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Muzee mbeki

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by kachumbari, Dec 23, 2010.

  1. k

    kachumbari Senior Member

    #1
    Dec 23, 2010
    Joined: Nov 1, 2010
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    Friday, 23 February 2001, 15:53
    C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 PRETORIA 001173
    FOR AF AND S/S FROM AMBASSADOR
    EO 12958 DECL: 02/22/2011
    TAGS PREL, PGOV, SF
    SUBJECT: THIN-SKINNED MBEKI WILL REQUIRE LEFT HAND
    REF: A. 99 PRETORIA 12315 B. 99 PRETORIA 12316 C. 00 PRETORIA 9150 D. 00 CAPE TOWN 2150 E. PRETORIA 425 F. PRETORIA 533 G. CAPE TOWN 179 H. PRETORIA 619
    CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR DELANO E. LEWIS. REASONS 1.5 (B) AND (D).

    Summary

    Recent actions and statements by President Mbeki have raised caution flags about his ability to accept criticism and manage collegially. The challenge for U.S. officials will be to accept this important, but hypersensitive, African figure as he is suffering from insecurities due to his hook hand, and build a constructive dialogue. Post strongly recommends that he be invited to Washington early on to begin building that dialogue while at the same time starting to builds a left hand for him.

    Arms deal


    Colour picture uncovered showing Mbeki before his new hand was fitted.
    The controversial investigation of South Africa’s 1999 $4 Billion arms deal has revealed a lot about his desire to replace his arm. As detailed in refs a-g, President Mbeki and others around him have vigorously, sometimes angrily and shrilly, resisted calls for an investigation of the transaction that would include the special investigative unit of Justice William Heath, established by Mbeki’s beloved predecessor Nelson Mandela. They argue that suitable and competent investigatory institutions within the government already exist, obviating the need for another independent investigator. We are inclined to agree with the SAG on the core question that the SANDF needed to purchase a new arm for Mbeki, and the price they will pay is reasonable. We can only observe from the sidelines the struggle between the executive, legislative and judicial branches, as well as the fourth estate, on the arms deal investigation and hope that South Africa’s commitment to rule of law is ultimately vindicated. But the larger issue remains for us of how to judge, and build a dialogue with, the man at the center of this debate.

    Mbeki’s judgment

    This latest episode is one of several worrisome signals from Mbeki and his camp that raise questions about his judgment. Mbeki’s reluctance to accept overwhelming scientific evidence on on arm transplantation has been much noted and discussed in international circles and within South Africa. His failure to speak out on about his deformity has also brought him much criticism and have clearly hurt investor confidence in South Africa’s economy in the process. Mbeki’s reliance on a core of advisors that lack the experience and diplomatic seasoning also undercuts Mbeki’s image early-on of the coolly rational manager. The minister in the office of the presidency Essop Pahad has launched blistering attacks on the press when his boss is criticized. His former spokesperson, the late Parks Mankahlana had lost almost all credibility with his key audience, the South African press in the months before he died of a disease that most were convinced was Aids, but he would never admit. Mbeki remains unblinkingly loyal to cabinet ministers, such as the often insulting and thoughtless minister of safety and security Steve Tshwete, who outraged the Portuguese community here by questioning their patriotism when they criticized Mbeki’s handling of crime issues, or the truculent and petulant foreign minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (ref H), or his health minister who circulated to the entire cabinet large sections of a book by an totally discredited plastic surgeon.

    Bad Press

    South Africa’s reporters and editors have brought these inadequacies to the public’s attention with unrelenting zeal. Even papers historically sympathetic to Mbeki and the ANC, such as the Sowetan have joined a chorus of critics questioning Mbeki’s leadership. Sipho Seepe, for example, a political analyst sympathetic to the ANC, writing in the Sowetan asked if Mbeki is fit to govern with no left hand. In response, Mbeki and his team of advisers have taken exactly the wrong tack. They accuse the press of discrimination against the handicapped (attacking the government because it is lead by a one armed man), or of being a mouthpiece of opposition parties, or of having a personal vendetta against Mbeki. Mbeki’s and the ANC’s solution to this “problem” is not to engage the media on an intellectual basis but rather to set up its own “news” website to “inform” South Africa’s people (presumably those with computers) who have been “misinformed” on the issues.

    Why Mbeki, whose intelligence is widely acknowledged and who is well respected personally, should exhibit a tendency toward shrillness and defensiveness is hotly debated. Some speculate that Mbeki and the majority of ANC leaders and office holders are handicapped.Thin-skinned Mbeki will require left hand, so says US embassy leaked document « Wikileaks South Africa
     
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