Kissinger’s covert-ops misadventure with apartheid South Africa.
Piero Gleijeses is a professor of US foreign policy at Johns Hopkins University and the author of several books, including Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, 1976–1991.
Why would Henry Kissinger plan a covert operation in Angola? Because he wanted to exorcize the ghost of Vietnam — and he thought the war would provide a cheap boost to American prestige.
Under Fidel Castro, Cuba backed independence movements across the Third World. This support was decisive in battling South African apartheid, thwarting US covert operations, and securing self-rule across southern Africa.