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South Africa's post-1994 military relations with the Mercosur countries: prospects and challenges *.


The formation of Mercosur/Mercosul in 1991 coincided with the changing political dispensation in South Africa and the end of the Cold War. The coincidence is particularly important in the sense that South Africa's foreign policy options expanded in scope and that the newly-democratised South Africa was catapulted into a changing global environment which, for decades, had been characterised by a political-ideological divide between the East and the West. The historical links between South Africa and Mercosur member states had to be redefined and reconfigured in response to the changing national and global political, economic and military environments. This presented opportunities and challenges which the new South African government, but particularly the new Department of Defence, had to deal with.


The formation of Mercosur/Mercosul (1)) (Southern Cone Common Market) coincided with the end of the Cold War, rather than being a result of it. The member countries--Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, with Bolivia and Chile as associate members--had been under military dictatorships or authoritarian rule for the whole or a significant part of the Cold War period. The end of apartheid in South Africa and the country's subsequent readmission to the international fold also coincided with the new post-Cold War era. Hence it was not long before South Africa was catapulted into the international limelight, with the expectation to assume leadership roles in certain international organisations and to articulate Third World positions on global issues. While this newly-found reputation endeared South Africa and enhanced its diplomatic significance from a strategic partnership perspective in global affairs, it also engendered resentment from some hitherto recognised regional players who had been displaced by it.

This article analyses the evolution of the broad policy framework governing defence foreign relations; the nature and scope of military relations between South Africa and the Mercosur countries from 1994 to 2002, in terms of military representation, high-profile visits by military personnel, bilateral and/multilateral agreements, and co-operation among defence-related industries; and the resumption of joint military exercises. It concludes with a reflection on prospects and possible challenges to trans-Atlantic ties in the Southern Cone.


The African National Congress (ANC), which became the ruling party after the first democratic elections in South Africa, had through its Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) committed South Africa to a regional foreign policy based on co-operation rather than competition, and stability rather than destabilisation. Recognising the adverse effects of restrictions imposed by the Bretton Woods institutions, namely the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, the ANC argued that it would be necessary to negotiate with the then GATT (General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs), the IMF and World Bank as a collective representing the Southern African countries in order to create stable markets in the region and also to stem the tide of illegal migrants flocking into South Africa due to lack of employment, peace and stability in their own countries. In this regard the RDP manual proposed that "(t)he democratic government must negotiate with neighbouring countries to forge an equitable and mutually beneficial programme of increasing cooperation, coordination and integration appropriate to the conditions of the region. In this respect, the RDP must support the goals and ideals of African integration as laid out in the Lagos Plan of Action and the Abuja Declaration". (2)) While the role of the defence force was not specifically mentioned within the foreign policy context, the manual did specify that the "defence force and the police and intelligence services must be transformed from being agents of oppression into effective servants of the community with the capacity to participate in the RDP. Our society must be thoroughly demilitarised and all security forces under clear civilian control". (3))

After 1994, the future role of the security services in the foreign policy arena, including the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), was encapsulated by the Constitution of South Africa, 1996 (Act 108 of 1996) which states in Section 199 (5) that "(t)he security services must act ... in accordance with the Constitution and the law, including customary international law and international agreements binding on the Republic". (4)) By implication the Department of Defence (DOD) would be guided by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in participating in specific foreign policy initiatives that sought to advance the country's national interest. Some national policy documents, notably the White Paper on Defence, 1996 and the Defence Review, 1998, however, permitted the DOD, especially the SANDF, to be proactive in conducting defence diplomatic initiatives in support of the DFA. For instance, the White Paper on Defence states that for "political, strategic and geographic reasons, defence co-operation with other Southern African states is a priority. South Africa will seek to strengthen the security and defence forums of the SADC [Southern African Development Community]". (5)) The White Paper on Defence, however, cautioned that "(w)ithin budgetary constraints, the DOD will engage in co-operative ventures with its counterparts throughout the world in such fields as training and education, defence planning, exchange visits, combined exercises and procurement of arms and equipment". (6))

Accordingly, the ANC-led Government of National Unity (GNU) recognised the strategic significance of the SADC region on the basis of geographic proximity; the historical role of these countries in providing sanctuary to the liberation movements; and the fact that South Africa's future is inextricably linked to the stability and prosperity of the region as a whole. At the same time, the GNU was realistic enough to caution the DOD to align its defence diplomatic commitments with its budgetary allocation.

The South African government also made a conscious decision to position itself in the global arena as a prominent 'exporter' of peace-building and conflict resolution strategies. Even though the expectation was that the SANDF would participate in the peace support operations of the United Nations (UN), the former Organisation of African Unity (OAU) and SADC, the scale and frequency of such involvement could not be determined in advance. This constraint has been exacerbated by the Government's growing leadership role in the newly-established African Union (AU)--the successor to the now-defunct OAU, the development and implementation of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), and the general expectation on the part of prominent Third World countries that South Africa should advance South-South co-operation and engage the global North on behalf of developing countries.

Having been placed under a mandatory UN arms embargo since 1977 and subsequently trying to conduct arms trade through surreptitious means, South Africa suffered a serious backlog in respect of the latest defence-related technical know-how and military hardware. Thus South Africa's re-admission to the international community provided an ideal opportunity for the SANDF to catch up with its counterparts in the rest of the world through bilateral and multilateral agreements, most notably through Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs). Even though the primary focus of defence foreign relations was originally supposed to be (and still remains) SADC, the SANDF had to look beyond Africa in order to stay 'on par' with the best in defence technology, hardware and military doctrine. South Africa's defence diplomatic initiatives involving the Mercosur countries were part of this reality.


Military relations between South Africa and the Mercosur countries in the period from 1994 to 2002, have been influenced by a number of factors, most importantly by the overall restructuring of diplomatic missions or offices by the DFA due to limited financial resources and changed priorities. Thus, military attache offices have been closed down in some countries and new ones opened in others.

3.1 Argentina

The nature of military relations between South Africa and Argentina can hardly be described as ever being hostile because both in the pre-1994 and post-1994 periods, military interaction continued unabated, albeit secretly in the immediate pre-1994 period. The imposition of the mandatory arms embargo against South Africa in terms of UN Security Council Resolution 418 of 1977 was seen as a bearable inconvenience. Argentina on its part, faced with a perceived threat on its borders, resolved to befriend any country that would help augment its military capacity and diplomatic relations. In response, South Africa presented itself in this light.

After 1994 the military relations between Argentina and South Africa were characterised by continuity and stability in many dimensions, including military representation, high-profile goodwill visits, and training exchange programmes.

