Chatting with a Comedian By Sisay T.

March 5th, 2012 Print Print Email Email

Out of the handful entertainers our country has, the one who comes to mind first is undoubtedly Artist Tamagn Beyene. A lot has been said about his talent as a comedian, a host and even as player of musical instruments. Every comedian we know has his own style of presentation, but what separated Tamagn from others is his quick and witty repartee that captivates the audience every minute of the time. Still more than that, his jokes are not only funny; they are also fresh and current as well as suitable to the core message he has to his audience. Through bad and good times, he has molded his jokes to be worthy of telling. Naturally, unpopular ideas are safe for all comedians to crack good jokes about them. But for Tamagn, that was not an alternative. He has to live the lives of his fellow Ethiopians; he has to feel their pain and misery. Most of all he has to pay his due to save his country from total disintegration. Whatever he brings to the stage, it has to be popular and relevant. Here is where you find Tamagn taking a more heroic and humane tasks to listen and reflect the heart beat of the Ethiopian people. To my everlasting astonishment, Tamagn has realized that his comedy and his presence on the stage are serving him as a tool to advance the precious causes of freedom and social justice. He has dealt with topics that are touchy and morally sensitive and were interpreted as politically unacceptable by the government. As we all witnessed it, that did not make the authorities happy and as the result he was forced to live in exile.

Now see what Tamagn has been doing since he came to the US some 20 years ago. Have you ever questioned how this one man force has become a hell of a pain for the ruling party in Ethiopian even when he is thousands of miles away from them? Just remember how many protests he rallied against tyranny and human right abuses in Ethiopia. Just imagine how many pro-unity and pro-democracy meetings he has hosted. Time and again he has demonstrated his unwavering belief in the unity of the country and his passionate commitment for the well being of the people of Ethiopia. Any sane mind can tell that he indulges himself into those activities neither for the money nor for the glory. First of all there is no money to be made and second, nobody can tell us what more glory and fame Tamagn would have sought for. This gentleman has been a pro bono activist for long period of time. Few or none of us have the slightest idea about the driving force behind his activism. Well, in the last few months, in two separate but similar occasions, I have a chance to chat with this humble and charismatic person we all know as Artist Tamagn Beyene.

The first time I came across this great person was when he was in Dallas to lead the stage for Ethiopian Community Day event. Some friends I knew have arranged a dinner party in his honor and I was an invitee to that party. I was amazed by his humility to avail himself up close and personal. He levels himself down to everyone. He respects
others view. I learned that as much as he respects others he deservedly demands to be respected as well. He has high regards for his principles and his own personal attachment to his country, her flag and unity. This is the person who is arguably the top entertainer in the country of 80 million people. You should understand if I felt privileged to talk to him.

At the beginning of the discussion some of our friends were unhappy about the uncivilized message we were getting from the usual destructive forces in our city. I think some of them have issues with Tamagne because he, or they think he, has aligned his activism with the group that was open to talk and work with parties like OLF and ONLF. The others who rumored around the community were the pro-EPRDF elements.

Surprisingly, their message was the same. They have this archaic and feudalistic view that a comedian (in their parlance ‘Azmari’ –they meant it to be a derogatory term) cannot be up to the task of a ‘noble’ person’s deeds; the deeds being that of leading an organized group, becoming a political activist and understand the intricacies of politics. Well, some have moronic views that everything Tamagn does is somehow meant to make us laugh and could not measure up to be a serious matter. Although I disdain these unenlightened comments, it pains me to see such views still prevalent in our society. I wish they had seen him how thrilled he is in becoming a comedian and fervently loved to be named a comedian or an ‘Azmari’ for that matter. To my angry friends, Tamagn has simply quelled them by unashamedly calling himself an “Azmari’ whose agenda is to see a democratic and united Ethiopia.

His opponents and critics alike have thrown every name at him. They said he is uneducated and he has no business in politics. This is an absurd prejudice. These people have been propagating against Tamagn to intimidate and subdue him. I don’t know what kind of diplomas and degrees he has or which college he attended. I believe the level of education one has cannot be a standard to determine his ability to stand up for freedom and democracy. Let truth be told, however, I can confidently say that Tamagn is an autodidact whose general knowledge is in par with the class of political elites. I was mesmerized by his sharp memory and his skills in storytelling and putting narratives in perspective. He is for sure an ardent follower of current affairs. More than anything else, you can clearly see his strong social value system and a decent personal character. Did you remember how Tamagn had trounced his opponent on the debate he had with a certain EPRDF supporter on VOA? You can surely say that he knows about the Ethiopian Constitution more than most Members of Parliament in Ethiopian.

