The Noah Project

Rebuilding a sustainable world.

What Mandela Asked Of His Oppressors

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The Dish

Beinart criticizes the media for glossing over it:

Mandela refused to grant legal absolution to the perpetrators of apartheid’s crimes until they publicly confessed their guilt. In the run-up to South Africa’s first free elections, de Klerk granted clemency to 4,000 members of the South African police and security services. But after winning those elections, the ANC overturned de Klerk’s action and created the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which required detailed, public confessions by anyone seeking amnesty. In the words of Mandela ally Bishop Desmond Tutu, who ran the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, A group of American and South African students, aged from 11 to 19, met with Nelson Mandela at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg, on 2 June 2009. This is part of a series of activities ahead of Mandela Day on 18 July.“True reconciliation exposes the awfulness, the abuse, the hurt, the truth…because in the end only an honest confrontation with reality can bring real healing. Superficial reconciliation can bring only superficial healing.”

Why, in recent days, has the American media focused so much more on Mandela’s capacity for reconciliation than his demand for truth? Perhaps it’s because…

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Author: Daniela

I was born in Croatia, at that time Yugoslavia. My family moved to the US when I was very young, but I still treasure the memories of my grandfather teaching me how to protect myself against the "evil eye," my grandmother shopping early every morning, at the open air market, to buy the freshest vegetables for the day's meals, and the traditions that were the underpinnings of our society. Someone once noted that "For all of us that want to move forward, there are a very few that want to keep the old methods of production, traditions and crafts alive." I am a fellow traveler with those who value the old traditions and folk wisdom. I believe the knowledge they possess can contribute significantly to our efforts to build a more sustainable world; one that values the individual over the corporation, conservation over growth and happiness over wealth.

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