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                                                                                                                                                                                  The Truth and Reconciliation Commission began in 1912 due to the struggle in South Africa. During this time, the black majority fought for their right to rule their own government by protesting against the apartheid. The apartheid was a system of segregation and discrimination. The impact on the non-white majority fighting for anti-apartheid resulted in many injustices of human and civil rights of those groups. As the apartheid diminished overtime, there appeared to be less violence and more recognition of self-rule in South Africa.The conflict of apartheid then was significant because more rights were being ignored therefore which led to more physical abuse and murder. As the TRC progressed, as an organization they were able to begin the process of forgiveness of human rights issues. Nelson Mandela later came into effect when he joined the African National Congress to help spread awareness about the racial discrimination. Mandela was later able to help the commission call for a reconciliation and agreement which began as a process of healing for many abused people who were brutalized by apartheid oppression. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission should be seen as a model for how a country can confront its horrific past, honor the victims of oppression, and move forward into a brighter future.       In 1948 in South Africa, the National Party became the first governing party. This party implemented a policy known as the “apartheid”. The apartheid policy was used to govern relations between the non-white minority and the white majority, which accredited racial segregation. Another one of the apartheid’s goals was to decrease the African Americans political power. The apartheid lasted almost nearly 50 years until it soon began to fail in 1997.           The National Party and The Population Registration Act of 1950  successfully issued a set of laws that composed the apartheid policy, which was known as intensified segregation, political repression, and separate development.            Intensified segregation was broken down into more smaller laws. Which included the prohibition of marriage and sexual liaisons between races. The National Party government went even further and created different racial categorization acts. The categorization acts included; residential segregation, segregation of public facilities, and separate education. Another rule that was passed by the population registration act was that all African Americans were to carry around documents that authorized their presence in defined areas. On the other hand, separate development stated that all blacks were removed from white urban areas into crowded black areas in South Africa. Almost 4 million African Americans were forcibly removed and were submersed into poverty and wretchedness. To sum up, under apartheid or the National Party, African Americans were forced to live in disunited areas from whites and were forced to use separate facilities like bathrooms and schools than the white majority. Racial segregation came along way before the apartheid policy and the National Party was established. The Land Act in 1913 is when segregation came about. The Land Act was known for forcing African Americans to live in separate rural areas.       The apartheid became well known for causing violence in South Africa. The apartheid caused many African Americans to resist to apartheid from non-violent demonstrations, protests, and strikes to political action and eventually to armed resistance. The apartheid eventually becomes more repressive and started to fight back with killing and injuring many African Americans. This had gone on for more than 40 years until the apartheid diminished in the 1990’s.          Nelson Mandela became one of the most inspiring political figures around the world. Nelson Mandela was an anti-apartheid political leader who became the first African American president in 1994 in South Africa. Mandela helped bring an end to the apartheid and National Party government. Before he became president, Nelson began his journey as part of the African      National Congress along with Archbishop Desmond Tutu in the 1940’s. While in the African National Congress, Mandela was also a leader of the armed resistance and peaceful protests against the apartheid and white minority. Mandela helped lead the African National Congress’ 1952 Campaign for the Defiance of Unjust Laws by traveling across the country to organize protests against the National Party. While trying to protest with the African National Congress, Mandela was arrested due to wanting to overthrow the state by protesting and armed resistance. Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life in prison on June 11th but had gotten out twenty-seven years later due to the government crisis.      Soon After Nelson Mandela had gotten out of prison on February 11th, 1990, the former president Frederik Willem de Klerk urged to negotiate with Mandela about switching over to a democratic government. This negotiation was very significant because it brought the two opposing leaders together to come to an agreement. Mandela and Frederik Willem de Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 for their work in ending apartheid. After the agreement had been settled, the first nonracial democratic election was followed in 1994, and Mandela was known as the first democratically elected president of the country.      Overall, Nelson Mandela is one of the most well known political figures in history following after Mahatma Gandhi. Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi were both courageous in the face of violence and injustice. Nelson Mandela was even more inspiring to people all around the world when he was in prison for life. Mandela will always be portrayed as one of the prodigious human beings of history.      The truth and reconciliation commission first dated back to the 70’s in South Africa due to the struggle of segregation. The commission was created during the time South Africa wanted to switch from an Apartheid to a democracy. The South African government thought it was a good idea to use the truth and reconciliation commission as a way to help heal the country and bring compromise and reconciliation. The commission had many committees appointed to not only uncover the truth about the human rights violations but to uncover the truth on amnesty as well. In the late 1940’s in South Africa, the National Party became the first governing party. This party implemented a policy known as the “apartheid”. The apartheid policy was used to govern relations between the non-white minority and the white majority, which accredited racial segregation. The apartheid lasted almost nearly 50 years until it soon began to fail in 1994.         Soon after the National Party adopted the policy known as the apartheid, the African National Congress was instituted as a movement to unite the African Americans. The African National Congress’ main objective was to create a united non-racial democratic society in South Africa. To do so, the ANC had to take action and create protests around South Africa to spread awareness about the black majority fighting for their right to rule their own government. The African National Congress adopted a “Program of Action” calling for strikes, boycotts, and civil disobedience as means toward a goal of African “self-determination” in 1949. Instead of getting harmony, the Congress had gotten brutalized by the police and apartheid. The National Party had also tightened racial segregation even more due to the strikes and boycotts.The black majority was forced to surrender during these protests leaving them defenseless. But the African National Congress still had unfinished business and didn’t want the apartheid to regain control. Instead of totally giving up, the African National Congress decided to underhandedly create a secret organization known as the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC). The Pan Africanist Congress worked to organize armed resistance with the African National Congress. Although the ANC and the PAC worked to create a nonracial democratic society by protesting, it was not enough to defeat the apartheid and National Party. The apartheid soon struck back and became more repressive by brutalizing and depraving the nonwhite majority.        After this brutal and repulsive blowout in South Africa, the truth and reconciliation commission was forced to create a solution and compromise with the apartheid. The compromise being a way to help heal the African Americans with forgiveness and to make peace with everyone in South Africa. While the African National Congress became known for their liberation movement, the truth and reconciliation commission was required to investigate the conflicts of the past. The truth and reconciliation commission stated “Ideally, all victims of human rights abuses would receive justice, and all perpetrators and those who gave them the orders to commit their crimes would be punished”. (Middleton) The truth and reconciliation commission became known as the first successful national social movement. This movement became widely known across the world. The truth and reconciliation commission went on even longer than when Nelson Mandela became president. Soon in 2003, the 19,000 victims of the apartheid regime received a monetary reparation payment of $30,000, which means each victim received $4,800.  The Commission was regarded as a hugely successful experiment in assessing and dealing with human rights violations during a period of political change.     In conclusion, the African National Congress helped negotiate with the National Party to take action and discard the apartheid system of segregation and discrimination by creating a policy set up by the government of National Unity to give victims of human rights abuses justice and reconciliation. However, these reparations marked a high point in the existence of South Africa’s reconciliation commission which was charged with the task of bringing to light charges that the apartheid violated human rights. And therefore, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission should be seen as a model for how a country can confront its horrific past, honor the victims of oppression, and move forward into a brighter future.

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