Mau Mau Uprising 1952-60 – Anti-British Rebellion in Kenya

Many of the darker stories of the Cold War
come from the brutal struggles for decolonisation. Especially after the draining efforts of the
Second World War, many European colonial empires found themselves without the resources available
to maintain dominance over indigenous peoples across their holdings. Anti-colonial movements
began to rise, and desperate empires would go to more and more desperate lengths to stop
them. We’ve seen this in cases such as the Malay Emergency or the rise of Sukarno in
Indonesia, which we talked about previously on this channel. And today we’re going to
talk about another similar story when a group opposed the white supremacist rule of Britain
in Kenya. Today’s topic is the Mau Mau Rebellion. I’m your host David and this is the Cold
War. To start, Kenya was a British colony, a land
not only rich in agriculture, but highly strategic for British transportation conduits on the
African continent. With British holdings in the African interior and a railroad to maintain,
Kenya was of vital importance to British rule. But it all sounds rather banal if you talk
about resources and logistics. The Kenyan people, made up up a wide number of different
ethnic communities including but not limited to Kikuyu, Luhya, Kalenjin, Luo, Kamba, Kisii,
Somalis, Mijikenda, Meru, Turkana, and Maasai had been conquered and subjugated by the British.
The Mau Mau rebellion was merely the result of systematic and constant resistance to the
British ever since it became a protectorate in the late 19th century. And the response
to this resistance has always been bloody and brutal.
White settlers in Kenya enjoyed significant privileges when it came to making money and
owning the best and most land. Kenyans had to keep identification on them to move about.
There was an attempt in the 1930’s to improve conditions called the Carter Land Commission
but still, they recommended next to nothing for the Kenyan people, and many Kenyans started
to conclude that there was no path to liberation through peaceful means.
The material conditions they lived under were designed to keep native Kenyans in systematic
poverty. The British put laws in place to force Kenyans to become wage workers through
taxing huts, forcing ethnic groups into overcrowded reserves, banning Kenyans from farming the
most profitable crops, and attacks on squatters and tenants rights. White settlers paid almost
no taxes, and the services and infrastructure Kenyans paid for were mostly enjoyed by white
settlers. Lastly, the working conditions for native Kenyans were often horrible, with beatings
being a frequent occurrence, and the legal system having little to no sympathy for them.
All of this is the context for a movement called the Mau Mau. They were a militant group
of Kenyans fighting for greater rights and freedoms for themselves. Originally a student
movement, its attempts at making reforms through activism failed. It grew to encompass more
native segments of the population, and more militant members began to take over.
The militant activity started to increase throughout 1952. The colonial government,
however, was slow to respond. They assumed that their overwhelming military power and
resources would be more than a match for any native uprising. It had been the case in the
past, and apparently, the realities of guerilla warfare are a very slow lesson to learn for
empires. The new governor Evelyn Baring had no warning of the growing uprising in Kenya
as he took office. The first act of violence came with the stabbing
of a woman on October 3rd. A week later, Mau Mau militants shot a key colonial official.
A chief who supported the British regime. The attacks would continue using principles
of asymmetric warfare. They attacked at night, in areas loyalists had weak influence and
used hit and run tactics. On October 20th, Baring declared a state of
emergency, ordering the mass arrests of any known Mau Mau leader they could the next day.
The idea was that doing so would destroy the organisation early by removing the leadership
in one fell swoop in something called Operation Jock Scott. The problem is that info leaked
to Mau Mau about the planned arrests. Any moderates left in the organisation accepted
their fates, leaving only the most militant and radical who had escaped capture to steer
the movement. They responded with a series of gruesome murders I’ll spare the details
of here just in case someone’s watching this video during lunch. Upping the ante,
the UK raised an entire 3000 man native army as well as dispatching a battalion of British
troops to put down the resistance and then put the leaders arrested through a notoriously
unfair trial. At the same time, the continued efforts of the British to stop the movement
radicalised a majority of the Kenyan people to sympathise with the Mau Mau.
As the British began to use the army to crack down on the Mau Mau, they retreated to rural
areas, to the forests, to commit guerilla… this is starting to get a bit familiar isn’t
it?? It took the British four years to wipe out the Mau Mau. Some vital intelligence from
captured leaders and continual pressure caused their decline.
What sticks out is how the British “pressured” the Kenyan people. There’s a lot to go into,
and it shows the scale of violence we will see as colonised people struggled for rights
and freedoms. The British dropped on Kenya nearly 6 million
bombs. They stormed the city of Nairobi, a city with heavy Mau Mau presence, displacing
