First Black Defense Chief Is Appointed
The Soviet-trained former commander of the main anti-apartheid guerrilla force has been appointed the first black chief of the South African National Defense Force. Lt. Gen. Siphiwe Nyanda inherits a 93,000-strong force in the throes of change and rattled by an intelligence fiasco that led to his predecessor’s sudden resignation. Gen. Georg Meiring, a member of the “old guard” of white officers, stepped down after forwarding to President Nelson Mandela an unsubstantiated intelligence report that identified Nyanda as being part of an alleged assassination and coup plot. Mandela dismissed the report as a myth.