analysisBy Simon Allison
Zimbabwean citizens (including a surprising number of centenarians and more than a few dead people) are casting their vote on Wednesday.
Despite the opposition's fighting talk - not real fighting, that's a ZANU-PF specialty - President Robert Mugabe looks like he's got this one in the bag, with SADC and the AU firmly in his corner.
Let's get one thing out of the way first: this election is not going to be free and fair. This election is not going to be credible.
This election is not going to be transparent, or acceptable, or whatever other linguistically and morally ambiguous adjective the African diplomatic community will coin to condone its results (so far, African Union Commission chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has gone plumped for satisfactory, as in "the [election] preparations were satisfactory", an insupportable conclusion which makes me question my admiration for her).
Tendai Biti, Zimbabwe's long-suffering finance minister and a very senior opposition figure, wearily offered a few more accurate adjectives in an interview with Al Jazeera: "I have said it and I have said it again and I am beginning to sound like a broken record now, but these elections are illegal, illegitimate, immoral, unfree and unfair."...