23 August 2017

South Africa: Gukurahundi Origins - Myth and Reality, Part 4 - the One-Party State, 1980-1987

analysis

Illuminating as it is to examine some of the individual events that together make up the backcloth to the Matabeleland killings of 1983-4 - among them, the Entumbane violence, the arms caches "crisis" and the tourist abduction - this complex tapestry only fully makes sense when we identify the ideological thread (and associated objectives) which runs through it. Imbued with a tradition that emphasised absolute domination, Robert Mugabe and his confidants entered government in 1980 with a burning desire to impose a one-party state - a birthright that they believed had been stolen from them by a negotiated end to the Rhodesian civil war. Zanu's early post-independence history is the story of this fetish and the plans that were made to satisfy it. By STUART DORAN.

This is the last of a four-part series on the Gukurahundi exclusively published by Daily Maverick, based on Stuart Doran's newly published book Kingdom, power, glory: Mugabe, Zanu and the quest for supremacy, 1960-1987, which is now available in major bookstores and online at www.sithatha.com. Also read part 1, part 2 and part 3.

The fundamental precondition for understanding Zimbabwe in the 1980s - and beyond - is to recognise the supremacist mentality that...

South Africa

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