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Type REPARATION & REHABILITATION COMMITTEE TRANSCRIPTS
Starting Date 20 February 1998
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Ms Hlengiwe has asked me to come in and I have, they're sort of poems, sort of readings which are based on some experiences and I will just take you straight into them as a way of setting the tone. The first poem is actually - goes back to the 1960's. Certainly one of the rather surprising elements that has come out of the Human Rights Hearings has been that there are obviously some particular dates that people remember. People remember '76 and '76 tends to have become the start of the revolution, everything happened in 1976, but in fact the time period covered by the Commission goes back to 1960 in Sharpeville, obviously and this is something that happened. I mean this is based on an experience in 1964. It's entitled "The Greys" which in those days had the same connotation as John Vorster Square, it was the Greys just down the road, was the centre of the security police and it is the place where quite a lot of things happened. This happened on the evening, or during the night in fact, of Friday 24th July 1964.
He was standing in front of me shouting 'Jew bastard, you Jew bastard!" which, as you knew very well by then, was incorrect on both counts. Still he stood in front of me screaming 'Jew bastard, you Jew bastard, I'll kill you!' and a lot of additional filth about my mother, my grandmother and my children yet to come. The generations talked that night,
the generations screamed from the depth of the hulk in front of me, screaming 'Jew bastard, Jew, I'll kill, kill, kill you!' Because of the bomb, the bomb had killed that night, a lonely unwanted bomb spluttering rage in the great hollow hall of the tiny whites on their way home. The bomb spluttered and killed. He screamed 'Fourteen! Your bomb killed fourteen, Jew bastard, I'll kill you, your bomb, your mother!' Not my bomb of course, as he knew only too well, but 'fourteen' he spluttered, 'fourteen!' Coming closer, the rage and the fear of the generations, screaming and coming closer. He took off my glasses and put them down on the table so they wouldn't break, so I stood in front of him unsheltered by glasses, might break, and his arms, 'Jew bastard!' began waving towards me and I tried to concentrate. 'I'll kill, fourteen!' on the hands of the arms coming towards me, telling myself 'This is it! This is what it will be like when it really happens, when it really happens to me.' And the hands clenched and hit and struck, sharp, grasping blows at the eyes, ears, eyes, clenched blows at the head, with cupped fists on each of: 'Jew bastard! Kill! Kill! Kill!' And I watched as the body went down to the floor and I thought 'This is what it will be like for me when it really happens.'
And I saw the body on the floor being kicked and I thought 'When it gets up it will be the end.' But when I saw the body on the floor get up, I remembered what Stan had said about when you're arrested for a pass or something and they start beating you up, that the best thing is to scream, scream anything, scream because that pleases them and it takes your mind off it. So when the body got up, I screamed, screamed, screamed something silly like: 'No, no please! No, no please! Please no!' And it pleased him so much that he screamed 'Jew bastard kill!' and the hands hit the body again down to the floor again, then the screaming and the body and the scrabbling on the floor and the kicks and the shouts was one. Was me. So I got up. 'Jew bastard!' And then there were two of them and the second watching the first and the first waved his hands. 'Hy's 'n Jood, in Jood, 'n bliksemse Jood!' And the second nodded and I said nothing. Then above, the floor began to rumble like my floor had rumbled. Muffled rumbles and thuds, thudding cries, spluttering thuds and then nothing. Quiet. The first looked at the second. 'Ons het hom'. And the second nodded. The hands paused, pushed across a chair, handed me the glasses from the table and said, 'Here Jew, have a smoke'."
"One witness has a dark suit and a waistcoat and a glove on his hand to help with the arthritis and a stick. Thirty years before he didn't need a stick to stir the streets, him and the other kids. They picked him up he said and roughed him up a bit in Alex before taking him to Pretoria. Compol, the big house, their house, with the warrants of officers like cells in corridors where they do what they want and they start giving him the treatment, pausing only to bring in another pickup, looking dazed, to watch while they batter him and batter him and batter him. 'But I was lucky', he said. 'I shat myself' and they said, 'Jasus, maar die Kaffir het gekak en vat hom weg, hy stink!' They start instead on the spectator. He is from Cape Town. His name is Looksmart. By morning, he's dead."
Another witness tells how she's heard about her teenage son. How he'd been in the street with friends when a passing Hippo shot him, no sense to it, no reason. Then they collect him, she said, still alive and batter his head against a rock. Twenty years later, tall and high pitched, she spits fury, red hot. 'Maybe', she says, crumpling into her pain, 'he'd still be here if they hadn't hit his head against the rock'."
"Three witnesses together, grannies with doeks and darting eyes take it in turns to weep as they tell of their children across the border in the safety of Gaborone. So many details of the cars they took to get there, of the scenery along the way, all the details, the shoulders, they, the soldiers, sorry, the soldiers they explain shot anything that moved and raked the cupboard where the overnight visitor hid. Tore the cupboard to pieces, to pieces, to pieces. And there was this large white sheet at the funeral, she said, with all the names listed and his wasn't there, wasn't there, wasn't there. But there at the bottom, ah! Joseph. Afterwards the hall echoes with the laughter of kids in the square outside and we sit wondering about these lists of bodies and mortuaries and more mortuaries and coffins, coffins, coffins, bones, bones and the glistening eyes of mothers and survivors and the evening shadows ring with the sounds of children and you have to think of tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow."
DR DANIEL: It's tough isn't it? Why won’t we as we did yesterday, just to connect again? How are you? You want to discuss any feelings about the poetry? What, what's funny? A teapot is absolutely more easier to take than the poetry, no? It is a nice distraction, it's my comfort. Yes? Oh wonderful. Hi.
TIMOTHY: First time. Timothy. I know you have showed some sign of concern about the conspiracy of silence in this part of the hall and I must assure you that we have been listening very attentively to what you have been saying and we were taking notes though we were silent. I'm concerned about just one or two things. I've listened to you sharing with us your experiences and how you're dealing with them. It seems to me yours was and is, you're dealing with a people, a nation with one culture, one tradition, one religion, same values, from the same background and with one hope of rebuilding a great nation. Now I'm concerned about...
DR DANIEL: As always I want to correct misconceptions. Yes, Judaism is a one nation but if you knew how many different, how complex that nation is and what a range of complex idealogies and understandings and cultures there are in Judaism. See it's interesting that, right, we always start this way, with a stereotype. From the outside, when you look from the outside, you really don't know the inside, hey? Right? The Rabbi, Harris, who is the Chief Rabbi of South Africa who is with us today and I just had a very quick understanding as to the complexity, the internal complexity of the Jewish Community only here and we in fact, we say then it is, well in the United States and not only, remember after I presented the different families yesterday? I said that what we didn't talk about is the different demographic questions and the different backgrounds of these people? Like some were very orthodox, some were totally assimilated, some were living in rural areas, some in big cities and they came all from different countries and every country had it's own colouring of the way they have been. In Israel we have, how many cultures? Just in the Jewish Community? See we have a joke that, okay I'll put it differently, I'll tell you a joke that we told in America that the American President and the Israeli visiting President sat together and the American President said "What do you know? I am a president of over 250 million people." So the Israeli President says "What do you know?. I am a president of 4 Million Presidents!" So it's a good joke because it really characterizes. There's another one of a Jewish guy, you know, the boat got lost and found himself, you know, on a deserted island. So the first thing he does, he builds a synagogue, right? Then when they find him, you know they find him working on the other side of the island so he said "What are you doing?" He said "I am building the other synagogue, you know for the people who wouldn't step into this one!" So these jokes are just to give you in a humorous way, you know, the kind of sense of differentness within the Jewish Community, okay, so you don't need to start with a stereotype of a people. You really don't. It gets us nowhere to do that. Every time we did that right, yesterday, every comment that started "well you" had a lot of misconceptions in it. I think it's better to ask or to simply talk about you and then we can talk together and I think that's part of what the reconciliation process is about, isn't it? Don't assume that you stereotypically know a people. Not even a person. You know when people say to me "You know what I mean?" I always say "no I don't". So.
TIMOTHY: Well thank you for making that clear. That's why I started by saying 'it seems' because I wasn't sure of what is happening. Now, my concern is how do you bring these cultures together in rebuilding a nation? The intercultural part of it. I'm sure you will be able to cover that today but I'm very much interested in that one because we are here dealing with people of different backgrounds, different cultures and we don't understand one another in this country. From where I come from we deal with people of any race, culture, you name it, status. But then I found that there is still this problem of intercultural relationship that we still have to build and that's my concern at the moment. I'm sure you will be able to cover that as how you dealt with that part of it. Thank you.
DR DANIEL: Right, we won't be able to cover that without you, though. But two things we already learned from just our interchange, right, that there is a tendency to stereotype, right, if you don't know you think that you can reduce a people or a person to one impression or to not even an impression, just a belief. So the best thing to do if you really want to know the people is to ask them and I agree with you, I think there is a lot of need to talk with each other, not at each other but with each other. I was thinking last night also, you know, we have in conflict resolution, I told Pat this, some of the, some of my colleagues are trying to come up with like very simple succinct way of putting, of putting the problem, of explaining the problem and like one of the ways that's very lovely, they said it's not you or me, it's you and me. It's a very nice little set immediately to establish that we are both in this together. It's not either you or me or I have to kill you or you have to remove me. We're together. It's you and me and we respect, I respect you as much as you respect me or as much as I wish you to respect me. I want to know you. You're as valuable to me as I'm valuable to me as I'm valuable to you. So what we're talking about is even a way of looking that before you even begin to talk and what you're saying is and it's a very positive thing, what you're saying is beyond the disappointment and the hurt and the hateful feelings, there is a curiosity to get to know each other and that's wonderful. See, so, the first way to, the first, I heard the building aspect already in your question. You don't know each other, you would like to know each other. For years and years you've treated each other in stereotypes, you know, there were enemies. We talk about that, there are theories on, you know, the image of the enemy, right? To experience the other only as an enemy. As long as the other's only an enemy, you don't need to get to know them at all. In fact the only thing you need to do is be very careful of them. In fact to get to know them means that they will be human beings to you. It won't be so easy for you to slightly relate to them as bad or as dangerous only. You have to at least give them as much interest and respect as you do to your own complexity. But again you see it brings us back to the same issue that comes up all the time in our discussion. Getting to know somebody takes time, takes patience, takes attention, takes focus, takes openness, takes a dialogue, right? That means listening to each other not talking at each other. Spending time together, taking the time to learn what you're about, what the meanings of your behaviours are. So, here you already have a few, right, doors to see what, but to say I want to know you, gosh, that's wonderful. That's the first way to get to be friends. You remember we began this saying, you know, what am I going to open up in front of a group of strangers? Well we are no longer that. Because we took the time to be with each other, to listen to each other, to learn from each other. I don't just mean it as easy words, I think you know that. It's really the way to go. See and it's very hard after being enemies to even relax a little to do this because you're so used to being, I call it a porcupine position, you know. The thorns are up, the ears are sharp, you know and only the mouth is aaaah, you know, either to scream or to shout or to, to, and the arms are beginning to move and you all know that posture, don't you? So easy to act - yugh! So easy. It's so hard to just say okay, let me, let me cool it now and I don't mean cool in the sense of cold, I mean let me relax it, let me put down the defences a little, let me open the ears a little, let me try to just hear a little bit.
Let me see does it hurt so much to get to know that that person also has feelings? Children, mother, father, history? So there's a lot of that to do. We talked about it in, you remember on the first day I mentioned to you, groups of children of survivors and children of Nazis, this is one initiative of, I mentioned to you Dan ...[indistinct] a colleague from Israel who has done that, who, he came to visit here in fact. I know he met with you and you know, arranged for people from here to come too to the groups.
We have another initiative actually in the United States to bring to a summer camp of two months, Israeli children, Jordanian, Palestinian, Egyptian, all the quote "enemies" either former enemies or still current enemies and they lived together for two months. There's only one adult in the camp to run the administration. The kids live together. They have counsellors but they're very young counsellors from, you know, camp to camp. They lived together for two months. They have these lengthy conversations with each other about 'how I saw you'. Gee I wish we thought about it ahead of time, next time when I come and at this point I'm committed to it, I will bring you tapes of that camp experience to show you, the kids themselves say: 'I came here, the only thing I knew about you was that you had to kill me. I never thought of you as a kid who goes to school, who is studying, who may fall in love with somebody, who has a girlfriend'. Never occurred to them. The only thing that occurred to them 'these are the enemies, these are the bad people who are out to get me, so I'd better very careful and get them first.' I'll bring tapes of that next time, you know, we have to really plan, because you're so interested in these programmes and they do exist and I can bring a lot of that material in, see being here I'm also learning what, what you need more than what I brought with me. Further kind of thinking and we can do that, we can do that well actually and we can try it out too. So perhaps next time we'll have groups of former enemies because you see as Yitzak Rabin said, you know our Prime Minister who was killed. He said you make peace only with enemies.
See, when we talked about reconciliation and the difficulties, you somehow think that you have to begin by being, by pretending to be friends already. No, you're beginning from having been enemies and that's the first thing to attend to and we did it a little bit between Eddie, you remember, Eddie and what is your name again? Rajiet. You remember? You acted the enemies. It was very interesting when we opened it up you became more of the enemy and more and more remember? That's a very important phase of the process. To see, to explore all of that. It hurts like hell but without it, it won't go on from there. Eddie can I ask you a question? Where is he? Hi. You don't have to answer. We had a lot of speculations about, right, in the room, about what you wanted from the policemen, right, in the bakery. What did you really, we never asked you for real, how did you feel? How did you feel when he walked away, what really you wanted to ask him? To those of you that weren't there, why won’t you just fill in very briefly what it was okay?
EDDIE: I really wanted to talk to him but the other side of me was also saying, when he walked out, 'good shot', and I related it to my wife and she said to me it's wrong. You should talk to him because she also identified with his wife and could imagine what she's going through. Now that women solidarity was an important element for me and it pushed me where I was saying that if I do get the opportunity I would want to talk but I'm afraid also, that he's going to respond the way it happened here and therefore wouldn't want to do it in an area where I could be embarrassed. I would want to do it privately but recognise also it's not a private affair and that's the contradictions.
DR DANIEL: No, it's a beautiful contradiction there because it is a private matter isn't it? Each one leaves a, two unique hearts but it is representative of the whole problem. That's a beautiful way of saying it. When you said "good shot" to yourself, that part of you, what that does that mean? You were glad that, what? That he was too what?
EDDIE: That's an element that we have missed in this workshop to a large extent, we have concentrated on our losses and not on what we've gained. It was good shot for me in that he now realises that we have been victorious in our struggle. He doesn't hold the power any more, the power belongs elsewhere and those that they have persecuted before are now the ones that they have to co-operate with and the "good shot" was therefore to say that "you were not victorious".
EDDIE: I think it's what we said earlier on, the conflict that one has with our own faith. I relates for me with the whole thing of forgiveness that we started discussing yesterday where my faith tells me that you can't go on living with this person. My understanding of my faith experience is that you must set things right before the sun goes down, whatever we understand by the sun going down and I have a feeling that for this person, the sun is already going down and my faith coerces me to set things right with him because I know that he cannot hurt me any more or at least maybe I should say that's how I feel strongly about, that he can't hurt me any more. But now he's hurting someone else, battering his wife and as a person with a social consciousness my faith tells me that you must do something about that even to the enemy. Because what is the enemy, who is the enemy? How do you define an enemy? His wife is not an enemy and maybe by doing that, one can actually contribute towards restoring human relations because part of my work, I'm getting paid for doing this, is to say to people like Duma, he's not here yet, and to people like Khosi, let us search together for a way in which you can become reconciled. You see this whole thing of Ubuntu then comes into the picture as well where I've tried it on the first day with Duma, we were smoking in the toilet, interestingly and we said what happens now with muntu ngumtu ngbantu? Your humanity is affirmed by you being with other human beings and if you cut yourself off to other human beings because of what they have done to you in our situation, also very often because of their skin colour. I mean what are you doing to your own humanity and I'm therefore challenged also as a carer to say you can't ask other people to do it unless you explore ways of doing it yourself and if one therefore goes through that tension in your own life you begin to appreciate how much more difficult it is for those who have gone through much more painful experiences and I was saying to someone this morning that the wonderful thing about being a carer is that very often you learn much more from the people that you are meant to be serving and you give more to them than what, they give more to you than what you give to them and one is just then, in that context, challenged by your own commitments and understanding of the situation.
DR DANIEL: See even, I'm very glad I asked you because even in the way Eddie talks you can see that in his own being there's so many different parts and they all exist so it's again, you and me. It's both a victorious feeling and a compassionate feeling and the enforcing feeling and many more feelings of course and all of them exist in the same person. Each one of us has all of these different parts that have to reconcile. Very hard and a part of him is still angry and still calls the guy the enemy and still needs to see him down. So now it's another up and down before it was this up and down now it's this up and down, there's no way to really talk from this position. You see that? See we can even draw, you know, when you talk, we can draw the directions of talking, are we talking with each other, are we talking at each other, are we talking to each other, are we talking down to each other or up? Different ways create different relationships. You wanted to comment or, no? Okay. Lets...Yes go ahead.
