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Battle for Angola

The End of the Cold War in Africa c1975-89

Author : Al J Venter

Battle for Angola : The End of the Cold War in Africa c1975-89


General - Pages : 562 | Images : approx. 200 b/w photos, two 16pp colour sections

Paperback - Date of Publication : January 2021 | Size : 245mm X 170mm | ISBN : 9781914059025 | Helion Book Code : HEL1296

Hardback - Date of Publication : February 2017 | Size : 245mm x 170mm | ISBN : 9781911096412 | Helion Book Code : HEL0705

Following the publication of Al Venter’s successful Portugal’s Guerrilla Wars in Africa - shortlisted by the New York Military Affairs Symposium’s 'Arthur Goodzeit Book Award for 2013' - his Battle for Angola, he delves still further into the troubled history of this former Portuguese African colony. For the sake of continuity, the author has included several chapters on that colonial struggle in this work, with the main thrust on events before and after - including the civil war that followed Lisbon’s over-hasty departure back to the metrópole, as well as the role of South African mercenaries in defeating the rebel leader Dr Jonas Savimbi (considered by some as the most accomplished guerrilla leader to emerge in Africa in the past century). He is helped by several notable authorities, including the French historian Dr René Pélissier and the American academic and former naval aviator Dr John (Jack) Cann. With their assistance, he covers several ancillary uprisings and invasions, including the Herero revolt of the early 20th century; the equally-troubled Ovambo insurrection, as well as the invasion of Angola by the Imperial German Army in the First World War. An important section deals with the South African Border War, because without Angola, that would never have happened - nor 'Operation Savannah' and the invasion of Angola from the south. Finally, the role of the Cuban Revolutionary Army receives the attention it deserves.


“War, famine, terrorism etc., have ravaged most of the countries of central and southern Africa and this book, about the 1970s-1980s, describes a conflict that brings a feeling of dismay and sadness as the people of Angola fall into the misery and self-destruction of a civil war.” Books Monthly


“...breaks down the complex political and military situations in to language which the Common Man on the Clapham Omnibus can understand .Without a doubt this will be the leading reference on the proxy cold wars fought in Africa and will be a best seller. 5 stars.” Army Rumour Service


"The style is often descriptive, emotive and personal, rather than academic or deeply analytical, and certainly leaves you in no doubt as to the impact of the war on those who fought. [...] Recommended for those interested in post-war African conflicts." Miniature Wargames


“Battle for Angola: The end of the Cold War in Africa c1975-1989 is an insightful read, especially for someone looking for a broad view of the Angolan theatre of war for the period mentioned. The text is elucidated with a number of excellent photographs, spanning the whole period reported on. The broad glossary makes it easier for those not familiar with the necessary military or political terms while the comprehensive index makes it useful for those interested in further research on the topic covered.” Insight on Africa


“Venter’s work encompasses the complex nature of the war spanning the strategic Cold War period, the regional conflicts between the various tribal and national groups and the tactical nature of the traditional and asymmetric elements of the war. His analysis is deep and thoughtful and based upon firsthand and expert knowledge. His discussion of the various paramilitary and Special Forces and some of their more notable successes and failures further enhances the scope of the work. This is a highly readable account of the struggle for South West Africa and the impact that it had both internationally and regionally. Helion has published a superb book replete with high quality photographs; the bibliography is extensive. There are many lessons to be learned from the engagements in Africa and without a doubt Venter and his work is an outstanding source.” Canadian Army Journal

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