The German colonial machine also perpetrated genocide on African soil. In Namibia, the Herero and Namaqua peoples rebelled against the uncivilised barbarity they were subjected to by white savages. The German response was to deploy a heavily armed force, under the command of Lieutenant General Lothar von Trotha. An official extermination order was issued, it read, ‘Within the German boundaries every Herero, whether found with or without a rifle, with or without cattle, shall be shot’. Those who survived the massacres were condemned to die in concentration camps, often transported to those hellish places in cattle trucks. An estimated 90,000 Herero and Namaqua were killed. In 2004, the German government officially apologised to the Herero and accepted that what its forebears inflicted upon them was genocide.
‘I became interested in genocide because it happened so many times. It happened to the Armenians, then after the Armenians, Hitler took action.’ – Raphael Lemkin
On July the 11th, Muslim Bosniaks commemorated the twentieth anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide. The Bosnian War raged as the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia began to crumble. Bosnian Serb forces entered Srebrenica, a designated United Nations ‘safe area’ and subsequently executed approximately 8,000 Bosniak Muslim boys and men. The intent was clear; destroy Srebrenica’s male population in a coldly efficient, planned manner. The massacre was utilised diplomatically to manufacture consent for NATO’s bombing campaign over Bosnia. Regardless of opposition to this campaign, or any imperialistic NATO intervention for that matter, the horror of Srebrenica undoubtedly constituted an act of genocide.
Right now, the Muslim Rohingya people of Myanmar are suffering in the midst of a continuing genocide…
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