By Charles Matekenya
The level of toxicity displayed by some Zimbabweans in their support of white supremacism is deeply troubling.
There are individuals who, claiming to be educated and patriotic, naively assert that Zimbabwe’s Independence was handed to us on a silver platter.
It is a shame that such shallow thinking and misguided propaganda has gained traction. It is important to dispel these myths and acknowledge the true complexity of our struggle for independence.
Some misguided assertions suggest that the settlers willingly returned the country to its original owners because they were tired of ruling. Others claim that it was a benevolent act by the colonisers to give everything back to Africa. These notions are far from the truth.
The key events leading up to the Geneva Conference of 1979 were not favourable for the settlers. If the freedom fighters had not been resolute during the last conference before independence, the attainment of freedom could have been delayed even further.
The decisive events, such as the Chinhoyi Battle, the BP Shell attack, the Mavonde Battle, and many other undocumented incidents characterised by surprise and sabotage attacks, played a crucial role in weakening white dominance.
The military expertise imported from frontline states, Russia, China, Yugoslavia, and others, was instrumental in overpowering white dominance. The black fighters showcased superior weaponry and employed effective counteroffensive strategies.
The intensification of surprise attacks and sabotage from the freedom fighters crippled the oppressors from all angles.
The Chinhoyi Battle, involving seven fighters, lasted for many hours and resulted in the downing of enemy helicopters.
The Crocodile gang’s actions were also significant in their efforts to dismantle the chains of slavery imposed by the intruders. The close relationship between the fighters and the general populace played a vital role in achieving independence.
It is important to debunk the ignorant and ill-informed chants that seek to undermine the informative and technical contributions of Mujibas and Chimbwidos.
The mass mobilisation programs strengthened the fighters and ensured that morale remained high in the camps.
Zambia and Mozambique provided support and training grounds for the fighters. Tembwe training school in Mozambique, for instance, trained numerous recruits who joined the war after completing their training. ZANLA and ZIPRA forces underwent training in Tembwe and Chimoio training camps in Mozambique, as well as Mkushi and Chifombo in Zambia.
These encampments and training facilities served as launchpads for insurgents to infiltrate Rhodesia.
Despite the Rhodesian army’s combined air and ground attacks, which included suicidal raids, black fighters remained undeterred, holding onto their last hopes of regaining independence.
Even though they lived under horrible conditions, the fighters maintained a sense of hope as they dreamed of liberating future generations.
The bloodshed at Chimoio in 1976 and Mkushi in 1978, as a result of numerous raids and bombardments, did not see them lose heart.
The process of attaining freedom was inevitable, as various tactics were employed. The selfless acts of fallen cadres and their diplomatic maneuvers swiftly pushed out the invaders. The involvement of spirit mediums in the armed struggle cannot be underestimated, as they played a crucial role in destabilising the white enemy.
Power can manifest in radical ways and can be influenced by those in subordinate positions.
The skills and wisdom employed by black fighters to overcome the powerful white oppressors were remarkable.
The collective efforts of liberation elements were the foundation of the freedom we now cherish as a united nation.
The media also played a significant role during the war by providing timely updates on the progress of the conflict. Broadcasts, particularly those in Mozambique, were effective strategies adopted by freedom fighters to undermine the settlers.
Eloquent speeches by key nationalists like Julius Nyerere provided encouragement and deserve recognition.
African solidarity, vigilance, and technical prowess were critical components in countering the notion that Zimbabwe’s independence came easily or was handed to us on a silver platter.
The persistence of neocolonialism and imperialistic ideologies by the West, driven by their desire to maintain control, is evidence that the white colonisers were prevented from fully exploiting Zimbabwe’s treasures and natural resources.
The attempts by the white minority to reclaim Zimbabwe are nothing more than cheap political ideology.
Their nepotistic imperialism is evident in their use of puppetry strategies to retain control under the guise of democracy.
The media, which has often served as a mouthpiece for neocolonialism in Zimbabwe, played a prominent role during the regime era, which was marked by predicted hardships.
History has repeatedly shown that white men will not stop causing havoc.