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Name: __________________________________

Period: _____

Methods of Resistance
Vocabulary
Sabotage To destroy
something
on purpose.
AllegeTo claim
someone has
done
something

Margin Notes

Resistance Through Sabotage


The sabotage campaign began when the ANC launched Umkhonto in 1961
and continued until 1963. It was part of Umkhonto which means "Spear of
the Nation" in Zulu . It was the armed wing of the African National
Congress (ANC), co-founded by Nelson Mandela in the wake of the
Sharpeville massacre. Although initially committed to non-violent protest,
in association with the South African Communist Party he co-founded the
militant Umkhonto we Sizwe in 1961, leading a sabotage campaign against
the apartheid government. This was the first time that the anti apartheid
movement began to use violent methods.

According to Joe Slovo, an opponent of the apartheid system, the Sabotage


Campaign was just the beginning. They began by attacking the things
that represented the economy like power lines and things that represented
oppression like pass oces. The group did this at night so that nobody would be injured. At the
same time as the first bombs went o, we issued an appeal to the authorities which said to
them:
We are demonstrating what we can do and this will grow. This is just the
beginning. A mild beginning. It is not yet too late to change course and
there may yet be still time for reason to break through. We never thought
that we could actually overthrow the regime or bring revolution by
overturning a few pylons and putting some rather weak explosives at
night in targets like pass offices. But we had good reasons for choosing
these targets and avoiding taking lives.
The campaign began on December 16, 1961 when
Umkhonto we Sizwe saboteurs lit explosives at an
electricity sub-station. Dozens of other acts of
sabotage followed over the next eighteen months.
( the government would allege the defendants
committed 235 separate acts of sabotage.) The
sabotage included attacks on government posts,
machines, and power facilities, as well as
deliberate crop burning. Although they
committed destructive acts, no lives were taken.

Name: __________________________________

Vocabulary
Comrades A companion
who shares
activities.
Guerrilla A small,
independent
group fighting
a larger group.
Maliciously -

Period: _____

The group hoped to show that a new phase in the resistance against
apartheid had begun. However, not everyone agreed to violent tactics.
Some organizations like the Indian Congress still believed very strongly
that non-violence was the only way we could struggle against the regime.

Margin Notes

The sabotage campaign continued by sending comrades out of the


country for military training. The High Command sent many hundreds
of activists out of the country to be trained in guerrilla warfare and
military struggle. The High Command wrote a document called
'Operation Mayibuye'. It was a plan of guerrilla operations to spark a
mass armed uprising. They planned to make weapons inside the country,
including 50,000 hand grenades. The Sabotage Campaign met with the
whole leadership of the ANC outside the country and discussed
Operation Mayibuye. They immediately sent people to Algeria and other
places to find out what other governments could do for us.

But six weeks later, the leadership of the ANC and Umkhonto were
captured at a farm in Rivonia. In the fall of 1963, Nelson Mandela and ten
other leading opponents of South Africa's apartheid regime faced trial for
their lives. The charges, in what is often called "the Rivonia trial" were
sabotage and conspiracy. The defendants were accused of sabotage, ordering munitions,
recruiting young men for guerrilla warfare, encouraging invasion for foreign military units, and
conspiring to obtain funds for revolution from foreign states. The first accused, Nelson
Mandela plead not guilty: "My Lord, it it not I, but the government that should be in the dock.
I plead not not guilty." Each of the other defendants in turn entered not guilty pleas as well.
Yutar delivered the opening statement for the prosecution, The accused deliberately and
maliciously plotted and engineered the commission of acts of violence and destruction
throughout the country. Desperate times had dictated desperate measures. Standing in the
dock at the Palace of Justice in Pretoria, Mandela announced that "the ideal of a democratic
and free society" is one "for which I am prepared to die."
Intending to do
harm.

Once they began the armed struggle, the government also


changed their methods. They became much harsher. They
sent out policemen for special training in Algeria and the
United States. They came back and completely changed
the government's security structures and methods to deal
with the new situation. They also began to make new laws
that were much harsher.