Drawing Lessons from Zimbabwe's War of Liberation: Efficacious Use of Propaganda and Violence
Jephias Andrew Dzimbanhete
The article seeks to examine aspects of Zimbabwe's liberation war from which today's politics can draw lessons. The aspects are propaganda and violence that were deployed by the Rhodesian Front-led government and the liberation movements. The basis of colonial propaganda during the war of independence was the misconception that the rural people were passive, unsophisticated and gullible. On the other hand the liberation movements, who were cognisant of the significant role of the subaltern group, the peasants, with whom they collaborated, did not propagate delusive propaganda. The liberation forces deployed propaganda that was bound up with the fight for freedom. The white minority regime unleashed indiscriminate violence against the civilian population. The intention was to glean information about the freedom fighters and punish the rural population for cooperating with the liberation fighters. Such random violence rebounded and did not produce the desired results. The liberation forces used violence against members of the rural population who collaborated with the Rhodesian regime and security forces. Guerrilla violence was selective and generally did not alienate the liberation guerrilla fighters from the rural populace. This article derives from the author's doctoral study on the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU)'s guerrilla war.*
Zimbabwe attained its independence in 1980 after a war that pitted the colonial forces of Rhodesia against the Zimbabwean liberation guerrilla forces. The war assumed a guerrilla warfare character and drew the warring parties into a contest that was both military and political. The goal of either side in the political rivalry was to control the African population that resided in the countryside which was the war's theatre of operation. The Rhodesian security forces needed to win the ‘hearts and minds' of the rural populace so that they could secure information about the activities of the nationalist guerrilla forces. The colonial forces thus desired the co-operation of the rural African people in their agenda of fighting what they labeled ‘terrorism'. On the other hand it was imperative for the liberation forces to secure political control of the rural population. This entailed securing their sympathy and support. The profit of political control of the rural population for the liberation fighters was the availability of food, clothing, intelligence and other logistical support. Controlling access to the civilian population was the key to defeating one's opponent in the liberation war. The contending forces got embroiled in a situation that demanded the deployment of propaganda and violence to achieve the goal of exerting political control over the civilian population. I do not however intend to catalogue lessons that could be drawn from the Zimbabwe's war of liberation war in the manner of saying lesson number 1, lesson 2 and so on. I simply examine and revisit the nature of war-time violence and propaganda and present a critical expose which has been lacking in much of the documented narratives of the war of national liberation. In this article I subscribe to Sturges's definition of propaganda. He writes that propaganda is the practice of distributing material that is untrue or if it is true, it is actually not relevant and applicable. The aim of propaganda is to confuse and deceive those that receive it.
Propaganda dissemination by the war's rival players involved a process of projecting information about oneself in a positive manner and of the adversary in a negative style. For the contesting players propaganda thus served as either an instrument of offence or defence. Whilst the Rhodesian colonial regime was able to mobilise massive propaganda machinery the Zimbabwean liberation movement had to make do with an inferior but effective propaganda apparatus.
The Propaganda Tool of the Rhodesian Government
The colonial government churned out propaganda which largely demonised the liberation fighters. The intention was to alienate the liberation fighters from the rural populace and to elicit the loyalty of the residents of the rural areas, the war's theatre of operation. The basis of this propaganda was that the rural population was unsophisticated, gullible and passive. Such colonial stereotype and bigotry found expression in intimations of the following nature: ‘The typical ZANLA fighter was unsophisticated, but the impoverished peasants among whom he operated were usually illiterate and even more unsophisticated'. Newspapers and magazines which included The Rhodesian Herald, The Sunday Mail, The African Times, The Bulawayo Chronicle, The Police Outpost, The Parrot and others were awash with reports on the glowing and successful military successes of the Rhodesian army forces. These reports compiled by white Rhodesian journalists exaggerated the numbers of liberation fighters that were killed in encounters between the warring parties and also understated the figures of the Rhodesian soldiers who died in the same encounters. The hope was that the black population of Rhodesia, especially those who resided in the rural areas, would realise that it was futile to back a losing side. This would drive them away from co-operating with the liberation fighters. The rural populace were also bombarded with war communiqués that came through the radio services of the Rhodesian Broadcasting Corporation (RBC). These communiqués not only inflated the number of the freedom fighters that the Rhodesian armed forces killed but also understated the figures of members of the Rhodesian forces who died at the hands of the nationalist fighters.
