Media play up US plot to oust Mugabe


The Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front newspaper, The People’s Voice, called it American madness. But it warned that no Western power was mighty enough to intimidate the heroic people of Zimbabwe.

The Sunday Mirror, the Sunday News, The Herald and the Chronicle all had their say on the alleged plot by the United States to oust President Robert Mugabe.


Full cable:


If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID






2002-08-26 13:55

2011-08-30 01:44


Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.











E.O. 12958: N/A





1.   Under the headline “American madness” the weekly

ZANU-PF house organ “The People’s Voice” (08/25)



“The U.S. Government this week shamelessly went

public about its plans to oust the

democratically elected President of the Republic

of Zimbabwe Robert Gabriel Mugabe, from power.

This American madness has been witnessed in

Cuba, Iraq, Libya, Iran and the Democratic

People’s Republic of Korea among others.

American bureaucrats forget that it is not their

business to choose leaders of the countries of

the world. This is the prerogative of the

peoples of these countries by God’s divine

ruling. In exercising that exclusive

prerogative, the people of Zimbabwe elected

President Mugabe. . . ZANU PF, the government

and people of Zimbabwe will stand up against any

world power and their international network in

defense of the country’s national sovereignty

and independence. No Western power is mighty

enough to intimidate the heroic people of



“British and American citizens must be extremely

worried that their governments have given

themselves the Satanic role of spreading misery

and strife throughout the world. Where other

nations are striving for international progress

and development, the British and American

governments are being retrogressive because of

their selfish and myopic interests. Zimbabwe

and the progressive world in general, will not

stand for that. The sooner the British and

American governments realize that the better.

The world will not tolerate a situation whereby

the British and Americans speak so highly of

people’s democratic will but are quick to punish

the same people when that democracy fails to

yield pre-determined western results. . . Our

government owes its allegiance not to the United

States and Britain but to the people of Zimbabwe

who elected it.”


2.   Under headline “Zimbabwe’s neighbors humiliate

U.S. Assistant Secretary” the pro-government weekly

“The Sunday Mirror” (08/25) carried the following

article on its “Media Focus” column on page 9:


“Not content with blasting Afghanistan’s Tora

Bora mountains to smithereens in search of an

elusive Osama bin Laden, and planning on

ejecting Iraqi strongmen Saddam Hussein from

power, the U.S. has focused its interest on

Zimbabwe. In flagrant violation of the

principle that `none of us can choose who leads

governments or administrations in foreign

countries,’ the U.S. has endeavored to dabble in

the politics of the country with the hope of

instilling its own preferred candidate in the

seat of government. In a humiliating slap in

the face, Botswana, South Africa and Mozambique

have shot down claims by the U.S. Secretary of

State for Africa, Walter Kansteiner, that their

governments had signed up to a U.S. plan to

isolate President Robert Mugabe. . . The snub

America has received from the region has

exploded the myth that it has the influence to

manipulate the political dynamics in the region

in its favor, and with the moral blessing and

active co-operation of the region itself. . .”


3.   Under headline “Zimbabwe is not a colony” the

government-controlled weekly “The Sunday News” (08/25)



“. . .Mr. Walter Kansteiner. . .told the world

that the illegitimate Bush administration has

hatched a plot to topple the elected government

of Zimbabwe. This is not news to most Africans.

The only starling aspect of Mr. Kansteiner’s

utterances is that he actually found such racist

nonsense newsworthy. . . The man either suffers

from a severe strain of amnesia or is hopelessly

addicted to the despicable pastime of political

mischief. His own un-elected boss, President

Bush, is an illegitimate leader who bulldozed

his way to power by manipulating partisan

Supreme Court judges appointed by his Republican

Party. Any serious watchers of international

politics would know that Mr. Bush was elected by

judges whereas President Mugabe has the mandate

of the people of Zimbabwe. . . We owe our

legality, democracy and rule of law to none but

ourselves. . . The confrontational stance

adopted by Washington and London against

Zimbabwe’s land reform program is futile because

the agrarian revolution is irreversible. The

legitimacy of Zimbabwe’s political system is

neither decided by George Bush and Tony Blair

nor by southern Africa’s so-called regional

powers. . . American and British politicians

must be reminded that foreign interference in

the internal affairs of a sovereign country is a

clear violation of international law and norms.

