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    Default 'Dogs of War' Ban Will Rob British Army of Vital Frontline Soldiers

    5 August London Times - 'Dogs of War' Ban Will Rob British Army of Vital Frontline Soldiers by Fred Bridgland and Michael Evans.

    Seven Hundred South Africans serving in Britain’s Armed Forces will have to abandon their careers or surrender their citizenship under draconian new anti-mercenary legislation being enacted by South Africa’s Parliament.

    The new Bill, designed to scotch South Africa’s reputation as a rich recruiting ground for “dogs of war”, was approved by 11 votes to one by the Parliament’s defence committee this week despite an impassioned appeal from Paul Boateng, the British High Commissioner.

    If the Bill is approved by the full assembly, as now seems probable, it will end a tradition of South Africans serving with the British military that goes back to the First World War, and leave Britain’s Armed Forces overstretched.

    Many of the 700 are serving with British forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. Second Lieutenant Ralph Johnson, 24, one of the three British soldiers killed in Afghanistan this week, was born in South Africa. Sholto Hedenskog, 25, a Marine killed in Iraq in 2003, was also South African. It was the activities of a former British soldier, Simon Mann, that inspired the Bill. In 2004 Mann, a former SAS officer, began an unsuccessful coup against President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasago of Equatorial Guinea using 70 mercenaries recruited in South Africa. He is now in prison and Sir Mark Thatcher, the son of the former British Prime Minister, was fined £265,000 for helping to finance the attempted coup.

    The legislation, which will greatly strengthen South Africa’s previous anti-mercenary laws, is driven by politics as much as security.

    The ruling African National Congress, which came to power in 1994 after decades of apartheid rule, fought in exile alongside Angola’s former Marxist army against such apartheid-era forces as the Buffalo Battalion, the Reconnaissance Commandos and the Parachute Brigade...
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 01-04-2017 at 11:20 AM. Reason: Was a stand alone thread till merging in 2017.

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