Cover

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Contents

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Introduction

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pp. 1-7

When the Zimbabwean flag was raised officially in the early hours of 18 April 1980, symbolizing the dawn of a new era and the end of a bitter liberation war, who could have imagined then that the crowds cheering their hero—Robert Mugabe—would come to hate him some thirty years...

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1. Authoritarian Control of the Political Arena

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pp. 8-45

Contrary to a view commonly held in the media and by some observers— that there was a sudden turn of events in 2000, supposedly reversing a previous trend toward democratization—the political system set in place at independence and throughout the 1980s was authoritarian in...

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2. Violence as the Cornerstone of Mugabe's Strategy of Political Survival

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pp. 46-79

Violence was crucial for ZANU-PF to secure victory in both the parliamentary elections in June 2000 and the presidential election in March 2002, and once again in the 2008 presidential run-off (although systematic rigging also played a determining role, especially in presidential...

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3. Militant Civil Society and the Emergence of a Credible Opposition

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pp. 80-117

Although some opposition parties existed prior to 1999, none succeeded in breaching the ZANU-PF monopoly. Indeed, the Movement for Democratic Change is ‘‘the first substantive opposition party to emerge [in Zimbabwe] in the last 20 years.’’1 However, the positive legacy...

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4. The Media Battlefield: From Skirmishes to Full-Fledged War

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pp. 118-140

A feeling of freedom flourished when, at Independence, the ZANU-PF government announced its determination to remove the Rhodesian Front regime’s strict state controls on the media. ‘‘Not only will the media be genuinely free in an independent Zimbabwe; they will also be...

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5. The Judiciary: From Resistance to Subjugation

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pp. 141-165

Since Independence the judiciary has often been under attack, including the harassment of individual Supreme Court and High Court judges, some of which was documented by human rights NGOs such as the CCJP and LRF.1 In fact, Mugabe’s regime never really accepted the principle...

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6. The Land ''Reform'' Charade and the Tragedy of Famine

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pp. 166-190

‘‘Land reform’’ is an inappropriate name for a political strategy that has little to do with rural development or the black peasants’ alleged hunger for land. Reclaiming the land has been a mobilization slogan ever since the liberation war,1 and it is now a political weapon against the regime’s

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7. The State Bourgeoisie and the Plunder of the Economy

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pp. 191-220

It is difficult to reconcile Stephen Chan’s recollection of the simple lifestyle in 1980 of Teurai Ropa (Joyce Mujuru) and her husband Rex Nhongo (General Solomon Mujuru)1 and their current position as prominent businesspeople.2 In their own way they exemplify the success...

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8. The International Community and the Crisis in Zimbabwe

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pp. 221-253

The deepening crisis in Zimbabwe became an international issue as early as 2000, both within the region and in terms of Europe/Africa relations. Not only were some of the white farmers who were victims of violence foreigners, with their plight attracting sympathy in the Western press and...

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Conclusion: Chaos Averted or Merely Postponed?

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pp. 254-270

Whether 2008 was a pivotal moment of change for Zimbabwe, signaling the end of the crisis opened by the February 2000 referendum, remains undecided more than one year after the coalition government between ZANU-PF and the two MDCs was sworn in. ...

List of Acronyms

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pp. 271-275

Notes

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pp. 277-328

Index

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pp. 329-333

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Acknowledgments

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p. 335

This book would never had been written without Diana Mitchell’s friendship and support to my research activities in Zimbabwe, her and Brian’s wonderful hospitality, and her careful editing of the draft at various stages of completion. Although I bear responsibility for the ideas...