Friday, September 18, 2009

Names of farm victims read out on radio

Kobus, an expat reader resident in Arizona wrote the following:

Alphabetic name list: murders, attacks on SA farms and smallholdings 2009 - Known death toll now 3084.

I am fascinated by the media in South Africa……

The one thing that I have learned, in the 12 years staying here in the USA is that “news” either on the web, printed or the TV, is nothing more than local news or propaganda. You will only see and read what somebody else thinks is important for you. And mostly it makes sense.
I stay in Arizona, and surely am not interested in the other 49 states' local news.

However, South Africa is so small that ALL news should be available. The article below is about the reading of the names of all the slain farmers. Now my fascination…why is this only available in the Afrikaans media?

I have searched high and low and cannot find it in any English publications. Is it maybe, that in English it will be available worldwide, to the international media, and “somebody” has decided that the rest of the world will make the “wrong” deductions when reading it? Who pulls the strings in the English media houses?

Doberman says: Very good observation. Is the English media afraid that by publishing stories like that below that the foreign media and blogosphere might grab a whiff of what is really transpiring in South Africa and run with it? We know they are looking for content all the time.

Being written in Afrikaans does two things: 1) They (English papers) think, well, the story's been covered so we don't have to do it and that's a good excuse (especially if the papers are part of a common media holding) and 2) Being in Afrikaans the damage is limited as foreign journos are too lazy to translate.


[translated from Afrikaans - Beeld newspaper] - Don't bother looking for this story in English publications. God forbid they should actually do real reporting]

"I grew up in the countryside among farmers so this matter is very close to my heart"

That's what Lianie May, a well-known singer said yesterday at the studios of Solidarity Radio in Kloofsig in PretoriA.

May and other familiar names like Gerrie Pretorius and Dr Allan Boesak yesterday helped read a list of 1 650 names of victims of farm attacks on Solidarity Radio (

Short descriptions of the attacks were also read out.

The special program was expected to run from 08:30 tot 16:30.

"My father is a farmer and I'm just thankful that he has been spared this kind of violence so far," said May.

"Some of my father's friends have been affected by farm attacks."

She said it is "shocking" to hear how violent the attacks are and that it happens almost daily.

"I believe that it is very important that the issue gets more exposure."

Boesak said he had decided to take part because crime "is one of the great dangers for democracy in the country".

"I am concerned about the increasing gulf of violence in the country," said Boesak.

"Crime affects us all, regardless of race, beliefs or class and we must stand up and unite to fight it."

Pretorius said a friend had his throat cut by robbers the previous week on a farm in Bultfontein.

"It is for me tragic that an initiative such as this is necessary, but I believe it is important." said Pretorius.

"It is emotionally exhausting to read these names and descriptions but I believe this type of shock-awareness is really needed."

Mr Wynand Hart, a farmer who in 2001 together with his family was chased off his farm in Zimbabwe and whose mother was killed two weeks ago on a farm in Zimbabwe also helped read out the names.

"Two truckloads of attackers chased me and my family off my farm," said Hart.

"We lost everything and had to start completely from scratch.

"Now, just two weeks ago, I had to hear how my mother was strangled in her house.

"My father was at watching the Tri-Nations at friends' house and when he returned, he found my mother dead."

Hat tip: Kobus

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