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Mandela’s long-time assistant Zelda la Grange recalls her early racism

June 25th, 2014
08:04 AM ET

By Mick Krever, CNN

“I was a full-on racist by the time I started working for him.”

That is the shocking revelation from Nelson Mandela’s long-time personal assistant, gatekeeper, and trusted aide, Zelda la Grange, a white Afrikaner.

“Now looking back, if you [asked] me at the age of twenty-three I would probably have denied being a racist,” she told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday. “Now it's easier, because you can recognize the change in yourself.”

La Grange was born the year after Mandela was sent to prison; little in her upbringing suggests she was destined to be confidant to the world’s foremost black liberation leader.

She had been so ignorant of her country’s politics that she hadn’t even heard of Mandela when it was announced he would be released from prison, in 1990.

“I was swimming in the pool on that day in February,” she told Amanpour. “And [her father] came outside and he said to me, ‘We are in trouble.’”

“And I said, ‘What are you talking about?’”

“And he said, ‘The terrorist is being released.’”

“I said, ‘Who is that?’”

“And he said, ‘Nelson Mandela.’”

“I continued swimming. It didn't affect my life. I didn't know who he was. My father apparently knew who he was.”

When Mandela assumed the presidency after that landmark election in 1994, la Grange happened to be applying for a menial typist job in the office of the presidency when Mandela’s then-secretary came into the room and said she needed someone “right now.”

It was all, she said, “so unlikely to happen.”

Her first meeting with Mandela was “the turning point in my life,” she told Amanpour.

“He was kind. He smiled. He extended his hand, and he spoke to me in my own language. He spoke to me in Afrikaans. And that is the last thing you expect of him, because I was brought up to fear this man.”

“And that just destroyed my defenses immediately, and I broke down and I was crying, and he said to me, ‘No, no, no, you're overreacting.’”

“And if a president tells you you’re overreacting, you pull yourself together very quickly.”

It would be the beginning of a lifelong friendship and alliance.

Bringing excitement to Mandela’s life

In those first years of Mandela’s presidency, La Grange said, “there was no excitement really, I think, in his life other than politics.”

“At that stage, I mean, I didn't really think of the president entering into a romantic relationship.”

That all changed during a state visit to Paris.

“I got to his room and his door was closed. You know, of course the president's got a lounge and a dining room and a room and so and so – this door leading to his suite was closed.”

She ran the president’s spokesman and said, “There’s a problem – the president's door is closed and there's a lady inside.”

“I just knew, we all knew, if it's one thing not supposed to happen it's that the president's door is closed when he’s alone with a woman.”

There was broad concern at the time, she explained, that the president’s opponents could “put him in a compromising position” – in other words, frame him.

“I got called to the president's suite and he said to me after a while, ‘This is my friend Graça Machel, and I want you to look after her and she's going with us to the next event, so please keep an eye on her.’”

“And that was the start of this wonderful, romantic relationship between the two of them and them. And yeah, it turned out to be the best thing that could ever happen to him.”

“She brought him about to understand or to appreciate the different things in life again – beautiful music, look at the flowers, walking hand in hand in the street early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Ordinary things that we take for granted.”

Nelson and Elizabeth

Mandela may very well have been the only person who could call Queen Elizabeth, “Elizabeth.”

“It was fascinating to watch, and Ms. Machel at one point said to Madiba, ‘You can't call her Elizabeth!’”

“And then Madiba responded and he said, ‘Well, she calls me Nelson.’ So it was very entertaining to watch.”

“He respected the Queen but it was a warm friendship and I think they recognized each other as human beings – each other's humanity. And I think the Queen enjoyed that really.”

It was probably rare for her, Amanpour said.

“I think very rare for her.”

“He walked up to her when we visited Buckingham Palace at one occasion, and he said to her, ‘Oh, Elizabeth, you've lost weight.’”

“Not something that everyone gets to tell the Queen of England.”

