in Stories

Mugabe says farm invasions are “practical self-help”

President Robert Mugabe told United States embassy officials that the farm invasions by war veterans were a demonstration of practical self-help so he was not going to send in the army or police to restrain them.

“The war vets are protestors,” he said “and while the Brits view it as a violation of the rule of law I will never send in the army and police against our own people.”

“It would cause more bloodshed and remember that there are still plenty of war veterans in the army, though fewer in the police,” he stated.

Mugabe said it was Britain’s responsibility to pay compensation to white farmers who were losing their land because it had promised to do so at Lancaster House in 1979, but Britain had never honoured its obligations.

“During the Lancaster House negotiations a week was spent stuck on the land compensation issue. President Carter helped break the deadlock, and the result was a 10-year period when the proscribed rule of willing seller- willing buyer was in effect, with Britain supposed to be paying for the land.

“The problem is the English never honoured their obligations… the Thatcher government was lukewarm; John Major’s administration was cold; and Blair’s labour leadership outright icy,” Mugabe said.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 00HARARE2205, THE GUERILLA WAR FOR LAND IN ZIMABABWE

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

00HARARE2205

2000-04-24 12:52

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

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

 

241252Z Apr 00

 

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ6075

 

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/009W

——————4F30E1 241252Z /38

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5827

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY LONDON

AMEMBASSY PARIS

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 04 HARARE 002205

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF A/S SUSAN RICE, OAS POWELL, AF/S

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

LONDON FOR PFLAUMER

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/23/10

TAGS: PGOV PREL EAGR PINR ZI

SUBJECT: THE GUERILLA WAR FOR LAND IN ZIMABABWE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 02205 01 OF 04 241249Z

CONTINUES

 

CLASSIFIEO BY AMBASSAOOR TOM MCDONALD, REASONS

1.5 (B), (0)

 

REF: HARARE 2202

 

1. (C) SUMMARY: IN A THREE HOUR MEETING NEARLY

HALF OF WHICH WAS SPENT ON LANO, PRESIDENT MUGABE

TOLD US THAT LANO ACQUISITION WAS AN OVERDUE

MATTER OF ACHIEVING JUSTICE AND ESCAPING FROM

UNOER THE YOKE OF COLONIALISM THAT THE PEOPLE OF

ZIMBABWE NOW OEMANO. THE WAR VET’S OCCUPATIONS,

WHICH HE SUPPORTS BUT OID NOT INITIATE, ARE A

DEMONSTRATION OF “PRACTICAL SELF-HELP.” WE

BELIEVE THAT IN CONDONING THE VET’S ACTIONS HE

HAS UNLEASHEO A FORCE THAT IS POWERFUL,

DANGEROUS, EXTREMELY DIFFICULT TO CONTROL AND A

THREAT TO THE PRESIDENT’S IRON GRIP. ZIMBABWE’S

GUERILLAS ARE OPERATING AGAIN IN ZIMBABWE.

HAVING UNCHAINED SUCH A FORCE, HE NOW NEEDS TO

BUY IT OFF, MOST LIKELY WITH LAND HAVING ALREADY

EXERCISED THE CASH OPTION, IF HE IS TO MAINTAIN

CONTROL OVER THE REINS OF POWER.

 

2. (C) THE PRESIDENT IS ADAMANT THAT BRITAIN

MUST PAY FOR LAND ACQUISITION AS, ACCORDING TO

HIM, THEY COMMITTED TO IT AT LANCASTER HOUSE IN

1980. IF THEY DO NOT PROVIDE FUNDS, COMPULSORY

ACQUISITION WITHOUT COMPENSATION WILL GO AHEAD.

THE COMMERCIAL FARMERS, WHO RETAIN THE MENTALITY

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 02205 01 OF 04 241249Z

OF BRITISH COLONIZERS ACCOROING TO PRESIDENT

MUGABE, HAVE BEEN TOLD THAT THEY NEED TO OFFER UP

AS A GOOD FAITH GESTURE ALL 841 FARMS PREVIOUSLY

DESIGNATED BY THE GOZ FOR ACQUISITION. NEITHER

THE POLICE NOR MILTTARY WILL BE USED TO EVICT THE

FARM INVADERS, ACCOROING TO MUGABE, AS THEY ARE

MERELY “FIGHTING FOR JUSTICE.” END SUMMARY.

