●The xenophobia of bureaucracy – by jounalist David Le Page

12Jun08

June 11, 2008
The only time I have heard Ebrahim Rasool speak was at the launch of a book of Sufi philosophy I had helped edit. The launch was in a museum in the Bo-Kaap. Rasool was on his home turf, comfortable amidst his community. He was confident, humane, urbane, knowledgeable and deeply impressive.

The now notorious refugee camp called Soetwater is a few kilometres from where I live. Three thousand people have been living there in bitter cold, increasingly wet tents for two weeks, tortured by uncertainty. They were wrenched from their homes and businesses by violence and terror. Overnight, the patient, painful work of years was plundered, burnt or crumbling behind them. The response of the authorities, and the UN, to their plight has been to insist that they must return to the communities that turned on them so suddenly and brutally. In other words, preserving the illusion of national harmony and tolerance is considered more Continue Reading »

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