10 November 2017

South Africa: Keeping the President - Securocrats On the Rampage


One of the great ironies pertaining to human society is the following: when huge institutions implode, comedy is the principal byproduct. Sure, there will also be loads of death, mayhem, misery, and hastily silk-screened t-shirts. But for the most part, there's the yuks. Only with this in mind is it possible to understand the motivations behind the State Security Agency laying charges against journalist Jacques Pauw, for revelations contained in his new book, the bestselling 'The President's Keepers'. By RICHARD POPLAK.

As Pauw has recently made clear - and he is by no means the first journalist to furnish punters with this information - the intelligence community is devoted less to the protection of the nation's interests than it is to ring-fencing President Jacob Zuma's cabal. The SSA's activities have been both criminal and treasonous - running cigarette smuggling scams; the wholesale dismantling of the South African Revenue Service; generally being assholes. As with most of the critical institutions that form the ligature of the state, the SSA has been wholesale captured by Jacob Zuma's cronies, who are trying to hide the fact that he is an (impeachable) tax cheat. And so their attempts to block the book - already...

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