about 50,000 people to those overcrowded reserves. People of the Kikuyu ethnic group, who made
up a significant part of the Mau Mau, were deported en masse to reserves. To screen them,
the British had to make massive detention camps in a system that has been compared to
Stalin’s gulags. In these camps talking in public was forbidden, families were split
up, and they transferred prisoners for days with little to no food and water. Camp diseases
spread like wildfire without sufficient sanitation. The British then used the detainees in these
camps for forced labour. Many infrastructure projects in Kenya were built on the backs
of prisoners in forced labour camps. Later in the conflict, the British decided to commit
mass relocations of the peoples in their prison system. These ‘villages’ were not unlike
the ones rural Malayan people had to live in during the emergency there. To cut off
rebel support, thousands of people had to live behind barbed wire and armed guards.
They were concentration camps. The British were using concentration camps. And in these
concentration camps, people started to starve. Aaaaand the British prioritised food to loyalists…
They even called the ones they starved “punitive villages”. A shockingly high number of the
50,000 deaths which occurred during this whole conflict were children in these camps. Now
I haven’t checked in a while, but this is some severe war crimes territory right here.
Speaking of war crimes…that’s a weird way to start a sentence. BUT let’s look
into the war crimes the British imposed on the Kenyan people. Civil liberties were suspended
during the state of emergency. In those concentration camps, also a war crime, by the way, that
targeted starvation was a form of collective punishment. Many were tortured and even sexually
assaulted for information. Again for those eating, I won’t go into details, but suffice
it to say, this was particularly grotesque. I feel it is important to note here that over
1,000 death sentences were handed out during this State of Emergency; that is actually
twice the number handed out by the French during the Algerian War. Which of course could
just mean that the French were more comfortable with extra-judicial killing while the British
prefered to have a veneer of legality to their executions.
The Mau Mau weren’t off the hook either in the violence department. From retaliatory
violence to massacres of loyalist troops, to the poisoning of cattle, the Mau Mau killed
almost 2000 fellow Kenyans in the uprising. By the end in 1955, Baring offered some massive
concessions to the Mau Mau, including land reform, relaxations on the native population’s
right to grow cash crops, increased wages, and even the right to vote in democratic elections.
How kind. By the end of 1956, the uprising had been
largely put down but the State of Emergency remained until 1960, as the last of the rebels
were tracked down. But, the elected government that was formed after 1956 would lead to eventual
majority rule, and would eventually move Kenya towards independence, finally gained in 1963.
The question we all have, and is still debated by historians and many Kenyans is whether
the uprising was the reason for all of this progress. Is the Mau Mau uprising part of
Kenya’s story of decolonisation, or an unfortunately failed attempt going on while the slower path
moved forward? The debate is whether the British gave all of these concessions as they realised
Kenya was not worth the investment of blood and treasure to maintain control, or if it
was a mere sideshow. The Kenyan government does recognise several
Mau Mau fighters as national heroes, and Kenyans do honour them every October 20th. Though
this was not always the case. After independence, discussion of the Mau Mau was conspicuously
absent. It is a more modern reassessment of the Mau Mau, or according to some a political
ploy. So, the legacy and feelings towards them are complicated even today.
A couple of Mau Mau veteran’s groups have tried to sue the British. While many weren’t
successful, the continued pressure in the early 21st century did make an impact. Eventually,
the British did pay Kenya reparations to Kenya for the torture and mass cruelty they committed
during the uprising and even funded a little statue in Nairobi to it.
Oftentimes, our education on this period of world history is heavily skewed by which side
our country of origin took in the Cold War. As we move forward on this channel, I want
you to know that this was a conflict with no heroes and no villains but a lot of cruelty
and an overwhelming amount of injustice. The scars of colonization in Kenya are deep, and
remain to this day. When you look at the news, think about the layers of history which might
underwrite the issues of our day. Some of you will have noticed that this is
our first video on Sub-Saharan Africa. There will be many more to come over the life of
this channel as we move into the bitter struggles of decolonization. Themse of social injustice,
of freedom and oppression, and of horrific violence will run throughout. We are approaching
stage of the Cold War where direct conflict between the superpowers was becoming less
likely but highly destabilizing proxy wars were becoming the norm.
We hope you have enjoyed todays video and thank you to Tristan from StepBack History
for todays script! Please make sure you are subscribed to our channel and to make sure
you don’t iss future videos, oppress the bell button. We can be reached via email at
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war is that it doesn’t take too long before it becomes heated.”

