Communist Support of Terror Groups in Rhodesia, Ministry of Foreign Affairs 1975
Editor’s Note: The Chinese make much of the fact that they ‘won their liberation struggle’ against themselves (Chinese vs Chinese), by the same tactics being taught to the black African trainees. Further, Mugabe’s ZANU-PF declared it “is guided by the principles of Marxism-Leninism” through violent revolution. In other words, it was never a race war it was a struggle to install Communism International. Calling the terror groups “Nationalist Political Groups” is, as shown below, an intentionally euphemistic Communist phrase straight from the little Red Book. In ‘liberated’ Zimbabwe, the dictatorship of ZANU-PF has proved that Mugabe and his thugs were interested in the nation Rhodesia purely for self-enrichment and power secured by a dictatorship. This was their attraction to Communism in the first place. In other words, a match made in hell.
Further, several of the Communist nations mentioned below, especially North Korea, aided Mugabe’s Shona ZANU-PF terrorists to slaughter up to 40,000 black Matebele. They sought to wipe out internal black opposition to ZANU in the new Zimbabwe. That’s Marxism 101 – get rid of democratic opposition and voting. They then eradicated the small but successful farming community feeding the nation. That’s Marxism 102 – get rid of land owners and induce a famine.
Communist Leanings of Rhodesian Nationalist Groups which are now combined under the aegis of the African National Council
In December, 1974, the Rhodesian Government released leaders of two African Nationalist political parties banned in Rhodesia from their restriction so that they could attend a meeting in Lusaka, Zambia, with the Presidents of Botswana, Tanzania, Zambia and Mocambique, neighbours of Rhodesia, in an attempt to unify Rhodesian black nationalists under one banner. As a result of the meetings the Rhodesian nationalists agreed to submit to the leadership of United Methodist Bishop Abel Muzorewa under the banner of the African National Council. They also agreed to abolish their former political parties – the Zimbabwe African Peoples’ Union (ZAPU), and the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) and the Front for the Liberation of Zimbabwe (FROLIZI).
In the months that followed this agreement it became obvious that the factions within the African National Council were still at odds with each other and pursuing the ideologies developed during the early sixties. There has been frequent contact with communist countries by members of the banned political parties and Rhodesian blacks have been trained, both in ideology and sabotage. They have received through the OAU, and directly, generous gifts of weapons of communist origin. The purpose of this paper is to show the communist support, both ideological and military, that these factions are receiving.
Links to Communist Countries
The Rhodesian Government has been aware since the early 1960’s of numerous visits to Moscow and Peking by leaders of the nationalist groups. The pattern that emerges here is of close links between ZAPU and the USSR and between ZANU and the PRC [Communist Chinese Party].
During this period the external missions of ZAPU were known to be coming under increasing communist influence, especially in London, where the Communist Party of Great Britain (CPGB) was actively engaged in organising ‘platforms’ on ZAPU’s behalf. Advertisements of communist content also appeared in the ‘Zimbabwe Review’, a Party propaganda organ published in London.
The following are countries in which it is known that Rhodesian nationalists have undergone para-military and sabotage training under communist direction:
Groups of Rhodesian African nationalists have been accomodated and trained in houses and flats in the Koxhovoskaya and Chirimuski areas of Moscow. Groups have been small – normally consisting of six men per group – and have been trained by Russian uniformed instructors in the use of explosives, arms, sabotage and guerrilla tactics.
Rhodesian African nationalists have been trained in the use of explosives and arms at a camp some fifteen kilometres from Pyongyeng. The instructors on this course were uniformed North Korean military officers.
Groups of Rhodesian African
nationalists [gangs] have been trained in camps near Peking and Nanking. Instruction has been given by Chinese military instructors in revolutionary tactics, arms, explosives, sabotage technique, communications and strategy.
Large groups of Rhodesian African nationalists were trained at Half Assini and Abenamadi Camps in Ghana during 1965. Instruction was given in guerrilla warfare, weapon training, explosives and sabotage technique by thirteen Chinese instructors.
To bring the situation into the seventies, the following is extracted from a report by the American Affairs Association, Inc., of New York. The report was written by Professor Walter Darnell Jacobs of the University of Maryland. The relevant extract follows:
“In order to judge the extent of Communist support of ZANU and ZAPU some review of the history of these organizations is appropriate. Both ZANU and ZAPU correspond to the type of organization prescribed in the ideology of the national liberation movement as elaborated from Moscow and Peking.
