PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
ZION
 
Comments: 4
Article views: 608
 
 
Latest Badges:



 
View all ZION's badges.
 

Border War

05 February 2013, 09:04

I notice there is a tendency to articles relating to the SA border war.

While still doing my apprenticeship in Windhoek  in 1970 I received call-up papers and had to present myself to the officer in command in Windhoek.  In a case like this the rookey receives military pay and pay from his employee but with the military pay of R15 deducted from the employee.  I  spent two days writing out  signing-on forms so the pay could be paid every month to a banking account. I had to return to Walvis Bay to do the administration work

Eventually the great day arrived and we troepies were herded like a bunch of trolls to the train and shown our compartment. We were about 6 per compartment and as soon as the first roll-call was made on the station  we boarded the train and away we went to Pretoria.

Other than counting the beer bottles and  settling the endless fights induced by dagga, and wiping the blood off  the floor,  the train eventually stopped over in Windhoek where we could buy warm beer and bandages.  At one stage the station looked like an impromptu battle field.  The problem was really just a replay of the Anglo Boer War. And  a case where the intoxicated must just be quiet.  Parents usually pack a “Kosblik” for their soon to be soldier sons. But somehow when needed most  were found to be emptied earlier.  Twelve hours later it was discovered that the troops had not eaten for almost 24 hours yet the train had a  “dining car” attached. By the third round of mumbling and grumbling to the escort officers food appeared miraculously before us.  The rest of the trip was uneventfull and we reached Voortrekker   Hoogte in the early hours of the morning. We went through the usual documentation amid orders and more orders and eventually we became somewhat deaf.

Some were sent home again amidst much cheering and goo-baais. And always that bit of resentment that it was not you.  This was the tiffy camp and much was still tents with a few bungalows here and there. The Electrical gang, myself too,  was shuttled into a tent and had to make up the bed. One feels rather irked to travel the country from north to South to just make up a bed.  There was about 16 of us in the tent and at midnight we had a piss-parade. That deserves little elaboration  other than korporaaaal se skoen is gepiss. Our stint in boot camp was only for 3 months then we would be sent to outside camps to carry on with our respective trades. I had the onerous job of being an auto-electrician without spares.   During that period there  had never been any incidents other than the usual squabbling about who goes where.  It was our duty to do guard duty and late one night we heard a shot and the person on duty reported in by radio that he had just shot a person.  The investigation indicated that the person had approached the guard who ordered him to retire and the order was refused. The guard threatened to fire but the person approached him. He was shot and died instantly.   What was most remarkable about the army was the ability of strangers to become friends without reference to backgrounds or who was what in Civvy street.  If you had a Lexington and your mate had nothing then he was given one too without ado: just a part of the culture. If you had a problem you always had someone to back you up just as a friend would. 

Just before the termination of my 3 months I was ordered to pay a visit to the Sergeant  Major :  Now these people are always busy, in fact they are so busy that they forget what is happening around them.  The SM told me that I was being sent back to Walvis Bay because they had a shortage of electrical staff and the unit was satisfied  with my work and I was promoted to a one-liner.

So on the train back to Walvis Bay camp and without the camaraderie.  I spent the last 6 month in a workshop 14 miles out in the desert.

My nine month intake was the last of its kind because the “year” guys had taken over.  My parents lived in Walvis bay and when the truck passed the house  it stopped further up the road and I got off for a visit and  returned to camp in style.

The stay in Walvis bay was uneventful

The military agreement at the time stated that every ACF would do 10 camps  before they were no longer a part of the military staff. The duration of the camps were 21 days to a month. I was sent to Windhoek on several occasions and from there to the border.  ACF = Active Citizen Force.   Life on the border was rather laid back and few would bother you:  at the time I was a one-liner and had very few problems with the troops. It must be seen in context:  I was called up when I was 20yrs old and on the  done all the camps with some at 2 a year to get them done. (The army liked that) Eventually I received a discharge in the early “80’s”  When I was there, there  was not too much military activity and even until today I can communicate easily with those persons who were doing the fighting.  I have always considered my military training as nothing more than a part of my past. At the time, remember, it was the hippy period and nothing was taken seriously anyway.  I have no regrets and found the army a place where one can live and be part of the camaraderie.  There is always the unspoken words:  When you go I go too.

                         


Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Merry Martin
Theists, please stop explaining!

SilverBack wrote a series of rebuttal articles recently, and one of the issues he raised was the scene where God instructs Abraham to sacrifice Isaac, only to rescind that instruction at the last minute.  Read more...

334 comments 2650 views
Submitted by
MyNews24 delay

We have been receiving your photos and stories but at the moment we're experiencing technical difficulties and are unable to publish them. But there is a way to get heard. Read more.  Read more...

0 comments 406 views
Submitted by
Luthando Taitai
Let's appreciate them while they ...

There is a tendency of only showing appreciation of someone when they are gone, how many people go to bed everyday deprived this important token. Read more...

1 comments 508 views
Submitted by
Joe Johnson789
Celebrity deaths bring violent cr...

The eyes of the world were on South Africa for about ten months the trial of Oscar Pistorius lasted. It was reported as one of the most watched media events in recent history. Read more...

9 comments 1046 views
Submitted by
Manny Obi-Wan Meyer
The pleasure of finding things ou...

I have often wondered how the events of my past have structured my life in the present, my various skills and propensities, my way of reflecting upon the world at large. Read more...

12 comments 723 views
Submitted by
capetowndoll
God is tangible

I am writing this to let every atheist know what happened to me when I was deeply concerned about my mother. Read more...

441 comments 5286 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Save up to R2100 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Hot offer: Up to 50% off irons

Save up to 50% on all Philips irons. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.