In my opening statement and the subsequent discussion, I will present a broad framework to understand and explain Zimbabwe’s foreign policy. In 1985 I published an extended chapter entitled ‘No master, no mortgage, no sale: the foreign policy of Zimbabwe’ (Patel, 1985). It was later updated and expanded (Patel, 1987). The first part of the title was abstracted from official statements, and I believed then and continue to believe that it broadly captures the central character of Zimbabwe’s foreign policy.