More on Zimbabwe

Simon Fairlie chapter7 at
Tue Apr 8 00:21:05 BST 2008

Here is another article on Zimbabwe, to add to the one sent in  
earlier by Djehuti Sundaka
I have cut it considerably. The full article is at http://
Considering the grotesque bias in the British media's reporting of  
events in Zimbabwe, I find this article quite restrained.

British interest in poll telling
By Peter Mavunga
IT HAS been a momentous week. The harmonised presidential,  
parliamentary and local elections have concentrated the minds of many  
Zimbabweans wherever they are. But they have also attracted a level  
of interest from beyond our borders. In Britain, the interest has  
been keen. This has manifested itself in acres of newsprint devoted  
to the subject;journalists (like John Simpson) smuggling themselves  
into Zimbabwe despite the ban on the BBC; and a debate in the House  
of Commons in which David Miliband, the British foreign secretary,  
made a full statement.
Miliband said the level of interest is due to their concern for  
Zimbabweans whose will, he argued, had to be respected. He called for  
the results of the elections to be published as soon as possible as  
further delay was likely to heighten suspicion.This sounds  
wonderfully balanced and diplomatic although it is the point of view  
of a government minister who, like many before him, wants President  
Mugabe to go.
The whole media coverage has been about maximising the President’s  
discomfort to facilitate his “departure”. A good example was Jeremy  
Paxman’s question for Cde Boniface Chidyausiku, Zimbabwe’s USA envoy,  
on Newsnight on Wednesday night.“Why doesn’t he just go?” Paxman  
asked. “To go where?” came the rhetorical question in reply.
For all their “good” intentions and ‘‘love’’ for the people of  
Zimbabwe, the British interest in Zimbabwe’s electoral process ought  
to be seen in the context of their perceived interests in the  
country. If we lose sight of this we do so at our own peril. The  
responsibility to remove Cde Mugabe from office or any public servant  
for that matter, is a matter for Zimbabweans. It is no business of  
the British to inject haste and sense of urgency ito a  process,  
which Morgan Tsvangirai, MDC faction leader said on Tuesday he was  
going to allow to take its course.
British intervention in matters like this has tended to be partisan,  
condescending and unhelpful. It has implied that Africans cannot  
manage their affairs, let alone resolve their own differences  
peacefully.The coded message inherent in what they were saying was  
that Zimbabwe was about to descend into Kenya-type chaos of murder  
and destruction. Talk of “tensions rising” was designed to whip up  
feelings of grievance to trigger a violent reaction.
Once Zimbabwe was in smoke; images of dead bodies like we saw in  
Kenya, would become the subject of western cameras. It is all done in  
the interest of informing the world what is going on in the African  
country. Yet, if truth be told, bodies of dead British soldiers  
coming from Iraq are quite rightly never paraded in public. This  
would be an affront of public decency.
It is essential, that Africans should consider themselves capable of  
doing what they have to do for themselves. Sikhanyiso Ndlovu put it  
nicely when he told an interviewer earlier this week that: “We do not  
do things in order to please you.” 
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the Diggers350 mailing list