Prince Mashele’s Comparison of Africans and South Koreans Wrong

Published on 30th April 2019

Sowetan columnist Prince Mashele opens his article in the Sowetan of 29 April 2019 thus: To visit a country like South Korea as a South African is to be haunted by our backwardness as black people. I guess by black people he is referring to African people.

According to Mashele’s twisted logic, all African people are backward even those who had nothing to do with mismanaging South Africa or the African continent. For the past 25 years, South Africa has been run by a few ANC elite including the white elite. So why blame everybody for the failures of the African and white elite? It should be borne in mind that in the secret negotiations the ANC held with the white establishment, ANC leaders settled for less and were handed a crown without the jewels whereas South Koreans controlled every aspect of their economy and national life. They control their education system and have the proper philosophy of education. They do not mimic the education system of their former colonial masters like South Africa is currently doing. They still have their language intact and teach though its medium.

The ANC elite that Mashele reveres so much such as Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and others only wanted to trade places with their former colonial masters. So how on earth does Mashele expect anything different from the absolute failure that neo-colonial South Africa is? Moreover, he tinkles on the urges of real issues or skirts around them.

A handful of white families and the Anglo American Empire who controlled South Africa’s economy during the apartheid era through their monopolies such as the Oppenheimers, Ruperts, Wieses and others are still controlling the South African economy to date. These are the families, together with the Anglo American Empire, that assassinated HF Verwoerd on the 6th September 1966 because Verwoerd wanted to put a stop to their monopolies. Verwoerd had established a one person commission of inquiry and appointed Dr Piet Hoek to investigate the role of these families and the Anglo American Empire in the country’s economy. Dr Hoek completed the probe and handed the report to Verwoerd known as the Hoek Report. The report revealed that the Anglo American Empire and the families mentioned in the preceding lines had a stranglehold on the South African economy through their monopolies and were involved in corruption and money laundering. Nothing of this sort happened in South Korea. Mashele says nothing about these families and the Anglo American Empire.

Mashele continued to state that the South Koreans were colonised just like us but that unlike us, they fought a bitter war (1950 to 1953), resulting in the geopolitically tense North and South Korea arrangement of today. He does not say what caused that war and why the country was divided into North and South. He writes favourably about the United States of America in his article, the same USA that caused the Korean war of 1950 – 1953. Mashele either does not know or conceals the fact that it was the USA that caused both the war and the division of Korea into South and North. The then USSR and China were also involved in supporting the three leaders that were involved in the Korean struggle against Japanese colonialism. Here is a link of an article on this issue to buttress my contention

Mashele describes Kim Jong Un as a madman who continues to experiment with long-range rockets that can convert South Korea into an untraceable smoulder. If Kim Jong Un did not have those long-range rockets, his country would not have earned the respect of the USA, China, Japan and Russia. The North Koreans would be as “backward” as he claims African people are. Japan, China and Russia respect North Korea. China has made Africa a happy hunting ground for its imperialistic ambitions something it will never do to North Korea, its neighbour.

Bizarrely, Mashele sees nothing wrong with US military presence in the Korean Peninsula as well as South Korea’s dependence on US military protection. However, he refers to China, North Korea’s neighbour, as a menacing global giant. He naively thinks the US army is protecting South Korea as a gesture of goodwill. His naivety should be envied.

Mashele thinks South Africa has no external security threats. He writes, “We South Africans are not trapped in such a permanent national security trap. No neighbour poses any real threat to us. Our former coloniser, Britain, is busy nursing life-threatening Brexit wounds.” Britain is heavily involved in controlling South Africa's economy and its spy agency, MI6 has a big office in South Africa thanks to Nelson mandela. Look at how the French government is exploiting its former colonies and Mashele thinks everything is hunky-dory. South Africa is an integral part of the African continent and the African continent is occupied by the US army under the guise of Africom. The US has Africom military bases on the African continent. I urge Mashele and others to watch an Africom report on Russian Television by Caleb Maupin and see the extent of US army involvement on the African continent.

One wonders what goes through the head of an African like Mashele when he wakes up and writes an article such is this one which was published under the headline, “Thriving South Korea a reminder of SA’s failures 25 years into democratic rule.” Yes South Africa is a failure. Why not point out those failures without introducing extraneous factors such as glorifying imperialist powers like the USA? Why paint every African/black person with the same brush and this is not an exception. It is typical of Mashele’s articles to denigrate African people.

By Sam Ditshego

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