Rumor had it that a certain white foreigner who used to go out with young Swazi woman had a pistol. When the boyfriend went abroad, news reached the ANC underground operatives in the area that he had left his pistol with her. And so the leaders of the ANC underground in Swaziland, Thabo Mbeki and Albert Dhlomo, instructed their most trusted cadre, Jacob Zuma, to get the gun. The plan, they told Zuma, was for him to woo her, get close to her and then find ways of acquiring the weapon through his seductive prowess with theft as a fall back position.
Even though “the woman was not beautiful as Zuma would recall, he followed the orders and proposed to her”. Within days, Zuma had charmed his way into her heart. Now as her lover he could freely ask her about her ex-boyfriend and his prized pistol.
The boyfriend had indeed left the gun with her, she told her new lover. But, to Zuma’s horror, she had also sold it just two days before he asked her about it.
Inculcated with modern warfare’s, military strategists of all times like author of the Chinese classic-The art of war –sun-tzu, great army commanders like Yamamoto,
T.E Lawrence,Shaka,Zulu,Genghis Khan,Napoleon Collin Powel and many others would have failed Chilembwe’s war strategy. Firstly, he allowed emotion to run his independence effort. Secondly his was a much localized activity; there was multi-factional or tribal jealousy, leadership rivalry and so many negative factors. But I do give John Chilembwe credit for clearly expressing discontent with the increasingly restrictive rule imposed on his country by the colonial power.
If people are living in terrible conditions for whatever reason, they become desperate and desperate people will risk everything in a fight. Already defeated by circumstances, they have nothing to loose.