Bench reserved for "non-whites only" outside a public building in Cape Town.

The African Response to Racial Laws

TO THE obvious embarrassment of the democratic nations of the world, race problems in South Africa attract constant and bewildered attention beyond the borders of the Union. The Western nations earnestly desire cordial relations with the Union of South Africa, and she has done much to earn their friendship. Her soldiers fought magnificently both in World War I and World War II, under the leadership of Field Marshal Smuts. Her reputation as a nation pledged to defend the cause of freedom, peace and international security in the modern world was enhanced when she became a signatory to the United Nations Charter. And her recent contribution of an air squadron to the forces of the United Nations fighting in Korea showed that she was once more prepared to play her part in resisting totalitarian aggression.

On the other hand, the categorical refusal of the government led by Field Marshal Smuts, himself one of the architects of the United Nations Charter, to submit an agreement for the transfer of the mandated territory of South-West Africa to the Trusteeship Council of the United Nations led to widespread comment; and when the Indian and Pakistan Governments submitted to the U. N. Assembly the question of the treatment of Indians within the Union of South Africa, the Union's color policy evoked much troubled discussion. The change of government in South Africa in May 1948, when the United Party led by General Smuts was replaced by a coalition of Afrikaner parties led by Dr. D. F. Malan, intensified foreign misgivings about the Union's nonwhite policy.

Repeated efforts have been made in South Africa to find a solution to the racial problem. Commissions of experts have studied the issues involved and made recommendations to various South African governments. Parliamentary Select Committees have heard voluminous evidence. Innumerable individual studies have been made and various schemes have been tried in the search for a political system which would safeguard the rights of all sections of the population. But South Africa is

Loading, please wait...

Related Articles

This site uses cookies to improve your user experience. Click here to learn more.