Thursday, November 22, 2007

(HERALD) Imperialism driven by propaganda

Imperialism driven by propaganda
By Reason Wafawarova in Sydney, Australia

TODAY we are in the era of terrorism, tyranny, dictatorships, rule of law, democracy and human rights — terms oft defined in a rigid and doctrinal manner by the Western ruling elite through their powerful media mouthpieces. Imperialism is inherently an unjust enterprise and those presiding over its crude existence are quite clear that there is no moral justification for their endeavours and for a long time they have resorted to creating any moral pretext their media houses can sell, in order to ensure the continued flow of imperialist capital and the maximisation of unjust profit.

While imperialist regimes embarked on perfidious and slanderous propaganda against socialism and communism as ideologies deriving an existence from the power of indoctrination, especially during the Cold War — the reality of the matter is that the Western communities themselves rank among the most indoctrinated peoples of this world.

Take for example the kind of opposition in Zimbabwe, the MDC in the mind of any ordinary Westerner, who day after day is bombarded by this media image of an all-democratic, holy and civilised group of well-meaning Zimbabweans — all at the mercy of a ruthless and murderous dictatorship literally wanted by no one in Zimbabwe except the cronies of President Mugabe.

What a miracle if this were true!

So determined are the Western media in their MDC image creation commitments that this writer was once portrayed as a ruthless murderer and evil man by one journalist who took great exception to an article by this writer titled "MDC leaders must not mislead youths" published by The Herald (March 28 2007).

The quoted offending words from this piece were, "Without Western media sympathy and biased coverage; stripped of the propaganda against President Mugabe and the Government, along with lies of alleged stuffing of ballot boxes, the MDC is an outfit of thugs, snivelling donor mongers, mercenaries and political opportunists led by a treacherous lapdog figurehead personified by Morgan Tsvangirai."

That this piece came after the March 11 Highfield skirmishes made the attacks against this writer more vicious but now we are all told who the thugs in the MDC are, who the donor mongers are, who the mercenaries are and also who the political opportunists are — all told to the world by bona fide members of the MDC, indeed high ranking officials, particularly those whose positions are under the threat of Tsvangirai’s tsunami-like powers.

All Zimbabweans now know very well what kind of a political party the MDC is, not least those enlisted as its leadership and supporters. Not only are many people now aware of the democratic shortcomings of the MDC and its apparent inherent violent tendencies — they are also quite alive to the fact that giving Zimbabwe’s leadership to the MDC, particularly to Tsvangirai, would be akin to entrusting one’s one and only car to a bunch of unlicensed intoxicated teenagers.

Well, the Western media naturally has no business reporting on the nonsense that the Lucia Matibenga sacking from the MDC Women’s Assembly is. Neither do they have any media space for the circus happening in the so-called MDC UK and Ireland province.

They did not have much space for the October 2005 split, did they? Any balanced reporting on this kind of madness in the MDC would be counterproductive to the perfect image of Tony Blair’s political project as created by the Western media on behalf of the US-led imperial authority.

The question is; why is it necessary for imperialist powers to embark on this crusade of misinformation, if one were to be more charitable with words? The answer is simple according to Dave Holmes, an Australian socialist writer. Holmes argues that imperialism deliberately creates absolute meanings for terms in as much as it creates absolute positions for its opponents — all in order to brainwash the unsuspecting public as well as to strengthen its repressive apparatus both at home and abroad.

Imperialism’s war on terror for example, is in reality the post Cold War ideological justification of the ruling imperialist classes for attacking the so-called Third World as well as establishing fear-driven control of the populations in the imperialists’ own backyards.

Indeed terrorist acts such as September 11 and the Madrid bombings should be condemned without reservation, especially if the attackers’ calculation is to intimidate the West or to arouse the Moslem world into a struggle. Such a calculation is obviously insane and so is the enterprise as a whole.

However, the fact that this enterprise is insane does not erase a stronger fact that the phenomenon of anti-Western terrorism arose as a result of Western domination of weaker nation states, ironically aided by Washington’s previous intimate relationships with today’s "terrorists".

In fact, at whatever rate and from any number of angles, Washington’s "war on terror" is just ludicrous. It is a media created war with no context whatsoever — of course except to try and force it down our throats that anti-Western Islamic terrorists are simply evil incarnate.

For the Western media, terrorism only ever applies to others; by definition the West does not use terror. No, the invasion of Iraq cannot be seen as terrorism, the 2006 murderous bombing of southern Lebanon by Israel at the instruction of Washington cannot be seen as terrorism and the Allied air campaign against German cities in World War II cannot be seen as terrorism. By definition terror victims can only be Westerners or their allies.

