Bradley Steyn (@bradley_steyn_) is an expert on risk mitigation, operational support, and racial injustice. He is the co-author of Undercover with Mandela’s Spies: The Story of the Boy Who Crossed the Square, a memoir of his time as a double agent working for Nelson Mandela during the dying days of South African Apartheid. [This is part two of a two-part episode. Make sure to check out part one here!]
What We Discuss with Bradley Steyn:
- Bradley shares his observations as a white kid growing up in Apartheid-era South Africa.
- How, as a teenager, Bradley bore witness to the brutal Strijdom Square massacre, in which white supremacist Barend Hendrik Strydom calmly took the lives of eight People of Color and injured 16 with a 9mm pistol.
- The PTSD, nightmares, anger issues, and emotional distress Bradley was forced to cope with in the aftermath of this horrific experience — and still deals with more than three decades later.
- How Bradley was recruited for undercover duty by the feared security police of the Apartheid government while working as a bouncer at a Pretoria gay bar.
- What led to Bradley’s dedication to the anti-Apartheid struggle and his service as a deep cover double agent within the Department of Intelligence and Security under the directive of Chris Hani’s and Nelson Mandela’s paramilitary wing, uMkhonto weSizwe.
- And much more…
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From the introduction to Undercover with Mandela’s Spies: The Story of the Boy Who Crossed the Square by Bradley Steyn and Mark Fine:
“1988 South Africa teeters on the edge of a state of emergency. Almost exactly 40 years ago, 17-year-old Bradley Steyn crosses Pretoria’s Strydom Square and walks straight into a massacre. Barend Strydom, the notorious white supremacist ‘Wit Wolf’ is mowing down black bystanders relaxing in the square during their lunch break. Bradley cradles a dying man in his arms, and, later, with reports of eight dead and 16 seriously injured, he is brought face to face with the insanity of the nation. Suffering from acute PTSD, unable to cope with day-to-day life, and consumed by rage, Bradley spirals out of control.
“His parents unwittingly initiate the next chapter in the story of the boy who crossed the square when they arrange for him to join the SA Navy. Here, angry and unable to work through his trauma, he is called upon by the Apartheid regime’s Security Branch to “confront the threat of Communism” and the navy serviceman joins the dreaded D-Section as a classified government enforcer.
“But on the political stage events are changing fast: F.W. de Klerk becomes President, the ANC is legalized, and Nelson Mandela walks to freedom. However, undermining this progress, a sinister Third Force has formed an alliance between the deep state military-intelligence complex, neo-Nazis, and white supremacists. With these forces edging the nation toward a bloody race war, President F.W. de Klerk is forced to make a deal with Nelson Mandela.
“And with this deal, the underground Department of Intelligence and Security (DIS) of the African National Congress (MK) recruits Bradley and Neil De Beer to infiltrate the Third Force network before all hope for a free future is destroyed. Bradley Steyn goes undercover to help unravel the extremists’ master plan — but will his time run out before they discover he is working for Mandela’s spies?”
In this two-part episode, Bradley Steyn joins us to discuss what it was like being on the front lines of this secret dirty war between the ANC and the government of the day, how he’s still coping with PTSD in the aftermath of the massacre he survived only because of the color of his skin, what he’s been up to in the meantime, and why he’s moving back to South Africa after years of living in the United States. [This is part two of a two-part episode. Make sure to check out part one here!]
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Miss our interview with Freeway Rick Ross, the crack empire kingpin gone good? Catch up with episode 121: Freeway Rick Ross | Life in the Crack Lane here!
Thanks, Bradley Steyn!
If you enjoyed this session with Bradley Steyn, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
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Resources from This Episode:
- Undercover with Mandela’s Spies: The Story of the Boy Who Crossed the Square by Bradley Steyn and Mark Fine | Amazon
- Unique Access to Experts from the World of Secrets | SPYEX
- Bradley Steyn | Linktree
- Bradley Steyn | Instagram
- Bradley Steyn | Twitter
- Bradley Steyn | YouTube
- Mandela’s Spy | True Spies Podcast
- A History of Apartheid in South Africa | South African History Online
- Soweto, Johannesburg | South African History Online
- The Strijdom Square Massacre | The African Crime & Conflict Journal
- Monumental Space and the Uncanny | Geoforum
- The Wit Wolf: Barend Hendrik Strydom | Nicole Claire
- The Smiling Killer: The White Wolf — Barend Strydom Documentary | YouTube
- How Communists Have Shaped South Africa’s History over 100 Years | The Conversation
- Mandela and the South African Communist Party | South African History Online
- South African Border War | Wikipedia
- Security Branch (South Africa) | Wikipedia
- Chris Hani | South African History Online
- Killer of South African Anti-Apartheid Leader Chris Hani Stabbed in Jail | The Guardian
- Taxi Wars in South Africa | Wikipedia
- Former South African President Zuma Could Be Sent Back to Jail | Voice Online
761: Bradley Steyn | Undercover with Mandela’s Spies Part Two
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Nebula Genomics for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:05] This episode is sponsored in part by Peloton. It's the time of year where we start thinking about what next year we'll bring. We make New Year's resolutions to exercise more, but let's face it, will you actually stick with it? It's been proven that you're more likely to stick to a routine if it's something you enjoy, which is why so many people stick with Peloton. The instructors are so fun. It's like working out with a friend. There's a very strong Peloton community. Also, I'm all about data, and Peloton tracks your metrics so you can keep tabs on your performance over time. And right now, Peloton's got a gift for you. Get up to 200 bucks off accessories like cycling shoes, heart rate monitors — both of which I have and use regularly — and more when you purchase a Peloton Bike, Bike+, or Tread, and up to a hundred dollars off accessories with the purchase of a Peloton Guide, which will turn your TV into an AI-powered personal trainer. Make this the first step toward achieving your fitness goals in the new year. Choose from Peloton's cycling to scenic runs, boot camps to power walks. A huge variety of classes that work for you, taught by world-class instructors who know exactly how to get the best out of you. So don't wait. Get this offer before it ends on December 25th. Visit onepeloton.com. All-access membership separate, offer ends December 25th, cannot be combined with other offers. See additional terms at onepeloton.com.
[00:01:11] Before we start this show, I want to let you know it has some adult themes and it's a "no kids in the car" for this one. And if you leave the kids in the car and you still play the episode, don't blame me when they have nightmares.
[00:01:21] Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:01:24] Bradley Steyn: This is about putting humanity first and learning from our mistakes. This precipice that it is with the Black Lives Matter movement that we learned from history and from the mistakes that have been made. Element of it is very reminiscent of apartheid security bureaucracy if I could say that from the police unions to the police forces, and the way that they profile and handle black people is disgusting.
[00:02:00] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people. We have in-depth conversations with scientists, entrepreneurs, spies, and psychologists, even the occasional investigative journalist, former cult member, money laundering expert, or music mogul. And each episode turns our guest's wisdom into practical advice that you can use to build a deeper understanding of how the world works and become a better thinker.
