The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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Cathy Buckle

Everyone stays silent
Saturday 12th February 2005

Dear Family and Friends,
Over the last few months there has been much talk about Zimbabwe's food
security. Despite a number of local, regional and international
organisations saying that Zimbabwe would run out of maize meal before the
next harvest, our government insists that there is more than enough. For the
past two weeks the food situation in Marondera has been getting worse and
worse with piles on shelves getting smaller until this week they ran out
altogether. In all of the town's four major supermarkets there is no maize
meal at all this weekend, just great long empty shelves. Sugar has also
suddenly disappeared and the shelves are instead filled with rice that few
people can afford to buy. I knew something must be happening as I got to one
big supermarket this weekend because suddenly people started running and
shouting all around me. There was no maize meal but a delivery of sugar had
just come in and people were grabbing bags as fast as they could. There were
no orderly queues or limits per customer and people were taking as much as
they could carry. I saw at least a dozen men literally filling entire
shopping trolleys with sugar and this is undoubtedly bound for the now
familiar black market that springs up at every Zimbabwean election.

The fact that there is no maize meal in our shops makes no sense at all as
there are huge mountains of grain bags easily visible from the road at the
local grain marketing depot in the town. When I asked shop keepers where the
maize meal was they all just shrugged their shoulders and said "no
deliveries." This crazy situation where there are mountains of food in
storage and yet none to buy is typical of the stark contrasts here.
Abandoning my search for maize meal I spent half an hour just looking at the
crazy kaleidoscope of my home town.

At 9.30 in the morning a barefoot man in ragged trousers was digging in a
dustbin outside the post office and parked in front of him was one of the
many new cars that are suddenly all over our town six weeks before an
election. This one was a dark blue Mercedes with no number plates and
plastic still on the seats and wing mirrors. In the supermarket there was no
maize meal or sugar and a woman wearing broken plastic sandals stood with a
baby on her back counting filthy one hundred dollar notes trying to see if
she had enough for a three and half thousand dollar loaf of bread. Next to
her was a big display of Valentines gifts. I looked at the prices and shook
my head in wonder; cards that ranged from nineteen to seventy thousand
dollars; a three inch high white teddy sitting in a red straw filled basket
for a hundred thousand dollars; a 5 litre box of South African wine for two
hundred thousand dollars. Outside another shop two policemen, in uniform,
loading 4 dozen beers and three tins of floor polish into a police landrover
watched by a little scruffy beggar boy who was given nothing when he
proffered his hand to them.

Driving out of town the filling stations have blackboards which say "Petrol
Yes, Diesel No" and everyone notices that the town is filled with vehicles
sporting white government number plates. They are parked and double parked
outside the hotel and the banks. For some unknown reason the owners don't
find it necessary to park in parking bays, lock their doors or even close
their windows but everyone stays quiet because an election is coming.
Until next week, with love, cathy

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Mugabe party woos voters with 'bright future'

February 12, 2005, 19:00

Robert Mugabe, the Zimbabwean president, has promised more funding for the
key agriculture sector and vowed to bring electricity to its rural
strongholds ahead of a parliamentary vote next month.

In an election manifesto made public today, the Zanu(PF) - the ruling
party - lauded its controversial land reform programme, saying it had
acquired 5 890 farms, 7.8 million hectares, from whites for redistribution
among blacks over the past five years. Critics say the land reforms, often
accompanied by violence, have undermined Zimbabwe's key agricultural sector,
deepening the worst economic crisis since independence from Britain in 1980.
Opponents blame the crisis on Mugabe's mismanagement.

The government says food shortages that have rocked what was once southern
Africa's bread basket over the last few years were mainly due to drought,
and that it no longer needs external food aid because of an improved
harvest. But this week state media reported that some 1.5 million people out
of a population of about 14 million would need food aid to be met

Zanu(PF)'s manifesto
Zanu(PF)'s manifesto pledged "a brighter and more hopeful era where all the
sacrifices, strains and pressures associated with the preceding half
decade...have to give way to a bright future of rich rewards and much
improved living standards for all our people". "The next five years will
witness more robust funding for all categories of the agriculture sector.
Agriculture will reassert its pride of place as a leading contributor to
gross domestic product," it added.

Mugabe launched the manifesto yesterday as his party prepared to square off
in the March 31 vote with the opposition Movement for Democratic Change,
which draws most of its support from urban voters. Zanu(PF) promised to
supply more electricity to its traditional rural base, which largely relies
on firewood and fuel energy. It pledged water sector funding to promote
irrigation and boost food security, saying it had disbursed $4.13 million
towards a major dam project in the drought-prone Matabeleland region, and
promised Z$25 billion more.

