Tuesday, July 22, 2008

How incredibly impressive

Right, that's it then: it seems that Thabo Mbeki has waved his magic wand and now Zimbabwe is sorted.
President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai have signed a deal outlining a framework for talks on Zimbabwe's political crisis.

Much like Bag, my reaction to this is... well... much like's Bag's.
A deal on a framework. Wow! What a concession. It must have taken hundreds of man hours of tough negotiations for that.

Or, to put it more succinctly, well whoopee-fucking-do.

Now, we in the West can sit back and watch the death toll rise with the inflation figures and claim that it nothing to do with us because the Africans are going to sort it all out.

Oh, wait, I forgot: that's precisely what we've been doing for the last few years, isn't it?

26 comments:

Charles Pooter said...

What do you suggest "the West" should do?

Guthrum said...

The last time Mugabe entered into a government of national unity was with Nkomo, he unleashed a terror in the South, Nkomo's party was absorbed into Zanu PF and a lot of people got killed and Nkomo died. It is for this Mugabe fears the Hague Court.

Frankly there is very little we can do short of finance a military coup which would not be a wise foreign policy. If the frontline states are happy to have this powder keg on their doorstep, and are prepared to tolerate the mad old bastard that is down to them.

TBRRob said...

Yeah my attitude is we're better off out of all these things.

Roger Thornhill said...

This power sharing idea is ghastly, like a perverse form of hung parliament where the ex refuses to leave. I do not hold out much hope for the MDC. How long before they are offered "security" by ZanuPF?

Anthony said...

From what I could tell from last night's reporting, it seems like the opposition has given up. Too much bloodshed and social destruction by going against Mugabe so any form of 'constructive' govt. is seen to be worth the try.

Playing right into Mugabe's hands. :(

@tbrrob: What would you want, us to ignore it? The best we can do I am afraid is to watch vigilantly and to help whenever it seems appropriate or is asked for.... As hard as that is.

Lord James Bigglesworth said...

What, us cynical? Never!

Harry Haddock said...

I'm with tbrrob. None of our freaking business ~ we are only going to make things worse by trying to 'help'. If the regional 'super power' won't do anything, such as turning off their electricity supply that would bring down Mugabe in a matter of days, we haven't got a hope. Painful as it may be to watch, we need to stay out of it.

silas said...

As the new Premier of Botswana, Seretse Khama Ian Khama is pretty much the only African leader to speak out against Mugabe directly. He advocated kicking Zimbabwe out of the African Union.

Sanctions will mainly affect the people of Zimbabwe - most of whom are already starving. Military action is unlikely to be popular regardless of who is sending in the troops.

Sad to say, but there's not a great deal I think we can do.

killemallletgodsortemout said...

Whatever happens, don't let Gordon Brown anywhere near the place.

The continent would probably self-destruct.

Mark Wadsworth said...

I like tthrob's answer to Charles Pooter's question. None of our business. To be fair, neither are Iraq or Afgh.

Old Holborn said...

Africa will be Africa. Nation states are false walls imposed upon tribal peoples who have no desire or need for democracy.

Quite simply, the strongest tribe takes all and the strongest member of the tribe becomes the leader.

Leave them to it. If there any Africans not dead from Aids or inter tribal violence in 30 years, stick them in the British Museum.

Mark Wadsworth said...

... or starvation, or malaria.

ade said...

Until fairly recently, I was one of those thinking "That Mugabe is a right cunt, and needs to die, like now".

Nothing has changed that view; but now, I reckon just let them get on with it. Zimbabweans voted for a terrorist to rule over them mumblety years ago, when the British were kicked out. So now they reap what they sowed.

Henry Crun said...

OH hits the nail on the head. Democracy is an alien concept for most Africans. It isn't part of their social context and it is only the educated Africans living in the cities and urban sprawls that have bought the Western-style democracy argument.

In the rural areas, where the majority of Africans live, the social structure is based around family, clan and tribal groupings with most villages enjoying a modicum of autonomy over their own affairs and governments pretty much leave them to it. Except when it is an election year and all kinds of harrassment and intimidation come into play (cf. Zimbabwe, Kenya) or one tribe decides to laud it over another (cf. Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi, Congo, Zaire).

Should we leave them to it. Politically, yes. But for humanitarian reaswons, there comes a time when enough is enough. Bashire in Sudan has been charged with genocide and war crimes. Mad Bob must be worried that a similar fate is waiting for him otherwise he would have sent Morgan the same way as Nkomo, Sithole and Muzarewa.

SACKERSON said...

