Mugabe Insists “No Suffering” in Zimbabwe

200px-mugabecloseup2008 President Robert Mugabe, 91, has long been one of the world’s most heartless and merciless dictators, but he seems also on a quest to show that he is also the most clueless. This week Mugabe expressed utter surprise that his people were starving as he and his notorious and corrupt family live like emperors. He assured that there is “no suffering” in Zimbabwe.

Most people have been reduced to selling things along the roadside. However, Mugabe expressed utter surprise by the notion of poverty in his country: “But what is it that the people are suffering from? Didn’t we give them land?”

Just for the record.

Zimbabwe is a low-income, food-deficit country, ranked 156 out of 187 countries according to the 2013 UNDP Human Development Index. Currently, 72 percent of the population lives below the national poverty line (less than US$ 1.25 per day). Some 30 percent of the rural poor are considered to be ‘food poor’ or ‘extremely poor’. Although the prevalence of HIV has been reduced, it still remains high with nearly 15 percent of adults living with HIV – many of whom also suffer from malnutrition due to food insecurity.

Source: News24

109 thoughts on “Mugabe Insists “No Suffering” in Zimbabwe”

  1. Ninian – I believe your goal could be achieved if every country/nation/governing entity, adopted the same governing documents. As an American, I say everyone should adopt our Declaration of Independence, adapt it for their own situation. They should then copy our constitution, but be more definitively clear on defined powers. The planet needs to be held to the same legal metric for your proposed system to work. Americans, generally, will die fighting tooth and nail if you are seriously proposing to rescind our founding documents and replace it with something more “U.N. global mindset”, or as we would read it – repealing our god-given-man-codified rights. Sure, you can read that as ‘Dey’ll Take R GUNZ!! RARRR!’ because, the other amendments are worthless without the 2nd to back it up.

    This is why DavidM and Paul keep telling you why it can’t be done. I believe it can be done. Everyone needs to operate under the same rules.

    I saw this article yesterday about the self-driving cars, and I can’t seem to find it anywhere. The point of it was that the computers were being confused by other human drivers (doing a rolling stop, other little oddities not 100% in line with the law), and basically were paralyzed. One of the researchers said the car has to adapt to the culture of the roadway. Here in NJ, we are kind of aggressive, although somewhat courteous. I haven’t been flipped off in ages! My point is the culture. If you want everyone to play by the same rules, all the cultures have to be OK with it. I believe the chances of this happening are so slim it is not a worth pursuit. But it can be done!

    Here in the US we see a clash of cultures we can’t agree – big government weenies with freebies vs small government leave us alone capitalists, and every mixed stripe in between. Isn’t this the same in every large modernized country? It is a righteous, however lofty goal to unite global people under one rule of law.

    1. Steg: With mass murder / crimes against humanity there is a common thread in different legal system’s. Murder is a universal crime.

      So we are all on the same hymn sheet. Singing the same tune. And probably in the same key.

      There isn’t a problem with this proposal as long as it focuses on crimes against humanity.

      If you expand this into other legal areas there may/would be problems.

      But I am not suggesting that

      1. ninianpeckitt, the problem is how do you define crimes against humanity. You probably consider a nation that punishes homosexual behavior or adultery as committing a crime against humanity. A Muslim nation might consider a nation that prohibits polygamy as committing a crime against humanity. The Netherlands probably consider a nation that punishes prostitutes as committing a crime against humanity.

        1. David2575: I am focusing on definitions of crimes against humanity which have a common thread in international jurisprudence. I have deliberately avoided other legal areas which could precipitate controversy.

    2. Steg wrote: “I believe your goal could be achieved if every country/nation/governing entity, adopted the same governing documents.”

      That is basically similar to what I had said about the need to agree upon law. Our biggest mistake in Iraq and Afghanistan was helping them draft Constitutions that basically created Islamic Republics. That immediately made any nation building efforts a failure. If all laws must conform with the Holy Quran, you can’t have religious liberty.

      1. Davidm2575: The controversial issues in Islam is not the QURAN but the traditions or Hadiths passed down which become the basis for for Sharia Law. Each religious group has different Hadith. This has led to fundamental differences between Shia and Sunni Muslims that mirror the differences and conflagrations between Catholics and Protestants.