3.1.1 Military representation

The advent of democracy in South Africa necessitated the revival of active and open consultations between the military establishments of South Africa and Argentina. Although extensive military representation of South Africa in Argentina commenced in earnest in 1986, the restructuring of South Africa's diplomatic representation after 1994 resulted in South Africa's representative in Argentina also being accredited to Paraguay and Uruguay. (7))

The Argentine military office in Pretoria was re-opened in February 1993. Similar to the South African practice, the Argentine military representative is responsible for all defence-related matters covering the South African Army, the Air Force and Navy (hereinafter the SA Army, the SA Air Force and the SAN respectively). It is, however, also notable that only naval officers have thus far represented the Argentine armed forces in South Africa, emphasising the naval interests shared by both countries.

3.1.2 Military visits

Diplomatic visits normally give an indication of the eagerness of countries to identify and promote mutual interests. With regard to Argentine South African military relations, there have been limited exchange visits by high-profile military officials (both uniformed and civilian). On the civilian side, Juan Carlos Melian, an adviser to the Defence Commission of the Argentinean Parliament, visited the Unisa Centre for Latin American Studies (UCLAS) on 19 March 1996. He was accompanied by German Dominguez, Cultural Attache, Embassy of the Argentine Republic in South Africa. According to Melian, one of the long-term goals of his visit to South Africa was to strengthen co-operation in the South Atlantic region. Being a member of the council of an association known as the Seguridad Estrategica Regional (SER) (also known as Regional Strategic Security), Melian stated that he wanted to "promote debate on security and defence problems on national, regional and international levels". He further indicated that the SER was in the process of establishing a database for such purposes. (8))

On the military side, the Chief of the SAN twice visited Argentina (October 1996 and October 1997). In September 1996, the Argentine Chief of Army, General Baiza, visited the SA Army. The then Chief of the SA Army, Lieutenant-General Otto, paid a goodwill visit to Argentina in February 1997. During the following year, in April 1998, the Argentine Chief of Army Staff paid a goodwill visit to the SA Army. The other significant visit by Argentine personnel was to Africa Aerospace and Defence 2000, a defence and aerospace industry exposition, and to SAAF 80, the SA Air Force's 80th birthday celebrations, both of which took place on 5-9 September 2000 at the Waterkloof Air Force Base. Making the 2000 visit even more special was the fact that Argentina was the only South American country attending the show to exhibit two aircraft as well. (9))

3.1.3 Military training

During the period 1994 to 2002, the Argentine armed forces did not send a single military student to attend any of the SANDF military courses in South Africa. It could be argued that since the SANDF had to accommodate the integration process, limited opportunities were made available to foreign students. Conversely, South Africa had been able to secure training slots in the Argentine armed forces' training programmes. For instance, during 1995, the SAN sent a surface attachment to Argentina. In the same year and also in 1996, a SAN officer attended the Naval Control of Shipping course In 1999 and 2000 a SAN officer attended the Ice Navigation course. (10))

As already indicated, there is a clear preponderance of navy-related activities between the two countries. This can be ascribed to the existence of two agreements to this effect. Firstly, the Agreement on the Exchange of Information on Maritime Traffic which was signed on 30 August 1991 ; and secondly, the Agreement of Peacetime Cooperation between Argentine-RSA Navies, which was signed in October 1997. (11)) While the first agreement is a bilateral arrangement between two countries with large oceanic waters separating them, the second seems to logically exclude periods of conflict and/or war. Hence it should not be misconstrued as a bilateral defence agreement that would guarantee mutual military assistance during times of war.

3.2 Brazil

The hegemonic rivalry between Brazil and Argentina, to a large extent affected the way both countries interacted with South Africa. Being a pariah state prior to 1994, South Africa sought to exploit the situation to its advantage. South Africa hoped that maintaining cordial relations with the two countries would ensure support for its position in international fora, amongst others in the UN General Assembly. However, history proved that this was not always possible as both countries regularly reviewed their political stance towards South Africa, especially when they democratised during the early to mid-1980s. As a result, military interaction between Brazil and South Africa was largely in the area of diplomatic representation, goodwill visits and training exchange programmes.

3.2.1 Military representation

Overt military relations between Brazil and South Africa only commenced in 1994 with the advent of democracy in the latter. It is notable that South Africa's first black military attache in South America was appointed in Brazil. Holding the rank of a Lieutenant-Colonel, he was the first relatively junior military representative of South Africa in such an important country.

Unlike South Africa, Brazil has since 1994 always sent two military representatives to South Africa, one as military attache (Army and Air Force) and the other a naval attache As is the case with Argentina, the Brazilian Navy is hardly ever coupled with any other arm of service, whereas its Army is normally coupled with its Air Force. The presence of two attaches demonstrates in no uncertain terms the seriousness with which the Brazilian armed forces regard South Africa from military, political and geo-strategic perspectives.

3.2.2 Military visits

Given the high level of military representation of Brazilian interests in South Africa, it is only logical that there would be substantial bilateral interaction and high-profile visits. The first official visit by a Brazilian naval vessel was in June 1995 when the hydrographic vessel, Sirius, conducted a routine visit to Cape Town. In 1996 three SANDF yachts participated in the Cape to Rio Yacht Race and the Brazilian Navy provided essential support to the visiting participants. During November of the same year, two SA Air Force members visited Brazil to attend a fighter pilot symposium. The South African Special Forces paid an official visit to Brazil in 1997, as did the Chief of the SAN. Members of the SAN attended the South Atlantic Maritime Area Organisation meeting that was held in Brazil in March 1998. In April of the same year, the Chief of the SANDF hosted the Chief of Staff of the Brazilian Army. The SA Army Chaplain visited Brazil for the World Council of Churches (WCC) conference in May 1998. In October 1998, South African Rear-Admiral M J G Soderlund and Commander Jamieson visited Brazil in order to finalise preparations for Atlasur 1999. During 1999 the Chief of the SA Army paid a goodwill visit to Brazil and in April of the same year the Chief of the SANDF joined the Denel delegation to attend the LAD 99 Defence Exhibition in that country. (12))

One of the highlights of Brazil-South Africa military relations was the 500th celebrations of 'Discovery of Brazil' which took place on 30 April 2000. For that occasion, the SAN sent a hydrographic ship, the SAS Protea, to represent the SANDF. (13)) When the SAN celebrated its 75th birthday, the Brazilian Navy reciprocated by sending three ships to South Africa. The SANDF also had three entries in the 2000 Cape to Rio Yacht Race, and the Brazilian Navy once again provided essential support to the SANDF participants. During September 2000, the Chief of Staff of the Brazilian Navy paid a goodwill visit to South Africa, following which members of the South African Defence Intelligence community visited Brazil for the Intelligence Exchange conference in November 2000. The Chief of the SA Air Force attended the LAD Defence Exhibition 2001 in April 2001 and in June 2001, the Chief of the SA Army also paid a goodwill visit to Brazil. (14))

3.2.3 Military training

Personnel of the Brazilian armed forces have attended some military courses presented by the SANDF, mostly naval courses (see Table 1). It is also noteworthy that the Brazilians have regularly been sending attachments to SAN's ships as part of their training and skills transfer programme, an initiative from which both navies have benefited.