[00:02:25] If you're new to the show — welcome — if you want to tell your friends about the show — thank you for doing that — our episode starter packs are a great place to begin. These are collections of some of our favorite episodes organized by topic. That'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here on the show — topics like technology and futurism, disinformation and cyber warfare, persuasion and influence, investing in financial crimes, and more. Just visit jordanharbinger.com/start or search for us in your Spotify app to get started.
[00:02:51] Today is part two with Bradley Steyn. If you haven't heard part one, go back and check it out. It's just a few days ago. Bradley went undercover and was a spy in and from South Africa. Really interesting tale. Let's keep it going here with part two with Bradley Steyn.
[00:03:07] So the taxi wars. This sort of sounds like, okay, it's the only way for a lot of black people in the country at this time to make any money because it's one of the only sort of enterprises where they can operate. And then rival taxi cartels are beating up passengers and beating up the drivers or the others and even killing them, which is an interesting way to get business. Like all jokes aside, imagine if you're riding in a Lyft and an Uber driver like cuts you off, pulls you out of the car, beats your ass and says, "Don't ever take a Lyft again, always take an Uber," and then speeds off leaving you like bloodied in the road. That's kind of what we're talking about, right?
[00:03:38] Bradley Steyn: Absolutely. A hundred percent. Yeah.
[00:03:40] Jordan Harbinger: And they're cutting, bombing, stabbing, shooting people on trains because they want them to not take the train and then take private taxis to raise the profit margin. So again, think you're driving an Uber and they hijack your bus and they say, "Don't ever take the bus, take a private, take Uber."
[00:03:57] Bradley Steyn: Correct.
[00:03:58] Jordan Harbinger: This is crazy.
[00:03:59] Bradley Steyn: Correct. Yeah.
[00:04:00] Jordan Harbinger: What are you doing during this mess? Because you had a job or a role in these kind of situations.
[00:04:05] Bradley Steyn: So at that stage, the Security Police and Major Miller were in bed with the South African Black Taxi Association, SABTA. And SABTA had recently just assassinated the head of CODETA, which was a rival taxi organization. And Major Miller needed his asset protected and kept safe. We were tasked with protecting him and that's when I got shot for the first time.
[00:04:36] Jordan Harbinger: The first time, okay.
[00:04:37] Bradley Steyn: We got ambushed near the Golden Acre Center in Cape Town.
[00:04:42] Jordan Harbinger: Is that like a mall?
[00:04:43] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:04:43] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:04:44] Bradley Steyn: Exactly. So it's a mall that has a taxi rank outside and we were driving in a secured convoy to go pick up the head of SABTA's daughter and we came under gunfire. But we hadn't received our R1 automatic rifles. We only had 9mm and .38 revolvers, and—
[00:05:10] Jordan Harbinger: So handguns.
[00:05:12] Bradley Steyn: Handguns with us.
[00:05:13] Jordan Harbinger: Mmm.
[00:05:13] Bradley Steyn: And we came into a contact situation and we lost my driver. My driver was shot. I took the principal, pulled him out of the vehicle to get him into our backup vehicle, and we were hiding behind the wheel while we were taking fire from an AK-47, so note to self, never go to a gun battle against an AK-47 with a pistol.
[00:05:39] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I mean, it's kind of the knife and the gunfight almost.
[00:05:42] Bradley Steyn: Exactly. So my client tried to jump up, run away.
[00:05:47] Jordan Harbinger: Did he just panic?
[00:05:48] Bradley Steyn: He panicked.
[00:05:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:05:49] Bradley Steyn: I had to grab him. I had to pistol whip him, hit him on the back of the head, tell him to sit down. I had to sit on top of him. I still remember he ended up pissing his pants because of the giant wet patch.
[00:06:01] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:06:01] Bradley Steyn: It was a terrifying situation, but we managed to get out and then when we got back to a safe house, I remember my fingers were sticking together and I saw I had some blood on my hands and I looked up and I had part of a round lodged into my bicep. So it missed my heart, only a few inches.
[00:06:24] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:06:24] Bradley Steyn: So, yeah, that was pretty scary.
[00:06:28] Jordan Harbinger: Geez. Wow.
[00:06:28] Bradley Steyn: So, I was still working for Major Andy Miller. After that, he instructed us to go and extract and go and kidnap or go and grab this guy—
[00:06:41] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:06:42] Bradley Steyn: —called Stephen Kumalo.
[00:06:43] Jordan Harbinger: We'll get there in a second.
[00:06:45] Bradley Steyn: Okay.
[00:06:45] Jordan Harbinger: By the way, for those who are listening, there is a twist in this plot. I'm not just interviewing terrible people now. You have a redemption. You say in the book, "I can find multiple ways to justify it if I choose, but the fact is that Project Group." Your thug bodyguard group was doing the donkey work of an organization that embraced racist psychotic killers. So this is like, you're doing bad stuff, but you're still kind of a lost soul. And then, soon after Nelson Mandela gets out of prison. He's the ANC leader, a lot of people watching probably are too young to know, which is interesting, and a lot of people are very aware of who that is, largely seen as a freedom fighter in South Africa.
[00:07:25] Tell me how you meet this guy, Kumalo.
[00:07:27] Bradley Steyn: So Major Andy Miller.
[00:07:29] Jordan Harbinger: Your boss in the Secret Police.
[00:07:31] Bradley Steyn: Our boss in the Security Police gives us a dossier. Inside of this dossier is a profile of a guy called Stephen Kumalo, which is an alias. Stephen Kumalo is a highly trained operative of South African descent. He's had his training done by the KGB in Moscow. He's currently in Lusaka where all military operations take place outside South Africa.
[00:08:00] Jordan Harbinger: Is that in Angola?
[00:08:01] Bradley Steyn: Zambia.
[00:08:02] Jordan Harbinger: Zambia.
[00:08:03] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:08:03] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:08:03] Bradley Steyn: So, our orders are to try and track him down, find him, bring him in, and gather information of him and figure out what the African National Congress, there's new pushes because he's a highly placed secret asset. And, you know, he's highly placed with the KGB or with the former KGB. And he ends up, funnily enough, crossing a river and coming into South Africa with a pocket full of rough diamonds. We figured out where he is. We got to kick the door down. The whole shack falls down as we kicked the door down.
[00:08:49] Jordan Harbinger: So this is like made out of corrugated metals.
[00:08:51] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:08:52] Jordan Harbinger: A little shack. Like a shanty town type.
[00:08:54] Bradley Steyn: Exactly. It's made out of old billboards and road signs. It's shanty town shack. I kicked the door down. His wife tries to scratch my eyes out. We grabbed him. There's a kid standing outside the door that hears the commotion with a panga that wants to try and—
[00:09:12] Jordan Harbinger: What's that? A machete?
