Human Souls Still Unequal in the Eyes of the Western Media – By Belayneh Abate

July 8th, 2009 Print Print Email Email

Although some disagree, general consensus (at least among Plato, Berkeley, Locke, Kant, and other contemporary idealistic thinkers) asserts that a human being is composed of flesh and soul. (more…)

Although some disagree, general consensus (at least among Plato, Berkeley, Locke, Kant, and other contemporary idealistic thinkers) asserts that a human being is composed of flesh and soul. As we can observe, the flesh has a certain look, color, odor, taste, feel and other measurable dimensions. Soul, on the other hand, is a life- force with no quantifiable physical characters. How on the earth, then, the western media identifies and selectively recounts certain dead souls while it disregards others?

As any regular news paper readers or TV watchers might have noticed, Iran was one of the major headlines this past month, not only for the core media outlets such as New York Times, LA Times, Washington Post, Huffington Post, USA Today, CNN, BBC, MSBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox news, and other international networks but also for local papers and TV stations.

Documenting innocent peoples’ sufferings and reporting the dead souls accurately is a fair and praiseworthy journalism. However; was it only in Iran that election were rigged; innocent citizens were murdered and imprisoned? How are Iranian souls different, for example, from Africans’?

Besides Earth, Mars and other planets understand that no more than five African countries are ruled by the elected leaders. The rest are asphyxiating under toxic and smoky rules of despots who are directly and indirectly supported by powerful western nations. As a consequence of spurious elections (conducted to dupe donor nations), people are frequently subjected to massacre, torture, imprisonment and any other types of horrendous inhumane conditions. What proportion of these crimes in Africa capture the headlines of the western media? Regrettably the answer is almost none. The case of Ethiopia elaborates more how the western media is biased significantly towards human soul.

An election which involved more than 90% of registered voters was terribly ripped off in 2005 in the presence of the observers from European Union and the Carter Center. Consequently, at least 193 citizens were murdered; hundreds of people were injured and disabled; and still other tens of thousands were jailed according to the inquiry commission which was established to calm down international critics. [*, **] In fact, human rights activists undoubtedly believe the actual number of victims was far more than what was reported.

Among the dead, there was a mother who was shot in front of her life- long husband and children for requesting an explanation why her children’s father was forced to get into prison. Dismayed by these kinds of cruelty, Ethiopians and friends of Ethiopians marched and shed tears in front of Capitol Hill, the Major American, European and Australian cities to request the foremost powers of the world to stop standing with the assassins. Furthermore, they rallied by the offices of CNN, BBC, Washington Post , New York Times and other media outlets carrying the pictures of the dead and disabled to raise public awareness about the crimes committed against humanity. Did these justice seekers get the western media’s attention? The answer unfortunately is Nope!!

Centuries ago, prominent scholars like John Locke, Thomas Hobbs and others underlined the importance of one’s right to live in liberty enjoying the fruits of happiness. I assume these great historical men meant that all living souls are equal and deserve to live freely guzzling the juice of contentment. With the same token, I believe dead souls are equal and they should, at least, be regarded and reported equally.

1. http://www.qalitiqalkidan.org/commission/Testimony_Frehiywot_Samuel.pdf (accessed on 7/3/09)
2. http://www.abbaymedia.com/Ethiopian_Genocide_Watch_on_Election_2005.htm (accessed on 7/3/09)

The writer is can be reached at abatebelai@yahoo.com

  1. Belachew
  2. T
    | #2

    This analysis is based on faulty assumptions. We are not as important as Iran is to world politics at the moment. Live with it. Free yourself. Then you won’t be needing any one to report on your plights.

    I am truly sick and tired of whiners.

  3. Mamo
    | #3

    America and its drputy the UN don’t give a dam about the plight of Africa.so my friend don’t expect from these evil to solve the problem of Africans.

  4. Lemma
    | #4

    T

    If you think you are not as important as Iranian, how are you going to free your self? In other words you are not free, you infact assume you are sub-human. Totally wrong and subhuman assuption is yours not the writers. T you are really T if you know what it means. Thank you!

  5. Zagol
    | #5

    Mamo and T

    I read this article twice. There is nothing that says the west should solve the African Problem. As far as I understand it it talks about media bias, not problem solving.

    Mister T your comment is just out of context. Please read, if you do not understand ask first before you comment. I do not understad why people run immediately to the negative before getting the content. Thanks.

  6. BBX
    | #6

    Ato Abate, I don’t have any problem with your article and we have to come together and fight the woyanne regime. The western nations may prefer zenawi rather than free society in Ethiopia.
    I demonstrate infront of the state department and the white house for several times and still not seen or heard a word aganist the butcher of Addis (buchelawee zenawi).

