Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Arts,
Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa
Prof Dr GP Louw
Focus Area Social Transformation
Faculty of Arts
Ensovoort volume 37(2017), number 11:2
Alliance, apartheid, Black danger, civilisation, conflict, destiny, destitute, discrimination, dissolution, doctrine, intention, miscegenation, network, opportunistic, preparedness, racism, regime, Uhuru
Then, in 1974, at the stroke of a pen, the Portuguese relinquish control of the colonies of Angola and Mozambique. For years, the Portuguese army, the one into which you were conscripted as a young man, had been fighting Frelimo in the bush. In just a few days, Frelimo is going to take over the government! Images of Mau Mau in Kenya, the slaughter of civilians, even nuns in the Congo, let alone what you saw as a soldier, rush to mind. You look at your wife and two daughters, and your beautiful home, and know what you have to do: get out. You have no foreign currency, no passports, and it is too late to try and get them. So you pack all the valuables you can into your car. You squeeze in granny and the rest of the family and, along with what looks the entire white Portuguese population of Mozambique, make your way to the South African border at Komatipoort. Overnight, you are a refugee.
Where do you all go? Bez Valley (Johannesburg, RSA)! And why to Bez Valley? Because suddenly you need the tribe. You need the extended Portuguese family to survive. For here, in this strange country, your Portuguese escudos (Mozambique pre-independence currency) mean nothing; you are unable to even speak the language. It doesn’t matter that in Lourenço Marques you were landowner and a successful businessman. Here you have nothing. In order to survive, first the extended family and then the tribe draws together. Your uncle speaks a little English and helps you find a job. In crises you group together and find ways of helping each other because you all experience the same treat. Ethnicity is high.
With time, the community is educated in the local culture. You learn to speak English and you progress quickly in business terms. Over the years, you once again become a well-to-do, successful businessman. Your children are at good local schools, but when they finish high school you decide to move. You no longer live in Bez Valley, although you still have friends there. Now you live in Sandton, Randburg or Mondeor”(Boon1, p. 62).
With above description Boon1, p.62 sensitively, but thoroughly profiles what can happen when established political systems suddenly collapse and disintegrate. The Portuguese who had become indigenous to Mozambique, were not only left destitute, but also became permanently detached from their trusted leadership and the motherland they served loyally and unquestioningly for many years. This was primarily the direct outcome of political entities that not only suddenly lost all power, but consequently also failed to offer their previously core group of supporters and followers any protection or support whatsoever. This political group were in a certain sense cold-blooded in that they did not take the trouble to negotiate any kind of guarantee with Frelimo for the safety of Portuguese citizens. All the traditional guarantees, written or unwritten, said or unsaid, that had safeguarded the Mozambican Portuguese’s unique lifestyle and their personal safety fell away. Suddenly these Mozambican Portuguese were alone and they were forced to make dramatic life-changes, totally foreign to them. The Portuguese master they served with loyalty and even their lives for many years, became more concern with the interests of Frelimo than their interests.
1.1 The De Klerk pen-stroke
History repeats itself, especially in terms of what happens to groups of people. In South Africa, Uhuru also lifted its head to slowly demolish the nationalist Afrikaners’ empire. In 1994, also with the stroke of a pen, the Afrikaners relinquished control of South Africa. Rather, the De Klerk regime did it on their behalf. He was mandated by a half-baked referendum. The country as a whole went to the African National Congress (ANC), which the Afrikaners fought for years in the bush, on the borders and in the country. For years the NP-AB leadership impressed on people that this group is an enemy, murderers, communists, terrorists and unacceptable citizens. Suddenly they received the blessing of the same NP-AB leaders to become the masters of the Afrikaners, precisely as Frelimo became the masters of the Portuguese in Mozambique with the blessing of the Portuguese authorities twenty years earlier.1,2
The following comparison between the Afrikaners and the Mozambican Portuguese serves to facilitate an understanding of the position of the Afrikaners since 1994 and their reaction to the threat that is the ANC government.
Both of these groups descend from European groups and over time had become indigenous African groups. Both groups had lost contact with their motherlands, but were at all times seen and treated as superiors (based on White supremacy) by the local indigenous people. Both were supported by oppressive security forces that protected their personal safety and their rule over the Blacks populations. Both had access to wealth, opportunities and favours not always available to Blacks. The Portuguese had an established extended family network outside Mozambique (supported further by unrelated Portuguese in South Africa based on ethnicity). The Mozambican Portuguese’s Roman Catholic religious groups were far more communally oriented in offering support to its members than the selfish capitalistic Protestant religious groups of the Afrikaners that were the bedrock of the NP-AB political alliance. Both groups practiced racial discrimination: the Afrikaners in an extreme form (varying from planned brutal suppression, impoverishment and manipulating of Blacks up to the Immorality Act), while the Portuguese engaged in a form of racial miscegenation. The Portuguese not only lost their Mozambican citizen’s rights, but all their material belongings immediately after Uhuru. They had to restart and rehabilitate their personal, social and economic lives. Their lives became endangered on the very first day of entering Mozambican independence. The Portuguese were suddenly refugees, forced to find a new homeland. They had to learn a new language and accept a new culture. The Mozambican Uhuru at once cut off the Portuguese from their Mozambican hinterland.1
The Afrikaners were not forced out of South Africa after 1994. Nor were they forced to accept a new culture. They did not lose their South African citizenship or their material possessions. Their lives were not endangered. But still, the South African Uhuru brought immense changes for the Afrikaners and these changes are still intensifying in 2017. Although the real consequences of Black rule for the Afrikaners only emerged five years and longer after 1994, it seems to be in some ways more negative than in the Mozambique of 1974. It is starting to endanger the lives and material possessions of the Afrikaners. Afrikaners have not had extended family systems in other countries since before the Second Anglo Boer War, nor have they had the sympathy of other countries. It was effectively replaced by a NP-AB Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) network that supported and rewarded those who were loyal to the NP-AB-DRC cause. The benefits, favours, rights and privileges, written, unwritten, said or unsaid, that were generated by the apartheid dispensation were central to this network.1,3
1.2 Neo-Calvinism and Afrikaner nationalism of 1910 as a political-religious system▼
This political-religious system, started in Potchefstroom by the “Doppers” in the North and by DF Malan in the South in the 1910s under the umbrella of Neo-Calvinism and extreme Afrikaner nationalism (strongly influenced after the 1930s by the racism of the Nazis), later had roots in every sphere of the Afrikaner life – social, economic, personal, religious, cultural. The main targets were the vulnerable poor, lower and middle class Afrikaner voters. They won government in 1948, after which the dogma of White supremacy and racial discrimination were established and practiced to the extreme. The ordinary nationalist Afrikaner citizen benefitted financial, politically and socially. In exchange for these comprehensive benefits and safeguards, nationalist Afrikaner citizens and followers of the NP-AB-DRC alliance were required to accept the NP-AB-DRC leadership’s dogma of White supremacy unquestioningly. It was the task of the Afrikaners to Christianize and “save” the Blacks. All this required the promotion of Afrikaner unity and solidarity over and against individualism, the value ascribed to White racial purity and the obstruction and rejection of all cultural and racial foreignness, etc. The ordinary nationalist Afrikaner citizens in the process surrendered their citizen’s rights to the NP-AB-DRC top management, who came to speak, think and act on behalf of the ordinary nationalist Afrikaners. From the late 1940s, the entire Afrikaner social structure was based on this mandate. The NP-AB-DRC benefits and safeguards (written, unwritten, said and unsaid, justified or unjustified, legal or illegal), safeguarding the Afrikaners from physical, political, social, economical and personal onslaughts from the Blacks, were kept alive by the ordinary voters themselves via general and local elections. This idea of the leaders as “saviours” became entrenched in ordinary Afrikaners: all decisions, planning, solutions, future planning and thinking on Afrikaner interests became centralized as a mandate to be executed exclusively by the NP-AB-DRC top management, with the ordinary Afrikaners in a subordinate position.3,4
It never crossed the minds of the general Afrikaner populace that the NP-AB-DRC leadership could falter or double-cross them (especially after 46 years of benefitting and being favoured), so they accepted in good will the De Klerk regime’s unwritten guarantees of an ongoing Afrikaner utopia after 1994. It was in this context of long-lasting security and political benefit that the ordinary Afrikaners blindly accepted the resolutions of the Referendum and sanctioned the ANC via their NP-AB-DRC leadership as the new regime in 1994.
▲Cross-references: see Part 4, subdivision 18.104.22.168.
The general aim of this study is to determine if the guarantees that NP-AB-DRC put forward of the continuation of a strong future White South Africa, promised in so many election manifestos of the NP over the years, kicked in after 1994 and if they still exist today. The further aim is to examine how the ordinary Afrikaners handled post-1994 South Africa treats and challenges. The new role players and organizations that promote Afrikaner interests are also evaluated. Central to this research focus is the doctrine of Afrikaner and White supremacy that dominated from 1948–1994 and the right of Afrikaners to dominate Blacks in all areas of life. It is important that the processes and the various role players in the establishment of this doctrine are understood.
The primary aim of this study is to determine the preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa.
- This article is the sixth in a series of seven. The seven articles represent the following research topics: 1) Who is the Afrikaner? 2) The historical determinants and role players in the establishment and reinforcement of racial and ethnic discrimination in the mindsets of Afrikaners; 3) Present and past negative determinants and role players in the establishment and reinforcement of injustices in the mindsets of Afrikaners; 4) The Afrikaners’ failure to understand, accept and appropriate the indigenous realities of South Africa; 5) The vicious cycle of revenge and counter-revenge around apartheid; 6) The preparedness of Afrikaners to deal with the treats and the challenges of the new South Africa; 7) 2017 is the time for thinking, planning and action.
- The overarching intention of the total study is to determine the position of the Afrikaner in the year 2117.
The research was done by means of a literature review. This method aims build a viewpoint as the evidence appears during the course of the research. This approach is used in modern historical research where there is a lack of an established library, like on the topic of the Afrikaner’s present and future position in South Africa. The databases used were EBSCOHost and Sabinet online. Sources included articles from 2015 to 2017, books for the period 1944 to 2016 and new papers covering the period 2016 to 2017 to reflect on the Afrikaners and to put thinking trends, views and opinions on the Afrikaners in perspective.5-7
The research findings are presented in narrative format.
3.1 The “Black danger” and NP-AB leadership’s unwritten guarantees of political rights for ordinary Afrikaners
It became clear that the NP-regime was already a government in crisis with regard to the Black problem by the late 1980s. It was the most serious South African statutory problem for the various White regimes since 1910. The Black problem, centring on the incorporation of Black South Africans into the country’s political environment and awarding full voting rights equal to those of the Whites, created enormous conflict in the White society since the founding of the Union of South Africa. This problem, dubbed the Black danger in the 1920s by the rising nationalist Afrikaners to gain voters’ support for their dream of an independent Afrikaner republic outside British domination, became the political vehicle through which DF Malan slowly began to rally the poor lower and middle classes of Afrikaners behind his dogma of Afrikaner nationalism since 1913. Afrikaner status, Afrikaans as an exclusive own Afrikaner language, Afrikaner radical economic transformation, Afrikaner state capture, the racial purity of the Afrikaner, race separation, the limitation of Black politics, Afrikaner social and economical empowerment, Afrikaner nation identification, Afrikaner group identity above individuality etc., became the dominant propaganda of the Malan era.3,4,8
For the Afrikaners, especially the bruised and vulnerable Northern Afrikaners still battling with their psychological and financial scars after the Second Anglo Boer War, this Afrikaner messiah and his message were like manna from heaven. Extreme apartheid was born, driven daily by a growing authoritarian Afrikaner leadership who gradually broke down individual thinking, planning and decision making of the ordinary Afrikaner in exchange for the establishment of an exclusive Whiteman’s utopia. The ordinary Afrikaners’ dependence on their NP-AB-DRC leaders to meet all their needs as citizens in time became internalized in most of the post-1910 Afrikaners and the following three generations up to 1994. It not only led to grand apartheid to manage the ever-growing and ever-present “Black danger,” but also contributed to the rigid and ruthless reinforcement of apartheid for nearly five decades to follow.3,4,8
Schlemmer8 discusses the interrelation between the “Black danger” and archetypical apartheid and the process around its maintenance, including favouring the Afrikaners. He writes that it was developed to its epitome in the Verwoerdian period. Schlemmer describes apartheid as follows8, pp. 8-9:
It represented a brutal, massive but almost heroic attempt on the part of the then ethnically solidary NP of the time to secure a correspondence between nation and territory for Whites by imposing an order much more incisive than race segregation. It was the period of the grand experiment: dividing South Africa into homelands, called national states, by using a full barrage of legislative, economic and administrative strategies. It might have succeeded at that stage of Black politicization and international sympathy had it not been for other major elements in the tradition of government: paternalism; a disregard of the interests and aspirations of the subjugated peoples and the all-pervasive conviction that the most developed nation deserved the lion’s share of resources.