[00:09:13] Bradley Steyn: Machete. Exactly. You know, I remember shouting f*ck off because, you know, he's a young kid. Nobody needed to die that day. We just needed to get him in the van and take him to a safe house an hour north of Victoria in a place called [Wombats] on a rural farm that the Security Police used for interrogations. So we grabbed him, we took him. He's sitting at a table. I'm waiting for Neil De Beer to come into the office, and I'm standing against the wall with my arms crossed, and he said, "Baba, I can see you are a big guy. You're a strong guy. I can see you can hurt me. I can see you want to hurt me, you want to inflict pain on me. But before you do that, I want to tell you about the African National Congress's Freedom Charter and what it stands for and that it includes you and your tribe. Because we see the White South Africans and the Africaners as part of one of the African tribes now." So the Freedom Charter stands for all South Africans. Something resonated within him. I don't know if it was, he reminded me of Kind Eyes, but all of a sudden the fog and all this confusion from the PTSD, from being so angry sort of subsided. It was my coming to Jesus moment. When the penny dropped and I realized that, you know, this is not about the, for me, it's never really been black danger.
[00:10:55] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:10:55] Bradley Steyn: Because I grew up in an incredibly liberal family. For me, it was about the communist threat.
[00:11:01] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:11:02] Bradley Steyn: Rooi gevaar, red danger. And all of a sudden, my whole mindset changed and I stepped out and I said to Neil, "Neil, just come and listen to this for a second." And he said, "You're not going soft on me, right?" And I said, "No, we need to be smart here. You need to come and listen to this." And he told Neil as well, he said, "Our Freedom Charter is there to protect all South Africans." And that was a very, very powerful statement. And it's a very powerful document. And Neil and I stepped out again and we were like, "What is happening here?" And we were incredibly moved by the situation. So we decided to not beat him up, not torture him, not hurt him. I remember taking a knife and cutting myself and taking the blood and putting it on Kumalo's face. We took some photos so that we could show the major, and we told the major that we had secured him as an asset for us and for the Security Police, so that he would now become our informant and he would give us information. Neil and I at that stage, decided that we would stay in communication with him, that we would have a weekly time that we would call him at an allocated payphone and check in with each other.
[00:12:36] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:12:36] Bradley Steyn: And if we needed to meet, we could meet covertly somewhere. But in essence, that's when Neil and I decided to switch and become double agents.
[00:12:47] Jordan Harbinger: By the way, African sounds a little bit like you speak German, but you're just really drunk and everything is slurring. Can you understand a little bit of German, I assume?
[00:12:56] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, yeah, yeah. No, [foreign language].
[00:13:01] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:13:02] Bradley Steyn: I can speak a little bit of German, but not too much.
[00:13:04] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, it sounds a little bit similar.
[00:13:06] Bradley Steyn: But it's an ancient Dutch dialect. Yeah.
[00:13:10] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so you meet him by kidnapping him. You met me by punching me in the face. I'm starting to wonder if this is how you make all of your friends. How did you meet your wife? Did you run her over with your car?
[00:13:19] Bradley Steyn: No, I picked her up in a bar.
[00:13:21] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, fair enough. Fair enough. Okay, so now you're a double agent.
[00:13:26] Bradley Steyn: In essence, yes. So this was an incredibly stressful time in my life because if Major Miller found out or the Security Police found out, it'd be very easy for them to put a 9mm back behind my ear and squeeze the trigger and kill us. Life is very cheap in Africa.
[00:13:46] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:13:46] Bradley Steyn: You know, that could happen like that. And I wouldn't even know, I wouldn't even see it coming.
[00:13:51] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:13:51] Bradley Steyn: So, you know, we had to play a very careful, balanced operation because every time we had come into contact with Major Miller now, you know, this guy was highly trained intelligence operative. He could smell a rat a mile away. So, we had to be incredibly careful. We had to make sure and rehearse everything before we said anything to him to make sure that we don't get caught in a lie.
[00:14:22] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:14:23] Bradley Steyn: Because then it's our tickets. He just, you know, like I said, he'd kill us. So he sent us on another op and he told us — and this made this the stress even more because we thought he did this on purpose. So it was a guy that he had told us to get into business with earlier. A guy that ran the Cape Flats and his name was Cyril Beeka. He is a very well-known guy in South Africa in the underworld in South Africa.
[00:14:54] Jordan Harbinger: And the Cape Flats are like a dangerous area.
[00:14:57] Bradley Steyn: A very dangerous area, yeah. This guy basically ran a lot of the Cape Flats. He ran Cape Town for many years. He was assassinated a few years ago on a drive-by. The people that killed him were sitting on the back of a motorbike, drove past him. I think there's a riddled car with the Uzi and killed him. His Serbian bodyguard at the time survived. But anyway, so Cyril was our dog handler, security partner. He would get us intel from the Cape Flats, et cetera. So we were told to go and do surveillance on a guy that had just done seven years on Robben Island for terrorism.
[00:15:41] Jordan Harbinger: Is that like an Alcatraz-type place?
[00:15:43] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:15:43] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:15:44] Bradley Steyn: A hundred percent. So Robben Island is a maximum security prison just off the coast of Cape Town and it sits in the shadow of Table Mountain, which is in the city of Cape Town.
[00:15:55] Jordan Harbinger: Is it still a prison?
[00:15:56] Bradley Steyn: It's a museum now.
[00:15:57] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay.
[00:15:58] Bradley Steyn: So we went and did this surveillance operation in Cape Town, in Sea Point. And we were sitting across the road, we saw these two guys, these two black guys sitting across the road. I remember the one guy had a few fingers missing. There was a rumor that he lost these fingers building bombs, but you know, these are very dangerous guys. And another guy, Andre Lincoln was sitting there as well. All of a sudden, they were sitting under this canopy of umbrellas and then we saw this other guy walking towards them. And I recognized the gait of this guy and the body language of this guy. And as soon as he sat down and his head dropped from below the umbrellas, we saw it was Cyril, our partner—
[00:16:44] Jordan Harbinger: Dog handler, yeah.
[00:16:45] Bradley Steyn: Our dog handler, our security, our muscle, our hit man on the Cape Flats. So he sat down with these two ANC terrorists and we were like, "What the f*ck is Major Miller—? Sorry.
[00:16:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. It's okay.
[00:16:59] Bradley Steyn: What is Major Miller doing here? Is he trying to set us up? Is he trying to get us killed? Does he know what's going on?
[00:17:07] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:17:08] Bradley Steyn: Does he know what's happening? So now we need to get off the X because if he makes us, we're dead. He'll kill us.
[00:17:18] Jordan Harbinger: Cyril will.
[00:17:19] Bradley Steyn: Cyril will.
[00:17:20] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:17:20] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, because he knows that we work for the Security Police.
[00:17:24] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, right, okay.
[00:17:25] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:17:26] Jordan Harbinger: But he's working with the—
[00:17:28] Bradley Steyn: ANC.
[00:17:29] Jordan Harbinger: —the enemy, your enemy at that time.
[00:17:31] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:17:31] Jordan Harbinger: So he doesn't know that you know that he's your enemy.
[00:17:34] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:17:35] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. Right.
