By Dany Gaaraa | May 24, 2013
My observation on Meles’s failed tactics that he used to try to soften the Amhara opposition to his/Tigrean rule of the Ethiopian Empire:
Failed Tactic # 1: Meles all of a sudden started talking about the so-called “3000 years of Ethiopia history.” Until 2005, TPLF media and its puppy dog OPDO used to mention Ethiopia’s history as only 100 years, that is, since the Menelik invasion. After 2005 election, Meles, in the interviews he gave to one of the media, unashamedly said that Ethiopia has more than 3000 years history. The Amhara elites seemed pleased with the gesture but remained sceptical doubting it as just another fad. For the Amhara elites Meles was the only Ethiopia leader (oops! didn’t they say he can’t be Ethiopia’s leader) who oversaw and helped the secession of Eritrea and made Ethiopia land locked. They vowed not to forgive him until they ‘feast on his flesh as raw meat’ (oh god! this folks love tire siga even that of Meles’s flesh especially his “brainy” brain) so that his body parts will only come out as human excrement sent down the toilet. They hoped his body will never be buried on sacred Ethiopian soil. Unfortunately, his body rested in the most sacred of places with pomp and ceremony. Did we all hear that the entire Ethiopia, even the Amhara elites had wept and cried after his death? In reality, it was all too obvious that Amhara elites like all other Ethiopians would have liked Meles put to the gallows for his war crimes, nonetheless they are relieved that the monster had gone. Read more…
May 20, 2013
Since he ordered kids following their parents to anti-government rallies to be shot and killed, millions in Ethiopia regard him as a very insane man endowed with evil powers to maim and murder the innocent and the defenseless.
Just looking in to his merciless gaze with blank cruelty of a cannibalized warlord sends shivers down the spine of his enemies. Since his master Meles Zenawi died Federal police boss Workneh Gebeyhu has been in sullen and vituperous mood; raging against any opposition to the TPLF. The most feared and hated man in Ethiopia, never seen smiling or talking without angrily raising his fist and punching the air, TPLF warlords see him as an ideal replacement for the self-exiled gun and sex crimes maestro, Bisrat Amare of Columbus Ohio in the US.
The iron lady of murky Tigre politics, former first lady Azeb Mesfin still adores Workneh for his ability to defend the TPLF hierarchy and for the role he played in protecting her late husband Meles Zenawi for more than two decades. Read more…
|Part I||Part II|
By Siegfried Modola
May 17, 2013, HAMAD-ILE, Ethiopia (Reuters) - Abdu Ibrahim Mohammed was 15 years old when he began trekking with caravans of camels to collect salt in a sun-blasted desert basin of north Ethiopia that is one of the hottest places on earth.
Now 51 and retired, he has passed his camels to his son to pursue this centuries-old trade in “white gold” from the Danakil Depression, where rain almost never falls and the average temperature is 94 degrees Fahrenheit (34.4 Celsius).
But the tradition of hacking salt slabs from the earth’s crust and transporting them by camel is changing as a paved road is built across the northern Afar region.
Although the road being cut through the Danakil Depression is making it easier to transport the salt, the region’s fiercely independent local salt miners and traders are wary of the access it might give to industrial mining companies with mechanised extraction techniques that require far less labour. Read more…
By Assefa Getachew | May 16, 2013
The historical impacts of land-grab in Ethiopia were characterized by brutal conflicts, cultural
extinction, and even genocide through mass killings. The war of occupation and land-grab in the
last decades of the nineteenth century resulted in the death of about five million people in
Southern Ethiopia (OSA 2013). The current problems associated with land-grab are especially
complex in Southern Ethiopia; the local people are not represented in the government of Ethiopia
that is dominated and led by TPLF. Mistrust between TPLF leaders who come from the North
and the Southern peoples of Ethiopia is rampant, shaped by a bitter history of war, occupation,
cultural domination, and inherited hostility. The non-Tigrayan population of Ethiopia sees the
decision of the TPLF regime as a deliberate and conniving move to dismantle the cultural fiber
of the South and expand Tigrayan cultural and economic domination. Land-grab is indeed
perceived among the Southern Ethiopian population as a hostile trap targeting their most sacred
property, their land. Read more…
May 16, 2013, ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA (VOA News) — An Ethiopian journalist has been arrested and interrogated for writing an article about the wife of late prime minister Meles Zenawi. Wednesday’s arrest came as a surprise since the article was published seven months ago.
Ethiopian journalist Ferew Abebe, editor-in-chief of the weekly publication Sendek, said he was summoned Wednesday to the Federal Police Crime Investigation Department office. He was interrogated about an article he wrote and published seven months ago and was accused of defaming the former first lady, Azeb Mesfin.
Ferew said he was very surprised about the interrogation and being treated like a criminal. He said the federal police asked him many questions and wanted him to reveal his sources. They then took his fingerprints, personal details and photos before releasing him on $265 bail. Read more…
Informed by prison experience, activist-scholar imagines a more open Ethiopia
May 16, 2013 (Harvard Gazette) –Four years ago this spring, Birtukan Midekssa was in solitary confinement in an Ethiopian prison. Her cell was 13 feet wide and 20 feet long and had no window. She was allowed only two visitors: her elderly mother and her 3-year-old daughter.
