How a Great Power Falls Apart
Decline Is Invisible From the Inside
IN DEFENSE OF APARTHEID
AT a time when South Africa, by reason of what are commonly referred to as its "racial" policies, has become the object of such universal censure, it behooves any thinking South African to examine for himself the anatomy of that program which is exciting so much dissent, and not simply to content himself with a public posture suggested by some climate of opinion, whether in South Africa or abroad. The fact that he may not have voted for those who sponsor the program should not prevent him from according it such merits as it seems to him to possess, independent of its parenthood. It need not prevent his seeing many of the strictures currently passed upon it as unwarranted and incorrect.
Of one thing he may be sure. The hostility of the non-white world can be explained without reference to the merits of the apartheid program. Indeed, for Afro-Asians the possibility that it has any merits can scarcely arise. It is the policy of white men governing black; and the only good thing that white men still wielding authority in Africa can do is to abdicate in favor of the non-white majority. Anything else they may think to do is by definition bad. In the eyes of the Bandung confraternity, South Africa ought never to have existed and ought now no longer to exist. It is not a question of whether she is meeting her responsibilities with humanity, wisdom, even a measure of self-abnegation. What in their eyes is wrong is not what South Africa may do, but the fact that she should continue in a position to do anything at all.
King Ahab, in the Old Testament story, was not interested in how Naboth was administering his vineyard. Hitler was not really much concerned with what Bene? might be willing to do for the Sudeten Germans. The Addis Ababa powers are not interested in South Africa's current policy of home rule for all. If those powers have not consciously adopted Hitler's language, it must at least be admitted that Hitler did anticipate some of theirs.
Nor should it be beyond South Africa's comprehension that the major Western governments may in these circumstances shy away from identifying themselves with her position. In the world of tough diplomacy old friendships may have to be set aside in deference to new expediencies. At a time when even Emperor Haile Selassie is constrained to forget what he owes to South Africa, when Israel finds it necessary to ignore the analogy between South Africa's predicament and her own, and when Britain has to be cautious even in her support for Israel, it is easy to see why neither Britain nor the United States can be other than cautious in support of South Africa. Though the South African may not admire the posture of the Western powers, he can at least claim to understand it.
To understand the attitudes of foreign governments, whether at the United Nations or elsewhere, is one thing; to contrive to take them seriously, except in the sense that any unfriendliness must of course be taken seriously, is another. For the better the South African understands the official hostility of his former friends, the less intrinsic importance is he able to accord it. And-at a time when little that South Africa may do can be expected to win approval-it certainly seems futile to allow the fear of disapproval to weigh against more substantial considerations in judging what policies for South Africa are well advised.
It is not as if it were open to South Africa to do just nothing. The situation in which she finds herself is a heritage from a complicated past. Where the irresponsible foreign onlooker has merely to insist that apartheid is "morally wrong," the responsible South African has rather to ask himself whether there is any less immoral approach to South Africa's problem. He reads, for instance, in the Tomlinson Commission's report that "a continuation of the policy of integration would intensify racial friction and animosity," and that "the only alternative is to promote the establishment of separate communities in their own separate territories where each will have the fullest opportunity for self-expression and development." And he remembers how, at the Savoy Hotel dinner in 1961, Dr. Verwoerd threw down his challenge to a fascinated company: "Ladies and Gentlemen, what would you do?" He remembers also how, although the so- called "native question" had been on the agenda for South African statesmanship since before the turn of the century, it was not until 1948 that the country had a government with the necessary electoral backing to undertake any treatment of the question at all. And he notices that, while the world's judgment on apartheid is commonly expressed in moralistic language, it was, by contrast, upon sociological appraisal that the architects of the program based their recommendations for the progressive bettering of a given state of things which mere condemnation would not cure.
Not that foreign censure of South Africa's policies is without effect upon the domestic situation. But the effect is the opposite of what is intended. As happened in the 1930s when pressure from Geneva was put at one time on Japan and at another on Italy, pressure today upon South Africa from New York seems to increase support for those who, as the country's official spokesmen, are the immediate targets for the internationally orchestrated polyphony of execration.
