I haven't said very much about my experiences in the South African Defense Force, or in supporting industries, through the 1970's and 1980's. Part of that is because I signed the South African Official Secrets Act of 1956, the Protection of Information Act of 1982, and other security legislation. They govern much of what I did during that period, and I haven't (and won't) renege on my undertaking of secrecy. As my father used to say, "If your word is no good, then you are no good."
Nevertheless, a lot of information has come out in the years since then. Perhaps the best book (in my experience, anyway) about the climax to South Africa's Border War is Fred Bridgland's "The War For Africa", which is very hard to come by and very expensive when you can find a copy, but is the best summation of the final battles of 1987/88 that I know. (It's due to be republished later this year, which is very welcome news. I'll have to buy a couple of extra copies to lend to friends.)
I was pleased to find an article by American scholar Robert Goldich on a South African military history blog, giving a strategic overview of the conflict. Here's how he begins.
There aren’t many truly unknown wars these days. Military history writing, scholarly and popular and in between, has mushroomed over the past several decades. But military events under the Southern Cross receive much less attention, because the vast majority of the developed countries are well north of the Equator.
Reading South African accounts of the 23-year long Border War between South Africa and the Angolan liberation movement UNITA on the one hand, and the Angolan government and army, supported by large Cuban forces on the other, is almost hypnotically compelling. This is not only because for most of us north of the Equator it is so distant. The names of both natural features and people involved, and the range of cultures they represent, sound exotic to our ears, and hold one’s attention.
The tactical and operational lessons from the Border War are mostly variations on usual military themes — solid and relevant training, doctrine, and attitudes — but that the most significant lessons of this conflict for the United States are far broader, and sobering, in nature.
There's much more at the link.
If you'd like to learn something about one of the lesser-known parts of the Cold War (which seemed pretty damned hot to me on occasion, as my scars will testify!), I recommend the article to your attention. To learn more, I highly recommend Fred Bridgland's book.