Mandela: Inspiration for an era of activismtags: NYT, South Africa, Nelson Mandela, apartheid, London
LONDON — In the welter of passion and memory surrounding the decline of Nelson Mandela, a more modest commemoration slipped by a week ago that said much about the role he played as an inspiration in his long years of imprisonment, when the daily grind of struggle against apartheid fell to others who fought in his name.
It was a reminder, too, that the battle to end white rule was fought on many levels, ranging from the activism of anti-apartheid exiles here in London to a brutal shadow war in South Africa itself that offered no quarter to those seeking a new order.
The events of June 27, 1985, offered a particular insight.
On that date, a hit team of secret police officers — white and black — murdered four anti-apartheid activists from Cradock, a pinprick settlement in the remote hinterland of the Eastern Cape, ambushing their car late at night before bludgeoning, shooting, stabbing and burning them to death.
In the shorthand of martyrdom, they became known as the Cradock Four, emblems of a time when the white authorities sought to dismantle such clusters of resistance through a tactic they euphemistically called “permanent removal” from society....
comments powered by Disqus
- King Tut had overbite, club foot because his parents were brother and sister
- Prehistoric humans were far smarter than previously assumed
- Priests race to save manuscripts from jihadists in Iraq
- Where Mud Is Archaeological Gold, Russian History Grew on Trees
- Conflict Uncovers a Ukrainian Identity Crisis Over Deep Russian Roots
- Highlights of the recent Oral History Association Meeting
- Rick Perlstein response to Sam Tanenhaus's complaint that he's an aggregator
- Thai historian faces charges for daring to challenge a story about a royal king
- It's Rick Perlstein vs. Judith Stein in a Three Round Fight
- Park Honan, a Biographer of Authors, Is Dead at 86