The War for Africa

Twelve Months that Transformed a Continent

Fred Bridgland

The story of the Cuban-South African war in Angola in 1987-88 through the eyes of the South Africans who fought in it.
Date Published :
March 2017
Publisher :
Casemate
Language:
English
Illustration :
40 images
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Hardback
ISBN : 9781612004921
Pages : 360
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
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+
In stock
$32.95

Overview
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The story of the Cuban-South African war in Angola in 1987–88 through the eyes of the South Africans who fought in it.

The Angolan Civil War lasted over a quarter of a century, from 1975 to 2002. Beginning as a power struggle between two former liberation movements, the MPLA and UNITA, it became a Cold War struggle with involvement from the Soviet Union, Cuba, South Africa and the USA.

This book examines the height of the Cuban-South African fighting in Angola in 1987–88, when 3,000 South African soldiers and about 8,000 UNITA guerrilla fighters fought in alliance against the Cubans and the armed forces of the Marxist MPLA government, a force of over 50,000 men. Bridgland pieced together the course of the war, fought in one of the world’s most remote and wild terrains, by interviewing the South Africans who fought it, and many of their accounts are woven into the narrative.

This classic account of a Cold War struggle and its momentous consequences for the participants and across the continent, is released in a new edition with a new preface and epilogue.

About The Author
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Fred Bridgland, a graduate of St Andrew’s University, is a British veteran foreign correspondent and author. He has reported on wars in India, Pakistan, the Middle East and Africa. In 1975 his discovery of South Africa’s secret US-engineered invasion of Angola uncovered the CIA’s involvement in one of Africa’s longest wars, and was a world scoop. He has written a number of books, including Jonas Savimbi: A Key to Africa, and is currently writing a biography of Winnie Mandela.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
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Preface
Prologue

PART 1: GENERAL SHAGANOVITCH’S OFFENSIVE
The Prelude
The South Africans move in
Sniffing out the enemy
Fapla’s advance continues

PART 2: THE DEFENCE
South Africa steps things up
South Africa’s first disaster
Enter the Falcon
The first land battle
The Second ‘Rumble on the Lomba’

PART 3: THE STING
Waiting and watching
Recce hardships
The Air Force gears up
War in the air
Laying the trap
Fancy tricks and dirty tricks
The Cavalry – 61 Mech – rides to the rescue
Softening up 47 Brigade
The trap closes
The destruction of 47 Brigade
Booty from the battlefield
Fapla’s offensive ends

PART 4: THE STALEMATE
Forward beyond the Lomba
The reinforcements arrive

PART 5: THE COUNTER-OFFENSIVE
The attack on 16 Brigade
‘Destroy the G-5S!’
Fapla’s Great Escape: The Chambinga Gallop

PART 6: THE SIDESHOW
Begging for permission to destroy the enemy

PART 7: INTO 1988. OPERATION HOOPER – THE COUNTER-OFFENSIVE CONTINUED
The attack on 21 Brigade: 13 January 1988
Throwing something at the Cuito River Bridge
The attack on 59 Brigade: 14 February 1988
The attack on Highpoint 1251

PART 8: THE SIDESHOW (CONTINUED)
The attack on Menongue

PART 9: THE THREE BATTLES FOR THE TUMPO TRIANGLE
Mike Muller leads the First Tumpo Attack: 25 February 1988
Mike Muller leads the Second Tumpo Attack: 29 February 1988
Jaw-jaw begins to supplant war-war
Gerhard Louw leads the Third Tumpo Attack: 23 March 1988

PART 10: THE DENOUEMENT
More jaw-jaw
Fidel’s last hurrah!

Epilogue
Postscript: UNITA
Timeline
Glossary
Select Bibliography

REVIEWS
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“…a gripping text that highlights just how much political and social considerations dictate the outcome of war… A highly detailed work of military history, The War for Africa can tell us a lot about the nature of counter-insurgency warfare and how small states can become contested battlegrounds between superpowers.”

- New York Journal of Books

“...a very impressive contribution, which will have its place across the world in studies of this theatre."

- Paul Trewhela, South African Journalist and Commentator

“This book presents the story of the Cuban-South African war in Angola in 1987-1988. It uses the accounts of the South African veterans to produce a rich and gripping narrative.”

- Military Heritage, November 2017

“Re-issued with a revised preface and interesting epilogue, this book has to be in the library of anyone who is interested in the minutiae of the war in Angola and the impact of the Cold War in Africa.”

- Miniature Wargames

“As an operational military history, The War for Africa has merit, especially for its granular descriptions of tactics and the constraints one side faced.”

- Michigan War Studies Review

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