100 thoughts on “Mau Mau Uprising 1952-60 – Anti-British Rebellion in Kenya

  1. Warcrimes only exist between two actors who apply to the Hague and Geneva conventions, which is not the case.

  2. So many british symphatizers in the comments
    I guess you are what you eat
    And your opinions are what your media and government tell you

  3. 4:48 WRONG! Wrong! WRONG!
    You spare us the gruesome details just because a few people are eating while viewing this? So the majority have to suffer for the sake of the few? …. History wouldn't be history if all the details were about how everything was dandy and lavender. We 're fascinated by history because we learn about the things people used to do that would be make our lower jaws drop today. And you just deprived us of that action, because you assumed some persons might be eating? Since when did telling the history of war and brutality have to be censored? How do we learn to NOT let conflict get to that stage anymore, of we don't know how bad it used to get out of hand?

    Please don't do this again. The least you can do is make a disclaimer or spoiler alert at the beginning. But, ALWAYS give us the details; that's what we subscribed for.

    The atomic bombing of Japan wouldn't be interesting to learn about if the gruesome details were covered up by those who witnessed it. Get it?

  4. As a Kenyan, I appreciate this excellent video on our struggle against oppression. I look forward to more content on Sub-Saharan Africa's turbulent history during the Cold War. Zimbabwe, Congo and Angola have very compelling stories that could be explored in future videos.

  5. My African Religion teacher was from Kenya, a Masai. From just a random illiterate primitive isolated village child, to teaching upper level college classes with a doctorate. One of the friendliest and kindest people I ever met, and a great class. As a kid, he thought the Volkswagon bug (used by the priest who taught him to read to reach the village) was the coolest thing in in the world lol

    Great work here, as always

    I'm really looking forward to either channel talking about Jonas Savimbi and the 3 way civil war in Angola with the MPLA and all that. I love amazing people who start a Black Ops 2 campaign by saying "That's a real guy. He has twice my education, from an excellent school in the UK." The UN leaders voted him the world's most intimidating leader or some such lol. It was cool to listen to him speak to the whole UN, and imagine him on top of an APC with an MGL like in CoD lol

    6:11 A lot people see images like this (or the famous ones of people being executed during the Battle of Hue City in Vietnam) and say things like, "See!? That's what guns are for! See how evil and scary they are! Get rid of them all! Why do you need such things?" I'm like, "What do you think the Mau Mau were using? What do you think I learned how to shoot on as a child? What are those things that there are more of in my town than human beings by far for over a century – with 0 murders ever from them? What would you use to stop something like this? What would someone like you use to stop horrible things where the bad people are tough and or numerous – but don't have guns? What stopped the offices of the Black Panthers from being closed by cops with no warrant? What did Malcolm X tell black men to go out and form clubs around? What is that sitting there in the case on the firing line that me and over a dozen other friends just safely shot for hours as kids? The same thing." Half the time the gun on screen that they're so frightened of as adults and don't think I should have as an adult, is the exact same type that I learned to shoot on a child or that friends had. The people who QQ have projection issues.

