Friday, June 21, 2013
Kasrils slams ANC during book handover
Armed and Dangerous ( Amped Edition ) VS Armed And Dangerous ( Ronnie Kasril's )
With nearly a million copies sold in previous editions, Armed & Dangerous is a trusted Bible resource for teens.
Now, it’s been amped!
Containing the complete text of the original Armed & Dangerous—with more than 100 life topics and 1,000 Bible passages—this new edition also includes real-world observations such as statistics and quotations from popular media.
It also includes questions for further thought, to help you apply the Bible passages to your own life experience.
With verses from the King James and New International Versions, Armed & Dangerous—Amped Edition is newly-designed and typeset. . .and ready to continue a 15-year history of challenging you with God’s Word
Review On Ronnie Kasril"s Book : Armed and Dangerous " My undercover struggle against Apartheid "
A Useless Idiot who enlisted with the Anti-Semites, May 21, 2005
By Alan Rockman
This review is from: Armed and Dangerous:
My Undercover Struggle Against Apartheid (African Writers Series) (Paperback)
I am frankly amused by the two reviewers who gave Ronnie Kasrils' "Armed and Dangerous" five star reviews. Of course, they seem to be the lot who would eagerly fly to Ramallah and place flowers on the grave of the monster and babykiller who wrecked his own "peace process".
Kasrils chose, unlike fellow Leftie Hirsh Goodman, to abandon his people and adopt the creed of the Stalinist Jew-haters of Soviet Communism. Goodman, for all of his faults, chose Zionism, and must be respected for that.
Kasrils chose a new kind of Hitlerism even if he suggests it was for admirable purposes. To study terrorism under these people, and to take up arms alongside the PLO, Baader Meinhof, and other terrorist groups brings back that old John Lennon quote: "but if you're gonna carry passages from Chairman Mao, you ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow".
The ANC was a terrorist organization. Period. If Kasrils really had guts and brains he would have joined Chief Buthelezi and the Zulus in their principled opposition to reckless Apartheid policies.
Ironically Kasrils is now the director of South Africa's equivalent of the CIA. Or in his case, KGB or Gestapo. He now favors tweed suits and the golf clubs over the khaki and kalashnikov. But deep down inside Kasrils is still a Fascist, as per his remarks supporting Palestinian genocidal bombing against Israel women and children. Furthermore, South Africa's Intelligence agencies have been cited as having possible links to Al Qaeda.
Ronnie Kasrils ...........
"He said the dreadful corruption prevalent in the country was a betrayal of the revolution, adding that the ANC needed to be questioned and to have a strong opposition.
In his contribution to the discussion, Devan Pillay, from the Wits sociology department, said he felt that if former president Thabo Mbeki had stayed in power, the country would still find itself in the mess it is in now, even though he was cleverer than President Jacob Zuma. "
1.0 out of 5 stars
Kasrils slams ANC during book handover
June 21 2013 at 11:54am
By CHARLOTTE CHIPANGURA
File photo: Struggle veteran and former minister for intelligence services Ronnie Kasrils
Johannesburg - “Shoot me down in flames if you don’t like what I say, but I have to speak out.”
These were the words of former minister of intelligence Ronnie Kasrils, as he handed over his memoirs and unique historical material to the Wits University’s historical archives at the institution on Thursday.
A revised edition of Kasrils’s book Armed and Dangerous was on sale at the function.
Kasrils said the book, which has been translated into Spanish, Russian, and German, was dedicated to the born-frees “so that they know why we took up arms and why we made so many sacrifices”.
He added that he was also thinking of people such as Julius Malema, who at some point, vowed that he would kill for (President Jacob) Zuma.
“There shouldn’t be violence like that in a democracy. The Marikana massacre should not have happened in democratic South Africa,” said Kasrils.
He said the dreadful corruption prevalent in the country was a betrayal of the revolution, adding that the ANC needed to be questioned and to have a strong opposition.
