Movement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai
The Movement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai is a center-left political party and the main opposition party in the House of Assembly of Zimbabwe ahead of the 2018 elections. After the split of the original Movement for Democratic Change in 2005, the MDC–T remains the major opposition faction; the smaller faction is the Movement for Democratic Change – Ncube, or MDC–N, led by Welshman Ncube. The Movement for Democratic Change was founded in 1999 as an opposition party to the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front party led by President Robert Mugabe; the MDC was formed from members of the broad coalition of civic society groups and individuals that campaigned for a "No" vote in the 2000 constitutional referendum, in particular the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions. The party split following the 2005 Senate election, with the main faction headed by the founder leader Morgan Tsvangirai and the other formation headed by Arthur Mutambara. At the Morgan Tsvangirai-led 2006 Congress, Thokozani Khuphe was elected for Vice-President replacing Gibson Sibanda, now part of MDC-M.
The two factions subsequently won a combined majority in the March 2008 parliamentary election. On 3 August 2007 it was reported that two officials of the smaller Arthur Mutambara-led MDC formation had defected to the main Tsvangirai-led Movement for Democratic Change Zimbabwe formation, a week after talks to reunite the two parties had broken down. At a media briefing, former Member of Parliament Silas Mangono and Masvingo Province chairman Shaky Matake announced that they had defected from the Mutambara-led formation. An opinion poll on 27 September 2007 by the Mass Public Opinion Institute of Zimbabwe found that of the 22% of poll respondents who are supporters of the MDC, 21% backed the main MDC formation led Tsvangirai and 1% expressed support for the smaller Mutambara's faction; the poll takers acknowledged the survey was conducted in the rural areas, traditionally a ZANU–PF stronghold, because the majority of the population lives there. It polled 1,202 of eligible voters; the Southern African Development Community mandated South African President Thabo Mbeki to mediate between ZANU-PF and the MDC in April 2007 to create conditions for free and fair elections for the 2008 polls.
Mbeki appointed Sydney Mufamadi, South Africa's Minister of Provincial and Local Government, director-general in the presidency, Frank Chikane, as the main mediators in the talks. All parties agreed to refrain from commenting on the progress of the talks in the media. Due to the media silence, it is difficult to judge the progress of these talks, but both parties have agreed to constitutional amendments and the revision of certain key media and security laws; the MDC faction led by Morgan Tsvangirai threatened to pull out of the talks if the conditions were not created in which free and fair elections can take place. In July and August 2008, the MDC and ZANU–PF entered into negotiations to settle electoral disputes and to reach a compromise; the talks were both mediated by Thabo Mbeki. On 15 September 2008, the leaders of the 14-member Southern African Development Community witnessed the signing of the power-sharing agreement, brokered by Mbeki. At the Rainbow Towers hotel in Harare and Tsvangirai signed the deal to resolve the crisis.
According to the deal, Mugabe will remain president, Tsvangirai will become prime minister, the MDC will control the police, Mugabe's ZANU–PF party will command the Army, Mutambara will become deputy prime minister. Tendai Biti was confirmed as the Finance Minister in the GNU and sworn in on Wednesday 11 November 2009. After months of in-fighting following Tsvangirai's 2013 presidential bid, he was suspended by members of the MDC for "remarkable failure of leadership," during a meeting of the National Council. Tsvangirai was accused of creating a divisive atmosphere within the party. Six other leaders were suspended at the same time, furthering the political split within the MDC. Douglas Mwonzora, a spokesperson for the party and one of the suspended leaders, accused former Finance Minister and MDC general secretary Tendai Biti of helping Mugabe oust Tsvangirai; the MDC-T survived to see Mugabe removed from office in November 2017, but Tsvangirai was afflicted by colon cancer and died on 14 February 2018.
