Paraphrasing the Irish Nationalists' "England's misfortune is the bitter enders' opportunity," the "bitter enders" and their supporters saw the start of World War I as that opportunity, particularly since England's enemy, Germany, had been their old supporter. The outbreak of hostilities in Europe in August 1914 was an enormous surprise, but the government of the Union of South Africa was well aware of the significance of the common border South Africa shared with the German colony of South-West Africa. Prime Minister Louis Botha informed London that South Africa could defend itself and that the imperial garrison could depart for France; when the British government asked Botha whether his forces would invade German South-West Africa, the reply was that they could and would.
South African troops were mobilised along the border between the two countries under the command of General Henry Lukin and Lieutenant Colonel Manie Maritz early in September 1914. On 19 September 1914 another force occupied the German port of Lüderitz. The Commandant-General of the Union Defence Force, Brigadier-General Christiaan Frederick Beyers was opposed to the South African government's decision to undertake offensive operations. He resigned his commission on 15 September 1914, writing "It is sad that the war is being waged against the 'barbarism' of the Germans. We have forgiven but not forgotten all the barbarities committed in our own country during the South African War", referring to the atrocities committed during the Boer War. A nominated senator, General Koos de la Rey, who had refused to support the government in parliament over this issue, associated himself with Beyers. On 15 September they set off together to visit Major JCG (Jan) Kemp in Potchefstroom, who had a large armoury and a force of 2,000 men who had just finished training, many of whom were thought to be sympathetic to the rebels' ideas. Although it is not known what the purpose of their visit was, the South African government believed it to be an attempt to instigate a rebellion, as stated in the Government Blue Book on the rebellion. According to General Beyers it was to discuss plans for the simultaneous resignation of leading army officers as protest against the government's actions, similar to what had happened in Britain two years earlier in the Curragh incident over the Irish Home Rule Bill. On the way to the meeting de la Rey's car was fired upon[citation needed] by a policeman at a road block set up to look for the Foster gang. De la Rey was hit and killed. At his funeral, however, many Nationalist Afrikaners believed and perpetuated the rumour that it was a government assassination, which added fuel to the fire. Their anger was even further inflamed by Siener van Rensburg and his controversial prophecies.

投稿日時 - 2019-05-26 01:50:00




>Paraphrasing the Irish ~ they could and would.

>South African troops ~ during the Boer War.

>A nominated senator, ~ Blue Book on the rebellion.

>According to General Beyers ~ and his controversial prophecies.

投稿日時 - 2019-06-02 11:38:04



投稿日時 - 2019-06-02 21:31:24