In his contribution to the discussion, Devan Pillay, from the Wits sociology department, said he felt that if former president Thabo Mbeki had stayed in power, the country would still find itself in the mess it is in now, even though he was cleverer than President Jacob Zuma.
Michelle Williams, also from the sociology department, echoed this, lamenting the fact that liberation movement files were sanitised before being made available to the public.
Wits vice-chancellor Professor Adam Habib, who made the welcome speech, started off by offering an institutional apology for the gaffe made when Nelson Mandela’s obituary was inadvertently made available online.
Mandela is still in a Pretoria hospital.
“It was a silly mistake. We have sent letters to Graça Machel, Mandla and the family, apologising for the mistake, and it won’t happen again.”
Wealth of Struggle history in material donated to university:
* Kasrils’s introduction to Marxism, and Umkhonto weSizwe notebooks from the Soviet Union;
* Lecture notes given in Angolan camps in 1977 and 1978, including recordings of some of the lectures and class discussions;
* Recordings of camp concerts and celebrations with live commentary and interviews;
* The 1986 MPLA/Fapla-MK intelligence agreement signed by the presidents of the two organisations, Oliver Tambo and José Eduardo dos Santos, as well as Kasrils - as MK’s military intelligence chief - and his Angolan counterpart;
* Letters to his late wife Eleanor from the Angolan camp;
* Kasrils’s apartheid surveillance file No 1032 relating to his political activities from 1961 to 1990; and
* Financial documents for operations, underground cadres and self-defence units during Operation Vula.
Thabo's boys vs Vula's boys -- the sequel
The rows over Mac Maharaj and Willem Heath are a new phase in an old war between the acolytes of Thabo Mbeki and the minds behind Operation Vula.
Willem Heath: from Madiba, to Kebble, and Zuma
Mac Maharaj responds to the Mail & Guardian
The evidence that damns Mac
Presidency: Heath comments are his own
Heath rant 'devoid of all truth', says Mbeki
In November 2001, while working for Noseweek magazine, I wrote a piece titled “Thabo’s boys vs Vula’s boys”.
The story tried to understand, from available public information, the political background to the then nascent arms-deal investigation being carried out by the Scorpions.
One should recall that, at the time, all we really knew was that Tony Yengeni had been arrested (for lying about his car discount) and Schabir Shaik had been raided. The fact that Jacob Zuma was a key suspect was then unknown.
It is worth quoting extracts at some length because the trajectory I outlined (somewhat speculatively) appears to have had some predictive value.
And it may offer some insight into events today, 10 years later, as allegations about Mac Maharaj, now presidential spokesperson, resurface, as a new Zuma-approved arms-deal inquiry gets under way, and as former judge Willem Heath clumsily telegraphs the message that it’s open season on Thabo Mbeki and his acolytes.
So here’s some of what Noseweek carried in 2001.
“Will President Thabo Mbeki allow the [arms deal] investigation to go the whole way, risking bringing down the pillars of the temple, or will he seek to limit the inquiry to small-time corruption involving secondary contracts only? As we ask it, we know it’s a foolish question.
“But let’s have a closer look anyway at the situation — and see if our suspicions are correct.
“Arms-deals investigators will quickly have discovered that those within the ANC most interested in the deals can be divided roughly into two competing groups: the Vula boys and Thabo’s boys.
“While both are equally anxious to maintain their grip on power and their cut of the arms-deal profits, the difference between them could just influence who will be sacrificed and who will be saved in the arms-deal investigations.
“The Vula boys are the collection of communists and [mostly Natal] ANC intelligence operatives who set up Operation Vula, the secret pre-1990 programme to develop the leadership and financial networks inside South Africa needed to launch a violent revolution.
“Vula was controversial because it was secret even inside the ANC—the wider ANC leadership, including Thabo Mbeki, knew nothing about it. That gap between the groups appears to have persisted ...