        I suppose by any definition of religion, it’s adoption is inconsistent with liberty. And an example of this is to be seen in the Bible Belt of the Deep South.

        What is important is a working model rather than the mathematical concept of freedom which for example is a figment of the imagination of the DOI.

  2. davidm2575 and Steg

    I am not proposing a Hague Model and only used this as an example.

    I understand Steg’s argument but this is not what the issue is about. It is about bringing mass murders to trial who otherwise walk free. It’s about how military intervention fails on nearly every occasion. About how justice is evaded by snatching one individual for execution without trial. The last time this happened it made no difference whatsoever apart from temporary satisfaction. If anything it made resolve against America stronger, and you don’t win with this scenario.

    If you are going to adopt the traditionalistic approach to war. You have to fight to win. That is how WWII was won and why other wars have not delivered the same result.

    I am arguing that as Total War is unacceptable a different strategy is required. I have made a strong case for this backed with evidence that would take the burden off the shoulders of an individual country, remove disruptive politics (as much as is possible) and have a chance of delivering some success.

    We are living at a time in history where the world will not tolerate crimes against humanity. Political retaliation with sanctions etc doesn’t work. Invasion doesn’t work, Assassination doesn’t work.

    Politics is the cause of many of these problems rather than the solution.

    I am arguing that there is a thread of law, a common denominator that is applicable to some of these issues and that can be exploited. An ability to do this might just be crucial to prevent atrocities spreading to our home soil.

    The alternative is to do nothing, bring your troops home and let death and destruction continue to spread unchecked. Because Armed intervention has failed to check this situation. Cells in the USA and elsewhere will spring up joined by the disaffected radicals and then you have a problem that will be impossible to solve.

    These issues have to be solved collectively through the rule of Law and not Government. Perpetrators have to understand that there is no powerbase for them and there is no where to hide.

    This is how to do it sending in hit squads to create martyrs is not the answer. There is no shame in being killed by your enemy. Look to what Sir David Frost did to Richard Nixon if you want some inspiration. Now that WAS a result. It sent a warning to every President ever since. If he had been physically assassinated the impact would have been very different indeed and America would be in a weaker situation.

    Crimes against humanity need to be addressed in court. If we haven’t got a court we need to create one.

    There is no reasonable argument against this – indeed a failure to act implies complicity.

    1. ninianpeckitt, so you think our military action to stop Saddam Hussein from invading Kuwait was unsuccessful? You think our invasion of Iraq to remove him from power was unsuccessful? I see it in quite the opposite light. Properly planned invasions do work. After seeing what we were capable of doing in Iraq, President Gaddafi of Libya called our President Bush and agreed to rollback his weapons of mass destruction program. That is success.

      What has not been successful are nation building programs in countries that do not share the same values. You can’t force people to change their value systems. You must persuade them, and it takes a lot of time.

      1. davidm2575:

        It was not unsuccessful.

        It was a disaster.

        And one of the greatest magnitude. It has created insurmountable problems in the region with a power vacuum filled by I.S. This will come back to haunt America which has demonstrated a complete lack of understanding of the Islamic World. I have a dreadful feeling that Twin Towers is only the beginning. And I hope to God that I am wrong.

        America went in “John Wayne Style” with a Tony Blair Lapdog to find no promised Weapons of “Mad” Destruction. Saddam Hussein was deposed because the allies chose to do this. The legality of the conflict is still debated. But what was messed up (as usual in a limited conflict) was the End Game and Exit Strategy. Stormin’ Norman fought a brilliant war with almost zero allied casualties. No doubt about it. His military campaign was brilliant. But you don’t win a war just by beating an army in battle. American doesn’t really understand this anymore. You need the Wisdom and the administrative Ability of MacArthur to rebuild a country that was defeated in war. He proved it could be done. The Iraqis were thrown to the wolves.

        IS now controls an area about the size of Pennsylvania the last time I read this up. Saddam Hussein was a pussy cat in comparison with these people. These people are bent on the destruction of Western values and have stated that the USA will be a prime target.

        But what is the biggest disaster of all is that some Americans actually think this war was a success.

        If this was a success – God knows how you define a failure.

