Despite a dearth of primary source materials from the Cuban and Angolan governments, Polack has crafted a fluent and captivating narrative of a pivotal battle that will advance the sparse existing scholarship on the events that took place between late and early Polack does not aim to provide a comprehensive study of the geopolitical significance of southern Africa in the Cold War.
Africa was ripe for the picking as it emerged from more than a century of colonial exploitation and oppression.
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The book's micro-historical approach concentrates attention on the effects of a singular battle upon the various involved parties. Polack reveals the challenges that confronted the Cubans in these early days of Angola's splintered fight for independence; challenges very like those the United States had encountered in the countryside of South Vietnam in the previous decade. Drawing on the experience of a Cuban veteran of Operation Carlotta, Polack writes:.
Polack sees the Cuban interference in southern Africa as the product of Fidel Castro's own ambitions and not any larger directive from Moscow.
The Cuban Intervention in Angola, 1965-1991 : From Che Guevara to Cuito Cuanavale
Angola represented an ideal opportunity for Castro to promote his doctrine of the "internationalist proletariat. Yet, the Cubans learned several important lessons they would later apply in the battle of Cuito Cuanavale. Unfortunately, many of book's chapters are congested with ledgers of casualties, profiles of key personalities on all sides, and too detailed descriptions of the sundry armaments used by South Africans, Cubans, and Angolans. In general, however, Polack glosses over South Africa's role in Angola's struggle. Although staunchly anti-communist, Pieter Botha's government had become anathema as the world mobilized against its Apartheid policies.
South Africa thus joined the fray in Angola without benefit of Western arms and economic aid; it acted as much to secure its own frontiers as to further any specific ideological goal. The actions South Africa took in Angola were certainly part of the larger Cold War struggles of the time, but they were motivated chiefly by a desire to preserve its own territorial integrity. Drawing on interviews with leading protagonists, first-hand accounts and archive material from Cuba, Angola and South Africa, this new book dispels the myths of the Cuban intervention, revealing that Havana's decision to intervene was not so much an heroic gesture of solidarity, but rather a last-ditch gamble to avert disaster.
By examining Cuba's role in the Angolan War in a global context, this book demonstrates how the interaction between the many players in Angola shaped and affected Cuba's intervention as it headed towards its controversial conclusion. Here at Walmart. Your email address will never be sold or distributed to a third party for any reason.
Castro decides to send troops to Angola to fight South Africa | South African History Online
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Drawing on interviews with leading protagonists, first-hand accounts and archive material from Cuba, Angola and South Africa, this new book dispels the myths of the Cuban intervention, revealing that Havana's decision to intervene was not so much an heroic gesture of solidarity, but rather a last-ditch gamble to avert disaster.
By examining Cuba's role in the Angolan War in a global context, this book demonstrates how the interaction between the many players in Angola shaped and affected Cuba's intervention as it headed towards its controversial conclusion.
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