37 years of the TPLF and the footprints of Meles Zenawi, By Kahsay Berhe and Tesfay Atsbeha (Part two)

March 20th, 2012 Print Print Email Email

Why are we writing about Meles? Meles has absolute power as all his predecessors. He can decide the fate of more than 80 Million Ethiopians and probably the coming generations. (more…)

Why are we writing about Meles? Meles has absolute power as all his predecessors. He can decide the fate of more than 80 Million Ethiopians and probably the coming generations. As every major aspect of life of all Ethiopians is controlled by Meles, there is no possibility for Ethiopians to take their own destiny into their own hands without removing Meles. Since Meles, more than anybody else, has been committing so many crimes with impunity, it is Imperative to deal with the worst enemy of the people before everything else and hence expose his crimes.

When absolute rulers go down, they go down absolutely along with their followers as we saw these in the case of colonel Mengistu as well as Hitler, Mussolini and Pol Pot. Therefore the EPRDF will vanish as a political entity with the overthrow of Meles, while EPRDF members who have not committed crimes can be part of the solution by siding with their people.

It is of course a shame for millions of Ethiopians and a manifestation of the worst form of backwardness to be controlled by a single person and almost a miracle for a nation to be controlled and devastated by an anti-Ethiopian Person. Ignorance, the lack of an institutionalized democratic culture, the absence of economic independence due to poverty aggravated by the fact the citizens are deprived of the security of private ownership with the State having a monopoly on almost everything including land; and the fact that the state has become the biggest employer are the favourable conditions which are helping Meles to stay in power. Meles will maintain these favourable conditions for his tyranny as long as he is in power. Therefore there is no means of changing the status quo and ensuring the dignity of Ethiopians without getting rid of the tyrant.

Coming back to the birth day of the TPLF, let us see the things which are propagated and mystified continuously. It has become almost a legend that the TPLF started the armed struggle with 11 fighters on 18 February 1975 (11 Yekatit 1967 E.C.). Yes, there was also an Amhara fighter called Mikael (Abtew) Takele in the group, as mentioned in Fetehe . Mikael (Abtew) did not join the TPLF in order to struggle for the secession of Tigray from Ethiopia and he, as many other members of the TPLF did not know that some elements were abusing the revolutionary fervour of the young people for their hidden agenda.

Mikael was a good hunter and friendly. He used to hunt and gather wild honey for the group. His Amhara origin caused no problem. Most members did not see secession as a solution to the Tigrayan question. Kahsay remembers how Mikael provoked by someone was angrily asking: “are you going to cut off the country – ageritwan litqortu new?” It is true that TPLF leaders and their cadres exclude those who reject separatism and stand for justice in Ethiopia from the list of the founders. Mikael is often excluded by some individuals from the list, but Kahsay is also excluded particularly by Seyoum.

Apart from the 11 , another group of about nine (9) men including Meles ) also went to Eritrea for training by the EPLF (shaebia) in January of the same year. A third group of ten (10) young peasants from the Shire region, mainly relatives and acquaintances of Sehul Ayele who were gathered and recruited at a short notice by Fitewi (Berhane) Ayele, a younger brother of Sehul Ayele were dispatched to the EPLF training centres. The young peasants were sent to Eritrea because the EPLF insisted on the inclusion of as many illiterate farmers as possible as a precautionary measure to avoid the dominance of educated critical elements. Therefore the 2nd and the 3rd groups completed their training at the same time and returned together to Tigray. If all groups are added up together, the number climbs up to around 30 individuals. Those who remained in the towns to accomplish organizational tasks and risked their lives more than those who went to the field should also be recognized as founders. If those who worked in the towns are added up, the number must have been more than 30. Taking the groups mentioned above into consideration, those people, who agreed to start the struggle should be considered as founders of the organisation. Mentioning the founders is for us simply stating the facts as they were, without attaching any special importance.

The annihilation of the TLF

In November 1975, while a few Central committee (CC) members of the TPLF were talking with members of the Tigrayan Liberation Front (TLF) to unite the TPLF and TLF, Meles was passionately agitating and warning other TPLF members of the danger of unity, that the TLF would be dangerous for the lives of the TPLF members. Meles was only a few months away from being appointed to be a deputy member of the CC. Both Fronts “agreed” to unite; they redistributed their weapons after mixing them up and the leadership was to be shared.

