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Berlin’s position "is that the complaint is inadmissable because of the principle of state immunity"

“Germany has acknowledged that atrocities occurred at the hands of German colonial authorities, but it has repeatedly refused to pay direct reparations.

It has argued that its development aid worth hundreds of millions of euros since Namibia’s independence from South Africa in 1990 was "for the benefit of all Namibians".”

...

In short

The suit alleges that from 1885 to 1903 about a quarter of Ovaherero and Nama lands — thousands of square miles — was taken without compensation by German settlers with the explicit consent of German colonial authorities.

It also claims that those authorities turned a blind eye to rapes by colonists of Ovaherero and Nama women and girls, and the use of forced labour.

Tensions boiled over in early 1904 when the Ovaherero rose up, followed by the Nama, in an insurrection crushed by German imperial troops.

In the Battle of Waterberg in August 1904, around 80,000 Herero fled including women and children.

German troops went after them across what is now known as the Kalahari Desert. Only 15,000 Herero survived.

The smaller Nama tribe faced a similar fate. Around 10,000 of them were killed as they sought to rebel against the Germans during the conflict.

https://www.businesslive.co.za/…/2018-01-27-germany-asks-u…/

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A class-action suit was launched by Herero and Nama people last year over tens of thousands killed in 1904-1908 massacres
businesslive.co.za

"Kentridge tells artnet News that the piece refers to how World War I was a culmination of the Conference of Berlin in 1884-85, dubbed the Scramble for Africa, when European powers carved up the continent. After the conflict “there is a huge re-arrangement of Africa,” Kentridge says. He adds that the work is also due to be performed in Germany as part of the next Ruhrtrienniale.

While the campaign in east Africa is sometimes remembered, albeit as side-shows to the conflict ...on the Western and other fronts, the impact and human cost of the war across Africa and in African lives “is a history that I myself was unclear about,” he says, stressing that “a million Africans died in Africa.”

The Head and the Load, which is a phrase taken from a Ghanaian saying, refers to the thousands of Africans from almost every country rushed to Europe by Britain, France, and Germany to fight in the front line and in even greater numbers dig trenches behind the lines and transport supplies as laborers and porters, but its main focus are the men who volunteered or were pressed into service in Africa. The colonial politicians’ and generals’ empty promises about civil rights if they served, and the men’s mistreatment, are at the heart of the operatic piece, co-commissioned by 14-18 Now and the Park Avenue Armory."

https://news.artnet.com/…/william-kentridges-great-war-perf…

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The impact and human cost of the war across Africa and in African lives is a history that Kentridge admits he didn't know enough about.
news.artnet.com
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"In the early 20th century, the popularity of social Darwinism had created a consensus that nations should be seen similarly to biological organisms, which risked extinction or decay if they failed to expel alien bodies and achieve “living space” for their own citizens. Pseudo-scientific theories of biological difference between races posited a world in which all races were engaged in an international struggle for wealth and power. Whiteness became “the new religion”, as Du B...ois witnessed, offering security amid disorienting economic and technological shifts, and a promise of power and authority over a majority of the human population.

The resurgence of these supremacist views today in the west – alongside the far more widespread stigmatisation of entire populations as culturally incompatible with white western peoples – should suggest that the first world war was not, in fact, a profound rupture with Europe’s own history. Rather it was, as Liang Qichao, China’s foremost modern intellectual, was already insisting in 1918, a “mediating passage that connects the past and the future”.

The liturgies of Remembrance Day, and evocations of the beautiful long summer of 1913, deny both the grim reality that preceded the war and the way it has persisted into the 21st century."
https://www.theguardian.com/…/how-colonial-violence-came-ho…

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The long read: There is a notion that the Great War was a shocking rupture in civilisation that tore a peaceful world apart. But for millions who had long been living under imperialist rule, terror and degradation were not new
theguardian.com
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Iconographic Research is at Ruvuma River.