The Moscow approach is older, going back at least to Khrushchev’s famous 1960 and 1961 statements which so disturbed President Kennedy and contributed to the reorganization of the U.S. armed forces to attempt to provide a capability to deal with “insurgencies”.
The Chinese view has been set out in much of the early writings of Mao Tse-Tung and, later, of Lin Piao and others. Both Moscow and Peking have a generous output of theory concerning the national liberation movement.
A measure of the significance which the Soviet leadership places on the movement can be gained from assessing its support of ‘liberation’ activities in Vietnam and elsewhere. It can also be measured from the statement by Leonid Brezhnev to the 24th Congress of the Communist Party in 1971 that the three main revolutionary forces of our epoch are socialism, the international working-class movement, and the national liberation movement.
The further remarks of Brezhnev on 30 January 1973 in the Kremlin Palace are also germane. At that time he said: ‘The victory of Vietnam shows that it is impossible to conquer a people who fight for their freedom and independence, leaning on the powerful support of their class brothers and all revolutionary and progressive forces of the planet…The victory of Vietnam is a graphic proof of the effectiveness of the internationalism of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries. We have rendered Vietnamese friends active assistance in their efforts on all fronts – the military, political, and diplomatic.
ZANU and ZAPU have been under some pressure from the OAU and several leading African politicians to merge their efforts. In spite of the split between the USSR and PRC, Moscow and Peking have not appeared averse to such a union. In fact, the first ‘military’ training undergone by Rhodesian African terrorists was in the People’s Republic of China in early 1963. Since that year, ZAPU (formerly known as the People’s Caretaker Council), has received financial and material aid from the Soviet bloc. The other organization, ZANU, has had some continuing support from the Soviet bloc but, more recently, has become increasingly dependent on the PRC.
In response to the pressure for unity, on 1 October 1971 the Front for the Liberation of Zimbabwe (FROLIZI) was formed. The constitution and manifesto of FROLIZI are heavily larded with communist verbiage. FROLIZI is headed by James R.P. Chikerema and its effectiveness as a fusion liberation group is still doubtful. In any case, ZANU and ZAPU continue to operate apparently as separate units. Some observers suggest that FROLIZI really represents a coalition of dissidents from ZAPU and ZANU organized behind Chikerema for his own challenge for leadership of the entire Zimbabwe liberation movement.
Further attempts at unity between the remaining members of ZANU and ZAPU led to the establishment of the Joint Military Command (JMC). This was announced at the 19th session of the OAU Liberation Committee at Benghazi, Libya, in January 1972, and ratified at the 20th session in Kampala, Uganda, in May 1972. While the JMC, which appears to be under the command of Herbert Chitepo of ZANU (Herbert Chitepo was assassinated in Lusaka, Zambia, in March 1975) is responsible for recruiting, training, financing, and overall operational planning. Both terrorist groups (ZANU and ZAPU) maintain their own ideological beliefs, and much of the old enmity (basically tribal in nature) still exists.
The following is a breakdown of confirmed and identified terrorist training courses:
Training courses outside the communist bloc under Chinese instructors include:
Courses held in the Soviet Union have been of four main types – para-military training, military engineering, radio (usually at Simferopol and Odessa), and intelligence (in Moscow). Para-military training has also been given in Bulgaria, North Korea, and the Arab Republic of Egypt.
Courses in military engineering and radio are self-explanatory. Para-military courses include instruction in weapons training; the manufacture and use of explosives, grenades and bombs; sabotage and demolition techniques for use on ferro-concrete, steel and wooden targets; guerrilla tactics including ambushes against vehicles and personnel, camouflage and spoor- covering; and basic radio communications and map reading.
Intelligence training covers foreign intelligence organizations (including American, British and French), sophisticated codes and cyphers, invisible inks, and hidden microphones. It also covers counter-intelligence such as agent-running, surveillance, mail interception, and similar measures. Also taught are photography, radio communication, and basic firearms training.
In all cases political indoctrination has been a feature of the training and the terrorists have been taught the importance of spreading the communist doctrine among their people. The ‘advantage’ of socialism over capitalism is persistently stressed.
The training of ZANU recruits has been carried out in the PRC at established military bases near Peking and Nanking. While the same para-military subjects are taught there as in the Soviet Union, great emphasis is placed on influencing the minds and attitudes of the terrorists through political indoctrination and the ‘ideology’ of guerrilla warfare. The Chinese make much of the fact that they ‘won their liberation struggle’ by the same tactics being taught to the African trainees. That the Africans were influenced by this brainwashing was evidenced in one incident inside Rhodesia where a group of infiltrators went down clutching Mao Tse- Tung’s ‘little red book’. To these infiltrators the book of Chairman Mao’s thoughts provided no greater protection than the traditional African witchdoctor’s spell against bullets.
