Politics and Literature in a Dystopian Age. The Iron Heel, We, and Collected Essays of George Orwell

Politics and Literature in a Dystopian Age. The Iron Heel, We, and Collected Essays of George Orwell

February 20, 2021

by Francis Lee for the Saker Blog

1. Jack London and the Iron Heelhttps://thesaker.is/politics-and-literature-in-a-dystopian-age-the-iron-heel-we-and-collected-essays-of-george-orwell/

The Iron Heel is a dystopian novel by the American writer Jack London, first published in 1908.

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It is considered to be one of the earliest examples of modern dystopian fiction. It was the fourth of London’s earlier output which included, People of the Abyss (which was in fact journalism rather than literature) and the two novels, Call of the Wild, and White Fang. London was a difficult author to place given his very eclectic political and social philosophy; this was best epitomized in his own estimation as: ‘I am a white man and then a Socialist.’ But perhaps aptly described by Orwell as being a ‘doubtfully reliable Socialist’.

Be that as it may London was an avowed opponent of the capitalist system as he knew it, and how it functioned in the United States. In his book London imagines a proletarian revolution breaking out in the USA. Unfortunately, the revolution was crushed by the ruthless ruling class who staged a counter-revolution. There then followed a long period during which the newly established order was ruled over by a small group of tyrants known as the Oligarchs (Does this sound familiar? FL). The Oligarchs were served by an internal Praetorian Guard known as the Mercenaries. An underground struggle against the dictatorship was precisely the kind of eventuality which London could imagine. He foresaw the now familiar methods of totalitarian regimes which have become commonplace in our own time. For example, the way in which suspected enemies of the regime were made to simply disappear. Hardly novel in our own age.

One of the main themes of the book, however, was London’s incisive view that capitalism was not necessarily going to collapse due to its ‘internal contradictions’ – this being the rather crude orthodox and determinist Marxist view. This was and still is an unfortunate theoretical hiatus that the left continually fails to appreciate – namely, that the ruling class is not just an economic force, it is also a political/ideological force. This implies that the possessive class would be able to form itself into some vast corporation and even to evolve into a form of perverted socialism or State Capitalism. This view of London’s was also to gain some traction in the work of the American social/political theorist, James Burnham, and his theory of The Managerial Revolution. Like many of the radicals of the post WW2 period Burnham was a Trotskyist activist, and like many of the same persuasion duly abandoned Marxism for the following reasons. His seminal work The Managerial Revolution (1941), theorized about the future of world capitalism based upon its development in the interwar period. Burnham weighed three possibilities: (1) that capitalism was a permanent form of social and economic organization and would continue indefinitely; (2) that it was temporary and destined by its nature to collapse and be replaced by socialism; (3) that it was currently being transformed into some non-socialist future form of society. Since capitalism had a more or less definite beginning in the 14th century, it could not be regarded as an immutable and permanent form. George Orwell was impressed (not in a good way) by this work and wrote a review of the book. But I digress.

Returning to Jack London, however, perhaps the key passage in the book is London’s penetrating insight into the mentality of the Oligarchs. It reads:

‘’They, as a class (writes the imaginary author of the book) believed that they alone maintained civilization. It was their belief that, if they ever weakened, the great beast would engulf them and everything of beauty and joy and wonder and good in its cavernous and slime-dripping maw. Without them, anarchy would reign, and humanity would drop backward into the primitive night out of which it had so painfully emerged … In short, they alone, by their unremitting toil and self-sacrifice, stood between a weak humanity and the all devouring beast: and they believed it, passionately believed it.

‘’I (London) cannot lay too much stress on this high ethical righteousness of the whole Oligarch class. This has been the strength of the whole Iron Heel, and too many of the comrades have been slow or loath to realize it. Many of them have ascribed the strength of the Iron Heel to a system of reward and punishment. This is a mistake. Heaven and Hell may be the prime factors of zeal in the religion of a fanatic; but for the great majority of the religious, heaven and hell are incidental to right and wrong. Love of the right, desire for the right, unhappiness than anything less than the right – in short, right conduct is the prime factor of religion. And so with the Oligarchy – the great driving force of the Oligarchs is the belief that they are doing right.’’

In this connexion I seem to recall that, Lloyd Blankfein who was an American investment banker at Goldman Sachs and who served as senior chairman seemed to articulate the same sentiments, i.e. that he was doing ‘God’s Work.’ And of course there was Hillary Clinton pouring her scorn on the basket of deplorables.

For these and many similar passages it can be seen that London’s understanding of the nature of the ruling class – that is the characteristics that a ruling class must have if it is to survive as a ruling class – went very deep. London understood in a way that the left could not was that the capitalist is a cynical scoundrel, without honour or courage and intent in filling his own pockets. Yes, he is all of these things … but more. He is part of a politically and ideologically organized force of true believers which presents a formidable barrier to the would-be revolutionists who tend to underestimate their trickery. The resolve and belief of the ruling elite is, to use an American expression, their ‘manifest destiny’, and was their right to rule both at home and abroad, by force if necessary. He also knew instinctively that the American Businessmen would fight when their possessions were menaced because in their place, he would have thought so himself.

This is where London’s core beliefs exhibited a strain of brutality and an unconquerable preference for the strong man against the weak man. He was an adventurer and man of action as few writers had even been, all of which made him something of a political maverick. Nonetheless much of his time was spent working and lecturing for the Socialist movement, and when he was already a successful and famous man, he would explore the worst effects of poverty in East London (the city) and compile a book: The People of the Abyss – published in 1902. London died at the relatively young age of 41 in 1916.

2. Yevgeny Zamyatin – We

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Yevgeny Zamyatin, who died in Paris in 1937, was a Russian novelist and critic who published a number of books both before and after the Revolution. ‘We’ -was written in about 1923, and though it is not about Russia and has no direct connection with contemporary politics, it is a fantasy dealing with the twenty-sixth century and it was refused publication on the ground that it was ideologically undesirable. The book is not particularly Russian, for once you remove the Russian language, and perhaps one or two minor characters the babushkas who act as guardians of the Ancient House and D503’s building, what is left is a sort of generalised human society. Part of Zamyatin’s point, surely, is that his nightmare states lacks the warm smell and taste of long human habitation and lack any of the recognisable attributes of nationhood. OneState, as it is called is not to be blamed on the Americans or the Bolsheviks or the Industrial Lords of Manchester or Liverpool. It is a fate toward which a thoughtless humanity is hurtling.

We are in the twenty-sixth century, in Zamyatin’s vision of it, the inhabitants of Utopia have so completely lost their individuality as to be known only by numbers. They live in glass houses (this was written before television was invented), which enables the political police, known as the “Guardians”, to supervise them more easily. They all wear identical uniforms, and a human being is commonly referred to either as “a number” or “a unif” (uniform). They live on synthetic food, and their usual recreation is to march in fours while the anthem of the Single State is played through loudspeakers. At stated intervals they are allowed for one hour (known as “the sex hour”) to lower the curtains round their glass apartments. There is, of course, no marriage, though sex life does not appear to be completely promiscuous. For purposes of love-making everyone has a sort of ration book of pink tickets, and the partner with whom he spends one of his allotted sex hours signs the counterfoil. The Single State is ruled over by a personage known as The Benefactor, who is annually re-elected by the entire population, the vote being always unanimous. The guiding principle of the State is that happiness and freedom are incompatible. In the Garden of Eden man was happy, but in his folly, he demanded freedom and was driven out into the wilderness. Now the Single State has restored his happiness by removing his freedom.

But in spite of the vigilance of the Guardians the small and fragile of many of the ancient instincts still survive. The chief character in the story is D503 who is a gifted engineer, but like most of his contemporaries cuts a poor conventional creature who thinks and talks as he is told. However in a moment of madness he falls in love (a criminal act) with a certain I-330 female. During their clandestine romance it emerges that I-330 is a member of an underground resistance movement and succeeds for a while in leading him into rebellion. Come the insurrectionary moment it appears that the enemies of the Benefactor a more numerous than was thought. Characteristics of this subversive movement, apart from overthrowing OneState, were the diabolical practises of smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol.

After D-503s rather weak-willed attempt at defiance he makes amends and is ultimately saved from the consequences of his own folly. For their part, the authorities announce that they have discovered the cause of the disturbances: it became known that human beings were suffering from a disease called ‘imagination’.

This came as a bolt from the blue for D503; to think that he might be suffering from an ‘imagination’. He resolved to talking to a colleague about the condition.

‘’Have you heard about the new operation they have supposed to have developed?’’ Said a colleague.

Yes, I know, but why to you bring that up … because if I were you, I’d go and see about having the operation done.’’

Worse was to follow. D503 was feeling rather unwell and was persuaded to take himself to the Medical Bureau. He was quizzed as to why he had come by the less than welcoming medical staff.

‘’What’s the matter?’’ Why are you standing there?’’

Turned upside down like an idiot, hanging by my feet and burning with shame, D503 said nothing.

S said: ‘’Follow me.’’

I went obediently, swinging useless arms that belonged to someone else. I couldn’t raise my eyes. The whole time I was walking in a wide world turned on its head … We stopped. There were steps in front of me. One step more, and I see figures in white coats, doctors, and the huge silence … There were two of them. One shortish with legs like mileposts, used his eyes as though they were horns to toss the patients. The other was extremely thin. Had lips like scissors and a nose like a blade.

‘’You’re really in bad shape, said scissor nose. It looks like you are developing a soul.’’

A soul? That strange, ancient, long-forgotten word. We sometimes used expressions like ‘soul-mate’, ‘body and soul,’ ‘soul-destroying’, and so on, but soul …

‘’That’s dangerous … extremely dangerous,’’ I murmured.

‘’Incurable,’’ the scissors snapped.

This little tete-a-tete gave rise to a tantrum in milepost.

‘’What’s been going on? A soul? Did you say, a soul? What the Hell! Next thing you know we’ll have cholera again. I told you so … We should operate on all of them, on the imagination. Extirpate the imagination. Surgery’s the only answer … nothing but surgery …’’

(In passing we might add that this is all very suggestive of the Corona pandemic and mass inoculation of the population as part of the Great Reset, transhumanism and so forth. FL)

D503 duly underwent his corrective surgery like a model citizen after which it was easy for him to do what he has known all along that he ought to do – that is to betray his confederates to the police. Additionally and with complete equanimity he watches his ex-lover I-330 tortured by means of compressed air under a glass bell. I-330 along with the captured subversives were, to use the usual Stalinist vernacular, duly ‘liquidated’. In this ideal state death by execution, torture, freedom of speech and assembly, and abject barbarism were common-practice.