        There is a difference in wanting something to be true and having the courage to admit when it isn’t. This region of the world is now very unstable indeed in an Islamic World now in the possession of Nuclear Weapons. They have demonstrated an ability to bring their “armed struggle” to the USA, Europe, Asia and Australasia. Disaffected radicalised youngsters are joining them to fight. Thousands of refugees are fleeing war zones and drowning in the Mediterranean Sea.

        I don’t count this as success in any manner or form.

        I remember receiving loads emails from close American friends at the time of the invasion saying that they were going to “kick some butt”, which I believe is a colloquialism for military victory, and responding to them that it would all “end in tears”. It was a sure bet. Why? Because of a total absence of Wisdom and a total lack of understanding of the enemy.

        I think the real problem is that America has always believed that American values are the ones to prevail. You drum this into your kids at school and it is regurgitated constantly so much so that it is believed. North Korea does the same. So do the British.

        In fact, American thinking is in the minority. A billion Chinese don’t think this way for example. Neither do the Russians, most of Asia, Indian Subcontinent and the Islamic World etc etc.

        So with the very best of intentions, American Foreign Policy actually causes more problems than solutions. I have listed some of these in previous postings. It’s not that America always fails – far from it. Its just that America has been incredibly badly led, especially in recent times. The calibre of your politicians is generally low and they play to the lowest common denominator. Statements are clearly rehearsed and lack conviction. UK politicians aren’t much better either. They also have tried to treat the British Public like idiots and by enlarge they have succeeded.

        What is required is Insight, Wisdom and Statesmanship. This seems to be sadly lacking.

        We look on with dismay at the quality of candidates for the Republicans and Democrats in the sure knowledge that whoever gets into the White House it will be more of the same.

        I want to remove politicians from this role because they have failed to deliver and I want to base justice on Law. I’m interested in how this can be done, not in why it can’t be done.

  3. Ninian – I think being on the winning side is the definition of ‘winner’. Thank you for your replies. I believe we want the same thing, and as is the age old problem, we disagree on how to get there. I do appreciate your civil approach, however I think you have generalized my philosophy too much. I also think you do not give enough credence to my animal arguments. You think we’re all civilized? It is really the rules of society which protect the criminals from the masses.

    I am not advocating going into countries and ‘shooting from the hip’. I have outlined my positions above. Our founding fathers were all traitors to the crown. They realized this, and they knew they could be executed as so. They went forward anyway with this fully in mind. That was one of the general points of the book I linked. You seem to be fully aware of this. It is good that you put ‘lawfully’ in the quotes about their execution. We have a tool here called Jury Nullification- where if the jury decides that the law was bad, the vote for acquittal and the accused goes free. Our system is supposed to have the power resting with the people. We here are innocent until proven guilty.

    National boundaries may not be important to you, but that is a decision every nation has to make for itself. Just like the decision to be a free people. Or what to do for a living. The individual must decide for themselves, and take action with their own hands. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink, eh? Some people do not want to be free, and would rather be in bondage. I cannot begrudge them their choice, yet I cannot accept it as my fate and I can not let any man make that decision for me. I can only help steer people in what I believe is the correct way.

    Our constitution is the supreme law of our land, and can not be overruled by an entity like the UN. I suggest every country get their house in order with a representative republic. I can’t, however, force them to do so. I can’t force them to choose freedom. I can’t force them to choose capitalism. I can only offer peaceful support. I can’t force Americans to choose freedom. Too many of them want to force me to do things though. We here in America need to try federalism again.

    The idea of capitalism is individuals choosing what is best for their own lives. This is the standard I would apply to all peoples everywhere. Sometimes other people don’t like it when ‘lesser’ people choose for themselves. It is in these instances when the perceived ‘lesser’ peoples need to be armed and trained so that they may win the precious jewel of freedom for themselves.

    Apologies for bouncing around so much, out the door to work.

  4. Steg: Violence

    The violence of WWI led to WWII.

    Why because Germany never admitted defeat after WWI

    In WWII they were crushed and completely rebuilt with masses of funding especially from USA.

    Britain was bankrupt. WWII finished off Britain. Even though we were on the winning side.

    Churchill’s aim to defend the Empire was anachronistic and ultimately failed.

    So violence and being on the winning side does not make you a winner.

