Zimbabwe is once again an eye opener to all Africans who value their national sovereignty and control of their country’s mineral wealth and other Africa’s national resources for their people. The sustained attack on Zimbabwe is an economic war by imperialist Western countries on Africa. These countries have a long history of “planned regime. ’’ If this fails, then they resort to “regime change.” To Britain and America, and all their satellites; ‘’democracy’’ and ‘’legitimacy’’ is when their imperialist interests prevail over those of the African people.
There are media reports that two Chicago men have been charged for lobbying to lift economic sanctions against Robert Mugabe’s government. It is further reported that the American government does not believe that the recent election results in Zimbabwe represent the will of Zimbabwe people. Therefore, it is important to point out that for all the long years when African States and the United Nations demanded economic sanctions against Ian Smith’s rebel colonial regime in Rhodesia and against apartheid and colonialism in South Africa, the European powers led by the USA opposed these sanctions. Britain’s Margaret Thatcher argued that sanctions would hurt ‘’ordinary Rhodesians and black South Africans.’’ This was all false. The imperialist countries of Western Europe had long had ‘’planned regime’’ strategy during colonial days in AFRICA. This was immediately they got a signal that Africans were determined to end colonialism and all forms of imperialist domination in Africa.
In Zimbabwe they preferred Bishop Abel Muzorewa. Many attempts were made to assassinate Robert Mugabe even after the signing of the Lancaster House Agreement with ZANU-PF. In colonial Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia), Britain and its Western allies preferred Harry Nkumbula to Kenneth Kaunda. In Lesotho they preferred Jonathan Leabua to Ntsu Mokhehle, to the point of staging a coup d’etat against Mokhehle and stopping his being sworn as the Prime Minister of Lesotho. In Ghana, Britain never liked Kwame Nkrumah. It was only when the ‘’Gold Coast,’’ (now Ghana) became ungovernable that Britain conceded to the demands of Kwame Nkrumah’s CPP Party. In Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta of KANU was never the British colonial preference. They called him a Mau Mau leader – ‘’a leader to darkness’’. In South Africa (Azania), Prof. Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe was never liked by imperialists and their agents. He was imprisoned on Robben Island without even a mockery of trial and later banished until his death through poisoning, according to his colleagues.
President Nkrumah was democratically elected in Ghana. The imperialist countries including CIA in America overthrew his government. Patrice Lumumba was legitimately elected First Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Belgium and the American government were involved in his assassination and overthrow of his government. Evidence that he was burnt alive has emerged and last year a still embarrassed Belgian government appointed a Commission to investigate the circumstances of Lumumba’s death. Murtala Mohammed of Nigeria and Thomas Sankara of Burkina Faso were assassinated by foreign powers. Milton Obote in Uganda was overthrown by Britain under Heath’s government and, in his stead, Idi Amini was installed. He murdered thousands of Ugandans. All these African leaders were overthrown or killed because they did not fit the ‘’planned regime’’ strategy. They were not trusted to look after neo-colonial economic interests at the expense of African economic interests.
This century, western imperialist leaders have come up with the ‘’regime change’’ strategy. The excuse is that some African leaders had stayed too long in power. Well, in Britain Prime Minister Robert Walpole ruled for 21 years. Daniel Arap Mooi ruled Kenya for 24 years. Hastings Banda ruled Malawi for 33 years. Mobuto Sese Seseko ruled DRC for 37 years. Gnassingbe Eyadema of Togo was President for 41 years. Omar Bongo Ondima of Gabon ruled for 41 years. Hosni Mubarak ruled Egypt for 41 years. Western imperialist leaders never pointed fingers at these leaders because they toed the line of the Western masters. They served imperialist interests more than those of their own countries. In fact, Mobuto of DRC and Hosni Mubarak were very close allies of the USA. None of these leaders were ever asked to give in to Democracy until in the case of Congo, the Congolese people drove Mobuto out of power. The people of Egypt did the same to Mubarak.
