In the Rhodesian town of Gwelo on Friday (10 February) the Rhodesian premier, Mr Ian Smith declared the Rhodesia's security forces were becoming stronger every day.
MV: Rhodesian troops march onto parade ground in Gwelo, Rhodesia.
MV: officers with wives watch parade.
MV PULL BACK TO GV: troops come to halt on parade ground
MV: Prime Minister Ian Smith inspecting troops
MV: news photographers looking on.
MV: Mr. Smith continues inspection
MV PULL BACK TO GV Black soldiers standing at attention.
MV PAN: Mr Smith escorted off parade ground.
MV: Mr Smith speaking from rostrum.
SMITH: "Anyone who believes that we can go on living in the future Rhodesia under conditions similar to those which have prevailed in the past 50 years, and there are some such people in Rhodesia, is living in a fool's paradise. However, anyone who thinks that we are prepared to accept a change which will reduce us to the kind of chaotic situation which one finds in so many parts of the third world, is naive in the extreme. There is a reasonable, practical path in between. Not an easy achievement as we know from (indistinct) experience. One which will acknowledge the dignity of man, whatever his race, colour or creed, and even more important, one which will have the means of protecting and preserving this acknowledgement, thus ensuring justice and freedom, not only for the strong, but the weak as well, not only for the majority, but the minority as well.
I believe I represent the views of the vast majority of Rhodesians, black and white, when I say that these are things for which we are prepared to continue to fight. We are in the fortunate position that, with the passing of each day, our security forces become stronger and more proficient. We are eternally grateful to them for keeping us in the position where we can continue to negotiate from a position of strength, which will, in the end, enable us to secure a fair and just settlement to our constitutional problem."
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Background: In the Rhodesian town of Gwelo on Friday (10 February) the Rhodesian premier, Mr Ian Smith declared the Rhodesia's security forces were becoming stronger every day. Speaking to a passing-out parade of 18 young white officers, Mr Smith said this enabled him to negotiate on Rhodesia's future from a position of strength. Mr Smith also said anyone who thought Rhodesia could continue as it had in the past 50 years was living in a fool's paradise.
SYNOPSIS: More than 160 troops took part in the passing-out parade in the grounds of the Gwelo School of Infantry.
The parade coincided with a government decision to draft more blacks into the armed forces.
Mr Smith wants to increase the size of the security forces, and the new regulations will mean that about 200 African apprentices will now qualify for national service in white-led army.
This is the first time large numbers of blacks have been called-up for the bush war against African nationalist guerrillas. Several thousand blacks, however, have volunteered for service, and now form the bulk of the army.
For Mr Smith, the parade was a chance to parse the security forces and to stress the need for changing attitudes.
Mr Smith then returned to Salisbury for further talks with internally-based black nationalist leaders.