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I have commented on the article linked to above - in reply to another commentator - as follows:

I wrote my thesis, predicting the imminent end of Apartheid for economic reasons in 1988, before Mandela's release, and while PM De Klerk was still viewed as an irredentist pro-apartheid hardliner. The costs of Apartheid had simply begun to outweigh the benefits, even for a majority of the White community.

Where I predicted violent resistance was from the military, farming and civil service sectors, as their livelihoods were, in large measure, still dependent on the maintenance of Apartheid (which required a huge military/bureaucratic apparatus to keep in place). I argued that a UN or US peace keeping force might be required for a transitionary period to prevent violent slaughter.

What I didn't adequately predict was the degree to which Mandela - still then seen by whites as a terrorist - would develop into an outstanding statesman who gained the trust and respect of all of SA's racial communities. As a direct consequence the transition was largely peaceful, and no external peace keeping force was required.

The SA economy grew again, and a large black middle class developed adding to the stability of the new dispensation. Sadly much of that progress has been dissipated since by corruption, crime and poor leadership once Mandela left the stage. But my point is that with good leadership, violence is not inevitable, even when a radical transformation of a state and society is taking place.

I would suggest to you that that is the route Ireland should plan to take - reconciliation, inclusion,and societal transformation north and south. Nobody wants a repeat of the bloody suppression which characterised much of NI history. The question is whether people of Mandela or Hume's stature will emerge to lead the transition process.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon May 3rd, 2021 at 09:00:26 PM EST
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