Mozambique achieved its independence from Portugal in June 1975.
That was about 5 months earlier than Angola and FRELIMO, the resistance movement, took over power, as a one party state, with Marxist-Leninist leanings.
In that same year an anti-communist movement was founded in Mozambique and sponsored by the Rhodesian Central Intelligence Organisation.
Naturally, South Africa, fearing another communist neighbor and also due to its alliance with Rhodesia, joined the meddling across another border.
The Mozambican National Resistance or RENAMO was labeled by some as a "proxy army" of Rhodesia and South Africa.
Rhodesia had interests in Mozambique due to the fact that liberation insurgents were operating from that territory and South Africa had similar interests since MK insurgents were operating alongside those insurgents.
Mozambique, post independence, was a simple access route and housing for insurgent bases and routes after being trained and infiltrating from Tanzania.
Zaire or the Congo was the playing ground of the CIA and so most Communist backed overland support for liberation movements was channeled from the north via Tanzania.
Overland movements to the west went via Zambia and Angola to SWAPO and down the east via Mozambique.
By the end of 1975, after the Portuguese pullout out of Africa, South Africa's and Rhodesia's worst nightmares had been realized.
They were now surrounded by communist backed regimes sympathetic to their liberation movements struggles and prepared to assist in any way possible.
The border war was now on all borders.
Other posts in this series
Part 1 - The air battles
Part 2 - The SA Fighter Aircraft
Part 3 - The SA Bomber Aircraft
Part 4 - The conflicts deep roots and start
Part 5 - Regional Tensions
Part 6 - Angolan War of Independence
Part 7 - Mozambican War of Independence.
Part 8 - Africa's forgotten cold war - Rhodesian Bush War
Part 9 - Africa's forgotten cold war - The Angolan War of Independence transitions to the Angolan Civil War
Part 10 - The South African Border War - The start of Operation Savannah and Large scale South African involvement.
Part 11 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah - the wheels start coming off.
Part 12 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah - Battle of Quifangondo
Part 13 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah - Battle of Ebo
Part 14 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah - Battle of Bridge 14
Part 15 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah - Battle of Luso
Part 16 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah comes to an end.
Part 17 - The South African Border War - Operation Savannah the withdrawal.
Part 18 - The South African Border War - Meanwhile back on the home front.