Home and country burglarized. By Yilma Bekele

September 13th, 2012 Print Print Email Email

Someone broke into our house. They forced the backdoor open and went through every square inch of the house. They turned our mattress over, pilfered through our drawers and left the closet in a mess. It was done in the middle of the day and it looks like they took their time. They stole laptops, I pod, tablet computer, flat screen TV’s and my wife’s gold jewelry.

We have lived in the same neighborhood for over twenty years now. Nothing like this has happened before. We felt safe and secure. We did not have a burglar alarm. There were no metal guards on our doors and windows. When we moved to the area most of our neighbors were elderly people enjoying their retirement. They were always outside sitting on their porch and remising and watching. It is true there were one or two houses where the young kids were dealing drugs but the presence of the grandfathers made their business low-key.

Burglary is an ugly and very personal crime. Most of the stuff they took is replaceable. What is disturbing and creepy is the fact that a stranger went thru your stuff. I just keep visualizing their ugly dirty hands in my drawer and all over my home. They stole expensive stuff like computers but what bothered me most was the loss of quarters I was saving for my son. They took the flat screen televisions and Google tablet but the loss of little gold crosses from my mom to my wife is what keeps me awake at night. The thought of a burglar never crossed my mind but now I am convinced burglars are the scums of the earth. I better not be called for a jury duty where the crime is burglary. Off with his/her head is what first comes to mind.

I was seething with anger regarding my home invasion when I read Ambassador Susan Rice eulogy at the funeral of you know who in my homeland. My depression was compounded. Et tu Susan? When Bush was the President Mrs. Rice in an article she wrote for the Washington Post said “We Saved Europeans. Why Not Africans?” regarding the administration’s refusal to use force in Darfur and her praise of President Clinton’s military intervention in Kosovo. Compare that to her statement at the funeral of an African tyrant. Our fearless Ambassador was very generous with her praises of the dictator and was nice enough to include the human side of him inquiring about her family. She went out of her way to heap accolades like a smitten teen ager and elevate the dictator to new heights. I have no problem with her ignorance but what got my goat was her statement “He [Meles] was tough, unsentimental and sometimes unyielding. And, of course, he had little patience for fools, or “idiots,” as he liked to call them” That to me is too personal. Shame on you Susan Rice! Those of us that fight injustice are not fools or idiots. My dear Ambassador it looks like you got things reversed.

Those that deny freedom to others, those that deny democracy, those that deny the rule of law are considered fools and idiots. On the other hand those that fight back to secure their God given right to live in peace and dignity are normally referred to as freedom fighters. As a black person that find herself in such a high and powerful position representing her country I would have thought she would be the perfect candidate to identify with the cause of our people and be able to articulate our wishes and dreams better than her Wasp predecessors. Mrs. Ambassador it is a little disconcerting to think a poor immigrant like me is constantly fighting rednecks and conservatives that judge you negatively based on the color of your skin and declare you unfit to represent America and here you are paying my favor by dancing with criminals and unsavory characters. Too bad she is not a student of MLK. Where did she miss the bus? I forgot she did not take the bus, may be that is why Fox news referred to her as a ‘limousine liberal’?

Anyway I gave her transgressions and insulting behavior some thought and was able to put things in perspective. I decided there is no reason I should spend an ounce of energy on what she thinks and say. I got bigger problems to solve. Thus I went back to my home burglary issue and viewed the two items and marveled at the linkage of the situation.

I did not leave my home open. Someone forced the door open. What I have done since then is install security doors and windows, install cameras and use cloud storage to back up my documents. It is impossible to stop a determined criminal the least I could do is make the bum work to earn his pay. It is said you know who your friends are in times of difficulty. I was humbled by two of my friends that gave me a lap top computer and a flat screen television to ease my pain. My friends Getachew and Dr. Tesfaye made me realize I am not alone. We are each other’s keeper.

