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Monday, June 30, 2008

Mugabe - Anglophile

Just watched Simpson's BBC report on the Zimbabwe situation. He interviewed Tsvangirai at a house in Harare at the time Mugabe was being sworn in. He did look relaxed, considering the slaughter and intimidation. The parliamentary observers from Africa made it quite clear the election was a sham.

Kenya's PM (himself a victim of political intimidation, and now working in a compromise national unity government) has said:
"We want the African Union to send troops to Zimbabwe. The time has come for the African continent to stand firm in unity to end dictatorship,"
There's a long way to go before that happens. I think the AU force in Darfur proves that even when there are "troops on the ground" they are under-resourced, under-staffed and on a limited mandate. Indeed the Darfur troops are there because the Sudanese regime let them in. I can't see Mugabe ever doing that. Unlike the Congo (that Mugabe help invade) there is nothing much left in Zimbabwe to loot.

I had a weird feeling the other night - while I was watching a bit of the tennis at Wimbeldon on TV - and I was aware that this is what Mugabe was watching. He's sitting there, his nation a mess - and he's watching this very English game on his TV. He's the patron of the Cricket Association as I understand it. Everyone in Zim speaks English. Their parliament is in the old building and looks just as it always has under white rule (only there are no whites there now). He is such a hypocrite. All the British-bashing is a put on. The real foreigners interferring in Zimbabwe are China and South Africa - at Mugabe's behest.


At 30/6/08 12:36 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No one has even attempted to answer my questions yet:

Question. In fact a couple of questions.

Hypothetically, if the United States decided to send a military force to depose this desparate dictator who is both butchering his own people, subverting the democratic process and destabilising the region would this be a good or a bad thing?

How is this different from Iraq?


At 30/6/08 4:10 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good thing - if under a UN mandate. This would make it different from Iraq.

At 30/6/08 4:45 pm, Blogger Tim Selwyn said...

The US has very little strategic interest in Zim. China has a wider interest that it is cultivating in the region, esp. Congo.

I really think Tsvangirai did the nation and his supporters no favour when he pulled out. Maybe he has been talking to the South Africans? They aren't on his side.

At 30/6/08 5:30 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim you are wrong when you say that Zim has no resources of interest - it has some of the largest reserves of platinum in the world. It isn't worthless. But yes, it has little to no geopolitical significance.

What evidence is there that China is 'cultivating an interest' in the DRC? - if this is the Congo you're talking about, I assume it is because in the post you referred to Zim's participation in its war.

At 30/6/08 6:00 pm, Blogger Tim Selwyn said...

It has been termed new imperialism in the Congo.

At 30/6/08 10:38 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting stuff - but as I thought you're mistaking the Republic of Congo with the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The DRC isnt producing major oil at the moment, and I didnt think China was very much involved in their logging or the mining in the East.

Republic of Congo, like Ethiopia, Nigeria and Angola is a different story - this is where the new race for Africa is going on

At 1/7/08 1:35 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Good thing - if under a UN mandate. This would make it different from Iraq."

And how would they get that mandate, what with China having a permanent seat on the UN Security Council?

The UN is hamstrung, China have their own agenda in Zimbabwe as Tim and others have pointed out. The African Union don't have the political or military will to do anything about the situation.

Who's left? The EU? NATO? Zimbabwe is long way from Brussels.

Only a handful of countries have the military power to take unilateral action against Mugabe if it turns out some sort of military is needed.


At 1/7/08 3:00 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Argox - you asked a hypothetical question and were given a hypothetical answer, to which you've given an empirical response.

Most people would agree with you that humanitarian intervention won't happen in Zimbabwe for practical reasons - you've stated one. However if it did hypothetically go ahead it would occur with UN approval as a humanitarian intervention, which is the nearest thing the anarchy of states can come to rubber-stamping an action as justified.

Iraq on the other hand did not get invaded for humanitarian reasons - which must be obvious to you unless you're a fool.

Therefore the two cases are not comparable.

At 1/7/08 3:23 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Argox do you have an IR background and know about humanitarian interventions, multilateralism, international law, legitimacy and realpolitik or is your retarded realism just a product of your ignorance?

At 1/7/08 4:04 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Anon 3:23 PM - Yes, I worked for 17 years as a lead negotiator for the UN, have a International Law degree from Harvard, a golf handicap of 55, an american express platinum card and seventeen inch penis.

The two situations (Iraq and Zimbabwe) are not completely incomparable, the media and public reaction to them is wildly different (in an interesting way).

Think about this:

"Um bongo, um bongo, they drink it in de congo"

Just think about it for a minute.

What does an obscure advertising slogan have to do with anything you may ask. Just think about it.


At 1/7/08 7:00 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Argox you're such a tool. Zimbabwe and Iraq are so not comparable for a simple reason - Zim would be a humanitarian intervention and Iraq was clearly not. Simple.

Think about "drink it in de congo?" WTF this is meaningless

At 1/7/08 11:53 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Argox, why not let your arguments speak for themselves instead of riposting with an appeal to your alleged credentials and a cryptic piece of gibberish? This is how a fool would debate.


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