It must be noted that the NP introduced a number of policy reforms and adaptations (from September 1978) that departed from the rigid “traditional” apartheid policy. Radical territorial separation and separation in the political and social lives of the races and the idea of an exclusive and autonomous nation for Whites in the central area (87%) of South Africa was to a great extent abandoned. In these “reforms,” the concept of the White nation made place for the concept of the autonomy of White communities within a multi-racial nation.8 This “new liberal” thinking was reflected by senior NP-leaders like Pik Botha8, p.25 (foreign affairs minister) who argued on 7 February 1986 that as long as suitable constitutional means of protecting minority rights [referring to Afrikaner rights] could be identified, the impact of racial categories should be removed. This “liberal” remark is in line with two earlier remarks by cabinet minister Chris Heunis. On 8 May 1985 he said8, p.38: “Many things have occurred in the past for which some of us must now ask forgiveness,” and, “A White power monopoly has become intolerable…”. PW Botha (President) added to this rhetoric on 21 April 1986 by saying8, p. 38: “We made a mistake,” while earlier on 27 March 1986 FW De Klerk said8, p. 38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody” [undoubtedly Blacks]. There was an enormous decline in the numbers of Afrikaner farmers (most adhering to the extreme racist thinking of DF Malan) and they were growing poorer. As such the farmers became unsupportive of the NP and became less important as voters (they declined from 116 000 in 1950 to more or less 65 000 in 1986). By 1985-1986 the NP turned their attention to urban (industrial/business) Afrikaner votes. There was for the first time an open negativity from the side of the NP-AB leaders towards certain sectors of their voter corps and doubt about the continuation of the NP-AB alliance as the guardian and extended family of some Afrikaners.8 A NP member of Parliament made this clear in 1985 when he said8, p. 23: “We have been afraid of White farmers far too long – we must be prepared to lose votes.”
Was the above tactful rhetoric of 1985–1986 on the side of the NP leaders the masked introduction of Black rule? Were they giving notice of the end of the existing mandate of the NP-AB leadership (from as early as 1913) that so gradually eroded the individual thinking, planning and decision making of the Afrikaner? Was the Mozambican–Portuguese syndrome of 1974 arriving in South Africa? The answer is a decisive “yes” in terms of above rhetoric. FW De Klerk’s dramatic turn-around in political thinking confirms it.8 On 5 February 1986 he said publically that8, p. 38: “voluntary group association would lead to chaos and confusion,” reflecting clearly his hidden racism and his support for the traditional NP-AB race policy from the days of DF Malan. Only a month later, he expresses a contradicting view when on 27 March 1986 he says8, p.38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants [undoubtedly Blacks] in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody [undoubtedly Blacks].” These leaders were not only warning Afrikaners that the mandate of the NP-AB leaders had come to an end, but also that they can no longer guarantee the political, social, personal, as well as the economical and civil rights to which the Afrikaners were accustomed too.
Although it is argued that the 6 May 1987 general election gave the NP a mandate to work towards the central representation of Blacks outside the politically and economically marginalised homelands, it was clear that the interests of Whites had to be guaranteed by the NP-AB leaders for them to stay in power. The inroads of the Conservative Party (CP), founded on 20 March 1982, into Afrikaner politics in the May 1987 general election slowed down the “new liberal thinking” of the NP-leaders on South African politics. The CP warned about the NP-AB-DRC leadership surrendering the rights of the Afrikaners in the name justice and equality to Blacks. In this election 610 516 voters (29.62%) voted anti-NP (conservative right), representing a 25% swing away from the NP’s 1981 electoral support. The CP obtained 22 seats to become the official opposition on its first attempt and only five years after establishment. This outcome gave the NP a taste of what could be expected if dramatic pro-Black reforms and “liberal” political changes followed. (It reminded of the unexpected fall of the Hertzog regime in the general election of 1943 to JC Smuts. Smuts reduced the nationalist Afrikaners to only 43 seats against his 110 seats in a house of 160).3,9 PW Botha put the brakes on, reassuring the Afrikaners of the NP’s good intentions.9
In 12 June 1986 the State of Emergency called in 1985 was widened to include the whole country, whereas the 1985-proclamation was only applicable to one third of South Africa’s 133 magisterial districts. This caused a reconsideration of the “emergence” of “liberal” political thinking within the NP. Politicians reassured Afrikaners of the NP-AB guarantees for their protection in the future. Many ordinary citizens saw the implications of the 1986 state of emergency as a “restarting” of apartheid by the NP-AB leadership by means of suppression tactics.8
The doubts and distrust in the NP-AB leadership which had started to emerge in 1985 to 1986, was quickly laid to rest with various anti-Black actions. The NP-AB reconfirmed their commitment to safeguard in future the political, social, personal, economical and civil rights of the Afrikaners.8,9
Notwithstanding all the talk during 1985–1986 within the NP’s top management of some form of “incorporation” of Blacks into South African politics, the NP rhetoric still contained the old unifying emphasis on the concept of a European standard and way of life, mythical or otherwise, which must be upheld at all times, reports Schlemmer.8, p.27 The NP was still concerned about an entire subset of Whites whose rights, as was done since 1948, had to be safeguarded and guaranteed by the NP-AB leaders in its mandate to Afrikaners if they wanted to stay in power. The NP member of Parliament, Albert Nothnagel, describes these interests of Afrikaners inside the NP-AB leadership’s mandate as follows8, p. 27: “…a combination of lifestyle, a sense of origin and identity, the psychological satisfaction of an in-group community life, standards of public order, behaviour and respectability and sufficient control over the allocation of resources and the maintenance of security to ensure the continuation of these benefits”.
Another senior NP member of Parliament summed up the major interests of nationalist Afrikaners in 1985-1986 as being8, p.27: “…security and standards – there is a great fear (among whites) that a third world situation will arise in their areas.” A senior NP-MP reflected that some in the inner circles of the NP wanted the old rigid apartheid guidelines to be included in future guarantees on Afrikaner rights8, p. 27: “National Party thinking gave the central concern a more ethnic flavour but also stressed the composite character of its ideology by listing Western values, Christian values, life views, community cohesion, material security, a familiar and recognisable environment, a strong economy, property rights, an objective legal system and the protection of established institutions in general. These everyday or popular interests would be taken for granted in any typical Western society. In South Africa, however, they are clearly much more consciously experienced as constituting a first world sub-society within a third world continent”.
Extreme apartheid, driven daily by an authoritarian nationalist Afrikaner leadership, remained undisturbed up to the 1990 Referendum and the 1994 transfer of political power to the ANC. PW Botha supported it in his address to Parliament after winning the 6th May 1987 general election.8 Schlemmer refers to the following keywords in Botha’s speech8pp.13-14: “…It is not possible in a multicultural country like the Republic of South Africa to talk about the protection of individual rights unless one talk about the protection of minority rights at the same time…it is (also) impossible to talk about the protection of minority rights unless one talks about the protection of minority groups at the same time and the prevention of the domination unless groups enjoy statutory recognition and the relationship among them is regulated constitutionally…Constitutional development cannot take place in isolation, but has to be preceded and accompanied by economic and social processes to create the conditions in which renewal may be continued on the basis of security…our challenge lies in narrowing the gap between the first world and the third world without lowering standards in South Africa…At the same time the government will ensure that safety and security will the highest priority because without them development and progress are not possible…”.
It is clear from the above that the NP-AB leadership tried to guarantee the Afrikaners’ political and other rights in the future during the late 1980s. It was included in their political planning, whether by legation or by brute force. This outcome placed the Afrikaners in a much more favourable position than the Mozambican Portuguese, who had to leave Mozambique empty-handed and without any guarantee of their Mozambican political position and status in the future.
The doctrine of racism and its constant impression on nationalist Afrikaners by the NP-AB-DRC alliance’s leadership led to a successful Afrikaner ethnic and racial despotism within half a century in South Africa. The NP-AB-DRC used methods such as ostracising and punishing dissident Afrikaners for political deviating and anti-Afrikaner behaviour and compensating people for approved pro-Afrikaner behaviours. This situation was never challenged or questioned by grassroots nationalist Afrikaners and was inculcated in the new generations of nationalist Afrikaners. Greed played a part in the start and continuation of conformity to racism.4,10-12
Most Afrikaners grew up in this undemocratic political context. They obliged themselves to a lifestyle manipulated by the arrogant leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance. By means of parliamentary mandating, they indirectly took away the ordinary Afrikaners’ basic right to decide for themselves on their behaviour, thinking and planning. These are common rights in a democracy.13 Ordinary Afrikaners were trapped within a doctrine where discrimination against non-Whites and negative attitudes against other ethnic groups were regarded as appropriate, correct and morally justified. They adhered to the opinions, advice, viewpoints and integrity of the leaders of the NP-AB-DRC alliance unquestioningly, even if their own logical thinking contradicted it.4,13,14
For most nationalist Afrikaners, the political rights, privileges, benefits and favours they gained by supporting and practicing apartheid became similar to what Ferguson14, p.3 writes of the rich, imperial and arrogant British in the 1900s: “…a state of affairs as normal, certain, and permanent, except in the direction of further improvement, and any deviation from it as aberrant, scandalous, and avoidable”. However, there is always an expensive price attached to such behaviour in the future, especially where greed is the motivator. For the greedy British it came in two devastating World Wars and the loss of their Empire; for the nationalist Afrikaners it arrived in 1994, stripping them of apartheid’s rights, privileges, benefits and favours.4,13,14
3.2 The intertwining of the NP and the AB in creating and guaranteeing Afrikaner rights▼
It is important to reflect in short on the Afrikaner leadership who gradually subdued the independent thinking, planning and decision making of the ordinary Afrikaner in exchange for favour in an exclusive “Whiteman’s Utopia.”
