Did Peter Mandelson’s Communist ideology drive businessmen from Tanzania?
Abbreviated biographies of Peter Mandelson say that he went to Tanzania in the early 1970s (I think 1972) for a year. At the time he was a communist, but could a 19-year-old possibly have influenced government policy?
A few days ago I was talking to a businessman in an hotel bar, while I was away working. He was very intelligent, well-educated and widely-experienced. He asked about my work, and he quickly either knew or was able to grasp what I was talking about. He was also well-travelled, having lived in various countries.
This man was born in Tanzania, where he grew up and ran a business. He was well-off and had a good life, with several servants. However he also worked hard and earned his money, contributing to the local economy. Eventually he was forced to leave, sneaking out of the country, afraid even to be seen packing a suitcase in his car, car loaded with boxes of money for bribes, then left abandoned at the border, and he was relieved to get out safely.
He blames Peter Mandelson for the political changes that forced him to flee for his life. He said that Mandelson had gone in and advised the government on communist ideology – already by then thoroughly discredited and linked with tens of millions dead. He said this was widely known in that part of Africa at the time, and that the British High Commission had made him sign to say he would not write about his ordeal before he could receive assistance to leave Africa.
So, a few questions arise.
How true is this, and are there any more details to be found? A cursory internet search does not reveal any, but how widely known is this part of Mandelson’s life?
Why have the press not held Labour to account for this? The Guardian and BBC condemn Conservatives for working with Kaminski, the Polish MEP, for past connections with politicians who later became extremists, yet one of our own senior politicians, who has rather a lot of flaws anyway, was himself an extremist.
Communism has been the scourge of Africa. It destroyed healthy economies and was responsible for widespread famine, for wars and since Soviet support disappeared for failed states. If Lord Mandelson shares even slight blame for this then it should be known, for he has blood on his hands.