Black Rage, White Fist

Mass arrests and bloodshed mark South Africa's state of emergency

Day after day, the number of detainees grew--first 500, then 800, finally 1,000. Police jeeps and trucks rumbled through the dusty, despair-ridden black townships that surround South Africa's towns and cities, stopping at this house and that. A man was pulled out here, a woman there. The security forces arrested political activists, church workers, students, labor organizers, youthful militants--anyone, it seemed, who might conceivably lead a protest against the white minority government of State President P.W. Botha. At times the detentions seemed carefully planned, at others indiscriminate: near Johannesburg, 22 bus passengers were taken into custody as they returned from a...

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