A Pariah State

via A Pariah State | The Zimbabwean 3 October 2014 by Eddie Cross

When Mr. Mugabe stood to speak at the UN General Assembly last week it was to a nearly empty hall. What a change from 1980 when he had the admiration and respect of the whole world and was regarded as one of the hopes of Africa. Today we do not fit quite in the same category as apartheid South Africa, but we certainly occupy a place in that most exclusive of groupings – that of a pariah State. Some would take it further and call us a Piranha State – a State that eats its own.

It’s very sad really as the victims of this slide into disgrace, (no pun intended) are not the politically connected and beneficiaries of the system of patronage that they have created to support the edifice of the State in the absence of either democratic or international support, are the majority of Zimbabweans in all walks of life.

How did we get from 1980 to 2014? The milestones on this journey are many but the main ones are, in my opinion, the following.

In 1983, Mr. Mugabe decided to deal with the only effective opposition to his rule in the form of Zapu. They had attempted a military coup a year before and now had a small number of “dissidents” operating as rebels in the rural areas. To crush the Party he recruited a special Brigade of troops from his own ethnic clan and then launched the Ghukurahundi campaign that was to last 4 years and lead to the collapse of Zapu and the 1987 unity agreement. Military action supported by the Police and intelligence services and accompanied by withholding food and other forms of support from the Communities which supported Zapu, resulted in a swathe of death and injury as well as forced expulsions.

Initially the international Community stood by silently and watched with dismay – opting for silence instead of principle in the name of stability and security. Encouraged by the success of his first major efforts at securing his tenure and control over the country, Mr. Mugabe went on to destroy at least 5 opposition Parties that attempted to challenge the new hegemony.

But the exercise ended the independence honeymoon and when the regime started to abuse the funds provided for land reform, the international Community withdrew support. This was followed by the 1997/98 land reform conference under UN auspices which although it produced a workable plan and an offer of international support was not implemented because it did not allow patronage opportunities.

Growing fiscal indiscipline in 1997 and 1998 with the unplanned payment of US$1 billion to war veterans and then the commitment to send 11 000 troops and heavy armor to the Congo to support Kabila at a cost of $1,5 million a day on top of an unsustainable budget deficit of about 8 per cent over the previous two decades, then triggered the withdrawal of support by the multilateral agencies.

In 1987 we had the food riots when the first civilian casualties were incurred as the Army fired live rounds at protestors in Harare and Chitungwiza. This was followed by strikes and the near shut down of the country by the Trade Unions and in 1999 the Unions formed the MDC to fight Zanu PF. For the first time Zanu PF was faced with a domestic challenge that it could not manage or suppress.

The next major milestone in my view was the 2002 elections for a new President. Zanu PF had been defeated in the 2000 referendum, had just survived the elections in the same year and now faced its first real threat to its power and control. They pulled out all the stops and only the desire by the South African government to prevent an MDC victory for fear of what that might do to the ANC alliance with COSATU; saved the day.

Hundreds of thousands of voters were denied the vote; hundreds of thousands were turned away from polling stations in the urban areas and for the first time rural voters were forced to vote under supervision and coercion. The South African government suppressed their own election reports and recognised an illegitimate return to power by Mr. Mugabe. It was a complete travesty and the international Community knew it.

What was left of the countries reputation was further damaged by the way the State handled the 2005 elections – securing a two thirds majority in the lower House and creating an upper House that was totally manipulated and loaded with appointed members.

Not satisfied with the victory, the State launched another national campaign – this time called Murambatsvina – or “let’s sweep out the rubbish”. In a period of three months, in the middle of winter, 300 000 homes were destroyed and 1,2 million people internally displaced and banished to the rural areas. The United Nations declared it a crime against humanity and categorized Ghukurahundi as Genocide.

Although the commercial farmers had no local or international constituency, what the State was doing to displace them and their staff was held up as a backdrop to all that was going on in the country and further damaged our status as a country. In what must rank as one of the largest heists in history, despite their citizenship, their constitutionally protected rights; the State simply took over 8 million hectares of productive, well managed commercial enterprise worth perhaps $30 billion – three times the national debt, and gave occupation rights to some 300 000 people who were selected as being either Zanu PF supporters or at least neutral and vulnerable to management and control.

