In a remote field in rural South Africa, Channel 4 News finds a group of Afrikaner teenagers has arrived for a very different kind of summer camp: Kommando Kamp.
Thousands of young Afrikaners have undergone training here over the last two years. The camp is run by Colonel Franz Jooste, a veteran of South Africa’s army during the Apartheid era. The aim of his camp – to cleanse the boys of the propaganda they have been fed about “racial harmony” in the so-called Rainbow Nation.
“South Africa is bleeding,” he says. “And that is why we have to train our people to be prepared.”
“You’ve got these millions and millions of blacks around you. Smothering you and killing you,” he says.
“So you have to implement certain systems to survive. And that’s why we say the only system that we can go now for is not apartheid – that’s second prize. The first prize is freedom. We want to be free.”
Most of the days are filled with gruelling physical exertion and army-style training. But as night falls they are given a series of lectures straight out of the text books that were taught in South African schools under Apartheid.
‘We look different’
“There’s a conflict between white people and black people in this country,” Jooste tells the gathered teenagers.
“We must accept this. Why is there a conflict? Number one: there’s an external conflict. We look different. We don’t look the same as each other.”
“They have thick lips. Their lips are likely to curl upwards. Okay? We have thin lips. The negroes’ ears on the inside are totally different from ours. It’s much more sensitive.”
“That’s why us Afrikaners know to hit them on the ears and they will fall to the ground. Because their ears are made differently.”
There’s no discussion, no dissent, as Jooste quotes from the 1960’s American segregationist Carleton Putnam.
“[Studies] clearly indicated that the negro’s inferiority to the white man, average against average, in many ways but in no way more significantly than in the size and the weight of the brain. Especially in the measurements of the brain’s frontal cortex.
“Now we ask ourselves, is there a difference in the intelligence levels between a negro and a Caucasian?”
He cites the German missionary Albert Schweitzer, who worked in Africa in the early 20th century.
“One must look at the negro not as one’s equal but as a child. A black man has the intelligence level of a 14 year old white boy.”
The lecture culminates in a call to arms.
‘Brainwashed by Mandela’
“We have the ability. We have the men. We just need to plant the will in you because you’ve been [brain] washed by old Mandela and all that stuff. Be proud of your people. Be proud of your race. Be proud of your faith. Be proud of your culture.”
Colonel Jooste represents a group of Afrikaners who, 20 years after the end of Apartheid, are determined to win their own Volkstat or Afrikaner homeland.
They are linked with other white nationalist groups in the country, most notably the Afrikaner Resistance Movement, the AWB. Its former leader Eugene Terre’Blanche was murdered by blacks on his farm in 2010.
Jooste says his group is now focused on helping Afrikaners defend themselves from the growing threat to white farmers in South Africa. He said 3,000 farmers have been killed by black gangs since the end of Apartheid 20 years ago in what he said is a genocide committed on our people.
While the paramilitary groups form a minority of white opinion in South Africa, they are still active and have been pursued by the government. In October, 19 members of a group called the Boeremag were convicted of high treason for a plot to violently overthrow the ANC government in the early 2000s.
‘I don’t have any black friends’
One of the teenagers at the camp is 15-year old Deon Barnard, nicknamed Sparky. His parents proudly show off the certificates they got at similar training camps run by the AWB and say they have sent him on the camp to make a man of him.
“In the bible, it says black people must live with black people and white must live with white people. You cannot mix nations,” he says.
“I don’t have black friends. If they come to my side and ask to speak to me, I will say no. Or I will turn my back on them, and walk away.”
“The truth is that there will definitely be a war in this country. So I’m preparing myself for a war that’s coming.”
The camp ends with the symbolic burning of South Africa’s post-apartheid flag, and the hoisting of the old orange white and blue flag. The new recruits gather round as the camp leaders chant.
“No one will force us to stand under this flag. We Afrikaners want our freedom! We want our own country!”