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Stolen youth: Battling the demons of the Border Wars

Jonathan Ancer talks to author Norman McFarlane about the post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by so many South Africans whose youth was shattered by both internal and external conflict

12 June 2022 - 00:00 By Jonathan Ancer

On Norman McFarlane’s 20th birthday, his comrades presented him with a tin of bully beef. On top of it was a makeshift candle fashioned from a twig. But he didn’t have the stomach to celebrate and he couldn’t eat. A few hours earlier he had walked through a battlefield littered with corpses. Some of the corpses were missing limbs and heads, some looked as if they were asleep and others lay “impossibly contorted in death”. ..

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