International disapproval of South Africa, while more violent of late, has been at least audible from the early days of the United Nations. It was General Smuts who first had to bear the brunt of it; and he foresaw that his apparent impotence in the face of this disapproval might result in his defeat by those who could be expected to meet it in less accommodating language than he. As one of the authors of the Charter, he had emerged deeply disillusioned from debates in which he could detect little sign of any serious desire to understand the problems of a society not merely multi- racial, but multi-cultural as well. And it was Dr. Verwoerd, the present Prime Minister, who returned from the conference at Lancaster House in 1961 with a similar sense of disappointment, having said at the outset that he was ready to have apartheid discussed, though on the assumption that the discussion would proceed "in a mature manner." And in recent debates at the United Nations it has become increasingly difficult to impute much sense of reality to delegations which could join in a demand that South Africa take no action against those accused of attempting to destroy with high explosives the installations upon which the country's viability is dependent. Critics who see the defense of law and order as reprehensible merely because the government responsible happens also to be pursuing policies not widely understood are not considered by South Africans to have any qualification to pass judgment on what is being done. In a country where the least sign of official displeasure on the part of the Permanent Mandates Commission would at one time have excited grave concern, it is indeed a pity that the moral authority of the United Nations should have fallen almost to zero.
In few cases, if any, can a Communist-encouraged, if not necessarily Communist-inspired, campaign of systematic mood-engineering have met with comparable success in the Western world. Whether, for instance, the Communists should be described as having joined with the Western democracies in condemning the suppression of saboteurs in South Africa, or whether it is the democracies that should be said to have toed the Communist line, may seem an academic point. But it is not from Western propaganda that the Communist countries will have learned their hostility to a capitalistic South Africa. Who shall say that the converse is equally true? Is it the democracies that have deliberately set themselves to create chaos in South Africa? They may well appear to have been doing so; but it is hard to believe that they really have. Whereas, if the Communists have been striving to avert chaos, their efforts have been remarkably well disguised.
Someone has said that if South Africa did not exist she might have to be invented. What other target could have provided so unifying an emotional focus for the Bandung world? And it now begins to look as though South Africa were supplying the basis on which the two sides in the global ideological conflict may at last find themselves linked in a kind of uneasy partnership.
It is indeed typical of the spirit in which the anti-South Africa campaign is being conducted that crisis measures there are commonly condemned without any reference to the existence of a crisis; and that the crisis, if ever mentioned, is represented as being of the government's own creation- when the whole effort of so much of the outside world has seemed directed to bringing it about. South Africans are not blind to the fact that the defense of law and order is incumbent upon any government, and that in South Africa its neglect would be a betrayal of the law-abiding, both black and white. They know that the powers which governments give themselves in times of crisis are always subject to possible criticism as being unnecessarily drastic. But the key word here is "unnecessarily" and not "drastic."
In attempting to evaluate the policy of apartheid and, more important, the philosophy which underlies it, the troubled South African must be struck by something rather commonly overlooked-namely, the importance of differentiating between the standpoint of the sponsors of the program, on the one hand, and the public psychology which makes its application feasible, on the other. Color prejudice, so evident in parts of the United States, and not absent even in Britain, has long been endemic in South Africa; and those South Africans who believe in "keeping the native in his place" may be expected to approve a program of separate development whether they fully understand it or not. But to say this is not the same as saying that at cabinet level the policy is grounded in unfriendliness toward the non-enfranchised majority of the population, for whose welfare the white minority has borne responsibility since 1910.
