By Dr Tafataona Mahoso
IN Zimbabwe, the nexus of sanctions, financial warfare (economic drones), demonisation and escape politics from 1999 to date brought not just the exodus of young persons and professionals; it also unleashed a massive and literal trashing of Zimbabwe.
We suffered not just the sabotage activism of foreign sponsored parties and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), but also the deliberate pillaging and degradation of the environment, burying whole cities, parks, lawns and streams in uncollected trash and garbage.
The attitude that this world (Zimbabwe) is not my home, I am just trashing through, became the hallmark of the escape politics and aesthetics of foreign-sponsored ‘change’.
The MDC formations sold British and US visas for cash and selected young persons who made up heart-rending tales of torture and starvation to please the white Anglo-Saxon master who dished out asylum papers.
The display of emptied supermarket shelves became the emblem of sponsored media terror against Zimbabwe, until the African land reclamation movement learned to fight back, saying that supermarket shelves and cold rooms never planted nor harvested tomatoes or potatoes.
“We will fill the emptied shelves and freezers with the new produce of our land revolution.”
And so we have.
And the journey home has gathered pace.
What is still sorely missing is the restoration of the abandoned national currency to provide popular and accessible liquidity.
On the international scene, readers might have seen pictures of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and US First Lady Michelle Obama with Jestina Mukoko in 2010, which pictures might have reminded them of yet another set of pictures in previous years showing former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and her Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Jendayi Fraser with Jenny Williams of Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA).
Jenny Williams and Jestina Mukoko were given prizes under the title, ‘Women of Courage’ and donated to the nation of Zimbabwe as heroines because, in the eyes of the US State Department and the Anglo-Saxon axis it leads, Zimbabweans lacked heroes and heroines and they were incapable of recognising them when they did emerge.
In 2007, another recipient of a US prize, Peta Thorncroft, was interviewed by Violet Gonda of the terror channel called Studio 7 about her feelings after receiving her prize and being given a tour of the US.
She expressed disappointment that the general public in the US did not know about her work and did not know about Zimbabwe and its relations with the US government.
What she did not reveal was that the people of Zimbabwe also did not think she was their heroine.
The whole thing was a contrived media stunt and part of futile US State Department propaganda reflecting the racist nature of the average US intelligence officer who advises the US Government.
Did the pictures elevate Jestina Mukoko or Jenny Williams to heroines?
How the Anglo-Saxon Powers Tried to Erase the Memory of Congo and “Rebirth” it as Zaire
The first Prime Minister of Congo and his political party represented the only legitimate and truly national leadership of the whole country.
The first move the Anglo-Saxon powers made to erase that resurgent nation was to pretend to support Lumumba while cultivating tribalist and regionalist factions and leaders who could be used to create chaos and dismember Congo before rebuilding it under white military leadership.
The second step was the contemptuous and brutal humiliation of Lumumba and his top leaders by the white forces using the cover of the very same United Nations (UN) whose primary mission was supposed to be to secure the national integrity and political coherence of the Congo.
The third step was a series of brutal beatings of Lumumba and his top leaders during transfer by military plane from Leopoldville to Elizabethville, while the prisoners were awaiting execution in Elizabethville and on the way to the murder scene.
The fourth stage was the attempt to erase every trace of Lumumba and his entire leadership after they had been murdered.
This stage consisted of many acts including the following:
l Exhuming the bodies of the three leaders — Patrice Lumumba, Maurice Mpolo and Joseph Okito — from the scene of the murders and the first shallow graves.
l Putting the three decomposing bodies on to a lorry and driving 220 kilometres at night from Elizabethville to Kasenga, a place close to the border with Northern Rhodesia then, now Zambia.
l Borrowing 200 litres of sulphuric acid, some drums, hacksaws and other tools from the giant mining company, Union Miniere, for the purpose of cutting up the bodies into small pieces to fit the drums and dissolve all the flesh in acid.
l Hiding the identities of the white officers and their African helpers who took part in the murders and the burning of the cut up bodies in acid.
Fear of the Zimbabwe Way of Consolidating African Independence
The purpose of the elaborate erasure of all traces of the assassination of Lumumba was to prevent something like what happened in Zimbabwe 19 years after the overthrow of the Congo revolution.
Zimbabwe had the courage to plan and build a system of national shrines and monuments dedicated to making visible the key players in the African revolution which the settlers and their imperialist sponsors had sought to erase through massacres at Chimoio, Nyadzonia, Freedom Camp and all over the region.
The discovery, recovery and reburial of liberation war heroes still goes on in Zimbabwe even 30 years after the war.
This process and all related rituals and ceremonies have helped to consolidate African memory.
Most scholars say that the reluctance to honour and project national heroes such as Dedan Kimathi (Mau-Mau, Kenya), Patrice Lumumba (Congo) and Bambata (South Africa) is not only because of white racist fear of African memory.
It is also because of fear among the reactionary petty elite who feel daily condemned by the images and visions of these African heroes because the petty elites have abandoned or betrayed what the heroic images stand for.
Zimbabwe has done well to create the National Heroes Acre and all the Heroes Acres and monuments we see today.
We need to go further: Write, film and publish the achievements and legacies of our heroes.
If we do not do so, we should not be surprised to find Barack Obama donating a Jenny Williams or Roy Bennett as a replacement for Winnie Mandela or Nahanda Nyakasikana.
The issue is not race.
It is legacy.
Moise Tshombe was an African on the outside and a white settler inside.