The NP and AB in time developed into independent and comprehensive safe havens for and guardians of nationalist Afrikaners’ political and cultural interests. The NP-AB leadership’s political and military power as part of the Afrikaner government for the period 1948 up to 1994, made them, in terms of opinion-forming on and implementation of political, racial and cultural matters, unchallengeable and mighty political machines. This position offered them the opportunity to force their racist political opinions and plans, formed over many years of discussion, evaluation and testing, to promote only Afrikaner interests. This was driven by a small group of super-nationalist Afrikaners. This NP-AB power gradually led to corruptive and nepotistic result where more or less 20 000 members of the AB, supported further by as many of its “Junior ABs”, called the “Ruiterwagte” and “Rapportryers”, enjoyed many work and financial opportunities and various other rights and privileges that other Afrikaners outside the circle of the AB and NP, were denied. There was even a clear discrimination between members with dual membership of the NP and AB and members with only NP membership. There was open and total discrimination against any dissident Afrikaner. These Afrikaners were in the same position as the suppressed Blacks politically, socially and economically.2,11,15,16
Afrikaner dissidents and non-conformists were often labelled as communists. This followed on widespread propaganda and stigmatization of anyone who challenged the broader racist and supremacist belief system on politics and culture. There is sound reason for “liberal” Afrikaners of that time to say that they have only known discrimination their whole lives. They grew up mostly in the politically liberal southern part of the country, studied at various Afrikaner universities and worked in the northern or southern parts of South Africa. They experienced it first under the NP-AB alliance from 1948 to 1994 in terms of White-on-White discrimination and then from 1994 under the ANC-regime and its partners in terms of Black-on-White discrimination. This tendency to discriminate contributed too many English-speaking Whites, liberal Afrikaners and of course other races to slowly turn away from the Afrikaner nationalist establishment after 1948. From the 1930s onwards there was a strong Nazi influence in the NP-AB’s general vision and political views and doctrines. Their indoctrination and manipulation was so effective that the arguments and opinions of political opponents of the NP-AB alliance never really made any impact on the general Afrikaner population. Many Black and White opponents were scandalously silenced with jail sentences, exile and murder by the NP regime’s secret agents. Suppression and even murder became approved and sanctioned behaviours for the nationalist Afrikaner followers as a result of the political doctrines and false information fed to them by the NP-regime’s leadership.2,8,11,15-19
The NP-AB alliance was already established by the 1930s and together they indoctrinated common Afrikaners, especially the various poor segments of the lower and middle classes. This alliance’s profoundly negative impact on the broader social society and the internalization of their political contamination among the highly receptive and uninformed ordinary nationalist Afrikaners evident from the growth in member numbers of the NP from 1948 to the late 1970s. The top management of the NP-AB alliance quickly became the sole thinkers, decision makers and spokespersons for the common nationalist Afrikaner. They instilled in the Afrikaner that racism was appropriate and correct. The Afrikaner youth became their main target.2,4,10-12,17,20-22
In March 1992 the ordinary Afrikaners, still guided and driven daily by an authoritarian Afrikaner-leadership which had minimised their self-thinking,-planning and-decision-making in exchanged for their exclusive living rights and protection in a Whiteman’s Utopia created by Verwoerd in 1961 with his First Republic of South Africa, agreed to F W De Klerk’s plea to vote in a referendum endorsing only the negotiation process on the possibility of a new type of Black-White mutual-government.2,4,22
On “total Black-rule” was F W De Klerk dumb in the referendum: indeed he promised a second referendum on the matter of change of ruler-ship or handing over to Black-rule, but it seems his volte face-experience (changing from right-wing to left-wing in the NP), starting suddenly on 2 February 1990, made him seemingly short in memory about his future political responsibilities and promises as far it concerns the future interests of Afrikaners. F W De Klerk’s volte face– or Damascus-experience of 1990 is still today “undeclared behaviour”. What is clear is that De Klerk contributed extensively to the haste-up of the dissimilation of the Afrikaners.2,4,22
It must be note further that the De Klerk–regime was facing more and more a right-wing backlash inside the NP: In the February 1992 election they saw a serious decline in votes at the traditional NP-AB-Dopper Parliament-seat of Potchefstroom. This was a clear decline starting in 1990 under leadership of the political-inexperienced F W De Klerk’s and after the reconstructed NP becoming a multi-racial party. It was a demoralized NP that was ruling and for the NP-caucus it was clear that the Conservative Party (CP) can be the new White-rulers in the future. Indeed, it became also clear that very few of NP-members would be re-voted to Parliament in a post-Apartheid RSA. November 1993 statistics showed an estimated NP support of between a mere 15% to 18% in general, while with Whites it declined to less than 34% and Blacks basically zero. From Afrikaners side it was thus already obvious for many NP-members in 1993 that the NP under F W De Klerk and his right-hand man, Roelf Meyer, were not a match for the ANC’s negotiation-team and that the NP would not come to power again in the future, either in a Black- or White political system. The NP-leadership’s capitulation to the ANC, even before the 1992-Referendum, became fact, as the then minister Dawie De Villiers bemoaned it to the De Klerk-cabinet. De Klerk and his cadres failed already at that time to guarantee the NP-members and other White-voters who had voted for them naively in the Referendum, in future the coverage of power, protection and patronage previously offered by the NP to them: an outcome proofed to be totally correct in 2017. The NP was a lame duck from 1990 under the leadership of F W De Klerk as far as first-order Afrikaner-interests concern. The first so called democratic elections of 27 April 1993 was well-masked by the De Klerk-regime in the handing over of power to Black-ruling. Looking back today on this development, it was nothing less than a well-planned bloodless coup d’ état, executed successfully by a small band of dissipated Afrikaner nationalist on the unsuspected Afrikanerdom, changing their political milieu for ever. Indeed, it was the officially start-up of straightforward majority Black-rule and the end of the “traditional” rights, privileges, favours, etc., exclusively enjoyed (justified or unjustified) by the Whites during Apartheid up to 1994.2,4,22
In 1992 the general Afrikaner population, still guided by an authoritarian Afrikaner leadership, agreed to vote in a referendum on Black rule. The outcome was a “yes.” The naive Afrikaners trusted the various unwritten promises of the NP-AB-DRC leadership that nothing radical will follow after 1994 because of checks and balances in the government of national unity. (In large F W De Klerk owed his 1992-Referendum “victory” to his so called “guarantees” in the constitutional proposals for which he sought a mandate. This should have had included permanent power sharing in a federal system in which power was to be devolved to the maximum possible extent to regions, a free market economy and guarantees for the status of Afrikaans, etc.). Initially the Afrikaners’ reality and rights seemed untouched. All initially went well in the “reconciliation government” until the NP was basically ousted by the Mandela-government (an expected normal development in political evolution and revolution) and De Klerk chose an escape route. The trust of the Afrikaners quickly changed into distrust with the unmasking of the De Klerk-regime’s true political colours. With the entry of Marthinus van Schalkwyk as the new leader of the NP, its total collapse arrived quickly. Suddenly the Afrikaners had not only been double-crossed and betrayed by their trusted NP-AB leadership, but they were also left without any of the many guarantees or back-ups assured by the NP-AB leadership to steer their political future. With the collapse of the NP as a political and military power and a safe haven for the ordinary Afrikaner nationalists, Afrikaners were “homeless.” Many Afrikaners see themselves as a group without a “destiny;” strangers in their previous own territory, stripped from their immense political power and favour, while they seem more and more unwelcome in the ANC-regime.2,4,22
What the unprepared and naive broader population of Afrikaners failed to understand, even as late as in the 2000s, is that the De Klerk-regime was not in a position to guarantee them any of the rights that they enjoyed in such abundance under grand apartheid. These guarantees were worthless political promises, emotional rhetoric, utterances used by opportunistic politicians to promote only their own interests and to manipulate. Many senior NP-negotiators realized this well, but stay silent on the fact that the NP could not secure a constitutional blueprint that contained all of its proposals build on the Referendum-promises in virtually unchanged form. It can be read already in the 1990 to 1994 failed management of F W De Klerk and his regime to control at that stage already violence and to assure good government themselves, forget in a Black-regime.22 Spence22, p. 40writes: “Coupled with political violence has been sharply increasing criminal violence, including numerous cases of the brutal slaying of elderly whites on isolated farms. This, too, has rubbed off on de Klerk by strengthening the perception that his administration has been unable to protect communities and has ‘lost control’”. De Klerk’s “lost of control”, starting in 1990 and that had stayed with him through the rest of his official political career, is undoubtedly still with the Afrikaners in 2017.
It is doubtful if the De Klerk-regime really would have wanted to guarantee these rights, even if they could. After 1994 the NP-AB leaders had a new master to serve and to please and new gains to make for themselves again. Afrikaners misunderstood what De Klerk meant on 27 March 1986 when he said8, p.38: “Any system aimed at keeping some of its participants in a subordinate position through clever or devious means is doomed to failure. It must be visible and honestly just and equitable towards everybody”. After 1994 he extended his so-called ‘justice’ and ‘equitability’ to everybody in South Africa – remember: there was a new master to serve and to please! Also they missed out on his volte face or “Damascus experience” of 2 February 1990, seemingly changing his spiritual visions on politics dramatically.
Afrikaners did not even realize how well planned the NP-AB rejection was. These leaders quickly sought ways to ensure that they would not be prosecuted for apartheid crimes and to make new gains for themselves. Mamphela Ramphele describes these hidden intentions and mechanisms of self-enrichment and personal gain that characterized the NP-ANC talks on a new political dispensation instead of a spirit of keeping promises of political rights for ordinary Afrikaners after 1994 when she writes23, p. 20:
It is significant that those who led the charge on the NP side in the negotiation of our political settlement were Afrikaners elite redeployed from business and academia.
Their brief was to protect the foundations of capital accumulation and obstruct any redistributive policy framework designed to address the extreme poverty and inequality affecting the majority of people.
Key business people worked patiently to shift the mindsets of the less-experienced ANC leaders to get them to adopt market-friendly liberal economic policy frameworks.
The elite comprise underpinning our 1994 political settlement pressured the ANC, in the interest of political power, to sacrifice redistribution and concomitant socio-economic upliftment of the citizens, while the NP exchanged political power for continuing White economic power.
Politicians’ hidden agendas and conscienceless abuse and betrayal of their people are possibly best described by Palkhivala when he says24, p. 81: “…it is beyond hope that the correct guidance can ever come from politicians. They are self-centred and have their minds glued on their own personal prospects and those of their party; and shamelessly look upon people as vote banks and not as human beings entitled to disinterested guidance from their so-called political leaders”.
With the political bankruptcy of the NP and its loss of power, the AB, once the NP’s think tank and brain trust and used over the years as a powerful political machine to ensure the capture, command and control of South Africa for the exclusive benefit of the Afrikaners, came also the lost its political and military power.23 Only a remnant is left today, just enough for a museum piece. (If the ANC-regime should ever consider an Afrikaner institute and its members for prosecution for crimes against humanity, the AB would be the most appropriate one).
It is clear that the ordinary Afrikaner’s position is ultimately in some aspects the same as that of the Mozambican Portuguese who were forced to flee in 1974. Both were suddenly, after the coming of Uhuru, on their own after being betrayed by their long-trusted leaders who they served with utmost loyalty, support and submissiveness. Both found themselves in an extremely hostile political setup. Both were forced to find their own solutions to function. Both were to a great extent to blame them selves because of their own greed, self-positioning, arrogance and White supremacy that closed their eyes to the indigenous realities of Southern Africa.
▲Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5 and Part 4, subdivision 3.2.
3.3 The phantom of the DRC is still lurking in some Afrikaners’ mindsets▼
Today all that is left of the Afrikaner’s previous bullying institutions to guide, support and indoctrinate him with inappropriate Afrikaner ideologies and dogmas in his present personal and political disorientation and insecurity are the three main Afrikaner churches. Here the DRC is still the dominant role player.
The historical role of the DRC in the establishment and continuation of racial discrimination is apparent from the outset. Today, after the collapse of the NP and the paralysing of the AB, it is the strongest conditioner and booster of the Afrikaner’s racial attitudes, although most of the nationalist Afrikaners have publically moved from hyper- to hypo-nationalism.