 

WE HAVE WAITED TOO LONG

 

3. (C) DURING THE EVENING OF APRIL 22 PRESIDENT

ROBERT MUGABE, UNACCOMPANIED BUT FOR A NOTETAKER,

SPENT THREE HOURS PLUS DISCUSSING THE PRIOR DAYS

MINI-SUMMIT OF REGIONAL LEADERS AT VICTORIA

FALLS, THE CONGO PEACE PROCESS AND ZIMBABWE’S

LAND ISSUE WITH U.S. OFFICIALS. THE U.S. GROUP

CONSISTED OF S/E HOWARD WOLPE, AMBASSADOR

MCDONALD, LT. COL. GADDIS, SPECIAL ADVISOR

PRENDERGAST AND ECONOFF NOTETAKER. AFTER THE

INITIAL 20 MINUTES SPENT DESCRIBING THE VICTORIA

FALLS GATHERING AND PROGRESS MADE THERE ON THE

CONGO ISSUE MUGABE, WITHOUT A PROMPT FROM US,

LAUNCHED INTO A 45-MINUTE HISTORICAL TOUR OF

ZIMBABWE’S LAND ISSUE COVERING THE PRE-RHODES’

DAYS TO THE PRESENT. DETAILED AND FULL OF

MINUTIA (THE PRESIDENT WAS A SCHOOLTEACHER FOR

YEARS BEFORE AND DURING THE LIBERATION STRUGGLE),

THE MESSAGE WAS THAT HISTORY SAW THE LAND STOLEN

FROM THE BLACKS WITH CONTROL CONSOLIDATED BY THE

BRITISH WITH VICIOUS DISREGARD FOR THE RIGHTS OF

BLACKS, A STATE THAT CONTINUES TODAY WITH ACTIVE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 04       HARARE 02205 01 OF 04 241249Z

BRITISH SPONSORSHIP.

 

BRITAIN TO BLAME

 

4. (C) DURING THE LANCASTER HOUSE NEGOTIATIONS A

WEEK WAS SPENT STUCK ON THE LAND COMPENSATION

ISSUE. PRESIDENT CARTER HELPED BREAK THE

DEADLOCK, AND THE RESULT WAS A 10-YEAR PERIOD

WHEN THE PROSCRIBED RULE OF WILLING SELLER-

WILLING BUYER WAS IN EFFECT, WITH BRITAIN

SUPPOSED TO BE PAYING FOR THE LAND. THE PROBLEM

IS THE ENGLISH NEVER HONORED THEIR OBLIGATIONS,

MUGABE TOLD US: THE THATCHER GOVERNMENT WAS

LUKEWARM; JOHN MAJOR’S ADMINISTRATION WAS COLD;

AND BLAIR’S LABOR LEADERSHIP OUTRIGHT ICY. THE

ZIMBABWEAN PRESIDENT LAMENTED TO US THAT THE

BRITISH PRIME MINISTER BLAIR HAD NEVER SPENT

QUALITY ONE-ON-ONE TIME WITH HIM (HAVING STIFFED

MUGABE ON AN OFFICIAL VISIT AFTER INVITING HIM),

AND COULD ONLY SPARE THE SENIOR AFRICAN STATESMAN

10-15 MINUTES ONCE ON A PRODUCTION LINE BASIS

DURING A EUROPE/AFRICA SUMMIT. “I HAVE SPENT

MORE TIME WITH CLINTON” HE SNIFFED, “AND HAVE

 

EVEN MET WITH CHIRAC FOUR TIMES — THOUGH HIS

TIME IN OFFICE IS LESS THAN BLAIR’S.” THE LONG

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ6076

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 02205 02 OF 04 241249Z

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INR-00   L-00     AC-01   DCP-01   NSAE-00 OMB-01   OPIC-01

PA-00   PM-00    PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00   TRSE-00

USIE-00 PMB-00   DSCC-00 DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00 SAS-00