We all know that nobody has pushed him to do this very difficult job. Through times, he is the only unflinching activist who virtually spent his entire life in exile to fight against injustice. And that was not happening without cost and sacrifice. Can’t he promote and shoot further higher and higher to enrich himself. Can we imagine the emotional trauma this individual has been living to balance his personal and activist life? Do we know how it feels to be away from your dear wife and kids days in and days out and doing that for a number of years? That means he has to say no to his kids whenever they asks him to be with them. We all know that Tamagn can give his family and himself a better life if he uses his talent for money alone. For instance, the night he was in Dallas to promote his country’s cause, his much junior comedians, Meskerem Bekele and Kebebew Geda were performing in DC making a hefty sum of money.

Forget everything and think even after he left the country and become their enemy number one, wouldn’t EPRDF guys love to win him back by offering millions of dollars. We have seen some low rated activists awarded a whole lot of dollars for abandoning their opposition to the government. Ali Birra and Kemer Yosuf were reportedly awarded huge amounts of dollars just to go to Addis and perform. Even that buffoon, Solomon Tekalign was worth something to EPRDF. Let me digress a bit and say few words about Solomon. I know Tamagne would not want me to talk about this moron on the same breath I talked about him. Because, Tamagn and Solomon are on a very different scale, and from a different pedigree, I shall say. Any ways, I visit Aiga Forum once in a while and one day I saw a link to Solomon Tekalign’s radio station. That was one thing to be bemused. But sooner I was further bewildered when I learned that EPRDF heavyweights, like the Deputy PM and the former Minister for Foreign Affairs, were the guests for his show. I click on the link and started to listen but before going further I not only cringe on his gaffs and utter incompetence, I also felt deeply sadden by the fate of my country who has lost all of its talented and qualified broadcasters and journalists and now become a playground for bush-leagues. The Deputy Prime Minister giving a prime time interview to the most unskilled and untrained radio host. This says a lot about EPRDF, and its inept leaders. I thought the Aiga Forum boys were smarter than this. How low our county is going to go down? God has mercy on Ethiopia.

  1. Selamu
    | #1

    Thank you Mr. Sisay. I also say Tamagn for Prime Minster of Ethiopia. I trust nobody except him.

  2. Wag
    | #2

    Dear Fellow Ethiopians. Here is an example how some brave individuals are contributing to the struggle. The question is now, how about each on of us? Let us ask ourselves, what did I do?

  3. Hailu Berhane
    | #3

    Thank you, Abugida info. You are a Voice to a person I admire the most for a very long time. I only saw Tamagne Live from the distance one time. However, I have read and Watch about our hero for a long time. When his FB friend site reached the limit I created a FAN page (Honoring Tamagne Beyene) and borrowed most of your interviews Video.

    Now, our brother Mr. Sisay T. wrote beautifully. It confirms my statement to me and others would also would follow suit. When earlier I change my profile, I posted, Tamagne is like Mandella to free us to a United Ethiopia. I meant it!!

    Dear Sisay, taking from your important message, people would need to read what you wrote and understand who Tamagne is? what you stated summarizes it all:

    “I was amazed by his humility to avail himself up close and personal. He levels himself down to everyone. He respects others view. I learned that as much as he respects others he deservedly demands to be respected as well. He has high regards for his principles and his own personal attachment to his country, her flag and unity. This is the person who is arguably the top entertainer in the country of 80 million people. You should understand if I felt privileged to talk to him.”

    Abugida info and Mr. Sisay, All Ethipian’s wish you both what you desired.

    Del le Ethiopia Hizbe soon!!