The same propaganda machinery of the Rhodesian regime demonised the liberation fighters and stressed the cruelty and brutality of the freedom fighters. Besides exaggerating guerrilla violence this propaganda fingered the liberation fighters for atrocities they probably did not commit. Instead the Rhodesian Selous Scouts, a pseudo-guerrilla unit of the colonial armed forces, committed atrocities disguised as the liberation guerrilla fighters. These atrocities included the murder of missionaries at rural mission stations and use of chemical weapons. Writing in 2006, Parker, a former Rhodesian serviceman, revealed that the Selous Scouts were responsible for the murder of Father Killian Huesser, a Roman Catholic priest based at Berejena Mission in February 1980. The Rhodesian media had rushed to blame the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA), one of the two liberation armies of Zimbabwe's war of independence. The cold-blooded murder of seven white missionaries at St. Pauls' Musami on 7 February 1977 was also blamed on the liberation fighters. Writing in 1999, Reid-Daly echoed Rhodesian regime propaganda when he indicated that the white missionaries at Musami Catholic Mission were slaughtered without mercy by Robert Mugabe's ZANLA forces. The balance of probability points to the Rhodesian Selous Scouts as being responsible for the murder. It was very likely that the Rhodesian Selous Scouts were responsible for the murder of white missionaries at rural outposts and rural African businessmen. The Rhodesian regime made capital of these murders and used them as propaganda material to discredit the forces of liberation. This was in the vain hope that this would erode the support that the rural population rendered to the liberation forces. The Rhodesian Ministry of Information produced, and distributed pamphlets that told gory stories of guerrilla violence on the civilian population. The African people were however not turned away from the liberation fighters but instead they became glued to the nationalist guerrilla fighters and the cause for freedom.
The weakness of Rhodesian propaganda was it lacked essential preoccupation with the truth. The rural population who were the target of the propaganda was aware of its factual deficiency and found it ludicrous. For example part of the Rhodesian propaganda that reached the African people insinuated that the freedom fighters willy-nilly raped married women. But peasants never experienced these scenarios in the war zones. The Rhodesian regime also propagated that the armed wings of the liberation movements were ‘terrorists' who murdered civilians indiscriminately and for no reason. The rural people witnessed a totally different picture. The nature of Rhodesian propaganda stemmed from the faulty colonial view that the African mind was a container that could be emptied and refilled. Contrary to this view, the rural African people were awake to the fact that the atrocities that were attributed to the freedom fighters by Rhodesian propaganda were committed by Rhodesian army units especially the Rhodesian Selous Scouts.
Overall the propaganda that was disseminated by the Rhodesian authorities failed to produce the desired results. The target of this propaganda (misinformation), the rural population, unfortunately, was not moved. The rural people remained committed to the forces of liberation and the cause of freedom. In reality what the rural African population persistently encountered were atrocities committed by the Rhodesian security forces. Insidious colonial injustices continued to bite the African people. The continual refusal by the colonial authorities to grant economic and political spaces to the African population, which was the root cause of the liberation struggle, made their propaganda count for nothing.
The Liberation Fighters and Their Propaganda
Pro-Rhodesian narratives have insinuated and acknowledged that the liberation fighters waged a far more effective psychological and propaganda war than the white Rhodesians. This was a result of the flawed conviction of the white Rhodesians that the claim by the liberation fighters that the discontented black masses of the impending new Zimbabwe were oppressed by the Rhodesian minority government was propaganda. The political mobilisation of the rural population by the liberation fighters emphasised the cruelty and brutality of the colonial forces and colonial injustice that severely gnawed the African population. This was real and could not pass as propaganda (misinformation). It was largely at pungwe (night gatherings) that the liberation guerrilla fighters conducted political mobilisation of the rural peasants. Guerrilla propaganda appeared in the military reports that the liberation fighters announced at pungwe gatherings and through the radio broadcasts of the Voice of Zimbabwe that was beamed from Dar-es-Salaam, Lusaka and Maputo during the war. These reports amplified the military successes of the liberation fighters especially the ZANLA forces. This was largely through the deliberate avoidance of stating the military setbacks and losses of the liberation forces and inflating cases of fatalities. The propaganda of the nationalist liberation forces was effective because it was crafted in such a way that it fitted in with the expectations of the rural people who were yearning for the removal of the unjust colonial system. The study turns to the aspect of violence which was bilaterally deployed for diverse reasons and in different circumstances by the rival parties during Zimbabwe's war of liberation.
