South Africa Going Part of the Way

A divided Commonwealth votes sanctions, and Pretoria hits back

"We ended up as friendly as we started," declared Britain's Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at the close of a special two-day meeting of seven leaders of the 49-nation Commonwealth last week. Actually, relations between Thatcher and her Commonwealth colleagues were strained at the beginning of the session and got steadily worse. In the end Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi accused Britain of "compromising its basic values for economic gain." An even angrier Kenneth Kaunda, the President of Zambia, described Thatcher as a "pathetic figure" who was "worshiping platinum and gold."

The issue, of course, was economic sanctions against South Africa, which...

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