Mugabe accuses Britain of leading a Western propaganda campaign to
destabilise the country in retaliation for the white farm seizures, which it
says were necessary to correct ownership imbalances created by colonialism.
In its election manifesto, the ruling party said it would continue to pursue
economic ties with Asian countries saying its new "look East" policy had
already seen new investment flock in from China, Malaysia, Indonesia and
Iran. - Reuters
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The Australian

40 women arrested for 'love' march
From correspondents in Harare
February 12, 2005
ZIMBABWEAN police arrested at least 40 women in the country's second largest
city of Bulawayo today during a pre-Valentine's Day march "to spread a
message of love", one of the organisers of the march said.

"About 40 women have been arrested and are being held at Bulawayo central
police station," said Jenni Williams, spokesperson for Women of Zimbabwe
Arise (WOZA) a civic group that organised the march.

"It's most likely there are lots of people who have just been caught up
because the police were getting into buses and taxis pulling out any woman
wearing a red or white dress or carrying a red rose.

Human rights lawyer Arnold Tsunga said: "I have just heard about the arrests
and I am on my way to the police station to confirm. As of now, I don't even
know what charges they are facing."

Police spokesman Oliver Mandipaka could not be reached on his mobile phone.

Williams said about 500 women staged a peaceful march through central
Bulawayo calling on Zimbabweans to "choose the power of love rather than the
love of power".

"We felt with the elections around the corner, it's important that
Zimbabweans have love in their hearts so that when they go out campaigning
they will campaign peacefully and when they vote they will choose a person
with a loving heart," she said.

The police broke up the march when the women stopped outside the offices of
a government-run newspaper group.

Zimbabwe's most recent elections in 2000 and 2002 were marred by allegations
of widespread violence and intimidation.

President Robert Mugabe, police chief Augustine Chihuri and some ruling
party officials have called for peaceful campaigns ahead of the crunch
parliamentary polls on March 31.
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Institute for War and Peace Reporting

Mugabe Set for "Ugly" Campaign

President kicks off election campaign that seems certain to be disfigured by

By Chiedza Banda in Harare (Africa Reports: Zimbabwe Elections No 06,

Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe has launched his ruling ZANU PF party's
general election campaign with a blistering attack on British prime minister
Tony Blair, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Zimbabwe opposition
leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

Wearing a bandana in Zimbabwe's national colours, Mugabe denounced Blair as
a liar, Rice as a slave of white men, and Tsvangirai as a stooge of the

The bitterness of Mugabe's two-and-a-half hour tirade late on Friday,
February 11, has set the tone for what now looks certain to be an ugly and
violent campaign.

It came as one of the few remaining white commercial farmers remaining was
abducted and strangled to death with wire by youth militiamen and so-called
war veteran supporters of Mugabe.

Norwegian-born Ole Sunde, 66, became the 13th white farmer to die in ZANU PF's
land invasion campaign. His assailants seized him on his Musozowa Farm, near
Banket, northwest of Harare, and drove him into nearby forest where he was

Commercial Farmers Union president Doug Taylor-Freeme said Sunde had serious
head in juries and had been strangled with wire. It was impossible to
establish an official cause of death because Zimbabwe's last forensic
pathologist resigned and quit the country nine months ago.

Two of Sunde's white neighbours who went to his assistance were also
abducted and, as yet, their fate remains unknown.

The Sunde attack is expected to trigger a series of attacks on the 400
remaining white farmers. In 2000, when the president gave the signal to war
veterans, party supporters and youth militiamen to invade agricultural land,
there were 5000 white commercial farmers, whose produce made Zimbabwe the
breadbasket of Africa. Taylor-Freeme said 20 white farming families still in
the Banket area immediately quit their properties after Sunde's murder and
moved into flats in Harare.

"The man you call Blair, I call him B-liar," Mugabe told a rally of 3000
wildly cheering ZANU PF supporters at the election campaign launch rally at
the Harare International Conference Centre. "I say this because he goes
around telling lies to the rest of Europe that the problem in Zimbabwe is
one of lack of democracy, lack of human rights and lack of transparency.

"It is now again the time to demonstrate to the world that it is we who
established democracy in Zimbabwe. We taught the British what democracy for
Zimbabwe was."

