REPRESENTATION OF ZIMBABWE'S WAR VETERANS SKIRMISHES AND DISILLUSIONMENT IN THE HERALD AND DAILY NEWS
The paper examines the skirmishes and disillusionment among Zimbabwe’s war veterans as represented by The Herald and Daily News newspapers. We discuss the landmark physical and violent skirmishes between the war veterans and the ruling party, ZANU PF on the 18th of February 2016, a development that the paper suggests signalled a significant and unprecedented use of force against the war veterans with dare consequences for ZANU PF, the war veterans’ patron and Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe and the nation at large. We suggest that these skirmishes and the subsequent disillusionment mark a new era in ZANU PF and the nation at large as the war veterans have been the bulwark of the ruling party. The war veterans have largely been used as willing tools by ZANU PF to maintain its dominant hegemony in Zimbabwe. At independence, war veterans were instrumental in the promotion of a one- party state in Zimbabwe and when the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) posed fierce opposition to ZANU PF, they readily aligned themselves with the ruling party. The skirmishes depict the various multi-layered and multi-factioned conflicts which found expression in intra-party conflicts which were extensively covered in the media between February and July, 2016. Using the survey method, the paper compares and analyses how two daily newspapers, The Herald and Daily News have represented the conflicts between and among the war veterans and the ruling party and state. Despite the limitation of only focusing on a five month period and the two dailies, the paper concludes that media framing of the events came to parallel the polarised political environment in Zimbabwe. The Herald was pro-war veterans aligned to Team Lacoste and anti-war veterans linked to Generation 40; while the Daily News was anti-war veterans and Anti-President Robert Mugabe.
|Keywords: Conflict, Factions, G40, Team Lacoste, War Veterans, Media, Framing Analysis|
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