Saw this in the D*G’s front page last Sunday (yes it takes me a week to read the Sunday paper):
President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, speaking to 3,000 delegates at a conference…conceded that shortcomings in his land redistribution program contributed to critical food shortages in his country.
You read that and think, oh ho hum, there are some problems there, but if you’re not aware of the particulars of Mugabe’s land reform, you’d have no idea that that statement is roughly equivalent to “Bush concedes shortcomings in Iraq War.” For those who may not know, Mugabe instituted a sort of government-imposed revolution whereby all white farmers were expelled from their land and their property given to black folk. This was in many cases a violent expulsion; imagine the Mafia enforcing affirmative action. Trouble is, the folks who took over the land have no farming experience, so you can imagine that this essentially crippled Zimbabwe’s economy.
Oops. Finally Mugabe is starting to admit the program wasn’t such a great idea.