    The rebuilding of Germany and Japan is a different matter. They lost heavily and came out of the poo they created smelling of roses.

    What you are advocating is understandable, but has rarely worked for reasons I have already posted.

    America will soon leave Afghanistan and it will have made no difference.

    No difference at all.

    Just like all the other countries where troops have withdrawn.

  5. Ninian….it is a far less common mistake to believe that Assad Sr. ruled Iraq.
    I have plowed through a ton of your vague, contradictory, and worthless verbiage.
    Your old standby is “you obviously do not understand what I am talking about.”
    The problem, in fact, is a mountain of inane “solutions” from a commentator who is clueless.

  6. Ninian – He may have been deposed ages ago if the 22 drop program I’m suggesting had been in place. And it would have been done by the very people with the most vested interest in securing a free state. It could be done without the need for a massive bureaucracy in place, which would cost a lot of money. Most people are overtaxed already without the additional entity to fund forever. For your reaction to my ‘best way to police the world’ comment- you seem to be the one who wishes to police the world. I am suggesting we facilitate the countries to police themselves as the ‘best way to police the world’.

    Violence is the answer to damn near everything. Ultimately we follow the laws of society because if we don’t, the result is rough men licensed to coerce us, under color of law, will come and do just that. The threat of violence keeps the evil which lurks in the hearts of men, in check.

  7. It was not until the MDC in Zim began to gain major support in the provinces, that caused RGM and Chinamasa to sweat. RGB began a reign of terror in Harare, to squelch support, by raiding MDC headquarters and threatening the members, by telling them they would torture and imprison their family members, if they did not disband…even Morgan Tsvangarai, former puppet P.M. and head of the MDC, was brutally beaten and Roy Bennet was forced to flee to South Africa and ultimately G.B. to evade RGM clutches, as the CIO was stalking him whilst in S.A. Mugabe’s reign of terror is limited in scope, but within his limited sphere of influence, it is terrifying and the psychology of fear, keeps the vast majority of Zim citizens in check

  8. Ninian – Thank you for thinking about it. I understand you are arguing on a higher plane- with courts and laws and civility. I am arguing from the floor of the jungle from whence we came. I am glad you do not totally discount my comments. You said,

    “So when Steg is talking about SOLI training guerillas to fight for their freedom, I understand his thinking. It is a gut reaction of fighting spirit. But this is not how America won their independence from Britain, which at the time was a superpower fighting what they saw were farmers, in a war for which they had no real stomach.”

    That’s pretty close. It’s not a gut reaction of fighting spirit, but a cold calculation of fighting spirit. Why 22s? To wound, not straight up kill. Britain had no real stomach to fight the war, especially as their regulars were wounded by the farmers. If a man is killed on the battlefield, his corpse can be retrieved later. If he is wounded, he requires the manpower of at least one, usually more, troops to either save him or get him where he stands a better chance of survival.

    If you go back and read my comments carefully, they are aimed at changing your heart and mind. You are aiming for what most on this board would call ‘normal, civilized’ people. Others have pointed out you would not do so well in this conversation with an ISIS typed mindset. People can be brutal and savage, every bit as vicious as a wild carnivore. That is one of my main points. That is why there will never be a global concurrence on ‘values of decency’ or whatever it was.

    Ninian also said,

    “But the truth is that the American Revolution was part of a much larger Global Conflict between the British Empire and France which continued until 1815 and the Battle of Waterloo.”

    We could say that about *pick a country* today. This is all about the global conflict between Freedom and Communism/collectivism/statism. A lot of my reactions are visceral. My grandfathers were both in the Navy in WW2, and their grandparents all came here at the turn of the century. We kept our small traditions passed down, but the family learned English (I only know a handful of Russian words), and went to work. The blood our citizens have shed for this country specifically, is immense. We have put forth the greatest sacrifice for freedom. For the power of the individual.

    Read this book:

    One of the key figures for me was Richard Stockton, who had both his officer sons locked on the British prison ship Jersey. He would not capitulate to the enemy, for freedom. This is an idea worth dying for, which means it is also worth killing for.

