Zenawi and his Gangs upset by H.R. 2003 – By Brian Blackwell

August 23rd, 2007 Print Print Email Email

Ethiopian officials are disturbed by legislation pending in Congress that would restrict military assistance and travel to the United States by certain Ethiopian officials unless President Bush certifies that the Addis Ababa government is acting to address specific human rights concerns. (more…)

Ethiopian officials are disturbed by legislation pending in Congress that would restrict military assistance and travel to the United States by certain Ethiopian officials unless President Bush certifies that the Addis Ababa government is acting to address specific human rights concerns.

The Ethiopians argue that it is unfair to lump them in with countries like North Korea and Iran at a time when their troops are acting as allies in the war on terrorism, defending an interim government in neighboring Somalia against Islamist extremists.

“This would be the fatal blow to cooperating security arrangements between the United States and Ethiopia,” said Samuel Assefa, Ethiopian ambassador to the United States. “Ethiopia is a vital ally to the U.S. in this region in the fight against terrorism. The bill could cut off economic and bilateral aid at a most inopportune time.”

The legislation — known as H.R. 2003 — was proposed by Rep. Donald M. Payne, New Jersey Democrat, and is backed by members of the Ethiopian community in Washington, most of whom support the main opposition party in Addis Ababa and remain angry over the outcome of a May 2005 parliamentary election.

Shortly after the election — in which the opposition party won an unprecedented number of seats but not enough to defeat Prime Minister Meles Zenawi — violent protests erupted, leading to a government crackdown.

The government admitted its security forces arrested about 30,000 protesters and killed 193 civilian protesters, but denied excessive force was used. Many more were arrested and have been held in many cases until recently.

Mr. Assefa argued in an interview at The Washington Times that his government was addressing the problem. Last weekend, the government reported that 32 members and supporters of the opposition coalition were released.

Another 38 prisoners had been freed three weeks earlier, and Mr. Assefa said only one political prisoner who signed a plea requesting a pardon remains jailed because his court case is still pending.

Under the country’s legal system, Mr. Assefa said, “a plea for a pardon can only be considered after a conviction and sentencing is passed.”

However leaders of a local support group, Coalition for H.R. 2003, contends the Ethiopian government is using the political prisoners as “pawns in its shell game with the U.S. Congress.”

“Every time the bill is scheduled for markup [by a full House committee], the regime touts out a hapless bunch of political prisoners and threatens the U.S. that they will not be released if the House Foreign Affairs Committee marks up H.R. 2003,” said Alemayehu Mariam, member of the Coalition for H.R. 2003.

“The bottom line on the ruling regime’s opposition to H.R. 2003 is that it is incapable of making a morally and politically convincing case against the bill in its entirety, or any of its provisions,” Mr. Mariam said.

“So it has to resort to the thuggish tactic of strong-arming members of Congress and holding the freedom of innocent political prisoners in the balance.”

While the Ethiopian government questions the timing of the bill, Noelle LuSane, staff director for the subcommittee on Africa and Global Health, emphasized there was a two-year gap between the time the 193 protesters were killed and the bill’s introduction in April.

“The government had plenty of time to resolve the issue,” Ms. LuSane said. “So Congressman Payne does not feel the government should have been given more time, as they had two years to fix the problem.”

  1. tesema
    | #1

    Samuel assefa did a very good job. The traitor al mariam thinks ethiopia is a garbage country that should be colonized and controlled by white people.
    But samuel assefa has warned america.
    excellent job!!!
    God bless Ethiopia.

  2. kill zenawi
    | #2


    Where was your brain when you wrote this garbage? Ooops… sorry …forgot you got no brain.

  3. YeAmbo
    | #3

    Tesema … you are nothing but piece of s… brainless mercinery … hodam ….

  4. balager_00
    | #4

    tesema, yes hodamu samuel assefa did a very good job for woyane.i tell you why are you trying to put such trash words even if you know that it doesnt make any sense. pls try to control your brainwashed soul. the truth stand always with time.

  5. balager_00
    | #5

    tesema ,pls dont cry . jut do your job as woyanes servant

  6. | #6

    Dear tesema………….shame on you and/or on TPLF minority group associates..

