Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, 1976-1991

Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, 1976-1991

by Piero Gleijeses


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During the final fifteen years of the Cold War, southern Africa underwent a period of upheaval, with dramatic twists and turns in relations between the superpowers. Americans, Cubans, Soviets, and Africans fought over the future of Angola, where tens of thousands of Cuban soldiers were stationed, and over the decolonization of Namibia, Africa's last colony. Beyond lay the great prize: South Africa. Piero Gleijeses uses archival sources, particularly from the United States, South Africa, and the closed Cuban archives, to provide an unprecedented international history of this important theater of the late Cold War.
These sources all point to one conclusion: by humiliating the United States and defying the Soviet Union, Fidel Castro changed the course of history in southern Africa. It was Cuba's victory in Angola in 1988 that forced Pretoria to set Namibia free and helped break the back of apartheid South Africa. In the words of Nelson Mandela, the Cubans "destroyed the myth of the invincibility of the white oppressor . . . [and] inspired the fighting masses of South Africa."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781469628325
Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date: 02/01/2016
Series: The New Cold War History
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 672
Sales rank: 404,730
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.90(d)

About the Author

Piero Gleijeses is professor of American foreign policy at the School of Advanced International Studies at the Johns Hopkins University. He is author of Conflicting Missions: Havana, Washington, and Africa, 1959-1976, among other books.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Abbreviations Used in Text xiii

Prologue 9

1 The Cuban Drumbeat 17

2 Neto, Castro, and Carter: A New Beginning? 37

3 The Cubans in Angola 65

4 Strained Relations: Cuba and Angola 98

5 The Fronts Harden: The United States and Cuba, 1978-1980 119

6 Carter and Southern Africa: A Balance Sheet 139

7 Enter Reagan 166

8 The Wonders of Linkage 197

9 Angolan Travails 213

10 The Failure of Lusaka 242

11 The United States, South Africa, and Savimbi 279

12 The View from Cuba, 1984-1986 314

13 Havana and Moscow: Conflicting Strategies 343

14 Negotiations in the Offing? 379

15 Cuito Cuanavale 393

16 Maniobra XXXI Aniversario 421

17 Chester Crocker Meets Jorge Risquet: Talks about Talks 431

18 The Negotiations 450

19 The New York Agreements 482

20 Visions of Freedom 503

Notes 527

Bibliography 613

Index 641

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

A deeply satisfying work. Gleijeses organizes a dazzling array of data to explain why events unfolded as they did. No one has done this better. No one has even come close.—Lars G. Schoultz, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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