Nelson Chamisa became acting president of the party. Tsvangirai and Mutambara failed to unite on a single MDC candidate for the March 2008 presidential election. Tsvangirai ran for President. In the election, Tsvangirai won 47.9% of the vote according to Zimbabwe Electoral Commission results, ahead of Mugabe's 43.2%, necessitating a run-off because neither candidate won a majority. However, Tsvangirai claimed to have won a narrow first-round majority on 50.3% based on the mandatory posting of votes counted at polling booths. In the simultaneous parliamentary election, both factions contested most seats, with the Tsvangirai faction winning 99 and the Mutambara faction 10, compared with 97 for Zanu PF, 1 independent, leaving 3 vacancies caused by deaths of candidates. On 28 April 2008, the two factions of the MDC announced that they were reuniting, thus enabling them to have a clear parliamentary majority; as of June 2008, the factions had not formally merged. International media reported that MDC members and supporters, including prominent activist Tonderai Ndira, murdered in May, were subjected to arrests and killings during the campaign period for the second round of the election.
On 22 June 2008, Tsvangirai announced at a press conference that he was withdrawing from the run-off against Mugabe, due to be held on 27 June, describing it as a "violent sham" and saying that his supporters risked being killed if th
Socialism is a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership of the means of production and workers' self-management, as well as the political theories and movements associated with them. Social ownership can be citizen ownership of equity. There are many varieties of socialism and there is no single definition encapsulating all of them, with social ownership being the common element shared by its various forms. Socialist systems are divided into market forms. Non-market socialism involves the substitution of factor markets and money with engineering and technical criteria based on calculation performed in-kind, thereby producing an economic mechanism that functions according to different economic laws from those of capitalism. Non-market socialism aims to circumvent the inefficiencies and crises traditionally associated with capital accumulation and the profit system. By contrast, market socialism retains the use of monetary prices, factor markets and in some cases the profit motive, with respect to the operation of owned enterprises and the allocation of capital goods between them.
Profits generated by these firms would be controlled directly by the workforce of each firm, or accrue to society at large in the form of a social dividend. The socialist calculation debate concerns the feasibility and methods of resource allocation for a socialist system. Socialist politics has been both nationalist in orientation. Originating within the socialist movement, social democracy has embraced a mixed economy with a market that includes substantial state intervention in the form of income redistribution, a welfare state. Economic democracy proposes a sort of market socialism where there is more decentralized control of companies, currencies and natural resources; the socialist political movement includes a set of political philosophies that originated in the revolutionary movements of the mid-to-late 18th century and out of concern for the social problems that were associated with capitalism. By the late 19th century, after the work of Karl Marx and his collaborator Friedrich Engels, socialism had come to signify opposition to capitalism and advocacy for a post-capitalist system based on some form of social ownership of the means of production.
By the 1920s, social democracy and communism had become the two dominant political tendencies within the international socialist movement. By this time, socialism emerged as "the most influential secular movement of the twentieth century, worldwide, it is a political ideology, a wide and divided political movement" and while the emergence of the Soviet Union as the world's first nominally socialist state led to socialism's widespread association with the Soviet economic model, some economists and intellectuals argued that in practice the model functioned as a form of state capitalism or a non-planned administrative or command economy. Socialist parties and ideas remain a political force with varying degrees of power and influence on all continents, heading national governments in many countries around the world. Today, some socialists have adopted the causes of other social movements, such as environmentalism and progressivism. In 21st century America, the term socialism, without clear definition, has become a pejorative used by conservatives to taint liberal and progressive policies and public figures.
For Andrew Vincent, "he word ‘socialism’ finds its root in the Latin sociare, which means to combine or to share. The related, more technical term in Roman and medieval law was societas; this latter word could mean companionship and fellowship as well as the more legalistic idea of a consensual contract between freemen". The term "socialism" was created by Henri de Saint-Simon, one of the founders of what would be labelled "utopian socialism". Simon coined the term as a contrast to the liberal doctrine of "individualism", which stressed that people act or should act as if they are in isolation from one another; the original "utopian" socialists condemned liberal individualism for failing to address social concerns during the industrial revolution, including poverty, social oppression and gross inequalities in wealth, thus viewing liberal individualism as degenerating society into supporting selfish egoism that harmed community life through promoting a society based on competition. They presented socialism as an alternative to liberal individualism based on the shared ownership of resources, although their proposals for socialism differed significantly.
