By this time the regime in Portugal had been through two major political upheavals: from monarchy to republic in 1910 and then to a military dictatorship after a coup in 1926. Unable to broker a new compromise, in November 1975 Portugal's last African High Commissioner Rosa Coutinho hauled down his nation's flag and departed Angola. Between 1968 and 1972, the Portuguese forces increased their offensive posture, in the form of raids into PAIGC-controlled territory. Portugal had been the first European power to establish a colony in Africa when it captured Ceuta in 1415 and now it was one of the last to leave. The museum is run by the League of Combatants and tells the story of Portuguese military personnel serving in the Overseas War (known in Portuguese as the Guerra do Ultramar and sometimes, in English, as the Portuguese Colonial War) fought from 1961 to 1975 in Angola, Guinea-Bissau and Mozambique. Until April 1970, the military activity of FRELIMO increased steadily, mainly due to the strategic work of Samora Machel in the region of Cabo Delgado. They were employed especially in Guinea, but also in the Congo River (and other smaller rivers) in Angola and in the Zambezi (and other rivers) in Mozambique. The insurgents called for local Bantu farmworkers and villagers to join them, unleashing an orgy of violence and destruction. Political, legislative, administrative, commercial and other institutional relations between the colonies and Portugal-based individuals and organizations were numerous, though migration to, from, and between Portugal and its overseas departments was limited in size, due principally to the long distance and low annual income of the average Portuguese as well that of the indigenous overseas populations. The OAU established a committee based in Dar es Salaam, with representatives from Ethiopia, Algeria, Uganda, Egypt, Tanzania, Zaire, Guinea, Senegal, Nigeria, to support African liberation movements. The Alouette III was the most widely used helicopter, although the Puma was also used with great success. White Faces In A Black Crowd: Will They Stay? In the 1960s and early 1970s, to counter the increasing insurgency of FRELIMO forces and show to the Portug… During its 5th Congress, in 1957, the illegal Portuguese Communist Party (Partido Comunista Português – PCP) was the first political organization to demand the immediate and total independence of the colonies. In 1975, the year of maximum revolutionary turmoil, Portugal's per capita GDP declined to 52 percent of the EC-12 average. The BR, on its side, began armed actions on 7 November 1971, with the sabotage of the NATO base at Pinhal de Armeiro, the last action being carried out 9 April 1974, against the Niassa ship which was preparing to leave Lisboa with troops to be deployed in Portuguese Guinea. Anti-aircraft (AA) weapons were also employed, especially by the PAIGC and the FRELIMO. [40] The Portuguese military was overstretched and there was no political solution or end in sight. [59], On March 15, 1961, the UPA led by Holden Roberto launched an incursion into the Bakongo region of northern Angola with 4,000–5,000 insurgents. In 1961 the Portuguese had 79,000 in arms – 58,000 in the Army, 8,500 in the Navy and 12,500 in the Air force (Cann, 1997). The meanings that the combatants attributed to their war experiences then and now are the book’s analytical focus. These movements alleged that Portuguese policies and development plans were primarily designed by the ruling authorities for the benefit of the territories' ethnic Portuguese population at the expense of local tribal control, the development of native communities, and the majority of the indigenous population, who suffered both state-sponsored discrimination and enormous social pressure to comply with government policies largely imposed from Lisbon. Several armored cars were used, including the Panhard AML, Panhard EBR, Fox and (in the 1970s) the Chaimite. [87] To counter the mine threat, Portuguese engineers commenced the herculean task of tarring the rural road network. Individual Portuguese counterinsurgency commanders such as Second Lieutenant Fernando Robles of the 6ª Companhia de Caçadores Especiais became well known throughout the country for their ruthlessness in hunting down insurgents. [31], For the Portuguese ruling regime, the overseas empire was a matter of national interest, to be preserved at all costs. [67] Demobilized by the departing Portuguese military authorities after the independence of Portuguese Guinea had been agreed, a total of 7,447 black Guinea-Bissauan African soldiers who had served in Portuguese native commando forces and militia were summarily executed by the PAIGC after the independence of the new African country.[67][68][69]. Ottoman Empire (1542–43) Victory. At this time Portuguese forces also adopted unorthodox means of countering the insurgents, including attacks on the political structure of the nationalist movement. Throughout the period Portugal faced increasing dissent, arms embargoes and other punitive sanctions imposed by the international community. [65] The branch stores of the Companhia União Fabril (CUF), Mario Lima Whanon, and Manuel Pinto Brandão companies were seized and inventoried by the PAIGC in the areas they controlled, while the use of Portuguese currency in the areas under guerrilla control was banned. [52] Nevertheless, the costs of continuing the wars in Africa imposed a heavy burden on Portugal's resources; by the 1970s, the country was spending 40 per cent of its annual budget on the war effort. The official feeling of the Portuguese state, despite all