The death Machine of the Benefactor is an updated version of the French guillotine. In Zamyatin’s Utopia executions are frequent. They are staged publicly, in the presence of the Benefactor. There are the usual triumphal odes recited by the official poets and before a selected audience consisting of everybody who is anybody. The guillotine-Mark6 of course, is not the old crude instrument, but the latest version of a much-improved model. This instrument functions to literally liquidate its victim, reducing him/her in an instant to a puff of smoke and a pool of clear water. The execution is in fact, nothing less than a human sacrifice, and the scene of pomp and circumstance describing it is given deliberately the colour of the sinister slave civilizations of the ancient world. It is the intuitive grasp of the irrational side of totalitarianism – human sacrifice, cruelty as an end in itself, the worship of a leader who is credited with divine attributes that makes Zamyatin’s book ahead of its time and a future world as described into a real possibility.

Such is nature of all totalitarian systems; the quest of perfecting an ideal society consistently fails simply because human nature is imperfect. This much may be true, but it does not follow that human imperfection is rigidly fixed and – mirabile dictu – human nature can be changed and that should be the objective. In the words of Martin Luther King: ‘’One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.”

3. The Collected Essays, Journalism, and Letters of George Orwell, Volumes 1 to 4 covering the period 1920-1950.

Note: I have left out Orwell’s novels and much of his journalism since these are well known, and decided to concentrate on his writings as contained in the 4 volumes put together from 1920 to 1950

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Eric Blair aka George Orwell (1) was born in Bengal in British India in 1903. His father was a minor customs official in the Indian Civil Service. When Orwell was four years old, his family returned to England, where they settled at Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire, a village near London, England. Having won a scholarship he was educated at what was possibly the most prestigious boys school in the UK – Eton. It was customary for boys from Eton to ascend to the highest positions in the British colonial and business class. This was not Orwell’s choice, however. After leaving Eton he joined the Indian Imperial Police and spent the years 1922-27 as a sub-divisional officer in Burma. The five years of isolation in Burma must have been decisive for his approach to writing; at a formative age he was removed from the world of intellectual discussion and the literary reviews with the quick succession of opinions and ideas and given instead action and responsibility and the solitude in which to meditate on the justice to which his work made him a party. It was during this period that Orwell produced two of his early essays, namely ‘A Hanging’ and ‘Shooting an Elephant.’

1. A HANGING: 1931

‘’It was in Burma … A sodden morning of the Rains (Monsoon). A sickly light like yellow tinfoil, was slanting over the high walls into the jail-yard. We were waiting outside of the condemned cells, a row of sheds with double bars, like small animal cages … in some of them brown silent men were squatting at the inner bars with blankets draped around them. These were condemned men waiting to be hanged within the next week or two.’’

Thus the scene was set for the brutal reality of British imperial rule in India.

‘’One prisoner was brought out of his cell. He was a Hindu, a puny wisp of a man, with a shaven head and vague liquid eyes.’’

Orwell and the other warders wanted to get this sordid little business over as soon as possible. They set out for the gallows. It was about 40 yards away. Orwell noted during the last walk of the prisoner:

‘’I watched the bare brown back marching in front of me. He walked clumsily with his bound arms but quite steadily, with that bobbing gait of the Indian who never straightens his knees … And once, in spite of the men who gripped him by each shoulder, he stepped slightly aside to avoid a puddle on the path.’’

The enormity of what he was bound to do began to dawn on Orwell. Taking a man’s life is a profoundly serious business even if he is only – in pure racist terms – a coolie. In such a situation simply being there, in the middle of all this, one is emotionally temporarily suspended. It’s not really happening, it is happening somewhere else, not here for God’s sake!

‘’It is curious but until that moment I had never realized what it is to destroy a healthy conscious man. When I saw the prisoner step aside to avoid the puddle, I saw the mystery, the unspeakable wrongness of cutting a life short when it is in full-tide … He and me were a party of men walking together, seeing, hearing, feeling, understanding the same world; and in two minutes, with a sudden snap, one of us would be gone – one mind less, one world less.’’

After the grisly denouement had been completed a sense of relaxation overtook the hanging party.

‘’The jail Superintendent reached out with his stick and poked the bare body; it oscillated slightly …The moody look had gone out of his face quite suddenly. He glanced at his wrist-watch. ‘‘Eight minutes past eight. Well, that’s all for this morning, Thank God.’’

In fact the whole mood of the hanging party had changed. Several people laughed. At what no-one seemed certain. Assistant Superintendent Francis who was walking by the Superintendent was making a joke of the whole proceedings.

‘’You will scarcely credit, sir, that it took six wardens to dislodge him, three pulling at each leg. We reasoned with him. ’My dear fellow’ he said ’think of all the pain and trouble you are causing to us!’ But no, he would not listen! Ach! he was very troublesome.’’

Job job, job done, to use an English expression. Everyone was now very relaxed after this nauseating little episode.

‘’I found that I was laughing quite loudly. Everyone was laughing. Even the Superintendent in a tolerant way. ‘You’d better all come out and have a drink,’ he said quite genially. ‘I’ve got a bottle of whisky in the car. We could do with it … We all drank together … We all began laughing again … had a drink together, native, and European alike, quite amicably. The dead man was a hundred yards away.’’

2. SHOOTING AN ELEPHANT – 1936

In this second essay Shooting an Elephant he describes how one morning he was called out to deal with an elephant that had run amok and killed a man. He sends for a rifle to defend himself, but when he eventually catches up with the animal, its attack of must is over and it is quietly pulling up tufts of grass and eating them. Orwell knows that the elephant is much too valuable to be shot out of hand – it is like an expensive capital good – and is anyway by now harmless. But the situation is now beginning to get out of hand. A crowd had gathered.

‘’At that moment I glanced at the crowd that had followed me. It was an immense crowd, two thousand at least and growing every minute. It blocked the road for a large distance either side. I looked at a sea of yellow faces above the garish clothes – faces all happy and excited over this bit of fun, all certain that the elephant was going to be shot. They were watching me as they would watch a conjurer about to perform a trick. They did not like me but with my magical rifle in my hands I was momentarily worth watching. And suddenly I realised that I would have to shoot the elephant after all. The people expected it of me, and I had got to do it; I could feel their two thousand wills pressing me there with my rifle in my hands, that I first grasped the hollowness, the futility of the white man’s dominion in the East. Here it was that I, the white man, with his gun, standing in front of the unarmed native crowd – seemingly the leader of the piece; but in reality, I was only an absurd puppet pushed to and fro by the will of those yellow faces behind. I perceived in this moment that when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom he destroys. He becomes a hollow, posing dummy, the conventionalized figure of a sahib. For the condition of his rule he must spend his life in trying to ‘impress’ the ‘natives’. And so in every crisis he has got to do what the natives expect of him. He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it.’’

It is generally agreed that both ‘A Hanging’ and ‘Shooting and Elephant’ are among the best essays that Orwell ever wrote, and they certainly provide the most classic examples of his method of progressing from the individual experience to the general conclusion. What is distinctive is his ability to record on the page the progress of a creative intelligence, producing ideas, not from the ideas of others, but from the experience of life itself.

3. MARRAKECH – 1939

‘’As the corpse went by the flies left the restaurant table in a cloud and rushed after it, but they came back a few minutes later.’’

Orwell had been exposed to third world poverty during his time in India, but this was of a different order. He had been advised by his doctor to leave the murk and fog of an English winter due to a bronchial condition and opt for sunnier climes in the searing heat of north Africa but along with the sunshine came the overpowering abject poverty.

‘’The little crowd of mourners – all men and boys, no women – threaded their way across the market-place between the piles of pomegranates and the taxis and the camels, wailing a short chant, over and over again … When the friends got to the burial-ground, they hacked an oblong hole about two feet deep, dumped the body in it and flung into it a little of the dried-up lumpy earth which is like broken brick. No gravestone, no identifying mark of any kind. The burial-ground is merely a huge mound of hummocky earth, like a derelict building lot. After a month or two no-one can be even certain where his own relatives are buried.’’

How quite different this was to Surrey and Hampshire or even the poverty of Jack London’s East End – People of the Abyss. The poverty was simply breath-taking, and Orwell did not hold back from offending the sensibilities of his readers.

‘’When you walk through a town like this – two hundred thousand inhabitants, of whom twenty thousand own literally nothing except the rags they stand up in – when you see how the people live, and still more how easily they die, it is always difficult to believe that you are walking among human beings … Do they even have names? Or are they a kind of undifferentiated brown stuff, about is individual as bees or coral insects. They rise out of the earth, they sweat and starve for a few years, and then they sink back into the nameless mounds of the graveyards and nobody notices they are gone.’’

In an interesting passage Orwell described what happened to him when he wandered into the Jewish ghetto in the city.

‘’When you go through the Jewish quarters you gather some idea of what the medieval ghettoes were probably like … I was just passing the coppersmiths booths when somebody noticed that I was lighting a cigarette. Instantly, from the dark holes all around, there was a frenzied rush of Jews, many of them old Grandfathers with flowing grey beards, all clamouring for a cigarette. Even a blind man somewhere at the back of one of the booths heard a rumour of cigarettes and came crawling out, groping the air with his hand. In less than a minute I had used up the whole packet. None of these people, I suppose, works less than twelve hours a day, and every one of them looks upon a cigarette as a more or less impossible luxury.’’

For anyone from the relative affluence of the developed world this would be a painful reading experience. Unfortunately, this is the real world – the global South – in which most people have to eke out a living. A little further on his travels Orwell came across a military column marching southward.

‘’As the storks flew northward the Negroes were marching southward. A long and dusty column of infantry, screw-gun batteries, and then more infantry, four or five thousand men in all winding up the road with a clumping of boots and a clatter of iron wheels … But there is one thought which every white man … thinks when he sees a black army marching past. How much longer can we go on kidding these people? How long before they turn their guns in the other direction?’’

Another author puts the situation more succinctly:

‘’The countries of the global South and the majority of their populations are victims of the capitalist/imperialist systems, whereas those of the North benefit from it. Both know this perfectly well, even though they very often either surrender to it (as in the South) or laud themselves for having it (in the North). A radical transformation of the system is not on the agenda of the North, whereas the South remains a region of tempests of repeated and potentially revolutionary revolts. Consequently the initiatives of the people of the South have, and will be, decisive in the transformation of the world – as is demonstrated by the history of the twentieth century.’’ (2)

NOT COUNTING ‘NIGGERS’ (SIC!) (3)

Clarence Streit was an American journalist who played a prominent role in the Atlanticist and world federalist movements and published a book (Union Now) which suggests that democratic nations starting with fifteen which he names, should voluntarily form themselves into a union, not a league nor an alliance, but a union similar to the United States, with a common government, common currency and complete internal free-trade. In the fullness of time other states could be admitted to the union ‘if and when they proved themselves worthy.’

