Unbanned Bible Publications
Defending God’s Truth in Church Doctrine and Political History – Renette Vermeulen
BRITAIN’S RACIST EXPLOITATION READIED SOUTH AFRICAN MINERS FOR REVOLUTION
Because Great Britain had established an explosive labor market through racist segregation in South Africa, the Chamber of Mines benefited immensely from disadvantaged white and non-white workers. With all the well-paid, managerial jobs in the hands of British foreigners, the Chamber of Mines only advanced skills among a minority of whites on a basis of necessity, excluding most Afrikaners and multitudes of Africans. White workers were, (as they still are,) a tiny minority compared to the very large non-white labor market, but generally, they were more skilled in craft and industry. As a result, whites expected to be paid according to experience and ability, while non-white workers were willing to earn any amount of money for any type of job. This caused a growing tendency among mining magnates to employ cheaper non-white labor while pushing white workers systematically out of the labor market; worsening the already terrible post-war living conditions even further for all South Africans.
[Acknowledgement to those who compiled the images in this study]
Then, in 1920, the price of gold plummeted. To increase their profits and not to “keep the mines in production” as the Chamber of Mines alleged, they fired 10,000 white miners, replacing them with cheaper non-white labor. This meant that with one blow, (for half of the remaining white workforce of only 20,000,) mine bosses crushed their hope to earn an income in this country. To add insult to injury, this was done even before South Africans could begin to recover from the flattening foot of Great Britain, which tramped them to pieces during the ‘Boer’ War only twenty years ago.
While this drastic reduction in white labor seemed to benefit non-white workers financially, it was really all about extorting higher and higher profits from desperately poor, extremely hard working men of all races. Needless to say, by castrating whites financially in favor of very cheap non-white labor, the Chamber of Mines recklessly fanned the miners’ smoldering resentment of mine management, as well as the racism between the many competing workers.
What happened next, was merely a matter of survival for a severely abused minority of struggling workers, who have been looking down the bottomless shaft of starvation for much too long. Still, by grasping at straws, the miners played right into the hands of clever clandestine forces. The greedy politicians and billionaire industrialists of the young South Africa were actually using this “time of suffering” to infect the minds of the population with more racial germs.
The clambering for jobs escalated immensely and made them all hungry for war.
Just as the masonic Brotherhood had planned, these were the mechanisms that would bring the miners “to detach their minds from local interests and seriously unite in… mutual self-sacrifice to attempt some great reform… [toward communist chaos and eventually, the one-world, socialist ‘order.’]”
THE WHITE ‘REDS’ OF THE 1922 RAND MINERS’ STRIKE
Over the years, the international media taught South Africans and the rest of the world that this country has ‘always’ been governed by a whole nation of Afrikaners, who exerted enormous pressure on the citizens of other races. However, the sad and extremely violent history of the nineteenth and young twentieth century proved that the communist enemies and governments of South Africa, as in every other country in the world, always instigated violence and conversely, suppressed uprising and revolution regardless of race or creed. The African National Congress regime of the new South Africa did (and is still doing) exactly the same, as we saw in the Marikana miners’ massacre when miners first fired at police, killing 2 police officers and 2 security guards. Thirty-four miners were killed as a result.
[Acknowledgement to those who compiled the images in this study]
In the early 1920’s, communist agitators, (always preying on civil need and financial discontent to cause chaos in order to advance their communist goals,) proposed a distinct ‘way out’ for the dilemma of the white miners: continuous industrial action. The general assumption is that the leaders of the strike knew exactly what they were doing and whom they were following. However, most miners, as ordinary citizens, were completely oblivious to the hidden agenda of the powers that were steering them towards willfully created anarchy. Apart from the harsh Martial-Law lesson they learned under the 1914 regime of Jan Smuts, (who became Prime Minister of the British Union of South Africa after General Louis Botha died in 1919,) Marxism baring its teeth among workers in this way was still something new in South Africa. Yet, under the influence of communist campaigners, despairing white members of the miners’ Trade Union began to call themselves “The Reds.”
In January 1922, white coal miners downed tools over further pay cuts. Government mediation failed and the Chamber of Mines threatened with the loss of another 2,000 jobs for white miners, who would then have been replaced by non-white workers.