The fiscal indiscipline of previous years, the reckless spending to try and maintain support and the ruthless destruction of the agricultural industry was eventually altogether too much and the economy simply collapsed. By 2008 we had to be dragged out of the water by our neighbors with the help of the international community who then fed our people and helped us patch up our health and education services.

Forced into an unworkable alliance with the MDC, a brief respite ensued. The economy recovered rapidly – GDP and State revenues rising from dismal levels in 2008 to reasonable levels in 2012. The EU, encouraged by attempts to put our house in order including, at last, a new Constitution, talked about a rapprochement and reengagement. The IMF and the World Bank began to resume activity.

Then came the 2013 elections. Zanu PF swept aside any pretense that they recognised democratic values in an election run by the State security agencies and the Army. Once again the MDC was crushed and the Zanu PF Party resumed its full control of the State. It was simply too much for the people and the markets, Zimbabwe went into mourning and what was left of the economy came crashing down. In a year we have lost a 100 000 jobs, a third of our banks and revenues to the State can no longer support our basic needs.

Zanu PF then turned to long time allies – first China, when rebuffed there with calls for leadership changes, economic reforms and reengagement with the West, Mr. Mugabe, in an old style cold war maneuver, went to Russia instead. Then Putin invaded the Ukraine and Zimbabwe along with other members of the elite Group of pariah States, voted in the UN to support Russia. Wrong move, wrong time, this latest act of lunacy has sealed our fate. We will remain a pariah State that is eating its children until; somehow, we can force a change of leadership.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 35
  • comment-avatar

    You left out the Zvobgo contrived constitutional ammendment which heaped executive power on the President. This removed him from direct and restraining scrutiny and perched him up there as some kind of demi god.
    But it can also be said the attitudes of white farmers may also have given Mugabe and cohorts a perfect excuse to throw tje rule book away and place this country on a ruinous tragectory.

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      Reverend 8 years ago

      MC, I do believe the attitude of the white farmer was to help balance the land issues to the extent that the 1998 donor conference was a model scheme designed to keep commercial farming foremost and RM even signed the agreement and then pulled out when he saw that he lost the constitutional referendum. The farmers did not realise the evil intent of Mugabe who had told them in 1980 that farms would not be taken away and that reconcilliation was the order of the day. His land programme made him a liar and a thief and the population who were going to get land stolen from white commercial farmers were told that they would walk into the whites wealth.They were not informed of the work and expertise required to assume that wealth. Well here we are an embittered and destroyed nation because we did not realise that this blithering idiot would sink to the depths of destruction that he did. We were caught with our proverbial pants around our ankles.

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      If one is referring to the United Nations then how about the largest democracy in the world India? Prime Minister of India Mr. Mody also spoke to almost empty UN body and so did dozens of other heads of several countries. Mr. Mugabe’s resolve was defiant and honest as it should be from a country that is under an illegal and self-serving sanction by the former criminals of the past from Zimbabwe. Let those who are casting their votes and predictions of President Mugabe to be somehow leave Zimbabwe to its sad state of tatter, they are only dreaming. Mugabe seems to be determined to outsmart and outlive almost all the pundits and nay sayers for the last decade or so. One must ask, what does any other leader of Zimbabwe have to offer? Where in the world supposedly new leader is going to get the magical wand to transfer Zimbabwe into a thriving economy? Less one agrees to sell Zimbabwe piec by piece to the looters of the world waiting to get their dirty hands on Zimbabwe’s unimaginable natural wealth in trillions of dollars. West has to keep invading weak countries to replenish their coffers from the looting of all those country fall victims to the West and its crimialities. Case in point.. What happened to trillions of dollars of gold and cash assets of Iraq, Libya, Philippines, Panama, Vietnam, Combodia, and other countries? Where did it all go? Who is in control of Iraq and Libya’s oil? Certainly not the Iraqis and the Libyans! So all those wanna-be self-appointed do gooders of Zimbabwe must think and think hard before brown nosing unlce Tom! Zimbabwe can only be revived and restored by the Zimbabweans and if anyone thinks otherwise, just look around in other countries of Africa and see who is running the show!

