|Our army mustn’t be questioned|
|Monday, 06 August 2012 00:00|
While the West uses alleged human rights abuses in Zimbabwe by the military as the official basis of their criticism of President Mugabe’s Government, the reality of the matter is that there is a concerted effort to dismantle the country’s patriotic uniformed men and women.
An army that has no political training is dangerous for the integrity of the state and Zimbabwe’s military is quite politically conscious.
It is this political consciousness that riles the West and those who would like to boot President Mugabe out of office.
Addressing the Central Committee of the Zanu-PF party that he leads, President Mugabe recently said, “I want to say here, we stand by our commanders, who have served our country very well . . . they are defenders and protectors of our country, they fought for the freedom and democracy of this country, it’s their product.”
The first call of duty for any properly trained soldier is to defend the sovereignty of his or her country, to safeguard the founding principles that are the basis of the state.
When the white settlers came to Zimbabwe, they recruited other locals in their military, trained them and equipped them with the ideology of protecting Rhodesia and what Rhodesia stood for.
It is well-known that any military person worth his or her salt stands by the pledges of allegiance made at the onset and this is what the Rhodesian military did.
The military is there to protect a country’s territorial integrity, uphold the constitution, maintain peace and act as a deterrent. And this is simply what Zimbabwe’s military is doing today.
The Zimbabwe Defence Forces have taken pledges of allegiance and when they refuse to be part of an illegal regime change agenda, all manner of aspersions are cast on them by people who would like to see them weakened.
When the generals and other military leaders make it clear that they will not tolerate criminally driven political agendas, they are accused of meddling in politics. How absurd!
Further, military personnel have the full rights of citizenship and can hold whatever political views they want, provided these political views do not interfere in their service.
In the face of much provocation from political actors in Zimbabwe, the country’s military has refused to be drawn into action against the citizens, our uniformed men and women have sworn to protect, even when they are insulted and goaded repeatedly.
They professionally remain in their barracks and continue with their operational duties as provided for in the Constitution of Zimbabwe.
Surely, one cannot say that such people are warmongers who are intent on crushing the political opposition!
The calls to “reform” Zimbabwe’s security sector are hinged on political attempts to weaken the military and allow all manner of subversion — and perhaps even treason — to take root in the country as part of the broader illegal regime change agenda.
We have read of how in the past Tony Blair, the former Prime Minister of Britain, entertained ideas of sending a military force to topple President Mugabe and most likely install Morgan Tsvangirai as President.
The UK media reported that he only backed down when his top commander General Sir Guthrie, advised him of Zimbabwe military’s capabilities, especially at a time when Britain was bogged down in the mess in Iraq and Afghanistan.
We would be naïve to think that the security sector “reform” (weakening of the military) being talked of now is divorced from these previous flirtations with ideas of invading Zimbabwe.
What has probably annoyed proponents of illegal/unconstitutional regime change in Zimbabwe is that they thought that the military would lead a revolt against President Mugabe’s Government many years ago when the economy went into decline.
Some will remember US lawmaker Chester Crocker telling his legislators that the only way to separate the people from President Mugabe is to “make the economy scream”.
This was when he was giving motivation for the imposition of US sanctions on Zimbabwe.
The economy did indeed scream, but the military has refused to be drawn into any unconstitutional acts that diverge from the pledges of allegiance that officers and service members took upon attestation.
Through thick and thin, the military has stood firm.
There is a popular saying, “Zimbabwe ndeyeropa”. It means our independence was blood-bought.
The politically aware military is more than conversant with this and they have vowed to continue protecting the principles for which so much blood has already been shed. — The Southern Times.