  4. Gonderew
    | #4

    God bless you my brother for telling the truth. We should make it our culture to commend and appreciate our compatriots. We have a number of fighters no body has remembered. Mr. Sisay T. please write more about the forgotten heroes. Unfortunately ,we have traitors amongst us. I agree with you and feel the same about that Ass XXX Solomon Tegalign

  5. T. Samuel
    | #5

    Thank you Ato Sisay, well said. Tamange faced his enemies up-close without flinching. He went to the war front risking his life to give thanks to the men and women who served to defend the motherland from the enemy within. Tamange could have done anything and live a better life with his family; but he chose to sacrifice his life and the life of his family to betterment of our nation and our people. It is not the title, it is what you do that counts. Thank you so much Tamange Beyene

  6. Belew
    | #6

    Mr. Sisay, look where you started your article and ended up writing. Your adulation for personality aside, you can’t even take the high road for one article to give meaning to your “great comedian’s” view respecting others for their differing takes. If your message was to tell us how we have to be thankful for his highness for bringing us together, I must say, you have failed spectacularly as a messenger. You say, “I don’t know what kind of diplomas and degrees he has or which college he attended. I believe the level of education one has cannot be a standard to determine his ability to stand up for freedom and democracy.”, just so to contradict yourself by saying, “…I also felt deeply sadden by the fate of my country who has lost all of its talented and qualified broadcasters and journalists and now become a playground for bush-leagues”. You see your hypocrisy? This is also exactly what I observed from your subject all the time. Now that you are proving my long held views about the so-called diaspora opposition, I feel sorry for your blind folded followers who praise the likes of you whenever you utter a word. Sad story, indeed.

  7. Sisay T.
    | #7

    Mr. Belew,

    You twisted my writing in the wrong way. Can you point out a line where it said I have a message “to tell us how we have to be thankful for his highness for bringing us together”. I simply exress my observation. On you second point , I stood by thoses sentences you quoted. I said Tamagne’s level of education is irrelevant for him to stand up for freedom and injustice. Freedom is an inalienable right given from God. Wherever there is no freedom any human being , educated or not, can voice his or her dissent. Tamagne has never said he wants to be something else. But your Jack Asss, Solomon want to be something which he could not or should not. That is the difference.

  8. Teferi
    | #8

    Thank you Sisay for the superb article which touches the heart of most Ethiopians. Many feel the same about Tamagn but you said it better. Don’t even bother to answer to the paid hodams like Belew who are here to twist any substantive issue and make a
    bsurd conclusion. Never dignify by answering this type of low-life, good-for-nothing rascal. I am in the majority if I say I entirely share your views about Tamagn. Keep up the good work!!!

  9. Belew
    | #9


    I give it to you that the perspective expressed in this article reflects your point of view and only your point of view. But to argue that you didn’t paint your subject as source of integrity and togetherness defies any reasonable reading of your article. How else do you explain then when you say, “Time and again he has demonstrated his unwavering belief in the unity of the country and his passionate commitment for the well being of the people of Ethiopia. Any sane mind can tell that he indulges himself into those activities neither for the money nor for the glory.“?

    I write this in defense of the legitimate right of others to disagree with your point of view as well as “my jack ass”. That’s, I believe, our universal right. In a perfect world, your subject as an aspiring human right advocate and activist will lend – I will argue – his modest voice to this noble idea of dissent. “My jack ass’s” fundamental right cannot be reduced or trampled upon because somebody held a diametrically opposed political perspective from the opposition or because his former colleagues in the Diaspora have undeclared vendetta for whatever reason. The issue I’ve with your subject to the most part lies between those lines. Legitimate human right activism includes the responsibility of defending the right of those who failed to defend and even of those who abused the rights of thousands. Careless disregard for this fundamental principle in order to garner a political advantage will only prove self-defeating and myopic. Defending their right is not defending the character or actions of the individual. That right belongs to the court of law. I express my opinion and objection about this as a member of the community wishing for a better national discourse. The unavoidable future national introspection and dialogue will create the opportunity and the proper moral ground for all of us to delve into what needs to be done to reconcile the opposing views of so many.

    Mr. Teferi, please, please try to grow up!

  10. dj
    | #10

    thank you sis.

  11. Sisay T.
    | #11

    Mr. Belew,

    I cannot say you are a naive person, but I can smell some Utopianism. Here is your Utopian comment, ” Legitimate human right activism includes the responsibility of defending the right of those who failed to defend and even of those who abused the rights of thousands”. Mr. Belew, are you talking about Ethiopia? You are saying that Tamagn’s activisim should be inclusive of everyone, from EPRDF to Solomon. In a perfect world anyone can have a an opposing political view without sacrificing others right. But do you know how many lives were in danger when Solomon defected to the other group? By the way, Tamagne has never talked about Solomon; but I have. Who cares if he has changed his political affilation, if he ever had one. The problem is his betrayal and his attempt to cash on it.

