Zimbabwe may technically be a country at peace, but it is suffering from extraordinary levels political instability, economic dislocation and social upheaval, similar to a war-torn country. This Note suggests that, once Zimbabwe has an acceptable political leadership, donors may need to apply post-conflict recovery strategies. Given the country’s fragility and the narrow window of opportunity a post-Mugabe transition will provide, the United States and the donor community should begin planning for such a response immediately. Formation of a U.S. Committee for Assistance to a Free Zimbabwe could help advance this goal. Letting Zimbabweans know they have not been forgotten and that the world stands ready to help once Robert Mugabe is gone could even hasten that day.
This Note is based on the CGD Working Paper, "The Day After Comrade Bob: Applying Post-Conflict Recovery Lessons to Zimbabwe."