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Sequel to Long Walk to Freedom - Revision 4.3 - Chapter 2 Page 3

The Nelson Mandela Foundation

The Nelson Mandela Foundation
Johannesburg, South Africa

This item consists of 6 pages, numbered 2 - 7, and is an edited version of Item 6. There are some handwritten additions. It is not clear if this version was written first or if this is one of the later versions.

This is page 3 of 6 typed pages, numbered 2 - 7, and is an edited version of Item 4.2. There are some handwritten additions and edits.

Details

  • Title: Sequel to Long Walk to Freedom - Revision 4.3 - Chapter 2 Page 3
  • Date: 1985/2002
  • Original Language: English
  • Transcript:
    I flew down to the Wilderness; the retirement home of former president P.W. Botha, reminded him of the communiqué we jointly issued when I was still in prison in July 1989. In that communiqué we pledged to work together for peace in our country. I informed him that that peace was now threatened by the rightwing and asked him to intervene. He was co-operative and confirmed that Afrikaners were determined to stop the elections. But he added that he did not want to discuss the matter with me alone, and suggested that I bring President F.W. de Klerk , Ferdi Hartzenberg and theG eneral. I proposed that we should also include the leader of the extreme Afrikaner rightwing, Eugene Terre'Blanche, on the grounds that he was a reckless demagogue who could attract larger crowds than President De Klerk. On this issue the former president was so negative that I dropped the subject. I returned to Johannesburg and immediately telephoned President De Klerk and informed him of Botha's invitation. He was as hostile to the whole idea of us meeting the former president as the latter was towards Terre' Blanche. I then approached the progressive Afrikaner theologian, Professor Johan Heyns, to bring together the general, Hartzenberg, Terre" Blanche and myself. Terre'Blanche was uncompromising and rejected any meeting with me, a communist, as he said. I then met the general and Hartzenberg and asked whether it was true that they were preparing to stop the elections by violent means. The General was frank and admitted that this was correct, and that Afrikaners were arming, and that a bloody civil war was facing the country. I was shaken but I pretended that I was supremely confident of the victory of the liberation movement. I told them that they would give us a hard time since they were better trained militarily than us, commanded more devastating weaponry and because of their resources, they knew the country better than us. But I warned that at the end of that reckless gamble they would be crushed. We were then on the verge of an historic victory after we had inflicted a mortal blow to white 4
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  • Type: Book
  • Repository: Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
  • Reference code: 4.3, 3
  • Origination: Mandela, Nelson
  • Originals location: Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
  • Immediate source of acquisition or transfer: Donation of the Office of Nelson Mandela
  • Finding aids: Finding aid available
  • Extent and Medium: 6 typed pages, 1 typed page
  • Creator: Mandela, Nelson
  • Conditions governing reproduction: Copyright held by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
  • Conditions governing access: Access by permission of the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
  • Collection: Sequel to Long Walk to Freedom
  • Chapter revision: 4.3
  • Chapter: 2
  • Book: Sequel to Long Walk to Freedom
  • Alternate forms available: All chapters have been scanned and saved on disk: NMF DOCS 0019

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