Saturday, July 26, 2008

Complicit in tyranny

.QPQ's representative to the UN is astonished
that the SA government voted 'no'.

Michael Meadon and I have co-authored an op-ed piece entitled, 'A distressing record of siding with the bad guys'. It was published in the Business Day (Fri 25 July) and concerns South Africa's voting record at the United Nations Security Council. In the article we illustrate how our government has repeatedly sought to block punitive measures against authoritarian regimes - specifically in Burma and Zimbabwe.

Michael first drew attention to SA's lacklustre commitment to democracy and human rights on his blog, Ionian Enchantment. His original argument is over two posts. The first, 'Voting for authoritarianism' condemns the rejection of the draft resolution on Burma (in early 2007) and the second, 'South Africa's shame' is a response to a similar action taken by SA over targeted sanctions towards Robert Mugabe and his ZANU-PF cronies a fortnight ago. The article is a synthesis of these posts as well as some commentary on recent developments in Zim. Of the current negotiations, we write:

As dictatorial regimes seldom give up power voluntarily, there has to be a change in the material circumstances of the dictators themselves for meaningful change to occur. The current Zimbabwean talks hold much promise, but it is unclear whether the results will be either lasting or substantive. There is little to suggest that the mere act of “dialogue” can produce results in the absence of a force that compels the incumbents to cede power.


  1. Unfortunately Business Day is bad at maintaining links - they delete their articles after a while. So maybe you should republish your article here

  2. Thanks, I'll check up on the article in the not-too-distant future and if the link disappears I'll post on the site. Unlike BusDay links, QPQ is not going anywhere...

  3. One wonders if they have not heard of the long tail.

  4. Alleman was right, BDay have removed the link to the article. Not to worry, I have re-published the article on QPQ, 30 July '08.