When I was conscripted into the 1st South African Infantry Battalion in 1988 I, like many other politically disinformed white South African youths never really questioned the reasons behind the conscription. Most of us were not even aware that Cuba, backed by Soviet and East-German advisors were maintaining tens of thousands of troops in Angola.

Almost as soon as our National Service was over, we quickly forgot that we'd ever been soldiers in the South African Defence Force. Many years afterwards though, one starts remembering again. Whilst searching for information on the internet I found this official document, an informative read compiled for the South African Defence Force Review in 1989 by Colonel C.J. Nöthling. The chronicle, spanning more than 70 years, sheds interesting light on the history of the SADF and it's many conflicts in the regions of Southern Africa.

The stories and photos on this site typify life during the compulsory period of National Service in the SADF, a life experienced similarly by just about every other National Serviceman at the time. Besides my own experience in 1 SAI Battalion, this section also features the experiences of Corporal Simon Hare who was with the South African Army Corps of Engineers during 1983 and 1984.

If you have a story you'd like to share here, contact the webmaster! And if you're interested in furthering the informative experience then be sure to check out the SADFlinks page where you'll find an ever growing list of weblinks relating to the South African Defence Force, once regarded as the most well trained fighting force in Africa.

This website about the South African Defence Force is a tribute to all who served in the SADF, and a reminder to those who have long since forgotten ...