User talk:Katangais

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WZ-523 in Namibian service[edit]

Hi,with regards to your inquiries on the Namibian Army's WZ-523,well Namibia's WZ-523 are armed with 73mm cannon or a single heavy machine gun please see images at this link http://www.saairforce.co.za/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=8370

The 73 mm guns are very much in use. — Preceding unsigned comment added by ViceAdmiral (talkcontribs) 17:09, 7 July 2016 (UTC)

Contests[edit]

User:Dr. Blofeld has created Wikipedia:WikiProject Africa/Contests. The idea is to run a series of contests/editathons focusing on each region of Africa. He has spoken to Wikimedia about it and $1000-1500 is possible for prize money. As someone who has previously expressed interest in African topics, would you be interested in contributing to one or assisting draw up core article/missing article lists? He says he's thinking of North Africa for an inaugural one in October. If interested please sign up in the participants section of the Contest page, thanks.♦ --Ser Amantio di NicolaoChe dicono a Signa?Lo dicono a Signa. 01:28, 21 July 2016 (UTC)

Reference errors on 25 July[edit]

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ArbCom Elections 2016: Voting now open![edit]

Scale of justice 2.svg Hello, Katangais. Voting in the 2016 Arbitration Committee elections is open from Monday, 00:00, 21 November through Sunday, 23:59, 4 December to all unblocked users who have registered an account before Wednesday, 00:00, 28 October 2016 and have made at least 150 mainspace edits before Sunday, 00:00, 1 November 2016.

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Internal resistance to apartheid[edit]

Hi, you recently made this edit. I am sure you meant well, but I have a few concerns about it. I hope you don't mind me sharing them with you. Hopefully we can find some common ground!

First, you changed the following:

Internal resistance to the apartheid system in South Africa came from several sectors of society and saw the creation of organisations dedicated variously to peaceful protests, passive resistance and armed insurrection.

to:

Internal resistance to apartheid in South Africa originated from several sectors of society and took the form of social movements, passive resistance, and guerrilla warfare.

The former wording suggests, correctly, that internal resistance to apartheid arose independently in diverse parts of the population, and that different groups within the resistance used different methods in pursuit of that resistance.

Your new wording, however, especially "originated" and "took the form of", seems to me to wrongly imply that internal resistance coalesced into a heterogeneous movement that embraced the three forms you then list. Also, I question your use of "social movements" in place of "peaceful protests", and "guerilla warfare" in place of "armed insurrection". Overall, I am especially concerned your new wording here may all too easily mislead a reader into thinking that anyone involved in internal resistance against apartheid must have been part of a group that practised guerrilla warfare - which would be a very false impression indeed.

Please could you consider rewording that sentence along the following lines?

Internal resistance to the apartheid system arose independently in several sectors of South African society, resulting in numerous resistance groups, some of whom formed coalitions. The various resistance groups adopted different measures, according to the philosophies of their constituents, some preferring to organise peaceful protests, others engaging in passive resistance. Some adopted armed insurrection.

Also in the same edit, you replaced the previous illustration with a photograph of what appears to be a violent protest. This, again, has the potential to mislead a reader to the impression that acts of violence were an inseparable part of internal resistance to apartheid. I would ask you to revert that change, or to use this image instead, in order to reduce the potential of misleading our (Wikipedia's) readers.

Finally, you have given one "result" of the internal resistance as "military stalemate". That would only make sense if it the internal resistance was a military effort; but it wasn't. It was mostly civilian. I note that you cite two sources, but neither one has its text available online, which makes it hard to tell if you are citing them accurately. I am assuming good faith here, and I am sure you did not intentionally misrepresent your sources, but I would be very grateful if you could quote in reply to me the passages you are citing as evidence for the claim that the result of the internal resistance was military stalemate.

Thanks! zazpot (talk) 00:51, 24 November 2016 (UTC)

Howzit, Zazpot. Thanks for sharing your concerns. I would be happy to alter the wording of the first sentence in the paragraph as it was certainly not my intention to imply that anti-apartheid movements were any sort of monolith. Something like this, perhaps?

Internal resistance to apartheid in South Africa originated from several independent sectors of society and alternatively took the form of social movements, passive resistance, or guerrilla warfare.