EDDIE: Can I just say, if for me I then reflect on what we have done over the last two days. The first day for me was very enriching it was a little bit better than yesterday. Why, because I was hoping that we're going to have a lot more participation yesterday and everybody has noticed it that we don't have participation of everybody and some people like us who talk a lot are now beginning to feel inhibited. We are talking to much because others are not talking and I don't know how to deal with that. Is it the right thing to do at this time? But the other is also if we look at the onion of the trauma, I think that we have not said it, that we have rotten onions as well, where you can't peel it off, I mean it is rotten all the way through, the thing falls apart once you touch it. The second is that we also have an onion that is standing in a glass of water and there's more skins growing onto the onion all the time and although we are trying to get to the core, we very often don't have the tools to do it, so it only makes us cry and I'm afraid that we're going to give up peeling. I'm afraid that we may have reached that stage and the last thing about the onion is also to say that some of the onions are deeply underground and we just can't get to them. If we take a fork we are going to pierce right through the middle of the onion and there again, therefore, this event is for me extremely meaningful because it warns me that I have to use my hands, I mustn't be rough.
KHOSI: Well, I have the same feeling with Eddie, I realised yesterday, you know, I'd, I can think and try and think in what has been happening for the last two days although the morning part I wasn't here, that it seems as if I'm here and I'm rather, you know, sort of draw attention to myself as if in the whole audience nothing happened to them because it's not much contribution, you know, as if they will just listen to me and I would like to apologise about that because I feel it is because of the many things which has happened to me and being afraid also away from here that when I talk about these things nobody wants to listen or they feel oh, you know, as if I'm drawing attention to myself but to me deep down my heart I this was a general genocide to black people as of old, for almost 400 years. Whatever I'm saying, I'm just saying, it's just the tip of the iceberg because I even write in my statement here, I didn't say it all. There are many things, especially that when I made my statement I made it to a young man, whose a man, and there are certain things I couldn't just tell and I wish perhaps I had a chance of talking to another woman, you know, where I could tell everything and I wish everybody here could contribute or say something because it feels, it makes me feel so small as if I want to be seen as the wronged person and second thing again, I think I'll stop from there, it's about children, our children. You talked about the children, Palestinians, you said it all, but with us, we are doing more compromising from our end than the white children, privileged children. We have even gone to an extent of taking our own kids into the white schools to go and join them and there are daily, children are being held with insults from other children, white children. It is one of the many things, many wrongs, I know it's only three years old but it's rather too much. On my own, I don't know what can be done on that. At least perhaps you may have to go and approach white children or white people, go and talk to them and hear their side of the story. It's another thing to live a year and say please can I talk to you, be my friend? We black people, it's natural that we are so forgiving really. Even now we are embracing the white people but they have nothing to do with us in exception of the very few people like Braam Fisher, you named the all, there are quite a few who even died in the struggle, you know, who had seen the light. It's so difficult for us.
MR VINEY: Sorry, my name is Ron Viney, I'm from the National Monuments Council. What has come to me is that, what has come to me specifically is that we should not go ahead here and perpetuate and recreate myths around the whole struggle. I come from that background you mentioned with the Brits and the Afrikaners. Now part of that myth that came from there that it was a white man's war. It actually wasn't. We had a huge brouhaha from the press in the Free State when we started digging up the 20 Thousand odd black people who actually died in the British concentration camps. That kind of myth we must be careful of recreating here and perpetuating.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Thank you. Mine is to recognise what we have said in terms of multi-generational legacies of trauma. I look back in the '70s when young people who were actually going back to the parent to say, as we have said, you respect in our culture. Any other adult as your parent, therefore as children we are saying to you don't go to school because our leaders were detained then, then you have to take responsibility as parents to those kids. The effects of that in our families, in our society to date, you find a situation where in a community there are things that needs it, people, other people or citizens in that locality or in that community to take up the challenge but they would say our children will solve this for us, you know. It is there in different communities where adults will say we know these young people, whether they will call them young lion etcetera. But you know that is destructive to the children themselves. But I want us to recognise mechanisms that were put in place by South Africans like the Rustenberg Declaration. It goes to an extent of people who committed themselves to action where church leaders even from the other white community were committed to this action. We need to revisit that and find out how far are these actions that they were committed to, enhance the TRC, because we have the situation whereby the life of the TRC is about to come to an end. We need those people whoever, who were part and parcel of this declaration. Even in the Kairos Document, things were explicitly put down on what is reconciliation, what reconciliation is to do. How we should go about, the reconciliation should take cognisance of, we need to revisit that and those organisations or the people who are strictly tied to that need to come out quite clearly. I'm concerned about the statement that Bishop Tutu has made and what it has invoked in the white community because they felt, some of them felt it was too general, it didn't take cognisance of them, white activists. Perhaps this kind of workshop, now that this is the last day, we need to find out if we could be in a position to enhance that and clarify that general statement that has been made to say, this, in our context, this is what it means because a lot of what we have shared has put us into a better perspective.
We need to recognise that even in the white community. We have people that needs to be recognised, a people ...[indistinct] and in that regard I think we'd be in a position to move forward with the process. Thanks, that's all I had to share this morning.
DR DANIEL: Well that's great. I can see that the right people are taking notes! Ron, I'm sorry, we didn't acknowledge your feeling and you clearly feel so intensely. As intensely about you're being stereotyped as everyone else about everyone else about them being stereotyped. I want to acknowledge that. But, and I'm very glad you said it because I think that you can see how anytime you stereotype anybody, it hurts like hell. So in effect, it's a way to undo people, it's way to say well you don't matter, I have an idea that's all that matters and it's so important for us to talk, you see, to look and to listen and to learn. Please?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Something, it's I believe it's not necessarily politically right thing to be saying but I think it comes from just a true honesty of where I'm at in all this. I think I was touched by a story of someone from Australia who reflected on his experience and he said that there was some injustice amongst the Aboriginal community and someone who was unfairly imprisoned anyway and beaten up and so on and he, as a white Australian, took up the issue and phoned one of the Aboriginal leaders and asked him what can we do, what can I do and this person's response to him was go take care of your own. He said, "do you know how many white people are beaten up, do you know how many white Australians are being unfairly imprisoned for their stands against certain things?" and he sort of said "go take care of your own, that will be very helpful to us." And so again I think it's part of my maybe defensiveness of a stereotype that nothings happening, but there's something about, in my own work for instance, I think even though it's predominantly amongst the white community of continually addressing patriarchal ways of being that impose on people, that sort of reduce other people to being non-people and that gets played out in gender, you know, that gets played out in relationships with couples, families etcetera. For me those are challenges that are not enough. It's not doing enough about our whole Truth and Reconciliation process and I don't mean it to replace that, but at the same time it's maybe challenging some of the things that gave rise to Apartheid. So I suppose I just wanted to bring in a whole another level of complexity that again, if one uses a microscope, perhaps a lot is happening.
DR DANIEL: Now let me tell you it's been my dream that everyone here would participate, okay, but I'm very patient that way, I knew it would happen, you see. Please learn that from me and Khosi and Eddie, you're not talking too much? You're talking and other people will be talking too. Go ahead Heike.
HEIKE: Okay, ya well I wanted to say something because I don't want you to get that feeling there's something and some people sitting in the corners and you don't know what's going on. But the reason why I wasn't saying terribly much because I was thinking so heavily yesterday and just to give you an idea what I've been thinking about without having any conclusion. I'm a second generation post war German, I'm not a South African. So I was very interested yesterday to hear about your analyses and your experiences with families who have come out of a traumatic situation and my family situation is that I would say they were typical Germans, non Jewish Germans but I think it's very interesting to see and during my life it becomes clearer for me that it was a whole mixture. It was a typical standing by, not doing anything situation. It was a bit of being mixed up in the perpetrator and responsible as a perpetrator situation as well, but it was also quite a bit being in a victim situation. My parents were youth, youngsters, young people when the war happened so, and they were refugees after the war, a displaced people themselves. So I found it very interesting to see quite a lot of parallels in the families you described in what I experienced myself even though I came kind of from the other side and I know of course that what happens to one side of a community in a way always kind of hits back or comes back to the other side of the communities. So I was kind of confirmed in that. Where I'm still struggling a bit and that's because I'm culturally not that much rooted yet in South Africa is to draw the parallels with the South African experiences and I sometimes had the feeling what you're saying was closer to me and my experience to what I could relate it to in South Africa.
DR DANIEL: In the book I mentioned, the one that Salvio took the leaflets, there are some excellent chapters about second and third generation Germans. One about second and third generation Nazis, that is, children of Nazis and grandchildren of Nazis that are extremely powerful and very important. Go ahead.
HEIKE: May I still say something. I think the consequences are what my parents had experienced might even play a very big role in my being in South Africa because I kind of had the feeling that being interested in a way, also fascinated by a war and by a highly dramatic conflict situation is something that drew me to be part of this here. Also the feeling of being committed to peacemaking, to kind of stirring in this whole pot of violent conflict, of who is guilty, what can we do to overcome this. It is something that I grew up with so I think it's not a coincidence that I'm here and that I also feel committed to the South African process and I think I'm trying to, well it's a bit speculation, but I might be trying to follow something up that has passed me by in Germany maybe and that I can do here now.
DR DANIEL: Yes, you are exploring your own history here and you're trying to undo your own history here too so you're trying to both understand it and heal it. So this is wonderful actually. I will take the time in the break to give you the name of the book that came from Germany because I think it will teach you a lot. Gee so many people who haven't spoken. So hold on just a second, let me first give it to everybody who's not. Go ahead, your name?
SEPO KULA: My name is Sepo Kula from the North West Province and the reason why I decided to stand is, my sister here saying sit down I think. I'm perhaps one of the youngest of the people seated in here and I am not necessarily challenged by what brother Eddie and some of the guys have said here but more by what I will be doing when I go back home. I wanted to say something, I wanted to pose questions and I, deep inside I thought, perhaps I'd be touching on those wounds. Perhaps questioning and listening on the other hand is just not enough. What would be happening if I go back home? I am, I haven't been, I not a survivor, none of my members have been going through the atrocities that many of the people here have felt, but as Eddie said umuntu umuntu ubantu...[indistinct] When I reflect on what they have gone through it, it hurts. Again it's like, what will I have done had I been part of that. Now that I wasn't part of that directly, what is it that I'm going to do? A challenge that I think the future generation would be faced towards. What is it that we have to do? We talked again yesterday about the monuments. Perhaps it's something that for those who haven't been directly effected to really think deeply about. What is it that we have to do? What are we really going to do to try and reflect on the atrocities being done to our fellow brothers and sisters. It's like this workshop is just not enough, there has to be, you know, many other workshops in different parts of the world or rather of South Africa and especially in..
SEPO KULA: The world, ja, and especially in the North West Province where we were not much part of South Africa but as you know Boputhatswana where atrocities have been committed by the Bop regime but not as much as those who were in the then South Africa went through and there's a lot that one needs to say and question and perhaps as the workshop progresses one would be getting light as to what needs to be done in future. Thank you.
DR DANIEL: I totally agree with you and actually I think in some ways there's a sadness that this workshop is going to be over today? I'm very sad. On the other hand there's happiness about knowing that we are going to continue and I think the more we talk the more we realise how much work there is to do and I think one way to look at what this discussion the last three days has been brought to us is some dimensions that we're seeing is to, how to go from here, okay? Please.
FREDDY: My name is Freddy. I just want to add on what Khosi was saying about the whites, you know, distancing themselves from the democracy that's taking place in our country. We have seen the Afrikaner schools turning back our kids from their schools and we have seen a lot of them on this government of National Unity we are still singing Die Stem of Suid Afrika which reminds us also of the past and we have seen demonstrations of the Afrikaaners still waving the old Afrikaner, old South African flag. Those things when we look at them they make us you know, hurt, we feel hurt about them.
THABO: My name is Thabo. Basically what I wanted to do is, just to, if I review what happened, what transpired in the past two days, I find the experiential part on the first day to be very therapeutic even though I didn't share personally the trauma that I went through and I'm referring specifically to, I had one misconception about the peoples of this workshop. I expected that we were going to be given a package on how to immediately come to a process of healing, I didn't take it as something..
DR DANIEL: Excuse me, do not, shhh! Do not do, do not quickly get over this because I can see people really know what you're talking about which I really didn't. See you're teaching me so much you're beginning to appreciate how much you're teaching me, right? But do you remember what I said before, not you or me but you and me? Is there a way to sing both anthems? No? Will you please tell us about that?
CHRIS: My name is Chris. Fortunately I'm coming from Eastern Cape, former Ciskei Bantustan. Now, there is one thing that I wanted to share with, that we'll be moving from a wrong premise if we rationalise the whole process of reconciliation as if we're fighting a racial struggle. We're fighting a just struggle against apartheid and it's surrogates. The repatriates that were supporting apartheid, blacks, you know tyrants like Gzo, tyrants like Gzo, Sebe, Mtanzima and so forth. It will be wrong for me to say that I won’t appreciate the role that has been played by white people during the course of our struggle. Whilst we recognise that there are those who are resisting for the process of change, you know, there is nothing wrong for us to kick start the process, you know, as blacks, Africans in particular, people who have been experiencing the problems. There is nothing wrong for us to say that we are peace loving people, you know, want to build this country, all of us belong to this country. Let us unite. Those who don't want to support us, as South Africans, those who don't want enjoy their process, history will judge them and history will bury them and I want to say to all of us as South Africans, the believers and non-believers, let us forget but we know that it will be a process to forgive but let us try work towards that particular process. Because, if we as the current generation, we don't try to work towards reconciliation, the generations to come will still have that hatred. You are going to tell your grandchild that ag, those people have done so and so and so unto us and they will grow having that particular hatred and what is going to happen to us, our future generation? You know and whatever happened upon us, that will be the history, we must be able, day and night, try to teach our grandchildren or our children that, you know, so and so and so, some of these things happened. In the past there were the wars of resistance, we were told about those things, they are the history now, you know. We are not saying that ag there were tribal wars between Zulus and Sothos, between so and so and so and so, we are taking those things as part of the history, but let's forget about those things, you know, now let us build the new nation. I'm trying to appeal to people, some of us, I for one, I used to say that I can't sing the Stem van Suid Afrika but now I can sing because I'm one of those people, you know, who are working towards reconciliation.
DR DANIEL: Okay, see, this is very important, you said I'm now feeling empowered and I want to exercise my power this way rather than build only on past hurt or hate. Now again, this is a phase in the process, isn't it? So let's respect that rather than say 'Oh, stop hating!' Because hate has been a part of the process and in fact it has been a part of what empowered, not sort of in a good way, but just the same, did give a sense of power and a sense of saying 'I'm not that, I'm this'. The only thing I want to say though, you remember the first day I told you about the people we said that there's hate addiction? Right? People that get stuck in their hate and never live a full life because of it and never give themselves a chance to experience the fullness of life? So the only thing, acknowledging that it's a totally understandable feeling. Try not get stuck in there and to deprive yourself of the rest of the feelings of being human. Go ahead.
FREDDY: Talking in Israel, we sympathise with you about what you went on, but our struggle is different, it has been different to yours. We have been oppressed for more than 48 years, 300 years, no 300 years and even after independence we are still living with that. It's left you and went to Germany, we are still living with them, they have built, they have claimed that this is their country. We live with them.
