Executive Outcome

Mercenary Intervention in Angola and Sierra Leone 1993-1996

(Africa@War Series 12)

By Andrew Hudson


The detritus of 20th-century conflict litters the African continent. Scars and irreparable destruction characterize both the physical and human dimensions of these bitter wars, reinforcing the stereotype that nothing good comes of war. As the armed conflict in South Africa gravitated toward political accommodation and compromise, a group of highly skilled and experienced South African Defence Force soldiers, tempered by decades of success, and some failures, on the battlefields of South West Africa, Angola, Rhodesia and Mozambique found themselves out of political favour. In effect they became the human detritus of the political compromise that spawned the South Africa we know today. Unwanted, unrecognized and facing a static garrison life in the reconstituted South African military and police forces, these men, in the prime of their lives, opted rather to seek other opportunities where the application of their military skills and the associated life of adventure might continue. The simmering conflicts in Angola and Sierra Leone offered two hitherto unavailable opportunities to the men to continue their warrior lifestyle and Executive Outcomes, the pioneering private security company of the late 20th century, was born. Vaunted as efficient force multipliers and heroes in the countries in which they fought, the men of Executive Outcomes faced stark accusations of treason and prosecution at home in South Africa. An Executive Outcome casts the political rhetoric aside and focuses on a description of the major military operations undertaken by these men as they sought to rekindle the sense of achievement, the lift and exhilaration a soldier experiences during and after an engagement with the enemy, particularly at close quarters, which is and will always be unmatched in any other profession. 8pp colour photos, c 100 b/w photos, maps  Deidre Hudson.

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Africa@War is a ground-breaking series concept, studying Africas conflicts and military players in an informative and entertaining manner, examining some of the lesser-known campaigns and shedding new light on some of the better-known operations … great models of what the combination of authors and publishers can produce by way of useable case studies for the market place in a concise illustrated format. They are recommended as professional military education references. --Charles D. Melson, Chief Historian, U.S. Marine Corps

Each of the books in this series is a well-documented and researched synopsis of the events that they are focused upon. They layouts and presentation are logical and of a very high quality ... As an introduction to this field of operation, this series is outstanding. A definite asset for those wishing to improve their knowledge and understanding of the development of successful, multi-faceted doctrine in the fight against insurgent/assymetric war. --Major Chris Buckham, Royal Canadian Air Force Journal