Covert collusion? American and South African relations during the Angolan civil war, 1974-1976

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    Abstract

    The traditional focus regarding the Angolan Civil War, 1974 – 1976, has been on the nature of Soviet and Cuban involvement, the American response to communist activities, and South Africa’s invasion. A point often mentioned, but rarely elaborated upon in the literature, is the degree to which the USA encouraged South Africa to intervene in the Angolan conflict. This paper investigates the extent and nature of American collusion with South Africa in the civil war, and the degree of complicity of senior American officials. The paper argues that on balance, the evidence suggests that senior elements of the United States executive branch, covertly and informally, colluded with South Africa. South African politicians overestimated the depth and extent of American support for its intervention, and when the USA ceased its assistance, they felt betrayed by Kissinger.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)28-47
    Number of pages20
    JournalAfrican Historical Review
    Volume43
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

    Keywords

    • South Africa
    • Angolan Civil War
    • USA
    • CIA
    • Covert Collusion
    • Cold War
    • Kissinger

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