31 July 2014
Attention: Andries Breytenbach
To: The Chairman.
c/o Mr Abel Malan
Facebook link https://www.facebook.com/groups/volksraad/
CC; The Honourable Mr. President J.G. Zuma
South African Parliament
Dear Mr. Breytenbach,
MEETING WITH THE BOER-AFRIKANER VOLKSRAAD TO DISCUSS SELF-DETERMINATION FOR THE AFRIKANER
Firstly I apologise for not addressing this letter directly to your offices. After searching the internet, I could not find a suitable contact address for mail to be delivered to, and thus made use of the Facebook facility to inbox this letter to one of your members, namely Mr. Abel Malan, for delivery thereof.
With reference to the up-coming talks between the Office of the South African President, the honourable J.Zuma; and the Boer-Afrikaner Volksraad with regards to talks on self-determination for the Afrikaners and the Boers, I wish to express my feelings as I am of Boer stock.
I understand that this call for self-determination also involves the Afrikaner Electoral Commission (VVK) which carries many supporters of the previous National Party government.
I fully support any call for self-determination of any group of people as it could be to their benefit to be grounded to their ethnical and cultural roots. A positive identity builds a self-confident and productive nation.
I am sure that all aspects of such a shift in control of power would be carefully considered by all parties involved, and what I wish to lay out may already have been planned for the table. Therefore, I apologise up front if the following is superfluous, but kindly hear me out.
The word ‘Afrikaner’ has to be considered in depth if we are to know who the people are concerned with this matter. So, too, the word ‘Boer’ as a nation, rather than merely an occupation.
From my analysis, the call for talks is to discuss territory which could be set aside for the sole use of the Afrikaners governed by a democratic system.
Firstly, the word ‘Afrikaner’ may be misconstrued. The first group of people who were named Afrikaners during the 1700’s were from the KhoiSan forefather Oude Ram Afrikaner (born during the 1690’s in the Tulbagh district).
After the land of David Afrikaner, then known as `tLand van Waveren’, was taken away from him by the Cape governor and given to White Colonialists, who renamed the area Tulbagh, the Afrikaner clan moved to the Hantam area, where their land was again taken away from them which forced them to work for the Pienaar family.
Both David Afrikaner and his son, Jager Afrikaner, became consigned labourers of the farmer Pieter Pienaar on Hantam, in the Calvinia district.
According to family tales retold, Mr. Pienaar was a quick tempered person, which led to the revolt of the Afrikaners. After a carefully planned plot, they murdered the Pienaar family and fled northwards, taking along with them everything they could transport.
Because the farms were so far apart at that time, it took many days before the neighbouring farmers discovered the massacre. By that time the fleeing Afrikaners were well on their way to Gariep (the Orange River) where they stayed for a long time in the Pella area with other clans before they continued northwards across the Gariep. On their way through southern Namibia, they came across various other KhoiSan and non-KhoiSan clans. The Afrikaners finally settled in a valley which Jager Afrikaner named ‘Klein Winterhoek’ in remembrance of the Winterhoek Valley in Tulbagh where he had been born and had grown up. Winterhoek later became known as “Windhoek” due to mispronunciations.
During the first half of the 1800’s, Jan Jonker Afrikaner, the son of Jager Afrikaner, governed the central areas of Nambia as captain of his clan.
This Afrikaner clan expanded and still exists. Their rich history cannot be ignored.
At the time that the KhoiSan and other ‘Coloureds” in the Cape area became known as Afrikaners, the whites in southern Africa were known as the Colonials of the Cape Dutch, and the Vryburghers. The Vryburghers had taken their freedom from VOC after they had completed their services, and moved away from the Cape government. They became known as the ‘GrensBoere’ (Border Boers), and the ‘TrekBoere’ (Pioneering Boers).
The first ‘white’ who called himself an “Afrikaner’ was Hendrik Biebouw. His father was German and his sister was Coloured. Biebouw, racing while drunk through Stellenbosch, was pulled off his horse by a Dutch magistrate. While the magistrate was caning him, Biebouw objected, stating: “You can’t hit me, I am an Afrikaner!”