The contesting players in Zimbabwe's war of decolonisation resorted to violence in different contexts. The Rhodesian security forces encountered the challenge of failing to engage the Zimbabwean freedom fighters in a frontal war because the latter adopted guerrilla warfare. Consequently, the Rhodesian armed forces had to rely on a set of strategies often called counter-insurgency, whose main objective was to deprive the guerrilla fighters of civilian support. This constituted the violence that was deployed by the colonial army against the civilian population in the rural areas. Counter-insurgency entailed instituting draconian reprisals and meting out collective punishment against civilians for their collaboration with the freedom fighters. Due to their preoccupation with survival the guerrilla fighters avoided frontal military engagement of the Rhodesian security forces. Guerrilla violence visited members of the rural populace who jeopardised the lives of the freedom fighters by reporting guerrilla activities to the Rhodesian security forces. However, before the guerrillas resorted to civilian executions they warned would-be traitors or collaborators against providing the colonial forces with information on their activities. Invariably, guerrilla violence was used as a last resort when members of the rural population failed to take heed of guerrilla warnings. The liberation fighters thus used violence on civilians sparingly because they could not afford to lose the priceless support they rendered them. Civilian support and co-operation was the linchpin of guerrilla survival in a war in which they faced superior forces.
The Colonial Army's Repressive Violence
The violence that was used by the Rhodesian government troops against the rural people was vastly greater than that used by the guerrillas. This was because they were the incumbent government's armed forces and consequently had superior military machinery at their disposal. Many black civilians in the war zones became victims of this violence. The regime's soldiers were motivated to commit violence against the rural peasants (the guerrillas' support base) because of their failure to glean information about the guerrilla fighters and their activities. Colonial repressive violence was also inspired by the obvious fact that the rural people provided logistical support to the guerrilla forces. In their oral testimonies civilians who participated in the war of liberation have indicated that they were subjected to forms of repression that included terror, starvation, death and destruction of their property and homes. In addition to this repression the colonial authorities introduced forceful relocation of the peasants especially along the country's borders. Werbner noted the extreme measures of the Rhodesian regime from 1973 onwards of collective punishment imposed under the Emergency Powers directed against whole communities for supporting the liberation fighters. The measures included imposition of dusk to dawn curfew. Members of the rural population who broke these curfew regulations were shot at. Excessive force was used in the relocation of Africans into ‘protected villages' which were introduced to deny the liberation forces' access to the rural population.
The guerrilla fighters managed to negotiate a convivial relationship with the rural juveniles, who among other wartime duties provided them with intelligence about the Rhodesian security forces. The co-operation and alliance between the freedom fighters and the juveniles (vanamujibha and vanachimbwido) was significant in the successful prosecution of the liberation war. This collaboration infuriated the Rhodesian security forces who decided to shoot dead all juveniles who were found outside homes at whatever time of the day. Entire villages, homes, granaries, and crops in the rural areas were burnt down by the Rhodesian armed forces. The Indemnity and Compensation Act that was passed by the Rhodesian government in 1975 granted the colonial regime officials and forces with the immunity against prosecution for atrocities that they committed against the civilian population. This Act of Parliament officially bestowed on the Rhodesian army forces and other government officials the carte blanche to commit atrocities and murder on the rural people. Cases abound of Rhodesian security forces shooting dead civilians for no apparent reason during the war. They would make reports that they killed guerrilla fighters. In a rural area south of Masvingo, a man and his four children who were working in their field were shot dead by Rhodesian soldiers. The soldiers actually went about boasting that they had killed five guerrilla fighters.
Villagers were sometimes witness to grisly incidents such as the bayoneting of a pregnant woman to death by the Rhodesian security forces. One ex-mujibha related such murder of a pregnant woman near Morgenster Mission, southeast of Masvingo. The responsible Rhodesian security forces unkindly commented that she was carrying communist weapons in her womb. Terror was exercised on the rural peasants in various other forms. The imposition of a dusk to dawn curfew not only curtailed the movement of the rural people but provided the Rhodesian security forces with the excuse to shoot down people in the rural areas. Galling incidents that included tying people on army trucks and then dragging them on the ground for long distances were commonplace. Parker described how the Rhodesian soldiers how an adult man was made to sit on the bonnet of the lead army truck in the war zone hoping that he would reveal sites on the dirt roads were landmines were planted. It was commonplace that peasants had parts of their bodies like noses, ears and limps dismembered by members of the colonial armies especially the Rhodesian Selous Scouts. Stories abound of rural women who were also raped by members of the Rhodesian army. The death of Rhodesian soldiers after Rhodesian army tracks detonated landmines spelt danger to the people in the vicinity. They faced the wrath of Rhodesian forces' repression. They would be subjected to terror that included severe beatings, torture and destruction of their homes and property. In his autobiography, Godwin, a white Rhodesian who worked for the British South African Police decried the failure of the Rhodesian forces to forge good relations with the rural people. Instead they went berserk in an orgy of violence and burnt rural homes in Matabeleland.