Trenches along the Rovuma River between Mozambique and Tanzania

Year: 1914-1918

Source: Arquivo Histórico Militar, Lisboa

Today!
"For Memorial Day. World War I veterans Fayette Johnson & Burnett Watson, Charlottesville, Virginia, 1919. (Photos: Rufus Holsinger)"
Source: https://twitter.com/johnedwinmason/status/869190336974905344

Image may contain: 1 person, standing, shoes and outdoor
Image may contain: 1 person, standing, shoes and outdoor

"The genocide is widely viewed as the first of the twentieth century, perpetrated from 1904 to 1907, but is rarely recognized. Historians believe that the atrocities perpetrated by the German troops became a precursor for those perpetrated during the Holocaust. The parallels between Germany’s two genocides are chillingly similar: the extermination order for the sake of expansion, forced labor in concentration camps and scientific experiments on prisoners.
Within three years, ...German troops oversaw the extermination of 85% of the Herero population, expropriated their land and seized their source of wealth, their cattle. Today, the once powerful Herero make up about 10% of Namibia’s population and live in some of the country’s most underdeveloped regions, struggling with high youth unemployment." http://qz.com/…/germany-finally-apologizes-for-its-other-g…/

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There will be an apology and formal recognition of the atrocities, but no reparations.
qz.com

"Germans carefully recorded the flogging of 49,506 Africans from Namibia (then German South West Africa) between January 1913 and March 1914. The pictures depict results of the flogging of two Africans from Namibia! " Source : Azaria C. Mbughuni #WWIAFRICA

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"Wilson is credited for helping found the League of Nations, the precursor to today’s United Nations. But that Wilson’s name is on Princeton’s School of Public and International Affairs is a cruel irony, given that his legacy in the League of Nations has also been whitewashed. Wilson took his bigotry and pandering to Southern Democrats to the global stage when he opposed the Racial Equality Proposal put forth by Japan in 1919, that stated that a basic tenet of the League of Nations should be to accord “equal and just treatment . . . making no distinction, in law or in fact, on account of their race or nationality.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/…/woodrow-wilson-and-cecil-…/

From Princeton to Oxford, students are directly challenging anti-blackness and white supremacy.
washingtonpost.com

#Kickstart "The black veterans of WWI returned home to become foot soldiers for civil rights in America,” Beeson said. “The WWI black experience was the beginning of the modern civil rights movement.”

BlackTimeMap opens a window into these soldiers’ time to make sure their stories are told, their service is honored, and that the history lessons of their time are not lost. The black veteran experience in the shadow of Jim Crow racism parallels and continues to shed light on th...e current racial landscape in America in which we have witnessed the rise of reactionary movements against immigrants and people of color, growing income inequality, and the pressures of technological change.

“If we don't learn from the past how social and economic distress served to divide us, we are bound to repeat this cycle,” Beeson said.
...
"There's a whole lot of history that needs to be dug out and put out there so the whole world will know," said E. Ray Williams, a black World War II U.S. Army war veteran from Welch, West Virginia. Williams' father-in-law, Harry Neal, Sr., was one of the 11 WWI veterans to raise funds and build the Kimball Memorial in 1928."

https://www.kickstarter.com/…/blac…/blacktimemap/description

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Joel Beeson, associate professor at West Virginia University Reed College of Media, is partnering with Congressional Black Caucus Veterans Braintrust to build BlackTimeMap in an ongoing effort to uncover and capture the hidden stories of African American veterans. The app will launch during the U.S.…
kickstarter.com

"People say I am being disrespectful but don’t ask why I choose not to wear it.

"If the poppy was simply about World War One and Two victims alone, I'd wear it without a problem.

"I would wear it every day of the year if that was the thing but it doesn't, it stands for all the conflicts that Britain has been involved in. Because of the history where I come from in Derry, I cannot wear something that represents that."

The Republic of Ireland winger has always refused to wear a poppy on his shirt and he has now explained his reasons for making that decision
mirror.co.uk

"It's important for me to remember the public too, the impact on my great-grandmother and her children during the war. I imagine the ordinary men, women, and children in those hills, plains, and along the river.

They were full of fear and insecurity, they suffered from acute food shortage, had their houses burned by combatants, they were exhausted by war traumas.

Women and children were probably at the highest risk from this global crisis that unfolded in their villages.

...

But I know that just as my people suffered in this war, many also survived and overcame the challenges. Their creative adaptations, the Ubhuche, helped them to endure and prosper.

They may be invisible in the mainstream history.

Let us not forget them."

