Original Rhodesian Bush War Era Rhodesian Brushstroke Camouflage Pattern Uniform Set by Statesman
Original Item: Only One Available. Now this is a fantastic Rhodesian Brushtroke camouflage pattern uniform set! The set consists of a fatigue top and pair of trousers, both presented with similar fading and no extensive damage, truly a wonderful offering. The Rhodesian Brushstroke is a brushstroke-type camouflage pattern used by the Rhodesian Security Forces from 1965 until its replacement by a vertical lizard stripe in 1980.
It was the default camouflage appearing on battledress of the Rhodesian Army and British South Africa Police, although used in smaller quantities by INTAF personnel. The design was also used on uniforms issued to South African Special Forces for clandestine operations. A similar pattern is fielded by the Zimbabwe National Army.
Rhodesian Brushstroke consists of large, contrasting, shapes tailored to break up the outline of an object. Like most disruptive camouflage, the pattern is dependent on countershading, utilizing hues with high-intensity contrast or noticeable differences in chromaticity.
Prior to Rhodesia's Unilateral Declaration of Independence, enlisted personnel in the Rhodesian Army were issued with uniforms in khaki drill. The Battle of Sinoia and the outbreak of the Rhodesian Bush War prompted the security forces to devise a more appropriate uniform especially designed for the region.
This incorporated a three color, high contrast, disruptive fabric with green and brown strokes on a sandy background. Early shortages of textile and equipment were
overcome with South African and Portuguese technical assistance, and a home industry for the new battledress developed.
The set is in fantastic condition with the blouse having what looks like a stamped name, but is unfortunately too faded to read properly. From the mid-1970s, isolated Rhodesia produced its own uniforms as effective international sanctions bit hard. Home-grown camouflage patterns proved to be extremely effective in the African 'bush' and were adopted by all ranks of the military and police formations, distinguishable only by distinctive service and unit patches. Entire uniform items comprising T-shirts, field jackets, shirts, trousers and field caps were made of this camouflage pattern and it continues to be used by the forces of the Mugabe regime in present-day Zimbabwe.
The top still has the original STATESMAN machine embroidered tag, a company we have not been able to find much about.
A great set ready for further research and display.
Collar to shoulder: 9.5"
Shoulder to sleeve: 23”
Shoulder to shoulder: 17”
Chest width: 20"
Waist width: 18.5"
Hip width: 19"
Front length: 28.5"
Rhodesian Bush War
The Rhodesian Bush War, also called the Second Chimurenga as well as the Zimbabwe War of Independence, was a civil conflict from July 1964 to December 1979 in the unrecognized country of Rhodesia (later Zimbabwe-Rhodesia).
The conflict pitted three forces against one another: the Rhodesian white minority-led government of Ian Smith (later the Zimbabwe-Rhodesian government of Bishop Abel Muzorewa); the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army, the military wing of Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union; and the Zimbabwe People's Revolutionary Army of Joshua Nkomo's Zimbabwe African People's Union.
The war and its subsequent Internal Settlement, signed in 1978 by Smith and Muzorewa, led to the implementation of universal suffrage in June 1979 and the end of white minority rule in Rhodesia, which was renamed Zimbabwe Rhodesia under a black majority government. However, this new order failed to win international recognition and the war continued. Neither side achieved a military victory and a compromise was later reached.
Negotiations between the government of Zimbabwe-Rhodesia, the government of the United Kingdom, and Mugabe and Nkomo's united "Patriotic Front" took place at Lancaster House, London in December 1979, and the Lancaster House Agreement was signed. The country returned temporarily to British control and new elections were held under British and Commonwealth supervision in March 1980. ZANU won the election and Mugabe became the first Prime Minister of Zimbabwe on 18 April 1980, when the country achieved internationally recognised independence.
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