Zimbabwean Future Up in the Air
|MDC leaders have yet to decide whether or not to contest the runoff election that seems likely to happen in Zimbabwe at some point in the future. It is hard to blame them:|
"Pro-government militias have reportedly beaten opposition activists in the past month – killing 20 MDC supporters and displacing some 5,000 families, opposition leaders say. Some top government officials speak openly about the possibility of a power-sharing agreement with the opposition, an unthinkable idea just weeks ago...The best case scenario would be a unity government between MDC and ZANU-PF (excluding Mugabe). Not perfect, but a good first step toward fixing the larger problems in Zimbabwe. Unfortunately, I expect a runoff.
Despite the ongoing violence and the likelihood of massive voter intimidation during a second poll from ZANU-PF and their surrogates, MDC should contest any runoff. They cannot let Mugabe steal this that easily. He's been weakened and more pressure will weaken him more. If there is violence it will draw more international attention to the crisis. There is also the possibility, however unlikely, that MDC wins outright (again).
Now is not the time to sit back and be principled and passive and lose.