Saturday, July 05, 2008

'Africa Unite' and Free Zimbabwe

This crying child was pictured outside of the US embassy in Zimbabwe. About 200 Zimbabweans were there pleading for political asylum.

Mugabe, who has violently installed himself as the president, remains characteristically defiant. He continues to define the opposition Movement for Democratic Change as representives of colonial interests.

He nontheless says he will negotiate with the opposition only if he remains the president. This position reminds me of the apartheid government's insistence that it would enter into talks with the liberation movements on the condition that they renounce armed resistance.

GuardianFilms has obtained footage of "Mugabe's henchmen ... stealing civil servant postal ballots." See the video here.

South Africa's Mail & Guardian explains how and why Shepherd Yuda secretly made the film.

"The film shows how he and his colleagues at Harare Central prison had to fill in their postal ballots in front of a Mugabe supporter, how voters had to pretend to be illiterate so an official would fill in their ballots for them, and how terrified Zimbabweans were using felt tip pens to colour their fingers to pretend they had voted, lest they be murdered by Zanu-PF gangs."
Adding to the horror is the fact that African leadership is hardly able to summon enough power to force Mugabe's hand. Except for Kenya, Nigeria, and Zambia, the rest of the continent can't find the necessary conviction to take a stand.

The worst offender is our own President Thabo Mbeki. How short his memory is huh?

Not too long ago his movement castigated the US and Israel, among others, for supporting apartheid.

How different is his position now? Not much in my view.

South Africa has no business being caught between historical loyalty and Mugabe's defiance. And I say this out of conviction and Africanist loyalty to democratic freedom.

Free Zimbabwe!


Anonymous said...

It is interesting that South Africa has not taken a stronger stand with Zimbabwe, being it closest neighbor and with the influx of refugees that may begin to grow with the outcome of the latest election.
I know a man who has run a nonprofit for a group of artists in a small town for several years and he has described continued caution with the election and with Mugabe's men running around it is more dangerous for his group to do what they need to, to provide for the artists.
These artists need South Africa to step in and to help turn their economy and government around, so that the people benefit and not suffer for their leaders desires.
Free Zimbabwe!


Ridwan said...

Hello Kim. I read yesterday that Mbeki met with Mugabe again. More "quiet diplomacy" with zero progressive results.

Just like apartheid, Mugabe can't be reformed. He needs to leave. A big part of why he is holding onto power is that he fears prosecution under a new government.

So they should give his ass asylum somewhere.

I told you that Laurie was in South Africa. She was in Tanzania for a while and the last few days she is in Zimbabwe.

Yeah you read that right.

I heard that the border folks charge Americans/Canadians up to $200 to enter Zim.

It may be about $50 at the airport but Laurie crossed by bus.

I will talk to her sometime next week before she goes back to Georgia.

OK, before I forget. Dade has written an excellent post on Obama's tilt/drift to the right.

Like you, Dade is a supporter of Obama and that is why I think his post will interest you.

See it here:

I'll holla later.

Peace Kim.


Dade said...

By taking such a hard line, Mugabe would seem to be guaranteeing more bloodshed and violence. Can he possibly imagine that he will succeed where countless other strongmen have failed? Eventually, they all fall down.

Ridwan said...

I sure hope he "falls down" sooner than later Dade.

A lot of blood will likely flow as he feels more and more threatened.

Peace brother,

Anonymous said...

I am trying to figure out if any countries are accepting Zimbabweans as refugees. It seems UK is difficult. ? Have you heard anything?

Ridwan said...

Profacero thanks for looking in and commenting. There are millions of displaced Zimbabweans living in South Africa, Malawi, Tanzania, etc.

With the recent xenephobic violence in SAfrica it is not easy for Zimbabweans here.

The SAfrican government is not offering asylum but is also not forcing Zimbabweans to return.

I do not know if the US, UK, or any other Western state is offering asylum.

Does anyone else know?

Peace PZ.