In any assessment, it is also necessary to differentiate between the electorate, the parliament, the government and the majority party. Pressures upon the South African people, to induce them to support some alternative set of policies, may be a rational undertaking-though politically not very sophisticated. Pressures upon the South African Government, to induce it to pursue policies not accepted by the people, would be less sophisticated and certainly less rational. To inveigh against a government for not attempting the politically impracticable may be emotionally rewarding. But it is otherwise rather pointless-particularly when it results in strengthening rather than weakening that government's position at home. If outside pressures are to produce in South Africa the allegedly needed "change of heart," it is in the electorate and not simply in the government that that change must be effected. If integration, against which the Tomlinson Commission gave warning, is, as it appears to be, the only thing that the world will accept, it is on the few local advocates of integration that the world must rest its hopes. There is little realism in supposing that, in a country whose constitution is based upon the Westminster model, the government could in deference to foreign pressures adopt a principle whose exponents have almost without exception lost their deposits when running for a parliament seat. It is true that at the last election some 70,000 voters supported the Progressive Party, which now has one member in the House; but, except as proving that political opinion in South Africa is sufficiently free, this could not in itself give much encouragement to those who want an early change.
Different policies might be adopted tomorrow, but at present it is separate development that is being tried. To understand it, one must, of course, examine it in its historical and sociological context; for to study apartheid in the abstract would be as inept as to study the policy of desegregation in the United States in the same restricted manner.
"Ours," declared George Kennan in referring to the defensive nationalism of the American people, "is not the imperial frame of mind." At the root of the separate development program lies the nationalism, equally defensive, of the Afrikaner volk. It is indeed an error to see apartheid as expressive only of an attitude of the white man toward the black. For nationalism as such is not a question of color feeling, and it is nationalism, rather than racialism, that the honest inquirer has basically to comprehend. In the first place the nationalism we are speaking of is not that of all South African white people. Rather it is the nationalism of the Afrikaner volk, a majority indeed, but by no means the whole, of the enfranchised population. It is easy for the foreigner to deride a nationalism which he does not share; but nowhere in human history has nationalism ever been destroyed by foreign scorn. Admittedly, Afrikaner nationalism is a form of collective selfishness; but to say this is simply to say that it is an authentic case of nationalism. For what is nationalism anywhere if not collective self- love? What underlies apartheid is at bottom an attitude not toward the black man, but toward the forefathers-and the future-of the Afrikaner people. It is to these that a responsibility is felt, to conserve a cultural heritage in defense of which white men fought against white men from 1899 to 1902.
In a parliamentary political system it is always possible that the electorate may be persuaded to withdraw its support from a particular party. What is well nigh inconceivable, however, and presumably without example, is that a party should abandon its constitutive principles at a time when these principles are winning it ever increasing support at the polls. The apartheid program is the program of a particular party-the National Party; and it is germane to reflect in what circumstances that party had its birth.
The idea that English-speaking and Afrikaans-speaking South Africans might merge together into a single people was the basis of the Union and the accepted ideal of the Botha Government in 1910; and when in 1912 General Hertzog broke away from the Botha Cabinet, the government was anxious lest the spiritual patrimony of Afrikanerdom should suffer in competition with a more potent and by no means inferior, but importantly different, cultural heritage-that of the English-speaking world. The Europeans who in the 1600s had come to settle in southern Africa, as others at about the same time were settling on the eastern seaboard of America, felt themselves different from the indigenous inhabitants they encountered on arrival. And their sense of having a distinctive cultural heritage worth preserving reasserted itself in the 1800s against the outlook of the English, from whose domination they presently sought to escape. A party formed specifically to preserve the integrity of Afrikanerdom against the danger of obliteration by a culture which was seen not as inferior but as different is hardly of a kind to opt for the merging of white society into a culturally uncongenial and in principle homogeneous all-African mass. Thus in the context of any discussion on alternatives to apartheid, the raison d'être of the National Party needs to be seen and appreciated for what it is. And if apartheid is to be understood, it should be studied in terms of the assumptions on which it is practiced by the National Party, rather than simply in the light of those prejudices which ensure its acceptance by enough of the voters to permit its resolute application.