[00:17:36] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:17:36] Jordan Harbinger: But if he sees you, then the jig is up.
[00:17:38] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:17:38] Jordan Harbinger: And he'll shoot you or whatever.
[00:17:39] Bradley Steyn: Exactly.
[00:17:39] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:17:40] Bradley Steyn: You know, if your listeners know any South Africans and they can ask anybody about Cyril Beeka. He was one of the most notorious and dangerous people from South Africa. So, you know, we had to get off the X. We got out of there. We didn't panic, but we realized that this is a very, very dangerous game—
[00:18:04] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:18:05] Bradley Steyn: —we're playing now. Do we just get the hell out of there and go to England or come to the States or is it too hot? But we wanted to sit it art for a while. So then, Stephen Kumalo calls us and he says, "Okay, we need you to go come and meet your new comrades and your new handlers in the ANC." And we said, "Okay, fine. Wonder who it's going to be." So we go to a Wimpy bar, Wimpy Restaurant.
[00:18:34] Jordan Harbinger: Is that like a burger place?
[00:18:35] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:18:35] Jordan Harbinger: I think we have that here, Wimpy Burger.
[00:18:37] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, I think so.
[00:18:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:18:38] Bradley Steyn: It's like a little burger joint. As soon as we get to the burger joint and I'm about to walk through the door, I see those two ANC terrorists sitting at the table. I pull my 9mm and Stephen Kumalo says, "No, those are your comrades. Those are your new commanders.
[00:18:58] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:18:58] Bradley Steyn: I was terrified. I thought this was a setup and we were going to get taken out.
[00:19:04] Jordan Harbinger: Yikes.
[00:19:04] Bradley Steyn: So we sat at the table and obviously, there was massive mistrust between all of us.
[00:19:11] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:19:12] Bradley Steyn: You know, these guys, Jeremy had just done seven years hard time on Robben Island with Nelson Mandela, but Nelson Mandela was now in a different prison. Mandela hasn't been released yet at this stage.
[00:19:25] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay. Still not out. Okay.
[00:19:27] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. Sorry. At this stage, Mandela was not out yet. So what ended up happening is that we knew that we had to build trust with these guys and not just crisis type, because — I beg you pardoned. Mandela was—
[00:19:43] Jordan Harbinger: He was, okay.
[00:19:44] Bradley Steyn: He was.
[00:19:44] Jordan Harbinger: I was going to say you wrote the book wrong, but I'm—
[00:19:46] Bradley Steyn: No, no, no, no.
[00:19:47] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, I get it.
[00:19:48] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. Yeah. My bad, he was out already.
[00:19:50] Jordan Harbinger: Got it.
[00:19:51] Bradley Steyn: And there was a sense that the African National Congress was going to come into power and that the political landscape in South Africa was going to change.
[00:20:01] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:20:01] Bradley Steyn: So the ANC's Department of Intelligence and Security, DIS, under Umkhonto we Sizwe, spear of the nation, the military wing, that's who we fell under now. So now, we were double agents working for Mandela spy team and their biggest priority right now was to try and figure out what they're doing from a crisis damage control point of view. At the same time, Major Miller is also sending us to go clean up and do damage control because there was a guy called Eugene de Kock who had a play — they call him Prime Evil. He was part of another Security Police intelligence unit similar to Project Group that was on a place called Vlakplaas where the lucerne, the grass grew this high because of the dismembered body parts that they used to plow into the fields.
[00:21:01] Jordan Harbinger: Geez.
[00:21:02] Bradley Steyn: A very brutal guy and operational team. We had to go and take care of one of Eugene de Kock's guys because he was starting to speak to the Americans and Miller heard about this, spoke to de Kock. So it was chaos within the intelligence community at that stage.
[00:21:21] Jordan Harbinger: So, like units are killing each other all the time.
[00:21:24] Bradley Steyn: People are starting to panic. They're trying to sell stuff. They're trying to figure out — can we move to the United States? Can we go here? Can we go there? Because the United States and the Nazi movement here, were helping fund a lot of the organizations like World Apartheid Movement, WAM, et cetera. So, you know, they were alliances all over the place.
[00:21:48] Jordan Harbinger: What a mess.
[00:21:49] Bradley Steyn: And this is what we call the dirty war. So this is what I referred to in the book as the dirty war where we needed to go in and clean up. And one of the things they wanted us to do was get all and every bit of intel that we could from Major Miller's office. So Major Miller was also a bit of a piss-cat. He loved to drink. He had this special drawer and he had this bottle in his drawer, and I happened to see where he hid a key once and we managed to break into his office, get this key, and get into this filing cabinet.
[00:22:27] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:22:28] Bradley Steyn: We get into this filing cabinet and we find a dossier within this filing cabinet of who are the African National Congress, Mandela's top guys that are assets of the National Party government.
[00:22:43] Jordan Harbinger: So you find the other spies.
[00:22:45] Bradley Steyn: So we find out who the double agents are within the ANC. So we take this file and we make copies of it. We get out of there, we go and we start looking through this file. But the head of — he claims he's the head of military intelligence for the African National Congress, but he's not the head of military intelligence, but he's a high-ranking official within the African National Congress. This is going to put everybody's lives at danger and everybody at risk. So, that brought us a massive amount of trust and friendship with our two new handlers within the ANC.
[00:23:27] Jordan Harbinger: Because you just had struck gold.
[00:23:29] Bradley Steyn: We literally struck gold.
[00:23:31] Jordan Harbinger: Figuratively, literally.
[00:23:33] Bradley Steyn: Figuratively, exactly. But now this intel is incredibly dangerous and incredibly harmful. My publishers wanted to leave this part out of the book.
[00:23:44] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:23:45] Bradley Steyn: But it's very important for me to say this at the precipice of where we are as a nation South Africa today, because one of the people that's name was on this list was Jacob Zuma, the former president of South Africa, who was within the intelligence community in the South African Revolution. He was an askari, _____, a double agent.
[00:24:12] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:24:13] Bradley Steyn: The reason South Africa is burning today is because of him. So the world needs to know that this man had sold his people out a long, long time ago already. He's a charmer. He's incredibly charismatic. He's a brilliant strategist. He became the president in South Africa.
[00:24:37] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:24:38] Bradley Steyn: You know, it's sad for me all these years later to sort of see what happened in this revolution of these freedom fighters in South Africa because all these years later we see that the dream that Madiba had, that Nelson Mandela had of a free and fair society where we treat each other with dignity is not where we are in South Africa today. And that is because of the likes of Jacob Zuma and the damage he has created in the country.
[00:25:17] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Bradley Steyn. We'll be right back.
