Who exactly is this Radical Soldier? By the time we need to write his obituary....it will be too late to ask. Please also check www.zimfinalpush.blogspot.com and related websites.

The rise and fall of Rhodesia etc...

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"MY WIFE YOU HURT ME!!!" REV M S HOVE

"MY WIFE YOU HURT ME!!!" REV M S HOVE
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Previous Postings Archived Monthly

Wednesday, 11 April 2007

ZIM: "THE FAIRY TALE BECAME A GORY NIGHTMARE!"

Zimbabwe: When a Fairy Tale Becomes a Gory Nightmare…
 
April 06, 2007 02:35 PM
The year was 1979 and on Radio Cameroon (there was no TV then) Zimbabwe
was a permanent if not dominant fixture on the international news. The racist Ian Smith regime had been replaced by the black government of Bishop Abel Muzorewa – a suspect government which for all intents and purposes was merely an extension of the racist Smith regime. Zimbabwean nationalists in exile led by Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe fiercely challenged the farce. And the rest of the world agreed. In the end, Muzorewa was dragged kicking and screaming to London for talks at Lancaster House under the auspices of Lord Carrington.
 
One didn't need to be a grown up back then to understand what was at stake; white supremacist rule (hiding behind Muzorewa's black face) vs. black majority rule represented by Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe. How we envied Zimbabwe when the Lancaster talks ended with an agreement for new internationally supervised elections! This was a time when Cameroon was solidly under the control of a dictator called Ahmadou Ahidjo; an era of rule by terror which a generation of Cameroonians cannot begin to relate to and even occasionally romanticize – the result of a quarter of a century of misrule by Ahidjo's successor Paul  Biya….
 
And how we again turned green with envy when Zimbabwe became independent on April 18, 1980 after free and fair elections that saw Mugabe besting his old comrade in arms Joshua Nkomo! Racist Rhodesia was finally dead and black-led Zimbabwe born. Even the great Bob Marley, that immortal icon of our generation, showed up for the party to sing his famous tribute to the new nation: 
 
Every man gotta right to decide his own destiny,
And in this judgement there is no partiality.
So arm in arms, with arms, we'll fight this little struggle,
'Cause that's the only way we can overcome our little trouble.

Natty Dread it in-a (Zimbabwe);
Set it up in (Zimbabwe);
Mash it up-a in-a Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe);
Africans a-liberate (Zimbabwe), yeah.
 
But that euphoria did not last long and the honeymoon was soon over. In 1982 the affable Joshua Nkomo was accused for attempting to overthrow Mugabe's regime. Mugabe then unleashed a six-year reign of terror in Nkomo's native Matabeleland where, according to some estimates, the North-Korean trained Fifth Brigade allegedly killed about 40,000 people – nearly twice the number who died during the war of liberation. Mugabe called the campaign "Operation Gukuruhundi", meaning "the wind that sweeps away the chaff". Zimbabwe had lost its luster. And suddenly, Paul Biya's Cameroon felt a million times safer … and freer!!!
 
No more internal power struggle;
We come together to overcome the little trouble.
Soon we'll find out who is the real revolutionary,
'Cause I don't want my people to be contrary.
 
By the time Mugabe got his way and imposed one-party rule in the late eighties, Zimbabwe was faithfully following that disheartening political blueprint which newly-independent African states used in the 1960s; excessively high hopes at the birth of the nation followed by a short honeymoon; then the imposition of one-man-one-party rule and the jailing of political opponents; the pauperization of the masses and the illicit enrichment of a select few; the institution of a culture of fear and brutal repression; economic stagnation and the collapse of the middle class;  the descent into the abyss and the loss of innocence.
 
To divide and rule could only tear us apart;
In everyman chest, mm - there beats a heart.
So soon we'll find out who is the real revolutionaries;
And I don't want my people to be tricked by mercenaries
 
But the worse was yet to come with the bungled land distribution campaign and Mugabe's maniacal obsession with hanging to power whatever the cost. Whatever one's take on the historical legitimacy (or lack thereof) of the land distribution campaign, it is now evident that this was a fly-by-night operation whose implementation was driven primarily by cynical political and populist motives. This was not a carefully planned program aimed at rectifying the errors of the past and at jump-starting the Zimbabwean economy. The end result is there for all to see. As Zimbabwean Bishops lament in a recent pastoral letter:
 
"Following a radical land reform programme seven years ago, many people are today going to bed hungry and wake up to a day without work. Hundreds of companies were forced to close. Over 80 per cent of the people of Zimbabwe are without employment. Scores risk their lives week after week in search of work in neighbouring countries. Inflation has soared to over 1,600 per cent, and continues to rise, daily. It is the highest in the world and has made the life of ordinary Zimbabweans unbearable…"
 
The downhill slide would continue with the mass eviction of "illegal dwellers" across the country in the infamous "operation Murambatsvina" (get rid of the filth) of 2005. The operation, which had strong political and partisan undertones, only worsened the socio-economic situation in the country. According a United Nations fact finding mission:
 
"It estimated that some 700,000 people in cities across the country have lost either their homes, their source of livelihood or both. Indirectly, a further 2.4 million people have been affected in varying degrees. Hundreds of thousands of women, men and children were made homeless, without access to food, water and sanitation, or health care. Education for thousands of school age children has been disrupted. Many of the sick, including those with HIV and AIDS, no longer have access to care. The vast majority of those directly and indirectly affected are the poor and disadvantaged segments of the population. They are, today, deeper in poverty, deprivation and destitution, and have been rendered more vulnerable."
 