When, for example, it is said that people are being penalized for the color of their skins, this is a crudely tendentious way of putting the position where, the whites having a monopoly of political responsibility, and power having passed into the hands of a party dedicated to the preservation of Afrikanerdom, things are done for the sake of this over-riding ideal which works to the disadvantage of those without a vote-who happen to be black.
Given, therefore, that the only program with any immediate prospect of going into operation in South Africa is that of the party in power, and given that an insistence on the differences not merely between the whites and the non-whites but to some extent even between the Afrikaans-speaking and the English-speaking elements in South Africa is the root principle of National Party policy, it is this philosophy of differentiation that has to be inquired into if the changes now being effected in South Africa are to be understood. Just as the National Party originally had its rationale in a danger to the Afrikaner volk, so today its apartheid policy has its justification in a threat to the European-type civilization which has in the course of three centuries been so hopefully built up in the South of Africa. And, as the party's original preoccupation with the needs of Afrikanerdom implied no necessary disrespect for British culture as such, so now its concern for the safeguarding of what white men have created in South Africa need imply no reflection on the quality of African civilization in itself. For the European to see African culture as something essentially other than his own is by no means necessarily to hold it in disesteem. And in so far as the declared intention in the creation of the Bantustans is to provide for the several peoples within the Republic at least as good an opportunity for progressive self-fulfillment as is presumably now assured to the peoples of Tanganyika, Ghana and Kenya, the charge that apartheid is meant to hold the African indefinitely in a status of inferiority is without foundation.
Nor is it pertinent to depict apartheid as being based on the now no longer reputable American concept of "separate but equal." Separate but equal meant equal though separate, the context being a specific constitution under which the equality of all men was required to be affirmed. No such political system was ever established in South Africa. There it was white men's societies that the migrant Boers established; and at most what could be claimed for apartheid might be that it accepts as its criterion the formula "separate but reasonable"-reasonable, that is, in the given situation in which the future of the African is admittedly a responsibility of the whites. It is simply not conceded that there ever has existed in South Africa a single community comprising 16,000,000 souls, a community now to be divided into parts, each with its claim to a proportionate share of the country's total wealth. When the principle of Irish home rule was accepted in Britain it was not "a fair share of the United Kingdom" that was proposed to be allocated to the Irish; it was merely that to that portion of the country which was historically the Irish part a new status was to be given, in enjoyment of which it might presently emerge into membership in the League of Nations, into sovereign independence, into equality of nationhood among the peoples of the world.
True, it is not full sovereign independence that is now being conferred on the Transkei; but today's developments are declaredly no more than a phase in a process, the speed of which it will be partly up to the several Bantu peoples to decide. When therefore it is asked, "What is to be the ultimate outcome, what the final pattern, in South Africa?" the very question reveals a lack of understanding of apartheid. Apartheid means the granting of autonomy-the enthronement, that is, of communal wills independent of that of the existing white electorate. Purportedly to give autonomy to others, while at the same time prejudging issues in respect of which their autonomy should be promising them a say, would be somewhat contradictory. The definitive blueprinting of South Africa's future is not being attempted now. There is no way to know what choices the Bantu may make in the situations of tomorrow. It is a liberal fallacy to suppose that those to whom freedom is given will use it only as foreseen by those who gave it.
Conceivably there could even today be found individuals who, regretting Britain's renunciation in 1922 of the vision of a single "British" community, would question the virtue of preserving the traditional identity of either the English, or the Irish, people. And some might even condemn as defeatist Britain's final abandonment in 1947 of her vestigial hope that, when she eventually withdrew from India, India might persist as a single whole. But Britain was sufficiently realistic to see that neither Islam nor Hinduism was digestible by the other, nor Irish nationalism assimilable into the nationalism of the British people. When, in 1910, South Africa was established as a single country, no attempt was made to fuse its many peoples into one. Such a fusion was attempted only for the two originally European, white-skinned, Afrikaans-speaking and English-speaking elements. And today, after more than 50 years of that experiment, it is more than ever obvious how enterprising a concept this was, and how marked are the persisting incompatibilities between two living cultures, neither of which is disposed to lose itself in the other. It is similarly easy to see the differences between the Zulu nation on the one hand and the Asian community, or communities, on the other-as indeed between the Zulus and any other of the major ethnic groups which together make up the African majority of the total population. Were the complete fusing of all South Africa's peoples to be proposed, and the constitutional framework for realizing it devised, and were the resulting battle for ascendancy to bring peace at the end, what is wholly unpredictable is whether it would be the Zulus or some other of the African peoples, or whether it might not after all be the Europeans, who would survive as "top dog" nation, imposing their solutions upon what might remain of the rest.