[00:25:22] This episode is sponsored in part by StoryWorth. It's the holidays, and chances are you're going to hear a ton of family stories good and bad. Have you ever wanted to document them? I think about how much I wished I'd sat down with my grandparents with a tape recorder. I have so many unanswered questions, and of course, I miss the opportunity. So now with my own parents, I've tried to be a little bit more intentional and StoryWorth is a really fun, really easy way to document these timeless stories and create a book about their life. Every week, StoryWorth will email your loved one a single question, and they have tons of questions you can pick from the list or you can create questions yourself. All they have to do is reply to the email with their story, and then after a year, StoryWorth compiles your loved one's stories, memories even photos into a high-quality hardcover book, which is an awesome keepsake. I've had my mom answer a question today. You can choose the frequency. It doesn't have to be every day. It was so fun hearing about her adventures traveling to Australia in her 20s. I mean, in 1960 something, nobody traveled alone as a woman, especially. She traveled to Australia in her 20s. She had her first job. She overcame some pretty difficult times. I want to be able to share these things with my kids and with my grandkids, and this has just been such a fun way to do this.
[00:26:32] Jen Harbinger: Help your family share their story this holiday season with StoryWorth. Go to storyworth.com/jordan today to save $10 on your first purchase. That's S-T-O-R-Y-W-O-R-T-H.com/jordan to save $10 on your first purchase, storyworth.com/jordan.
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[00:28:18] Jordan Harbinger: If you're wondering how I managed to book all these folks for the show, it's because of my network and I don't like doing the schmoozy gross yuck it up thing. I really want to do things in a non-cringe, down-to-earth way. And I'm teaching you how to do the same thing in our course, which is also free over at jordanharbinger.com/course. It's all just practical exercises that'll make you a better connector, a better colleague, a better peer, a better friend. Takes less than six minutes a day. Many of the guests on the show subscribe and contribute to the course. So, hey, come join us, you'll be in smart company. You can find the course at jordanharbinger.com/course.
[00:28:52] And now back to Bradley Steyn.
[00:28:55] How did he end up not getting arrested or getting the boot out of the ANC? Like, if there were documents saying, "Hey, this guy is a double agent," how come he made it this far?
[00:29:05] Bradley Steyn: Because Jeremy Vearey and Andre Lincoln gave this intelligence to our intelligence head, which was Commander Comrade Joe Nhlanhla, who's unfortunately passed on now. But they decided at that stage it was best to not let anybody know about this.
[00:29:27] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man. What a frigging—
[00:29:30] Bradley Steyn: I know. So it's a massive failure within the use of effective and actionable intelligence.
[00:29:37] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:29:38] Bradley Steyn: And South Africa is burning today because of this. So that's one of the reasons why I want to go back to my country, and that's one of the reasons why I want to go stand side by side with General Jeremy Vearey and Andre Lincoln and Neil de Beer, and they fight against corruption and they fight against state capture in South Africa because this is not what the Freedom Charter set out for us and said it was going to set out for us. These guys were at the tip of the spear, of the assegai, fighting for people's fundamental human rights, the likes of Chris Hani or Che Guevara—
[00:30:26] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:30:26] Bradley Steyn: —were so important to fighting for our people, and yet these people were all pushed to the side and the like of Jacob Zuma came in and turned our country upside down.
[00:30:43] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:30:44] Bradley Steyn: Has promoted, corruption has been involved in cronyism and tenders and—
[00:30:52] Jordan Harbinger: Tenders?
[00:30:53] Bradley Steyn: Tenders meaning—
[00:30:54] Jordan Harbinger: What's that?
[00:30:54] Bradley Steyn: A government tender is giving massive government contracts to friends—
[00:30:59] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, sure.
[00:30:59] Bradley Steyn: —families—
[00:31:00] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:31:00] Bradley Steyn: —and other corrupt people within the party. So, this beautiful dream that we had of a rainbow nation, you know, this beautiful kumbaya moment if you've seen Invictus of—
[00:31:13] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:31:13] Bradley Steyn: —Morgan Freeman playing Mandela and it's this great energy behind, this is the hopes and the dreams, which these Israeli-Palestinian conflict can aspire to. It was completely destroyed by the likes of Jacob Zuma, who has now gone and destroyed our country.
[00:31:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:31:38] Bradley Steyn: The world needs to know about this.
[00:31:40] Jordan Harbinger: Definitely. I mean, you say comrade and things like that. Would you describe yourself as a communist or a socialist?
[00:31:46] Bradley Steyn: No, but I have socialist ideals from the point of view of, I'm more like a Bernie Sanders, type of—
[00:31:56] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:31:57] Bradley Steyn: —ideals where, you know, I want to place humanity first. A more of a Trotsky ideal, where it would've worked out better for the people of South Africa that were treated so badly for hundreds and hundreds of years to at least give them a fair step up. Giving them medical, giving them housing, giving them food, you know, just basic fundamental rights. I'm not saying that we need to make the reserve bank a parastatal, for instance.
[00:32:34] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:32:34] Bradley Steyn: I'm not saying that communist or socialist ideals work 100%. But there are elements to them where it serves humanity in a good way.
[00:32:45] Jordan Harbinger: What do you think about these farm seizures where they're sort of taking away the land from the white farmers and I don't know, what are they giving it? Redistributing it?
[00:32:52] Bradley Steyn: You're asking the good questions, Jordan.
[00:32:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:32:54] Bradley Steyn: Because those are really good questions. It's a very complicated dynamic because, sure, the Dutch settlers came in and started farming and taking land to farm, et cetera, and finding opportunities, et cetera. But the wrong people are fighting today and wanted to get that land back because the land belonged to the Khoisan people, the _____ people, the indigenous people of South Africa, the other tribes came from different places across Africa and migrated down south. I'm just really disappointed in how our beloved ANC, which I'm still a member of to this day, has let our people down.
[00:33:48] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:33:48] Bradley Steyn: And let the people of South Africa down because these guys that were on the ground fighting for our freedoms were, like I said, pushed aside, and the people that were in exile, eating lobster, caviar in London and raising money and doing good stuff.
[00:34:06] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:34:07] Bradley Steyn: But just came back to South Africa and we're so used to that lavish lifestyle and have placed their needs before the needs of poorest of people in South Africa. I need to just touch on how do these land seizures, et cetera, work and farm murders work, et cetera. And this is a very personal thing to me because when I was in South Africa with Annie Costner and Adrienne Hall, who are documentary filmmakers, documenting my story. My brother-in-law was murdered on our family farm. I made this little video afterwards and I showed this video of our beautiful farm and I said, "This is a beautiful country, our beloved South Africa. But the reality is that our ANC government has failed to protect our people," and they really have. So now it's time that we really need to go and get control of the situation. We need to make sure that our police protect our citizens. We need to make sure that our national security capabilities are of standard so that we can protect our people.
[00:35:30] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:35:30] Bradley Steyn: So that we can protect our tourists when they come to the country because—
[00:35:35] Jordan Harbinger: I would love to go to South Africa, but I'm also like, is this a good idea? I'm a little bit more gutsy than my wife, obviously.
[00:35:41] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:35:42] Jordan Harbinger: It's like, it looks amazing. My friends tell me. It's amazing. Even the non-South Africans, the ones that are going there on tour, but I'm like they got beaches and places that don't have rights right now too.
[00:35:52] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, yeah. No, absolutely. And people have said to me, oh, why would you take your family? Why would you go move back to this country?
