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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Zimbabwe arms shipment campaign
Author:Larmer, MilesISNI
Periodical:Review of African Political Economy
Geographic terms:Zimbabwe
South Africa
trade unions
civil society
arms trade
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03056240802411198
Abstract:The refusal by Durban (South Africa) dockworkers in April 2008 to unload Chinese arms imports destined for Zimbabwe was an impressive display of solidarity by unionized Africa, one that was supported by wider action by civil society throughout southern Africa and internationally. This display of solidarity did not appear out of nowhere. Rather, it can be understood to reflect a number of underlying processes which are examined in this briefing. The first is a general strengthening of independent civil society movements across the southern African region over the last decade. Second, it was a demonstration of the growing alienation of the South African government from its alliance partners, the South African Communist party (SACP) and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), as well as much of wider civil society. Third, it represented the fruits of strenuous efforts to build regional solidarity amongst trade unions and social movements in solidarity with Zimbabwean counterparts over the last five years. Perhaps most importantly, the action against the shipment exposed the inaccurate though widely-held view that Mugabe's African critics support and are influenced by pro-Western and imperialist positions, and who can therefore be characterized and dismissed as the agents of neocolonialism. Notes. [ASC Leiden abstract]