The Boer Wars are generally viewed as a minor conflict affecting only South Africa; I, however, am skeptical about this. Britain did, after all, send nearly half a million soldiers to fight in the Boer Wars. So I'm wondering, how did the Boer Wars affect the tide of world history elsewhere? I remember reading about how they affected Allied tactics during Word War I; but beyond that I'm in the dark.

What is the significance of the Boer Wars outside of South Africa?

  • 5
    I'd think there ought to be a way to narrow this question a bit to make it on-topic. It would be nice to have a good Boer Wars question here.
    – T.E.D.
    Mar 23, 2017 at 11:34
  • 2
    I have (hopefully) clarified the question and voted to re-open.
    – Tom Au
    Mar 23, 2017 at 19:23
  • @T.E.D.: I placed the new boer-war tag on several relevant questions, so there is now a a whole section.
    – Tom Au
    Mar 25, 2017 at 20:38

1 Answer 1


The Boer War was something of a flashpoint for World War I. For instance, Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany sent congratulations in the so-called Kruger Telegram, to Boer President Paul Kruger after an early Boer victory, inflaming British public opinion.

More to the point, the conclusion of the Boer War produced a moderate peace that led to a reconciliation between British and Boer that formed the Union of South Africa in 1910, merging the two British provinces (Cape Province and Natal) with the two Boer provinces (Transvaal and Orange Free State) into a single entity. A few years later, General Jan Christian Smuts, an important Boer general in the Boer War led the combined "South African" forces against German South West Africa (Namibia) in 1914.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.