    What it all reminds me of is the very sad story of a very old lady, who had only ever known abuse and beatings etc at the hands of every single male in her life. She told her story on an NPR broadcast I heard years ago from a senior citizen home. She said her whole life that men and even boys past a very young age were all just scary and threatening to her, because all they had ever done was dominate her with force and cruel treatment. That includes the police, who had guns. At most, they were males she rarely saw who did nothing to her, the acquaintances in passing, etc. She just concluded that that's how it was, that everyone else knew and just didn't say anything. She cried when one of the sound crew guys walked up and hugged her, because she'd never experienced affection or kindness from a male. Especially a young muscular 200 plus pound one. I'd do the same thing. That poor lady…

    I think most people's hatred and fear of firearms comes from only hearing (and lived) stories like that, having never seen what the normal and majority is. Plus, "People fear what they don't understand."-Professor X. Oh, and a political agenda based on total ignorance of the tool and disregard for human rights…

    Guns are a very powerful tool. "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure."-Marianne Williamson, not Nelson Mandella lol

    If that poor old lady had the firearm skill plenty of girls I know had before reaching puberty – she wouldn't have had to take any of that shit. What applies to an individual on the micro level, applies to nations on the macro level.

    I don't see anyone having much luck colonizing or oppressing or occupying the US against it's will any time soon. If a bunch of ignorant 3rd world people who shoot holding the gun around the corner hundreds of yards away most of the time and never clean their weapons (much less the ones who do better than that, like Giap's guys) is that tough for Modern armies, they aren't ready for the American gun culture. The PAVN/NVA did not systematically teach basic 3 position rifle marksmanship (like my NRA jr. rifle team teaches little kids to high schoolers across the country…) until after the battle of Khe Sanh, against the USMC – which has a well earned reputation for it. I got that from reading sources by or about North Vietnamese generals, I'm pretty sure it was Giap himself who said that in his memoir – but I won't cite it lol. Apparently, the French at Dien Bien Phu didn't make enough of an impression to drive the point home like the Marines did. Although Russian manuals of arms and war-fighting doctrine (which armies like North Vietnam, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, etc copy) generally teach troops to move while shooting and use the underarm assault position, (the crosshairs on the screen, in FPS terms) before trying to teach sighted fire or stationary shooting positions, I can't see why Ho's military NEVER though to teach people how to lay down, kneel, or stand and shoot the right way – and yet got to 1968 against the US without it!

    Well, Giap had only shot a shotgun at some clays doing trap shooting a few times before becoming the leader of an armed rebellion, that may have something to do with it. The black and white picture where almost half of their aprox. 50 guys (against the Japanese in WW2) have frackin' crossbows (as opposed to Marines en masse reciting the Rifleman's Creed) might also have something to do with it…

  6. You don't mention the horrible atrocities committed by the murderous May Mai., who by the way WERE NOT entitled to the protection of the laws of land warfare. The Mail May were NOTHING but murderous criminal TERRORIST brigands.

  7. The war crimes of the victor tend to vanish. And it tends to come out when nobody will pay the crimes anymore, and the people say "yeah, we recognize the crimes of our father but that's in the past now".

    George Bush and Tony Blair did war crimes crimes. George Bush even defends torture. They get applause and recognition, maybe waiting for "it's all in the past now".

  8. Britain 1945: Germany, what you did with those minorities was a crime against humanity. (talking about the concentration camps, not the extermination camps)
    Britain in 1956: Put Kenyians in concentration camps
    Germany : Wait what?

  9. Guys you're covering some dark chapters of history that some think best left forgotten. I appreciate you guys for that. BUT, you gotta show or describe some of the atrocities. You Can't be that family friendly while covering such topics. WW2 by indy neidell and spartacus made a pretty good balance between both. Cheers.