“She laughed. You know, she was entertained probably by this directness. And with no shame and no ill intent – you know, was Madiba loved charming women and he was always very complimentary of women. So it was part of who he was.”

Entertaining the Iranians

So close were la Grange and Mandela that he insisted she attend all state dinners – even those private meals with just the president and his counterpart.

Even, she explained to Amanpour, a private dinner with Iranian President Mohammad Khatami.

“It was the weirdest experience, because suddenly I find myself with only these two people, Nelson Mandela and President Khatami, and I have to give President Khatami the history of South Africa.”

“And Madiba was happily eating. He's not conversing. He's just, you know, looking at the two of us, sharing history.”

Perhaps an opportunity, Amanpour asked, for Mandela to simply enjoy his meal?

“That was I think exactly it. For once he could really just enjoy his food and he was just watching me entertaining the president.”


Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Latest Episode • South Africa
soundoff (70 Responses)
  1. Elrancho

    Wonderful story and a clear demonstration of what is possible – even for indoctrinated racists.

    June 25, 2014 at 9:26 am | Reply
    • Ralph

      All you need is love, love, love is all you need.

      June 26, 2014 at 3:07 am | Reply
      • jennifer

        nothing else but love

        June 27, 2014 at 12:03 am |
      • Chris

        Singing with ya, Ralph! I'm singing it with ya.

        June 27, 2014 at 12:08 pm |
  2. tim bukktuu

    Of course she was a 'full on racist', but so were 99% of all white south Africans. This is why its so important to have political leaders who call on their 'higher selves' to lead the public discourse. Not the self-interested, bigoted, sectarian religious 'Self' that too often speaks. By the way, this is the main issue in Iraq today.

    June 25, 2014 at 9:32 am | Reply
    • Kim

      As a white South African who lived through Apartheid, I can say with confidence (and on behalf of the many many many others who were fiercely against it all) that your comment regarding 99% of us is 100% false and a hugely unfair generalisation.

      June 25, 2014 at 11:57 am | Reply
      • yummukutu

        Then why didn't the many of you stand up and do something? I know that many whites fought alongside blacks and many blacks were against Mandela, at least initially but these have been very small numbers of both.

        One great man said that "Bad things when good men remain silent". Are you one of those who choose to just "mind your business" whilst ennocent people dies just because they were of the "wrong" skin color?

        June 25, 2014 at 8:10 pm |
      • Nasdaq7

        The country was under siege from the USSR!

        June 29, 2014 at 5:09 pm |
      • Nasdaq7

        Let me tell you about South Africa and Africa: During apartheid, if a black person drove into a white neighbourhood, they were given a job. They were given food etc. If a white person drove into a black neighbourhood, that person was murdered by mobs! The political situation was so intense that land or territory was seen as being owned by various races. That is how hostile it was.

        In 2013 South Africa has over 1 million rapes a year, 67,000 babies are raped by black people. But from 1900 – 1900 things were far far worse: In Africa tens of millions died in wars. Dictatorships ruled. Tribal kings. The whites said: we can't live like this! We trust no-one. We live apart, because at least then we are safe and can build our economies. And we did: the 9th largest stock exchange, 15th largest economy. But at some time we needed to share power and integrate the societies. And we didn't share enough land and integrate enough because we feared for our lives. Every other white country collapsed completely in Africa.

        June 29, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
    • Fay

      99% of white people in South Africa were not rascist, not even all Afrikaners were rascist. How do you think the referendum came about? Living in Europe I can tell you that there are a lot of rascists right here and of course there's the US. Why didn't the UK and the US do more to help the black people in South Africa during apartheid? it's because they themselves considered Mandela and his political party to be terrorists.

      June 26, 2014 at 6:50 am | Reply
  3. JABU

    Zelda KaMandela. welldone grand daughter

    June 25, 2014 at 9:54 am | Reply
  4. Whitfield Palmer

    Great story, but she speaks NOTHING of her racism or what made her a racist.

