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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Peacekeeping operations and adjustment of soldiers in Sudan: peace in minds and hearts of soldiers?
Authors:Koopman, René
Van Dijk, Gideon A.J.
Periodical:African Journal on Conflict Resolution (ISSN 1562-6997)
Geographic term:Sudan
Subjects:military personnel
South Africans
African peacekeeping forces
peacekeeping operations
mental health
Abstract:United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions have become a reality for soldiers in Africa, specifically for members of the South African National Defence Forces (SANDF). In Sudan, SANDF members have to deal with severe challenges. On the one hand, Sudan is a vast, sun-baked desert land. Temperatures are extremely high, making the heat unbearable for foreigners. On the other hand, the nature of the conflict includes dealing with death, mutilated bodies, rape and aggrieved communities. These factors can be very traumatic and require tremendous adjustment skills from members in peacekeeping operations from foreign countries like South Africa. The article discusses the circumstances in Sudan which contribute to the adjustment challenges of members. The researchers interviewed five members (from Captain to Lieutenant-Colonel) of the SANDF on their experiences in Sudan. The article focuses on the stress reactions of members during the adjustment process, and makes recommendations on the selection of members of peacekeeping operations, their training and preparation, their support by leaders during the operation, and by their families after the operation. These recommendations are relevant for international peacekeeping forces and specifically for the SANDF. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]