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Zimbabweans who were arrested during protests over the hike in fuel prices are taken to a court appearance, Harare, Zimbabwe, Jan. 17, 2019 (AP photo by Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi).

The Mask Slips to Reveal the Grim Reality of Mnangagwa’s Zimbabwe

Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019

The military coup that ended the ruinous 37-year rule of Robert Mugabe was greeted with genuine enthusiasm both in Zimbabwe and abroad. Any skepticism of Emmerson Mnangagwa was drowned out by the new president’s calming rhetoric about unity and reconciliation and his commitment to a “new beginning.” It seemed churlish, amid such optimism, to deny the long-suffering people of Zimbabwe their moment of hope.

Yet that spirit has been dashed recently as Mnangagwa’s reforms have been exposed as cosmetic, at best. Instead of a new Zimbabwe, it is the same old state within the narrow parameters imposed by the ruling party, ZANU-PF, with no prospect of any change that might encroach upon its power. ...

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