There goes Newt, doing one of his two favorite things, lecturing Conservatives. this time on the wonder that was Mandela, who according to Newt is just like our Founders
Yesterday I issued a heartfelt and personal statement about the passing of President Nelson Mandela. I said that his family and his country would be in my prayers and Callista’s prayers.
I was surprised by the hostility and vehemence of some of the people who reacted to me saying a kind word about a unique historic figure.
So let me say to those conservatives who don’t want to honor Nelson Mandela, what would you have done?
Mandela was faced with a vicious apartheid regime that eliminated all rights for blacks and gave them no hope for the future. This was a regime which used secret police, prisons and military force to crush all efforts at seeking freedom by blacks.
What would you have done faced with that crushing government?
What would you do here in America if you had that kind of oppression?
Some of the people who are most opposed to oppression from Washington attack Mandela when he was opposed to oppression in his own country.
After years of preaching non-violence, using the political system, making his case as a defendant in court, Mandela resorted to violence against a government that was ruthless and violent in its suppression of free speech.
As Americans we celebrate the farmers at Lexington and Concord who used force to oppose British tyranny. We praise George Washington for spending eight years in the field fighting the British Army’s dictatorial assault on our freedom.
Patrick Henry said, “Give me liberty or give me death.”
Thomas Jefferson wrote and the Continental Congress adopted that “all men are created equal, and they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Doesn’t this apply to Nelson Mandela and his people?
It applies to all people Newt, but Communism, which Mandela embraced, never respects or enables liberty does it? You can sugar coat Mandela’s record if you like Newt, but you might want to consider that allowing to Left to rewrite Mandela’s legacy, and allowing them to bestow sainthood upon him do not aid the truth or liberty. If you wish to bow to Mandela fine Newt, go right ahead, you and Charles Johnson can maybe get a drink or two and talk about how much y’all have in common. After all, Mandela ONLY turned to Communism AFTER those Conservatives refused to back him and oppose apartheid right?
Mandela was “appointed the leader of the newly formed Umkhonto we Sizwe guerrilla movement, an underground military arm of the ANC,” in 1961, to quote the Washington Post. “After raiding the ANC offices, police [found] documents outlining an armed campaign to overthrow the government. Mandela and nine others [were] charged with conspiracy. . . . After an eight-month trial, Mandela and seven others [were] sentenced to life in prison [in 1964] and taken to Robben Island.”
This happened when the presidents of the United States were John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. If JFK or LBJ (both Democrats) protested the arrest and imprisonment of Mandela, or did anything to end apartheid in South Africa, this has escaped my notice. But as to the wisdom of U.S. policy, either under JFK or LBJ or later under Reagan, it is important to remember that the chief object of our foreign policy was opposition to communism, especially Soviet-backed “wars of national liberation” in Third World countries. Charles Johnson will not let the evident fact that he doesn’t know a goddamned thing about Cold War history (or any other history, for that matter) impede the use of his “Race Detective” skills against Ronald Reagan.
Let the education begin. What do we know about the ANC and its military wing, the Umkhonto we Sizwe (“Spear of the Nation”) guerrilla movement, known as MK? From The Diplomacy of Liberation: The Foreign Relations of the ANC since 1960 by Scott M. Thomas:
The less publicized support socialist states gave the ANC was the military training of its cadres. Before the Sino-Soviet split, key ANC personnel were trained in China at the Nanking Military Academy. Soviet bloc para-military training took place in Cuba, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia. For more advanced training, recruits went to the Soviet Union.
Unkhonto training bases in Africa in the early 1960s were mainly in north Africa. By 1964, recruits were being trained in Egypt (about 25), in Algeria (about 50-70), and smaller numbers in Ethiopia, Ghana (organized by Ghana’s Bureau of African Affairs, but with Soviet instructors), in Morocco and Tanzania.
Chinese and Soviet training arrangements were made until the Umkhonto’s camps could be built in southern Africa. The first bases were in Tanzania, after independence in 1961, and in Zambia after independence in 1964. According to Anatoly A. Gromyko, the Director of the Institute of African Studies, arms, ammunition and some Soviet training personnel began arriving at these newly established Umkhonto bases after Zambia’s independence. . . .
The Soviet Union, Cuba, the Eastern bloc, particularly the GDR [German Democratic Republic, i.e., East Germany], and Angola trained cadres . . . North Korea and Bulgaria helping to a lesser extent. By the early 1980s, the ANC’s Chief Representative in [East Germany] acknowledged that an increasing number of ANC cadres were being trained there in various fields, particularly law, engineering, and natural science. This was a cover for military training since Umkhonto recruits in the Soviet Union were openly identified with the ANC and the SACP [South African Communist Party], but in [East Germany] they trained in civilian clothing under the guise of doing other courses.
