Skip to comments.White Farmers Reject Mugabe Plea To Return (Zimbabwe)
Posted on 05/21/2005 5:56:38 PM PDT by blam
White farmers reject Mugabe plea to return
By Toby Harnden , Chief Foreign Correspondent
White farmers evicted by Robert Mugabe's government have reacted with contempt to an offer that they should return to Zimbabwe to take part in "joint ventures" with those who brutalised them and stole their land.
Gideon Gono, the governor of the country's central bank, suggested the idea last Thursday as a possible solution to Zimbabwe's economic crisis.
A Zimbabwean woman surveys her devastated maize crop
Greg McMurray, a tobacco farmer who fled Zimbabwe in 2001 and is now a grinder at a factory in Wiltshire, said: "These are empty promises. We have had all the assurances before and then they just turn around and change their minds.
"I had them coming into my garden and threatening my fiancée. Men with a bit of beer in their bellies told me, 'We'll come and burn you and your wife and your house'.
"I would love to go back but the economy's in ruins. The place is a shambles. So many professional people have left. It would need a new regime before most of us would think seriously about going back."
The prospect of a return for white farmers was dangled by Mr Gono, Mr Mugabe's leading economic policy maker, in a rambling three-hour statement in which he also announced a 31 per cent devaluation of the Zimbabwean dollar.
He said: "In order to ensure maximum productivity levels, there is great scope in the country promoting and supporting joint ventures between the new farmers with progressive-minded former operators as well as other new investors, so as to hasten the skills transfer cycle."
During the evictions, some white farmers were murdered and many others were beaten and their families abused. The evictions prompted the collapse of the agriculture sector, the traditional engine of the economy.
Those who took over the farms had no specialist knowledge - and most farmland now lies uncultivated. The machinery has been stolen, buildings have been plundered and the former workers are starving.
Eddie Cross, the economics spokesman for the opposition Movement for Democratic Change - which was heavily defeated by the ruling Zanu-PF party in recent parliamentary elections that were widely condemned as being rigged - said that Mr Gono was desperate.
Mr Cross said: "He's got no power and he can't deliver. The reality is a thousand miles away from everything he says. He wants to regain some credibility with multilateral institutions. He has meetings with the International Monetary Fund and World Bank next month. This is about having something to say to those guys. The only salvation will be a change of government and a return to the rule of law.
"Until then, no one's going to invest here or come back. Who on earth is going to do anything in agriculture when there is such dispute over land ownership? They'd be mad."
While Mr Gono's words could be interpreted as an admission that the land seizure policy pursued by Mr Mugabe - which led to him becoming an international pariah - had failed, they offered little comfort to the dispossessed.
One tobacco and cattle farmer, who was forced off his property by armed squatters in 2000, said: "He can't be serious. My house has been burnt down, my fields destroyed and he wants to invite me back?
"There has to be a proper return to respect for property rights. We need facts, not words and a legal framework. No one's going to go back on the basis of this."
The man, who asked to remain anonymous, is among 1,600 evicted landowners who have stayed in Zimbabwe and are attempting to get compensation.
In 2000, there were 4,500 white farmers. Now only 400 remain on parts of their farms, many having made deals with Mugabe's regime. Thousands of others lost everything and have had to seek help to set themselves up in ventures outside Zimbabwe.
Colin Ransome, of the Zimbabwe Farmers Trust Fund, a Scottish-registered charity, said: "A lot of those who settled in Britain have young families and new jobs. Everyone is very wary. Iron-clad assurances would be needed."
the nyt today had a front page article on the demise of zimbabwe.
whatta laugh! not once did they mention directly the cause of the problems in zimbabwe.
'the nyt today had a front page article on the demise of zimbabwe.
whatta laugh! not once did they mention directly the cause of the problems in zimbabwe.'
What did you expect? Mugabe's one of their heroes.
El Presidente Fox should send poor Mexicans to Zimbabwe. The white farmers were evicted or murdered, and those who took over were either too stupid or too lazy to work the farms.
Send Mugabe some belts to hold up their pants.
What do you suppose will happen next, to any white farmer foolish enough to still be in Zimbabwe? I give even odds they will either be dead or slaves on their former farms for their new masters.
All of this was foretold by Ayn Rand in the greatest novel of the 20th Century- Atlas Shrugged. These idiots in Zimbabwe are clearly looters NOT producers.
"Come back! We didn't mean it! We were just having a little fun, that's all. That whole thing about sending in armed thugs to beat your family and steal your land, well, that was just a joke! What's the matter, can't you take it? Don't have a sense of humour? Why don't you white farmers want to come back? Are you racists?"
mugabe really is a black hitler. you wont see it in the press and even when movies like the interpreter mention it but make mugabe white.
