Eugène Terre'Blanche: Wikis


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Eugène Terre'Blanche

In office
1970 – 1997
Assumed office 

Born January 31, 1941 (1941-01-31) (age 68)
Ventersdorp, South Africa
Political party AWB
Spouse(s) Martie Terre'Blanche
Children 1 daughter
Residence Ventersdorp
Occupation former police officer (SAP)
Religion Afrikaanse Protestantse Kerk (APK)

Eugène Ney Terre'Blanche (born January 31, 1941) is a Boer-Afrikaner who founded the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging during the apartheid era in South Africa. Terre'Blanche remains leader of the recently reactivated AWB and continues to push for an Afrikaner secessionist state within South Africa.





The progenitor of the Terre'Blanche name ('white land' in French) in the region was a French Huguenot refugee named Estienne Terreblanche from Toulon (Provence), France, who arrived at the Cape in 1704.[1] The Terreblanche name has generally retained its original spelling though other spellings include Terre'Blanche, Terre Blanche, Terblanche and Terblans.[2]

Eugene Terre'Blanche's grandfather fought for the Boer cause as a Cape Rebel in the Second Boer War, and his father was a lieutenant colonel in the South African Defence Force. Born in Ventersdorp, Terre'Blanche later became an officer in the South African Police, even being a Warrant Officer in the Special Guard Unit, who were assigned to members of the Cabinet.

Opposition to government policies

During the late 1960s, Terre'Blanche increasingly opposed what he called the "liberal policies" of B. J. Vorster, then Prime Minister of South Africa. In 1970, Terre'Blanche, with six other Afrikaners, founded the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging, commonly known as the AWB. His oratorical skills earned him much support among the white right wing in South Africa; the AWB claimed 70,000 members at its height.[3]

Terre'Blanche viewed the end of apartheid as a surrender to communism, and threatened full scale civil war if President FW de Klerk handed power to Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress. When De Klerk addressed a meeting in Terre'Blanche's hometown of Ventersdorp in 1991, Terre'Blanche led a protest, and the Battle of Ventersdorp ensued between the AWB and the police, with a number of people killed.[4]

In 1993, Terre'Blanche led an armed invasion of the World Trade Centre in Kempton Park while negotiations were in progress.[5]

The AWB were defeated while invading Bophuthatswana to prop up the autocratic leader of the bantustan in 1994 and, subsequently, Terre'Blanche did not follow up on his earlier threats of war.[6]

Media image

Terre'Blanche and the AWB were seldom out of the media during the 1980s and first half of the 1990s. Terre'blanche's powerful oratory and apocalyptic images of race war often featured, with the image of heavily armed AWB members parading in uniform, sometimes hooded. However, this image of the rise of the far right was not the only image projected by the media, which increasingly ridiculed Terre'Blanche and his supporters.

Terre'Blanche was lampooned in the 1991 documentary The Leader, His Driver and the Driver's Wife, directed by British filmmaker Nick Broomfield. A sequel by Broomfield, His Big White Self, was first broadcast in February 2006. Terre'Blanche was also interviewed by Louis Theroux in the episode 3.3 Boer separatists of the BBC series Louis Theroux's Weird Weekends.

In 1988, the AWB was beset by scandal when claims of an affair with journalist Jani Allan surfaced. In July 1989, Cornelius Lottering member of breakaway AWB group Orde van die Dood, orchestrated a failed assassination attempt on Allan's life by placing a bomb outside her Sandton apartment[7]. Broomfield's 1991 documentary claimed that Terre'Blanche had an affair with the Sunday Times journalist; a claim she denied as well as her portrayal in the documentary. This led to Allan taking libel proceedings against the documentary broadcaster Channel 4 in 1992 in the London High Court. During the trial, several transcripts of their alleged sexual relationship appeared in the South African and British press.[8] Terre'Blanche also submitted a sworn statement to the London court denying that he had had an affair with Allan. Although the judge found that Channel 4's allegations had not defamed Allan, he did not rule on whether or not there had been an affair.[9]

Terre'Blanche was widely ridiculed after he was filmed falling off his horse during a parade in Pretoria.[10]

In 2004, he was voted no.25 in SABC3's Great South Africans, a list of 100 of South Africa's favourite personalities according to the public. His presence amongst others such as Hendrik Verwoerd triggered a national debate. The controversy led to the cancellation of the SABC television series.


In his book "Warfare by Other Means," author Peter Stiff alleges that Terre'Blanche was covertly working for the police force, and later military intelligence, to expose right wing forces' strategies and personalities.