As the president said the March 31 poll would be an "anti-Blair election",
banners were unfurled which read, "2005 election - time to bury Blair and
his puppets"; "2005 anti-Blair election - Blair keep your England, I'll keep
my Zimbabwe"; and "Zimbabwe will never be a colony again".

Turning to Rice, Mugabe, who will turn 81 later this month, said, "The white
man is the slave master to her. She says Zimbabwe is one of the five or six
outposts of tyranny. Ah well, she has got to echo her master's voice." It
was the first time Mugabe had responded to Rice's branding of Zimbabwe as an
outpost of tyranny along with North Korea, Cuba, Belarus, Burma and Iran.

The president labelled Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for
Democratic Change, MDC, which came close to toppling ZANU PF and Mugabe in
the last parliamentary election in 2000, a stooge of the West who had
lobbied the US, the European Union and Britain to impose sanctions on his
own country

"Morgan Tsvangirai, you sold out to the whites," said Mugabe. "It is you who
has invited Blair, it is you that has lobbied for sanctions that affect the
same people that you want to vote for you.

"Time and time again you run to Blair, (US President George) Bush. What do
you want them to do? We are a sovereign people, sovereignty derived from the
fact of our independence in 1980. We are masters of our land. Do we need
Blair or Bush or anyone to think for us?"

Mugabe said because Zimbabwe was a democratic country, the MDC was free to
campaign anywhere in Zimbabwe without fear. "Let anyone else who wants to
participate come into the arena," he said. "They are free to seek for votes.
We know they will lose. When we win they will say elections were rigged.
Rest assured, you will hear that many times. You will hear Blair saying
there is no democracy."

Britain and other western countries have backed an assertion by the MDC that
ZANU-PF rigged 2000 parliamentary elections and a presidential vote two
years later in which Mugabe won another six years in office. ZANU-PF insists
it won fairly. The MDC last week lifted a threat to boycott this year's
polls, saying it would take part although it doubted the contest would be
free or fair.

Political analysts say the elections are almost certain to return ZANU-PF to
power, prolonging a political and economic crisis they say has ruined the
once prosperous southern African country.

A flavour of the way the coming poll is likely to be skewed towards the
ruling party came in a new government edict banning opposition and
independent candidates from canvassing support among army, air force, police
and prison personnel, all of them considered to be part of the bedrock of
ZANU PF's grip on power since independence 25 years ago.

Commanders at army, police and prison camps have in the past few weeks
refused the candidates permission to hold meetings or distribute manifestoes
in their barracks where thousands of service personnel live with their
families. ZANU PF candidates and government ministers have been entering
freely to canvas for support.

Harare lawyer and senior MDC candidate Tendai Biti, who was refused entry
into Chikurubi prison complex, east of the capital, said, "It is
unconstitutional and immoral to bar the opposition from campaigning in camps
and barracks. Uniformed officers must be given the right of choice.
Politicians must be allowed to campaign freely if Zimbabwe is a democratic

Just before the 2002 presidential election, controversially won by Mugabe,
the country's army, air force, police, prison and secret service chiefs
declared in a joint statement that they would not allow anyone to take over
the country who did not fight in Zimbabwe's 1970s independence war.
Tsvangirai, a trade unionist, was an opponent of the former white government
but did not become a guerrilla fighter.

The statement was seen as a clear threat to stage a coup should Tsvangirai
win the presidential election.

Chiedza Banda is the pseudonym of the IWPR contributor in Zimbabwe.
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From The Times (UK), 12 February

Mugabe changes aid stance

By Jan Raath

The Zimbabwean Government said it was launching a "drought relief" operation
for 1.5 million people who it said were in need of food. The news came on
the day that President Mugabe launched his Zanu PF party's campaign for next
month's elections. The announcement flatly contradicted Mr Mugabe's claims
last year that Zimbabwe had so much food it was "choking" on it. He said
then that there had been a record harvest and ordered the United Nations to
stop distributing food. "They (the Government) are the only ones who have
food," Renson Gasela, the Shadow Agriculture Minister, said. "They will use
that food to campaign. People are starving and they can only get it if they
are on a Zanu PF list." In a rambling speech Mr Mugabe also had some advice
for Condoleezza Rice, the American Secretary of State, who last month
included Zimbabwe in her list of "outposts of tyranny", alongside North
Korea, Burma, Iran, Belarus and Cuba. "That girl, born out of slave ancestry
in the United States, should know . . . that the white man is slave master
to her," he said. He deliberately pronounced her name "Lice".
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Big News Network

Saturday 12th February, 2005

Omar Bashir named world's worst dictator

Big News     Sunday 13th February, 2005  (UPI)

      Parade magazine's yearly list of the planet's 10 worst living
dictators has named Sudan's Omar Bashir as the head of world's most
ignominious class.

