- This article says that Mugabe is using
deception and is giving young people military training.
- But what is most interesting is an admission
in this article that Russian mercenaries helped Zimbabwe in the war in
- I read a while back that approximately
2 million people have died in the great war in the Congo - and yet this
has hardly received any mention in the media. I warned, some years back
that this could be the "Great African War" - and yet, according
to the media it was a non-event!
- This is becoming very interesting indeed...
- The Financial Gazette - Zimbabwe
- Contrary to claims by Zanu PF that its
national service youths are not receiving military training, the Financial
Gazette this week spoke to some of the graduates of the training programme
who all confirmed that military tactics and political indoctrination were
the key components of the course run by the Border Gezi Centre in Mount
Darwin. The youths said they had been promised jobs in the army and the
police force in exchange for spearheading President Robert Mugabe's violent
campaign to win re-election on March 9 and 10. But the five youths interviewed
on condition of anonymity for their own security said most of them were
not happy with the promises of job offers after the presidential poll.
They said they would have been happier if they had been given the jobs
- Youth Development and Employment Minister
Elliot Manyika last week said the national service youths were not receiving
military training because Zimbabwe was not at war and there was absolutely
no need for such training. He said the army was well placed to defend Zimbabwe.
The government has said the youths are being trained in courses such as
carpentry, agriculture, craftsmanship, bricklaying and other technical
services. But the youths told the Financial Gazette that it was not possible
to have effective training in these disciplines within the short periods
the courses were being run. The courses last between one and three weeks.
- During the training, the youths said
they were divided into groups of about 50 to create psychological bonds
that would enable them to act as a group once deployed in the field. A
substantial amount of time was spent on fitness exercises, followed by
gun-handling and shooting lessons. Those who demonstrated political awareness
in favour of the ruling Zanu PF were made the group leaders, who regularly
interacted with uniformed officers to develop their leadership skills.
The youths said they were also given political lessons on patriotism and
Zimbabwean history, with emphasis being placed on how Zanu PF helped liberate
- The youths denied that Russian mercenaries,
who once helped Zimbabwe in its war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,
had been re-hired to conduct the training. "To be honest, I have not
seen any white man at the centre - not even Health Minister Timothy Stamps,"
one youth said. "All the military aspects of the training have been
conducted by officials from the army and the police."
- The youths also emphasised that the military
training was not offered to everyone. Those suspected of being followers
of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change and those who failed to
demonstrate sufficient support for the ruling party were withdrawn from
the centre. "Although the idea of national youth service is a noble
one, everything that is being done now is for the election. Maybe proper
national youth service will start after the election," another youth
- The youths said their occasional deployment
to do cleaning services in urban areas was an attempt to hoodwink the public
about their real mission. "Nobody needs training to be a sweeper,"
one of the youths said.