The DRC’s involvement with apartheid is hidden in a church-political foundation where racial differentiation and racial purity were prominent church doctrines from the 1850s. History shows that the DRC’s formal racial diversity began in 1857 when its Cape Synod introduced segregated congregations. It was a policy that was consistent with the already racially discriminatory church policies of the DRC itself and the two other reformed churches that were founded and very active in the Transvaal and Free State republics.3,10-12
The 1857-decision was undoubtedly one of the main precursors to the grand apartheid of 1948 to 1994. It introduced a unique church-political life and way of thinking among most of the DRC members. In time it became entrenched in its members across the country. The DRC’s church culture had become embedded in a contaminating alliance and interaction between the hierarchies of the DRC and nationalist Afrikaner politicians, as well as the leaderships of the NP and that of the AB. After 1948, this interaction became part of the thinking and behaviours of DRC members.3,10,12
After the 1948 NP take-over of the South African government, the DRC gave its unconditional support and approval to the NP’s new policy of apartheid and started to build the DRC’s political authority within this NP-DRC alliance. The DRC used official church literature to advocate and to justify apartheid, which they claimed to be “godlike diversity,” while several influential and leading DRC ministers, academics and writers produced written propaganda to promote and to establish apartheid in general in the church life and to justify apartheid from Scripture in the DRC. Texts from the Bible were reformulated and misrepresented. The sole intention was to instil apartheid in DRC members and in their religious, social and personal lives as something that was Biblically correct.3,10,12
By 1950 the DRC propaganda had been so successful that a joint congress of the three Afrikaner churches and the Dutch Reformed Mission Church [the Coloured DRC at that time, today the United Reformed Church (URC)] in Bloemfontein decided overwhelmingly in favour of total racial separation in their church life. The DRC apartheid’s policy was reaffirmed at several successive General Synods. Socio-economic and political racial discriminations were quickly embraced, internalized and promoted by many opportunistic nationalist Afrikaner DRC members. Apartheid legislation for example led to the expropriation of the land and properties of non-Whites to create White Areas. Afrikaners were enormously benefitted as they could obtain ownership of these properties cheaply. Job reservation also benefited them. Additionally, apartheid seemed to serve as an external force to “protect” DRC members from the temptation to intermix with non-Whites. A Christian dogma of wisdom had made place for a pathological dogma of financial-political greed in many DRC members’ lives3,10,12
Although the DRC’s racial policies evoked criticism from some of its liberal theologians, the impact was minimal and these elements were promptly suppressed by the hierarchy of the DRC. The expulsions of dissident DRC ministers and thinkers demolished criticism against the DRC’s racism. The DRC’s General Synod decision of 1974 that the Church of Christ (and hence the DRC) had to be opened to all races, peoples and nations, were entirely ignored by the NP-AB hierarchy of the DRC and the managerial boards of the various DRC congregations.3,10,12
The DRC-NP affiliation in time became even more contaminated by extreme racism, which was absolutely entrenched until the fall of the NP in 1994. The NP-AB alliance influenced the DRC as an equal partner. Its stated principle of Afrikaner Christian nationalism changed quickly to Afrikaner Nationalist Christianity with hyper-Afrikaner nationalism in the first place. In this system, racial discrimination, despite its devastating negative psychological and financial consequences for non-Whites, was practiced by its indoctrinated DRC members, which included a strong contingent of NP-politicians and AB-members.3,10,12
Racism is still part of the DRC and present among its members. The established value and belief systems of nationalist Christianity were not dispelled by the DRC in 1994 with the advent of the new South Africa. Today it is still conveyed subtly to DRC-members and inculcated by its hierarchy, just disguised enough to operate within the provisions of the South African Constitution and the Human Rights Commission.
Since 1994 many of the DRC-members’ (especially the elderly) negative racial values were unfortunately strengthened by a multitude of destructive events in the country rather than mitigated: examples of these events are the loss of their “Afrikaner state,” the post-1994 political, social and economic chaos that was created by the ANC government, White poverty, unprecedented violence, crime, corruption and murder. The worst was most certainly the miserable way their long-time partner and patron, the NP, left them lurched and alone. The AB has also started to fade as an emotional and political guide. These events left them disillusioned and politically more radical, with just one notable Afrikaner fortress left that still seeks to protect their church-life, personal and cultural rights, namely the DRC in its current, rigid racial form.2-4,10,12
The fact that DRC-members (especially its youth) have been leaving the church in droves the last decade for the less racially rigid charismatic churches (a phenomenon that will increase dramatically in the next decade), together with the lack of inflow of active, young members, as well as the rise in deaths of its elderly members, predicts that the DRC, as a significant driver to internalize and to strengthen racism among its members, will disappear in the near future. However, to think at this stage that racial discrimination will disappear from the DRC is wishful thinking – their elderly members have been indoctrinated for too long on the racial differences between Whites and non-Whites and the right of Afrikaners to discriminate against non-Whites. This contamination will stay with the DRC until it disbands or all its elderly members have passed away.
▲Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 22.214.171.124
4.1 Past and present actions and movements to safeguard the Afrikaner’s future
It is clear that no provision was made by the NP-AB-DRC alliance to accommodate and to steer the ordinary Afrikaners after 1994 in their adaptation to a new South Africa. The changes in their political, social, economic and personal functioning in the post-1994 South Africa were not only unexpected, but often phenomenal. Many negative emotional outcomes have followed. Afrikaner experiences of injustices, bitterness, insecurity and indirectness should surely be addressed urgently. This seems to have attracted the attention of a few “saviours and savers” of the Afrikaners.
Can Afrikaners stand on their own legs after their NP-leadership and the NP-AB guardianship failed them in 1994 like the proto-Afrikaners successfully did in the 1700s? South African politics and human rights have dramatically changed in the last 20 years, making the racial discrimination and racial misbehaviour that the older generation of Afrikaners grew up with criminal offences. Lifestyles, habits, beliefs, socio-economics, thinking about the future, traditions, group values, family life and demographic limitations have all changes dramatically in South Africa. The individual has detached from group conformity so that it is unnecessary for people to be accommodated in close groups or to be guided by “exclusive” leaders and groups to survive in the future. Also, most ordinary Afrikaners have as individuals started to make these changes of modernization. The condemnation of the NP, the side-lining of the AB and the vague role of the DRC in many Afrikaners’ lives, confirm the process of Afrikaners’ departure from these three previously dominant racism contaminated groups. This new self-orientation and individuality makes the chances excellent for the individual Afrikaner to take on the many challenges of New South Africa. Many Afrikaners, especially the young, have successfully crossed over from the exclusivist Afrikaner identity and entity to which many Afrikaners were exposed, to an inclusive South African identity and entity, driven primarily by indigenous realities. On the other hand it seems as if as many ordinary Afrikaners are still caught in the culture of the old South Africa, drifting around without direction or aims and beset with conflict. Many others show a tendency of rationalizing the present in terms of the past, seriously clouding their insight on conflict and adaptation. Many of these persons seem to have fallen prey to opportunistic “helpers of the Afrikaner case.”
The question is what has happened in general to ordinary Afrikaners in their daily functioning as citizens in South Africa from 1994 up to 2017? How have they managed to deal with the threats and challenges of an unfriendly political environment? The question is also who are the persons and institutions who/which are taking care of them or offer them support services in the absence of the NP and AB?
Before and after 1994 there have been various attempts by new role players “to safeguard the Afrikaners from dissolution.” These role players had varying success. They also offered “guarantees” and visions on how the “dire political, social, economical and cultural situation of Afrikaners” can and will be rectified by these so-called pro-Afrikaner organizations and by a small group of self-appointed new leaders of the Afrikaners. Some of these so-called “saviours” and “rescuers” or “Afrikaner-White helmets” gained the support of a portion of ordinary nationalist Afrikaners who are still anchored in apartheid thinking and the nostalgia of living in grand apartheid (and of course fantasies of re-establishing it in the near future).
Whatever ideas opportunists impress on present-day insecure Afrikaners, the reality is that the Afrikaners can just one day suddenly disappear: dissolute by their own doing, due to natural processes or a hostile environment. These circumstances ask of Afrikaners to look to the future constructively. We can only hope they will think, plan and act more constructively and successfully than their ancestors did thus far. Every Afrikaner must know and understand the indigenous realities of South Africa in order to decide objectively on his or her own fate and future, as well as that of their immediate descendants. Any support and guidance offered either to the Afrikaners as individuals or as a group, must be critically evaluated, otherwise they will be exploited again as the NP-AB leaders did for many years. It is all the more tragic if a people become dissolute of their own doing. Following wrong advice, guidance, trends and solutions spell dissolution by own doing; Afrikaners must note it well.2-4,10,11,14,22,25
The important question at this stage is: What did the Afrikaner himself do to better or to safeguard his position before 1992 and in the post-1994 political dispensation of South Africa? Various options were in available in the past. They are still available, but they will now achieve less than they could have 20 years or more ago.
One option is (or should have been in the 1960s) the Chamberlain-Churchill approach, also known as the “Chamberlain-Churchill reaction of self-assertion”3,14. The Chamberlain element’s intention is to appease the enemy at all time (stemming from the policy of Chamberlain to appease Hitler at all times and not to be aggressive to his neighbouring countries). These actions lack constructive resistance to dangers to the tribe’s existence (the NP-regime’s opportunistic approach since the late-1980s and onwards to Black power was to appease them, while at the same time surrendering power slowly). The Churchill element (representing Churchill’s belief that there was no limits to Hitler’s aggression and that he must be fought and neutralized) means that one takes on the enemy in various forms, representing full resistance and battle without fear of annihilation (an approach strongly inculcated in the armed forces during the offices of Verwoerd and Vorster).3,4
Another approach propagated by some Afrikaner political strategists was and is still to trust the future in terms previous historical outcomes for the Afrikaners and the “sacred” role of the Afrikaner in the South African history (an approach very near the Chamberlain approach of appeasement, but more passive and characterized by a lack of any involvement). This fatalism in the Afrikaner thinking and belief system becomes quite apparent in times of loss and failure as a group or after being abandoned by leaders, as reflected in old Israel. As a result of total disempowerment and their dire situation, the group stops all resistance to the enemy. Even constructive actions stop. Self-isolation and self-pity are prominent. Biblical examples of the Jewish people being rescued from unavoidable dissolution motivate the Afrikaners to believe that a “new life” is waiting and that they will be saved. This thinking seems to find fertile ground among politically, economically and socially suppressed people when they did not implement the Chamberlain-Churchill approach in time.14
Often a belief in the mystical and trust in the supernatural visions of prophets, intertwined with a historical/Biblical context, is used to manipulate people in search for a positive future. In the case of the Afrikaners, a prominent role player in these future visions of Afrikaner salvation is the “prophet” Siener van Rensburg. He prophesied that “Afrikaners will come to power again in South Africa.” In this context, the prophecy of an independent Boer state becomes prominent. This belief seems to be strongly established among the Northern Afrikaners. 26, 27
There are also the various, but mostly false utopias that “Afrikaner-friendly organizations” and self-appointed leaders present to ordinary Afrikaners. These organizations seldom offer free membership and support. They use the motto “we are here for the Afrikaners,” to make money in the short run, knowing very well that their efforts “to better the Afrikaner’s position” locally or globally, is of little significance. The promises, if they are fulfilled, are often not sustainable in the long run.
The above three reactions are discussed more detail in the following sections. These sections discuss the potential to assist Afrikaners to adapt to new threats and challenges in the new South Africa, as well as possibilities to avert their dissolution in a century’s time. On the other hand, the discussion reflects often doubtful business enterprises and dubious characters that can harm Afrikaners interests, especially the poorer and less educated lower classes who are desperate for help, guidelines and new leaders to promote their interests and safeguard them from political dangers.
4.1.1 Chamberlain-Churchill approach
The Chamberlain-Churchill approach, designed in 1939 as a guideline to fight the continuous and constant rise in the aggression of Hitler and his Third Reich, seems to be a good guideline for evaluating what the Afrikaners could have done in the past and what they can still do to protect their interests, although less would be possible at present.14,28
Niall Ferguson describes the Afrikaner’s choice between fight or flight and the consequences that awaited Afrikaners after 1994 (and as far back as 1910) if they acted in certain ways well when he writes14, p. 318: “Even a dog has a choice when confronted by a more aggressive dog: to fight or to flee.” Based on the Chamberlain-Churchill approach, the Afrikaners had four options in the 1990s14, p. 319:
- Acquiescence. The primary approach of the Afrikaner since 1994 was “hoping for the best”, trusting that the Blacks’ gestures of good will towards the Whites are sincere. They let the Blacks “have their way for a while in South Africa” before taking some repair actions. It seems the Afrikaners gave the ANC unwritten permission with their Yes-vote in the 1993 referendum to mismanage the country, to practice corruption, nepotism, fraud, and to take financial mismanagement and misadministration of the country to an unprecedented high. The present threats to their pensions, capital, property, as well as AA, EE and EEB (nothing other than legalized racial discrimination), are a few of many dilemmas suddenly facing the Afrikaner (but to which they willingly agreed).
Resistance to these discriminations, especially outside the prescribed legal channels, can only spell disaster and war. A war is beyond the means of Afrikaners at this stage. The Afrikaners have no political or military power to obtain justice; they only have legal action in terms of the Constitution and the Constitutional Court.