  7. mateos
    | #7

    Ethiopians are important to most western needs too and the past 50-60 years shows how important they are ones they are “EXPORTED” to their respective host country. Examples, 1- there are more Ethiopian doctors in Chicago than the whole Ethiopia itself, 2- there are more Ethiopian business owners in DC than the entire Ethiopian population in Ethiopia- – this generates income for the government (taxes), 3- there are more Ethiopian teachers and professors in the US than in Ethiopia, 4- there are more NGO and other institutions in Ethiopia than in any other country in the world milking their respective country in the name of “SAVE THE POOR ETHIOPIANS”, and finally 5- the current Ethiopian so called leaders function as a superb modern slaves of western world. They are willing to sacrifice the 76 million Ethiopians for a few handouts and donated name brand suits! So in the end Ethiopia might not export OIL but more than oil!

  8. Anonymous
    | #8

    T

    I am terribly sick of peoples like you who comment without understanding and without doing any thing. This writer is teaching important stuff. What are you doing? Sitting on the soffa and writing broken English in the subject matter you have no clue? Sad

  9. አበሻ
    | #9

    በራሳችን መተማመን አለብን!አድዋ ላይ ጣሊያንን ድል ያደረግነው በዉጭ እርዳታ አልነበረም::አሁንም ህገራችን ልታድግ የምትችለው ሁላችንም ከልባችን ስንሰራና የለማኝ ጼባያችንን ስንተው ብቻ ነዉ::በፈረንጅ ማምለክና መተማምን ይቅር ራሳችንን ካስከበርን ሌላዉም ያከብረናል::የአገራችን ችግር የወያኔ ፖሌቲካ ችግር ብቻ አይመስለኝም መክንያቱም ብዝዎቻችን ተማርን የምንለው ፅጉር መሰንጠቅ እንወዳለን አንድነት ከመፍጠር ይልቅ ልዩነትን እናስፋፋልን በመሰረቱ የአንድ አገር ልጆች ሆነን liberation front እያልን ህዝቡን እናምታተዋለን::በዘመናችን ከዚህ የበለጠ ምን አሳፋሪ ነገር አለ? ፈረንጆቹስ ቢንቁን ምን ያስገርማል?

  10. Agegnehu
    | #10

    In fact we Ethiopians still need our freedom to be given to us by western governments .This has been the core problem of all of us . Dear citizens, our country is dying ,resources are being looted ,citizens are demoralized much worse than in the past eras . Woyane are getting stronger than ever before. I have been back home recently and what I saw is almost disappointing .The woyanes seem untouchable because they have controlled two key aspects of the country;power and business . But woyanes are getting older too. Their old ideology looks like outdated . They have lost all the credit from the Ethiopian people . I am telling you, woyane is the most dangerous political group ever assembled by humans . We need to double or triple our our political understanding to overthrow and dismantle this evil party from power,and it is costly .

  11. T
    | #11

    I am the one writing broken English? That is really rich. LOL

    Yes, I understood what the writer said. Before you start judging “Westerners” for not caring about our problems, ask yourself exactly how many problems around the world you yourself care about and what you have done about it! I have never heard of Ethiopians talk about the misery of Falun Gong followers in China! Falun Gong followers in China are killed and their organs exported…even their skins are pealed off! Then why aren’t we screaming about that on Ethiopian web sites?! Is it because we don’t care?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I don’t think so. It is because we are all caught up in our own problems that we spend all our available time worrying about and reading about ourselves. IT IS PRACTICALLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR EVERY LAY PERSON LIKE US TO CARE ABOUT EVERY PROBLEM IN THE WORLD! There is not enough time or energy for every one to care, read and worry about every problem in the world! Every one has limited time and resources!

    That is exactly the same way with westerners. Yes, there is a history of western aggression and racism towards Africa…but that doesn’t make all current citizens of western nations evil! We know that because we live among them. Most westerners are nice people just like most people elsewhere. They do care about the death of Ethiopians, but they have different priorities from ours because, whether you like it or not, they have their own worries as well! Therefore, in the limited time and resources they have, they can only spare their attentions for a few things. Most of the time, the most popular stories around the world tend to occupy that left over attention.

    At the moment, because of the nuclear issue, Iran is a household name across most of the western world. Because of that, they pay attention to what happens inside Iran.

    As for the media, although they, along with the government, do decide what to make a headline…they also need money for survival and for the most part decide based on what would attract attention the most. As for the governments, they do have the power to take any country and make it a household name…but they only do that based on how important a country is to their interest at a given time.

    So, Mr. Lemma…use your brain before you open your mouth. When I say “we are not important to world politics as much as Iran is”, I was not making a comparison between our souls. I was talking about the importance of our country vis a vis the interests of western nations.

    Sorry to burst your bubbles people…I know most of you would just love to sit and indulge yourselves in a victim mentality and blame the west for all your misery. It is all power politics…make yourself a big player in world politics and you will see if the media will talk about you or not.

  12. Lemma
    | #12

    T

    Reading and undertanding are different. The article

    1. The article did not blame westerners. It just talks about the media and only a tiny fraction of people work in the media. Therefore your accusation of blaming west is baseless unless it is just in your head.
    2. Ethiopian websites do not talk about china’s problem as they are not taking Irlands problem. There is no partialty or bias here unlike the western media

    3. you said “most of you blame the west for your misery” What is your evidence? where is your reseach that made you reach to this conclusion?