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33329661

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More than one million people died in East Africa during World War One - some soldiers were forced to fight members of their own families, writes Oswald Masebo.
bbc.com

Check out:

"In development for three years, the film, set in 1916, in colonized West Africa, tells the story of a young boy named Adama, who goes in search of his brother, a rifleman with the French army during the First World War. His journey (by truck, ship, and train) takes him to Verdun, a small city in north-eastern France, and the site of a major battle during the First World War - one of the costliest battles of the war. It's a trip into the unknown, to an entirely dif...ferent world the boy knows nothing about, putting him face-to-face with the horrors of war."

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The film's first trailer, which I published on this blog yesterday, was for its upcoming already set release in France, and thus was in French with no English s
blogs.indiewire.com

The much celebrated (not by us) #WWIAfrica General, Von Lettow Vorbeck's visit back to the former German East Africa colony in 1952 makes a touching request of his former askaris to embrace their new rulers, British colonials "Continue to till the soil as you've always done and obey the laws of our brothers who are now your rulers. We are their friends." #Colonialpostcard

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In the case of the Herero, an official, written order – the extermination order – was issued by the German commander, explicitly condemning the entire people to annihilation. After military attempts to bring this about had been thwarted, the liquidation of the surviving Herero, along with the Nama people, was continued in concentration camps, a term that was used at the time for the archipelago of facilities the Germans built across Namibia. Some of the victims of the Namibian genocide were transported to those camps in cattle trucks and the bodies of some of the victims were subjected to pseudoscientific racial examinations and dissections. http://www.theguardian.com/…/pope-francis-armenian-genocide…

The pope was wrong when he called the Armenian massacre the first genocide of the last century
theguardian.com

This ship was transported partially by rail, then carried by porters to the shores of Lake Tanganyika and assembled, pay attention to the dimensions, 70 metres long, weighing 1,200 tonnes #Humanlabor #WWIAfrica It's also a shame that it's survival is based on donor funding as opposed to a Tanzanian government body or organization taking a stance in preserving this history.

"Mapunda said the ship should be celebrated, and preserved, just as German colonial-era buildings and ...railway lines are throughout the country. The MV Liemba began its life in a shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, in 1913 where it was named the Graf von Götzen after German East Africa’s former governor.

Before setting sail, the steamer was taken apart, packed into 5,000 numbered crates, and shipped to Dar es Salaam.

Then it was taken by railway and porter to the shore of Lake Tanganyika where it was reassembled in 1915, armed with cannon, and put to work defending the waters against Belgian and British soldiers.

Measuring 70 metres long and weighing 1,200 tonnes the Graf von Götzen dominated the lake for nearly a year, dwarfing all other ships."

http://wwiafrica.tumblr.com/…/mv-liemba-still-plies-on-lake…

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Once a feared gunship defending the African lake for Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany during World War I, the legendary vessel has been sunk and refloated twice, renamed and repurposed as a ferry. On Lake...
wwiafrica.tumblr.com

"In 1919, a white mob in Blakely, Georgia, lynched William Little, a soldier returning from World War I, for refusing to take off his
Army uniform." #blackhistorymonth http://www.eji.org/…/EJI%20Lynching%20in%20America%20SUMMAR…

"The eye of the storm. That’s what comes to mind (and heart) when I see this photo of the Harlem Hellfighters. These men have already endured one maelstrom in the trenches of France, and now they’re heading straight into another — in their own land. They’re going home to face hypocrisy and hatred in a nation built on ideals that America has yet to live up to — and that the Hellfighters have yet to enjoy

They’re going home to a racial environment so virulent it will spark doze...ns of deadly race riots around the U.S. — lending the infamous “Red Summer of 1919″ its name. (Race riots exploded across America in the Second World War, as well — a bitter commentary on the enduring myth of a country seamlessly united in its battle against Fascism and racial violence abroad.)

And yet it’s worth remembering that the hatred and fear that surrounded the Hellfighters — and countless other African-Americans in 1919 — were in elemental ways direct, visceral reactions to the pride justly displayed on the faces of these returning heroes. To me, the brilliant smiles of the men in this picture seem to say: “We fought to make the world safe for democracy, and we’ll keep fighting until it’s safe for us, and for ours, here in the USA.” Max Brooks ‘World War Z’ Author Max Brooks Celebrates WWI’s Harlem Hellfighters #WWIAFRICA

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/…/The-Harlem-Hellfighters-in-pic…

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Max Brooks, author of World War Z, talks about his latest graphic novel and examines racism during the First World War
telegraph.co.uk