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Special Report
Transcripts for Section 2 of Episode 4

01:1910:15 pm, June14 1986. A powerful car bomb explodes in front of the Why not Bar, a popular Durban nightspot. Three people die, 67 are injured. Helen Kearney was the barmaid. // There was this enormous explosion. What I remember is seeing flashing lights of all colours: red, blue, green and a horrendous noise that actually went right down into your body. But there was like a vacuum after that, there was silence and then all of a sudden there was this swishing sound and everything just went bezerk. I don’t know, when I spoke to the bomb squad afterwards they told me it’s an impact, there is a fraction of a second or two seconds, before it actually takes everything away in its find. It happened so fast and you … actually we didn’t know what had happened. It was so tremendous, that for the moment you don’t know what … and then we saw it in its full colours. It was a massive bloodbath with flesh and blood dripping from the walls. I remember seeing half a head, on an optic. I ...moreFull Transcript and References
03:32Umkhonto we Sizwe soldier Robert McBride was given three death sentences for planting the bomb. After four years on death row he was reprieved and in 1991 given amnesty. He is now a diplomat at the Department of Foreign Affairs. This made the sisters of one of those killed in the Why not Bar, Michelle Gerrard, angry and bitter. // He is seen in some circles as being some sort of liberation activist, people’s hero, but in our opinion all he did was contribute to the violence, hatred and segregation that we all wanted to disappear. He had a choice whether to plant that terrible bomb or not and he made his choice. Michelle and the other two young ladies, they didn’t have a choice, he made their choice for them. Mister McBride cannot justify his position in the government of national unity as he’s a cold blooded murderer, who can never wipe away the pain, sorrow and anguish and destruction he caused. // Mister McBride had been aware of the hazards of the bomb he planted to life and ...moreFull Transcript and References
04:49On Friday we met with Robert McBride in the gardens of the Union Buildings where he now works. // This particular operation cannot be seen in isolation to what the state was doing. It was after a period of a number of cross-border raids in which men, women and children, mostly not even members of the ANC, mostly non-combatants of those who were ANC members, were killed. It was after the Kabwe conference in which the ANC decided to step up its military activity. It was in the time when the ANC decided they would not show as much restraint as they did in the past in going after enemy personal. It was a time when the word for example of ‘caught in crossfire,’ the phrase came about. It was a time when there was a state of emergency, where we had a fascist system in the country, detention without trial, where there was no democracy, when apartheid was regarded as a crime against humanity. It was a time when we youth activists had become radicalised, we had been in and out of ...moreFull Transcript and References
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