Any Western leader. . .who assumes that he can

use his economic and military muscle to bully

Zimbabweans into reversing the perfectly legal

and morally justifiable land redistribution

program is not being sincere to himself and his

country. Zimbabwe is not a colony and Zimbabwe

is not for sale.”


4.   Under headline “Zimbabwe will not be

intimidated!” the government controlled daily (08/24)

“Chronicle” comments:


“. . .The reason behind (the American) resolve

to see the Zimbabwe government out of office is

that they backed the wrong horse at the last

election, and that the government in power will

not bow down to their evil machinations. The

people of Zimbabwe are more than ready to defend

their sovereignty and will not be intimidated by

statements from people whose only pre-occupation

is protecting the interests of a few white

farmers at the expense of the black majority. .

.Where are the voices of the likes of Amnesty

International and the United Nations? Do the

landless majority of this country not have any

rights? Would somebody know what happened to

the Universal Bill of Rights. . .? It seems

President Mugabe’s only sin is to redistribute

land to fellow blacks, and winning the elections

when the Americans and the British gave him no

chance. The new democracy through the barrel of

a gun will not be tolerated, and the ganging up

against the country only goes to show that

imperialists cannot get over their colonial

paternalism and disdain for African authority. .

. The Americans and the British are still to

deliver on their promise of funding for land

reforms made in 1979. For the record, our

President has delivered a few months after

elections. . . We have not meddled in

Washington’s affairs and in the same spirit we

hope the Americans steer clear of Harare and do

not get caught up in their British cousins’



5.   Under headline “Belligerent U.S. joins Zimbabwe’s

tormentors” the August 24 edition of the government-

controlled daily “Chronicle” carried the following op-

ed by Peter Baka Nyoni:


“After the British, the Europeans and the white

Commonwealth and their attempts to force their

own kind of change in Zimbabwe’s political

landscape over the last eight months without

success, it has now fallen to the Americans to

try their hand too. How frustrating it must be

for little Zimbabwe to prove such a hard nut to

crack for those who live outside it! The

present American government is distinctly

different from the one that preceded it. Bill

Clinton had a human face to him. . . By

contrast, the George W. Bush administration is a

belligerent one. It only understands the

language of war and threats. It has marked

itself out on a mission to exhibit American

power and might as the sole super-power of the

world. . . Zimbabwe this week stands under the

shadow of the most direct and menacing of the

American threats. Where others have failed, the

mighty U.S. is not expected to fail. After all

it is the world’s last Big Brother that we have



“America’s so-called Zimbabwe Democracy and

Economic Recovery Act (ZDERA) has now been upon

us for over six months. Under it we faced a

select range of financial and immigration

sanctions. . . The reality has proved a little

more complicated. Thus the search is on for

other and more effective ways to bring this

stubborn government to its knees. For some

strange and inexplicable reason, the internal

revolt and mass uprising premised on the efforts

of the internal political opposition have so far

come to grief. It is common cause now that the

opposition coalition is hopelessly divided and

ineffectual. Its backbone, in the white farming

community, has now been finally

broken. . . Internally, the opposition is a

lost cause. . . It is this realization that

appears to have pushed the Americans to center

stage in the fight against Zimbabwe. . .”


6.   Under headline “United States spills the beans”

the government-controlled daily “The Herald” (08/24)

published the following editorial on page 8:


“The American government spilled the beans last

week with their revelation that they are working

with some `independent’ journalists in Zimbabwe

to topple the ruling ZANU PF government. We

have always known that the private media in this

country was controlled from Britain and America

and it comes as no surprise that the U. S. is

confirming it. . . The U.S. Assistant Secretary

of State, Mr. Walter Kansteiner has exposed them

for what they really are: shameless turncoats

who are prepared to sell their own country to

the highest bidder. It is indeed a sad chapter

in Zimbabwe’s media history as a new madness has

gripped the privately owned Press. Instead of

being the first line of defense of the country’s

sovereignty, values and dignity, they celebrate

at its denigration and are even players in the

process. . .”





Like it? Share with your friends!

Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *