- When a mob laid siege to Two Trees farm yesterday, sealing
off the property with roadblocks, a carefully planned operation swung into
action to sow terror among the white landowners around Chinhoyi.
- Barely seven hours later, the owner of Two Trees and
19 other farmers had fled, leaving the mobs in complete control of the
area - free to loot the homesteads and assault the black farm workers at
- It was the latest escalation of President Robert Mugabe's
offensive against white farmers, and amounted to the ethnic cleansing of
a swathe of Zimbabwe's most fertile region.
- The mob violence unleashed against whites on the streets
of Chinhoyi 75 miles north-west of Harare, on Tuesday has been spread to
nearby farms - shattering the tightly knit rural community.
- Among those fleeing last night was Les de Jager, the
owner of Two Trees, near Lion's Den, about 30 miles north of Chinhoyi.
He was driving to South Africa.
- Earlier in the day, the mob - with military precision
- had sealed off his farmhouse by felling trees across the road. They seized
tractors and trailers, loaded them with all of Mr de Jager's fertiliser
and drove them away.
- Charl Geldehys, the farm manager, confronted the thieves.
They shot his dog and then opened fire on him, missing narrowly.
- He retreated into the homestead, with his wife, Tertia,
his sick daughter, Maritia, 12, and three-month-old baby girl. Neighbouring
farmers heard Tertia Geldehys sobbing over the radio.
- The family huddled in the homestead with Mr de Jager
for seven hours, listening to the baying mob. Their telephone line was
cut and only the radio link with other farmers saved them from total isolation.
- The siege was broken at 3pm when police finally responded,
accompanied by Peter Chanetsa, the provincial governor. Yet the family's
ordeal was not over.
- They were berated by the squatters, while cameras from
state television rolled to capture every moment of their ritual humiliation.
- Mr Geldehys took his family to a safe house on the outskirts
of Chinhoyi. A friend said: "He's in a very bad way. He's just too
upset to talk to anyone right now."
- The mobs were then joined by hundreds of members of the
youth league of Mr Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party. A general alert was broadcast
to farmers in the Doma-Mhangura area. Hastily packing whatever belongings
were to hand, they pulled out of their homes.
- As they fled, the mobs moved in. One farmer, who asked
not to be named, said: "The squatters went absolutely mad. They stripped
the farmhouses. They looted everything they could."
- Black workers were rounded up and forced to fill tractor
trailers with the looted possessions. Scores were beaten.
- Jenni Williams, of the Commercial Farmers' Union, said:
"Many of the workers have been taken for 're-education'." This
is a Zanu-PF euphemism for the violent intimidation of voters.
- Taking the families of workers into account, perhaps
10,000 blacks lived on the farms that have been evacuated. Their fate,
in an area dominated by Mr Mugabe's mobs, is unclear.
- The panic later spread, once again, to the town of Chinhoyi.
Lomagundi school, which serves the area's white farmers, closed a day early
for the half-term break.
- A bus that would have driven the children to the town
was abandoned. It would have been too easy a target. At the farming town
of Karoi, 70 miles up the road, the Rydings school also closed early as
- When the farmers' union sent a plane over the area north
of Chinhoyi at 3pm, the only figures visible in the lush fields were squatters.
- Those farmers who remained were huddled fearfully inside
their homesteads. None would be named for fear of reprisals. One said:
"They're just waiting for us. Its very hard to restrain feelings of
fear and anger, especially at night." ___
- The Race War Raging in Zimbabwe
- The View From South Africa From Jan Lamprecht email@example.com
- I never thought I'd hear the words I heard on TV tonight.
On the Afrikaans program FOKUS, they showed a lot of film footage about
what is happening in Zimbabwe - and it is BAD.
- Earlier this week, 21 white farmers were thrown in prison.
They were put in prison, mainly because they dared to DEFEND THEMSELVES.
- One was here in South Africa and gave a TV interview
but did so with his back to the cameras so he couldn't be identified.
