Lana Bank (Lana Marks) was born in East London, South Africa but now resides in Palm Beach, Florida. Her father, Alec Bank, had immigrated from Lithuania as a child; he was an affluent property developer and a leader in the Jewish community. Like other friends of Mandela – Joe Slovo also emigrated from Lithuania and part of the ANC and Kodesa. Interested, she attended Clarendon High School for Girls in East London, and speaks Xhosa and Afrikaans. The name “Clarendon” was given to both schools in 1957, after the former Governor-General of South Africa and his wife, the Lord and Lady Clarendon (british).
The report quoted from the Jewish website – Lana Marks is part of the Jewish community. In her written testimony before the senate , Marks spoke about her father, who she described as “a good and fair” man. “He escaped the anti-Semitism of Lithuania in the 1930’s, and emigrated to South Africa, where he worked his way through university, earned a degree in engineering, and went into real-estate development.”
“Land is a historically fraught issue in which there are legitimate grievances by the majority. On the other hand, you have to consider security, economy, productivity, not only for South Africans but for American companies doing business there. It’s being dealt with in a transparent manner which the Administration approves of.” was said by Lana Marks, Ambassador of America in South Africa.
Mrs Marks : Land is a historically fraught
Marks went before a US senate committee hearing on foreign relations last week to motivate for her presidential nomination to this position. The stylish Palm Beach, Florida, resident told a number of senators that her experience in business and her ties to South Africa, having been born and raised in East London, would hold her in good stead for the position. Her ability to speak three of the four most widely spoken of the 11 official languages, as well as her knowledge of the country, would also help, she said.
In her written testimony, Marks said she started her business as a small artisanal handbag enterprise from the kitchen table of her then two-bedroom apartment, and grew it into a global brand.
Marks, who left South Africa when she was in her early twenties, said she and her family represented the American dream, “achieved through hard work, determination, and perseverance”.
Asked by US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham how she was nominated, and why he should vote for her, Marks said that the day after the US presidential elections, she had called President Donald Trump to congratulate him. He told her she would make an “ideal candidate” as ambassador, and asked whether she’d be interested. She said she told the then-new president she would be honoured.
“I have started a business from scratch, [expanding it] throughout the United States and globally. I have set up all the supply chains, I’ve done all the negotiations. I feel this will hold me in good stead in increasing business between the United States and South Africa.”
She said she had a knowledge of South Africa, had served on various boards internationally, and had interfaced socially and with the media, experiences which she would use to the best of her ability as ambassador.
Democratic Party Senator Tim Kaine raised last year’s highly controversial tweet by Trump, in which he asked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to “study the South Africa land and farm seizures and expropriations, and the large-scale killing of farmers”. In the widely criticised tweet, Trump also said, “the South African government is now seizing land from white farmers.” He told the hearing that the quote was widely condemned, the anti-defamation league said it was “deeply troubling”, and it was a “white supremacist talking point”.
Kaine then asked Marks whether she supported President Cyril Ramaphosa’s land-reform efforts, and asked what the US could do to be helpful in this regard.
“Land is a historically fraught issue, a complicated issue, in which there are legitimate grievances by the majority,” Marks said. She said one had to consider “security, the economy, and productivity not only for South Africans, but for American companies doing business there”.
The issue was “being dealt with in a transparent manner which the administration approves of”. Marks went on to say that she thought it important to engage further going forward, and she would put all her effort into this.
On farm murders, she said, “No farms have been confiscated at this time…” She went on to call farm and other murders in South Africa “shocking” and “unacceptable”.
Marks said she would encourage the police to get involved in a more meaningful way to help combat this.
(her opinion) – Kaine asked her if murders of farmers were dramatically higher than they were decades ago, dramatically lower, or about the same.
“Any murders of farmers is shocking. Any murders in general are shocking. The ratio goes up, it goes down, it’s less than 1% of the total murders of the country, but they are all unacceptable. The trend has gone down, but it’s not acceptable.”
What government or country investigated farm killings in South Africa?
WOW – A FAMILY? Marks who was one of five nominees for various positions, was accompanied to the hearing by her husband of 43 years, psychiatrist Neville Marks, her son Martin, her daughter Tiffany Isaacs, and her son-in-law, Simon, as well as her grandchildren Asher, Skyler and Mia.
In her written testimony before the senate, Marks spoke about her father, who she described as “a good and fair” man. “He escaped the anti-Semitism of Lithuania in the 1930s, and emigrated to South Africa, where he worked his way through university, earned a degree in engineering, and went into real-estate development.”
She said her top priority as ambassador would be the safety and security of all Americans in South Africa, and she would also work to cultivate the already robust relationship the US has with South Africa.
“South Africa is our most developed trading partner in sub-Saharan Africa. Deepening those ties would directly support one of the administration’s key objectives in the Africa strategy.”
Marks said American firms already contributed about 10% of South Africa’s GDP (gross domestic product), and employed about 200 000 South Africans directly and indirectly. Considering this, she would “work tirelessly” to expand markets in South Africa for American exporters, and ensure that American businesses and products were treated fairly.
On the subject of HIV and AIDS, Marks said that continued bipartisan support, and generous funding from the US to South Africa through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), could help put an end to the scourge “once and for all”. If confirmed, she would work intensively with the PEPFAR team and South African partners to ensure that US funding was applied in the most efficient and effective way.
Marks said the issues of women and youth empowerment, entrepreneurship, and economic opportunity were close to her heart.
After centuries of hardship and colonialism, South Africa had embraced democratic ideals, and served as “a beacon of hope” for the rest of Africa. She referred to the election of President Ramaphosa as “heartening”.
“We must reinforce our message to the South African people that we are true partners on the road ahead,” she said, pointing out that there were “deep, long-standing, and genuine ties of affection” binding the two countries, which she would strengthen if appointed ambassador.
2018 – her family
President Trump van Amerika het sy keuse vir nominasie gemaak vir Ambassadeur in Suid-Afrika. Lana Marks is ‘n eks Suid-Afrikaner met Afrikaans en Xhosa sprekend. Sy is ‘n besigheidsvrou van handsakke ontwerp, maar sy is ook lid van sy privaat klub Mar-a-Lago wat ‘n duur en eksklusiewe klub is, wat nie vir die gewone man op straat is nie. Dus ‘n ware rykmanslewe. Dit gaan nie oor die pos as sulks nie maar oor ‘n groter prentjie. Haar handsakke is baie duur en ook bekend aan die “elites” en “royals”. Sover bekend was die pos van Ambassadeur vir 2 jaar vakant. Daar is ook vasgestel dat sy van Joodse afkoms is soos reeds aangedui.
Members of the South African Communist Party (SACP), an alliance partner of the governing African National Congress (ANC), have gathered outside the United States (US) embassy, in Pretoria, to protest against US President Donald Trump’s treatment of Iran. Asked why they were picketing outside the US Embassy, the group claimed that this was a way of standing in solidarity with the Iranian people, following the assassination of the Middle East’s most revered military veteran, General Qasem Soleimani.