The two most urgent economic problems facing South Africa today, 25-years of a triumphant ANC rose to power in the democratic elections of 1994, under the much-feted Nelson Mandela, is stubbornly high unemployment figures that the Eskom crisis. Wracked by daily power outages (load-shedding) the South African economy and the public are both experiencing tremendous distress as a result of the fear of the unknown and various experts suggesting it will take about 5-years to resolve the structural and maintenance issues besetting the SOE, state-owned enterprise. Some are suggesting that the problems facing Eskom as “manmade” and a pretext by the Ramaphosa government to privatise Eskom once the public has reached a certain threshold of exasperation with the daily outages. 

Let’s take a step back to 1953, when the hugely popular democratically elected President of Iran, Mohammed Mossadegh was ousted in a CIA backed coup. Orchestrated by the grandson of U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt, one Kermit Roosevelt Jr, an intelligence officer that designed the modern handbook of instigating insurrection and illegal coups on behalf of the American government. 

The “Kermit Roosevelt Jr Handbook” for a successful coup – creates and ferment discontent among the population by paying people to participate in violent riots against the government. Make sure that you buy the loyalties of the top generals who control the armed forces. The population becomes distressed and pleads with the government to intervene. The government sends in the army to crack down on the strikers and during the ensuing mayhem, buildings are torched and people lose their lives. The generals step in accusing the government of heavy-handedness and of losing control of the country. The President is arrested, trumped-up charges are brought against him and he is jailed, placed under house arrest for the rest of his life or killed. A handpicked client President is hastily installed that serves the purposes of the coup plotters and he collaborates with the generals offering emoluments and financial inducements in exchange for their compliance. The hapless state is systematically stripped of its natural resources for the benefit of Empire (read the British or the Americans). 

Since the successful overthrow of Mossadegh, this CIA strategy has been replicated several times, especially in South America, and is happening in Venezuela as we speak. But, as times change, so old strategies are niftily replaced with smarter more non-invasive ones, which leads me to South Africa. Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa a man known to have close ties to the white captains of industry, and the then Deputy President of the country succeeded the sitting President of the Republic, Jacob Zuma in what is generally seen in some quarters as a “soft coup” after he became the President of the ANC in December 2017, the majority political party in the country.

From that point onwards, the ANC and powerful business interests leaned on Zuma enough to persuade him that he no longer enjoyed legitimacy and the confidence of the people that elected him, he capitulated, so Cyril became the first unelected President of South Africa, post-1994. He was only democratically elected in 2019 but ruled the interregnum as de facto President of the Republic. Like all Presidents across the globe, he was elected on the promises of decreasing state corruption (a deep-seated systemic issue that seems insoluble), decreasing unemployment and “resolving the SOE issues?” Once the “Ramaphoria” had died down it has become clear that the current sitting President is doing just that, sitting, sitting and waiting, but the question is why? 

Next week in Part 2:

I shall address the bold plan to hand South Africa back to white rule backed by white capital interests in the most audacious manner that will leave Kermit Roosevelt Jr red with envy.