Case 335 - Peacemaking in Southern Africa: The Namibia-Angola Settlement of 1988
Few conflicts in the waning years of the Cold War involved more players than Southern Africa. Namibia, which had been under de facto rule by South Africa since 1915, by the 1970s was caught up in an independence movement as well as a greater regional struggle and a Cold War power play. The United States, Soviet Union, Cuba, and South Africa all became involved in Angola’s civil war, which threatened to spill over into both Namibia and South Africa.
Written by US lead negotiator Ambassador Chester A. Crocker, this case study details the eight-year negotiations to bring about peace in the region – and secure Namibia’s independence from South Africa. The case includes a practical discussion of the concepts of “linkage” and “ripeness” – which help explain how the US team was able to push the negotiations to conclusion in 1988.