Saturday, August 27, 2016

Zimbabwe Fights Imperialist Regime-Change Strategy: MDC-T Violence, Human Shields and Choppies
August 26, 2016
Tichaona Zindoga : Political Editor
Zimbabwe Herald

There is a particular trend regarding violence that has been witnessed in Zimbabwe over the past couple of months that all watchers, analysts and authorities must now be seized with to fully understand the trajectory of the country’s politics. On Wednesday, police fought running battles with MDC-T youths who went on a rampage of destruction, burning a police vehicle and a van belonging to the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation and looting shops in the process.The melee had started off as a petition march by the MDC-T youths — coinciding with the launch of what they call #MyZimbabwe Campaign — which predictably degenerated into open warfare between the youths and police.

In historical terms, the opposition and its appendages in the civil society sector have been staging all manner of protests, marches and demonstrations to ostensibly draw attention to certain grievances — which is well within their constitutional rights as Zimbabweans.

However, these actions have largely been underpinned by a political motive ranging from a desire to show cause and force to outright showmanship meant for Western donor attention.

It is not even a secret that many organisations and individuals behind such actions have tended to smile all the way to the bank. It is the self same situation with the MDC-T party led by Morgan Tsvangirai, who by his own account has enjoyed the “fruits of torture”.

Thus the opposition and its cousins in the so-called civil society, which enjoy the mutual patronage of Western funders that seek regime change in Zimbabwe, always pull off these stunts.

Their real prayer is that one day, there will be a spark to torch off a conflagration of a civil war that will force the abdication of the Zanu-PF Government.

Hence, such incidents such as those witnessed on Wednesday, like many violent exhibitions before, should be treated as acts of terrorism and banditry.

The question of peaceful demonstration quickly falls away when it is drawn in the boardroom at the onset that every demonstration should end up in a confrontation with the authorities, failure of which equals lack of success.

The MDC-T has a violent clique within its ranks that it uses to provoke and undertake illegal acts. The so-called “Democratic Resistance Committees” were set up for the purposes of violence and urban terrorism.

As we speak, the so-called #MyZimbabwe Campaign is a purely violent campaign meant to cause anarchy in the country and information at hand indicates that the youth assembly has planned successive violent campaigns from now till 2017.

It will also be critical to know that the #MyZimbabwe Campaign is the culmination and formalisation of the activities that have been sporadically carried out by the outfit calling itself #Tajamuka.

The intention of these violent activities is not only to get the attention of funders, but also set Zimbabwe up for discussion at such forums as Sadc, the African Union and at the United Nations.

This is with a view to putting pressure on the Zimbabwe Government via international sanction.

It does not matter that the incumbent government is legitimate, having won popular mandate in the 2013 elections and has about two years still running.

Human shields, human tinder

There is a clear strategy that is being employed by the violent goons belonging or aligned to MDC-T which basically revolves around choreographed acts.

Whether illegal or have a veneer of legality through a half hearted police clearance, the violent-end script remains the same.

And if it turns nasty, as intended, the result will be something that will be so dramatically telegenic for the audience of local (as in foreign embassies) and foreign funders in the west.

It is such a pity that the Zimbabwe Republic Police always appear to swallow the bait thrown at them by these goons. There is a strong view that the police force appears ill-trained and unprepared to deal with attention-seeking and violent protesters.

There have been a number of occasions when observers have felt that the police should have left the protesters be, so that the whole thing fizzles out without incident.

Of course, things are not as simple as that. What is beyond question, though, is that police need to be a lot smarter and savvier than they are today.

It is a good case for the development of newer and technology-based policing methods that will keep such equipment as tankers, teargas and water cannons — which are being found to be eternally handy today — behind the scenes.

There is also the danger that images of these machines rolling up and down our streets not only create a siege mentality (a defensive or paranoid attitude based on the belief that others are hostile toward one) in the people.

They also perpetuate the notion that Zimbabwe is a war zone — an erroneous view that has denied the country critical investments and tourists.

It is common cause that the denial of investments and tourist revenues has been one of the reasons why Zimbabwe has faced economic challenges since 2000.

The police and authorities of this country will not be counted to like to be associated with the de-campaigning of Zimbabwe, will they? One of the key pillars in the strategy of anarchy by the opposition is to use ordinary people in Harare or urban areas as human shields — and even better — tinder.

It goes like this: the anarchists begin their march, legal and illegal and as they come into confrontation with police, which they likely provoke, they run into squares, streets, shops, buses or any other place where people will be conducting their business.

The provoked and in particular not-so-smart police, wade into the same crowd trying to fish out identified hooligans and clear the area.

Many people are caught in the crossfire. The police have two choices either to withdraw and let the instigators go or to pursue. They often choose the former option and get into hot pursuit of their targets leaving a trail of battered innocent people, which has obvious consequences on the image of the police and greater good they seek to achieve.

But that is not the worst case scenario. What the anarchists not only want the police to behave like provoked bulls, which they usually do.

The anarchists hope to turn the people against the police when they wade into public spaces trying to retrieve anarchists.

Anarchists want people to turn against the police, beat up police officers, burn police vehicles and be emboldened to burn government buildings and property, police stations, beat up soldiers, storm army barracks, grab weapons, overpower the military and seize control of the country.

That will be a “revolution” for them.

That is a script they are trying too hard to follow, a well-worn template that we have seen on TV.

Police should be a lot smarter than they are or they should be able to tell one day how they torched off a conflagration that would engulf them and the whole nation — perchance without a prospect of recovery.

Looting Choppies

There has been a worrying trend, especially this year where the #Tajamuka-style protests have targeted Choppies Supermarket stores in Harare and hoodlums looted and ransacked shops.

On Wednesday, they were at it again.

Choppies Supermarkets is partly owned by Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko and it is for the precise reason that the shops have been attacked, especially by groups that once protested his stay while awaiting Government allocation of a house at a hotel in Harare, claiming that it was a waste of taxpayers’ money.

It has now shown that the attacks on VP Mphoko’s business is not only political, but criminal to the extent that it endangers his office and person as the country’s vice president.

One does not have to like him or even to belong to his party to see this self evident fact.

(For its own part, Choppies chain began way back in Botswana in 1986 in a small village-town called Lobatse and has now expanded across southern and eastern Africa.)

This hate has reached an endemic level that is close to a phobia that can also now be shown to exhibit an unfortunate tribalistic tincture.

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