The Pattern of Political Conflict in South Africa and the White Right-Wing Violation of Civil Liberties, 1990-1994
During the epoch 1990 to 1994, the nature and pattern of political conflict in South Africa had changed considerably, particularly in its apparent anonymity. Two factors dominated the period 1990 to 1994. The first was the process of negotiations aimed at democratic constitutional dispensation. The second was a dramatic escalation in levels of violence in the country, with a consequent increase in the number of gross violations of civil liberties, particularly by the white right-wing formations. For the purposes of this Paper, the definition of the white right wing incorporates all white groups and individuals who organised themselves to acquire self-determination and against the democratic changes, but in particular those who were willing to commit violations of civil liberties in pursuit of their aims. These groups at times worked closely with other ethnically based nationalist groups, like Inkatha Freedom Party and the Bantustan leaders. The comparatively short period of the constitutional transformation in South African society during the 1990s was marked by a radical mobilisation of white right-wing groupings. In a number of instances, unlawful acts perpetrated by members of right-wing organisations resulted in gross violations of civil liberties.