Who said you can't teach an old dog new tricks?
The saga that is Zimbabwe under dictatorial rule continued apace today, with farcical scenes erupting outside the courthouse where Mugabe's primary political opponent is being tried for treason.
The British High Commissioner, The American Ambassador, and a German diplomat were all prevented from entering the courthouse by Mugabe's riot police; despite the judge making it clear that anyone with an interest in the proceedings could attend.
In one morning, Robert Mugabe became an official dictator; removing the separation between executive and judicial branches of government. He didn't stop there however, four hours after the judge announced that anyone could attend, he passed a new media law which states that only approved journalists can attend trial proceedings.
Who does the approving? why - none other than the state run, Mugabe controlled Media Agency.
Zimbabwe has now hit rock bottom. Economically, socially, internationally, democratically, politically.. a once proud and industrious country (a veritable jewel within the African continent) has been reduced to a Titanic failure; almost singularly by one man - President Robert Mugabe.
The trial however, is made all the more important by the simple fact that if the defendant loses, he'll also lose his life. Treason (much like being a White Farmer) is punishable by death.
Mugabe's grip on Zimbabwe is at once chilling and impressive; he conducts himself in exactly the same way as any other dictator (so lining up nice comparisons with Iraq, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and others) and continues to ride high whilst maintaining his lifestyle at the expense of everyone in his country (cronies aside).
Yet essentially, the western democracies do nothing - of course, they are almost certainly too busy rallying their padres for a jaunt out East - and Mugabe continues to bankrupt and rape Zimbabwe of everything he can lay his hands on.
We *NEED* to sort Zimbabwe out; we owe it to the millions of starving oppressed Zimbabweans, we owe it to those who have invested their lives in the country only to see Mugabe wield his ax and remove them by force, and we owe it to ourselves - to remove with a definite degree of permanence yet another rampantly idiotic man from power.