Thursday, April 24, 2008

those Chinese soldiers in Zim

From StrategyPage:

(the first part of the article is about the Chinese arms shipment and that Chinese soldiers have been seen in Mutare)...


Beijing has a substantial investment in Zimbabe, including a $1.3 billion contract to open coal mines and three thermal power stations in the Zambezi valley (as well as unpaid debts dating back to the Congo Civil War that started in 1998).

This is not the first time Mugabe has looked east for security assistance. In 1981, he imported 106 North Korean police instructors, who trained a brigade of troops on how to most effectively terrorize Matabeleland. There, the Ndebele minority (18 percent of the population) were hostile to Mugabe, who was a Shona. The Shona and Ndebele had not gotten along, even as they fought for Zimbabwean independence. So Mugabe sent his North Korean trained 5th Brigade to Matabeleland, where thousands of Ndebele died, and everyone else was terrified into submission. The North Koreans took their money and went home.

If China fails to maintain influence over the election results, their political and economic foothold is in danger of evaporating. - Adam Geibel

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