Orwell comments:

‘’It is worth noticing at the outset that this scheme is not so visionary as it sounds. What is there about it that smells? For it does smell of course … Mr Streit has lumped together the huge British and French empires – in essence nothing but mechanisms for exploiting cheap coloured labour – under the heading of democracies. Here and there in the book, though not often, there are references to the ‘dependencies’ of the democratic states. ‘Dependencies’ means subject races. It is explained that they are going to go on being dependencies, that their resources are going to be pooled among the states of the Union, and that their coloured inhabitants will lack the right to vote in Union affairs … India for example is not yet ready for self-government and the status quo must continue.’’

This neatly coincides with the idea of earlier Fabians such as the playwright George Bernard Shaw who enunciated the view that ‘Good government is better than self-government’ (see Fabianism and the Empire) and even worse was the racist/eugenicist, H.G.Wells. He had written in 1902 that …’’those swarms of black and brown, and dirty white, and yellow who do not come into the new needs of efficiency were self-evidently otiose. The World is a World and not a charitable institution and I take it that they will have to go. The whole tenor and meaning of the World, as I see it, is that they will have to go.’’ (4)

How our latter day social and cultural engineers – Klaus Schwab for one – would fervently endorse those sentiments.

Orwell comments:

‘’Mr Streit is letting cats out of bags, but all phrases like ‘’Peace Bloc’’, ‘’Peace Front’’, etcetera contain some such implications; all imply a tightening up of the existing structure. The unspoken clause is always ‘not counting niggers’. For how can we take a ‘firm stand’ against Hitler if we are simultaneously weakening ourselves at home. In other words how can we fight Fascism’ except by bolstering up a far vaster injustice.

For of course it is vaster. What we always forget is that the overwhelming bulk of the British proletariat does not live in Britain but in Asia or Africa. It is not in Hitler’s power, for example, to make a penny an hour the normal industrial wage. It is perfectly normal in India, and we are at great pains to keep it so. One gets some idea of the real relationship between India and Britain when one reflects upon the annual per capita income in Britain is something over £80, and in India about £7. It is quite common for an Indian coolies leg to be thinner than an average Englishman’s arm. And there is nothing racial in this for well-fed members of the same races or of normal physique; it is due to simple starvation. This is the system we all live on and which we denounce when we see that there is no danger of its being altered. Of late, however, it has become the first duty of a good ‘anti-fascist’ to lie about it and keep it in being.’’

So ended the early period and development of Orwell’s undoubted literary talent and political insights together with his ideological convictions. He has been regarded as a towering figure, almost a patron saint of the left; and unlike many armchair revolutionaries, he was prepared to get down and dirty during his time serving in the POUM (Pardido Obrero Unificacion Marxista – Workers Party of Marxist Unity) militia during his time in Spain, where he nearly died of a neck-wound. He was also to experience extreme poverty in England and France during the great depression. Unfortunately, these combined events had a very deleterious effect on his health, and he died after suffering a lifelong battle against TB common among his earlier and famous contemporaries D.H.Lawrence and Anton Chekov.

However, there was an episode late in his life that caused some controversy on the left, this was his association with the Information Research Department (IRD). This was a secret Cold War propaganda department of the British Foreign Office, created to publish anti-communist propaganda, provide support and information to anti-communist politicians, academics, and writers, and to use weaponized disinformation and “fake news” to attack socialists and anti-colonial movements. Soon after its creation, the IRD broke away from focusing solely on Soviet matters and began to publish pro-colonial propaganda intended to suppress pro-independence revolutions in Asia, Africa, Ireland, and the Middle East. The IRD was heavily involved in the publishing of books, newspapers, leaflets, journals, and even created publishing houses to act as propaganda fronts, most notably Ampersand Limited. Operating for 29 years, the IRD was notable for being the longest-running covert government propaganda department in British history, the largest branch of the Foreign Office, and the first major anglophone propaganda offensive against the USSR since the end of World War II.

The IRD is most notable for being the government department to which George Orwell submitted his list of suspected communists (Orwell’s list), including many notable people such as Charlie ChaplinPaul Robeson, and Michael Redgrave. With the help of Orwell’s widow Sonia Orwell and his former publisher Fredric Warburg, the IRD gained the foreign rights to much of Orwell’s work and spent years distributing Animal Farm onto every continent, translating Orwell’s works into 20 different languages, funding the creation of an Animal Farm carton and working with the CIA to create the feature-length Animal Farm animated movie, the first of its kind in British history. Many historians have noted how Orwell’s literary reputation can largely be credited to joint propaganda operations between the IRD and CIA. The IRD heavily marketed Animal Farm for audiences in the middle east to sway Arab nationalism and independence activists from seeking Soviet aid, as it was believed by IRD agents that a story featuring pigs as the villains would appeal highly towards Muslim audiences. The IRD funded the activities of many authors including  Arthur KoestlerBertrand Russell, and Robert Conquest.

I suppose that the fact that this was a time of red scares and anti-communist witch-hunts that did much to poison the political atmosphere in the west. Even the putatively great humanist philosopher, Bertrand Russell advocated using the Atomic Bomb to destroy the Soviet Union in 1948. Readers should make up their own mind as to Orwell’s ‘conversion’ shortly before he died. But the idea of working with the CIA, and MI5 still rankles.

NOTES

(1) Eric Blair changed his name adopting George (After England’s patron saint Saint George) and ‘Orwell’ from the River Orwell in Suffolk

(2) Samir Amin – The Capitalist-Socialist Conflict & The North-South Conflict. – p.26 – From Capitalism to Civilization.

(3) The use of the pejorative term ‘niggers’ is somewhat unfortunate, but it should be read in the context of the essay and the meaning which is intended by Orwell.

(4) Anticipations – H.G.Wells – London 1918 – p.317

لماذا نعارض المؤسسات غير الحكومية

 

 ابراهيم الأمين

الإثنين 9 كانون الأول2019

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قبل مئات السنين، بدأ فلاسفة وعلماء اجتماع في أوروبا يتداولون عبارة «المجتمع المدني». اعتبرها البعض مقابلاً للحالة السائدة مجتمعياً، أي ما كان يُعرف بنظام الحكم التقليدي الذي رسّخته عائلات ومنظومات اقتصادية بمساعدة الكنيسة. لكنّ في أوروبا نفسها، عاد الجميع إلى الانقلاب على هذا التوصيف. وبدل أن يكون المجتمع المدني عاكساً للمجتمع المنظّم سياسياً، ذهب كثيرون نحو اعتباره مجتمعاً خاصاً في مواجهة الدولة ككلّ، وخصوصاً عندما شعر المنتسبون إلى المجتمع المدني بأن قوانين الدولة صارت تمثّل سلطة إكراه وقمع. لكنّ هؤلاء لم يكترثوا بكون هذا المجتمع المدني إنما يسير من دون نظام عدالة ومساواة كاملة بين أفراد الدولة، بل يغرق في حماية متطلّبات العيش كفرد، ولو ترافق ذلك مع عجز مُستدام عن معالجة مشكلاته الداخلية.

في عالمنا اليوم، وبعد صراعات جميع مفكّري القرنين التاسع عشر والعشرين حول فكرة الدولة، يحتلّ المجتمع المدني حيزاً أساسياً من اهتمامات بلداننا. لكنّه يطبّق المفهوم الغربي نفسه، القائم على نظرية تحقيق المصالح والحاجات الفردية ولو على حساب «المجتمع – الدولة».
المنتمون إلى هذا المجتمع يخلطون بين رفضهم قوانين ما قبل الدولة التي تتحكّم بكثير من الأمور في بلادنا، وبين رفضهم القوانين المتطوّرة المفترض أن تضعها مجموعات تسعى للخروج من هذه الأعراف – القوانين. وفي صحالتنا، يصبح المجتمع المدني رفضياً لكل ما هو عام.

(محمد نهاد علم الدين)

يتحول هؤلاء إلى مجموعة مستقلّة على شكل حلقات مستقلّة، ثم على شكل أفراد مستقلّين أيضاً، تجمعهم مُعضلة الانخراط في القانون العام، لأن القانون العام عندما يقوم ويتطور، إنما يراعي ـــ تلقائياً ـــ الوضعيات الاجتماعية القائمة في البلاد. وهو العدوّ الفعلي لهذه المجموعات. وينتهي بهم الأمر، ساعين إلى خلق إطارهم الخاص الذي يرفض المشترك الذي يقوم بين من يؤلّف المجتمع ـــ الدولة في المسائل الوطنية العامة، من موضوع الدفاع عن الوطن إلى بناء السياسات والعلاقات الخارجية إلى القوانين الناظمة لشؤون الناس اليومية. أبناء هذا المجتمع المدني يريدون قانوناً يحمي فرديّتهم ويحمي حريتهم حتى ولو تعارضت مع هذه القوانين. وبهذه الحالة، لا يمكن أن يشكلوا في أي لحظة حلاً يعالج مشكلات كل الناس. وهم يربطون موقفهم من الطروحات المقابلة، بحجم تأثيرها على الحاجات والمنافع والأهواء التي تشكّل روابطهم كأفراد. وجاءت فكرة المنظمات غير الحكومية لترسّخ الفكرة القائلة بأن المجتمع المدني إنما هو حالة صراعية مع الحكومة، التي يُفترض أنها تمثل الدولة، أي تمثل المشترك الفعلي بين جميع قاطني أراضي هذه الدولة.

عندما يتصرف أفراد المجتمع المدني على أساس أن السياسة هي خصمٌ رئيسي لهم، إنما هم يفعلون ما يعتقدون أنه الأنسب للتفلّت من نتائج الفعل السياسي، أي التفلّت من رقابة القانون العام الذي يفرضه المجتمع ـــ الدولة. وبهذا المعنى، يتحول أفراد المجتمع المدني إلى خصوم فعليّين للدولة، وخصوصاً عندما يُفرطون في الدفاع عن استقلالهم الفردي ومصالحهم الخاصة.

وبذلك يمكن فهم التأصيل النظري الذي قدّمه الفلاسفة عن أن المجتمع المدني إنما هو في حقيقة الأمر واقع يقيم بين مرحلتي العائلة والدولة. فهو يقوم على مبدأ رفض قوانين العائلة، لكنّه لم يندمج بعد في معادلة قوانين الدولة. وبذلك، يصير أفراد المجتمع المدني، من حيث منظومة الإنتاج والاستهلاك، أقرب إلى البرجوازيين الذي يهتمون عملياً بمصالحهم الخاصة، في نقيض تامّ لطبقة المواطنين الذي هم في موقع أدنى اقتصادياً، لكنّ هاجسهم هو المصلحة المشتركة، أو ما يُعرف بالمصلحة العامة.

