Thursday, January 03, 2008

What Words Can't Express

What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?

I'll give the answer to that riddle at the end of the post. For the last almost one week I have been following the news from Kenya. I have been on a roller coaster of emotions that I can't even begin to describe. A friend of mine told me before these elections that Kenya will never be the same again, I scoffed at her but now I agree wholeheartedly. It has been hard for me to do this post, I have started it several times but the right words wouldn't come out.

Basically from what I gather the elections seemed to be going well with the usual hiccups. Then the count began to take longer than expected, and then it was stopped to investigate irregularities. Upon resumption the leader was now the follower; results were announced followed by a shot gun swearing in. One side wasn't taking it down and rose up to demonstrate and the government decided that they were going to put them down with an iron fist

At one point I wanted to accuse and point fingers. At another juncture say that certain people had brought this upon us and if anything happens to them they asked for it, but now the only thing I can ask for is peace.

One thing I am going to say is that alot of the sentiments that led to this state of affairs have been fomenting for a very long time. We have had elections before in Kenya and yes we did have scuffles but for things to get this bad must mean that something was building in the back of people's minds.

What's worse is that tribal relations in Kenya will not be the same again. It is now going to be them vs us mentality for many different tribes for a long time to come.

Anyway I'm not on the ground so there is a limit to what I can say since I am not experiencing things first hand. One thing I can say is that there is no winner in this election, in fact the greatest losers have been the Kenyan people.

All I am hoping for is that most bloggers and readers out there are fine, and that even if you lost property that at least you and your families are safe.

Oh and as for my riddle you might have guessed that the unstoppable force is Raila and the immovable object is Kibaki.

What happens when an unstoppable force meet and immovable object?

They must both yield or there shall be total chaos......

ps: I did see Gathara did post a similar version to this riddle but with a different answer somewhat, I guess great minds think alike.


Dshy said...

I can think of nothing that frustrates and depresses me quite so much as the willing participation of Kenyans in the furtherance of genocide (note I said furtherance of genocide). Whatever a person’s motives, no matter how noble a person’s cause, killing another human being is unacceptable and it’s intolerable. No cause, no context can justify it.

I have just read an sms from Nairobi about widespread rioting and violence in the town centre. This just three hours after I received another sms that some form of normalcy had returned and some folks had even gone to work. How many more unintentional dead will it take before the government intervenes?

toiyoi said...

First i hate murder and any type of death, especially if senseless.

But we also quickly forget, that MOST ( if not all ) the good systems we so much admire, did not just happen. People had to fight for them.

Is it worth fighting for freedom? Were the Mau Mau right in fighting for freedom of their grabbed land? Are there people in Kenya who feel they need freedom?

Is the killing in Kenya senseless? Was the genocide in Rwanda senseless? I have no answers.

Anonymous said...


Kenya chaos and killings continue
Robyn Dixon, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
3:03 AM PST, January 3, 2008
NAIROBI, KENYA -- Kenyan riot police today fired tear gas and water cannons at thousands of opposition protesters waving branches and white cloths, stopping them from marching to a banned rally at a city park.

Defying the police ban, opposition presidential candidate, Raila Odinga, called on his supporters to go ahead with a "million man march," raising fears of a new surge of tribal killing. He accuses President Mwai Kibaki of rigging elections and illegitimately grabbing another five-year term.

But while police succeeded in containing the demonstrators to the slum area of Kibera, home to about a million people, they could not contain their anger. Despite the white cloths, protesters, mainly from the Luo tribe, threatened to keep on killing Kikuyus from President Kibaki's tribe until he steps down.

"We are slaughtering them and we will keep on slaughtering them," said one young protester, Gabriel Okelo, who got up at six and walked nine miles from the outskirts of the city to march in support of Odinga.

As the political violence worsens, tribal fighting and tit-for-tat killings have been going on in Nairobi's slums and in other towns.

Okelo said he killed two people with a machete for the first time Wednesday because "When you are angry, it's easy. If they refuse our president, Raila Odinga to address the rally, it will happen again. We shall slaughter the Kikuyus. It will go on and on and on, in all parts of the country."

The confrontation threatened to deepen Kenya's political crisis and worsen the tribal violence that flared up over the weekend and has so far killed at least 300.

Intense international diplomatic efforts have so far failed to persuade the two to step back from the brink and reach a political settlement.

