WASHINGTON, DC, August 27 — Workers and students organized by the Labor Committee of Occupy DC and PLP members targeted the embassy of South Africa, rallying to protest the murderous attack by the ANC-led government on the wildcatting platinum mine workers (see page 2,8). Thousands of workers and students saw our signs and heard our speeches and chants during rush hour. The Labor Committee passed out 500 leaflets while PL’ers distributed a Party leaflet and CHALLENGE.
Some were shocked to learn as well as that the African National Congress(ANC), supposedly the liberators of South Africa, has put in place a New Apartheid ruling class made up of white industrialists and imperialists together with a tiny percentage of black Africans, including the “liberators.”
But no one should have been shocked. The sellout by the ANC and its allied “Communist” Party of South Africa was sealed as early as 1987 at the infamous Dakar meeting among the ANC, the leading white capitalists of South Africa, and the Afrikaner leadership. At Dakar, all parties agreed to maintain capitalism in South Africa while allowing modest integration of the ruling class through the freeing of political prisoners like Mandela and new elections.
Today, we see the result. Some of the “liberators” now share ownership of the mines with the white capitalists. President Zuma’s nephew, Khulubuse Zuma, and Zondwa Mandela, a grandson of Nelson Mandela, are part-owners of the Aurora gold mine in Grootvlei, east of Johannesburg. This mine went into liquidation in 2009, firing 5,000 people and the company continues to ignore a court order to pay its workers 4.3 million rand ($537,500) (Associated Press, 8/31/2012). Some liberation!
The ANC government added insult to injury by charging 270 striking miners with murder and attempted murder of the workers gunned down by the police, using an apartheid-era law. This caused such an outrage that the charges were withdrawn “provisionally,” still to be considered. During the rally, protestors tweeted messages about the rally to contacts in South Africa, conveying the determination of Occupiers and PL’ers to build global, militant working-class unity in the face of the New Apartheid in South Africa, the New Jim Crow in the U.S., and the sharpening attacks worldwide on our sisters and brothers.