[Marxism] Stating obvious, SADC says Zimbabwe vote not will of people
Jscotlive at aol.com
Jscotlive at aol.com
Mon Jun 30 11:20:43 MDT 2008
Since when has Mugabe offered resistance to the world order? Some
analysis of the Zimbabwean economy is necessary to back up such an
Well certainly not on the scale of Fidel or even, at present, Ahmadinejad,
but by expropriating the white farmers he certainly hit a nerve in European
capitals, where the colonial mindset remains very much in place.
So what are you saying? That the Western media is lying when it accuses
Mugabe of these things?
Based on what we know from recent history - i.e., genocide and mass ethnic
cleansing in the Balkans; Saddam with an arsenal of WMD - I would say there is
a more than good chance that the facts on the ground are being somewhat
embellished to suit a get-Mugabe agenda. The MDC have stated that 86 of their
members have been killed and thousands driven from their homes. If this is true,
whilst it is certainly an atrocity, it in no way qualifies as the beginnings
of a Rwandan type genocide. It reminds me of the news footage from the
Balkans that did the rounds, where a half starved man standing behind barbed wire
was presented as evidence of Serb concentration camps. It later turned out to
have been staged for the benefit of a gullible public, part of the
demonisation of Milosevic and the Serbian people preparatory to bombing the shit out
As ever, the truth will come out as and when the dust settles. Until it
does, I shall remain skeptical in the extreme.
We should be able to operate on two levels when it comes to the likes of
a Saddam Hussein or a Robert Mugabe. We should oppose imperialist
sanctions, invasions, etc. but we have to make clear that Mugabe is an
anti-working class thug.
Well this is where we differ in our analysis. The current crisis in Zimbabwe
cannot be taken in isolation from the ravaging of that continent and its
economies by the West. Zimbabwe's current economic woes are a result of Mugabe
turning to the West for capital investment throughout the 1980s. The crisis
came to the fore by the late nineties, when charges of corruption were laid at
the door of his regime as the harsh realities of loan repayments and
structural adjustment bit hard on the people of Zimbabwe. I have no doubt that Mugabe
and his regime is corrupt, but in any situation of economic scarcity there
will be a struggle for control of what what little wealth there is.
As I point out in my piece, economically the MDC is committed to deepening
Zimbabwe's dependence on the West, which in no wise constitutes progress.
Yes, Mugabe is a thug, yes he is corrupt, and yes he should be removed. But
the key aspect to this has to be agency. The UN is discredited as a de facto
agency of US foreign policy, so calls for its involvement should be resisted.
The Mugabe regime has arisen as a result of the soft imperialism delivered
through the IMF and World Bank. I think it is incumbent on us to point this
out, laying the underlying cause of the crisis in Zimbabwe at the door of
European capitals and Washington DC where it belongs.
I think we really need to get beneath the "land reform" claims of
Mugabe. To begin with, there is hunger in Zimbabwe today while those
nationalized farms are being used by Mugabe's cronies to produce for the
export market, just as they were when they were owned by whites. Also,
when you carry out such reforms, you are obligated to ensure their
success. Stalin's seizure of Kulak land set Soviet agriculture back for
The issue of land ownership lies at the heart of this issue. The British
government ceded political control of the country but, as with the rest of its
former empire, maintained a semblance of control through its support for the
white elite who remained in control of the nation's economy. The principal of
expropriation is correct; however the way it was carried out, Mugabe's
motivation, was not correct. He is an opportunist who attempted to distract from
the economic situation by unleashing a mob in the countryside. Ideally, if he
was truly interested in instituting a land reform program in order to foment
social and economic justice, he would have nationalised the farms and brought
in agricultural experts, say from Cuba or Venezuela, to train black
Zimbabweans to run them. He even may have been able to persuade some of the existing
white farmers to assist in that process.
His methods were crude and panicked, revealing that his motives were nothing
more than desire to hold onto power regardless.
This assumes that Mugabe was bent on land reform, like Fidel Castro in
1959. This is not true. If he were, he would have found ways back in the
1980s to expropriate the wealthy white farmers. His more recent moves
were a cynical attempt to consolidate a voting bloc in the countryside,
now that the Zimbabwean people were getting sick of ZANU-PF rule.
Agreed, which I think I've covered in my previous response.
Nobody has any illusions in the MDC. However, we don't support Mugabe
just because the West prefers the MDC. We have our own yardstick based
on Marxist principles.
I don't think the article supports Mugabe at all. I also think it does
adhere to Marxist principles, in the shape of a dialectical analysis of the
current crisis. What it doesn't do is join in the mass vilification of Mugabe that
seems to be the sport of the week.
No, the article doesn't support Mugabe at all. It does however lay the blame
for the economic crisis which precipitated Mugabe's degeneration at the door
of the West where it belongs.
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