As South Africa Reels from Mine Shootings, Social Inequality Threatens to Undo the Post-Apartheid ‘Miracle’

Posted: August 23, 2012 in Children, Emergencies, Health, Human Rights, Internally displaced persons, News
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World

A series of police massacres from the 1960s to the 1980s helped seal the fate of white minority rule in South Africa, so it’s hardly surprising that last week’s killing of 34 striking mine workers has left the ANC government politically paralyzed: It was the erstwhile liberation movement — now  the ruling party — that sent the police to break up a strike at the Marikana platinum mine outside Rustenberg, where the resulting confrontation turned into a bloodbath. In the days since, the ANC leadership — so quick, usually, to rally in support of traumatized communities — has reportedly been conspicuous by its absence, only fueling the rage of the miners and their supporters. President Jacob Zuma has called for calm, for mourning and soul-searching, and for an investigation. But Zuma will know as well as anyone that the Marikana shootings may yet prove to be the symbolic moment…

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