“Vula was led by Mac Maharaj [later made minister of transport by Mandela, but fired by Mbeki]. It included Siphiwe Nyanda [now defence force chief], Ronnie Kasrils [moved by Mbeki from defence to water affairs], Moe Shaik [demoted from national intelligence coordinator to ambassador in Morocco], and Shaik’s brother Schabir.
“Deputy President Jacob Zuma [then still ANC intelligence chief] was apparently also within the Vula network and is widely perceived to be the closest the group has to a protector in government.
“There are clearly ideological issues involved in the conflict. Maharaj, Pravin Gordhan and company are associated with the ANC’s left wing. At least two of the Shaik brothers have privately expressed concern at the ‘crude Africanism’ espoused by some of Mbeki’s acolytes ...
“All this might lead one to suspect that the recent raids by the Scorpions on the offices of Nkobi Holdings and the home of Schabir Shaik might have been politically motivated. Not so, we are assured ...
“But that’s not to say investigators are not under political pressure. They are, and the focus on the Shaiks has diverted attention from Thabo’s boys also having their snouts deep in the arms-deal trough.”
It should be recorded that I had the benefit of one source with insight into this shadowy world—the late Bheki Jacobs, a man alternately derided and feared as “Thabo Mbeki’s spy”.
It was Jacobs who played a pivotal role in South Africa’s post-apartheid history by blowing the whistle on the arms deal, inter alia through the so-called 1999 “De Lille dossier”, which it seems he played the primary role in creating.
Jacobs’s thesis was that the anti-Mbeki strand of the ANC, clustered around Maharaj, had positioned itself to use arms-deal cash to fund their factional battle.
It is worth recalling this interpretation in the light of information published by City Press last week. The paper reported that at one point in the legal tussle between Maharaj and the Scorpions, Maharaj had offered to explain alleged contradictions between what he told the Scorpions during his June 2003 in-camera interrogation and what it subsequently established about the existence of and payments into his wife’s Geneva bank account.
The explanation, Maharaj reportedly suggested, derived from sensitive internal ANC activities relating to the struggle against apartheid.
It seems Maharaj subsequently conveyed this explanation to an ANC committee appointed to investigate the “hoax emails” that attempted to portray the Scorpions, former national director of public prosecutions Bulelani Ngcuka and others as part of a conspiracy against Zuma.
But there appears to be little evidence that Maharaj’s hinted explanation gels with the known facts, unless one argues that Schabir Shaik’s contribution to the financial and political survival of those individuals, such as Maharaj and Zuma, closely associated with the congress tradition in the ANC, represented a justifiable continuation of the struggle.
That argument is not wholly without merit, given the strange places Mbeki was taking the country as he succeeded Mandela, but it is not an easy one to make legally.
To resume the narrative: it appears that in 1999, when Jacobs tried to alert Mbeki to the political threat posed by the arms deal, he was rebuffed, not least because of the ambiguous role played by his contact in the presidency, Essop Pahad.
Jacobs went on to practise what he called “guerilla intelligence”, which the established spy agencies condemned as information peddling.
It appears he was later reabsorbed into the orbit of the presidency and had an open channel to the Scorpions. The latter was notably visible in Jacobs’s follow-up “De Lille dossier”, released in November 2003, at the height of the Hefer Commission confrontation between “Mac and Moe” on the one side and Ngcuka and Mbeki on the other.
The follow-up dossier made the following claim: “Hamaid Baig deposited large sums of money into Zarina Maharaj’s bank account, which was then transferred into Mac’s bond account on his Hyde Park house ... Hamaid Baig is a Pakistani with United States citizenship.”
It is now clear that the information about Baig was almost certainly drawn from Maharaj’s in-camera interview with the Scorpions, which had taken place just five months earlier.
