10 November 2008


Well, with the election, I've taken my eye off the ball with regards Zimbabwe.

It appears that there are two camps in the Zimbabwe crisis among the Southern African Development Community (SADC), led by former South African President Thabo Mbeki, who generally cuts Mugabe infinite slack, and President Ian Khama of Botswana, whose opposition to Mugabe is best described as vociferous.

I agree with Mr. Khama.

In any case, the SADC summit was held, and both parties attended, though Tsvangerai made it clear that he would not sign an agreement just to satisfy mediators, which is a not so thinly veiled swipe at Mbeki's disasterous involvement in the process.

Of course, while this is all going on, ZANU-PF is still engaged in a broad ranging program of harassment, violence and intimidation....Same old, same old....

In any case, it's refreshing to see that Jacob Zuma, who had Mbeki ousted as South African president, Zuma says SADC summit must force Zimbabwe deal | International | Reuters
is making it clear that he will not accept Mbeki's do nothing style:
"As far as I'm concerned SADC must make those Zimbabweans reach an agreement," Jacob Zuma told Reuters after a speech to the Cape Town Press Club. "They must force them."
So it now appears that there may be a full summit of the SADC, which is pretty much a recognition that Mbeki is simply not up to the task here.

So they held the summit over the weekend, but which came to nothing.

It appears that there was an offer to "co-manage" the home affairs ministry, but I think that it's clear that the MDC "co-manager" would have no voice in the matter, which they rejected.

In any case, it appears that Mugabe is now saying that he will unilaterally allocate cabinet positions.

One final note is that we now have confirmation of one of the more bizarre aspects of this whole affair, that the ZANU-PF for signing at altered the prior agreement document
Before any progress can be made the SADC leaders will have to resolve the controversy over the documents that were signed by the three Zimbabwean leaders. In an earlier report The Zimbabwean stated that they had been doctored behind Tsvangirai’s back by Zanu (PF)’s Patrick Chinamasa, MDC-M’s secretary-general, Welshman Ncube and one of Thabo Mbeki’s representatives.

We now understand Ncube had nothing to do with the doctoring and we apologise to him unreservedly. Patrick Chinamasa has admitted to tampering with the documents and to “accidentally” deleting two paragraphs which alter the document substantially.
I'm not sure exactly how you deal with people who see this as a legitimate negotiating ploy, and, short of declaring ZANU-PF a terrorist organization, and while it it is actively terrorizing its populace, this would be a misuse of the statute, I'm not sure what the US can do.


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