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History of Namibia



African territory after the Portuguese tried to convert them to Catholicism and forbade their language at schools.
German rule
Namibia became a German colony in 1884 to forestall British encroachment and was known as German South-West Africa (Deutsch-Südwestafrika). However, the Palgrave mission by the British governor in Cape Town had determined that only the natural deep-water harbour of Walvis Bay (Walfisch in German, Walvis in Afrikaans, Whale in English) was worth occupying – and this was annexed to the Cape province of British South Africa. From 1904 to 1907, the Herero and the Namaqua took up arms against the Germans and in the subsequent Herero and Namaqua genocide, 10,000 Nama (half the population) and approximately 65,000 Hereros (about 80% of the population) were killed. The survivors, when finally released from detention, were subjected to a policy of dispossession, deportation, forced labor, racial segregation and discrimination in a system that in many ways anticipated apartheid. Most Africans were confined to so-called native territories, which later under South African rule post-1949 were turned into "homelands" (Bantustans). Indeed, some historians have speculated that the German genocide in Namibia was a model used by Nazis in the Holocaust, but most scholars say that episode was not especially influential for the Nazis, who were children at the time. However, the father of Luftwaffe commander Hermann Göring was a one-time German colonial governor of Namibia and has a street named after him in Swakopmund. The memory of genocide remains relevant to ethnic identity in independent Namibia and to relations with Germany.
South African rule and the struggle for independence
South Africa occupied the colony in 1915 after defeating the German force during World War I and administered it as a League of Nations mandate territory from 1919. Although the South African government desired to incorporate