في حالتنا اللبنانية، ووفق تجربة ربع قرن من النضالات الشعبية، خبرنا كيفية مشاركة أفراد المجتمع المدني. وغالبية هؤلاء يمكن إدراجهم ضمن فئات، تتراوح بين متسلّق يسعى إلى المنبر بهدف الارتقاء من خلال بناء وضعية اجتماعية قابلة للتسييل على شكل أعمال وعائدات أو مناصب؛ أو مجموعة من الكوادر يجدون أنفسهم أسرى علاقات جديدة تُبعدهم أكثر عن البيئة العامة، فلا يحفظون من التجربة إلا الصور والذكريات، ثم يندمجون سريعاً في قواعد اللعبة، حيث يكون في انتظارهم جيش المنظّمات غير الحكومية؛ أو أفراد يسكنهم الإحباط ولا يُجيدون تمييز هوية المسؤول عن ذلك، فتراهم يصبّون جام غضبهم على السلطة القائمة، متجاهلين من ساروا خلفهم. أما الكتلة الأعمّ، فتعود إلى قوانينها اليومية: تمارس لعبة انفكاك القول عن قائله، بمعنى رفع نبرة الاعتراض مقابل تراجع فعلية الاحتجاج.

وصف ماركس المجتمع المدني بأنه الدولة الخاصة، أي الدولة غير السياسية. وهنا لا يعود المجتمع المدني إلا ممثلاً لكل ما هو مناقض للدولة. بهذا المعنى، يلجأ هؤلاء إلى لعبة التعميم والتجهيل، أي إنهم لا يهتمون بمحاسبة فلان أو فلان، بل هم يريدون التخلّص من خصم كبير اسمه الدولة. وبهذا المعنى، يتجنّب هؤلاء نقد المؤسسة الدينية الفاعلة جداً في حياة الناس، والمتورّطة في علاقة تخادم مع السلطة السياسية، إلا حيث تشكل عائقاً أمام حريتهم. لكنّهم لا ينظرون إليها بوصفها جزءاً من منظومة السيطرة على الحقّ العام.

والحال نفسها بالنسبة إلى النظم الأخرى، من حيث العمل النقابي، الذي يُراد له أن يكون طوعياً بالكامل، أي غير خاضع لمنظومة القوانين العامة. وهنا يمكن فهم المشكلة الأكبر في علاقة المجتمع المدني بالحق العام، من خلال عدم الاكتراث للتعليم العام، أي للتعليم المدعوم من الدولة والذي يقلّص الفوارق بين المواطنين في تأسيسهم التعليمي، بل يتجهون إلى التعليم الخاص الذي يشكل عنصر تمايز اجتماعي لهم عن بقية الناس، ما يقود إلى فكرة القوانين الخاصة التي يعتقدون أنها ممكنة. ففي بيروت، مثلاً، يمكن لطلاب وأساتذة وأطباء ومدراء ومنتجي الجامعتين الأميركية واليسوعية تشكيل مجتمع مستقلّ، له كلّ نُظمه في ما خصّ شوؤن العمل والحياة وحتى الحاجات والأهواء. وهم في هذه الحالة يريدون من الحق العام (أي الدولة) توفير ما يحصّن الحق الخاص (أي المجتمع المدني خاصّتهم). وهذا سبب كافٍ لتدرك أنه لا يمكن لهذه المجموعة أن تمثل خياراً عاماً لبقية الناس وهم الأغلبية. لأن هواجس وطموحات أغلبية المشكلين لهذا المجتمع المدني، إنما هي في الحقيقة، تمثل نقيض ما يمكن أن يكون مشتركاً في بقية العوام. وبذلك يصبح الموقف من مسائل ذات طابع وطني، متصلاً بانعكاسه على مصالحهم وأهوائهم الخاصة. هنا تصبح منظومة الفساد، ليس في احتكار العلم الجيد والطبّ الجيد والطعام الجيد والترفيه الجيد، بل في كون ريفي أتى به جَهلة إلى منصب عام، وصار يريد فرض قانون للضريبة يختلف مع مصالح هذا المجتمع المدني.

يعني، في لحظة واحدة، يصبح المجتمع المدني حليفاً طبيعياً لمجتمع الطوائف. الاثنان في حالة تناقض كلي مع المجتمع – الدولة. وبهذا، لا يبدو مستغرباً أن يذهب أفراد المجتمع المدني نحو التماهي مع ما تقوم به القوى الأكثر نفوذاً في البلاد. لنأخذ الحريرية المنهارة درساً، أو لننظر إلى حالة حزب الله الذي أسّس لنفسه مجتمعاً مستقلاً، من حيث الحاجات المشتركة لأبنائه في العلم والعمل والطبابة والسكن والثقافة والفنون والترفيه، إضافة إلى عنصر تمايز أكثر فعّالية يتعلق بجيشه الذي يقيه شرّ الانقلاب متى أراد خصومه ذلك.
بهذا المعنى، يمكن القول، بأن المخبولين فقط يعتقدون أن أغلبية الناس في لبنان تقبل السير خلف ناشطين من «المجتمع المدني« يتجمّعون في أطر تحت اسم «المنظّمات غير الحكومية». والمسألة هنا لا تعود متعلقة بمواصفات المتصدّين لدور القيادة. المسألة تتعلّق بالأهداف الفعلية لهؤلاء. حيث التناقض أشد قساوةً في طبيعة التطلّع والتطلّب عند الكتلة المَدينية عن أبناء أحياء البؤس داخل المدينة نفسها، أو أبناء الأحزمة التي صارت مدناً بحالها. وهو تناقض يتصل بكل أشكال الحياة، بما يجعل التوافق على ورقة أو إطار أو اسم، توافقاً مفترضاً كحال الثائرين على مواقع التواصل الاجتماعي.

أفراد المجتمع المدني هنا، هم الذين تجمّعوا خلال عقود ما بعد الحرب الأهلية. هم أولاد جيلين: واحد تعثّر مشروعه الكبير في التغيير الشامل، وثانٍ عانى من إحباط الأهل فوجد ضالّته في خيارات فردية، تجعل القائم شيئاً مرذولاً يمكن الاستغناء عنه. احتاج هؤلاء ليس إلى علوم متقدمة فقط، بل إلى تسويق لقدرات لا تجد تاجراً لها سوى العابثين بأحوال المجتمعات المرصودة كأهداف لاستعمار جديد. والتسوية بين الطرفين تنتهي على شكل حضاري منمّق لنفس فكرة جماعات «التكفير والهجرة» التي قامت في تسعينات القرن الماضي في شمال أفريقيا. هي حالة تنشد ابتعاداً إلى حدّ الانفصال عن المجتمع – الدولة. لا تفترض بالضرورة عنفاً مؤسِّساً لاحتراب أهلي، بل تكتفي بعنف لفظي قائم على فوقية افتراضية وتسخيف الآخر، والسعي إلى بناء بيئة مستقلّة، تتطلب توحّداً في الطقوس اليومية للحياة، ولكن راضية منصاعة لمرجعية واحدة تتحكّم بكل هؤلاء، هي مصدر المال.

والعنف البديل عند هؤلاء هو العنف اللفظي الذي ينتهي عادة على شتم وأنواع من التنمّر، حتى يكاد رفع الصوت أو القبضة أن يكون فعلاً انتحارياً، يتطلب حفلاً وداعياً تُتلى فيه وصايا الاستشهاديين. وفي بال هؤلاء صورة المضربين في «وول ستريت». هكذا تعلموا فعل النضال الجذري. هكذا شاهدوه بأمّ العين، لكن على شاشات. وهذا ما تدرّبوا عليه لسنوات في ورش العمل على النضال من أجل المواطنة، كما تُقدمها مدارس الـ«أن جي اوز».

بالنسبة إلى هذا الصنف، ينحصر الأمر في معاناة تخصّهم لوحدهم. تخصّ مكان سكنهم وجامعاتهم وعملهم وسهرهم. لا تبقى في ذهنهم صور مختلفة عمّا عاشوه في منازل الأهل. كل مظاهر الاحتجاج والملل من سنوات العشرية الأولى من حياتهم، هي حكايات للتندّر فقط. هم كحال الذين انتموا إلى أحزاب عقائدية عابرة. يجمعون كل ما عاشوه مع الأهل، ويضعونه في كيس داخل صندوق أمانات على باب المكتب الحزبي. هؤلاء، يحتاجون إلى قطع نهائي مع الماضي الاجتماعي، مستعدون لفعل أي شيء من أجل ذلك. حتى ارتكاب ما تراه عائلاتهم عيباً كبيراً، إذا كان يساعدهم على الانقطاع الكلي. الترقّي بالنسبة إليهم هو فعل مظهري، يتصل بنوع الثياب وقصة الشعر والحلي، وهو يتصل بنوع الأكل والشراب وطريقة الكلام ونوعية المفردات المستخدمة، وطقوس موحّدة حيال المسرح والسينما والموسيقى والقراءة والسفر. يتحولون فجأة إلى كشافة يشبهون بعضهم البعض حتى ولو كانوا يكيلون لبعضهم السباب والشتائم. القاعدة الجديدة التي أرستها ثقافة الفرد المستقلّ كما تقول نظرية المنظمات غير الحكومية، هي التي تجعلهم متساوين في الحقوق والواجبات إزاء الرجل الأبيض. درجة من الإعجاب الأخّاذ، لكن من دون نقاش جدي أو اعتراض فعلي. وإلا تم حرمانهم من كل شيء: العمل والراتب والعلاقات، وهذا يعني تلقائياً تهديدهم بإعادتهم إلى بيوت الأهل. وإلى الأحياء الحقيقية التي لا يريدون البقاء فيها.

اللّاطائفية التي تتّسم بها مجموعات هؤلاء ليست مسألة عميقة الجذور ثقافياً. اللّاطائفية، هنا، شكل من المساواة فرضتها آليات المموّل الذي لا يهتم لغير الولاء. لكن البديل عن الطائفية كشكل من أشكال التمييز في بلادنا، هو الطبقية بشكلها الجديد. الطبقية التي تجعل الساعي إلى الانتماء إلى هذه الفئة متحفّزاً لإثبات أنه غادر موقعه السابق، ومستعد للقيام بكل ما يجعله يحظى بالعضوية الجديدة، ولفعل أي شيء أثناء صعوده درجات سلّم هذا العالم، ويتّسم بانتهازية دفينة تجعله مستعداً كل لحظة للانشقاق والتحول نحو منظمة أخرى متى جاءت الفرصة الأفضل مكانة ومرتباً ونفوذاً. والمموّل لا يهتم لكل هذا السباق وكل هذا الصراع. ما يهمه هو الحفاظ على مرجعيته الأساسية التي تتحكم عملياً بحياة عشرات الآلاف من الشباب في بلدان متعبة. والتحكم هنا، من أجل تحويلهم إلى جنود في معركة السيطرة على الأنظمة والثروات. وعلى طريقة الديمقراطية الأميركية، سيكون للمنضوين في جيش هذه المنظمات، الحق، كل الحق، في قول ما يريدون. لا يهم رفع السقف والصوت، لكن، دون تجاوز الخط الأحمر.

