Calgary Sun | Mar. 24, 2003 | Orest Slepokura

Century of moral capital

The Editor:

Re: "On the losers' side: Century of moral capital is utterly spent," Ezra Levant, The Calgary Sun, March 24, 2003.

Contrary to what Ezra Levant avers, Canada's participation in the Boer War did not add to its "century of moral capital." The British commander Lord Kitchener adopted a scorched-earth policy that saw Boer women and children herded into concentration camps. A style of warfare whose "unbelievable barbarism and gruesomeness" Jan Smuts, a future South African prime minister, decried in a January 1902 report, for "bringing the pressure of war against defenseless women and children." After the war, an official government report concluded 27,927 Boers had died in the camps -- victims of disease, undernourishment and exposure. Of these, 26,251 were women and children; of whom 22,074 were children under the age of 16. [1]

1. T. Pakenham, The Boer War, pp. 607; T. Pakenham, Scramble, pp. 578-579; Reader's Digest Association, Illustrated History of South Africa, p. 256.

Sincerely yours,

Orest Slepokura
Strathmore AB

c.Ezra Levant