The many raids of pungwe gatherings that were carried out by the colonial regime forces regrettably left many civilians dead. In May 1978 in Gutu District Rhodesian forces attacked a pungwe gathering resulting in the death of over 150 civilians and just one Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA) guerrilla fighter. The government forces were quite aware that their raids on pungwe meetings resulted in the death of innocent civilians. That they never exercised restraint was an index of their cruelty and the propensity to commit atrocities against the rural population. These attacks which did not discriminate between combatants and non-combatants were arbitrary and non-selective in nature. Every category of people in the rural communities that fell in the war zones became targets of the repressive violence of the Rhodesian government forces. Writing on terrorism in civil wars, Kalyvas observed that indiscriminate violence is targeted at individuals on the basis of their membership in a group perceived to be connected with the opposition irrespective of their individual actions. In the Rhodesian scenario indiscriminate violence was motivated by the known fact that almost every if not all members of the rural societies provided logistical support to the liberation fighters. Kalyvas also holds that random violence is also prompted by information asymmetry between warring parties in a conflict.
Due to lack of the support of the rural African population the Rhodesian security forces experienced dearth of information about guerrilla activities and guerrilla positions in the war zones. The liberation fighters, on the other hand, had access to intelligence which was willingly provided by the rural peasants. Frustration resulting from unavailability of information actuated the application of arbitrary violence by the Rhodesian army forces. The Rhodesian security forces were aware that rural communities were loyal and sympathetic to the liberation fighters but sometimes had no tangible evidence to incriminate them. The unfortunate propensity to apply indiscriminate repression was the result of this shortcoming. The Rhodesian security forces also used violent and desperate means that could not discriminate between combatants and non-combatants. These measures included contamination with poison of food and clothing that was destined for guerrilla fighters. Unfortunately, the rural peasants also became victims of the poisoned clothing and food.
This was the nature of the reprisals that the Rhodesian security forces applied on the African people resident in the war zones. This kind of violence exposed the Rhodesian security forces to odium. The Rhodesian regime was wary of the work of the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) during the war. The CCJP set about to investigate and publicise violence committed against the civilian population by the warring parties during the war. Bishop Donal Lamont, who was the chairman of the CCJP, faced the wrath of the Rhodesian government for publishing the atrocities they committed when they used force to relocate the peasants into ‘Protected Villages'. He was deported from the country on 23 March 1977. Sister Janice McLaughlin, a Catholic nun, who also worked for the CCJP was also deported from Rhodesia for her stand against Rhodesian repressive violence against the rural African people. It was evident that the Rhodesian security forces deployed wanton violence against the civilian population in its unsuccessful attempt to crush the liberation movements.
The violence that the Rhodesian colonial forces perpetrated against the rural peasants was apparently systematic and organised. It is on this score that it should be appropriately labelled ‘terrorism' and it was the Rhodesian security forces that deserved to be called ‘terrorists'. The Rhodesian regime and its forces hoped that loyalty and sympathy of the peasants would be redefined if they used terror. Resulting from the proclivity of incumbent governments to attribute ills that are rooted internally, the Rhodesian regime justified their random violence in the war zones by intimating that they were fighting against communist-trained and inspired terrorists. They stubbornly refused to accept that the liberation war was not externally motivated but was largely a result of their unjust policies and practises. The Rhodesian regime recoiled from ever attempting to ‘win the hearts and minds' of the rural African population. Such a policy would have implied addressing grievances of the black population in Rhodesia. Officially these grievances did not exist. According to the Rhodesian government and the security force commanders, the way to eliminate terrorism was to kill ‘terrorists', deny them physical access to the black population and punish those who collaborated with them.
