June 26, 2005

Paul Theroux on Zimbabwe - part 2

From Paul Theroux's Dark Star Safari:

Zimbabwe had a gasoline shortage. The new $500 million Harare International Airport had run out of aviation fuel. No hard currency meant a severe reduction in imported goods. There had been food riots in Harare. The opposition parties had been persecuted by the ruling party's goon squads. The unemployment figure had risen to 75 percent, and visitor numbers had dropped by 70 percent. The irrationality of the president was so well known his accusations had ceased to be quoted in the world's press, except for his maddest utteranceds, such as, "I have a degree in violence." Foreign journalists had been attacked, some seriously injured, and others had been deported for trying to cover stories of intimidation and disruption. Fearing the same fate, under "Occupation" on my entry visa application I wrote "Geography teacher".
Posted by sheila