Rhodesian Farmers the first line of Defence.
Rhodesian farmers all faced daily danger of land mines on farm access roads, homestead attacks, some were called to compounds and tortured / killed. Agricalert radios were used to warn of attacks which were being mounted and call for assistance. Many Farmers were on quick response sticks in police Reserve or PATU.
Several families were murdered. Some were abducted and force marched to Mozambique. Peach tried to communicate with gooks and was brutally tortured. We owe a lot to the farmers.
There is a farm roll of honour which should be erected as a memorial in Salisbury UK with our other memorials. Nevill thinks the Viscount memorial should be relocated there too? Nevill Bulloch grew up on a tobacco farm and his father served 10 years in police Reserve. He is listed in Contact 1 or Contact II. We lost five farmers from Enterprise killed on call up. Many farmers had to abandon farms in the hot areas like Mtoko and Mtepatepa, Mount Darwin, Centenery etc while a few brave souls stayed on and fought.
The local sports clubs were focus points for farm moral etc and many became bases. Golf courses were used by choppers. The ladies often ran our canteens at various JOCs and locations.
In the view of JB Campbell, there are no farm attacks anywhere in the world that match the ferocity which the Rhodesian farmers (husbands, wives and children) faced and survived. The terrorists were armed by the Soviet Union and China with modern military weapons, including anti-tank landmines that were used to blow up farmers and civilians.
Farmers would also form their own militias from the farm hands and Guard Force would also be deployed where possible to help the farmers.
Farmers then had to start buying or converting their vehicles to Mine Ambush Protected vehicles to fight against the mine threat and ambushes by terrorists. After some years there were a number of vehicles used by farmers such as the mine protected Land Rover, Leopard, Cougar, Kudu, Rhino, Hyena and others extemporized versions. Some of the vehicles shown are in Police or Government use but farmers were also using these vehicles as well.
There are instances of reaction forces from which ever units there were available racing to help the beleaguered farms. By road in Mine Ambush Protected vehicles, helicopters or on foot if they thought roads were mined in the vicinity of the farm. There was even one instance I believe were sticks of RAR were parachuted in the fading light to help relieve a farm.
Farms would also increase their defences with bunkers, trenches, arming farm hands, recruiting mercenaries, or the Government providing Guard Force or troops of some description. Wire fences some electrified, plough sheers fitted with explosives to put weary attackers off.
In the 20mm range Underfire Miniatures have produced Rhodesian farmers and their farm guards.