  12. Belew
    | #12

    Mr. Sisay,

    Utopian is the least characteristics it will ever attributed to me. This includes the realistic and idealistic points of utopia. I know from my life experience and little reading why it can never come true. I emphasize on the irony that utopia aspires people to strive for a better society and at the same time bring them down for nothing can be perfect in this world. I just wanted to make that clear. Mr. Sisay, betrayal is rather a harsh word to use for someone who happens to disagree with your views. Allow Mr. Solomon the benefit of the doubt for not “cashing in” as you did to Mr. Tamagne. That’s not too much to ask if you believe in the power of ideas and conviction – as you seem to do. Thank you for engaging me in a civilized way.

  13. Teferi
    | #13

    ‘You see your hypocrisy? This is also exactly what I observed from your subject all the time. Now that you are proving my long held views about the so-called diaspora opposition, I feel sorry for your blind folded followers who praise the likes of you whenever you utter a word. Sad story, indeed.’
    Belew with the statment you made above do you expect a civil discourse? You have already ‘grown up’ when you paint the whole diaspora with one brush.

  14. Dandee
    | #14

    What is up with this Belew guy. Mr. Belew ,we know you are a TPLF surrogate trying to be civil. Start with your sarcasm with the “highness” word and as Teferi said it, your opposition with the diaspora. and Mr. Sisay has told you politely how you read too much and how a backbencher idealist you are. For God’s sake, you open your mouth before you talk about that kiiler party of yours. No time to talk about theory, fight against the most brutal rulers of Ethiopia. What do you say know? I guess your with the killers.

  15. Teferi
    | #15

    As the Diaspora Ambassador in DC(it is a new Woyane designation to accommodate cadres who have been helpful in organizing events counter to the efforts of the opposition) once confessed, it is Tamagn Beyene and Abebe Belew who are depriving Woyanes their sleep by working around the clock. Thus it would be reasonable to be skeptical of some comments thrown against these figures, especially if they are not supported by facts. If there is one thing that we, the opposition in Diaspora, commonly share with the Woyanes it is the respect we both have for Tamagn, albeit for different reasons. Them, for fear of the wrath he usually unleashes, and us for expressing in better terms what we all feel and share. Tamagn has always been talking based on facts which he usually supports with video, and it would only be fair to criticize him based on facts.

    In the comments to Sisay’s well written observation Belew, self-righteously claimed to be in a civilized discourse while trying to ridicule Tamagn and defend the “defenseless” Solomon Tekalign. From what he wrote he seems not to be a big fan of Tamagn which is his right. However, he was questioning Tamagn’s integrity. I would expect evidence to validate that Tamagn has never been a source of integrity and togetherness. In the absence of facts I question the integrity and motive of the writer; and that is within my right, too.

    Woyanes can hurl anything against Tamagn or any opposition hoping it would at least stick to a naïve supporter and some pseudo-intellectual who can ran with it writing good English.
    Belew thinks he is conducting a civil discourse with the few exchanges he made with Sisay. I can say with great certainty that Belew cannot bring any fact to support his wild accusation of Tamagn’s hypocrisy.
    I don’t think a civilized discourse is possible by stereotyping, based on one observation alone. I don’t see anything wrong on what Sisay wrote but even if there is one that Belew could associate with hypocrisy, is that enough to reach to the conclusion he has reached about the Diaspora? You don’t think that is too small a sample size?
    Belew, I would accept your civility if you could speak based on facts. You haven’t shown one fact to substantiate your accusations, though.
    From what you wrote either you are a Woyane or a self-righteous pseudo-intellectual who pretends to be superior to those who may make mistakes in their quest to fight a tyranny who is hell-bent to destroy the country. The struggle to bring democracy is a serious and monumental task which requires serious people devoting their time away from their family and in some cases their life, too. Most activists are trying to bring a court of law that “defend[s] the character and actions of the individual.”
    Belew, we don’t have the luxury of observing people who may make mistakes here and there and chastise them equally in stronger terms with those who are committing atrocity. Talking about your right being violated by an activist like Tamagn (even if I take it to be true, that is) can be fixed with a few conversations but comparing it with the violation of rights with strong army that is killing and torturing journalists and opposition figures, as we write back and forth here, is misleading, to say the least.