Kenya's morning newspapers pleaded for compromise, with the Daily Nation and Standard running identical front page banner headlines: "Save Our Beloved Country."

"No grievance and no cause is worth the innocent blood of Kenyan children," said an editorial in the Daily Nation. "We're on the brink of becoming one of Africa's failed states," ran another headline in the newspaper.

Until last week's election, Kenya was a beacon of democracy in Africa. With elections due in Ghana, Zimbabwe and Angola this year, the message Kibaki's administration sends to other African countries about democracy is seen as crucial.

South African Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu flew in to Nairobi today offering to mediate and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was talking to both sides in a bid to find a compromise and avert a slide into tribal warfare. African Union chairman and Ghanian President, John Kufuor, was due to fly into Nairobi today to meet both Kibaki and Odinga.

But so far, neither side is willing to make a meaningful concession in a winner-take-all standoff for the right to rule East Africa's strongest economy.

Even if there was a political settlement there is a question mark over the extent to which Odinga can control his supporters.

One opposition protester, Edward Okoo, 32, said the protesters would not support a power-sharing deal, sentiments echoed by many others yesterday.

"There will be no peace until Raila (Odinga) is president. We voted for our party to lead." "You can't ask for a sheep and you get a goat," chimed in another opposition supporter, David Namale, 39, referring to any power sharing arrangement.

The two political leaders are stalemated: Kibaki insists the election was fair and demands Odinga accept the results; Odinga demands that Kibaki admits he is not the legitimate president or accepts international mediators.

Both have refused a power-sharing deal, seen by the international community as the only speedy way forward in order to avoid more deaths and a slide into more entrenched tribal killing.[/quote]

Juma said...

Over 400years ago William Shakespear wrote:
"It is safer to be what we destroy,
Than by destruction dwell in doughtful joy"
Kenyans are now, and for a longtime to come, live in total fear of each other...your name can be your enemy, for it you are likely to be hacked with a panga.
The gentle Kibaka we have known for over 40 years has turned into a fiend, like Macbeth...and he has a "lady Macbeth" in Lucy.

For we in Tanzania we say POLENI NDUGU ZETU!!!!!!

SisBigBones said...

Aco, I totally feel you on your mixed emotions. I'm too spent right now. All I can say is that TRIBALISM IS WORSE THAN RACISM. I hope we'll openly have this discussion and come up with a lasting solution as a country. Otherwise, the kind of uprising we're seeing will become the norm in our beloved country.

Kenyanchick said...

I'm with you. It's like I said on my blog, "When two elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers."


Aegeus said...

i have nothing more to add. i am tired.

Pea said...

It's been a rollercoaster for everyone. It's so hard when the most I can do from all the way over here is bite my lower lip until it bleeds. I did not know I had this endless supply of tears.

It's a rollercoaster at home, too. First, it's calm, then suddenly, there's violence.

We were almost there. We'd almost overcome the whole "Luo, Kikuyu, circumcised, uncircumcised" nonsense... but we've been taken SO far back by all this and I just hope it does not take another 44 years to recover.

You know what's so crazy? If we're to move on from this drama, then one day, we're going to have to forgive each other.

Only God can save Kenya. May He help us all. Thanks for the comment space.

meerkatmermaid said...

Aco, Must say that being bila words for this maneno is an understatement. I thought I had seen it all, and knew the worst that a Kenyan can do to another. oh so wrong.

Thanks for saying what many people have yet to articulate, that the Kenya we know is no more. Over to our tediously selfish politicians, led by both Kibaki and Raila, thanks for showing us how little you care for wananchi.

Spent. BTW, I'm as far away from home. I feel you on not being able to fully get what is going on there.

joe said...

ACO i haven't been on this site in the longest . You know i am a Kibaki supporter to the very end . The truth of the matter is we have reached the end - we can not continue any further to pretend that we are in one accord .

Those who wish Kenya could go back to being what it was , i am sorry that will never happen.

This is now a zero sum game.If you are not mentally prepared for this get ready and start preparing .Unless ODM backs down things will get worse .

Kibaki is a leopard and if you know how a leopard hunts then you will not be caught unawares.

I wish you and all other bloggers a happy and safe new year .prepare for the worst

Shiroh said...

Anything that does not discuss the issue at hand but is meant to insult the author will be deleted. You can disagree with me without insulting me.