The Re public of South Africa was the territory where the white population was the largest.
South Africa came under British rule in the 19th century.
In 1910, it became a state within the British Empire, thanks to its resources of gold, diamonds, and coal.
The business elite and professional classes were mostly of British origin, but a larger population of working-class and farm-owning Afrikaners ran the government through their elected representatives.
The native Africans, Indian immigrants, and "Coloureds" of mixed race were outnumbered by whites by ten to one.
Only whites were able to vote, and the better jobs and advanced education were only available to whites.
In a relatively advanced industrial society, nonwhites made gains all the same, and in the late 1940s, radical Afrikaner politicians came to power who were determined to hold the nonwhites down.
South Africa was a democracy for whites and a police state for most nonwhites for twenty years.
The African National Congress was banned in 1960.
Nelson Mandela spent the next quarter of a century in prison after being convicted of sabotage.
The wind of change was blowing against South Africa.
South Africa was forced out of the British Commonwealth in 1961.
As South Africa became more isolated in the world and its northern neighbors began to fall under African rule, apartheid began to fall.
After the rise of Islam, most of the population were Arabs, and the territory was once the homeland of the Jews.
The Middle East was mostly ruled by local monarchs in 1939.
Iran and Saudi Arabia were more independent than France in Syria and Lebanon.
The Persian Gulf region became the world's main supplier of oil and the Soviet Union and the United States tried to take over from Britain.
The United States became the main target of local grievances.
At the turn of the century, Zionism appeared in Europe.
It was seen by many Jews as the only permanent solution to the problem of discrimination in Christian states.
The British cabinet promised support for a national home in Palestine during the First World War.
The Arabs of Palestine saw this migration as a new form of Western imperialism.
The Jews were thought to be an expansionist colony on the Arab shore.
There were terrorist acts by both sides against each other and the British in 1946, when violence broke out between Jewish and Arab armed groups.
The United Nations voted for an independent Palestine after Britain withdrew.
The descendants of Aqaba still live.
Many Jews fled government harassment and mob violence in Arab countries and settled in Israel.
The existence of the Jewish state was defended by most non-Arab nations.
Britain and France were eager to keep their influence in the Middle East.
The three countries tried to overthrow the nationalist leader of Egypt, who had sponsored guerrilla attacks against Israel, and helped an Algeria revolt against French rule.
The attempt came to nothing because the United States and the Soviet Union pressured all three nations to call off the war.
The changing balance of world power was an important moment in the Middle East, as well as in other parts of the world.
The French learned that Britain and America were not to be relied on, so that France could never again exercise worldwide influence except as a member of the European Community.
The British decided that they needed to be part of Europe, even though they would never act independently of the United States.
Israel decided to rely on the United States for its survival in the future.
All three countries have kept these decisions.
The "Six-Day War" of June 1967, was Israel's most impressive demonstration of strength.
In a lightning attack, Israel smashed larger surrounding forces of Egyptians, Syrians, and Jordanians.
The West Bank of the Jordan River was wrested from Jordan.
The Arabs refused to recognize Israel and its occupation of their territories.
The Soviet Union gave them new arms that they wanted to use in the Middle East.
The UN Security Council passed a resolution calling for Israeli withdrawal in return for peace.
Some Arab states did not accept the resolution in principle.
Israel needed the West Bank and Gaza for its security and the west had a historic right to those areas.
Israel settled its citizens in the occupied territories.
After six years of waiting, the Egyptians and Syrians attacked the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur in 1973.
Israeli forces, hastily reinforced by weapons from the United States, recovered from heavy initial losses.
The embargo on shipments to all nations supporting the cause of Israel was imposed by the Arab oil-exporting states as a war measure.
The industrialized countries were dependent on oil and pressed Israel to come to an agreement with the Arabs.
Egypt shifted from relying on the Soviet Union to having a close relationship with the United States.
The United States was in a position to influence the Israeli course of action because it had become the only ally that Israel relied on.
Henry Kissinger, the American secretary of state at the time, did not bring a peaceful settlement to the Middle East in his "step-by-step" diplomacy.
The first break in the feud between Israel and the Arabs was caused by the growth of American influence in the Middle East.
The Egyptian president made a "surprise" flight from Cairo to Jerusalem in 1977.