DR DANIEL: See, I do want to answer you. First of all I did answer it yesterday so I'm not going to repeat what I said yesterday, but perhaps my view will help you. I live with the Germans. I live with the Germans 24 hours a day. I live in this world. The fact that you said the world and I said the world, it is the world. You're living in the world, you're not just living in your street. I live with the Germans all the time, every decision they make has an effect in my life and those for you, every decision they make has an effect on your life. To pretend that you can just push people away some place and put them in some disconnected and non-threatening place is another quick fix that doesn't work. But you see the most important part of this discussion is that the enemies we lived with are the enemies inside ourselves. You see? You will live with that enemy. Every time you hate you are with that person or with those people, inside. Very important. The same as we said with guilt yesterday, remember, that we keep people that we love together with us, when we hate we keep people we hate together with us. That's very, very important to acknowledge and when you say 'they' and 'me' it's the same as, you know, you're putting so much energy into that wall and to building that wall and to keeping it hard. It's not that I don't understand the feeling, I do, believe me. But it's very important to keep the perspective of everything you are, try to learn everything they are, try to learn everything they are and try to communicate. It's not that you don't have choice, see, what you're saying is let's throw the whites out, or let's go some place else, that's what we did, we had no choice nobody wanted us. You think when I moved I wanted to leave my home? The Jews lived for five thousand years in the Diaspora, longing for Jerusalem every day. 2000 years, you're competing with the 48 and the 300, we can pull 2000, I mean, if you want to really do numerical gimmicks. We didn't have a land, we had no rights. We could, we were the only tribe that remained alive despite being dispersed in the Diaspora and being persecuted all the time, we are still alive. We're the only ones and we still laugh and then we still love and we still try to bring love to others as well. We could just hate, I told you, after World War II we could kill Germans and no one would blame us for a second. It was a matter of choice, at some point every one of us when we look in a mirror, has to ask 'How do I want to live?' You remember I gave you that thing about no regrets on the first day? That every situation in life to live knowing that you have put all of you in it and you got everything from it and you've been totally there that, you know, your whole being is right here? It's a wonderful, wonderful way to be because you always gain. There's nothing to lose. You don't cut yourself off from anything. But, I'll give you that no regrets rule even more deeply. When was this, 1936, I was told that I had three months to live at most. When that happened, a whole series of things happened, some were awful. Like friends of mine started mourning me already and they weren't there for me and in fact when they called and cried I had to comfort them and when I didn't die, you know, they already mourned me so they were no longer my friends. It upset them you know, they cried and cried and all that. Very interesting, what happens, okay? While being operated on and not being able even to move, it so happens at the same time the University I was teaching at had to, went through budget cuts. So while I was immobile, I get a letter telling me that my job is gone. So, I was told my life was gone, right, I was losing people all the time. There's a funny way in which you keep saying goodbye all the time, you know and you're losing all the time. I lost my job, that everything I trusted in, my body, my wellbeing, my friends, the people I loved, my work which as you know I love. And it was Thanksgiving Day. The man I was going to marry, whose birthday was Thanksgiving, the day before, left a note that he can't take it any more. So here I was on Thanksgiving which is a very wonderful holiday in America, very wonderful and it's a family holiday. I had not nowhere to go, I couldn't go anyhow, and I live on the 31st floor, those who come to New York, you're welcome, it's a gorgeous place, and I have a terrace and I went to the terrace and I was ready to jump because it felt to me like nothing, there was nothing there. You see Eddie when you talk about giving up, I know those feelings and by the way, that's after I did the research on hope. So I was an expert on what was going on. I saw all the processes, at the same time I was feeling all the feelings just the same. I was ready to jump, really ready to jump and believe me I did feel hate for people who abandoned me at that time. I know that feeling. I was ready to jump probably because I couldn't live with the hate, too. Everything was too much. And suddenly I saw in front of my face an aunt of mine, I had a memory of hers. She's not a real aunt, you know after the Holocaust there were very few people of every family left so sort of called aunt and uncles everybody you loved. So here was my aunt. It's a very nice story because when she arrived to Israel from after the camps, she was a survivor. She was not my aunt we didn't know each other even. Israel did something wonderful. It sent children like me, I was a child, with curls and all, must have been very cute, and we wore white little clothes and we came to the boats, people then came by boat, with bread and honey and salt to welcome the survivors and this woman, she saw me and she's the one I gave the bread to and the salt to first and she looked at me and this is the woman who became the aunt. I adopted her, she adopted me. Years later, when I was teaching her son in school, she came to a teachers, what is it, teachers/parents conference and she told me that when she saw me that day, that's when she decided to have a child and she told me her story. They were taken to Auschwitz. Her fiancee was shot in front of her face, in front of her. Her mother was being taken away. One of her sisters became mad and started screaming, literally became totally mad so she was shot. Another sister became so paralysed that she didn't do anything which was lucky, I also know her, she survived as well, but she survived like an automat, you know she was like totally, she was able to do everything they told her which was the right thing to do at the time in order to survive but because she lost her mind, really, she's basically lived in a mental hospital in Israel ever since she arrived back. Hannah, that's the name of my aunt, was given the job of clearing bodies from the crematorium and one of the bodies she cleared was her fathers and she lost it. She decided to commit suicide, she couldn't take it any more, so she went to the, she went to the fences to, you know they were electrocuted, so even if you just touched them you'd die. And she said that while she almost touched the fence, from the corner of her eye she saw the Nazi guard aiming the machine gun at her and suddenly inside she rebelled and she said, you're not going to get my life so easily. So when I was standing on the terrace, ready to jump, I got that feeling and I suddenly became happy. It was clear to me that no matter no long I had to live I will do it my way, I will do it the right way, I will do what I believe in and I'll find my way, as she did. So she has been one of the people that has, you know, that sits on my shoulders, you know each one of us has a whole bunch of people on our shoulders? She is one of them, you know, I sort of, you know Eddie, when I feel like giving up I talk to her, you know. Now there was another lesson I learned in those days. See when you're told you have...teatime! The tyranny of tea, I'm going to finish this story even if you're dying to have tea because it's really I want you to take it into your heart. When, when you're told you have three months to live, every minute becomes of a different, totally different value and I learned two things. One is, to appreciate every minute as if it's the very last minute of my life. At the same time I also learned to treat every minute as if it's going to go forever. Can you do that trick? It's an incredible trick, it's an incredible trick because whenever I feel like it's only one minute I say ah ah, it's going forever, you know that patience I told you about? That's where it's coming from, that feeling. I also learned though, another feeling that's really my teacher if you will in life. I want to know the very last second before I die that I can look at my maker and to look myself in the mirror at the same time because you see Jews relate with each other and with God, they are two separate relationships and I want to look back and say I did good, I did it right, it's been an okay life, don't want to regret, I want to feel ashamed as little as possible.
So keep that in mind and see if you want to spend, if think with that way, I don't know, it feels different to choose to hate or to choose to love or to choose to be angry all the time. You know, when you see it that way, you can see well I have a choice to do this, or this, or this, or spend my time feeling this, or this, or this. Try to keep that image with you because it's the best I can give you. I can read you everything I wrote and give those ideas too and we'll do that after the tea break no matter what. But if I can give you something that is really me, that's me, okay, that's and it has a religious feeling to it too, but I don't even and I'm sure it's coming from my Jewish self, but I don't think it's only Jewish, I think it's for everyone. So go drink tea.
DR DANIEL: See you know what I love about the process, every time I look, people are talking with each other here. You're the ones who told me it's a strangers group. We beat that one. A few people came to me and I think want to speak some more before we get to a little more formal presentation. See I have a teacher in me that has to do what I said to myself I must do although I think it's okay. Go ahead, Michael.
MICHAEL: Sorry, I was speaking for those of us who were electronically disenfranchised before tea. There were a couple of points that seemed to me to be emerging earlier on that I wanted to get off my chest because my chest is large enough already.
MICHAEL: Three and then I'll deflate. One is one of the things that has bothered me from when we first began talking about the TRC is, I think reconciliation is completely the wrong term. I think reconciliation is impossible here because I see a couple who were in love and have quarrelled, I can help them reconcile, they are getting back to a relationship, a good relationship they had. We've never been married, we've never been engaged. One of the things Apartheid did was to make sure that most people, not only between black and white communities but even amongst black communities, didn't meet each other, didn't know each other. It's not reconciliation it's conciliation we need to start with. We're starting in different camps not knowing each other and trying to find a way together. It's the "re" that bothers me and I don't think that's it's just a technical pernickety point, it implies that there's something we had like the African Renaissance idea that we must get back to something. What we need to do is to get forward to something we never had but we need badly. A second point is something that I found coming from a number of the people who were commenting before and my last two point are actually related in that.
One that I would like to ask you to comment on, either now or later, is one of the things that struck me very much at Jad Vachem at the great Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem, that I think we may need from the TRC side to look for an equivalent in South Africa because several people commented on it. There were whites who died in the struggle, who suffered in the struggle, I know that too well. There weren't many, they weren't the majority and therefore on one hand they either end up being cast with the perpetrators or cast into no man's land. The commemoration at Jad Vachem of the Righteous Gentiles struck me as a very important model for us in a sense that they're at the very important central site for recognising the huge scale of Jewish suffering. There was a place for remembering the people who didn't have to be part of that struggle, who could have avoided it, who could have been, as the majority were, bystanders, but didn't, but tried to play a part, did play a part in some way and maybe one of the things we need as a way of recognising those who did what they weren't compelled to do except compelled internally rather than externally.
And that was where it led to my third point. A lot of what we talk about assumes that there were two types of people in Germany or two types of people in South Africa. There were victims and there were perpetrators and I'm amazed at how huge the world literature is while ignoring the role of the bystander and when one thinks that in modern writings about child abuse they talk about the facilitator. I think the bystander/facilitator, the people who did not go out and torture someone, but if they hadn't done what they did and especially if they had not done the things they didn't do, the torturers wouldn't have been able to do what they did, they wouldn't be able to get away with it and that is, there were a lot of, huge number of white bystander/facilitators, there were a substantial number of black bystanders/facilitators too and that's a group we never deal with, we never talk about, we never understand. Their instinctive practised skilled role in conflict is to stand aside and let other people fight and try and pick up, some of them try and pick up the profits around the edges and some of them just pretend it isn't happening. When we now say we have a struggle to recreate a new South Africa, why isn't everybody jumping in? One of the reasons is that the bystanders are standing by like they always do, they worked fine before, they're still doing it. Nobody has ever tried to de-programme them or teach them any other way of getting involved. Those who were from the small number of whites and the huge number of blacks who were involved in the struggle are generally too burned, too damaged, too pained to be able to take a leading role in that. Our activists, I mean, the whole repressive system successively creamed off every crop of activists and took them away and made sure they stopped doing that or that they were damaged in a way that they couldn't continue doing that. It's not fair of us to look upon that group in society to lead the new struggle for the freedom we haven't finished getting yet. But I think it may be why we keep saying, I remember the, the, while you were talking, I was remembering the memorial at Daga or other camps saying "never again" and you looked past memorial and saw a military camp on the other side. Whoever thought it was "never again".
One of the reasons why it may keep coming again is that we ignore the huge majority role of the bystander/facilitator who helps it happen, never helps it stop and nobody ever talks to them, talks about them or helps them find a different role in society. The far end extremes of the perpetrators will probably never change. Every society has some of them. One of the reasons we have to build safeguards here is to make sure that those that are still amongst us from all sections of the community, don't get a chance to do it again because by God they will if there is a chance. Why don't we also look at that middle group, why is there an even bigger conspiracy of silence about that role? Maybe because the majority are in that role. It's rare except in situations like the Holocaust for there to be a huge majority of victims. There are often a smaller proportion in society, South Africa's also unusual in that way, in the proportion of directly victimised people. The perpetrators have huge powers but they're also relatively small in numbers and the rest, the audience who should be listening as you were saying yesterday, to what the survivors need to say, that's another reason why they don't listen. They never needed to and they don't see why they need to now.
DR DANIEL: I want to respond. You made three points. One was the reconciliation/conciliation, I totally agree with that but I think sensory conciliation is a process. I don't find that a difficult word to live with, okay, even though I totally agree that, but I agree and I disagree. It was going to be one of my points at the beginning. I agree and I disagree because just the mere fact that everybody lived in this place meant that you shared the land, you liked it, you didn't like it, that's separate question. But I look at the reconciliation as a national, national initiative, not just perpetrators and victims and from that point of view I think the word is correct. So I don't have problem so much with that and by the way I was, when I was on the flight here, I thought about another one which I, which I actually for the first time I realised...you journalist, you find out. The word remember...it just occurred to me after all these years of speaking about memories and remembering blah, blah, blah. What does it mean? It means remember. So. The opposite of dismember, sure. So it's a nice thought, I haven't given it enough thought yet but whoever made that word must have had that in mind that memory maybe had that function of making you a piece of a whole again rather than disjointed. It's a nice thought. Yes the Jad Vachem, it's an interesting thought that you quote. Who are we commemorating here? Jad Vachem is actually called the Memorial of the Holocaust and Heroism so it commemorates the victims, the heroism of the victims and resistance and in it, well it's always developing, see everything is process, even a memorial building, it's a process. We have the Avenue of the Just for the people who helped the Jews, okay, and there's a tree for everyone who helped. It's wonderful, it's just absolutely wonderful to go, you know, to go there and near every tree you have the name of the person, right, and where etcetera and in fact there are books in the Holocaust will say victim, perpetrators and rescuers so we absolutely attend and respect and celebrate those, who despite belonging to whatever, in America we call the silent majority, that's why we call it the silent majority in America. You know the majority of America, nobody knows what they think, they don't let you know either. No, they may know but they may not be bothered, yes America's huge you know and to travel, I live in New York which is not, which a world all on it's own. It happens to be in America but it's really not, but it's totally different from the rest of the country and the rest of the country has a love hate relationship with it, right? They love to visit but they would never stay there and you know we have the stereotypes. But if you go, but again having come to the United States, right, from abroad? I see it, for me it's such a complicated country, people are so different from one place to another. They even have different accents from one side to another. They think differently, they act differently, so see you can't even stereotype that piece. I think you said you wanted to talk some? Please, just tell everybody your name.
BILL SCHUTES: My name is Bill Schutes, I'm a retired Civil Engineer which you can't see but what you can see is I am a white person. I'm one of those people with whom the black people are worried about having to live in the future. I might also be described as one of the bystanders or whatever else you may like to say. But what I would like to say is that a change of heart which is a really a deep thing is possible in our country because I'm not going to tell you about other people, about me. I went to Stellenbosch University where they train Afrikaaners and I could also be speaking in Afrikaans right now, so I have a long history on the Afrikaans side from 1803 when my, the first Schutes came to South Africa. Now I went through an experience when I was at University and that was just after the 1948 election when the Nationalist Party became the Government and the experience that I went through apart from changing the whole direction of my life because I grew up not believing in God and I became a Christian, but associated with that, I began to realise that I was just like a lot of people all around me who rejected people of other races. We wanted nothing to do with people of other races in South Africa and I began to realise that this, although I didn't physically hurt anybody, this must have caused hurt and I had the opportunity to apologise to black people in an interracial meeting at that time and I must say to you it's not to my credit, God changed my heart. I started to be interested in building a different South Africa. I was never imprisoned for my beliefs or activities, I was interrogated by the security police here in Johannesburg. But I saw that we could build a different South Africa and having retired two years ago, what I trying to do and it's not easy but nothing is going to stop me is to reach my own people, particularly Afrikaans people, to say that we don't need to fear the future. You know many Afrikaans people are saying they feel their country is no longer their country. Now the way we Afrikaaners behaved, we thought nobody else mattered and it was our country and I would say the essential characteristic of the way I was, was extremely selfish and arrogant. God changed my heart. I can claim no credit for that, I'm saying it twice but I met some Coloured people in Cape Town and I was talking with them and one of them, I was told, had vowed he would never speak to a white man again. I phoned him and I said I'd like to come and talk to you, can I invite you out, you and your wife out for a meal. 1980, you couldn't do that without breaking the law unless you went to an international hotel. I think we need to acknowledge all these things that happened in the past. He said, no, I must come to his house. My wife and I went and his living room was full of his friends and he asked me, a white man, to pray for them in his house. I'm not a dominee, predicant or minister, I'm just an ordinary Christian, but that's why I say God changed my heart. He accepted me, he was willing to trust me to invite me to his house. So I have great hope that, and I could go on for a long time because I've so many experiences and I love talking about them, but, what I really want people to hear is, it is possible for white South Africans, Afrikaaners like myself to face the truth about the hurt we have caused. The hurt to black peoples' self, their humanity, their dignity, by the way we have treated you. We denied that you were people, that's what we did and I think a lot of white people still have that frame of mind but it is possible to win, to get through and I have great hope for what we can do in building relationships in our country. It is possible. I'm so grateful a meeting like this is happening where people can talk about these things. Thank you.
EDDIE: Can I engage the person. I've heard you saying exactly the same in 1996. What have you done and what has been your experience since that time in efforts to get those Afrikaaners, as you're referring to, to change their attitudes?
BILL SCHUTES: I can tell you I haven't made much progress although this really is my fulltime commitment. I have made contact with various churches, various organisations and I cannot claim to have made great advances but I still I believe this is what I should be doing and I'm doing it. I've made contact, I've had several meetings with Beyers Naude who a lot of people here know and we're trying to set up something, he and I, but it's difficult but not impossible. It can be done. I haven't satisfied you Eddie, but that's my answer.
EDDIE: Oh sorry and I'm saying that it is important that when we, to make this type of confessions, that we bring something substantive to people. I was talking to Freddy during the tea break and if I'm impatient then Freddy's a patient. But we're saying that there's a lot of things that have happened and what is important for me that I think, just to take it at another much more pragmatic level, I'm beginning to find answers. I ask myself why do I want this policeman? Why do I want to help him? And as I was talking this morning, I found an answer. That's there's two things that have happened in my life, in my family, not out there, in my family. We're looking at a broader scenario. What we did yesterday was to look at the facts in the family. These things are effecting us in our families in a very significant manner. Whoever's going to do the recording must not, please, not write this.
EDDIE (CONTINUED): What is this saying to me? That my father has been dehumanised, unconsciously by the system, my brother-in-law has been dehumanised, I want to believe it's by the system as well. I don't want to put the blame on the system only, but I'm saying that the legacies of our past are effecting our family relationships in a very, very severe way. I have had the opportunity to talk to a number of people who are in leadership positions in our country at the moment and one gets the same sense from them, that our family relations in this country are carrying such heavy burdens that if we don't do anything about it, it's going to be destroyed.
EDDIE: Okay, but let me pose a question, I've not asked you a question here all the time. With the people that you are working with in New York. Is it your experience as well that this multi-generational consequences of trauma are very often hitting us very hard and in many instances we are not able to work through it? And that's not only true for the side of those that were direct victims, the black people in South African society. I have spoken to a lot of Afrikaner people who are telling me that because I have been on the border, I fought the war against these terrorists and the communists and now I'm confused because these people are in positions of authority and many of them can no longer live with themselves and we tried to do research recently on the number of suicides that we have within white South African society. Family suicides and it is very high and therefore we are saying that the past is catching up with us in a unique way and I therefore want to repeat my question to you. Is it true that that is happening or are we blaming some other people for our own faults?