    June 25, 2014 at 10:46 am | Reply
    • garymak54

      She most certainly does, quite clearly and quite early. That's how she was brought up, in the totality of the belief in Apartheid. She also discusses her epiphany that her entire belief system was false. Good for her for confronting it, reforming and working to right those wrongs.

      June 25, 2014 at 5:13 pm | Reply
    • Chris

      She did speak about what made her racist. It's how she was raised. Read the beginning of the story.

      July 23, 2014 at 11:47 am | Reply
  5. Cesar Romero

    It only retracts years of appartheid that went on and on , without the interference of OCDE , through sanctions or any kind of action . Even the US did very little to help ending that regime of horror. It resembles what Hitler did to jews.

    June 25, 2014 at 10:51 am | Reply
    • Moshe Ciwal

      You mean like the concentration camps, gas chambers and mass graves?

      June 25, 2014 at 3:18 pm | Reply
    • CJ

      You must be joking? I suggest you read some South African history, Afrikaners did not keep blacks in concentration camps and starve them to death. Neither did they lead them into showers killing them by gas. Millions of people were killed over a few years during the holocaust. Provide me with proof of how many blacks were murdered during 50 years of apartheid. Boers died by the thousands in British concentration camps but they didnt keep crying a sob story wallowing in self pity.

      June 25, 2014 at 3:32 pm | Reply
      • Moshe Ciwal

        Thank you CJ. It's exactly the response I was hoping for. What happened to Boers and blacks (for that matter) in British concentration camps can be compared to what happened to Jews during the Holocaust. I guess it depends on who writes the history books. Thanks again for putting it in perspective.

        June 25, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
    • stefan

      Cesar, funny you say nothing about the horror that is happening under the current government in South Africa. where black on with crime has reached 1000 a white farmers a year, sports teams are force to choose black players, police must be 96% black, Julius Malema who has openly spoken hate speech against whites, in parliament and is now a member of the comity choosing judges, self have more than 5 court cases pending and has been convicted of fraud. Police commissioner socializing with criminals......

      June 26, 2014 at 11:53 pm | Reply
    • Nasdaq7

      Wikipedia apartheid

      Between 1960 and 1994, according to statistics from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the Inkatha Freedom Party was responsible for 4,500 killings, South African security forces were responsible for 2,700 killings and the ANC was responsible for 1,300 killings

      You liar!

      June 29, 2014 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  6. highcross

    She has.

    “I was swimming in the pool on that day in February,” she told Amanpour. “And [her father] came outside and he said to me, ‘We are in trouble.’”

    “And I said, ‘What are you talking about?’”

    “And he said, ‘The terrorist is being released.’”

    “I said, ‘Who is that?’”

    “And he said, ‘Nelson Mandela.’”

    “I continued swimming. It didn't affect my life. I didn't know who he was. My father apparently knew who he was.”

    HER DAD TOLD HER

    June 25, 2014 at 10:55 am | Reply
    • Fuzz

      there is also quite a contradiction in the story above....
      1st comes : “I continued swimming. It didn't affect my life. I didn't know who he was. My father apparently knew who he was.”
      Then comes: He spoke to me in Afrikaans. And that is the last thing you expect of him, because I was brought up to fear this man.”

      she hadn't heard of him but was brought up to fear him.....

      June 25, 2014 at 1:25 pm | Reply
      • a

        It was years after he was released that he was elected president. She had heard of him by then.

        June 26, 2014 at 9:45 am |
      • A.

        I read that too. How can she not know who Mandela is, then say she was "brought up" to fear him? Which is it? I just think she's a liar. #FAIL

        June 26, 2014 at 3:17 pm |
      • Sean

        He was released in 1990 and elected in 1994 when she says she was 23. So he was released when she was 19, still basically a teen. Maybe "brought up" wasn't the best word choice to use, but her story holds water unless you have some reason to not believe her or giver her the benefit of the doubt.

