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CAPE TOWN, South Africa – It’s official now – dictator Robert Mugabe has announced formally that a famine has come to Zimbabwe.
The famine is a direct result of Mugabe’s henchmen seizing all of the nation’s white and Indian-owned farms and businesses.
“Mugabe is blaming drought, but neighboring nations like Botswana are far drier and have not announced any drought conditions,” Zimbabwean farmer Casey Dunn told WorldNetDaily. Dunn has fled Zimbabwe to Mozambique, where displaced white farmers are being welcomed.
“Mugabe is following land-reform patterns carried out in nations like North Korea. And the world knows about the famine there.”
Cathy Buckle, a white Zimbabwean farmer and activist, told WorldNetDaily last week that her own farm had been seized by Mugabe’s thugs.
“Last Saturday morning, a war veteran named Wind, accompanied by a bunch of young men, arrived on my farm in the morning. He gave my tenants and their young children two days to get off the farm and out of the house as he says it now belongs to him. Wind then went over the road and issued a verbal eviction order to my neighbors and then to the family living in their cottage,” Buckle said.
“These eviction orders were all non-negotiable and backed up by threats of violence. One of the threats was to throw a 4-year-old deaf child into a silage pit. Wind and his men then went to the houses of all the people who live and work on these farms. All the men, women and children were also ordered out. Wind closed the trading store on my farm and said it was now his. He ordered that all the dairy cows on one of the farms and all the laying hens on the other farm were not to be moved as they now belong to him.”
Several Zimbabweans interviewed by WorldNetDaily said that Mugabe’s henchmen were cutting off one leg of each of the cattle on white-owned farms and locking horses in corrals before lighting the corrals on fire. Even the black rhino reserve has been overrun by Mugabe’s men.
Buckle told WorldNetDaily that Wind ordered all the agricultural equipment be left behind, including a tractor and plough, borehole motors, feed tins, water pipes, wheelbarrows, drums of fuel, rakes, shovels, etc. Buckle said that Zimbabwean police were informed but said they could not get involved since it was political.
“I went out to my neighbors and tried to help them pack. Driving toward the farmhouse gate, I was met by Wind. He was wearing orange overalls, a brown leather belt, a big hat and carried a large Zimbabwe flag on a pole in his back pocket. At his side was a thin dog, and a number of youths were hanging around, many with shaven heads and wearing Ray Ban sunglasses. I had phoned ahead, so a friendly face was waiting at the gate for me and I drove in rapidly before Wind and his helpers could get in,” Buckle reported.
“There were no friendly, barking dogs to meet me as usual; they had been put to sleep the evening before because there will be no room for them in the tiny cottage the owners are moving to. Inside the house was utter chaos. The contents of a 22-year life on this farm were strewn everywhere. Boxes and crates were filled, curtains taken down, pictures removed from walls, furniture moved outside onto the lawn. Everything was done in haste and all under the watchful gaze of Wind and his men.
“Throughout the packing and loading they patrolled up and down the driveway, leaned against the gate, climbed trees and just stared. When we were finally done and the removal truck was loaded, we all sat on the front step of the little porch and looked for one last time out onto the farm. We shared a cup of coffee out of the only things not packed – a cracked plastic cup and a chipped china mug without a handle. There was not much to say that didn’t include swear words.”
Buckle was despondent in describing her emotional state during this event.
“For me, there were a million memories of happy days, lunch parties, fat cattle at the feed tins, burning firebreaks together under the pine trees, glossy starlings at the bird bath. … For the owners, there were just silent tears. For them this is the end. They are too old to start again anywhere else. They had invested their life in this farm, which is not even designated for government acquisition. They have been forced to just walk out and let a bunch of thugs move into their home,” she said.
“There is no money, no compensation, nothing – just get out or else. When we were ready to leave, Wind was waiting at the gate. Bored louts lolled against the fence and trees down the driveway and we all thanked God we got out alive. There had been no time to harvest the vegetables in the garden or bananas dripping from the trees; there had been no time to dig up treasured plants from the flower beds.”
Buckle said that the tenants on her farm had a much more torrid time.
“Wind and his men supervised the loading of their furniture. At one point, he barricaded them in for some hours and later changed the lock on the gate so they couldn’t get back in to collect the last load,” she told WorldNetDaily.
“They demanded all the keys to my house, dairy, workers’ houses and the trading store. Wind and his men are now living in my house, lying in my bath, sitting on my veranda. My tenants have lost their home and livelihood. I have lost the farm it took a decade to pay for and establish and the rent I was getting, which was my only income. In an article I wrote for a local newspaper about the events of last weekend I pointed out the immediate results of Wind’s actions: 63 people are now homeless, 28 adults and 35 children. Because of these evictions, Zimbabwe is immediately deprived of 110 dozen eggs a week, 1,500 liters of milk a week and 1,000 kilograms of beef a week.”
Buckle said that Wind and his cronies had only a few comfortable days on her farm.
“They had nice hot baths and listened to their radio at a very loud volume until Wednesday when they ran the borehole dry and burnt out the electric motor. They sent a message to me saying that as I was still the owner of the farm I should pay for the borehole motor to be repaired, as they could not survive without water. My response to their demand was short, explosive and consisted of two words which I cannot repeat.”
Buckle also told WorldNetDaily that other horrors from Zimbabwe this week, include a woman in her fifties who “was beheaded by government supporters in front of her two daughters.”
Buckle told WorldNetDaily of the difficulties she experienced while reporting the seizure of her farm to the local Mugabe-appointed authorities.
“Last week, I finally managed to get in to see a senior local government official to advise him that three unknown men were now living in my house, had broken the borehole and that the situation was completely out of control. I explained politely that as the government had not served me with any acquisition papers at all, I was extremely worried about assets which may now be being destroyed such as geysers, water fittings, fitted cupboards and other items,” she said.
“The ‘official’ got extremely angry with me and gave me a very long lecture about the history of Zimbabwe and said the reason the country was now in this state was due to ‘you people’ who have made concerted efforts to ‘demonize Zimbabwe’ and ‘tell lies to the world.’ Some of the things this ‘official’ said to me were extremely offensive and absolutely shocking, particularly coming from a civil servant. The official told me that in order to have my property valued I must go to another government department, fill in forms and hand over the title deeds. When this has been done, government valuers will go in and then compensation would be paid at some future date.”
Buckle explained that throughout the “interview” she was “polite and courteous and did not raise my voice or lose my temper and had expected a similar response from a man whose salary is paid by my taxes.”
Buckle said there have been dozens of similar cases in the past two weeks.
“While this goes on the food supply situation is continuing to deteriorate,” she said.
Indeed, the Sunday Times of South Africa reported this week that 4 million people in southern Africa are starving and that representatives of nations in the area will be meeting this month with United Nations agencies to try to hammer out a solution. The paper reports that Zimbabwe is among the three nations hardest hit by famine.