Angola: A Modern Military History, 1961-2002 by S. Weigert

By S. Weigert

This research is the 1st accomplished evaluation of battle in Angola to hide all 3 stages of the nation’s smooth historical past: the anti-colonial fight, the chilly conflict part, and the post-Cold battle period. it's also the 1st to hide, intimately, the ultimate section of conflict in Angola, 1998-2002, culminating in Jonas Savimbi’s loss of life and the signing of the Luena Accord. writer Stephen L.Weigert deals a arguable account of the method of guerrilla war hired via the Unita insurgency in addition to an evaluate of the position and importance of management in insurgency. He demanding situations the traditional view of Jonas Savimbi as a “student of Mao Zedong” and demonstrates that his technique of guerrilla battle represented a extra complicated and nuanced model of extra affects, significantly Colonel George Grivas of the Nineteen Fifties Cyprus insurgency. additionally, this account additionally urges the reader to contemplate Savimbi’s “charisma” as a personality trait which blinded and distracted many from a extra sober review of his political tendencies (reformer or innovative) and his talents as an army commander.

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Extra info for Angola: A Modern Military History, 1961-2002

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14 The country’s rail system had 3,670 kilometers of track dedicated primarily to three major rail lines running east from Luanda, Benguela, and Mocamedes (later Namibe). 15 Five years after they launched their campaigns, FNLA and Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) guerrillas had failed to fully exploit the opportunities that Angola’s terrain offered. Insurgent activity had a direct impact on only some 20 percent of Angola’s national territory by 1965. 16 MPLA insurgents’ hit and run raids barely reached several kilometers inside Cabinda.

On December 4, 1966, Savimbi led some sixty insurgents in an attack on Cassamba, a small but well-defended logging town in eastern Angola. The guerrillas had not gathered accurate intelligence concerning the perimeter 36 Angola defenses and stormed a position whose several hundred occupants outnumbered and outgunned their attackers. Savimbi pressed the assault despite lastminute reservations by one of his Chinese-trained colleagues who cited Mao to support his argument that they disengage. UNITA withdrew after both sides had sustained limited casualties.

This modification in fighting techniques characterized the first months of the war of liberation . . It did not take long for the leaders of the Angolan rising to realize that they must find some other methods if they really wanted to free their country . . ”55 Fanon did not mention Algeria or provide specific examples of a “war of liberation” and he did not cite any particular theorist of guerrilla warfare whose “techniques” could have inspired UPA. International sympathy and subsequent Pan-African support from the newly established Organization of African Unity (OAU) did not suffice to turn the FNLA into a more effective guerrilla movement.

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