This is a great photograph.
Basically the lobbying from these #Basotho chiefs kept #Lesotho, #eSwatini, and #Botswana out of the Union of South Africa and allowed for their contemporary #independence. (Names of chiefs in next tweets from Morija below the pic)
It should also be noted that the fact that these three territories were NOT incorporated in 1909 made it *much* harder for the apartheid regime to implement full apartheid via its Homelands/Bantustan plans. These plans *always* had Botswana/Swai/Lesotho playing a key role...
...with South Africa assuming that leaders in the three countries would simply accept their role as minor ethnic states in South Africa's orbit. With the support of the international community, all three resisted this (to differing degrees, of course).
Thus, #Lesotho, #Botswana, and #Swaziland/#eSwatini played a key role in undermining the intellectual rationale for Bantustans/ethnic separation.
Had they been incorporated, would have been much easier for RSA to justify Bantustans as more land would have been available.
Of course, in the present there are vigorous debates about what citizens of these countries miss by not being part of RSA, but in 1909 and for most of 20th century there was near-universal sentiment that the three were better off for not being part of RSA.
What should happen in present and future in terms of #borders, #rights, and #citizenship is beyond my remit as a historian, but forgetting key role that these three played in anti-apartheid efforts simply by existing within/near RSA would be a shame.
#Lesotho #Botswana #eSwatini
And it should be said, that the bulk of the 'cost' of these states being anti-apartheid was borne not by govt leaders (who needed to have courage to maintain the position, sure), but by ordinary #Basotho, #Swazi, and #Batswana who lived on/near the #border and faced repercussions
whether it was the inability to get in and out of RSA for work/visiting/shopping, or the threat of security raids that threatened life and property, or just the fact that they were on the front lines of an international struggle day-in-and-day-out.
Because this daily threat doesn't really get documented anywhere (until there is a terrible cross-border raid) it gets lost in the history and to the contemporary discourse about who has the 'right' to cross borders or live/work across an internationally-demarcated line. #borders
But it needs to be foregrounded as #Basotho, #Swazi, and #Batswana living their daily lives, even in nominally independent states, paid the price, too, for fighting #apartheid and this needs to be not just remembered and celebrated, but acknowledged in policy by #SouthAfrica
So, yea, end of that thread, I think!

Thanks to @MorijaMuseum for posting photographs of #history and #heritage!

And the above thread is what animates my push to document and record the history of the #Lesotho/#SouthAfrican #borderlands.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with John Aerni-Flessner

John Aerni-Flessner Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @LesothoJohn

7 Jan
So yesterday we lost of giant of #Lesotho academics when @MoMonyake Ntate Moletsane Monyake passed away.

I wanted to put a small tribute here as he was a friend and co-author with me on some pieces. He will be dearly missed.
I first met Mo on here. We engaged on a variety of issues around #Lesotho's history and politics (what we each, respectively) studied and I was struck from the outset at the spirit of generosity that came through his tweets. Tone is not easy to get right on here and Mo nailed it
Every time. He had the ability to push back on your ideas without coming across as pushy, rude, or mean-spirited. I can't speak for everyone, but this generosity of spirit pervaded *all* of my interactions with Mo.
Read 12 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!