أفراد المجتمع المدني أقرب إلى البرجوازيين الذين يهتمون عملياً بمصالحهم الخاصة في نقيض لطبقة المواطنين الذين هم في موقع أدنى اقتصادياً وهاجسهم هو المصلحة المشتركة

قسم غير قليل من هؤلاء، عاشوا في ظل عائلات عانت الأمرّين لتوفير أفضل العلوم للأبناء. وباعت أرزاقاً توارثتها جيلاً بعد جيل من أجل تحسين نمط العيش، وتخلّت عن الكثير من أحلامها من أجل زرع الأمل بغد أفضل في قلوب وعقول الأبناء. وهي عائلات تحدّت أيضاً قوانين «العائلة» و«الطائفة» و«المجتمع – السلطة» من أجل تحقيق ذلك. وهي فعلت ذلك، بصورة فردية، في ظل غياب مجتمع متماسك، وفي ظل غياب دولة طبيعية. وفي ظل غياب قوانين ناظمة للحياة. أما الأبناء، الذين نراهم اليوم في الساحات متصدّين لقيادة الثورة المجيدة، فقد سمعوا وحفظوا الكثير عن حياة القهر. وحملوا الحقد على مرجعيات وإقطاع أذاق البلاد الأمرّين ولم يزل. وسكنتهم الضغينة إزاء غياب العدالة في توزيع الفرص والثروة على الناس. لكنّ هؤلاء، تربوا على أن البديل عن التغيير العام الذي لا يحصل من دون حركات سياسية متكاملة، هو التغيير الفردي. ولذلك، نشط هؤلاء من دون هوادة لتغيير جذري في حياتهم كأفراد. أسقطوا توالياً كل أشكال التضامن الاجتماعي والأهلي. ثم أعلنوا كفرهم بكل تشكيل سياسي أو اجتماعي عابر للقضايا والمناطق والطوائف. وقرروا الاغتراب فكرياً وسلوكياً وحياتياً. وهم في حالة غربة حقيقية.

والتنافس القائم بينهم لا يتصل فقط باسترضاء المموّلين. بل يقوم على فكرة النشاط المفرط في سبيل إثبات القدرة على التأثير أكثر في الشارع. وعلى قدرة تقديم المختلف، لا يهم كيف يتم الأمر. المهم الحفاظ على مصادر التمويل جارية من دون توقف. وفي هذه الحالة، تختفي الشفافية الحقيقية، وتحل مكانها عبارة تُذيّل بها أوراق ومواقع عمل هؤلاء، تحت اسم «الممولون». أما كيف تجري عملية الانتساب، فهذا شأن خاص. لك أن تتعرف إليه فقط، في حالة قررت الانتساب إلى هذا النادي. وهناك تتعلم ألاعيب تُذكرك بسماسرة الإدارات الرسمية في الدولة. كيف تختار النموذج الأفضل لكتابة الفكرة، ثم من تستشير للحصول على خبرة في شرح الفوائد. ومن ثم تستعين بصديق لكي يكون منتجك مطابقاً للمواصفات، ثم تبدأ رحلة الاستجداء والاستعطاء. فترسل مشروعك إلى مئات العناوين، وتتصرف بانتهازية غير مسبوقة في التواصل مع كل من يخدم غرضك. ومتى حصلت على الموافقة الأولى، تستعد لتعلم كل متطلبات النجاح في المقابلة المباشرة. ولا بأس هنا، من الاستفادة من خبرات السابقين في كيفية وضع الموازنات وفتح الحسابات وتوظيف الناس وإعداد قوائم الدفع للمشاركين في هذا المشروع أو ذاك. لكن، لا يحصل ابداً، أن يسأل هؤلاء عن المنفعة العامة لما يقومون به. ومع الوقت، يصبح الواحد منهم، أسير موقعه الجديد. يتعرّف شيئاً فشيئاً إلى ماهية الأمر. ويعرف أكثر طبيعة المقاصد. لكنه، يسير في قطيع أعمى، ويقف مثل عمال عصور العبودية، في طابور طويل، ينتظر من ينقطه بضعة دنانير مع نظرة فوقية تذكره بأنه لن يكون يوماً على شاكلة الرجل الأبيض.

هل تذكرون ماذا فعل رفيق الحريري بجيل كامل؟ جرّه من إحباطه إلى العمل في خدمة مشروع لا أسس ثابتة له. أيقظ طائفية ومذهبية مقيتتيْن في عقول وقلوب من خبر التفلّت من قيود القبيلة. وجعله يتلو فعل الندامة ليلَ نهارَ. جعل مثقفين يتفنّنون في تأصيل مشهد الكرم والسخاء على أنه فعل إنساني خالص. وجعل جيشاً من الأتباع فريسة نظام حياة إن تخلوا عنه ماتوا غيظاً، فصارت السيارة والبيت والثياب والمطاعم والسفر أساس أي موقف من أي قضية. وما إن فرط المشروع بشحطة قلم، حتى سكن الإحباط هؤلاء. والآن نراهم في الساحات، مثل العاطلين عن عمل، لكنهم يريدون قيادة الناس نحو تغيير شامل، من دون الإشارة إلى مصدر القهر. وكلهم يستغلّون خوف اللبنانيين من كتابة تاريخ كلّه دماء وقمع وكذب، لكنهم يتوافقون على حيلة أهل هذه البلاد، بأنهم شعب اصطفاه الخالق من دون الآخرين، منبعاً للحرية والتقدم!

هؤلاء، هم أنفسهم الذين يتصرفون بثقة مُفرطة، على أنهم قادة التغيير في البلاد. وأي بلاد؟ بلاد نهشتها قوانين وسياسات عامة في السياسة والاقتصاد والاجتماع والقبلية على مدى قرنين على الأقل، ويعتقدون أن تطبيقاً ذكياً جُرب في مكان ما في هذا العالم، سيكون كافياً لسحق منظومة تتجذّر في الأرض وتحتاج إلى جيوش لقلعها. ويعتقدون أن طقوساً بلهاء، تحت عنوان التعايش والحب والعلم الوطني، كافية لإعادة إنتاج شعب مختلف. ومع ذلك، تراهم يختارون بوعي أو من دونه، الساحات نفسها التي ترمز إلى الحرب الأهلية مكاناً للتجمعات، ويسيرون في شوارع سُميت بخطوط التماس بين المتقاتلين، كأنهم يشعرون في دواخلهم بأن الحرب لم تنته بعد.

هل سمع أحد بتظاهرة في الدكوانة أو فرن الشباك أو حارة حريك أو الطريق الجديدة؟ هل تجمّع الناس في وسط المتن أو في جرد كسروان؟ هل سار هؤلاء في شوارع فنيدق أو تكريت أو قصدوا أحياء شحيم الضيقة، أو جرّبوا التنقل بين أزقة باب التبانة أو أحياء جبل محسن؟ هل قصدوا البلدة القديمة في صيدا أو غابة اللحم البشري في الأوزاعي أو حي السلم، أو تعرفوا إلى أحياء عالية الداخلية أو ما الذي يجري خلف الجدران في بعقلين وكفرحيم أو كيف يحل الصمت عند كل غروب، كأن الحياة انتهت في عماطور وبقعاتا ونيحا الشوف بينما يسترق الفتية صوت السمر والسهر يأتي خفيفاً من قصر الزعيم؟

هل جرّب أحدهم الدخول في قلب بلدة مجدل عنجر، أو حي الطمليس وحارات عين الرمانة وقرى إهمج وجاج ولاسا في جرد جبيل؟ هل يعرف هؤلاء ماذا ترتدي النسوة في قرى بشري ودير الأحمر وأعالي القبيات، وهنّ يشجعن الفتيات على الدرس عسى يكبرن ويتاح لهن التشبه بثياب الزعيمة عارضة الأزياء؟

لم يفعلوا، ولن يفعلوا، هم يتصرفون كما يفترض بهم التصرف على طبيعتهم، يذهبون نحو الساحات التي ينظرون إليها باعتبارها مركز النظام. يعتقدون أنهم في حال احتلوا حيزاً فيها، صاروا جزءاً من النظام. أو صار بمقدورهم التصرف على أساس أنهم هم النظام. برغم أنهم يعرفون أن أصل النظام موجود في الأحياء البعيدة وفي المناطق والأرياف. هناك يجري حشد الناس والأصوات. ومن هناك يأتي الموظفون والجنود والمتعبون. فتية المجتمع المدني، يرون في ساحات وشوارع المدينة الرئيسية أمكنة الحياة. وهم لا يهتمون بغير المركز. ويفترضون على طريقة الانقلابيين، أن من يحتل المركز يسيطر على البلاد.

ينسون أين كانوا هم قبل جيل. وعلاقتهم بالمهمّشين، تتحول مع الوقت إلى علاقة قائمة على أساس التفوق في كل شيء، العلم والمعرفة والسلوك والذوق وحتى الإحساس. وعندما يبنون ريفهم في المناطق البعيدة، لا يجيدون بناء علاقة مع أهل الأرض. بالنسبة إليهم، الفقراء بحاجة إلى دعم. لكن على طريقة العمل الخيري، صاروا مثل الأثرياء الجدد، يتنافسون على طريقة الإحسان إلى الفقراء. لا يعرفون عملاً من دون استعراض. حتى القبلة على خدّ طفل تنتظر وصول الكاميرا. والكاميرا هنا، لم تعد وسيلة الإعلام – الإعلان التقليدية. بل صارت كل الفضاء المفتوح عبر مواقع التواصل الاجتماعي. والإصلاح عندهم، يقتصر على حملة لمنع التنمّر, أو تعلم وضع حزام الأمان والتوقف عند إشارة السير، أ التدرب على فرز النفايات في المنزل والحي، أو لنذهب في رحلة إلى ذاك الجبل، لكن بعد أن نشتري العدّة كما شاهدناها في فيلم المتسلّق المحبوب. أما البحر، فيصعب أن يكون مكاناً للاختلاط مع العاديين. نرفض كل شيء عام. نرفض حتى الفنادق الكبرى، لكن تعالوا نفرض نموذجاً عن الفنادق الخاصة، من تلك البيوت التي هجرها أهلها، بموت أو تشرّد أو حتى إبعاد من الأولاد، لتحويلها إلى بيوت سياحية تستقبل الزوار الآتين من المدينة مع ابتسامات ودهشة.

