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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 22, 2008 / 17 Nissan 5768

The dire situation in Zimbabwe

By Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby
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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In retrospect , it was an exercise in naiveté to have imagined that Zimbabwe's brutal strongman, Robert Mugabe, would relinquish power just because he had lost an election. It has been more than three weeks since the March 29 vote in which Mugabe's party, known as ZANU-PF, lost control of the lower house of parliament. Yet official results in the presidential contest between Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai have yet to be released.

There isn't much doubt who won. Public tallies posted at each polling station showed Tsvangirai's party, the Movement for Democratic Change, garnering more than 50 percent of the vote. Were the electoral commission to certify those tallies, it would mean Mugabe's 28 years at the top had come to an end. But the electoral commission, like everything else in Zimbabwe's government, is controlled by ZANU-PF. So there will be no official results until the books have been cooked to Mugabe's satisfaction.

Meanwhile, the regime's thugs have been busy, staging raids against foreign journalists and opposition-party offices, invading farms owned by white Zimbabweans, terrorizing voters in the countryside. US Ambassador James McGee warned last week that Mugabe's goon squads were carrying out "threats, beatings, abductions, burning of homes, and even murder" in areas where the opposition party ran strong. A group of Zimbabwean doctors say they have treated more than 150 people who had been beaten since the election. Hundreds more have been detained, and the MDC says at least two of its workers have been murdered.

Not for the first time, Mugabe is viciously stealing an election, and not for the first time, the international community is doing nothing to stop him. Particularly feckless has been South Africa's president, Thabo Mbeki. More than any other regional leader, he could exert the leverage to force Mugabe to abide by the voters' decision. He has refused to do so. A week after the election, Mbeki insisted there was "a hopeful picture" in Zimbabwe; several days later he held a friendly session with Mugabe, then declared to the world that "there is no crisis in Zimbabwe" - merely a "natural process taking place."

Is it any wonder that Africa is so often thought of as the planet's most miserable continent?

"By failing to come together to denounce Mugabe unequivocally," The Economist concluded, Mbeki and other African leaders "have not only prolonged Zimbabwe's agony; they have damaged the whole of southern Africa, both materially and in terms of Africa's reputation."

Rarely has one man's misrule so horribly wrecked a country. The MDC's David Coltart, a member of Zimbabwe's parliament, surveyed some of the data recently in a study for the Cato Institute in Washington:

In a country once known as Africa's breadbasket, agriculture has been all but destroyed. Manufacturing has collapsed. So has mining - gold production has fallen to its lowest level since 1907, even as world gold prices soar to record highs.

Thanks to ZANU-PF thuggery, 90 percent of foreign tourism to Zimbabwe has evaporated. Insane economic policies have fueled an inflation rate of well over 100,000 percent. Zimbabweans by the millions have fled the country, and 80 percent of those who remain live below the poverty line. Death from disease and malnutrition has exploded. Life expectancy for men in Zimbabwe has fallen to 37 years - 34 years for women.

Mugabe and his loyalists stop at nothing to ensure their grip on power, Coltart writes. As of 2004, an astonishing "90 percent of the MDC members of parliament elected in June 2000 had suffered some human rights violation; 24 percent survived murder attempts, and 42 percent had been tortured."

The government, meanwhile, is now accusing Tsvangirai of treason. State-run media claims he was plotting with Great Britain to overthrow the regime. But the real menace is Mugabe, who was preparing at week's end to receive a 77-ton shipment of Chinese arms, including AK-47 rifles, mortars, rocket-propelled grenades, and more than 3 million rounds of ammunition. What is he planning to do with so much additional firepower? That, Zimbabwe's deputy information minister said, is "none of anybody's business."

On Thursday, a South African government spokesman belatedly acknowledged that the situation in Zimbabwe "is dire." Now maybe he'll say how much more dire it must get before South Africa - or any other country - finally does something about it.

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Jeff Jacoby is a Boston Globe columnist. Comment by clicking here.

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