It could have been a bloodbath of historic proportions. But instead, one man made the end of apartheid possible: in February 1990, President F.W. de Klerk lifted the ban on the African National Congress and ordered the release of Nelson Mandela. As the world celebrated, Mandela would go on to become South Africa's first democratically elected president -- with de Klerk as his Vice President. But de Klerk's history is complicated. Before becoming president, he was a virulent defender of white Africans and their privileges, and helped lead the policy of "Total Onslaught, Total Strategy" against ANC activists. And his own term as president was marred by violence, often at the hands of his own security forces. What pushed this man to reverse his beliefs and jumpstart the process of making South Africa a more equal and just nation? Featuring in-depth interviews with de Klerk himself, former president Thabo Mbeki, anti-apartheid activists Father Michael Lapsley and Mathews Phosa, Yasmin Sooka (of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission), Richard Goldstone (who headed the Goldstone Commission investigations into political violence) and many others, filmmaker Nic Rossier explores the fascinating political journey and legacy of this complex figure.
Fri Feb 06 2015