The Dictator
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Good or bad?

Personally I think we did it too soon. If we had remained in Africa a couple of decades longer, the population would have been better-educated and better equipped to take up the mantle of governance. As it happened, at the height of the Cold War we abandoned the continent and left it to rot under the misrule and maladministration of unreconstructed Marxist intellectuals who simply aligned their respective countries to the Soviet Union or at least took up a position of hostility towards the West.

Rhodesia is the best example of this. Once the breadbasket of Africa, Rhodesia is now a basket-case. It is a basket-case because of the ruinous economic policies of the Marxist terrorist, Robert Mugabe, and his black nationalist cronies. It will remain a basket-case for some time to come. The betrayal of Harold Wilson and many other keys figures in the British Government will be a stain on our record for all time. No wonder Ian Smith was such a broken man towards the end of his life.

Look at India, a country which was still mired in primitivity, barbarism and atavistic cultural practices such as slavery and widow-burning. We spent over a decade and a half looking after that place, developing it, transforming it, and now, India is one of the more successful former colonies of Britain. Even then, our work there was still half-finished. If we had ruled in Africa for that long, think of where it would be now.
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Arbolus
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Perhaps. On the other hand, if the people of the colonies decided they wanted independence, there's only so long Britain could delay for before the people got fed up and resorted to an armed uprising. It's likely that Britain could have crushed any such uprising, but only at the cost of thousands of civilian deaths and the destruction of the colony's economy and infrastructure. Just look at what happened with the Mau Mau rebellion, and that only involved one ethnic group in one part of Kenya. We certainly wouldn't have had the stomach to deal with an equivalent of Vietnam.
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MatureStudent36
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(Original post by The Dictator)
Good or bad?

Personally I think we did it too soon. If we had remained in Africa a couple of decades longer, the population would have been better-educated and better equipped to take up the mantle of governance. As it happened, at the height of the Cold War we abandoned the continent and left it to rot under the misrule and maladministration of unreconstructed Marxist intellectuals who simply aligned their respective countries to the Soviet Union or at least took up a position of hostility towards the West.

Rhodesia is the best example of this. Once the breadbasket of Africa, Rhodesia is now a basket-case. It is a basket-case because of the ruinous economic policies of the Marxist terrorist, Robert Mugabe, and his black nationalist cronies. It will remain a basket-case for some time to come. The betrayal of Harold Wilson and many other keys figures in the British Government will be a stain on our record for all time. No wonder Ian Smith was such a broken man towards the end of his life.

Look at India, a country which was still mired in primitivity, barbarism and atavistic cultural practices such as slavery and widow-burning. We spent over a decade and a half looking after that place, developing it, transforming it, and now, India is one of the more successful former colonies of Britain. Even then, our work there was still half-finished. If we had ruled in Africa for that long, think of where it would be now.
On the whole, UK decolonisation was a damn site more successful than french, Belgian and Portuguese.

The decolonisation process had to happen. Partly through cost, partly through US support of the UK during WW2.

The crazy countries happened way after Deconisaltion.
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capitalismstinks
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Independence was an inevitable consequence of how Europeans set up their empires. Unlike Islamic Empires which were set up under a caliphate, European Empires made nation states out of the land masses they ruled.

Eventually nation states want freedom.

America was the first to break away, but independence was always an inevitability for all of these new nation states which European empires created.

I don't think a few decades here or there would have mattered. Either the people that want independence can run a nation state, or they cant.
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anarchism101
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(Original post by The Dictator)
Rhodesia is the best example of this. Once the breadbasket of Africa, Rhodesia is now a basket-case. It is a basket-case because of the ruinous economic policies of the Marxist terrorist, Robert Mugabe, and his black nationalist cronies. It will remain a basket-case for some time to come. The betrayal of Harold Wilson and many other keys figures in the British Government will be a stain on our record for all time. No wonder Ian Smith was such a broken man towards the end of his life.
During Mugabe's actual socialist phase in the 1980s, Zimbabwe's economy was actually doing pretty OK. The problems really started with the IMF-induced reforms in the early 1990s. Not that Mugabe wasn't a problem from the start; he was pretty brutal the whole way and was always more interested in power than anything else.

Smith and Co. screwed over themselves. They fought an unwinnable war far longer than they could possibly hope to maintain any real bargaining leverage. Imagine if the South African regime had, rather than starting to talk to Mandela in the 1980s, had tried to fight on until about 2000, and then found that a relative moderate like Mandela had no real influence any more, and instead they had to negotiate with someone like Winnie Mandela or Julius Malema. That's basically what the Rhodesian regime did.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by The Dictator)
Good or bad?

Personally I think we did it too soon. If we had remained in Africa a couple of decades longer, the population would have been better-educated and better equipped to take up the mantle of governance. As it happened, at the height of the Cold War we abandoned the continent and left it to rot under the misrule and maladministration of unreconstructed Marxist intellectuals who simply aligned their respective countries to the Soviet Union or at least took up a position of hostility towards the West.

Rhodesia is the best example of this. Once the breadbasket of Africa, Rhodesia is now a basket-case. It is a basket-case because of the ruinous economic policies of the Marxist terrorist, Robert Mugabe, and his black nationalist cronies. It will remain a basket-case for some time to come. The betrayal of Harold Wilson and many other keys figures in the British Government will be a stain on our record for all time. No wonder Ian Smith was such a broken man towards the end of his life.

Look at India, a country which was still mired in primitivity, barbarism and atavistic cultural practices such as slavery and widow-burning. We spent over a decade and a half looking after that place, developing it, transforming it, and now, India is one of the more successful former colonies of Britain. Even then, our work there was still half-finished. If we had ruled in Africa for that long, think of where it would be now.
I agree. It's a great shame that Britain gave up it's empire.
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gladders
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(Original post by capitalismstinks)
European Empires made nation states out of the land masses they ruled.
No they didn't.
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capitalismstinks
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(Original post by gladders)
No they didn't.

Oh yes they did.
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gladders
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(Original post by capitalismstinks)
Oh yes they did.
Most of the states the Europeans left behind collapsed into civil war, often on ethnic lines; there was no created nation in nearly all of them. The exceptions, arguably, are the Dominions, because the indigineous races were largely overrun.
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MatureStudent36
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(Original post by gladders)
Most of the states the Europeans left behind collapsed into civil war, often on ethnic lines; there was no created nation in nearly all of them. The exceptions, arguably, are the Dominions, because the indigineous races were largely overrun.
The Portuguese and Belgians failed to prepare for decolonisation and just left. That creates a power vacuum and power vacuums lead to civil wars especially when all of your civil servants leave as well.

France faired a bit better and the UK led the way.

Many 'civil wars' during decolonisation can be linked to the bigger back drop of the cold war.
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capitalismstinks
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(Original post by gladders)
Most of the states the Europeans left behind collapsed into civil war, often on ethnic lines; there was no created nation in nearly all of them. The exceptions, arguably, are the Dominions, because the indigineous races were largely overrun.

All of if the nations Europeans left behind are still nations.

These people owe their nationhood to empire.

India for example wasn't a unified nation until the British invented it. The land mass we now call India was a series of warring regions largely dominated by Islamic forces.
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felamaslen
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Yup, it is more immoral to let a tyrant rule a place than to continue to keep it under colonial control by a democratic country.
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