this, was the same: Portugal had inalienable and legitimate rights over the colonies and this was what was transmitted through the media and through the state propaganda. A common tactic was to plant large anti-vehicle mines in a roadway bordered by obvious cover, such as an irrigation ditch, then seed the ditch with anti-personnel mines. Portugal e os Estados Unidos no início da década de 1960 – At the 22nd Meeting of History teachers of the Centro (region), Caldas da Rainha, April 2004, Angola discutida na Assembleia Geral das Nações Unidas. Its basic principles were co-operation between African nations and solidarity between African peoples. At the forefront of this work are the lived experiences of a wide range of Portuguese veterans, framed by … If the insurgents planned to confront the Portuguese openly, one or two heavy machine guns would be sited to sweep the ditch and other likely areas of cover. [37], While sub-saharan African soldiers constituted a mere 18% of the total number of troops fighting in Portugal's African territories in 1961, this percentage would rise dramatically over the next thirteen years, with black soldiers constituting over 50% of all government forces fighting in Africa by April 1974. During the latter part of the 1960s, military tactical reforms instituted by Gen. Spínola began to improve Portuguese counterinsurgency operations in Guinea. The Portuguese government officially abolished the slave trade in 1836, and from 1885 to 1930 Portugal suppressed local resistance and consolidated its colonial control over the country. In Guinea, the success of PAIGC guerrilla operations put Portuguese armed forces on the defensive, forcing them to limit their response to defending territories and cities already held. 97, No. This strategy culminated in the assassination of Amílcar Cabral in January 1973. The Portuguese Way of War 1961–1974 by John P. Cann – A Guerra de África 1961–1974 by José Freire Antunes – Author of Review: Douglas L. Wheeler. Among them were Rui Luís Gomes and Arlindo Vicente, the first would not be allowed to participate in the election and the second would support Delgado in 1958. The Portuguese Air Force responded to the rebellion by bombing twenty villages in the area, allegedly using napalm in an attack that resulted in some 400 indigenous Angolan deaths. [13] Angola and Mozambique established state-planned economies after independence,[14] and struggled with inefficient judicial systems and bureaucracies,[14] corruption,[14][15][16] and poverty and unemployment. Native African troops, although widely deployed were initially employed in subordinate roles as enlisted troops or noncommissioned officers. Photos of Africans killed by the UPA, which included photos of decapitated civilians, men, women and children of both white and black ethnicity, would later be displayed in the UN by Portuguese diplomats. Some, like the U.S.-backed UPA[30] wanted national self-determination, while others wanted a new form of government based on Marxist principles. This oral history of ex-combatants of the Portuguese colonial war places the reader face-to-face with the men who were conscripted to fight the last and bloodiest of the West’s colonial wars in Africa, namely in Angola, Mozambique and Guinea-Bissau (then Portuguese Guinea), between 1961 and 1974. [34] Salazar himself was fond of restating the old Portuguese policy maxim that any indigenous resident of Portugal's African territories was in theory eligible to become a member of Portuguese government, even its President. Like many regional African conflicts during the late twentieth century, the Mozambican Civil War possessed local dynamics but was also exacerbated greatly by the polarizing effects of Cold War politics. Many felt they had received too little opportunity or resources to upgrade their skills and improve their economic and social situation to a degree comparable to that of the Europeans. [49], By early 1974, guerrilla operations in Angola and Mozambique had been reduced to sporadic ambush operations against the Portuguese in the rural countryside areas, far from the main centers of population. As far back as 1919, a Portuguese delegate to the International Labour Conference in Geneva declared: "The assimilation of the so-called inferior races, by cross-breeding, by means of the Christian religion, by the mixing of the most widely divergent elements; freedom of access to the highest offices of state, even in Europe – these are the principles which have always guided Portuguese colonisation in Asia, in Africa, in the Pacific, and previously in America. Nevertheless, most accepted the inevitable, and while an abortive right-wing settler revolt broke out in Mozambique, it quickly died out as Portuguese coup leaders made it clear that the decision to grant independence was irrevocable.[92]. Thus, initial military operations were conducted using World War II radios, the old m/937 7.92mm Mauser rifle, the Portuguese m/948 9mm FBP submachine gun, and the equally elderly German m/938 7.92mm (MG 13) Dreyse and Italian 8×59mm RB m/938 (Breda M37) machine guns. Therefore, it had to accede to views that didn't reflect its true anticolonial position. By this time, the size of the guerrilla movement had substantially increased; this, along with the low numbers of Portuguese troops and colonists, allowed a steady increase in FRELIMO's strength. Lloyd-Jones, Stewart, and Costa Pinto, António, PAIGC, Jornal Nô Pintcha, 29 November 1980: In a statement in the party newspaper. Portugal's growing isolation following Hastings's claims has often been cited as a factor that helped to bring about the "carnation revolution" coup in Lisbon which deposed the Caetano regime in 1974, ending the Portuguese African counter-insurgency campaigns and triggering the rapid collapse of the Portuguese Empire.