In 1909, the British Parliament could of course have rejected the formula which placed a virtual monopoly of responsibility so securely in the hands of the European element. As that element forms so small a minority of the total population, it is somewhat as if Britain, in giving self- determination to an unpartitioned India, had placed power in the hands of the Muslims, and as if subsequently the world had directed its disapproving attention to the way in which the Muslim minority was safeguarding its identity by refusing to introduce majority rule. A case could doubtless be made for the swift liquidation of Pakistan, or of Israel, or for the incorporation of Basutoland in South Africa, or of Gibraltar in Spain, or similarly for the displacement of the whites in favor of the Africans in South Africa. It has even been suggested that Algeria provides a pointer to the future of South Africa; the fact overlooked is that the vital decisions on Algeria were made in Paris and in Evian, and were not made by a white community in Algiers. But in South Africa, which has long been self- governing, the relevant decisions must be made in Pretoria, or Pretoria and Cape Town. If the colons of Algeria have indeed been expended, this was not of their doing. The liquidation of white South Africa would require, constitutionally, an act of collective submission-a manifestation, perhaps we should say, of that sacrificial love which is the very essence of Christianity. But, if it is only by such collective self-immolation that a people can reveal itself as Christian, never since the coming of Christianity has there existed a Christian people, as distinct from a people composed in part of Christian individuals. Not only is it difficult to conceive of a Christian nation, in the sense of a nation capable of giving its all for others; it is even difficult to argue that the democratic system of government is a Christian system. For here, too, collective selfishness is enthroned; it is assumed, correctly of course, that men in general, when given a vote, will use it to suit themselves, to suit their group, their section of society; they will not use it to manifest sacrificial love.
Fortunately, the Africans in South Africa have in general not as yet become impatient of European rule. Indeed, there is a considerable reservoir of good will toward the whites, and certainly a disposition to look to them for much of the leadership, the enterprise, the initiative, the giving of employment. And maybe it is this comparative absence of hostility on the side of the Africans that explains the sense of responsibility with which they still are generally regarded by the whites. Individually the behavior of white men may in many instances be unforgivable. But collectively and officially the Europeans still reveal a sense of paternalistic concern which could all too easily be lost if the non-whites should be seen by the whites as potential political rivals, and therefore eventual rulers. No one who questions the sincerity of the white leadership to "do the right thing" for the African can hope to understand the philosophy of apartheid; and it is presumably the fact that so many do seemingly doubt that sincerity which accounts for some of the incomprehension with which current policies are viewed.
How else is one to explain the apparent incredulity with which the simplest facts with respect to Bantu education are commonly received? Since white men, allegedly hating black men, must presumably be unwilling to seek their advancement, it is seen as inconceivable that Bantu education can have any object except to hold the Bantu down. What apparently is not believed is that the white man can possibly see that in the interests of his children an African élite must be created if the program for the Bantu homelands is to succeed. Yet, to doubt the sincerity of the program is becoming daily more difficult; so it is the feasibility rather than the sincerity of the program which has to be called in question instead. This is done, not infrequently, by ascribing to it objectives which have never, in fact, been a part of the plan.