    Dr. Samuael did not contribute any for the country rather enjoying with black label whisky and “chat”. Let’s give chance to comments regarding his background particularly,let’s give the chance for those have visited Addis Ababa University. Dr. Samuael and the so-called Prof. Endrias are well known by most AAU students. Dr. Samuael is a man who cannot brief U about one topic accurately because of his natural behavior. Please don’t compare Prof. Al Mariam with him. Thus, Dr. Samuael is ignoring the truth not because of the commitment he had/has to the TPLF/Melles or Prof. Endrias but also because of his aptitude and poor judgment for the truth.

    “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter”. Martin Luther King Jr.


  7. Jyigzaw
    | #7

    Tessema, your body “zenawi” is already running out of time. He has digging his grave by himself and will buried soon.

  8. kiros
    | #8

    tesema,you child killer and evil mind go to hell with your boss weyane.

  9. Tigist
    | #9

    The struggle for Unity and Democracy in Ethiopia will continue and we will prevail. The primitive Weyannes have no place in the modern world.

  10. Birhanu
    | #10

    It is shameful to see all of these ignorant words on this message board. This shows exactly how we’re functioning as of now. Instead of working towards a solution we spend most of our time cursing and judging each other; taking sides and being rivals. What is wrong with us? I was surprised to see articles like “Professor Al versus Prof Ishac”. These are two individuals working for the betterment of our nation. Unfortunately their ways happened to cross, some how. But what is wrong with the irresponsible media? Enough with the media, what is wrong with us taking sides and fighting on every single message board instead of suggesting what we should be doing from now on? What is wrong with us people?!

    I believe that HR2003 has a lot of good points. I also think that it has some weak points. Let me just mention the weak points, from my point of view as the good points are too many to mention. I don’t support the Military assistance ban on Ethiopia and I don’t support the travel bans to be imposed on the leading party members. Believe it or not banning military assistance is not going to stop EPRDF from killing our people. They don’t need high tech US military to kill innocent citizens. We are circled by nations like Egypt who has been arming all militant groups in the nation. Egypt was one of the biggest military assistance from US this year. There are others like Eritrea and many others who don’t like Ethiopia’s influence in the horn. The millitary assistance ban is only going to make our country less powerful in the horn, more stress and disintegration, more power to militants like OLF, ONLF, Eritrean regime and more. Can we imagine what the fate of our country will be if these militants take over? Do we know that they can sign all kinds of agreements with other nations who helped them take over the power just because they don’t believe in the existence of Ethiopia? Obviously they are separatists groups who often want to mention Ethiopia as a Colonial power. They can sign agreements with Sudan, and Eritrea to give out ambiguous lands on the boarders. They can sign agreement with Egypt about Nile just to mention a few. Our country is only going to be in a deep shit than it already is. People let’s be very wise on these issues. Let’s not be tempted to do something just because we can. I noticed Ethiopians in Canada signed a petition to ban Ethiopian Airlines from flying to Canada. Let’s understand who this is going to hurt, the people or EPRDF? Let’s assume that all of Ethiopian companies and military become so weak and EPRDF gives power to the people, do we think we can stand together as a nation with all the failed economy, failed military and all? Let’s be more responsible. It’s our home.

    Trust me even if the country becomes the poorest of all, EPRDF isn’t going to give power to the people feeling guilty of failing the country. We have seen regimes like the Eritrea regim with their nation in so much deep trouble still manages to lead the nation at gun point. So let’s not push things way too far. Let’s give EPRDF a chance to either go with the reconciliation or let them save face and give us our nation back. Either ways our people are going to win if we resolve the issue peacefully. They’re only Ethiopians who’ve failed the nation and let’s treat them like brothers. Not because they’re as good but if reconcilation has to happen we have to do it. That’s how the 70 million Ethiopians believe and let’s not try to dictate from here just because we can. That’s what EPRDF did, dictate!!!

    If you push a brother to the better, push him just enough. If you push him too hard you’ll lose him.

  11. Reppi
    | #11

    You wrote:”They’re only Ethiopians who’ve failed the nation and let’s treat them like brothers. Not because they’re as good but if reconcilation has to happen we have to do it.”

    The reconcilation is between the ethiopian people that were divided by the enemy(tplf/eprdf).
    Woyanes thru ignorance or greed or plain lack of self-esteem are selling themselves and the country to anyone with $$$$.Treating them like brothers is like sharing the profit they make by bending over for their masters.
    Let me remind you of one of our terets:
    Three merchants travelling in hayena terretory
    decicded to spent the night out in the open.
    Late in The night they were awakened by bone crunching noise.
    One of the merchants asked waht the noise was.
    He heard a whispered reply ” keep quiet, the hayena is eating my leg, if you keep making noises you will have all of us killed.”

