Thursday, December 15, 2005

Zimbabwe's quiet coup

Trevor Ncube, chairman of the Africa board of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, has hit out fiercely at Zimbabwe's ruling elite, alleging that the deeply troubled southern African state is now effectively being ruled by the military and the intelligence agencies rather than by President Robert Mugabe.

"It has become clear Mugabe is not running the country," said the publisher. "Remember after Operation Murambatsvina. It was revealed that it was the Central Intelligence Organisation that was behind it." Operation Murambatsvina, which translates into Shona as "Operation Drive Out The Rubbish", resulted in somewhere between 750,000 and 2.3 million Zimbabweans being made homeless when police, soldiers and militias of the ruling ZANU PF party moved into working class suburbs in the cities and towns, hotbeds of support for the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, MDC, and razed many thousands of homes with bulldozers and sledgehammers.

"Mugabe has no intention to leave [the presidency], and in fulfilment of that he now relies more and more on the military," continued Ncube. "In other words we have a military dictatorship in place.

An earlier post of mine sounds eerily prescient today:

One way out for Mugabe, perhaps the only one (short of suicide) at this point, is to provoke a crisis that would justify the introduction of martial law, immediately followed by a military coup (with his support in exchange for protection). His recent promise to allocate stolen land to 6000 members of the armed forces hints at some kind of agreement.


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