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By ATWadmin On April 5th, 2008 at 8:00 pm

Robert_Mugabe.jpgI listened in disbelief to some UK politicians chatter on TV  the other evening that Robert Mugabe might voluntarily step down from power, given that he and his Zanu-PF party have been most likely beaten in the recent elections. Of COURSE he won’t! This guy is a tyrant, just like Saddam was. He has NO interest in listening to the voices of the ordinary Zimbabwean people but it appears that he does have plans for them. Morgan Tsvangirai, has accused President Robert Mugabe of preparing to go to war against the country’s people. He said Mr Mugabe was deploying troops and armed militias to intimidate voters ahead of a possible run-off poll.

I am sure he is right. This despot will not go voluntarily. He is in it to stay in power even AGAINST the will of his people. That’s why I consider the response of South African President Thabo Mbeki so utterly pathetic. He could put real pressure on his thug-next-door, but the sombre reality is that he has and will do nothing. Mugabe may be a depraved and evil marxist tyrant but to many fellow African leaders, he is more admired as a role model.  He gained power, he kept power, the rest is detail. I wish Morgan Tsvangirai and his party well but it looks like they cannot count on their nearest neighbour for any help! As for Gordon Brown’s response – honestly, he is just hopeless on the issue.

Meanwhile, Over There – “Open Government”…??

By ATWadmin On April 2nd, 2008 at 7:38 pm

openshut.jpgHow must the impoverished people of Zimbabwe be feeling tonight, as the delays in their election results go on and on? I’d imagine they must be experiencing feelings of despair, cynicism and (as always) fear of what is coming next, mixed perhaps with just a glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe, they are about to be released from the cruel tyranny of Robert Mugabe’s dictatorial presidency, under which they have suffered for so long.

Reports coming out of Zimbabwe are confused and conflicting at this stage. Some say that Mugabe is trying to work out the practicalities of making a "dignified" exit from the scene (and possibly the country). I’d certainly like to hope so (although, a curse on whatever country offers the damnable rogue political asylum). Other reports suggest that these electoral delays are nothing more than a political tactic. All I know is that dictators very rarely, if ever, concede defeat and hand over power "just like that". On the other hand, if a dictator such as Romania’s Ceaucescu can finally "get his come-uppance" at the hands of the people, then there has got to be some scope for hoping that Mugabe will not escape justice in the end….

Discussions about Zimbabwe’s politics often hinge on historical comparisons between the way the country was governed as Rhodesia, and the way it is governed today – I often hear the opinion that "Africans just don’t know to/aren’t ready to govern themselves". Well, I don’t know all the ins and outs of that argument, but my opinion is: Zimbabwe is NOT in the ruinous state it is in today simply because its government is black/anti-colonialist/less educated than the former regime about economics. Zimbabwe is in ruins chiefly because Mugabe is a wicked and corrupt dictator.

I also sometimes hear (on the newspapers’ comment sections) opinions such as "Well, they voted for him en-masse back in 1980; so why should we intervene? Let them have the ‘independance’ they wanted". I think that particular opinion is rather spiteful and cruel. The truth is that people have always been conned and lied to by politicians, and have voted in favour of "a fresh start", a "time for change". Although there is really no comparison to Zimbabwe in the analogy, How many of us in the UK voted for New Labour back in May 1997, and watched with glee as the fresh-faced grinning Blair tossed the sleaze-ridden, out-of-ideas Major administration into the dustbin of history?  Well… do we all still like the government we’ve got now? Or are some of us now wishing we’d never voted Nu-Lab at all? The people of Zimbabwe voted for huge changes back then, but surely they had no inkling of the present horrors of life under Mugabe. No sane person could have voted for that. And I think it is wrong to suggest that  any independent government in Zimbabwe would intrinsically, inevitably lead to the same sort of corruption and economic ruin.

In short, if Mugabe tricks and lies his way back into power this time, then I see a clear-cut case for full-scale military intervention, on humanitarian grounds, by "the West" (I’m not absolutely sure which countries or coalition of countries I mean by this, but certainly the UK should be involved).  We’re quick enough to intervene when our own immediate interests (oil, anti- AQ/Taliban) are at stake (and I fully support our interventions in Iraq/Afghan). So, if self-interest must reign supreme as the prevailing reason for wars, then why don’t we look to our long-term interests and realise that it is also very much in those interests to see countries like Zimbabwe freed from tyranny and thriving economically?


By ATWadmin On April 1st, 2008 at 11:17 am

I was intrigued to see just how industrious those Nigerian nationals that live amongst us can be…

"A Nigerian national has pleaded guilty to organising seven “sham” marriages used to help Chinese and Nigerian men and women gain illegal entry to European Union member states. Alexander Success (30), whose address was given as Waterfoot Park in Derry, will be sentenced at Derry Crown Court sitting in Coleraine tomorrow. The defendant’s co-accused, Akim Shittu, is currently serving three and a half years in prison with a recommendation of deportation on his release on similar charges.

At yesterday’s hearing of the court, Judge Seamus Treacy was told police found false passports and marriage documents when they searched Success’s home in May 2006.  The court heard that Chinese and Nigerian nationals went through sham marriages with seven people from the north west. After the marriages, their Irish spouses claimed status as migrant workers by claiming they were crossing from the Republic into Northern Ireland as workers.