This tendency to “hope for the best” corresponds with the (failed) guarantees offered by the De Klerk regime when they mesmerized the Afrikaners into voting yes in exchange for a guarantee that the goodwill of the ANC-elite is sincere and will be honoured in the long run. The (failed) government of national unity should have affirmed this sincere goodwill of the Blacks. The Afrikaners forgot about “for a while before they will be taken repair actions.” Seeing as they lost their power by their own free will in 1994, they have no means to take repair actions besides the Constitutional Court, which can only bring limited “reparation.”
- Retaliation. In the context of retaliating are time and resources important. A retaliation party has to act with speed and overwhelming power. This can include physical actions like military retaliation for wrongdoing against the victim (as in the case of the British and Europeans in reaction to Nazi aggression). The Afrikaners did have this kind of reaction up to the 1990s towards the ANC and the other Black revolutionary organizations. However, since the Afrikaners lost all political and military power in 1994, any direct organized military action is excluded as an option. At the moment, retaliation represents only the implementing of “formal objections and legal steps” as reactions to offensive ANC actions. The only option is passive actions such as approaching the Constitutional Court, and where available and allowed, official parliamentary actions. Thus far these reactions have had limited positive outcomes with respect to Afrikaner interests. Since 1994 Afrikaners have been second-class citizens, and there is very little they can do about it.
- Deterrence. During WW2, the British entered into an armed struggle with friendly countries to form a strong united military front to take on the Nazis and to bring them down. In the case of the Afrikaners, there was (White) cooperation with the Portuguese in Mozambique and Angola and Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) before the 1990s to take up arms against (Black) aggressive revolutionary organizations. After the end of Portuguese rule in Africa and the ousting of the Smith-regime in Rhodesia, the Afrikaner was alone. After 1994, the scenario changed from military to political combat. After the collapse of the NP and the diminishing of the right-wing faction of Afrikaners, the only alternatives left for the disempowered Afrikaners were to join strong existing and upcoming political opposition groups, like the DA, or to found their own strong cultural, social, economical and political structures. The aim: to build up “an own ability to strike legally and politically at the opponent.” So far political bodies like the DA have had limited politically success in addressing the failures of the ANC in parliament, municipalities, governmental departments, parastatals, etc. The founding of bodies like Afriforum and Solidariteit has in individual cases been successful with effort to safeguard and promote Afrikaner interests, although on a very limited scale. Corrections of ANC wrongdoings via other official and non-governmental bodies were and are mostly limited as a result of the strong representing of the ANC in the parliament and other executive and legal structures. It is clear that the Afrikaners are not only side-lined, but are in a process of losing more ground in the present governmental setup. There have been no successful deterrence efforts since 1994, nor is there any possibility of this being a real option.
- Pre-emption. The nationalist Afrikaner regime was very well armed and good at eliminating threats with pre-emptive military strikes. They kept political problems like the “Black danger” at bay with these forces. Since 1994 this option has not been available to Afrikaners. At the moment Afrikaners lack any military or political executive power to end the ANC-regime and Black authority. Another form of pre-emptive behaviour is needed, namely new political empowerment. In this regard the Afrikaners lack the numbers to challenge the ANC in elections or to do “political pre-emptive strikes” on the ANC powerhouse. The Afrikaners’ greatest chance at pre-emptive action is through the DA, where they are in a subordinate position inside a semi-Black organization. All indications are that the DA will become more Black-orientated with time, although they undoubtedly have more sympathy for Afrikaner interests than the ANC in the short term. Afrikaners therefore have no powerful tool to strike with pre-emptive action.
In terms of the Chamberlain-Churchill approach to rectifying political instability, Afrikaners have basically lost all means. Their own problematic economic situation, declining political empowerment and often their own short-sightedness, have caused them to in effect become a political failure. They have become aliens in the new South Africa, a group without any pre-emptive power, often burying his head in the sand like an ostrich.
In terms of the “Chamberlain/Churchill reactions of self-assertion” required to neutralize treats of nation dissimilation, it seems that Afrikaners had become helpless to take any preventive actions in terms of self-preservation and self-defence against or assault on their political enemies to assure their future. The Chamberlain-Churchill approach can basically only be implemented and activated from an existing position of strength. In the Afrikaner’s case, such action was needed long before 1994 when the Afrikaners were still in a position of power to force down decisions favouring them, like an Afrikaner homeland. In the Afrikaners’ emotional and financial dependence (and blind trust) of their NP-AB leadership since the 1960s, thoughts of such self-remedial actions were just unthinkable and unneeded because history could never go wrong for the Afrikaners. Their dependence made them an easy prey in the 1990s for the De Klerk-regime, which was beset with the Chamberlain-inclination of acquiescence to appease and please the ANC and to surrender without any resistance. In the 1993 referendum, Afrikaners were easy prey to be caught by the De Klerk-regime and the ANC.2,4,14,28
After the De Klerk-regime disbanded the Afrikaners’ armed forces, there was no chance for any turn-around or a full Churchill-approach to fight the threat to their political rights. The Afrikaners are in a sense to blame for this, since they had ample time to get rid of De Klerk or to reject his surrender to the ANC. Self-assertion is still available, but within the hostile setup it is much more limited. In the Afrikaner’s case it seems as if the dog is fleeing, and with good reasons. For the first time, it seems as if the odds are just too great to overcome, or at least for some of the Afrikaners.2,4,14,28
4.1.2 History and its joker surprises
History, thankfully, have also had unexpected, even strange outcomes. The fortunes and misfortunes of nations have in some instances changed even after they had fled or failed, totally contradicting the rules of trustworthy predictions (and even sound thinking!). The impact of extreme world disasters, like earthquakes, pests, new wars, immense famine, new mass migrations, just to mention a few, have in the past had quick and profound impacts on the power of mighty empires or have caused undervalued, small nations’ fate to take a turn for the better. To a certain extent, the Afrikaners experienced this kind of luck after the devastating Second Anglo Boer War. The possibility is there that today’s Afrikaners can be lucky again, even though they are such a small indigenous racial group. However, the chances are slim.3,14,24,28
History shows that the unexpected joker surprises sometimes result from the incorporation of a subordinate group (loser/victim) into the social and political life of the ruler (suppressor/winner). Often this takes place at the beginning of the new regime’s take over, other times later on as the new regime (winner) becomes established and as they lose their insecurity or resentment of the subordinate or their need for revenge. Two primary factors drive this joker surprise: first, a positive change in the suppressor/ruler in that he no longer see the subordinate as a danger to his reign; and secondly, the subordinates/losers reflecting excellent abilities that the ruler urgently needs to make a country successful.
Positive changes in governments of places that previously experienced racial and ethnic conflict that ultimately lead to sound non-discriminative management and rule and the inclusion of the “loser” sometimes contradicts the established and traditional findings on the outcomes of genocide or racial conflict as happened in Europe with the cold blooded killing of ethnic minorities with the millions of murders of “colonial” Jews and other groups under Hitler and Stalin. In Southern Africa, Namibia is an example of such a successful transition to a race-free democracy, starting immediately after independence. South Africa, after initially being a reconciliation success, failed to include the Afrikaners as a political group in the government and started to force not only the Afrikaners out of political empowerment, but to inspire further Black discrimination against them. The expulsion of the Afrikaners was not because they were incompetent politicians or substandard citizens, but purely as a direct outcome of the ANC-regime’s hate for the Afrikaners’ apartheid (and possible masked racism). This negative view of Afrikaners is gaining ground as the present-day political rhetoric and actions of the ANC elite shows.14,25,29
There are undoubtedly many factors that favour the Afrikaner as a group that may help them come back into South African history as a prominent role player in a future governmental life. Despite their descent, they are closer to Africa than to Europe after 350 years. They have become indigenous.4,12 Afrikaners have gradually been cemented into an African indigenous heritage (although clouded by apartheid). The Afrikaner has great talent, experience and political intelligence, making him capable at many levels. Research on the pattern of ousting the losers from politics shows specific that jealousy and inferiority on the side of the winner are often the causes. The ANC elite show signs of this syndrome with their ousting of Afrikaners from the South African political life, as well as their hostile labels of “colonists,” “exploiters,” ”thieves.” It seems many of the negative reactions are directly linked to the Afrikaner’s personal talents that make him capable, like leadership, integrity, being hardworking, honesty, strategic thinking and independence. It was through the Afrikaner’s self-styled and to a great extent selfish guardianship and separate development initiative during his political reign (much of its positive impact is being ignored, denied and detested today) that the Black civilisation was helped to overtake the White civilisation in 1994, making the Blacks the new guardians of the South African society. This is a normal development that Hertzog already indicated in the 1920s. He warned the Afrikaner to take note and to be prepared if they develop and promote the Black civilisation unselfishly and wrong planned.3,4,12,30,31
Afrikaners and their forefathers have made and are still making tremendous contributions to the country, although now outside the ANC’s main stream of politics. They have the potential to do it again inside the political context in the future if they are offered the opportunity by a wise Black regime. The majority of Afrikaners deserve respect and acknowledgement, something the ANC regime and its leadership have thus far, for obvious opportunistic and self-centred reasons, refused to give. The Afrikaner does have a bond with South Africa. It was with great honesty that Nelson Mandela said that the Afrikaner is through blood and tears, the same as all the other indigenous nations, part of South Africa.32
One possibility for the Afrikaner to gain a place to participate in the country is the predicted fall of the ANC. Some political research indicates that there would be a new ruler in 2024, while others indicate the possible end of the ANC government by 2019. This can bring surprising changes to the South African political landscape.22,33-36
Even though the DA will in all probability be a majority Black party in the near future, they will surely be much more lenient and friendly in its attitude and treatment of the individual indigenous Afrikaner as a political companion. In this political context it must be emphasised that the new South Africa still holds many opportunities for Afrikaners, especially if the Black ruler of the day is positive about them. There can still be a surprise under the present ANC-regime. History sometimes surprises everyone.36-38
4.1.3 History and the biblical destiny of the Afrikaner
There is an interrelationship between the Afrikaners’ history and the Afrikaners’ biblical belief system, sometimes with a vicious undertone. Some Afrikaners believe that they are in some way “a chosen people,” placed in South Africa to Christianise the Blacks and to spread European culture here. Those who adhere to this belief think that since this is their “God-given destiny,” He will take care of them in the long run. This thinking dates back to the late 1790s and was further cultivated by the proto-Afrikaners and Afrikaner churches like the DRC. It was propagated and strengthened from 1948 by the leadership of the NP, AB and the DRC as part of their nation-building efforts and attempts to gain political power. Closely intertwined with this dogma is also the belief in the God-given visions of Siener van Rensburg. Many Afrikaners considered him a prophet. Van Rensburg, a Transvaal burgher who fought against the British, alleged to have made some “successful” predictions about the outcomes of battles during the Second Anglo Boer War and about the fact that the Boers would lose the war. Some believe that he also predicted the “suffering” of the Afrikaners under the present-day ANC regime. Fascination with his views increased in the last ten years of Afrikaner rule. 26, 27
The relevance of his prophecies for today lies in the fact that he allegedly prophesied that there would be a Black regime that would rule South Africa for a while, but as soon the Afrikaners make peace with God and rid themselves of non-Afrikaner thinking, influences and intermingling, God will put them in charge of South Africa again. Afrikaners are required in terms of his dogma to stay calm and trust God at all times. Van Rensburg’s visions of the future South Africa and the Afrikaners’ prominent role in it carry strong support among some Afrikaners, especially the elderly from the North of the country and a new contingent of Afrikaners who feel side-lined and helpless in the present political context.26, 27
These prophecies are illogical, selective of peoples and nations and seldom realizes. At this time they are misleading, creating not only false hope, but also racial conflict. The White population is dwindling when compared to the Black population (at present they make up 8% of the population, while in 20 years’ time this percentage will be between 4% and 6%, and in 60 years, 1% at most). If a war or disaster is the reason for Van Rensburg’s coming change, it will affect both Blacks and Whites equally. If a White government comes into power again, racial discrimination would start all over again. According to the Herodotus Rules, the Afrikaner would take the place of the victim in time and the positions will reverse again. The Van Rensburg predictions, if they ever realize, are a recipe for disaster and large-scale genocide and murder of a powerless Afrikaner people in a future South Africa. This is an outcome that will hopefully never realize. Thankfully, the success of such an outcome is only one in 30 million and limited to and promoted by a small fraction of Afrikaners.26,27, 39
4.1.4 The donkey’s carrot and Afrikaners’ false utopias
Since 1994 some Afrikaners have held to the belief that history will only be merciful on the Afrikaner if they themselves are constructive and participate in their own fate. Three factors play a role in this.
