On August 22, President Donald Trump announced via Twitter that he ordered Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to “closely study” the situation in South Africa, alleged farm seizures, expropriations, and the “large scale killing” of farmers in the country.
“South African Government is now seizing land from white farmers,” Trump concluded the tweet with a quote from Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke praised Trump’s tweet today, applauding the POTUS for tweeting about the “large scale killing of farmers” in South Africa, suggesting that the United States should “take in” white South Africans, The Hill reports.
“Russia has already agreed to take in 15,000 White South Africans — your move, Mr. President. Thank you!” Duke tweeted.
This is not the first time for Duke to praise the president of the United States, according to The Hill. Recently, Duke praised Trump for his “courageous” attacks on the “Zionist Occupied Government of the United States.”
Vox characterized Trump’s tweet as an attempt to move the spotlight away from the Michael Cohen saga. According to Vox, Trump is referring to a racist conspiracy theory that has most recently been propagated by one of the POTUS’ favorite cable pundits, Tucker Carlson.
The theory is based on the issue of post-Apartheid land reform in South Africa. As Vox noted, for nearly 50 years, black South Africans were subjected to institutional discrimination. Among many infringements on basic human rights, black South Africans were legally barred from owning land. While the Apartheid formally ended in 1994, 10 percent of South Africa’s population owns 90 percent of the land. Meaning, white South Africans, although only 10 percent of the population, own almost all land in the country, thanks to Apartheid.
In 2016, South Africa passed a law allowing “the expropriation of property for a public purpose or in the public interest, subject to just and equitable compensation.”
The country’s government is now legally allowed to force white South Africans to give up their land for a fair price so that the government can redistribute it to black South Africans, according to Vox.
As Reuters reported, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa’s spokeswoman said Trump was “misinformed,” and a tweet from South Africa’s official government account said the following.
“South Africa totally rejects this narrow perception which only seeks to divide our nation and reminds us of our colonial past.”
Vox also noted that a small South African lobbying group is responsible for spreading the racist conspiracy theory about the alleged “white genocide” happening in the country. The group, called AfriForum, according to Reuters,“champions white people’s rights” in South Africa.
AfriForum also praised Donald Trump’s comments.
“Everyone in South Africa should therefore hope that the pressure from the USA will lead to the ANC reconsidering the disastrous route that they want to take SA on,” the organization’s CEO told Reuters.