It is insult to intelligent Africans who recall that these imperialist countries that practised slavery, colonialism and racism and perpetrated atrocities against other humans killing them and taking their lands and riches by terrorist militarialism are today posing as ‘’teachers’’ of ‘’democracy’’ ‘’legitimacy’’ ‘’good governance’’ and ‘’rule of law’’ while their hands are dripping with the blood of millions of Africans from whom they stole not only their countries but their men and women as slaves to build their own imperialist economies that are still under developing Africa to this day.
In 1994, the Americans and other imperialist western countries in apartheid colonial South Africa showed up in a big way. Again they applied their ‘’planned regime.’’ They identified, from the liberation movements of the country, who was ‘’extremist’’ and who was ‘’moderate’’. By ‘’moderate’’ they meant leaders who would protect especially their foreign economic interests at the expense of their own African people.
The western countries with few exceptions were the supporters of apartheid colonialist regime in South Africa (Azania). Relying on the Western imperialist support, in 1990, Dr. Gert Viljoen, the Minister of Constitutional Affairs under F.W. de Klerk, made his government’s position very clear about who the South African regime would negotiate with. He said: ‘’We want to change our approach. But we would be negotiating even the name. Many Blacks call it (South Africa) Azania. I think there is no likelihood of coming to agreement with them. They are the extreme Pan Africanist Congress (PAC). The name Azania sounds a warning note of a break in history. In our thinking a complete break in history would be unaccepted. We will have to provide some continuation of the past.’’ Indeed, that continuation of the past is obvious in South Africa today. Whites who are only 8.9% according to the recent population census, still control 87% of the land to 13% allocated to the African indigenous majority which is now 79.2% of the country’s population. This land dispossession is entrenched in section 25(7) of the ‘’New South Africa’’ constitution.
Explaining the reason for the apartheid regime to quickly negotiate with the ‘’moderates,’’ The Star newspaper in Johannesburg reported at the time that: “To the left of the ANC is the PAC, a bunch too radical for reasonable conversation….unless the government talks to the ANC soon, and reaches our accommodation, the time will come when it wishes it had the ANC to talk to instead of the more radical organisations. Better by far to talk to the Mandela’s, Tambo’s and Makatini’s, conservative men all of them.’’ During the 1994 elections, the American government heavily financed Mandela’s ANC to ensure the De Klerk – Mandela ‘’planned regime” succeeded. Stanley B. Greenberg and Frank Geer directed the ANC elections campaign. These two men were President Clinton’s own pollster and image maker respectively.
In his book FROM WAR ROOM, Greenberg writes, ‘’The Pan Africanist Congress launched anti-pass campaign……close to 70 demonstrators in Sharpeville were massacred, putting the international limelight on the Pan Africanist Congress…..the PAC was the only other party with standing in the anti-apartheid struggle thus a majority of Africans viewed it favourably. The PAC boycotted the negotiations…when it joined…advocated expropriation of white land without compensation.” The truth however is that the PAC had a long policy of equitable redistribution of land. The European colonial settlers expropriated land from Africans. It is not the other way round. In South Africa it is nearly 20 years after ‘’negotiations’’ with ‘’moderates” but the land and its riches are still the property of a European minority.
When the 1994 election results were announced even The Times (London) conceded that the election could not have been considered “free and fair’’. “There is agreement that there was a wide-spread fraud and cheating.” Bill Deeds of the Daily Telegraph in London, wrote, “By our own electoral standard the conduct of South Africa’s general election and counting of votes has been deplorable.” A senior official of the South African apartheid regime later corroborated that the 1994 April elections had been “embarrassing and flawed.” He indicated that De Klerk and Mandela agreed that the elections had to be declared ‘’free and fair’’ because the alternative would have been a political disaster. “We simply could not afford this thing to go down the tube. It would serve no purpose to cry foul.”