I've made specific reference to independent sectors of society, and without lengthening the existing sentence too much or requiring a second sentence to elaborate further, "alternatively" suggests that social movements, passive resistance, and guerrilla warfare were adopted by separate segments of said society.
With regards as to my choice of images and my use of the wording "military stalemate" to describe internal resistance to apartheid: the infobox is a military conflict infobox. It was meant to display information pertinent to a military campaign; hence I described, in strictly military terms, what the outcome was of the ANC/PAC's guerrilla campaign against the South African state (a tactical stalemate). Likewise, the image was selected for its militancy, and appropriateness for an infobox about a military conflict. That being said I do think the photograph of Mandela burning his passbook possesses a greater degree of historical significance, so I'll replace it accordingly.
Here is the text you requested from the references I cited:
"Towards the latter half of the 1980s a military stalemate was developing in South Africa and the perception of a mutually hurting stalemate gradually took hold in the minds of the leading stakeholders. The military stalemate resulted from, on the one hand, the ability of the state to contain the armed insurrectionary plan of the ANC, and on the other, its inability to displace the armed presence of the ANC inside the country. The ANC could, and did, succeed in executing armed actions (sabotage, bombs, land mines, hand grenade attacks, etc) inside the country, but they could not succeed in establishing ‘liberated zones’. The security forces of the state could contain the forces of MK in a military sense through detentions, bannings, arrests, and deaths in armed confrontations, but it could not eliminate them as a political presence within South Africa. Neither could prevail on its own terms. The stalemate was a mutually hurting condition. The number of MK casualties in battle rose, as did the number of SADF and SAP members who died in combat. The number of people held in detention under two states of emergency escalated enormously. The socio-economic ramifications of this military confrontation, in the form of declining local and international investor confidence, a sliding currency value, domestic labour turbulence and decreasing economic activity contributed to the overall costs of the stalemate." - Du Toit, pg. 92, 'South Africa's Brittle Peace: The Problem of Post-Settlement Violence'.
"The idea of a mutually hurting stalemate (MHS) was developing by William Zartman, who defines it as follows: ‘The concept is based on the notion that when the parties find themselves locked in a conflict from which they cannot escalate to victory and this deadlock is painful to both of the (although not necessarily in equal degree or for the same reasons) they seek an alternative policy or way out.’ Zartman and co-author Guy Faure write: ‘When a stalemate hurts, it is rational for the parties to come to terms; if both are caught in the impasse, the conditions are set for negotiations to provide a way out that benefits each. This situation does not guarantee a positive result, but it does provide the minimal conditions for one.’ They go on to explain that the MHS has to be perceived as effective. It ‘is the perception of the objective condition, not the condition itself, that makes for a MHS. If the parties do not recognise ‘clear evidence’ (in someone else’s view) that they are in an impasse, a Mutually Hurting Stalemate has not (yet) occurred, and if they do perceive themselves to be in such a situation, no matter how flimsy the ‘evidence’, the MHS is present. Military stalemate lies at the root of nearly every successful negotiation...in South Africa, the MK – the armed wing of the ANC- was ineffective. In the words of Chief Buthelezi, the leader of Inkatha, it has not blown up a single bridge or occupied a single acre of soil. Nelson Mandela said that by the 1980s, ‘It was clear to me that a military victory was a distant if not impossible dream...It was time to talk.’ Some radicals in the ANC still argued they could take power by force and that liberation was around the corner, and saw any talk of negotiation as a synonym for betrayal; but by the time of the Harare Declaration in August 1989, the doves had the upper hand and succeeded in committing the ANC to negotiation. In Mbeki’s words, the ‘ANC’s trump card is not the armed struggle. It is the political struggle – internationally and nationally.’ On the other side, the National Party government came to realize it could not win militarily either. As Mike Louw put it, South Africa had six nuclear weapons but no military solution to its problems. There was only one way to go, and that was a negotiated settlement." - Powell, pgs. 145 - 146, 'Terrorists at the Table: Why Negotiating is the Only Way to Peace'.
It's worth noting that the impression I received when I was in RSA was very much that the ANC's armed struggle was an integral part of the resistance to apartheid, and as such the military dimension of the campaign should not be downplayed or ignored. Anyway, that's just my perspective - maybe I was mistaken. Thanks, --Katangais (talk) 05:58, 24 November 2016 (UTC)