For some Umkhonto recruits there was a country specialization in the progression of training: Mozambique … for political strategy, Angola for weapons training, the Soviet Union for general training, including a platoon commanders’ course in tactics and artillery and an advanced infantry course for officers. The best Umkhonto recruits were sent to [East Germany] for more advanced studies in communications, sabotage, topography, map reading, military engineering, and political theory. …
The [South African Communist Party] was instrumental in forming Umkhonto we Sizwe. …. While Mandela made the arrangements to set up training bases for Umkhonto cadres during his Africa tour in 1962, Arthur Goldreich, a member of the SACP and Umkhonto, went to the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe for the same purpose. Although his trip was to obtain military assistance, including explosives for sabotage, Goldreich tried to convince the Soviets to directly intervene in South Africa, but they declined. They only promised military assistance and reportedly gave Goldreich $2.8 million.
Oliver Tambo has acknowledged he went to the Soviet Union for the first time in 1963. He was accompanied by Moses Kotane, Secretary-General of the SACP, and Duma Nokwe, Secretary-General of the ANC. …
The ANC’s main training bases were set up in northern Angola in 1977. … Five training camps were set up in northern Angola, holding between 2,000 and 8,000 Umkhonto combatants. … [T]he training was given by East German, Cuban and Soviet instructors. …
Developments in Angola were closely connected to the ANC’s relations with Cuba. Six months after military preparations began in northern Angola, in October 1977, Oliver Tambo went to Havana to discuss the role Cuba could play in the liberation struggle. The following year, Alex La Guma, a South African author who was also a key member of the SACP, established the ANC’s office in Havana. …
The fact is, the ANC was allied with the South African Communist Party and, for nearly two decades before Ronald Reagan became president of the United States, the ANC and its MK guerrilla movement were aligned with the Soviet-led communist bloc, including East Germany and Fidel Castro’s Cuba.
In short Mandela was a Communist Newt! And Communism is evil. Again, you want to point out the positives about Mandela, fine, but don’t you wag your damned finger at those who DO point out all the facts, even the politically incorrect facts about Mandela
Wall Street editorial as racist data-point for the right, “Nelson Mandela (at Google)”:
The bulk of his adult life, Nelson Mandela was a failed Marxist revolutionary and leftist icon, the Che Guevara of Africa. Then in his seventies he had the chance to govern. He chose national reconciliation over reprisal, and he thus made himself a historic and all too rare example of a wise revolutionary leader.
Mandela, who died Thursday at age 95, had a patrician upbringing and a Methodist education. But his coming of age coincided with the rise of apartheid. Winning whites-only elections in 1948, the National Party lavished its Afrikaner base of European descendants with state jobs and privileges. Black, mixed-race and Indian South Africans were disfranchised.
Trained as a lawyer, Mandela was drawn to the African National Congress, which was founded by professional, educated blacks in 1912. He was not a born communist, but as he rose in its ranks the ANC moved toward Marxism and an alliance with the Soviets. Mandela kept portraits of Lenin and Stalin above his desk at home. Frustrated with the ANC’s ineffective peaceful resistance, he embraced armed struggle in the early 1960s and trained to become a guerrilla leader. He was arrested for plotting sabotage.
His 1964 trial gave Mandela a platform. In his famous closing argument, he said: “I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But, if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
This speech was the last the world saw of him for 26 years. He started his life sentence at Robben Island prison near Cape Town a would-be Lenin. He walked out of jail on February 11, 1990—at age 71—an African Havel.
Age mellowed him. Times changed. The apartheid leadership had opened secret talks with the ANC in the mid-1980s. While still in prison, Mandela became “president in training” under F.W. de Klerk, the last apartheid leader. In early 1990, Mr. de Klerk lifted the ban on the ANC.
Mandela ditched the ANC’s Marxism and reached out to business. Somehow—another miracle—the illiberal ANC and the illiberal National Party together negotiated a liberal new constitution with strong protections for minorities and an independent judiciary. “You do not compromise with a friend,” Mandela often said, “you compromise with an enemy.”
He won the country’s first free presidential elections in 1994 and worked to unite a scarred and anxious nation. He opened up the economy to the world, and a black middle class came to life. After a single term, he voluntarily left power at the height of his popularity. Most African rulers didn’t do that, but Mandela said, “I don’t want a country like ours to be led by an octogenarian. I must step down while there are one or two people who admire me.”
Sorry there Newt but, Mandela did do some noble things, and if that is what you wish to focus on, that is you. As for me, I focus on the totality of the man. That totality leaves a lot of blood on his hands that no amount of white washing by those who admired him can wash away.