هكذا هي حياة هؤلاء. الأفراد أو المجموعات المشكّلة لمجتمع واحد ولو بوجهين، هما مجتمع المنظمات غير الحكومية، ومجتمع الطوائف. يتصرف هؤلاء على أنهم البديل الفعلي لإدارة الدولة. حفظوا مقرّرات من مناهج بعيدة. درسوا تطبيقات على أمكنة وشعوب لا تنطبق بالضرورة على ناسنا هنا، لكنهم قرروا أنها الأنسب لنا. ويعتقدون أن بمقدورهم التسلط على الناس المتعبين، وقيادتهم في حراك أو انتفاضة أو ثورة لتغيير يدّعون أنه شامل. هؤلاء ليسوا، مع الأسف، مؤهّلين لنضال عام يقود نحو دولة متكاملة متماسكة، لها قوانينها المدنية أي المضادّة لقوانين الطوائف، ولديها سياساتها غير المحايدة إزاء ما يجري من حولنا في السياسة والأمن والاقتصاد والاستراتيجيا. هؤلاء مجموعة من الانتهازيين، تلفّهم السذاجة عندما ينظرون إلى أنفسهم في المرآة، على طريقة أفلام الكرتون، التي تجعل الفأر فيلاً، وهم مجموعة من المتكسّبين، يعانون من مرض عُضال لا يقلّ خطراً عن مرض الحاكمين باسم الله والطائفة والمنطقة والعائلة!

South Africa – Pretend Marxist Neo-Chiefs Practice Destructive Capitalism

August 17, 2019

A South African writer for The Saker Blog

Let’s set the social scene with a video from Vesti News:

People are getting accustomed to living this way. The Neo-Chiefs in the Ruling Party do not care for the minorities, and neither do they care for their own. In the final section, we will return to social issues.

Mentioning a second introductory point may be timely for a watch list. If real trouble strikes in the Persian Gulf and with Iran, the route around the Horn of Africa passing South Africa, may become of strategic significance.

The recent May elections.

48 political parties contested the 2019 elections The results were:

– The governing African National Congress (ANC) won its smallest percentage of votes for national office ever, reflecting the worst performance of this party in any national election since 1994. It still won 57.51 percent of the vote.

– The DA (Democratic Alliance) won 20.76 percent.

– The EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters) won 10.79 percent.

– The remaining forty-five parties together won 10.94 percent, though most of them did not win enough to earn a seat.

– The ANC won eight of the nine provincial legislatures; the EFF retained its position as Official Opposition in Limpopo and the North West, beating the DA to second place in Mpumalanga.

– The DA obtained a second place in five provinces won by the ANC.

– In KwaZulu-Natal, the Inkatha Freedom Party beat the DA to second place for the first time since 2014 and grew to 3.38% on a national level.

– In the Western Cape, the only province not won by the ANC, the DA declined from 59.38% to 55.45%.

– The ruling ANC slipped to holding 230 parliament seats, while the main opposition DA now holds 84, the EFF holds 44 seats (with some wiggling and jiggling after the elections that changed a few seats but not materially).

To make these results more understandable for the larger world, the ANC is supposed to be the centrists (but they are not, they are the neo-chiefs), the DA is supposed to be the progressives, and the EFF is clearly the challengers and very far left. The small splinter parties represent a spectrum, including the right. https://businesstech.co.za/news/government/316134/south-african-national-election-2019-final-results/

Shortly after the elections and as is customary, Cyril Ramaphosa (now the 2nd richest man in the country) was again elected President and presented his State of the Nation Address that immediately was described as underwhelming. https://www.thebricspost.com/ramaphosas-state-of-the-nation-address-underwhelms/

The Cabinet changes after the State of the Nation address were described with ‘cautious optimism.’ https://www.thebricspost.com/new-south-african-cabinet-welcomed-with-cautious-optimism/

Ramaphosa’s speech reads like a Christmas tree, all kinds of lights flickering, and will last about as long as a Christmas tree.  This is simply a grab-bag of wish-list promises. He is going to do just everything! It is a pity that the country’s internal education does not supply the people with the ability to do what Ramaphosa’s says he wants to do. Again, he links everything to land redistribution in his opening paragraph, while the problems in the country are much more serious.

“We gather here at the start of the 6th Democratic Parliament, 106 years to the day after the Natives Land Act – one of the most devastating acts of dispossession, pain and humiliation – came into force. “http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/speeches/state-nation-address-president-cyril-ramaphosa%2C-parliament%2C-cape-town 

These neo-chiefs are beginning to sound like they have taken advertising lessons from Holocaust promoters and certainly not taking cognizance of who did what in history. These people that said vile things as depicted in the image on the right, are not in the country any longer; they are long dead and so is apartheid.

In South Africa, where trucks moving goods and food traveling the main North/South Highway (N2) are being pelted with petrol bombs, Ramaphosa wants to build a new smart city, just like in China.  He wants to bring in high speed rail, save the world, cut crime only by 50% percent, redistribute land and just about destroy the ability for food production, while, as is discussed under economy, the youth unemployment rate is 50% and the educational standards are exceedingly poor. Smart cities need engineers, software engineers, people who understand math and science and a host of other skills. Needless to say, the skill-set is just not there, and nothing serious is being done to materially educate people, let alone the electricity to support this notion.  Listening to the State of the Nation, one can only smack your head against a brick wall and say: “Mr Ramaphosa, I’m very happy that you saw smart cities and fast trains in China. But this is a trailing indicator of a 40+ year program of poverty eradication and education. This program is what you should have looked at and this is what you should dream about first. The Smarts and the Speed will Follow if you create a structural base, and we don’t see any of that! All we see, is a crumbling state and infrastructure.”

The initial election of Cyril Ramaphosa as president was covered for The Saker Blog here.

And even though there was a positive feeling in some parts of the country when Ramphosa was first elected, we will soon see that there is very little positivity left.  Even Al Jazeera is listing Ramaphosa’s current problems with sheer graft.

So, let us summarize and highlight:

  • As we move from the hard election results and to discussing South Africa and BRICS, we have a Russian news report unashamedly calling the killings of white farmers “Ethnic Cleansing.” This is in the open now.
  • And then, from China, we have this from the current Chinese ambassador to South Africa.  “Ramaphosa is the “last hope of this country,” Lin Songtian, the Chinese ambassador to South Africa, said in a Reuters interview.”

And the commentary on that:

  • “When the leader of a country starts getting, from abroad, compliments and expressions of support against rival factions — especially from a Chinese diplomat schooled to be studiously even-handed in public — it’s a sure indication that they think he is buried in the political crap. ”  https://www.politicsweb.co.za/opinion/the-timidity-of-sas-last-hope

South Africa in BRICS

Note that the previous section commenting on the recent elections contains two links, both from The BRICS post, and in each instance, not very flattering or with high enthusiasm. Is this what we can accept as the real sense from the other BRICS partners toward South Africa? Is South Africa the heavy brick that drags down BRICS? Certain forces seem to think so, as there is internal resistance against Brics – Gangsters and Banksters, the “Break the BRICS Coalition.”

As we do not have a cohesive society in the country, this gets complex. The understanding about BRICS in the country is abysmal. This, interestingly enough, illustrates the ideological schism existent for many years within South Africa where the previous dictatorial white government were aligned with the west during the cold war and in its denouement of anything USSR or Chinese at the time, but the black community saw especially the USSR style communist ideology as their only hope for their future; an important point to remember if one looks at South Africa today. This schism is still alive and appears in the strangest of places, especially if a traditional Marxist tells you how bad Russia and China is. The video below will illustrate.

On Thursday 26 July 2018 different formations calling themselves “Break the BRICS Coalition” marched to the Sandton Convention Centre, the venue of the 10th BRICS Summit. The march was a protest against what the coalition calls the capitalist nature of the BRICS states, their anti-working class behavior, and their environmentally destructive policies.”

As can be seen from the first part of the video, the leader of this coalition displays a breathtaking ignorance of the real conditions within China and Russia today, and he carries with him old western cold war ideas. The commentary is valuable however, as it illustrates the general state of education of the population, either for or against a non-existent notion of ‘communism’, but in other circles, talking up Marxism.

The overall interesting question is: Where does South Africa really stand in the move towards a multipolar world system? This anti-Brics coalition leader has some good ideas on that, and indeed, the start of the Free Trade African wide agreement is a good idea. In contrast to the first part of the conversation, which is old cold war rhetoric, this part of the interview starts at time marker 11:38.

BRICS Leaders Are Reinforcing, Not Replacing, the Global System of Power
Patrick Bond (August 2018)

In addition to the internal pushback against BRICS, there is almost symmetrical pushback against what is called the 4th Industrial Revolution. Frequently companies cannot modernize, as modern equipment is broken by workers, set on fire and otherwise tampered with under the slogan “This 4th Industrial Revolution will Take our Jobs.” (Now think of the Ramaphosa promise of a smart city and high speed rail and you will get an idea of how far removed his inauguration speech is from reality on the ground).

What is South Africa’s real role in BRICS? The reality becomes subsumed with all kinds of promises and flowery descriptions.  This study gives an overview:  https://www.unav.edu/documents/16800098/17755721/DT-01-2019_South-Africa_ENG+%281%29.pdf

From this China Daily report, it seems to hinge around the concept of a ‘gateway to Africa.’ http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/cndy/2011-09/15/content_13689717.htm

Studying these two documents and others, it seems as if South Africa is just ballast, only present as part of the ‘Global South’ sphere in BRICS, more for the investment opportunities it offers to the other BRICS countries, instead of anything more substantial that the state may provide to the BRICS coalition itself.

One may argue that they are in BRICS to stop them from being in any other alliance.

Nevertheless, this is the formal governmental description, and we will see if it makes sense when we look at the next section on the economy; specifically, the upbeat job creation scenario envisaged in the light of active ‘Staatskaping’ or State Capture.

Professor Wang Yong, in his 2012 Economic Diplomacy Programme paper titled: South Africa’s role in BRICS and the G20 summed up South Africa’s unique role in BRICS when he wrote: South Africa is in a position to make unique contributions, particularly in terms of development of the BRICS Africa agenda, promoting global economic governance reforms, and institution of the BRICS as a credible international organization”.

“Already, these five BRICS countries account for 40 percent of the world population, and as of this year, their combined nominal GDP amounted to US$18.6 trillion, about 23.2% of the gross world product.

Trade between the five countries has doubled in seven years, ballooning from R203 billion in 2010 to R462 billion last year.

South Africa’s membership of BRICS also gallops towards the realization of the country’s National Development Plan mandate of eliminating poverty and the reduction of inequality by 2030. This is aligned with BRICS’ five pillars of priority.