In accordance with the principle of reciprocity and complementarity, the SANDF has similarly sent its members to attend courses in Brazil. In addition to providing training on Naval Control of Shipping, the Brazilian armed forces have reserved slots for the SANDF on Senior Staff courses and have also enabled it to send attachments to Brazilian ships, submarines in particular (see Table 2).

3.2.4 Military agreements

Most of the post-1994 military interactions and exchanges between Brazil and South Africa have been facilitated by substantial goodwill among politicians. Despite the absence of a formal military agreement binding the two military establishments, their interaction surpasses other bilateral exchanges, which are based on formal agreements. Various military agreements were in the process of being negotiated during 2001 and 2002, amongst others pertaining to merchant shipping and related maritime matters; environmental co-operation; science and technology; and aeronautical and maritime search-and-rescue services. (15)) There are increasing indications that these could all be consolidated into a single Agreement on Defence and Security Co-operation. An agreement to combat drug-trafficking between the two countries is, nevertheless, already in place. (16)) The Declaration of Intent signed between the two governments in June 2003 gave impetus to the expansion and diversification of military interaction between the two armed forces. However, a comprehensive defence agreement is yet to be finalised and signed. It is envisaged that such an agreement would cover aspects such as skills transfer, joint military exercises and training opportunities of military personnel on the basis of reciprocity.

The co-operation of Brazil and South Africa in defence-related industries has an important sub-regional dimension. Brazil is increasingly involved in the SADC sub-region, particularly in Namibia where the Brazilian Navy is assisting the country in creating a naval capacity. The Namibian Minister of Defence, Peter Mueshinghange, visited Brazil in the early 1990s with a view to solicit assistance in establishing a military infrastructure, including a naval base for Namibia. In fact, Namibia had already ordered patrol boats from Brazil. Namibia also showed interest to acquire the Brazilian Tucano military trainer aircraft and Bandeirante transport aircraft from Embraer. Thus, it would be necessary for Brazil to station some naval and air force personnel in Namibia in order to train Namibian personnel and upgrade Namibian military equipment. (17))

While the involvement of Brazil in Namibia should not be viewed as a threat to South Africa's security, it is important that both Brazil and Namibia should not harbour negative perceptions of South Africa, particularly in the military sphere. For many years, the UN arms embargo prevented Embraer from providing arms to South Africa. (18)) However, with the lifting of sanctions, co-operation between the two countries in the area of defence-related industries has not been as impressive as might have been expected. This is particularly due to the fact that South Africa is also a significant arms supplier (in Third World terms). For instance, in 1999 South Africa's Denel was the only company listed in SIPRI's 100 largest arms-producing companies from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and developing countries. (19)) There have been very modest orders of military equipment by Brazil. In 1997, Brazil ordered so-called Sensitive Major Significant Equipment (SMSE) and Sensitive Significant Equipment (SSE) to the value of R19 000 and R2,6 million respectively from South Africa. According to the South African National Conventional Arms Control Committee (NCACC), the statutory body responsible for designing and implementing South Africa's arms trade policy, the SMSE comprises "conventional implements of war that could cause heavy personnel casualties and/or major damage and destruction to material, structures, objects and facilities". The SSE include "all types of hand-held and portable weapons of a calibre smaller than 12.7mm such as assault rifles and pistols". (20))

It is undeniably true that Brazil-South Africa relations in the military sphere are very much at an infancy stage. This can be attributed to the strict adherence of Brazil to previous UN resolutions which effectively isolated South Africa. Presently, both countries maintain mutual recognition and understanding of their significance in their respective regions. Furthermore, both countries realise that in order to attain their respective global strategic objectives, they have to co-operate on issues of regional significance, particularly in the area of peace and security. Brazil's involvement in Southern Africa, mainly in the previously Lusophone countries of Angola and Mozambique, is crucial for peacemaking and post-conflict peace-building activities. Arguably, if not for the involvement of countries such as Brazil, South Africa would have had a much bigger problem in dealing with the security concerns of its neighbours. Both countries believe that they have a joint responsibility to patrol the South-East Atlantic, hence the strategic imperative to put in service the new corvettes South Africa acquired through the Strategic Defence Packages. (21))

3.3 Paraguay

Unlike Argentina and Brazil, Paraguay, is a small country that is particularly vulnerable to external influences. This reality was exacerbated by the role of the military establishment in the country's history. As a result, Paraguay could hardly resist temptations of flouting the international arms embargo regime in its pre-1994 interactions with South Africa.

The prominance enjoyed by the military establishment, especially in pursuit of covert diplomatic relations, waned and eventually came to an end in 1994 with the political change in South Africa. Consequently, the office of South Africa's defence attache in Paraguay was closed down. Since then, South Africa's defence attache posted in Buenos Aires, Argentina, is also accredited to Paraguay as a non-resident attache. Similarly, Paraguay no longer has any military representation in South Africa. (22))

Despite political inexpediency and international condemnation, Paraguay-South Africa military relations were rooted in the inherent weakness of their respective political systems and in the lack of industrial infrastructure in Paraguay. Paraguay had strong regional ambitions that could not be translated into action, owing simply to the fact that its neighbours were potential rivals. Thus, South Africa presented an ideal opportunity to fulfil those ambitions. However, it is noteworthy that it was not only the need for military-industrial development which prompted Paraguay to defy the international call for the isolation of South Africa, but also socio-economic factors. The strong bilateral military relations that existed prior to 1994 nonetheless dissipated during the restructuring and consolidation process of South Africa's foreign missions. The closing down of the South African embassy in Asuncion demonstrated a change of direction by the post-1994 government of South Africa.

3.4 Uruguay

Uruguay also had strong military relations with South Africa during the sanctions era. The general nature and scope of Uruguay's military relations with South Africa resembled, to a large extent, those between South Africa and Paraguay.

With the closure of South Africa's diplomatic and military representatives' offices in Uruguay, the relations remained strained but not hostile However, following the political change of 1994 in South Africa, no effort was made to re-open the offices. Instead, the South African defence attache posted in Buenos Aires, Argentina, is also accredited to Uruguay as a non-resident attache. Uruguay only closed its defence attache's office in South Africa in December 1999. (23)) Arguably this step was largely motivated by considerations other than dissatisfaction with South African policy, such as financial constraints and the fact that South Africa does not have a resident defence attache in Uruguay, which could possibly be perceived by Uruguay as an indication of the limited strategic or political value that South Africa attaches to the latter.

