TITLE

THE FORGOTTEN RHODESIANS

AUTHOR(S)
Smock, David R.
PUB. DATE
April 1969
SOURCE
Foreign Affairs;Apr1969, Vol. 47 Issue 3, p532
SOURCE TYPE
Periodical
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article looks at the issues surrounding the unilateral declaration of independence made by the Rhodesian white minority government in November 1965. British efforts to force a return to legality in Rhodesia have been rendered largely ineffective from the outset by the British announcement well before independence had been declared that force would not be used to bring down the Ian Smith regime and maintain Rhodesia as a British territory. Given the domestic political climate in Britain at the time, the decision against the use of force was probably the only realistic course open to Harold Wilson. Yet the public announcement of this policy before the threat of force had been used to full strategic advantage was a serious blunder. A Commonwealth Prime Ministers Conference in September 1966 set November 30 of that year as the final date for a Rhodesian solution and gained British assurances that if no settlement was reached by then an appeal would be made to the United Nations for selective mandatory economic sanctions. Moreover, all offers for a settlement would be withdrawn and replaced by insistence that there would be no independence before majority rule. This led to the earlier face-to-face encounter between Wilson and Smith aboard HMS Tiger in early December 1966.
ACCESSION #
5800851

 

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