The second “De Lille dossier” alleged: “The fight around Bulelani Ngcuka has become the terrain of battle by both forces, the constitutional, legitimate forces of the state represented by the president and the unconstitutional, underground, parallel structures, represented by Mac Maharaj/Jacob Zuma/Moe Shaik.”
The dossier resulted in Jacobs being arrested on the eve of Shaik’s testimony at the Hefer Commission in an operation driven by the Crime Intelligence Service (CIS), notably Mark Hankel and Ray Lalla, the latter then the acting head of the CIS.
There is evidence the Scorpions also attempted unofficially to have Maharaj bugged but that was picked up by a well-connected South African Revenue Service (Sars) official and reported to Shaik.
Lalla, once part of the Vula machinery, has now rejoined his old comrades at Sars and the odds are Hankel will survive the current purge of the CIS.
In his Hefer evidence, Shaik made the dramatic claim that other individuals associated with the Scorpions were about to be arrested.
That didn’t happen but he probably had in mind Ivor Powell, whose entrapment by crime intelligence (on a drunk-driving charge) would happen only in January 2008, after his so-called “Browse Mole” report had been leaked and publicly discredited.
Where does all this history leave us today? Here are some tentative conclusions:
It is the turn of Thabo’s boys—and Mbeki himself—to face the arms-deal heat. Whether or not Heath survives being indiscreet, his message was in tune with the un-spoken subtext of the new arms-deal commission of inquiry.
There is a consolidation of the battlelines and the weeding out of those, including Gibson Njenje and Moe Shaik, who want to limit the extent to which state institutions are again dragged into this war and are damaged by it.
There is deep suspicion about the ex-Scorpions network clustered around Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) head Willie Hofmeyr (centred on former Jackie Selebi prosecutor Gerrie Nel) and of Hofmeyr himself. It is worth recalling that Hofmeyr was Mbeki’s parliamentary counsellor before being appointed by him to head the AFU and later the Special Investigating Unit, replacing Heath. The way in which Hofmeyr is perceived to be able to drive some investigations, such as the Hawks probe of crime intelligence, is regarded as a threat. Hofmeyr is seen as having changed sides once too often.
The criminal justice system, with the intelligence services, has become entrenched in the dominant political culture as primarily a means to secure and protect political dominance. Although Mbeki may have initiated this process, it is sadly ironic that Maharaj, who once rightly warned against abuses of state power, is the mouthpiece of an administration that appears bent on finishing what Mbeki started.
The media has and will continue to be used as a tool to smear opponents. We will have to fight against being drawn into conspiracies and allegations of conspiracy, such as the one Maharaj is calling on the Hawks to investigate in relation to the Mail & Guardian and City Press.
The political battle we are witnessing feeds on old fissures in the ANC, drawing on fears about the dominance of a communist cabal.
What is glaring in this whole saga since 1999 is the failure of people such as Maharaj to eschew a politics of open dissent in favour of a politics of conspiracy, just like their enemies.
Unless we change, that sort of politics will continue to smother the dream of 1994.
* Got a tip-off for us about this story? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
The M&G Centre for Investigative Journalism, a non-profit initiative to develop investigative journalism in the public interest, produced this story. All views are ours. See www.amabhungane.co.za for all our stories, activities and sources of funding.
Rusty's review of "Armed and Dangerous" by Ronnie Kasrils
AT HOME IN THE UNDERGROUND
You can cover the whole history of Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) in the life and adult adventures of Ronnie Kasrils. When it was formed in 1961 he was in the ranks of its first Durban unit. When it consolidated and began its campaign of sabotage he was in the Natal Regional Command. When it suffered virtual suppression in the post-Rivonia period, he was wanted and on the run into exile. He became an essential cog in the slow reconstruction directed from London, Dar es Salaam, Lusaka and Maputo.