DR DANIEL: I think it's time that I give you my system so that it won't so much sound like either/or it's either other people or us or either the family or the society, okay, because I mean we know now, remember we spoke about post-traumatic stress disorder? It's as, it's present in the same proportion. I'm going to do some drawing, it's present in the same proportion between the perpetrators as it is among the victims. So I would be absolutely unsurprised to find suicides there, I would actually, the same way I told you that we're trying to study the relationship between impunity and crime and rise in crime? Part of what we are measuring is suicides as well or measures of what we call demoralization, right, because you're talking about demoralization, see and we always, the field always is not sure whether to talk human language or technical language. I'm wedded to the human one, so I want to, as you see I'll have to draw things. I will part read you because it's simply succinct as it's written, and we do need to be cognisant of time. Yes?
DR DANIEL: Oh, you will learn what impunity means but by the way you do know what impunity means, but I will talk about it more systematically. Impunity means to not be held responsible for bad things you do in the judicial system or otherwise, actually. But we can talk about, I mean, we had a whole week seminar just on that. What we're really talking about, each word we are using deserves a whole lot of work, so, okay. Let me start reading and I will, okay, my model is called "Trauma and the Continuity of Self and Multi-dimensional, Multi-disciplinary Integrative Framework" and like you like it, and finally after all these years of people don't recognise my concepts, I've decided to do like the Americans do and like you do and I'm acronising it, so it's this TCMI Framework. Maybe now people will remember it.
Trauma Continuity, Self you'll remember, Multi-dimensional, Integrated, these are the main words I want you to remember. Oh, by the way I have the name of that German book. "The Collective Silence, German Identity and the Legacy of Shame" and you can see how rightly it connects silence and shame.
DR DANIEL: It's an edited book, Heimannsberg and Schmidt and it appeared in 1993. Actually it's an edited book and some of the chapters are unbelievable, you know extremely moving and actually in terms of forgiveness, those of you who are so preoccupied with it, the last chapter in that book is written by a Pastor. It's written as a letter from him to his son about forgiveness and he, I think, was a Nazi, so it's very worthwhile reading for those of you who are so interested in exploring the forgiveness aspect. Yes?
So let me share with you my model and I'll draw a little bit. This is the attempt to delineate and encompass the nature and extent of the destruction of catastrophic massive trauma having to account for the different contextual dimensions and levels of it and the diversity in and in response to it, dictated the formulation of a multi-dimensional multi-disciplinary integrated framework. The framework will thus help guard against the reductionistic impulse to find uni-dimensional explanations for such complex phenomena. Okay, so I'm trying to just by drawing the framework you always remember that you can never explain anything uni-dimensionally, right, by only one dimensional. You should remember that underlying each of these dimensions which I will draw in a minute, there is a distinct philosophical view of the nature of humankind that effects what the professional thinks and does so if you focus only on the family you think one way, only on society, right, only on religion. You have a whole other different view of humankind, that's very important to remember. Okay and....there's a telephone? There are telephones everywhere. Tea and telephones, I love it. It's the TT terrors. TTT! Okay. An individuals identity - the "I" Like when I ask you or you ask me who am I, now follow me now, there's a lot of fun in doing this. An individuals identity involves a complex interplay of multiple spheres or systems, okay, now if I ask who the "I" is, those of you who know psychology or whatever, I already include the physiology and the psychology recognition of feeling, right? That's the "I". Now the "I" does not exist in a vacuum as we have been discovering. It's multiple spheres of system among these internally are the biological and intra-psychic, right, the ones that internal. The interpersonal, familiar, social, communal, the ethnic, cultural, ethical, religious, spiritual, natural, right you can continue with these spheres, right? This too is written and you'll get, when you get the big book. Then you have the educational, professional, occupational, the material, economic, legal and biomental, political, national and international. It's a floating session! Free flow, it's part of my concept! What would you like us to order you for lunch? I can't think about it right now, let's wait a little okay? Ya, if you got overwhelmed with these dimensions, they're not inclusive, right, I just threw a few at you. Each dimension may be a subject of one or more disciplines, right? Psychology, the human psychiatry study by psychologists, psycho link etcetera, etcetera, right? Which may overlap and interact such as biology, psychology, sociology, economics, law, anthropology, religious studies and philosophy. These systems, now it comes, dynamically co-exist, okay so you have all of these dimensions, right, horizontally, these systems dynamically co-exist along the time dimensions to create a continuous conception of life from past through present to the future, right? You have it? Ideally, the individual should simultaneously have free psychological access to a movement within all of these identity dimensions. So if I ask you "Who are you?" You could easily tell me some of these dimensions, right? More challenging is if I ask you, okay listen guys we've been working towards this for two days, "who were you before you were born?" Do it fast, we can spend a whole week on just this, believe me. "Who were you before you were born?" Just play with it. "Who were you before you were born, when you were one, when you were five, when you were ten, twenty?" Now each one deserves a whole chapter, you know, but just play with me you know, ah thirty, some of you are there, right. Forty. Who do you see yourself as five years from now? Ten years from now? Twenty years from now? How do you like to be remembered after you're gone? You see I'm saying that this is rather rich and each one of us has all that. Well ideally there's a free flow in all these systems, right, now expose you to trauma, expose you to trauma causes a rupture in these systems, a possible regression and a state of being stuck in this free flow which I called fixity to differentiate for those who know Freud's theories to differentiate from fixation, it's not the same. The time duration, extent and meaning of the trauma for the individual as well as the survival mechanism or strategies that he or she used to adapt to the trauma and post victimisation traumata such as the conspiracy of silence, right? What comes after the trauma, next one it's the, conspiracy of silence, it's the second wound somebody called it (Siemens) or ....[indistinct] another theoretician called it 'the third traumatic sequence' and the Vietnam veterans literature calls it 'the homecoming stress', will determine the elements and degrees of rupture, disruption, disorganisation and disorientation and the severity of the fixity, you follow me? Again each one of these words is a seminar, so, you are getting the idea, we get stuck in here. The fixity may render the individual vulnerable particularly to further traumatic ruptures throughout their life cycle. Remember that's we saw in the ageing process for example yesterday. This framework allows evaluation of whether and how much of each system was ruptured or pro-resilient. You hear your questions here? Is it the social, the economic system, the you know, the family system? Right, we have all of these here so we can ask ourselves which system was, was ruptured which pro-resilience with which we can use to help the healing? So even though it looks real simple it really gives you a very good picture how to think, the comprehensive way of thinking and may thus, this system, inform the choice of optimal systemic intervention. See in different traumas in different communities, you would choose the family as the target of intervention or the society or the nation or all of them as you must do here, okay? But if you systematic..as you are doing here, but if you doing it systematically as you're aware of all these systems, it becomes much easier, the job is not overwhelming, it's clearly in front of you. For example, the Nazi Holocaust not only ruptured continuity, right, but also destroyed all the individual existing supports. The ensuing pervasive conspiracy of silence between survivors and society including mental health professionals as we talked about, deprived them and their children of potential supports. Do you follow me, it's not only the support, you're doing the trauma, it's after the trauma of well. Integration of the trauma must take place in all of life's relevant dimensions or systems and cannot be accomplished by the individual alone. Roots to integration may include re-establishing, reliving and repairing the ruptured systems of the survivor and his or her community or nation and their place in the international community. Okay, you remember I mentioned then, okay I we can now....
That one of the first things Mandela, said you know that when he became president was "we are now a member in the community of nations. I'll never forget that so he immediately and I always quote that to show the importance of being international, the nation. People think that "oh this is far away, you know like you said right, it's stuff like this. No, that was the first thing Mandela said. Made me very happy.
Now we talked a little bit about integration, we spoke about the family system quite a bit, right? We spoke about the long term, even though you asked about the issue of vulnerability or resilience, I don't know, do you really want to talk about that? Let me just very briefly because I promised you an answer. I won't go into the full discussion of it but oh, I'm sitting, I'm sitting. Tea, telephone, sit. Tea, lunch, telephone. We spoke about, let me just give you a small answer but it's actually a very important question. As I said, I said some of the systems maybe ruptured, some may be resilient? Now people who claim that there's only resilience look only at the systems that are resilient and not looking at the rest and people who think there are only vulnerability look only at the vulnerable systems and not at the resilience and when you take a system like this you don't have that question any more. That's why I asked so the question is no longer vulnerability or resilience it's vulnerability and resilience, okay? It's very important for you to remember. There's always strength, if you don't see it something may be wrong with your eyes rather than not finding it and it's the other way around too. I haven't found any survivor, people ask me always "don't you have anyone who just made it?" You know they resent that I don't give them the good news, right? "Don't you find anyone who just made it?" like an acrobat of survival somebody asked me once, honest, in a university setting, "haven't you found any acrobat of survival?" I said not only didn't I find one, but if I found one I would really think that something very pathological is going on. If he or she went through the debasement of humanity that he or she went through and came out as if nothing happened to him or her, something is really worrisome. Okay, so what I'm saying is even asking the question as a moral implication also and not only a scientific interest. But if you ask me, just a second, I do not want to deprive you of one, ya, I do want to quote you some of the things because there is a great deal of, I mean the issue of resilience today in our field is like the hot topic and I'm taken as a, I'm a pariah in that way a little bit because people who are for resilience, it's like a political party, right? I'm for resilience, I'm for vulnerability and they're not ready yet for a system, for a comprehensive system. If I were to choose a party I would choose the vulnerability one when it comes to post traumatic consequences because of what we've learned in the last, yesterday in particular, okay that the vulnerability that stays in the family, the vulnerability that can catch up with you in ageing, even if you have, right, soared through life. The very good examples, Duma is not here today, but you remember he spoke about how he couldn't understand Prima Levi? You know of Prima Levi? Holocaust survivor, he was a chemist before, well he was a chemist before the war, suffered horrendously during the war and became one of the best writers of the world and a source of hope for all of us and April 12 1987 he committed suicide. There's another writer by the name Viagi Kazinski who was like a brother to me who survived. He had written an incredible book that some of you may want to read. Certainly you should read Prima Levi's work. Viagi wrote "The Painted Bird", just the name of the book to show you how he felt as a survivor, a painted bird. It's a very powerful book. He wrote about his childhood during the war. He too committed suicide four years ago. Bruno Betelheim whom I quoted to you committed suicide. The reason why I just mentioned these three and there are many others and by the way those who made it, I didn't mention that to you. Those who made it, remember the family category, have the highest rate of suicide amongst survivors and their children. I mean those who don't look it, hey? We pay a great price for the choices we make in the postures we choose in life but I want to give you some of my understanding of those suicides so you don't just think that I'm some, you know doom voice telling you the bad news. The reasons I chose these three is that were world known successful individuals in every way you want. Now you remember we talked, Augustine, you remember we talked about anniversary reaction? Bruno Betelheim committed suicide on the date that he was taken to Dago, forty years later. On the same day he asphyxiated himself. Viagi Kazinski did too. Viagi was a wild free person, couldn't, I mean if you gave him these lights around him, forget it. I always think about him when I do these. He had a heart, he suddenly developed a heart condition and had to go with electrodes, you know, to be monitored. He just couldn't live like that, he needed to be free. Asphyxiated himself. Prima Levi threw himself off the stairs. Those of us who know him, know that his mother became very ill, so here was another major loss and he himself became sick and you remember all the associations I gave you with being sick? And these are people who gave all of us hope and meaning in life. So I'm not saying they didn't and I'm not, I'm telling you especially about very successful people, right, so you remember that. But if God forbid the Iraq war will happen, there was research that was relevant to the last Gulf War to this question so I just want to just report to you about that. In Israel, you know that Israel has survivors and people who are not survivors of the Holocaust as I told you Israel is full of very many people with very many different legacies. You remember the last Gulf War, you know that people had to wear the masks and again there was a fear of a gas, dying from gas and you can imagine, if you were a Holocaust survivor, what it would mean to you. So a colleague of ours, Zahava Solomon who is a close friend, studied survivors of the Holocaust in response to the situation compared to others and indeed she found that those people, that's the meaning of the trauma, those people who connected the meaning of this attack to the Holocaust, had a recurrence of post traumatic stress, suffered much more than those who didn't make that association.
So the meaning we give things is also very important, remember the car flash, right, so it's not what things happen but the meaning we give them. Do we say that they're similar or they just things that happen today? Zahava did a, actually a study, before that in 1982 during the Lebanon war and almost by mistake she compared, she sort of had a lot of data, she was the Chief Researcher in the Israeli Army so she had all the data of post traumatic stress as a result in those soldiers after the war. Well, because she's a child of survivors she decided she'll compare children of survivors with those who weren't and low and behold what she found, you remember we talked about transmission? What she found was that those, the children of survivors, who fought in the same war as the others developed more severe, more PPSD, more severe PPSD and it stayed with them for a chronic, much longer time than the others. So this is a way to answer your question about vulnerability versus resilience or vulnerability and resilience in my system because....
...question, but worth studying, I mean some very good studies came out of that question. But again you see my thing is not always you or me but you and me so it's theoretically that way too. You had your hand up a few times, who was it? You did, right? So please ask and then we'll go on to claiming redress to the immediate issues at hand and issues of justice which I promised you. Go ahead.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Talking about resilience and, and what's the other one you spoke about? Vulnerability. When you place intransigent in the scheme of things in accordance with the psycho-analytical forces that you are conducting?
DR DANIEL: You remember I called it fixity, I said someone creates fixity and you become, the danger is you become stuck here? You know, you won't move on? There is so much more to talk about this okay, because the easiest stuff is say which system, the more difficult and the least studied dimension in our field is the dimension of time. Being stuck in time is one of the most important results of trauma, isn't it? Intransigence is being stuck in time and that's a matter of choice too and you say, you know, common sense language knows that. We say he's still a child, you know, we talk like that about people. What do we say when we say he's still a child? We mean he's still in it, you know, he's stuck in that period and he treats life today he may be 50, 55, 60 but he still treats life as if he's still a child, okay? We can be stuck in the trauma. Yes and you had a quest..he was first, so Mosie your'e next okay? Okay. No, no, no, he's hand was first, I'm trying to be fair.
MELANMASHAWA: Eddie here made a ...[indistinct] statement that one of the legacies of trauma was the suicide, family suicide and I believe that people together just going to the TRC testifying what really happened because of this trauma, post traumatic event, they don't cope and they end of committing suicide, self destruction, demolishing and whatsoever that do we think of and today I just want to know, other people here, right now, for example, that particular situation of behaviour, but not waiting, what can you say? What words can you give as South Africans to deal with the situations? It's just an ongoing process in South Africa committing suicide, family divorce, whatsoever. Thank you.
DR DANIEL: What are these people doing? They're re-rupturing. See when their birth is a rupture and being stagnant means you re-rupture. You're absolutely correct. See you remember we talked about foreshortened sense of future as a result of trauma is if the future doesn't exist? It's the time dimension pathology isn't it? Suicide means there is no life after this, life ends here. Re-rupturing, this is very interesting theoretically and it's a wonderful question and let me give sort of a side answer to it. Simmons, the guy I just mentioned, whose name I just mentioned, he started as a policeman in New York, married a psychiatrist and became a psychiatrist himself. Martin Simmons is his name. He was a good cop. He was I think was the first or certainly one of the very first who started training police as to how to work with victims, how to help victims of crime. Real good cop in my book and he came up, you see we came together because I came up with the theory of the conspiracy of trauma, that's what I called my work, right? He called it the second wound because he said the trauma itself is the first wound. What happens after the trauma, the conspiracy of silence is the second wound, right? If you were right and somebody says "well you dress like that, what do you expect?" That's a second wound. Or make you guilty for it, that's a second wound and the people who are supposed to take care of victims, the police, the hospitals, clergy, clergy is a very important potentially destructive, I'm sorry I have to say it, potentially destructive retraumatising discipline that has to be retrained sometime to really understand things from the victims point of view and how to heal things. Police, what did I say, nurses, the family, the community. So all of those agencies, so to speak, that they're supposedly to care for us when we are down or when we are in need. When they fail us, right, he calls it that's a second wound. Now he's a very, he's a wonderful man, he talks like, you know, straight. Now listen to this because this is a beauty. The third wound is the one we inflict on ourselves as how we perpetuate the trauma. How we re-rupture ourselves, what do we do with this and how, what we do with the second wound. So if I go to my Rabbi and my Rabbi makes me feel guilty for having been victimised rather than say to me I'm glad you survived, I'm sorry for what happened to you, you did nothing wrong. This is Martin Simmons, the same guy, he says there are three things you have to say to survivors, I'm glad you are here. I'm glad you survived, I'm sorry this happened to you, none of this is your fault. Very simple words hey? Everyone understands these words, you don't need to get very highly theoretical. But if that's not what you say, if you do inflict the second wound, what does the victim still has a choice about what to do whether to inflict the third wound on him or himself. Do you see what I'm saying. So if you come, if I go to the Rabbi and he makes me feel like dirt, I can say to myself he needs to be retrained, he doesn't know what he's doing or I can walk out of there feeling totally like dirt and committing suicide like not having ever intimate relationship with somebody I love and divorce my husband or my husband too. Let's set the sample example, I can come home and "let's take that, hold on." And he says to me "Oh, I'm going to kill the guy". All I need from him is to hug me right, and to say I love you, I'm really sorry I'll be here for you, nothing changed between us, you're still to me, you're not a damaged goods any more, you're still to me the woman I love. Instead only cares about his macho ego, he's going to retaliate, who gives a damn about that and by that what is he saying to me? He says I don't really love you, you are my property and now you are damaged all I'm caring about is to retaliate the guy for damaging my property. See there are many messages in, that we do without saying in our relationships, so if that's the case divorce may happen you see. For a good reason, no? But it happened because he took the second wound and I made it into a third. We have a choice about that. When you talk to victims about that, to analyze with everyone and again you take time, you listen, you talk, you find out what dimension do they feel actually? What is it? See with Eddie it was interpersonal, right? It's between him and this cop. I think for you, the way you talked at least we know each other so little, right, it's more that when your people and them, so it's more societal, right? Some of you talk more on the political realm, so of you were talking more about the religious aspects. We talked about the family, if it's a family dimension, right, so we've covered a lot of these dimensions if you realise, okay, but you have to carefully analyze and see where the rupture is and remind the person that he or she have a choice about being stuck there or not and they have a choice about whether to appropriate it and make it part of themselves or not. Please go on.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: And here in South Africa we've got many psychologists and of which some of them, they're not working with the situations and now the TRC is getting much old, we talk about the TRC which is in the state of late adulthood getting aged. Right, and the people right now are not ready for reconciliation of which we know that reconciliation is not an overnight process, but, the problem is the post traumatic effect. What words can you draw up for the psychologists here in South Africa to deal with these particular situations after the reconciliation process? What words because this is going to happen and even today I don't know whether it's the question of a conspiracy of silence. P W Botha is not getting the TRC, I don't know why and whether he's not I understand the concept to reconciliation I don't know, what can you do? Give us the direction of South African psychologists.
