Masters Degrees (Political Science (Mil))

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    Factors supporting youth recruitment for terrorist organisations in Africa: the case of Al-Shabab in Eastern Africa for the period of 2010-2020
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-12) Lutywantsi, P. G.; Bester, Petrus Cornelluis; Van der Merwe, Kristin Catherine; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Science. School for Security and Africa Studies. Dept. of Political Science (Mil)
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    The impact of the United States military aid on Botswana’s defence capability and development
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2023-12) Thaga, Thaga Lucky Steven; Vrey, Francois; Mandrup, Thomas; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Science. School for Security and Africa Studies: Political Science (Mil)
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Sub-Saharan Africa’s post-independent nation-building has suffered from various military interventions in politics, arising in part from weak economies, ethnically polarised and unprofessional militaries, and weak institutions of political oversight. Several African states, in partnership with foreign powers, embarked on defence institution-building efforts to develop combat-effective defence forces that are subordinate to civilian authority and support national development while contributing to peace and stability. To avoid the ‘coup pandemic’ prevalent in Africa in the 1960s, Botswana delayed creating a defence force until in 1977. Prior to this, the country relied on a paramilitary force for law enforcement and territorial defence. Botswana’s security was also guaranteed by its colonial linkage with the British particularly the presence of British troops stationed in Francistown to protect the BBC relay station. Using Defence Diplomacy and Historical Institutionalism as working theories, this study assesses the impact of United States military aid on Botswana’s defence capability and development. The study traces the evolution of the state and its defence diplomacy, especially the quest to develop a professional military that supports democracy and development with the assistance of military aid. Grounded in interpretivist and constructivist paradigms and a qualitative design; the study established that whereas the British helped to provide the formative institutional layering and norm-stretching for the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) through equipment, training, and military jurisprudence; the Americans later took over and became decisively involved in supporting Botswana’s core path dependence to professionalise its military, especially from the 1980s. At the diplomatic level, Botswana and the United States share a mutual understanding on the need for defence institution building to support democracy. Both countries accommodate each other on the philosophical framework supporting the operationalisation of military aid through various state institutions. On the defence and security front, United States military aid helped to shape the BDF’s structure and doctrine, therefore, developing Botswana’s military human capital—especially its command and leadership capabilities, combat power, and technical expertise. Furthermore, considerable impact is notable in the airpower domain, where the C-130 Hercules aircrafts have been instrumental in augmenting Botswana’s force projection capabilities for internal operations and multinational missions, offering a decisive capability for defence diplomacy. United States military aid has also bolstered biodiversity and anti-poaching capabilities, and military health infrastructure. At the national level, military aid has not only offered reprieve to the defence budget but has also contributed to the BDF’s indoctrination in the principle of military subordination to political authority, thus strengthening Botswana’s civil-military relations. Executive leadership training for civilian officials was also undertaken to enhance security sector management. In addition, military aid has been instrumental in bolstering Botswana’s civil aviation sector through skills and expertise. These efforts have coalesced to maintain Botswana’s defence institution-building project on its path dependent trajectory, in turn contributing to national development. Despite the evident impact, there are some challenges in the bilateral relationship that need to be addressed. These include inadequate aid programme coordination, bureaucratic red tape undermining efficiency, concerns about lack of political will in the uptake of specific aid programmes, and Botswana’s low participation in peace support missions, which undermine its attractiveness for increased funding. The study established that whereas there has been considerable norm stretching in the BDF (as evident in military subordination); weak parliamentary oversight over defence still exists, suggesting the need for more training and institutional layering in this area. The study suggests that Botswana is an outlier because unlike most countries in the Global South, it created a defence a decade after independence. This allowed for the evolution of other state institutions without competition for hegemony from the military. Cooperation with the United States facilitated the construction of democratic institutions and norms. Botswana’s military was born and socialized into a democratic dispensation. These attributes therefore made military assistance more receptive and successful in the country’s defence institution building efforts. Essentially, military aid has supported Botswana’s core path dependence of democracy and military professionalism. This study demonstrates that developing countries such as Botswana can leverage military assistance from powerful countries such as the United States to support defence institution building and national development.
