The Last Hot Battle of the Cold War : South Africa vs. Cuba in the Angolan Civil War
As the Soviet Union teetered on the edge of collapse during the late 1980s, and America prepared to claim its victory, a bloody war still raged in Southern Africa, where forces from both sides vied for control of Angola. The result was the largest battle on the dark continent since Al Alamein. The socialist government of Angola and its army, FAPLA, had only to wipe out a massive resistance group, UNITA, secretly supplied by the U.S, in order to claim full sovereignty over the country. A giant FAPLA offensive so threatened to succeed in overcoming UNITA that apartheid-era South Africa stepped in to protect its own interests. The white army crossing the border prompted the Angolan government to call on their own foreign reinforcements-the army of Communist Cuba. Thus began the epic battle of Cuito Cuanavale, largely unknown in the U.S., but which raged for three months in the entirely odd match-up of South African Boers vs. Castro's armed forces, which for the first time in the Cold War proved what it could achieve. The South Africans were no slouches at warfare themselves, but had suffered under a boycott of weapons since 1977. The Cubans and Angolan troops had the latest Soviet weapons, easily delivered. But UNITA had its secret U.S. supply line and the South Africans knew how to fight. Meantime the Cubans overcame their logistic difficulties with an impressive airlift of troops over the Atlantic, while the Boers simply needed to drive next door.
- Hardback | 304 pages
- 152 x 229 x 27.94mm | 566.99g
- 01 Dec 2013
- Casemate Publishers
- United States
- 16pp. photos
'... a detailed examination of the battle of Cuito Cuanavale that will assist military historians concerned to understand the value of specific armaments in determining the outcomes of proxy wars in the Cold War era.' -- Ian David Stewart, Michigan War Studies Review * Michigan War Studies Review *
About Peter Polack
Peter Polack was born in Jamaica in 1958 where he attended various schools including Jamaica College until 1972 when he went to Denstone College boarding school in England. He is a proud graduate of the University of the West Indies and Norman Manley Law School. Whilst at UWI he was co-founder of the Amnesty International campus group and a member of the Union of Democratic Students. A lawyer in the Cayman Islands since 1983, he resides there with his wife and two daughters. He was a former rapporteur of the International Bar Association, Co-Founder and first Treasurer Caymanian Bar Association. His only hobby but not a current interest is combat pistol shooting. In July 2005 he organized a Cuba relief shipment after Hurricane Dennis from generous donors of the Cayman Islands. He is a contributing editor for Encyclopaedia of Warfare to be published by Amber Books.His research led to first international release of a list of Cuban casualties of the Angola War published in the Miami Herald 20 February 2010.Inspired by the book he is to exhibit his first work as an artist entitled The Confinement Assemblage at the Cayman Islands National Gallery in May 2013.