SADF soldiers' stories. Review article

  • Gary Baines


This article reviews two recently published memoirs by SADF veterans: one a volunteer who spent 13 months as a medic in Namibia and the other a conscript who was deployed as a member of a mechanised battalion in Angola. Clive Holt’s “At Thy Call” may be the more dramatic of the two because he participated in the largest and fiercest conventional engagement of the entire war and seems to have been psychologically scarred for life. By contrast, Steven Webb’s “Ops Medic” seems uneventful as he was never involved in battle and appears not to bear any long-term ill effects of his more mundane experiences. Whatever their differences, these stories afford insights into how these soldier-authors have managed to come to terms with the memories of their times on active military service. And they have a wider relevance in that they provide insights into the enduring legacy of the militarisation of South Africa and its neighbouring states.
How to Cite
Baines, G. (2014). SADF soldiers’ stories. Review article. Journal of Namibian Studies : History Politics Culture, 5, 7-25. Retrieved from