n African Journal on Conflict Resolution - Strategic culture of the Southern African Development Community : militarised pathways to security?

Volume 9, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-6997


Parading elements of the Southern African Development Community's (SADC) Brigade took pride of place at the opening of the 2007 SADC Summit in Lusaka, Zambia. This SADC Brigade is tied in closely to both the security architecture of the African Standby Force (ASF) of the African Union (AU) and the SADC Mutual Defence Pact. In the recent past (1998), military interventions by SADC members into Lesotho and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) caused the SADC to become known for its military (ad)ventures rather than for amicable progress towards a security community committed to development. In part, internal war in the DR Congo and other war-legacies such as those in Angola still taint the strategic landscape of the SADC. In addition, very sophisticated ships and aircraft are being delivered to South Africa while political militancy plays a prominent role in the 2008 Zimbabwean crisis. Are these events indicative of a militarised SADC strategic culture as opposed to the declared pacifist preferences to resolve conflicts?

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