    I wouldn’t go that low, as you did to compare a public figure with integrity like Tamagn, to a low level hoodlum who would sell his mother for money. Solomon has a right to be a “jackass” but so has Siasy to call it so!
    Nobody is saying you don’t have a right to support a ‘Jackass’ or to become one but don’t throw unsubstantiated accusations towards people exercising their right to express what they observed. The observation could be wrong or right but it is that person’s observation and your comment should have focused in pointing out the fallacy of the observation. What you did, instead, was quote a text to fit your long held belief of hating the Diaspora which is a microcosm of Ethiopia. The only difference is that the people back home don’t have a means to express what they feel and think and we have. Sisay was supporting Tamagn and disdaining Solomon and you were doing the vice versa.

    Belew, based on your argument it was not Solomon but you are the “jackass” for defending the indefensible. Mind you, my right to call it so doesn’t preclude your right to refute it!

  16. Chanyalew
    | #16

    I never thought I would be put in this position as to defend someone who seems to genuinely disagree with my own beliefs like Belew does. But thank you to the two of you – here I am. What makes me cringe in all this conversation is this hotheaded self-righteousness to which you framed your arguments. In a forum where opposing ideas should flow freely, you chose to this tired idea of name calling. This was uncalled for the way Belew was presenting himself. It’s a well documented fact that the Diaspora, unfortunately, is often portrayed as unorganized and extreme tool of few elites. That perception is there either we like it or not. It’s up to us to change and challenge that charge. In stead, you both chose to attack Belew for stating the obvious. Listen, the current government has a record – for what it’s worth – which can be measured by the Ethiopian people and defended by EPRDF. What we have is just a theory. If we can’t defend that theory where it says everyone has a right to dissent – especially in this free country and in such a forum- how else do we think we would be able to convince the people back home as alternative to the current regime? It’s one thing for the people to find fault with the current government but entirely different thing to find us the better choice. If we can’t do this, then, as our adversaries’ accuse us, we do this out of the sense of entitlement to lead. Nobody is entitled to anything beyond his or her own opinion. This is not our cause and we should not compromise our principles just for instant gratification. If not, we are playing in to our adversaries hands. That’s why your name calling of the likes of Belew was very unfortunate. Let’s not please waste our time high fiving to each other in stead of challenging and trying to convince others who disagree with us in the market place of ideas. That’s where the fight for freedom and equality will be won or lost. I sure hope so that you are the exception to the norm among us.

    Sisay and Belew,

    I thank you for staying true to those principles I stated above. Let’s agree to disagree without being hostile towards each other. Good job!

  17. Chanyalew
    | #17

    My Comment was addressed to Teferi and Dandee! I’m sorry for that.

  18. Aba Guda
    | #18

    It is getting hot in here. Where are you Belew? Thank you Teferi, that is how it should be told

  19. Teferi
    | #19

    Chanyalew, perception is not always a reality. It is highly succeptible to be manipulated by those who have the power….especially the media. Woyane having controlled the media has created such a negative picture against the Diaspora. Some of us wittingly or otherwise have been promoting this unsubstantiated fact about the diaspora.
    There was nothing on what Sisay wrote that could lend to the conclusion that Belew reached about the Diaspora. Sisay was only writing his observation which we didn’t all have to agree. Belew didn’t agree wth Sisay. However, the way he came across to tell us his disagreement was so offending because he didn’t have an iota of fact that he told us about Tamagn. He could disagree with Sisay or Tamagn all he want but I didn’t obtain the slightest reason to convince me to change how I see Tamagn. His argument started with rediculing Tamagn and his admirers. chanyalew, can you go back and read what he said? Was there any reason at all to do so?
    Chanyalew, you were telling us how a civilized people should behave and interact but do you have to tell me I am hotheaded inorder to tame me?
    You coudn’t last even until you finish a paragraph to be like me. You are entitled to start your comment by throwing insults but io am sfraid you wouldn’t get the respect you so craved for unless you walk the talk.
    I totally agree that we all have to be better than our adversaries if we have to bring a better system. However, I will use anything I have to fight a system who unleashes a criminal on a civilized person like Andualem. I have zero tolerance for such low-level Woyane sympathizers. None whatsoever!
    As far as I am concerned we are done talking with Woyanes until they are forced to do so!

