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August 30, 2018  

After President Trump's announcemcent last week that he has asked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to "closely study" South Africa's proposals for land redistribution, President Cyril Ramaphosa appears to have slowed the pace and scope of constitutional debates on land reform. 

Laws encoded during South Africa's colonial and apartheid eras have allowed whites, who comprise 8 percent of the population, to own 72 percent of farms, while blacks, who are four-fifths of the population, own only 4 percent. 

Trump's assignment to Pompeo follows a Fox News report on "land and farm seizures" and alleged "large-scale killing of [white] farmers." President Ramaphosa was "seizing land from his own citizens without compensation because they are the wrong skin color," said the report, which the South African government decries as defamatory and inaccurate.

Trump's veiled threat to South Africa is the focus of our discussion today.

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