FW De Klerk: Not All Aspects of Apartheid ‘Morally Repugnant’

Aislinn Laing, Telegraph (London), May 11, 2012

The Nobel Peace Prize winner said not all aspects of apartheid were “morally repugnant”, and that there was “merit” in the notion of ethnic groups living apart but that in South Africa, the experiment had not worked.

In a CNN interview, Mr de Klerk said he had made a “profound apology” about the injustices wrought by apartheid on many occasions.

“What I haven’t apologised for is the original concept of seeking to bring justice to all South Africans through the concept of nation states (essentially creating two separate states, one black and one white),” he said.

The introduction of separate homelands began in the 1950s and saw black South Africans, who made up about 80 per cent of the population, moved into “bantustans” accounting for around 13 per cent of the country’s land, while whites held on to the remaining portion.

Many people were uprooted from their homes to be moved into impoverished homelands but, because of the lack of work there, had to apply for permits to live and work in white areas.

Mr de Klerk, who was president of South Africa until Nelson Mandela came to power in 1994, denied that blacks in the homelands were disenfranchised.

“They voted. They were not put in homelands, the homelands were historically there,” he said.

“If only the developed world would put so much money into Africa, which is struggling with poverty, as we poured into those homelands. How many universities were built? How many schools?

“At that stage the goal was separate but equal, but separate but equal failed.”

Mr de Klerk was asked if he believed apartheid was “morally repugnant”.

“I can only say in a qualified way,” he replied. “Inasmuch as it trampled human right, it was—and remains—morally reprehensible.

“But the concept of giving, as the Czechs have it and the Slovaks have it, of saying that ethnic unities with one culture, with one language, can be happy and can fulfil their democratic aspirations in an own state, that is not repugnant.

“The tipping point in my mind was when I realised, we need to abandon the concept of separateness. And we need to build a new nation with its eleven official languages, accommodating its diversity, but taking hands and moving forward together.”

His comments were met with protest from South Africans, some of whom called for his Nobel Peace Prize to be stripped.

Eusebius McKaiser, a political commentator wrote: “De Klerk doesn’t deserve that prize given he thinks our homelands weren’t indecent and apartheid not obviously immoral.”

Karima Brown, another political commentator, said: “He didn’t abandon apartheid because he thought it was wrong but because it had become too expensive to uphold,” she said.

Mr de Klerk’s spokesman Dave Stewart said people should focus on the “180 degree turn” the former president carried out when he realised the policies he supported were wrong.

“If he should hand back his Nobel Prize, then so should [Mikhail] Gorbachev because he supported radical communism in his youth,” he said.

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  • It’s a bit too late
    to bring back a grand program like
    Apartheid.

    In Amerika, it’ll take every gun we have.

  • loyalwhitebriton

    SA Apartheid was similar to the Swiss canton system of governance; where the native Swiss, German, French, Italian speakers live in regions which have a high degree of autonomy. As I understand it, the eventual goal, and indeed the pre-determined plan, of apartheid would have been the creation of several fully autonomous black states within the SA land mass. 

    F.W. de Klerk need not feel any shame whatsoever. SA Apartheid was a noble cause, which would have achieved fruition had it not been for the brain-dead, know-nothing, historically ignorant, anally retentive, media, academic, elites of the West, with their ‘useful idiot’ celebs jumping on the bandwagon to further spread what amounted to be a tissue of lies about SA apartheid.

  • TomIron361

    Firepower,

    It’s a bit too lateto bring back a grand program like Apartheid.
    In Amerika, it’ll take every gun we have.
    _________________________

    Sir, when the job is done, there’ll be no Aparthied or Jim Crow. The surviving blacks and hispanics will’ve been all repatriated to the sh*tholes they originally came from.

  • IKantunderstand

    You say” apartheid”, and I say: “society working”. You say: “no more apartheid, everyone is equal ,no matter how stupid they are, no matter their criminal tendencies, no matter how indolent and prone to barbaric practices.” I say , “Mr. de Klerk , you  are de Jerk”. 

  • Yada, yada, yada…

    1. Apartheid could not function. Legal separation of races became unacceptable after WW2.

    2. what could function is a white nation-sate, without black tribes or “nations” inside. And this is still possible for Afrikaners. Not Anglo- South Africans, they’d better emigrate to US, Australia etc.

  • loyalwhitebriton

    Thank you for detailed response to my comment, very educational too.
    Ideally, the facts that you presented above would get the air time it deserves in the MSM, but we all know that’s not going to happen.
    I very much regret Britains part in the history of SA, it was not our finest hour to say the least.
    I can only pray that SA whites will get their own homeland; and sooner rather than later.

  • newscomments70

    Stories of black on white crime in South Africa are rarely reported, but occasionally there is something. If you see something reported, send it to Drudge. It has to be from a respected media source, but there is a good chance he will post it. 

  • newscomments70

    She was brutally raped as well.

  • njguy83

    Whatever anyones thinks of De Klerk I’ am surprised he had the guts to defend any part of apartheid especially on a national television interview. 

  • The__Bobster
  • Carney3

    Whites never really had their hearts in grand apartheid.  They were too addicted to cheap black labor, and too stingy with the land.   Each black “homeland” was broken up into non-connected chunks surrounded by South African territory – how could any country be viable like that?   If the whites had ripped off the band-aid and handed over viable large chunks of land, with each black ethnic group getting a cohesive viable area, it might have worked.   Instead the whites dithered with half-measures and got nothing.

    • Bantu Education

      You are just showing how well the liberal indoctrination has worked on you, Carney.  The liberals always banged on about the Bantustans being 1) not large enough 2) chopped up into many small disconnected pieces 3) economically unviable 4) barren wastelands, etc, etc.

      Whereas in fact the largest and best-known Bantustan – Transkei – was 1) large 2) aside from one small outlier, was a contiguous piece of territory 3) had a long coastline 4) was very fertile.  On the other hand what you have described above did largely apply to Bophutswana. 

      Despite this “Bop” became the most successful Bantustan whereas Transkei was a mis-ruled corrupt gangster-ruled mess like almost almost every black African country.          

  • Seek

    At this point I have to wonder why ANY aspect of apartheid should be considered “morally repugnant.”  DeKlerk was far too accomodating in his statement.  

  • frederickdixon

    I don’t understand Laager’s point. Northern Ireland is a single coherent territory, not scattered fragments as all of the Black homelands were. N.I.s misfortune is that it is inhabited by two distinct nationalities, who have often been at each others throats, and one of those nationalities does not believe that N.I. should even exist. Northern Ireland, like Bosnia or (formerly) Cyprus is an excellent example of a territory where mutually hostile populations live intermingled with each other and where total separation into two territories would solve a lot of problems. References to the other countries of the British Isles is simply irrelevant and England, regrettably, does not have its own legislature.

    Carney3 is right, and I would go further –  trying to separate the Blacks into scattered and fragmented “homelands” could never succeed because of demographics and the pressure of the outside world. With the benefit of hindsight (always a wonderful thing) we can now see that the National Party governments of yesteryear should instead have set up all White homelands for the Afrikaner, and maybe for the British South African, populations while resigning the bulk of the country to its majority population – oh, and a separate homeland for the Coloureds in the Western Cape.