As we celebrate his life and mourn his passing, let us remember the movement that gave freedom to him and the people of South Africa. The international solidarity movement which was led by regular Americans and people of goodwill around the world, and buttressed by the governments of Russia and Cuba, our so-called enemies, deserve our recognition.
Let us remember that the U.S. government, which claims to be "the greatest force for good the world has ever known," maintained relations with that white racist government and supported apartheid until the 1990's. Nelson Mandela was even designated a terrorist and placed on the U.S. terrorism watch list.
Let us remember that the CIA infiltrated the ANC and in 1962 informed the brutal South African security officials that Mandela would be leaving a dinner party disguised as a chauffeur. He was arrested at a checkpoint and spent the next 27 years in prison on the notorious Robben Island.
Let us remember that even the American government that views itself as exceptional, with political and civic cultures that has no counterparts anywhere else can be on the wrong side of history. Rest in peace Madiba!
By Wyfred Russell
QUOTES FROM NELSON MANDELA
"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."
"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart."
"If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner." Nelson Mandela
"There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living." Nelson Mandela
"It always seems impossible until its done." Nelson Mandela "After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb." Nelson Mandela
"There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires." Nelson Mandela
"There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children." Nelson Mandela
"In my country we go to prison first and then become President." Nelson Mandela "We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right." Nelson Mandela