The Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 07.47.53Can Africa survive Davidson?

Dalrymple explains that after Basil Davidson, the upper-class British communist fellow-traveller, wrote a book extolling Tito,

the dictator killed half a million people at least.

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 07.50.26Davidson then switched his attention to the East, writing a book extolling Mao called Daybreak in China. A more appropriate title might have been Nightfall in China, for within a short time,

the Great Leap Forward caused about 30m deaths.

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 09.31.26Most unfortunately for an already suffering continent, Davidson then turned Africanist, finding in Guinea-Bissau

the hope of the world.

In that country some of the most horrendous mass killings in the history of West Africa followed.

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 07.54.22Casting about, Davidson wrote The Fortunate Isles about Cape Verde under its enlightened communist government. But the isles, Dalrymple points out, had in truth emerged after independence as actually deeply unfortunate, and shortly after publication of Davidson’s book,

half the population emigrated.

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 07.57.08Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 09.18.50Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 09.17.48

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 07.31.58

Lucky is the country about which Davidson has written nothing

Can Africa survive Basil Davidson?

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