Angola and the Reagan Doctrine

January 17, 1986

Report Outline
East-West Concerns
Angola's Troubled Past
Reagan Doctrine Debate
Special Focus

East-West Concerns

Controversy Over Resumption of U.S. Aid

One Of The First issues Congress is likely to address after it convenes Jan. 21 concerns the southern African nation of Angola. While American attention has focused on growing unrest in nearby South Africa, backers of the Reagan administration's policy of supporting anti-communist insurgents around the world are trying to add Angolan rebel leader Jonas Savimbi and his forces to the list of “freedom fighters” worthy of U.S. aid.

Like the “contras” fighting to overthrow the Sandinista government of Nicaragua, Savimbi's forces, known as UNITA, are seeking to topple an avowedly Marxist government that enjoys the support of the Soviet Union and its allies. And like the U.S. support of the Nicaraguan rebels, the question of aid to Savimbi promises to generate considerable controversy hinging as much on domestic political considerations as on the national security.

The United States has not given aid to UNITA—the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola—for nearly 10 years. After a bungled attempt by the Central Intelligence Agency to prevent leftist forces from taking over the former Portuguese colony in 1975, Congress passed the Clark Amendment, named for its chief sponsor, former Sen. Dick Clark, D-Iowa. The measure prohibited the United States from providing aid to any of the factions fighting in the Angolan civil war. Since Congress repealed the aid ban last July, there have been repeated calls to restore funding for UNITA.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Africa
Jul. 10, 2015  Terrorism in Africa
Nov. 20, 2012  Booming Africa
Apr. 05, 2011  Conflict in Congo
Aug. 2009  Attacking Piracy
Jun. 2009  The Troubled Horn of Africa
Sep. 2008  Crisis in Darfur
Jan. 2008  China in Africa
Sep. 09, 2005  Ending Poverty
Aug. 27, 2004  Stopping Genocide
Aug. 29, 2003  Aiding Africa
Nov. 08, 2002  Famine in Africa
Mar. 24, 1995  Democracy in Africa
Jan. 14, 1994  South Africa's Future
Mar. 23, 1990  U.S. Role in South Africa's Future
Nov. 07, 1986  Economic Turnabout In Africa
Jan. 17, 1986  Angola and the Reagan Doctrine
Sep. 09, 1983  South Africa's ‘Total Strategy’
Jul. 14, 1978  African Policy Reversal
Sep. 03, 1976  Africa and the Big Powers
Apr. 04, 1975  Southern Africa in Transition
Dec. 06, 1974  Ethiopia in Turmoil
May 09, 1973  African Nation Building
Feb. 28, 1968  Nigeria at War
Nov. 02, 1966  White Outposts in Southern Africa
Feb. 03, 1965  Congo Dilemma
Aug. 12, 1964  Red Rivalry in Africa
May 22, 1963  Political Turmoil in Southern Africa
Nov. 02, 1960  Tribalism and Nationalism in Africa
Sep. 28, 1960  Education for Africans
Apr. 10, 1959  Power Struggles in Colonial Africa
Aug. 20, 1958  Algerian Conflicts
Apr. 09, 1958  White Supremacy in South Africa
Sep. 11, 1957  Future of Algeria
Apr. 03, 1957  Political Awakening of Black Africa
Sep. 17, 1952  Africa and the West
Feb. 20, 1952  Nationalism in North Africa
Dec. 04, 1942  War Resources in Africa
May 29, 1935  Pre-War and Post-War Imperialism in Africa
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Regional Political Affairs: Africa
U.S. at War: Cold War