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London Recruits (film)

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London Recruits
Directed byGordon Main
Produced byPeter Edwards
James Barrett

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London Recruits is an upcoming documentary film about the true story of the young men and women who undertook clandestine missions for the ANC during apartheid South Africa.[1] Produced by Barefoot Rascals, the docu-drama is directed by Gordon Main.[2] and is based on the 2012 book London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid,[3] edited and compiled by Ken Keable.


Set at a time when ANC membership was prohibited and its activists executed or imprisoned, London Recruits tells the story of the actions of young women and men who travelled to South Africa disguised as honeymooning couples, tourists and business trippers, aimed at bringing down the apartheid regime. The London Recruits, in a plan activated by Oliver Tambo, were recruited by Ronnie Kasrils and deployed to undertake secret missions involving the transportation of anti-apartheid leaflets in false bottom suitcases and the detonation of bucket bombs in strategic commuter sites.[4][5]

The Recruits[edit]

The facilitator of the operation was Ronnie Kasrils.[6] South African born, Ronnie was dispatched to London by Oliver Tambo to recruit women and men to carry out missions for the ANC.[7] Mary Chamberlain, author of Fenwomen: A Portrait of Women in an English Village[8] was among the recruits enrolled by Ronnie to carry out the clandestine work in 1971 at the age of 24.[9] Other activists recruited were Steve Marsling[10] and Ken Keable, Editor of London Recruits: The Secret War against Apartheid


  1. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/dec/06/ronnie-kasrils-apartheid-london-recruits-south-africa-bombs
  2. "London Recruits". IMDB.
  3. Keable, Ken. "London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid". Merlin Press. Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. Stuart, Jeffries. "The leaflet bombers: the British recruits who fought apartheid from within". The Guardian.
  5. Duval Smith, Alex. "The Observer Secret London activists who became anti-apartheid's unsung heroes". The Guardian.
  6. https://www.jacobinmag.com/2017/11/south-africa-apartheid-sacp-london-recruits
  7. Cole, Peter. "A New Documentary Explores the Anti-Apartheid Activists in South Africa You Never Learned About". In These Times. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  8. Worpole, Ken. "Fenwomen: A Portrait of Women in an English Village". Caught By The River.
  9. Chamberlain, Mary. "My secret war against apartheid: Mary Chamberlain risked everything to help break the regime in South Africa". Independent.
  10. "Steve Marsling: Postal Worker to ANC supporter. A film dedicated to his and others' struggle against Apartheid". CWU Youth.

External links[edit]

London Recruits on IMDb Search this movie on Amazon.com Logo.png

"Anti-Apartheid Hero To Speak At London Recruits Event". The Morning Star.

"London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid". London Live. 24 November 2015.

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