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April 13, 1961. The dictator Antonio de Oliveira Salazar, who has been in power in Portugal since 1932, declares on television: “To Angola, fast and strong!” » Earlier in the year, on February 4, a handful of Angolan anti-colonial militants attacked two prisons in Luanda, in order to release several of their colleagues held by the Portuguese. With this gesture launched the armed struggle for the independence of Angola.
Then Guinea-Bissau and Mozambique, the two “Overseas Provinces” of Portugal, rose up in turn. The Portuguese colonies are running out of patience. In 1960, 14 provinces of French sub-Saharan Africa, Belgian Congo, Italian Somalia, and British Nigeria actually gained their independence.
But colonial imperialism is one of the pillars of the Salazarite faith. The colonies are inseparable from the Portuguese national identity, which is connected with the imagination of the “discoveries” of the great navigators of the fifteenth.e and sixteene Centuries. Even the constitution of the dictatorship states that Portugal has ” historical function To own and colonize overseas territories and prepare the population residing there..