Guerrilla ‘Violence for Freedom'
The perpetration of violence by the guerrilla movement against the rural population was no doubt an undeniable feature of the liberation war. However, pro-Rhodesian narratives of the war, which are unfriendly to the liberation fighters, have exaggerated the occurrence of incidents of and the character of guerrilla violence. The narratives have erroneously contended that guerrilla violence was part of the manner and method that the liberation movements employed to secure the co-operation of the rural population. Such narratives have given the impression that the liberation fighters applied violence against specific groups of the rural community. Kriger and Sachikonye suggest that chiefs, headmen, kraal heads, church leaders, shopkeepers and government agricultural demonstrators were obvious targets of guerrilla violence. Sachikonye makes the contention that: ‘There was also a great deal of violence exercised by guerrillas against collaborators of regime forces as well as against civilians amongst the African rural population'. Sachikonye errs in making a distinction between collaborators and civilians. Collaborators definitely emerged from the civilian population in the rural areas. Villagers who participated in the war have revealed that sell outs or traitors (vatengesi) that collaborated with the Rhodesian army forces were from all categories of the rural population. The sub-scholarly literature produced by ex-Rhodesian servicemen has largely exaggerated guerrilla violence. Chris Lotter, a former Rhodesian soldier manifested this hyperbole when he wrote:
His rape and frenzied pillage
May mutilate and burn
For freedom has no crime
Hear the muted agony
Of crippled men and boy 
Lotter gives the impression that the freedom fighters exercised violence that included rape, mutilation and cutting off the limps of the civilians. Reid-Daly, the commander of the Rhodesian Selous Scouts during the war, lamented lack of press mention of guerrilla atrocities. He pointed out that these included cases in which wives were forced to eat flesh cut from their murdered husbands' bodies, whole villages razed to the ground and all the villagers slaughtered or burnt to death while locked in their huts. Parker writes that the liberation guerrilla fighters raped, murdered and ruthlessly brutalised the villagers to keep them living in fear. These assertions found in narratives written by ex-Rhodesian servicemen were drawn from and were generally part of the propaganda of the Rhodesian regime. These narratives were not only serious exaggeration but largely untrue. The narrative that provided this hyperbole was also deficient in analysis and failed to realise that guerrilla violence was selective. The liberation fighters did not hesitate to execute and administer thorough beatings on members of the rural communities who sold out information about their activities to the Rhodesian security forces.
In my doctoral study I documented examples of collaborators who were executed by the liberation fighters around Morgenster and Bondolfi Missions. I however indicated that these killings were not part of the programme of the freedom fighters. The nationalist fighters were at pains to avoid estranging themselves from the rural population. Executions were dictated by the need to survive since civilian collaboration with the colonial army forces put the lives of the freedom fighters and the peasants at risk. It was clear that guerrilla violence that visited the rural folk was discriminate. It was used against only those elements of the rural population, who against the express advice of the liberation forces collaborated with the Rhodesian security forces. It was possible that the liberation fighters executed innocent people who were incorrectly judged to be traitors. These were exceptions rather than the rule. The rural people easily avoided guerrilla violence by refraining from flirting with the Rhodesian security forces as per advice of the liberation fighters. It is significant to note that guerrilla violence during Zimbabwe war of liberation was effective because it was combined with an agenda to promote peasant interests. Moreover, the Zimbabwean nationalist guerrillas largely practised justice rather than vengeance when they applied violence against elements of the rural population. The application of selective violence by the freedom fighters induced the rural population to be loyal and avail resources to the nationalist freedom fighters. What made guerrilla violence selective? This was largely because the Zimbabwean liberation fighters were careful not to offend the rural people who were the bedrock of their survival by supplying them with intelligence, food and other necessary material. Again, the guerrilla fighters who were freedom fighters purported to be socialist and thus were guided by a moral vision of a better world, which precluded terrorist actions as inconsistent with such a vision.