DR DANIEL: When you remember I said that all these different dimensions are dealt with by different disciplines? Clearly not only psychologists have to be involved. All of you, every profession has to be involved. I happen to be a psychologist who likes to do everything or to see things in a comprehensive way but I could have been a sociologist who does that, you know, so I totally agree with you. You involve all the relevant professions. In fact it's a responsibility of all the relevant professions. I as a psychologist couldn't do a political analysis, right, I as a psychologist, even if I could, I wouldn't because I would assume it's their responsibility both to see and to therefore make a decision. I would like them however to consult with me and more importantly I would like them to consult with the victims. One of the main tragedies, not only in South Africa, everywhere, is that the parties who make the, the parties who sit around the table and negotiate do not have the victims among them, right? It's this government and the opposition and they do the talking, there's no victims to have a voice in there. So all the made, the other plans and the decisions are not including the victims point of view. Now you can change that in fact I mean we have gone in this week through all the recommendations of the reparation and the rehabilitation committee and we corrected some of them and changed some of them and added some stuff and delete some stuff, we did a lot of work. I think for example that your voices are very important in making sure that it gets implemented. Services of many kinds are included in that proposal including psychological services and social services, but, politicians don't like things that may cost money even if it's a good investment. They hear money, no - no resources. I know, I'm at the U.N. you know it's impossible, the moment they hear money, forget it. So they don't think about the issue, they only, close off.
Now your message to your politicians has to be, we have learned and we know that these are long term and even multi-generational problems. You have to ensure that we have appropriate services for those. If you don't provide the victims with help now, you may not be spending your money now, but you're buying yourself a huge cost later on and you may even buy yourself another war that costs a whole lot of money and a whole lot of loss of life. So, again, I'm a psychologist but when I talk to politicians I try very much to understand where are they and what do they think and therefore to talk to them in their language to get what I want done, okay? This is very important, you want to get something done, you really have to listen to who the other party is who you co-operation is with. If you only repeat yourself, you're the only one who hears it. You know, so it's wonderful, so you hear your voice you hear it again, you hear it again, you hear it again. You have to hear their voice not even to be nice, just in order to know what to say if you want them to hear your voice. Am I talking too much about this? I don't think so. I'm trying to say you talk differently to different people too in the sense, only in the sense, not to be, to put on an act or something but in order for them to hear you and there's nothing humiliating or wrong about that. They have language, their language, the same way I have my language. I've just promised Mossie, he's been so patient.
MOSSIE: Stuckness. Does the TCMI framework help to explain, let's use the word stubbornness, of the people who were not directly traumatised. I know you did mention something about families and demand to generational effects of trauma and so on. But I think to use a faraway example, if in Europe there are these new Nazi resurgences. Now those youngsters weren't necessarily part of the, of that, the hard years of the 40's and so on, '30s and there is this Neo-Nazism coming up again. Now does one call that a, connect that with this, or is it just stubbornness related to issues of economics or nothing to do with psycho-analytical issues because in terms of our reconciliation journey or conciliation journey for that matter, to what extent are we to entertain the perpetrators' problems in relation to trauma or, because they are still very much definitely economic self interests which keep people where they are and so I'm just wondering whether this TCMI model was intended for victims or whether it is applicable to perpetrators and their children in so far as working, finding a way forward is concerned.
DR DANIEL: I intended it to be applicable to all. See they're stuck in the same trauma as you are. It's not a different trauma, same one. The reasons why you call it Neo-Nazi is that, you just said that. Neo-Nazi means Nazism again. No? It means repeating that. Now what's interesting about that is that the people who choose it are people again, the youngsters, who are forlorn, who perhaps live in poverty, whose parents don't give them direction and don't find a place in society so they adopt that as their gang, so to speak, or the peer group as you, you know, with those ideals. No everybody is stuck. You know what you're reminding me of that survivors often say that the only person who, the people who would know best what they went through is other survivors and perpetrators because they were there. They were there with them. No this applies to all and the economic situation is extremely important to analyze. Again it's not up to me to analyze it because I'm not an expert in this, but if we were to have a real planning, we will have everybody, we will have all the experts together and plan it together and do the healing together because you're right, without economic healing the problems that are related to economic healing will remain. That's why many of the initiatives that I encountered this week have been economic, right? To find work for women so that they can be paid, you know, doing the beads or to, you know, it's pretty hard you know to do the soap business with the kids, you know near Alexandria, for the kids both to work and to earn, you know to feel useful and to feel economically viable to the community. So I think each half dimension has it's own and you want to have all of them. I said healing integration is in all dimensions. All. I didn't say for a moment only in the psychological, did I? Please.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I just want to ask a simple question. Maybe through your research have you managed to research between the conflict that is taking place in the West Bank between the Israelites and the Palestine people and do you ever think that there will be a reconciliation between the two groupings, Palestinian people and Israelites people because they are the people that who just claim that no, this has been their promised land from God, occupied the land of other people, you know and there is that struggle between the two nations. Do you think that there will be a reconciliation between the two groupings?
DR DANIEL: Believe that the forces for reconciliation, I believe, I choose my word carefully. I believe that the forces for reconciliation are stronger than the forces against it but what we mean by reconciliation is very important isn't it? It means living together in peace and security and mutual respect and mutual prosperity and there are forces against that and again, the moment you get stuck some place you become entrenched? My tongue refuses. I need it, I need to see it to, thanks. The moment you're stuck, you're stuck I mean basically so if you get here, thanks, you can write right near the fixity. You see, so those people who Michael mentioned you know, most people are in the middle and most people of Israel want peace and I'm sure most Arabs want peace and we've had some peace already, so it's not impossible, we know that, each ones..
DR DANIEL: Right, thanks, okay so it's exactly the word and you see I think it's also part of a more general thing around the world, general movement today around the world of fanaticism and fundamentalism? People who take the extremes and just there and nothing, and part of who they are is not to move, to be stuck and when you have so many people on both sides, committed to not moving, no movement will happen even if the majority craves for it, prays for it, works for it. But again, you're really talking about the political dimension because those who don't get the peace done are the politicians. If you looked at the social dimension, the community dimensions, the family etcetera, people want peace and people live in peace with each other. So again, don't mix up the political dimension with the social dimension with the community dimensions okay? I just told you about so many initiatives of bringing kids together from there and you should hear those kids, I'll bring you those videos. You know when a Palestinian kid and an Israeli kid and an Egyptian kid, you know, I brought that group to a United Nations Congress on Crime. I wanted those politicians to listen to kids so I had, in the same panel I had an 80 year old Muslim clergyman from Egypt and a thirteen year old, three thirteen years old. It was wonderful and the kids were the last to speak and you should listen, you should have been there because everybody started crying. They very simply said we are the leaders of the future, we are going to handle our jobs differently, you know, we're going to make sure that this will happen, you know, but they have come so empowered to feel that they are the leaders of the future, that the futures in their hands. I have total hope when I listen to these kids because they really are fantastic. Ya.
MEMBER OF AUDIENCE: But however you can't separate the two, you know, because day and night, yesterday or today, you are going to see that there is that physical conflict between the Israelite people and the Palestinians and you can't say that now let's put aside politics because everything is influenced by political situations.
DR DANIEL: No, no, listen you're being unrealistic. He changes because he or she has no choice. Especially in democracy we have a maximum of two terms in most of the democracies of this world. That is the length of their political life to affect my life or yours. You just flattened yourself right in front of us, you're doing it to you. They are not doing it to you. You don't like them. In a democracy there are democratic ways to choose others instead. That's the wonderful thing about democracy, see I live in two democracies, it's in my bones. No politician runs my life. I choose the politician, if I don't like them I choose somebody else and if I care enough I go to talk to more people to vote for who I want also and excuse me and if I really care I will give up my practice and become a politician.
DR DANIEL: I know it's a terrible job, no it's a terrible job. I wouldn't do it because there are so many things you have to do for that, that I don't want to do. There lives are very difficult have you tried to be a politician? Have you tried to speak for a party you don't particularly believe in? I mean it's really rough, it's not easy life. Go ahead, you haven't spoken, I first want to hear the voices who haven't spoken, go ahead.
DAVID: Ya, my name is David. I want to contribute maybe around what has been raised now, the relation, the situation of the Israelites and the Palestinians. To my understanding my knowledge is that in a way in your life, let's maybe we have different understanding about what is politics. I understand unless maybe we have different understanding of what is meant by politics because to my understanding politics, everything that you live with on every day, you know in everyday life, but the influence..
DAVID: No I want to finish what I'm saying and maybe you'll say your understanding about what I'm trying to say. My understanding is to say that you know political life, maybe to my understanding, does have influence of our life and vice versa. It is unfortunately sometimes must be given time you know to say our thinking behind these things. My understanding is because of, I mean politics is not an event and to me again it's not correct or something that you can define it, maybe within a particular situation, but it's a process on it's own, how then do you understand something. When you look at the situation of the Palestinians and the Israelites it's because of some particular interest of a particular group to say I then I wanted to stay there and to be stagnant at that particular place is because of some certain influences and some certain interests.
DAVID: I think is what I'm saying and as I said that is the political life that is within ourself and that what of course is really telling us on daily basis what are the things and what are the happenings. What I'm trying to say here is that all of those people the Palestinians in particular for them to do that I think it's because of their own interest and because their own, I mean, situation which of course they want to find themselves in that situation and you look in the situation whereby they're fighting on each and every day. It's because of a particular political inclination what they want to achieve at the end of the day. Either they want to reconcile that particular period that the war was supposed to be, I mean, was supposed to be something of the past but because of a particular interest are still continuing and how even it's difficult for them to reconcile. I think I want to refer the situation to the South African situation in the South African context. I don't want to be that somehow to be revisionist...
DAVID: I don't want to be a revisionist but I want to be someone who progresses someone whose part of the times, you know the change of times. You are in a situation whereby you have a people who were the victims of the forced removals and want to place them in a particular situation at the end of the day you want to come to them, you want to reconcile with them, do you think that's going to be possible for them? Because at the end of the day what they want before is to reclaim their land, their belongings before. What I'm trying to say here is that, you know, in the process of reconciliation there are a number of aspects that we need to concede. It's not a matter of reconciliation between a white and a black in terms of colour. It is not a matter of reconciliation because of our thinking and the thinking of other people but because of the interest that we need to share an interest that we want to achieve at the end of the day and what we envisage. I think that is all I want reconciliation. So of course routine for some times it's not for me that we have a neighbour of a white, a particular colour person, I mean the process of reconciling this person. It's difficult when we fail to reconcile with your own African neighbour. How can you reconcile with someone from a particular, I mean, group? It's very, very much difficult. You start by self reconciling yourself reconciling your mind, reconciling your thinking, you see. But that should not give an individual such a broad, you know, democracy like anyone whose to experience what is democracy. That's why in South Africa we have this Bill of Rights so of course it's given people a certain, you know, privileges within their country. I'm not interested maybe if I'm living in the ....[indistinct] country to harm others people interest but my responsibility is to ensure that how can I begin to leave those people? I think that is the whole thing about reconciliation but the story that has been said here, I'm not sure how does it, going to help and assist in making sure that we really achieve what we're into today.
DR DANIEL: You haven't been here for the whole three days have you? Ya, no, no, no, because we have, a lot of these questions we have asked and attempted to address so I'm really sorry, I don't think repeating, I mean maybe some of you could fill in the people who just showed up today. But do not neglect your questions.
To just remind you so the basic principles, it can't done right now because if you like it, that's number one, it takes time. Even in terms of the interest, you see, you're talking about a basic interpersonal question. I have interests, you have interests, can we live together? Now that's a very basic immediate question that each one of us has from the first moment we wake up, you know? Where you sit, you sit there or you sit in my chair, or we both can sit. So one of the things I said today before between it's not either my interest or your interest, it's your interest and my interest and seeing how we can negotiate having all interests met and that holds true between you and your friends, between you and your loved ones, between you and your country, between you and your neighbour and between one country and another. That's what the United Nations is about. Sometimes we compromise sometimes your interests overtake the time if need be, sometimes mine, you're talking about a normal process of living together with others. You really are. You know, I quote another Jewish wisdom for you, what the hell we've made such a thing of it. A Rabbi, Helal and Shamai, there were two Rabbis in the history of Judaism and one asked the other "How what you put all of Judaism in one word, in one sentence?" "So I give you the sentence" he said. Now I'm translating from Hebrew so bear with me. "If not me for me, who will be? If not now, when. But if only me for myself, what am I?" That's the struggle we have, it's a struggle, it ain't an answer, it places the question. You have a good question but don't reduce it only to politics. Your question is really from you and one other human being to you and your country. You don't like my answer, you want a simpler one, you want me to say that it's all politics. So what you're, shall we shoot all the politicians? No, no, no dear what you're saying is if it's only the politicians what do we do, just throw them out? You guys love to throw difficulties up, it's like you know, it's like faeces, people problems you go flush them in the toilet. Doesn't work like that. You're not talking about living with each other, you're talking about how to get rid. That ain't living with each other.
DAVID: I'm not sure maybe you're committing yourself to that which of course I might not think what you have in mind but what I'm saying my understanding of the interpretation might be wrong. I'm from a particular situation with a particular history and a background and maybe you are from a particular situation with a particular history and the way in which you see things might be different from my situation. But at the end of the day...
DR DANIEL: I see things as you and me and you see things as you or me. It's a face, I agree with you, it's a fundamental difference of ways of living in the world. It's not coming from separate situations it's different ways of being in this world. Being, being, not thinking, not schooled, being.
DAVID: We'll reserve some of the things for lunch but I want to raise some of the things. To say that maybe our interest at heart is to make sure that we build the nation, that is our responsibility for now and..
DR DANIEL: I feel awfully guilty if I, what? Now I know you already what you mean is, you don't want me to leave. Thank you. Do believe me that I'll take all of you with me and I have the sense that we will, that we will repeat this in six months or so. So I want everybody to stay in touch, so I would very much like it if you as a community stay in touch because we have created a sense of community and I think so many good ideas came up. That it will be nice for you to continue the dialogue and planning together, okay? I do want to talk about reparation, compensation, the process of reparation as it happened with us for you to see what makes sense to you, what doesn't make sense to you. As we did with the families stuff. Shall I describe first the process of claiming redress. Now the German, the name the Germans gave it was "Wieder Gudmagom" which literally means to make something good again, to make amends for the suffering during the Nazis. Of course it's in extremely insulting words if you think of it. It was experienced by the survivors as yet an additional series of hardships. The ...[indistinct] powers after World War II issued laws restricted to restoring to the original owners property confiscated by the Nazis. It had strictly to do with property and as you know today from knowing what's going on with Switzerland and the rest of the world, a lot of people took the Jewish property and it was never returned to anybody. The laws did not take into account personal damage to victims of Nazi persecution. Those who had suffered in mind and body or had been deprived unjustly of their freedom or whose professional or economic prospects had been summarily cut short. Nor did these laws consider assistance to widows and orphans of those who had died as a result of Hitler's policies. The Western Allies placed the responsibility of the reparation of such damages in the hands of the newly constituted German Federal States. Following a few stages the Federal Republic of Germany enacted what's called the Final Federal Compensation Law on September 14, 1965 twenty years after the end of the war. So when you get jealous of our story please study the facts first, okay? Twenty years after. You're now only four years after. Twenty years after came that law, thus indemnification for persecution of persons was differentiated from restitution for lost property. Only then they started to talk about people. The implementation of the compensation law was traumatic in itself and let me quote you a lawyer, a reparation lawyer here, Kirstenberg, he was a good friend. He said "even when most German officials showed concern and willingness to compensate Jews for the wrong done to them, their so called Wieder Gudmagom was only concerned with monetary matters. A moral Wieder Gudmagom was not planned and did not exist. No one bothered to restore the survivors' dignity. On the contrary the procedures inherent in some of the paragraphs over the restitution laws inflict indignities upon the claimants while at the same time, German authorities are elevated to the status of superior beings who adjudicate the claimants' veracity and honesty and classify them in accordance with degree of their damage even if the applicant had indeed been confined to a concentration camp they behaved as if he were trying to extort money from the German government under false pretences. The survivors had to prove that they had been damaged. Their attempts at self cure were destroyed once they had to admit that their damage was permanent sealed and signed by the authorities. To receive payment often sorely needed the applicants had to subject themselves to the most humiliating and degrading seemingly very correct legal type of investigation." (They had better not see my lunch). "Bureaucratic deadlines" this reminded me of the arbitrary time of the end of the TRC, that has to not be. I was just told that special report is going to also going to stop in March by Jane and I think it will be a terrible tragedy because if you're okay, even if you close the TRC at least have the public process going and I think this is the way to do it, right, to ensure that it's public because this programme has been so it will be very good to continue it, you know, so there will be a respect for the process. I really very strongly recommend that and I recommend that you lobby for it, you know, with the station. "Bureaucratic deadlines are used for the unfair and prejudicial practice of rejecting claims. The German Treasury enriches itself when a claimant dies before his case is concluded. At this time, this is 1980, fifty percent of the claims are denied, twenty five percent are still pending, this is 1980.
