Gold-Mining Magnates and the South African War Cause and Effect Essay by wilb

Gold-Mining Magnates and the South African War
An analysis of the causes of the Boer War (1899-1902), exploring the roles of the gold-mining magnates, the British and Transvaal governments and individuals such as Joseph Chamberlain, Cecil J. Rhodes and Alfred Milner.
# 26866 | 1,690 words | 3 sources | APA | 2003 | GB
Published on May 19, 2003 in History (African) , History (British)

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This essay argues that although the mining magnates had a significant part to play in the build up to the South African War (1899-1902), the underlying causes of the war were the respective governments of Britain and the Transvaal. The paper shows that Joseph Chamberlain, Alfred Milner and C.J. Rhodes may have all contributed, but the cause of the war was greater than the actions of individuals and was the result of regional rivalry and governmental policy.

From the Paper:

"As with all the principal actors involved in Transvaal politics preceding the Boer War, the gold-mining magnates certainly had a part to play in its causes. Indeed, it would be a difficult task to attribute the Boer War to a single actor, as each of the main contributors played a significant role. Most histories instead attempt to single out the primary driving force behind the war. Since the end of the war different analyses have focused on different issues; the gold-mining magnates, the respective governments in London or Pretoria, the role of the Uitlanders, the individual actions of actors such as Kruger, Milner, Rhodes or Chamberlain, and international financiers. The problem with assigning too much significance to one of these actors is that none of them were in complete control of the situation, and all relied, at least in part, upon the actions of others. Nevertheless, solely naming the different factors achieves little; it is important to try to root out the principal force. Certainly, although it now seems unlikely that the gold-mining magnates were the primary cause of the Boer War, they played an important role, even after the Jameson Raid in 1895."

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