These guys talk like Castro, too. Pity you can't feed your people on hot air.
The term "joint venture" in this makes my skin crawl. The formerly successful farmers bring knowledge and experience. What do Mugabe and his thugs bring to the table? And what is that likely to mean to the workers who used to be paid and who used to eat and who now enjoy neither? Great deal for them, huh? And before anyone says "but it's better than starving," consider that it might not be.
Was Jimmy Carter there?
not the article I mentioned, but same point.
gee I guess Mugabe burned a couple bridges with that kill whitey and take his land thing....huh?
LOL....Mugabe will use em as brains for his own bucks and then use them as fertilizer when the duckets start rolling in........phucm !
They must think whitey is stupid as "merde". Well considering how the liberal media acts in this country, who can blame them?
Good post. These people were robbed, raped, and killed by these thugs... with no international condemnation and barely a mention in the US media. It's a one-way street my friends.
The only white farmers left are the liberal whites that aided Mugbe to take over.. They deserve MORE than will get.. They deserve Zero commpassion..
No surprise here. The savage thugs take over the entire country and turn it into a cesspool.
Oh now you've done it. You've done the MSM's work for them. The evil white farmers were politely asked to come back and they refused. Blacks will starve to death in Zimbabwe and the MSM will label the white farmers as greedy genocidal racists! And all because YOU pointed it out first! (smirk)
Then send them, Nelson Mandela, Koffi Anan and our "Black Caucus" to tell them all once again about bad it was to live with those whites and the evils of Apartheid.
The change was coming but the politicians from other countries had to meddle and have it overnight.
The incentive to work as a slave on their own land for the ones actually dumb enough to go back to Zimbabwe. As in rounding up their families and putting them in some gulag, and then telling the farmers "make this farm produce, or watch us rape and murder your wife and children."
White man seen the big cooking pots and said no thanks.
To the press and the UN, blacks are still an inferior human species, their plight not worthy of comment.
First, bring back Ian Smith.
Yes...these fools went in harvested the white mans crops had a large return. Then when it was their time to step up to the plate to grow crops they all miserably failed. They've also destroyed the land...w/out proper care for the land...the land will not bear any crop/fruit whatsoever. We white folks knew this was coming....how quickly it came.
I feel a rather sinful schadenfreude over this...
If left to it's own devices, Zimbabwe would become Matabeleland again, just like it was when ol' Cecil Rhodes found it in the 1890s, with about 500,000 subsistence-farming population instead of the 15,000,000 it has today.
That's the term that got me too. "Joint venture"???? What in the hell is that????
Hey, whitebread! Get back here and fix our destruction and give us the credit. You owe us.
They have fouled their own nest. The kindest thing the world can do for this nation gripped by the viral infection of collectivism is to not lift a finger to help, let the nation catastrophically collapse inward upon itself, and thoroughly document the ugly aftermath as a lesson for all future aspiring followers of tyrants that promise riches from looting.
they are savages... not even animals to this to each other!!! WARNING it's not for a weak stomach...
We can send Koffi over to run that place! THEN TAKE AWAY THE THIEF'S PASSPORT!!
If this was a script for a movie, we would guess it was a collaboration of Monty Python and Woody Allen. What's heartbreaking is that this stuff is actually happening.
A farmer that had his land stolen from the regime or its thugs would be insane to go back there, and risk thier lives again.
And that's the facts, Jack.
Mugabe is 81.
Close, but not quite. Liberals NEVER pony up their OWN money. They'll just lobby the government to make all of us pony up the money to keep Zimbabwe going, while the MSM will be broadcasting non stop images of the "poor victims of the terrible famine"
Let. Zimbabwe. Starve.
Could you and other progressive-minded Jewish physicists please come back to Germany and work on join ventures with our new Aryan physicists to hasten the skills transfer cycle on your atomic fission projects.
Your friend, Adolf
I the white Zimbabwean farmers are smart enough not to come back until Mugabe and his ilk are hanging by their ankles with piano wire in the center of Harare.
Let them starve.
re: your invitation to return
Dear Mr. Mugabe:
The guy who used to feed your fat a55.
When the UN comes begging for huge shipments of free food for the starving Zimbabs, what we ill we do? Oh, I know, we'll send the food, Mugabe will appropriate it and sell it, then deposit the money in his already huge Swiss bank accounts. We never learn.
ping--I know people who've hired these evicted farmers in the U.S. Some fled at knifepoint with just the shirts on their backs.