The worlds biggest closing down sale
I do not know how to describe what this collection of goons are doing
is the worlds biggest closing down sale! I have now been raided 7 times
on each occasion they have demanded that we write down our prices to
levels. I have yet to determine the full extent of our losses but they
run into the billions. My main concern now is just how on earth do we
our staff at the month end? They are equally concerned!
I have heard many explanations of this exercise, termed 'Good
the regime in its normal exemplary manner. One was that this is a knee
reaction to the statement by Christopher Dell, the US Ambassador to
on the 18th June 2007 to the effect that we are headed for 1,5 million
percent inflation and the collapse of the regime in short order.
that they were shocked by outcome of their own exercise to draw foreign
exchange from the market that week and the resulting collapse of the
currency and the massive surge in inflation that followed and this is a
desperate effort to halt inflation.
Yet another, well informed source said it was well planned, the people
involved trained and is a deliberate attempt to further reduce urban
populations and the support base of the MDC in the towns in the form of
small and large-scale business. This hypothesis was based on the
Murambatsvina exercise two years ago when they destroyed 300 000 homes
informal settlements and hundreds of thousands of small non-formal
businesses. This resulted in both an upsurge in human flight and
back to the rural areas - both targets of the policy and in the view
regime, highly successful.
Now, forced to face elections in March 2008, they have assessed the
situation and decided that more surgery is required. So smash the
of the formal economy and at the same time give the people cheap goods
reward for their complicity. The possible outcome is now clear, the
of what is left of the modern economy is being systematically destroyed
most companies affected will almost certainly close their doors with
dramatic job losses, huge suffering and the flight of much of our
urban population to South Africa and elsewhere.
They then feel that with all food supplies in their hands and most of
remnants of the economy under their control, they can direct how people
vote in the next election and be sure that they will comply. This
is validated by the actions taken last week to introduce new controls
importation of food and 'groceries' for resale. As for the flight
millions to South Africa it has been clear for some time that the
here is making no efforts at all to curb illegal border crossing into
our neighbors territory.
If permitted, this demonic, ruthless but clever operation will result
Zimbabwean population declining to less than 7 million this winter, the
potential voting population to perhaps 2 million; 80 per cent of them
impoverished and totally dependent on regime controlled handouts and
charity. Like peasants everywhere, the majority will be dependent on
regime for work, food, shelter and even clothing - the basics of
such they would not dare act in defiance.
Zanu PF will, under this scenario, then call an election early - as
the human flight and controls are in place and effective on the ground.
this election they will make every pretense to show that it is 'free
fair' even allowing some international and regional observers. The
will vote under supervision with the threat that districts that vote
known MDC activists will face instant reprisals that will leave them
food and all other means of survival. They might even control
The people behind this strategy are very clever in an evil sort of way.
have become wealthy beyond their imaginations; they have no shortages,
take holidays abroad (if they are not under sanctions and even if they
there are plenty of places that will gladly take their dollars) and
systems of control and coercion in their hands without legal or moral
constraints. They are totally determined to protect this power and
at any cost.
Their main threat is not from the MDC or the people, but from within.
Therefore they reserve their most harsh action for those individuals
dare to break away from the power group and in recent weeks we have
resurgence of political killings of senior Army officers who have dared
ask questions about what is happening and what they are asked to do.
not give a hoot about the interests of the region or the people, they
the former can be manipulated, do not have the will to stand up to them
may even be compliant. The latter, they regard as just fodder for the
machine they are creating.
The operation itself tells us a great deal about this regime. It is
effectively a military Junta. The Joint Operations Command is totally
charge and the civilian State is simply being brushed aside and forced
watch as decisions are taken (outside of Cabinet) and implemented. We
documentary evidence of this.
It also confirms that the rule of law has now been totally abandoned
Courts sidelined and access the legal redress made impossible. There is
nothing legal about what they are doing; it would never stand up in a
of Law in any normal society. The rights of property owners (no matter
sort of property) are being flagrantly violated with business capital
wiped out in a dramatic and fatal way. Interestingly they are not
discriminating in this operation, foreign or local, Zanu PF or MDC,
indigenous black or white, they are simply sweeping the board. This
that they feel they no longer need these alternative pillars of
support - the armed forces and their own systems and tentacles are
do what they want.
Do regional leaders understand the terrible price they will pay for
gross abuse of power and privilege in Zimbabwe? What on earth are they
to stop this madness? Not a great deal at present and there are four
possible outcomes of their inaction.
1. We will collapse in a heap and the military will formalize their
2. The so-called reformers in Zanu PF will take over, expel Mugabe from
power and form a new government that will declare a state of emergency
3. Mugabe will call a snap election late this year and will try to win
4. The SADC initiative will be put back on course by South African
we will stagger under reserve engines to an election in March 2008 that
produce a new government to pick up the pieces.
It is reported to me that Zanu PF Members of Parliament have jokingly
to MDC colleagues 'we know you will win the elections, and we are
sure there is nothing left for you to eat!' This might well be a
earth strategy - or the scorched earth idea might simply be a fall
position if SADC does intervene. Whatever, time is running out for all
Bulawayo, 19th July 2007