Thanks, Katangais, for this very helpful reply. Your reply made me curious to know the context in which you were in SA: for example, during which decade(s), and were you deployed there, for example? Certainly, many subjects worthy of an encyclopedia are like Rumi's elephant: large and complex enough that each person who studies them is likely to receive a somewhat unique perspective, depending upon the parts to which they were exposed. (N.B. Please do not feel obliged to address my curiousity if you have any misgivings whatsoever about doing so. I would never want a Wikipedian to disclose unimportant information about themselves that they would prefer to keep private, on my account.)
I agree that the armed struggle was a component of the resistance that should not be ignored, but whereas you are concerned that its significance should not be downplayed, I concerned that its significance should not be overplayed. Here is my understanding: MK's role in the internal resistance was but one facet of the ANC's role in the internal resistance; and that in turn was just one facet (albeit arguably the most significant facet) of the internal resistance movement as a whole. Similarly for other armed factions internally opposing apartheid. Viewed this way, military action was just a sub-facet of the internal resistance movement. As far as I can tell, the majority of people involved in internal resistance never took up arms in the service of that resistance, and many of them (it is impossible to know how many) deeply opposed the idea of doing so. This impression has come fom my reading on the topic, from conversations with people who were involved in internal resistance, and from visiting relevant museums, including the Apartheid Museum, Old Fort prison buildings, and MuseuMAfricA in Johannesburg, and Robben Island.
I am very grateful for the excerpts you have transcribed above, which clearly make the case for describing the conflict between the MK on the one side, and the SADF and SAP on the other, as reaching a military stalemate. Thank you for updating the infobox in that vein (though I think it might be more appropriate to replace "government" with "SADF and SAP", on account of the non-military, non-combatant character of the majority of the government's organs - do you agree?).
About the infobox: I appreciate your desire to do justice to it as a military conflict infobox. I am, though, concerned whether a military conflict infobox does justice to the subject of the article. Cf. my understanding above about military action being just a sub-facet of internal resistance to apartheid. To illustrate: the artistic activities of the Market Theatre were a notable and integral part of internal resistance to apartheid; so were the many books written and courses taught by South Africans in opposition to apartheid; so were many friendships, even, in days when those were risky to pursue across "racial" lines; but can such deeply non-military aspects of the resistance be suitably summarised in a military conflict infobox? I wonder if perhaps Wikipedia ought to have a "social movement" infobox we could use here instead, or if alternatively this article, at least, would be better without the infobox.
On a different note, thank you for changing the photo. I think the passbook-burning photo in some ways epitomises the whole internal struggle as well as any single photo can. It shows that, on the whole, this was not a struggle to attack people but rather a struggle against specific new oppressions; and that in the face of such oppressions, even a successful, be-suited lawyer could be driven to openly defy the state's oppressive new laws. The act of burning the passbook hints at the potential for larger violence in the scope of that defiance, but does not unduly centralise it.
Finally, about the opening sentence for the lede: I'll get back to you on that after I've taken care of a few IRL tasks off-wiki! Thanks again, zazpot (talk) 20:45, 24 November 2016 (UTC)
Your proposed wording for the opening sentence is basically good, but still leaves some room for misinterpretation:
  • "originated from several independent sectors of society" might be misunderstood to mean "originated only from independent sectors of society". Yet some of the people in South Africa who resisted apartheid were interdependent with, or dependent upon, other people who also resisted apartheid, e.g. individuals in "mixed" couples or families might each have been subject to different rules from each other under apartheid, yet have resisted it as a family; likewise "banned" people and their friends or relatives. Also, some of the resistance groups or their leaders began to openly resist apartheid only after first co-ordinating with others. So, it is worth seeking wording that minimises the risk of this potential misunderstanding.
  • "independent sectors" is a bit confusing: it begs the question, "In what sense independent?" Geographically? Economically? Politically? Culturally? Something else?
  • "alternatively took the form of" could be incorrectly assumed to mean that the resistors ended up becoming a cohesive bloc which took those forms in some kind of chronological sequence. Saying, instead, "variously took the forms of" might reduce this misunderstanding, but would not quite eliminate it.
The wording I proposed in my first message above, although slightly longer, was intended to avoid these potential miscommunications. The article is long enough that splitting the opening sentence into two or three sentences for clarity would not unduly lengthen it. I would be grateful if you would consider again using the wording I proposed, but if you feel that concision trumps clarity in this case, then I understand (even if I don't quite agree).
Above all: thank you again for your consideration of the points I made to you, and for your continued effort to improve the article! zazpot (talk) 02:10, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Cuanavale once again[edit]