More strikes exploded all over the Witwatersrand that surround Johannesburg.
Jan Smuts asked the miners publically to return to work and promised police protection for the ‘scabs’ or miners who chose not to join the strikes. However, the Communist Party and their militant Action Committee The Reds, which controlled the strikes, did not have a compromise in mind.
Head of the Communist Party and leader of The Reds in Johannesburg, Comrade Bill, called out a general strike among all the miners under his command. He also urged all other organized rebels under the leadership of the Federation of Labor to join them. Simultaneously, the daring Bob Waterston, leader of the Labor Party, called for a “national revolution,” demanding that the British South African Union declares itself a Democratic Republic to dethrone superrich British industrialists, who continue to tyrannize the suffering miners. (I wonder if the ordinary miner realized that this man was calling out another civil war in this country!) However, miners were so hopelessly exploited that most were loudly agreeing with Waterston by shouting communist slogans at the Chamber of Mines and furiously shaking communist fists at “that Afrikaner traitor,” Jan Smuts.
Surprisingly, Tielman Roos, leader of the National Party in Transvaal and supposedly “a great opponent of Marxism” submitted Waterston’s demand to Parliament. But Smuts, insanely loyal to the British crown, refused all attempts to free South Africa from British Colonial rule.
I assume this was the same mason Tielman Roos, who was initiated at the Kimberley Lodge in 1893. One can only wonder why fellow mason Jan Smuts rejected his proposal — other than presenting a deceptive difference of opinion between the old South African Party and the new National Party! It became obvious that the National Party would eventually come to power, but at the time, South Africa’s independence did not fit into the global scheme of things.
CIVIL WAR ENGULFED JOHANNESBURG AND THE SURROUNDING WITWATERSRAND
In February 1922, following the first full-blown military onslaught of Jan Smuts on miners in 1914, more racial clashes among workers and strikers allegedly “pushed” the Chamber of Mines into asking the Prime Minister to declare Martial Law on the strikers once again. (National Martial law such a great minority of white miners, if you don’t mind!) Surprisingly, Smuts seemed reluctant at first, obviously weighing the pros and cons of the situation in the light of his previous abuse of power. He knew very well that unyielding strike leaders were still in control of the miners, and he obviously realized that this time, it could end in a national bloodbath.
Since 1907, the Witwatersrand that surrounds Johannesburg was a hot seat for politicians as rioters and police sporadically clashed. Gradually, the fights intensified to resemble the hostility between police and rioters during the Communist Struggle of later years. Difference was, while the apartheid regime restrained the actions of their forces against millions upon millions of out-of-control revolutionaries, the great minority of white miners of 1922 were angry but frightened, because in their quest to gain financial fairness, they made many dangerous enemies. From previous standoffs with Jan Smuts, they knew him as a merciless politician and “a twisted Afrikaner.” His allegiance lay with Great Britain, not with his countrymen. Smuts would do anything to protect British interests in South Africa. Therefore, at far as possible, the strikers involved supporters such as old men to protect their loved ones because they thought they might be in danger of reprisal from Smuts’ police force, non-striking workers, and white South African Party, (SAP) Smuts-supporters.
Their suspicions were more than warranted.
In February 1922, after long deliberation with the Trade Unions, the Communist Party, The Chamber of Mines and the Smuts government, the Chamber of Mines still flatly refused to reinstate white workers or to stop job losses and pay cuts, and allegedly “pressured” Smuts into submitting to their demand to call out martial law once more.
All hell broke loose in the streets and surrounding towns and neighborhoods of Johannesburg.
When news of Martial Law reached the action group The Reds, they immediately took their fury to the streets. As in all other so-called ‘peaceful’ demonstrations, Mahatma Gandhi’s [bottom of WebPage] ‘passive-resistance’ quickly escalated into civil disobedience and violence.
On 10 March 1922, Jan Smuts launched his all-out military strike against rioting miners all over the Witwatersrand. To ‘assist’ the Police Force, the “heavy-handed” Smuts simultaneously called out the Artillery, the Burger commandos, the British Cavalry, the Defense Force and the Air Force — not to intimidate the rioters, but to obliterate the uprising completely.