[00:36:03] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:36:03] Bradley Steyn: This precipice when this country's on fire and it's burning currently in certain regions, for instance, KwaZulu-Natal—
[00:36:11] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:36:12] Bradley Steyn: —and Gauteng, which is near the capital. It's because of the instigation by Jacob Zuma and people within the captured side of the African National Congress. So there's still hope for South Africa but we need to go and fix it.
[00:36:32] Jordan Harbinger: Shout out to our listeners. We have listeners in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng because I see it on our downloads and I'm always like, oh, where are these places?
[00:36:42] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:36:42] Jordan Harbinger: Who's listening to us in these places?
[00:36:44] Bradley Steyn: Cape Town, yeah. Sure.
[00:36:45] Jordan Harbinger: Cape Town for sure. Joburg for sure. But I don't know about those other places I'd never heard of. All right. So I want to get back to the story because there's even more interesting stuff here before we wrap, but you come back, you're copying these documents, you find these intelligence documents and you come across a binder full of, basically all the bad sh*t you guys did, but none of the police cover, right? So they were going to set you up, it sounds like.
[00:37:08] Bradley Steyn: Correct. So, you know, in essence, what we think Major Miller was doing was keeping this ace up his sleeve in case—
[00:37:17] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:37:18] Bradley Steyn: —things went tits up and he needed to throw us under the bus. Any brilliant strategist in the intelligence arena would use this form of trade craft.
[00:37:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:37:29] Bradley Steyn: But it was really concerning. But, you know, we managed to take it and replace it with pages from a telephone book and—
[00:37:39] Jordan Harbinger: Do you think he noticed?
[00:37:41] Bradley Steyn: Eventually, he did. And I think that's when, ultimately, we were chased out of the country and they tried to kill us. So, yeah.
[00:37:50] Jordan Harbinger: Well, we'll get there in a second. So the ANC takes over, Mandela's inaugurated. Now, your ANC friends who used to be state enemies are promoted or installed in the security apparatus, which must have been a mess, right? Because you got this apartheid old guard, and then in the office down the hall, you've got the guy they were chasing for 20 years who came back from Zambia or London or whatever, and they're in the same office on the same floor sharing a secretary. I don't understand how that would've worked. That's got to be fairly complex, but your intelligence leads to foiling an assassination plot.
[00:38:23] Bradley Steyn: So actually that's before the inauguration, yes. So what Major Miller instructed us to do was to take that cachet of weapons.
[00:38:32] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:38:33] Bradley Steyn: That we have found and give it to WAM, World Apartheid Movement which is again, the unit that is used for political assassinations and killings, et cetera. We go back to our handlers, Stephen Kumalo, Jeremy Vearey, and Andre Lincoln, and ultimately they went to Joe Nhlanhla and told them that, "This is the instructions. What should we do?" Because I was terrified now because these are going to go from somebody else to somebody else who's probably even more evil. These guys were doing it for liberation and for freedom. These people are just doing it for complete—
[00:39:16] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:39:16] Bradley Steyn: —hatred and they had an evil agenda. Not that I'm justifying shooting a plane out of a sky. So we came up with a plan to secretly mark certain weapons that we would hand over to them that would work. The others we kept aside, we had removed the firing pins. We had disassembled a lot of the components of it. So they told us to take it up to this farming Zeerust, which is in this—
[00:39:49] Jordan Harbinger: What's a Zeerust like a farm?
[00:39:50] Bradley Steyn: Sorry. Zeerust is a town, a farming community.
[00:39:54] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:39:54] Bradley Steyn: A beautiful citrus valley. This is where Koos Vermeulen, the head of WAM operated out of — you know, he had this beautiful German Shepherd that he named Blondie out of Hitler's dog—
[00:40:10] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, weird fanboys.
[00:40:11] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, exactly. These guys were radicalized, right-wing militant guys and that operated with the likes of the _____, which is the Iron Brigade of AWB. So we hand these weapons over to them, et cetera. They like me. We get on very well. There's a guy that was there, guy by the name of Keith, Keith Conway, who I actually knew previously, and he knew of me because of the security work in the Cape and ______ et cetera—
[00:40:54] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:40:54] Bradley Steyn: —of Project Group. So Keith and I got on very well. Koos Vermeulen, who Keith worked for, put a bug in his ear and said, "Hey, Bradley's a great asset. Why don't we use him?"
[00:41:05] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:41:05] Bradley Steyn: So that's how I ended up infiltrating the World Apartheid Movement. And I ended up staying with them for about two years.
[00:41:13] Jordan Harbinger: Geez.
[00:41:14] Bradley Steyn: No, sorry. Just over a year rather.
[00:41:17] Jordan Harbinger: So, basically, you're a thug who's undercover with the Security Branch police, who's also undercover as a double agent with the DIS, who's now an undercover agent with the World Apartheid Movement.
[00:41:27] Bradley Steyn: Well, they asked me to infiltrate the World Apartheid Movement.
[00:41:30] Jordan Harbinger: Right, right. But I'm just saying you have like three covers.
[00:41:33] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. You know, it was a nightmare.
[00:41:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:41:36] Bradley Steyn: You know, it was incredibly stressful. And I also thrived on it. I thrived on the rush, of the danger, and it was a very stressful time, like I said. But I'm glad I was there. We found out about the poisoning plot for the township.
[00:41:53] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:41:54] Bradley Steyn: We managed to avoid that happening. You know, we found out that just by chance that they were building a homemade rifle, sniper rifle. I didn't know what it was for initially but my mother had given me this Walkman cassette player, and I used to listen to my classical music or opera, whatever. I used to love all different types of music. But what I'd use that cassette for was I'd let the music play and then I would tape my field notes into the recording of the tape recorder. For instance, I say, "They're building a rifle, they're planning an assassination. I don't know who it is yet." And then I'd put it in a dead drop. At that stage, Cyril Beeka was across the border of Botswana, which is a different African country right next to South Africa. And he'd come across the border in the middle of the night, grab the cassette, and they would go and play the cassette and that's how it would fill them in.
[00:43:01] Jordan Harbinger: Ah.
[00:43:02] Bradley Steyn: I ended up, I did find out that they were planning to assassinate Mandela at his inauguration.
[00:43:08] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:43:08] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. So I gave that intel to Andre Lincoln and Andre Lincoln and Jeremy Vearey with our team managed to thwart the assassination of Mandela at his inauguration.
[00:43:23] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. How did they do that? Just by, did they—?
[00:43:25] Bradley Steyn: Oh, no. It was a hunt down to the minute. They found a sniper rifle in the security policeman's desk. He was in the government Security Police, and he had credentials to go to inauguration, and that's why we had that ballistic bulletproof glass around Madiba, around Mandela on he's inauguration.
[00:43:49] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I mean, you would have to — that's wild. That's a very close call.
[00:43:54] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. No, but pretty much after that I got encrypted, well, we call it encrypted just because I got a covert message that—
[00:44:06] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:44:06] Bradley Steyn: —I needed to go and meet with Andre Lincoln.
