Nice Charts… But…

Someone very kindly gave my Atlas of the Boer War a nice shout out on one of the various Boer War Facebook groups the other day.

With mind-numbing predictability, however, one of the more entertaining Defenders of the Myth immediately popped up to make the following comment / counter recommendation:

Of course, in this fellow’s resolutely blinkered outlook, absolutely anything simply has to be better than something Chris Ash has written, and so he declares the ‘battlefield charts [whatever the hell those are?] in this one gives (sic) better information’.

Such is his knee-jerk determination to pooh-pooh my work, however, that he rushed to recommend a book with the following blatant mistakes on the cover:

As we know, this chap is only interested in defending Apartheid-era myths, so the fact that the book he frantically recommends over mine has school boy howlers on the cover clearly doesn’t bother him.

Either that, or he is blissfully unaware that, at the time of the Boer War(s), there was no ‘Cape Province’. That territory was called the Cape Colony.

Similarly, what is now called ‘Namibia’ only became known as ‘South West Africa’ in 1915. Prior to that (ie. at the time of the Boer War), it was called: German South West Africa / Deutsch-Südwestafrika.

Also, the country we now know as ‘Zimbabwe’ was known as ‘Rhodesia’ at the time of the Boer War, with the term ‘Southern Rhodesia’ only being adopted in 1923.

Equally, this fellow is heartily / mindlessly recommending the ‘battlefield charts’ in a book which clearly depicts the border between the Transvaal and Natal in totally the wrong place at the time of the Boer War(s).

In terms of providing ‘better information’, this would be about as sensible / helpful / accurate as using a modern-day map of Europe to illustrate an Atlas of the Napoleonic Wars.

Of course, the panic-stricken defence will be that the map on the cover shows the borders and names of the 1960s or whatever… but surely an atlas which purports to cover the Boer War should reflect how things were at that time, not at some point, years into the future.

But hey, at least Chris Ash didn’t write it, and that’s all that really matters to the True Believers.

‘Better information’, indeed.

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