Midekssa left Ethiopia in 2011, after two imprisonments that consumed 41 months of her life. She stayed first in Washington, D.C., and then at Stanford University. Today — grateful, happy, and energized — she has an office (with a window) at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute, where she is a fellow this year. (A lawyer by training, Midekssa is also a Visiting Fellow withHarvard Law School’s Human Rights Program; starting in the fall she’ll pursue a one-year mid-career master’s degree in public administration through the Mason Program at Harvard Kennedy School.) Read more…
The U.S. secretary of state’s visit to Addis Ababa is a chance to pressure the government on its dreadful record on human rights.
By MARTIN SCHIBBYE AND PATRICK GRIFFITH
May 13, 2013 (The Wall Street Journal) — This month, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to attend the 21st African Union (AU) summit. The message he brings will speak volumes about the future of American engagement on the continent.
In announcing the visit during a U.S. Senate hearing last month, Mr. Kerry expressed concern about the potentially negative impact of China’s and Iran’s increased presence in Africa. He noted that graft and poor development choices could undermine the stability of some African governments, and he acknowledged the need for more U.S. engagement.
Further American cooperation on development and security would be good news for Africa. But the U.S. must continue to focus on another potentially destabilizing factor in the continent: ongoing violations of basic human rights and fundamental freedoms. Read more…
May 15, 2013 (Wordcoo) – The Aunak people of the Gambela region are affected by government decisions. Since 1980s theEthiopian government carries out a program called Villagization. Last year, according to the government,the Anuak people would be relocated to areas with better access to clean water, health and education and with the promise that they would find plenty of corn and other food in the new place where they were moving. But, the Anuaks say, they were forced to move under false pretenses.
The Anuaks are going through a complex battle over landownership and water rights between farmers, the government, and foreign investors. It’s a battle that is being fought in many African countries. Read more…
May 13, 2013
BAHIR DAR, Northwestern Ethiopia — Twelve ruling party officials were killed and two wounded here in this resort city on the shores of Lake Tana on Sunday when rebels stormed a wedding and opened fire, a rebel spokesperson told Ethiomedia by phone on Monday.
The Ethiopian Unity and Freedom Force (EUFF), a rebel group that has been targetting the ruling EPRDF party officials and their businesses, claimed responsibility for the deadly attack. EUFF said the names of the officials killed and wounded would be released soon.
The news has not been verified by any other independent source.
All those killed were members of Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM), one of the four parties that make up the ruling EPRDF, in power since 1991. Read more…
May 13, 2013 (Bikya News) — Statement delivered at the 53rd ordinary session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights in Banjul, Gambia
Madame chair, ladies and gentlemen
Today, Ethiopia lives through the sword of the Damocles drawn against it. The scourge of the old days of the Red Terror grips the population. 90 million Ethiopians, a total population of a few countries in Africa put together, live in absolute fear. A simple test for the prevalence of unfreedom and absolute violation of freedom of expression is whether or not the population of a given country is gripped with fear when it comes to freedom of expression. That is the reality in Ethiopia today and no amount of claims on the contrary can change this fact.
What distinguishes humans from animals is not the capacity to think but the capacity of humans to express what they think in speech and writing. If that capability is deprived, humans are reduced to the level of animals. Today, the Ethiopian people are reduced to this deplorable level. Ethiopia, the seat of the African Union and the Economic Commission for Africa and considered as the symbol of African independence, has relinquished this prestige by muzzling its own people from expressing what they think. In as much as the population is subjected to live in fear, the government has also displayed its utter fear of the freedom of expression of the population particularly after the 2005 elections. Read more…
The Ethiopian government may be guilty of atrocities against indigenous peoples as it completes construction of the Gibe III dam. UK aid-agency DFID has failed to exert its influence and protect the rights of these minorities.
May 12, 2013 (Think Africa Press) –Ethiopia may until recently have been a byword for famine, but in one part of the country at least, there are people who have lived largely without outside help for hundreds of years. With the connivance of the British government, this is about to change forever.
The tribes of the Lower OmoValley in south west Ethiopia – chief among them the Mursi, the Nyangatom, the Bodi and the Daasanach – depend on a combination of flood retreat cultivation on the banks of the Omo River, rain fed cultivation further back from the river, and cattle on the grass plains.
They move between these resources seasonally so as to exploit them to their best advantage. A self-sufficient existence outside mainstream society has meant that few speak Amharic, and that fewer still can read or write. Like most of us they are strongly attached to their way of life and their traditions, and believe passionately in their right to decide for themselves whether and how to change them. Read more…
May 11, 2013 (Addis Fortune, Ethiopian government website) — Justice Minister Brehan Hailu has been fired from his job on Friday, May 10, 2013, reliable sources disclosed to Fortune. Brehan has received a letter from the Prime Minister’s Office, signed by Hailemariam Desalegn, late on Friday, according to these sources. Brehan has been serving in this capacity since 2005. He was moved to Justice after his previous ministry, Ministry of Information, was dissolved by law.
However, the decision to remove the Minister from Office has come as little surprise in the government circle. He has lost his position in the powerful executive committee of the ruling EPRDF, when elections were held back in March 2013. Read more…