The Advent Of Communism In Rhodesia History Essay

1705 words - 7 pages

Evaluate how extreme left-wing ideology in Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia), led to the downfall of Ian Smiths Government, which was comprised of white minorities

The downfall of Ian Smith’s Government, in South Rhodesia was definitely due to extreme left-wing ideology being conveniently utilized by political parties and leaders. The movement of the Marxist ideology, through education was an integral part to the downfall of the government which leads to the formation of political parties wanting to rule over Rhodesia, and inevitably resulting in a Guerrilla War called the “Rhodesian Bush War” lasting 15 years. The Marxist ideology presented by the outside world, exacerbated the effects of pan-Africanism and African Nationalism which was rising, during the lead up years to the bush war. At the same time right wing politics and White Rhodesian Nationalism was on the rise, which was demonstrated by the “Unilateral Declaration of Independence”. This further escalated the Bush War, in which Ian Smith’s Rhodesian Government was against, two rival Marxist/socialist groups, the “Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army” (ZANLA) , the military wing of Robert Mugabe's “Zimbabwe African National Union” (ZANU); and the “Zimbabwe People's Revolutionary Army” (ZIPRA) of Joshua Nkomo's “Zimbabwe African People's Union” (ZAPU).
First of all, it is important to note what each of the major radical left wing parties specifically represent. Mugabe's “Zimbabwe African National Union” (ZANU), was founded on the 8th of August 1963. The political position was/is left-wing however its primary ideologies were “African nationalism, left wing nationalism and democratic socialism”. Ultimately it seeks to establish a socialist society in Zimbabwe on the guidance of Marxism–Leninism principles, according to (Pindula.co.zw, 2017). However, “Zimbabwe African People's Union” (ZAPU), was founded on the 17th of December 1961, its primary ideologies included, Socialism and Left-wing nationalism. Using the same source, as before it has the same goals as ZANU, as during the 1980’s it was merged to form one party named, (ZANU-PF). Leading up to the Rhodesian Bush War, there was this “wind of change” throughout the whole of Africa, in which many former colonies were granted independence due to the rise in African Self-Confidence, also called Pan- Africanism. According to (Padeap.net, 2017), there were 31 independent African nations by 1961, who were exercising African Nationalism through their strong opposition against colonists. In conjunction, with this rising nationalism, Marxist ideologies started spreading to the African Continent which is an extreme left wing ideology. One of the ways it arrived to Zimbabwe, was through the Mugabe. According to (Biography.com, 2017), Mugabe was an extremely educated individual, who earned several bachelors in arts, economics, history and education. However, throughout his younger years he faced a fatherless childhood, his village was...

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