White Rhodesians are increasingly under pressure as the nationalist guerrilla was along the front line with Mozambique grows more bitter each day.
White Rhodesians are increasingly under pressure as the nationalist guerrilla was along the front line with Mozambique grows more bitter each day. And the situation doesn't only affect the fighting troops. There are very few roads linking the even fewer towns with each other -- and now the ordinary civilian traveller has to be escorted under guard when travelling from one to the other, especially on roads out of the beleaguered country.
SYNOPSIS: Rhodesia is a national under siege. Ninety per cent of the borders of this landlocked central African country are black. One of them--Botswana--is realistic enough of its reliance on South Africa, the continent's only other bastion of white domination, to allow some road and rail traffic through its territory. But Rhodesia is slowly being strangled. Its few outlets are being choked by the sheer volume of traffic -- and guerrilla activity determined to cut it. Road convoys through the one and only direct link with South Africa have been under constant armed guard since the beginning of the jugular strangulation campaign earlier in the year when three white South African motorcyclists were shot dead on a main Rhodesian highway in broad daylight.
The armed convoys to South Africa begin hundreds of miles away from the one direct road and rail link with South Africa. Armed vehicles from Rhodesia's small but relatively powerful forces are placed at the front, end, and sometimes in the middle of convoys. The order of each convoy commander is speed--the faster the better, despite the nation's fuel-saving laws which only permits a maximum of 80 kph (50 mph). The black population, meanwhile, watches and waits. For while white Rhodesians confidently predict they will hold on for the foreseeable future, the white population drops monthly, In the days of the horse and cart, hill peaks around the borders were a natural barrier. But today, they are only a natural ambush.