He proposed a permanent settlement to the Israeli prime minister on the basis of "land for peace" in return for Egypt's recognition of Israel and the establishment of normal diplomatic relations.
The terms were worked out at a series of summit meetings chaired by President Jimmy Carter.
In particular Libya, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia, Sadat's negotiations were viewed as a separate peace with a common enemy.
The understandings between Israel and Egypt were mostly fulfilled.
In 1982 Begin, a believer in the historic right of the Jews to possess the West Bank territories, made an effort to settle the issue on terms favorable to Israel.
The Israeli army invaded Lebanon to clear out anti-Israeli guerrilla units of the Palestine Liberation Organization that were based there, and at the same time to destroy Palestinian hopes that the PLO would ever form an independent government.
Christians would follow the example of Egypt and sign a peace treaty if a friendly government in Lebanon was installed by the Israelis.
In the course of the invasion, the Israeli forces killed thousands of people in Lebanon.
There was revulsion in Israel against the savagery of these methods and the Israeli forces suffered a lot of losses.
Ronald Reagan ordered American troops to the capital of Lebanon in order to support the Israeli effort to set up a client government.
In 1983, a suicide bomber drove a truck full of explosives into a building that was being used by the U.S. marines.
In one of the worst disasters in Marine Corps history, more than 220 marines died in their beds.
The president said that terrorist acts wouldn't force the United States to run out of commitments.
American ground and naval forces were withdrawn from Lebanon within a few months.
After 1985 Israeli troops withdrew gradually, occupying a small strip of land north of Israel's border with Syria in the course of peace negotiations.
The Lebanon war made it clear to the Israelis that they were not strong enough to impose peace on any Arab country by force, and that the Americans would back down in the face of truck bombs.
The guerrilla campaigns against both countries were encouraged by Syria.
The fighting between Christians, Sunni Muslims, Shiite Muslims, and Palestinians that had been going on since 1972 ended when its troops occupied most of the country.
Lebanon developed into an uneasily functioning democracy in the 1990s, where different religious groups had their share of political power.
The French tried to bring their colonies into closer political association than the British.
They offered them membership in the French Union.
The approach failed because it only appealed to a small group of colonial subjects who had been educated in French schools and had come to respect and admire French culture.
After the Second World War, Charles de Gaulle promised the colonies that assisted him a free choice of status.
The French Community was a short-lived association that resembled the British Commonwealth.
Despite their political choices, the former French territories in Africa still rely heavily on French military aid, investment, and trade.
In Algeria, where there was a large minority of European settlers, and in Indochina, where the independence leaders were communists, the French went to war in a vain attempt to hold political power.
They were forced to withdraw from both after brutal fighting and heavy losses.
Algeria became independent in 1962.
Vietnam was temporarily divided by an international conference into a communist-ruled north, after securing their independence from France in 1954.
The United States took up the fight to prevent a communist victory in the southern half of the country after the French gave up.
After the Second World War, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Portugal tried to regain their colonies.
The Dutch lost control of the East Indies to the Japanese in 1942.
The state of Indonesia has a population of over 100 million.
In 1960, the rising tide of nationalism forced the Belgians to agree to freedom without adequate preparation.
The Portuguese were determined to keep their hold on the southern African territories, which they viewed as part of Portugal.
The native resistance forces used guerrilla tactics to break the will of the colonial masters.
Portuguese commanders observing the futility of their own military efforts brought about a turnover in the imperial home government in Lisbon.
The Portuguese government granted independence to these territories in 1975.
The turn to dependence went ahead even though the resistance movement remained unified.
The Portuguese withdrawal led to a civil war among three competing parties, which was complicated by intervention from outside powers.
There was an official peace in 1991, but fighting continues.
South Africa had an illegal occupation of Namibia from 1990 to 1990.
The international agreement provided for free elections in the country.
The idea of superiority of the white race over the other races of the world was one of the justifications for nineteenth-century imperialism.
The imperialists argued that the nonwhite races were incapable of governing themselves on the Western level, or at least they would need many decades or even centuries of white rule before they were up to the task.
The Nazi atrocities had shown the horrors to which racism could lead, and these ideas had always been opposed by the imperialist countries.
The Second World War made it hard to claim that people of European origin were superior to other peoples of the world, and in any case, biology was not in favor of that idea.
The idea of white racial superiority ceased to be respectable even among whites themselves, and social and political orders based on this idea came to be recognized as oppressive.