From its inception the South Africa-Uruguay military relationship has always been biased in favour of South Africa. This was mainly due to the relatively higher level of economic and military development in South Africa and the corresponding dependence of Uruguay on South Africa with regard to certain technical military expertise. South Africa had prudently exploited these weaknesses until the democratisation process started in Uruguay. It is nonetheless notable that Uruguay's changed political approach to South Africa corresponded with those of other South American countries. There was a strong realisation in Uruguay that South Africa's strategic priorities have changed since 1994. This was also in line with the popular thinking among South Africa's foreign policy-makers and analysts that the Southern Cone countries, including Uruguay, should where possible be dealt with as a group within the Mercosur framework.

3.5 Bolivia

The advent of democracy in South Africa did not change the situation drastically in terms of diplomatic and military relations with Bolivia. The post-1994 South African government did not open an embassy in Bolivia. Thus, South Africa does not have a resident defence attache in Bolivia, and vice versa. There are currently no military agreements in existence or any due for future consideration. However, the absence of direct diplomatic and military representation does not reflect negatively on bilateral relations, but is largely based on other considerations, including financial constraints. With the possibility of Bolivia becoming a full member of Mercosur, South Africa has considered it more prudent to deal with that country within a collective framework. Being a landlocked country, Bolivia is bound to extend its diplomatic representation much wider to include most countries in the Andean Community and beyond, including South Africa. However, this may not be possible due to limited resources. The actual or perceived strategic value of Bolivia to South Africa in the period prior to 1994 is not clear. Nevertheless, Bolivia had a relationship of dependency with South Africa, which was optimally exploited by the latter for political purposes.

3.6 Chile

One of the most enduring military relationships that South Africa ever had with a South American country, was that with Chile. As was the case with Bolivia, Paraguay and Uruguay, South Africa's diplomatic relations with Chile were spearheaded by the military establishment. Through military intelligence structures both countries managed to achieve what they could not achieve through overt, non-military structures and processes. The post-1994 political dispensation affected South Africa-Chile relations in respect of military diplomatic representation, visits by military personnel, military training and interaction between defence-related industries.

3.6.1 Military representation

Despite the changed political situation in South Africa, which prompted it to revise military relations with Chile, bilateral military interaction continued after 1994, albeit scaled down in intensity. South Africa's military representation in Chile continued until December 2000 when the defence attache's office in Santiago was closed down. While this coincided with the DFA's restructuring of diplomatic missions, the mere fact that both Chile and South Africa could no longer sustain previous secret agreements, arguably made the decision easier.

Ironically, and contrary to South Africa's decision to close down the defence attache's office in Santiago, Chile's military representation in South Africa has appreciably intensified. However, whereas South Africa had only one military representative for the Army, Air Force and the Navy, Chile's military representation since 1995 involved an independent Air attache and an Army attache coupled with the Navy.

3.6.2 Military visits

During the period from 1994 to 2002 there were a number of high-profile visits by South African military personnel to Chile. In 1997, the SAN personnel were invited to Chile to help them develop their 76/62mm Oto Melara gun-overhauling course. Apparently the invitation stemmed from the interaction between the two countries prior to 1994. During the mid-1980s South Africa provided, amongst others, artillery training to Chilean armed forces. In October 1997 two SA Air Force members visited Chilean Naval facilities and later attended the Digital Battlefield symposium. In March 1988 the Chief of the SA Air Force paid a goodwill visit to Santiago which was reportedly a great success. During October 1999 some members of the Policy and Planning Division of the Defence Secretariat attended a Defence Seminar that was held in Chile and the Chief of the SA Air Force, together with some members from the Armaments Corporation of South Africa (Armscor) and Denel, attended the Fidae 2000 exposition in Chile during March 2000. In April 2000, the Chief of Joint Operations attended the Naval Control of Shipping Critique conference and in October 2000 SAN personnel attended the Chris (hydrographic) meeting. In December 2000, the Chief of the SAN attended the Exponaval exposition. (24))

While there were a number of high-profile visits by SANDF personnel to Chile, these were not reciprocated. In fact, by 2002, the only visit by a prominent member of the Chilean armed forces was that of March 2000 when the Chief of the SA Navy hosted the Chief of Chilean Navy Procurement, Admiral O Torres, on behalf of African Defence Systems (ADS), a South African company in the defence-related industry. (25))

3.6.3 Military training

Most of the bilateral interaction took place in the area of military training. During 2001 the SA Air Force presented military training to Chilean students. This reflected a drastic departure from pre-1994 student exchanges, which were mainly hosted by the SA Army. From 1994 to 2001 the SANDF had also trained at least 33 Chileans in the Cheetah D Simulator course. This is an indication of a confidence in the SANDF simulator training or an interest that may result in the purchase of the Cheetah or its related components.

In accordance with the principle of reciprocity and complementarity, the military courses offered by the Chilean armed forces to the SANDF were largely in the area of naval co-operation (see Table 3). It is notable that there has been a reduction in the number and frequency of students and courses that are being exchanged between the two countries. Furthermore, with the closure of the South African defence attache's office in Chile, a corresponding reduction in the intensity and frequency of training opportunities is expected.

3.6.4 Mutual agreements and defence industry co-operation

The nature and scope of political support and congruity normally guide the formal interaction between states. However, in the case of Chile-South Africa relations, it is noticeable that reciprocal military training was never preceded by a formal bilateral agreement between the two countries. This demonstrates without doubt the cordiality of relations between the two countries. There is a strong possibility that a defence co-operation agreement could be signed in the near future which may result in increased exchanges and more formal interaction. (26)) It is, however, not envisaged that the South African defence attache's office in Santiago will be re-opened soon.

Nonetheless, the signing of a defence co-operation agreement would considerably impact on defence-related industries. Most of the South African beneficiaries would be Denel's aviation wing. Aircraft components and flying training, including simulators, are in demand in Chile. Chile's status as a potential export market for South Africa has not changed after 1994. In 1997 alone, Chile respectively imported R16,2 million and R805 000 worth of SMSE and Non-Sensitive Equipment (NSE) (NSE includes all support equipment utilised in the direct support of combat operations and that has no inherent capability to kill or destroy, for instance, meteorological stations, radio equipment and radars). (27)) This counters any notion of a reduced strategic significance of South Africa to Chile, and is indicative of a reality that there is increased fluidity in the arms export market. The new tendency is to include counter-trade and skills-transfer clauses in the contracts for arms transfers, creating the likelihood that only stronger and well-established arms suppliers are likely to survive. The military effectiveness of weapon systems is no longer sufficient to secure military contracts.

