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Cablegate: Media Reaction Taylor/Mugabe; Harare

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

190626Z Aug 03

UNCLAS HARARE 001643

SIPDIS

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

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KPAO KMDR ZI
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION TAYLOR/MUGABE; HARARE


1. Under headline "Curse of quiet diplomacy" the
independent weekly "The Daily News On Sunday"
dedicated its August 17 editorial to criticizing
South African President Thabo Mbeki's "quiet
diplomacy" towards Robert Mugabe, arguing, "It was
not quiet diplomacy which forced Charles Taylor to
leave his country, Liberia." Excerpts:

2. "It was not quiet diplomacy which forced Charles
Taylor to leave his country, Liberia, kicking and
screaming, for luxurious exile in Kalabar, Nigeria. Both
the president of the United States and the leaders of the
African countries who helped the dictator to leave his
country must have used rather loud diplomacy to make him an
offer he could not refuse. The carrot of an opulently
furnished mansion in Kalabar may have played its part in
persuading Taylor to leave. The specter of his indictment
on human rights violations by the United Nations could have
had an impact on his king-size ego as well. But there can
be no doubt that all the men discussing with Taylor the
paucity of his options told him bluntly that the only way
he could save his country - and his own political bacon -
was to leave Liberia. The comparison with President Robert
Mugabe's situation may be different, but not because he can
contribute anything worthwhile to the survival of his
country any more. Apart from inflaming his critics'
passions with his rhetoric of blasphemy, there is precious
little else he can do to bring his country back to normal.
President Thabo Mbeki, who played a crucial role in getting
Taylor out of Monrovia, must know that quiet diplomacy may
work well with leaders whose egos may be normal in size,
but that Mugabe's is nothing of the kind. . . ."

SULLIVAN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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