• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To what extent were the civil wars that followed independence in Angola and Mozambique the result of internal divisions or external interventions?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent were the civil wars that followed independence in Angola and Mozambique the result of internal divisions or external interventions? You should focus your answer on one particular territory but relate this to developments in the other. The wars that followed the independence of both Angola and Mozambique were resultant of internal divisions, but more importantly, they were greatly catalysed by the financial, political, and physical intervention of other nations. It is also generally agreed that the intervention of these countries exacerbated the already volatile situations in Angola and Mozambique, to the extent that had they not intervened as they did, then the resulting economic collapse and massive social unrest that is still prevalent today would not have been so considerable. In this essay, I intend to focus primarily on the situation in Angola, and the range of factors that were instrumental in bringing about such a lengthy and destructive period of violence. The actual 'civil war' in Angola took place in 1975 and 1976, yet the violence still continues to this day. Angola is a country with a vast ethnic wealth. At the latest count there are some 36 or so individual ethnic groups, to which an individual language is assigned, including, of course, the Portuguese language which has been accepted across the nation as the official language. Each of the native languages belongs to a certain area of the country, and it is the distribution of these languages and their cultures that has led to some social tension. ...read more.

Middle

was the most successful of the three. Being based in Luanda it had immediate control of the capital from the outset of independence, and this was to its advantage as its power base there grew quickly and steadily, simultaneously providing easy access to immense wealth from the oil fields, and close links to the sea, from where aid from Cuba and the Soviet Union arrived. The movements' leadership consisted of a group of mesti´┐Żos, and this was representative of its desires for a free, multi-racial Angola. The second movement, UNITA (Uniao Nacional para a Independ´┐Żncia Total de Angola) took perhaps the most interesting course in the events following Angola's independence. Founded in 1966, it was to spearhead the incredible political career of Jonas Savimbi. Despite UNITA's low level of military might, Savimbi's role was vital in securing an underground following of Ovimbundu that was to become a small yet very sharp thorn in the side of the MPLA. He was a very charismatic and ambitious leader and played an essential role in the events that followed. It is suffice to say that Savimbi's very existence was a cause for internal division in the country, from which the subsequent civil war was resultant. It was his hegemony over UNITA, and reluctance to accept a secondary role in the Angolan political history that obstructed the passage to peace. "... The...factional fighting that ensued in 1975 was so chaotic and opportunistic that its exact sequence may remain forever arguable..."2 Savimbi's desire for absolute power led to the 'disappearance' of his internal rivals, ...read more.

Conclusion

Coupled with the changes that were taking place right up until the war, another influencing internal factor was the legacy left by the Portuguese settlers when they fled in 1975. The country was in a state of political turbulence, with many of the policies leading to disappointment when their many pledges remained unfulfilled. The influence of external parties in promoting regional conflict was, however, infinitely more consequential. Vast quantities of aid were received by all of the principal fighting forces, and had this not been the case then Angola's history would not have been so volatile. When comparing the outcomes of post-independence in Angola and Mozambique, we can see that the civil war came to an end in Mozambique and not in Angola essentially due to one major component: money. It was the great wealth that Angola received from its natural resources and from foreign aid that prolonged the conflict there. Mozambique, on the other hand, had limited funding, and a continuation of the costly armed struggle was therefore not a possibility. It is also noteworthy that the internal divisions and personal rivalries in Mozambique were no way as deep-rooted as in Angola. "...In sum, both the Angolans and the Mozambicans did have their own internal reasons for disagreement...However, it is widely agreed that the wars attained their deadly height as a result of external forces that raised destruction to levels far beyond the capacity of the societies to resist. It was above all, the intertwined pacing of apartheid's death struggle and the end-game of the Cold War that determined their rhythm and intensity... ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. To what extent did the foreign intervention influence the outcome of the Spanish Civil ...

    This encouraged insubordination between officers. The Nationalist militias on the other hand, were brought under centralized control in December 1936 by Franco, who also imposed on all of his forces; rigorous military discipline. Carr maintains that "Its notable achievements notwithstanding, the Popular Army, as a military machine that could be

  2. Free essay

    Do you consider military intervention in Africa as successful? Focus on the policies in ...

    successful in achieving its mandate, both as a peacekeeping force and as an agent of political change, (Macqueen, 2002, p258 and Doyle & Otunnu, 1998, p221). Twelve years after the UN's peace implementation efforts, Namibia is still largely at peace.

  1. To what extent was the Civil War the main factor in the Bolshevik

    Whites Civil War was over before the official end of the War, as Soviet historiography dates the end in 1922, thus leading me to the assumption that the Reds versus Whites Civil War was somewhat significant as it was a victory for the Bolsheviks, however this was not the only

  2. Site visit to Hong Kongs Museum of Coastal Defense

    The biggest threat this bunker faced, however, was tropical disease; not once was it used to protect the entrance to the harbor. In one year alone, 40 percent of the garrison died due to a severe fever epidemic. Soldiers also died of malaria, not to mention the plague.

  1. In two world wars, the richer countries mobilized their economiesmore successfully than others. How ...

    Under the weight of these conditions, governments intervened directly in the conduct of industry, transportation, and agriculture. For the first time, industry came to recognize the meaning of the word control-controls over raw materials, foodstuffs, prices, profits and credit. All these controls by the government were essential to divert resources

  2. Many peoples have contributed to the development of the United States of America, a ...

    An aggressive Nikita Khrushchev, Soviet premier, trumpeted that communism would bury capitalism and boasted of Moscow's powerful intercontinental missiles while encouraging so-called wars of liberation in Southeast Asia and elsewhere. THE UNITED STATES SINCE 1960: NEW CHALLENGES TO THEAMERICAN SYSTEM During the 1960s and 1970s cold-war concerns gave way as attention focused on social and cultural rebellions at home.

  1. From rebellion through rivalries to reformation

    We demand equality of rights for the American people in its dealings with other nations, and the revocation of the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the World Bank, the North American Free Trade Agreement, the World Trade Organization, and the International Monetary Fund.

  2. The American Civil War was not caused by real and deep rooted divisions between ...

    This is significant because with this type of power available to them, the articles could be manipulated to fit the Southern extremist ideas and in this way control the South who at this point would trust what they were told from their politicians and newspaper, the situation was like a

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work