Back in July, Mugabe declared that white people could no longer own land in Zimbabwe.
Via New York Observer:
Charles Barron famously hosted Zimbabwe’s repressive President Robert Mugabe at City Hall as a freshman councilman in 2002–and said yesterday he would like to repeat the performance in his first term at the state capital.
In an exclusive interview with the Observer, Mr. Barron, who won a Democratic primary for an open Assembly seat last week and is very likely to crush his GOP rival, expressed hope that he could persuade the foreign official to visit Albany.
“I would love for him to come to Albany. I would love for him to come anywhere in the United States, really,” Mr. Barron said in an interview at his former campaign office in East New York, Brooklyn. “I think he’s a shining example of an African leader on the African continent.”New. Critics have argued that Mr. Mugabe uses this policy to reward his political allies.
“He was one of the few African leaders who had the courage to take the land back from the settlers,” said Mr. Barron, comparing him favorably to the late South African leader Nelson Mandela, who he argued allowed whites to retain too much property. [...]
Mr. Barron has long expressed admiration for other Third World military dictators, such as late Libyan leader Muammar el-Quaddafi and former Cuban President Fidel Castro, even as he condemned the United States for supporting the fallen regimes of the Duvalier family in Haiti and General Augusto Pinochet in Chile. All of those rulers drew international condemnation for using violence, intimidation, torture, imprisonment and extrajudicial executions to suppress political dissidence.
“All my heroes were America’s enemies,” Mr. Barron said.
Background on Mugabe sending his goons to forcefully seize white-owned farms:
…From 12 to 13 February 2000, a referendum on constitutional amendments was held. The proposed amendments would have limited future presidents to two terms, but as it was not retroactive, Mugabe could have stood for another two terms. It also would have made his government and military officials immune from prosecution for any illegal acts committed while in office. In addition, it allowed the government to confiscate white-owned land for redistribution to black farmers without compensation. The motion failed with 55% of participants against the referendum.
The referendum had a 20% turnout fuelled by an effective SMS campaign. Mugabe declared that he would “abide by the will of the people”. The vote was a surprise to ZANU-PF, and an embarrassment before parliamentary elections due in mid-April. Almost immediately, self-styled “war veterans”, led by Chenjerai ‘Hitler’ Hunzvi, began invading white-owned farms. Those who did not leave voluntarily were often tortured and sometimes killed. One was forced to drink diesel fuel as a form of torture. On 6 April 2000, Parliament pushed through an amendment, taken word for word from the draft constitution that was rejected by voters, allowing the seizure of white-owned farmlands without due reimbursement or payment.