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Cablegate: Media Reaction U.S. Blamed for Zim's Woes; Harare

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

UNCLAS HARARE 000563

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/PDPA FOR DALTON, MITCHELL AND SIMS
AF/S FOR RAYNOR
NSC FOR JENDAYI FRAZER
LONDON FOR GURNEY
PARIS FOR NEARY
NAIROBI FOR PFLAUMER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KPAO KMDR ZI
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION U.S. BLAMED FOR ZIM'S WOES; HARARE


1. Under headline "MDC lacks respect for human life" the
government-controlled daily "The Herald" used its March 19
editorial to accuse the United States of stirring up the
current socioeconomic and political turbulence in Zimbabwe.
Excerpts:

2. ". . .As if to give credence to claims by the white
Commonwealth, Britain and the United States that the
situation in Zimbabwe was deteriorating, the MDC has
gone on an orgy of violence and terror against its
perceived enemies. Two innocent lives have been
lost so far at the hands of the MDC in the battle
for the Kuwadzana constituency. While the MDC is
petrol-bombing its opponents, burning down buses or
deliberately running over innocent pedestrians and
firing weapons indiscriminately like lawless
hoodlums. . .the American Government is, on the
other hand, encouraging this lawlessness with its
renewed onslaught on Zimbabwe. By targeting
sanctions on the Zimbabwean government as part of
measures to remove the ruling ZANU PF from power,
the United States has effectively provided cover to
the opposition to carry on with its wanton killing,
beatings and torture of innocent Zimbabweans.

". . .As if to cheer the MDC on, the United States
started running an illegal radio station this week
to support dissent in Zimbabwe. The pirate radio
station was also meant to give impetus to
yesterday's mass action. . . The United States also
announced the renewal of a so-called executive order
by President George W. Bush renewing sanctions and a
freeze on alleged assets owned by President Mugabe
and 76 other ZANU PF officials. The U.S. freeze has
been in place for more than a year but the Americans
know full well that there are no such assets in
their country. The sanctions are, however, meant to
destroy the Zimbabwean economy and instead blame it
on the ZANU PF government. Working with the British
and a few other European Union countries, the U.S.
has managed to squeeze the Zimbabwean economy,
shutting its normal offshore loans, grants and
investments, resulting in acute shortages of foreign
currency that have led to scarcity in fuel and other
essential imports. . . ."

SULLIVAN

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