    I do not want myself or my family to die for Zimbabwe’s freedom. However, I can wholeheartedly endorse their quest for their own independence. Some people cannot sit idly by, and they will commit their services to the cause. Whether it be training, as in SOLI, or direct enlistment:

    1. Steg: Robert Mugabe could have been arrested years ago when he left Zimbabwe for a trip to Europe.
      And he would have been arrested had the infrastructure I am proposing been in place.
      And because it wasn’t – he wasn’t…..

      Paul C. Schulte: Politicians and Political Bodies like the UN need to be kept out of this proposal. They are not above the Law. Look what happened to President Nixon. Despite all the political stuff, Tricky Dickie was impeached. So don’t tell me that Law is nobbled by politics. History shows it isn’t necessarily so. Look at Germany, Japan and the Balkans. All imperfect yes. But the effort was made. Why give up now?

      Neither you nor I will choose the Judiciary nor the modus operandi. This will be a matter for the Judicial Systems to decide. There are all sorts of possibilities to remove bias. For example a British Judge might not sit on a case involving a British Mass Murderer etc. There are endless permutations. If Isis came to Trial it might be decided that an Islamic Court was appropriate by the International Judicial Body. Or it might not be acceptable. Who knows? The important thing is that a decision be made excluding politicians as much as possible. It is this exclusion zone that makes the concept more acceptable and makes argument against it more difficult.

      For example you are really struggling to fault it and not really doing that well I think.

      1. ninian – it is a common mistake by the undereducated that Nixon was impeached. He was not. Only two Presidents have been impeach Johnson and Clinton and neither convicted. Nixon resigned.

        1. Paul C. Schulte

          In 1974, the House Judiciary Committee recommended Articles of Impeachment to the full House of Representatives, but Nixon resigned before the House voted on the Articles.

          So you are right he did resign to prevent impeachment, but the vote would have been for impeachment otherwise he would not have resigned.

          My reference to this case is to indicate that the President is not above the law and this case illustrates that my proposals can be used to tackle politicians who commit crimes against humanity in which there is a common thread of justice in relation to the crime of mass murder for example.

    2. Steg: Richard Stockton was an interesting character and a victim of his times.

      He first took a moderate stance in the troubles between the colonies and Great Britain. In 1774 he drafted and sent to Lord Dartmouth “a plan of self-government for America, independent of Parliament, without renouncing the Crown.” This Commonwealth approach was not acceptable to the King; had it been, the British could have avoided the war that freed the colonies and deprived the King of the fairest jewel in his crown. In actual fact it was unacceptable to Prime Minister Lord North. The King had no political power.

      When Parliament resolved to raise revenue in the colonies in 1775, (the lowest rate of taxation in the Empire actually) Stockton declared the colonies “must each of them send one or two of their most ingenious fellows, and enable them to get into the House of Commons, maintain them there till they can maintain themselves, or else we shall be fleeced to some purpose.”

      So I think he did everything he could “to make it work.

      He became a Revolutionary and was captured by loyalists and turned over to the British. General William Howe had written a Proclamation offering protection papers and a full and free pardon to those willing to remain in peaceable obedience to the King. Although many took the pardon, Stockton never did, and was marched to Perth Amboy where he was put in irons, and brutally treated as a common criminal. So he was a real American hero.

      He was then moved to Provost Prison in New York, where he was intentionally starved and subjected to freezing cold weather. After nearly five weeks of brutal treatment, Stockton was released on parole, his health ruined.

      Over 12,000 prisoners died in the prison ships and prisons in New York compared to 4,435 soldiers that died in combat over the six years of war. His estate, Morven, in Princeton was occupied by General Cornwallis during Stockton’s imprisonment; his furniture, all household belongings, crops and livestock were taken or destroyed by the British. His library, one of the finest in the colonies, was burned.

      Stockton’s treatment in the New York prison prompted the Continental Congress to pass a resolution directing Gen. Washington to inquire into the circumstances and not long afterward, Stockton was paroled on January 13, 1777. The U.S. National Archives contains other messages showing that Washington duly contacted General Howe in New York regarding the exchange or release of Stockton and others.

      Howe’s document that Stockton signed, giving his word of honour not to meddle in the American affairs during the war, was the condition of his parole.

