21 March 2018
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Convulsions on the Korean Peninsula and Kenya: Which way Africa?

06/09/2017 00:00:00
by Seewell Mashizha
Chamisa: new prospect or damp squib?
Zim’s balance sheet & need for new impetus
Economy: the need for a paradigm shift
2018 election: Zim & the wealth card
Zim: The curse of the ‘Amai Syndrome’
Parties to be judged on appeal, results
The Coriolanus factor and its aftermath
Era of intrigue, pacts & accommodation?
When a stich in time could save nine
G40 Crew now Zim’s Gang of Four?
Kenya: What parallels for Zimbabwe?
Africa must negate US's global empire
Zim’s silly season in politics continues
Yesterday’s ogres & restorative justice
Subverting the golden rule in our time
Seewell Mashizha: When bad boys return
Zimbabwe: Obstacles to Pan-Africanism
Generational politics & something seismic
2018: Looming battle of manifestos & issues
2018: As the MDC-T threatens violence
Envisioning the new day that must come
Of Zim’s political history and the convulsions
Gukurahundi: no single narrative will do
Prejudice and black achievements
Mashizha: Negating western propaganda
Rival political interests: Strengths & flaws
2018 and Zanu PF’s liberation war DNA
2018 elections and the opposition
Of wily foxes and tearful crocodiles
Time for Africa to shape its own destiny
US & the rise of Trump: An interpretation
Mashizha: A new world reportage by Africans
Mashizha: telling our own stories as we see them
Zim: The curse of a blue print syndrome
Seewell Mashizha: Life is an open book
Seewell Mashizha: Africa’s interests
New day dawning or world done for?
Why Zim needs own glasnost, perestroika
Corruption: Tracking Zim’s slime highway
Africa through her revolutionary seers
Prophetic Edwin Hama: Waiting for a new day!

FOR any columnist worth his salt, reader feedback, whether negative or positive, is essentially engaging. However, not all feedback is informed or candid.

In fact, much of it may be bigoted and ill-informed with its protagonists determined to ignore verifiable facts and information.

Quite often such readers hold on dogmatically to the myths and fabrications that are generously shoved their way by exponents of global empire. They will deny the existence of things that are in the public domain, and they will also ignore untoward behaviour by imperialist powers. 

Take for instance, the current Korean peninsula impasse and the various acts of provocation and brinkmanship there.

The United States of America is ratcheting up its war rhetoric and its spin doctors are busy selling the notion that there is a mad man in Pyongyang. All sorts of derogatory and dismissive epithets are used against North Korea.

These range from ‘rogue state to hermit state’ and several other provocative terms.

While a lot of attention is given to North Korea’s ICBM tests and other initiatives, hardly any is given to what the United States is doing at the same time: joint military exercises with South Korea and its own nuclear, missile and ICBM tests.

The thinking is that North Korea has no right to be a nuclear power. Consequently, Kim Jong Un is consistently demonized.

One of Zimbabwe’s most gifted musicians, Willom Tight, has a song that laments the effects of a soccer match being refereed by a mad man. The result of that is both comical and distractive and has the effect of disrupting the match.

Willom Tight is, of course, being metaphorical. His metaphor aptly fits Donald Trump, the twitting President. In his press conferences Trump uses language suggesting that Armageddon is here. He threatens North Korea with the kind of catastrophe that the world has never seen.

This is reminiscent of George W. Bush’s shock and awe utterance prior to the beginning of the second gulf war with Iraq in 2003.

One of my favourite quotes from Islam is the one that reads: “Says God, we never punish unless we send a messenger”.

This is a template that humanity has tended to follow only cursorily. In the realm of faith and religion God’s messengers are the prophets recorded in the Old Testament. The message they proclaim is divine and imperative.


Because the West is playing God Africa must be wary of its prophets – the diplomats! Looked at this way international affairs take on the guise of intrigue and subterfuge, hence the attachment of intelligence operatives with fancy labels to the embassies of the world.

These operatives are the silent men and women whose major brief is to serve the social, political and economic interests and objectives of their home countries. Some of them are the jackals that John Perkins in ‘Confessions of An Economic Hit Man’ speaks of.

Sceptics and sycophants will continue to ignore and trash the obvious truths laid bare before them: words from the horse’s mouth so to speak. In the preface to his book Perkins writes:

“Economic hit men (EHMs) are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. They funnel money from the World Bank, U.S. Agency for International Development, and other foreign “aid” organizations into the coffers of huge corporations and the pockets of a few wealthy families who control the planet's natural resources. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as empire, but one that has taken on new and terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization.”

