Sunday, April 20, 2008

Cathy Buckle's Weekly Letter From Zimbabwe !

Machinations !
19th April 2008.

Dear Family and Friends,

Behind every tree, under every bush and around every corner, it seems there is a British enemy waiting to invade Zimbabwe."We must maintain the utmost vigilance in the face of vicious British machinations," Mr Mugabe warned as he spoke at his celebration of Zimbabwe's 28th anniversary of Independence.

No one that I've spoken to this week had even the vaguest clue of what a machination is. A few thought it had something to do with machinery or engines, others that it was a mispronunciation of the word imagination. Still others wondered if these mysterious machinations had anything to do with the Chinese ship steaming around looking for somewhere to unload its cargo of death destined for Harare. The ship loaded with 3 million bullets, 1500 rocket propelled grenades and 3000 mortar shells. So we sat on the edge of our chairs this Independence day wondering just exactly where the British are hiding and what their unknown vicious something-or-other means to our daily lives.

Nearly thirty years after Independence the threats and warnings of British plots haven't just worn thin, they've worn out altogether. It is generally agreed that at most there are perhaps thirty thousand white people left in Zimbabwe - a miniscule percentage in a population of approximately 11 million people. It's way past time for our leaders to stop blaming someone else and accept responsibility for their own deeds and machinations such as those portrayed on the front page of one weekly independent newspaper:

"Hundreds flee Zanu PF Rampage.""Murder, torture, terror."

It's three weeks since Zimbabwe voted and we are exhausted, frustrated and frightened. As each day passes there is less and less food to buy, more and more reports of people beaten and hiding and still no final election results.Zimbabweans want food and jobs not grenades and bullets. We want our voices to be heard and our votes to be respected. When the South African Transport workers union refused to unload the Chinese cargo ship in Durban this week they showed the way and we thank them for this. Zimbabwe is not at war, it is hungry.

Until next week, thanks for reading,

love cathy

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