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Cablegate: Media Reaction Zimbabwe Decides; Harare

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

091042Z Mar 02


UNCLASSIFIED PTQ8779

PAGE 01 HARARE 00625 01 OF 02 091339Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 AID-00 CIAE-00 DODE-00 SRPP-00 EB-00 EUR-00
UTED-00 VC-00 H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 L-00
AC-01 NSAE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00
ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 SS-00 STR-00 TEST-00 TRSE-00
T-00 USIE-00 NISC-00 PMB-00 PRM-00 DRL-02 G-00
SAS-00 /007W
------------------71EBEB 091339Z /03
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1150
INFO NSC WASHDC
AMEMBASSY PRETORIA
AMEMBASSY LUSAKA
AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK
AMEMBASSY GABORONE
AMEMBASSY LILONGWE
AMEMBASSY LONDON

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 000625

SIPDIS

AF/PD FOR COX AND ROBERTSON, AF/S FOR KRAFT AND
SCHLACHTER, AF/RA FOR SWANN, INR/R/MR, NSC FOR JENDAYI
FRAZER

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


1. AS ZIMBABWEANS HEAD FOR THE POLLS, EDITORIALS IN
THE LEADING NEWSPAPERS TAKE ONE LAST SHOT AT PERSUADING
VOTERS TO SUPPORT ONE OF THE TWO LEADING CANDIDATES.
EXCERPTS:

2. UNDER HEADLINE "D-DAY FOR ZIMBABWE," THE MARCH 9
EDITION OF THE GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED DAILY "THE
HERALD" CARRIED THE FOLLOWING EDITORIAL ON PAGE
ONE:

"TODAY IS D-DAY, AS ZIMBABWEANS GO TO THE POLLS TO
DECIDE THEIR POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC FUTURE IN THIS
WATERSHED PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION. THIS IS NO
ORDINARY PLEBISCITE TO CHOOSE WHO WILL LEAD THIS
COUNTRY FOR THE NEXT SIX YEARS. IT IS IN FACT, A
CRUCIAL DEFINING MOMENT WHICH WILL DETERMINE THE
DIRECTION WHICH THIS NATION WILL TAKE IN TERMS OF
ITS SOVEREIGNTY. THE RESULT OF THIS ELECTION WILL
ALSO HAVE WIDER IMPLICATIONS ON THE POLITICAL AND
ECONOMIC LANDSCAPE OF SOUTHERN AFRICA AND THE REST
OF THE CONTINENT. AFTER THE ELECTION, ZIMBABWE
WILL NEVER BE THE SAME. IT WILL EITHER EMERGE AS A
TRULY INDEPENDENT AFRICAN STATE IN CHARGE OF ITS
OWN POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC DESTINY OR A SEEMINGLY
PROSPEROUS COUNTRY WHERE THE SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC
DIVIDE BETWEEN WHITE AND BLACK WILL BE PERPETUATED.

.OPTIONS CONFRONTING MOST ZIMBABWEANS AT THIS POINT
IN TIME ARE WHETHER THEY WANT TO CONTINUE BEING
GOOD DOCILE AFRICANS THAT ARE PAMPERED BY THE NORTH
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 HARARE 00625 01 OF 02 091339Z
ATLANTIC WORLD AND FED FROM LEFTOVERS OR THEY WANT
TO TAKE THE BULL BY ITS HORNS AND TAKE CHARGE OF
THEIR DESTINY. . .

. . .THE EUROPEAN UNION AND THE UNITED STATES
IMPOSED SURGICAL SANCTIONS AGAINST PRESIDENT MUGABE
AND THREATENED TO FREEZE HIS ALLEGED OVERSEAS
ASSETS IN A BID TO DAMAGE HIS REPUTATION. . . THE
COMBINED MIGHT OF EUROPE AND AMERICA HAS FAILED TO
DAMPEN HIS SPIRIT, WHICH HAS GROWN STRONGER
INSTEAD. . . HISTORY WILL REMEMBER HIM FOR HIS
ABILITY TO SACRIFICE HIS GOOD NAME FOR THE SAKE OF
THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY. . .

