Africa says no to sanctions: Stop strangling Zimbabwe

Oct. 25 Anti-Sanctions Day march in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Over 3,000 Palestinian children have been killed in Gaza by U.S.-made bombs and missiles launched by the U.S.-financed Zionist regime. Gaza and all of Palestine have been under siege for decades, not only by bullets but also by economic sanctions.

Belarus, China, Cuba, Iran, People’s Korea, Nicaragua, the Russian Federation, Venezuela, Yemen, and Zimbabwe have had their economies targeted by U.S. and European banksters for destruction.

In response, the 16-nation Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) designated Oct. 25 as Anti-Sanctions Day. This year, thousands of people marched in Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe, on Oct. 25 to say No! to this economic warfare.

Zimbabwe Vice President Constantino Chiwenga described the damage inflicted on the African country by these sanctions:

“Since 2001, we estimate that Zimbabwe has lost or missed over 150 billion U.S. dollars through frozen assets, trade embargoes, export and investment restrictions from potential bilateral donor support, development loans, the International Monetary Fund and World Bank balance of payment support, and commercial loans.”

Since 15 million people live in Zimbabwe, these sanctions have cost every person living in the African country $10,000. Zimbabwe’s “crime” was for Africans to reclaim their land from the colonial settlers who stole it.

That should have happened in the United States in 1865 following the Civil War. Justice demanded that the plantations be taken over by the Africans who tilled the land and the Indigenous nations that it was stolen from.

Capitalists stopped this from happening because they wanted to exploit Black labor instead. Their descendants are now putting the screws on Zimbabwe and other sanctioned countries.

Solidarity in Brooklyn

In solidarity with Anti-Sanctions Day, the December 12th Movement held a meeting at Sistas’ Place in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. Three members of D12 were in Zimbabwe attending the Anti-Sanctions march and other activities.

Lateefah Carter of D12 chaired the meeting. A BreakThrough News video was shown featuring Rutendo Matinyarare, chairperson of the Zimbabwe Anti-Sanctions Movement (ZASM). Eugene Puryear and Rania Khalek interviewed him.

Matinyarare described how, in its first decade, independent Zimbabwe built 5,700 schools. Zimbabwe was attacked after war veterans who liberated the country started to take over the settler-owned farms.

President George W. Bush — who let Black and poor people drown and starve in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina — issued “targeted sanctions” against Zimbabwe. Bush was joined by what Rutendo Matinyarare called the “Berlin Conference Cabal,” meaning those European countries that divided up Africa in that infamous 1884-1885 meeting.

Colette Pean pointed out that settlers had stolen 86% of Zimbabwe’s land. Despite the sanctions, Zimbabwe has built hydroelectric dams and shared development projects equally among its 10 provinces.

Pean, a December 12th member, said that Zimbabwe has had bumper harvests the last three years. Good news about Africa like this doesn’t find its way into the corporate media.

Roger Wareham of D-12 pointed out how the United States supports Britain, Zimbabwe’s former colonial overlord that called the country “Rhodesia.” The people of Zimbabwe waged a nearly 20-year-long “Chimurenga” liberation war to win their freedom.

The U.S. Senate voted in 1971 to allow imports of chrome from “Rhodesia” in violation of United Nations sanctions against the settler regime. The Senate now helps to impose sanctions on independent Zimbabwe.

Roger Wareham said Zimbabwe is hurt by the “brain drain” of health workers and other skilled people, many of whom work in Britain.

U.S. and other capitalists now want to grab Zimbabwe’s large lithium reserves, vital to making batteries for electric cars. December 12th Movement member Vinson Verdree said Zimbabwe won’t let its lithium be stolen. The country will build a battery plant and other facilities to process the raw material.

Despite the sanctions and the lies in the media, Zimbabwe is moving forward.


Join the Struggle-La Lucha Telegram channel