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Cablegate: King Commemorations

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

240534Z Jan 02


UNCLASSIFIED PTO4225

PAGE 01 HARARE 00215 240542Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 A-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00 DODE-00 DS-00
UTED-00 VC-00 TEDE-00 INR-00 VCE-00 NSAE-00 TEST-00
USIE-00 IIP-00 DSCC-00 DRL-02 NFAT-00 SAS-00 /002W
------------------5C51AC 240543Z /38
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0776

UNCLAS HARARE 000215

SIPDIS

AF/PD FOR SANDERS, COX, ROBERTSON, DOWLING; IIP/G/AF FOR
HEAD, MURPHY, PITTS; INFO AF/S FOR KRAFT, SCHLACHTER
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ZI PREL PHUM
SUBJECT: KING COMMEMORATIONS


1. HARARE IS TAKING ADVANTAGE OF 2002 MARTIN LUTHER KING
DAY AND BLACK HISTORY MONTH TO SPREAD DR. KING'S MESSAGE OF
NON-VIOLENCE. AN EXAMINATION OF THE PRINCIPLES OF NON-
VIOLENCE FROM MANY DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVES IS AN ESPECIALLY
USEFUL THEME AS ZIMBABWE EDGES TOWARD THE MARCH 9 AND 10
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS. ON JANUARY 20 AND 21, WE GENERATED
PROGRAMMING THAT, THROUGH ZIMBABWE'S PRINT AND ELECTRONIC
MEDIA, REACHED AN EXTREMELY BROAD AUDIENCE.

2. UNDER THE GENERAL RUBRIC OF "THE PRINCIPLES OF NON-
VIOLENCE," EMBASSY HARARE BEGAN 6 WEEKS OF MLK/BHM
PROGRAMMING ON JANUARY 20 WITH ADVERTISING OF LECTURES,
VIDEOS, DISCUSSION AND CULTURAL PROGRAMS WE HAVE PLANNED
FOR THE COMING 6 WEEKS. THE ADVERTISEMENTS RAN IN ALL OF
ZIMBABWE'S NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS.

3. ON JANUARY 21, THE EMBASSY PLACED LARGE "ADVERTORIALS"
IN ALL 3 ZIMBABWEAN DAILY NEWSPAPERS ABOUT DR. KING AND HIS
COMMITMENT TO NON-VIOLENCE AS THE LASTING MEANS OF BUILDING
A JUST SOCIETY. WE ARE GRATEFUL TO IIP'S DAVID PITTS FOR
THE OUTSTANDING WASHINGTON FILE ARTICLE ON MLK THAT FORMED
THE BASIS OF OUR "ADVERTORIALS." THE SAME ARTICLE WILL RUN
IN ZIMBABWE'S INFLUENTIAL WEEKLY PAPERS IN THE NEXT 6 DAYS.

4. ON JANUARY 21, AGAINST ALL ODDS GIVEN THE CONTENTIOUS
VIEW THE STATE-OWNED ZIMBABWE BROADCASTING CORPORATION
(ZBC) USUALLY OFFERS OF THE UNITED STATES, WE WERE ABLE TO
PLACE SPECIAL PROGRAMS TO COMMEMORATE AND CELEBRATE MLK'S
LIFE ON BOTH RADIO AND TELEVISION. ALL PRODUCTIONS
HIGHLIGHTED KING'S MESSAGE OF NON-VIOLENCE. ZBC'S "THIS
MORNING" TELEVISION PROGRAM (0600 TO 0800) AIRED A TEN-
MINUTE SPECIAL ABOUT KING'S LIFE AND HIS MESSAGE OF PEACE,
TOLERANCE AND HOPE. THE SPECIAL WAS COMPILED BY ZBC FROM
MATERIAL PROVIDED BY THE EMBASSY'S PUBLIC AFFAIRS SECTION.
AFTER THE SPECIAL, ANCHOR SUPA MANDIWANZIRA CALLED ON
ZIMBABWEANS "TO HEED DR. KING'S LEGACY OF NONVIOLENT
CHANGE, ESPECIALLY NOW WHEN ZIMBABWEANS PREPARE TO GO TO
THE POLLS TO ELECT A NEW PRESIDENT." ACCORDING TO THE
PRODUCER OF "THIS MORNING," CHRISTINA TARUVINGA, THE
PROGRAM WAS WELL RECEIVED BY THE VIEWERS, MANY OF WHOM
CALLED THE STATION TO COMMENT ON THE "WONDERFUL AND VERY
INFORMATIVE" PRODUCTION. DUE TO POPULAR DEMAND FROM
VIEWERS, TARUVINGA SAID SHE WOULD RUN THE PROGRAM AGAIN
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 HARARE 00215 240542Z
DURING THE BLACK HISTORY MONTH.

5. ZBC'S NATIONAL RADIO ALSO BROADCAST EXCERPTS FROM
MLK'S "I HAVE A DREAM" SPEECH ON JANUARY 21 DURING PROGRAMS
BROADCAST IN 14 NATIONAL LANGUAGES INCLUDING ENGLISH, SHONA
AND NDEBELE. PROGRAM PRESENTERS ALSO READ EXCERPTS FROM
PAS-PROVIDED BACKGROUND MATERIAL ABOUT DR. KING. THE HEAD
OF NATIONAL RADIO, PATU MANALA, HAS REQUESTED MORE PROGRAMS
AND INFORMATION REGARDING PROMINENT AFRICAN-AMERICANS FOR
BROADCAST DURING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY.

6. ZBC IS THE ONLY ELECTRONIC MEDIA OPERATING IN
ZIMBABWE. ACCORDING TO THE ZBC TV'S MARKETING DIVISION,
NEARLY A MILLION VIEWERS WATCHED "THIS MORNING" PROGRAM,
WHILE OVER ONE AND HALF MILLION ARE ESTIMATED TO HAVE
LISTENED TO AT LEAST ONE OF THE MARTIN LUTHER KING SLOTS
DURING THE JANUARY 21 PROGRAMMING.

SULLIVAN

UNCLASSIFIED

>

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