More recently courses inside the PRC have been largely replaced by similar training and exercises in Tanzania under Chinese instructors. Also of late, emphasis in this training has been on defense against attack by aircraft and on mine laying and sabotage.
OTHER COMMUNIST SUPPORT
To support their investment in the training of terrorists, the USSR and the PRC individually supply weapons, ammunition, explosives, uniforms, finance and food to the OAU Liberation Committee in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, for distribution to the African nationalist groups. This Committee, as a result of non-payment of dues by the majority of its eleven African member states is forced to rely more and more on direct aid from communist sources. (The aid is supplemented by grants from the World Council of Churches, from some Swedish government funds, and from private groups in Norway and elsewhere. Some liberation groups have solicited funds inside the United States.)
As well as channeling assistance to the terrorists through the OAU, the Soviet Union and the PRC supply aid directly to their liberation groups, ZAPU and ZANU, respectively. This system of direct aid is also followed by the Democratic Republic of Germany, North Korea, Bulgaria, Hungary and Poland.
The German Democratic Republic prints and circulates the ZAPU newsletter, ‘The Zimbabwe Review’. Chinese aid has extended to the supply of radio stations to Tanzania and Zambia for the purpose of broadcasting terrorist propaganda against the white-governed countries of Southern Africa.
There is, in short, no lack of evidence of communist support of ZANU and ZAPU. (Most of the material cited here was gained from interviews with captured or defected ZANU and ZAPU members.) Nor is there any lack of official statements of support by Moscow and Peking for the liberation movements. In addition to the Brezhnev speech cited above, numerous other examples could be adduced. For instance, the Soviet ambassador to the Democratic Republic of the Congo stated during a press conference in Brazzaville on 27 December 1972, that the Soviet Union ‘is to increase its aid to African national liberation movements against all forms of national oppression, bringing all possible aid to liberation movements and to the strengthening of young sovereign states which fight for real and authentic independence’.
Terrorism inside Rhodesia remains a problem today largely because the terrorists are supported by the Soviet Union and the PRC. The willingness of Moscow and Peking to heighten its level of support could complicate the problem for Salisbury. The late 1972 and early 1973 incursions into the Centenary district of Rhodesia and in areas of the Zambezi river demonstrate that the terrorists are most difficult to control completely. The problem is further complicated by some new factors which surfaced in the course of these recent raids.
First among these is the apparent ability of ZANU and ZAPU to agree on areas of operation. ZAPU operated chiefly in the western area of Rhodesia, along the Zambezi and near Victoria Falls. ZANU seemed to confine its activities to the northeastern areas of Rhodesia. In this ZANU area of responsibility the terrorists were infiltrated into Rhodesia from areas in the Tete province of neighbouring Mozambique which were controlled by the Front for the Liberation of Mozambique (FRELIMO). As a result of this control ZANU recruits could be held in FRELIMO camps for a period of training under realistic combat conditions. They could be instructed in advanced methods of supply. These were elements of training that had been missing in earlier terrorist activities inside Rhodesia. When ZANU groups did leave the FRELIMO-controlled areas of Tete Province and moved into Rhodesia, they were able to enter the country and remain there undiscovered for several weeks, or until the outbreak of terrorism in December 1972…”
Communist weapons captured by Rhodesian Security Forces
In a paper prepared in December 1974 after a visit to Rhodesia, Dr. Lucius Beebe, Professor of Strategy, the Citadel, Charleston, S.C. wrote as follows:
“Weapons used by the terrorists are all of communist origin; this writer has seen hundreds of Chinese made AK-47’s, many still in cosmoline, as well as hand-grenades, land mines, rocket launchers, booby traps, etc., that have been captured by the Rhodesian authorities. The automatic rifle is the most popular weapon, but the land mine is most widely used because of its ease of placement and indiscriminate destruction which fills the African with terror. Since the end of United States involvement in South East Asia, the terrorists’ inventory has increased and the diabolical phosphorus mine has been introduced…”
On March 8, 1975, Christopher Munnion reported to the London Daily Telegraph from Salisbury under a headline “GUERRILLAS PLAN MISSILES WAR IN RHODESIA” as follows:
“An African guerrilla group in Rhodesia has been told to step up terrorist warfare on the North-Eastern border following the arrest of its leader by the Government.