  10. This host obviously knows his stuff, which is great. His delivery however is not as good as a professional would be. I think for next year a replacement should be considered. Im not trying to be mean or troll or anything, only offer some constructive criticism.

  11. Good old Mau-Mau story, Big heroes of my socialist east European childhood games :cD

  12. my knowledge on the revolt comes from antidotes from people who where missionaries there at the time. There little to nothing said in world history classes that I took in high school which was in the seventies. Thanks for your explanation of the issue. On a second note I notice that your back round changes throughout the episode. Would you do an episode that explains some of the items you use & their significance to the series?

  13. If you won't talk about the brutality of the Mau Mau attacks you can't explain the British response

  14. Replace "Kenyans" with "American colonists" and suddenly a story of people using violent methods of achieve independence from the British becomes worth it.

  15. Please, don't spare us the gruesome details, they deserve to be taught as well.

    Just add a little warning beforehand so those who eat breakfast can skip forward.

  16. I'd be willing to bet that this guy's tinder bio tells what his preferred pronouns are.

  17. When are you going to make a video on de-Stalinization in the Soviet Union? Stalin died in 1953, so it makes sense chronologically to make it now

  18. After helping the Brits defeat the spychopathic fascist.we didn't get paid but instead we learned the lesson that the Brits were the true Spychopathic fascist

  19. The story of the Mau-Mau does answer the question: how could a rebellion be defeated? The methods were not nice but this broadcast (necessarily) glossed over some horrific murders of white women and children – while mentioning the death of black women, etc.
    Neither side came out of the fight with reputation unblemished.

  20. The reason Africa is poor is because of the west and wars like this so yeah make more videos about Africa show us what true racism is don't be afraid about telling the truth of history

  21. All we wanted to do was spread a little enlightenment and cultural enrichment, is that so wrong?

    (Joke, I think we went a bit too far.. but in the UK's defence, everyone has had a morally questionable empire at some point.)

  22. It's interesting how at Nat Geo, Discovery and History channels you are not gonna see topics like this. Only Nazi related history. The Brits were worse than Nazi Germany. Mark my words.

  23. Great episode as always really are doing a service covering everything that falls in your period in such detail, I was wondering will you guys be discussing the 'troubles' in Northern Ireland in future episodes as the fire in Britain's back garden that burned on throughout this period or would ye consider it to fall outside the scope of this channel because it doesn't conclude during the cold war and depending on your political thinking (though I would not agree with this thinking) could be considered a domestic British concern?

  24. Reserves,
    A nice British word for concentration camps……
    The same thing happened to the South Africa Boers.
    I know Britain has been a U.S. allie for many years(due to President Woodrow Wilson). That does not change the fact.
    Nor does nice words, change history.

  25. Anyone who says that the U.S. and its allies were the 'good guys' in the Cold War is most likely either selectively remembering history or (as was the case with me for several years) uninformed of what truly occurred. I now realize that there were only 'bad guys' and 'badder guys' with each title belonging to different groups at different times.

  26. I love learning more about different stories from different theaters that most would consider minor. The cold war affected everyone but sadly our history favors the major players. Which after a while, I find boring.

  27. Funny how the independence movement of the 50s has been replaced with a mass movement of Kenyan's into the former white countries they wanted to be independent from. Really makes you think.

  28. I am proud that my grandpa who was in his late teens back then, worked in supplying intelligence to the Mau Mau. Be glad that The Cold War spared you the gruesome details, I myself cant stomach some of the details of British colonial barbarity when my grandpa decides to share what he witnessed.

    PS: Surprised that the Mau Mau leader, Field Marshal Dedan Kimathi didn't get a shout out in this video.

  29. Normally you guys are very thorough in your historical research, but as a student of the Mau Mau Uprising I have to say you grossly understated the horrifying war crimes that the Mau Mau committed on their fellow Kikuyu and Kenyans.

