SOUTH AFRICA: Tragedy at No. 10

Misery lit the bloodshot eyes of the black woman in tattered dress huddled on her knees near the mine shaft at Coalbrook North. As a white man passed, she clutched his legs and moaned, "Baas, please, baas, tell me where my man is." Five hundred feet below, her man, and 439 others, all but six of them Africans, were trapped behind thousands of tons of rock and coal in a half-mile-long gallery of No. 10 section.

The first rockfall had come 24 hours earlier, a cave-in far up No. 10's main tunnel. Everybody...

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