Military Decline Calls South Africa’s Regional Leadership into Question

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Despite the turbulence in South Africa’s domestic politics during the troubled presidency of Jacob Zuma, South Africa has continued to be viewed as the African continent’s natural leader, its principal conflict manager and its chief interlocutor with major external powers and international organizations. However, within the space of a week in late March and early April 2014, two separate yet related developments combined to bring this conventional wisdom into serious question for the first time. The first was on March 25, when the 2014 South African Defense Review—details of which were leaked to Reuters—highlighted a “critical state of decline” in […]

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