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    Basic educational reform and provision of quality education in South Africa (1994-2018): A tentative exploration of policy in the making
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2022-12) Lawrence, Audrey Rozanne; Liebenberg, J. C. R.; Mkhize, M. C.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Science. School for Security and Africa Studies: Political Science.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Quality education as a human right and its emphasis in education policy have garnered much attention in education research. Emphasis has also been placed on what children learn in school, as well as the features of a quality education. Research on education in South Africa is well documented. Much of the existing research focuses on inequality in education, especially the lack of provision of quality education for the majority of learners in South African schools. Quality education includes the provision of learning opportunities that are conducive to mastering basic literacy and numeracy skills as enablers of success in subjects across the curriculum. Various international, regional, and localised South African tests indicate that the mastery of these skills is influenced by the availability of relevant resources and socio-economic conditions, which in South Africa vary greatly between provinces, and even within provinces. The aim of this study was to critically discuss and analyse the role and influence of policy changes within South African basic education (1994-2018) in the provision of quality education in public primary schools. The study followed a qualitative research approach and is partly inductive in nature. For purposes of answering the three research questions that drove this research project, a hybrid approach was followed, which was rooted in a multiple case study design. This was divided into three major political administrations during the period 1994 to 2018 to indicate policy changes that occurred with the change in leadership and agendas that had a notable influence on policy implementation and other challenges in the educational context. Data on literacy and numeracy levels (and quality education) were collected from available literature, governmental and other stakeholder literature, and the works of reputable education researchers. These works were analysed using the document-analysis method. The study employed models of public policy analysis to elucidate the challenges associated with the South African policy environment and the influence thereof on quality education provision in public primary schools. The findings indicated that the quality of education and the attainment of literacy and numeracy levels differ between provinces, and correlate with the languages through which learners acquire literacy and numeracy skills. Poverty levels and parental involvement also differ from province to province. Political instability, state corruption, socio-economic inequality, limitations on social mobility, a poorly educated workforce, and socio-economic conditions all deepen challenges in the education system in general, and the achievement of essential levels of literacy and numeracy in particular. Apartheid’s legacy still impedes the provision of equitable quality education. Provision is also confounded by hasty and poor decision making and a lack of collaborative decision making, which are compounded by unprecedented levels of corruption. Various policy inadequacies exist, especially in terms of language policy in schools, as well as the management of schools. This, along with huge educational backlogs and learning deficits that span centuries, have perpetuated the cycles of ineffective learning in the South African educational landscape. The study recommends that quality provision in schools be tackled from various levels in the collaborative climate envisaged by education policies by adopting the Eastonian feedback loop. Participatory spaces that enable critical citizen engagement need to be established with targeted information sessions, especially for the most vulnerable societies (such as those found in rural areas) with high poverty and unemployment levels. Given the crucial role of teachers and other role players in the learning process, the South African Department of Education needs to finalise the policy on teacher and educator accountability, and accountability should be a core part of all spheres of government. For any initiative to work, structures need to be in place for accountability, competence, and consequences for not living up to required skills and knowledge standards, as emphasised in the national government’s framework for democratic public participation.