Investment deals between South Africa and the BRICS partners have reached fever pitch, with China leading the way. Several Chinese billion-dollar firms have headed south in recent times. Among them, mobile and green energy companies such as Hisense, FAW, Beijing Automobile International Corporation, Phalabora Mining Company, China Longyuan Power Group.

A PriceWaterCoopers (PwC) report recently showed that the bilateral trade between Pretoria and New Delhi has grown by 400% between 2004 and 2014. According to the report, the investment deals were in the environmental, financial services, mining, pharmaceuticals, automotive, and information technology sectors.

All this could mean one thing – the much-needed job creation. According to the PwC report, the R50 billion investments came with 18,000 jobs in tow.”  https://www.sanews.gov.za/features-south-africa/sa-worthy-member-brics

Let’s move on to the economy and see if we can find those 18,000 jobs.

The Economy is not a bright spot, BRICS, or no BRICS.

We start with a confused ideology. Black Agenda Radio in the US hit it exactly right on most points excepting two.  They say:

“South Africa is the only place in the world where the entire Black political class speaks in the language of Marxism-Leninism, even when they are in cahoots with Big Capital.”

https://soundcloud.com/user-887995524-149532189/talking-marxism-but-serving-capitalism-in-south-africa

The two points:

First – The wealth of the country is no longer centered in white hands and Black Agenda Radio presents as if the EFF are genuine Marxists. They are not.  They are instead the quasi-military wing of the ANC itself, and a violent grouping deeply involved in State Capture. They are now seeking a larger role and are disassociating themselves from the ANC, as the ‘real revolutionaries’. Yet even in this disassociation, the ideological lies are clear:

Get rich or lie trying: Why ANC millionaire Julius Malema posed as a radical.  https://libcom.org/library/get-rich-or-lie-trying-why-anc-millionaire-julius-malema-posed-radical

Second – While South Africa still claims the 2nd biggest economy in Africa (the 1st being Nigeria and the 3rd being Egypt) finding useful economic data becomes a difficult task. One of the frequently mentioned criticisms on Ramaphosa´s state of the nation speech after the May elections is that there is no vision and no expression of the real feeling on the ground. His speech indeed lacks vision and mission and precisely clear policy, paths to implementation of policy, and innovation to economically bring positive changes in the country. Is it because he is incompetent, or is it because there is no vision because vision is not required for the ruling party as their reality story is quite different from having a vision for a functioning country? I would suggest the latter.

After 25 + years of ‘democracy’ the country boasts:

  • a joblessness rate of more than 29% officially – of course, the number on the street is quoted as much higher, (2 out of 3 people not working, so where are those BRICS jobs quoted in the BRICS section?). In addition a youth joblessness rate of 50% +
  • A massive crime rate forced by joblessness, hopelessness, and despair.
  • A surge in foreign debt,
  • fairly open Northern border and a years-long surge-in of more hopeless people from Zimbabwe and Mozambique.
  • The power provider (Eskom) is so poorly managed with unmaintained infrastructure that the country regularly is in rolling electricity blackouts. Btw, even the Chinese Ambassador expressed that the problems here are not financial, but management and application of skills. (machine translation https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=af&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.afriforum.co.za%2Fafriforum-eskom-verliese-en-hoer-werkloosheid-wys-ramaphosa-se-planne-werk-nie%2F
  • the tax collector SARS has not been able administratively to handle its job and is basically falling apart and imploding. – https://www.businesslive.co.za/fm/special-reports/2019-02-21-revenue-collection-dire-cost-of-sarss-implosion/
  • Trains, planes, pick your government service and they are all in financial trouble – there is no end of problems, and infrastructure that worked is now coming to the end of its life. Because of no maintenance during these 25 + years, the end is one of implosion.
  • Labor strikes are too many to count. You can search for ‘strikes in South Africa 2019′. There are national strikes, local strikes, municipality worker’s strikes, mine workers, port authority, wildcat strikes, university strikes and so on, too many to mention.
  • Hospitals are exceedingly badly managed : Go in Alive, Come out a Corpse is the slogan
  • The Police service is in crisis with reports that 41% of officers failed their annual shooting test – People are relying on private security, which increases cost of living.
  • The problem of ‘staatskaping’ or State Capture of the wealth of the country is still in full swing. The form that State Capture takes is that the ANC owns or attempts to hold all of the wealth of the State, even above State objectives. The ANC with its neo-chiefs, enriches itself first. In the last election, however, this is beginning to unravel, because even ANC members and cadres now feel they are not getting their fair share of the hijacked state economy. Basically, all the might of the state and economic affairs is captured or pirated by the ruling party and run as a private enterprise for itself, and the country is left in rack and ruin. The rulers are redirecting the wealth and economy of the country into their own pockets and into their political party.   https://www.sastatecapture.org.za/site/hearings.  This is even visible in religious and church affairs, where the President asks for prayers for the ANC, and not for the country. https://www.timeslive.co.za/politics/2019-04-19-pray-for-us-ramaphosa-invites-the-church-to-be-ancs-watchdog/

Summary : Generally, 25 years+ into so-called democracy, the country is falling apart, but not for the neo-chiefs, who have never partied hardier.

An Experimental Comparison

Let us make a short comparison of what Russia has accomplished since the fall of the Soviet Union 1991, with South Africa’s freedom election in 1994. You may say this is an unfair comparison as Russia is a much bigger country with many more people and massive landmass. Yet, South Africa changed materially in 1994 and has the advantage in such a comparison as the average income in Russia was statistically expressed as 0, and the country was non-functioning, whereas South Africa was a functioning country. Both countries had to deal with the international sphere equally, and Russia was again handicapped with sanctions and having to protect itself militarily. Of the BRICS members, a comparison between South Africa and Russia makes the most sense. This is what it looks like in simple percentage terms:

Consumer Prices in South Africa are 11.36% higher than in Russia

Consumer Prices Including Rent in South Africa are 17.62% higher than in Russia

Rent Prices in South Africa are 39.29% higher than in Russia

Restaurant Prices in South Africa are 4.77% higher than in Russia

Groceries Prices in South Africa are 9.71% higher than in Russia

And a few more:

  • South Africa has a 29% official unemployment rate with a 50% youth unemployment rate, and Russia is in the range of 4% yet Russia was a non-functioning country being plundered in 1991 and South Africa a functioning state in 1994.
  • Russia is a respected country, and South Africa is floundering.
  • Russia does not have laws that exclude a mostly educated workforce from the workplace because of racism.
  • South Africa has a relatively young workforce with a median age of 26.3 years whereas we all know about the Russian people’s resistance against pension age changes for its population, which is of an older median age.
  • The wealth in South Africa has changed hands, and it is now estimated that 40% of the really rich are black neo-chiefs, so the accusation that the whites hold economic power is slowly eroding.
  • South Africa, as a country, has natural resources as has Russia.

Why does the current ANC government still hold the firm belief that making all the whites poor, will enrich the rest of the 55 Million blacks?. On the face of it, it is absurd, as the white minority is slowly going through the process of being impoverished. At this stage, this is nothing more than trumped-up racial revenge to hide the shortcomings of the current management in the country.

Some of the percentage differences between the two countries in a detailed cost of living comparison are quite breathtaking, and is submitted for those with time on their hands. https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_countries_result.jsp?country1=Russia&country2=South+Africa

Russia clearly has an alive, growing and most importantly well-managed economy and South Africa has an economy teetering on stagnation with most public services imploding or falling apart. Just before Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation address, Moody’s made the statement that South Africa’s GDP growth will remain one of the lowest among Baa3-rated sovereigns. The debt burden is expected to rise but a brighter point is that the structure of the debt is resilient to shocks. Of course, the significant debt (as far as can be determined) is to China, and China has structured it to be resilient, very specifically the new loans to prop up South Africa’s power generation company Eskom. China works in a particular way with debt that cannot be serviced – they take over the project and infrastructure that the debt financed and run it themselves, leaving very little opportunity for state capture.

In South Africa, as you heard from Black Agenda Radio and many other studies, the inequality of people’s is the highest in the world. The rulers talk Marxism but practice extractive and exploitative capitalism.

So, high level only, what did Russia do differently from their lowest point as a country, in comparison to the steps that the new South African government took from what was a high point if one believed the Rainbow Nation advertising?

1. Russia got their oligarchs under control. In South Africa, the neo-chiefs are the oligarchs and are running the country. It is stated policy to create a black millionaire and billionaire class and that document was hastily hidden when it was first discovered.

2. Russia invested in technology, education, and food production (with sanctions accelerating and mandating this trajectory and they also needed to spend on defense). In South Africa, they are breaking down technology in protest against the so-called 4th industrial revolution, the education is liberal and weak, and the most significant agenda item is land redistribution without compensation, i.e., stealing. What a way to handle your productive food sector by threatening their lives, while saying BRICS is bringing all these jobs. All these jobs? Well, I don’t see them. South Africa is now an importer of maize and corn, and food imports are steadily increasing.

3. The most significant difference is that Russia invested in their country and their people. In South Africa, the neo-chiefs invested in themselves by capturing state income and economy for their own pockets and ideological political party.

4. Russia had an educated workforce and still to today education lacks in South Africa.

The evening before Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation speech, Moody’s dropped a severe report, warning that the country’s growth rate is in trouble and SA’s inequality of people’s is not just staying put, it’s on the increase. (Of course, it is the fault of the whites – everything is, as everything is the fault of Russia if one believes the western propaganda).

So taking a look at economic factors, what is reported is la-la land-like positive outcomes, interspersed with great speeches with promises of doing better when the la-la scenario does not manifest. The big gap, of course, is between promises for the future and how to actually get there. That piece is generally missing in the economic reporting. It is clear that economically South Africans of all colors and classes are struggling to the point of despair, not because they are not productive and good people, but because the country is managed as a ‘get rich’ piggy bank, focused on creating black millionaires and billionaires. If this makes you flash to the Ukraine in your thinking, you would be exactly right but for South Africa, even Mexico is voting Cape Town as exceedingly dangerous and in South Africa, they are even killing Ukrainians in hiding : http://www.radiofreesouthafrica.com/mexican-council-votes-cape-town-as-africas-most-dangerous-city/

Yet, the black cadres are still plotting and planning revolution : http://www.radiofreesouthafrica.com/we-foresee-a-revolution-militants-in-secret-black-power-drill/

Farm Murders and Land expropriation/re-distribution without compensation.

We have a first bright spot here with the ruling government now forced to acknowledge that farm murders are not common crimes but truly unique. These are very specific atrocities against the white farming and rural population perpetrated not only with extreme violence but exceedingly cruel torture (Kill The Boer). Bear in mind that it is difficult to defend yourself because the laws discriminate against the mainly white farming population and their employees.