A cursory look at the inventories of most South American countries shows a strong presence of military hardware that originates from high-profile global players in the arms production industry. Given all these factors, it remains to be seen if military relations between South Africa and the Mercosur countries can be improved beyond the current levels of interaction to include aspects such as intelligence training and technology transfer, especially in the area of ship-building.

Based on the data provided in Table 4, Brazil is expected to continue to host South African military students, simply because it has the resources and capacity to do so. The rationale for downsizing and/or closing the military attaches' offices in some of the countries seems self-evident. Certain military services in some countries, such as the air force or navy, are largely symbolic and do not pose any threat to neighbouring countries. With the formation of Mercosur, there has been a significant increase in the trend that states come to rely on their neighbours or sub-regional structures to deter any attack against them. It is therefore surmised that South Africa can expect increased military interaction on substantive issues, mainly with Argentina, Brazil and Chile. Increased interaction engenders mutual understanding and military exercises can be instrumental in this process.


The vast ocean separating the countries of the South Atlantic region necessitates the involvement of naval forces in any military exercise. This does not preclude the possibility of joint land and air force operational exercises, especially involving amphibious landings and bridgehead formations. However, the most inhibiting factor, preventing or limiting the possibility and frequency of joint military exercises, is the fact that countries in the region are mostly developing, with Argentina, Brazil and South Africa classified as middle-income emerging countries. A further complicating factor is the limitation imposed by language differences. South Africa and some Mercosur countries have nevertheless held several United States (US)-sponsored naval exercises, most notably the Atlasur (Atlantic South/South Atlantic), the Unitas and the Transoceanic exercises.

4.1 Exercise Atlasur

This joint military exercise involves four countries, namely, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa and Uruguay. Its primary aim is to ensure and enhance interoperability of military equipment and harmonisation of military operating procedures during operations. It takes place every two years and participating countries take turns in hosting the exercise. However, every two years it is alternately held off the South American and South African coasts, thus resulting in South Africa having to host it every second turn. While the planning phase of the exercise is conducted long in advance, the actual practical phase of the exercise lasts for two weeks. The exercise depends largely on funding by the US. (28)) As Table 5 indicates, South Africa has taken part in all Atlasur exercises since 1994, most of which were conducted in South African waters. (29))

4.2 Exercise Unitas

Unlike Atlasur, the Unitas exercise is much bigger in terms of the number of participating countries, duration and the scope of its operation. It involves Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela and the US, with South Africa participating on invitation from one of the participating countries in that particular country's section of the exercise. For instance, SAS Drakensberg and units of the SANDF participated in Exercise Unitas from North America to South America during 1996. (30)) The exercise is designed to provide participating countries the opportunity to conduct combined naval operations in furtherance of mutual defence objectives. The exercise takes place every year in the South Atlantic region during the period from July to December, with the actual practical phase lasting between 10 and 14 days. (31))

4.3 Exercise Transoceanic

While both Atlasur and Unitas are practical exercises involving military vessels and military personnel at sea in defensive and offensive roles, Transoceanic is a naval control shipping exercise. As it is a communication and procedural 'paper' exercise, there are no naval vessels used at sea. The participating countries are Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, South Africa, Uruguay, Venezuela and Panama (the latter involved for the first time in 2001 as an observer) (see Table 6). The primary goal of the exercise is to test and evaluate the procedures for Naval Control and Civil Direction of Maritime Traffic and Fishing, during a period of tension with limited aggression, which increases progressively

on the basis of a fictitious scenario. The exercise is held annually and lasts for about 12 days. (32)) Given the nature of potential events that may disrupt the smooth flow of maritime traffic in the South Atlantic, Exercise Transoceanic presents an opportunity to optimally explore all options without incurring exorbitant expenses for 'live' exercises.

The military exercises in the South Atlantic Ocean have, however, not been limited to those sponsored by the US but have also included combined military exercises arranged on a bilateral basis. For instance, a Brazilian Task Group consisting of two frigates conducted an operational visit to Cape Town in September 1996. Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay participated in the SAN's 75th celebrations during April 1997 and, in the same year, a senior officer from Brazil attended Exercise Morning Star. Similarly, South Africa has also held a joint military exercise with Chile. A SAN officer also joined his counterparts from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom (UK) and the US, during Exercise Buoy which was held in Chile in April 2000. (33))


Future relations between South Africa and the Mercosur countries, at a bilateral and a multilateral level, are determined by various factors that are prevalent in the Mercosur sub-region at any given time.

5.1 South-South co-operation

One of the main driving forces of South Atlantic co-operation is the notion of South-South co-operation. South Africa, through its internationalist President Thabo Mbeki, has been instrumental in espousing strong ties in the Southern Hemisphere, especially on economic and political issues. Thus, countries such as Brazil, India and South Africa have succeeded in articulating the positions of the global South in many important fora, including the World Trade Organisation (WTO). South Africa, in particular, has sought to conclude a free trade agreement with Mercosur. (34)) Since military relations are a function of political and economic ties between countries, it is expected that military relations will improve substantially as a result of agreements in the political and economic arenas.

With the decline of overt regional rivalry, previously evidenced by the arms race between Argentina and Brazil and between Argentina and Chile, an atmosphere exists in which all Mercosur countries can negotiate and engage one another within the framework of a common security approach. In this respect it is important to note that Mercosur, which is an economic arrangement, was a direct result of successes in the security sphere. Successes on issues such as border disputes and the peaceful use of nuclear power engendered a co-operative spirit that was taken a step further through the creation of Mercosur. However, the advances that have been made in the economic arena have not necessarily translated into military integration as opposed to security (military) co-operation. According to Pion-Berlin, security co-operation, as practised in South America, "is a form of deterrence predicated not on raising the stakes for potential aggressors but on making military intentions and processes transparent". (35)) In this respect, security integration refers to "a defense system that unites states militarily to fend off potential aggressors, in which an attack against one is an attack against all". (36))

5.3 Brazil's budgetary constraints and the Amazon security

The general downward trend in budgetary allocations for defence forces throughout the world, and in South America in particular, has had a tremendous impact on the force levels, force designs and force structures of many countries in the region. While in South Africa there is pressure to downsize and rightsize, there is corresponding pressure to restructure and transform the armed forces in order to reflect the integration forces that are now part of the SANDF. In contrast, the Mercosur countries have a substantial portion of their populations under arms (see Table 4). (37)) Brazil's military establishment has, in some arms of service, more than the total number of personnel under arms than all the other Mercosur countries and South Africa combined. It could be argued that the size of Brazil's armed forces are commensurate with its economic capacity and geographical size, but it is not clear whether or not this is proportionate with the requirements for dealing with threats to its national security. It is not inconceivable that the instability that exists in Colombia has the potential to spill over into the bordering countries such as Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. It is against this background that these countries, most notably Brazil, have stepped up their military presence on their common border with Colombia.

