The West, and the United States in particular, has reveled in its own glow for 20 years after toppling the National Party government in South Africa through the most extreme of financial and economic sanctions. So busy was it patting itself on the back, that for twenty years it would not allow any warning signs from South Africa to intrude on its reverie. Meanwhile, South Africa was sliding into an abyss. It appeared that the Black nationalist African National Congress government, no matter how incompetent or corrupt, could simply do no wrong in the eyes of the United States government.
The truth, however, is belatedly dawning on at least some of the US intelligentsia. On Sunday 23 February 2014, in conversation on CNN with Fareed Zakaria, editor of Time Magazine and host of Fareed Zakaria GPS, guest Robin Wright, author of Rock the Kasbah: Rage and Rebellion Across the Islamic World, stated clear as daylight:
“… In South Africa today, Blacks are worse off than under Apartheid.”
Wright has reported from more than 140 countries on six continents for The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, TIME, The Atlantic, The Sunday Times of London, CBS News, Foreign Affairs, and many others. Her foreign tours include the Middle East, Europe, Africa, and several years as a roving foreign correspondent worldwide. She has covered a dozen wars and several revolutions. Until 2008, she covered U.S. foreign policy for The Washington Post.
Ironically, in his insightful book, The Post-American World (p.237 & 170-173), Zakaria himself specifically identified the South African Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902 as the event that “broke the back of the British Empire“; the previous Lone Superpower.
I should like to suggest the United States—the present Lone Superpower—heed the lessons of the past and carefully consider what bedfellows it chooses in South Africa.