/009W

——————4F30F3 241252Z /38

P 241252Z APR 00

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5828

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY LONDON

AMEMBASSY PARIS

 

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 04 HARARE 002205

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF A/S SUSAN RICE, OAS POWELL, AF/S

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

LONDON FOR PFLAUMER

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/23/10

TAGS: PGOV PREL EAGR PINR ZI

SUBJECT: THE GUERILLA WAR FOR LAND IN ZIMABABWE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 02205 02 OF 04 241249Z

CONTINUES

 

AND SHORT OF IT, PRESIDENT MUGABE ADVISED US, IS

HIS CONCLUSION THAT BRITAIN HAS NEVER SUPPORTED

ZIMBABWE’S EFFORTS AT INDEPENDENCE AND LAND

REFORM, STILL VIEWS HIS COUNTRY A COLONY, AND

WILL ONLY HONOR ITS OBLIGATIONS TO PAY FOR LAND

IN ZIMBABWE IF FORCED. “THIS IS WHAT WE ARE NOW

CARRYING OUT,” HE TOLD US, “WITH THE

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT I SIGNED LAST WEEK.”

 

5. (C) ZIMBABWE HAS NO MONEY TO PAY FOR LAND,

MUGABE TOLD US. BRITAIN DOES HAVE THE MONEY, AND

IS REQUIRED TO PAY BY BOTH ITS PROMISE TO, AND

THE FACT THAT ITS CITIZENS STOLE THE LAND FROM

AFRICANS. THE LAND ACQUISITION CLAUSE WAS PLACED

IN THE DRAFT CONSTITUTION TO ENABLE THE

COMMERCIAL FARMERS “TO GET PAID SOMETHING FOR

THEIR LAND”, HE EXPLAINED. (COMMENT: THIS IS

THE LINE MUGABE TOOK LAST WEEK IN HIS MEETING THE

CFU, WHERE HE LECTURED THEM THAT THE

CONSTITUTIONAL CLAUSE WAS IN THEIR BEST INTERESTS

AND REMONSTRATING THEM FOR FIGHTING SO ACTIVELY

AGAINST IT. END COMMENT.) THE CONSTITUTION WAS

REJECTED BECAUSE THE FARMERS ORGANIZED THEIR

LABOR TO VOTE NO, IN EFFECT CONSPIRING AGAINST

THE GOVERNMENT, HE TOLD US, AND BECAUSE THE PARTY

DID NOT CAMPAIGN ENOUGH FOR IT. THE WAR VETS

REACTED TO THE REFERENDUM VOTE BY SPRINGING INTO

ACTION IN A “SELF-HELP MODE”, MUGABE STATED, “AND

WE WANTED IT TO BE A DEMONSTRATION MARK ON THE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 02205 02 OF 04 241249Z

MINDS OF THE FARMER’S AND THE BRITS.”

 

6. (C) “THE WAR VETS ARE PROTESTORS,” HE

CONTINUED “AND WHILE THE BRITS VIEW IT AS A

VIOLATION OF THE RULE OF LAW I WILL NEVER SEND IN

THE ARMY AND POLICE AGAINST OUR OWN PEOPLE.” “IT

WOULD CAUSE MORE BLOODSHED AND REMEMBER THAT

THERE ARE STILL PLENTY OF WAR VETERANS IN THE

ARMY, THOUGH FEWER IN THE POLICE,” HE STATED

WHILE LOOKING AT US OVER HIS EYEGLASSES. THE

PRESIDENT ALSO REITERATED THE DILEMMA CONFRONTING

THE GOZ WERE IT TO TRY TO ENFORCE THE COURT’S

ORDER TO EVICT THE INVADERS. HIS ARGUMENTS WERE

THE SAME AS THOSE LAID OUT BY HIS FOREIGN

MINISTER TO US EARLIER IN THE DAY (IN ESSENCE THE

POLICE’S LACK OF CAPACITY TO ACT AND THE

EXECUTIVE NON-INTERFERENCE RULING, SEE REF A).

