A Century's Perspective

  • Ian Van der Waag
Keywords: Second Anglo-Boer War, South African history, impact of the war, Union Defence Force, British and Boer military systems


The year 1999 has deep significance for South Africa. One hundred years ago, a war broke out on the subcontinent of southern Africa that was to have a profound effect upon the shaping of the region. This war, historicised as the Second Anglo-Boer War, was a watershed in South African history and for this reason it has been for many decades a major focus of South African history writing and particularly in the annals of Afrikaner history. By any measure, the war affected South African society severely. Smuts wrote some years later that this was one of the first 'total' wars of the twentieth century and its impact on South African politics, economics and social life was therefore profound. He might have added that the more 'total' the experience, the heavier the impact of the war upon the historical and national consciousness.


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Author Biography

Ian Van der Waag
Executive Editor, Scientia Militaria
How to Cite
Van der Waag, I. (2012). A Century’s Perspective. Scientia Militaria - South African Journal of Military Studies, 29. https://doi.org/10.5787/29-0-184
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