    It was these actions: the forced oathing, the kidnapping/conscription of unwilling individuals, and of course the mutilating murders (including women and children) and occasional massacres (especially at Lari); that were key components in the Mau Mau never gaining support among Kenyans at large and even for large portions of the Kikuyu people.

    Yes, the British committed war crimes. There were gross miscarriages of the justice system throughout the uprising. The concentration camps were compared to Nazi and Soviet camps by contemporaries. And the routine beating and assaulting of suspects in order to get "information" makes a mockery of any regime that claims to be for "law and order" (As the colonial government claimed).

    But to basically brush over the influence of the Mau Mau war crimes on the Kenyan peoples to both not support the uprising and how it actively moved many into the colonial camp does this topic, your viewers, and your channel a major disservice.

    There were no "good guys" in this conflict, both sides were equally capable of getting bloody and dirty to advance their cause; it's just that the magnitude of British war crimes was larger and thus more easily spotted and (rightfully) condemned.

    To anyone interested in the era I would recommend "Histories of the Hanged" by David Anderson. It remains mostly neutral when many books on the topic are decidedly in one camp or the other.

  30. The glaring anti-British bias makes this hard to watch. It’s a shame, I would have liked to have supported this channel.

  31. Talking about oppression and subjugation from 1952 is missing the systematic murder and plunder of natives beginning from 1888 till native revolts culminating in the state of emergency in 1952, Kenyans were subjected to punitive expeditions by British mercenaries of the private entity "Imperial British East African company". The same company recruited mercenaries to kill and subjugate and forcefully dispossess us of our property this and basic rights to own the same, the right to assemble, the right to representation, in short they made us their slaves.,%2520Kericho….pdf%3Fsequence%3D1&ved=2ahUKEwiM15PsnebnAhXB5-AKHREyAIwQFjAQegQICBAB&usg=AOvVaw3fRg1QEqFlTduA7uBzXuHd
    And it started with the deceitful captain Frederick lugard.

    Ask me, I'm Kenyan. Visit our national archives.

  32. "White supremacist rule"? Maybe a more historical perspective and less biased by nowadays politics? The first video I desliked.

  33. "Maintain dominance over indigenous people", well it didn't start good and the malay emergency was the kicker. I know it would take some stones but the post modern white/ european man bad interpretation of history really is on the wane u would do well to read anything before the sixties. I mean for god sake does anyone think any of these places were capable of self rule in the fifties and sixties?

  34. Well done look at this often overlooked post-colonial conflict. I hope to see a similar video on the Congo soon.

  35. Just based on how they were treated by the Setters, those Settlers deserve everything bad that was coming to them.

  36. The so called tribal chiefs in Kenya were actually collaborators appointed as chiefs by the British against the wishes and traditional elections of native Kenyans. The term Mau Mau most likely is an invention of the White colonists. The colonists would tell insulting stories and jokes about Africans using a fake gibberish for African languages. When inventing a fake religious cult backstory for the KLFA they made up a African sounding gibberish name that would pass for real with British colonial government. Allowing them to hide the true make up of the KLFA and represent them as insane religious fanatic barbarians.

  37. Sparing the gruesome details is censoring history. People need to be offended if it teaches them about horrible events.

  38. Please change your outro line to "the problem with the cold war is that eventually it gets hot" or "is that it eventually gets hot" whichever rolls out better for you
    the current line comes out awkward every time

  39. Please make a video on the Naxalbari Movement in India, a Maoist movement which shook the government of India.

  40. It's way too easy to sit in the comfort of 2020 to say who was wrong. I am sure if I was a Mau Mau at the time I could easily justify brutally murdering non-combatants or those not as radical as I am. Equally if I was a more peace loving Kenyan, who had a relative killed by them, or a British farmer, I could just as easily justify the brutality committed to suppress them. These wars are messy in the extreme, and merely show us how brutal we really are under the veneer of our own self righteousness. Sadly we like to lionize people who may well have killed us if we had met them in their own time period, and sit in judgement as though we are not capable of the same sort of atrocities committed on both sides in this horrible war.