In recent months, Mugabe has upped the ante on political repression and recklessness as he uses every bloody trick in the book hang on to power in perpetuity; the hounding, jailing, torture and even murder of anyone who is rightly or wrongly considered an enemy of the regime is now a national hobby. 
 
Today, Zimbabwe is a shadow of its old self, a fairytale transformed into a gory nightmare right before our eyes. That rainbow nation where black and white were supposed to live happily ever after, where political opponents were supposed to carry on with the business of nation building without fear or repression, is now a distant and even laughable dream. Zimbabwe has gone full circle, right back to the worst days of good old Rhodesia as the Bishops point out in their letter:
 
"None of the unjust and oppressive security laws of the Rhodesian State have been repealed; in fact, they have been reinforced by even more repressive legislation… in particular. It almost appears as though someone sat down with the Declaration of Human Rights and deliberately scrubbed out each in turn. [S]oon after Independence, the power and wealth of the tiny white Rhodesian elite was appropriated by an equally exclusive black elite, some of whom have governed the country for the past 27 years through political patronage. Black Zimbabweans today fight for the same basic rights they fought for during the liberation struggle. It is the same conflict between those who possess power and wealth in abundance, and those who do not; between those who are determined to maintain their privileges of power and wealth at any cost, even at the cost of bloodshed, and those who demand their democratic rights and a share in the fruits of independence...."
 
Zimbabwe, says one news dispatch,
"…is reaching the end game, witnessing the last, desperate throes of a regime that has destroyed one of Africa's few successful economies, plunged millions of people into grinding poverty and led to the deaths of tens of thousands from malnutrition and lack of medical care."
 
This view is shared by the Bishops who warn that:
 
"The confrontation in our Country has now reached a flashpoint. As the suffering population becomes more insistent, generating more and more pressure through boycotts, strikes, demonstrations and uprisings, the State responds with ever harsher oppression through arrests, detentions, banning orders, beatings and torture. In our judgement, the situation is extremely volatile."
 
The Bishops add that what Zimbabwe desperately needs is "a new people-driven Constitution that will guide a democratic leadership chosen in free and fair elections that will offer a chance for economic recovery under genuinely new policies."

For that to happen, African countries, particularly those in the Southern African region led by South Africa, must bring pressure to bear on Mugabe. Unfortunately they have been reluctant to openly take on Mugabe, preferring a failed behind-the-scenes diplomacy that has only emboldened Mugabe.

As we look at the situation unfolding in Zimbabwe we cannot help but be very sad at the lost opportunities, the broken promises and the shattered dreams. When and how will it end? Will Zimbabweans finally get the right to decide their own destiny as Bob Marley urged back in 1979? Will Thabo Mbeki and other African leaders stop pussyfooting and finally live up to their historic responsibility to the Zimbabwean people by calling Mugabe to order? How much longer will this horror movie last?
How much more of this punishment can the people of Zimbabwe endure?
 
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11 comments on this post
Added: April 06, 2007 03:10 PM
Betrayal
Well written Dibussi. As the bishops said,

"The Bishops add that what Zimbabwe desperately needs is "a new people-driven Constitution that will guide a democratic leadership chosen in free and fair elections that will offer a chance for economic recovery under genuinely new policies."

Africa has been betrayed by its leaders many an times and Mugabe is just the in guy right now. Until we get constitutions with checks and balances that ensure the common citizens rights are protected and the power of a president diminished, we will always have to rely on a leader's personal integrity. Out of the continent you get both Nelson Mandela and Robert Mugabe and that is just too high a price to pay with each leader coming into power.
By:  
Joshua
Added: April 06, 2007 05:08 PM
True Zimbabwean
My brother do not be fooled by the whiteman's propaganda. Zimbabwe is fully behind President Mugabe and we back his every move. We'd rather be ruled by Mugabe for a thousand years than let our country fall in the hands of sellouts. Let the true African spirit prevail for the greatest battle is yet to be seen. Icho!
By:  
Mudiwa Charamba
Added: April 06, 2007 05:47 PM
Mudiwa
Are you trying to tell me you are fully behind Mugabe and everything is good over there? Is the media lying to us with all the information coming out of Harare or the refugees running to neighboring countries?
By:  
Hubert
Added: April 06, 2007 06:06 PM
Why do all Mugabe supporters always assume that any analysis that is not favorable to Mugabe is the white man's propaganda? Why not deal with the issues raised? The Matabeleland massacres did not happen? The campaign against the squaters was a Western invention? And have Zimbabwean bishops all become whire men? And all those bloggers blogging from within Zimbabwe are just crazy?

