Books – On Africa: Colossal waste

Frontiersmen: Warfare in Africa since 1950 by Anthony Clayton Published by UCL Press, 1999.

The World Today Updated 27 October 2020 Published 1 January 2000 2 minute READ

Susan Walker

Southern Africa Study Group, Chatham House

From Sudan to Sierra Leone, the African continent has become almost synonymous with warfare and conflict. Anthony Clayton, a military historian, does not in this book take on the mantle of an international political scientist.

What he has produced is a comprehensive and timely overview of warfare in Africa from 1950 to the present day. He looks at its causes, combatants, weapons (there is a useful technical note on these), methods, victories and defeats. The meticulously accurate appendices are clearly set out and combine to form a mini encyclopedic dictionary; from that perspective alone the volume is a tool worth having.

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