It’s an absolute scam the way these Nigerians get into the UK, they seem to cause a lot of criminal problems as this case vividly demonstrates and I fail to understand why the UK (and the Republic of Ireland) tolerates them.

Hat-tip to the ATW reader for the story!


By ATWadmin On March 28th, 2008 at 8:20 am

Robert_Mugabe.jpgWell, you know that Zimbabwe (Rhodesia) used to be known as the bread-basket of Africa, such was the economic dynamo that drove that nation. Land was hugely productive and it was the envy of neighbouring states. But then it became independent of the burden of the white man, Robert Mugabe – that communist thug – seized power and has turned it into the basket-case of Africa. Well, Zimbabwe is about to have another general election, and the generals that pledge loyalty to Mugabe will be doing their best to make sure the ruling Zanu-PF thugocracy rigs the votes to stay in a position of power. I wish the opposition all the best and trust that for the sake of ALL of the people in this accursed land, they can achieve a victory. I somehow doubt it as I think Mugabe will cheat his way back into power. At the age of 84, one would think his thirst for power might drain away, but not a bit of it. Worse than all of this, I reckon that too many other African leaders see him as a role model.  

South African Sick Note

By ATWadmin On February 25th, 2008 at 6:40 pm

After reading David’s post regarding the so-called ‘Traditional Healers’, I was reminded of a wonderful little picture I saved off a South African blog some years ago!

Trouble is, these clowns are almost revered in the country and tribal areas of South Africa, and of course the Minister is all for them, as the Health Services in South Africa falter and fail, for many these fools are the only game in town! 





By ATWadmin On February 24th, 2008 at 11:31 am

I touched on the tragedy of South Africa the other day and I come back to it with this story that South Africa’s outspoken health minister has said medicines used by ..ahem …"traditional healers" should not be subject to clinical trials. Manto Tshabalala-Msimang warned against using what she called Western protocols for research and development. Medicines used for thousands of years should not become "bogged down in clinical trials", she said. She has distinguished herself previously by suggesting that garlic and vegetables be used to combat the spread of HIV.

God help South Africa with this fool in charge of Health.


By ATWadmin On February 23rd, 2008 at 10:57 am

South Africa under the rule of the ANC is not a happy place. Take this story about Jacob Zuma, the newly elected president of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), who now finds himself  at the centre of renewed controversy yesterday after accepting an invitation to address a “blacks-only” meeting of South African journalists. Mr Zuma, who is in line to become the country’s next president in 2009, said that he saw nothing wrong in the decision by the Forum of Black Journalists (FBJ) not to allow any white journalists, including those known to be favourable to the ANC, to attend a luncheon at which he was the guest speaker. Three well-known white journalists who tried to attend were asked to leave. The incident has infuriated many South Africans, of all races, who fear that it is a sign of Mr Zuma’s intentions if he succeeds to the presidency when Thabo Mbeki steps down. Mr Zuma, who currently faces corruption charges, was elected ANC president in a bitterly fought contest last year.

“Such exclusion has no place in South Africa today and certainly not in a forum that represents journalists,” the South African National Editors’ Forum, which represents white and non-white editors, said in a statement. I agree. And as for Mr Zuma – he who will be ANC king – anyone familiar with the rape charges brought against him will be clear as to the sort of man the ANC prefers.


By ATWadmin On February 1st, 2008 at 7:54 am

You have to feel sorry for Kenya. First the people set about each other with a savagery which is sickening to behold. Then the mighty African Union intervenes but then decides it can’t do much to stop the killing! Then Kofi Annan is parachuted in – maybe there are some lucrative side-deals he could cut? And now, Ban-ki-Moon. the utterly useless head of the UN descends upon the place. What chance have the Kenyans of finding any form of peace with these legions of liberals running around the country sharing their pain? 


By ATWadmin On January 29th, 2008 at 10:50 pm

After living for over seventeen years in South Africa, I really appreciate the odd spark of the old humour which used to enliven my life!

So I give you, by virtue of a virulently anti-ANC South African blog, the post which really says everything without actually saying anything! 

(For the uninitiated, Guguletu is a township some fifteen miles from Cape Town)



By ATWadmin On January 11th, 2008 at 7:51 am

061229saddam1_422.jpgAs if things couldn’t get any worse for Kenya comes the news that Kofi Annan is "taking over" the talking process aimed at stopping the chaos that has engulfed this country since the election results were declared.  (Here he is pictured with one of his former dear friends, now sadly deceased)

With the African Union intervention having proven – as one might expect  – completely useless, in desperation Kenya now turns to Mr Corruption himself, the man who passively watched the genocide in Rwanda and whose track record whilst head honcho of the UN has been on of staggering from one crisis to the next without actually ever doing anything. However in one respect this is a problem that has to be solved by African politicians – it is up to them to demonstrate a maturity and above all a responsibility to the electorate and the democratic process. It is sad to see Kenyans butcher each other as tempers flare and anger takes over, but is is Kenya’s problem and I think it would be great if Kenya could work out a solution itself. The beacon of democracy and liberty barely flickers across the dark continent, as far too many tin-pot tyrants are tolerated, and abuse of power has become the norm. If Africa is to truly move forward then it has to grow up, stand on its own feet, and jettison the tribalism and thuggery which typifies too many nations. I can’t see Kofi bringing and joy to the situation, although maybe Tojo may soon be finding new job opportunities?