Sunday, August 18, 2013

Random News Generator- Botswana

The connection to the key country today's rather loose, but let's do this anyway. On July 31st, Zimbabwe held their latest presidential elections. It should surprise nobody to learn that Robert Mugabe won. It should surprise even fewer people than nobody to learn that potential reformist Morgan Tsvangirai, who had wrestled a power-sharing agreement from Mugabe after the last contested election in 2008, was this time completely denied. Because this is Zimbabwe we're talking about, where the concept of free and fair elections is regarded as 'oh, how cute, he thinks we have those'. On Friday, Tsvangirai bowed to the inevitable and dropped his opposition to the result.

Botswana's role in all this is that they got out in front in decrying the election as unfair, running against the grain of much of Africa, which is largely going along to get along, and which is loaded with heads of state who have no business saying anything themselves considering how they got into office. Botswana wouldn't be one of them; their elections are considered fair and the nation stable, with the caveat that the place is such a one-party state that the opposition doesn't have a prayer anyway. Don't tell the Zimbabwean media that, though; their response to Botswana's allegations was headlines such as "Shock As Top Tswana Analyst Says Botswana Elections Worse than Zimbabwe’s", and Mugabe has, as is usual, dismissed the West's complaints as just not understanding Africa.

Mugabe effectively controls the Zimbabwean media, just in case you hadn't guessed.

Today, Botswana backed down from their allegations... according to the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation. They're the only ones I can find who've said such a thing.

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