126.96.36.199 Outdated emotionally driven group conformity and group management
There seems to be a concerted effort by some individuals to keep Afrikaners together as a group and to strengthen them with some measure of political impact in the country. They are trying to motivate Afrikaners to stay (more than 1.2 million Afrikaners have left South Africa since 1994, and this process is gaining ground among the youth). The efforts to create Afrikaner solidarity is partly based on the belief that they are still a group and that they should identify leaders who can lead them to an Afrikaner utopia. However, these efforts are in vain, since many Afrikaners are distrustful of “Afrikaner leaders.” They are wary of anything apartheid-flavoured and they are comfortable enough in post-1994 to steer clear of any talk of an Afrikaner utopia.41-47
188.8.131.52 The elderly, the poor and outdated Afrikaner nationalism
Data show that the migration for great groups of people (even from European origin) to Europe and other Western countries are becoming unfeasible, as the current resistance and hostility to Islamic refugees all over Europe shows. Any further large exodus of Afrikaners will be impossible. Even if the was opportunity, the ageing of Afrikaners makes them less acceptable in other European countries (at the moment the 60 years and older age group makes up 22% of the total White population, while the age group over 16 years makes up another 60%. The average age of Afrikaners is increasing fast, leaving the possibility of a total Afrikaner population of less than one million in 30 years). Obviously the older and poorer Afrikaners would be a burden on another country, so they are unwelcome. These elders are best off keeping their capital in the country and living their lives here. Data also confirm that there are still many opportunities for educated and eager Afrikaner youths to make money and to start a life in the new South Africa, but then outside the nationalist Afrikaner political and cultural doctrine and domain. Many Afrikaners are doing extraordinary well after 1994 financially speaking; so much so that their income increased much more from 1994 to 2014 than in the 18 years after 1910. From a short-term financial perspective South Africa is a future utopia for the older and the poorer Afrikaners. A point of great concern is the hidden efforts of self-made opportunistic Afrikaner leaders to mobilize these ordinary Afrikaners as an opposing force to Black rule. The financial abilities of these persons, like pension funds and other investments, also draw the attention of opportunistic Afrikaners and their enterprises. The rekindling of a strong nationalist Afrikaner movement has thus far been of minimal success, even among the elderly. This group has become concerned with their day-to-day existence, a far cry from the tribal concerns of years ago. The only link to their nationalist past that they are upholding is their Afrikaner churches, especially the DRC, which itself has suffered a decline in numbers.41-47
184.108.40.206 Present-day saviours and rescuers of the Afrikaners▼
The third group that offers visions of an Afrikaner utopia is the old right-wing groups, often inclusive of opportunistic Afrikaner businessmen. Sometimes the intentions are nothing less than self-enrichment. Their rhetoric aims to make Afrikaners feel endangered by speaking of topics like the danger in which Afrikaner educational institutions (schools and universities) are, farm murders, political discrimination, the capture of farms and of White capital, radical economic transformation, etc. Many of these allegations have some semblance of truth, but are stretched to fuel emotion. The “Black danger” warning is prominent, while the conservation of the Afrikaner’s self-rule is a primary topic (with the focus on an Afrikaner state or region, consisting of exclusive Afrikaner communities with their own educational institutions, etc.). Many of these private enterprises, promoting themselves as able to assist the Afrikaners with regaining their “old rights and privileges,” are run by former Afrikaner leaders, portraying themselves as sincere businesses and servants of the Afrikaner cause. At the moment many of these saviours and rescuers of the Afrikaners (Afrikaner white helmets?) are central role players in that they offer bursaries and support education and legal defence for Afrikaners’ constitutional rights. There are thankfully also a contingent of persons and enterprises of integrity active in these areas. This group have become the central role players in the political, cultural, economical and personal “rehabilitation” of ordinary Afrikaners. They are the “pilots” who can steer Afrikaners back to their former glory. Their well-oiled marketing strategies and their impact on a certain component of ordinary Afrikaners through services and products should be reflected on. This is done in the next section.
In terms of the activities, agendas, intentions and rhetoric reflected by some of these pro-Afrikaner activist groups, it is crucial that Afrikaners make sure who these people and their enterprises are. Afrikaners must learn to separate the wheat and chaff. Modern Afrikaners cannot allow their minds to be polluted by any opportunistic fellow Afrikaners who bought into the ANC dogma of nepotism and corruption, or by self-centred and greedy Afrikaners and institutions who want to mislead the Afrikaners with false propaganda and short-sighted information about the Afrikaners’ future. Even the Afrikaner media still tries to persuade Afrikaners of a good future in South Africa on the one hand and of the hostile actions that threaten Afrikaners on the other. Many of these editorials and articles lack knowledge and wisdom with respect to the “Afrikaner question.” Some also lacks knowledge of economical planning and the functioning of the country, world, genocide, etc. Most of all, they seem to be out of touch with the thinking of modern Afrikaners, young and old. Their advice and guidelines on the future for Afrikaners (as individuals and as groups) – inside or outside the country – lack the needed depth and soundness to inspire wise decisions and seems to be driven by emotional rhetoric. The Afrikaners must start to think beyond this mass propaganda and false ideas of “an everlasting happy new South Africa” or “durable support to solve the Afrikaners mistreatment by the ANC.” Nor must they blindly accept and support schemes to better themselves while in reality they are enriching only these individuals and groups at their own peril.48-60, 64
▲Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5.
220.127.116.11.1 Incoming of exclusive private school and tertiary education▼
Education is of great importance for the Afrikaners. This has been the case from the 1930s when Afrikaners suffered devastating poverty due to prolonged droughts and poor markets. The Afrikaners were mainly farmers, so this affected a large portion of the group. In 1936, 41.2% Afrikaners were in agricultural occupations, compared to 27.5% in White collar occupations (with 31.3% in blue collar and other manual occupations). These numbers have changed dramatically over the next 41 years. In 1977, only 8.1% Afrikaners were still in agricultural occupations (a decline of 23.2%), with 65.2% in White collar occupations (an increase of 37.7%). The percentage for blue collar and other manual occupations in 1977 was 26.7% (a decline of 4.6%).4
With the arrival of the ANC on the scene in 1994 and the many problems around school and tertiary education that followed, education again became a main point of concern for many Afrikaners. While they argue that the quality of education has dropped, concerns also included racially mixed institutions, being allowed Christian schools and Afrikaans as language of instruction. Many Afrikaners are unwilling to send their children to open schools where there is racial mixing, class divisions are breaking-down and non-racism has become the priority. They share the concerns that PW Botha aired when opening Parliament on 6 May 1987: the “protection of individual rights”, the “protection of minority rights”, the “protection of minority groups” and the “gap between the first world (Afrikaner) and the third world (Blacks) and the lowering of standards”. These “protections” valued by Botha for many Afrikaners became legitimate claims based on guarantees by the NP-regime before its fall. They in effect want exclusive Afrikaner residential areas, lifestyle and rights, as in the pre-1994 South Africa, far removed from the indigenous realities of South Africa.8
Education has become a hot issue in White-Black relations. Some Afrikaners want “better”, alternative education to fit the “exclusive standards” of education required by some of them. Private education has become an attractive alternative for Afrikaners who can afford it. It has become a gold mine for educators and businessmen who care to entertain these notions, which are often accompanied by racist attitudes. For many Afrikaners private education is a miracle, for others it seems to be a nightmare. The true consequences of private education could only be determined two to three decades from now, but at present there is much to worry about.
Many South African private organizations pride themselves in being able to save the Afrikaners with the help of linked organizations. One group of businesses, which primarily focus on Afrikaners as clients, is reflecting 350 000 members (and one million indirect members when the family members of their members are included!). Regarding tertiary education, their advertising literature mentions that they have assisted more than 5 000 students at a cost of R73 million; that their student fund is R100 million strong and that they plan to expand their scholarship fund to R160 million by 2020; that they are currently training 1 000 artisans and plan to train 1 500 artisans annually in the near future; that they have invested R50 million each in two separate training institutes; that they intend to invest R735 million in security structures, municipal services and schools by 2020 and that they aim to establish an Afrikaner hostel at one of the public universities. At the same time, they are speaking of the establishment of a private “university” for Afrikaners comparable to Yale! As can be seen from their marketing strategy, most of their actions or products are “planned,” or “will be established,” meaning simply that they are not in existence. Promises are not facts and truths, and Afrikaners must take note of this.49,51,54,55,57,60-63
First, the above group’s 350 000 members is misleading for the purposes of true education empowerment. Most of their members belong to their labour union, insurance division, etc. A very low percentage of these members can be useful in their education network to create a significant Afrikaner tertiary institution, exclusively for Afrikaners. Their insignificant present student numbers, when compared with that of the public universities’ numbers, confirms this. As said, to present intentions and future planning as realities, is misleading and cannot be taken as a viable and sustainable guarantee. Second, their 350 000 members (hopefully ordinary Afrikaners?) represent less than 13% of the total Afrikaner population (2.7 million) presently living in South Africa, making even their 350 000 memberships insignificant. Eighty seven per cent (87%) of Afrikaners do not make use of any of their general services, with many more ignoring their academic activities. Third, regarding the status of their “university,” they failed to inform the public that as a “private tertiary institute” they are not allowed to use the title “university” in South Africa, although they can offer degree programmes, but only if they meet the prescribed standards and are registered with and controlled by the various statutory bodies. Fourth, their vague reference to the possible training of healthcare professionals in the future is nothing less than fantasy. This kind of training, which includes expensive equipment, training facilities, staff and overseeing, is unaffordable without immense infrastructure and enormous government subsidies (something that private tertiary institutions do not receive and will not receive in the near future).49,51,54,55,57,59-63
Another business group, already active in private school education and functioning as a public company on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), also advertises that they are going to open various “universities” in the near future as a public company, also to be registered on the JSE. It is assumed that they will, besides Afrikaners, also cater for other races as students to make it viable and sustainable. Their intention is to offer various degree programmes to 40 000 students initially, but to enlarge the student numbers to 100 000.65 As previously said, to present intentions and future planning as realities, is misleading and cannot be taken as a viable and sustainable guarantee.
All these promises, however good the intentions, can do more harm than good given the uncertainty of Afrikaners. It also holds enormous financial risks for shareholders in the long run where these enterprises are register on the JSE to generate funding for their businesses’ development. For Afrikaners who put their savings into such an enterprise in support of the “Afrikaner cause,” the outcome can be catastrophic in the long run. A well-known educational institution that went public in the 1990s after the South African authorities allowed the opening of private institutions to offer degrees and other tertiary qualifications came on the market at R40 a share. When it was delisted as a company in the 2000s, it shares were bought out by the parent company in a rescue-effort for 40 cents a share, reflecting a hundredth of a share’s initial value. Such negative outcomes can and will happen again as the South African financial environment worsens and public education is rehabilitated by a new regime, again offering excellent public education at affordable costs to South Africans. Also, when the promises of private enterprises of large enrolments fail to realize and they don’t show the profit to make these “universities” viable and sustainable businesses, the financial academic outcomes can be devastating for shareholders, as well as students enrolled in good faith.49,51,54-57,59-61,66
Regarding the private tertiary institutions for the sake of Afrikaans and Afrikaners, the dwindling and impoverishing Afrikaners are not able financially to support such a dream in the long run. The limited work opportunities and inclusiveness of the government’s AA, EE and BEE employment policy with respect to all appointments and employments, even Afrikaner private enterprises, makes the chances that these “home trained” Afrikaners will be employed very slim. The leaders of these enterprises failed to tell the Afrikaner public that the Afrikaners are an ageing population who do not need further study and training. They also fail to tell the Afrikaner public that the Afrikaners are in a process of dissolution: it is estimated that in 30 years, there will be less than one million Afrikaners in South Africa (mostly old people), while in 60 years their number will be less than 300 000. In the year 2117, there will be less than 20 000 “pure” Afrikaners left in South Africa. The financial viability and sustainability of these exclusive “Afrikaner universities” are basically zero.41-47
There is no sound basis for comparison of the quality and world ranking of these private and public tertiary institutions. The qualifications offered by these private institutions are not accepted with the same approval as those of the public universities by employers in general. This outcome also has a negative impact on the overseas employment of graduates and on further study. Very few of the graduates from private South African tertiary institutions continue their studies at public South African universities. The argument that the quality of public universities is falling due to the student unrest of the past two years is not accurate. The unrest proved to be temporary and most of the public universities compete well internationally. Besides, education at the public universities is still much less expensive than at the private universities.
Running a single medium-size faculty at a public university costs more or less R50 million a year, while a medium-size university with three campuses that include 26 faculties, costs about R1.3 billion per annum. It is also public knowledge that not a single one of the 26 South African public universities are successful business enterprises that can function without state subsidy, which makes up anywhere between 10% to 90% (average 50%) of the 26 universities’ total annual income. Those who sell a university to the public as a business model that can offer private education to Afrikaners are abusing the naïveté of the public.52-56,59,67-72
What is more, the Constitution of South Africa forbids discrimination on entrance to any universities, private or public, on the basis of race. This means that the planned exclusive “private Afrikaner universities” may not allow only “pure Afrikaners” (meaning Caucasians who speak Afrikaans at home). It will be compelled to allow all students speaking Afrikaans (not necessarily at home). This group numbers more than 13.5 million against the 2.7 million Afrikaners. This can render the “only Afrikaner” exclusiveness null and void. This knowledge is kept from the public and shareholder by the Afrikaner saviours with their private Afrikaner tertiary institutions registered on the JSE.52-56,59,67-72
Regarding private schooling, this element of education has also found approval with the Afrikaners, although it seems that the educational environment is less racially orientated, with some private businesses offering this kind of service. Still, some Afrikaners show great interest in this type of schooling, especially those offering a so-called Christian education where the Black numbers are small. This trend therefore warrants some investigation as well.
In South Africa private schools make up only 4% of all the South African schools and are therefore insignificant role players in education. Although there was a significant growth in this sector in the last 10 years, the bulk of pupils are still concentrated in public schools, which accommodate more than 12 million pupils in 23 700 schools countrywide. Private schools seem popular as a result of the temporary instability in the public school education, which often lack quality education and management. Afrikaners from the middle class (a group that is growing as rich Afrikaners earn less income) and its higher income earners are making use of these institutions. From a financial perspective, these schools are generally expensive, with fees varying between R15 000 and R21 000 per month. These fees make it unaffordable for most South Africans, although some of the schools situated in the rural areas still offer enrolment at lower fees.73
These schools can be attractive for the Afrikaners, especially those parents who believe private schools offer a better education and an environment that is more conducive to learning, additional resources, better policies and practices and who are of course satisfied with their hidden racial discrimination. The prominent question is: are these schools a stable factor in the future of the Afrikaners’ education and are they the saviours of Afrikaner education? Are Afrikaner children really benefitting from it? As a guideline one can use the statistics of one of these groups for 2017. This group has increased pupil numbers by a compound growth rate of 31% since 2012, with revenue and earnings increasing at a rate of 48% and 83% respectively over the same period. Looking back to 2009 when it joined a large business as partner, its numbers increased from 2 000 pupils to 35 000 in 2015, but it now seems as if enrolment has started to reach saturation. As many as 127 of their present schools are only operating at a 52% capacity.73 Evidence suggests that further expansion plans are just too ambitious. Gumede writes73, p. 8: “…it’s not one of those things the market is going to get excited over because there are hurdles to achieving such target”. This negativity about the future of private schools is confirmed by other sources. This draws the attention to one of these groups declaration that tit plan to establish and run 500 schools in South Africa by 2030. The attainment of this target is doubtful (in terms of financial viability and sustainability given the fact that private capital must fund it), especially in light of the poor financial environment into which the country is moving. There is a relatively small middle class, the country’s credit ratings have been downgraded, poor economic outlook, low business and personal confidence in the government, sub-zero growth are prominent. One of these education groups constantly have to back up development, not from net profits delivered by the schools or from the pockets of the owners themselves, but from annual rights (This group has had six rights offers in six years, yet still do not pay dividends to shareholders as a result of “reinvesting” of profits).73
The fact that some of the private education service deliverers are not using their own money to run these enterprises but make use of enormous public money (via the JSE, etc.) to drive their businesses, leaves a question mark on stable profits from the existing schools as a direct source of income. Why do these schools not generate enough capital to drive on their own growth in terms of pupils and more schools? Profit and dividend payment to shareholders based on the delivery of affordable education does not seems to be viable and sustainable.73 Promises of future performance cannot and should not be seen as guarantees. It is a marketing strategy to attract attention, nothing more. The Afrikaners who support these ventures with their hard-earned capital to secure their children an “Afrikaner education” at the secondary or tertiary levels must take note of this.
It is clear from the above it will be difficult for many Afrikaners to make use of private schools in future because the fees of these schools will increase, while the income of the parents is on the decrease. An eagerly parent who wants to make a contribution to the continuation of private schools by investing money into the holding companies, should take note of the constant lack of significant net profit generated by some of these schools themselves and the constant use of rights to do development. Constant development (reinvestment) leads to “over-development” and the “over-sourcing” of finance via the JSE from the public that stretches beyond the true value of some education enterprises. This can lead to a vicious cycle of “money-sourcing,” for reasons other than pure education delivery. Private school education is, like private tertiary education, not always the utopia offered too many ordinary Afrikaners, from promises of exclusive “White” education, to promises of financial gain.
The initiatives for the creation of own-funded private “universities”, schools and related educational businesses are noble ideas and must not be seen at any time as “illegal”, “irregular” or “fraud’. It is individuals and business-groups democratic right to do and practice it and to believe in the virtue of it, as long as they stay inside the law. What is clear is that a line must be drawn between business opportunism which is focussed on every individual, notwithstanding race, religion or status or political orientation in South Africa to make money from by business enterprises versus business initiatives solely focussed in helping the Afrikaners in their unique political, ethnic, racial and cultural dilemma. Here especially are the political confused Afrikaners under radar. With a shrinking Afrikaner population and decreased buying power, exclusion from profitable and sustainable enterprises and professions by a growing policy of AA, EE and BEE, these actions to “save” of Afrikaners are just too little too late. The same is happening here than what happened with the Jews in Germany, Hungary and Poland in the 1940s, namely the selectively disownment of their properties, being kept out of professions, closure of their schools and universities, withdrawal of business rights, limiting their civil and personal lives. Nothing can stop the ANC from making an end to private school and tertiary training in the near future. The worst can still come. The Afrikaners must be informed and not be misled by moneymaking schemes and business opportunists who abuse their emotional and personal unhappiness in present-day South Africa. Public education is still the most viable and preferable for the ordinary Afrikaner. Most important of all, it helps the Afrikaner to enter the South African open society and to accept the indigenous realities of the country. His individuality is here centred, not outdated political, racial and cultural groupings and doctrines or isolation in Afrikaner learning-enclaves. Exclusive private institutions cannot reach this goal.56,68,72,73
▲Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5.
18.104.22.168.2 Private enterprises who take on public and legal battles on behalf of Afrikaners▼
Frustrated Afrikaners are at the moment limited to court cases, appeals to the Constitutional Court and moaning in the few struggling Afrikaans newspapers still publishing. Many of these unhappy and deserted Afrikaners are putting their last hopes, trust and money, often in vain, into various “organisations for Afrikaners” to repair their lost political, economical, social and civil rights. In all honesty, these organizations do not have the real political power, know-how and finances to restore the Afrikaners’ dignity and rights in full, or even have the stamina themselves to outlive the Afrikaners’ daily growing problems.56,57,74-84
A profile analysis of the two largest of the private enterprises involved in the “Afrikaner cause” reflect that they have approximately 170 000 supporters and approximately 350 000 members respectively. These two, to a certain extent, self-styled “Afrikaner saving bodies,” how humble and honest their intentions may be, have struggled to attract more than between 5% and 13% of the total Afrikaner population since 1994. One of these bodies’ Afrikaner support has gone down from 600 000 votes in 1994 to only 166 000 in 2014, reflecting a decline of nearly 70% in 20 years. The prominent nationalist Afrikaner right-wing organizations that promised the freeing of the Afrikaner from Black rule after 1994, have all but disappeared.60,74,85
Besides the two organizations referred to above, various other smaller organizations and initiatives representing the interests of today’s “lost” Afrikaners surface from time to time. Some of these organizations target the Afrikaners’ religiosity. However much these organizations, initiatives, leaders and “prophets” like to present themselves as saviours, their own life-span as service deliverers are at most ten years. They are superficial, directionless, not viable or sustainable in the new South Africa. Second, some of these “saviours” are intentionally (seeing that some of the leaders themselves make alarm that the Afrikaners are in a process of dissolution) not informing their uninformed followers that there will be only between 300 000 and 1 million Afrikaners left in South Africa in 30 to 60 years (in a century it can be less than 20 000 “pure” Afrikaners). This makes the “pure” Afrikaners as a dynamic and profitable entity to generate income through membership and donations for all these initiatives, insignificant. Their rescue efforts are already doomed. Efforts to mobilize Afrikaner positively to accept the new South Africa unconditionally, to discard apartheid and racial discrimination fully are absent from these various initiatives. All that many of these “saviour” initiatives do is to give false hope of a “new Afrikaner South Africa.” They often just strengthen outdated apartheid and racial discriminations and negative political attitudes in the minds of confused and directionless Afrikaners, making their future adaptation to a non-racial society basically impossible.20,60,70,74,83,85,87-91
The actions and declarations of these various organizations that have emerged since 1994 with their sympathy for the “Afrikaner cause” through court actions and other public rescue-actions on behalf of the ordinary Afrikaners are also reflected in public publications. It must be clear that these organizations in general are not non-profit organizations, but are often trade unions that are constantly marketing themselves as the front-line fighters for a specific cause: Afrikaner rights and the Afrikaner’s future. Their main aims are to assure member enrolments, member fees and thus a constant income for the union’s staff salaries and benefits. Public statements that these organizations currently have more than 30 affirmative action cases against the state pending, that they win nearly 90% of their court cases, that they handle 400 000 work-related enquiries annually, that they are involved in 1 200 legal disputes and court actions at any given time and that they are even making presentations to the United Nation on behalf of the Afrikaner, bare evidence of their excellent marketing policies. All these efforts cost money and ask immense input from the organizations, but ultimately serve to attract more support, more members and more income. They have offices to maintain, as well as the salaries, pensions and medical funds of the “hard-working and sincere” directors, managers and staff involved in these solutions to Afrikaner “injustices.” They offer limited welfare and free services, and in the end all these services are funded by the Afrikaner themselves through membership fees and their donations for the “urgent Afrikaner cause.” Very few Afrikaner organizations offer any free services to the public. They never mention the declining Afrikaner numbers and how little they can do about that. Much of their rhetoric also reflects a strong anti-Black view, troubling racial relations unnecessary. In some cases it seems as if they deliberately seek conflict, and this causes Afrikaners in general to look like they are uncooperative. These actions not only increases hostility, but contributes to moving Afrikaners further away from inclusion in the South African politics.49,51,54,55,57, 59-61, 66, 72
These organizations call on memories of the “Help Each Other”-initiative of 1915 which led to the later founding of various Afrikaner financial institutions. However, the comparison is misleading and constitutes manipulation to recruit more Afrikaners and their hard-earned savings into often doomed financial enterprises. The Afrikaners’ successes of the past can never be repeated by the present-day Afrikaners, simply because they lack apartheid’s favour, NP state capture and Afrikaner radical economical transformation by the NP, as well as the nationalistic Afrikaner doctrine and unity that drove Afrikaners in their previous crises and planning.50,52-54,5658,66,77
The above future utopias offered to the naive and sometime desperate Afrikaners, spells only disaster. These efforts are short-termed and cannot grow into anything substantial. It only furthers and strengthens the Afrikaner’s negative racial attitudes, obstructs transformation, creates false ideas about his individual constitutional and other personal rights and slows down his successfully absorption into the new South Africa. The useless continuation of court cases against the state (some of the organizations have gone so far as establishing a prosecution authority) to protect “individual Afrikaners’ constitutional rights,” etc., is nothing more than public gimmicks to recruit more members and generate more income for these Afrikaner institutions. Since these efforts increase hostility, they do not always serve the Afrikaners who want to stay in South Africa. Afrikaners, either as individuals or as a group, must remember that they can no longer hide behind outdated Afrikaner institutions that promise unsustainable futures. It is foolish to give these “saviours” and “rescuers” a mandate to manage Afrikaner interests. The Afrikaners did this with the NP, AB and the DRC in the past, and it caused the present chaos. There is no place for isolation in modern society, not for the individual, the group or the country. This is applicable to the individual Afrikaner too. Chances are that many of these noisy organizations will go down at the same speed and with as little of a bang as the NP did.50, 56, 57, 59, 60, 70
To-day’s Afrikaners do not need again the exclusive Afrikaner education, economic and cultural volk- institutions from their past. Neither do they need the input of outdated and self-righteous leaders from the old NP-AB alliance to guide and uplift them. They have their quota of them in the past. Most Afrikaners are now in individual growth, geopolitically in transit, or, as the writer Breyten Breytenbach describes them: “people in the middle world”; people able to think more and more for them selves, independent from the misleading doctrine of Afrikaner nationalism. Indeed, the Afrikaner is seeking a new identity, totally unknown at this stage.50,56,57,59,60,70,92-95
▲Cross-references: see Part 2, subdivision 3.1.5.
