Between 1904 and 1909, the imperial ruler and his subalterns liquidated the indigenous and peoples of modern-day Namibia. He particularly focused on the notion that mixing of race groups lead to biological inferiority. The death rate in the Shark Island camp off Luderitz was 70% p. The twin revolts, even if never really threatening to overthrow German rule, induced a small wave of panic back in Berlin. The two risings were neither coordinated nor very shrewdly planned.
David Olusoga and Casper W. It is amazing that previous writers have paid so little attention to this history, and appalling that some of the Allied nations joined the Germans in trying to cover it up. Many refused to go along with the charade, objecting particularly to wearing the primitive clothing expected by the German population. Years later, the soldiers and bureaucrats who had administered the camps, and the racial theories that had inspired them, would play a role in the formation of Nazism. Erichsen have uncovered extraordinary links between the Nazis and the atrocities committed in Africa under Kaiser Wilhelm. The Herero and Nama gecide was deliberately concealed for almost a century. His attempts to examine them naked, including measurement of genitals, were rebuffed by the deeply religious Basters.
Civilisation, according to these pseudo-scientists, depended on the separation of races, not on their harmonious integration. On 12 May 1883, the German flag was raised on the coast of South-West Africa, modern Namibia. In a racist age, nature was seen as a competitive market place, where black people were born to be mastered and the fittest survived. None of this, though, is anything like as new as they make it sound — although they do break new ground in their discussion of the murderous internment camps. In 1904, in what was then German South-West Africa, now Namibia, the Herero and Nama peoples rebelled against colonial control.
This took place as the country was also grappling with considerable political and social problems. London, 2010 reviewed by As one reads this fascinating book, one gets the sense that the major theme that develops was not what the writers intended. The Kaiser's Holocaust uncovers extraordinary links between the two regimes: their ideologies, personnel, even symbols and uniform. Even the article we are directing you to could, in principle, change without notice on sites we do not control. There was an unprecedented moral horror to what the Nazis did. The notorious brown shirts worn by the Nazi storm troopers had originally served as uniforms in Namibia. Some were very well educated.
Now, two experts on Namibian history provide a scholarly account of the forgotten genocide that foreshadowed the Holocaust. Even the Brown Shirt uniforms were colonial army surplus. There was a direct path from Namibia to Auschwitz, from German attempts at empire-building in Africa to the vastly more destructive 1940s bid for empire within Europe. David Olusoga is an Anglo-Nigerian historian and producer. The Nama, fewer though better armed, soon suffered a similar fate. Thousands of the indigenous people were killed or driven out into the desert to die.
Outside Luderitz, winds have blown away the desert sand exposing the remains of victims of the Shark Island concentration camp. There are many other connections highlighted in the book between the colonial race scientists and later Nazi race science. As David Olusoga and Caspar Erichsen point out, there were some striking continuities of ideology, methods, personnel, even of uniforms between the African venture and the Nazis. He has travelled extensively in Africa, and has been drawn to Namibia and its troubled history since the middle 2000s. Today, as the graves of the victims are uncovered in the Namibian deserts, the re-emergence of the Kaiser's holocaust poses a profound challenge to the notion that Nazi violence was an aberration in European history. Erichsen has lived in Africa for the past 14 years. Moving, powerful and unforgettable, it is a story that needs to be told.
The centenary of the revolts and their suppression, though, produced a huge outpouring of commemoration and debate in both Germany and Namibia. He was a school teacher, spoke High Dutch and carried a Bible with him at all times. The Kaiser's Holocaust passionately narrates this harrowing story and explores one of the defining episodes of the twentieth century from a new angle. As settlers began to take over the tribal lands of the indigenous peoples, the Herero and Nama resisted and Germany launched a war of extermination. He has travelled extensively in Africa, and has been drawn to Namibia and its troubled history for several years. One cannot help but feel, though, a terrible sadness that their response was not exponentially more outraged.
But Christian missionaries were increasingly sidelined, and the book highlights instances of missionary resistance as well as collaboration with the horrors that unfolded pp. This is the great post-war myth: The comforting fantasy that the Nazis were a new order of monsters and that their crimes were without precursor or precedent. Born in Denmark, Casper W. It is said that 64% of Hamburg trade with Africa at this time was paid for with alcohol. The majority of pages are undamaged with minimal creasing or tearing, minimal pencil underlining of text, no highlighting of text, no writing in margins.