 

WE PUSH BACK

 

7. (C) WHEN AMBASSADOR MCDONALD RAISED A NUMBER

OF POINTS REGARDING RECENT DEVELOPMENTS INCLUDING

THE VIOLENCE OCCURRING ON THE FARMS, DISREGARD OF

THE RULE OF LAW, THE USG’S COMMITMENT AND

ASSISTANCE FOR LAND REFORM AND THE NEED FOR A

PRACTICAL SOLUTION, PRESIDENT MUGABE RESPONDED

WITH SOME OF HIS TRADEMARK EMOTION AND POINTED

RHETORIC. SOME OF THE POINTS AND COUNTERPOINTS

ARE (U.S. AND ZIMBABWE RESPECTIVELY):

 

WE NEED TO RETURN TO THE PRINCIPALS OF THE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 04       HARARE 02205 02 OF 04 241249Z

1998 LAND REFORM CONFERENCE. RESPONSE: THE

COMMERCIAL FARMERS UNION (CFU) OPPOSED THE 841

DESIGNATED FARM LIST, AND WITH BRITAIN’S HELP

STYMIED IMPLEMENTATION.

 

THE WORLD BANK AND OTHERS CAN FUND SOME LAND

ACQUISITION. RESPONSE: WE WILL NOT GO AHEAD ANY

MORE ON FAITH. FOR 20 YEARS WE HAVE DONE THIS

AND THE LAND ISSUE WILL NOT BE SOLVED UNTIL

BRITAIN GIVES US THE MONEY TO BUY IT. THE PEOPLE

WILL SETTLE FOR NOTHING LESS.

 

WE NEED A PRACTICAL SOLUTION. THERE ARE 800 –

1000 FARMS BEING VOLUNTARILY OFFERED FOR SALE.

RESPONSE: THE WAR VETS HAVE ALREADY COME UP WITH

A PRACTICAL SOLUTION. THEY ARE ON THE FARMS AND

WE HAVE A LAW THAT WILL ALLOW US TO MOVE AHEAD ON

ACQUIRING THE FARMS WE NEED.

 

WHAT OF THE DAMAGE TO ZIMBABWE’S IMAGE AS A

WONDERFUL COUNTRY, NOT CHARACTERIZED BY VIOLENCE

OR STANDOFFS? THE COUNTRY HAS SUFFERED A BLACK

EYE. RESPONSE: ZIMBABWE HAS ONLY BEEN WONDERFUL

FOR THE WHITE COLONIZERS NOT THE BLACKS. THAT

HAS NOT CHANGED FOR 20 YEARS SINCE INDEPENDENCE

BUT WILL NOW. MORE HAVE BEEN KILLED IN SOUTH

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ6082

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 02205 03 OF 04 241250Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   AGRE-00 ACQ-00   CIAE-00 SMEC-00 COME-00

DINT-00 DODE-00 DOEE-00 DOTE-00 WHA-00   SRPP-00 DS-00

EB-00   EUR-01   FAAE-00 FBIE-00 VC-01   H-01     TEDE-00

INR-00   L-00     AC-01   DCP-01   NSAE-00 OMB-01   OPIC-01

PA-00   PM-00   PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00   TRSE-00

USIE-00 PMB-00   DSCC-00 DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00 SAS-00

/009W

——————4F3109 241253Z /38

P 241252Z APR 00

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5829

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY LONDON

AMEMBASSY PARIS

 

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 03 OF 04 HARARE 002205

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF A/S SUSAN RICE, OAS POWELL, AF/S

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

LONDON FOR PFLAUMER

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/23/10

TAGS: PGOV PREL EAGR PINR ZI

SUBJECT: THE GUERILLA WAR FOR LAND IN ZIMABABWE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 02205 03 OF 04 241250Z

CONTINUES

 

AFRICA ON THE LAND ISSUE WITH A LOT LESS

PUBLICITY. BRITAIN IS TO BLAME, WE ARE NO LONGER

THEIR COLONY. BRITISH MP’S ARE ABSENTEE OWNERS

OF FARMS, THEY SEEK TO PROTECT TOO. FINALLY WE

HAVE THE BRITS ATTENTION.

