Friday, October 12, 2007

Kamm versus McCann on Guevara

Oliver Kamm, looking as smug as ever, appeared on BBC Northern Ireland's "Hearts and Minds" to debate Eamonn McCann on the legacy of Che Guevara. Here's Kamm's account:

McCann had the bright idea to claim simultaneously that Guevara's taste for revolutionary violence was (a) taken out of context, and (b) comparable anyway to the activities of the ANC under apartheid. In case you want to check the second assertion [emphasis added by Capt Cab] , you should note that Nelson Mandela has never shot without trial teenage members of his own organisation for petty pilfering, or authorised the execution of his party comrades on grounds of their ideological deviation.

A word of advice to Oliver. If you are going to say things like that, it is best not to provide a link to the programme concerned. Those who watch will find that (a) referred to a quotation and not to Guevara's taste, but, more pertinently, McCann's claim (b) was specifically directed to the activities of MK, the ANC's security apparatus in camps in Mozambique and not to Mandela.

7 Comments:

Anonymous dd said...

Nelson Mandela has never shot without trial teenage members of his own organisation for petty pilfering, or authorised the execution of his party comrades on grounds of their ideological deviation.

even I can remember the name of Stompie Moeketsi.

10/12/2007 09:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

DD, the idea that Nelson M was in any way complicit in or tolerant of Moeketsi's death at the hands of teenage supporters of Winnie Mandela's, is a calumny worthy of the old-time Federation of Conservative Students. Apologise?

10/12/2007 09:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you are referring to MK in Angola rather than Mozambique. MK camps in Mozambiue would have been too vulnerable.

10/12/2007 09:51:00 AM  
Anonymous dd said...

No it isn't and no I won't. The ANC which ran amok as a criminal gang in the 80s is the same organisation that Mandela led. He was highly influential over the movement from jail and could have done a lot more to stop the infighting with the Inkatha than he in fact did. Moeketsi was the big high profile case, but lots of people died in the 1980s and Nelson Mandela was in charge of the movement that killed them.

The ANC was a generally progressive movement, but I absolutely won't have its record whitewashed - it, like most other revolutionary movements, has its share of blood on its hands and I regard the school of history which has Mandela sitting in his jail cell like Gandhi, oblivious to the bloodshed, as incorrect. Mandela is much more like Che than like Martin Luther King, and the determination to beatify him is a real barrier to understanding African politics.

10/12/2007 10:32:00 AM  
Blogger Captain Cabernet said...

The reference to Mozambique was McCann's, not mine.

10/12/2007 01:01:00 PM  
Anonymous splinteredsunrise said...

A really dreadful performance from Ollie, who's obviously as clueless about South Africa as he is about Cuba.

Even worse than Johann's article on Che. You don't need to be a fan of Che to wonder if this really hysterical gravedancing says more about Ollie and Johann than their target.

McCann was far too polite as well.

10/12/2007 03:49:00 PM  
Blogger ejh said...

He was highly influential over the movement from jail and could have done a lot more to stop the infighting with the Inkatha than he in fact did

I'm not sure I agree with the second part of this, though the first part is plainly true. I'm not sure there was much that could have been done to stop the fighting with Inkatha short of handing power over to the brutal friend of Mrs Thatcher who was in charge of them.

10/12/2007 09:21:00 PM  

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