Thus Biebouw was deported to Australia, as the law in those days operated concerning offenders.
There was also a time period during the 1800’s when Afrikaners called the new British arrivals at the Cape ‘Afrikaners’, but the English newspaper of Grahamstown denounced the word “Afrikaner’ stating that the word was associated with slaves and that Afrikaans was a bastard language. This sentiment was widely shared with the British who believed that Britain was far superior to Africa.
It was nearly 200 years after Oude Ram Afrikaner was born that some of the white Colonial descendents started calling themselves ‘Afrikaners’ and accepted the bastardised Afrikaans language of the Coloureds as their own. In 1875, under leadership of The Fellowship of Real Afrikaners, and later The Afrikanerbond in 1881, the title of Afrikaner was used in a more official manner to apply to Colonialists. By this time, the Boer nation had already developed and owned two internationally recognized Republics, namely Die Zuid Afrikaanse Republiek (ZAR) and the Oranje Vrystaat (OFS), and their common language was "Die Taal", which had a strong Dutch influence.
During the second half of the 20th Century, white Afrikaner nationalists started using the Afrikaner identity exclusively for white Afrikaners, thus excluding the Coloureds and also denying the Boers their identity by referring to them as Afrikaners. To the best of my understanding, Afrikaner Nationalism and Voortrekker sovereignty is not the same thing.
SJ Du Toit who started the standardization of Afrikaans was from the Western Cape and an Anglophile, who had many dealings with Rhodes. He grew increasingly critical of Kruger's policies and supported the ideal of a united South Africa, promoted by Cecil John Rhodes.
General Jan Smuts, - who also stemmed from the western Cape, was the most famous and accomplished statesman in South Africa during the first half of the 20th century - was also an ardent admirer and follower of Rhodes. He, along with the Afrikaners of the Cape Colony, shared Rhodes' vision of a political fusion of the country's Afrikaner and English races, and the creation of a united South Africa. In fact, as representative of the Boers during the meeting called by the British to discuss a peace treaty during the second Anglo Boer War, Jan Smuts had strict instructions from the Boers NOT to capitulate, as the Boers were having massive victories in the field, and the British treasury was bankrupt. When he told the Cape Rebels that he had agreed on their behalf that they would surrender, one shouted, "You have betrayed us!" Furthermore, he also said that he could not ensure the Cape Rebels' safety.
It had become clear that the ‘white’ Afrikaners supported a Unionized South Africa, despite the costs the Boers suffered by being stripped of their independent Republics.
If now, the Afrikaners are calling for self determination and their own land to carry out their own culture under the entitlement of ‘Afrikaner-Boer’, it should be made clear to all concerned which culture they are referring to, and if they intend to orchestrate a ‘whites only’ area. As there is no official reference to ‘Afrikaner-Boer’ as a nation in South Africa, what with the South African Indians being the latest such nation recognized internationally, I also suggest that application be made for international acceptance of their identity. However, I as a Boer do not embrace the identity of an Afrikaner-Boer nor will I support such a bastardization of my heritage and culture.
Secondly, the Boer culture inherently embraces a Republican system of governance, but the so-called Afrikaner-Boer Volksraad are offering a democratic system, should they be granted self determination. Such a Democratic system centralizes power to a few select, whereas in a Republican system, representatives in government are merely messengers of the people, and cannot make decisions on their behalf unless mandated to do so by the people.
Thirdly, history has proven that in the Boer Republics people of all races, cultures and religions were allowed to live and work alongside the Boers. As a Boer, I am proud of my culture, race and colour; but I do not consider myself superior to any other race. I would not class myself as a racist, as it is commonly understood.
I, personally, am not interested in being subjected to governance by an Afrikaner as much as a Palestinian does not want to be subjected to governance under a Zionist government in the land of his ancestors.
The only, true solution I can see to the land issue in South Africa, is to declare the Union of South Africa in 1910 illegal, and to hand control back to those it belonged to before the Union was finalized. I do not expect any person to be destabilized, but envision dual citizenry where required. But this is my personal view on the matter.
I thank you for your time.