Day By Day

Monday, May 29, 2006

Zimbabwe Update -- Mugabe Tightens His Grip

The Scotsman reports:

With pressure now building both internally and externally on the 82-year-old president to save his country by removing himself from power, [Zimbabwe dictator Robert] Mugabe is strengthening his grip over the country's rural masses....

Now Mugabe, who has been in power since the country's independence in 1980, has ordered his military to fan out across several rural areas to ensure the government's grain silos are full. He is also appointing military commanders to top positions in civilian institutions, presumably to stave off instability anticipated over rising prices.

As well as the Grain Board, senior officers, both on active duty and retired, are now in control of the Reserve Bank, the Electoral Commission, Zimbabwe Railroads, the Ministry of Energy, the Public Service Commission, the National Parks and other key institutions....

The presence of the military predominantly in the southern part of the country, and not in the north where Mugabe's draws his support, is no coincidence. "The army has targeted areas that are potential opposition strongholds, those farmers that have voted for the opposition," said Gordon Moyo, leader of the Bulawayo Dialogue advocacy group. "It's an act of intimidation and a violation of human right of those people."

Read it here.

Why such harsh measures? Well, primarily because Mugabe's mad descent into racist, Maoist, anti-colonialist Hell has destroyed Zimbabwe's economy [once the strongest in the region], its social fabric, and its political culture. Hundreds of thousands have been made homeless, there is a persistent food crisis, inflation is running at an annual rate of more than 1,000 %, fuel supplies are almost nonexistant, hundreds of thousands, especially the white population have fled the country and Mad Bobby's henchman are pillaging what remains. It is nothing less than the systematic destruction of a country and a people, comparable to the atrocities perpetrated by the worst of the Communist regimes of the last century.
Jonathan Moyo, a former Secretary for Information and currently Zimbabwe's only independent Member of Parliament, said: "This is an admission that things have fallen apart and national governance can no longer continue in a civilian mode. It's a crisis and we are in an undeclared state of emergency."
And now Mad Bobby fears the future.

David Coltart, a white Member of Parliament with the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), said: "The militarisation of the state of government is viewed by Mugabe as a passport to a post-State House security. He hopes that after he leaves State House he will not be pursued by the law and not dragged to Senegal or the Netherlands for crimes against humanity."
You see, the madman is now 82 years old and under intense pressure to retire. But, like the Iraqi insurgents who fight on desperately, he fears that his past crimes will rise to haunt him under a new regime.

And, as in Iraq, the determination of the old order to hold on at all costs, is inflicting terrible, terrible suffering on innocent and helpless people.

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