Katangais, apparently I misread the SADF article, thank you for the information. As you already know, my point that white supremacism was embedded in SADF as an institution through its anti-insurgency mandate and its racial recruitment rules remains just as valid.

Your point that white supremacy had nothing to do with the battle, on the other hand, is misguided. We may all have our opinions, but that`s not what wikipedia is about, as we know. I would love (sincerely) to see a quotation for that claim, it would totally change not only my view but the view of historians in general. So I highly recommend you to spread the word to the world, if this is true. As it stands now, it seems to be a consensual view - again, help me if I`m wrong - not only of historians but also of all the main powers involved in the conflict that white supremacy was indeed an important aspect of the whole thing. Your idea that "the actual battle" is about casualties, military movements and whatnot contradicts one simple premise of war history (and history in general): why? Why were people fighting a battle? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Marco.natalino (talkcontribs) 00:57, 7 December 2016 (UTC)

I'm going to try and state this very simply: You appear to be mixing up Internal resistance to apartheid with South Africa's intervention in the Angolan Civil War (including the Battle of Cuito Cuanavale). Since it's obvious neither of us are going to reach an agreement on our own, I'm going to open a discussion on Talk:Battle of Cuito Cuanavale and ping it at Wikipedia:WikiProject Military History so we can make a decision based on consensus. Sound good? --Katangais (talk)

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Merry, merry![edit]

From the icy Canajian north; to you and yours! FWiW Bzuk (talk) 02:02, 27 December 2016 (UTC) Lights ablaze.JPG

Map of Namibia[edit]

Hi Katangais. Would you have access and be able to upload a new map for Regions of Namibia, reflecting the split of Kavango region into two? Thanks. Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 12:35, 23 January 2017 (UTC)

Done. An updated map which included both East and West Kavango already existed on the German Wikipedia, so it was a simple matter to translate and upload an English version, which I've placed at the Regions of Namibia article accordingly. Thanks, --Katangais (talk) 14:26, 23 January 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, and thanks for the speedy and prompt response. I will replace it on WP:pt. Rui ''Gabriel'' Correia (talk) 14:55, 23 January 2017 (UTC)

Public domain newsreels[edit]

Hello Katangais. I was wondering if you would be able to help me put some public domain newsreels onto the Commons. While surfing through archive.org, I found the three films:

The first two are Universal Newsreels, the latter is a collection of silent footage collected by the United States Army. Accordingly, all are in the public domain. The reason I ask is that, while they cover a myriad of topics, all have something to do with the Congo Crisis and I think the material in here would be very useful. I would upload them myself but it appears some sort of format-conversion process is necessary. Care to assist? -Indy beetle (talk) 17:25, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Howzit Indy beetle,
Apologies for the late response, but I was busy with a few other things this week and wanted to make absolutely certain I'd tried everything before getting back to you.
I converted the three videos you linked in your comment to a Wikimedia Commons-friendly format (WebM and OGG); however, they are all larger than 100MB. Videos and images over 100MB in size are larger than what the Commons server is configured to allow.
Uploading a 100MB+ file is beyond what I can help you with, but admins on Commons may override the 100MB limit by carrying out a server-side upload. I suggest contacting one of them since they are in a better position to assist in this regard. --Katangais (talk) 00:36, 3 February 2017 (UTC)

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substituted templates[edit]

hello i saw your comment here. could you tell me where is it the "norm"? i assume that there are other templates youve seen. which ones are they? the problem with separating the code into a template is if another proficient editor comes along, the problem arises that they dont know where to find the codeGonejackal (talk) 18:03, 30 April 2017 (UTC)

Howzit, Gonejackal, good to hear from you. First off, please bear in mind that I am primarily a content contributor, I rarely comment on template discussions and streamlining templates is something that other, more qualified editors focus on. In these particular cases, however, I make an exception while accepting a general tradeoff - the bad is that the template is harder for new contributors to edit, the good is that once they do in fact find it they can edit the map much more easily. Having a gigantic block of code in the middle of an article makes things more difficult for content contributors who are only trying to edit the text. So, if said template is merged into the article as a block of code I would sooner remove it altogether.
In the end, I had to ask myself as a content contributor: would I rather have new users experience more difficulty a) finding the template or b) editing the article text. While this is not what templates are generally used for, it works and is an example of making do with what means we already have on hand. Using a template was the only way I was able to get my user page looking the way it does, for instance, otherwise the amount of code I'd have to shift through just to find where to edit some otherwise minor detail would be impossibly long.
Anyway that about sums up my reasoning. I understand you probably disagree with it, as your focal point appears to be templates as opposed to content. That's fine, as long as you understand the rationale.
Examples of other maps which have been adopted as templates in a similar manner include Template:Africa Labelled Map, Template:Albanian counties labelled map, Template:Apayao labelled map, etc. Thanks, --Katangais (talk) 19:15, 30 April 2017 (UTC)
Hi there. Thanks for the response and you are right that I respectfully disagree, per WP:TG. I understand your viewpoint that it may be easier to "add content" when separating 'clumsy' code from text, but I hope you understand that my viewpoint is that it isn't that difficult for editors to skip to the section to add whatever specific text they felt compelled to add. My viewpoint is for all editors, experienced and new. Template space is intended for multiple pages and not for one-off uses is my viewpoint so I hope the link I cited helps you understand where I'm coming from.Gonejackal (talk) 02:42, 1 May 2017 (UTC)