- They showed film footage of how fields were burned and
homes and barns burned down. They showed cattle that had been stabbed with
spears. The carnage and destruction is amazing.
- We went through an entire war with less destruction than
what one sees now.
- They showed a BLACK commercial farmer (one of the few
that exists), who had his farm BURNT TO THE GROUND. His home was destroyed,
everything. Now here we have an example, of a SUCCESSFUL, black farmer.
But, what happens? Mugabe, leading the rabble and scum, attack black and
white SUCCESS STORIES and destroy them. The black farmer was extremely
angry. He said that all this was just politics so Mugabe could stay in
power. His irrigation pipes had been torn up, and everything he owned was
- The MDC (Movement for Democratic Change) was interviewed
and they said the same: It is all so Mugabe can stay in power.
- Zimbabwe is heading for famine. Crops in all sectors
- I laughed, they showed some "settlers" as they
call the "war veterans". They were boasting that they'd harvested
2 tons of maize and 3 tons some other crop. There were dozens of them working
together. The joke is that a single commercial farmer in Zimbabwe, on average,
produces 200 tons of maize. (And they normally engage in diversified farming
so the maize would not be the only product of the farm).
- They showed too, how black farm workers had lost their
jobs and how they were struggling to survive.
- The chaos and carnage up in Zimbabwe is terrible. It
amazes me that more of this does not hit the press. It is far FAR worse
now than a year ago.
- I watched Professor Moyo, Mugabe's propagandist and Chief
Liar. The dear Professor, excels himself in the number of lies he can tell.
Never, in the history of the human race, has one man, told so many lies,
in such a short period of time. Professor Moyo deserves an Academy Award
for the boldness and the blatancy of the lies he tells.
- Professor Moyo says that the war veterans are peaceful
and it is the white farmers who PROVOKE THEM and cause the violence!! Professor
Moyo says the aim of the Third Chimurenga (war for freedom), is to get
- I was quite stunned by this. The First Chimurenga is
the Matabele Rebellion of 1897. The Second Chimurenga is the "liberation
war" which brought Mugabe to power. So, I am somewhat stunned that
one of Mugabe's Right Hand men is talking of the Third Chimurenga.
- On Fokus, they had a white farmer from Zimbabwe and he
said some things. The most shocking though was when he said that a RACE
WAR is in progress. He explained that whites are constantly attacked everywhere
they go. They cannot even go to shops without coming under attack. But,
as he says, everything they own is there, and dangerous as it is, he must
go back there. The Police do not protect them. The Police act along political
lines and attack blacks and whites who support Mugabe's opposition.
- When asked whether ALL blacks were against the whites,
the farmer said no. He said that the MAJORITY of blacks DO NOT SUPPORT
THIS VIOLENCE. But, the "race issue" is the main issue/guise
under which Mugabe's cronies and hoods act.
- Anyhow, his mention of a RACE WAR in Zimbabwe was pretty
stunning to me. I didn't realise that the violence against whites was this
bad when he described the daily hell they go through.
- Of course, let me remind you that these are the liberal
whites who believed you can co-exist with a communist.
- All this merely confirms what I'm writing in my book,
in which I state, again and again, that RACISM and RACE ISSUES is one of
the disguises of communism. A few work the race issue when in fact the
race issues are not that bad at all. The problem I have, is that the good
blacks, the ones on our side, are normally too docile. They do not match
the violence of their brothers, and so, although they are nice folks, they
don't really help much when our butts are on the line.
- A year ago, I said that one should try to arm the good
guys. But, of course, who are we, and what power do we have? The MDC was
and still is trying to solve this peacefully. They are wasting their time.
I say the MDC, its supporters and the few whites should be armed and they
should fight to drive communism out of that country. But, this is pie in
the sky. It will never happen.
- I just hope that when our turn comes in South Africa
that we are more organised and determined than that lot up there. We have
every reason to be in a much much better situation. I only hope people
wake up. There are odd reports of land occupations occuring in South Africa
but it does not make the news prominently as it should.