Extract taken with the author's permission from: “War In Angola - The Final South African Phase“, by Helmoed-Römer Heitman (See Bibliography)
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The artillery had begun shooting the fire plan at 07h00 on 14 February, first shelling the positions at Tumpo and then switching to the 21 Brigade positions. The two combat groups and the Unita forces moved out from their forward assembly areas at 08h50, using the thick bush as cover. 61 Mech moved off first, followed by Regiment Molopo's squadron, F Squadron and the rest of 4 SAI. Low and thick cloud cover promised a day free from interference by MiGs, but it soon lifted and 4 SAI was frequently held up by the need to stop and seek cover when fighters were overhead.
Four MiGs had meanwhile appeared over the area of the SAAF anti-aircraft group at 09h10, looking for targets. They did not find the South Africans in the thick bush, but did slow 4 SAI down for a time. by forcing it to seek cover.
Unita's 18th and 275th Semi-Regular Battalions attacked the north-eastern positions of 21 Brigade at 09h25. After about half an hour's fighting, the commander of 21 Brigade was convinced that his brigade was the objective of the developing attack. Not only were some of his positions under attack, his outposts could hear armoured vehicles approaching from the east. The Forward Command Post agreed with his interpretation of the situation. His D-30s began shelling the eastern approach route from about 08h30. The BM-21s positioned near the brigade headquarters unmasked about 09h50 and began rocketing the Unita infantry in front of the 21 Brigade positions, causing several casualties.
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