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African National Congress

Twenty Years of Democracy in South Africa: Should We Celebrate?

by Mpoletsang Raymond Montshosi

Twenty years of nominal Black rule has failed to change relationships of wealth and economic power in South Africa – the world’s most unequal country. “An average African man earns in the region of R2,400 per month, whilst an average white man earns around R19,000 per month.”

Freedom Rider: Miners Shot Down

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

A new film, Miners Shot Down, shows in graphic detail the massacre of dozens of miners at Marikana, South Africa, in 2012. “Footage from the South African police shows the miners being penned in by barbwire, mowed down by a fusillade and the survivors being hunted down yet again.” The slaughter may mark the beginning of the end of a Black-led regime that sold out its people.

Nelson Mandela and Collective Power

by Kevin Alexander Gray

Whatever verdict history decrees on three decades of nominal Black rule in South Africa, one thing is certain: Nelson Mandela is not the only person responsible. The unfinished struggle was a collective effort. “Moderates and radicals, ANC members and non-members, martyrs, marchers, clergy, secular, individuals and organizations made up the collective.” Indeed, lots of the change-makers weren’t even South African.

Freedom Charter is Key to New Struggle for South Africa

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

“Marikana was the great shock to the national consciousness, and Mandela’s death brought a final end to the pretense of social transformation.” In the transition from apartheid, the ruling African National Congress chose Black capitalism and neoliberalism. But, trade unionists plan to create a workers party that will fight for implementation of the Freedom Charter – and socialism.

Black South Africa Rediscovers Itself – Will Black America?

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

South Africa appears poised to reclaim its revolutionary legacy from the clutches of the African National Congress, which has “devolved into a fat and corrupt partner of white capital.” As the Age of Obama nears its end, Black America must also awake from the catastrophe of racial symbolism and self-delusion.

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The African National Congress: The Rise and Tragic Fall of a Revolutionary Movement

by Anthony Monteiro

Black “rule” in South Africa is illusory. “White supremacy without the obvious hand of white people is the form of social and political control, which replaces legal apartheid.” The revolution was derailed. “The road from the Freedom Charter, to the Morogoro Consultative Conference, to the 1994 elections, to the murder of 34 miners at Mirikana in 2012, is the ANC’s road to counter-revolution.”

Nelson Mandela’s Long Death

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

As Nelson Mandela lay for nine months near death, the world got an education on his legacy – including the scope of the deal that he and his African National Congress comrades cut to abandon the Freedom Charter. Blacks got the vote, and little else, while whites held on to economic power. Imperialism got a new lease on life in Africa.

South Africa and Zimbabwe: A Tale of Two Land Reforms

by Harold Green

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When Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe attended the memorial service for Nelson Mandela, he “received the loudest cheers and applause” among the dignitaries. Zimbabwe’s successful land reform stands in stark contrast to South Africa, where “barely 10% of farm land has been redistributed,” and the wealth gap – which is a race gap – “has become one of the most unequal in the world.”

Freedom Rider: Talking About Mandela

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Nelson Mandela belongs to history now. We should be able to look at his whole life, his whole record in perspective. That perspective ought to include who is praising Nelson Mandela nowadays and why.

Reconciliation is Not Decolonization

by BAR columnist Jemima Pierre

Nelson Mandela certainly led an inspirational life, but the “liberation” of South Africa has been the continent’s most spectacular failure. Mandela and his party “reneged on their own Freedom Charter which promised that land, the national mineral wealth, the banking systems, as well as all other industry and trade be nationalized and used to the benefit of South Africa’s majority.”

Nelson Mandela, The Contradictions Of His Life And Legacies

by Anthony Monteiro

Nelson Mandela lived a long life, with 3 careers, one before he was locked up, another while in prison, and a third after his 1990 release. Dr. Anthony Monteiro reflects upon the life, the lessons and the legacies of Nelson Mandela.

Eyewitness to America Betraying Mandela's South Africa: The Gore - Mbeki Commission

by Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo

Nelson Mandela's ANC leadership negotiated the form of the new South Africa on two tracks, the political wrangling in one set of meetings, & the decisions on the nation's economic future separately at another location, headed by Thabo Mbeki. The results were predictable, as Miriam Makeba said: "We got the flag, but they got to keep the money."

South Africa: 'World Class' for the Few, 'Third Class' for the Rest

by Dale T. McKinley

South Africa’s rulers’ pretensions to world rank have more to do with their own narrow class aspirations than with broad questions of social justice and democracy. The land of Mandela is a classy place for the upper classes, but a world of deepening poverty for the majority.

Steve Biko and the Quest for Black Power Today

by Veli

Next April 27 marks the 20th anniversary of the first majority rule elections in South Africa. Many will be wondering what all the celebration is about, and what martyred Black Consciousness leader Steve Biko’s guidance would be. “We must locate Biko in the struggle against the state under the ANC, which has adopted an increasingly anti-black stance, in pursuance of its neo-liberal agenda.”

How the ANC's Faustian Pact Sold Out South Africa's Poorest

by Ronnie Kasrils

A veteran of the South African freedom struggle and its Black-led government says the African National Congress’ soul “was eventually lost to corporate power: we were entrapped by the neoliberal economy – or, as some today cry out, we ‘sold our people down the river.’"

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