The awkwardness of 'enemies' who feed and educate you

Jul 18, 2011

There have been heated recent calls for 'security sector reform' in Zimbabwe, meaning trying to institute a military that is non-political and non-partisan. The key beneficiary of such a partisan military, the incumbent ruler, has dismissed the calls as being ''from an enemy who wishes to weaken us. We are not in the habit of taking advice from our enemies." But that same 'enemy' is feeding a big chunk of your population because you can't.

Reported the Herald:

President Mugabe said the so-called security sector reforms were a Western ploy to weaken Zimbabwe.
"The so-called security sector reforms, all of them emanate from Western interests. Let the MDC formations find something to talk about, not that one please. We are not in the habit of taking advice from our enemies."

So then, the tough talk of the leader of a strong nation, wary of weakening 'ploys' by its declared 'enemies,' of which Britain and the US have often been accused of being the most nefarious.   

But then one finds out that in 2010/11, 'enemy' Britain provided $110 million in various kinds of aid to Zimbabwe, and the figure will be $130 million this year. Target areas include the provision of emergency food aid, maternal and child care services and schools support.

Could it all this be part of the enemy's clever ploy to weaken Zimbabwe? If so, Zimbabwe gladly accepts this aid, so the 'weakening ploy' is with the recipient  government's full support! 

The other accused partner in the weakening crime says, ''The United States government is the largest single donor of humanitarian assistance in Zimbabwe. Since 2002, the United States has contributed more than $1 billion to humanitarian operations in Zimbabwe.  This support reached a peak of 7 million people in 2009.'' 

Again, if a sneaky 'ploy,' it is one freely accepted by the government of Zimbabwe.

When the government you govern is forced to accept the humiliation of taking increasing amounts of donations from the countries you say are your worst enemies, that is the ultimate humiliation and weakness.

Then the Daily News tells us:

President Robert Mugabe has urged his party to take up the issue of sanctions with British courts...citing deputy Minister of Public Works Aguy Georgias...(who) fought against the deportation of his children from the United Kingdom through British courts.

The contradictions only seem to get worse, the humiliation deeper: You not only count on food aid from your 'enemies,' it is they you entrust to educate your children. So much so that you will fight them in their courts for your children to continue to enjoy the benefits of those enemies teaching those children of yours!

That desperate neediness is more of a self-imposed weakening 'ploy' than anything those 'enemies' need to plot to do.

The love-hate relationship Zimbabwe's government has with Britain is so convoluted and complex that Mugabe seems blissfully unaware of how the rhetoric coming out of one side of his mouth is sometimes contradicted by that coming out of the other side of that same mouth.


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