(Ed.) Hell and Horror in Zimbabwe. A disgrace to what used to be a flourishing country for all.

(SOURCE:- Cathy Buckle, Zimbabwe)

Dear Family and Friends,

On a few days away, heading south from the capital, the view from the
window is a Zimbabwe that is hot and dry and golden brown. Rivers that
were churning and thundering, overflowing their banks and breaking
bridges just three or four months ago are again dry, littered with
rocks and boulders and filled with deep yellow sand. The grass
everywhere is very tall and completely dry, brittle and golden. Every
day we hold our breath waiting for the inevitable fires that will this
year have enormous amounts of fuel to feed their flames. Out in the
hot and scratchy bush the dust is thick, red and choking; the
deciduous trees are losing their leaves fast and if you are lucky you
may see a magnificent Zimbabwe Aloe (Aloe Excelsa) in full flower,
towering higher than many of the trees, a beacon of red in a golden
landscape.

Returning to ‘civilization’ newspaper reports rapidly bring you
back to what has become our often un-civilized life in Zimbabwe. On
the front page a picture of a woman in South Africa who had allegedly
been assaulted by Zimbabwe’s First Lady, Mrs. Mugabe. The shame of
these scandals, which are growing in frequency, are making a laughing
stock of Zimbabwe; scandals of privileged youngsters living an
unchecked life filled with excesses and outrageous extravagance while
ordinary people are scrabbling in the dust to survive back in
Zimbabwe.

While the international media scrutinize attempts by South Africa to
hold Mrs. Mugabe accountable, there is an even more disturbing report
going almost unnoticed; a report far more serious, more worrying than
a First Lady and an assault in a luxury South African hotel. In his
speech on Heroes Day, President Mugabe said that there would be no
prosecution for the people who killed white farmers in Zimbabwe’s
“fast-track land reform program.” As unbelievable as it is there
has yet to be any accountability for the perpetrators of murders
committed in the name of land invasions since 2000 or of thousands of
other crimes committed under that same smoke screen. Crimes that
include rape, arson, theft, torture, and murder. Crimes committed
against black and white Zimbabweans.

President Mugabe said: “Yes, we have those who were killed when they resisted. We will never prosecute those who killed them. I ask why we should arrest them.”

President Mugabe did not give examples of farmers murdered for
“resisting” the theft of their private property, homes and
life’s work. He did not mention the case, for example, of David
Stevens, the first commercial farmer murdered in April 2000 who was
abducted by war veterans, handcuffed and taken to the War Veterans
Headquarters in Murehwa. There he was beaten and assaulted and later
taken into the bush where he and another farmer, both handcuffed, were
assaulted by numerous people who used “fists, feet, sticks, stones,
fan belts, and wire rods. “ Shortly afterward David Stevens was shot
and killed. Can you call it resistance when you are handcuffed,
lynched and being beaten on all sides? What about justice, the law,
the courts and due process?

This single eye witness account is one of the thousands of stories of hell and horror perpetrated against black and white Zimbabweans which
continue to haunt our nation nearly two decades after land invasions
began. Some of us are ourselves victims or witnessed the events, saw
thousands of traumatized people left homeless, jobless or mourning the
deaths of loved ones in horrific political violence and brutal farm
invasions since 2000.

What kind of an example is it to the youth of Zimbabwe to absolve
murderers of white people? What about the thousands of black people
who were brutalized and lost everything in land invasions and the
thousands murdered in political violence in the same time period? It
doesn’t matter if we are black or white, our blood is the same
color and we are all entitled to justice and protection under our
country’s Constitution. Until the perpetrators of crimes are held to
account, whatever the skin color of them or their victims, Zimbabwe
will not be able to move forward, regardless of this blanket
“immunity” given by our 93-year-old President. Until next time,
thanks for reading, love Cathy. 18th August 2017.