Mugabe is the worst thing that ever happened to Africa and most of us rational folks do not need a whiteman to point that out to us.
By:  
Aloku
Added: April 06, 2007 06:13 PM
Well said Aloku
Well said Aloku. Mugabe and a number of Africans use the white man for all their failings. "Our transportation system is not working"

The white man is the reason.

"Our children don't have enough to eat."

The white man is the reason.

Last time I checked, Mugabe (black man) was running Zimbabwe. To keep blaming others is a sign of irresponsibility and one of the worst traits a leader can possess. We need to grow up and do better!
By:  
Joshua
Added: April 06, 2007 06:55 PM
"Glow" Zimbabwe
Good points all, we are not behind Mugabe, Mugabe is evil. If there were free and fair elections (preferably where the dispora could vote) he would be gone. This is not the case. I so hope it is the case someday.

Also, whatever did happen to all of those poor youths abducted from the Glow last week? They have vanished, which is concerning...
By:  
Economic Mip
Added: April 07, 2007 01:15 AM
Don't blame the West, blame Mugabe
Well written! It's a shame that post-colonial Africa is ruled by despots like Robert Mugabe. It's easy to blame the former colonists but Mugabe is ultimately responsible for what has happened in Zimbabwe. Words like greed, corruption and intimidation aptly describe Mugabe and his Zanu-PF cronies. Sadly the Zimbabwean people and most African peoples in post colonial Africa, suffer at the hands of power hungry, dictators who care less for their own people than the colonists.
By:  
Kimberly Ba
Added: April 07, 2007 07:20 AM
So much propaganda
It seems that most commentators are simply buying the bogus news reports from Zimbabwe that are written by person and organizations that are being financed by the US and UK.

The issue is that Mugabe took back land from whites and they are all up in arms over this.

All the other excuses people are giving is just to cover up their racist US/UK financed agenda. There are corrupt governments the world over that are well supported and financed by the US and UK once they do their dirty work.

To them Blacks must never try to remove White Supremacy.
By:  
Emil
Added: April 07, 2007 07:25 AM
What does Zimbabwe deserve??
Zimbabweans deserve Mugabe. there is no point in crying about the melt-down now. Zimbabweans get the leader they deserve and they definitely deserve Robert Gabrielle Mugabe. So stop complaining and get off your pathetic backsides and help Robert do what he does best with his degrees in violence.
Even SADC love Mugabe. If fact all Africans love Mugabe that is why it is OKAY for blacks to beat, bash and kill blacks. So stop complaining and get on or get out. Zimbabwe only needs half it's population according to zanupf, so get out if you don't like it.



By:  
Tichaona Zunga
Added: April 07, 2007 10:43 AM
An Unexpected nightmare in a wealthy and economic power house in Africa
It never rained but it is actually a 'come and see' political derby and civil strife in the all time peaceful but dictatorial Zimbabwe under R Mugabe.I am still visualising the end of time sooner for the innocent indegenes who are mostly the scape-goats in this sacrament of politcal misunderstanding.There is little doubt that countries like if countries like Zimbabwe,Ivory Coast,Zaire and host of other hitherto peaceful nation could fall short of expectations then Africa is heading to a chaotic political doom.These were the countries to set a good example of peaceful settlement of conflict and a new method of conflict resolution that donnot need voilent reproaches.

It will be a mistake to say other countries like Cameroon,Ghana and bunch of other 'peaceful countries' will follow suit.Little doubt that there is bond of contention and political strife in other African countries but what remains is the final pitfall of voilence and civil war.I pray for a change of mentality from the African s alike for this method of expression of grievance go a long way to bring poverty,inflict suffering,pain and hunger to the poor refugees.A message to all African leaders to stop voilent and misleadership which hamper smooth development,and increase the pangs of our African predicament in all African countries.
By:  
Fritzane Kiki
Added: April 08, 2007 01:27 AM
True Zimbabwean
Mudiwa your brain is full of mud. In 100 years there will be no Zimbabweans left let alone 1000 years. Mugabe is the worst leader of a country the world has had. He sits by and watches 1000's of his countrymen and women starving to death as well as the cruelty he inflicts on them. I hope in the near future a true Zimbabwean is elected as President, one that will take care of his fellow men and woman and one that will restore Zimbabwe to its once beautiful self. I hope one day again blacks and whites will be able to live, work and socialise in peace and harmony.
By:  
Anne Johnston
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NOT THE TIME TO LOOK JOVIAL....

NOT THE TIME TO LOOK JOVIAL....
....BUT WELL THERE YOU ARE! "CHEESSSEE!"

VaRadical Soldier ku Joburg pa"Anti-Mugabe" demo!

VaRadical Soldier ku Joburg pa"Anti-Mugabe" demo!
Tichasvika chete!

"....zvama 'dhisnyongoro'....!"

"....zvama 'dhisnyongoro'....!"
The same demo in JHB...more on www.fozc.blogspot.com