Henry:

"In the rural areas, where the majority of Africans live, the social structure is based around family, clan and tribal groupings with most villages enjoying a modicum of autonomy over their own affairs and governments pretty much leave them to it."

Wouldn't this also have been true of the Scots, at one time?

Obnoxio The Clown said...

@Sackerson: It still is, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

What does Devils Cock-chin suggest the West do? Invade? Cock.

Old Holborn said...

And in time the Scots evolved to being bigoted Sectarianists & Puritans uninterested in Democracy.

Look at our Parliament.

We can't even make the Northern European Democratic model work in this country. Why the hell should it work in Iraq or Zimbabwe?

patrick said...

Why should govts concern themselves with Mugabe's behaviour.. He is merely doing what all politicians do well..

Raping and pillaging a nations hard labour..

Trixy said...

I think our lesson from Iraq should be that we leave well alone where we have no business being.

MT will already have a swiss bank account set up, I am sure. But what we could stop doing is funding these rancid governments through aid. Like the 30 million we gave to the terrorist organisation Hamas last week. All that happens when we give these countries aid is that Mercedes, Leer Jets and diamonds get bought more frequently.

Exile said...

"Mad Bob must be worried that a similar fate is waiting for him otherwise he would have sent Morgan the same way as Nkomo, Sithole and Muzarewa."

Eh? Joshua Nkomo and Ndabaningi Sithole both died in their beds, the latter in the USA if memory serves me right. Abel Murorewa is still alive - or was the last time I checked.

Anonymous said...

Henry:

"In the rural areas, where the majority of Africans live, the social structure is based around family, clan and tribal groupings with most villages enjoying a modicum of autonomy over their own affairs and governments pretty much leave them to it."

Wouldn't this also have been true of the Scots, at one time?

7/22/2008 04:47:00 PM

Yep . Bang on. Most of Scotland outside the lowland belt was thus until the late 18nth century. Before that James V1 conducted two sweeps of the wild north and west in the late 16nth cent. to no great avail.

Slavery(ie white slavery)applied to most of the population and was closely connected to the concept of independent baronies/feudalities which made sure that Scotland was in reality some 400 little tyrannies.

One of the great unsung triumphs of the Scottish negotiators of the Union was that they actually got all this legally confirmed in the Act of Union 1707, Article 22- mainly because the naive English dodn't know what they were agreeing to.

Not repealed until 1799 when the English wised up!

It always makes me spit when you hear the Scots take a high moral tone.

assegai mike said...

"In the rural areas, where the majority of Africans live, the social structure is based around family, clan and tribal groupings with most villages enjoying a modicum of autonomy over their own affairs and governments pretty much leave them to it."

Kinda like how it was under the evil Rhodesian government, in fact. The first problems these people ever had was when Mugabe and Nkomo's boys turned up to rip their lips off, abduct their kids etc., and the evil Rhodesians did their best to put a stop to it.

The options for Britain might be a) do nothing b)do a little (the current status) or c) do something spectacular

b) could be improved upon by being a bit more shitty to South Africa who have the key that can unlock the whole mess

c) Invade. Arrest all military (incl police) above the rank of colonel. Replace with promising officers of the rank of captain/major. Supervise new elections a la 1980. Go home. Military resistance would be close to nil. Hardly anyone in Zim under the age of 45 has any combat experience whatsoever. This option, of course, is a dinner table discussion: it'll never happen.

Mike (an evil Rhodesian)

Old Holborn said...

http://www.independent.ie/opinion/columnists/kevin-myers/africa-is-giving-nothing-to-anyone--apart-from-aids-1430428.html

Ian_QT said...

An interesting article here:

"For God's sake, please stop the aid!" - James Shikwati, Kenyan economist

Cato, author of www.toryheaven.com said...

Mr Pooter: What should the West do? We should give that b*****d Mugabe an ultimatum to go, and, if it isn't met, we should send in the troops. We have a responsibility to our former colony which we should honour.

Or, for those who prefer a more positive suggestion, I would offer (were I British PM), on a first come first served basis, to take one former African colony back as a Colony. I would see that it were incredibly well run, well financed, and corruption free. I would make it a beacon for the rest of Africa. We would have the rest of the continent queuing up to become colonies again and kick out their corrupt dictators, Mugabe included. I rather think that if it were a choice between notional but non-existent 'freedom' or living in a colony where the people had food, jobs and a decent education, the majority might well choose the latter.

Has anyone seen the bloody great mansion Mugabe is living in? It is sickening. Check out the photos: http://toryheaven.blogspot.com/2008/07/dictators-oppulent-lifestyle.html