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        Kevin Watson 8 years ago

        You are an idiot who cannot even get the spelling of Mr Modi’s name right. Your defence of genocidal, thieving politicians in Zimbabwe is pathetic. ZANU PF under Mugabe has committed genocide, crimes against humanity, larceny on a grand scale in the DRC, destroyed commercial farming in Zimbabwe rendering 3m Zimbabweans reliant on US and European food aid, destroyed the rule of law, trashed their own constitution and destroyed the economy making 85% of Zimbabweans unemployed and forcing 3m of them to leave the country in order to survive and provide for their families survival. You think this is admirable! Well you are clearly a brainless lickspittle toady of criminals.

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          DEar Mr. Watson, your high minded intellectual tendencies are clearly aligned with those who are hell bend in further destroying Zimbabwe. If you can perhaps consider the facts on hand then you may find it very surprising to note that not only Zimbabwe is suffering from the illegalities of the West but the West itself is the victim of its own selfish, ruthless criminals operating from their ivy towers of so called “the Wall Street”. Why in the world would USA in particular, and its lapdogs brown nosing EU would impose illegal economic sanctions on Zimbabwe? Please do some quick Googling an find the facts to see why there are such “economic sanctions” and who created them and who is imposing them for what purposes? I am not in particular defending President Mugabe but speaking generally of Africa and particularly about Zimbabwe. If one reviews the history of Zimbabwe, it is very obvious that it is not the President Mugabe’s policies that has caused all the disasters in Zim’s economy but indisputably the illegal and well planned economic sanctions. Imagine if Zimbabwe did not have these illegal sanctions imposed on it, where would Zimbabwe be today regardless of how mismanaged present government’s policies were in place! So blaming the easy target who is closest to you is unfortunately the human psyche. So instead rolling in your self manifested hate of President Mugabe and waiting for some miracle to take place, try and working together as Zimbabweans and take matters in your own hands and start rebuilding one brick at a time and see how much productive Zimbabwe be! You must believe and understand clearly that there’s no miracle wand or one particular policy of any party of Zimbabwe that would bring relief from economic hardship Zimbabwe is undergoing! Creating a bigger mess won’t solve the problems and bringing in a new politicians with his or her own personal agenda won’t bring any easy and foreseeable relieve either. As far as the UN goes, Mr. Narinder Mody was not the only leader from plane earth’s biggest democracy who spoke to almost empty UN body but dozens of others faced the same dire situation clearly demonstrating that how useless and unconcerned this UN organization has become. So please let’s be civil about disagreeing on issues that I understand are too emotionally close to your heart. But as the saying goes.. cool heads always prevail!!!

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            Phunyukabemphethe 8 years ago

            Ed Malik
            Please note that, had the US ever wanted to invade Zimbabwe; they would have done this long back with no need for allies andwith very little resistance. Zim is not strategic for the US whatever your lofty dreams might be telling you.

            On the sanctions question; why didn’t the UN sanctions imposed on Rhodesia destroy the country to the same extent these selective bilateral sanctions have destroyed Zimbabwe?

            How can a country which is not under UN sanctions and is not prohibited from trading internationally end up with an economy that is in such a mess; yet Rhodesia which could not trade internationally and faced oil embargoes grew its economy tremendously over the its sanctions period?

            Please, don’t tell us about sanctions busting; for we all know that, whilst it true that there was sanctions busting by Rhodesian allies; this simply could not have worked to the advantage of Rhodesia to the same extent as the expected advantages of open unrestricted global trading should have had on Zimbabwe; where it not for corruption; mismanagement and bad leadership.

            Since the impositions of these bilateral sanctions, has the government of Zimbabwe ever stopped spending huge budgets on luxury cars for its officials and chiefs? What about entourages of 50 or more officials that accompany Mugabe on his unnecessary regular international trips – have they ever stopped?

            And then there is the top heavy government with two vice Presidents and lots of hangers-on of so-called Cabinet Ministers and deputy ministers; what do you say about that? The US is a 13 trillion USD economy, but it only has one Vice President – how do you explain the need for two Vice Presidents for an economy of the size of one of the smallest South African towns?

            All this is over and above Mugabe’s adventurism in the DRC, of which he had been sternly warned against by the then South African President Nelson Mandela; the dishing out of unbudgeted funds to the lazy, primitive and unprogressive permanently dependent so-called war veterans and many other politically inspired decisions on Gukurahundi, Murambatswina etc – the list is endless!

