The book “Dias de Coragem e de Amizade” brings together the memories of 50 ex-combatants from the Portuguese Colonial War, or, in the designation of African independence movements, the War of Liberation. Altogether, between 800 thousand and one million Portuguese were mobilized for the three war scenarios – Angola, Guinea-Bissau and Mozambique – between 1961 and 1974. More than nine thousand perished. The rest, those who returned – thousands with physical and psychological marks – brought with them a collective memory. Individual and collective memories that were not fictionalized, but imposed. Images that these hundreds of thousands of young adults – at that time – had to silence, or share them only among themselves.
Is this not a very strong reason for the development of an identity spirit? All of these men portrayed here have a common identity, fueled by a collective memory, but not by tradition: they are all ex-combatants of a particular war in Africa.
“War is like a burn that is marked and does not go away.” – Carlos Manuel Pereira