Zimbabwe farmers settle with Hunzvi

Chris Burford cburford at gn.apc.org
Fri Apr 28 16:03:08 PDT 2000

A striking clarification of one of the most important and obvious economic features of the present struggle:

>Farmers are worried that the violence will delay Wednesday's scheduled opening of tobacco auctions and deter foreign buyers, dealing another blow to the country's suffering economy.<

But their pockets most of all!

Besides they hope that Zimbabwe's "suffering" economy will cause Mugabe's party to lose support.

>Zimbabwe is the world's second biggest tobacco exporter after Brazil, and
>the product is the nation's No. 1 source of hard currency.

"Hard currency", which cannot be eaten. Currency in the world of international finance capital, not in the world of survival for the ordinary people of Zimbabwe. Currency to pay for imports of Scotch whisky for the white colonial expatriates.

>But this year,
>the amount of tobacco delivered to the auction floors is down sharply. Work
>grading and packing tobacco has been disrupted by the violent occupations of
>white-owned farms, said officials of the Commercial Farmers Union, which
>represents many of Zimbabwe's white farmers. On Monday, tobacco worth an
>estimated $240,000 was destroyed when mobs torched a tobacco barn in eastern
>Zimbabwe, neighbors said.

That does not sound like an accident but the result of political and economic intelligence.

Besides today, Cook's ultimatum that there will be no more talks at ministerial level if Britain is to hand over 36million pounds worth of reparations until the occupiers leave the white farmlands has been spiked. Dr Chenjerai Hunzvi, the veterans leader has announced an agreement with the white farmers to end violence on condition that the white farm owners allow the occupiers to remain.

Britain ought to pay up.

And if there are suggestions of political irregularities within Zimbabwe

a) Britain should not take advantage of them and fan them,

b) all the more reason to grant the just demands for reparations, and allow the democratic processes to sort themselves out internally.

Just think of the beneficial effects on the real world economy if all that land stopped producing one of humanity's most addictive and most harmful commodities, and was instead used to produce food for the Zimbabwean population.

Chris Burford


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