When Jonas Savimbi and Afonso Dhlakama were killing civilians in Angola and Mozambique respectively, Ronald Reagan was busy telling the world that they were freedom fighters and even inviting them to White House.

Of course, poor African villagers voting for communist Jose dos Santos and Samora Machel could not pass for victims of terror. They "deserved" it and the perpetrators could only be freedom fighters.

This is the dogmatic and pugnacious doctrine of imperialism that is well-drilled into the masses of this world by the power of the Western media with a view of brainwashing as many as can be reached.

As the singer Bob Marley put it, quoting another source, one can fool some people some of the time but never all the people all of the time. To many of us the opposition to terrorism cannot be in Western media’s absolute terms. The idea of democracy is equally not in Western media’s absolute terms, so isn’t the rule of law, human rights, tyranny, dictatorships and so-called despotic regimes. These are terms whose context can never be ignored.

Why, for example is President Mugabe, the erstwhile West’s best statesman in Africa, all of a sudden demoted to the unenvious role of a tyrant? Why is a clearly fraudulent election that brings Umaru Y’Ardua to power in Nigeria okayed by the West as a "learning curve" while a Sadc endorsed election in Zimbabwe is condemned as stolen and undemocratic?

Why is the killing of opposition activists by Ethiopia’s Meles Zenawi a non-event in the Western media when the same media cries loudest at the sight of a button stick wielding Zimbabwean police officer?

The answers to all these questions are of course in the context in which the chosen terms are used. President Mugabe was the best statesman when he did not temper with imperialist interest in Zimbabwe and when he allowed imperialist investment free reign, even embracing the IMF poison of the so-called economic structural adjustment programmes. So was Nelson Mandela when he forgave those heartless butchers of Soweto and allowed imperialist interests a free reign in South Africa. He is the applauded hero of Africa while President Mugabe has been demoted to a "Hitler of Africa" for repossessing white-held Zimbabwean land for distribution among its rightful owners, the indigenous people of Zimbabwe.

Y’Ardua and his colleagues can steal as many elections as they please as long as they allow Shell free reign in the Niger Delta and as long as they keep shooting those Delta protesters on behalf of imperialists, even executing them like they did with Ken Saro Wiwa. Oh yes, they stuff ballots right in front of the BBC cameras and their election can only be a "learning curve" at worst.

And Zimbabwe’s election can be declared free and fair by the archangel Michael with the endorsement of the Lord Jesus Christ but as long as President Mugabe emerges the winner, the West will declare it stolen and fraudulent. Conversely, Tsvangirai can split his party all he wants — he still must win any election in Zimbabwe otherwise that election cannot be free and fair.

Zenawi can kill all of his political opponents if he so wishes, as long as he remains the ally he is in the US horn of Africa interests. It is in the world’s interest to always have a context when the West uses terms like insurgency, terrorism, dictatorships, rule of law and so and so forth.

Not least among imperialism’s worst indoctrinated are members of the poor countries’ middle class, a class from which a sizeable number of the MDC’s supporters hail. This class provided leadership and followers for the Contras, that anti-revolutionary stooge movement used by imperialism to destroy the Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua.

The same class propped Frederick Chiluba in Zambia and now imperialist forces want to turn around and persecute Chiluba in their vainglorious attempt at hoodwinking the public into a belief that imperialist rulers stand for transparency; actually stooping as low as to allude that Chiluba stole state money to buy designer suits.

How cheap!

Imperialism has taken advantage of virtue, morality, pacifism and even justice to manipulate world opinion in its favour and often it is backed by the might of the West’s military arsenal whenever it faces resistance. In fact imperialism flows like water, eroding all areas of weakness and the resistant rocky areas are left to the mercy of the rule of force, the sworn doctrine of all imperialists.

This is the doctrine in whose context Blair was contemplating invading Zimbabwe and of course if he had been foolish enough to ignore advice and proceed with the invasion, then the Western media would have had a double duty of creating justification for the invasion on one hand and the defeat on the other. This is how imperialism works, driven by the brainwashing power of propaganda.

This writer is of the firm belief that Zimbabwe can stand united and defeat the marauding forces of imperialism if only all of us can work hard to produce for the nation and stop feeding on each other’s suffering.

Together we will overcome.

l Reason Wafawarova is a political writer and can be contacted on

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