President Robert Mugabe Saturday scorned former US President George Bush’s hostile stance towards his government but thanked current President Donald Trump for defeating an equally “cruel” Hillary Clinton he feared could have tightened the screws on his regime.
The Zimbabwean leader was addressing thousands of party supporters who thronged his Matebeleland South youth interface rally at Phelandaba stadium in the provincial capital of Gwanda.
President Mugabe labelled as “thieves”, Bush and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair for conniving to topple former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein under the pretext of looking for arms of mass distraction when they in fact wanted to plunder his country’s oil resources.
Under Bush, President Mugabe and some of his lieutenants who included wife, senior military personnel and associated firms, were in 2001 slapped with a targeted travel and trade embargo for rampant rights abuses and undermining democracy.
The so-called Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act which activated the sanctions still subsists to date and has been an overplayed excuse for the blundering Zanu PF led government’s failure to deliver.
But in his comments, President Mugabe appeared puzzled about Trump’s apparent disinterest on Zimbabwean affairs and only reserved comment about the controversial American leader to his election duel with Clinton last year.
“We don’t know much about the new President Trump; some say he is impulsive, he does not think straight. Some say he is crazy, we don’t know,” he said.
“But I personally say, ah, even if he was so crazy, he still did us a favour by getting rid of that other woman (Clinton) who was meant to succeed (former US President Barack Obama).”
President Mugabe described Clinton as cruel, adding that he never worried about Trump’s wild behaviour as was being alleged.
“He did us a lot of good because she was going to bring more sanctions on us with her hatred on the President; very, very vicious hatred she has towards Zimbabwe.
“So, we say, well, we also are children of God and our prayers do pay off and we are doing no wrong to anyone. We are good neighbours to our friends.
“We are working for the cause of our people, a just cause. So, we are not offending anyone and the Lord Almighty I know will justly judge us as being right and assist us in our endeavours.”
In his address, President Mugabe further berated Blair for admitting that he once planned to send troops to dethrone the veteran Zanu PF leader after the 93-year-old led the controversial expropriation of land which was in the hands of white Zimbabweans of British descent.
“He wanted to invade us because of our land, shame on him, shame!” Mugabe said, further describing sanctions also imposed by Europe under Blair’s instigation as “nonsensical”.
“So, these two thieves (Bush and Blair), working together in that illicit way decided to impose sanctions on us,” he said.
“That is our only crime, their thievery.
“To us, it’s another war that the westerners are trying to impose on us thinking that if they do so we will collapse.
“But we have our people who understand us, who supported us yesterday as we fought for our land and we also said fine, these are your (Britain) sanctions but these are also my people.
“You have supported us, supported me and you continue to support the government in spite of the sanctions.”