Only one fourth of Jewish survivors received a ...[indistinct]. A case in the court alone takes eight years for the termination while many of elderly claimants are not only humiliated but suffer from lack of economic necessities and monies for treatment of ailments which exacerbate in old age. The victimisation" he concludes, "of the ones persecuted continues." Crucial to having claims processed was undergoing a psychiatric examination, it wasn't automatic that you received money, you had to not only prove that you were a victim but also to go to a psychiatric examination. To be an examiner, the only requirement was that the psychiatrist be able to speak and write German which was not the language of the victim. So it wasn't Yiddish or Polish or any of the languages of the victims. German, to be able to write a report to the government. Which were the language..okay, it's very similar here, I heard, I mean people bitterly talking about some people only insisting on talking Afrikaans or, so it's, there are some things that are so similar. The psychiatric examiner had to determine and try to express in numbers how much or what fraction of the patient's emotional illness is in his opinion, in those days it was only his, due to the persecution he suffered. The law required a minimum of twenty five percent damage in order for the applicant to receive pension. So if you had less, if you had twenty four percent suffering, you weren't compensated. Examiners had intense emotional and moral reactions to this process, you remember my transference thing? These reactions motivated much of the writings and were poignantly expressed in most of them. Islo, one of the examiners and a good guy, speculates that one major reason for the experts and the courts quote
"Open or concede hostility against those who have had to bear suffering, great suffering, had to do" he calls it "universal archaic pagan contempt that man still tends to feel for the weak and humiliated, for those who had to submit to physical punishment, suffering and torture".
"the minimum one may be mad under such circumstances is that the responsible authorities recognise those who cannot control this archaic feeling and exclude them from the position of experts in matters of compensation for suffering."
When a physician refers to a concentration camp experience is quotes "disagreeable" he has given away his secret contempt, he has thrown away the right be called an expert. If he continues to avail himself of that privilege, he must share the blame with those who continue to use his services. Kristal and Nederland, right I mentioned Kristal a few times he's one of my foremost teachers. They say even the hearing of the tales of the concentration camps survivors is so disturbing and traumatic, so abusive to the examiner that some are compelled to avoid obtaining the details of the traumatisation. You remember that's the conspiracy of silence between the mental health and? They then arrive they say, at a meaninglessly brief summary of the experiences and Hoking report cases quote "where the patients have been told not to describe their experiences, only their symptoms."
Fred, a friend of mine, a Czech Jew of Viennese origin and a sole survivor of a well to do family whose total possessions in Prague were taken over by the Germans and then by the Communists left via France to the United States and began pursuing compensation in the 1950's. He describes his ordeal as follows: "The fact that I was three and a half years in concentration camp didn't count. At that time unless you were literally disabled such as missing a hand, they recognised nothing. I always found it distasteful to spend days fighting a bureaucracy that tried to tell me that I'm not entitled to that money, providing documents, writing letters, writing to, trying to, having to prove I was indeed worthy of compensation. When I tried to get payment for some medical bills they wanted copies of the bills from 1946 to 1956. I had no way of finding them so they figured out an average and offered me 200 dollars if I waived claims against medical bills and I said that that is an insult and told them to keep the money and leave me alone. Fighting for these things absorbed so much emotional energy, it is bad enough that I have to live with memories, but to have to stir them up and also face ones persecutors, I don't have to face Nazis any more but I still have to deal with German bureaucracy. I got disgusted and wanted to quit but I knew if I didn't claim it, the money will remain in Germany. They won't give more to someone else."
Okay, let me move on to motions of restitution and compensation. What I didn't do here, I didn't tell you that this was paper, I wrote this for the United Nations High Commission of Human Rights and this was a special group of experts working for the United Nations on the rights to restitution, compensation and rehabilitation for victims of gross violation of human rights and fundamental freedom. Now this was written in '92 and what I did is different from the others who sort of focused more on restitution, no compensation. What I did was, interviewed victims, survivors of the Holocaust, Argentina Regime, Japanese, Internees and World War II in America and some Bapal victims, to simply give the voice of the victim because the voice of the victim is normally not included in writings of lawyers and politicians and such.
So what I'm going to do now is basically quote victims about these issues. Most of this is their voices, a little bit is mine. Where was I, restitution and compensation, so again, this is what victims said: "Of course everybody says that money is not enough, there is a disagreement whether we should take money or not. Some people don't need it at all financially yet insist on getting reparation. Compensation is a symbolic act because you can never be compensated. It is minor in amount but major insignificance. Many people are desperate and need the support. They are living on a pension of 200 dollars a month and it's critical." No, they are living on a pension, right, they are retired and elderly and 200 dollars a month can save them, you know. So it's critical to receive that. For a family in Bapal even 15 dollars a month may make a difference even though it's a pittance. Let me continue. "How does one compensate for three and a half years in concentration camp? For me or how does one compensate for loss of a child? It's impossible. How do you pay for a dead person? For a Korean woman sexually abused by the Japanese in World War II. It's not the money but what the money signifies. An indication. It signifies the governments own admission of guilt and an apology. The actual value especially in cases of loss of life is of course merely symbolic and should be acknowledged as such." Now another survivor: "The money concretises to the victim the confirmation of responsibility, wrongfulness, she or he is not guilty and somebody cares about it. It is at least a token. It does have a meaning. Just a letter of apology does not give the same meaning and does not have the same meaning and even if it is a token it adds." Now this particular quote was from a Japanese internee in World War II. You know that America had concentration camps for Japanese ...[indistinct] during World War II, do you know that? Everywhere you look there are victims of gross violations of human rights. So it's, this particular quote was from a Japanese internee and so he says in our system of justice, that's the United States, and our system of Government when damage occurs money is paid. So he said in that system money should therefore be part of it. That's another saying, psychiatrist survivor: "We have demonstrated that people can be damaged. There must be an acknowledgement that wrong was done. Then those who were damaged are entitled to compensation for their damages and a programme of rehabilitation. The acknowledgement is necessary because without an admission of guilt, people remain angry when you see that here. Rehabilitation programmes must be available on the long term basis." Now I will repeat that as many times as everybody in this country hears that. In Israel, there's some survivors who went to Israel, okay? In Israel idealist fought against taking money, okay? They said "I refuse, it's blood money". They used to call it blood money and they felt that it would be an insult to the memory of the victims, okay? Now this is a one of them looking back.
He says "Today I'm sorry because I concluded that I did not succeed to change anything by refusing and the truth is that here and in Israel" well that's both in America and in Israel, "in Israel there are ageing survivors who don't have an extended family. The steady sum enables them to go on. The fact that I gave up only left the money in the hands of the Germans. We were wrong." And I agree with him. Actually out of that came my recommendation that whenever survivors refused the money, put it in a special fund so it remains raising interest and when the survivors need it or when their children, or if they want to, how do you call it, to contribute it to other victims help or to build hospitals, I don't care what. I think there should be a special fund, okay, so please remember that and I think another survivor from Argentina said that later.
Okay, should there be one payment? Actually it came up, see, all of these issues come up for you and came up for us. Okay, so the question was should there be one payment, right, or a payment like for you it's through six years which I think is too short but, okay. So the survivor says no. The monthly cheque in some ways weakens the trauma. Listen to this please because that did not come as a consideration there, right? He says when it becomes routine, it transforms into something permanent that somehow enables overcoming survivor guilt. Sort of a reminder, right, that it's okay. You remember our discussion about that? The routine swallows the guilt so there's a psychological value here as well. Okay, Argentina and Chile. the Argentinean and Chilean parents they said to me that the state will admit that a horrible crime was done to them and that it was done without any justification or reasons or was purely an expression of political harm and abusive power and violation of their freedoms and human lives. Not only was there a crime taking lives, suddenly they are without their children. They were also robbed of the chance of their children helping and supporting them and standing by them in old age. Thus at least they should have a compensation for the rest of their lives, not a single lump sum. There is no place for a single payment. A house is a house but when it comes to human life you compensate for something that could have accompanied them throughout their lives. Therefore, there's a logic in receiving regular compensation. This should be legalised throughout the war.
Okay, I'm going on with again Argentina. In Argentina, responses of different victims groups seemed to vary. The mothers, the Platzo De Mio Organisation, you know them right? Right, everybody knows? The Mothers’ Organisation officially refused economic reparations as the governments attempt to buy their silence and in the absence of social and historical recognition, that their children had been political and social opponents and not criminals. The former political prisoners, especially if they had been in prison for a long time, consider economical compensation as their rightful reparation. Mostly young people, their imprisonment deprived them of finishing their studies, progressing in a job or establishing their own home and families. In married cases the long period in jail caused great economical difficulties to their families. Many of them feel that this is a partial moral recognition of the damage they had suffered and that albeit in a small way, they can at least win something from the state.
For people who are ambivalent, who have mixed feelings, their ambivalence increases when compensation is experienced as an offense, yet it is necessary economically. I'll go on. Here it comes, the impunity. I'm quoting Argentina, I mean survivors. Perhaps the most crucial aspect is that of "impunidad" that's the name of impunity there or amnesty there. I'm quoting: "That traitors collaborators, torturers are not punished. As long as persons who had violated human rights or exerted torture could go free, there can never be a true democracy in society. A democratic constitution is no guarantee against torture. Impunity under a democratic constitution is a continuous repression. Impunity stops democratic process. Torturers for example should have absolute maximum punishment. To practice torture is equal to committing murder." Okay, now I'm going to the Japanese Americans again. "Most Japanese Americans", I'm sure they have a lot of feelings here and I'm sure we can stop to discuss after every voice, but I'm not going to do that now, the whole thing is to have everything and then we, so I don't feel guilty for not giving you this piece of work. That made a difference in the United Nations. This is part of the United Nations resolution. The agreement you have here doesn't live up to international agreements. It's important that you know that. But again, I want to bring you voices from other people. "Most Japanese Americans felt finally vindicated after 50 years". Okay, I really want you to hear this, okay, please hear this. 50 years it took them. Having spent ten years fighting this system, do you hear me, impatient kids there? They fought ten years to fight a system. Not as a Japanese issue. They fought it, they were very smart, listen to this. They didn't fight it as a Japanese issue like "feel guilty for me". They did something extremely smart. They made it an American Constitutional issue. Brilliant but it took 40 years for them to get that idea. Okay, "so many of our people", they say, "could now talk about it" They bring the benefit out, okay, because for 50 years they didn't talk. I mean their conspiracy of silence was absolute. It's also cultural. So it got very complex. So he said to me, "not so many of our people could now talk about it and express deep seated feelings for the first time in 50 years. "That was the positive therapeutic side" he said. "It was only a token compensation". Now, you would laugh at this, but that's America. He says "Twenty thousand dollars won't cover what was lost, jobs, names, all properties, horrible living conditions, dignity, citizenship. It's not the money but what the money signifies". Psychologically it lifted the big burden off the Japanese Americans who always feel that the "system couldn't trust us but viewed us as potential enemies, as second class citizens. At least we now feel not accepted but vindicated for what happened 50 years ago. The apology," he said, this is very important, "the apology was more important than the amount of money. After 50 years of maintaining that they were right, the government did acknowledge that they were constitutionally wrong." Now it was very interesting, I don't know if I quoted it here, let me read, just in case, there was something very interesting. When they received the money, you know, and the signature from the government, it came in brown manila envelopes and they got very insulted that it was a bureaucratic matter, so again they raised hell about that. Sent back those and received it with a presidential seal in white envelopes. So everything is important. You remember I said yesterday you can't fix it all by one thing. Everything is important, even the envelope. When dignity is at issue you have to really be careful and sensitive. "Economic compensation" another statement, "given to torture victims should be very substantial. The torturers should compensate for their crime by having confiscated all their property in order to pay back to those they have tortured." Duma spoke about that yesterday, he didn't even talk about confiscating, he spoke about just giving, you know, contributing. "Whether members of governments, police officers and doctors who have participated in torture, all property should be confiscated from them. This is the most important aspect of restitution and used for compensation to the victim. Furthermore, there should be general awareness in the whole population about this aspect and the situation as such. It might be very effective preventively if this principal was generally known." And think about that, if people had to also pay money, people for whom money matters, that perhaps could be another preventive measure, right? Let me go on. That's a Holocaust survivor now. "Before I anything else, the victim wants an acknowledgement of a debt that somehow sometime a government writes laws and one of them is Mr Such and So, deserved the praise of the country. The first step of the government such as Argentina is, the State of Argentina has woefully wronged those people who were persecuted by the military dictatorship and we feel contrite and wish to apologise. The full sense of it is that it should be a law, nothing else". Do you have that already? The national apology? You've got a new law to fight for. And they say and put it on the books "We have done wrong, we acknowledge it" It is very important as a political matter I would absolutely have the books opened, open the files and let the facts speak for themselves. This is another one: "Let us find a way and make a general statement. Clearly victims of governmental wrong should be compensated and this is the way we should go about it as we had established norms of international minimal behaviours, crime against humanity, we need prior legislation for compensation for victims."
"Legal procedures against victimisers and financial arrangements compensating the victims unnecessary steps in the aftermath of man made calamity. However there are not sufficient steps for societies to recover. In societies which moved out of totalitarian regimes into quasi democratic ones such as Argentina, Chile, Eastern Europe. Victims and victimisers of the former regime go on living in the same society".
Okay, hi guys, those who brought that up? Okay? I told you you'll find some answers later. "As they do not have", we are actually having an international dialogue because I'm giving you voices from all over the world. "As they do not have any social and psychological mechanisms to repair these past relations, these may just penetrate deeper inside and thereby be transmitted to the next generation. Therefore a long legal and financial steps in each of these countries is socio-psychological institute should be established to work on the after effects of trauma with both children of victims and victimisers.
The end result of this process should be to try to bring them together, to think about the overall social responsibility. What can they do together so that trimental tensions will not burst out again and again within the societies." See, we touched on a whole lot of these and then somebody else says: "I'm still concerned that it makes it easier to just assign monetary value and not address the profound emotional and moral breach." That's why we have to insist here on the services, special services and social, psycho-social services. Oh here is that front one. Okay, "because of the long term and or inter-generational transmission of victimisation" guess who wrote that? "There should be no statute of limitation" that's me. "Should be no statute of limitation. If the victim for moral reasons refuses the meaning of the reparation payments, the money should, nonetheless, not remain in the hands of the perpetrators or the silently acquiescent proceeding socio-political system, but it or the equivalent sum, should be put in a special long term fund whose purpose should be future oriented both in terms of education, prevention and latter care as provisions for the future for themselves and offspring care if needed and necessary." Okay, you've got to hold on to your voices on that.
Let me move on to commemoration and education. Some of the commemoration things we covered yesterday but I will repeat it because I think it's important enough. "The need for commemoration for the victims and society. Rituals are very important. There is no organised society, religion or culture that does not have rituals of memory. Commemorations can fill the vacuum with creative responses and may help heal the rupture not only internally, but also the rupture the victimisation created between the survivors and society." Let me go on. "It is a shared context, shared mourning, shared memory, the memory is preserved, the nation has transformed it into part of it's consciousness. The nation shares the horrible pain. What may be an obligatory one day a year ritual to others, the victims experience is a gesture of support, of sharing the pain, they are not lonely in their pain." I would love to invite you to visit Israel on "Yoma Sha'ar" on Holocaust day. Eight o'clock in the morning, everything in the country stops. There is a siren and everything stops. People get out of the cars, people stop walking, nothing moves, you don't hear a sound. Everybody stands up. A whole moment and then the siren call go again and things start moving again. I cannot describe to you the feeling, knowing that the whole country is together experiencing this. It's truly an incredible experience, you really should, if you have a chance ever, it's just an incredible experience. Nobody feels alone at that particular moment and that's worthwhile doing for the survivors and for society, it's a moment of reflection, it's just a little moment, but you remember, you think, so I highly recommend that as part of when you come up with the date for your commemoration day, I highly recommend something exactly like that.
In the discussion, like you're having, is it a day of heroism or a day of a martyrdom right? Is it a day of liberation? I think because World War II sort of ended in similar time, you know, during a few months, it sort of worked, it's always a compromise, so it, it was a, I don't know exactly what the upshot, I was there. I was just, remember feeling totally relieved that it was decided, but a lot of the issues are very important that come up in the discussion because the meaning of the day is supremely important and that would count but we very clearly try to give both of the martyrdom and heroism to it. Okay I'll go on.