            Admit it, Gukurahundi Mugabe, his ZANU PF and their quislings destroyed Zimbabwe’s economy. Its a total lie that the sanctions are responsible for this!!

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          Patriot 8 years ago

          Well said

      • comment-avatar
        Swagman 8 years ago

        You are NOT a “Squire”, (Esq:) that’s
        a British title, only awarded
        to Land Owners, so get rid of it,
        fool!

  • comment-avatar
    Zimbali 8 years ago

    MC my opinion my differ slightly from yours. The CFU came up with a well documented plan on land redistribution in the early ’90’s which was given to the government of the day and the government, in typical arrogant fashion, did absolutely nothing about it. When his lordship RMG’s power base was being threatened in early 2000 with the rise of the MDC, he concocted this story about taking the land back from the colonials. The majority of “colonials” had purchased their land post independence with certificates of “no interest” from the government. The rest is history, lies, lies and more lies concocted by ZANU PF.

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    Zimbali 8 years ago

    Eddie, as usual you write a good article but unfortunately, as usual, you are misguided in some aspects.
    1.”Today we do not fit quite in the same category as apartheid South Africa” What have you been smoking Eddie?
    2. You say that whilst Ghukurahundi was taking place in 1983, the world stood silently by and watched. I think that you might find that the full horror of Ghukurahundi was only discovered in 1992 when there was the longest and most severe drought that the country had ever experienced. Whilst rural folk were desperate for water they went searching down disused mine shafts and found countless bodies of men, women and children. Some say 20,000 or more.
    3. “and for the first time rural voters were forced to vote under supervision and coercion”. Where were you in the election of 1980 Eddie? I think you might well agree with me that there was a fair amount of “coercion” then, maybe not supervision.

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      Kevin Watson 8 years ago

      Eddie has fairly rose tinted glasses. Rural voters have always been coerced into voting as their land tenure system and hence survival depends on it. At this stage Zimbabwe is being consigned to the dustbin of history by a voracious thieving political elite whose major opposition are naïve and useless at best. My Sister who sits in Parliament with Eddie was subjected to a racist attack by MDC colleagues and Eddie said nothing.

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    I wonder who will write the correct History for the future. The memoirs of our politicians are all so different the kids will be confused.The Police might of but the 5th Brigade did not kill even one armed dissident. They killed over 20000 unarmed civilians who were taken by such surprise that they did not see it coming. Cowards of the highest order.

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    Hi its all well to say there were clear papers and positions adopted by the white commercial farmers but I am.of the view that tge structure of agrculture at that time always made the commercial farmers an easy target for political capital and I just wonder for example if it was politic for some of them to have been seen to have been so overt in their support of the opposition. Some will say it was their democratic right but they not have more subtle?
    That said the land grabs were executed in a manner that defies modern civility. It decapited the engine room of this economy and we shall have long to pay until sanity prevails. The problem with a clueless leadership is that they will keep repeating the same mistakes inorder to sanitize the original one.

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    Could they not have been more subtle?

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    Reverend 8 years ago

    LOL….subtle is not in the shona dictionary.

    Yes Doc some one needs to write the unabridged history of Zimbabwe so others can learn not to allow other mugabes to dictate again.

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      Don Cox 8 years ago

      The biggest problem in politics is how to keep those who are greedy for power away from it. Often their hunger and determination to rule overcomes all obstacles.

      And it is common for those who are not power-mad at first to become addicted to it after a few years. This is why term limits are so important. One of the first things a budding dictator does is try to remove term limits from the constitution.

      This is a world wide problem, not just one for Africa.

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    Zimbali 8 years ago

    MC, I agree 100% with your last two posts. The country as a whole and the farmers in particular thought that change was coming and were totally brazen about transporting workers to the polling stations in 2002. They should have kept a strategy of remaining below the radar. Hindsight is easy, however would things have been different? I doubt it. All we have left to do now is to pray for change.

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    WHY should the farmers “have been more subtle”? Like me, they are/were citizens. Some were arseholes, some were so-so and some were good, just like any bunch of people.

    The very trouble with Zim is that no one wants to piss-off the powerful – because as a nation we do not understand the concepts of Democracy, Nationalism or Patriotism.

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    Baba Jukwa's Tokolshe 8 years ago

    Baba Jukwa’s Tokolsohe will get the Genocidal Dictator….it is just a matter of tome now. The Tokoloshe is simply tired of him.

