This is an account of aspects of my experience of torture when first arrested in June 1975. One of the torturers, Col Andrew Taylor, applied for amnesty for those assaults in 1997, although he died before it could be heard. There is little that is comparable to finding oneself in the hands of the South African Security Police. You know they have already tortured and killed many people. You know this precludes any sense of human kinship between you and them. You are surrounded by these people and have no access to family, friends or lawyers. The security police are a law unto themselves. They decide when and what you eat, whether you are allowed books to read and how much exercise you get. You look into the eyes of these people and sometimes there are glimmers of humour (perhaps, of sadistic humour) and other faint signs of humanity. In some cases — such as that of Taylor — all remnants of human feeling have been obliterated by years of abuse, systematically practised upon fellow hum...

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