Like her phoney husband, Teresa Heinz Kerry likes to hype up and embellish her past

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Republican Party Reptile

When Teresa Heinz Kerry starting going on about her days of fearlessly fighting apartheid in South Africa, I thought it was suspicious.

Now, some reporters have decided to investigate.

Heinz Kerry, the forgotten radical


AS A would-be Democratic First Lady, Teresa Heinz Kerry nailed her radical colours to the mast with stories of the struggle against South African apartheid while a student in the country.

But now contemporaries from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg say her participation in an anti-apartheid protest march, which she used to describe her fearlessness, was an isolated event.

John Kerry’s billionaire wife is remembered either as very religious or beautiful, but certainly not as a radical political activist.

In April 1959, students and lecturers donned their academic gowns and marched on the Johannesburg City Hall. Banners announced their opposition to the government’s attempts to ban black students from campus. Teresa Ferreira, as she was then known, was among the 3,000 or so who marched that day, as she reminded US Democratic Party members at their convention in Boston.

She told delegates: "I learned something then, and I believe it still. There is a value in taking a stand, whether or not anyone may be noticing and whether or not it is a risky thing to do."

Colleagues from the time say her participation in the march should not be seen as indicative of a broader involvement in the anti-apartheid movement which became known as the "struggle".

"She certainly wasn’t in the broad left, nor was she active at all in the fight against university apartheid," Alf Stadler told Scotland on Sunday. A student at the university from 1957 to 1961, Stadler went on to become a Professor of Political Studies at the institution.

Stadler maintains the protest in which Heinz Kerry was involved drew virtually the whole campus. "Everyone was on it, it was the formal protest of the university."

The protest, for which permission had been granted by the authorities, was led by the university’s vice-chancellor, W G Sutton, a man Stadler claimed was so cautious he virtually would not "leave his office without permission".

"A lot of students got clobbered," said Stadler, remembering some of the anti-apartheid protests on campus. But "not as many were involved in what eventually became known as ‘the struggle’ as pretended to be," he chuckled.

He said of Heinz Kerry’s references to her participation: "She’s trying to make some kind of personal role... but it’s not working."

"I don’t remotely see this lady as having indulged in that kind of thing," said Stadler, referring to a range of anti-government protests by students.

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