      General Howe obtained 4,836 declarations reversing decision to join the rebellion. But Stockton never signed. As signatory to the DOI this would have been difficult. In fact as a signatory to the DOI he had committed treason in the eyes of the British and should have been executed. But he wasn’t. And this is very interesting.

      Sadly, because of the parole document Stockton signed with General Howe to gain his freedom, and giving his word of honour not to meddle in the war (required to be given a parole), Stockton resigned from Congress. It took nearly two years to regain his health.

      Now I mention all this because of a sting in the tail and the relevance to the modern world.

      If your philosophy of “gut fired shoot ’em dead approach” had prevailed in those brutal times, all these rebels would have been “lawfully” exterminated as traitors. If you had been fighting other enemies at the time there would have been no quarter given and this would have happened.

      And you have to ask why Washington could do a deal with Lord Howe to help his friends?

      It is interesting that General Howe was later accused of deliberately undermining the war effort for the benefit of the anti-war Whig faction in Parliament. You have to understand not everyone agreed with Lord North and his prosecution of a war in the American Colonies.

      In Parliament, Howe was generally sympathetic to the American colonies. He publicly opposed the collection of legislation intended to punish the Thirteen Colonies known as Intolerable Acts, and in 1774 assured his constituents that he would resist active duty against the Americans and asserted that the entire British army could not conquer America.

      It may surprise you but there was support for America in Britain. When Stockton was in Edinburgh Scotland he was welcomed with open arms by British Whig intellectuals who were sympathetic to the colonies. In fact he did rather well and defended himself in a robbery wounding the would be robber with his sword. You would have been proud of him.

      So all is not what it seems.

      I am trying to explain by using this parable that going into a country shooting from the hip does not always give a result. My arguments have emphasised that Total War and Total Surrender is a different matter. But most wars are not fought in this way, and trouble resurfaces. These are lessons that are yet to be learned as historical mistakes are repeated by politicians.

      In today’s world, which is now a Global Society, national boundaries are becoming less and less important.

      We now have a real opportunity to bring vicious mass killers to justice without politicians and without the use of US troops and American Policing.

      The only thing we lack is the will to do it and like Richard Stockton, a Real American Hero, we shall all pay the same price in the end.

      Your rifle will not protect us from another Twin Towers.

      1. ninian – the problem with your New World Order is that the saving of the world will fall on the same people. We know the British won’t do it or the French. The Italians are worthless. That leaves the Americans, Chinese, Swedes and Russians. Now, of that group, who do you want saving you butt?

          1. ninian – Your New World Order is unworkable, so you would be letting those mass murderers go free. And, personally, I am not letting anyone go free. I am not in the policing business. If you want to catch mass murderers that is up to you.

  9. Jumping in here, without time to read all the comments, but it occurs to me that it might be worth looking at current events in Guatemala…

    Yesterday on Democracy Now!:

    AMY GOODMAN: You talk about Otto Pérez Molina being involved in murder of indigenous people in the northwest highlands, Allan Nairn, but what these protests are about are corruption, why his vice president has now been arrested, as well as other officials. So, do you see this possible indictment getting larger? And are people calling for that?

    ALLAN NAIRN: Corruption has kicked open the door. Now, what could follow is mass murder, a prosecution for mass murder. Just about everyone I talk to on the street raises that issue. And under Guatemalan law, an ordinary citizen can go to a court and file a criminal case. And now that Pérez Molina has been stripped of immunity, anyone can step forward and file criminal charges against him for the slaughter in the Ixil zone in December of ’82, when slaughter that occurred, and I was there talking to Pérez Molina and talking to his—talking to his troops. So that now becomes a possibility.

    And part of it—if that goes forward, and part of it is dependent on the action of state prosecutors—if the state prosecutors go forward, I would also urge them to look at charging not just Pérez Molina, but also his U.S. sponsors, the Americans who worked as military and intelligence liaisons with the Guatemalan army as they were murdering civilians, and also high American officials who set the policy in Washington. They can be charged as accomplices to murder. As President George W. Bush said, if you arm a terrorist, if you fund a terrorist, you are a terrorist. I think President Bush had a point, and that he should be subject to that same rule, that same principle, and that now that Guatemala has kicked open the door, set an example for the world, this trail of blood can be followed wherever it leads, including back to Washington. -Allan Nairn

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