May 16, 2012

Endgame: Secret Talks and the End of Apartheid

While reading this book keep in mind that the author, professor Willie Esterhuyse, was a National Intelligence Service (NIS) spy. He admitted this fact in his own words, in Afrikaans, when he stated: “My code name was Gert!” – (Afr: “my kodenaam was Gert!”) -- See Beeld report here.

He often wrote about his experiences and meetings in English pubs with the Communist enemies of South Africa and how South Africa’s super spies laid the table for handing the country over to the Marxist enemies. In his book “Tomorrow is another country”, the journalist Alister Sparks writes on page 86, that Prof. Willie Esterhuyse after those experiences taught his political science students that, “Negotiations do not always have to be formal; You can use Glenfiddich to solve a problem.”

– See also:

In 2009 the film Endgame was made as a dramatization of the negotiations.

By Willie Esterhuyse
In May 1989, National Intelligence contacted me. Their request took me by complete surprise: “Get in touch with Thabo Mbeki. Ask him to travel to London where you and he will meet in private. No one else must know.” I started trembling violently. I realised at once that this was the real deal. Should I get involved in something that could compromise me so deeply that everything morally important to me might go to ruin?

The full story of the secret meetings between ANC leaders and a select few Afrikaners in the turbulent 1980s, told for the first time by someone who was there himself: Stellenbosch professor Willie Esterhuyse. Eindstryd recounts how these talks, held behind closed doors in England, not only kicked-started negotiations in South Africa, but also led to an unlikely yet lasting friendship between an Afrikaner insider and a young activist and eventual president.

Esterhuyse’s first-hand account, filled with anecdotes, offers a fresh look at many South African leaders. It contains fascinating information on i.a. secret discussions in prison, what went on in PW Botha’s situation room, and how the NIS tried to save South Africa from widespread violence by covertly intervening in the high-stakes chess game played by the “enemies”.

“Important, revealing, and a good read too.”  Jan-Jan Joubert, political journalist

“Anyone who wants to understand how we got to where we are, should read this.”  Ruda Landman, ex-Carte Blanche journalist

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Product Details:
Author: Willie Esterhuyse
Publisher: Tafelberg Publishers Ltd
ISBN: 9780624054276
Date Released: 17 April 2012 

This book is available from in ENGLISH and AFRIKAANS

About the author:
Prof Willie Esterhuyse is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including the Sunday Times prize for political literature (1981), the Stals Prize for Philosophy, awarded by the South African Academy for Science & Technology (1984) and the NP van Wyk Louw Medal, also from the South African Academy of Science & Technology (1999). He was elected "Visiting Professor of the Year" at the University of Cape Town’s  Graduate School of Business (1997), and "Professor of the Year" at the US Business School’s MBA exchange program with the University of Nijenrode, Netherlands (2001). He received the Institute for Personnel Management's President’s Award (1999) and the Order of Luthuli (silver) in 2003, the same year that the University of Stellenbosch awarded him an honorary doctorate. He has served as board member and later as chair of Artscape, as board member of the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival and of Freedom Park, and as trustee of the Nations Trust. More biographical info here.

His other publications include Apartheid Must Die, Die pad van hervorming, Anton Rupert: Pleitbesorger vir hoop, and The ANC and its Leaders. With Ebbe Dommisse he wrote Anton Rupert: A Biography. He was the compiler for Thabo Mbeki's Africa: The time has come and Africa: Define yourself. His most recent books are God en die gode van Egipte and Die God van Genesis.