Were the Bantustans program inherently and obviously unfeasible, this could hardly have gone unsuspected by its more intelligent exponents, in which case the whole thing must after all be an elaborate bluff-though it is hard to see who was to be deceived. And the truth is that, if the plan did not offer any serious promise of providing an answer for South Africa's possibly, but not certainly, insoluble problem, it could scarcely be receiving the support it does. Even doctors cannot always know that their patients will recover; but the belief that they possibly might do so is the basis on which they typically proceed; and for South Africans it may well be sufficient to believe that apartheid might possibly prove the answer for them to be willing to give it a trial. And this goes for black South Africans as well as for white.
One thing at least is certain: the homelands program, if patently unworthy of Bantu acceptance, will be rejected by the Bantu. They are not rejecting it yet. This must be irksome to South Africa's enemies and may explain the vehemence with which they are now demanding that it be frustrated from abroad. Were they really quite so certain that the program was a bad one they might be content simply to sit back and see it fail on its own demerits. But the trouble with just waiting for it to fail is that it might succeed and be seen by the world to be succeeding.
The fact that the Bantu have been so prompt in participating in the work of the new Transkei Parliament is not, of course, a guarantee of their love of the program as it stands. There is such a thing as joining in an enterprise with the intention of making it fail. But it surely is a form of color prejudice which simply takes it for granted that the African of the future, unlike some Europeans, will be quite incapable of moderation, of humor, even perhaps of fair play. Anyone with any faith in the good judgment and good nature of the Bantu will prefer to assume that there may be enough of them who will choose to adapt themselves to the realities of political life as they find them. They do not despair of seeing some of the best of the new generation active in the politics of the Bantustans. Extremism there will doubtless be; that one must indeed accept. And should the extremists "get on top" the program may very easily fail. But it also offers worthwhile possibilities for the less extreme; and it seems reasonable to hope that these, too, may have a role in the running of the new Transkei. Like Basutoland, the area must long remain economically dependent upon the good will of Pretoria; and it is not by immoderate gestures that African leaders will be in the best position to retain that good will.
Not the least among the many disservices that some of the black man's self- styled friends have done him is to have encouraged in him a disposition to ask for the moon. White men know better than to train their own offspring to expect the impossible, to suppose that the world owes them a living, to believe that if things happen to go ill with them it is because there is a conspiracy against them. All too commonly non-whites are tempted to believe that, were it not for their pigmentation, life might for them have been relatively free from ups and downs. All too readily are they given to suppose that when once they have won their independence paradise will be theirs, and incidentally that paradise is the least for which they can be expected to settle. All too often some sensible suggestion is disposed of with the comment that "the African would never be content with that." Too seldom is it asked with what the white man might not be content. Too seldom is it conceded that in the world as it is peace may well be dependent upon black and white alike adjusting themselves to conditions with which no one is entirely content.
It is no kindness to the African to convince him that his grievances are more serious than they are-to tell him, for instance, that the area of the Bantustans, barely 13 percent of the Republic, is insufficient for his needs and plainly inequitable as the portion for 75 percent of the population. There is no reason why further land, if needed, should not eventually be added to the Bantustans. Already they are larger than England and Wales, with their population of some 40 million. That the Bantustans, when rehabilitated and industrialized, should accommodate, say, 10 million people does not seem an unreasonable estimate. And again, on the question of South Africa's wealth, it is difficult to maintain that the Bantu have in any consequential sense been partners in the development of the country. Labor they may indeed have provided, on terms sufficient to draw more and more of them in from the outside every year. But if by their physical exertions those from the Transkei have earned a proprietary interest in the gold mines, for instance, why not also those from the Rhodesias and Mozambique, or the coolies that Lord Milner imported from China, for an agreed remuneration, in a time of exceptional dearth?
Apartheid is sometimes referred to as an "ideology;" and, since it is on the face of it inconsistent with Western liberalism, it is seen as in principle wrong. But it is wiser to recognize it as simply an expedient, an exercise in social therapeutics. It is a remedial treatment for a state of things deriving from the past. In part it is, of course, dictated by a passionate concern for the future of a European-type white society, and no doubt that society's right to self-preservation is itself a matter for debate. But it is this, and not the principle of apartheid, which thus is the matter for debate. Concede to the white man a right to preserve his achievement, and some such policy as apartheid may well appear as an inevitable corollary. Deplore the white man's collective self-concern, and you may equally well damn every other example of nationalism, white or black. It is absurd to assume that nationalism is nice, or nasty, according to its color.