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    Nawana 8 years ago

    Dear Eddie Cross. ZAPU never attempted to topple the ZANU regime. You refrain from from embellishing the truth in order to keep your ZANU friends happy. You are poisoning the already toxic broth.

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    blackhammer 8 years ago

    In April 2010 I wrote the piece below under the heading, ‘Could it have been different?’

    ———never test the depth of water with both feet——–oooooooops!

    Just over ten years ago the Zimbabwe political scene seemed dull. Except of coarse, for those who were in the thick of it. News wasn’t freely flowing like today, thanks to the internet. Among other news items, there was news of Tsvangirai’s near death experience, at the hands of state agents, on a fifth or seventh floor of a block of offices. At the time it was either the union or the students having tussles with the Zanu government while most of us mere mortals were at our local downing our favourite brew.. But I remember vividly one Saturday lunch time when I switched on the television and the BBC news showed a demonstration in central Harare in which our honourable police were running amok at the demonstrators. A white gentleman had a gash on his forehead and there was blood all over his face.

    Immediately after the bulletin I phoned a friend and I told him the whites had made a miscalculation by going on these demonstrations. A few weeks later the farm invasions started. At the time my point was any farmer threatened should have quietly vacated and watch from a distance instead of being a dead hero. One can always live to fight another day. The way I looked at the political situation then was Mugabe had become complacent, corruption was now endemic and the economy was pointing in one direction only, down. It was hard for Mugabe to point a finger at anyone else and the black majority was on his tail. Just like last year when he lost the elections and the MDC rescued him the white participation gave him an excuse and the rest is history, I believed. One has also to bear in mind that in the previous 20 years the whites weren’t an issue to Mugabe. He had grown to love them, if you get my drift. As a trade unionist and fighting for the working conditions of the workers Tsvangirai became an enemy of both the employers, who were predominantly white, and Zanu who were now enjoying the cream at the top. Zanu were keen for the status quo to remain. I also was of the opinion that, by deciding to go on this path of wanton destruction of the economy’s mainstay, i.e. farming, Zanu’s days in power would be numbered. I even went further and hoped and “prayed” the farmers would quietly and discretely stop or reduce production although this would indeed have given more ammunition to the Zanu thugs. In any case the thugs did win and are still winning and we have never looked back!

    I argued this case over months even at the Central London Forum but the majority of the participants pointed out that as a democracy the whites had a right to voice their opinion with regards to the direction the country was taking. Very very true but if one had looked at the history of Mugabe and Zanu one would have realised that the concept of “democracy” to them was a fallacy. The arguments I was articulating then were very controversial but in some ways attractive and I appreciated everyone who stuck to their guns. They said and insisted we should stick to one word. Honesty. Even today Zanu apologists delude themselves by claiming that the MDC was formed by whites for the whites and Tsvangirai was installed leader as a front. Would Zanu have found other excuses? Could it have been different? Probably yes to both questions. But, like many things, for example, football, the result becomes so obvious after the final whistle has gone. Unless of coarse, if one is in a Far East syndicate! Hindsight is always cruel! Maybe, just maybe, things wouldn’t have reached the point where we are today. We will never know but I hope it gives you food for thought.

    Simon M Tozvireva.

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    Chanisa 8 years ago

    The greatest calamity in 1980 was when we granted ZANUPF two thirds majority. That gave Mugabe free reign to duck removal by democracy. South Africa has been lucky.

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      Kevin Watson 8 years ago

      In 1980 Mugabe won 57 seats in Parliament, Abel Musorewa won 3 seats I Parliament, Nkomo won 20 seats in Parliament and 20 seats were won by Smith as they were reserved for whites. Basic arithmetic tells us that 57 out of 100 is 57% and that two thirds is 66.66%, a pity your facts are wrong, it makes the rest of your comment irrelevant.

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    Hindsight is a formidable teacher. For those of us who were alert.to the situation the white farmers had for long enjoyed a love hate relationship with Mugabe right up to the point when Mdc was formed. They also decided to withdraw from politics until up to this time. So Zanu saw their sudden appetite for political space as an attempt to topple them from power (which would have been good) if it had happened. In the event it did not with all the dire consequences.

