Since the Elections of 2002 relations between the United States
and Zimbabwe can best be described in one word Chilly.
This Election cycle was tame in comparison to the ones held in 2002 and 2005.
There were rampant reports of intimidation and outright Assault and Murder of Candidates. Even the Independent Media was Muzzled
or outright Co-opted by State Security Forces.
In the Past the ZEC (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) was very quick in releasing
the results. However in this cycle the results were gradually released over a period of a week. Now the Speed of the release
has been taken to the Courts by the Opposition and now the MDC (Movement for Democratic Change) has been accused of trying
to Bribe the ZEC to release the results in a way to show that the MDC had won the whole thing.
Security Forces have been deployed in Harare. What will happen Next?
Who will be the President of Zimbabwe? And will the country slide towards Civil War?
In Recent Days two Americans have been taken into custody by State
Security Forces. One person is Dileepan Sivapathasundaram. He is an Employee of the NDI (National Democratic Institute). His
Specialty was Asssiting Civic Groups and how they can monitor the Electoral Process. It is widely held that there is no legal
standing for his detention. He is currently under the Protection of the US Embassy in Harare.
The Second individual in Question is Barry Bearak. He is a Pulitzer Prize winning Journalist
for the New York Times. He is the Co-Bureau Chief in Johannesburg. He was detained on Thursday Night for Practicing Journalism
without proper accrediation also known as the Zimbabwean Government did not like what he writing. He is still in custody.
The Situation within Zimbabwe is Calm but Tense. There is an Expectation that ZANU-PF
(Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front) will either steal the election or create chaos to cause the Security Forces
to Crackdown so they can remain in Power.
So Much for a Transparent Election.
For More Information about Barry Bearak the New York Times has a Topics Page about him its at: www.nytimes.com
The National Democratic Institute webpage is at www.ndi.org