While the world is busy shipping in vital supplies including food and medicine to help the people of Zimbabwe, the UN reports that President Mugabe, who allowed the Harare area water system deteriorate because they “couldn’t afford” supplies, nevertheless managed to buy guns and other military weapons from China, smuggling them in from his friends in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This is despite an embargo forbidding shipments of arms to that country.
The reason for this deception is that an earlier shipment in April was discovered and diverted after South African Trade Union workers refused to unload the shipment. It eventually was reported to have been offloaded in Angola and flown to Harare.
In this case, the arms were sent to the DRC and flown to Harare.
a United Nations investigation has revealed that Chinese weapons are getting to Harare, via the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The report says at least two SADC countries are allowing shipments from China to land for onward passage to Zimbabwe.
The UN says it has credible information that between August 20 and 22 this year, a Boeing aircraft transported 53 tons of ammunition destined for the Zimbabwe defence forces, from the DRC to Zimbabwe.
To understand why such countries as Angola and the DRC are helping Mugabe, you have to realize that Mugabe sent in Zimbabwean Army soldiers and Angola sent troops and arms to help the president of the DRC, ten years ago when that murderous civil war began to spread.
Since then, several million people have died or been displaced in Central Africa, and many in Zimbabwe blame much of their country’s economic woes on the war.
Some of the support was given in exchange for mining interests for Mugabe’s family; but it was also a way for Mugabe to push himself as a hero in the eyes of other governments.
The bad result, of course, is that the “payback” has allowed Mugabe to remain armed and dangerous to his own people.
And World Politics Review reports that both Angola and Zimbabwe have again sent troops to fight on the side of President Kabila in the reopened war against the Rwandan backed rebels.
In the middle of all of this are a couple more million people at risk for death and disease, and a few thousand UN peacekeepers who are unable to keep the peace.
But of course, this is all about who will control the mineral rich mines of that area. And into this swirl of war comes China, who aims to get control of the mines.
Again, from SWRadioAfrica:
Liberty Mpakati, an intelligence analyst, said; â€˜The information contained in the UN report is just the tip of an iceberg. This is a very complex operation involving several Southern African countries. How the system works is the DRC would purchase the weapons on behalf of Zimbabwe and once they get hold of the cargo, they would simply forward it to Zimbabwe.â€™ He added; â€˜Kabila owes his presidency to Mugabe and he will do anything to ensure he remains in power. As for the Chinese, you need not look further than their opposition at the UN to block any moves to impose global sanctions against Mugabe.â€™
So death in Africa goes on, silently.
But the UN and churches and NGO’s just try their best to keep people alive while the devils fight.
Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is MakaipaBlog