Guerrilla violence was used in a highly controlled, ancillary and selective fashion within the overall plan of ideological and organisational restructuring in the war's theatre of operation. The liberation movement, especially the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU), and its armed wing, ZANLA, crafted a code of conduct that among other issues regulated the relations between the guerrillas and the peasants. The nature of guerrilla violence was influenced by these rules. Among these were the ‘Three Rules' and the ‘Eight Points for Attention.' The code of conduct provided clear-cut censure procedures against commission of unwarranted atrocities by ZANLA forces. ZANLA regulations stipulated that the decision to execute collaborators or sell outs (vatengesi) was the prerogative of senior ZANLA field commanders from detachment leadership and above. This ensured adherence to the process that had to be followed before any killing of such persons took place. The process entailed trials that constituted verification of the allegations that someone had ‘sold out' information which compromised the cause for freedom. It was these important and necessary trial sessions that anti-liberation literature has labelled ‘kangaroo courts' or ‘centres of miscarriages of justice'. Members of ZANLA's Military High Command, which was the supreme organ of the ZANLA guerrilla fighters, based at Chimoio during the last four years of the war, made frequent visits to the war font in colonial Rhodesia. These visits, among other objectives, had the intention of investigating and resolving guerrilla indiscipline which included unnecessary guerrilla violence. In keeping with principles of their revolutionary pursuit the liberation forces wanted to maintain moral superiority over the Rhodesian security forces. An ex-guerrilla fighter, Last Ndega, pointed out that liberation fighters endeavoured to depict that they were disciplined freedom fighters. The ZANLA forces compiled reports of their activities at the war front. These reports were sent to the ZANLA military headquarters at Chimoio, in Mozambique. The exercise of writing reports was part of the training of ZANLA cadres. It was emphasised at training that ZANLA commanders had to compile accurate field reports which included activities like execution of individual enemy soldiers and collaborators. The compilation of reports precluded the liberation fighters from executing and deploying violence against innocent people in the war zones.
The foregoing discussion has shown that current attempts to equate and link the selective nature of violence that was deployed by the revolutionary guerrilla forces to contemporary outbreaks of violence are unfounded and devoid of academic analysis. The nonselective violence that is perpetrated by troops of an incumbent government is normally intended to stifle legitimate demand for economic and political spaces by the citizens. On the other hand the application of violence on civilians by the liberation fighters was in the interest of creating economic and political space. It would be fitting to refer to guerrilla violence as ‘freedom violence'. The rural people tolerated and accepted it because it was possible to avoid it and were nearly always in agreement to the reasons for deploying it. The Rhodesian colonial regime and its repressive military machinery failed to gain control of the civilian population. It terrorised, starved, butchered and destroyed the property of the rural people. The proper definition of such violence applied on civilians by the Rhodesian security forces would be ‘terrorism'. It was applied to defend a repugnant system and therefore backfired. There was no justification for the deployment of violence on rural people by the colonial forces of the incumbent Rhodesian government. It could not justify its continued hold to power when it failed to address the black people's demand for social justice and political self-assertion.
In its propaganda the Rhodesian colonial government deployed the rhetoric of ‘terrorism' whose goal was to de-legitimise the liberation movements' fight for independence. The colonial government also set about to criminalise the liberation war through its propaganda. These efforts failed to change the attitude of the black people whose hostility towards the white colonial regime intensified. The propaganda of the liberation fighters was effective and strengthened their bond with their fellow black population in the struggle for shaking off the manacle of the unjust colonial system.
Bhebe, N., ZAPU and ZANLA Guerrilla War and the Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe (Gweru: Mambo Press, 1999).
Author, ‘Zimbabwe's Liberation Struggle: A Critical Decade of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU)'s Guerrilla War (PhD Thesis, Fort Hare University, 2011).
Godwin, G., Mukiwa: A White Boy in Africa (London: Macmillan, 1996).
Godwin, P., and Hancock, I., Rhodesians Never Die: The Impact of War and Political Change on White Rhodesia (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993).
Kalyvas, S., ‘The Paradox of Terrorism in Civil War', Journal of Ethics, 8 (2003), pp. 97-138.
Kriger, N., Zimbabwe's Guerrilla War: Peasant Voices (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992).
Lotter, C., Rhodesian Soldiers and Others who Fought (Alberton: Galago, 1984).
McLaughlin, J., On the Frontline: Catholic Missions in Zimbabwe's Liberation War (Harare: Baobab Books, 1996).
Moorcraft, P., Mugabe's War Machine (Johannesburg & Cape Town: Jonathan Ball Publishers, 2012).
Parker, J., Assignment Selous Scouts: Inside Story of a Rhodesian Special Branch Officer (Alberton: Galago, 2006).
Reid-Daly, R., Pamwe Chete: The Legend of the Selous Scouts (Weltervreden Park: Covos-Books, 1999).
Sachikonye, L., When a State Turns on its Citizens: Institutionalised Violence and Political Culture (Auckland Park: Jacana Media, 2011).