 

WHAT OF THE 841 FARMS THAT YOU HAVE DEMANDED

FROM THE CFU? WHAT OF THE PROPERTIES THE

GOVERNMENT ALREADY OWNS THAT ARE NOT UTILIZED?

RESPONSE: THEY WILL SAY NO AT FIRST (THE CFU),

BUT ON THAT THEY MUST AGREE. WE NEED THOSE 841

FARMS BECAUSE OF THEIR LOCATION. THEY ARE NEXT

TO THE COMMUNAL AREAS, THE ONES WE OWN ARE NOT.

IN WRITING WE HAVE ASSURED THE CFU THAT THE

DISPLACED COMMERCIAL FARMERS CAN BUY A

REPLACEMENT PROPERTY. WE WILL NOT DEVIATE FROM

THE PLAN.

 

WHAT OF THE MONEY FOR LAND IN THIS YEAR’S

BUDGET STILL UNSPENT? RESPONSE: WE WILL NEVER

USE OUR MONEY FOR LAND – JUST DEVELOPMENT. THE

BRITS WILL PAY OR THERE WILL BE NO PAYMENT.

THOSE TAKING ACTIONS AGAINST US TODAY HAVE NEVER

SUPPORTED US SINCE 1980, LIKE THE BRITS AND THE

WHITE FARMERS. I AM CALLED HITLER IN THE BRITISH

PRESS. THEY NEVER CALLED IAN SMITH A HITLER.

THEY DO THIS BECAUSE THEY WANT TO KEEP US A

COLONY.

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 02205 03 OF 04 241250Z

– WHAT ABOUT YOU MAKING A STATEMENT IN THE

SPIRIT OF VICE PRESIDENT MSIKA’S — TO WITHDRAW?

RESPONSE: I DID NOT SEE THAT STATEMENT AND HAVE

ONLY HEARD OF IT. HE DENIES TO ME THAT HE MADE

IT.

 

WHAT ABOUT THE EFFECTS OF THE INVASION OF THE

ECONOMY? THIS IS THE HARVEST SEASON FOR TOBACCO.

RESPONSE: THE TIME HAS COME AFTER 20 YEARS. WE

WILL RESOLVE IT NOW. IF THE CFU FARMERS WANT TO

LEAVE THEY SHOULD GO NOW. THEY ARE EMBITTERED

OLD RHOADIES WHO HAVE NEVER REPENTED, SADDENED

THAT THEY HAVE LOST THEIR POWER SINCE

INDEPENDENCE. THEY ARE SABOTAGING THE ECONOMY,

HAVING BEEN RAISED AND LIVED IN THE DAYS OF

DISHONESTY AS SANCTIONS BUSTERS. THEY ARE THE

WEALTHIEST CLASS BUT PAY THE LEAST TAXES.

 

BUT WHAT OF THE MORAL ARGUMENTS AGAINST WHAT

IS OCCURRING? YOU ARE THE HEAD OF STATE AND THE

MORAL LEADER OF THE COUNTRY. IF YOU CAME OUT

STRONGLY IN FAVOR OF THE RULE OF LAW AND TOLD THE

WAR VETS TO LEAVE THE FARM, MOST WOULD.

RESPONSE: THE AMOUNT OF VIOLENCE IS EXAGGERATED

BY THE BBC AND CNN. TWO DAYS AGO CNN STAGED AN

EVICTION OF THE WAR VETS. BECAUSE WE DO NOT HAVE

THE MEDIA ON OUR SIDE DOES NOT MEAN THAT WE ARE

NOT RIGHT OR JUST. I WILL NOT SEND THE POLICE OR

ARMY AGAINST PEOPLE WHO ARE FIGHTING FOR JUSTICE.