4.1.5 The rekindling of the Boer homeland thinking
Many of the organizations alluded to above do not answer the question of what kind of future they see for the Afrikaner in South Africa. Do they see this future inside or outside South Africa? What will happen to the small group of Afrikaners left 60 years from now? Where will they live or where will they go?
The idea of a Boer homeland is still alive among some Afrikaners. They see the cultural and racial diversity of South Africa as a good reason to restart homelands. The focus is the unification of certain similar groups who are concentrated in specific regions or areas. The argument is that the creation of homelands in areas with mono-cultural economical structures, racial and ethnic composition, and development histories, has occurred world-wide and can also happen in the future South Africa. Modern-day Italy, Belgium, the UK and The Netherlands are offered by these Afrikaner propagandists as good examples of self-rule. It is also argued that Brexit, where Britain preferred to regain its independence from the European Union, as well as the fight for independence from the British by the Scots, shows the legal possibility of cancelling unifications when a specific group’s interest, like democracy, unique identity and finance are endangered. Afrikaanses in the Western Cape, supported by Afrikaners, are playing with the idea of breaking away in the Western Cape.40,92-94
Frans Cronje92, director of the South African Institute of Race Relations, has referred to the possible division of the new South Africa into various independent states, mainly on the basis of economical sustainability and viability, although ethnicity and race differences can also be role players at the end. Cronje is of the opinion that over the last 100 years, not a single South African government could successfully governed the “Union of South Africans” in a prosperous and peacefully way. He argues further that the present forcing of different races and ethnicities into one South African state is indeed a huge failure. The Zulus, as a specific Black tribe, would be the first to gain independence as the ANC has failed to stay in power in that region and the Zulu-component in the government is losing their power and are being pushed into sub-ordinance by the Xhosas and others. There is also at present a racial cleansing of non-Zulus underway in Zulu regions making a “pure” racial Zulu state even more of a reality. An Afrikaner homeland is also part of this thinking, inspiring the idea of an utopia in waiting for Afrikaners in the new South Africa.33,34,36,92
Clearly, some Afrikaner did not learn anything from the AWB efforts in the 1990s to establish an independent Boer state. The average Afrikaner is becoming poorer and poorer and their dreams are being shattered, while their realities are becoming harsher and their opportunities are becoming fewer and fewer each day. The Constitution is on occasion dragged into this “Afrikaner fight for justice” without much sound argument. The Constitution is not meant for abuse by the citizens of South Africa. This includes the Afrikaner’s search for justice for the alleged wrongs done to him after 1994.50,51,54-57, 59,-61,66
There seems to be only one constructive route, and that is as individuals inside an Afrikaanse grouping inside greater South Africa, free from the anti-transformational sentiment of the right wing and “laager” Afrikaners who are being misled and exited by all kinds of prophets and visionaries. It would be wise for Afrikaners to pay their medical fund, pension contributions and taxes every month, but not a sent to any organization or individuals that offer to act on their behalf or to fight for their rights. They are wasting their money and time. Most of all, in doing so they surrender to opportunists!
4.1.6 The post-1994 cultural, social and political unchaining of many Afrikaners▼
After 1948 and under the influence of the NP-government many of the ordinary nationalist Afrikaners thought of themselves as the anointed nation who was sent to Africa by God to Christianise the Blacks. Prominent were the NP-AB dogma of White supremacy and the internalized belief that Afrikaners would always have the power to rule South Africa. They never thought that it could all collapse. When the NP-AB alliance suddenly collapsed in 1994, many ordinary Afrikaners were still too naive to understand that they, with the approval of the NP-AB-ANC leadership, will slowly be sacrificed within ten years: the proverbial lamb to be slaughtered on the ANC’s altar of revenge. Since the early 2000s the ordinary Afrikaners were not only naive on what to expect in a new South Africa and unprepared for the immense political, social, economic and personal changes awaiting, but were also totally confused about what their position in the new dispensation is and about the appropriate behaviours for new environment.8
It is not surprising that many Afrikaners feel so desolated. Many experience the feeling that they have ceased being an Afrikaner and the Afrikaner as an entity with a language has been lost.95
The Afrikaner is still alive, but it is true that they have lost all power. Black rule has become final. What is also clear is that the new ruler will apply more and more strong-arm tactics to impoverish, isolate and where possible, nullify the Afrikaner as a citizen.1,95
The hard fact is that Afrikaners are still citizens and that the ruler should take note of this. It is therefore of utmost importance for Afrikaners to find solutions to secure their existence and to avert the danger of dissolution. There is evidence that Afrikaners have already started to think outside their indoctrinated Afrikaner nationalism and are starting to try out solutions to adapt to their political dilemmas in the new South Africa.95
Afrikaner dependence on spiritual-political-cultural leaders and mentors is evident from the political and personal disorientation of NP-members as a group after the1970s on the deaths of their dominant leaders DF Malan, JG Strydom and HF Verwoerd. After 1994 they started to split into small, less rigid and less extreme Afrikaner cultural, political and financial bodies. However, the Afrikaner group’s disintegration does not mean that the internalized beliefs, values and intentions on racial differences have disappeared too. These views have become fixed and independent dispositions in the mindsets of the nationalist Afrikaners, guiding many of them still today.2,4,10-12,17,21,22
Since the late-1990s many nationalist Afrikaners, basically leaderless and politically disorientated, have become individual and reactive about their well-being. They seek individual economical and social empowerment, outside the growing corrupted NP and AB family tree and its extreme racial policy. Established internalized beliefs, customs and traditions are increasingly being abandoned without the traditional compensations of the past to reinforce it. Once an unstoppable and mighty political, cultural, economic and emotional bullying giant under the guardianship of the NP and AB, the nationalist Afrikaners are now orphaned and totally frail. In 23 years Afrikaner nationalism has gone from a hyper-state into a hypo-state.
Most of the current 2.7 million Afrikaners, of whom many already hold different political and cultural views than their parents, are driven in their daily lives and future planning by their own individual needs. More or less 2.3 million ordinary Afrikaners are ignoring the various exclusive “saviours” and “rescuers” and the various bodies that want to take up the Afrikaner cause.
Most Afrikaners clearly see no place for the racist right wing politics of old. The new independent Afrikaners have undoubtedly drawn a line between themselves and the hard-line nationalist Afrikaners. The de-internalization of wrong believes on racism and the dissociation from false “saviours” has become essential for the Afrikaners’ survival.
Many Afrikaners have written off their racist pasts and are doing their level best to adjust to the new South Africa on an individual basis. Many of these Afrikaners regret their trust in the different apartheid governments and their adherence to those doctrines. This being the case, would it not have been better if they put their loyalties and votes on the side of the ANC in 1994?
To reach the ideal outcome of non-racism is not so easy, as fixed mindsets are not easily pliable. This fact is reflected today by some Afrikaners’ who still underwrite negative racial attitudes and behaviours against Blacks, although mostly not openly.
▲Cross-references: see Part 5, subdivision 4.2.7.
Boon1, p. 11 enthusiastically wrote 21 years ago about a free South Africa: “South Africa has been forced in conflict but also in human triumph. It is a place of multiple cultures – each with their dramatic and proud histories and powerful heritages. But culture is not static nor is it an isolated thing. It is dynamic and constantly influenced by other groups’ thoughts, philosophies and behaviours”. And this South Africa came in 1994, making dramatic chances to its multiple cultures and to the mindsets of its various peoples.
The Afrikaners were put before the reality of dynamic and constant changes in their culture by the 1994 dispensation. They resisted being assimilated into the country’s multiple cultures or assimilating South Africa’s multiple cultures into theirs for 350 years. The 1994 dispensation forced them out of their cocoon of assumed White supremacy and Afrikaner uniqueness and their ignorance of the indigenous realities of South Africa. They have lost their fear for the other South African groups’ thoughts, philosophies and behaviours. Undoubtedly many of their political conflicts have changed to human triumphs. Their previously rigid refusals to understand, accept and appropriate the indigenous realities of South Africa have started to wane. Being betrayed by the NP-AB leadership after the ANC came to power, have forced them out of group conformity and they have started thinking independently. Most of the ordinary Afrikaners do not need “saviours” and “rescuers” to steer their future: not the NP-AB-DRC leadership of the past or the new post-1994 corps of “Afrikaner white helmets”; leaders and enterprises with their “we are here to serve exclusively Afrikaners.” They can only harm Afrikaners’ future with their intentions and efforts to create a “double government” for South Africa (with their efforts to institute and to reserve “apartheid” for the “benefit” of some racial Afrikaners again). Ordinary Afrikaners can thankfully at last think, plan and decide for themselves, and some are doing it excellently.
Some Afrikaners prepared themselves long ago to deal with the threats and challenges of the new South Africa. Other unfortunately did not.
An in-depth understanding of their present and future situation is urgently needed so that they can get out of their present political, social, economical and emotional insecurities.
The pertinent question at this stage is: Are routes really available to assure success? Can ordinary Afrikaners make the year 2017 the year of thinking, decisions and actions? They can only do this if they know the opportunities, challenges, risks, threats and dangers awaiting them in the future. Part 7 (Article 7) of the series offers such a reflection on options and opportunities.
Whether they plan to make a future in South Africa or not, is it of great importance that the ordinary Afrikaner takes to heart in the wisdom of J C Smuts, the eminent South African statesman and scholar, when he said that South Africa was a place in which neither the best nor the worst has happened96. For the Afrikaner, moving into the new South Africa, these words can be the wisest he ever heard. The negativisms they experienced since 1994 in South Africa could have been worse; it was not the worst and will not become worse. The apartheid euphoria until 1994 was false. His future experiences in South Africa can be positive. What does the Afrikaner want more than a true South Africa? The Mozambican-Portuguese settled successfully in the new South Africa. Why can the indigenous Afrikaners not do the same? South Africa is his only homeland.
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Not commissioned. Externally peer reviewed.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
The author declares that he has no competing interest.
The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Arts, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.