This makes it clear that if an African leader is not favoured by western powers, he is a wrong leader for democracy. If he or she wins elections, they are illegitimate. If indeed, the leaders of western countries are people of high morals and almost ‘’infallible,’’ why did they not even as much hint the flawed elections in South Africa in 1994? Clinton’s two experts, Greenberg and Freez were there. They had financed and conducted these elections. They knew what had happened. Incidentally, during those elections United States troops in low-key manoeuvre were in an African neighbouring country. There was suspicion that the American troops were being moved “near the boiling part that is South Africa” to make sure that if any radical political party took power the American soldiers would enter the country, shoot a few whites and attribute that to radicals. This happened in Patrice Lumumba’s DRC. It was attempted in Zimbabwe by the colonialists through Operation Hectic whereby some whites would be killed by imperialist agents and the action blamed on the anti- Christian/MARXIST Robert Mugabe and ZANU PF.
The imperialists were aware of the majority African support for the Pan Africanist Congress and its undeniable strength towards the 1994 elections in South Africa. On 29 April 1990, Deon Delport of The Star newspaper in Johannesburg wrote, “A recent survey found among many Sowetan youngsters, the PAC is increasingly preferred to the ANC which was viewed as being promoted by the apartheid government.” In the same article it was reported that wide support for the PAC had been found by researcher Sue Lerena for McCann, a Johannesburg based advertising firm. Lerena observed a wide range of Sowetans between April 14 and 22nd in 1990 after the unbanning of the PAC and ANC and release of Nelson Mandela. Lerena added, “My own view was, we could end up like in Zimbabwe where whites were stunned and shocked of the defeat of Bishop Abel Muzorewa by Mr. Robert Mugabe. The media further reported, “The so-called main players are losing support where is it going to….? The most important change over the past years has been the rise in support of the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) among the BLACKS. The PAC is poised to emerge as the single most powerful electoral force…even though it be almost exclusively black….” (Work in progress magazine 17 June 1993).
After the assassination of Chris Hani, several newspapers reported about Clarence Makwetu, President of the PAC and Nelson Mandela of the ANC. According to one such report: “Mr. Nelson Mandela the icon of the black struggle against apartheid was booed at a meeting in Soweto when he upset many in a crowd of around 30 000 people with a friendly reference to the ruling apartheid party. One of the biggest cheers of the two hour event came when Mr. Clarence Makwetu, leader of the radical Pan Africanist Congress strode into the packed stadium in the middle of Mr. Mandela’s speech. Mr. Mandela was forced to pause as the crowed cheered and whistled for a beaming Makwetu who told them ‘we have come to a time when leaders run out of words.’ The crowed rose to him and set off thunder flashes, while some ANC officials on the platform looked dismayed.”
How did PAC voters on the 27th April 1994 disappear? Was there massive rigging in the presence of Clinton’s own men? What did they do about this? They never said a word about this? Of the strength of the political parties in South Africa, Dr. Vladimir Tickhomiov, the learned secretary of the Russian academy of science African institute had confirmed prior to the 1994 South Africa elections (in south Africa) that: “The alliance of the ANC is weaker than that of other black organisations and movements. The ideology of Africanism and black awareness prevail among the majority of the politically active blacks. This was especially true when black organizations had the opportunity of leaving the underground and becoming legal.”
It was not surprising when a German magazine – Geheim (top secret) stated: ‘’The so-called Independent Electoral Commission as well as the technical personnel handling the elections in South Africa was infiltrated by the national intelligence service (NIS) agents in places like Johannesburg, Western Cape, Pretoria, Port Elizabeth and Durban“ (GEHEIM 30th April 1994).
Zimbabwe is being attacked because it is tired of flag independence. It wants to control its own riches. They have been looted by imperialists for far too long. Africa must defend Zimbabwe. Africa cannot have her riches looted by imperialists through puppet leaders forever. Former slave traders in humans and colonial thieves of other people’s countries have no credentials to qualify as champions of democracy and legitimacy in Africa.
By Dr. Motsoko Pheko
The writer is an author of several books among which include THE HIDDEN SIDE OF SOUTH AFRUCAN POLITICS and TOWARDS AFRICA’S AUTHENTIC LIBERATION.