There should be general awareness on high level. Information and education about the situation. How it arose, what are the consequences. Statues of heros and martyrs, paintings, streets should be named after them. You have it in your clause, I was so happy to see that. Streets should be named after them as should rooms and colleges and museums. Actually I don't know how you handle your schools but how about naming schools after them? Something very interesting happening. In United States, two months ago, would you believe, two months ago, this is years and years and years after. Two months ago, three schools in the South decided to change their names from White names to finding Black hero names. It was so interesting that, see this is part of long struggle. There should be memorial services, scholarship funds - very important, concerts and theatre performances and educational books. This is, another one says: " commemoration should be done with great dignity and with the feeling that while it horrors those who suffered" excuse me - "and with the feeling that while it honours those who suffered, those who have died, it's also done for preventive purposes in the spirit of the knowledge that compensation for loss of lives, hell, hopes can never be fulfilled. Maintaining the commitment to 'never again' and the possibility for inter-generational dialogue which may include dialogue between children of survivors and perpetrators." I touched yesterday upon, you know, the survivors carrying this internal cemeteries, so you already have that idea and we talked about the importance of monuments in, not only in commemoration but documentation and education, remember? The extension of bearing witness? So you remember those functions.
Okay let me go on to complete this and give you my final goals and recommendations that have been submitted to the U.N. are included in it. It's really very succinct, you know, it's one, two, three. So let me do it with you very slowly, very carefully. Okay, I am briefly relisting the goals and recommendations that emerged from those interviews, right, with all of the survivors and I'm really, I'm not giving a full account of course but what I have I think, well, the world thought its good enough, so I join in with that, or at least it's a good start. Okay.
Re-establishment. That's a goal. The goal is to re-establish the victims equality of value, power, esteem, dignity (depends what word you like there) which is really the basis of reparation in this society or nation. But (A) is from the victims point of view, so now, this is accomplished by:
(C) and last one for now. This is from the nations point of view, okay? Repairing the nations ability to provide and maintain equal value under law and the provisions of justice. Shall I repeat it? Okay. Repairing the nations, that's the goal, right. Repairing the nations' ability to provide and maintain equal value under law and the provisions of justice. This is accomplished by:
JOHN: My name is John. John van Rooyen. I'm from the education department and I've been observing and listening to the proceedings for the last three days and there's one aspect that keeps on coming back and that is the question of the financial and the economical aspect and I think that is quite a very important aspect of the whole debate and you've read some quotes in terms of what victims have been saying world wide and many of them have raised the economic side of it as well and there's just a few points I would like to raise before I would also like to make some recommendations and the one important one is the fact that victims within South Africa, at the moment, are still being oppressed. Oppressed financially in the sense that during the years of Apartheid, the Government loaned huge sums of money, from especially institutions within South Africa and the pension fund and I thing it's a very small amount, from either IMF or the World Bank. Today, we have a situation where the very same victims that are now getting jobs and especially in the public sector and getting to a point to be almost determined or deemed to be the middle class, are now being taxed, taxed to such an extent, they still suffer because they pay huge sums of tax, for they have to contribute huge sums of their salaries to tax. The families are suffering because the breadwinner has little to spend on reparation within the family itself, on education, on many of the social aspects within society and I think that is a major concern and that is something that we have to look at. It's either we have to drastically change the tax structure, I know it's a very difficult and complex thing to do but some thought will have to go into that process. We need to do something about that.
The second point is immediately after Apartheid which I think it's not dead yet, but let's just call it post-apartheid. One did not have or South Africans did not get a sense that the international world were really that much concerned about the suffering and the pain that black people had to go through during the years of Apartheid and I'm talking about in the sense of the treatment that's been meted out to South Africa in not acknowledging that South Africa, post-apartheid South Africa should be treated as if it is post war South Africa because a war was fought in this country.
And thirdly, I think what we need to do is to, we need to get a champion, a champion to fight for the deaths the government have, for that to be scrapped. I'm saying this because much of that money, if we don't have to repay the huge sums of debts to, ironically, institutions, where we are sitting now, the Sanlams and Old Mutuals etcetera. We don't have to pay them, these huge sums of money, then that money can be used for social services, for rehabilitation, for reparation. I know that the TRC is at this point in time awaiting a cabinet approval for the sum of approximately plus minus 2 Billion Rand for the purposes or reparation and rehabilitation and if only, only the government can be given the opportunity to pay back perhaps half of the debt, or half the debt gets scrapped, over a period of five years or so and we restart paying the debts again. There will be huge, huge, huge sums of money that will be available for reparation and rehabilitation, then the TRC can go on for approximately 10 years, 15 years, 20 years to pay victims and that is part of a recommendation that I would like to make and just something interesting, you said earlier on, yesterday, you said domestic solutions for global problems and I think that as part of my recommendation here, in terms of getting a champion is that we need to change it around and say global solutions for domestic problems because are debts are more domestic debts and it's not what we owe the IMF and the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation and my recommendations specifically now is that perhaps we found a champion. Perhaps you are the champion and perhaps we need to nominate you as a champion so that you can fight this and place it high on the agenda of the United Nations in those discussions etcetera and things so that they can exert pressure on these institutions within South Africa so that they can scrap the debt and I would really like to hear your opinion in terms of choosing you as a champion. Perhaps for some period and when the State President retires maybe he can take over that role and pursue that further. Thank you.
DR DANIEL: I have chosen that mission and I do that as I hope you know. I don't think the World Bank will think of me as worthy of listening to so please use me as a champion, you know, where my voice will make a difference. I'd like to effective but look, what you read was, sounded very rational and I wonder whether you can write it up and send it to the appropriate people in your government and even to the World Bank. I don't think they will not answer you at least they'll acknowledge that they received it and somebody will read it and I think in principle, you know, coming from you, that aspect will, you know, be more powerful coming from you than from me anyhow because they can easily say to me "What do you know about that?" and they're right. But we can stay in touch, you know, you can send me copies and I can see if there's anybody I can bug it with. Please?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Can I respond to that? There is already initiative to have the IMF thing declared an odious debt. It's one of the concepts. There are already people from South Africa doing that and I don't know why we need outside champions, I'm tired of that. We need to, no I'm serious about it, we need to fight the battle from within. If we declare it an odious debt, then let's face the consequences of declaring it an odious debt but also as you say the ...[indistinct] are part of our internal odious debt and the Archbishop of Cape Town and John Ngunkulu and part of the poverty summit is looking at that and constantly raising it in international media so it is constantly being raised at an international level by South Africans and I think that what you then look for is not champions, but supporters of the concept from elsewhere and I think there already are. There's already an international initiative in this regard and that's Oscar Arias's initiative which is about saying that you should actually start marketing nations and checking how much they spend on arms. South Africa must do an internal search before it buys Corvettes and more aircraft and cuts off all the military staff, thus increasing the potential for more armed robberies and other things to happen so we've got a lot of lobbying to do of our government to begin to realise the concept of rehabilitation and I really firmly mean that when the budget comes up and they start saying oh it's such a small part of the defence, it's such a small part of the budget, we need to say yes it's a big part for victims, the money that you're talking about and what you can do with it so I think the challenges are there for us as citizens to actually push through as much to the IMF as through our own structures and our own government and own responses to the question.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: You were talking about the day of the siren and the day of the moments or the moment of silence rather and I don't think we have to look very hard, we've got already the Day of Reconciliation, we can put that to work and it costs nothing to have a similar thing, a siren going on, people standing together, I think it's a valuable moment. Then I've got two, and I think they're thorny questions, but I think they something we need to think about and it's an open question. Do we as South Africans have a responsibility to see that the perpetrators are rehabilitated and how? And it's a question I've put to the Truth Commission several times and it's a tricky one. And then secondly, you were talking about the Government apology and I was wondering, in our case, and it's the same with Argentina where you had one government taking over from another. It's the same problem with the SABC. My board could not apologise for the previous board and it's understood. You can understand that the new board can't apologise for the old but I think it's the same question. Can this government put in something, a public apology in a newspaper, national campaigns or whatever, apologising for what we as South Africans did, whoever that "we" was.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I think that in all fairness that or to lay to rest, you know, the whole burden or part of it, that the government or some of our people have to begin talking about some kind of a tax that people who have gained much from Apartheid are able to pay, not much, so that all the kind of things that we are talking about, monuments for instance, schools for instance, you know, art and so on, so that these things can be made a reality you know, in our situation because if we expect you know, the little money that reconciliation and commission, you know sort of that, we will be leaving those people scot free. May be looked upon as Apartheid in reverse but I know that you know that you know that, that the amount of money that you received for your education was not the same as my son and as me, do you understand? And even if it can be sort of a free, a free or volunteer something, do you understand? Perhaps that will be something that a lot of people will want to do.
DR DANIEL: I love that idea. I was just interviewed about remorse, I wish we talked about it before because it's a brilliant idea. Now it's very interesting because I'm thinking what is the right level to have that idea? Is it that the government should do it? Or is it that society should do it? Should it be as a tax thing or the courts should decide or should it be, as you said, a voluntary, my feeling is voluntary. I believe in people, I can..and my sense is perpetrators will be very glad and probably relieved and maybe you can do it on a communal level so that it doesn't single out but you know, sort of makes it a communal level of, you know you're reminding me, before I came here, I told Hlengiwe, you know I was talking with friends about how little money you have for the reparation, rehabilitation, all of those things and I thought well, if we did fundraisers in the United States, you know I was already doing that. If we did fundraisers for that kind of stuff and suddenly we were thinking, you know, well who do we invite? Black people? White people? Interesting questions, you see, even when I think of it to bring it to America it will create a whole lot of questions. So it's not an easy solution but it's a brilliant one nonetheless and I think if you do it so that it's social contributions for social causes. So it's clearly on a societal level rather than as a punishment even though it is in a sense an alternative or substitute for justice and you know it and we know it, but still, if you still make as their possibility to do good, you do it positively, right, the possibility of do good to you know, remedy that way and it's really very dignified. Actually you know, you just gave me an idea, my mind is running you know, you can call the memorial in the name of whoever you want to and the contributor name should be on it too. So in effect, you're giving them the dignity too. You're dignifying their doing this, their acknowledgement and the implied apology. I think it's brilliant. How you do it, you know your society to how you do it. Michael, go ahead.
MICHAEL: Couple of points. One, the idea of the silence is powerful. Interestingly it was done in South Africa because after the First World War and for a period after the Second World War until, without anybody deciding it, it seemed to just fade out. There was the procedure that on the timing of the Armistice being signed for World War I the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. There was, I think, a two minute silence and this was followed in many of the Common Wealth countries and I can remember as a child seeing it in South Africa and finding it very powerful even though I didn't know what it was about because obviously if all these people will do something that big, you had to find out what it was about and that's one of the important functions of it. It challenges you to explain. Couple of other quick comments of what we said. Of course we must invested in the rehabilitating perpetrators. We know quite enough about repeat offenders of petty crimes. We know quite enough about the problems of repeat offenders in petty crimes let alone in the gross crimes but again as I mentioned this morning we must also rehabilitate the bystanders or they'll continue to stand on the sidelines. So we're saying there's hardly anyone that doesn't need, rehabilitation sounds a bit formidable and a bit like "we know what's better for you" but a re-education process, a process of learning from the past so that we are not condemned to repeat it, is something that there is nobody that I can identify in this country and that isn't in need of it and the idea that people can say "yes, very useful for them, I'm okay I don't need that" but we all know there's a them somewhere that needs it, all of us needs different aspects of that.
MICHAEL: (cont) ...There you have their names already and all the victims identified, dead victims identified to the TRC who therefore weren't able to make statements. Name the sports fields, name the swimming pools, name the public libraries, name the facilities. We have far too many named after politicians, lie them dead. It should almost be a rule that politicians don't qualify for that process unless they are victims, that would quite it down quite a lot. One of the other recommendations we made earlier that I would fit with what you're saying is, why don't we build into the curriculum one of the processes that would continue the TRC process of having students, children, go to the victims, the local victims, the survivors in their community and take their story. There are still millions of stories that were never recorded. The TRC has had to focus on gross human rights abuses and has led to the tragedy of saying well, if your house burned down but nobody was killed, we can't attend to that now. There are children that should be able to continue doing that, decade after decade and to have a way of collecting those stories. I'd like to appeal to the TRC similarly as a process we were discussing at lunch. There was this strange process by which there was a decision that the report will take, will be in two volumes. That was before anybody knew how much data there was going to be so we'll get two volumes worth of truth and the rest will have to be left out. I'd like to appeal that if that is seen as important in terms of the paperback edition, that there should be an addition of a fuller report, all submissions, all evidence, all transcripts put on CD Roms because at that way, at a fairly lower cost, every public library, every school, can have the archives of the TRC there, not set up at the University of the Western Cape or wherever where people have to make a pilgrimage across country to be able to see them. Not so that ordinary people who are not skilled with degrees and librarianship don't know how to walk amongst all those files and find stuff. On a CD Rom you put in your grandmother's name and you see if she's mentioned. You find out about her, you can check about the things, simply, ordinary people can do that easily.
MICHAEL: You should see the alternatives. I also share the point that volunteer payments are important because taxes are, if we put something for the victims in the category of taxation, that is as loved and as unpaid as it is, I don't know that we will be achieving the same moral message, the same psychological and social message that we want. The only area where that attracts me is, there may be a need for the voluntary funding but may there not be a need to consider some separate treatment of those very large golden handshakes that many of the perpetrators awarded themselves out of the public purse, which was untaxed as far as I can recall and simply restoring their taxability would raise a surprising amount of money. But I still worry about what Eugene de Kock, if he's going to stay in prison as long as they say, after the first 100 years I'm not sure what he's going to do with his three million. The other point to back to what our colleague from the Education Department said is, the advantage of the volunteer fund but of it being marketed, abut it being put across as a moral obligation is first of all that people do gain some moral sense from giving to it. I don't know anybody who feels morally enhanced by paying their taxes, whatever those are spent for. They don't feel that as a moral act on their part and something they feel good about and we don't see where it goes. Again, though, the funds that are expended in this way should be absolutely transparent. They should do better than businesses but we should be, all be, shareholders and there should be an annual report to the shareholders that says we ran this for you, this is what happened, this is where it went so that we should know that. We have public media that spend a lot of their time showing us the Nagana Olympics, I think could maybe fill in some of the time doing that. But what I was going to add to it finally, was that it's not just the people but echoing back what our colleague at the Education Department said, that is a chance to ask some of those multi-nationals and large intra-national companies that profiteered from Apartheid to make a contribution and let us publicise very openly what they said in response to that letter and how much money the Sanlams and the large companies did. I think that would be a very interesting exercise for them. Final comment on Sanlam, is my experience is my experience..
MICHAEL: Shame is a very useful process which I think we have under-exploited grossly and particularly for large companies where they have to answer to some shareholders when they have to try and look good particularly at this stage in our history when they're wanting to look good to the international shareholders, then let them stand up and let them put that in their report and see how that appeals to the international community. Final comment on Sanlam, because I think it's relevant to this, as a company that sold insurance policies to large numbers of people in this country, guaranteeing them that they would pay them for any health reasons they became unable to work, my experience has been because I've had a lot of the cases come to me, that there are cases of people with gross PTSD, some with dementia, who were suffering from the conflict who the Sanlam people, Board of Directors and their Medical Advisors, consistently refused to pay a cent. I've had to battle with them in cases where they say that this person is not unemployable and I say they've lost their job, they've applied for 57 jobs, none of them will give them. A man of 57 whose dementing is not likely to be given the job in any society let alone one where we have so many unemployed. The only one I've won so far is when I wrote back to them and said if you think he's so darn employable, employ him and they paid him out.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Thank you Madame Chair. I also just wanted to add from what, I don't know, was it the Bishop was saying and maybe I mentioned that yesterday that, Madame Chair, that for it's as agree with people who are saying maybe the perpetrators for instance at this point in time are sitting with a lot of money in their own banking account and some of them need to be held responsible for that. They need to contribute to this healing process and I'd like to add by saying the other thing I'd like to suggest that maybe this question of reparation, it must not be a question of the Government and the TRC alone because when you read the TRC document it said "the TRC will recommend 1,2,3 to Mandela and Mandela will decide and I think you are creating a very serious mistake. If you listen to people like Duma and my brother that's from Kroonstad, yesterday, I think it's a process that needs to be driven by the victim and the survivors themselves because if you read I'm a victim and someone's going to decide whether should I get the bread instead of the land, then there will be serious problem. So I think maybe as a community here, one of our challenge is to make sure that we are going out to have this, how do you call it, survivors groups like Kulumani or whoever is engaged with the stuff like that to bring these victims and survivors forward so that he must be the one from their own feelings in terms of how should we reparated and assisted and so on. So that at the end of the day the TRC or Mandela is not going to be blamed for that thing.
So you are saying a project should be led by the survivors and the victims themselves because we are speaking about things that has happened, sometimes we are speaking about issues like the land that was taken by a force, by a certain company, whoever, and that's a gross violation of human rights. Maybe those people they are in need of their own land and you are giving them R2000, R6000, something of that nature. I don't think it will serve their own interests. We are saying one of our challenges here, let's go out and get as much as victims and survivors we can maybe a premium to this type of [indistinct] and they must decide how should they be reparated and I think maybe somehow we can achieve something.