[85]. By the end of the Portuguese colonial war in 1974, black African participation had become crucial due to declining numbers of recruits available from Portugal itself.[41]. By 2002, however, the end of the Angolan Civil War, combined with exploitation of the country's highly valuable natural resources, resulted in that country becoming economically successful for the first time in decades. General Francisco da Costa Gomes, perhaps the most successful counterinsurgency commander, sought good relations with local civilians and employed African units within the framework of an organized counter-insurgency plan. Detonation of the vehicle mine would cause Portuguese troops to deploy and seek cover in the ditch, where the anti-personnel mines would cause further casualties. The Portuguese arrived in present-day Angola in 1483. The construction of the Cahora Bassa Dam tied up nearly 50 percent of the Portuguese troops in Mozambique, and brought the FRELIMO to the Tete Province, closer to some cities and more populated areas in the south. For example, during the 1961 Ferreira Incident, a UPA patrol captured 21 MPLA insurgents as prisoners, then summarily executed them on 9 October, sparking open confrontation between the two insurgent groups. The major actions were the attack on the Tancos air base that destroyed several helicopters on March 8, 1971, and the attack on the NATO headquarters at Oeiras in October of the same year. The national service period was increased to four years in 1967, and virtually all conscripts faced a mandatory two-year tour of service in Africa. Many ethnic Portuguese of the African overseas territories were also increasingly willing to accept independence if their economic status could be preserved. [7] By 1973, the war had become increasingly unpopular due to its length and financial costs, the worsening of diplomatic relations with other United Nations members, and the role it had always played as a factor of perpetuation of the entrenched Estado Novo regime and the non-democratic status quo. Instead, most infantryman used their rifles to fire individual shots. Several opposition figures outside the PCP also had anticolonial opinions, such as the candidates to the fraudulent presidential elections, like Norton de Matos (in 1949), Quintão Meireles (in 1951) and Humberto Delgado (in 1958). [58] Portuguese authorities responded with a sweeping counterinsurgency response in which over 5,000 Angolans were arrested, and a Portuguese mob raided the musseques (shanty towns) of Luanda, killing several dozen Angolans in the process. Later in the war, most guerrillas would use roughly the same infantry rifles of Soviet origin: the Mosin–Nagant bolt-action rifle, the SKS carbine, and most importantly the AK-47 series of 7.62×39mm automatic rifle, or Kalashnikov. The coalition government established by the Alvor Agreement soon fell apart as the various nationalist parties each attempted to seize power. The scale of this success can be seen in the fact that native Guineans in the 'liberated territories' ceased payment of debts to Portuguese landowners and the payment of taxes to the colonial administration. Equipped with standard or collapsible-stock m/961 rifles, grenades, and other gear, they used small boats or patrol craft to infiltrate guerrilla positions. This "NATO generation" ascended quickly to the highest political positions and military command without having to provide evidence of loyalty to the regime. The conflict started in Angola in 1961, at a time when colonialism was severely condemned internationally, and ceased in 1974. Portuguese leaders, including Salazar, attempted to stave off calls for independence by defending a policy of assimilation, multiracialism, and civilising mission, or Lusotropicalism, as a way of integrating Portuguese colonies, and their peoples, more closely with Portugal itself. [citation needed] The radicalization of the opposition movements started with the younger people who also felt victimized by the continuation of the war. However, they also used small arms of U.S. manufacture (such as the .45 M1 Thompson submachine gun), along with British, French, and German weapons came from neighboring countries sympathetic to the rebellion. By the end of the conflict in 1974, due to the Carnation Revolution (a military coup in Lisbon), the total in the Portuguese Armed Forceshad risen to 217,000. [79][81] Because of the mobile nature of counterinsurgency operations, heavy support weapons were less frequently used. After 1974, the deterioration in central planning effectiveness, economic development and growth, security, education and health system efficiency, was rampant. The expenses were divided into ordinary and extraordinary ones; the latter were the main factor in the huge increase in the military budget. While the human losses were relatively small, the war as whole had already entered its second decade. More than a million men, women and children were shipped from Angola across the Atlantic. Kingdom of Portugal (1542–43) Adal Sultanate. This became the major objective of the organization in its first years and soon OAU pressure led to the situation in the Portuguese colonies being brought up at the UN Security Council. The United States supported the Union of Peoples of Angola (UPA – União dos Povos de Angola), headed by Holden Roberto. 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