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      Have been following the conversation, interesting but the writer of this document makes one mistake to say ZAPU tried a coup, that’s misleading and wrong. The writer must have been young by then and I think he was misinformed of the events of the times. The differences and enemity based on racesism where fueled by ZANU in the 1960s hence Mugabe had a score to settle with ZAPU. ZANU never wone the elections after all, the elections where given to Zanu by the British for many good reasons, so to say we gave Zanu majority rule is wrong. Should you want more on this I will kindly respond. The rigging MDC sees today did not start with them, it started wn 1980. The idea was to have people vote for PF and who shot the idea down and for what good reason? People where forced to vote under fear and inspection in the presence of white inspectors from uk and all complains where sweept under the carpet.
      Guguraundi happened under the watchfull eye of the British, Australia,Newziland, the USA and the Canadians, all who had interest in Zim, what was more intersting was that they kept quite thinking their intersts where being protected. Let’s not forget the role played by RSA since by then Zim relied on SA for its economic growth. SA played and lived a double life by creating dissidants and having opperatives in Zim and people would say it was ZAPU. Mugabe had also simillar tactics and we suffered for no reason and should Zipra wanted to take the powers by then nothing could have stopped them.

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    you can put a baboon in suit but you can’t make it act like a man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    Havoc 8 years ago

    Wise man learn from history and foolish man learn from experience. It is true that Zimbabwe is now a pariah state but we have a chain of other independent states who went through the same experiences although not worse of than ours. Tanzania, Zambia, Mozambique, now Zimbabwe and South Africa to follow, just to mention a few. Where all these independent states led by lunatics? What went wrong and how can we learn from their mistakes. To me it is obvious unless someone proves me wrong. We have sad barriers of racial mistrust created in the process of our history to date. These barriers are breeding grounds for greedy politicians (political and economic dictators)who do not want to remove the barriers for fear of being disposed. It is unfortunate that our racial history left an irreparable dent of mistrust which translates to lack of faith in any majority governments worse if politics overtake laws, economic principles and proven administrative systems.

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    revenger avenger 8 years ago

    Basically it isn’t ” hindsight ” you armchair academics. Long before 1980 many wise folk had foretold predicted where zimdesia would be in the future. It wasn’t rocket science to figure out. . The world is full of fools said the greatest man in history. Dream on about nikuv 2018 erections. I say viva mob justice. Pamberi street revolution. Pasi cowards

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    revenger avenger 8 years ago

    Very interesting article. Since whenever in the last 3000 years have brazen dictatorships ever been thrown out by ” democratic erections ” ???????? Viva mob justice pamberi street revolts. Pasi gullibility naivety armchair cowards. Forward the true martyrs. Paso whore vets

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    Ed Melik you stupid arse look around you and see what Harare looks like! An Armaggedon!! Rubbish everywhere, storm drains completely blocked up and treated as dustbins, traffic lights broken and fallen down and not collected for years, no water, no zesa, broken roads. They know that it can completely break down and somebody else will come in and fix it, but only if they can get some of the money in their filthy hands. This is a tiny symptom of the way in which they are running the whole country. Is this successful in any way at all! You big fool! We need foreign investment and if it comes in, of course there are going to be conditions. They just do not like the conditions if it doesn’t suit their pocket!!

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    Mixed Race 8 years ago

    @Ed Melik …=I have not included the last bit of your assumed name because you are a disgrace to me.Let me try to explain a few things you seem to forget in life:-
    1-UN is a club of United Nonentities as evidenced by the majority which make UN.This is the club whereby all these poorly governed states meet and have an opportunity to see a first world country in operation for their wives to shop.
    2-The countries you mentioned and their resources you claim were taken by the west shows your limited understanding of international affairs-I feel sorry for your lack of maturity.These countries have one common denominator,that is they had terrible rulers before change of governments, which in most cases those who took over power had never seen freedom before, therefore they have tendencies of falling back to dictatorship, until civil society groups develop skills to monitor the politicians.It takes time to transform people’s minds like yours.
    3-I suggest you read the 24/7 Wall Street publican on The 100 Least Powerful People in the World in this report you will realise why some people commit suicide because they become less popular and influential whilst they still think they have it.Once it dwells in them that things have changed they become depressed and make more noises in the hope that the world will listen to them.I really feel pity for them because the end results are devastating and leaves their supporters defenseless and confused leading to what is happening in those countries you weakly mentioned in your comment.
    4-The countries you mentioned had their resources taken by their new leaders not the west, because when dictators fall the next in line take advantage of the weak civil society groups which were destroyed by the dictators.So whom do you blame for the failures of those countries which were ruled by these dictators !!!Should I blame you for rescuing me from drowning or I should blame the water and my lack of swimming skills?!!

