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Cablegate: Media Reaction Ramsey Clark and Zimbabwe; Harare

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

141258Z Aug 01


UNCLASSIFIED PTO7186

PAGE 01 HARARE 02400 141301Z
ACTION INR-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 AF-00 A-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00 INL-00
DODE-00 DS-00 EUR-00 UTED-00 VC-00 TEDE-00 LAB-01
VCE-00 NSAE-00 TEST-00 USIE-00 IIP-00 DSCC-00 DRL-02
NFAT-00 SAS-00 /003W
------------------12015D 141301Z /38
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9462
INFO NSC WASHDC
AMEMBASSY PRETORIA
AMEMBASSY LUSAKA
AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK
AMEMBASSY GABORONE
AMEMBASSY LILONGWE
AMEMBASSY LONDON

UNCLAS HARARE 002400

SIPDIS

AF/PD FOR COX, ROBERTSON, AF/S FOR KRAFT, AF/P, INR/R/MR,
NSC FOR JENDAYI FRAZER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM ZI
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION RAMSEY CLARK AND ZIMBABWE; HARARE


1. THE INDEPENDENT WEEKLY "THE FINANCIAL GAZETTE" DEDICATED
ITS AUGUST 9 EDITORIAL TO SPEAK AGAINST THE PROPOSED FREEDOM
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 HARARE 02400 141301Z
OF INFORMATION AND PROTECTION OF PRIVACY BILL. THE
CONTROVERSIAL BILL COULD BECOME LAW BEFORE THE END OF THE
YEAR. UNDER HEADLINE "MOYO'S FUTILE WAR," THE PAPER
COMMENTS:

2. "PERHAPS RAMSEY CLARK, A FORMER AMERICAN
ATTORNEY-GENERAL, CAPTURED THE ESSENCE OF AN INDIVIDUAL'S
FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS MORE THAN MOST OF TODAY'S SCHOLARS WHEN,
IN 1977, HE STATED: 'A RIGHT IS NOT WHAT SOMEONE GIVES YOU;
IT IS WHAT NO ONE CAN TAKE FROM YOU-' AS ZIMBABWE FACES UP
TO ITS MOST DEFINING MOMENT POLITICALLY, CLARK'S WORDS MUST
SURELY TROUBLE ALL GOOD MEN AND WOMEN IN THE LAND AS A
DESPERATE GOVERNMENT DECLARES A TOTAL ONSLAUGHT ON THEIR
BASIC RIGHTS JUST TO CLING TO POWER. JONATHAN MOYO, ONCE THE
GOVERNMENT'S CHIEF FOE AND NOW ITS MOST LOYAL PROPAGANDIST,
IS LEADING WHAT HAS BECOME THE MOST VICIOUS CAMPAIGN
EVER TO SILENCE ALL DIVERGENT VOICES, CRUCIALLY
ZIMBABWE'S INDEPENDENT MEDIA, AHEAD OF A LANDMARK
PRESIDENTIAL BALLOT THAT THREATENS TO BURY HIM AND HIS AGING
(SIC) MASTERS. . MOYO HAS COME TO SYMBOLIZE THROUGH HIS
HIGH-HANDEDNESS AND IRRESPONSIBLE UTTERANCES ALL THAT IS
WRONG AND BAD WITH A GOVERNMENT THAT HAS UTTERLY FAILED ITS
CITIZENS . . . NOW, AFTER WHIPPING UP A FRENZY OF EMOTIONS
AGAINST ALL WHO WISH AND WANT TO SEE ZIMBABWE PROSPER AND
BECOME PART OF THE CIVILIZED WORLD, HE IS RACING TO ENACT A
LAW AGAINST THE MEDIA WHICH HE KNOWS RUNS COUNTER TO THE
NATION'S BASIC FREEDOMS . . . LET IT BE KNOWN THAT AN
INDIVIDUAL'S UNFETTERED RIGHT TO RECEIVE AND IMPART
INFORMATION, WHICH HE IS SEEKING TO CURTAIL, IS A CARDINAL
PLANK OF ANY DEMOCRACY AND CIVILIZED GOVERNANCE AND THAT
ZIMBABWEANS DESERVE NO LESS AND NO MORE.
UNCLASSIFIED

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PAGE 03 HARARE 02400 141301Z

3. "MOYO'S ATTEMPT TO GAG THE MEDIA AND TO PREVENT IT FROM
DOING ITS NATIONAL DUTY OF HIGHLIGHTING ZIMBABWE'S GLARING
INJUSTICES, LAWLESSNESS AND VIOLENCE, CORRUPTION AND OTHER
ILLS WILL FAIL SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO BASIS IN LAW. BUT
MORE IMPORTANTLY, THE ENTRENCHED RIGHTS (THAT) HE WANTS TO
TRAMPLE UPON ARE GOD-GIVEN AND WILL ALWAYS REMAIN SO. THE
UPCOMING PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION . . . WILL BE FATALLY FLAWED
IF THE NEW ANTI-DEMOCRACY LEGISLATION IS APPROVED . . . AS
AMERICA'S INCOMING AMBASSADOR TO ZIMBABWE, JOSEPH SULLIVAN,
BLUNTLY TOLD THE GOVERNMENT LAST WEEK: I . . . WE CANNOT
HAVE GOOD RELATIONS (WITH ZIMBABWE) UNTIL THE GOVERNMENT
ACTS TO END VIOLENCE AND INTIMIDATION AND RESTORES THE RULE
OF LAW AND RESPECTS THE FREEDOM TO OPERATE OF POLITICAL
PARTIES AND DEMOCRATIC INSTITUTIONS, INCLUDING AN
INDEPENDENT MEDIA, CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS AND THE
JUDICIARY . . .THERE YOU ARE MOYO. ALL ZIMBABWEANS AND THEIR
TRUE FRIENDS AROUND THE GLOBE WANT THE SIMPLE BUT CRUCIAL
THINGS TO BE DONE BUT YOUR GOVERNMENT COULD CARE LESS."

WHITEHEAD

UNCLASSIFIED

>

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