      Although last year Bashir ranked a mere seventh among the 10 worst
dictators, this year's list has him as the worst of the worst because of the
70,000 people who have been killed in Sudan's Darfur region and 6 million
internally displaced as a result of Khartoum's ethnic cleansing,
contributing editor David Wallechinsky wrote in Sunday's edition of Parade.

      Among his signature forms of abuse: slave trading and aerial bombing
of women's and children's refugee camps.

      Following Bashir are, in order: Kim Jong Il (North Korea), Than Shwe
(Myanmar, formerly Burma), Hu Jintao (China), Crown Prince Abdullah (Saudi
Arabia), Muammar al-Qadafi (Libya), Pervez Musharraf (Pakistan), Saparmurat
Niyazov (Turkmenistan), Robert Mugabe (Zimbabwe) and Teodoro Obiang Nguema
(Equatorial Guinea).

      Receiving dishonorable mentions are King Mswati III (Swaziland),
Aleksander Lukashenko (Belarus) and Fidel Castro (Cuba), the world's
longest-reigning -- and in Latin America an almost beloved -- dictator.

      Wallechinsky developed his list by consulting such human rights groups
as Freedom House, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and Reporters
Without Borders.
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Washington Times editorial

Zimbabwe's mockery of democracy

Archbishop Desmond Tutu did not help trounce apartheid in South Africa by
keeping provocative thoughts to himself. Leading up to Zimbabwe's
parliamentary elections on March 31, the Nobel Laureate is once again taking
a principled stand at a critical time. Mr. Tutu recently one-upped his
country's government by stating that Zimbabwean leader Robert Mugabe was
"making a mockery of African democracy." Through his plain speech, Mr. Tutu
highlighted the absurdity of South Africa's verbal contortions over and
quiet (read compromising) diplomacy with the repressive and ruinous Mugabe

    South Africa's other liberation hero, former South African President
Nelson Mandela, has also taken aim at Mr. Mugabe, though it has regrettably
been a good while since Mr. Mandela has spoken out against him. Now would be
a good time for Mr. Mandela to reiterate some of his concerns. In 2000, Mr.
Mandela said in a speech: "There are leaders in Africa...who have made
enormous wealth, leaders who once commanded liberation armies. But rubbing
shoulders with the rich, the powerful, the wealthy, has made some leaders
despise the very people who put them in power, and they think it is their
privilege to be there for eternity." When asked if he was referring to Mr.
Mugabe, Mr. Mandela said, "Everybody here knows who I am talking about."

    Mr. Mugabe himself was once a liberation hero, but his repressive and
disastrous government has made him an embarrassment to others who battled
apartheid, not to mention the South African government. South Africa has
gone to such lengths to avoid confronting Zimbabwe's violations against
human rights, the rule of law and racial reconciliation, it is surprising
that the Mbeki government has not chastized its liberation heroes for
criticizing Mr. Mugabe.

    The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), which was expelled
from Zimbabwe earlier this month, has been less fortunate. The trade-union
federation has been trying to meet with its Zimbabwean counterpart. Although
COSATU has long been an ally of the ruling African National Congress in
South Africa and has been trying to help bolster workers' rights in
Zimbabwe, the Mbeki government has worked to undermine the group's efforts.
South African Labor Minister Membathisi Mdladlana said leading up to the
COSATU trip to - and subsequent expulsion from - Zimbabwe, that "it would be
a big mistake if they come [to Zimbabwe] without the necessary authority,"
adding the visit had the "potential to undermine our relations." COSATU said
it complied with Zimbabwe's entry requirements and that Mr. Mdladlana's
comments facilitated its extralegal expulsion.

    South Africa would prefer to have a more democratic neighbor, but its
utter failure to take even modest steps toward bringing about a desirable
outcome has become bewildering. The Mbeki government has tried quiet
diplomacy for years, to no avail. The upcoming elections provide the people
of Zimbabwe, and Mr. Mbeki, a chance to push for democracy.
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Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Montana

Under Zimbabwean skies

By Carol Polich For the Chronicle

I recently spent six months in southern Africa, where I traveled to Namibia,
South Africa and Zimbabwe to photograph wildlife, landscapes and some travel
adventure for my freelance photo files.

