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Mugabe is an old man who refuses to open his eyes to reality

President Robert Mugabe was an old man who refused to open his eyes to the reality of his country because politically and economically he was bereft of ideas to rescue it from certain disaster.

This was said 10 years ago by the Daily News on Sunday in an editorial to coincide with United States President George Bush’s visit to Africa.

Bush was not visiting Zimbabwe.

The editorial said Mugabe should step aside and give way to let younger people with 21st century ideas take over.

“Bush must convince South Africa’s President Thabo Mbeki that Mugabe must step down if the regime change in Zimbabwe is to be without bloodshed,” the paper said.

The Sunday Mail in contrast accused Bush of becoming so arrogant that he was now giving deadlines on when governments should be set up or deposed.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 03HARARE1379, MEDIA REACTION PRESIDENT BUSH’S VISIT TO AFRICA;

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

03HARARE1379

2003-07-08 09:54

2011-08-30 01:44

UNCLASSIFIED

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

080954Z Jul 03

UNCLAS HARARE 001379

 

SIPDIS

 

DEPT FOR AF/PDPA FOR DALTON, MITCHELL AND SIMS

NSC FOR JENDAYI FRAZER

LONDON FOR GURNEY

PARIS FOR NEARY

NAIROBI FOR PFLAUMER

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: PREL ZI

SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION PRESIDENT BUSH’S VISIT TO AFRICA;

HARARE

 

 

1.   Mainstream newspapers have started dedicating acres of

editorial space to mull over United States President George

W. Bush’s visit to Africa. Editorial excerpts follow:

 

2.   Under headline “The Bush African trail” the

independent weekly “The Daily News on Sunday” (06/29)

comments:

 

“. . .George W. Bush. . .who begins an historic

journey through a changing Africa next month, has an

opportunity to join that pantheon of conservative

statesmen, by engaging the leaders in a dialogue for

a change in their priorities. . .Understandably,

Bush is not visiting Zimbabwe, because President

Robert Mugabe is (an) old man who refuses to open

his eyes to the reality of his country. Politically

and economically, he is bereft of new ideas to

rescue his country from certain disaster. He should

step aside to let younger people with 21st century

ideas take over. Bush must convince South Africa’s

President Thabo Mbeki that Mugabe must step down if

the regime change in Zimbabwe is to be without

bloodshed.”

 

3.   Under headline “African leaders must ignore Bush’s

antics” the government-controlled weekly “The Sunday

Mail” (06/29) comments:

 

“The American President, George W. Bush, has grown

so arrogant that he is now giving deadlines on when

governments should be set up or deposed, ahead of

his African visit. The contempt he is showing for

African leadership is as sickening as his attitude

towards the leadership of the people of Afghanistan

and Iraq. . .On what pedestal is he standing? In

fact, he speaks with an air of a god. It was clear

that the weapons of mass destruction that his

country possesses have deluded him into believing

that he is now a divine being who can speak and it

will (be) done. He sees himself as Almighty God. .

.No wonder the revered former South African

president, Nelson Mandela, once remarked that the

Texan `cannot think properly’ anymore. We welcome

the stance that Mr. Mandela has taken in advance of

Bush’s visit that the Texan should be met with a

clear message of how appalled Africans are by the

murderous policies of the Bush and Blair

administrations. African leaders across the

continent must stand firm and refuse to be

patronized. . .Bush is a war-monger and not a

peacemaker and must be made to feel like

one. . .Zimbabwe and Africa should simply ignore

Colin Powell and Bush and look inside and among

themselves for solutions to the challenges that

beset them.”

 

SULLIVAN

 

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