So the illustrious leader asks the class for an example of a "tragedy".
One little boy stands up and offers: "If my best friend, who lives on a farm, is playing in the field and a war vet comes along and knocks him dead with a log, that would be a tragedy."
"No," says Mugabe," that would be an accident."
A little girl raises her hand: "If a school bus carrying 50 children drove over a cliff, killing everyone inside, that would be a tragedy."
"I'm afraid not," explains the president. "That's what we would call a great loss."
The room goes silent. No other children volunteer. Mugabe searches the room. "Isn't there someone here who can give me an example of a tragedy?"
Finally at the back of the room a small boy raises his hand. In a quiet voice he says: "If a Zimbabwe Air Force jet carrying Mr Mugabe were struck by a missile and blown to smithereens that would be a tragedy."
"Fantastic!" exclaims Mugabe. "That's right. And can you tell me why that would be tragedy?"
"Well," says the boy, "because it certainly wouldn't be a great loss and it probably wouldn't be an accident either."