- Zimbabwean army deserters in South Africa: military bonding and survival
- Africa Peace and Conflict Journal
- Volume | Issue number
- 6 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
Accounts of Zimbabwe's political crisis have mostly presented soldiers in the army as defenders of President Robert Mugabe's regime without any mention of the regime's victimization of its own soldiers. To escape further victimization many of these soldiers deserted and migrated to South Africa. In exile, their military bonds remain a significant aspect of their lives. This article explores how Zimbabwean army deserters in South Africa deal with their past and survive in exile. The exploration is based on qualitative research using life histories, focus group discussions, informal conversations, and observation. It was found that the thirty-nine army deserters surveyed formed the equivalent of a 'military unit', albeit in exile, to manage their pasts, maintain their sense of dignity, and lobby for political amnesty from the Zimbabwean government.
If you believe that digital publication of certain material infringes any of your rights or (privacy) interests, please let the Library know, stating your reasons. In case of a legitimate complaint, the Library will make the material inaccessible and/or remove it from the website. Please Ask the Library, or send a letter to: Library of the University of Amsterdam, Secretariat, Singel 425, 1012 WP Amsterdam, The Netherlands. You will be contacted as soon as possible.