1970s

po011. Britain and South Africa: Partners in imperialism

Poster publicising an AAM conference held on 4 July 1971. The main issues discussed at the conference were the proposed settlement on Rhodesia and action against British firms with investments in South Africa. One of the speakers was Caroline Hunter from the US Polaroid Revolutionary Workers Movement. Polaroid supplied photographic equipment used to produce passbooks for black South Africans. After a long campaign by its largely black US workforce, Polaroid pulled out of South Africa in 1977.

pic7107. Protest at the death of Ahmed Timol

This protester was one of a group of around 30 people who infiltrated the South African Embassy in London to protest against the death of Ahmed Timol. Timol was killed in detention by South African security police on 27 October 1971. His death provoked widespread protests in Britain. He was a former teacher and British teaching unions joined the protests. Ahmed Timol was the 20th political detainee known to have died in police custody.

70s07. ‘Southern Africa in Crisis’ youth meeting

This leaflet advertised a meeting co-hosted by the British Youth Council, with speakers from the Southern African liberation movements.

zim09. Petition against the Rhodesia settlement proposals

This petition calling for no independence for Rhodesia before majority rule was launched at an AAM meeting addressed by Judy Todd at the Labour Party conference in October 1971. It was part of the AAM’s campaign for the rejection of the Conservative government’s 1971 proposals for a settlement with the illegal Smith regime. The petition was widely circulated and reprinted in the Guardian newspaper. It was signed by 80,000 people and presented to the British Prime Minister on 21 March.

po020. ‘I am delighted to announce that black Rhodesians are completely sold out’

In November 1971 Conservative Foreign Secretary Lord Home published proposals for a settlement agreed with Ian Smith. The proposals fell far short of majority rule, but included a provision that they must be acceptable to the African majority. The British government sent a commission headed by Lord Pearce to test African opinion, which overwhelmingly rejected the settlement. This poster was produced for the AAM’s campaign against the sell-out.

zim10. The Proposals for a Settlement in Rhodesia

Leaflet produced by the Rhodesia Emergency Campaign Committee (RECC) analysing the settlement proposals agreed by Conservative Foreign Secretary Alec Douglas-Home and Ian Smith and published as a White Paper on 25 November 1971. RECC was a broad coalition of 45 organisations, set up at a meeting convened by the AAM in December 1971 and chaired by Methodist minister Colin Morris and New Left academic Stuart Hall. The AAM estimated that over half a million campaign leaflets, stickers, posters and badges were distributed over the next few months. 

zim30. ‘No Agreement with Smith’

In November 1971 Conservative Foreign Secretary Alec Douglas-Home agreed proposals for a settlement in Rhodesia with the Smith regime that fell far short of majority rule. This leaflet asked AAM supporters to write to him telling him there was no basis for an agreement and that sanctions against the illegal Rhodesian regime should be tightened.

po021. Fight the Sell Out in Rhodesia

Poster publicising an AAM demonstration on 13 February 1972 against the Conservative government’s proposals for a settlement on Rhodesia. The proposals fell far short of majority rule, but included a provision that they must be acceptable to the African majority. The British government sent a commission to test African opinion, which overwhelmingly rejected the settlement. The main speaker at the demonstration was Bishop Abel Muzorewa, President of the African National Council, which led the opposition to the proposals inside Zimbabwe. The Rhodesia Emergency Campaign Committee was a coalition of groups set up by the AAM.