In Zimbabwe, Opposition Follows Washington’s Plan

By Stephen Gowans

The color revolution in Zimbabwe (yet to be given a color) unfolds as other US- and British-government and foundation-directed color revolutions have unfolded in Yugoslavia, Georgia and Ukraine.

The revolution is what, in business circles, is called a turn-key solution. All you do is turn a key, and follow the plan.

The plan was developed by the US State Department, based on advice from “peace” and civil society scholars, and is cheered on by the same scholars who contributed to its development.

Here’s how the plan unfolds:

1. Elected officials in countries that won’t do Washington’s bidding are denounced a dictators. That the officials in these countries have won free and fair elections doesn’t matter. Doubt is raised about the legitimacy of the elections or the leaders are said to govern in an anti-democratic manner (Chavez) or both. This provides the US with the justification for step 2.

One of the most persistent critics of “anti-democratic” leaders abroad is US Vice-President Dick Cheney, whose commitment to democracy hasn’t dissuaded him from explaining that it doesn’t matter what the US public thinks of the war on Iraq – the administration does what it wants, not what’s popular. While the next administration will doubtlessly dismiss what’s popular in precisely the same way, there’s no movement afoot to get rid of the dictatorship where it’s needed most.

2. The US, Britain, and other Western countries provide financial support, expertise and other assistance to “civil society, the media, and opposition parties” to remove the “dictator.”

3. An election campaign is used as the setting to force the government to step down. The apparent inconsistency of a dictator holding elections is explained away as a hollow sham used by the dictator to claim legitimacy. (If the leadership is really dictatorial, and the elections really lack legitimacy in the eyes of voters, why are real dictators holding elections at all? Hitler, Mussolini and Franco didn’t. Why would real dictators do so now?)

4. The Western-supported media, civil society and opposition parties declare in advance, consistent with the dictator narrative, that the vote will be rigged. Western media dutifully trumpet this prediction.

5. Before the official vote is announced, the opposition and “independent” election monitors announce an opposition victory.

6. If the official vote tally contradicts the opposition’s claim of victory, the vote is denounced as fraudulent, and people are encouraged to move the battle to the streets.

Ian Makoni, election director for Zimbabwe’s main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai explained two days before the vote:

“The lesson from 2002 (when the last presidential election was held) is we didn’t plan for after the vote. Everyone stayed at home and said we will go to the courts. What happened in Kenya was they knew there would be fraud and they were ready. We will be out on the streets celebrating when the polls close.”

Note that Makoni had already declared an opposition victory before the vote had even been held. It’s one thing to say the vote will be rigged – quite another to declare in advance of the poll that you’ve won.

Makoni continued: “It can turn into a protest easily. Zimbabweans are angry, they are desperate, they are ready to protest. It’s the turning point we are planning for.”

Opposition spokesman Nelson Chamisa said that if the opposition isn’t declared the winner, Kenya will look like a picnic.

7. Public opinion is mobilized in the West by the media’s single-minded focus on the opposition and its civil society allies, completely excluding the government’s point of view.

Every major Western newspaper has based its reporting of Zimbabwe’s election in the last week exclusively on the point of view of the opposition and the civil society groups who share the same Western sources of funding. It’s as if in an election held in the United States, the media only covered the Republican candidates.

4 thoughts on “In Zimbabwe, Opposition Follows Washington’s Plan

  1. Robert Mugabe was knighted by the queen in 1994 – but now they are trying to rewrite history and pretend that he was always bad, etc.

    If you look at hyperinflation in Zimbabwe in late 2003, it is much closer temporaneously to the introduction of financial sanctions (the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act of 2001, introduced in early 2002), than it is to land reform in 1997. And yet, the media always blame ‘economic mismanagement by Mugabe’ but never mention sanctions at all. In fact, the proof that the MDC is a sham organisation, is that they LIE about everything. Here are some of the lies:

    1) Mugabe is not a war hero

    This is a matter of record, as he headed ZANU-PF and was a signatory to the Lancaster House Agreement. And yet, they want to portray him as somehow not connected to Liberation.

    2) There are no sanctions and if there are, they are targeted against individuals, who are ‘Mugabe and his cronies’

    Section 4c of the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act of 2001 (S.494) is titled “Multilateral Financial Restrictions” and shows how THE GOVERNMENT of Zimbabwe, not single individuals will not be allowed to extend loans, borrow or reschedule debt from 9 international financial institutions and the IMF.

    3) Land is only given to Mugabe’s ‘friends and cronies’

    Hundreds of thousands (234,000 in the year 2003) people have benefited from land reform. Either that are a lot of ‘friends and cronies’, or the MDC is lying again.

    The MDC is a completely scurrilous organsation that will sell out the government of Zimbabwe’s assets for cents on the dollar and give away the country’s mineral resources for a bribe. They are people of very low moral character, who have no concept of the interest of the people of Zimbabwe at all, because they are in it to enrich themselves in the fastest way possible.

    Also notice that until land reform, most of the individuals in the MDC were members of ZANU-PF. Even though ZANU-PF was elected in 1980, it was only after land reform was started in 1997 that the MDC was created in 1999.

    In other words, all the previous policies they could agree with, except land reform, which caused to them to set up a party of their own.

    All they want to do is turn back land reform and comply with the IMF’s ‘structural adjustment’, which will cause tens of thousands of job losses and leave Zimbabwe in the hands of foreign corporations.

  2. Freedom, Democracy, Human Rights have been manipulated by the West (and its allies) to act as a contemporary version of the Western Civilizing Mission or White Man’s Burden.

    That is, these ideologies have become contrived pretexts for the “Free World” to invade, bomb, exploit, sanction, destabilize, or overthrow other nations.

    And like the era of the British Empire, many people in the West cling to these official lies and pretexts–no matter how pathetic they are.

  3. Here in England, it is seldom mentioned in the extensive media coverage on the elections that Zimbabwe used to be part of the British Empire. It’s not mentioned either that in the early nineties Mugabe was heralded as the good example for the rest of Africa to follow – there was a multiparty democracy, Zanu-PF were a party of privatisation…

  4. Your article is true but very sad. The U.S., Britain, and European Union, are morally wrong to destablize a country because they do not agree with the leader of the country. The above countires and union do not care about black people; they just want to steal the natural resources of Zimbabwe and reestablish white supremacy.
    I’m black american and I say loudly and clearly……long live Mugabe. You might cut off the branch of the revolution but the vine you will never be able to cut off. Mugabe lives in me—–I will always fight for black liberation today, tomorrow and forever.

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