Senator Jim Inhofe has introduced legislation to repeal the ILLEGAL economic sanctions that the Bush Administration used to destroy the Zimbabwean economy. ZDERA was introduced in December 2001, and unlike landreform, coincides with the collapse of the Zimbabwean currency and trade surplus in 2002.
It put the Zimbabwean government on a credit freeze, and did so outside of the perview of the United Nations. Interestingly, Barack Obama confidant and co-sponsor of ZDERA, came up with a new piece of legislation this year that would extend the economic sanctions against Zimbabwe, called ZTDERA or the Zimbabwe Transition to Democracy and Economic Recovery Act of 2010, S. 3297 of the 111th US Congress (Senate). Also see (TalkZimbabwe) US senator introduces Zimbabwe Sanctions Repeal Act, by Philip Murombedzi, and (NewZimbabwe) Sweden breaks ranks over EU sanctions, Staff Reporter. Also see US Bill to repeal Zimbabwe sanctions by Staff Reporters.
Check out Stephen Gowans' article on these revelations here: US Senator Comes Clean On Zimbabwe Sanctions, reproduced on NewZimbabwe.com here.
From the Senator's page at senate.gov:
INHOFE INTRODUCES ZIMBABWE SANCTIONS REPEAL ACT
Contacts: Jared Young 202-224-5762
Kathryn Junk 202-224-1282
August 5, 2010
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced the Zimbabwe Sanctions Repeal Act of 2010. This new legislation will lift U.S. economic sanctions originally imposed on the African nation of Zimbabwe in 2001, and restore the country’s economy and aide in the nation’s transition to democracy.
In 2001, economic sanctions were imposed against Zimbabwe as a result of President Robert Mugabe’s oppressive leadership and fiscally irresponsible programs that collapsed the economy. These sanctions specifically directed the U.S. to oppose and vote against any extension of loans, credit, or guarantees to the Government of Zimbabwe as well as any debt cancellation or reduction owed by the Government of Zimbabwe to the United States or any international financial institution.
As a result of a 2008 power-sharing agreement engineered by the Southern African Development Community and the United States, Mugabe remains as President, but opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai holds the post of Prime Minister. Under this new government, the Zimbabwe economy is starting to recover and democratic freedoms are reemerging. Repealing the 2001 sanctions will allow the Zimbabwe economy to recover fully and assist in its process of transition to democracy.
“I am pleased that the African nation of Zimbabwe continues to recover under the new power-sharing leadership set by both the United States and the Southern African Development Community,” said Inhofe.
“I commend the efforts of the power-sharing government there as they have reduced inflation and improved GDP and basic government services like medicine, education, and transportation. It is my hope that my legislation will help Zimbabwe return to being called the ‘Breadbasket of Africa’ and continue on the road to democracy.”
Now there is some rewriting of history in this statement. For instance:
In 2001, economic sanctions were imposed against Zimbabwe as a result of President Robert Mugabe’s oppressive leadership and fiscally irresponsible programs that collapsed the economy.
The problem with that statement, is that by late 2001, the economy had not yet collapsed. So there is a temporal dissonance with that statement. The dollar did not collapse, and the trade surplus did not collapse, and tobacco exports did not decline, until the year 2002, when ZDERA put a credit freeze on the Zimbabwean government, as this statement acknowledges. In fact during the year 2001, trade surplus and tobacco exports GREW.
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006
Tobacco (US$ m) 548.8 594.1 434.6 321.3 226.7 203.8 206.9
Trade Deficit (US$) -295.6 -322.5 18.2 108.3 305.2 387.9 231.3
Source: Table 1: Zimbabwe - Key economic indicators, 2000–2007