[Acknowledgement to those who compiled the images in this study]
Above: The mayhem of a second declaration of martial law against miners in 1922 came before the term ‘riot control’ existed. Apparently, no one considered arming police and soldiers with riot shields, guard dogs, rubber bullets, teargas, and batons. The thought of using life-sparing devices such as water cannons never entered Jan Smuts’ power-deranged mind. Instead, he ordered his combined police and military forces to flush the desperate miners from the city like garbage, shoot them on sight like stray dogs, and bomb them from the air like vermin!
Engaged in mortal combat, The Reds took control of the mines. Armed commandos barricaded the mines to prevent non-striking ‘scabs’ from keeping the mines in production. When the scabs did not submit to their intimidation, the rioters aggressively assaulted them. Rebel rioters even began to snipe at the mine management and police officers on duty.
Prime Minister Jan Smuts instantly retaliated with so much force that overnight, the entire Witwatersrand was catapulted into a war zone. In this second martial law assault on rioters, with 20,000 troops under his command, supported by field artillery, Afrikaner and English commandos on horseback, storm troopers, army tanks — and get this: fighter planes, Smuts eventually arrested 1,500 miners at the Johannesburg show grounds and jailed their strike leaders in The Fort. I could not find any statistics of fatalities through this calculated military strike against civilians, but one can assume that Smuts left behind many dead and wounded rioters in his wake.
Miraculously, most of the miner commandos escaped Smuts’ mighty military assaults. They raided police stations for arms and ammunition, loosening more relentless government attacks upon them. During the following week, a full-scale war intensified in the streets and suburbs surrounding Johannesburg. Artillery fire and airplane strikes flattened many buildings and thundered over hordes of strikers and civilians on the streets.
During a coordinated British Imperial Light Horse Brigade, and a more than 600 men strong Workers’ Commando attack on The Reds at Ellispark, miners killed eight members of these brigades while losing an unknown number of their own men. In familiar hit-and-run Boer-War commando combat, miners ambushed The Transvaal Scottish Brigade at Dunswart and killed five of their officers and twelve soldiers.
While Smuts’ commandos and police force searched, intimidated and assaulted all possible ‘striker sympathizers' in the streets, buildings and houses of Johannesburg, his Assault Forces cordoned off all byways and surrounding areas to flush out and trap fleeing and hiding miners. Without considering innocent bystanders, striking and other miners or their families, Smuts then ordered his air force to bombard all the buildings, houses and other places suspected of sheltering the miners, among these, the Town Hall of Benoni.
On that dreadful day of 11 March 1922, desperate rebels bravely besieged the Brakpan and Benoni police stations. Sympathizers of the strikes watched helplessly as Smuts’ soldiers took 2,000 prisoners on the Brixton Bridge, while his artillery bombarded the remaining rebel strongholds, as well as Fordsburg Square.
A few days later, the world heard the news that the two most prominent leaders of The Reds, Fisher and Spendiff, committed suicide when their stronghold fell. The two deeply committed leaders left this simple note, stating, “We died for what we believed in: The [Communist] Cause.”
Of course, all the strikers were used and deceived by ruthless Communist commanders operating from behind the scenes. Nonetheless, they remained battle-marred ‘Burgers’ (meaning civilians) of the Boer War, (1899-2002,) who had scarcely returned from Britain’s foreign battlefields of World War One, (1914-1918.) They haven’t recovered from the wild waters of the ocean yet; the hot bowls of war ships that carried them to foreign countries and incarcerated thousands of others in watery graves. They didn’t have time to heal from the shock and mutilation of World War One’s screeching airplane bombs, hand grenades, land mines, bullet-spitting Gatling guns and incinerating flamethrowers. The soul-grinding noise of armed tanks and the choking clouds of artillery smoke, tear gas, mustard gas, and other types of chemical warfare. The bone-chilling war cries of storm troopers on suicide missions. The loud cursing of the wounded and the whispered prayers of the dying. And then, that which would always cleave to their minds: the musty smell of warm, gushing blood; the reek of those filthy, muddy, diseased trenches; the nauseating stench of ‘trench mouth,’ urine, sweat and feces — and of course, the foul, sour-sweet smell of death all around them.