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Special Report
Transcripts for Section 7 of Episode 69

45:40On the last day of the armed forces hearing the ANC’s armed wing Umkhonto we Sizwe came under the spotlight. But after the two massive ANC submissions already made to the Truth Commission there was little that had not already been heard before. However, Cabinet Minister Mac Maharaj did respond very strongly to claims made earlier in the week by former police commissioners. They had explained to the Truth Commission that clandestine or unconventional methods against government opponents had only been started in the mid eighties as a direct reaction to what they saw as a total onslaught by liberation movements.Full Transcript and References
46:15Nonsense, Mr. Chairperson. People were being tortured, thrown out of windows in 1963. 1963. By 1965 at least six people were already dead in detention, political people. I myself was detained in that period. And the methods used were already, to put it mildly, unconventional. Just about everything that became formalized and generalized, electric torture, the helicopter, sleep deprivation, standing on a brick, beatings, they were all there. By the time of Steve Biko we’re talking about number 46. So, all these methods of torture, some culminating in death in detention, were already there in 1963 and it is interesting that some of the generals who appeared here and have appeared in the Truth Commission records were Warrant Officers, Sergeants, Lieutenants. Lieutenant Victor and Van der Merwe, they were Lieutenants in 1963, ‘64 torturing me. They rose to become generals. Lieutenant Victor and Lieutenant Van der Merwe of 1964 had just returned from a training course under the ...moreFull Transcript
49:06It’s a pity we couldn’t see Mac Maharaj and Johan van der Merwe face to face. The hearing about the armies that physically fought the war was given an unexpected interpretation by former MK commander, Matthews Phosa. Full Transcript
49:20Before you close the proceedings, if you don’t mind, you’re dealing with a very difficult area, so we thought we’ll read you very nice lines which characterize the very conflict we’re trying to analyse. // Is it a poem in Afrikaans? // Listen… // English for a change… // English for a change. // ‘The first to go are the niceties // the little minor conformities // that suddenly seem absurdities // soon kindling animosities // surmount all civilities and // start the first brutalities // then come bold extremities // the justified enmities // the unrestrained ferocities’ // That is the character of our conflict.Full Transcript
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