by Max Barry

Latest Forum Topics




by The Republic of A z a n i a. . 112 reads.

Azania's alternate history (WIP)

- In this timeline, the Jameson Raid succeeded in toppling the government of the South African Republic/SAR. This eventually led to the establishment of a more moderate Afrikaner government in the state that was a lot more amiable with the British. Seeing the success of the Cape Colony's Qualified Franchise in quelling interracial violence, the new government of the SAR opted to establish it's own limited franchise for "non-whites". The colony of Natal eventually adopted a limited franchise as well.

- In 1902, white lobbyists in the Cape, Natal, and SAR managed to sway the British government in favour of Greater South Africa (the movement that aimed to achieve a unified southern African state). It was decided that it would be in the best interests of the new state that the Orange Free State be included. The British government reached out to the Orange Free State to gauge it's interest in the move. Having suffered diplomatic and economic isolation for years in British-dominated southern Africa, the Orange Free State agreed to participate in talks to form the new state.

- In this timeline, there was never any Second Boer War, meaning that tensions between Afrikaners and British never reach IRL proportions.

- At the conclusion of negotiations, the Union of South Africa was formed in 1910. It included the colonies of the Cape, Natal, and Bechuanaland, and the Afrikaner republics of the Orange Free State and the SAR. During the negotiations, advocates of a unitary state prevailed against advocates of a federal state. Provision was made to include Southern Rhodesia in the Union (which would vote against this in the 1920s).

- Like IRL, the Native Land Act was passed in 1913, although black people were not prohibited from owning land outside of "native" reserves established by the Act.

- German South West Africa was incorporated into the Union after World War 1 as the South West Africa province.

- In the 1920s, a brief constitutional crisis resulted in the establishment of the National Qualified Franchise. Under this franchise, black people had to meet certain educational and economic standards in order to qualify to vote. Public life was still heavily segregated, but the NQF laid the foundation for the desegregation movement

- Like IRL, support for the war effort during the Second World War was lukewarm at best. Short of manpower, the South African government permitted black men to serve in combat roles, although in segregated platoons almost always under a white commander.

- A postwar study conducted by the UDF found no reasonable grounds for segregation in the military. This, coupled both with an ANC campaign of peaceful civil disobedience to end discrimination in the military, and the findings of the Fagan Commission, was enough to convince the government to reverse it's stance on segregation. By the late 1950s, desegregation of the military was complete.

- Unlike IRL, where previously existing racism was codified and intensified under apartheid, the United Party's victory in the 1948 election meant that apartheid never came to fruition. This meant that no armed resistance movement was necessary as the ANC and other liberation groups were never banned in the 1950s. This paved the way for an eventual peaceful transition of power.

- Like IRL, a white-only referendum was held to convert the Union into a republic. This was done to appease republican elements of the ruling United Party. Much to the government's surprise, white voters narrowly voted in favour of a republic. A new republican constitution was enacted which, although preserving the NQF, banned other forms racial discrimination. This allowed black people to participate freely and openly in the economy, unlike IRL were this was prohibited. This also allowed prospective black homeowners the chance to live anywhere, unlike IRL where neighbourhoods were forcefully segregated along racial lines.

- With an increasing black middle class came increasing calls for universal franchise. With the ANC leadership preferring negotiation to mass action, the frustrated party youth took it upon themselves to mobilise the populace. At the forefront of this movement were people such as Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo, Samuel Nujoma, Seretse Khama, Quett Masire, and Herman Toivo.

- In the late 1960s, the Border War began. The war began after Lozi separatists based in the Caprivi strip in the northeast of the South West Africa province attacked a police station in the Caprivi district. Calling themselves the Caprivi Liberation Army (CLA), their goal was the independence of the Caprivi Strip. The war lasted until 1989 and had a significant cultural impact on the country, with many questioning the morality of sending black soldiers to war for a county that considered them second-class citizens. The proliferation of the television (which came much earlier to the country than IRL and was not subject to government censorship like IRL) helped spur on this cultural revolution.

- The Democratic Party - a breakaway of the United Party - won the 1966 elections, and Harry Schwartz is sworn in as president. He opens secret negotiations with the ANC to end minority rule. Schwarz also took measures to increase the socio-economic standing of black people in the country.

The Republic of A z a n i a