I could not help laughing my head off, listening to some so-called political analysts – who were, in fact, nothing more than the ruling elite’s shameless apologists and defenders – crying foul, on the state broadcaster (ZBC TV), over alleged ‘unfair interference’ in Zimbabwe’s internal affairs, by the US (United States) embassy in Harare.
This was after the Western nation’s embassy posted Twitter messages urging Zimbabweans to register to vote – ostensibly, in order for them to unseat the current ruling establishment, which is notorious for running down the economy, and ruining the livelihoods of the country’s citizenry, through rampant shameless corruption, and gross mismanagement.
What made me split my sides, in uncontrollable laughter, was the absurdity of a government – known for its bullying and unprincipled preying on its own less powerful citizens – actually, whining and whinging over experiencing the same treatment at the hands of a more powerful entity than itself.
For starters, I found the referencing by the state broadcaster, of the US embassy’s brazen violation of international law – particularly, the Geneva Convention, of non-interference in another sovereign country’s internal affairs – exceedingly laughable, considering that ZBC itself, is at the forefront of unashamedly disregarding the Constitution of Zimbabwe, which dictates that “all State-owned media of communication must be impartial, and afford an opportunity for the presentation of divergent views and dissenting opinions” [section 61(4)(b and c)].
Yet, ZBC, The Herald, Sunday Mail, and others in their fold, act more like the ruling ZANU PF party’s propaganda and publicity departments – instead, of being the voice of the voiceless, and speaking for the entire cross-section of the Zimbabwean political spectrum.
As such, before throwing stones at the US embassy, and its clear violation of international law – our own government, institutions, and even political analysts, should first introspect, by critically analysing their own behavior, especially in regards to obeying and respecting local laws.
Even in my favorite book, the Holy Bible, those self-righteous and pretentious Pharisees – who sought to stone a woman allegedly caught in the act of adultery – had enough sense to reluctantly and embarrassingly walk away, after our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ had suggested that, whoever was without any sin should cast the first stone.
Yet, our own ruling elite and their sycophants, appear not to possess even a grain of sense.
I am reminded of similar irritating moaning over targeted sanctions imposed on selected individuals and entities (accused of human rights abuses, and corruption) by the same US, UK (United Kingdom), and EU (European Union) – which, I honestly do not care much about, as I do not believe they are the real reason for our unbearable suffering and unspeakable poverty in this country.
Nothing fascinates me than listening to the incessant complaining over the supposed ‘unfair and unequal’ treatment of top Zimbabwean officials by bigger and more powerful nations.
As someone who endured sickening and painful bullying as a child – such whining by the ruling elite always reminds me of the hidden pleasure and joy I used to have in seeing those who bullied me getting a bitter taste of their own medicine, at the hands of even more powerful bullies.
I am sure that is the reason not too many Zimbabweans are particularly sympathetic to these ‘sanctions’ cries by a leadership that has proven to be nothing better than a bunch of schoolyard bullies.
Who would feel any empathy for a ruling elite that knows no bounds and shame in looting our nation’s abundant resources, for their own self-serving aggrandizement – living lavish lifestyles, only comparable to Hollywood stars – whilst, impoverishing an entire nation of millions?
When a country ‘boasts’ of nearly half the population (about seven million) wallowing in extreme poverty – surviving on less than USD1.90 a day, with most families failing to put food on their tables, are unable to access and even afford medical care, or pay for decent accommodation – why would we care when some top regime officials are barred from travelling and shopping in Western capitals and have their ill-gotten billions of dollars frozen in some foreign bank accounts?
Who would side with a ruling elite that has no qualms killing, torturing, beating up, abducting, and even arresting on spurious charges, those who dare express objection to its wayward and nefarious ways – when a larger nation also abuses its powers to kick around and strangle them?
In fact, it is laughable hearing those in power in Zimbabwe accusing foreign entities of planting and funding ‘agents’ and ‘puppets’ to scuttle its efforts – yet, they themselves are causing the same mayhem in the country’s legitimate opposition.
I am not a fan of the US – since, I believe it is not, and has never been, a truly democratic and democracy-loving country, as it has not only oppressed and subjugated its own population (especially, the minority people of colour), but has authored untold death and destruction in foreign lands, through its barbaric wars, proxy puppet regimes, and exported immorality.
However, when I witness a ruling establishment that has caused so much pain and suffering in our day to day lives, as Zimbabweans, getting a feel of what it means to be bullied, I can not help feeling a sense of, “now you know a bit of how it feels”.
I sincerely hope that such ‘unfair and unjust’ treatment by more powerful countries will somehow serve as a lesson to our ruling elite that what they are doing to their own less powerful and defenceless citizenry is not only wrong, but evil and cowardly.
© Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, author, and political commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp/Call: +263715667700 / +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936 / +263733399640, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org