Letter From South Africa

I would be surprised if Moscow's policy to isolate South Africa were not ultimately successful.

I spent March 1985 in South Africa as a guest of several South African universities. I lectured to academic audiences, traveled in the rural areas of Transvaal and the Cape Province, spent a day in Soweto, visited the Crossroads slum in Cape Town and the Black township of Alexandra in Johannesburg. I talked to Black ser vants and Black leaders, to Afrikaners and Anglos, to people representing the three major parties: Conservative, Progressive, and Nationalist (presently in power), and to those sympathizing with the outlawed African National Congress. I formed several distinct impressions during that trip.

South Africa is about as integrated as America was in the l950's and early l960's. The new policy towards inte gration seems to be an ongoing con cern of the Botha government. Buses, airplanes, and shopping centers are integrated, and so are major universi ties and most private schools on the primary and secondary level. Better restaurants and snack bars are integrat ed, medium-level restaurants are inte grated in Cape Town but not in Johannesburg. Trains and government-run schools are not. Virtually all those with whom I discussed the subject felt that South Africa is in a state of change and that integration of all public facilities is only a matter of time, as is the abolition of laws prohibiting mixed marriages. The whites grumble...

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