The last time I was in Zimbabwe was in 1996, having traveled there twice
before. Never did I think I'd return to Zimbabwe, given its political

But while spending time in the northern Limpopo Province of South Africa, I
met a young woman, Melonie Eva, whose family farms in a newly proclaimed
transfrontier park across the Limpopo River and into southern Zimbabwe. The
invitation to "come and visit us sometime" was one that I couldn't refuse
nor resist.

Before I knew it, I was whisked off to unknown territory by the Eva family,
who also "whisked" me through customs.

The adjoining farms across the Limpopo River into southern Zimbabwe are part
of the new Shashi-Transfrontier Conservation Area, which also encompasses
the historical and cultural Mapungupwe World Heritage Site proclaimed in

The Mapungupwe civilization was a precursor to the Great Zimbabwe Ruins era,
which was around 1200 A.D. The area was the home of the kingdom of
Mapungupwe, the oldest known southern African tribe.

This vast and arid rocky wasteland contains artifacts dating back
centuries -- bead necklaces, bushman rock art and even dinosaur bones more
than 200 million years old.

By day we "bundu bashed," taking off-road shortcuts to find these
antiquities. Driving over the stony landscape and through invasive thornveld
in our open 1973 "Landy," I was glad the vehicle was doing most of the work
as the temperatures started to soar over the 110 degree F mark, a mere "cold
spell" compared to the usual 130-degree temperatures.

Being the dry season, game was sparse, but there were still herds of impala
leaping in front of us as we toodled along. Curious kudu and eland, being
shy and elusive, looked on before hightailing it out of our sight.

After the rainy season, the parched earth turns from a salmon-color soil to
a rich emerald green mass of grasses and wildflowers. It's during this time
that wild herds of elephants, zebras, wildebeests and the long line of
migratory animals descend upon this Noah's Ark.

After seeking out the bushman rock art and hiking through thorn bush,
Melonie and I reached a dark, sealed cave.

The entrance was closed with piles of long, thin logs that had weathered
over time. Nearby was a small opening where we had to crawl over rocks to
enter the bat-stenched cavernous room.

Within were the ancient grain bins. Using a spotlight and a disk reflector,
I managed to take a few shots before my light began to fade. Within the
glow, I managed to capture the crusty, dried clay that still covered the
reed poles that were used to contain crops.

The bins were raised on mopani platforms, rising more than 6 feet high to
avoid collecting moisture. A small "scooping" hole was placed near the top
and sealed with clay until the grains were needed.

In my mind, the cave wasn't a pleasant place to linger. Being on the lookout
for snakes and scorpions was a little too "Indiana Jones-ish" for me, and I
think I was quietly relieved when the spotlight faded and it was time to
crawl back out into daylight.

On smooth 12-ply tires, we rattled up the road and hillside in the
antiquated Landrover to Fly Camp, which after a few days became my favorite

Sitting on the sandstone bluff, I had a panoramic view of the Limpopo Valley
lying before me. Sheer rust-color sandstone bluffs were freestanding on the
parched earth. I could see into South Africa on a clear day.

In the near and far distance were the organically moving root systems of the
white, rock fig trees. They grew out of the rocks and mesmerized me as they
dripped and oozed over the contrasting roughness of the colored sandstone.

I was brought back to reality when Melonie mentioned we'd better "pitch up"
and gather some wood for a night fire before the sun went down.

"Pitching up" for me was setting up my little, beat-to-a-frazzle dome tent a
few meters from where the fire was to be built. For Melonie, a young
Zimbabwean passionate about Africa and used to seeing the stars overhead
even when here eyes are shut, it meant unfolding her stretcher cot and
laying by the fire, which was necessary to "keep away the hyenas," she said,
and I hoped.

There was a sliver of a moon that mid-October night, which didn't show
itself for very long. As it dipped and disappeared, the Southern Cross
ambled its way into our view, along with myriad nebulae and other star

In the Zimbabwean darkness, we heard the hyena "whoo-o-ops" in the distance,
my favorite sound in the African bush. Our conversation came to a halt as we
listened to the hyenas. Exhaustion from heat and bright sun during the day,
not to mention the constant photo action, curtailed our night talk and
slowly we went our ways to catch some shut eye.

Early the next morning, under clear Zimbabwean skies, I crept out of my tent
to photograph the golden glow beginning to show on the sandstone bluffs.
Nearby, the fire smoldered, small poofs of smoke exuding from the ashes.
Melonie had stoked the fire at 4 a.m., enough to burn until sunrise.

