PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Irukandji
 
Comments: 20
Article views: 4997
 
 
Latest Badges:



 
View all Irukandji's badges.
 

This article has been selected as an Editor’s Choice report. Articles are selected based on quality of writing, audience response, newsworthiness and originality, and is at the discretion of the MyNews24 editors.

Van Riebeeck - Father of Conflict?

10 January 2012, 07:57

The conflict and discord, between blacks and whites in this country, is frequently said to have started with Jan van Riebeeck’s arrival at the Cape. Were our cultures really all that different? Have things changed since then?

 

First, let us look at Johan Anthoniszoon “Jan” van Riebeeck the man; viewed by many Afrikaners as the founding father of their nation. His main task was to set up a halfway-station to provide fresh provisions for the VOC fleets sailing between the Dutch Republic and Batavia. He had to establish a Fruit & Veg outlet, so to speak.

 

Although Jan had lovely long hair – similar in length to reggae legend Bob Marley, he didn’t conceal cocaine in it. Even if he had wanted to, dreadlocks were not in fashion at the time and he would have stood out like a whitey at a taxi rank in Soweto. So here we have a big difference; the hairstyles of our cultures. But let us not belabour the point; this could lead to conflict.

 

Let’s rather strive towards similarities and conciliation.

 

Jan was accompanied by 82 men and 8 women. King Mswati of Swaziland has 14 wives (at the last count); his father, king Sobhuza, had 70 wives. Our own “showara wa re sokodisa” has three or four wives. So, the gender imbalance issue is nothing new.

 

There are some truly remarkable parallels in our cultures:

 

King Sobhuza, of Swaziland, had approximately 210 children; van Riebeeck had a brood of 7 or 9, depending on your source of reference. Our president has a litter of more or less 20. Again, an amazing similarity – large amounts of offspring, but the exact numbers are unknown.

 

Jan’s Dutchmen tried to obtain meat provisions through trade with the natives. Malema wants to farm with cattle to supply the meat market. Thus both our cultures are driven by supply and demand.

 

Van Riebeeck opened South Africa for white settlement; thousands of blacks now live in settlements – also known as squatter camps. This demonstrates the shared craving for settlements by both races.

 

The initial fort, named Fort de Goede Hoop, was made of mud and clay; the same materials that were used by the original inhabitants, to build their dwellings.

 

Van Riebeeck wanted honest, reliable domestic workers; Malema also wants these white domestic workers to work for him.

 

One of the locals, Herry*, served as the official interpreter for van Riebeeck. Today, every corrupt ANC official has such an assistant; called a spokesperson, or spin-doctor.

 

Van Riebeeck banished Herry after he committed several misdemeanours – like stealing cattle and barter goods. Nowadays dishonest officials, when caught “mismanaging funds,” are still banished – to serve as ambassadors in exotic countries.

 

After a couple of years Herry was allowed back in the Cape; he was not punished for his former misdemeanours. These days criminals are not punished either. Instead, they are declared to be terminally ill, and forced to spend the rest of their lives playing golf.

 

The first settlers traded (bartered) with the natives; giving them copper wire and copper plates in return for cattle. Today copper in still in great demand. Some of the natives are doing a roaring trade in stolen copper cables; exporting it via scrap-metal merchants, to China.

 

Not that old “Van” had such an untainted record himself. His most important position was that of head of the VOC trading post in Tonkin, Vietnam. However, he was called back from this post when it was discovered that he was illegally trading for his own account.  This is just like South Africa's ambassador to Indonesia, Norman Mashabane, who was recalled after having been found guilty at disciplinary hearings on 22 charges of sexual harassment, following allegations of sexual misconduct.

 

One of van Riebeeck’s sons, Abraham van Riebeeck, born at the Cape, later became Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies. Nepotism is still alive and prevalent in our present government.

 

Van Riebeeck had the first vineyard planted in the Company's garden; resulting in fine wines. Meanwhile, the locals were brewing their own version of beer in the shade behind Table Mountain. This clearly shows that we all had forefathers who shared the fondness of booze.

 

Lastly, Herry murdered the cattle-herd David Jansz, and took off with almost the whole of the settlers' herd of cattle. He was pursued but not captured. A major similarity here: If this event had to take place today, the cops would also have been unable to make an arrest – and even if they did manage to catch him, the docket would have been lost, or Herry would only have had to pay a small bribe.

 

So there you have it my fellow citizens – we are more similar than you thought. Now let’s get over the racism poefies, try to get along, and stop blaming one another.

  

*Note: Autshumao was known to the English as 'Harry' and to the Dutch as 'Herry'.

 

Another remarkable similarity: The names “Autshumao” and “Anthoniszoon” both begin with the first letter of the alphabet, the letter “A.” Both Autshumao and Anthoniszoon were men, and both had nicknames, i.e. Herry and Jan. Both had hair. Uncanny, isn’t it?

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
20 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Tiisetso Maloma
Open letter to minister of Small ...

Below I list a few things which I believe frustrate entrepreneurship growth and acceleration in South Africa.  Read more...

7 comments 431 views
The alarming issues relating to y...

Unemployment is one of the key indicators of poverty and has various negative effects on people. Read more...

10 comments 212 views
Submitted by
Logan
Impeach President Zuma

Why do we expect the best from professionals in all areas of our normal day-to-day, but accept what clearly is nowhere near sufficient from our President? Read more...

9 comments 375 views
Submitted by
jerrypitie
Investing in the poor pays much f...

It is nothing but a wreck of a thought and act of pruning short cuts for the lazy and the ignorants. Read more...

26 comments 611 views
Submitted by
Juanne Coetzee
Potential armed shopping robbers ...

ARREST - SAPS at their best Read more...

3 comments 979 views
Submitted by
Jotta Malvern Booysen
Open letter to Premier Helen Zill...

After kidney failure people need a new kidney or dialysis to live. If you do not get dialysis, toxins will build up in your blood and water will fill your lungs and you will die. Read more...

31 comments 2124 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing prices – As seen on TV

Get mind blowing prices on 1000’s of products! Shop now.

Deal of the week!

Save R1200 on the Samsung 48” smart full HD LED television now only R8799. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.