The inclusion of the TLF in the leadership meant the postponement of the promotion of Meles to the leadership. However, the whole theatre of unity talks was a deception by the CC of the TPLF to bring the TLF members under control when they fall asleep. Gebru Asrat mentioned in Fetehe No. 175 that some of the remaining TLF members continued their struggle with the TPLF; and we would add that they had no other realistic choices after their leadership was decimated. In a manual for political education to its members, the CC of the TPLF portrays the leadership of the TLF as a narrow nationalist, undemocratic and murderous group, but these descriptions also apply to the leadership of the TPLF as well. Meles and his group wrote the manifesto for the secession of Tigray three months after they destroyed the TLF. It is by taking his partially influential role in 1975, before he became a deputy member of the CC that we consider Meles to have been in power for more than 36 years. He formally became a deputy member of the CC of the TPLF in 1976, but he has been committing crimes since the autumn of 1975.

From secession to manipulation

According to Gebru (ibid.) the aim of the struggle for the independence of Tigray as declared in the manifesto was replaced by the concept of self-determination six months later, after the fighters discussed about it .Ghidey Zeratsion said (on 7 August 2011, in Ras Alula Pal talk Room) that the change of the manifesto took place after ten months and added that there was previously a consensus on the manifesto of secession within those who knew about it. The manifesto was written in February 1976 and changed in November of the same year only within the CC of the TPLF. We don’t know, whether Gebru who was not in the CC at that time participated in the internal discussion. The authors of the manifesto did not have absolute control on the rank-and-file-members of the TPLF and therefore no confidence to tell the latter (including some from the eleven like Asfaha, Kahsay and even Aregawi who was in the leadership etc..) about the aim of secession. As the authors of the manifesto did not want to tell other members of the organisation about their aim of secession, they did not speak about any change of the aim.

This change was probably sent to the EPLF, but we know it was not distributed amongst the members of the TPLF. On the one side, the change in the manifesto was a reaction to the criticism of the EPLF and EPRP. Aregawi Berhe has also written that he opposed secession. On the other side, the CC of the TPLF could have without mentioning the manifesto, indirectly come to the conclusion that there was no support for secession amongst the rank-and-file-members and the people. The aim of the TPLF was declared to be the self-determination of the people of Tigray in the first congress of the TPLF in 1979 without any mention that it was secession before. It was only in the beginning of 1985, at a time when the CC of the TPLF felt strong enough to take over power in the whole of Ethiopia that the existence of the manifesto of secession was disclosed openly. The disclosure was made in the first issue of the TPLF magazine “Yetigil Tiri (a call for struggle) as a half-hearted self-criticism of, as the CC put it: “the narrow nationalist tendency” of the TPLF in the beginning.

The formulation: “the right to self-determination, including and up to secession” is generally, and as we know it particularly in the TPLF ambivalent and very dangerous. This has been the worst phrase in Ethiopia since the mid 70s up to now. Such an aim shows the insincerity of its Authors on two counts. In the first place, the authors insincerely try to look like a neutral body which would see to it that the right of the people to reach a decision is respected. Theoretically, the self-determination of the people in a referendum is a compromise solution when one force struggles for secession while another tries to maintain unity. It is historically a phrase for independence from colonialism and secession is inherent in self-determination. The dominant elements of the CC of the TPLF did not want to take a clear position. This position as we see it practically means that they wanted unity if they get power all over Ethiopia and the secession of Tigray if they don’t monopolize power in Ethiopia. Secondly, the CC of the TPLF has never been democratic when it comes to elections as well as democratic and human rights. The assertion that they would accept the decision of the people while they are oppressing and terrorizing the people is simply a white lie. The right to self-determination including and up to secession as used by the TPLF is a system of manipulation and nothing else, because the aim is intentionally unclear so that it can be interpreted one way or the other depending on the wishes of Meles. Any decision can be imposed on the people with the help of repression and declared to have the support of 99.6% of people by the dishonest tyrant.

Irrespective of whatever the nature of the TLF was, there is pattern of behaviour of the leadership of the TPLF and particularly that of Meles which we find in connection with the annihilation of the TLF 37 years ago. According to this pattern of behaviour the perpetrator deceives, takes cruel measures and accuses the victim of crimes which the perpetrator himself commits. This history has similarities with measures taken by Meles against the CUD in 2005. The manipulation in connection with self-determination is also part of the culture of deceit which is being used to erode unity as well as maintain the repressive regime with the help of the system of divide and rule.