        June 27, 2014 at 8:25 pm |
      • Nasdaq7

        Let me try and describe the situation in South Africa in 1985. Imagine countless underground political parties that meet in secret. They are represent non-black people. Some are funded by the USSR, some by Sweden, some by the US. The ANC had 5000 members in 1960. They go about collecting signatures, getting new members. Some are liberals, some are African nationalists, a few are capitalists, 50% are communists. Their demands are most socialistic. See their founding charter 1955. They want a non-racial South Africa.

        Europe grants independence for many African countries. But there is no political structures in place. Europe abandons its colonies immediately. So out of the blue, new political parties arise and try to seize power. Many are communists. They seize power in most newly independent countries. The US gets nervous about the takeover of basically the entire Africa by Marxist groups and asks SA to intervene and stop the Soviet backed political parties from imposing one party states. So South Africa military intervenes everywhere in Africa.

        At this time, Mandela is not even famous. The ANC is just one of many groups the apartheid government took on militarily inside and outside South Africa. So that is why she doesn't know about him. To remain in power in Africa is difficult. No chances were taken by the white dominated government. Around and outside South Africa, throughout the region 3 million is killed 12 million displaced in wars. Inside Africa, dictatorships rule. 55 out of 56 African countries is a mess with ultra low incomes and Marxist / Islamist governments. That's why apartheid lasted so long. There was no trust, no stability, anywhere. 4 million Europeans fled Africa in the Cold War.

        So you always here from the ANC's perspective, but you never hear from the PAC, AZAPO, MPLA, ZAPO, SWAPO, UDM, IFP, FP... hundreds of those organizations, some were internationally recognized by governments, some not. Some used terrorism. So that is why her father says: they are all terrorists. Some demands were legal and just. But not to take any chances, they were all considered terrorist groups by the apartheid government. Especially if they had any communist members. There was no country in Africa where the communists didn't use terrorism.

        June 29, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
  7. John Saxbury

    Zelda is very cute. She has given me a woody.

    June 25, 2014 at 1:10 pm | Reply
  8. Tanko

    As a black man this should be a big lesson to white people that blacks never hate the white, in fact blacks in Africa never minded if white lived among them, but the brutality of the whites prompted the blacks to react some in a violent way some very brutal as well which is totally wrong as well, but deep into blacks man heart in Africa has no problem with whites at all. But i am surprise that up till now racism still exists in Europe, America and else where blacks are still being regard as some thing not normal humans. If only people could be humble and be honest with themselves and said yes i was a racist but i am making progress the world will be a better place. And i am watching to see how many people would comment on this conversation and how many would be in denial!

    June 25, 2014 at 2:03 pm | Reply
    • arapikos

      As I have said once before with the Donald Sterling $2 billion sale for a $12.5 million investment. This woman spends time with a great man–being a racist–now, she too will make $ millions from her book. Meaning, there is a fundamental motivation for some people to be a racists–then confess to being one and make millions. As an American, you are correct–we too have not malice towards our whites–but some act in a very "caveman" like manner. Consequently, we must protect ourselves and many times we self-inflict our own people–as if, they are the "root cause(s)" of our quality of life....

      June 26, 2014 at 4:36 am | Reply
      • Brian Little

        ?

        June 27, 2014 at 3:35 am |
    • bb

      Why are you completely ignoring the constant acts against white farmers in South Africa? Or the reverse racism occuring in white countries? There are attacks on whites everyday.

      June 26, 2014 at 1:41 pm | Reply
    • Nasdaq7

      4 million whites were driven from Africa from 1950 – 1990. Their farms seized, their businesses seized. Don't get crazy. Those new black dictatorships for life governments butchered millions of their own people. Nationalized everything European.

