|Africa News Digest
Bush Administration Moves To Wreck Zimbabwe Unity Deal
Dec. 21 (EIRNS)The Bush Administration today stepped up the pressure on behalf of London's efforts to wreck the Zimbabwe unity government deal that had been painstakingly worked out by former South Africa President Thabo Mbeki. The move guarantees that the Obama Administration will be confronted with a London-designed destabilization crisis in southern Africa.
Jendayi Frazer, the top envoy for Africa of the Bush Administration State Department, announced today in Pretoria, South Africa, that the Bush Administration can no longer support the Zimbabwe power-sharing deal, according to Voice of America today. Frazer said that the Bush Administration has lost confidence that Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe is capable of sharing power.
Frazer is mouthing the sentiments of London's Lord Mark Malloch-Brown, who after an "emergency" trip to South Africa Dec. 11, said: "There is increasingly a view that you are not going to get a deal while Robert Mugabe is President."
To ensure that any effort by the Southern Africa Development Community to push through the deal anyway, would fail, Frazer announced that the Bush Administration will not lift sanctions against Mugabe and other leading figures in Zimbabwe. These sanctions are the basis for the past nine years of economic warfare against Zimbabwe, which has led to the collapse of the economy, causing the conditions, including a cholera epidemic, which the government is being blamed for.
The Bush Administration escalation comes the day after Mugabe said he had invited the London-favored opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, to be sworn in as prime minister.
Malloch-Brown Repeats Demands Mugabe Step Down
Dec. 22 (EIRNS)The British government's Lord Malloch-Brown repeated today that President Robert Mugabe had become an "absolute impossible obstacle" and would have to step aside, since he is incapable of taking part in a power-sharing deal in Zimbabwe. He made the remarks on BBC Radio 4's Today program. He repeated the remarks he had made earlier, after Jendayi Frazer, the top U.S. State Department envoy for Africa, yesterday announced the breakoff of U.S. support for a unity government in Zimbabwe, using the same reason, making it appear as if he were following a U.S. policy lead.
Southern African Nations Provide Aid to Zimbabwe
Dec. 21 (EIRNS)The Southern African Development Community (SADC) announced a humanitarian aid package for Zimbabwe today. Zimbabwe is confronted by food shortages and an outbreak of cholera, resulting from a worsening economic crisis that began with a 1990 IMF restructuring program, and intense economic warfare for the last nine years.
SADC executive secretary Tomaz Salomão announced in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare, today, that "we are here to launch the initiative and find out how far we are in terms of delivering the required assistance." The announcement follows a visit by an SADC team, led by South Africa, two weeks ago. Salomão said part of the package was South Africa's $30 million donation of seed, fertilizers, and fuel to help revive Zimbabwe's agricultural sector. South Africa had previously withheld this aid, under pressure from the London imperial financial cartel.
Said Salomáo: "This is regional solidarity. When you are facing difficulties, you have to count on the solidarity of your brothers. We cannot fail in assisting Zimbabwe, that's the critical and most important thing." Tanzania, Botswana, and Namibia made additional contributions.
The SADC announcement came on the same day that the Bush Administration emphasized that it will not extend any aid to Zimbabwe as long as Mugabe remains President; obviously, the Administration is not concerned with the plight of the population.
Salomáo is a professional economist from Mozambique, and was appointed to his position at the 2005 SADC summit. He earned his doctorate at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md. Prior to the EU summit in Lisbon, Portugal, in December 2007, Salomáo said that SADC would pull out of the summit to if Zimbabwe was on the agenda. "SADC will not go to Lisbon to discuss Zimbabwe because the summit is not about Zimbabwe, but about relations between the EU and Africa," he said at that time.
Is the Bush Crowd Urging Obama To Go To War Against Sudan?
Dec. 18 (EIRNS)William Richardson, President Bush's special envoy to Sudan, said today that the warfare in Darfur "has been brutal, barbaric, it's been merciless, savage, inhumane," in an address at the Heritage Foundation, indicating that he expects that the Obama Administration will use "robust steps" against Sudan, because "we [the Administration] didn't have the kind of success that we were hoping for" with sanctions. "I've never worked on a more discouraging project," he noted.
Williamson said, "There's a sense that they're [the Obama Administration] going to increase the heat," and thus will develop more "actionable options including robust steps" towards Sudan than that of the Bush Administration.
By preparing these "actionable options," he said, the Obama Administration would be in a position to move to the robust steps immediately, at such time as they may determine there wont be progress diplomatically." He pointed out that Vice President-elect Joe Biden has advocated a tougher policy towards Sudan, supporting a no-fly zone over Darfur, and that UN Ambassador nominee Susan Rice has gone even further in proposing military action against that country. Williamson reported that meetings have taken place between the Bush Administration and the Obama Transition Team to develop plans for robust action in Sudan in response to a "January-February meltdown." The meltdown he is referring to would be the effects of a probable decision by the three-judge panel of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to indict Sudanese President Omar Bashir for crimes against humanity and genocide.
Williamson made it clear that Bush is committed to vetoing any attempt in the United Nations Security Council to block the expected ICC indictment (under Amendment 16), which he anticipates will come down in the next two months, either at the very end of the Bush term of office, or the early days or weeks of the new Obama Presidency.
Williamson knows full well that the indictment by the ICC of Bashir would lead to the collapse of the fragile Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between North and South, because Bashir as President, and his ruling National Congress Party, are the only institutions that have signed this peace treaty with the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM). The CPA has successfully averted war between Northern and Southern Sudan for over three years. If Bashir is indicted, the CPA is dead, and civil war will undoubtedly resume, along with a military escalation by the rebel groups in Darfur. Williamson dismissed the CPA as a "leaky boat."