During his life and reign of terror in Zimbabwe, the now dead murderous dictator Robert Mugabe had no shortage of friends in low places. No doubt Cuban dictator Fidel Castro and Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez were happy to welcome their good friend to hell.
With Friends Like These: Tyrants Who Called Mugabe ‘Friend’
The death of Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe aged 95 has come as a relief to freedom fighters around the world. However, many of his fellow tyrants considered him both a friend and ally.
As noted by Breitbart News, Mugabe’s 40-year leadership of the former British colony was “marked with bloodshed, persecution of political opponents, and vote-rigging on an industrial scale.” He also plunged the country, once one of the wealthiest in Africa, into an unprecedented economic disaster so severe that the government was forced to introduce a trillion-dollar note.
As it became clear to Western democracies that Mugabe was not the great colonial liberator he once promised to be, his country faced increasing international and economic isolation. However, Mugabe still managed to build relationships with some of the other most repressive regimes on earth.
With the Castro regime long interested in pursuing relationships with African countries such as South Africa and Angola, Mugabe’s Zimbabwe was also a close ally of the regime. In 2007, state propaganda outlet Granma announced Cuba’s “solidarity with the people and government of Zimbabwe, the support for its struggle in defense of the most sacred and inalienable rights, and the absolute rejection of attempts to isolate that African country.”
Then-Vice President of Zimbabwe Joyce Teurai Ropa Mujuru “wished health and long life to Commander in Chief Fidel Castro, brother of struggles and dreams of President Mugabe.” Mugabe would end up outliving Fidel Castro by nearly three years.
In 2004, the late socialist dictator Hugo Chávez praised Mugabe as a “freedom fighter” during a visit to Caracas, bestowing him with a replica of South American independence hero Simón Bolívar’s sword.
“For you, who like Bolivar, took up arms to liberate your people. For you, who like Bolivar, are and will always be a true freedom fighter,” Chávez said. “He continues, alongside his people, to confront the pretensions of new imperialists.”
In recent years, observers have drawn comparisons of Venezuela and Zimbabwe’s economic predicament, with both countries suffering similar problems such as shortages, hyperinflation, and the shame of having been transformed from prosperous and resource-rich countries to two of the world’s poorest nations.
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