Last Days of a Tyrant

Robert Mugabe is desperately trying to hang on to power in Zimbabwe. His opponents have called a general strike, and Mugabe is putting it down violently. The Independent reports that “Zimbabwean soldiers beat an opposition supporter to death yesterday.” Also, “Mugabe agents yesterday raided a private hospital and abducted several of its injured supporters who were awaiting treatment. The MDC said that an opposition supporter, Tichaona Kaguru, died in hospital after being tortured and assaulted by the soldiers putting down the anti-Mugabe protests.”
Mugabe is another worthless Marxist dictator who is tolerated by the world–and treated respectfully by the French and some other Europeans–only because he is an African. It was quite different when he first seized power in what was then Rhodesia. Somewhat like Fidel Castro, he was widely hailed as a progressive leader who had ousted a repressive, unrepresentative regime. That was in 1980; over the ensuing years, the long-suffering people of Zimbabwe have learned what real repression is.
Years ago, Deacon and I had a college roommate who later married an Ethiopian princess and moved to Africa. He became a war correspondent and traveled with Mugabe’s rebel army in the late 1970’s. At one point he wrote a profile on Mugabe for People magazine. When Mugabe took power, our friend became, if memory serves, the only white member of Mugabe’s cabinet. That didn’t last long; he quickly realized what was in store for Zimbabwe and moved on.
Mugabe’s days appear to be numbered. His demise can’t come too soon.


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