ZANU guerrillas have received the instruction after the renewed detention of the Rev. Ndabaningi Sithole, the group’s leader. Guerrilla leaders would be told to go ahead with a new phase of the war due to have been launched before the ceasefire agreed in Lusaka last November, Salisbury sources said.
This phase, I understand, involves the widespread use of the portable Soviet-made Sam 7 ground-to-air missile, large numbers of which have been supplied to ZANU through Tanzania.
The aim is to attempt the destruction of Rhodesian air superiority maintained by Canberra bombers, Hawker Hunter and Vampire ground-attack aircraft and helicopters.
They are also being instructed to lure Rhodesian aircraft – most of them low- and slow-flying – into missile range in the wild border area.
Communist-made missiles have already been used against security force aircraft. But the new phase is understood to involve more than 100 guerrillas specially-trained in the use of the SAM 7.
On the ground the ceasefire has now been completely forgotten by Rhodesian forces and guerrillas alike. Rhodesians are carrying out full-scale counter-insurgency operations while there are daily reports of terrorism.”
A Naval correspondent of the same newspaper on March 3 reported under the headline “SOVIET ARMS ARRIVE IN MOZAMBIQUE” as follows:
“Russia has begun shipping arms to Mozambique as the Soviet fleet in the Indian Ocean expands its activities at a rapid rate.
The Mozambique port of Beira and the Comoro Islands northwest of Malagasy are among new ports of call for the Russian ships.
In Mauritius the almost permanent presence of Russian warships has meant that visits by British and American warships have almost been abandoned.
But while France plans to build a new base in the Comoro Islands, the British naval radio station on Mauritius, along with the RAF staging post at Gan in the Maldive Islands, are to be closed under the Government’s defence cuts.
South African naval leaders are worried by the increasing Russian naval activity.
In the western Indian Ocean the elderly South African Shackleton patrol aircraft are the only Western planes available to keep watch on the Russians.
For the first time South Africa is building her own warships. Six missile boats, probably equipped with the Israeli Gabriel missile which was used with success in the 1973 war, are being built at Durban.
More submarines in addition to the three French-built boats now in service, may be ordered. France is most likely to get this order.
To find the number of sailors needed, coloured sailors now form a major portion of the crew of the naval survey ship, Protea, 2,750 tons. Recruiting for a naval Indian corps has also begun.”
Policy Statements by Rhodesian Black Nationalist Leaders
There have been a number of interviews of representatives of the Zimbabwe African Peoples’ Union by an organization called the Liberation Support Movement which is based in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada. Below are quotes from some of these interviews:
Interview with Edward Ndhlovu, ZAPU Deputy National Secretary, Dec. 1974
“At the moment we depend heavily on outside supplies of arms and funds to carry out our operations. In the long run, however, such a situation tends to hamper the progress of our struggle. Just the enormous time between requesting certain equipment and actually getting it into areas of operation makes planning very difficult. Our revolution* demands patience but having to wait a long time for supplies can become a cause of demoralization among our fighters. It is therefore of great importance that we achieve greater self-reliance as soon as possible. Logistic problems also limit recruitment and training inside Zimbabwe (nationalist name for Rhodesia). Some of our fighters are trained inside, but there is a very definite limit as to how much of this we can do. We give recruits basic knowledge of explosives and training in the use of light weapons. However, we don’t have adequate arms and ammunition for most of those who want to join us inside. Most of our guerrillas, therefore, are still trained outside in socialist or independent African countries. In the future, when we can improve our logistic situation, this should change.
I should add that all our militants also receive political training. They study Marxism, Leninism, Maoism, the history of Zimbabwe and writings on either revolutions, such as in Vietnam, Algeria, Cuba, or the Mau-Mau in Kenya. Whenever we can, we spend time on political education, since it is crucial in building and maintaining the morale and good comportment among our guerrillas.
As for ZAPU, it is no secret that we base our work on the principles of Marxism-Leninism and that our ideological position is rooted in the masses. The struggle to create a new society such as we are striving for must be based on the principles of scientific socialism.
We are committed to a programme of establishing a socialist state and society in Zimbabwe, and this we will do. We will need the support of everyone who has something to contribute, irrespective of race, colour or creed. In the short term there will be land reform and the establishment of peoples’ control over all large companies, including the multinationals operating in our country. Later we will go further,… but it is difficult to be more specific at this stage. Nevertheless, I am convinced that a free and socialist Zimbabwe will be a better place to live in for all Zimbabweans.”