. . .PRESIDENT MUGABE WILL INDEED GO DOWN IN
HISTORY AS A TRUE CHAMPION OF AFRICAN LIBERATION
WHO WENT AGAINST THE MIGHT OF THE WEST AND RISKED
RELEGATION TO A PARIAH IN ORDER TO DELIVER HIS
PEOPLE TO THE PROMISED LAND. AS ZIMBABWEANS GO TO
THE POLLS TODAY AND TOMORROW, THEY DO SO IN DIGNITY
AND PRIDE. THEIR VOTE WILL SEND A CLEAR AND
RESOUNDING MESSAGE TO THE REST OF THE WORLD THAT WE
ARE A SOVEREIGN NATION WITH THE DETERMINATION NOT
ONLY TO SURVIVE, BUT SUCCEED AGAINST ALL ODDS. THE
TRUST AND CONFIDENCE THAT WILL BE GIVEN BY THE
PEOPLE SHOULD SPUR THE PRESIDENT TO COMPLETE THE
TASK THAT WAS STARTED IN THE 1960S, TO RESTORE
FULLY THE COUNTRY, BACK TO ITS PEOPLE. . ."

3. UNDER HEADLINE "LIFE UNDER ZANU PF HAS BEEN ONE
LONG NIGHTMARE," THE MARCH 8 EDITION OF THE INDEPENDENT
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 04 HARARE 00625 01 OF 02 091339Z
DAILY "THE DAILY NEWS" COMMENTS:

4. "DIDYMUS MUTASA HAS BEEN TALKING TOUGH FOR SOME
TIME. SOME OF HIS OUTBURSTS HAVE BEEN PATENTLY
INSULTING TO THE INTELLIGENCE OF THE PEOPLE. HIS
GENERAL THEME HAS BEEN THAT ZANU PF CANNOT CEDE THE
REINS OF POWER FOR ANY REASON, THAT IF THE MDC WINS THE
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, HIS PARTY WOULD SEEK THE VIOLENT
OVERTHROW OF THE NEW GOVERNMENT. . .

"MOST PEOPLE ARE FED UP WITH ZANU PF'S ARROGANCE.
IF THEY ARE NOT SUFFICIENTLY INCENSED TO VOTE
MUGABE OUT OF POWER, THEN THAT WILL BE HIS GOOD
FORTUNE. BUT IF THEY ACT AGAINST HIM, NOBODY -
INCLUDING MUTASA AND OTHERS - CAN REVERSE THAT
DECISION WITHOUT PLUNGING THE COUNTRY INTO
SENSELESS STRIFE."

5. UNDER HEADLINE "TOWARDS A VISION OF POST-ELECTION
ZIMBABWE," THE MARCH 8 EDITION OF THE INDEPENDENT
WEEKLY "THE ZIMBABWE MIRROR" COMMENTS:

". . .AS WE DECIDE THIS WEEKEND BETWEEN THE TWO

UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED PTQ8780

PAGE 01 HARARE 00625 02 OF 02 091340Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 AID-00 CIAE-00 DODE-00 SRPP-00 EB-00 EUR-00
UTED-00 VC-00 H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 L-00
AC-01 NSAE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00
ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 SS-00 STR-00 TEST-00 TRSE-00
T-00 USIE-00 NISC-00 PMB-00 PRM-00 DRL-02 G-00
SAS-00 /007W
------------------71EBF5 091340Z /03
P 091042Z MAR 02
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1151
INFO NSC WASHDC
AMEMBASSY PRETORIA
AMEMBASSY LUSAKA
AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK
AMEMBASSY GABORONE
AMEMBASSY LILONGWE
AMEMBASSY LONDON

UNCLAS SECTION 02 OF 02 HARARE 000625

SIPDIS

AF/PD FOR COX AND ROBERTSON, AF/S FOR KRAFT AND
SCHLACHTER, AF/RA FOR SWANN, INR/R/MR, NSC FOR JENDAYI
FRAZER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ZI PREL PHUM
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION ZIMBABWE DECIDES; HARARE
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 HARARE 00625 02 OF 02 091340Z

THAT REPRESENT WHAT WOULD APPEAR TO BE OPPOSED
WORLD VIEWS IN OUR SOCIETY, ALL OF US WILL HAVE TO
BEAR IN MIND THE REALITY THAT WE ARE ZIMBABWEANS,
FIRST AND FOREMOST.

". . .BOTH ZANU PF AND THE MDC MUST AGREE, WITHIN
THE NEXT FEW WEEKS ON THE NEED TO INTRODUCE FOR
PARLIAMENTARY DEBATE THE DRAFT CONSTITUTION WHICH
WAS REJECTED AT THE HEAT OF THE MOMENT IN THE
REFERENDUM IN FEBRUARY, 2000. . . THE COUNTRY IS
IN DIRE NEED OF A NEW CONSTITUTION AND THE DRAFT
DOES PROVIDE A BASIS ON WHICH. . .ZIMBABWE CAN
USHER IN A NEW POLITICAL ORDER. . ."

SULLIVAN

UNCLASSIFIED

>

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