Should We Always Oppose Military Coups? 
9 December 2017
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By Dr Masimba Mavaza| 2017 has been a year with a great difference, it has been a year where ZANU PF imploded and almost destroyed itself. It is a year where adults where treated like children in front of the nation and no one said a thing. It was a year where a vice president acted as a lawyer he is not and walked into a police station to release criminals, twice not once. It was a year where none government workers and none executive workers had more powers to fire the executive without remorse. Indeed 2017 have been a very different year and an extra ordinary year.  

it was indeed a year where the president fired his Vice President and he was fired in turn by his handpicked Politburo. It is the year where most senior ZANU PF cadres flip flopped their allegiance in two weeks and betrayed those who trusted them. This was the year when the VP made a thunderous come back with the help of the army and the people. People showed their dislike of the clique which had taken over the government abusing the first lady, it took the courage of the army to step in and restore the Legacy of the president, and that of the freedom It was clear that Zimbabwe’s freedom was watered with the blood of many and that sacrificed blood was being soiled by the so called educated and not the brave ones. The liberation history was being erased in few rallies and those who fought and survived it were being ridiculed daily. The army was pushed to the edge and nobody ever thought that their reaction will bring in some changes.  

The intervention of the army in Zimbabwe was not a coup as we know it. it was a forceful persuasion by the army to have law and order prevail. it was reversing a coup which was perpetrated by the civilians in the executive or around it. The army made it clear that it was targeting the criminals who have usurped the country and its powers, however the master mind to the curtail managed to evade the arms of the law. Some have declared war on the new President this war was declared on twitter. The world. Policy on coups is understandably hostile, with law preventing foreign assistance to governments whose “duly elected head of government is deposed by military coup or decree.” (This law is one reason that U.S. officials are often reluctant to use the word.) The world and the AU have similar anti-coup rules in place. But the Zimbabwean situation took everybody by surprise; the intervention was to the benefit of the public and the public showed by the huge march which was never seen since 1980. Zimbabwe showed its maturity by spilling no blood and reaching a transition which was peaceful. Actually the intervention was so peaceful more than our elections to an extent that people are calling for a peaceful coup every five years instead of elections. 

But is our kneejerk opposition to military coups misplaced?  We can all agree that coups overthrowing democratic governments are never good, but coups restoring order and restoring confidence in people should be applauded. Those who are removed are not expected to be happy, many shed tears and at least it was tears not blood. 

It is true that the very forces that sanctimony comfortably condemns can sometimes be the most effective ally of democracy.” After all, whether or not a leader survives often depends more on the support of those around him than the support of citizens. Zimbabwe becomes the second country in the History of the world to manage a transition without a single crack of fire arm. this is after the Portuguese peaceful coup of 1974. 

In general, coups have been much more likely to lead to a return to elected government since the Cold War.  

“Installing a democratic system is a clear route to establish a legitimate government and to assure international support,” While this could mean the leader will lose power, at least it “affords him the opportunity to negotiate a privileged position in the government, retire with his life and livelihood, or at least survive in exile.” this did not have to happen in Zimbabwe, there was no coup per ser. the army came in to re align the decaying system and to restore the legacy. There was no problem with the army and its other armed forces, there was an unsaid agreement and very few departments faced some punches but not very fatal. it indeed created a gap between the army and some security organisations, but the necked truth is that they will find each other for the goodness of our country. What pushes any action is the national pride and Zimbabwe being a peace loving country the actions mirrored the peace bestowed in each and every Zimbabwean heart. 

In general, though, it is wise for the world to maintain a general bias against supporting coups. The Zimbabwean situation was not a coup and it has shown the world that a change can be effected without blood. 

Zimbabweans have shown that life as God given is indeed important and has to be protected, the changes we are having now in Zimbabwe will go a long way to show the world that we are a people of peace not a people of war. The gun leads to democracy and democracy is protected by the gun. – [email protected] 

5 Replies to “Should We Always Oppose Military Coups? ”

  1. Yes we do not want them there prevented a democratically elected government in 2008 in Zimbabwe from assuming office.

  2. Iwe G40, shut up. ED has just started his first 100 days in Office and has already started signing deals to benefit our beloved country. Just shut your dirty mouth; wait and see.

  3. The author of this article is a boot-licking idiot who should never call himself a Dr at all. To start with the coup plotters are the same people who have been looting the country in unprecedented levels. Bob knew that his time is almost up and wanted a true democratic dispensation, thus his statement that “we must pass on the button to the youth” Now this idiot showers praises to gun totting thugs who went firing bullets to their unarmed perceived rivals, tell us what has changed so far except removing Mugabe by the gun and imposing another ruthless dictator through the gun. Look at his cabinet Ministers, all of them under Mugabe could be serving, and have served him before. Dull author.

  4. 1. Current govt is illegal
    2. Coups must be condemned at all costs
    3. There was a coup in 2008, otherwise people could have got their freedom way back
    4. Coup plotters refused to salute a president without war credentials

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