It was ruled by an authoritarian and conservative right-leaning dictatorship, known as the Estado Novo regime. Portugal joined NATO as a founding member in 1949, and was integrated within the various fledgling military commands of NATO.. In Angola, construction of a railway from Luanda to Malanje, in the fertile highlands, was started in 1885.. , After the Carnation Revolution military coup in Lisbon on 25 April 1974, the new revolutionary leaders of Portugal and the PAIGC signed an accord in Algiers, Algeria in which Portugal agreed to remove all troops by the end of October and to officially recognize the Republic of Guinea-Bissau government controlled by the PAIGC, on 26 August 1974 and after a series of diplomatic meetings. It was in this environment that the Armed Revolutionary Action [pt] (Acção Revolucionária Armada – ARA), the armed branch of the Portuguese Communist Party created in the late 1960s, and the Revolutionary Brigades [pt] (Brigadas Revolucionárias – BR), a left-wing organization, became an important force of resistance against the war, carrying out multiple acts of sabotage and bombing against military targets. It was standard procedure, up to that point, to send the oldest and most obsolete material to the colonies. Rebel forces also made extensive use of machine guns for ambush and positional defense. This situation caused, as would be verified later, a lack of coordination between the three general staffs (Army, Air Force and Navy). Support weapons included mortars, recoilless rifles, and in particular, Soviet-made rocket launchers, the RPG-2 and RPG-7. 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. Even amphibious mines were used such as the PDM, along with numerous home-made antipersonnel wood box mines and other nonmetallic explosive devices. In the 17 th and 18 th century, Angola became a major Portuguese slave-trading area. The PAIGC was well-trained, well-led, and equipped and received substantial support from safe havens in neighboring countries like Senegal and the Republic of Guinea (Guinea-Conakry). According to Mozambican historian João Paulo Borges Coelho, the Portuguese colonial army was largely segregated along terms of race and ethnicity until 1960.  At the beginning of the war, the elite airborne units (Caçadores Pára-quedistas) rarely used the m/961, having adopted the modern 7.62 mm NATO ArmaLite AR-10 (produced by the Netherlands-based arms manufacturer Artillerie Inrichtingen) in 1960. 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. The Portuguese Colonial War (Portuguese: Guerra Colonial Portuguesa), also known in Portugal as the Overseas War (Guerra do Ultramar) or in the former colonies as the War of Liberation (Guerra de Libertação), was fought between Portugal's military and the emerging nationalist movements in Portugal's African colonies between 1961 and 1974. 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. 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. General Spínola was invited to assume the office of President, but resigned a few months later after it became clear that his desire to set up a system of federalized home rule for the African territories was not shared by the rest of the MFA, who wanted an immediate end to the war (achievable only by granting independence to the provinces of Portuguese Africa).  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.  The violence of the uprising received worldwide press attention and engendered sympathy for the Portuguese, while adversely affecting the international reputation of Roberto and the UPA. 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. The Portuguese finally entered into direct relations with the Mwenemutapa in the 1560s. Most deployments were either on foot or in vehicles (Berliet and Unimog trucks). Withdrawal of the Adal-Ottoman armies from the Ethiopian Highlands after the death of Ahmed ibn Ibrahim al-Ghazi. However, paid forced labor, including labor contracts with forced relocation of people, continued in many regions of Portuguese Africa until it was finally abolished in 1961. 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. 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. 12 (1971): As late as 1971, Kaúlza argued that the Portuguese government should tailor the social and political status progress of black Africans in Angola and Mozambique to the growth of the white settler population, while concluding that "blacks are not highly intelligent, on the contrary, of all peoples of the world they are the least intelligent.". More than a million men, women and children were shipped from Angola across the Atlantic.  The Operation "Nó Górdio" (Gordian Knot Operation) - conducted in 1970 and commanded by Portuguese Brigadier General Kaúlza de Arriaga - a conventional-style operation to destroy the guerrilla bases in the north of Mozambique, was the major military operation of the Portuguese Colonial War. In 1976 they produced 80,000 tons of coffee. Typically, armored vehicles would be placed at the front, center, and tail of a motorized convoy. 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. 