The Causes Of The Battle Of Isandlwana

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After the British arrived at the Cape, their influence and power spread to all areas of southern Africa. This colonisation was met with conflict and resistance, involving many indigenous groups, and led to tense skirmishes with the Zulu nation. This struggle between the Zulu and the English led to the Battle of Isandlwana, one of the most famous British defeats in history. The causes involved demands for labour and land, however there was an ulterior motive as to why Zululand was invaded.
Regarding Anglo-Zulu relations, the British felt that the Zulu nation posed a great military threat against the White Natal Colony and the Transvaal. The British sought to set up a “Federation of White colonies and states in South Africa in 1879”, however they felt vulnerable due to the fear caused by the very near Zulu menace (Source D). This specific fear of the Zulu nation was dominant because at the time Cetshwayo had transformed the Zulus into a stronger and
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The British became troubled that the republics would use Zululand to reach the sea, and would therefore have a strategic point to import and export to eastern countries via the British ports of Cape Town or D’Urban (Source D). The land in Natal at D’Urban was very important because it was the third city of the Republic of South Africa, one of its largest seaports and industrial centres. The population of the area consisted of 210 000 Whites and 240 000 Bantu/Zulu (Source G) who presented a threat at the time, making them an obvious target of British colonialism. This is why the British were determined to increase the conflict with the Zulu kingdom, and thus they would spread their control and power to another part of southern Africa, and the independent, powerful nation of the Zulus would be counterbalanced (Source

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