As the world watches in amazement as the Iranian people take to the streets in force to protest, at risk of life and limb, to air their belief that democracy has been stolen from them in the General Election a few weeks ago, I find myself comforted at the fact that people can still champion their cause peacefully. Like in Tiananmen Square all those years ago, it is the collective voice of its people that gets an oppressive dictatorship quaking in its boots. In the face of military persecution and a direct challenge to the fundamental human right of choice, the Iranian government have used violence against the masses of peaceful demontrators and now have blood on their hands in much the same way as many ruthless dictatorships. And its their own peoples blood that is spilt, dripping from their hands to spread in the dust below.
It makes me wonder if other people living under oppression have begun to see what is happening in Iran, and thus begin to wonder whether a collective effort on their part could put them in a better place. I know for one I never expected to see the Iranian people rise up against their leaders. It just goes to show how much government propaganda can create a false impression of peace and stability in a world that in reality is far from content. Never would I have expected such large numbers of people to retaliate against a man whom appeared at one time to so effectively speak as the supreme leader of his people. Maybe as the world has stood by and watched the west assist in the removal of Saddam Hussein, they have begun to realise that there is no need to live a life of abject fear under a dictatorship if your country has something that the west are interested in. Maybe the Iranian people realise that there is enough interest from the west that if a popular uprising to remove their oppressors takes firm shape that they could probably seek and receive assistance from the west to make it happen. Or maybe like the people in Zimbabwe they have just woken up to the realisation that no matter what the world loves to shout and scream from their podiums of relative safety, no one is comming to help! They have to do it themselves.
Yes this is the firm realisation of the Zimbabwean people. You see we don’t have substances that would attract large scale interest from the west. If anything it is the East that pays close attention to our assets. As a nation our people have lived under a cloud of dictatorship for almost 3 decades. Three whole generations that have suffered at the hands of an evil megalomaniac. I know and have spoken with many people who admire Mugabe, and I am ashamed by their admiration of a despot. He may well have been the leader of the resistance,but the war ended 30 years ago. Mugabe certainly does not have the people of Zimbabwe in his heart, nor do any of his policies seek to build up a Nation of Proud people under him. How can you admire a man who has lead one of the finest countries in Africa to its knees? How do you admire a man who has brought about the bankruptcy of his nation? How I ask can you admire a man who has committed murder in the name of greed? I have listened to people who call him a proud leader of the African people. Yet have you seen how you are treated if you oppose his dictatorship? One cannot use the excuse that it is the people around him that carry out the acts of aggression without his knowledge. Do you honestly believe that he does not know? Please, it is insulting to believe for one moment that you would believe such a thing.
I can honestly say, there was a time I admired Mugabe. When I was a school going man I even got to shake his hand at an awards ceremony. I like so many others believed that he was good for Zimbabwe. I ashamedly have to stand today and admit I was wrong. I was fooled by an incredibly well educated man who has been corrupted by greed and guilt. Ultimate power unchecked is damaging. It can only lead to corruption and evil. History has proved this time and time again. And the evil deeds committed under the guise of leadership are the nightmares that these people now chase. The fear that if they are deposed the skeletons will come parading out of the woodwork to expose their wicked ways. And yet they cling to power in earnest, desperate to hide their crimes against humanity.
Zimbabweans have learnt that they stand alone in this world. There is no nation that rally’s in support of their plight. There is no government willing to put its soldiers in the line of fire to rid the country of a man the whole world can clearly see is destructive and willing to use violence against his own people to ensure nothing threatens his grip on power. But maybe as a nation seeing what is happening in Iran is giving us strength and resolve to voice our objection. It only took a couple of hundred to force the Prime Minister to leave the stage today. As I watched his speech I did wonder what the future of Zimbabwe holds. Can its people really rise up peacefully in the same way as the Iranians to depose the government? Morgan Tsvangiri has lost a lot along the way. There is no doubt that the accident that killed his wife was staged by those loyal to the current regime. It’s a well known fact that opposition leaders or those who cross Mugabe will discover how easily road traffic accidents happen. We have seen it time after time after time. How long will it be before he is “bumped off” in yet another accident? I read an article by Jonathan Moyo recently calling Morgan a slave to Robert Mugabe. It would seem that today proved to him the depth of the anger that common Zimbabweans feel. For a man who was once quite well respected to suddenly feel so humiliated must have been a shock to the system. However when he makes statements calling Mugabe nothing but an old fashioned gentleman, and saying that there is unity and stability in Zimbabwe when we know otherwise, it is only by his own words that he has brought shame to his feet. I can’t help but feel that the MDC party have lost their way along the way slightly. A true leader can only inspire people to follow him if he is in touch with his people. And statements like “You’d better listen to me!” really do not go far in making you appear to be a leader of the people. A leader leads by example and talks with people. The Zimbabwean people have for the last 30 years being told what they should and shouldn’t listen too. Isn’t it about time you politicians started to wake up and realise its time to listen to what your people have to say?