Sturges, P., ‘Information in the National Liberation Struggle: Developing a Model', Journal of Documentation, 60, 4 (2004), pp. 428-448.
Werbner, R. P., ‘In Memory: A Heritage of War in South-western Zimbabwe', in N. Bhebe & T. Ranger (eds.,), Society in Zimbabwe's Liberation War (London: James Currey, 1996).
Interview with Daniel Jerimani (ex-mujibha), Morgenster Mission, Masvingo, 10 July 2009.
Interview with Felicitas Muzembi, Morgenster Mission, Masvingo, 20 August 2009.
Interview with Alex Mataruse, Murambwi Village, Masvingo, 13 August 2009.
Interview with Last Ndega (ex-ZANLA guerrilla fighter), ZANU (PF) Headquarters, Harare, 19 January 2009.
 P. Sturges, ‘Information in the National Liberation Struggle: Developing a Model', Journal of Documentation, 60, 4 (2004), p. 439.
 P. Moorcraft, Robert Mugabe's War Machine (Johannesburg & Cape Town: Jonathan Ball, 2012), p. 62.
 J. Parker, Assignment Selous Scouts: Inside Story of a Rhodesian Special Branch Officer (Alberton: Galago, 2006), p. 285.
 R. Reid-Daly, Pamwe Chete: The Legend of the Selous Scouts (Weltervreden Park: Covos-Books, 1999), p. 292.
 The Rhodesian Ministry of Information, Tourism and Immigration published a pamphlet in July 1978 in which the description of the murders is given.
 See P. Moorcraft, Mugabe's War Machine, p. 61.
 Parker, Assignment Selous Scouts, p. 187.
 Field commanders were obliged to compile accurate field reports. However, these internal reports took a new form when they became propaganda material. The losses of the nationalist guerrilla forces were left out.
 Interview with Daniel Jerimani (ex-mujibha), Morgenster Mission, Masvingo, 10 July 2009.
 All war zones were witness to such violence.
 R. P. Werbner, ‘In Memory: A Heritage of War in South-western Zimbabwe', in N. Bhebe & T. Ranger (eds.,), Society in Zimbabwe's Liberation War (London: James Currey, 1996), p. 197.
 N. Bhebe, ZAPU and ZANLA Guerrilla War and the Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe (Gweru: Mambo Press, 1999), p. 113.
 Interview with Felicitas Muzembi, Morgenster Mission, Masvingo, 20 August 2009.
 Interview with Alex Mataruse, Murambwi Village, Masvingo, 13 August 2009.
 Parker, Assignment Selous Scouts, p. 58.
 P. Godwin, Mukiwa: A White Boy in Africa (London: Macmillan, 1996), p. 302.
 J. McLaughlin, On the Frontline: Catholic Missions in Zimbabwe's Liberation War (Harare: Baobab Books, 1996), p. 196.
 S. Kalyvas, ‘The Paradox of Terrorism in Civil War', Journal of Ethics, 8 (2003), p. 101.
 Ibid, p. 101.
 Parker, Assignment Selous Scouts, p. 159.
 P. Godwin and I. Hancock, Rhodesians Never Die: The Impact of War and Political Change on White Rhodesia (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993), p. 186.
 P. Godwin and I. Hancock, Rhodesians Never Die, p. 100.
 N. Kriger, Zimbabwe's Guerrilla War: Peasant Voices (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), p.104 and L. Sachikonye, When a State Turns on its Citizens: Institutionalised Violence and Political Culture (Auckland Park: Jacana Media, 2011), p. 9.
 Sachikonye, When a State Turns on its Citizens, p. 9
 C. Lotter, Rhodesian Soldiers and Others who Fought (Alberton: Galago, 1984), p. 67.
 Reid-Daly, Pamwe Chete, p. 292.
 Parker, Assignment Selous Scouts, p. 25.
 Author, ‘Zimbabwe's Liberation Struggle: A Critical Decade of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU)'s Guerrilla War (PhD Thesis, Fort Hare University, 2011), pp. 154-155.
 The ‘Three Rules' and the ‘Eight Points for Attention' were regulations that ZANU adopted from Mao Tse-Tung's practice of revolution in China.
 From ZANLA war documents.
 Interview with Last Ndega (ex-ZANLA guerrilla fighter), ZANU (PF) Headquarters, Harare, 19 January 2009.