Willie Esterhuyse


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The full story of behind-the-scenes encounters between ANC leaders and a select few Afrikaners in the turbulent eighties, told for the first time by someone who was there himself: Stellenbosch philosophy professor Willie Esterhuyse. These highly confidential talks, held behind closed doors in England, were not only crucial to the start of negotiations and the transition in South Africa, they were also the start of an unlikely but lasting friendship between a former Broeder and a fiery young activist and eventual President.This first-hand account, filled with anecdotes, offers a fresh, often wry look at many South African leaders. With fascinating information on i.a. secret discussions with Nelson Mandela in prison, what went on in PW Botha’s situation room, and how National Intelligence tried to save the country from widespread violence by covertly intervening in the high-stakes chess game played by the parties. The author examines the reasons for keeping the talks top secret and argues strongly for the value of unofficial, clandestine discussions where politicians don’t have to maintain their public posturing or stick to formal party policies.Not to be missed.
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506 printed pages
Original publication


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