A Military History of Rhodesia and Zimbabwe: The First Matabele War /// 52

In 1890, the country of Rhodesia/Zimbabwe did not exist. What did exist were two regions dominated by the Ndebele tribe, a tribe who broke off from the battle-hardened Zulu. The area of modern-day Zimbabwe was called Matabeleland and Mashonaland. The Ndebele ruled over the Shona like Spartans over Helots. In the early 1890s, British settlers infiltrated Mashonaland and a bloody conflict erupted – a conflict that would ultimately last more than a hundred years.

This is the story of that conflict.

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Image from Blake (1978)


The Rise and fall of the British Empire by Lawrence James

Cry Zimbabwe: Independence 20 years on by Peter Stiff

Mugabe: Power and plunder in Zimbabwe by Martin Meredith 

The fate of Africa by Martin Meredith

The Rhodesian War: A military history by Paul Moorecraft and Peter McLaughlin

Bush War operator: Memoirs of the Rhodesian Light Infantry, Selous Scouts and beyond by Andrew Balaam

Fire Force: A trooper’s war In The Rhodesian Light Infantry by Chris Cocks

Survival course: Rhodesian denouement and the war of self by Chris Cocks

The Saints: The Rhodesian Light Infantry edited by Chris Cocks, Craig Bone, and authored by Alexandre Binda  

Masodja: The history of the Rhodesian African Rifles and its forerunner, The Rhodesia Native Regiment by John Wynne Hopkins, Brig David Heppenstal, and Alexandre Binda

Pamwe Chete: The Legend of the Selous Scouts by Ron Ried-Daly

Rhodesia: Last outpost of the British Empire 1890-1980 by Peter Baxter

A history of Rhodesia by Robert Blake

Taming the land mine by Peter Stiff

Black fire: accounts of the guerilla war in Rhodesia by Michael Raeburn

Rhodes: the race for Africa by Antony Thomas

A Handful of hard men: The SAS and the battle for Rhodesia by Hannes Wessels

Dingo firestorm: The greatest battle of the Rhodesian Bush War by Ian Pringle

Sunshine and storm in Rhodesia by Frederick Selous

Selous scouts: Rhodesian counter-insurgency specialists by Peter Baxter

Rhodesian light infantryman 1961–80 by Neil Grant

White liberals, moderates, and radicals in Rhodesia, 1953-1980 by Ian Hancock

The iron lady : Margaret Thatcher, from grocer’s daughter to prime minister by John Campbell and David Freeman

The struggle for Zimbabwe: Battle in the Bush by Lewis Gann

The struggle for Zimbabwe : The Chimurenga war by David Martin and Phyllis Johnson

A history of Zimbabwe, 1890-2000 by Chengetai Zvobgo

From Rhodesia to Zimbabwe by Lawrence Vambe

Origins of Rhodesia by Stanlake Samkange

The Zulu aftermath by J.D. Omer-Cooper

The washing of the spears by Donald Morris

At the going down of the sun by Charlie Warren

“Billionaire Soros Funds Local Prosecutor Races.” Wall-Street Journal. November 3, 2016. https://www.wsj.com/articles/billionaire-soros-funds-local-prosecutor-races-1478194109 

Native policy in Southern Rhodesia, 1890-1923. By DUIGNAN, PETER JAMES. Stanford University Doctoral Dissertation. 1961.

‘“It was Difficult in Zimbabwe”: A History of Imprisonment, Detention and Confinement during Zimbabwe’s Liberation Struggle, 1960-1980’ by Munyaradzi Bryn Munochiveyi. University of Minnesota Doctoral Dissertation. 2008.

History of Africa by Kevin Shillington

Cecil Rhodes: Flawed colossus by Brian Roberts

The founder: Cecil Rhodes and the pursuit of power by Robert Rotberg

“After Two Decades of Rot, Zimbabwe Is Coming Apart at the Seams” by Antony Sguazzin, Ray Ndlovu, and Brian Latham. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-09-14/after-two-decades-of-rot-zimbabwe-is-coming-apart-at-the-seams 

The rise and fall of the British Empire. 36 Lectures by Patrick Allitt. Produced by the Great Courses.

Rhodes and Rhodesia: the white conquest of Zimbabwe 1884-1902 by A. Keppel-Jones

End of Empire. (1985). Documentary film series. Available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DuNhsLR9y0

4 thoughts on “A Military History of Rhodesia and Zimbabwe: The First Matabele War /// 52

  1. This was a good show but it would be great if you could cover more content in one month. Maybe post a show every two weeks instead of monthly?


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