Following the end of apartheid, Terre'Blanche and his supporters sought amnesty for the storming of the World Trade Centre, the 'Battle of Ventersdorp', and other acts.[11][12] Amnesty was granted by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.[4]

Conviction and prison sentence

On June 17, 1997 Terre'Blanche was sentenced to six years in prison for assaulting a petrol station worker and the attempted murder of a security guard. One of only three whites in the Rooigrond prison near Mafikeng, during his time in prison he became a born-again Christian and claims he has moderated many of his more racist views.[13] Terre'Blanche was released on June 11, 2004[14] and the AWB website claims these court cases and other scandals involving him were fabricated by the 'Black Government and the left wing media'.[3]


Outside of his political career, Terre'Blanche has also been known for his poetry. Prior to the 1994 multi-racial elections, his Afrikaans-language works were on the state syllabus of Natal schools. Although upon his release from jail, he quoted Wordsworth's poem I Wandered Lonely As a Cloud. He has previously released a CD of his poetry collection and most recently a DVD.[15][16]


In March 2008, the AWB announced the re-activation of the political party, for 'populist' reasons, citing the encouragement of the public. Reasons for the return are largely attributed to the electricity crisis, corruption across government departments and rampant crime.[17]. Throughout April 2008, Terre'Blanche was to be the speaker at several AWB rallies, encompassing Vryburg, Middelburg, Mpumalanga and Pretoria.[16]

He has recently been calling for a “free Afrikaner republic” and has vowed to take his campaign to the United Nations' International Court of Justice in The Hague in a bid to secure this. In June 2008, it was announced that the AWB Youth Wing would be launched, Terre'Blanche would be its founding member. [18]

In a recent video interview, he voiced his objection to a proposal to change the iconic Springbok emblem of the South Africa national rugby union team (Springboks).[19]

In September 2009 he addressed a 3-day convention attended by 300 Afrikaners, the convention was intended to develop a strategy for Boer liberation. Terre'Blanche reinforced earlier claims for land in Northern Natal and the Eastern Transvaal.[20]

In an interview with the Mail and Guardian, he revealed that he will publish his biography, Blouberge van Nimmer (“The Blue Mountains of Long Ago”) in December 2009. [21]

A complaint has recently been lodged with the South African Human Rights Commission regarding inflammatory comments he is alleged to have made.[22]

See also


  1. ^ Bernard Lugan (January 1996) (in French). Ces Francais Qui Ont Fait L'Afrique Du Sud (The French People Who Made South Africa). ISBN 2841000869.  
  2. ^ Viljoen, H.C.. "The Contribution of The Huguenots in South Africa". The Huguenot Society of South Africa.  
  3. ^ a b "AWB Leader: Eugène Ney Terre'Blanche". AWB. Retrieved 2007-01-04.  
  4. ^ a b "Amnesty decision". Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Retrieved 2006-10-11.  
  5. ^ "Goldstone Commission : Events at the World Trade Centre June 1993". Retrieved 2007-04-22.  
  6. ^ "Tebbutt Commission". Retrieved 2007-04-22.  
  7. ^ "TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION". South African government. 1998-03-23.  
  8. ^ Sweeney, John (1999-12-19). "Brief encounters". The Observer.,,195616,00.html.  
  9. ^ "Century of Sundays". Carte Blanche. 2006-05-03.  
  10. ^ Jameson, Ethan (2004-06-12). "South Africa releases neo-Nazi chief". Associated Press.  
  11. ^ "Amnesty Hearing". Truth and Reconciliation Commission. 1999-05-10. Retrieved 2007-01-04.  
  12. ^ "Terre'Blanche calls for De Klerk to answer at his amnesty hearing". South African Press Association. 1999-05-10. Retrieved 2007-01-04.  
  13. ^ "Terre'Blanche tells of prison, his love for God and plans for AWB's future". Dispatch. 2005-08-27.  
  14. ^ Carroll, Rory (2004-06-10). "Terre'Blanche returns to a new world". The Guardian.,13262,1235281,00.html. Retrieved 2006-01-04.  
  15. ^ "Afrikaans radical leaves jail quoting Wordsworth". The Guardian. 2004-06-13.  
  16. ^ a b "The return of Eugene Terre'Blanche". IOL. 2008-03-30.  
  17. ^ "AWB leader Terre'Blanche rallies Boers again". The Telegraph. 01 June 2008.'Blanche-rallys-Boers-again.html.  
  18. ^ "O volk! Terre Blanche is back again". Sunday Times. 2008-06-15.  
  19. ^ Zoopy video :Eugene Terre'Blanche talks about the Springbok emblem at AWB headquarters November 21 2008
  20. ^ For volk sake Sunday Times. 26 September 2009
  21. ^ The AWB rides again Mail and Guardian. 2 October 2009
  22. ^ Terre'blanche 'apie' comment taken to rights commission Mail & Guardian. 7 December 2009

External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Eugène Ney Terre'Blanche (born January 31, 1941) is is a Boer-Afrikaner who founded the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging during the apartheid era in South Africa.


  • Our nation is unique. We grew out of a desire to worship God in a certain way; we grew from a number of other nations who were being prosecuted because of their faith. We have a wonderful culture, a wonderful, vibrant language. I want my people to be proud of who they are again.
    • Interview by Antoinette Keyser, August 25 2005 [1]
  • [Self-determination] is one of the fundamental principles of democracy, the ability to rule yourself. They don't want to give us that. We are not free. We have everything a nation needs, except a land to call our own.
    • Interview by Antoinette Keyser, August 25 2005 [2]
  • I have always been made out as a racist, someone who hates black people. I don't hate them. I grew up with them. I just know there are many differences between whites and blacks and I will always believe it.
    • Interview by Antoinette Keyser, August 25 2005 [3]
  • The rest of my life belongs to my culture, my language, my God and my nation.
    • Interview by Antoinette Keyser, August 25 2005 [4]
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