      June 29, 2014 at 4:28 pm | Reply
  9. Nancy McIntyre

    I enjoyed reading this very much! It is exactly what I crave and I savoured every little vowel. Please. sir, may I have some more? :-)

    June 25, 2014 at 5:39 pm | Reply
  10. Sipho

    BlAcls were never in concentration camps, the new generation of south African black youth are bigger racists than the whites were

    June 25, 2014 at 6:59 pm | Reply
  11. Sipho

    Nelson became the father of our nation through respect not through crony democracy

    June 25, 2014 at 7:01 pm | Reply
  12. Emmanuel

    Madiba....there is no way anybody could live with him and not get an epiphany. That's my definition of greatness. Great read...wish I could have more!

    June 25, 2014 at 7:30 pm | Reply
  13. lena

    Ihave never commented. This is disgusting lie she is out here involving a journalist we most listen to for her own interest , proof from the story using her own quotes as follow,
    ““I was swimming in the pool on that day in February,” she told Amanpour. “And [her father] came outside and he said to me, ‘We are in trouble.’”

    “And I said, ‘What are you talking about?’”

    “And he said, ‘The terrorist is being released.’”

    “I said, ‘Who is that?’”

    “And he said, ‘Nelson Mandela.’”

    “I continued swimming. It didn't affect my life. I didn't know who he was. My father apparently knew who he was.”

    lets not forget this was when she was in the pool 1990 and she got the job in 1994 and now the lie come, she new this man by her confession quote
    “He was kind. He smiled. He extended his hand, and he spoke to me in my own language. He spoke to me in Afrikaans. And that is the last thing you expect of him, because I was brought up to fear this man.” well Anampour please do your research well this is very disturbing since we really on your journalism

    June 25, 2014 at 9:12 pm | Reply
    • Issy

      Lena, do you understand context?
      At the time of his release she did not know who he was.

      June 26, 2014 at 12:49 am | Reply
  14. europian

    I lived in south afrika for couple of years and even the blacks were telling me that during the apartheid life was better.
    I also have to say that the Afrikaners are the worst people I have ever meet.

    June 25, 2014 at 9:19 pm | Reply
    • Issy

      In what way are the Afrikaners the worst people you have met?
      How many did you meet and really spend time with?
      It is so easy and lazy to generalize.

      June 26, 2014 at 12:51 am | Reply
      • europian

        The fact that I did not met a dissent one, say it all.
        They are lying, cheating, stilling and they are not afraid to admitted.
        I was trying to explain it with the fact that they lost their country, but talking to other withes I understood that they were always like that.
        Now because there is no plaice for withe people in south Africa they are particularly angry and unlike other whites how have a second passport, they fill desperate.
        Unfortunately with every white that lives the country 10 blacks lose their job.

        June 26, 2014 at 3:20 am |
      • europian

        The fact that I did not met a dissent one, say it all.
        They are lying, cheating, stilling and they are not afraid to admitted.
        I was trying to explain it with the fact that they lost their country, but talking to other withes I understood that they were always like that.
        Now because there is no plaice for withe people in south Africa they are particularly angry and unlike other whites who have a second passport, they fill desperate.
        Unfortunately with every white that lives the country 10 blacks lose their job.

        June 26, 2014 at 3:22 am |
    • Stuart

      Then you really havent met many people have you. What an idiotic statement. Please do not come back to my country.

      June 26, 2014 at 9:53 am | Reply
      • europian

        No I won't come back it is the most dangerous plaice on earth.
        I'm sure you write from somewhere else because all Afrikaans have or desperately trying to emigrate,
        and don't upset I'm just stating the facts.
        You know the first thing that they told me when I arrived in S.A. was – don't give money to the Afrikaans you won't see them again, but I mast to admit that without you S.A. would be another banana republic.

        June 26, 2014 at 10:57 am |
    • Brian Little

      Europian – you are indeed a strange person – I do not even want to address your comments as they stand as pure drivel among a number of other rather interesting discussion points raised by others posting here

      June 27, 2014 at 3:40 am | Reply
      • Steve, New York City

        Brian Little - well said (regarding Europian's infantile comments).

