The South African model is urged on Israel by many well-wishers from the West, and especially from Muslim countries. Other Muslims despise the stereotypical Palestinian brigands and are happy for Israel to repress them (albeit tacitly) without provoking the purported inter-Muslim unity. Even the West’s leftists urge Israel to follow the South African example for the politically correct oppression of aborigines. Leftists are foremost social activists and subscribe to the “white-man’s-burden” concept; South Africa ostensibly proves that cultural colonialism can coexist with superficial tolerance.

The real South Africa today is a classic case of feast in time of plague. Tourists shake their heads at the sight of endless slums, acknowledging in the depths of their consciences the white man’s deserved superiority. Business is going well in white neighborhoods, and Afrikaners drive expensive cars. Black faces dot South African politics and are sometimes seen in boardrooms. White farmers have gotten used to the rampaging murder rate, about 0.3% per annum. Police have learned to ignore such petty crimes as the immensely popular driving-under-influence (it is estimated that more than 20 percent of drivers at night are intoxicated). Tourists accept a 1 percent chance of being assaulted. Black girls are not romantically hysterical over the 25 percent chance that they will be raped before they reach adolescence. And the whites fence their houses off with a combination of walls, razor wire, and electronic detectors that would make Sing Sing Prison jealous.

By breaking down apartheid, South Africa created not one, but two societies: Afrikaners and coloreds versus the various black tribes. There is not a chance of forging a single society. Society depends on common values and culture, shared history, and comparable development and abilities. Society has to be relatively homogeneous, but even the wildest liberals can’t imagine a homogeneous society of 8 percent advanced, hard-working whites and 90 percent backward blacks with no skills or work ethics whatsoever. Even the United States, whose blacks are 140 years past their agricultural employment, doesn’t mix with them homogeneously. It is a rare white person in America who would venture to a black lawyer or doctor, even if he has graduated from the best university. American blacks are relatively few, which gives the whites a hope of integrating them. South African blacks are too many for the white minority to integrate them.

The white well-wishers in the West face a difficult situation. They provided food and medicines to sub-Saharan Africans to ease the horrendous death rate. As a result, the sub-Saharan population increased manifold—and now many more people require their assistance. South Africa’s climate is more conducive to agriculture, but no agricultural scheme can employ forty million people. The US, a huge consumer of agricultural product and a major exporter, employs fewer than ten million people in agriculture-related industries. Even if the blacks in the South African slums miraculously acquired agricultural skills and burned all the forests and savannahs to conduct subsistence agriculture, they would still remain jealous of the prosperous whites, robbing whom would seem a preferable alternative to tilling the land. Food is cheap. Feeding even the bourgeoning population is no big deal, but they keep adjusting their aspirations to what they see on car battery-run TVs and in white neighborhoods. There is just no way of leapfrogging Africa through several cultural stages, from Bronze-Age tribal societies into modern economies. Unlike the Asian nations that leapfrogged into modernity, African tribes lack developed religion and the books which come with it. They also lack work ethics, and a culture of learning. That’s not to say that Africans are incapable of developing. I’ve seen many Africans with an astonishing craving for books, and Mozambique provides an example of an African country genuinely seeking progress. But institutional changes, especially on the continental level, lag generations behind the pioneering examples. Besides, too many power players, from Western corporations to ex-colonial powers to new South African empire, have a strong interest in keeping Africans backward, attached to the lifeline of international aid and occasional peacekeeping actions. Africa is destined to remain the world’s slum.
In China, a minuscule proportion of the population is engaged in efficient industrial production, and the much-touted Chinese exports are a mere 2.5 times those of the tiny Netherlands; the consumable income of common Chinese is negligible. Even in America, the majority of the population works in service industries. If the world cannot efficiently employ some 100 million relatively well-educated Americans, what are the chances of employing 700 million Africans? Modern efficient agriculture and industrial production require very few hands, and Africans aren’t even hard-working like the Chinese. Whatever view we take with respect to the causes of ethnic differences, Africans lag tremendously behind other cultures.

The underlying idea of a post-apartheid state is that the economic dominance of whites compensates for the nominal political equality of the blacks. That would work in a rational world, which ours is not. Our world is the world of jealousy. South African blacks won’t sit idle watching the whites prosper. The blacks won’t embark on an arduous, generations-long path of catching up with the whites, enjoying their beneficial example and crumbs from their economic table. They would rather expropriate the whites’ wealth now and to hell the consequences. The expropriation will take many forms: increased taxation and redistribution of wealth, infrastructure projects in the black slums, and robbery. Smart Afrikaners will bribe the black politicians and otherwise convince them to choose the economy over black nationalism. As long as that nationalism is suppressed, whites are relatively safe. The creation of a class of relatively educated blacks signals the emergence of a pool of potential leaders. Some of them will call for simple solutions, such as taking over the whites’ wealth. British occupation was hugely beneficial to India, but it was overturned. The Jewish minority was hugely beneficial to various European countries, but it was annihilated. There is no chance that South African blacks will prove any more rational than Europeans or Indians.

The best policy for the whites in South Africa would be to leave the country to the blacks but carve for themselves a small, predominantly white enclave. That shouldn’t be a problem in the vast expanses of South Africa. The Afrikaners’ colonialist mentality, however, has long given way to an imperialist mentality, and they prefer a doomed empire to a comfortable community.