The beasts of Berlin

Nasson, Bill (2011-04)

The original publication is available at


In the early stage of the First World War, the Union of South Africa invaded the neighbouring colony of German South West Africa at the request of the British War Cabinet. The assignment was to knock out a German coastal wireless station, but South Africa’s war leaders, Generals Louis Botha and Jan Smuts, got above themselves. Going the whole hog, they seized the territory from Berlin. In the peace negotiations which finally ended the Great War, Pretoria persuaded the victorious powers to allow it to keep the former enemy colony under its jurisdiction as a League of Nations mandate territory.

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