In one of a number of papers that Ngugi Wa Mirii, the Kenyan theatre guru and ideologue presented in his life time, he showed how, in fact, the resources of the world (land in particular) were in the hands of a few wealthy individuals and organizations.

The Church of England and the Queen of England together own vast chunks of the world, as does the Catholic Church. It is an open secret that the Vietnam War was in large measure precipitated by the skewed land tenure pattern which saw the Catholic Church owning practically all the land.

Ho Chi Mihn and other Vietnamese patriots fought this. When the Church stepped aside the French took over and when the French were ‘whipped’ America with its B 52 bombers and other sophisticated weaponry came in to bolster the prospects of Western imperialism. The rest is history.

The origins of the Korean War (June 25, 1950 – July 27, 1953) were similar to those in Vietnam.  There too, America subverted the will of the people by forestalling a Kim Il Sung victory in the elections that were pending.

When America was threatening annihilation of what became North Korea, as she is doing now, Chinese troops poured across the border and changed the way the war was going.

In the end, an armistice was signed on July 27, 1953, formally ending the war in Korea. North and South Korea were separated by the 38th parallel thereby creating the 154-mile demarcation line with a demilitarised zone on either side of it.

Still haunted by the fiasco in South Vietnam, America is determined this time around to wage a war that could be catastrophic in terms of the millions of people likely to be killed through the use of nuclear weapons. In all this America continues to play the role of the aggrieved.

How long this hypocrisy can go on will depend upon the manner in which the rest of the world reacts to the situation. Africa in particular must plot its own trajectory and not be toyed with by the vested interests of the West.

Whatever the case may be, Africa must not shudder or be afraid. History vindicates the kind of optimism espoused in this article. All empires in history eventually came to an end, sometimes quite ignominiously too. It was the ravages of Attila the Hun and other so-called barbarians that brought about the demise of the Roman Empire. The apparent victory of the West against the Soviet bloc might turn out to have been a pyrrhic victory after all. Capitalism is under heavy strain and is almost bursting at the seams.

History is a dispensation in which the downtrodden peoples of the world can liberate their narratives and come into their own in a community of progressive nations.

What is curious though is the manner in which some of the victims of wilful amnesia embraced the elementary repackaging of Zimbabwe’s history, particularly in the post-1980 era and with specific reference to the Gukurahundi, by Stuart Doran, described as an independent historian and author.

Doran’s links with Australia through the Australian National University and his choice of where in the world to live, creates doubts about the authenticity of his sentiments and findings.

The agents of neo-colonialism make it their brief to fan conflicts around the world and to ensnare countries through un-payable debts. This is how globalisation then becomes a neo-colonialist venture. For this global empire project to succeed there is a need for foot soldiers and acolytes who can be depended upon to sing the virtues of their sponsors. In this respect recent events in Kenya are of paramount interest.

Raila Odinga, son to Oginga Odinga, is ecstatic about the Supreme Court ruling nullifying the Presidential election. Lack of adherence to the country’s constitution was cited. Will the ruling translate into votes in the October re-run of the Presidential election?

I am not particularly fond of Uhuru Kenyatta because I think that his father Mzee Jomo Kenyatta was a political fraudster who benefitted from the struggles of Dedan Kimathi and other Kenya Land Army (Mau Mau) patriots.

Nevertheless, he is the lesser evil between the two and that is why he and his deputy and presidential running mate, William Ruto, were hauled before the ICC at The Hague to answer charges of crimes against humanity following the violence that killed 1000 people in the aftermath of the elections of 2007. Significantly, Raila Odinga was sanitized and got away with no formal accusations from anyone whatsoever.

There is evidence Raila and his party precipitated the orgy of violence with Luo landlords encouraged to expel Gikuyu tenants from their properties. This was followed by orchestrated attacks against the Gikuyu.

One of Raila Odinga’s associates used his ‘independent’ radio station to stir up ethnic animosities and encourage violence. The Gikuyu found that they had to protect themselves and the resultant retaliation escalated the violence. Raila Odinga had a case to answer and should also have been brought to the ICC. That he was not arraigned speaks volumes about his loyalties.

With Zimbabwe’s next election in the offing, and with MDC-Alliance leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, savouring the possibility of a duplication of the Kenyan situation in Zimbabwe, it is going to be interesting to see how things pan out in the months ahead.

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