The Unknown Prisoner

Classes discovered from a better-known Robben Island inmate.

Nelson Mandela (#466/64), was the 466th prisoner jailed on Robben Island, South Africa, in 1964. A political prisoner, preventing for freedom from the oppression of apartheid. He spent the following 24 years in an island jail cell roughly 7 x 7 x 10 ft.

Though he was jailed in a tiny 7 x 7 x 10 cell, his story is that of a person whose thoughts was not confined to the 4 partitions of that cell. As a substitute he was free, unconquered. Invictus!

However Nelson Mandela’s story, or Madiba as he’s affectionately identified, has already been instructed, many instances. He’s hardly an unknown prisoner! Moderately, he’s the better-known, Robben Island inmate of this story.

That is my story, the unknown prisoner, hidden within the shadows, on the perimeter of life. It’s the story of a person who served an extended sentence than Madiba, confined to a a lot smaller cell; to be exact, over thirty six years in a cell simply 6 x four x three.

However not like Mandela, whose incarceration had a noble goal, mine was nothing. No nice ultimate to maintain me by the darkish days and nights on a lonely, windswept island. Nor the corporate of fellow prisoners to share my trials. No, mine was, for essentially the most half, a lonely and inglorious existence of solitary confinement.

There was no Invictus to raise my spirit or cheer my soul, none might. There was no mild. Simply evening.

Thirty six years crammed into an area 6 x four x three is usually a nightmare! It’s a nightmare! A nightmare of silent desperation. The nightmare of the unknown prisoner. Alone on the earth. No champion on ‘the surface’ to plead my case, but many determined for my continued incarceration. A darkish and lonely evening, thirty six years. A very long time.

However I’m not alone, there are thousands and thousands like me, unknown prisoners all. Women and men, younger and outdated. Jailed with out trial and even prices correctly laid. Simply jailed for all times; that’s, for so long as we dwell.

However the place is that this depressing unjust society that sentences an impressionable baby to a lifetime of distress? The place are these depressing jails? How can such a factor exist. Properly, they do. I’m right here to let you know so.

And let me add that my cell has since been demolished and I’m free! Free to inform my story to the world. Free! What a tremendous phrase. Fortunately, gratefully, I didn’t die a depressing loss of life in my 6 x four x three jail cell. I escaped! I’m free.

And there it would finish, or begin, however sadly part of me will not be but free; not totally free. You see, I can’t be free so long as I do know that there are others who nonetheless share that destiny. Tens of millions dwell out their days enduring larger, every day tortures in these horrendous 6 x four x three jail cells, some even smaller, if such a factor had been doable!

And I’ve know of many who’ve lived complete lives imprisoned in these depressing areas. And lots of, if not most, have died there unknown, alone and afraid Political Prisoner.

And it is much more astounding nonetheless while you realise that these prisons exist inside our midst, like Dachau, Auschwitz and a thousand different focus camps. Proper on our doorsteps.

Robben Island was a mere seven kilometres from the seashores I performed on as a toddler. The island was simply part of an attractive, image excellent scene of Desk Mountain; the one you see in postcards. To me it was heaven reserved for Sunday outings however, unbeknown to me, for Madiba and his comrades it was a every day hell. Astounding. Proper in our midst! In plain view for all to see, and but, to nonetheless not see.

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