Imperial Germany and the Herero of Southern Africa : genocide and the quest of recompense

TitleImperial Germany and the Herero of Southern Africa : genocide and the quest of recompense
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsJ.B. Gewald
EditorA. Jones
Secondary TitleGenocide, war crimes and the West : history and complicity
Pagination59 - 77
Date Published2004///
PublisherZed Books
Place PublishedLondon
Publication Languageeng
KeywordsAfrica, colonialism, compensation, genocide, Germany, Herero, Herero revolt, history, Namibia

Following a brief description of the Herero genocide of 1904/1907, this chapter provides a chronological overview of the way in which the Herero have sought to draw the world's attention to the crimes committed by imperial Germany in Namibia. Calls for recompensation revolve in the end around the issue of German government responsibility. That is, to what extent were the Herero genocide and related atrocities the product of German policy? To what extent were the criminal acts not merely the actions of individuals? Material presented in this chapter shows that the Herero genocide and associated atrocities were indeed officially sanctioned. During the Herero-German war, the German settlers and soldiers carried out a shoot-to-kill policy, conducted extrajudicial killings, established concentration camps, employed forced labour, and in at least two cases, established death camps. After the war, the loss of Herero liberty, land and stock was officially sanctioned in legislation. At no stage after 1904 were any German settlers or soldiers brought to justice for genocidal acts committed in Namibia between 1904 and 1908. Bibliogr., notes [ASC Leiden abstract]

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Citation Key799