In This Review

The Struggle For Africa: Conflict of the Great Powers
The Struggle For Africa: Conflict of the Great Powers
By Gerard Chaliand
St. Martin's, 1982, 121 pp.

A well-known French journalist and specialist on guerrilla insurgencies takes on Africa. Surveying the continent's crises (most saliently the Horn, which he covered in the late 1970s), he theorizes about the Soviet Union's indirect strategy of gaining access by "filling vacuums." Though scanty on specifics and decidedly dated (the original edition was published in French in 1980), the book provides an interesting European perspective on America's dilemmas in Africa (perhaps more in tune with 1980 than now), suggesting that with excessive reliance on the nuclear umbrella the United States has "forgotten how to wield traditional weapons."