South Africa: why you have to smash the old state apparatus

Lou Paulsen wwchi at
Sun Dec 17 11:09:01 MST 2000

>BBC News | AFRICA | Mbeki 'used as army shooting target'BBC News Online:
>World: Africa
>Sunday, 17 December, 2000, 16:49 GMT
>Mbeki 'used as army shooting target'
>South Africa's Defence Ministry is investigating a report that an army
>instructor ordered soldiers to fire on targets depicting President Thabo
>Mbeki and other leaders.

>A spokesman for Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota announced the inquiry after
>members of the National Ceremonial Guard, who train at Pretoria's
>Thabo-Tswana base, told a Sunday newspaper about the incident.
>The soldiers told the Sunday World that they had refused to obey the
>instructor's orders last Tuesday to shoot at targets depicting President
>Mbeki and other South African leaders.
>Instead they reported the incident to their superiors.

>A shooting range instructor at Thabo-Tswana, Captain Thomas Klaasen, had
>resigned on Thursday, the report said.
>Defence Ministry spokesman Sam Mkhwanazi could not confirm whether the
>incident actually happened or if it was the reason for the instructor's

>'Demoralised' armed forces

>South Africa's armed forces are in crisis because of a failure to integrate
>white and black soldiers, according to a government report published in

>The Defence Ministry report said racism "manifested itself in many ways",
>from abusive language and assault, to discrimination in accommodation and
>disciplinary proceedings.

>There has been a spate of racial shootings on military bases, including the
>slaying of eight white soldiers by a black colleague at Tempe base outside
>Bloemfontein in Free State province last year.

>Elements of the old South Africa remain in the national police force too.
>In September, a screen-saver was found on computers at police headquarters
>in Pretoria showing the face of former President Nelson Mandela being
>transformed into that of a gorilla.

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