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    A matter of survival? An exploratory study of cooperation and benefits for the South African maritime defence industry within the BRICS context
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2021-12) Beukes, Jacobus Petrus; Liebenberg, Ian; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Sciences. School for Security and Africa Studies. Dept. of Political Science.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The South African defence industry (SADI) was built up and became a strong industry during the 1970s and 1980s, supplying the South African Defence Force with equipment, weapons and logistic support. Between 1989 and 1994 the defence budget shrank by approximately 50%. Acquisition and procurement from the defence force was reduced by roughly 80% and the research and development (R&D) budget was reduced by 70%. As the defence force and the defence industry are closely linked, the budget cuts had a direct impact on the SADI. Many defence companies restructured, diversified into other industrial endeavours or closed down. Manpower also shrank from approximately 131 000 in the 1980s to 15 000 today. Currently the SADI is in dire straits to survive. A dying defence industry is counter-productive to the South African economy, its industries and the country as a whole. It also has a detrimental effect on the defence force’s capabilities. South Africa is a maritime nation with an island economy and is dependent on trade via maritime transport, with 95% of South Africa’s trade being by sea transport. Maritime security is important for South Africa to keep sea lanes safe for merchant travel; and maritime resources underdeveloped. The navy and certain air force elements as part of the broader South African National Defence Force (SANDF) are critical to ensure maritime security. The navy was always treated as the “step-child” of the SANDF purely because threats were always perceived as being landward and not from the sea. As such, the SADI was always more landward focused than maritime. Development and human security are priorities for South Africa. Being the most important priorities, it is unlikely that the defence budget will increase to levels needed to remedy the precarious situation of the defence force and the defence industry. The defence budget cannot ensure the survival and growth of the SADI but it provides seeding funding for R&D and much needed capabilities for the SANDF. Currently, the survival of the SADI is dependent on exports. It is also advantageous to the SADI to market and promote products that are in use in the SANDF, as it gives the products credibility on the international market. The defence review, approved by Parliament in 2015, is a good document which lays out the roles and functions of the SANDF, its needed force structure and force design; and the importance of a vibrant and strong defence industry. Without the budget to implement this, it will however remain a paper exercise. It is also clear that it is unlikely that defence will move up on the government’s list of priorities, which means no increase in funding, which leaves the question, what must the defence force be ready for? That determines what the design and structure must look like. One of the possibilities for survival of the SADI is cooperation with other countries. As part of the BRICS forum, this research explored the possibilities of cooperation with BRICS partners as an option. The research showed that cooperation is only one aspect. The survival of the SADI requires policy changes and implementation, diplomatic efforts, strategic decisions regarding the “ready for what?” of the defence force, focus on R&D funding, and embracing the underdeveloped blue economy for the betterment of South Africa and the regional/international village South Africa finds itself in.
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    Analysing human resources acquisition in the South African military health service
    (Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2020-12) Letebele, Pelonomi Clementine; Theletsane, Kula Ishmael; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Sciences. School for Defence Organisation and Resource Management.
    ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The SAMHS uses the Military Skills Development System to source candidates to join its ranks, reinforcing the Reserve Force component in contribution to fulfilling the national security mandate, and in fulfilment of its broadened role of socio-economic upliftment. This study focused on the human resource acquisition process in the SAMHS, interrogating the activities and procedures used to identify best talent among potential candidates and assessing its efficacy in aligning acquisition to employment opportunities in the SAMHS. Literature suggests that an effective, efficient and economical human resource plan, drawn within the ambit of relevant policies and guidelines and based on an ideal of professionalising the Force, is essential to facilitate the matching of potential candidates having requisite knowledge, skills, attitude and aptitude, to available organisational opportunities. The study used a convergent parallel mixed method to collect qualitative and quantitative data around the same period, and interpreted the overall results to best understand the situation. A phenomenological research approach was used to interrogate the SAMHS’ human resource acquisition processes. Sampling was done mainly through analysis of various documents to gain insight and enhance understanding of the processes followed by the SAMHS and for comparison with best practice. Qualitative data was further gathered using purposive sampling, by interviewing HR functionaries to supplement data gathered from records and to obtain their perceptions about the acquisition process. The findings portrayed the annual HR acquisition process of the SAMHS as adequate for getting the quantities needed but revealed gaps in processes for soliciting and identifying suitably qualified talents. The SAMHS has further not embraced emerging recruitment and selection trends, such as technologically-based platforms which are cost effective, save time, and have the potential to drastically improve efficiency. In its endeavour to bring about change, the study recommends transformation in the SAMHS’ human resource acquisition process by changing from a predominantly traditional, routine-based process, to evidence-based practice, informed by operational requirements, as well as the SAMHS’ capacity to train and be aligned to the allocated budget. The change would add a dimension of quality to the HR acquisition process, making it a purposeful and intentional process aimed at getting candidates of a specific calibre to benefit the SAMHS in its endeavour to execute its mandate.