It is possible of course that the Afrikaner, strict legalist that he is, may exaggerate the moral importance of constitutional right. Contrary to what his detractors imply, he shows little disposition to seek his objectives save through the methods of the constitution. What cannot be done constitutionally cannot, in his philosophy, be done. But conversely what can so be done, it is technically his right to do; and he is prone to hold that he is therefore right to do it. He has little patience with those who brush his constitutional arguments aside, even censuring his reliance on them-and this in a period when it is from people who disregard and even manipulate their constitutions that mankind has probably the more to fear.
It is perhaps propitious that everybody should think of his own political system as about the best there ever could be; but if each wants to impose the principles of his own on all others, the outlook for peace is poor. Honored voices have lately proclaimed the ideal of a world made safe for diversity. What else is this but the very principle of the apartheid program? Just as in the world as a whole there are many societies, each distinctive in its peculiar culture, so also within the confines of geographical South Africa there are more than one or two societies. That very self-determination which his fathers fought for is what the Afrikaner now envisages for each of the African peoples still subject to the white man's rule. The philosophy of separate development implies a rejection of the fallacy that wherever a single system of government is in operation, there do the governed compose a single people. Were the critics of South Africa to accept squarely the fact that South Africa comprises more communities than one, their admonitions would be more persuasive and their proposals more to the point. As it is, what many of them keep calling for is something which they might well know to be impossible-the inauguration, namely, of a system in which South Africa's many peoples would resolve themselves unreluctantly into one.
It is this cult of unreality in the assumptions of her critics that has given South Africa her now, alas, almost habitual indifference to what they may choose to say. When, for instance, they affect to see in the Transkei experiment a device for providing a reservoir of cheap labor, they seemingly forget that that is just what the Transkei has traditionally been, and that the granting to it of autonomy, with the creation of thousands of local opportunities both in government and industry, must tend, if anything, to make the territory's manpower less rather than more plentifully available for service in the white man's system. Or again, when they dismiss primary school instruction in the "mother-tongue" as a stratagem for barring the Bantu's access to the cultural resources of the West, they overlook that degree of proficiency in both English and Afrikaans which the Bantu child has concurrently the opportunity to achieve before moving up from one standard to the next. When they hail as a "setback" for the apartheid policy the success of possibly awkward candidates in the Transkei elections, they only show how apparently defective is their conception of what may be expected to occur in free elections. When they complain that the autonomy now being accorded is incomplete, they ignore the object lessons offered by Belgium's precipitate withdrawal from the Congo. And when they question the capability of the Bantustans to stand economically on their own, they neglect to ask themselves whether even Britain's Basutoland will ever be able to do that either.
The philosophy of apartheid is the standpoint of politicians who, having no mandate for effecting the liquidation of so-called white supremacy, must do the best they can, in circumstances where nothing they may realistically contemplate can be expected to win them the approval of the world. It is the philosophy of patriots who, while aware that certain powers could presumably choose to destroy them tomorrow, do not therefore feel free to abandon their tasks of today; and who, though charged with despising their African fellow-citizens, have more occasion to contemn their erstwhile Western friends who, for fear of the displeasure of the Afro-Asian "Establishment," can seemingly no longer afford to have eyes and minds of their own.
South Africa knows that it is not she that has lately changed; that never at any time were her peoples a single community or her constitution other than oligarchic, and that it is nevertheless essentially for this that she is now being blamed. And, from the fact that in their reviling of her, critics rely so largely on misconceptions as to what she is doing, she can draw a measure of hope. For perhaps it will not be too long before persons of independent outlook, who as of now are apparently accepting the fashionable evaluation of her policies, will begin to perceive and to appreciate those policies for what they are.