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Anton M. Pillay

Abstract

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, South Africa’s international standing has come under attack by Western-leaning forces who
advocate that the country should forget its global South stance in favour of obeisance to the neoliberal world order. This can be seen in the almost 30-year-old narrative which questions who South Africa should be allied with. The purpose of this narrative, according to Professor Chris Landsberg, is to ‘de-legitimize’ the country’s international image. In this research, the author examines South African–Cuban relations from a realist and postcolonial perspective, arguing that South Africa’s rich history and foreign policy of non-alignment in fact give it a respected status in the community of international states—an idea which is never afforded to the country. Instead, the nuances of South African–Cuban relations, and in fact South Africa’s relationship with other states which are vocally
‘anti-imperialist’, are often overlooked, distorted, and hidden from the public’s attention. This paper brings attention to this debate.

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