For Brazil, the protection of the Amazon region is a major concern. The Amazon region constitutes about 42 per cent of Brazil's landmass and is reputed to contain vast mineral deposits and other valuable natural resources. Consistent with the analyses of past and present geopoliticians, the Amazon is viewed as a key to achieving the country's destiny of grandeza (national greatness). Thus, the call for the internationalisation of the Amazon sparks negative reaction from the Brazilian population, particularly the military establishment. Furthermore, US military activities in the neighbouring countries, for example operating radar installations and conducting military exercises, are perceived to constitute a 'military belt' "that is designed not only to combat the narcotics trade but also to monitor the activities of Brazil in the Amazon". (38)) There is also a perennial fear that the Colombian rebels could use the Amazon region as a sanctuary, or for drug-trafficking and the illicit transfer of weapons.

In response Brazil started a US$1.4 billion project, known as SIVAM (Sistema de Vigilancia de Amazonia--Amazon Region Surveillance System), in order to monitor the Amazon basin by using radar, early-warning aircraft and ground sensors. However, more than 70 per cent of Brazil's total military budget is earmarked for salaries and pensions. Brazil also embarked on a US$3.5 billion capital acquisition programme that includes new aircraft and helicopters and the upgrading of existing aircraft. Brazil's fleet of river patrol boats is also to be upgraded to enable them to carry helicopters. These could all be used to protect the Amazon region and possibly to fight terrorism. (39)) Since Argentina and Brazil do not perceive each other as rivals or potential enemies anymore, both countries consult regularly on defence matters within the Mercosur framework.

5.4 Global fight against terrorism

The aftermath of the events of 11 September 2001 has had a seismic effect in all corners of the globe, leading amongst others to the fight against terrorism. Global partnership in combating terrorism has become a common currency and serves as a basis for security co-operation. Given the high priority placed on terrorism by the US, as the world's single superpower, it has become imperative for all states who want to benefit (economically, militarily and in other spheres) from US support, to demonstrate unequivocally that they are not easily susceptible or providing sanctuary to terrorist elements. The Western hemispheric security arrangement, the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR), arguably has become discredited or irrelevant from the perspective of some major Latin American countries, including Argentina, Brazil and Mexico. This trend commenced in 1982 when Argentina invoked the treaty in order to secure protection during the Falklands/Malvinas War with the UK. The US vetoed the move, and instead chose to support its long-standing ally, the UK. Thus, when the US tried to invoke the TIAR in September 2002--a year after the September 11 attacks--Mexico stated that TIAR was both discredited and irrelevant. This was because the US had reneged on its TIAR obligations and had emphasised the military aspects of defence, excluding issues such as public health, environmental security and drug-trafficking. Announcing Mexico's withdrawal from the Treaty (TIAR), Mexican President Vicente Fox indicated that Mexico was looking for a new regional security system. (40)

According to General James T Hill, Commander, US Southern Command, "Colombia is on the front-line of the regional war against terrorism. Its people suffer daily from murder, bombings, kidnappings, and lawlessness practically unimaginable to us [Americans]. In this war-torn country, the conflict has been hyper-accelerated by illicit drug money, claiming thousands of lives and creating millions of refugees. Some 1.5 million Colombians have been displaced from their homes. Last year [2002] there were more terrorist attacks in Colombia alone than in all other nations of the world combined--an average of four per day. This country has the highest homicide rate in the world--77.5 per 100,000-13 times the US rate". (41)) The result is continued security concerns on the part of the Mercosur countries about the ability of Colombia, in conjunction with the US, to seal the borders tightly enough and not to 'export' terrorism, at least as defined by the US. From a trans-Atlantic perspective, a common understanding among the Mercosur countries and South Africa as to what the concept of terrorism entails will go a long way towards formulating congruent and mutually reinforcing policies on terrorism.

One of the thorny issues facing the post-Cold War international community is how to deal with a single superpower who at times adopts and implements a unilateralist foreign policy that threatens to drive a wedge among allies and foes alike. While the notion of strengthening South-South relations resonates well among the developing countries, the post-September 11 period has seen global political polarisation, not so much along the faultline of the rich North and the poor South but in relation to the controversial foreign policy of the US which almost renders the UN obsolete. The recent examples of the polarising effect of US foreign policy include its refusal to sign the Protocol on International Criminal Court; the subsequent infamous Article 98 of US legislation which threatened to withdraw US military funding from countries that sign the Protocol; and the invasion of Iraq in the absence of a UN mandate. South Africa and some of the Mercosur countries were vocal in opposing US positions on these issues.

New left-leaning political leaders, particularly Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, Nestor Kirchner of Argentina and Lula da Silva of Brazil, pursue independent foreign and domestic policies which are capable of undermining any global power on specific issues. They have even made it clear to the US that they take cognisance of the latter's 'divide-and-rule' policy which seeks to secure bilateral agreements with countries such as Chile beyond the framework of collective regional arrangements. (42))

5.6 Trans-Atlantic regional co-operation on security

Despite major advances in bilateral military relations (including joint military exercises that have been held) between South Africa and the Mercosur countries, there appears to be a strategic vacuum created by an absence of an overarching regional security organisation that covers the South Atlantic region. The notion of a South Atlantic Treaty Organisation (SATO) modelled along the lines of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NAT0) never materialised during the Cold War era, largely due to the possible inclusion of South Africa which was then still a pariah state. (43)) The declaration of the Zone of Peace and Co-operation in the South Atlantic (ZPCSA) gave a semblance of a regional intent on designing security architecture, but the ideal was never converted into an intergovernmental organisation. Talks of establishing a South Atlantic Rim Association (SARA) on the basis of the ZPCSA have similarly not produced any concrete results. With the global fight against terrorism taking root and the corresponding emergence of influential but violent non-state actors giving rise to a changed global agenda, states are more inclined to act in a concerted manner through a multilateral framework, than through a piecemeal unilateral or bilateral approach. Increased illegal fishing, piracy and illegal trafficking in drugs and weapons in the South Atlantic bears testimony to the need for harmonised policies and a transnational strategy. Such an approach will also enhance the region's chances for donor funding from the North, for combating both terrorism and transnational crime. However, it is well known that the military--on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean--are vehemently opposed to becoming involved in crime-combating activities because this is seen to be eroding their military professionalism. (44))

5.7 Truth and reconciliation for the military

Argentina, a major Mercosur partner, has been plagued by a series of economic and political disruptions over the last two years. During this period the country suffered one of its worst economic crises ever, also considering that there was no political stability as presidents could not stay even half a term in office due to protest politics and violent riots. Argentina's military establishment has also not recovered psychologically and materially from the Falklands/Malvinas War of 1982. Further compounding the problem is the decline in the budgetary allocation for defence purpose, while Chile and Brazil have increased their people under arms. However, the co-operative spirit permeating Mercosur has enabled the military to 'construct bridges' among the armed forces of the member states.

