The Zimbabwe Crisis : A Response From Senator Orrin Hatch
by M. David Peterson
I plan to leave the peanut gallery comments in the peanut gallery and I ask that you be willing to do the same. This post isn't about differences of political opinions nor is it a post for or against the United States Government, President George W. Bush, and Senator Orrin Hatch. As such I ask you to please set aside your opinions regarding any of the above and instead focus on the content of this letter, which is a response from Senator Orrin Hatch of the United States Senate to an email I sent him regarding the current crisis taking place in Zimbabwe. In this email I asked, in no uncertain terms, what plans, if any, the United States Government has in bringing a stop to the atrocities currently taking place in this country.
In a position of seniority, I think the content of this letter from Senator Hatch, while not an official US Government response, does represent well the current views held by the Senate currently in place. As such there is value in this response in representation as to what, if anything, might take place in regards to physical actions by the US Government and as such I feel is of importance and needs to be brought to the surface. His response(or, more than likely, written by one of his staff members and signed with a signature machine -- but still a proper representation of the views of Senator Hatch none-the-less), is as follows (NOTE: Based on size restrictions this image is more than likely too small to be legible. A larger version of this letter can be viewed here.)
[NOTE: You might notice that this letter is dated as being written during the first part of September. One of the strange anomalies of the US Government is that there mail system is different than the services provided by the US Postal Service. But instead of this meaning better, it actually mean slower. In some cases slower by several magnitudes. I'm not sure of the exact reasoning behind this, but I can state that it tends to mean that any letters you might receive from US Government representatives tend to arrive much later than you would expect. But while the date it was written is almost 2 months back, the content is still very much relavent to the current mindset of the United States Senate in general (currently a Senate who's majority is of the Republican Party, of which Senator Hatch belongs, and of which, I believe, he is still the majority leader, but need to verify this to be certain).]
As many of you may know, Zimbabwe is currently in a state of intense crisis, labeled (I believe by Amnesty International but I need to verify this to be certain) one step away from complete and total genocide. The United Nations recently released a report assessing the current situation, calling for an immediatte end to the current "Slum blitz" taking place. According to this same linked report from the BBC:
"The scale of suffering is immense," it said. About 700,000 people have lost their homes or livelihoods and another 2.4 million people have been affected.
However, and again, according to this same report:
But Zimbabwe said the allegations in the report were "definitely false".
With an ongoing and horrific history of abuse, I feel we can only assume that the response from the Zimbabwe government can not be trusted and that the allegations brought forward by Mrs. Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka, the author of the above linked United Nations report, are true. As such I feel that as an international community we must act on these allegations accordingly and we must do so swiftly and with much urgency in mind.
In the United States tomorrow is the day we head back to the polls to place our votes regarding various positions up for reelection and ballot measures of importance to our individual state and local governments. While this is an off year election every election is an important one and should not be overlooked or set aside as anything else. As such, please take the time to vote tommorrow if you are currently registered as such in any district in the United States.
Again, I plan to keep comments specific to this letter to myself. As such, I don't plan an attempt to make any "political pursuasion" speaches. However, I can state that when it comes time to vote again for positions in the Congress and Senate of the US Government as well as in the next Presidential election the candidates in which I plan to place my vote for are candidates who have been willing to stand up and publicly take a stance against any government, whether that be local US or international governments alike, who opress, murder, or in any way violates the rights of a human being in which they hold positions of power over. If you are an individual who plans to run for Congress, Senate, or for President of the United States and my vote is important to you (I am currently registered in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States) then you may want to keep this in mind if you are desirous to sway my vote in your direction.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. Our response as an international voice is an important one. I hope we are able to make that response soon.
[NOTE: For more details as to why the topic of Zimbabwe and its current state of affairs are important to me that go beyond the obvious, please see this post from my personal blog.]
Thanks again for keeping your comments to this post as neutral to the US Government, President George W. Bush, and Senator Orrin Hatch as possible, and instead on the specifics of the content contained in the letter received in response to my concerns from Senator Hatch.