As an African, I will always be grateful for the role Ronald Reagan played in saving lives in Angola. In the 1980’s, I made multiple missionary trips into war-torn Angola.
As an African, I will always be grateful for the role Ronald Reagan played in saving lives in Angola. In the 1980’s, I made multiple missionary trips into war-torn Angola. At the time, there were over 50 000 Cuban troops in the country. The Communists had attacked and destroyed many churches. MiG-23’s and MI-23 Hind helicopter gun ships were terrorising villagers in Angola. I documented numerous of these atrocities, including the strafing of villages, schools and churches.
In 1986 I remember hearing Ronald Reagan’s speech – carried on the BBC Africa service – by short wave radio: “We are going to send stinger missiles to the Unita Freedom Fighters in Angola!” Those who were listening to the SW radio with me looked at one another in stunned amazement. After a long silence as we wondered if our ears had actually heard what we thought we heard, one of us said: “That would be nice!”.
We scarcely dared believe that it would happen. But it did. Not long afterwards the stinger missiles began to arrive in Unita controlled Free Angola. Soviet aircraft were shot down. The bombing and strafing of villagers, schools and churches came to an end. Without any doubt, Ronald Reagan’s policies saved many tens of thousands of lives in Angola.
In my photo albums I have numerous pictures of Soviet aircraft shot down in Angola: MI-24 Hind helicopters, MI-8 Hip helicopters, and a MiG-23. They are a reminder of an American President who cared about the people of Angola who were suffering under communist occupation.
Dr. Peter Hammond
P O Box 74 Newlands 7725
Cape Town South Africa
Tel.: +27 21 689–4480
Fax: +27 21 685–5884