The United States was most affected by decolonization.
The countries that it directly ruled, as opposed to those that it indirectly influenced, had never been large, and some of those countries, such as the Philippines, had already won independence before the Second World War.
The United States came into being as a result of European expansion.
It practiced slavery on a massive scale after wresting its actual home territory from earlier inhabitants.
The United States has a long history of racism and racial oppression.
The first Europeans to arrive in the United States were in New England and Virginia.
The tribes were nearly wiped out over the years and their culture was destroyed.
The Indian policy was reversed by the Roosevelt administration.
The new policy aimed at respecting and protecting the cultures of the Native Americans, though other serious problems affecting their welfare have persisted.
Other minority peoples in the United States have also been directed with racism.
Hispanic Americans and Asian Americans are both growing rapidly.
African Americans have played a special role in U.S. history.
The lynching of black men accused of serious crimes against whites was one of the consequences of the end of legal slavery.
In civil, political, social, and economic affairs, African Americans began to approach equality with whites in the middle of the twentieth century.
This decision ended the principle of "separate but equal" education for black children and called for progressive integration of the races in public-supported schools and colleges.
The decision was resisted by whites in many communities, but by 1970, it appeared to have been accepted in principle.
The tradition of the "neighborhood school" and resistance to the busing of children to different schools "for racial balance" kept schools substantially segregation in spite of the ruling.
Black leaders worked harder to end "Jim Crowism" and place more blacks on voter registration rolls.
During the 1960s, these efforts were supported by sit-ins, boycotts, mass demonstrations, and civil disobedience.
Aggressive legal actions were taken by the NAACP and the Baptist minister Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
King was for full integration of the races, equal opportunity, and non violence.
The younger members of the black community fell away from his leadership in the late 1960s.
Poor food and housing is still a problem for blacks in the urban ghettos.
The white power structure needs to be persuaded that more needs to be done for blacks.
There were cries for "black power," militancy, and violence.
Most blacks hated the police because they patrolled black neighborhoods like soldiers of an occupying army.
In the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles and in Detroit and Washington, there were riots after police clashed with the people.
The assassination of Martin Luther King was a blow to the black movement.
The movement was pushed further toward militancy by it.
The growing number of black converts to Islam was motivated by unhappiness with their situation in a society dominated by white Christians.
The "law and order" issue in the country was worsened by a white backlash.
Police forces were enlarged and more heavily armed, they sought out militant groups, kept them under watch, raided their headquarters, and often brought court charges against their leaders.
The 1970s and 1980s saw a decrease in violence, but racial tension remained high.
There was division within the African American community between those who favored continued efforts toward integration and those who preferred racial separation.
Blacks who were successful displayed a stronger spirit of pride, independence, and energy than ever before.
In the advance of black athletes in competitive sports, this spirit was visible in virtually all the arts and professions.
Despite affirmative action programs designed to employ more minorities in industry and public service, business recessions have been most heavily on nonwhites.
The majority of the country has resented these programs as "reverse discrimination" and supported moves to repeal them.
The result of civil rights and affirmative action has been the growth of a large and prosperous black middle class, as well as a growth in political and government power, especially at the local level, with African American mayors elected in many large cities.
Louis Farrakhan was the leader of the Nation of Islam.
Black Republicans are a minority among African Americans in the upper reaches of the George W. Bush administration.
The leaders of the liberated peoples of Asia and Africa, as well as of Latin American nations that hoped for freedom from foreign dominance in the newly decolonized world--knew that there was no going back to the old times before the colonial empires.
They wanted their people to be able to reproduce some of the achievements of their former imperial rulers, in particular, national freedom, unity, and power, and the possibility of health, wealth, and leisure for all.
The nations of Asia, Africa, and Latin America could take their rightful place in the world because of the building of powerful nation-states and wealthy industrial economies.
In the world in which they won independence, the former imperial nations still had the lion's share of wealth and power, even if they were divided between the West and the socialist camp.
Many Asian, African, and Latin American nations hoped to change the world order into a "tripolar" one that would better reflect their interests and values.
The ideal of a united Third World as a pillar of a reformed world order has great appeal in the ex-colonial nations, but from the start, many realities worked against it.
There were many different traditions of civilization in the Third World countries.
In many cases, their borders had originally been drawn by the colonial powers.