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    Mandevu 8 years ago

    Mmhh. So this is really the main issue

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    Phunyukabemphethe 8 years ago

    Ed Malik
    Please note that, had the US ever wanted to invade Zimbabwe; they would have done so long back with no need for allies; and with very little resistance. Zim is not and has never been strategic to the US, whatever your lofty dreams might be telling you. Zim is a landlocked country, no global power would bother themselves with a landlocked enclave. If anything South Africa is the country that could be strategic to the US interests and is certainly one country they would have risked invading had they ever wanted to.

    On the sanctions question; why didn’t the UN sanctions imposed on Rhodesia destroy the country to the same extent these selective bilateral sanctions have destroyed Zimbabwe?

    How can a country which is not under UN sanctions and is not prohibited from trading internationally end up with an economy that is in such a mess; yet Rhodesia which could not trade internationally and faced oil embargoes grew its economy tremendously over the its sanctions period?

    Please, don’t tell us about sanctions busting; for we all know that, whilst it is true that there was the busting of sanctions by Rhodesian allies; this simply could not have worked to the advantage of Rhodesia to the same extent as the expected advantages of open unrestricted global trading should have had on Zimbabwe; where it not for corruption; mismanagement and bad leadership.

    Since the impositions of these bilateral sanctions, has the government of Zimbabwe ever stopped spending huge budgets on luxury cars for its officials and chiefs? What about entourages of 50 or more officials that accompany Mugabe on his unnecessary regular international trips – have they ever stopped? Do you know that Ian Smith used to drive himself to work as the Rhodesian Prime Minister?

    And then, there is the top heavy government with two vice Presidents and lots of hangers-on of so-called Cabinet Ministers and deputy ministers; what do you say about that? The US is a 13 trillion USD economy, but it only has one Vice President – how do you explain the need for two Vice Presidents for an economy whose size is equal to that of one of the smallest South African towns?

    All this is over and above Mugabe’s adventurism in the DRC, of which he had been sternly warned against by the then South African President Nelson Mandela; the dishing out of unbudgeted funds to the lazy, primitive, unprogressive and permanently dependent so-called war veterans and many other politically inspired decisions such as Gukurahundi, Murambatswina, etc, etc – the list is endless!

    Admit it, Gukurahundi Mugabe, his ZANU PF and their quislings destroyed Zimbabwe’s economy. Its a total lie that the bilateral sanctions are responsible for this!!

  • comment-avatar
    blackhammer 8 years ago

    Since independence in 1980 Zimbabwe has had 4 vice presidents who all spent the last 2 years of their lives in a vegetative state but still on the payroll. Nkomo, Banana,Msika and another Nkomo. Julius Nyerere ruled Tanzania for over 20 years yet he spent 6 months of his last days in a coma before dying at St. Thomas hospital in London. Our dear leader, after an itch on the buttocks, runs to Malaysia for a check-up, and he has been at the helm for 28 years. The question I always ask is, why don’t our leaders build a well-equipped first class hospital in the country even if it is for use by the elite only? Today Harare hospital runs out of electricity or water in the theatres and operations are cancelled. And all because of ‘sanctions’ and, an itchy bum. Please! Why is it everything we touch tends to dust? And why is it we find comfort in blaming outsiders for our failings? Take the HIV pandemic for instance. At its height when many lives were being lost, Mbeki the South African president said it was all a conspiracy. Our leaders did not want to discuss it, and these are ‘educated’ men, until they, their sons and daughters started dropping off. Within our own families any death outside the family we said, ndicho chakauya, the pandemic. If it was a member of the family, aka roiwa, bewitched. Some have even gone further and said, (you got to laugh), masanctions, it’s the sanctions! What’s wrong with us so called educated people? Maybe it is God’s will. Kuda kwamwari. We are told. Let’s grow up!
    Simon M Tozvireva.