Eyewitness
Inside Zimbabwe
27 March 2007

Tuesday

People are talking about the recent news that Angola had agreed to send 2,500 police militia to boost the Zimbabwean Police Force.

The Angolan government has denied this, but no one believes they're telling the truth.

Zimbabweans have lost trust with governments in the SADC region, and we think they might lie for Mugabe and secretly help him keep us oppressed. The memory of the stolen elections, which were declared free and fair by South Africa, still feels very fresh. How can we trust them to help us?

In my area, Matabeleland, around 20,000 civilians were killed in the early 1980s during Mugabe's military operation code-named  'Gukuruhundi'. Many more were brutally tortured.

The Fifth Brigade who carried out the vicious murders were trained by the North Koreans. The cruelty and types of things they did to people defy civilised imaginations.

I know people who are still psychologically scarred by witnessing atrocities and living with fear. I have a friend whose mother still suffers from pain caused by torture injuries inflicted on her more than twenty years ago.

So when we hear talk of foreign forces coming in to 'help' Mugabe, that's the first thing that comes to mind for those of us who live in Matabeleland. We are even more alarmed when we hear that the Angolan police militia are referred to as 'ninjas' because of their brutal tactics.

I should be objective about this and say 'it has been denied by the Angolan government so it's probably just a rumour'. But like most of the people in my area of Zimbabwe I don't trust the regional leaders to stop an injustice BEFORE it happens, so I regard any comment by regional leaders with suspicion.

Like everyone in Matabeleland, I know it as an absolute fact that Mugabe is capable of murdering civilians on a mass scale. It has happened before.

I hope the world is wiser now than it was decades ago, and I hope it doesn't react too slowly on this issue. If Angola does send militia police to Zimbabwe, I hope the world knows that that means bloodshed for innocent people.

Hope, a Sokwanele activist
Blogging for Sokwanele at 'This is Zimbabwe' :
www.sokwanele.com/thisiszimbabwe

Written by Eyewitness, 27 March 2007

Comments

Cry freedom
I must say I agree with Keith above - blame never solved any problems. Acknowledging the Zimbabwean problem by Zimbabweans, analysing its causes and effects and working towards solving that problem is the only way Zimbabweans can be free.
I must also say I am glad this blog has brought to the forefront some of the atrocities by the Mugabe regime of the early 80s. How Mugabe with his Gukurahundi killed Matabele people whilst the world watched on just as he is doing to all Zimbabweans today. Hence I argue that if if we go by the blame culture, it becomes a vicious circle. Atrocities have been committed throughout history in one form or another whereby leaders devided and ruled.
At this juncture in the politics of Africa, Thabo Mbeki and South Africans have a lot to deal with - poverty and corruption is equally rife in South Africa. This means therefore, the buck stops with Zimbabweans - i.e. acknowledging that mistakes have been made in the past which have enabled Mugabe's regime to grow in its viciousness. Working constructively together as Zimbabweans in liberating themselves politically and economically. This also means the acknowledgement that sacrifices have been made in the past and will continue to be made until this liberation is achieved.
Taking comfort in the historical fact that brutal regimes like Mugabe's have been destroyed and can be destroyed and shall be destroyed by the people.

I pray therefore that as Africans - let us all work together - not blame each other and one day we shall all sing in unison 'Nkosi sikelela iAfrica - maluphakanyiswe uphondo lwayo ------' just as our ancestors did.


If Brenda had properly read my comments she would have noted that I stated that Mugabe now rules illegitimately, the original elections in Zimababwe which elected him & his party to power were closely monitored and were substantially free and fair, subsequent elections were patently not so, how many times in Africa has a leader been elected popularly only to revert to the dictatorship that has sadly become the norm, Mugabe is no different, far from making outrageous statements I was merely trying to highlight the fact that the direction of politics in Zimbabwe is a direct result of the, ill informed & poorly led, wishes of the people and not from external sources.


My family stayed in Zimbabwe until 2 years ago. My Mother And Father were beaten and my uncle was killed by Zanu PF. I wish someone would kill Mugabe. I want his family to feel the pain I feel everyday.


Keith Mears in Gauteng is not wrong when he says it is up to the Zimbabwean people, but the Zimbabweans didn't vote for Mugabe on the last 3 elections, even if the ANC did say they were free and fair. There is so much more the SA government can be doing (and the SA people for that matter). Mbeki is totally equivocal on the issue, what must he be thinking. I find it very very disturbing that the ANC are very quiet on this issue. Silent diplomacy is nothing more than a cop out. Like Vorster, who walked away from Ian Smith, Mbeki can do the same against Mugabe. The lights will go out, the fuel will stop and Mugabe and ZanuPF will be finished.


I am glad that Sky have seen their way clear to give space to the Zimbabwean issue.

I am one of a huge number of Zimbabwean exiles although I am originally from here.

I spend hours each day on my blog and try to get the news out to all and sundry.

I have also written a book on the Gukurahundi and believe that Mugabe should be brought to book, but not only for his genocide of the Ndebele people, but for the continued oppression and violence he is perpetrating against his own people at the present time.

For some reason that world does not take any action against Mugabe. Why?

Is Africa that unpalatable by the rest of the world? Very simply, the world doesn't know what to do with Mugabe, and if they don't make too many waves, the world hopes he will fade away, sooner rather than later...

Very sad.

Take care.

'debvhu


My father's family were murdered by Mugabe's Gukuruhundi and he watched the 5th Brigade mutilate their bodies. No one dare tell me, or any other Matabele, that Mugabe is honourable or even human.