  20. Embet
    | #20

    Teferi and Dandee,

    Do you seriously believe that Tamagn has any value beyond entertainment? But we have all been here before adoring and glorifying all the comings and goings of future politicians or entertainers. Tamagn’s trial by video montage is just laughable if not outright outrageous. Only the fools like Teferi will find this kind of theatrics amazing. I know Tamagn knows well he can simply heap accusations on people like that and the Diaspora world let him get away with it. This, of course, will not happen to the people who would allow themselves not to think this through logically. You ask to cite one example where Tamagne was wrong factually, let me give it to you. Actually, I was laughing at this at the time of watching it. Tamagn goes through the lists of people who are in exile because of EPRDF/TPLF and mentions, rather sarcastically, how able and well trained air force pilots were disband by the EPRDF. As a consequence of this some “clueless” cadres were crashing the planes left and right. Just few minutes later, at the same podium mind you, he asks to the people in attendance to help him appeal to Issayias Afeworki to release an Ethiopian POW. If you wonder who this brave prisoner of war was, here is the story as told by Tamagn. The pilot was a well-known member of the air force during the Derg who happen to crash during the first Ethio-Eritrea conflict. After the collapse of the Derg he was released and JOINED the force under the current government. This is the first irony and contradiction of Tamagn’s allegations. You remember he was telling us how all-able pilots were let go by EPRDF, right? Now, let’s proceed to the second part of the story. After portraying the old guard as able and can do wrong fellows, he tells the story how this poor guy was shot down for the second time and is imprisoned by the Eritrean regime. I thought crushing was all for the fools of EPRDF not the brave Derg pilots. That’s Tamagn at his best. Doing his best to please. The other story is where Tamagn shows some snippets’ of video footage of Meles and accuses him of being unstatesmanlike and revealing pettiness for using foul language. As it happens, I was in Addis while Meles was making those statements. He was answering to the acquisitions labeled to then parliamentarian Lidetu. Lidetu was making a complaint to Meles how some members of the EPRDF were running a smear campaign questioning his Christian faith. Meles agreed with Lidetu that kind of smear campaign should not have a place and tried to explain his disdain of such kind of politics. He was so outrage that he begged Lidetu to give him the names of those propitiators so that justice will be done. He came harsh on them with a language which then was perceived as brave by so many of us at home. He got all the praises and kudos for standing up for the opposition leader against his own cadres. So, what did Tamagn do with it? If you are really interested in facts you can go to youtbe and watch the entire conversation. I can go on and tell you how silly and nonsensical all Tamagn’s walking “evidence based” footages are. He even accuses the government for letting people be free to sell their skills wherever they please. What’s wrong with an Ethiopian pilot working for foreign carrier? What else is wrong for foreign national to believe in the quality and pay of our carrier and wanting to work? Those Ethiopian pilots, wherever they employed, they come back home with their hard earned money to invest in their people. Shouldn’t we applaud them for creating such an open and global work force? Are we not all for free choices? Last I checked, the Ethiopian Airlines one of the top performers in the world. Does this happen by accident, then? To take all that crap and say how great and brave Tamagn is a great disservice to the so many deep minded and pragmatic leaders of our time. Only a fool can believe that the EPRDF is in chaos, sleepless, because of Tamagn. The EPRDF is fine as long as the face of the opposition is Tamagn. Tamagn did not wake up one day and say how terrible things are in the land and decided to oppose. By his own admission he was opposed to them from day one. A person who was willing to co-exist with Derg with no problem but having hard time giving credit to the current government is a well come contrast for them. Just know the strengths and weakness of your adversaries if you want to go anywhere any time soon. Their strengths are a well-documented one. I also know they have so many faults and failings. But, fearing an entertainer with his facts not straight is none of them.


    Brother, this is not your place to be. You rather quit being realistic.


    I admire your courage.

    Abu Guda,

    Keep on learning your name! Make sure to stay out of the kitchen, though.

