Title: Inside South Africa's Foreign Policy

Subtitle: Diplomacy in Africa from Smuts to Mbeki
Author: John Siko


ISBN:              9781780768311

Size:               216 x 134mm

Extent:           288 pages    

Format:          Hardback

SA Rel:           Oct 2014

RRP:               R 325.00





South Africa is still the major-player in African diplomacy, its military resources far outstripping those of other nations on the continent. It also has traditionally taken the lead role in Africa’s united negotiations with other power blocs. Yet the recent consensus has been that South Africa’s diplomacy over the last decades has been a disappointing failure - from appearing to back the controversial Mugabe regime to accusations that it is failing to utilize its position to encourage Chinese investment.


John Siko has had insider access to the corridors of power in South Africa, and, with access to the major political players, charts the inability of South Africa to develop a coherent policy over the last four decades. In particular, he reveals the tight grip Mbeki has over foreign policy, to the detriment of SA’s standing in the world, and argues South Africa’s isolationist style of policy making has not changed enough after Mandela’s election in 1994.


Key Selling Points:

  • When it comes to understanding South African foreign policy, John Siko has few equals.  He has worked on South African political issues throughout his career as an analyst and diplomat.  He is a team member of the US Council on Foreign Relations and is an adjunct professor in Washington DC.
  • The book compares foreign policy making in the old and new South Africa – the similarities of which has proven disconcerting for sensitive readers.
  • Foreign policy analysts will find authoritative confirmation of their presumptions about the inner workings of the “black box” of democratic South Africa’s foreign policy formulation.
  • It contains a formidably wide range of sources including productive interviews with many of the key actors.
  • Will be a valuable text for those interested in a variety of fields, including foreign-policy analysis, democratic theory and transnational politics.


About the Author:

John Siko joined the US State Department in 2000. He has worked on Southern African political issues throughout his career as an analyst and diplomat, serving in Pretoria (2004-2006) and Cape Town (2008-2011). He is, in addition, an adjunct professor at Georgetown and George Washington Universities in Washington DC. John also holds BA and MA degrees from the George Washington University in Washington DC, and he is a term member of the US Council on Foreign Relations. He lives in DC.



Published By: IB Tauris

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