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. By 1974, the counterinsurgency efforts were successful in the Portuguese territories of Angola and Mozambique, but in Portuguese Guinea the local guerrillas were making progress. A Guerra De Africa (1961–1974) by José Freire Antunes, Temas e Debates. Portugal used radio propaganda in its colonies in the 1960s against local liberation movements. The reason for Arriaga's abrupt fate was an alleged incident with indigenous civilian populations, and the Portuguese government's suspicion that Arriaga was planning a military coup against Marcelo's administration in order to avoid the rise of leftist influences in Portugal and the loss of the African overseas provinces. In Mozambique special units were also used by the Portuguese Armed Forces: The Organization of African Unity (OAU) was founded May 1963. Thousands of kilometers down the coast, in Angola, the Portuguese found it even harder to consolidate their early advantage against encroachments by Dutch, British and French rivals. Later, after official discrimination based on skin colour was outlawed, some Portuguese commanders such as General António de Spínola began a process of Africanization of Portuguese forces fighting in Africa. Reviewed Work(s): Counterinsurgency in Africa. Some, like the U.S.-backed UPA wanted national self-determination, while others wanted a new form of government based on Marxist principles. , 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. The agreement, while signed by the MPLA, the FNLA, UNITA, and the Portuguese government, was never signed by the Front for the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda or the Eastern Revolt as the other parties had excluded them from the peace negotiations. Tetteh Hormeku – Programme Officer with Third World Network's Africa Secretariat in Accra, Third World Resurgence No.89, January 1998, A «GUERRA» 3º Episódio – «Violência do lado Português». 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. Due to both the technological gap between civilisations and the centuries-long colonial era, Portugal was a driving force in the development and shaping of all Portuguese Africasince the 15th century. Much of the initial offensive operations against Angolan UPA and MPLA insurgents was undertaken by four companies of Caçadores Especiais (Special Hunter) troops skilled in light infantry and antiguerrilla tactics, and who were already stationed in Angola at the outbreak of fighting. This strategy culminated in the assassination of Amílcar Cabral in January 1973. , 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. After conflict erupted between the UPA and MPLA and Portuguese military forces, U.S. President John F. Kennedy advised António de Oliveira Salazar (via the US consulate in Portugal) that Portugal should abandon Portugal's African colonies. The Portuguese founded Luanda in Angola in 1576 (see my African New World) and in the late 19th Century the Portuguese scrambled for the interior of Africa along with the rest of Europe (see Portuguese Scramble for Africa).There had been many wars and revolutions within the Portuguese African … Unlike the Vietnam War, Portugal's limited national resources did not allow for widespread use of the helicopter. The MPLA commenced activities in an area of Angola known as the Zona Sublevada do Norte (ZSN or the Rebel Zone of the North), consisting of the provinces of Zaire, Uíge and Cuanza Norte. Two special indigenous African counterinsurgency detachments were formed by the Portuguese Armed Forces.  Overall, the increasing success of Portuguese counterinsurgency operations and the inability or unwillingness of guerrilla forces to destroy the economy of Portugal's African territories was seen as a victory for the Portuguese government policies. 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. Coelho noted that perceptions of African soldiers varied a good deal among senior Portuguese commanders during the conflict in Angola, Guinea and Mozambique. The possessions were Angola, Cape Verde, Macau, Mozambique, Portuguese Guinea, Portuguese India, Portuguese Timor, São João Baptista de Ajudá and São Tomé and Príncipe. After World War II and the first decolonization events, this system gradually declined. Equipped with standard or collapsible-stock m/961 rifles, grenades, and other gear, they used small boats or patrol craft to infiltrate guerrilla positions. The authors were linked to the Patriotic Action Councils (Juntas de Acção Patriótica – JAP), supporters of Humberto Delgado, and responsible for the attack on the barracks of Beja. The distance from the major Angolan urban centers to the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia were so large that the eastern part of Angola's territory was known by the Portuguese as Terras do Fim do Mundo (the lands of the far side of the world). 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. Moderate elements of the new military government eventually won, preventing Portugal from becoming a communist state.  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. [Dictionary 1] The United Nations does not wage war (or proxy war): its peacekeeping military actions are instead police actions. Others did not share this view, including its main architect, troops, and officials who had participated on both sides of the operation, including high ranked elements from the FRELIMO guerrillas. 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