  21. Teferi
    | #21

    Emebet, you didn’t read what I wrote above: Nothing good would come out of talking with Woyane. I don’t blame you for looking at things the way you were told to.
    The record shows, so many planes have crashed while training so many Woyanes. Ethiopian Air force had so many damn-good pilots like Bezabih Petros when Ethiopian Air force was Air force. Great pilots could loose their plane in a war. Crashing a plane while you are fighting and doing a routine flight are different. I don’t think you are equipped to understand that! Having your plane shot down under engagement and crashing a plane on a market are two different things.
    What your boss did to the air force is well narrated by one young Ethiopian Air force named Tenkolu….go read it or listen to it on ESAT; you may find something to defend Meles on that account, too.
    Great Ethiopian pilots have been shot down by the enemy power, in most instances not for luck of competency but because they dared to push the limits of engagement. Legese, Mengistu Kassie, Bezabih, and even in peace times a great Pilot like Yohannis Aregay went down on a dog-fight. You know why they were great? The answer is simple: they were there because of their merits and not because they came from Tigray. You will always get the best and the brightest when you allow competition and reward people based on merit. When are you and your diminutive leader going to get this basic fact? Never!
    The truck record of Woyanes show that they are always scared of the truth. Otherwise, why would you jail those who dare to tell the truth—Eskinder, Professor Asrat, Birtukan, Wubshet, Reyot, Andualem and countless others?
    Emebet, do you know what all of these victims of your diminutive leader have in common? They all believed in a civilized way….to bring change peacefully, nothing more and nothing less! They all believed in engaging a tyrant courageously in a civilized manner and look what they get from you.
    Tamagn is no different from these courageous Ethiopians, he had been there; and knowing Woyanes from the get go makes him even better. They are what he has been telling us from day one. If Woyanes were not scared of Tamagn and others who have the courage to tell the truth, day in day out, why would they categorize them as terrorists? I know Tamagn gets in to your skin with truth and I am not gonna waste my time talking about it.
    It is simple, you want to defend Woyane’s bloody record in this open forum and you did to the best of what you were told to do. Tell your murderer leader to give my people freedom to exercise their basic right of expressing themselves like you are doing it here, with no shame. I don’t have a problem if you disagree with Tamagn, as much as I disagree with you and despise you for supporting Meles, I will defend your right to freely say your nonsense. Why don’t you fight for Tamagn to be heard at home and let the Ethiopian people decide what they want to hear? I feel sorry for the likes of you who cry foul on a free country while defending a regime that violates your fellow citizens’ God given right to exercise their freedom.
    Emebet I will assure you the time would come when my country would be free from tyranny and racism, where people would not be jailed because they wanted to exercise their god given right. A time would come when my sisters would not be abused and violated by the Arab nomads. A time would come when the government would not be selling my sisters and daughters for Arab vultures. A time when you are able to defend this government and me to oppose, it with out fearing for our life. No one knows that time…but until that time comes I will keep on fighting, for I believe a life wasted fighting tyranny is worth living for!
    I know I am trying a to boil a stone, hoping it would be well cooked

  22. Aman
    | #22

    Teferi, you are losing it. No wonder you are so confused about your facts. As long as your sources of information are ESAT and Tamagn, your backwardness and misery will continue. You need to wake up from this amnesia and deal with the hard truth. It may hurt but the stubborn facts will always have a way of following you no matter how you try to hide. Go to google and find out how many planes crushed in the US during the last 20 years compare to Ethiopia by the air force cadets. You can talk smack as you want about the people of Tigray in general and Meles in particular, but the fact remains they were able to dismantle and wipe out your mighty boss Derg.That should give them a merit to be where they are, right? Have you heard the saying The spoils go to the victor? Is that then what you meant by their merits? While Meles the “diminutive” deals with world leaders in a global stage to advance and bring his country to a middle class income state, you are busy painting the country in a color which is not familiar to most Ethiopians. The country is in the path to no return to your backward thinking to be bothered with your nonsense talk of doom and gloom. The law in terror, under which your Pinocchio’s in the likes of Eskinder are indicted, is a carbon copy of laws in the US. Try to cross that line as your friends did and you will see what will happen to you. The only regret I’ve is why it took them so long to take the action they took. People who had no problem teaching Marxism and Leninism during derg are here preaching how the Meles gov is bad – give me a break. My country is showing enormous progress thanks to the sacrifice of the brave EPRDF/TPLF, yes, most of them from Tigray and the unparallel leadership of Meles. Just deal with it – I was to say black stone before I decided against it. Embet, don’t get discouraged by those losers.

