Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #543) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #543)
Transcript: countries and maintained, as I still do, that they condemned apartheid more strongly than the West. I told the court, as I had done in the Treason Trial, that I was an African patriot who was attracted by the idea of a classless society and who had been influenced by marxist thought. I admitted that I had written the notes of "How to be a Good Communist" to demonstrate to an old friend who occupied senior positions in both the ANC and the CP and who had been trying to recruit me into the CP how marxism could be freed from the complicated cliches and jargon of the European dcontinent and made indigenous to Africa. I emphasised that MK was formed by Africans to further the African struggle in our country. After describing our economic, political and social disabilities I ended my addres with the following remarks: "During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But, if needs be it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die."
The address got wide publicity in the local and overseas press and it appeared almost word for word in the "Rand Daily Mail". In the Afrikaans press it was coldly received but Die Vaderland made the important observation that I had acknowledged my guilt. The speech indicated our line of defence and disarmed the prosecution who had prepared the whole case against me on the basis that I would give evidence under oath and that I would deny responsibility for the alleged offence. They had spent weeks pouring over the voluminous Treason Trial records to equip themselves for the purpose of cross examination
Extent and Medium: 1 page