opinionBy Kwanisai Mafa
Harare — AS the March 29, 2008 parliamentary elections are approaching, it is the time for Zimbabweans to boldly assert their God-given right to be free of a foreign ruler. This should be a vote that would totally sweep away all the remaining vestiges of colonialism. It should be a vote of consolidating our revolutionary gains under the banner of the Third Chimurenga. So many sacrifices and precious lives were lost in this country because the white settlers could not give up our land.
The journey towards independence was tortuous and fraught with peril. Land was central in our struggle and Zimbabwe has become a shining example in Africa by giving back land to its original owners.
Was there any justice, morality and democracy when we hoisted our flag without economic independence? Was there any justice for only 4 000 whites to own all the fertile land in the country?
Our independence could be meaningless without land, and all the lives would have been lost in vain. All Western "democracies" are out in full throttle to fight our own version of democracy. Any form of democracy that jeopardises imperial interests is labelled despotic and tyrannical.
Remember the great African leader Sekou Toureh hinted that imperialism would find its death in Africa. He was right because Pan-Africanism -- which the enemies have been trying to stifle -- is now on the rise, and the flame has been lit in Zimbabwe. All the oppressed masses of African descent in the world are looking at Zimbabwe with hope.
Zimbabweans in their totality on March 29 should show the whole world that we are determined to bury global imperialism once and for all. This victory will give inspiration to the downtrodden and oppressed to keep fighting against cruelties that are a disgrace to humanity.
Zimbabweans should stand strong and defend their interests. Britain is fighting for her interests in Zimbabwe, and Zimbabweans should also fight for what is good for them.
For Zimbabweans, it is time for cool heads and bold decisions, not blind faith in Western machinations. It is time for Zimbabweans to stand strong and decide their own destiny without outside interference.
We should divert from the imperialistic mentality of letting America and Britain decide who heads our country or who gets kicked out of power. We should put our priorities right, and in this case land is first and elections later. Tony Blair, because of the mad-cow disease, put off elections in Britain in order to solve the mad-cow tragedy.
As former US Ambassador to the United Nations and first Black mayor of Atlanta, Andrew Young said in an interview with The Herald in 2001, demonising President Mugabe is betraying Africa's cause. Whoever is trying to accuse Cde Mugabe should first look at Cde Mugabe's political and economic records.
He is an international statesman, a true Pan-Africanist, and a dedicated anti-imperialist who stands strong against forces of Western imperialism in Africa.
This truth is why Britain and the US hate Cde Mugabe. He is still a darling and remains the only outstanding continental African liberation fighter.
This is why very few African leaders are willing to raise a finger against him, and can also explain why the sensible ones have kept mum.
I think for Zimbabweans it is time to consider the future of our children and forget differences and problems of the past -- and confront the real enemy.
Zimbabweans should see each other as one body, and develop the spirit of brotherhood in order to fight Western propaganda, hypocrisy and criticism.
The use of the media by the West as a hegemonic tool has been extensive in brainwashing us to the extent of desiring to be white people. These are all the disadvantages of the capitalistic system driven by the white man.
Zimbabwe is increasingly subjected to various forms of external and internal pressure, which are seriously affecting its security, political, economic and social structures.
The biased Western media are not objectively reporting on Zimbabwe, but rather peddling falsehoods. Reasons cited for negative reporting include alleged poor governance, improper land distribution without compensation, and mismanagement of the economy.
Some of the criticism is ill conceived and outrageous, particularly the argument that if President Mugabe goes then everything will be all right.
Reports or any suggestions that the land issue will go away if Cde Mugabe goes away are a dangerous fallacy that Western administrations are putting in people's minds.
Millions of innocent human beings all over Africa die from the ravages of war, hunger and disease because of the greed of Britain and other Western countries that organised and operated the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.
If bribes, fear and intimidation do not work for them in their quest for world domination, then it's war. Somehow the war is called a war "to promote democratic principles," and the gullible believes that.
Since World War II, liberation movements in all parts of Africa have sought to end five centuries of subjugation and varying forms of tutelage imposed by Western powers, but as one colonial power after another conceded independence to African dominions, they often tried -- with different degrees of success and failure -- to install dependent stooge regimes and institutions that would pose no threat to traditional colonial interests.
US and Belgian manipulation and involvement in the assassination of Patrice Lumumba, saw a surrogate regime of Mobutu Sese Seko being put in place. The Congo and its people, including neighbouring states in Central Africa, have since seen no peace.
Kwame Nkrumah, who earlier on realised the importance of continental unity and the curse of imperial exploitation through multinationals, was overthrown in a CIA-engineered coup.
His country has not totally regained stability and development since. Between January 1956 and the end of 1985, there were 60 successful coups in Africa -- that is an average of two every year. In 1966 alone, there were eight military coups, and by 1986, out of some 50 African states only 18 were under civilian rule.
Behind every coup was the hand of another imperial power, and, more often than not, it was the US.
Overthrowing nationalist regimes and installing tyrannical dictatorships was then fair game for today's "champions of democracy" and "good governance." The CIA has acted too far to exceed its mandates as an intelligence-gathering agency.
It has acted as a secret mafia engaged in assassinations, levying wars in other countries, organising mercenary forces in order to overthrow lawfully-established governments, and destabilising societies and regimes that they do not like.
They manipulate trade unions, use academics, and plant bogus stories in reputable Western newspapers and on the Internet. They collaborated with the then-apartheid South Africa over arms supplies, the invasion of Angola, and the development of nuclear weapons.
The US and its allies are sponsoring the installation of pirate radio stations and newspapers as part of propaganda, psychological warfare intended to undermine the beliefs, perceptions and value-systems of the people under the rule of the adversary government. Britain and the US use large numbers of foreign-aid personnel to conduct propaganda, gather intelligence, and fund opposition political parties.
The foreign-aid personnel infiltrate deeply into the socio/politico fabric of Zimbabwe and other countries without arousing undue suspicion.
As in the rest of the world, US policy views Africa as a continent where Pan-Africanism should be eradicated -- a goal that would deny real independence to African countries by imposing and sustaining client regimes.
Today, AFrica is integral to the West economically -- oil for the US from Libya and Nigeria, uranium for Britain from Namibia, and huge American and EEC investment in South Africa, Kenya and elsewhere.
It is none other than Zimbabweans that can answer the following questions: Who are the real enemies of Zimbabwe? Who are the real friends of Africa? Who should we guard against?
Who should we work with? Who can we ask from? It is none other than the African that can answer . . .
"Tisakanganwa chazuro nehope, nyika ndeyedu iyi."
Kwanisai Mafa is based at the Midlands State University ,Gweru. He is a Pan-Africanist organiser regionally and internationally