A closer look
South Africa has a rich cultural and political history that can be traced back to before the 19th century as a trading centre in the South African region. This paper will attempt to analyze the factors that affected the progression of the South African state through its inception to the present day. Particular emphasis will be given to its geopolitical importance, the colonial impact and political history that helped formed its advanced infrastructure that would allow it to surpass its neighboring states. As well as the impact of external influences in shaping and supporting the South African regime towards developing the means to reinforce its role as a regional leader in the area. Concurrently, the paper also analyzes the internal development of South African institutions and how they have developed leading up to the present day. Ultimately, the purpose of this paper will be to take these factors and prove the South African has been able to maintain its status as the regional hegemon of Southern Africa.
The geography of South Africa and its demography favors the potential for a strong South African defense. Minerals were discovered in the region in the 1800s. South Africa also proved to be valuable as a trading post for ships coming from the east, and later became of geopolitical importance due to its proximity and access to the sea lanes. Its location and abundance of minerals motivated colonial powers to value South Africa’s geopolitical importance. Following the Second World War, the economic potential, and its strategic importance caught the interest of the U.S.
“The area constitutes the major non-Communist source of supply of a number of minerals, important to the West’s advanced industrial economies: chromium, platinum and manganese. The sea lanes that lie around the region have equal value to the West. More than half of the Western Europe’s oil... [continues]
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(2008, 05). South African Hegemony: a Closer Look. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 05, 2008, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/South-African-Hegemony-Closer-Look-151736.html
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