Sunday, January 06, 2008

Zimbabwe Must Not Fall Into the Same Trap as Kenya

Zim must not fall into same trap as Kenya

Zimbabwe Sunday Mail

THE recent Kenyan general election offers a clear example of the double standards of the West. To have a clearer picture we should compare the reaction of Britain and America and their imperialist allies with that of previous elections in Zimbabwe.

Even before the Americans had heard comment from observers on the ground, they had already congratulated Mwai Kibaki on his victory.

The right-about-turn soon after when the Americans unashamedly withdrew their congratulatory remarks shows how these imperialists take a fixed position well in advance with regard to outcomes of elections in the Third World.

When President Mugabe won the last presidential election in 2002, there were no congratulatory messages from the West. In fact, the results were dismissed as not a true reflection of the will of Zimbabweans.

This was despite credible observers’ views that the elections were not only free and fair but also transparent after the introduction of Sadc election guidelines.

But then the major consideration of the West was whether the views of the Zimbabwean electorate tallied with theirs.

After Raila Odinga disputed the results of the presidential polls, diplomacy initiated by the West quickly took centre stage.

This is why Commonwealth Secretary-General Don McKinnon was quick to point out that Kenya would not be suspended from the Commonwealth despite the bloodbath that followed the elections.

This is in stark contrast with Zimbabwe which was suspended from the Commonwealth over allegations that the peaceful 2002 presidential election was flawed, although credible observer missions had declared the poll free and fair.

In Zimbabwe once the opposition disputed the 2002 presidential results, simply because they had been soundly beaten, Britain and her allies quickly swallowed their unsubstantiated claims, hook, line and sinker.

Democracy as defined by the West is very different from our concept of the same ideology.

To the West democratic elections are those in which the party which seeks to promote the interests of imperialists wins.

Because the Zanu-PF party introduced the land reform programme which seeks to promote the interests of indigenous people, if the party wins an election, then the poll is not democratic. What hogwash!

What the West should realise, and fast for that matter, is that they cannot impose their thinking on an electorate that can identify a party that seeks to serve their interests.

The introduction of sanctions to bring misery will only strengthen the resolve of this electorate.

These are the people who form the majority of voters in Third World countries which have suffered many years of exploitation by their former colonisers.

The West and their weapons of mass misinformation in the form of CNN, Sky News and the BBC have gone overdrive in trying to destroy the image of Zanu-PF.

Let’s just imagine what has happened in Kenya, where hundreds of people were slaughtered following the disputed results, had been in Zimbabwe, what would have been the reaction of Britain and America?

We know what we see on the faces of these imperialists are crocodile tears. Their interests are superior to the lives of Kenyan blacks.

One word which would definitely not be flying around is "diplomacy". If a handful of Zimbabweans were to die during post-election violence words and phrases like "genocide" and "ethnic cleansing" would be the order of the day.

To Britain it wouldn’t matter who was responsible for the violence. Even if it were opposition instigated all the blame would be laid at the feet of Zanu-PF.

The Kenya example should once more make Zimbabwe value the significance of the Unity Accord between Zanu and PF-Zapu.

The exchange of fatal blows on ethnic grounds between Odinga’s Luos and Kibaki’s Kikuyus is a sad result of disunity caused by tribalism.

In two months’ time Zimbabweans go to the polls to elect their leaders.

No doubt, if the blood-letting in Kenya happened here, it would put us in a position Britain will find as delicious to attack. This must not be allowed.

Let’s vote and accept the will of the Zimbabwean electorate and ignore that of Mr George Bush and Mr Gordon Brown through their surrogates.

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