He was amongst the first guerrillas to be trained in Angola and in Eastern Europe; planned and promoted the first attempts at armed guerrilla incursions into South Africa; became a key organiser of the MK infiltrations from the Front Line states which re-established an armed MK presence inside South Africa. He crossed and re-crossed borders, legally, in disguise and illegally; and finally returned the MK and ANC exiles from abroad after the de Klerk reforms. He was one of the leaders of MK’s last stand, Operation Vula, when MK and the ANC were already legal but Vula's Maharaj and Kasrils remained at the head of the police "Wanted" list.
Or, to put it another way, the story of Ronnie Kasrils post 1961 is the story of MK, and of the clandestine cloak-and-dagger side of the South African liberation struggle. It starts at the very beginning of armed and violent struggle by the ANC and its allies, and ends appropriately in the negotiating team at the CODESA talks when a new South African constitution and state is being born.
He was in the very centre of the underground, in the hub of the terror with its raids, ambushes and assassinations by the South African security Services, police and military. He bore a charmed life, surviving to observe all - and now to tell all - while hundreds around him fell into the hands of the jailers, assassins and torturers, and others were 'turned' by the enemy through a combination of bribery and physical pressure. Inevitably as his exploits became known, Kasrils the survivor was nicknamed by the South African press and public as "The Red Pimpernel."
It is something over fifty years since I last came across a description of his predecessor, the Scarlet Pimpernel. My memory tells me that he was a supercilious and hidebound aristocrat, deeply conscious of his racial superiority to those villainous enemy French; that he was nevertheless, almost bloodless and endowed with the stiffest of British stiff upper lips. Perhaps the memory is false. But there is not the slightest resemblance between Kasrils and that stilted character of fiction except that they both operated within a national revolution, and both were exceptionally brave and daring. And, one might suggest, exceptionally lucky to have got away unscathed.
Kasrils tells his tale simply, straightforwardly and well. He emerges as the very antithesis of the Scarlet Pimpernel. He is the authentic "cheeky chappie", shown characteristically on the front cover of his book with both arms raised aloft in triumphant salute, with hammer-and-sickle and the slogan "Build the Party" emblazoned across his chest, and grin a mile wide across his face. And well he might grin, for he and his colleagues and their cause came out triumphant from a thirty-year battle against the vastly larger, better equipped and better resourced enemies in the state security battalions. Though those were thirty years of constant threat, constantly hunted and in dire peril, it seems to have been a life he revelled in; at least in retrospect.
Kasrils, I think, loved all the clandestinity, the daring-do, and all the physical and psychological challenge of confronting Goliath armed only with a sling. Perhaps more importantly, he loved the comrades of all colours and races who joined him in his peripatetic life in the underground. Over the years, as many of them fell in the struggle, he must often have felt "there but for the grace of God”. Deep dedication to their cause made it possible for the survivors to carry on without losing that feeling of excitement and adventure
"Armed and Dangerous" is his account of high adventure accompanied by suffering, sacrifice and endurance. It never dramatises the negative sides of violent political activity, but it underplays the tensions and perils, and concentrates on the dramatic events. It is an adventure story of a real life, of real skulduggery, of espionage and counter-espionage, told with no holds barred.
It can now be told for the first time because the underground struggle has given way to the open political contests of CODESA and the first ever non-racial election campaign, and there is no longer good reason to conceal names, dates, places or even operational details. Kasrils conceals nothing of his own operations or of those with which he was associated. Some have been reported before in less detail; fro court hearings and security briefings. Some have been the stuff of unconfirmed rumour; and some have never before even been rumoured. Together they add up to a classic true-life thriller, which it is impossible to put down, told by a somewhat larger-than-life revolutionary who it was; and is impossible to keep down.
When he was high on the South African state Wanted List. Kasrils and his colleagues were portrayed as stereotypes - like escapees from the mythology of Day of the Jackal or the "master terrorist" Carlos. But there is a deep divide between the fictional - or perhaps even real - terrorist on the one hand and the freedom fighter on the other. As in the fictions, Kasrils went about armed. Unlike the fictions, only once (if I counted right) did he ever fire deliberately, in anger.
