White Supremacy in South Africa

April 9, 1958

Report Outline
Separation of Races in South Africa
Boer Tradition of White Supremacy
Opposition to Policy of Apartheid
White Supremacy and Foreign Affairs
Special Focus

Separation of Races in South Africa

Apartheid and Coming Parliamentary Election

White citizens of the Union of South Africa will decide at the polls on April 16 whether or not to renew the mandate of the Nationalist Party for another five years. The Nationalists, who have been in power for a decade, are the leading apostles of South Africa's policy of apartheid, which is designed to assure white supremacy through complete segregation of whites and non-whites. Non-whites comprise four-fifths of the country's population, but they are denied the franchise in three of the four provinces.

The non-whites have threatened to stage a general strike a few days before the election to dramatize demands for (1) a minimum daily wage of $2.80; (2) abolition of the identification pass system; and (3) repeal of the whole structure of apartheid laws. The stoppage may not be widespread, because the government on March 14 curtailed activities of the sponsoring organization, the African National Congress. However, the militant attitude of both white Nationalists and black agitators throws ominous clouds across the future of South Africa.

The Nationalist Party maintains that in a country where non-whites outnumber whites by almost four to one, drastic measures are necessary to preserve the purity of the white race and the heritage of European culture. Nationalists aim to “keep South Africa white” not only for themselves but also for their descendants. They assert that the official political opposition, the United Party, offers no alternative to apartheid. And they insist that present racial tensions in the Union result largely from irresponsible criticism by English-language newspapers and English-speaking correspondents.

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