Despite all these positive confidence-building measures, Argentina's military establishment (and indeed those of the Mercosur group) are facing an uncertain future. This is due to the newly-elected President Nestor Kirchner who is determined to revisit the actions of the military establishment perpetrated during 1976-83 'dirty war'. An estimated 30 000 people 'disappeared' during the 'dirty war' and Kirchner has already started purging the military high command. He has also indicated his willingness to extradite the human rights violators of that time to any country who wants to put them to trial. He furthermore wants the Supreme Court to annul a number of amnesty laws and pardons that have been put in place by former presidents Raul Alfonsin and Carlos Saul Menem after the 'dirty war'. (45)) He has also told the senior officers of the armed forces to 'come clean' about their actions during the 'dirty war' and stated that "each must be charged for what he did, without shielding behind the historic prestige of the (Armed Forces) institution". (46)) While this stance may have pleased the relatives and friends of 'disappeared' people, it has alienated the military.

The successful implementation of this plan by Kirchner has the potential of being replicated in other neighbouring countries, which had similar experiences during the period when the military were in power. This will not only increase coup prospects, but will also make the military more internally focused. Democratic governance in Latin America is arguably still not firmly and irreversibly entrenched as demonstrated by the events in Haiti (1991 and 2004), Peru (1992), Guatemala (1993) and especially the near-coup in Paraguay in April 1996. (47)) The immediate effect of an internally focused military establishment is that serious military co-operation between South Africa and these countries is relegated as a priority.

Furthermore, Argentina would like to capitalise on South Africa's reputation of having an independent foreign policy and being an emerging global player in the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts throughout the world. The issue of Falklands (Malvinas) sovereignty remains high on Argentina's foreign policy agenda. South Africa could play a critical role in urging the UK to re-open negotiations with Argentina on the Falklands issue and related issues such as the lifting of all arms embargoes imposed by the UK on Argentina following the war. In October 1998, Prime Minister Tony Blair had mooted the idea of partially lifting the arms embargo, particularly on arms that may be used for dual civilian and military purposes (such as during UN peacekeeping missions) without jeopardising the security of the disputed territories. (48))


The military relations between South Africa and the Mercosur countries are determined by the nature of the political systems in place. In the past, South Africa and most of the Mercosur countries have been under the direct control or influence of their respective military establishments. During the Botha administration, the former South African Defence Force (SADF) had an undue influence in the political decision-making processes of the country and in some South American countries the military actually ruled. As South Africa experienced UN-imposed sanctions, the countries presently constituting Mercosur were being condemned by the international community on account of their praetorian governments. Consequently, this provided an ideal environment for South Africa to find credible allies. However, the prevalence of praetorianism in South America was not the only factor that bound them to South Africa; their shared aversion of communism was even more crucial.

South Africa's post-1994 foreign policy and the independently-minded political leadership in South Africa and the Mercosur countries have been a main catalyst for closer co-operation. However, this cooperation, especially on military issues, remains symbolic and lacks substance. While both South Africa and Brazil--as real, perceived or aspirant hegemons in their respective regions--have a congruent international agenda and compatible perspectives on global issues, they are also pursuing similar interests within a globalising world which at times, also becomes a basis for competition. As a result, South Africa's post-1994 military relations with the Mercosur countries provides both serious challenges as well as prospects for increasing inter-regional cooperation.
SINCE 1994

Nature of Course/Training   Year

Brazilian Navy
officer attended the
Naval Command and
Staff course                1997

Brazilian Navy sent
an attachment to
the SAS Outeniqua           1998

Brazilian Navy
sent a submarine
attachment to the RSA       1998

Brazilian Navy officer
attended the Foreign
Officers' Orientation
course                      1998

A Brazilian Army
officer attended the
SA Army Senior Commandand
Staff Duties course         1999

Brazilian Navy sent
a MCM attachment
to the RSA                  1999

Brazilian Navy officer
attended the Naval
Command and Staff course     1999

Source: Information provided by
the South African Department of
Defence Headquarters, Directorate
Foreign Relations, Corporate
Staff Division, Pretoria,
2 October 2001.


Nature of Course        Year

SAN officer attended
the Naval Control
of Shipping course      1995

SAN officer attended
the Naval Control
of Shipping course      1996

SA Air Force
officer attended
the Brazilian Senior
Air Force Staff course  1998

SA Army officer
attended the
Brazilian Army Senior
Staff course            1998

SAN sent a submarine
attachment to Brazil    1998

SAN sent a MCM
attachment to Brazil    2000

SAN sent a submarine
attachment to Brazil    2000

Source: Information provided
by the South African Department
of Defence Headquarters,
Directorate Foreign Relations,
Corporate Staff Division,
Pretoria, 2 October 2001.


Type of Training     Year   Arm of Service

Surface attachment   1995   Chilean Navy

Surface attachment
on BE Esmeralda      1996   Chilean Navy

OTO Malara Gun
Overhauling course   1997   Chilean Army

Flying course        1999   Chilean Air Force

Source: Information provided by the South African
Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate
Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division,
Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(Excluding Civilians and Reserves)

               Army      Navy    Air Force  Paramilitary    Total

Argentina      41 400    17 200     12 500        31 240    102 340
Bolivia        25 000     3 500      3 000        37 100     68 600
Brazil        189 000    48 600     50 000       385 600    673 200
Chile          51 000    24 000     12 000        29 500    116 500
Paraguay       14 900     3 600      1 700        14 800     35 000
Uruguay        15 200     5 500      3 000           920     24 620
South Africa   42 490     5 190      9 640      *  5 290     62 610

TOTAL         378 990   107 590     91 840       504 450  1 082 870

Note: * South Africa does not have paramilitary forces, but has
the South African Military Health Service (SAMHS) as a fourth
service (in addition to the Army, Air Force and the Navy).

Source: International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS),
The Military Balance, 2000/2001, Oxford University Press,
London, 2000.


Date         Countries involved         Series

May/June     Argentina, Brazil, South    III
1995         Africa and Uruguay

November     Argentina, Brazil, South
1996         Africa and Uruguay

April 1997   Argentina, Brazil, South     IV
             Africa and Uruguay

November     Argentina, Brazil, South
2001         Africa and Uruguay

April 2002   Argentina, Brazil and        V

Date         Comments

May/June     Exercise held in Brazilian
1995         territorial waters

November     Preparatory meeting for
1996         Exercise Atlasur IV held
             in South Africa

April 1997   Exercise held in South
             African territorial waters

November     Preparatory meeting for
2001         Exercise Atlasur V held in
             South Africa

April 2002   Exercise held in South
             African territorial waters

Source: Information provided by Department of
Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign
Relations, Corporate Staff Division,
Pretoria, 2 October 2001.