Saint-Simon proposed economic planning, scientific administration and the application of modern scientific advancements to the organisation of society. By contrast, Robert Owen proposed the organisation of ownership in cooperatives; the term "socialism" is attributed to Pierre Leroux and to Marie Roch Louis Reybaud in France. The modern definition and usage of "socialism" settled by the 1860s, becoming the predominant term among the group of words "co-operative", "mutualist" and "associationist", used as synonyms; the term "communism" fell out of use during this period, despite earlier distinctions between socialism and communism from the 1840s. An early distinction between socialism and communism was that the former aimed to only socialise production while the latter aimed to socialise both production and consumption. However, M
A massacre is a killing of multiple victims, considered morally unacceptable when perpetrated by a group of political actors against defenseless victims. The word is a loan of a French term for "butchery" or "carnage". There is no objective definition of what constitutes a "massacre". Various international organisations have proposed a formal definition of the term crimes against humanity, which would however include incidents of persecution or abuse that do not result in deaths. Conversely, a "massacre" is not a "crime against humanity". Other terms with overlapping scope include war crime, mass killing, mass murder, extrajudicial killing; the modern definition of massacre as "indiscriminate slaughter, carnage", the subsequent verb of this form, derive from late 16th century Middle French, evolved from Middle French "macacre, macecle" meaning "slaughterhouse, butchery". Further origins are dubious, though may be related to Latin macellum "provisions store, butcher shop"; the Middle French word macecre "butchery, carnage" is first recorded in the late 11th century.
Its primary use remained the context of animal slaughter well into the 18th century. The use of macecre "butchery" of the mass killing of people dates to the 12th century, implying people being "slaughtered like animals"; the term did not imply a large number of victims, e.g. Fénelon in Dialogue des Morts uses l'horride massacre de Blois of the assassination of Henry I, Duke of Guise, while Boileau, Satires XI has L'Europe fut un champ de massacre et d'horreur "Europe was a field of massacre and horror" of the European wars of religion; the French word is loaned into English in the 1580s in the sense "indiscriminate slaughter of a large number of people". It is used in reference to St. Bartholomew's Day massacre in The Massacre at Paris by Christopher Marlow; the term is again used in 1695 for the Sicilian Vespers of 1281, called "that famous Massacre of the French in Sicily" in the English translation of De quattuor monarchiis by Johannes Sleidanus, translating illa memorabilis Gallorum clades per Siciliam, i.e. massacre is here used as the translation of Latin clades "hammering, breaking.
The term's use in historiography was popularized by Gibbon's History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, who used e.g. "massacre of the Latins" of the killing of Roman Catholics in Constantinople in 1182. An early use in the propagandistic portrayal of current events was the "Boston Massacre" of 1770, employed to build support for the American Revolution. A pamphlet with the title A short narrative of the horrid massacre in Boston, perpetrated in the evening of the fifth day of March, 1770, by soldiers of the 29th regiment was printed in Boston still in 1770; the term massacre began to see inflationary use in journalism first half of the 20th century. By the 1970s, it could be used purely metaphorically, of events that do not involve deaths, such as the Saturday Night Massacre—the dismissals and resignations of political appointees during Richard Nixon's Watergate scandal; the term massacre, being a synonym of "butchery, carnage", is by nature hyperbolic or subjective used in partisan descriptions of events.
There is no neutral definition of what constitutes a "massacre" although some authors using the term may lay down general "working definitions" of what they mean by the term. Thus, Robert Melson in the context of the "Hamidian massacres" used a "basic working definition" of "by massacre we shall mean the intentional killing by political actors of a significant number of defenseless people... the motives for massacre need not be rational in order for the killings to be intentional... Mass killings can be carried out for various reasons, including a response to false rumors... political massacre... should be distinguished from criminal or pathological mass killings... as political bodies we of course include the state and its agencies, but nonstate actors..."Similarly, Levene attempts an objective classification of "massacres" throughout history, taking the term to refer to killings carried out by groups using overwhelming force against defenseless victims. He is excepting certain cases of mass executions, requiring that massacres must have the quality of being morally unacceptable.