[00:44:09] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:44:10] Bradley Steyn: And just like you said, he was now a brigadier in the South African police. He was appointed personally by Nelson Mandela. And he told me that Andy Millier, Major Miller had found out that it was us that have sabotaged a few of these projects, that they wanted to take us out, and that they had actually got the Young Americans—
[00:44:37] Jordan Harbinger: Which is a gang.
[00:44:38] Bradley Steyn: Which is a notorious, very dangerous gang out of Pollsmoor Prison, which is the maximum security prison in Cape Town, to put a hit out on us, on myself and Neil De Beer.
[00:44:49] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:44:50] Bradley Steyn: So Neil de Beer and I were, you know, in the crosses now and we had to get out of there and the ANC helped us get out of the country and going to exile. So while these other comrades were coming back from all these places in New York and London and Oslo, et cetera, we were passing each other like ships. They were coming back from exile and we just had to get the hell out of there.
[00:45:22] Jordan Harbinger: This is The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Bradley Steyn. We'll be right back.
[00:45:27] This episode is sponsored in part by Nebula Genomics. Can't think of what to gift your friend or family member that has everything? Here's an interesting and unique idea, a home DNA test. A lot of DNA kits only analyze as little as 0.02% of the human genome. Nebula Genomics offers a genetic testing kit that decodes a hundred percent of your DNA, so you get the most complete and accurate picture of your genetic makeup, even rare gene mutations. And of course, that means it's future proof in case more studies come out and they figure out what more stuff does in our DNA. The reporting is really detailed, includes links to scientific studies, so it's not just like, "Hey, you might have red hair." I've been digging deeper into my genealogy. So getting my DNA analyzed with Nebula will help provide much more detail for my family and for myself. Customer privacy is guaranteed. They take privacy very seriously, unlike some of the competition.
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[00:49:07] Now for the rest of my conversation with Bradley Steyn.
[00:49:11] I think it's an interesting note that the most dangerous people and one of the most dangerous countries during the most dangerous time are called the Americans. Who's going to leave that there??
[00:49:20] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, yeah.
[00:49:21] Jordan Harbinger: Like who's the most dangerous person in South Africa? Oh, these Americans.
[00:49:25] Bradley Steyn: Well, there's another gang as well, and they called the sexy boys.
[00:49:28] Jordan Harbinger: That's a ridiculous name for dangerous people.
[00:49:30] Bradley Steyn: Exactly. But it's insane.
[00:49:34] Jordan Harbinger: They got a branding issue.
[00:49:35] Bradley Steyn: YouTube, Cape Flats, gangsters. You'll see all these characters.
[00:49:40] Jordan Harbinger: I will definitely do that. So last five minutes here, you almost got killed on the way out of the country.
[00:49:46] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:49:46] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, it's like, this is like the part of the movie that's the most exciting chase scene, you know?
[00:49:50] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. Well, when I saw the guy pull up next to us and smiling and I saw here these grill with his teeth and the next thing I saw a Desert Eagle—
[00:50:02] Jordan Harbinger: Pistol.
[00:50:03] Bradley Steyn: Pistol glimpse out of the corner of my eye, I thought, that's our tickets. We're dead.
[00:50:07] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:50:08] Bradley Steyn: These guys were going to kill us. And then I couldn't get my gun. My gun was stuck in my holster.
[00:50:13] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:50:13] Bradley Steyn: Because I didn't have a combat hammer on my pistol.
[00:50:18] Jordan Harbinger: So the hammer got snagged.
[00:50:19] Bradley Steyn: The hammer got snagged. And, yeah, I saw my life flash by me a few times. But you know, one thing I do want to say, Jordan, is that in my business, on my former business, we don't talk about trade craft, we don't talk about secrets. We don't talk about this stuff because there's a silent oath that we take as intelligence professionals and we don't talk about this stuff, but the story of these brave heroes, the likes of Jeremy Vearey and Andre Lincoln, is the main reason why I decided to write this book—
[00:50:56] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:50:57] Bradley Steyn: —and tell this story was because these guys are the unsung heroes of the liberation movement in South Africa. And today, they're being marginalized and thrown to the wolves. Major General Vearey was a major general in the South African police up until a week ago, but because he's uncovering massive amounts of corruption within the South African government, as has Andre Lincoln. They captured corrupt part of the ANC, are so scared of them that they're just getting rid of them and throwing them under the bus.
[00:51:36] Jordan Harbinger: When you made it out of South Africa, there's a kind of an exciting scene in the book, and I'll let people maybe read the book to get this, but you basically run into a pub and escape by boat. And then you end up getting smuggled into Swaziland, which is this like weird, landlocked country on your way out. I mean, it's just the whole thing reads like a spy novel in many ways. And I'm excited to see what you end up doing with it.
[00:52:00] So you're moving back there, which should be interesting. Gutsy, move, man. Very pedestrian life you've lived. You might want to try break breaking the mold sometime, you know?
[00:52:10] Bradley Steyn: Yeah, maybe I should—
[00:52:11] Jordan Harbinger: Not a lot of excitement.
[00:52:12] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. Maybe I should move up, rather move up here to the Bay Area and get a techie job or something.
[00:52:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Well, there's plenty of action around here now, unfortunately as well.
[00:52:23] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:52:23] Jordan Harbinger: Not quite like South Africa, but thank you so much for coming on the show, man, and telling your story.
[00:52:27] Bradley Steyn: Absolutely. You know, I'm blessed to be in this situation to be able to tell the story and like I said, this is about putting humanity first and learning from our mistakes. It's very, very important that the United States at this precipice, that it is with the Black Lives Matter movement that we learn from history and from the mistakes that have been made. And it's very important because what I've seen happen here in the United States, in the years that I've been here now is very reminiscent. Element of it is very reminiscent of apartheid security bureaucracy if I could say that. From the police unions to the police forces and the way that they profile and handle black people is disgusting. So, I don't know if you know I was at a Black Lives Matter march.
[00:53:28] Jordan Harbinger: And yeah, you sent me a text telling me how you lost one of your — well, so you're at a Black Lives Matter march and what happened?
[00:53:35] Bradley Steyn: So I was going to take my daughter to a Black Lives Matter march. Which happened in 2020, right?
[00:53:44] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Well, did you have a mask on? That's the question, right? Because if not—
[00:53:49] Bradley Steyn: Yes, I did have a mask.
[00:53:50] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:53:51] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. So in 2020, I went to the Los Angeles Black Lives Matter march. I was going to take my daughter because I said to her, it's very important that we fight racism because we had just seen what happened to George Floyd and him getting the life squeezed out of him. So, we were making posters and then at the very last minute, something in my gut said, don't take your kid.
[00:54:16] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:54:16] Bradley Steyn: I ended up going to this Black Lives Matter much at Fairfax and third near The Grove in LA. I basically witnessed a guy called [Cedric Sampson, who's the organizer in LA getting the life beat out of him. He got beat up and it just agitated the whole crowd.