DR DANIEL: Actually, I would do that very fast because I believe the thinking is already taking place, am I correct? I was smiling because last night we were sitting on the document and we added every time they said, you know, build monuments and that, I said with the victims' opinion, with the victims' opinion, so I think it's already in the document. But I don't know how realistic that is, so Ilinga can tell you.
ILINGA: Well, earlier on I wanted to say it will help us a lot maybe if you can say something about lobbying strategies. You see there are things which we cannot change. Cabinet ultimately will have to make decisions as to how victims are given reparations, on what form will it take, how much, what is it? While we are formulating policies we used to have forums of this nature and victims all over the country were part of this as far as possible. But I should think the process, I think like last night we were looking at the regulations which maybe by now as we are talking they've been promulgated but I don't think so, I will check first. The question really is, how do victims, professional bodies who are on the side of the victim, watch the process very, very carefully and be able to make sure that they have the greatest say all the way throughout and the major problem the way I see it is are just the divisions.
ILINGA: I mean Human Rights Organisations, they are still, they still do not forge links in such a way that they become a threat to policy makers. Victims are scattered all over, they do not have the resources, I mean even the Kulumani initiative will be weakened by the fact that they don't have sufficient resources. But also we haven't been recommending their position in isolation as for instance if they're specialist in trauma, they ought to be vocal professional bodies. But what has happened so far since the Commission started, people will watch Max du Preez' programme, write papers, go overseas and talk. But internally there's been very little about what you are saying which would have threatened policy makers to realise that this issue is serious. So I should think that the lobbying and co-ordination strategies are critical if we are to succeed.
DR DANIEL: Absolutely correct. Everything we go from the U.N. on behalf of victims, every declaration I mentioned to you? Dog work, just dog work and we paid our own money, go to U.N. conferences where we can find them and bug them and convince them and lobby them and it's been very good indeed, I think you're absolutely correct in terms of using professionals because for example when I come to discuss something with a politician, he doesn't know more than I do on this and he has to respect the fact that I'm Doctor Daniel. You know he can treat me badly but he cannot not respect my opinion because it's a professional opinion. So, but, co-ordination among NG0's is most important. To have an allegiance so the politicians know "oh my God". We call it, we have a Coalition of NGO's. Coalition, we have an alliance, we have committees, we always get together. Like minded people? And because numbers create power in politics no matter where you put the number. So when you get like minded NGO's and expert NGO's, human right and experts on human rights law, get lawyers, get psychologists, you know get psychiatrists. People who when they speak the politicians can't just pooh pooh them. And victims and the victims have to make the professionals speak with the voices of the victims and to always identify them that way. I when I speak to them I say I speaking for the victims, I'm not speaking for Doctor Daniel. You know at the U.N. they don't even write names so it doesn't matter. But they will know that there is a contingency out there that they will need in order to look good and be re-elected you know, a constituent I meant not a contingency. And yes, co-ordination is very important because if one NGO calls him in the morning and tells him one thing, and the other NGO calls him in the afternoon and doesn't say it and says something else. It won't make any difference. They'll say "oh they're just.." you know. Also you can get people make petitions, run them, have people sign them. Go in the streets, get petitions. I've done that. Get as many signatures on what you want as possible. You know you need the name, the address and the signature. Get them, I mean feed them into their faxes and there's election coming up? Well dear, that's your chance. Not only, oh let me tell you about something else that will give you some support. The United States - Douglas, please, my voice has just gone, I'm trying to sort of live the end of it. United States, now, we've had an initiative for the last five years of putting a victim's amendment to the constitution adding, amending, the constitution of the country to include victims' rights and we probably will get it. It took twenty years of struggle but you have to think that way, I mean you have to take a long term point of view. There is just no way you'll get anything short term done but we dogged them and we went to their different states, right, and so in a different state, different people, a lobby. We have a national organisation for victims' assistance in the United States, right? Many countries now have them, established one, I don't think you have it here. Which is an organisation made of professionals, experts into disciplinary, both law enforcement, judges, victims, psychologists, volunteers. It provides training it has meetings. It's a very powerful lobbying body. Very powerful lobbying body. They appear before congress, they prepare papers to, you know. You have not gotten it yet so you really should because numbers are power. Intelligent advice, well looking documents. Not too long - politicians don't read. They make statements, okay. I don't mean to make fun, I mean I appreciate politicians, some of them are real good people and have everything right. But is sort of like what we do, you know, you want something to be passed, you have to put a lot of your time into it and your money. Don't expect anybody to appreciate it but you feel better about yourself I promise you. Yes please, then you.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I mean maybe this one will be my last contribution but, particularly towards the recommendations. I think I'd like to buy the suggestion made by Morgan to say that it would be better to bring together victims and survivors, I mean perpetrators, as to decide how they want to be re-compensated because sometimes it's difficult to think on behalf of other people who have already felt the situation. You know I think we must move from one premise of, like I want to make an example, everyone and each and every organisation when they go and look for funding they will see that because of this and this and this and this we're going to address this because of the poor. Which of course I think we must stop that tendency of ...[indistinct] on behalf of the poor. The poor themselves they must help to, they must take initiatives on their own and make sure that they contribute in changing their situation.
Secondly I want to contribute something to what has been raised by Douglas there. I want to agree with you that you say that it's our responsibility and make issue that how didn't we address the question of the economic debts because most of the money that has been used from the debts it was not used internationally it was used within the country and it benefited most of the individuals and companies so of course are generating income for their own and I think you shouldn't be taking too serious note that the very same companies that are operating and investors from those countries, they must take responsibility of ensuring how then can they contribute in the ....[indistinct] of this country. It should not be the responsibility of the government only in making loans on behalf of it's people but should be taken into cognisance that very same people who benefited from those debts, they must be able to contribute something and ensuring that they ....[indistinct] of this country. And lastly is to say that our contribution may be part of the society in building up on this process it's not been seen as if it is maybe we are crying for those who were victims but we must make sure that we become part of them. That is the only way which of course will build up on the question of reconciliation and making sure that the process of reparation and compensation goes without any doubts because I don't think it will be very much fair to pay me R2000 when I've lost my father which of course I won't even see him for the rest of my life and maybe you raise some of the recommendations around the question of education as part of addressing those situations.
And the other thing is around the contribution of the government in this instance. I think it has been a tendency in South Africa if not in other countries to say each and everything will be then put to the government and we need to be responsible to the government. What I want to ask you here is that in assurance that justice is done and done take it's course, you have to make sure that the very same people, perpetrators and people who caused this very same situation do contribute something to the life of the victims rather than ask people who have not been part of the victims contributing something to them. It would be very much useless for us to do that because of the incarceration substance to happen more and more because the very same perpetrators there will be with the lesson that if I do this the government is there to stand by me.
You looked at the case of Botha was paid a number of millions of rands just because I think that is very much useless for the government to pay that for him because he's a person who was supposed to do that on himself because of the ...[indistinct] in that he has contributed to that situation. It should not be taken as a responsibility of the government and innocent people did that, disadvantaged poorer people of this country to contribute to that situation. Thank you.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I know I've been a fly on the wall for most of the proceedings but at the special report, at the special hearing of the TRC on business a lot of these issues were raised and the taxation, wealth tax, all these issues were raised and very pertinently. Many big companies were asked, I feel in a kind of a threatening manner as to how I would like to contribute and as these guys know best, they dodged this question. They tried to keep their hand safe and keep their hands clean with the whole thing of the wealth tax or some sort of forced payment from their side to be extracted and I think the whole idea of a shame kind of payment is the best way to get money out of them because taxation will be dodged by them somehow. You will not get more tax from the taxpayers of South Africa. They know how to do that and to enforce them to do it they will find lawyers and people and will retaliate so the only avenue is a shame payment.
DR DANIEL: You know in the United States we did that with money for the arts, you know we go to one organisation and we say well Mobil gave us such and such, how much are you willing to? So it's shame and competition. It's deadly. Go ahead, after him.
DR DANIEL: It wasn't for the State of Israel it was for the Jewish people. Actually, quite a lot of the reparations, you're right were given to the Jewish State rather than the individual survivors. But these were just the allies, the United States, France, Britain, was I think the Soviet Union was then too. No, the allies of World War II. I think that's it. That was the martial plan. I believe it was Russia also, I'm not totally sure.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: The reason why I ask is simply that prior to the National Party taking over in this country in 1948 there was the British Empire, there was Anglo-America and much of the wealth and the resources of this country were deeply tapped into prior to 1948. Now the Sanlams and Old Mutuals and so on and so forth, they're all jumped into the bandwagon as it were at the time. So is it possible that we can explore further than Sanlam and Old Mutual and so and so forth and seek to engage the British Empire as it stands now and the American Institutions as John intimated earlier on. Not with any degree of arrogance and or chip on our shoulder because that doesn't help much as we know that Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe is really struggling seriously to not to take the land back from the farmers and so on and so forth and making the British Empire, you know, to compensate. But is it worth pursuing? Could we kind of peek into their national psyche and conscience as the people who were here and who really did the greatest of damages and then left and said thank you very much Afrikaaners, take it off and then run with it?
DR DANIEL: Well you don't have the same allies involved here as there were in World War II, okay, so probably the Brits are a good place for you although the, you know, but they always know how to find ways not to. But the Brits are good for you but listen I mean the Americans brought me here and America it isn't one place that America was really not involved in all in victimising and they do have a partnership programme but this is how I came, through the partnership programme. I believe France has one, I don't know what they have done, right? Does France have too? Have they brought people here or what? The arts. Well so, if the arts get some of their stuff for the monuments, you know. You see explore which country you have these partnership programmes with and press them in the areas that they are providing it. These are specific projects, you know, time limited but they're good because they get done, so.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I think because the Americans sent you here I would take the line with John that you should go back to them and say to them "well done for sending me to South Africa but here's what has to be done.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: This isn't so much a national solution but more of an individual or local but the structure already exists with tithings in churches where people feel usually about 10% is donated to a church and that's already a structure where people out of conscience give something back, give something and so the idea of perhaps, specially in predominantly white churches of which I think there are a few that are quite well off. Maybe that churches allocate specifically to reparation initiatives or memorials or whatever it is and the other idea is that...
AUDIENCE MEMBER: And those would be bringing them back to sort of ethical moral sort of roots. The other thing is about tithing can take place in the form of financial or time service and so as a sort of bystander kind of reparation thing of contributing service in whatever form whether it would be through people doing adult education or therapy for no fee or whatever. Those might be ways individuals can contribute.
DR DANIEL: Go ahead, Patrick. When you do that remember one thing. Don't go and say you owe it to us, say we should have a better South Africa. Take it as healing the country that's their country too. Remember please, it's a "we" initiative. Make it dear to them, make it something that they will be proud of doing.
PATRICK: I just want to, it's a personal thing, I just want to thank you very, very much for your contribution in this ongoing debate in South Africa. It is true that reconciliation is going to take very, very long time in our country but as I always say, every drop makes the, you know the ripple bigger and bigger and bigger and we hope and wish that one day we will be where the people of the Jewish religion are. But I know that it has been a long, long way you know even, you know, sort of for them. In fact, well, one of the things that I've said, you know, earlier on with somebody here having lived in the States, I have seen in different cities, small, large cities, monuments of you know, the Holocaust and I saw, I was just trying to sell the idea that when we think about a monument, we must also think about one big monument somewhere but which can be replicated, you know, in all these cities so that on occasions we can go and cry and weep there and again you know take of take strength, you know at that very, very place. I didn't want to do this, you know, with empty chairs because I hate preaching to empty churches so I mean that is why and I'm also going to be leaving just now, that's why I thought okay let me say this public...
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Just to add my voice on what was said on the churches where people go there for their wellbeing or their morality. I think we need to recognise the hierarchy of the church and in this regard to support that the church leaders have to be, a letter has to come out of this to the church leaders so that enable this process to take place within the churches because we find a situation of this hierarchy that is inhibitive within the churches and secondly I would like us to look at the moment of truth in this transitional era. When I talk about the moment of truth it's my understanding of the Kairos Document. That the people who have vocal, need to once more, re-look this situation and come out with a Kairos that would empower the victim to appoint that a victim would say we have been crushed but not destroyed so that victim is empowered to a level where my brother there has said let the victim articulate, let the victim articulate, let the victim be empowered. To say like we had a participant who was very vocal. We need to do that so that things are not decided for the victims they are decided with them. That's my humble contribution to this today.
DOUGLAS: Can I say that I think that in terms of networking the beginning of the process is as you've said in the community here and that requires that as soon as possible we get a list of who was here and that whether it's a TRC or whether it is one of other organisations present here that some responsibility must go to someone otherwise I'm just fearful that the whole process gets lost if we're serious about fighting for reparation and actually having our voice heard. I mean some of us can take it up in church quarters and other things but as a united voice I think this is a very good forum to begin with. That's what a very good outcome for me would be and I think that that's maybe something that I would ask the TRC to help us with in that regard because they will have lists, addresses, people and here we've had a broad spectrum, victims, peoples in the professions and working together.
DR DANIEL: I totally agree actually, I would love to have a list too, so, and it will be excellent if we can get an initiative studying here. It will make me feel wonderful for one. Where, you belong to? No, he said education, right okay?
KHOSI: Well we have been told that they will look at all the recommendations and ultimately, after they've debated it, they will take whatever positions which the government will be comfortable with but generally, there has been a commitment to the reparations process, we don't know what that means. I should think what we need to do is to devise ways of communication. Like if government promulgate regulations, in other words it becomes law that this is what we want to do, we need bodies who will look at that and have a say as to how do they react to it, what is it for them and that should be a beginning of a rigorous process of interacting with them.
DR DANIEL: Of systematic lobbying, this is what good lobbies do, they're always informed about everything else going on. Call the right people, go, you know, learn what they're about, what's important to them, how to recruit them to what's important to you and you find the good guys, you know and they become your core group and you go from there and you help them too you see. You become part of the process of decision making. That's good lobbying. I'm feeling really relieved because it's not me whose leaving, everybody else is leaving. So I'm just relieved to just sit here. I think we're going to leave soon and I don't want to be the bad guy here so. Well for me it's being wonderful I hope for you too. But what will make it really wonderful is the continuation of it. So it won't just be a wonderful event but a part of a process. The word process probably gets out of your ears but that's what we have to make, it's just a step in the process.
KHOSI: Just for now I'll say thank you to you in a very special way but I should think for us as a commission this is the beginning of a process. Dr Daniel is still going to Kwazulu Natal to our office there and the Western Cape so the task is not yet over. We're still going to sit down look even at how to formulate the report, the outcome of this. I wanted to ask one of you, who will volunteer and express whatever you think would have said by many of you. That will give us a kind of affirmation as well that we made the right choice. This morning when I was with some people from the U.S. State Embassy, the question was "how did you choose her" and then I said well I had met with her some time back briefly, I knew her work and other colleagues, Dr Alex Boraine and Professor Mida ...[indistinct] went to a conference. They came back with her name. It was like I jumped and it will be good for us to get feedback of some kind whether, how you felt about the process and that will be a way of thanking her as well. We have had many people as a commission but the feedback I've got so far, is like it's too late. But for me it's not too late to have you, you came at the right time when we were lobbying and looking at each and every point of and negotiations between us and government so it was timely but I would like really a volunteer.
BILL SCHUTTES?: That raises the risk, I may speak the truth and who should do that in a place like this? We can, thank goodness, be brief. This is the other end of the day to the other problem when people say introduce the speaker and you're faced with the speaker who needs no introduction. Well I think many people didn't know Yael when we began but now she needs no introduction. Two things, I think, come to my mind that we need to say. One was some time this morning someone said something which sounded like a need for a quick fix and you said boy, did they ask the wrong person. I think we can say, thank God they asked the wrong person because as I think it was H.L. Menkin said "to every serious problem there is a solution immediate, obvious, appealing, obviously right and completely wrong" and we have very many people queuing up from America, from Europe, from other countries to sell us quick fixes and simple solutions and one of the most important things you gave us is the message we can't hear enough that there is no quick fix. If you think you've fixed it quickly you haven't fixed it and that the perspective that we've needed of the long term studies the long term experiences of others is absolutely vital to us. Thank you very much for doing that, I know how much impression you've made on all of our other friends and colleagues here and I know that we've begun a conversation which we will do all week and to make sure it doesn't end here.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: At lunch time I asked you on a one and one basis if, whenever you're addressing seminars like you were today and it tends to get personal by virtue of the fact that you are of Jewish origin and when it does get to you as a person and you obviously answered, you know, correctly by so saying I mean that I knew the answer before I even got it from you that it doesn't get to you. I actually then went on to extend a shoulder for you to lean on in case you need one and also a handkerchief if you wish to wipe your tears but the Islamic thing, the Jewish thing is as old as time itself, don't let it get to you. So, if it did get personal, you know from Wednesday, Yesterday and today, Kwazulu Natal, Cape Town's going to be worse with you know, all it's elements and so on and so forth and just remember that you have some people who are you know very, very strongly pro you and thank you very much for coming here.
DR DANIEL: Thank you. And I was trying to think of what you asked me as well, further than the quick answer. I think in a sense this seminar brought the best Jewishness in me. I didn't at all think that that will be an aspect of the discussion. I came as a professional, you know, to give my professional knowledge. But I think because there have been, you know, issues of religion came up, I mean, you literally distilled the best out of me, I think, that way. So from that point of view, in fact I thank you.