Democide Disaster Ethnic cleansing Genocide Killing spree List of events named massacres Mass murder Pogrom Tragedy Tragedy War crime
Liberal Democrats (Zimbabwe)
The Liberal Democrats of Zimbabwe was formed in 2015 from South Africa. It is a political party registered in terms of ZEC requirements in Zimbabwe, its ability to contest the next election in Zimbabwe in 2018 is unknown. In 2016 it petitioned the Zimbabwean Embassy in Pretoria over the spending of US$800,000 on Robert Mugabe's birthday when many Zimbabweans were starving; the Liberal Democrats have raised various issues about Zimbabwe including their claim that Mr Mugabe, the President of Zimbabwe and the ruling party ZANU PF in Zimbabwe was being abused and his rights as an elderly person being violated by those close to him who were using him for their personal gains. The Liberal Democrats of Zimbabwe appear to be following hard on the issue of individual rights as enshrined or shown in the website and evidenced by this claim on Mr Mugabe, seen by many as the one violating their rights. In 2017 the Liberal Democrats of Zimbabwe raised a number of issues including the political state of affairs in Zimbabwe through its Chairperson.
The open letter appeared to be lamenting the inability to act by the Zimbabwean people and the lack of coherence in political activities. It made mention of the failures of many political parties including the major opposition parties like the MDCT which has always been seen as the contender to political office; the Liberal Democrats weighed in on the Zimbabwean appointment of the Chief Justice again coming in with views about how Mr Mugabe had been forced to appoint the Chief Justice, not to have been his first choice due to the ZANU PF factional wars. Mr Mugabe at the end of March 2017 appointed Justice Luke Malaba as the Chief Justice replacing Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, at the helm of the country of Zimbabwe's legal system for 17 years and was retiring as he had reached his retirement age, the age of 70 as per the Constitution of Zimbabwe, it would appear Justice Luke Malaba, who at his appointment was 66, would only serve for 4 years and yet many Zimbabweans would have pinned their hopes on the man to change the judiciary having managed some award-winning judgments such as on child marriages.
He had outdone two other more preferable contenders for ZANU PF in the form of Justice Rita Makarau, the country's ZEC Chairperson and Judge Paddington Garwe. The Liberal Democrats partnered with other political parties in South Africa in April 2016 while the country was due to commemorate its 36th independence demanding the diaspora vote; the Liberal Democrats is part of a network of political parties and Civic Society Organisations in South Africa that formed the Zimbabwe Diaspora Vote Coalition to lobby for the Zimbabweans in the diaspora to be allowed to vote in Zimbabwe a country that only allows only government employees to vote from outside Zimbabwe. In 2017 during Zimbabwe's independence day celebration the Liberal Democrats wrote an article in which it spoke about what they think independence means in light of the political situation in Zimbabwe. In this document they sought to explain the difference between freedom. Prior to this document the Liberal Democrats published another opinion piece on which it called on ZImbabweans to wake up to their civic duties and responsibilities.
In that document it spoke about the fallen heroes of Zimbabwean politics from pre-independence to current individuals that are fighting the government of Mr Mugabe. The article highlighted what it viewed as failures by political parties such as MDC-T, tipped to win Zimbabwean elections after it won the elections in 2008 but was cheated out of government by ZANU-PF. In March 2018 the Liberal Democrats approached the Zimbabwean Constitutional Court claiming that the actions on the army in November 2017 were unconstitutional, they further claimed in their court papers that the change in power or government was as a result of that coup and therefore prayed the Zimbabwean Apex Court to declare such actions unconstitutional, the resultant government unconstitutional and therefore not worthy to oversee the forth coming elections in 2018 because it was tainted with illegality and unconstitutionalism. History of Zimbabwe Movement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai
The Soviet Union the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, was a socialist state in Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, its government and economy were centralized; the country was a one-party state, governed by the Communist Party with Moscow as its capital in its largest republic, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Other major urban centres were Leningrad, Minsk, Alma-Ata, Novosibirsk, it spanned over 10,000 kilometres east to west across 11 time zones, over 7,200 kilometres north to south. It had five climate zones: tundra, steppes and mountains; the Soviet Union had its roots in the 1917 October Revolution, when the Bolsheviks, led by Vladimir Lenin, overthrew the Russian Provisional Government which had replaced Tsar Nicholas II during World War I. In 1922, the Soviet Union was formed by a treaty which legalized the unification of the Russian, Transcaucasian and Byelorussian republics that had occurred from 1918. Following Lenin's death in 1924 and a brief power struggle, Joseph Stalin came to power in the mid-1920s.