[00:54:40] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:54:40] Bradley Steyn: The LAPD just started beating up people and I was standing there. I was trying to reason with them saying, "Calm down. Just relax. This is excessive. You guys don't have to be so violent." They were literally beating the hell out of people. And I can send you a clip and show you. What ended up happening is that this black lady fell over and fell into this hedge in the Trader Joe's parking lot and they just started beating her up and climbing into her with batons. I couldn't stomach it anymore. So I went in and I picked her up and I lifted her over a hedge and some other people pulled her over the hedge and I turned around and then I got hit over the chest.
[00:55:25] So I went back into the crowd and then it calmed down a little bit and then I saw another chap walking by black guy again, and he was on his cellphone. He had a big straw hat and he was just walking by and they just started beating the hell out of him for no reason at all. I lean forward, I lunged forward and I ended up getting shot with a rubber bullet and I got shot in the genitalia and I ended up getting rushed to Cedar-Sinai and I ended up losing 45% of my left testicle.
[00:56:00] Jordan Harbinger: Geez. Good thing you already have your kids.
[00:56:02] Bradley Steyn: Exactly. Well, yeah, yeah, yeah.
[00:56:05] Jordan Harbinger: That's nasty.
[00:56:07] Bradley Steyn: Mmm.
[00:56:07] Jordan Harbinger: What good is half a testicle though? Why not just take the whole thing out?
[00:56:10] Bradley Steyn: Yeah. Well, they had to, you know, it had ruptured, the nerve endings were sticking out. So they had fused the nerve ending. And then suture my testicle. And then suture my scrotum.
[00:56:24] Jordan Harbinger: Good god.
[00:56:26] Bradley Steyn: So how about we leave it at that?
[00:56:28] Jordan Harbinger: Who's hungry? I'm hungry. want to get some lunch?
[00:56:29] Bradley Steyn: Yeah.
[00:56:30] Jordan Harbinger: Let's get some lunch.
[00:56:30] Bradley Steyn: Let's go get some Matzo ball.
[00:56:31] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:34] Now I've got some thoughts on this episode, but before we get into that, here's what you should check out next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:56:42] Tell me about the neighborhood where you grew up.
[00:56:44] Freeway Rick Ross: South Central, Los Angeles.
[00:56:45] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:46] Freeway Rick Ross: Where most people played a game of Grand Theft Auto.
[00:56:49] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:56:49] Freeway Rick Ross: So I'm sitting on the porch and I don't know what I'm going to do and my partner calls me and he's like, "Man, I got the new thing." And it was cocaine. Cocaine was really, really expensive then.
[00:56:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:59] Bradley Steyn: You know, a gram of cocaine back then was like $375.
[00:57:02] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. So it was dozens of times more expensive back then than it is now.
[00:57:06] Freeway Rick Ross: Like 300 times.
[00:57:08] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. And it's also the most expensive thing that you can fit in your hand that costs that much money. Probably, maybe a watch.
[00:57:13] Freeway Rick Ross: Yeah, absolutely. At that time, they say cocaine was more expensive than gold.
[00:57:17] Jordan Harbinger: How much money are we talking about here?
[00:57:19] Freeway Rick Ross: I probably was making about 55,000 off of a kilo.
[00:57:23] Jordan Harbinger: I think you made up around a billion dollars in the '80s in LA. That's what I heard on the documentary.
[00:57:29] Bradley Steyn: For two years, I made like 600 million dollars, not profit for me, but money that went through my hands. Before I started making a million every day, we made 500 every day. Before we're making 500, we made 400. Before we're making four, we made two. Before we're making two, we made a hundred.
[00:57:45] Jordan Harbinger: So you scaled up to a million dollars a day?
[00:57:47] Freeway Rick Ross: Yeah. I had days that I went through three million dollars in one day.
[00:57:51] Jordan Harbinger: How are you even counting that much money?
[00:57:53] Freeway Rick Ross: Oh, you have money counters.
[00:57:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:57:54] Freeway Rick Ross: And you have a team of girls that sit there and they count money all day. You know, you have a house and this house would have like a slot in the door and people would just come in and drop duffle bags through the door.
[00:58:06] So I wanted to know what was the difference between real business and the cocaine business.
[00:58:11] Jordan Harbinger: And what did you find?
[00:58:12] Freeway Rick Ross: There's none.
[00:58:14] Jordan Harbinger: For more of Freeway Rick Ross' story as one of the biggest drug dealers of all time, including his ties to the CIA, check out episode 121 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:58:25] All right. Like I told you crazy amount of stories here. We had to sit on this interview for something like, I think it's even been over a year just because of security concerns and all these other crazy things going on over in his neck of the woods. He had to build a fence around his house. He had to get an alarm system. He had to build different government connections and make sure that his network in South Africa was solidified once again because he has since moved back down there. Just a really, I would say, kind of a gutsy move moving back to the country after coming out with this kind of stuff.
[00:58:54] I mean, it's just a massive, massive deal that the president of South Africa was actually a double agent for the apartheid regime. First of all, that's massive. He's never said that anywhere else yet. So if you're in the media, you want more information on this, we can definitely make that happen. And I don't know if you all remember this, but there was a news story a few years ago about a man in Los Angeles getting shot in the balls by LAPD with a pepper spray gun or something like that. He lost one of his testicles. Some of you all may have seen that on the news. That was Bradley Steyn. He was in the front of the protests. The LAPD shot him in the balls. So yeah, maybe you've heard of this guy before, for all the wrong reasons. And we call him lefty now. No, we don't do that, but I would if I had the guts to do that. But remember we did meet when he punched me in the face, and I'm not super keen on reliving that experience. But regardless of how many testicles the man has, he did spend his time with us on the show and we thank him for that.
[00:59:49] Links to all things Bradley Steyn will be in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com. Transcripts are in the show notes. Videos are up on YouTube. Advertisers, deals, discount codes that help support the show are all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. Please consider supporting who support this show. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on Twitter and Instagram. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn. I find less kooky people tend to use LinkedIn these days.
[01:00:14] I'm also teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships using the same system, software, and tiny habits that I use every single day. That's our Six-Minute Networking course. That course is free. It's over at jordanharbinger.com/course. I want to teach you how to dig the well before you get thirsty. Build those relationships before you need them, not spend a ton of time doing it, not do it in a gross way. Many of the guests on the show subscribe and contribute to that course. Come join us, you'll be in smart company.
[01:00:39] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Millie Ocampo, Ian Baird, Josh Ballard, and Gabriel Mizrahi. Remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know somebody who loves wild stories like this, who's interested in South Africa, definitely share this episode with him. The greatest compliment you can give us is to share the show with those you care about. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
[01:01:15] Jillian Jalali: Hi everyone. This is Jillian with Court Junkie. Court Junkie is a true crime podcast that covers court cases and criminal trials using audio clips and interviews with people close to the cases. Court Junkie is available on Apple Podcasts and podcastone.com.
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