The Battle for Mozambique: The Frelimo?Renamo Struggle, 1977?1992

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Overview

The sixteen-year-long war in Mozambique between the Frelimo government and Renamo rebels remains one of the most overlooked and misunderstood of the conflicts that raged across Africa during the height of the Cold War. While usually viewed as mere sideshow to more high-profile wars in Angola, Rhodesia and within apartheid South Africa itself, it nonetheless is noteworthy in its complexity, duration and destructiveness.

Before it was all over in 1992 at least one million ...

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Overview

The sixteen-year-long war in Mozambique between the Frelimo government and Renamo rebels remains one of the most overlooked and misunderstood of the conflicts that raged across Africa during the height of the Cold War. While usually viewed as mere sideshow to more high-profile wars in Angola, Rhodesia and within apartheid South Africa itself, it nonetheless is noteworthy in its complexity, duration and destructiveness.

Before it was all over in 1992 at least one million Mozambicans would be dead, millions more homeless and the country lying in ruins. Ultimately Frelimo would get its victory not on the battlefield but rather at the polling booth in 1994.

Based on more than a decade of meticulous research, a review of thousands of pages of military records and documents, and dozens of in-depth interviews with political leaders, diplomats, generals, and soldiers and sailors, this book tells the story of the war from the perspective of those who fought it and lived it. It follows Renamo's growth from its Rhodesian roots in 1977 as a weapon against Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwean nationalist guerrillas operating from Mozambique through South African patronage in the early 1980s to Renamo's evolution as a self-sufficient nationalist insurgency.

In tracing the ebb and flow of the conflict from the rugged mountains and Savannah forests of central Mozambique across the hot, humid Zambezi River valley and down to the very outskirts of the Mozambican capital in the far south, it examines the operational strategy of Frelimo and Renamo commanders in the field, the battles they fought and the lives of their troops. In doing so it highlights personal struggles, each side's successes and failures, and the missed opportunities to decisively turn the tide of war. Accordingly, this book provides the first real comprehensive military history of a war too long neglected and under appreciated in the chronicles of modern African history.

REVIEWS

What emerges from the pages of this erudite book is the definitive account of the Mozambican civil war … Stephen Emerson’s thoughtful, incisive and highly readable account of the Mozambican civil war is a must for students, academics and policy-makers who seek to understand Mozambique’s past and future.”

Insights on Africa

"It has been over 20 years since the civil war in Mozambique ended, and a comprehensive history of what was one of Africa’s deadliest and most destructive conflicts has been overdue.
Stephen Emerson was a defence analyst of southern Africa for the US government during the war years, and The BATTLE FOR MOZAMBIQUE reflects such an eye.... provides important new insights into how guerrilla proxies develop their own agency. It also shows how relatively small amounts of covert support can be decisive in stoking up a proxy war."
Journal of International Affairs Review

particularly good on Renamo and on Zimbabwean military involvement ..."
Mozambique Report (Joseph Hanlon)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781909384927
  • Publisher: Helion & Company, Limited
  • Publication date: 3/19/2014
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 660,593
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.80 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2014

    The Battle for Mozambique is likely to remain the final word on

    The Battle for Mozambique is likely to remain the final word on the subject; indeed it is hard to see how more could be written, or anything better, about this oft-overlooked conflict. For anyone looking for rock-solid Cold War military history, or just a fascinating story about a war few know anything about, this is the book to choose. It is also a great antidote for the Cold War nostalgia that seems to crop up every once in a while among the chattering classes. Equally of interest to specialists and non-specialists alike, written by someone who is clearly an expert on the subject.

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