    Last but not list, you do not have to write to many uncessary words to prove that you do not write broken English. We all do write broken English and that is not our fault.

    Thank you for thinking before writing or saying something.

  13. T
    | #13

    Ato Lemma,

    Again you miss the point by a huge margin…

    You say:

    “It just talks about the media and only a tiny fraction of people work in the media.”

    You cannot separate the western media from the citizens. The media is a reflection of the population. THE MEDIA IS JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER BUSINESS; IT CATERS TO ITS AUDIENCE. They give their respective populations what they believe they want to hear. Of course there are other minor factors, but this is the major one.

    That is why I went into describing western citizens first…to try to show why the media acts the way it does. But then again, I guess it has to be spoon fed to some. Here is where the “broken English” factor comes in.

    “2. Ethiopian websites do not talk about china’s problem as they are not taking Irlands problem. There is no partialty or bias here unlike the western media”

    You don’t even see the contradiction in there, do you?

    Isn’t the whole argument of the writer based on the point that all humans are equal and the western media should care equally? Couldn’t that argument be stretched further to mean that when we are only interested in our own problems and not others’, it is because we think we are more important than others? Because, according to this argument, every one that considers humans to be equal should care for all humans equally. But that obviously is not the case with us. Because, as I said earlier, it is not practical for all humans to care about all problems at once. Therefore, we should not always jump to the conclusion that westerners do what they do because they don’t consider all humans to be equal. Besides, that is such a tired point that has been argued to the ground.

    “3. you said “most of you blame the west for your misery” What is your evidence? where is your reseach that made you reach to this conclusion?”

    Would you ask me for evidence if I say the sky is blue?

    “Last but not list, you do not have to write to many uncessary words to prove that you do not write broken English. We all do write broken English and that is not our fault.”

    How do you know I wrote all those “uncessary [sic] words” to prove that I do not write broken English? Hey, what is your evidence? Lol. How about considering that may be I did it to better explain things to you?

    And we all don’t write broken English…speak for yourself.

  14. Eyerus
    | #14

    T

    I do not think you have the capability to analyse things. You just spit what is in your small head. What you are talking about and what the article demontrate are north and south. What is your problem, Man/Woman?

  15. Socrates
    | #15

    Readers,

    Please either use your brain or close and keep it for yourself. Most of the comments above have nothing to do with the article. Leave the page for those who can comprehend and understand concepts. Soul is a deep concept that can be understand only by few thinking people.

    Thank you for understanding the limits.

  16. Mekdi
    | #16

    T whatever your real name is

    You are a kind of Stoneheaded person. You know Egnnnnnnn.

    I am a research person, and I do not think you understand what bias scientifically means. Please read about it before you bark. The problem comes when individuals without any background knowledge try to explain things to experts.

    Please undestand the scientific meaning of bias before you finish a whole a lot of page. Thanks

  17. Lemma
    | #17

    Thank you Mekdi.

    That is what I am talking about.

    T is a real T although he uses it as hidden name. If some one sees or do not see others equally there is no bias. Ethiopians websites are not talking about China or Irland equally. Therefore, no bias. But western journalists see other peole(outside themselves) differently. There is bias. Whether they do it for their own interest or not as long as they see other peole in different ways they are biased.

    T whatever you jabber above does not hold water. It only shows your malnorished brain. Please read and grow. By then you will stop commenting on the matter you have no clue. Thank you!

  18. Engida
    | #18

    Good comment Mekdes.

    The only poeple who are “defar”(balege) who do not hesitate to put irrelevant comment on this type of philosophical work are “doma” individuals. I think “T” belongs to one of them.

  19. T
    | #19

    Oh, the scientific meaning of bias…LMAO

    And “Soul is a deep concept that can be understand only by few thinking people” ROFL

    Where am I? Yemin gebeya metahu?

    Why do I have a feeling that it is the same person posting under different nick names to give readers the impression that you have others agreeing with u and are somehow “deep”? It’s called insecurity.

    If not…

    The bottom line is: you cannot always connect western media “bias” to their possible negative outlook on the equality of humans. Most of the times, it is done for practical reasons we too subscribe to. (Explained above in earlier posts).

    Silu semta doro tanqa motech aynet negerim meselegn eyetekahede yalew…some people find it cool to repeat what they heard ferenji liberals say. Critical thinking is good.

  20. Debebe
    | #20

    What I do not understand is why people comment on the subject matter the article contain.

    I do not see in the article which says “we need to depend on the west? can any one point out? Ageghehu, Habesha, and T it is just your interpretaion. The article does not talk about western dependence at all. It is just ringing in your ear and that is called hallucination.

    Thank you

  21. Engida
    | #21

    T

    “Alagabab betekefet aff wusit bado chinkilat yital”

Comments are closed.