Guerra Fria em Angola e Moçambique, por Christopher Jones, Ron Hilton e MCH
Speaking of Portuguese Africa, I said: Africa was decolonized much too quickly, and Angola and Mozambique are prime examples. The independence movement, with Soviet backing, reduced those one fairly prosperous countries to their present abject condition. One Portuguese mistake was to treat these colonies as part of Portugal; they had representatives in the Portuguese Congress; I attended a session. This grand design did not work.
Christopher Jones comments:The rush to decolonize was pushed through by the radical Marxist officers of the MFA (Movimento das Forças Armadas) whose charismatic chief was Major later General then Major Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho who fancied himself the Fidel Castro of Portugal. The nominal chief of the coup that overthrew the Salazarist regime, General Antônio de Spínola [known for his trademark monocle that he picked up at cavalry school in Nazi Germany] was in favor of exactly what you say, a slow movement towards a loose confederationm possibly including representatives of Brazil. He outlined his ideas in a book, Portugal e o futuro after returning from his tour as C-in-C of Portuguese forces in Guinea Bissau and was sacked by the Salazarist Prime Minister Marcelo Caetano- Spínola, who fancied himself as a sort of "De Gaulle" for Portugal , was just the right man in the right place at the wrong time. A pity. He was overthrown by some of the most rabid communists of western Europe, although he later returned to Portugal.
RH: Did Saraiva de Carvalho have any contact with Che Guevara in Africa?
MCH: Answering the question, it´s no, Otelo had no contact with Ernesto (Che) Guevara Lynch, a son of the so called Argentinian Good families who studied at the Marist College at Buenos Ayres. Yet he fancied himself the Fidel de Castro of Europe " if only I had strenuously studied earlier", as he put it. By the time Guevara went to his death in BOlivia, in 1967, Lieutenant Oteço was fighting in Africa against the independence movements oficially called "terrorists" by the Portuguese Government and indeed they also attacked civil population, the worst massacre being at the north of Angola, March, 16, 1961 with around 10.000 killed of which 1000 Europeans.
Now we must put into context the Portuguese resistance to African independence. It was colonialism but it also was a part of the Cold War. After Portugal leaving in 1974 the war increased mightily in Angola and Mozambique and it went on for more than twenty years. The URSS supported the MArxiost Governments the USA supported the RENAMO and UNITA movements, who practised terrorist attackx on the population. Recently an American scholar compared Reagan's embrace of the mujaheddin as "these men are the moral equivalent of our founding fathers" with the support of "terrorist" UNITA and RENAMO. So, fuzzy logic....