The Sunday Mail
Politics, as an existential science, can be characteristically hot, heavy and heady.
In its very extreme form, politics can be similar to religious fundamentalism, where it becomes a matter of life and death.
It is high-octane stuff that can be easily combustible, which is precisely the reason why oft-times politics and violence can be easy bedfellows.
But over the centuries, politicians have sensibly discovered that violence can be an inconvenient political tool since it has the potential to turn into an ungovernable Frankenstein monster capable of devouring even its creator.
Humanity learnt the value of peace through successive world wars — World War 1(1914-1918) and World War 2 (1939-1945) — which cumulatively claimed more than 100 million lives, a human calamity unlike any other seen before in the history of the world, or at least since Noah’s time.
Today, the United Nations — however dysfunctional — now stands as a symbol of the global commitment to pursue peace.
Bishop Lazi, having lived through the country’s painful transition from a British colony to an independent African state, also knows all too well how war, which is a choreographed version of violence, can be unconscionably gory.
Most who live through it do not have the mental fortitude to tell the traumatic tale.
The Bishop’s uncle barely survived it: the affable and voluble cadre who left to join the war was not the same grumpy, intemperate and withdrawn imposter who victoriously returned from the bush.
Whatever he saw, or whatever demons possessed him during his tortuous journey back, he didn’t tell a soul.
Instead, he soaked himself in disproportionate amounts of liquor, which many suspect took him on an early vacation to the grave.
Even his peers, who are still living to today, still carry with them the scars of the brutal and brutish years of Zimbabwe’s birth.
Ironically and unfortunately, today we have a toxic dichotomy where the generation that saw the excesses of violence and war insatiably crave peace, while the current generation of millennials who have relatively lived in peace desperately seek violence.
Stupidly Brave or Bravely Stupid?
The Bishop got quite the hibbie-jibbies from the incendiary rhetoric and sabre-rattling coming out of the MDC’s recent congress in Gweru.
While it is not uncommon to expect a harvest of both sound and fury from a conclave of jabberjaws, the young Nelson Chamisa and his starry-eyed acolytes might be pushing the political envelope a tad too far.
The excitable young politician was quite unequivocal that the MDC would dislodge Zanu-PF from power before the 2023 elections.
He wasn’t even implicit, but very explicit.
“Unenhamo imwe Ngwena; ucharedzwa mudziva. Nda. . . unokurumidza kutorwa nguva isati yasvika. What do I mean? Ndakataura kuti 2023 kure? Why ndiri kuti kure? We must make sure that we have a democratic election in this country as soon as possible. Kana varamba, tonovahwehweredza for that democratic election kuti iitike munyika muno umu,” said Chamisa at the congress.
Argh! Kikikiki. Baba’ngu shava.
I hope that our peace-loving Western diplomats are taking note of the young man’s inveterately inflammatory tongue.
Instinctively, the Bishop asked himself if Chamisa is stupidly brave or bravely stupid.
We have been down this path before.
We saw the same bravado from an equally excitable motley of young politicians (G40) in the year preceding the epoch-making month of November 2017.
And thanks to Professor Jonathan Moyo’s unscientific logic — which presupposes that if you find a tortoise in your backyard, it might be wise to ask whose it is — we now know that such bravado is definitely outsourced.
Moyo’s allegory assumes that the tortoise is an untouchable proxy of an unvanquishable force.
Well, now we all know how that story ended: the tortoise is now hunkered down in a hole somewhere in Kenya, while the unvanquishable force is now sulking his way into the sunset.
Kikikiki. Zimbabwean politics, it seems, is so unkind to puppeteered tortoises.
Quite clearly, an ambitious Chamisa is more than prepared to become the abiding tortoise of neocons (neoconservatives) who now control the White House.
Like Venezuela’s youthful Juan Guaido, he hopes that the US will parachute him to power by collapsing the Zanu-PF Government, which has been stonewalling Uncle Sam’s vaulting ambitions in the country and region.
The signs of this conveniently blossoming romance are quite apparent, from MDC’s reference to their “strong friends” during last year’s campaigns; the MDC manifesto, which ludicrously talks about recognising Israel, especially at a time when South Africa’s governing power, ANC, has since resolved to downgrade its embassy in Jerusalem; to MDC supporters blissfully hoisting the American flag during their demonstrations against the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) last year.
Dear reader, the MDC are free to associate and befriend whomsoever they want, for as long as long as they are not being sweet-talked into using dead bodies of innocent Zimbabweans as stepping stones to State House.
Recently, there was extensive coverage of how some of our fellow countrymen were taught, at a two-day workshop that was held in South Africa (May 10-May 11 2019), how to conveniently sacrifice as many lives as possible to further MDC’s power grab.
One of the workshop’s facilitators, Anthony Reeler, a man who has been known to operate in the shadows, reportedly told the naive gathering: “There is need to break people’s fear and unlock the appetite of total willingness in the people in order to get them out into the streets in numbers.
“No government will shoot, say, 5 000 people without drawing the attention of the UN and the full wrath of the US. If the numbers continue swelling, this will force Government to give in. Pressure will mount from both the regional and international community.”
As shocking as it might seem, this line of thinking is erringly similar to what Chamisa said during the just-ended MDC congress.
“When we start doing what we have to start doing, I know that they will panic and they will start killing people. But you can’t kill all the people, you will die before you kill all the people,” said the impressionable young man.
Well, Bishop Lazarus doesn’t believe in coincidences.
Nor in the fact that messages calling for another blood-letting shutdown, which inundated our social networking platforms last week — ably supported by an unabashed tweet from the US embassy in Zimbabwe cryptically asserting that “Peaceful protest is a human right” — are a mere happenstance.
There is definitely method to the madness. Indeed as many in spycraft would say, the real battle is fought in the shadows.
As a man of the cloth, I can only caution that the Holy Book warns against the futility of violence.
Proverbs 3:31 says, “Do not envy the violent and choose any of their ways”, while Psalms 11:5 preaches that “The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion.”
For non-believers, they must heed the wise words from pastor Evan Mawarire.
“Jeri harinakidze muwinter mukoma. Ndirikuyedza kupedza zvandakasungirwa muna January. Ndichiri musungwa kutaura kudai. Ndinzwireiwo nyasha vadikani,” he quipped recently on his Facebook page.
Of course cold weather and wet dreams are a toxic combo.
Winter is here; we will definitely see how it will all pan out.