Stalin committed the state's ideology to Marxism–Leninism and constructed a command economy which led to a period of rapid industrialization and collectivization. During his rule, political paranoia fermented and the Great Purge removed Stalin's opponents within and outside of the party via arbitrary arrests and persecutions of many people, resulting in at least 600,000 deaths. In 1933, a major famine struck the country. Before the start of World War II in 1939, the Soviets signed the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, agreeing to non-aggression with Nazi Germany, after which the USSR invaded Poland on 17 September 1939. In June 1941, Germany broke the pact and invaded the Soviet Union, opening the largest and bloodiest theatre of war in history. Soviet war casualties accounted for the highest proportion of the conflict in the effort of acquiring the upper hand over Axis forces at intense battles such as Stalingrad and Kursk; the territories overtaken by the Red Army became satellite states of the Soviet Union.
The post-war division of Europe into capitalist and communist halves would lead to increased tensions with the United States-led Western Bloc, known as the Cold War. Stalin died in 1953 and was succeeded by Nikita Khrushchev, who in 1956 denounced Stalin and began the de-Stalinization; the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred during Khrushchev's rule, among the many factors that led to his downfall in 1964. In the early 1970s, there was a brief détente of relations with the United States, but tensions resumed with the Soviet–Afghan War in 1979. In 1985, the last Soviet premier, Mikhail Gorbachev, sought to reform and liberalize the economy through his policies of glasnost and perestroika, which caused political instability. In 1989, Soviet satellite states in Eastern Europe overthrew their respective communist governments; as part of an attempt to prevent the country's dissolution due to rising nationalist and separatist movements, a referendum was held in March 1991, boycotted by some republics, that resulted in a majority of participating citizens voting in favor of preserving the union as a renewed federation.
Gorbachev's power was diminished after Russian President Boris Yeltsin's high-profile role in facing down a coup d'état attempted by Communist Party hardliners. In late 1991, Gorbachev resigned and the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union met and formally dissolved the Soviet Union; the remaining 12 constituent republics emerged as independent post-Soviet states, with the Russian Federation—formerly the Russian SFSR—assuming the Soviet Union's rights and obligations and being recognized as the successor state. The Soviet Union was a powerhouse of many significant technological achievements and innovations of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite, the first humans in space and the first probe to land on another planet, Venus; the country had the largest standing military in the world. The Soviet Union was recognized as one of the five nuclear weapons states and possessed the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction, it was a founding permanent member of the United Nations Security Council as well as a member of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the World Federation of Trade Unions and the leading member of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance and the Warsaw Pact.
The word "Soviet" is derived from a Russian word сове́т meaning council, advice, harmony and all deriving from the proto-Slavic verbal stem of vět-iti, related to Slavic věst, English "wise", the root in "ad-vis-or", or the Dutch weten. The word sovietnik means "councillor". A number of organizations in Russian history were called "council". For example, in the Russian Empire the State Council, which functioned from 1810 to 1917, was referred to as a Council of Ministers after the revolt of 1905. During the Georgian Affair, Vladimir Lenin envisioned an expression of Great Russian ethnic chauvinism by Joseph Stalin and his supporters, calling for these nation-states to join Russia as semi-independent parts of a greater union, which he named as the Union of Soviet Republics of Europe and Asia. Stalin resisted the proposal, but accepted it, although with Lenin's agreement changed the name of the newly proposed sta
2008–09 Zimbabwean political negotiations
The 2008–2009 Zimbabwean political negotiations between the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, its small splinter group, the Movement for Democratic Change – Mutambara, the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front were intended to negotiate an end to the partisan violence and human rights violations in Zimbabwe and create a framework for a power-sharing executive government between the two parties. These negotiations followed the 2008 presidential election, in which Mugabe was controversially re-elected, as well as the 2008 parliamentary election, in which the MDC won a majority in the House of Assembly. Preliminary talks to set up conditions for official negotiations began between leading negotiators from both parties on 10 July, on 22 July, the three party leaders met for the first time in Harare to express their support for a negotiated settlement of disputes arising out of the presidential and parliamentary elections. Negotiations between the parties began on 25 July in Pretoria, mediated by South African President Thabo Mbeki.