Interview with George Nyandoro, General Secretary of ZAPU
“During the liberation struggle our main objective is to seize power – then we can begin the social revolution, begin to put our social principles into practice. When we liberate an area, then we will begin our social revolution from that base – in practical terms. Until that time, until we have power in a liberated area, considerations of socialist programmes and policies are necessarily confined to the realm of pure theory.”
Interview with George Silundika, ZAPU Publicity and Information Secretary
“We are confident that the masses will not allow any leaders, whether of the ANC or any other organization, to commit the nation to a non-revolutionary course. Our guarantee is the persistence of the masses in their demand for genuine freedom* , which they have already sacrificed so much for. The ANC struck a correct note with an already organized people and the people reacted in a disciplined manner. So while the ANC leadership is inexperienced, the masses have a long history of struggle and will ensure a correct direction to further developments. Bishop Muzorewa’s (President of the ANC) recent public surrender of the principle of ‘one man one vote’ and his unprincipled flirtation with Ian Smith represent a radical and dangerous deviation from the correct line of the masses.”
The following quotations are from documents and evidence presented to the Special Court established in terms of Section 3 of the Emergency Powers (Special Court) Regulations, 1975, and presided over by the Honourable Hector Macdonald, Acting Chief Justice of Rhodesia. The Special Court was established to consider the redetention of the Rev. Ndabaningi Sithole, leader of the Zimbabwe African National Union, which is a banned organization in Rhodesia but which is now operating under the umbrella of the African National Council. The following extracts are presented. The official political programme of ZANU has this to say about the establishment of a new state in Rhodesia:
“A truly socialist, self-supporting economy would be established and organized on broad principles enunciated by Marxism-Leninism.”
In a publication “Basic Information about ZANU”, the question is posed, what is ZANU’s ideology? The answer is given as follows:
“ZANU is guided by the principles of Marxism-Leninism. It aims at achieving a socialist revolution. However, before the achievement of such a socialist revolution, a transitional stage of national democratic revolution is necessary. The national democratic revolution is a necessary preparation for the socialist revolution, and the socialist revolution is the inevitable sequel to the national democratic revolution. The deeper the national democratic revolution, the better the conditions for socialist revolution.”
In the official monthly publication for the month of December, 1974, the following claims are made:
“The same period in question saw great achievements and advances in the field of political mobilization at home and abroad. Combining theory and practice and utilizing Marxist- Leninist organization tactics, ZANU cadres throughout the country made great inroads in the mobilization of the suffering people. Workers, peasants, intellectuals and students have all come in full force to support the struggle under the banner of ZANU. ZANU secret branches have been set up throughout the country. Party cadres have organized themselves into clandestine ZANU cells in the countryside, urban residential areas, factories, colleges, etc., in order to carry out political underground work and mobilization of the people.”
In the opening paragraph of its political programme, ZANU states that at the time of its formation “it was dedicated to the policy of national independence and national liberation through violent revolution. It sought to unite all African people behind a leadership committed to this policy… For the last seven years, ZANU has been committed to a policy of violent revolution in order to change totally and completely the existing social and political system.” In the same document, under the heading “The Task at Present”, it is said that –
“The most pressing task of the Party, freedom-fighters and the people at present is to intensify the armed struggle in Zimbabwe in order to free our motherland* within this decade…ZANU is committed to achieving national independence through the armed struggle. It disapproves of the policy of collaboration with the white racist [aka non-Communist] states in Southern Africa advocated by the Republic of Malawi. While ZANU appreciates the motives and reasons behind the signatories to the Lusaka Manifesto, it completely rejects its approach to the problem and reaffirms its belief in the armed struggle [funded by non-black extremists].”
In the December, 1974 edition of the Zimbabwe News, the following emerges:
“ZANU says that there is no ceasefire and there won’t be a ceasefire until there is a definite programme to transfer power to the African people of Zimbabwe. And the only man who can call for a ceasefire is Comrade Ndabaningi Sithole, the President of ZANU.”
SLB/CGR 28 November 1975
Ministery of Foreign Affairs
Editor: As the saying in Africa goes: One man, One vote, One time, One bugger-up. Now you know why, the nationalist movements were a smokescreen for the international communist movement to conquer a nation without a direct hot war. Today they use euphemisms like Critical Race Theory and The Great Reset.
It’s all a con for the Communist International power grab that will turn the planet into Zimbabwe 2.0: