Mining and tourism more important: Bushmen forcibly removed from Central Kalahari
(via Savage Minds) All but a few of the Bushmen living in Botswana's Central Kalahari Game Reserve have been forcibly removed from their homes in recent days in what spokesmen for the affected communities said is a final push by the government to end human habitation there after tens of thousands of years, according to Washington Post. Their increasingly sedentary lifestyle -- which includes keeping domestic animals and using motorized vehicles -- makes them incompatible with a park for wild animals, Goverment officials say. The Kalahari reserve is a major tourist attraction for the southern African nation of 1.6 million.
In a follow-up article in the Washington Post, we read;
According to Molapo's chief, Molathwe Mokalaka, officials told the villagers that if they stayed, "you will eat the soil. Nothing else but the soil." Villagers here said they never would have left Molapo if not for the guns and threats of police and wildlife officers. Some critics also contend that the government's motive in removing the Bushmen is to gain easier access to deposits of diamonds located in the game reserve.
Molapo is now just a ghost town of empty huts made of sticks and grass. It was one of the last traditional communities of the hunter-gatherers who once roamed most of southern Africa.