A final deal was reached on 11 September 2008, providing for Mugabe to remain President while Tsvangirai would become Prime Minister. The deal was signed on 15 September. Mbeki met with Mugabe on 5 July. Although Tsvangirai's MDC organisation was not invited to participate, it declined to do so, reiterating its refusal to recognise Mugabe as President and saying that discussions should take place only in the presence of an AU-appointed mediator. Mbeki expressed hopes that Tsvangirai's party would participate. Patrick Chinamasa stressed that the government was committed to dialogue with both MDC groupings, but said that Tsvangirai had committed "an act of utter disrespect" by failing to appear at the talks. Mutambara stated that the involvement of all parties was necessary. Talks between the parties began in Pretoria on 10 July. ZANU-PF and both MDC groupings were present for the talks, although Tsvangirai said that his group's delegation, led by Biti, was present to explain its conditions for negotiations—which included an end to the violence, the release of MDC prisoners, the appointment of an AU envoy— not to participate in negotiations.
Chamisa described the discussions as "talks about whether to have talks just a consultation". ZANU-PF was represented in the talks by Goche. In a report from the Human Sciences Research Council, a policy group in South Africa, released on 10 July, Peter Kagwanja wrote that violence perpetrated against ZANU-PF by MDC supporters, which he described as having been spontaneous, was becoming more organised, he warned that this increased the possibility of a civil war. Chamisa, denied that the MDC had been responsible for any violence. On 11 July, the MDC said that Gift Mutsvungunu, a party official, had been found dead near Harare on the previous day; the MDC suspected the security forces of responsibility for this killing, the party said that its total number of dead during the violence had reached 113. Chamisa said on 13 July that no agreement had been reached and that the two sides "still have to clear the course for meaningful talks". According to Chamisa, violence against MDC members and supporters was continuing, he said that it was "difficult to engage in meaningful dialogue" under the circumstances.
Zimbabwe's Sunday Mail, reported on the same day that an agreement had been reached on a "working framework" for talks.14 MDC activists, who were being held on charges of violence, were acquitted and released on 14 July, according to the MDC. This followed the death on the same day of a police officer, the key witness against the activists. On 15 July, church leaders in Zimbabwe said that the "will of the people of Zimbabwe was not given authentic expression during these elections" due to the violence, they expressed willingness to assist in making arrangements for the formation of a national unity government. Mugabe launched a food subsidy programme on 16 July, he accused the UK of seeking to control Zimbabwe's resources on this occasion. On 16 July, the pro-MDC Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions condemned the second round and urged the appointment of a prominent AU envoy to assist in mediation. Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga said on 20 July that the two parties had "agreed a framework for negotiation" and that he expected this agreement to be signed in the same week.
According to Odinga, the talks that would follow this agreement would be held in Pretoria and would still be mediated by Mbeki, but with AU and UN supervision. On 20 July, Zimbabwe's Sunday Mail reported that any companies with Western investments would be taken over by Zimbabweans or by "companies from friendly countries those in the Far East" if they acted on Western calls to stop doing business in Zimbabwe. ZANU-PF and both groups of the MDC signed a Memorandum of Understanding outlining a framework for talks on 21 July in Harare. Both Mugabe and Tsvangirai were present to sign the agreement. According to Mbeki, present, the agreement "commits the negotiating parties to an intense program of work to try and finalize negotiations as as possible". Mugabe said that the aim of the talks was to "chart a new way, a n
Botswana the Republic of Botswana, is a landlocked country in Southern Africa. The British protectorate of Bechuanaland, Botswana adopted its new name after becoming independent within the Commonwealth on 30 September 1966. Since it has maintained a tradition of stable representative republic, with a consistent record of uninterrupted democratic elections and the best perceived corruption ranking in Africa since at least 1998, it is Africa's oldest continuous democracy. Botswana is topographically flat, with up to 70 percent of its territory being the Kalahari Desert, it is bordered by South Africa to the south and southeast, Namibia to the west and north, Zimbabwe to the northeast. Its border with Zambia to the north near Kazungula is poorly defined but is, at most, a few hundred metres long. A mid-sized country of just over 2 million people, Botswana is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world. Around 10 percent of the population lives in the capital and largest city, Gaborone.
