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Anniversary of Mandela’s ascension

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Ten years ago today, May 10, 1994, Nelson Mandela was sworn in as the first black president in post-apartheid South Africa.

It seems little less than miraculous to me that apartheid was ended without a full fledged civil war and massacres of white folk. That situation looked pretty grim.

Much of the credit for this seems to go to Nelson Mandela’s personal leadership. He could have come out of that prison and called for a big uprising. If he had called on his people to go kill whitey, pretty likely they would have.

Mandela has certainly talked a lot of foolishness in the last several years, particularly statements in some support of Saddam Hussein, or at least opposition to US involvement in toppling him. I’d like to think that this stuff was some kind of intention of loyalty for whatever support Hussein gave him in time.

In any case, when it counted, Mandela was the voice of reason and reconciliation rather than retribution- even though that would have been pretty understandable. I’m not sure I would have been quite so noble had it been me in his shoes.

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  • http://www.gwbush.blogspot.com RJ Elliott

    South Africa is now a complete basketcase as a nation.

    Apartheid was wrong. But what has become of this nation ain’t much better.

    You want violent crime? Go to South Africa. You want AIDs? Go to South Africa. You want corrupt government? Go to South Africa.

    One thing they did right was give up their WMDs.

    Why did the anti-American, pro-communist Mandela have to become the leader of the anti-apartheid movement? Why not someone more rational, and moderate?

    Oh, well. It’s all history now.

  • Sandra Smallson

    RJ Elliott you seem to refuse to listen in this particular case. You want violent crime you can go to United States for that too along with a tipple of terrorist attacks or alerts, however you take your brand of violence. You want aids,well you can damn well go anywhere in the world and if you knew your current affairs properly you would know that the country with the most increased number of AIDS sufferers is RUSSIA not South-Africa.

    As for corrupt government? LOL.. Tell me you did not say that with a straight face? LOL. Pot..Kettle..mean anything to you. Look, I don’t know where you or why you have these exaggerated feelings about S.A. Sure there is crime and aids and corruption BUT you live in AMERICA, are you for real?! You talk like you think all those things exist in S.A anymore than they exist in your Country. Get over it.

    Mandela may not have done a perfect job but it’s not easy to do a perfect job in a Country where most of the people has been subjected to the most appalling comditions for so long and suddenly they find themselves with freedom and equality. The bad apples will exist.

    There you are in America with all your freedom and you are still corrupt, the violence exists with new trends of violence you pass on to the rest of the world, and AIDS, well if a count were taken I bet you more Americans have got Aids than South Africans. The difference is, you guys probably have a more organised way of treating it.

    South Africa will have to try and accomplish tha. Please, much as I don’t care for Mandela, stop accusing S.A of suffering from all these things and Mandela did nothing about it. You live in a Country that has the very same problems and more and you’ve had freedom and liberty far longer than most.

    If South Africa is all those things you say, to paraphrase Donald Rumsfeld:) why are Americans arriving in S.A by the hundreds if not thousands? Why don’t they sit in safe, non-corrupt, aids-free America?

    Your comments are really ignorance at the highest level. I have never thought you ignorant…

  • Sandra Smallson

    correction…most of the people have not has (shudder)

  • Coxy

    how can u backmouth mandela when you live in u.s.a.. so theres aids in S.africa,.. so r ther aids in america and poland.. so what?
    corrupt government.. when youv goy bush brain leading your country.. do you really know what your talkin bout.. are you out of your leaugue here.. i think so! fool!