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Did the British Deal Brutally with the Boer Community During the Boer War?

  • Date Submitted: 01/19/2012 12:28 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 54.3 
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“How far do the sources P, Q and R support the proposition that the British dealt brutally with the Boer population in trying to defeat Boer guerrilla fighters?”

Source P supports the essay title as it comments that the “women were taken away in open wagons and grossly ill-treated and insulted by the soldiers and officers”. This suggests that the British did deal brutally with the general Boer population. Source Q also supports the title in a similar fashion where it says “we had to burn down the place and confiscate all cattle, stores, wagons etc”. This suggests that the British were unfair to the population of the Boers who didn’t necessarily deserve it. Source Q also hints at mistreatment of women by saying “we had only women to deal with you can guess how uncongenial our work was”. This also supports the proposition as the British did deal with the Boer population fairly brutally. Source R generally challenges the proposition of Boer mistreatment but slips a few details in that generally support the claim. Firstly, the writer of the source does mention that “there were nasty incidents” which suggests brutality towards the Boer population. The writer also says “soldiers did dreadful things”, again suggesting some form of mistreatment.
Source P also challenges the proposition slightly as the example given was not exactly “brutal”, it writes about a woman being “called a liar because she said she had no eggs in the house”. There is some form of mistreatment but it is by no means “brutally dealt with”. They also had transportation through “open wagons” so they didn’t have to trudge along. Source Q briefly challenges the title as it comments at the beginning that “some of our work”, suggesting that only a few actions were “brutal” as such and were probably necessary. Source R challenges the title greatly as it comments on the courtesy of the British in most cases such as “no firing on undefended cities” and “never shot a single one of the people in them...

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