Date       Countries involved                    Series

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,      X
1995       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Paraguay,      XI
1996       Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,     XII
1997       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,     XIII
1998       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,     XIV
1999       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,      XV
2000       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,     XVI
2001       Panama, Peru, Paraguay, South
           Africa, Uruguay, USA and

August     Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador,     XVII
2002       Peru, Paraguay, South Africa,
           Uruguay, USA and Venezuela

Date       Comments



August     Participating countries
1997       (except Paraguay) held
           a critique conference
           on the exercise in
           South Africa in
           October 1997

August     Participating countries
1999       (except Paraguay) held
           a critique conference
           on the exercise in
           South Africa in
           October 1999

August     Participating countries
2000       (except Paraguay) held
           a critique conference
           on the exercise in
           Argentina in October



Source: Information provided by Department of Defence
Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations,
Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

* Based on a DPhil thesis in International Politics completed at the University of Pretoria, under the supervision of Prof M Hough, Department of Political Sciences, during 2003. This article only covers events up to and including 2002.


(1.) This group is called Mercosur in Spanish and Mercosul in Portuguese To avoid the simultaneous use of both acronyms, the Spanish variation is used in deference to its common usage, while recognising the dominance and influence of the Portuguese-speaking Federative Republic of Brazil in the region.

(2.) African National Congress (ANC), The Reconstruction and Development Programme: A Policy Framework, Umanyano Publications, Johannesburg, 1994, pp 11 and 117.

(3.) Ibid, p 120.

(4.) RSA, The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, Act 108 of 1996, Government Printer, Pretoria, 1996.

(5.) RSA, White Paper on Defence, Government Printer, Pretoria, 1996, p 13.

(6.) Ibid.

(7.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(8.) Roeloefse-Campbell, Z, "Argentinean defence specialist visits the centre", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 12, No 2, July-December, 1996, pp 85-86.

(9.) Campbell, K, "Argentina at Africa Aerospace and Defence 2000 and SAAF 80", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 16, No 2, 2000, p 79.

(10.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(11.) Ibid.

(12.) Ibid.

(13.) Campbell, K, "South African Navy Participates in Fleet Review Commemorating 500th Anniversary of the Discovery of Brazil", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 16, No 2, 2000, pp 72-73.

(14.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.


(16.) Roelofse-Campbell, Z, "South-South Co-operation and the Security and Stability Challenges Facing the South Atlantic--A Brazilian view", Naval Forces, Vol 23, No 4, 2002, p 55

(17.) Roelofse-Campbell, Z, "The Forgotten Dimension: South African/Latin American Relations Past and Present", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 8, No 2, September, 1992, p 8.

(18.) Roelofse-Campbell, Z, "Brazil's New Role in South and Southern Africa: An Interview with Luiz Felipe Lampreia." Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 11, No 2, 1995, p 51.

(19.) Skons, E, et a/, "Military Expenditure and Arms Production", in Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). SIPRI Yearbook: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security, Oxford University Press, Stockholm, 2001, p 311.

(20.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence, Directorate Conventional Arms Control, 26 August 1998, Pretoria. See also, Khanyile, M B, "South Africa's Arms Transfers in 1997: Morality and Reality", Africa Insight, Vol 29, No 3-4, 2000, p 28.

(21.) Roelofse-Campbell, Z, "South-South co-operation ...", op cit, p 56.

(22.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(23.) Ibid.

(24.) Ibid.

(25.) Ibid.

(26.) Ibid.

(27.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence, Directorate Conventional Arms Control, 26 August 1998, Pretoria. See also, Khanyile, M B, op cir, 2000, p 28.

(28.) Information provided by the Department of Defence, Navy Headquarters, Pretoria, 12 November 2001.

(29.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(30.) Ibid.

(31.) Information provided by the Department of Defence, Navy Headquarters, Pretoria, 12 November 2001. See also Khanyile, M B, "Brazil-South Africa Relations: The Military Dimension", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 14, No 2, 1998, p 33.

(32.) Information provided by the Department of Defence, Navy Headquarters, Pretoria, 12 November 2001.

(33.) Information provided by the South African Department of Defence Headquarters, Directorate Foreign Relations, Corporate Staff Division, Pretoria, 2 October 2001.

(34.) New York Times (New York), 31 December 2000.

(35.) Pion-Berlin, D, "Will Soldiers Follow? Economic Integration and Regional Security in the Southern Cone", Journal of Interamerican Studies and World Affairs, Spring, 2000, p 4.

(36.) Ibid.

(37.) International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). The Military Balance, 2000/ 2001, Oxford University Press, London, 2000.

(38.) Martins, D, "Brazil--The Armed Forces of a Regional Superpower", Jane's Intelligence Review Yearbook: The World in Conflict 1994/95, Jane's Information Group Ltd, Coulsdon, 1995, p 141.

(39.) Skons, E, et al, op cit, pp 278, 279, 284 and 285; and op cit, pp. 263-264.

(40.) Global Information Network (New York), 9 May, 2003.

(41.) Hill, J T, "Colombia: Key To Security In The Western Hemisphere", The Heritage Foundation Lectures, No 790, 16 April 2003.

(42.) Wade, T, "Latin Trade Bloc Flexes its Muscle--New Leaders in Argentina, Brazil Give Mercosur Clout: Another Challenge for U.S.", The Wall Street Journal, 16 June 2003.

(43.) Broekman, D A, "A South Atlantic Rim Association: From a Notion to a Reality?", Unisa Latin American Report, Vol 14, No 1, 1998, p 7. See also Roelofse-Campbell, Z, "Brazil and South Africa: An Evolving Relationship between Regional Powers", Politeia, Vol 16, No 2, 1997, p 24; and Gamba-Stonehouse, V, Strategy in the Southern Oceans: A South American View, Pinter Publishers, London, 1989, p 60.

(44.) Pion-Berlin, D, op cit.

(45.) New York Times (New York), 18 June 2003. See also

(46.) Mercopress, "Appeal at the Argentine Armed Forces", 8 July 2003 (see, 13 July 2003).

(47.) Valenzuela, A, 1997. "Paraguay: The Coup That Didn't Happen", Journal of Democracy, Vol 8, No 1, 1997, pp 44-46.

(48.) New York Times (New York), 18 December 1998.

Dr Moses Khanyile

South African Ministry of Defence

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