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The Rhodesian Bush War. It was a ferocious guerrilla warfare campaign between the regular and elite units of the Rhodesian Army doing battle against Communist-backed terrorist groups in the valleys, jungles and bush country of Rhodesia, Mozambique and Zambia. Warrant Officer Dennis Croukamp fought in the conflict from its beginnings in the 1960's to the very end in 1979, and his combat memoir is an extraordinary chronicle of that bitter struggle from inside some of the most highly regarded elite combat units to ever take the field. In The Bush War in Rhodesia, Croukamp chronicles his eventful service with the Rhodesian Regular Army, the Rhodesian Light Infantry (RLI) and the Selous Scouts Reconnaisance Troop as he took part in cross-border reconnaissance operations, HALO jumps behind enemy lines, urban ops in the townships of Salisbury, raids, ambushes, demolition missions, prisoner snatches and more. And through it all, Croukamp brought along a camera, providing a remarkable visual documentation of this little-known war. This searingly honest, action-packed memoir is sure to become a classic, ground-level account of the bloody bush wars of Africa.

Paperback, 463 pages. Reprint: September 2008

About the Author

Dennis Croukamp was born in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and lived an idyllic life in the bush. As a young boy he spent his free time fishing and hunting and had shot his first buck at the age of seven. After leaving school he was called up to do his national service and thereafter in January 1965 enlisted in the Rhodesian Light Infantry as a Private. He served in the Rhodesian Army until 1980, rising through the ranks to eventually retire with the rank of Warrant Officer.

In his career as a soldier, Dennis at first served in an infantry unit, but later served as member of the elite Selous Scouts under the command of Lieutanant-Colonel Ron Reid-Daly. During the late 1960's the Rhodesian bush war started and ZANU and ZAPU guerillas infiltrated into the country. As a member of the armed forces, Dennis was often involved in skirmishes with the guerrillas. In 1970, not only did he become the most junior rank officer to be awarded the Rhodesian Bronze Cross, but also the first recipient for gallantry and determination in action after a fierce battle.

As a member of the famed Selous Scouts, Dennis became a reconnaissance specialist and carried out numerous reconnaissance mission in Mozambique. Whilst on one of his missions he became seperated from his two companions and spent the following six days making his way back to Rhodesia, all the while being pursued by FRELIMO soldiers. During this epic escape and evasion saga, Dennis had no communication with his base; he had no food or support and had to walk nearly 200 kilometres to get back to Rhodesia.

Dennis experienced guerrilla warfare from its inception in Rhodesia in 1967 until the cease-fire in 1979 and the eventual transition from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe. He had an exciting and adventurous career; was wounded in combat, and saw action on all border areas of Rhodesia and also in Mozambique, Zambia and Botswana. Some senior officers have told their experiences of the Rhodesia bush war, but this book gives the views and experiences of a man in the rank and file of the Rhodesian Army. He pulls no punches in telling his story and the book reflects his ability as a narrator. 

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
Only my friends call me Crouks.

Excellent read gives a very different view of the Scouts and especially the officers in charge!!

Only My Friends Call Me Crouks

Really great factual account of what went down, reality. Thanks Bud.

Good Insight into a Little-known Part of Rhodesian War

Dennis Croukamp, is a gifted, natural story teller. His personal experiences, first with the RLI in the sixties and later with the famous Selous Scouts, gives one good insight into the early days of the Rhodesian struggle. This is both a chronology of the war as well as a personal memoir. Croukamp's honest, self-deprecating style is a fresh deviation from the usual 'I was so special' personal accounts sometimes found. If you are interested in this conflict, read the book.

Only my Friends call me Crouks

Written as i expected it to happen.Funny - Serious and told as an old Soldier would tell it.There were times where i felt as though i am being involved in the action .
Cannot wait for a follow up from Dennis.


This is one of the best operational books that i have read regarding the Rhodesian Bush war .It is funny - serious - to the point and as far as i am concerned,it is the truth.Come on Dennis we are waiting for a follow up.Congratulations on a well written book