“Hit Men and Power: South Africa’s Leaders are Killing One Another”

“Political assassinations are rising sharply in South Africa, threatening the stability of hard-hit parts of the country and imperiling Mr. Mandela’s dream of a unified, democratic nation. But unlike much of the political violence that upended the country in the 1990s, the recent killings are not being driven by vicious battles between rival political parties. Quite the opposite: In most cases, African National Congress officials are killing one another, hiring professional hit men to eliminate fellow party members in an all-or-nothing fight over money, turf and power, A.N.C. officials say. The party once inspired generations of South Africans and captured the imagination of millions around the world — from impoverished corners of Africa to wealthy American campuses. But corruption and divisions have flourished within the A.N.C. in recent years, stripping much of the party of its ideals. After nearly 25 years in power, party members have increasingly turned to fighting, not over competing visions for the nation, but over influential positions and the spoils that go with them.”