Friday, September 11, 2009

(TALKZIMBABWE) US public diplomacy: a tool for domination

US public diplomacy: a tool for domination
Farai Mushayahembe -
Fri, 11 Sep 2009 02:53:00 +0000

DEAR EDITOR - I would like to commend public diplomatic officials in the United States of America for managing to dupe millions of people around the world that their country is the best symbol of democracy in the world.

US propaganda in this century has produced some astounding results with many people failing to see through this country's public propaganda. The idea of dropping "bombs and burgers" in Iraq has gone undetected by many people who think the US provides salvation to poor countries.

I joined the UK Army in 1999 and served in Afghanistan and Iraq. I resigned from the army last year after having seen the disastrous effects of US and UK propaganda about these two countries. I have to admit I went through some indoctrination which made me not understand what was going on around me and what I was fighting for. But, the human mind is very complex. I managed to find out the truth about what exactly was transpiring in these countries; albeit some years after.

The US destroyed the infrastructure of these countries. Some sacred buildings and monuments were destroyed and millions of women and children killed in the so-called War On Terror; in the name of democracy. It is disheartening that in the 21st Century we witness such atrocities.

I did not know that democracy kills people with such impunity. I did not know that democracy did not respect people's shrines and monuments. I did not think that democracy instilled fear and terror in people; and produced untold misery.

As a Zimbabwean, I have to say that I will no longer be used by these two countries to fight a war that has nothing to do with improving my welfare.

The reconstruction of Iraq today is being handled by companies that benefit US politicians; e.g. Dick Cheney's former company Haliburton which got reconstruction deals in the Iraq. In addition to that reconstruction, they are now building symbols of American culture: e.g. Starbucks, MacDonald's and various movie houses showing Hollywood movies. This is not only sad public diplomacy; but is pathetic. You cannot kill a people and replace their sacred monuments with these meaningless structures, at least to the Iraqis and Afghans.

In Zimbabwe, the move is less conspicuous. There are a number of so-called "human rights activists" who have won medals from US institutions. In the last ten years, Zimbabweans have topped the list of awardees in media, human rights and other "democracy related" activities. This is part of an orchestrated onslaught on Zimbabwe - to try and discredit our institutions and our capacity to find solutions to our own problems.

I just hope Zimbabweans will see the irony in receving accolades from people who violate the rights of others and claim to be champions of democracy. I hope Zimbabweans will resist such public diplomacy stunts.
*Farai Mushayahembe is the acronym of a Zimbabwean man who served in the UK army. He is retired from the army and works as a teacher in inner London.

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