As Tanzanian invasion forces tighten their grip on Uganda, more and more facts about the regime of former President Idi Amin are coming to light When Tanzanian and anti-Amin forces captured the Ugandan capital of Kampala earlier this month, they recovered official government film of Idi Amin rallying his troops during the war with Tanzania in November last year.
GV sign reading "Masaka Suicide Mechanised Special Regiment"
SV former Ugandan President Idi Amin applauded by crowd as he arrives at barracks for Victory Parade in November 1978
SV crowd carrying garlands, lift Amin to shoulders and carry him off as his sons look on (THREE SHOTS)
SV Amin, sons and officials walk past cheering crowds (FIVE SHOTS)
GV Amin's sons listen as their father speaks to troops (THREE SHOTS)
SV & GV troops chanting as Amin dances (THREE SHOTS)
SV & CU Amin speaking to frontline troops (FOUR SHOTS)
GV Amin with members of Ugandan Cabinet and soldiers inspecting war damage near Tanzanian border in November 1978 (THREE SHOTS)
GV & SV Amin talking in English about recaptured mortars (TWO SHOTS)
GV & SV Amin walks up to building and poses for cameraman with girl soldiers (TWO SHOTS)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: As Tanzanian invasion forces tighten their grip on Uganda, more and more facts about the regime of former President Idi Amin are coming to light When Tanzanian and anti-Amin forces captured the Ugandan capital of Kampala earlier this month, they recovered official government film of Idi Amin rallying his troops during the war with Tanzania in November last year.
SYNOPSIS: The film was shot at an unstated location close to the border of Uganda and Tanzania. Field Marshal Amin had arrived at the barracks to help members of his Masaka Suicide Mechanised Special Regiment celebrate what they called a "Victory Parade". Several of his sons were with him.
Although shot by a government film unit for propaganda purposes, the film had become badly scratched in the five months before it was discovered in Kampala. In October last year, Tanzania moved a number of troops from Dar-es-Salaam to the border after Ugandan aircraft reportedly bombed Tanzanian territory near the town of Bukoba, on the shore of Lake Victoria. President Amin alleged that a battalion of Tanzanian troops backed by Cubans had invaded Uganda, but President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania quickly denied the claim. It followed another claim of Tanzanian invasion that Amin made two weeks earlier.
On November the first, Amin announced his troops had occupied a large tract of Tanzanian bushland, known as the Kagera Salient, adding seven hundred square miles (about eighteen hundred square kilometres) to Uganda's territory. Radio Uganda said this occupation was carried out in a mere twenty-five minutes after their forces had driven invading Tanzanians off Ugandan soil. Uganda had long claimed this Salient, and the announcement of its seizure ended three weeks of what diplomats had called a "phoney war".
Diplomats in Nairobi said the incursion into the Salient appeared to have been made to allow the Ugandans to strike at their exiles living near the border in Tanzania.
While he was up at the so-called front line last November, Idi Amin also met with his Cabinet to plan strategy in what had escalated into a conflict with Tanzania. The same day as the incursion into the Kagera Salient, Tanzania said it had shot down three Ugandah aircraft which had attacked Bukoba and other Tanzanian border towns.
Early in November, Amin rebutted condemnation of the Kagera incursion from the American Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance, and accused Washington of actively helping Tanzania. Amin was unmoved by mounting diplomatic pressure, mainly from African states, for mediation, but then was reported ready to accept a mediation offer from the Libyan leader Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi. On November the eighth, the president announced over Radio Uganda that he was ready to withdraw his troops from Tanzania. Late in January, some two months after this film was taken, military and civilian insurrection erupted in many parts of Uganda, and Amin was on his way out.