South Africa “Mischief-makers”? Is Ugly-American Ambassador to Pretoria Reuben Brigety Correct, that South Africa Weapons Were Shipped to Russia?

(And What About SA's Unmentionable Military Deals with NATO Regimes? Or Pretoria Purchases from Moscow for Fossil-subimperial Blood Methane Extraction?)

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(Who, then, has been ‘making mischief’?)

Godongwana said all South African weapons sales had to be vetted by a cabinet committee, and no official decision had been taken to supply Russia.“If it did happen as the Americans claim, it could be a conduct of people who were mischief makers.” …

The rand slumped to its weakest level on record against the dollar and yields on government bonds soared last week amid investor concern that any escalation in the diplomatic row may put trade worth billions of dollars at risk. The market reaction “could have a massive disruption to our fiscal framework,” and a recovery in the rand and the nation’s bonds will depend on whether investors are comforted that the issue has been resolved, Godongwana said. “Once people realize that the matters raised by the ambassador have been dealt with, I think that things are going to stabilize.”

Panic is in the air: the credit ratings agencies do not approve.

But it’s not only subimperialist Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana, but also the head of the National Conventional Arms Control Committee, Mondli Gungubela – minister in the presidency – who is claiming that there was no official approval for SA arms exports to Russia on the red Lady R ship in the centre of the pic at the right. Oh, to correct myself, that’s not the grey battleship as I mistook it for a few days ago.

So, if the yanks are correct, who would have dunnit? Deputy public works minister Obed Bapela claimed on SAfm radio this morning, about SA’s parastatal arms manufacturer:

“I was with the management of Denel, I was there last week Friday. Denel has not been in production for the past three years.”

Although worth celebrating, that’s also confusing, because Rheinmetall-Denel has a major joint venture in Somerset West which I understand has been producing and selling quite a bit of deadly weaponry in recent weeks. They outright deny providing Putin his wicked tools, as you’d expect.

Meanwhile, the subimperialists at Armscor seems happy enough to authorise supply of SA arms to seven NATO countries, as noted below. And according to chairperson Phillip Dexter, the firm is explicitly committed to “commercialisation” of its so-called services. But as far as I know, Armscor is not an arms-manufacturer; that function was sent over to Denel some years ago.

So, if Reuben Brigety is correct that there was an upload of guns and/or ammo, and if he risked diplomatic chaos to tell that to us last Thursday, then who in SA made and arranged their delivery through a naval base last December?

Would it be the Paramount Group? Is Ivor Ichikowitz making mischief (again)? 

Meantime, Ramaphosa was tedious and evasive in this morning’s letter to the masses:

South Africa is a sovereign state, governed by a democratic Constitution and committed to the consistent application of international law. We will continue to fulfil our obligations in terms of the various international agreements and treaties to which we are signatories. These are among the principles that inform our approach to allegations that arms were loaded onto a Russian vessel that docked in Simon’s Town late last year. Since we do not have concrete evidence to support these allegations, we are establishing an independent inquiry headed by a retired judge to establish the facts.

He sounds… um… rather muffled?


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Patrick Bond, Professor, University of the Western Cape School of Government. He is a regular contributor to Global Research. 

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Articles by: Prof. Patrick Bond

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