  23. Andnet
    | #23

    Teferi, how do you know what Embet was told to say? A wild guess, uh? Don’t take yourself so seriously as to think that the GoE to give instructions how to respond to your wild mood swings. Please leave alone the brave and proud tigreans – they don’t have to prove to you how ethiopian they are. They did that time and again with their blood and all their being. Your are a narrow minded – your comments reflect your true color.

  24. Afework
    | #24

    It looks Like the TPLF cadres are out to smear Tamange and this article there is one truth only tamange is a headache to woyanes.Thank You Mr.sisay for the good article and Teferi for the clear answers to Belew and Emebet

  25. Lemma
    | #25

    Embet, Andnet, Aman Chanyalew and Belew,

    Here is my two cents on this whole conversation between you and the people like Teferi. Let Teferi and Co. drink from the Kool-Aid. They lost all the prospective of a rational thinking. They believe in every tired and recycled accusation as a fact and run with it. By the way, Eskinder and all those great journalists are the creation of EPRDF’s democratization process. So, in a weird way, the EPRDF is a victim of its own success story. I still vividly remember our journalists back in the day when they were reporting about a guy from a village condemning America – does that ring a bell? Now the concern is not human rights or freedom of press – it’s the fact that the likes of Eskinder cannot spit their venom as they wish. I don’t even know why I bother to say something to those black rocks.

  26. Mame
    | #26

    Why respond to tigrigna people? They dam all. Melse has tief and bud. I didnt luke tigry all against my poeple. Embet you good mey be in englsh but good ethiopia are you nat. I did like tamagne very much. I love you tamagne didnot warry of weyone. We get win over them soun.

  27. Belew
    | #27

    All the praise should go to Mr. Sisay for bringing up this subject without being the main charchter in the story. That’s how I measure a good story vs not a good one. The focus of discussion, in most cases, are the writer’s not their stories. To those who found my argument persuasive enoough to thank me, I return the favor in kind. Let’s continue to discuss the future of our country in forceful yet civilaized manner. I also thank Mr. Teferi for being good sports despite being hostile towards those who seem to disagree with his point of view.

  28. Danny
    | #28

    Intersting and bewildering conversation.

  29. Teferi
    | #29

    For the unabashed Woyane thugs who are swarming this free venue, I know I am like boiling a stone, as I said above, foolishly expecting it to be well cooked. Get this through you thick heads because this would be the last time I would be wasting my precious time.
    Whatever absurd notion you have, it is beautiful you can express it to the public on this free forum. Of course, the reader will be the judge of it. I know truth and Woyane have never intersected before nor will they ever, in this life time. However, you have this great forum to accommodate you….murderers. Why can’t my people have this basic right?
    Why would you put someone in prison for exercising their god given right?
    Believe it or not development and democracy are not mutually exclusive objectives…you can do both without sacrificing one for the other. But what do I know…..
    Listen Woyanes, you may momentarily get a kick out of having Andualem beaten up by a criminal you hired…enjoy your sadistic act while it lasts. You even have the audacity to come here and justify the actions of a tyrant under his very picture. Do you even know why his picture is here? It takes only a non-woyane mind to understand this simple fact. This very forum under which you are freely exercising your right of spewing out your absurd propaganda is the very guy who is enduring your leader’s inhuman treatment in order to set you free. Well I tend to forget that I am talking to Woyanes who all have one thing in common…no shame whatsoever!.
    You all are trying to kill ‘today,’ for you know tomorrow doesn’t belong to you.
    In the great scheme of things this will also come to pass and you will be thrown into the septic tank of history!
    I am signing out…
    P.S. for the guy who was proud of the diminutive Meles being with other great leaders, for most of us, his being there, is not a source of pride but rather an embarrassment because we know he is there as a beggar not as a company among equals. However hard he tried to associate himself with the others you can’t help but notice that he is always glaringly out of place.
    I have seen a picture of the real Meles once in my life that was indelibly etched in my mind: that was, when he was grilled on a British TV called Hard Talk, immediately after his Agazi ‘tor’ from Tigray mowed innocent children in Addis in the aftermath of 2005 election. I am willing to post you the link if you are interested.

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