CURRY: Mandela Opponents Trying to Re-Write History
George E. Curry | 12/18/2013, noon
Instead of supporting majority rule in South Africa, President Ronald Regan said in 1981 that as long as White South African leaders were making a “sincere and honest” effort to bring about racial progress, the United States should not be critical.
He asked, rhetorically: “Can we abandon a country that has stood by us in every war we have ever fought, a country that is strategically essential to the free world in its production of minerals that we all must have?”
Describing Mandela as a communist – and using that as an excuse to support minority rule – was a red herring. The United States has supported communist and socialist leaders of other countries – as long as they were perceived as serving the interests of the U.S.
Mandela noted our country’s hypocrisy.
“American conservatives of the era recognized the brutal repression of black South Africans by the whites, but ultimately determined that ending that system was less important that preserving South Africa as an ally in the Cold War,” Media Matters stated. “They pointed to Mandela’s ties to South Africa’s Communist Party and his history of violent activism and warned of dire results if he were freed and the apartheid government overthrown. (In his statement at the opening of the 1964 trial that ended in his imprisonment, Mandela explained that his African National Congress worked with communists toward the common goal of ‘the removal of white supremacy.’ He compared this to the United States and Great Britain allying with the Soviet Union during World War II).”
Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum even tried to equate Republicans’ opposition to the Affordable Care Act to Mandela’s struggle in South Africa.
Appearing Dec. 5 on The O’Reilly Factor, Santorum said, Mandela “was fighting against some great injustice, and I would make the argument that we have a great injustice going on right now in this country with an ever-increasing size of government that is taking over and controlling people’s lives, and Obamacare is front and center in that.”
Some politicians have no shame.
George E. Curry, former editor-in-chief of Emerge magazine, is editor-in-chief of the National Newspaper Publishers Association News Service (NNPA.) He is a keynote speaker, moderator, and media coach. Curry can be reached through his website, www.georgecurry.com. You can also follow him on Twitter @currygeorge and the George E. Curry Fan Page on Facebook.