Photo ^ from the Independent article Facing intimidation, still they queued all day long:
"In spite of the obstacles being put in their way – and blatant attempts by Robert Mugabe to stuff the ballot boxes – the people of this devastated African country came in their millions to deliver their verdict on his 28-year rule."
In my geography work, Zimbabwe and Algeria were the countries I got to know and love the most, and I've been following Zimbabwe's elections (yesterday, Sat. 3/29/08) on "This Is Zimbabwe" (link on my blogroll) and the like.
Photo, right, of Zimbabweans checking results outside their polling place today, from BBC article "Delay adds to Zimbabwe fraud fears"
The verdict is still out.
Unofficial reports suggest opposition candidates to the dictator Mugabe and his party have won around the country.
Delay in the official reports, however, suggest that Mugabe and his Borg drones ("resistance is futile") will make sure it matters not a whit who actually won.
I am awed that an opposition party even exists in Zimbabwe, given the harsh measures the ruling party deals out. But bravery makes sense in a country where life expectancy averages 35 years and inflation rates stand at 100,000 percent.
In hopes, here's one of my favorite poems, by Welsh poet Sheena Pugh (b.1950):
Sometimes things don't go after all,
from bad to worse. Some years muscadel
faces down frost; green thrives; the crops don't fail,
sometimes a man aims high, and all goes well.
A people sometimes will step back from war;
elect an honest man; decide they care
enough, that they can't leave some stranger poor.
Some men become what they were born for.
Sometimes our best efforts do not go
amiss; sometimes we do as we meant to.
The sun will sometimes melt a field of sorrow
that seemed hard frozen: may it happen for you.
Sometimes things don't go from bad to worse..
...but sometimes they do.
"A people sometimes will... elect an honest man...."
But that doesn't mean he'll get into office. (Even in the USA.)
We shall see.