  12. Billal
    | #12

    May the creator of the universe , Allah bless Ethiopia and her true children such us Dr. Al for defending the defenseless and standing for justice. When prophet Mohammed(SAW) sent the first Moslems to Abyssinia, I have no doubt in my mind they were welcomed by the great ancestors of Dr Al, not by the children of traitors and “yenech gudaye asfesame ashkeroch” like Meles and the TPLF gangs.

  13. | #13

    jabaadhaa walnyaadhaa!!!

  14. | #14

    Dear Berhanu,

    I would partially agree with your comment. I like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation that you were sincerely put down the weak points of H.R. 2003. It is also shameful to read all of these ignorant words, most likely immature on this message board. As you might agree, some of them would like to write just because of that they are told to do so by TPLF cliques.

    I am quite sure you can agree with the difference between Prof. Al Mariam and prof. Isaac. With due respect for both, we cannot deny both of them have different commitment for the country. We can say a lot about prof. Isaac since 1991 and he has done for our motherland including his support for Eritrea Independence and we can say also a lot about Prof. Al Mariam. Any way I am not intended to write about but believe the so-called ‘Shimagiles”under the leadership of Prof. Isaac could not have positive impact for political crises rather the political crises must need the willingness political reconilation. But TPLF/Melles minority group will never admit their weakness and let the people to enjoy democracy. To say about TPLF hidden agenda, we should have to consider the facts and practice that would have implemented for the past sixteen years.

    Let’s remind you the military aid of the US and its side effect. When the leaders of “ Derge regime “ has failed to get military aid from the US (which, by 1977, had provided Ethiopian with the largest amount of any country in Africa, to reverse their setback, they turned to USSR (which, as of 1977 had provided Somalia with a largest amount of military aid and you might aware the lost in both sides.

    No doubt about the military strengthening of Egypt. During the Kuwait war we, both Egypt and Ethiopia have given support for US invasion of Iraq. But Egypt had received 10 Billion USD military aids while Ethiopia received less than 80 Million USD (perhaps somebody could have been put the figure). Obviously, we can proof in different ways that the United States has different mutual and strategic interest on both countries. If only the Ethiopian politicians are willing to stable the country instead of devastating the unity of the country, we will bring-up the touchable economic growth. Don’t rely on the military strength rather count on the unity and commitment of the people. If you consider the military strength, the United States would have win in war Afghanistan, Iraq and Vietnam and so on. Thus, if we unite for growth and development (growth: economic growth, development: technological) we will defend our country not only from Egypt but also from U.S.A or Russia the leading countries in the world in terms of military strength. Some one has to say something about OLF. But I would prefer to comments on OLF/ONLF in opportune time. We cannot bring any success by categorizing OLF/ONLF as a separatist rather bringing them to table for political discussion. The “Dergue regime” had considered TPLF/EPLF as a separatist and had tried to fool the people of Ethiopia. But anybody can testify the catastrophe due to TPLF mismanagement/hidden agenda.

    I agree with your last comment on reconciliation. Yes, political reconciliation. Why does political reconciliation would happen? Do you think TPLF/ Melles would accept the political reconciliation?. In an interview made, backing Sebhat, Meles reaffirms the unwavering commitment of his government to the Eritrean independence and its resolution to oppose fiercely any attempt to reverse the status quo. Why they do not want to do political reconciliation with political groups rather doing for Eritrea? TPLF will stop killing our people when we unite our strength. TPLF/Melles clique will stop killing our people when we are committed to make sustainable struggle for democracy

    “Always bear in mind, that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other thing”Abraham Lincolin”

    God Bless Ethiopia
    Ethiopia will prevail soon.


  15. nanu
    | #15

    drear berhanu

    u make a good point my brother and i just want to tell u that i live in canada and the people who petitioned to ban ethiopian airline from flying to canada are ERITREANS i repeat they are ERITREANS. most of them held ethiopian passport. when i frist heard the news that ethiopians are petitioning against thier owen airline i was shoked i couldnt believe it. than later on the i found out it was eritreans.

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