Back into the bush we went, this time to the farm where Digby Bristow lived.

Digby is a native Zimbabwean who has discovered many of the relics lying on
this World Heritage site. He took us to his endangered Illala Palm Forest,
which was fenced in from free-browsing elephants. This unique forest reaches
upward while kudu, sable antelope, duiker and impala roam at leisure below
the green palm fronds.

The birds "chirruping" above us again brought me out of my dreams and to the
realization that I was in the African bush.

There always seems to be a lot of action in Digby's life. He was having
problems with poachers on his property and had recently brought in six of
them. Bows and arrows were confiscated, but little is done to the poachers
other than a few days in jail and a fine. After that, they are free to go,
and usually that meanss back to the bush to poach more wildlife with a
variety of snares and antiquated devices.

Passing through the militia -- recently established to catch "border
jumpers" on the main gravel road within these farms -- Digby took me,
Melonie's mother and Melonie to his "jewel," the Massospondylus carinatus,
known to the Zimbabweans as "Penny."

This is a dinosaur fossil, fully intact, more than 200 million years old.
Roaming in herds, the Massospondylus foraged on riverbank foliage with
small, serrated, leaf-shape teeth.

Since no one is receiving any funding to help preserve the relics in this
area, it has been up to the local farmers. A stone wall has been erected
around "Penny," and Digby keeps the fossil covered. Uncovering it and
looking down at the white bones entrenched in hardened soil would make any
paleontologist gasp with joy.

By this time, nightfall was approaching and at Digby's suggestion that we
"paint the fossil by light," we decided to wait for darkness. Melonie
crouched near the fossil singing her "sangoma" chant and pretended to "raise
the bones" while light was painted and reflected upon this eerie scenario as
I photographed. The hyenas and jackals pitched in with their own chants in
the distance. It was another haunting way to end a perfect day under
Zimbabwean skies, a country forgotten because of its political turmoil.

This area of southern Zimbabwe is expansive and rugged and it is possible to
imagine the ancients who once walked here. It's a land sheltered by the
desert where you see the big things, but upon closer inspection begin to
notice numerous smaller things, such as the vegetation, insects and lichen
on rocks, which paint a mosaic of colors.

Gravel roads stretch along open areas. Game paths crisscross the parched
land, usually leading to waterholes, the lifeline of the migratory wildlife.

Yes, this is the "real" Africa. There is even a stick cairn lying along a
game path as a trail marker for the border jumpers to follow. Melonie jumped
out of the Land Rover and tossed and scattered the sticks hoping to mislead
those "aliens." It's a game of survival for both sides.

We moved off road, back through thorn bush, over stones, up and down dry
river beds and through the African bush and desert, where we could be alone
with our thoughts.

I could only imagine how green the earth would become in February through
April with the land teeming in newly sprung vegetation and wildlife. It
would be a whole new look, and my thoughts seemed to advance me by two
seasons "down the path."

Someday, I would return to see the different colors within this sheltering

Meanwhile, what were we in pursuit of now? We didn't know. We were just
exploring and absorbing the dust and air under clear and warm Zimbabwean

Carol Polich is a freelance nature photographer/writer from Bozeman who
incorporates travel adventure into her photography and writing. She recently
returned from a six-month adventure traveling in South Africa, Namibia, and
Zimbabwe, her ninth visit to the region. She can be reached at; or 586-7122.

Moving away from the wildlife photography the last two weeks of her stay,
Polich visited a small game reserve on the Limpopo River, which forms the
border between South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe. There she met the Eva
family, who farm across the border in Zimbabwe.

Enchanted with their African tales of saving starving elephants, raising
lion cubs and living with pythons and cobras in the garden, Polich decided
to return to the area and learn more about the "zany Zimbabwes" and the
history of the World Heritage Site.

Melonie Eva, the daughter, is starting her own women-only safaris
( Her mother is busily involved with a spotted cats
orphanage. Ken Eva is the farm foreman, but is also kept busy caring for the
family's animals, which include six Australian cattle dogs, a mongoose,
Spurwing geese and two parrots.

Digby Bristow has been running a hunting business for several years. Through
his wanderings on Sentinel farm and the historical literature written by his
wife, Vanessa, and others in the area, the preservation of the artifacts has
started. His e-mail is: Carol Polich can be reached
at; or 586-7122.
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