Letters

Dear Editor



Books controlled by CNA/The Literary Group, which include all branches of Exclusive Books, Bookworm and Pilgrims, still continue to banish noseWEEK from their shelves “for business reasons”. Many reputable, independent bookshops and newsagents do, however, stock us. Call us for the supplier nearest you – and remember this when you are shopping for books.


Games in Africa


As I know that your magazine is relentless in its pursuit of the truth, I would like to set the record straight in regard to certain allegations made in your article in issue number 7 in the article entitled A Great Lottery Win!

Mr Eugen Meir Grunfeld is no relation of Mr Grunveld, who apparently sits on the board of Games Africa Ltd. I am sure that a magazine of your eminence can appreciate the difference in the spelling of similar sounding surnames. In addition, Eugen Meir Grunfeld has been residing in South Africa since 1964 and therefore your reference to him as being ‘more recently of Cape Town’ would certainly be apt if you were discussing the evolution of man which is measured in decades or millenia, but a period of residence in a country of 30 years can be no stretch of the imagination be construed as ‘more recently’.

Lastly, Mr Grunfeld does not front for the Mafia, nor for his son-in-law Vito Palazzolo, but being Jewish, fronts for the Nazi party. Mr Grunfeld established his cover at 13 years old when he spent 1.5 years in the Auschwitz concentration camp, where he lost his entire family (except for one surviving sister).
Yours sincerely
J Hendricks
(address not disclosed)

Indeed, the fact that a survivor of Auschwitz should have chosen, in 1964, to emigrate to South Africa to share in the privileges of a white minority, while the majority were deprived of their rights purely on the basis of race, does raise all sorts of interesting questions about Mr Grunfeld. So, too, does the fact that he was visiting Mafia banker Vitao Palazzolo in his Swiss prison cell before he escaped to South Africa – and that in the Lugano prison’s visitors’ register Mr Grunfeld is recorded as holding an Israeli passport and being resident in Nicse, Israel. Also see story on page 3. – Ed.


CNA names its official censor

CNA LIMITED

Dear Sir

I refer to comment made in issue 7 concerning the CNA position with regard to your publication.

The purpose of this note is to reiterate the fact that our policy is to keep an open mind in matters such as these. You should accordingly feel free to submit copies of your future editions to us for consideration, and you have my assurance that any such submission will be carefully and objectively reviewed by us.

Advance copies for consideration should be submitted to Butch Courtney, Director of our News-stand Division.
Yours sincerely
G D O Cooper
Merchandise Director

In view of your history in this matter, how open can your mind possibly be? You speak of keeping an open mind “in matters such as these” – matters such as what, for instance? It is not clear to us what you are referring to. You banned us from your shelves without having had a copy “submitted” to you “for consideration”. In fact you appear to have done so without having “carefully and objectively” reviewed the issues of noseWEEK then published at all. If you did, you would have been able to show what you found in noseWEEK that was factually wrong, or so offensive that the public deserved to be protected from us.
Why should we submit to censorship by Mr Butch Courtney, and what makes him so specially qualified and informed that he is able to judge the truth or otherwise of our reports and decide what is suitable for South Africans to read – and what not? What other publications are submitted to Mr Courtney for him to decide who should be able to buy them? Surely then it would be better for CNA to openly declare its support for a Board of Censors? Or is CNA promoting “privatised”, corporate fascism to replace the Fascist State we have only just seen on its way?
Please feel free to call us whenever you decide to stick to your usual business of distributing and selling books and publications – of all kinds and to all tastes. For spiritual and legal advice we go elsewhere. –
Ed.


Enjoyed seeing you on Carte Blanche. Now could we have an explanation of the presence of Jan S Marais at the Inauguration.
Also, may we have an obituary to General Basie Smit. Let us not forget his rather obsessive treatment of Durban’s gay community during his term of office there, which could not, of course, be related to homosexuality in his own immediate family.
L.R.
Sandton


Pasload trigger

Now that the Airforce’s CCB-type “privatised” operations, code-named “Pasload” and “Gauntlett” have become public knowledge – thanks to noseWEEK – perhaps it is time the public was also told that one of the four pallets loaded in the combi section of the Helderberg, the SAA flight from Taipei that went down in flames over the Indian Ocean killing all its passengers and crew, held a cargo addressed to Pasload. In certain informed airforce circles it is said the pallet contained no-no triggering devices and components being smuggled from America for SA’s rocket programme, in a desperate bid to stop what at the time was thought to be an otherwise unstoppable Cuban advance in Angola. No wonder there was no turning back.
The fact that the Helderberg enquiry was chaired by a judge with long-standing ties to the Israeli military establishment could be significant.
Put the Helderberg on the agenda of the Truth Commission and see who complains.
Your Air Correspondent
Cape Town


Rand note

A Mandela, a Tambo, an Umkonto. Is South Africa in store for a new currency, to replace the rand with politically correct lucre?
The financial markets say something is afoot. While bankers are, as usual, tight-lipped, the give-away is the change in the value of the rand abroad. Of late the financial rand has been strengthening and the commercial rand steadying. But when I recently tried to sell the few remaining rands I have from a trip to SA, I was politely told by my bank to try elsewhere. I have been told this has been the case for the past few weeks. In London Thomas Cook, National Westminster Bank, Midland Bank and Standard Chartered don’t want to insult their clients by quoting a rate. Other banks offend in degrees but don’t want more than R500 in notes. Barclays quote R5,50 to the pound, ABSA R5,90 and Nedbank R6,50.
The fact that British security printers De la Rue & Co were given the huge SA ballot printing contract suggests that diplomatic and business relations may have been restored between the SA Reserve Bank and the new owners of the British company that used to print all SA’s bank notes – until sanctions ended their relationship (or sent it underground). There has been a massive illegal flight of rands from SA which peaked during the build-up to the elections. A London banker tells me that in a single day shortly before the SA elections R120 000 in notes was changed at just three of his City branches.
Does the SA government propose neutralising the notes illegally taken abroad by introducing a new currency – which Da la Rue might be in the running to print? If so, people outside the country with buckets full of “hot” rands could be up the creek in a barbed wire canoe without a paddle: the only value their old rand notes may have is as wall paper, shoe liners or kindling for winter fires.
I have made a few enquiries, but most bankers seem to think the above scenario is unlikely. Too small a proportion of SA’s lost reserves is abroad in rand notes. The more prosaic reason for the reluctance to buy rands is that UK banks have stuffed their boots with rands prior to the election and don’t want to hold any more.
Many believe that, in any case, the financial rand will be abolished in the not too distant future. The discount on the financial rand to the commercial rand is around 23%; last time the currencies were merged it was at a discount of 18%. This time round bankers would prefer 10% or 15%. The resting rate of the unified currency would be expected to be between the current rates.
-Henry Harington
(Occasional Correspondent for the Wall Street Journal)
Devon, England
[Note to Editor: If you pay me for this please use the usual Lichtenstein account. I’ll pass on rands this time but would be happy to accept Bhutan Nqultrums, Mongolian Torogs or Haitian gourds – H H]

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