Many Third World countries were peasant societies in which a few powerful groups held most of the wealth and competed for power.
The corruption, government instability, rule by dictatorial strongmen, and horrible international and civil wars were all caused by this.
It was difficult for Third World countries to give up their traditional role as suppliers of raw materials and food to other countries.
They depended on these countries for access to markets, financial credit, and technical aid as often as not.
Many Third World countries were caught in a web of political and economic dependency on their former rulers, even after independence, because of their internal conflicts and economic weaknesses.
There were two possible paths for Third World countries to go in order to gain national power and industrial wealth.
To oppose the political and economic dominance of the West on the pattern of earlier opposition to imperial rule was one of the paths of resistance.
To acknowledge the West as a senior partner in an interdependent world in the hope that junior partnership would speed development and lead in the end to equality was the path of cooperation.
Many Third World countries deviated from the path they chose when it led to failure or conflict.
In Muslim countries, an international movement of Islamic fundamentalism grew up that rejected both partnership with the West and resistance just for the sake of escaping political and economic dependency.
The new movement proclaimed Jihad against the West in the name of the one truth about the one God.
It still wanted unity and power, but on a religious basis.
It was not opposed to the pursuit of wealth, health, and leisure as long as the societies pursued the Islamic truth.
Others were on good terms with the West, but their governments wanted to declare economic and social as well as political independence.
The path of resistance was likely to be followed by all such countries.
They were likely to nationalize foreign-owned companies and introduce government planning.
They wanted to take advantage of the world order by playing one bloc against the other so as to get the maximum help from both.
The movements would bring down the Western country's anger and turn it into support for the socialist camp.
Resistance would turn into confrontation between the local radicals and the patron country, as well as between the rival blocs.
Cuba and Vietnam were the places where the most noteworthy confrontations took place.
Cuba won independence from Spain in 1898 with the help of the United States, but this did not lead to real independence before or after the Second World War.
The United States was heavily involved in Cuban affairs.
From 1933 to 1959 it was influenced by one man, a former army sergeant.
He was the real force in most of the Cuban governments with or without elections.
The hated dictator was ousted in 1959 by a revolutionary movement.
Castro's first act in power was to nationalize the country's agriculture and industry, which had been owned by Americans.
Cuba became an authoritarian model of national liberation from a foreign-controlled political and economic establishment.
The goal of Castro's movement was to put the resources of the country at the disposal of its own people.
Castro and the other leaders were aware that continued independence and the effective use of resources depended on health care and improved education; universal literacy was essential if their purposes were to be understood and their programs successfully carried out.
Technical education was emphasized so that the young men and women of each new nation could operate the complicated machines that promised a better future.
The cost of education and resources were found to be high by the new leaders.
Popular disappointment and frustration was the result.
In Cuba, many thousands fled their homeland to seek a freer and more comfortable life in the United States.
Castro faced grave internal and external handicaps in carrying his program forward.
The United States has maintained a trade embargo against Cuba, despite President John F. Kennedy's approval of the "Bay of Pigs" invasion.
The CIA plotted the assassination of Castro after the invasion failed.
Lyndon B. Johnson sent troops into the Do minican Republic in 1965, in order to protect the United States from communism in the Western Hemisphere.
After his election in 1968, President Richard M. Nixon proposed a shift in means for areas outside the hemisphere.
Native troops with American arms would be expected to fight against communist forces there.
Normally, combat assistance from the United States would be limited to air and sea units.
The strategy was confirmed by President Gerald Ford in 1975.
Jimmy Carter followed a more restrained policy of intervention, but Ronald Reagan, who became chief executive in 1981, ordered stronger action and a build up of American military forces overseas.
After the French left, Americans replaced them in South Vietnam with special forces.
As the South Vietnamese were unable to suppress a guerrilla uprising inspired from the North, President Johnson decided to take full-scale American involvement.
Hundreds of thousands of troops were sent to South Vietnam by Johnson to aid the army of the north, which was supported by hundreds of warships and thousands of aircraft.
By the end of the Second World War, the total amount of cargo dropped by the United States was three times that of the United States.
By 1968, it was clear that the communist forces would not give up and that the American voters were becoming more opposed to the slaughter.
The death toll from the American war was over forty thousand, while the death toll from the Vietnam war was estimated at more than a million.
President Johnson decided not to run for reelection.