The Zimbabwean military is still the power behind the world's first "coup-that's-not-a-coup" but where does this leave the nation? Robert Mugabe has been asked to retire but he is treating the request with the same contempt he treated the loss of the election to the MDC in 2008 - he has just said NO!

Mugabe is buying time

Mugabe is hoping the African Union and SADC will declare the military action a coup, thereby rendering the activity anti-constitutional which should lead to intervention by the AU or SADC countries.

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The current Chairperson of SADC is President Zuma of South Africa who has condemned any non-democratic change of government but SADC countries are not all on the same page. Botswana's President Khama has already called for Mugabe to step down peacefully, thereby publicly making his feelings on the matter clear.

Meanwhile back at the ranch

Or in this case, the sprawling Mugabe mansion referred to as "the Blue Roof", it would appear Grace is missing.

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BBC is reporting she is still in Harare yet South African sources insist she is currently in Namibia. A return to South Africa is probably deemed too risky as there is a civil warrant of arrest waiting for Grace Mugabe for assault.

Grace is gone and Robert is still officially President - for now

President of what? A crippled nation that has been systematically destroyed over nearly 4 decades. When Britain handed the keys to Zimbabwe over to Robert Mugabe in the early 1980's the new Zimbabwe Dollar was worth US$1.20.

The nation was almost entirely self-sufficient with the exception of oil supplies. By 2007 the Zimbabwe dollar was hitting the trillion dollar mark against the US$ under the rule of one man (and let's be fair - his Generals). Shops contained matches and cigarettes and almost nothing else! It took longer to count out several million Zimbabwe dollars to pay for your cappuccino than it did to drink it.

Women stood shoulder deep in crocodile infested water, as close to mother hippos as they dared, to fish for their children's dinner. Fishing next to the most dangerous African animal, hoping the hippo would chase away crocodiles -desperation is an inadequate word.

So is this out of the fat and into the fire?

It may well be. The Vice Presidents and Generals propped up Mugabe's reign for a long time.

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VP Mnangagwa is not called "Crocodile" for nothing, after all, he masterminded the annihilation of the Matabele people and ruthlessly beat MDC supporters so badly that the MDC refused to participate in the last elections, fearing too many deaths.

The problem facing the "Crocodile" and his cronies now though, is the reaction of the nation who are expecting change at last. Will they order the military to crush these hopes once they are power?

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Let's hope not.

For now, though, let Zimbabwe rejoice in their freedom from Police harassment and revel in the idea that there may be HOPE again after a brutal and oppressive regime that has lasted longer than Apartheid.

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