Herrero Genocide

Topics: German Empire, Germany, German South-West Africa Pages: 2 (528 words) Published: December 18, 2012
The Herero people were a group of people, fathers; mothers; sons and daughters that lost their lives at the hands of an invading force. In this case the invading force was the German army, the year 1904 and the people were the Herero in the Southwest African nation of Namibia. The United Nations would categorize this action as a foreign genocide, although, the German ring-leaders did not consider this to be a genocide at all. (Shelton ) Due to growth in the German population they expanded to South West Africa to make space for the Germans. The Lebensraum theory was the idea that a people or nation must have space in order to survive. So the Germans expanded to as many spaces as they could. It was the first genocide of the twentieth century. The Herero were the first victims of genocide in the twentieth century, but also of the policy of concentration camp elimination through forced labor. The few survivors of the 1904 genocide found themselves thrown in forced labor camps.(Shelton) Between 1904 and 1907, an estimated 65,000 Africans were killed in concentration camps by the armies of the Second Reich. The German idea for a concentration camp became so popular with the Germans that it spread to the very heart of Europe. The Herero people became slaves held like animals and hired out by the day as workers for private industry. The horror that was endured over those three years started as a peaceful agreement by the Herero. Only later did the white settlers need for more land and resources cause the unrest that nearly destroyed the Herero people. The Germans came in peace as settlers and protectors for the Herero people after the Berlin conference of 1884. They paid for land and protected the Herero from neighboring tribes, like the Namas, in exchange for land for German settlers. All was well until conflicts between the German colonists and the Herero began around 1903. Disputes over access to land and water led to a legal discrimination against the...
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