 

COMMENT

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 04       HARARE 02205 03 OF 04 241250Z

 

8. (C) MUGABE DISPLAYED LUCIDITY AND A

REMARKABLE MEMORY ANO RECALL THROUGHOUT THE

CONVERSATION. HIS MOOO ANO EMOTION SWINGS

MATCHEO THE RHETORIC ANO WHEN WE RETURNEO TO

CONGO MATTERS AFTER THE LAND ISSUE HE WAS A

CHANGEO MAN. AMBASSAOOR MCOONALO IN A TELEPHONE

CALL BEFORE THE MEETING WITH THE PRESIDENT AND

DURING THE LONG SESSION THOUGHT THE MOOD WAS

CORDIAL EVEN WHEN THE ISSUES GOT DIFFICULT. WE

ARE THE ONLY WESTERN COUNTRY THAT MUGABE HAS MET

WITH ON THE TOPIC OF LAND. WE BELIEVE WE WERE

HEARD, BUT MUGABE WAS NOT PERSUADED. THE

AMBASSADOR PLANS TO CONTINUE HIS CONVERSATION

WITH THE PRESIDENT ON THE ISSUE.

 

9. (C) IT IS CLEAR THAT MUGABE IS STILL FIGHTING

THE GUERILLA STRUGGLE HE WON 20 YEARS AGO. HE

HAS DRAWN A LINE IN THE SAND AND SAID, “LAND NOW

AT ALL COSTS.” THE PRESIDENT REALIZES HE IS IN A

FIGHT FOR HIS POLITICAL LIFE, A BATTLE HE MUST

WIN. UNLEASHING THE WAR VETS IS A DANGEROUS

TACTIC, REEKING OF DESPERATION. THEY ARE A PIT

BULL LOOSE IN THE COUNTRYSIDE AND GETTING THEM

BACK IN THE CAGE OR ON A STOUT CHAIN WILL REQUIRE

OFFERINGS AND THE PROMISE OF REGULAR FEEDINGS.

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ6086

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 02205 04 OF 04 241250Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   AGRE-00 ACQ-00   CIAE-00 SMEC-00 COME-00

DINT-00 DODE-00 DOEE-00 DOTE-00 WHA-00   SRPP-00 DS-00

EB-00   EUR-01   FAAE-00 FBIE-00 VC-01   H-01     TEDE-00

INR-00   L-00     AC-01   DCP-01   NSAE-00 OMB-01   OPIC-01

PA-00   PM-00   PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00   TRSE-00

USIE-00 PMB-00   DSCC-00 DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00 SAS-00

/009W

——————4F311C 241253Z /38

P 241252Z APR 00

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5830

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY LONDON

AMEMBASSY PARIS

 

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 04 OF 04 HARARE 002205

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF A/S SUSAN RICE, OAS POWELL, AF/S

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

LONDON FOR PFLAUMER

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/23/10

TAGS: PGOV PREL EAGR PINR ZI

SUBJECT: THE GUERILLA WAR FOR LAND IN ZIMABABWE

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 02205 04 OF 04 241250Z

CONTINUES

 

EVENTS IN THE 24 HOURS SINCE OUR MEETING SHOW

THAT THE MESSAGE OF NON-VIOLENCE ESPOUSED BY THE

PRESIDENT IN HIS EARLIER MEETINGS WITH THE

FARMERS AND THE VETS HAVE NOT SUNK IN FOR THE

LATTER.

 

10. (C) MUGABE, BY UNLEASHING THE GUERILLAS, IS

PLAYING WITH FIRE. THOUGH SO FAR ONLY THE

FARMERS HAVE BEEN BURNED, THE CONSEQUENCES FOR

THE COUNTRY ARE EXTREMELY NEGATIVE AND THE

LEADERSHIP MAY FIND THAT THE COST TO ITSELF IS

HIGH. ALL OF THIS DOES NOT BODE WELL FOR THE

MEETINGS TO BEGIN IN LONDON ON APRIL 27. IF THIS

ATTITUDE AND POSITION CONTINUES, NOTHING WILL BE

ACCOMPLISHED WITH THE BRITISH. FOR NOW THE

COUNTRY IS IN LULL, AND SEMI-ATTENTIVE DURING THE

LONG EASTER HOLIDAY CHARACTERIZED BY CELL PHONES

TURNED OFF AND RETREATS INTO THE COUNTRYSIDE.

THOUGH PRIVATELY MUGABE MAY OFFER A MORE TEMPERED

MESSAGE, THE REALITY ON THE GROUND WITNESSED SO

FAR IN NOT ENCOURAGING. END COMMENT.

MCDONALD

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

>

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