63% Of the population is urban, so, that leaves us with around 47% of the people as rural. Farm murders are a type of violence in the background of land redistribution without compensation – it is the fear, torture and killing that is necessary to hide the program of state capture for the program of creating a class of black millionaires and billionaires – farm murders are not just crime, they are a project. These murders and attacks on relatively unprotected people show an increase of 60% over the past decade. One should also remember that volunteer groups kept the initial statistics as you could see from the woman killed in the first video by Vesti News. She was reporting on the murders. The hypocrisy does not even pass a first smell test. The ANC government initially stated clearly that they don’t count crimes on minorities separately from the overall crime rate. It is also generally known practice that even if dead and tortured people lay on the ground, the crime is classified as ‘burglary gone wrong’ or something similar. Yet, the rulers seem to count exactly how much land is in the hands of those minorities in a clear stance of egregious double standards. This is besides the fact that they got the numbers wrong by orders of magnitude as well.

Machine translation : https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=af&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fmaroelamedia.co.za%2Fnuus%2Fsa-nuus%2Fplaasaanvalle-styg-afgelope-dekade-met-60%2F

The ANC heads of Noordwes and Gauteng have admitted that farm murders must now be given attention to as priority crime.

The Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Ms Thoko Didiza, has spoken out strongly against Farm Murders as well as illegal land grabs. Her deputy stated that the 1.4 million hectares of land that the state owns, will be re-distributed first and the tone of this statement is less racially biased.

Machine Translation: https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=af&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fmaroelamedia.co.za%2Fnuus%2Fsa-nuus%2Fminister-veroordeel-plaasmoorde%2F

During July, Ramaphosa himself condemned farm murders, but with so much negative rhetoric stated toward the ones continually exposing the murders and torturous crimes, that his negative rhetoric virtually canceled his condemnation. Nobody believed the man. He has no principles, as you heard again from Black Agenda Radio regarding the Marikana massacres. Where there was some hope expressed after Ramaphosa was elected and I reported on that small hope here, that hope is also now gone.

With the relative loss of votes by the ANC, the visibility of unfair discrimination (workplace and crime rates) to educated minorities, the visibility of state capture, and the concomitant reduction of tourism and investment, the la-la land economic reporting, the service sectors of the state imploding, the balance of power is slowly beginning to change and the ANC might see the beginning of their loss of power. BRICS will not save them.

Then, the second bright spot : The internal knowledge base is slowly beginning to change as well, and reporting such as the following is becoming more common.

New world order looms amid US trade war with China, but SA seems clueless

“… the US does not want the locus of global power to shift from the West to the East. This is precisely what the trade war between China and the US is about. But where does SA stand in all this? Unfortunately, there is no evidence that either our intellectually bland president or our tired international relations minister has a clue. “  https://www.sowetanlive.co.za/opinion/columnists/2019-06-24-new-world-order-looms-amid-us-trade-war-with-china-but-sa-seems-clueless/

It is hard to find bright spots in this downward trajectory of a once flourishing country, but these two, condemning farm murders and an assurance that land will be distributed from state coffers first, as well as some internationally savvy reporting, are indeed welcome. This won’t stop the process of changing the constitution to make land-grabs legal.

What can we say about the future?

Well, it looks bleak. This looks like a country on the way to being a failed state and on a similar trajectory as the Ukraine, only with neo-chiefs as oligarchs. We can only hope that the contact with Russia, China and other BRICS countries changes the level of education, knowledge and sheer intelligence to stop this slide. At least in terms of India there is a lot of interaction, with Indian channels available on the local television networks. This slow decline could continue until there is nothing left to loot and end up in a type of Mogadishu, with increasingly violent strikes, open violent faction fighting and a very poor country with exceedingly wealthy neo-chiefs.

It is a sad state of affairs overall, as South Africa can do much much better. Given government support for those that produce food in country, this sector can be repaired as the know-how is there (if somebody overcomes the fact the many white folks have the know-how). At this stage we have to say .. Get Over Apartheid Already!

We can also look at South Africa pragmatically, as the African Empire in the previous age, which is failing and falling.  So many lessons can be learned while we are all watching the current world Empire, failing and falling.

What would be really wise is to send a delegation to Venezuela to go and investigate and learn how to take a previously western centered capitalist country, to a socialist managed country and to end the State Capture.

To end the formal part of this depressing analysis, it would be best if the country is handed to China for day to day management, and the neo-chiefs maintain their positions only as ceremonial leaders to ‘learn on the job’ so to speak. At least China would have the smarts to put the 50% + unemployed youth into re-education camps and teach them math, science, language and a skill-set. Then, and only then would Ramaphosa’s dream of a smart city and fast rail have a hope.

History – when does it end?

I wrote this part as an ending because the situation is so bleak.  I wanted to find something, anything positive.

If you do not know South Africa or Africa, structurally there may be no method in your head to consider these issues. It is a strange place with a unique set of circumstances and a very unique people. To try and judge this country by what you know of other countries, will probably not be appropriate. If you have not been accused of being “the child of rapists, colonists and plunderers” by a stranger in an airplane, you are not the strange creature that is African, but white and there is only about 5 or 6 million of my kind on the earth.

One must also remember that anything that goes wrong is still blamed on the 5 Million whites and not on the 55 Million blacks. The general accusation against migrants is that migrants do not assimilate or integrate. I, and other similar creatures like me, have done the unthinkable. We assimilated and integrated, built a country and became part of the African Soul. Our feet are still profoundly stuck into the soil of South Africa, and I still cry when I hear the voice of Miriam Makeba. This video contains a short history of Miriam and a very haunting and beautiful love song.

If your skin is white in South Africa, some of your ancestors probably committed sins. These were sins of their times like traditional slavery was a sin of its time.

When does history end? What does a group of people have to do, if their forefathers committed sins? How do they clean their own slate?. Is there an international court that can announce and declare that their debt to society has been paid, and it is enough now, and this South African white minority must be freed from the sins of the ancestors? The laws that mostly prohibit these people to take part in the workplace must now be abolished. The weird race-based laws that virtually prevent any white South African from freely running a business must now be abolished. The slow killing of these people must now stop.

Each time I say these things, there is a chorus of ‘How Bad the Whites Were,’ where no attention is paid to the efforts made by this population to redress the wrongs of their forefathers. And indeed, we can question whether these were wrongs, or whether these were actions taken within the context of the times. I’ve said this before and will repeat it … there was never a conscious ‘killing of black tribes’ akin to the American slaughter of the indigenous Indians; the Trail of Tears, or outright gunning for the indigenous in bloodthirsty horse mounted regiments. There has never been conscious exploitation of South African black folks equal to the British toward the Indians where the Indians were forced to abandon their own food production and grow indigo specifically for the Crown, resulting in hunger for the local population. Where do you all think the ubiquitous blue jeans of the 60’s/70’s free love revolution came from? The cloth was made and dyed and sewed in India under British rule; the jeans were sent to Germany for adding shiny studs – remember Levy-Strauss? Well, the Indians made those, excepting the studs, and we in the west wore those jeans, as a proud emblem of our free love revolution, without knowing that those that dyed the cloth, were under a British slavery system.

But enough of that. Let’s take a more positive look when we all still hoped for the Nelson Mandela rainbow nation. The music was good and is still good, the wine is superb and the current wild flower season breathtaking.

A famous and idiosyncratic South African musician, David Kramer penned these lyrics, in a song to the world:

You’ve got da money but we’ve got da beat!  Everybody born here Mister got the rhythm in their feet!”

This is unique music and old now, but perhaps the equivalent of US country music, yet a very unique west-coast storytelling style. This is happy music, and crying in your beer music and foot-stomping music that everybody knows and everybody enjoys.

This is what South Africans thought they had voted for, when the ANC took over the country and the rainbow nation and Truth and Reconciliation was a word on everyone’s lips.

This is what we got:

Miriam Makeba eventually returned to her homeland after many years in exile, after suppression by both the Americans and the local South African government, and everyone else following. The US wanted to nail the Russians and the Chinese, and South Africa suffered and what has changed?

It is time that this strange creature, an African that is White, could return, without fear of Kill the Boer, because we did the unthinkable, we assimilated and integrated. The blame game toward the whites is slowly unraveling. I don’t have a clue what the Dutch do or what the French do, because we assimilated and created a country. We should be lauded for that, and our skills should be used freely to create a new version of this country.

A moment of silence for Johnny Clegg, who united through music.

Johnny Clegg, Anti-Apartheid Musician in South Africa, Dead at 66

We are the scatterlings of Africa

And finally, for those that always ask me What About Da Joos?

Da Joos still own much of the mining, now only sharing with black leadership. They do what they do in other countries, and of course many have left South Africa, so, they manage their holdings from afar, well integrated with the neo-chiefs. Those that are still there, still protest BDS and work for Israeli causes. But the Jews were inherently racist and the word ‘schwartzes’ was used frequently, so, the ordinary rank and file to a large measure left the country.

 


Additional reading

Black on White crime – An American perspective … https://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2019/07/27/the-brutal-reality-of-black-on-white-crime/

The nature of farm murders described here

https://sputniknews.com/africa/201907181076286740-south-africa-new-farm-murder/

Paul Craig Roberts with a desperate question …. are whites too stupid to survive

http://www.unz.com/proberts/are-white-people-too-stupid-to-survive/

and Is White Genocide in our Future, where Roberts reports on South Africa

Seeing poor white people makes me happy. This was immediately censored, but it still exists in the internet archive

http://archive.vn/2cRrM#selection-713.0-713.39

Added for interest : Trump’s Vision for Africa: the 1960s

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/07/26/trumps-vision-for-africa-the-1960s/

History Reading

AmaBhulu (which means Afrikaners)

https://www.amazon.com/AmaBhulu-Birth-Death-Second-America/dp/0992159016

In 1797 the British Royal Navy feared South Africa would become a “Second America” for Britain, while, in the 20th century, the country was to Africa what the United States was to the world. AmaBhulu describes the developing crisis in the Second America that will inevitably entangle the First America. It is a study in the death of Civilization by its own collective hand; a severe warning for the West.

AmaBhulu is a view of South Africa through eyes different from those employed in fifty years of media reporting, social science, and politics. The author walks the reader from the 1652 landing of the Dutch to the present by following his own family bloodlines as example through the documented history of the country, supported by copious evidence. As settlers, soldiers, slaves, and indigenes, they farm, they fight, they triumph, and they lose. They are mercilessly impaled and massacred by savage African tyrants. They are hanged and fusilladed by an imperial overlord, and herded into concentration camps. Yet, they persevere to create a key Western Christian country; the envy of all Africa and a Cold War bulwark of the West. Eventually it falls to the author to describe the loss of his country through forces beyond his control.

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