Unlike fiction, his story has no gratuitous account of violence, no glorification of the power that comes “Through the barrel of a gun",' and no voyeuristic lingering over injuries or pain or death. His main concern is for the life of his comrades and for their concerns with families and communities and nation. His story is concerned with the cause they all upheld; rather than with a desire to shock. These were freedom fighters, ready when necessary to kill violently, but never in thrall to violence to people inspired by ideology.
"Ideologies are ideas which organise people's behaviour and conduct. It is generally difficult to make any distinction between the philosophies through which people understand the world, and the practices through which they operate in it” - Professor Stuart Hall, in the Guardian. 24.11.93
This is why the Jackal, a man without ideology, remains a fictions and a terrorised, why Kasrils “Armed and Dangerous” is the autobiography of a freedom fighter. Yet it is a thriller, but not a conventional thriller. It is also an historic record, but not a conventional history. For history asks a host of questions which Kasrils neither asks nor answers. History asks not only what happened, but why? Was the course chosen justified by the situation, and its conduct vindicated by the outcome? Could it have been done differently, better, and with different endings? Was it necessary? Kasrils allows himself no such questioning. He sticks strictly to the record - except for an occasional expression of regret for over-reliance on Soviet precept and experience; and even that stated rather than explored.
Which is not to imply, as reviewers sometimes do, that the writer should not have written this book, but something else instead. Kasrils should have written this book, because, perhaps no one else has such an intimate knowledge of the facts, or could recount them with such exuberance. He fills a vital gap in all our knowledge of events in the underground life of our country, in our time.
But now that the facts are on record, there is also a need for clear and thoughtful assessment, to draw out whatever lessons the past shape the future. On April 27th next, a new South African state and government should be coming into being. It will need to turn urgently to the very questions of military postures and strategies which the history of MK can illuminate. It will need to regulate in a new way the relations between the state and its military/police apparatus. It will need to create a new modus of political and democratic control over the states secret intelligence apparatus. It will need to guard against the constant threat, that even the best-intentioned democratic initiatives can give rise to brutal and authoritarian practices if the right organisational and administrative measures are not taken.
There is a great deal of experience but almost all negative to be learnt from the SADF and state intelligence services. It will be tragedy for South Africa if that negative experience is the only guide for the new South Africa simply because no one in the ANC or MK who has the knowledge of their very different experience takes the time to analyse and lay bare the many positive lessons that can be learnt from and the few negative ones to be avoided.
L. Bernstein, 26.11.93
ARMED AND DANGEROUS. My undercover against struggle against apartheid, by Ronnie Kasrils, is published by Heinemann
Remove Zuma as president, Malema urges
Malema's court appearance
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Polokwane - Expelled ANCYL president Julius Malema told his supporters on Wednesday that they needed to make sure President Jacob Zuma was not re-elected at the ANC's national conference in Mangaung.
Malema, who was speaking after being officially charged with money laundering at the Polokwane Regional court, and subsequently released on R10 000 bail, said Zuma must be removed as president.
"We must make sure Jacob Zuma does not become president of the ANC," he told supporters.
"Zuma has 700 charges against him. I only have one."
He said Zuma had to be officially charged and arrested.
Proclaiming his innocence, Malema said: "Comrades... we are happy our charges are here. We are prepared to answer any questions and every question... because we are not hiding anything," he said.
"Only criminals run away from the court."
He thanked the crowd for its support and for a night vigil held for him on Tuesday.
Malema also thanked his family, and especially his grandmother, who he said continued to receive threats.
"She has always said to me... if you believe in it, continue to fight for it."
He thanked the ANC provincial leadership for supporting him against "politically motivated charges".
"All of you, your efforts are recognised," he said.
He also thanked his lawyer, who he said had represented him despite criticism from other white people.
"They want justice to be served. That is why they took a decision to represent me... and my team will be victorious."
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