  41. same thing occurs in indonesia so often the pattern is known..
    land some colonists, then say "its too late to go back now, things have changed, do you see native americans free, do you see australians free, we are the reality now" this is why the UN has an office of decolonisation.
    this is why your fucking bullshit culture has never told you about what has been happening in west papua for 45 years.

  42. Rhodesian Buch war please and South african border war 🙂 You make very good videos 🙂

  43. But can you explain how Kenya today is any better, where most people live in abject poverty!
    "The white settlers paid no taxes."
    The paid THE VAST MAJORITY of the taxes….where do you think the roads and infrastructure came from!?
    Mystical Albanians who dropped out the sky who just built free roads!?.
    Do you imagine that British settlers just arrive and are given huge tracts of working farms for free!??
    One had to PAY for a farm….People who lived in towns had to pay Rates, sewerage and water taxes!!
    Stop trying to present whites as thieves who stole a technologically advanced Wakanda from the poor, innocent, thriving Natives!!!

  44. I remember an interview with a Mau Mau fighter, terrorist to some, they regretted the killings they had commit. On the flip side an interview with a member of the Hagana who bombed the hotel in Palestine which killed many British personal said they had no regrets in killing them.

  45. You completely glossed over all the horrific things the Mau Mau did to both the British and their fellow Kenyans

  46. People act like this wasn't slavery as recent as the 60s. My dad was alive during this and we are suppised to put it in the past like the effects are not there still today.

  47. Hmm, I'm happy my beloved Tanzania didn't go through anything as bad as that. Tanganyika became independent in 1961 and united with Zanzibar in January 1964 to become Tanzania. Thus the Mau-Mau had little to do with that. And I would not be surprised if Kenya had become independent, just as Tanganyika, without the Mau-Mau.

  48. God, the 20th century was really, really fucked up. I really hope the 21st century doesn't go downhill like it currently is. Shit will get way worse with technology and how many more people there are nowadays.

  49. I have heard that Obama's grandfather was killed in the Mau Mau uprising and this was one of the reasons that he wasn't too fond of the Brits. He even removed the bust of Churchill from the White House.

  50. Not sure how this fits into "Cold War" terms…this is more of a anti-colonial uprising during that time frame but obviously not a East vs West confrontation, as no connection between East or West in this video was mentioned. Is this series going to go beyond just communist vs capitalist proxy wars, support, and confrontations? Just curious!

  51. Western countries when they interact with non-Western countries be like: You are all dictatorial, you deny people human rights, you commit war crimes…
    Meanwhile, the (recent) history of Western countries be like: genocide, oppression, racism…

    (By the way, I'm not condoning what's going on in some parts of the world, but Western countries being moral and preachy on such issues is just pure hypocrisy.)

  52. This does give a slightly different perspective to the Apartheid system in South Africa given that the Afrikaaner civilians went through similar treatment at the hands of British forces (concentration camps, starvation, disease etc) during the guerilla phase of the Anglo-Boer war.

    An interesting book that gives insight into British tactics in Kenya and Malaysia, is "Gangs and Counter-gangs" by Frank Kitson ( These tactics were repeated during the Rhodesian bush war and, to some extent, used by Koevoet in Namibia. What is significant is that the British military gained a deep understanding of the hearts and minds aspect of counterinsurgency warfare which has stood them in good stead through the years.

  53. No hero and no villains? BS! Starving thousands of children in collective punishment requires lots of villains.

  54. We mostly don’t get taught about these atrocities at school in the UK. I had to go look for myself when we were studying decolonisation at A-level — got taught we committed war crimes, but they mostly spared the gory details and concentration camps.

    My parents and most of their generation still seem to think the Empire was a good thing, because we built railways. They always try to minimise it deny the evils of our past whenever I try to remind them. It’s staggering to me that anyone can even try and justify this shit, and the only answer I can find is that they simply don’t want to feel complicit. It’s easier to look away.

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