The Plank

Buried In Secret

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There are many horrific things one can observe about Zimbabwe right now. If you have not seen it already, please take a look at the tortured
(literally) face of Morgan Tsvangirai,
the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, beamed
across the world last week and symbolic of those courageously standing
up to one of the world's most vicious men. Yesterday, I was disheartened to see the violence meted out against MDC spokesman and Member of Parliament Nelson Chamisa, whom I interviewed last year, as he prepared to fly to a European Union meeting in Brussels. Government thugs alledgedly beat him over the head with iron bars and he may lose his right eye as a result.

Mugabe has also read the riot act to Western diplomats. Our man in Harare, to his credit, walked out of the meeting with Zimbabwe's Foreign Minister.

But what I'd most like to bring your attention to is a detail from Harare-based Peta Thornycroft's most recent dispatch in The Daily Telegraph bringing news of a particularly disgusting act by the Mugabe regime, which, in its petty vindictiveness, best exemplifies the utter cruelty
of the ZANU-PF thugocracy:

Gift Tandare, the activist shot dead during the demonstrations after
which Mr Tsvangirai was arrested, was meanwhile buried in secret by the
central intelligence organisation to prevent further demonstrations.

Multiple news sources have reported that Tandare's body was stolen at the morgue.

Mugabe claims to have much in common with the liberation movement that
ended apartheid in South Africa. But he has now become the Black
Verwoerd, and, ironically, he has learned a thing or two from the
architects of apartheid: the effective "banning" of political
opposition, violence against innocents, and now burying martyrs "in
secret" to avoid the specter of mass political funerals.

Thornycroft surveys, perhaps a bit prematurely, Mugabe's
potential successors. History has shown that he will not go without a
fight. Either way, the cast of characters lining up to take his place is
a gallery of fools.

--James Kirchick

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