Do you know that Argentina once had a massive population of Africans who were inhabitants of that land? According to the 2019 National Census of Argentina, the total Population of Argentines amounted to about 44.78 million, of whom 149,493 are Afro-Argentine. The most exciting part about the Argentine’s of African descent is that throughout the 18th to the 19th century, they played a pivotal role in the national culture of Argentina. At that time, they consisted of about 50 per cent of the population, which means that they were the majority as compared to the European descendants who were the minority. It completely changed when the Spanish colonialist arrived and started the enslavement and colonization of the Afro-Argentine’s, and this progressively increased the continuous influx of Europeans in Argentina.
As I write, the population of Argentina consist of 97 per cent of European descendants. This current figure seems confusing taking into account that as of the early 1700s, close to 50 per cent of Argentine’s were of African descent and between 30 and 40 per cent in mostly Buenos Aires were either black or mulatto. So what happened to Afro-Argentine’s, and why are they now the disadvantaged minority?
According to Spain’s Wikipedia, slavery ended around 1853 in South America. Most of the Afro-Argentine’s either died from war (keep in mind that most recruits in the Paraguayan War were predominantly blacks with very minimal military training), systemic controlled poverty, government mistreatment which drove most Afro-Argentines to flee to Uruguay.
Other reasons for their demise were unfavourable government policies aimed at disenfranchising them, high infant mortality rates, limited numbers of married couples in this ethnic group, cholera epidemics in 1861 and 1864, and a yellow fever epidemic in 1871. These devastating events led to a rapid decline and a massive exodus of Afro-Argentinians from Argentina to other parts of South America or, sadly, some to their untimely deaths.
In an effort to populate Argentina with more white people, the Argentine white-controlled government did everything within its powers to persuade Europeans from other parts of the world to live and work in Argentina with added incentives. Among the incentives were the promise of citizenship and social assistance benefits.
This brought about a massive migration of white settlers from Spain, Italy, Germany, France and Belgium. For the Afro-Argentines, it was the beginning of their economic and social decline.
Till this very day, the majority of Argentines with European ancestry deny the impact made by the Afro-Argentine’s, yet its first-ever president, Bernardino de la Trinidad González Rivadavia, nicknamed the “Chocolate Dictator” by his political opponents was of African ancestry. He was awarded the honours of a respected captain-general. Today, his remains rest in a mausoleum located on Plaza Miserere, next to Rivadavia Avenue, which bears his name. Thanks to the era of the Internet, atrocities against Afro-Argentinians have been brought to light. The big question is, why has nobody brought it up in the international media? It is as if the genocide against black people around the world is a planned and hidden effort that needs to be executed and forgotten. To hell with that Jewish Holocaust. Approximately 100 million black people have been horribly wiped from the face of the earth over the past 600 years in the hands of Europeans for the sake of power and territorial control. I am tired of hearing about the Holocaust, when known and unknown genocides against blacks still need investigation and reparation.
One of the controversial founders of the unfavourable policies represents no other than Domingo Faustino Sarmiento; he was an Argentinian activist, intellectual, writer, statesman and the seventh president of Argentina. Domingo One of the controversial founders of the unfavourable racist policies is Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. He was an Argentinean activist, an intellectual writer, a statesman and Argentina’s seventh president. Domingo Sarmiento issued this statement during his exile in Chile, and I quote: “We must be reasonable with the Spaniards,” he wrote, “by exterminating a savage people whose territory they were going to occupy, they merely achieved what all civilized people have done with savages, what colonization did consciously or unconsciously: absorb, destroy and exterminate.” – Domingo Faustino Sarmiento.
Domingo Sarmiento was responsible for the undercover genocide that eradicated the Afro-Argentinian population to the point that by the early 1900s there was a small population of black Argentinians. The Argentine government ignored calls to include Afro-Argentinians in the national population census; it was a planned and secretive effort to make the Argentine population predominantly white. Sarmiento’s racist apartheid policies included the separation of blacks from European descent and placing them in abandoned communities that rarely, if ever, had medical facilities. For this reason, when cholera was prevalent at the time, there was no medical solution, which led to the death of so many Blacks. Sarmiento is also responsible for the massive incarceration and extrajudicial murder of Afro-Argentinean men. This discriminatory practice affected African-Argentinean women so severely that they were emotionally forced to have children with mulattoes (of mixed origin) or white-Argentinean men.
The genocide continued for hundreds of years as the population of Afro-Argentina was in a negative decline. Former President of Argentina, Carlos Saúl Menem, found it easy to wrongly state that blacks do not exist in Argentina and that this is more of a Brazilian problem. Unfortunately, historical books in Argentina have been distorted in support of Carlos Menem’s illegitimate claim, forgetting the Afro-Argentine’s were true inhabitants of the land of Argentina as well as all over South America. To consolidate my support for the Afro-Argentine, where do you think the mixed-race mulatto came from if not for the forceful rape of afro-Argentinian women by the European Spanish colonialist invaders.
Come to think of it, why is Argentina mostly white and the rest of their neighbours are more of a diverse race like Brazil and Columbia who have a large number of black people. Similarly, Bolivia has a huge number of Indians. If you catch a more appropriate look at the Argentinian national football team, then one must wonder why there is an acute shortage of black footballers? This is yet another unequal social genocide carried out on black people because, as always, black life does not matter. The Argentine government must explain what happened to their once populated Afro-Argentine population. As always, it’s my opinion.