        I thought that Zelda's story was uplifting.

        June 27, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
  15. geo80

    I thought Zelda being “brought up (to fear this man)” was key.…She may have only known this “terrorist” figure her father would refer to, not by his name, but as a faceless figure her father feared/loathed while growing up... but by '94, the name and face were “connected” and she was speaking in the present when she said she “was brought up to fear this man.” I found the article to be inspiring, a testament to how Nelson Mandela was able to so profoundly affect the people around him and in so many different ways.

    June 26, 2014 at 4:10 am | Reply
  16. za79

    Her name is Zelda Le Grange (not La Grange) as indicated by CNN, both on TV and here.

    June 26, 2014 at 5:36 am | Reply
  17. Lance

    I too was lucky enough to meet Madiba in '95 or '96 when he was on a state visit to Botswana, and experienced a similar epiphany... He was that kind of man...

    June 26, 2014 at 6:41 am | Reply
  18. Cliff

    I visited SA last year and my tasks required me to go all over the country and eat in many different restuarants. I was warned where not to travel to at nights and I could see the the blacks were less than happy overall. For the most part they were wait staff and did the menial jobs. To me apartheid is alive and well inspite of the laws on the books.

    June 26, 2014 at 8:54 am | Reply
  19. Inno

    great story. it shows how far the world has come from, on the rights of women, the blacks, etc. A lot still to be done on the rights of gays, on feedom of religion, etc.

    June 26, 2014 at 9:38 am | Reply
  20. carmentosca

    Wow..amazing how people have opinions of something they don't know anything of... Her (real) name is actually Zelda La Gransie – she changed it because English people can't pronounce it and now they don't say La Grange correct either... I know her personally and there are still millions of very happy and decent and wonderful people in South Africa "europian"... none of us "trying" to emigrate. I can go and live anywhere in the world (and I have lived many different countries), but I choose South Africa.

    Tanko – I appreciate your comment... as my own father and his parents and brother had to flee the Congo in 1962...they lost everything there, he was born there, they grew up with all the other blacks...yet the same ones tried to kill them. But I do understand what you are saying and that war is still going on...

    John Saxbury, she is quite. My brother was the lucky guy she mentions on page 273, 274 of her book. ;-)

    Love to you all. That was Mandela's core message he lived for the last years of his life.

    June 26, 2014 at 6:37 pm | Reply
  21. gahh

    Good for her.

    June 26, 2014 at 7:39 pm | Reply
  22. Chi

    It is quite clear that she was sent to Mandela's office as a spy by the whites – her father and his folks. Its like Saul the Christian prosecutor from the bible getting arrested by the Holy spirit and converted to Paul. God did a wonderful job in her life.

    June 27, 2014 at 5:06 am | Reply
  23. Ogmios

    And now she likes nothing more than a BBC and a creampie shoved up her twitching 'conscience'.

    June 27, 2014 at 5:47 am | Reply
  24. Adrian

    So she was brought up to fear this man, but had never heard of him? Something sounds fishy.

    June 27, 2014 at 7:47 am | Reply
  25. gmichael52

    Next up- a gay white guy will come out of the closet and disclose he was a racist- all at the same time.

    June 27, 2014 at 9:13 am | Reply
  26. gmichael52

    Next up- a gay white actor who is on a career downfall will come out of the closet and disclose that he was a racist- all at the same time.

    June 27, 2014 at 9:14 am | Reply
  27. dan crabter

    without whites there would be no south africa..period.. as whites civilized this part of africa...just look around at any other part of africa that is black controlled and you have your answer on what whites contributred in africa..South africa once again now stands at the precipt of failure once again with blacks rueling this country...crime off the charts no jobs no work..Again as in any modern culture that is sucessful whites are behind that sucess...you can fantazize all you waht on the black acheivements...but sadly you only lie to yourself..