  1. ananymous
    | #1

    Abebe/Melese/Legesse and his boss Bereket Simon (Mebrahtu G/hiwot) had surpassed every evil person that had committed crimes against their own family, people, friends, and neighbors; they have held the Ethiopian people and the whole region as hostages with the help of interest groupies. The crimes of these individuals and their puppets will be revealed to the entire Ethiopians and the world in general and the consequences will be around for many generations to come. It is time for those who associate with thugs to distance themselves and become part of peace makers or!!!!

  2. wow
    | #2

    What is sustainaing TPLF and Meles until this day so that they have backers and followers of even most Ethiopians is their ability to do the cruelty under ground or replacing their killing by other gangs at the same time doing “development” work, at the same time implementing racist policies, at the same time allowing buildings, at the same time, conoslidating wealth through EFFORT at the same time, buidling dams. So on. This is what deceives us. If no one knows Meles and TPLF by now and working slowly towards creating civil war and secession when the time fits then we deserve to go through such suffering. Mengistu seen as barbaric is giving TPLF/Meles as saints but they in fact are doing the most damage to Ethiopia and the generation to come. I am sure a lot of collaborators as above authors are silent and have been silent. If the fuutre of TPLF and Meles is dim, I am sure these silent TPLF members as above, will quickly come out and spill the beans of TPLF to save themselves or to make it look like TPLF misled them or set them up. The TPLF members are being promised lavish lives for the rest of their lives and there is a chance for their 2 generations will be in control and even kings and queens. That is why they are silent. They therefore will be silent and take and continue this advantage if TPLF/Meles are in control or saved. Of course, add to that the same parents Shaebia whom until this day are collaborating with tPLF. It is very doubtful but even if Isayas is not part of it, Shaebia will be more than ready to fulfill TPLF’s agenda.

  3. koster
    | #3

    KUCH BILEN YESKENEWUN KUMEN MAWRED AKATEN – Fascist Meles would have not done all the evil deeds without the cooperation of hodams at various stages. Are you against Meles or Tigrean economic, military and political dominance too. It is not possible to cheat, loot and kill the Ethiopian people indefinately. If you really care for Ethiopia and Ethiopians fight for individual freedom and rule of law and this is only possible if you stop tribal politics and unite for a common goal which to make tyrany in Ethiopia history.

  4. Zerayakob Yared
    | #4


    ለወደፊቱ ጤንነት ለማምጣት ያለፈውን ወንጀል በግልፅ መነጋገር! ስለሆነም ያለፈውን ቆንጨራዊ ወንጀል ሲመዘገብላችሁ ለአንባቢያን ማቅረቡን አትደብቁ!! ዛሬ ጠዋት ያስተላለፍክላችሁን ከሁሉም የቀደመውን መልእክት መሰረዛችሁ ገርሞኛል!!

  5. Today not tomorrow!
    | #5

    We all are to blame and we all should be ashamed!

    My Father who fought for change so that all Ethnic should be treated equally and with dignity and those who fought for our country would spit on us if they are alive.
    We all are busy to protect our investment in Ethiopia and busy to gain for today while our kids and our grand kids will not have country that they will be able to have dignity!
    Not too late, but it is getting harder and harder while we are rewarding this government to titans the screws on us!
    Rise and be counted by writing by contributing money by, going and organizing!

  6. When is Enough is Enough?
    | #6

    Meles is evil as evil does! Meles has been committing evil deeds on Ethiopia/ns before and after he has taken power, probably for the last thirty to thirty five years of his life, may be more. The man is created without guilty conscience what is so ever, merciless, coldblooded, looter and one of the biggest lairs and manipulator in the world to get what he wants, and won’t stop committing crimes on innocent Ethiopians, unless he is stopped by every means of necessary. Our people and country have been suffering at the hands of the heartless subhuman tyrant for more than 21 years. When is Enough is Enough? Hasn’t that bloodsucker Mengestu left a few jegnnas to take out the tyrant and his TPLF cronies to end this endless nightmares?

  7. bim
    | #7

    What is clear from this article is that shabia was running the show within TPLf by a remote control. the rest of the article is a load of garbage.

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