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African Chief Praises Jews for Helping Dispossessed and Powerless in S, Africa

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Speaking to a large gathering of Durban Jews at the Durban Jewish Club, Chief Gatsha Buthelezi, chief minister of Kwa Zulu, the Zulu homeland, paid tribute to “those Jewish South Africans who have stuck their necks out for the dispossessed and the powerless” in South Africa. This is the first time that the head of an African homeland has been the guest of the Jewish community.

Chief Buthelezi said, “I believe as you do in the God of Abraham, and I believe that we are all creatures of His creation, and I believe that it is His hand that has inspired you to want me, as your Black countryman, to come to your club at this particular time to have this kind of social intercourse which is bound to make us understand each other better.”

He also said that the Black people in South Africa identify their situation with that of the Israelites in Biblical Egypt and derived inspiration from the Jewish advance to freedom. Chief Buthelezi appealed to the Jewish group to help his nation to “stand on our own feet,” a struggle made harder by the fact that Africans were at an economic and educational disadvantage.

He remarked that even though “a white skin is a badge of security in South Africa,” there is still racial prejudice against Jews. He expressed the hope that Jewish South Africans were among those working to save South Africa from destruction.

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