    June 27, 2014 at 9:56 am | Reply
    • Louise

      Your pretty pathetic, if you don't want to believe apartheid and European colonisation has has and still does have a horrible effect on Africa. But if you want to believe your stupid white man rides in and saves the people story then go ahead we will not be losing any sleep

      June 27, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Reply
    • Chi

      "dan crabter", you are what I call a typical educated white man – in other words, a productive robot lacking natural intelligence, virtue... as a result of ignorance. Look at what the Europeans did to Nigeria. They came in and bundled everyone together as one country and no one is progressing anymore. The first known genocide after WW2 was committed by Nigerian forces and Harold Wilson's UK government against the Biafran's (who wanted to secede and become better than your apartheid white South Africa) all in the name of greed and oil. Look at that region call Nigeria... everything has fallen apart.
      We don’t need to go far. If I and you were to be cast away alone in a no man's land, as an African, I will do better than you in all areas.
      Picasso copied African arts and now Picasso’s works are worth millions while original art works from Africa is worth nothing.
      If you want to be an Analyst, you should start by learning what a ‘root cause analysis’ is.

      June 27, 2014 at 9:42 pm | Reply
      • Love Chi

        well said Chi, i have been lacking words for this diseas for a long time now, you just help me thanks you, I love your wording

        June 28, 2014 at 5:17 am |
      • Nasdaq7

        Open an economic textbook and check the colonies of Europe. CHECK IT! See why Rhodesia was called the star of Africa and why it alone fed almost the entire Africa: 350 million people. Today it is on $100m UN food aid or 2 million starve. South Africa had the 9th largest stock exchange in the world. Reflect upon that!

        And while you are at it, read up on the 1927 visit of Nelson Mandela's ANC to their best friend Josef Stalin and why the USSR was considered heaven on earth!

        June 29, 2014 at 4:42 pm |
      • Chi

        "Nasdaq7", you are still a school boy! Just to let you know, I once told a lecturer during my first year at the university that a sociology textbook they recommended to my class did not reflect social behaviour in Africa – so I was not going to attend the class. You know why? Because I stopped thinking like a school boy even before I left school. If you want to know what happened to Zimbabwe, ask Tony Blair what happened to the UK and Zimbabwe subsidy agreement.

        June 30, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
  28. Mel

    Wonderful story! Thank you!

    June 27, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
  29. Sutra

    I enjoyed reading this. Thank you for posting.

    June 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm | Reply
  30. Tizzle

    So the president of Iran is learning history of South Africa from a lady who didn't know who Nelson Mandela was when he was released? K.

    June 28, 2014 at 10:21 pm | Reply
  31. Nasdaq7

    I can see there is a great reluctance to talk about the Cold War, about the US / USSR actions inside Africa, and the reasons why apartheid lasted so long. It's unbelievable: as if the USSR wasn't spending 35% of its defense budget fighting South Africa by 1986. What is this? Why is this? Who cared about Mandela and apartheid? When millions were dying inside Africa, and South Africa's forces were trying 100% to save those people and the complete collapse of Western civilization and capitalism in Africa.

    June 29, 2014 at 5:20 pm | Reply
  32. tim greenlee

    the live of one man is not enought to want to know the life of a country raceism raceism is in all of us even tö the point of jokes but let no one declare his less of raceism less of mine. for there is only one rule and that is fair play something that many has yet to learn in thire day by day living with others.to the fools who has read nothing and know nothing. the woman tóf the black slash movement is a good place to start if one wishes to see apartheid and its begains . there is still many goods humans being around i biing black and many of the others being white of whatever the color history is the past and the fools who want to say who did and who did not to others as they would to themself.we all know how bad the past has been for many others and some even knows what it has been to themself that is what i dont understand he still wnts to hurt the next man

    June 29, 2014 at 8:37 pm | Reply
  33. tonycayman

    "I didn't know who he was" she says and then later says "I was brought up to fear this man" She really is stupid when she contradicts herself in mid conversation. #fail #publicity seeker.

    June 30, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply

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