Mugabe is isolated, he appears in control but has really lost it this time. Amongst those disgruntled are soldiers that used to guard him , The Presidential Protection Unit, after firing pot shots within the State House grounds over salary grievances, they have been replaced by Libyan bodyguards. With the army still under the influence of Solomon Mujuru then retired but powerful former army general who boasts all his successors as relatives from his hometown of Chikomba district in Mashonaland East. He engineered the denial of the extension of Robert Mugabe's rule in December. Frustrating Mugabe, who can no longer trust his own army as he fears for a coup. he cannot trust the police evidence is shown with the arbitrary arrest of over 64 men and women, opposition and civic leaders during the Save Zimbabwe Coalition prayer meeting which was not done by police, but veterans from Zimbabwe's liberation army who Mugabe calls from time to time when ever his rule is challenged. The veterans whose average age is 23 assaulted and tortured opposition leaders including MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai in full view of the Zimbabwe Republic Police.

The economic meltdown in Zimbabwe knows no allies, just before the 11th of March which will be marked as a turning point in the struggle to free Zimbabwe from tyranny. The Chief of police wrote a secret memo which was leaked to the press saying that morale within the police was low as the wages that an average policeman earns cannot keep with the galloping inflation. Therefore Mugabe can not rely on the state machinery such as the army and policemen thats why he has resorted to get 5000 mercenaries from Angola to help pacify his own people. Reports keep coming in that bus terminus marshalls are being trained as reserve police just to ensure that he dies in office and escapes arrest and possible death sentence for the crimes he committed against the people of Zimbabwe.

As for the Angolans, I have a warning for them. To pull out of Zimbabwe and return to Anbgola. If they do not I promise you we Zimbabweans will fight them, ninjas my foot!

Izzy Mutanhaurwa
http://crybelovedzimbabwe.blogspot.com


With due respect, I must correct Mr Mears outrageous comment that "the people of Zimbabwe elected Mugabe" and therefore he is their problem - tragically, the people of Zimbabwe most definitely did NOT elect Mugabe!! I am an exiled Zimbabwean who was witness to both the Parliamentary and Presidential (so-called) "elections" and I have a million stories to tell of rigging, violence, torture and outright, blatant theft. My own brother and husband sat guarding the ballot boxes overnight, were assaulted and had their lives threatened. They were even forced off the road and into a ditch, when escorting the vehicle carrying the ballot boxes to the place they were doing the "counting". A substitute vehicle with new boxes was sent in the replace it – in FULL view of the election monitors and nothing was done to stop them! In places where the opposition is strong, people were turned away in their droves as their names, mysteriously, were not on the voters roll in spite of pre-registering. Deceased people voted (!), many voting stations did not open at all (in spite of people walking for tens of kilometres to reach them) and ballot boxes were stuffed with fake ballot papers. There were a million other nefarious things done too – stuff that no-one living in a 1st World would ever believe. For instance, for the months prior to the Parliamentary elections, soap was unavailable. Suddenly, in the same week as the election – a new kind of soap could be found at every street vendor’s stall on every corner. Thousands of desperate (and dirty) people bought the soap, only to discover on voting day that they were mysteriously covered in an indelible ink and therefore prohibited from voting. That’s only one story for the sadly misinformed Mr Mears to think about – I could give you a few hundred more ……
The bottom line is that the people of Zimbabwe have been starved, beaten & tortured to the point where they have very little strength left – particularly against a cowardly dictatorial opponent who has the full use (even if not the support) of the military and thinks NOTHING of murdering his own people. Don’t complain when Mr Mbeki uses the same strategies on your people. The signs are already there …..


My Mom was beaten up this morning by Robert Mugabe's Convoy... When is going to stop... Some one needs to step in!!! Some one HELP...


I'm glad the issue of the Gukuruhundi has been raised. I so often hear comments from other Africans that Mugabe is a good man who freed Zimbabwe and everything is a plot against him, but that isn't the case.

In this country, if a person kills one person only, they go to jail for 'life'. In Zimbabwe, Mugabe killed more than 20,000, and nothing happens to him.

What is wrong with Africa?

I've often wondered if the reason why Africans say Mugabe is an honourable man is because they simply don't know the facts. Or is it because they think "that's simply what happens in Africa?" - that life is cheap on the African continent and people should just accept it....???

Africans must recognise this man for the evil he has done. He must be brought to justice before he tries to do it again.


When i read the article last week concerning the Ninjas being shipped in from Angola the first thing i felt was panic. And then I realised that perhaps those feelings of panic and fear, bred from Zimbabwe's memories of the Matebele massacres, was perhaps Mugabe's only aim all along. Another piece of machinery in the propaganda mill he has used to cling to power. Angola may be denying it legitimately. Then again they may not be. But what better way to instill terror in the hearts of a broken nation.


It is so sad to read the articles by hope, the depth of despair is plain for all to read, I still feel that the only lasting "solution" to the Zimbabwe situation has to come from the people themselves, it is all very well blaming the inaction of Mr Mbeki but he did not elect the government of Zimbabwe the people of Zimbabwe did, the fact that Mr Mugabe now rules illegitmately is beyond doubt, however, he will continue to do so until sufficient internal pressure is brought to bear to make his position untenable the situation will continue to deteriorate. I agree that the western world would sit up & take more notice if Zimbabwe was awash with oil but recent history hasnt looked too kindly on foreign nations removing undoubted dictators and then occupying that country to serve their own agendas, I am sure the people of Zimbabwe wouldnt want their country again ruled by foreigners, the old Rhodesia may have appeared stable but the majority of the people were denied the right to govern themselves, this cannot be allowed to happen again, the results of the instability in Zimbabwe are an african problem, however, the solution is entirely a Zimbabwean one.


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