-babies for talking about “white genocide”, and, given what blacks are going through in South Africa, it is very understandable. But, it is a fact experts have shown that six of ten stages of genocide against whites (and against some groups of blacks) have been largely fulfilled, with elements of and spikes into the other four. Some say white genocide is already happening, while I say it is not, but this is a question of naming it: basically, they say the glass is half full (more than 60% full, actually), while I point out that the glass is (somewhat less than) half empty. In situations like this, one must err on the side of caution; it is WRONG to wait until the genocide occurs to REACT – instead, the world must be PROACTIVE to PREVENT it.

In this context, let me explain: most blacks want nothing to do with genocidal attacks on whites. But, remember, all these good people are struggling just to survive – in a country with an outrageous crime rate, and where the police, as it is right now, cannot effectively protect themselves. Should there be a genocidal outbreak, do we really believe all the good people together with the cops will suddenly be effective to stop it? Or, is it more likely they will be even more in defense mode, just trying to protect themselves and their families and communities?

If one argues that there is a slow-motion genocide and ethnic cleansing – not of all of South Africa, but of the rural and commercial farming areas – then the evidence supports that. Indeed, as high as the murder rate there is, the rate of killings of police in the line of duty is quite a bit higher, and the rate of killings of white farmers is higher yet – it is a very clear spike, if you can disaggregate the statistics.

(Never mind the terrible torture inflicted on the farmers.)

South Africa has Africa’s second largest and most developed economy, an incredibly important player on the world scene. What happens as all these problems worsen, and drive the nation further into chaos? Such a large supplier of so many important minerals, sitting astride such important shipping lanes… you think Somalia caused problems when it became a failed state, just you wait until the Republic of South Africa collapses.

Oh, speaking of Somalia… wait a minute! Did I mention Islamic terrorists? I didn’t??

Militant Islamic extremists are sowing terror in Mozambique, immediately to South Africa’s north along the Indian Ocean coast… you know, right there, where the little boats bring the heroin in?

Did I mention terrorist links to heroin? Terrorist groups fund their activities through organized crime (and other means), and heroin trafficking is particularly liked: it destroys the infidel world from within, while providing money for holy war. Where there is Afghan heroin being trafficked, there are profits that can be traced back to Islamic terrorist groups. And the amount of heroin flowing along the Southern Route, through South Africa, is truly amazing, though we don’t see most of it.

By the way, just south along the coast from Mozambique is… the South African port city of Durban, where, earlier today (October 24, 2018), a terrorist bomb plot was publicly linked – in court – to the Islamic State.

Potential famine, genocide that could flare up, possible state collapse… with Islamic terrorists ready to make South Africa the next Islamic State.

And, if America does get dragged into it, bear in mind: Communist China recently sold its HQ-9 surface-to-air missile system to Zimbabwe, a landlocked country bordering both South Africa and Mozambique (and through which some of that heroin moves). China has sold a great deal of other weapons to Zimbabwe, too, and now is reported to be establishing a military base there.

What is the HQ-9? It’s kind of like a poor-man’s Patriot. And, there is no one in that part of Africa that Zimbabwe would need the HQ-9 to defend against, except possibly South Africa… or a Western intervention in the region.

But, don’t believe me… do your own research.

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