One of the poorest countries in the world—with a GDP per capita of about US$70 per year in the late 1960s—Botswana has since transformed itself into one of the world's fastest-growing economies. The economy is dominated by mining and tourism. Botswana boasts a GDP per capita of about $18,825 per year as of 2015, one of the highest in Africa, its high gross national income gives the country a high standard of living and the highest Human Development Index of continental Sub-Saharan Africa. Botswana is a member of the African Union, the Southern African Development Community, the Commonwealth of Nations, the United Nations; the country has been among the hardest hit by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Despite the success in programmes to make treatments available to those infected, to educate the populace in general about how to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS, the number of people with AIDS rose from 290,000 in 2005 to 320,000 in 2013; as of 2014, Botswana has the third-highest prevalence rate for HIV/AIDS, with 20% of the population infected.
The country's name means "land of the tswana", referring to the dominant ethnic group in Botswana. The term Batswana was applied to the Tswana, still the case. However, it has come to be used as a demonym for all citizens of Botswana. Many English dictionaries recommend the term Botswanan to refer to people of Botswana. Archaeological digs have shown. Stone tools and fauna remains have shown that all areas of the country were inhabited at least 400,000 years ago. Evidence left by modern humans such as cave paintings are about 73,000 years old; the original inhabitants of southern Africa were the Khoi peoples. Both speak Khoisan languages and hunted and traded over long distances; when cattle were first introduced about 2000 years ago into southern Africa, pastoralism became a major feature of the economy, since the region had large grasslands free of tsetse fly. It is unclear when Bantu-speaking peoples first moved into the country from the north, although AD 600 seems to be a consensus estimate.
In that era, the ancestors of the modern-day Kalanga moved into what is now the north-eastern areas of the country. These proto-Kalanga were connected to states in Zimbabwe as well as to the Mapungubwe state; these states, located outside of current Botswana's borders, appear to have kept massive cattle herds in what is now the Central District—apparently at numbers approaching modern cattle density. This massive cattle-raising complex prospered until 1300 AD or so, seems to have regressed following the collapse of Mapungubwe. During this era, the first Tswana-speaking groups, the Bakgalagadi, moved into the southern areas of the Kalahari. All these various peoples were connected to trade routes that ran via the Limpopo River to the Indian Ocean, trade goods from Asia such as beads made their way to Botswana most in exchange for ivory and rhinoceros horn; the arrival of the ancestors of the Tswana-speakers who came to control the region has yet to be dated precisely. Members of the Bakwena, a chieftaincy under a legendary leader named Kgabo II, made their way into the southern Kalahari by AD 1500, at the latest, his people drove the Bakgalagadi inhabitants west into the desert.
Over the years, several offshoots of the Bakwena moved into adjoining territories. The Bangwaketse occupied areas to the west, while the Bangwato moved northeast into Kalanga areas. Not long afterwards, a Bangwato offshoot known as the Batawana migrated into the Okavango Delta in the 1790s; the first written records relating to modern-day Botswana appear in 1824. What these records show is that the Bangwaketse had become the predominant power in the region. Under the rule of Makaba II, the Bangwaketse kept vast herds of cattle in well-protected desert areas, used their military prowess to raid their neighbors. Other chiefdoms in the area, by this time, had capitals of 10,000 or so and were prosperous; this equilibrium came to end during the Mfecane period, 1823–1843, when a succession of invading peoples from South Africa entered the country. Although the Bangwaketse were able to defeat the invading Bakololo in 1826, over time all the major chiefdoms in Botswana were attacked and impoverished.
The Bakololo and Amandebele raided and took large numbers of cattle and children from the Batswana—most of whom were driven into the desert or sanctuary areas such as hilltops and caves. Only after 1843, when the Amandebele moved into western Zimbabwe, did this threat subside. During th