Watch Video: Caution Extremely Violent
By Melanie Nathan, August 17, 2012.
Tragedy struck at a Marikana mine in South Africa this week. No it did not cave in and no miners were not trapped underground. The miners were protesting. Singing and chanting, armed with machetes and sticks in war dance fashion. The South African police fired repeatedly and 34 miners were slaughtered and 78 injured. The promise of post-apartheid triumph seems to have been wiped out in a hail of bullets.
In a scene replayed endlessly on television that reminded some South Africans of the days when the police of the apartheid government opened fire on protesters, as the armed officers shot into a charging crowd of workers who walked off the job last Friday, demanding higher wages.
Frantic wives searched for missing loved ones, President Jacob Zuma rushed home from a regional summit and some miners vowed a fight to the death Friday as police finally announced the toll from the previous day’s shooting by officers of striking platinum miners: 34 dead and 78 wounded. President Jacob Zuma’s government has played down demands that South Africa’s mines and farms be nationalized. His party’s powerful youth wing argues that nationalization is the only way to redress the evils of the apartheid past. ( Associated Press)
How should the police have dealt with this? What would have been the protocol in other countries? Watch the video below and judge for yourself.
Perhaps the armed miners with machetes set the tone for violence. However what happened to water canons and rubber bullets? why were the police not prepared?
The massacre would at the time of Apartheid had the world in an uproar. But now that the world does not construe the post-apartheid Zuma ANC government as oppressive, it seems as if the South African regime gets off with a hand slap. But poverty and corruption prevails as Zuma, a traditionalist, enjoys many wives and many cars.
The country has faced oppressiveness of a different kind – for well over 20 years – increasing poverty, rampant unemployment and an inequality that the eradication of apartheid failed to correct.
The strike in Marikana has pitted the country’s largest mine workers union against a radical upstart union demanding sharp increases in pay and faster action to improve the grim living and working standards for miners.
Perhaps this will wake the world and South Africa up to the desperate need for change in South Africa.
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NOTE VIOLENT and DISTURBING VIDEO – See on CNN