When it came to my homeland the situation is a little different. The burglars did not have to break a door or climb thru a window. They just bought their way in to our precious country. They used collaborators to open the door and let them in. We left our door open. No need to blame the burglar for our being indifferent regarding our treasure. Ambassador Rice was praising an individual we allowed to dictate to us for over twenty years. I know some fought back. Plenty paid with their life. The use of ethnic loyalty was his calling card. I am also sure that his harsh and intrusive system have something to do with his longevity. No matter the reason, our door was left open, and our security was compromised.

The solution to safeguard a country is a little different than securing a home. Walls, cameras, border guards on the ground and drones in the sky are not a solution. The best full proof system is a population that is empowered to safeguard its own freedom. The citizen has to feel that they are in charge and they own their country. Those in charge have to understand that they serve by the will of the people. That is what is meant by ‘for the people by the people.’ As they are hired by the citizen they must know that the possibility of being fired for misconduct is real.

This kind of arrangement assures the leader entrusted with the key will not open the door and let strangers in to take advantage of a poor nation. Strangers will not try using underhanded means to get in and and act like king makers knowing it will be rejected. The recent death of the dictator is proof that our door was left wide open. The situation has favored the outsiders at the expense of the citizen. He was loved, respected, held in high esteem, considered a visionary and a person of extraordinary super natural gift. Unfortunately the sky high phrase is uttered by no other than those that enabled him to stay in power.

The issue is not Susan Rice, European Union or any outside party. We are that are the legitimate owners of this Nation called Ethiopia that allows misfits, megalomaniacs and unsavory individuals to hold the key to our door. We refuse to stand for fair play and justice. Recently when talking about an issue that tested the American people President Obama said ‘As Americans let us never, ever forget that our freedom is only sustained because there are people who are willing to fight for it, to stand up for it, and in some cases lay down their lives for it. Our country is only as strong as the character of our people and the service of those, both civilian and military, who represent us around the globe.’ It is when we can say those words regarding our motherland that we can stand straight look each other in the eye and utter the words ‘I love Ethiopia.’ Anything else is hot air and bluster. Happy New Year, may we have the strength of character to take advantage of the new reality God has given us and build a strong and democratic Ethiopia.

  1. Sam
    | #1

    For considerable years now the opposition parties in the diaspora seem interested to get the backing of the US government to replace EPDRF. But the bad news is it is not going to happen. The reason why Susan Rice’s eulogy at the funeral of Meles brought up condemination from some is they seem to realize the opposition parties do not have an iota of impact on the State Department’s policy regarding Ethiopian politics. Yilma is all over the place in this article. He compared those who bulgraized his house with EPDRF’s politicians. Meaning those who bulgraized his house should not take his stuff. It is not their home afterall. The EPDRF politicians should not “burglarize” Ethiopia either. Is it not their country? I do know what Yilma tries to imply. But it is a bad analogy. You cannot write something and hope readers to understand what you wrote the way you wanted it without you making it clear what you mean. Does Yilma expect Susan to say here goes one dictator from the face of the earth and America is happy for it? Maybe he does. Susan said of Meles he is “tough, unsentimental, and unyelding,” Does Yilma believe any of those adjectives apply to the characteristics of Meles? Is not true the opposition parties keep accusing Meles of being unyielding? It is strange really. Susan said he is unsentimental. Does Yilma believe he is sentimental and she should say so? Or does Yilma believes he is not tough? A man who run the party as he wished it to run, a man who got rid of any prominent politicians from TPLF who had the courage to stand up against his policy is weak? Maybe what got Yilma irritated is the next qoute. Susan said “he had little patience for fools, or idiots, as he liked to call them.’ She did not say they are fools or idiots. She qouted him saying. She should not qoute him that is what Yilma wanted to say? I can understand people who have difficulty with the English language and failing to understand what she said. Yilma is not one of them. That begs the question what he really is talking about? I wish I knew.

  2. Ittu Aba Farda
    | #2

    My sympathy to you for being so vandalized and violated by these scabs of the society. I think my family has been lucky enough not to experience such vexing experience. I agree with you one hundred percent that the material you lost can be replaced and you should count your blessing that no one in your family was harmed in the process. The drug problem is a problem in every continent now. It is spreading like a prairie fire everywhere. It is not only spreading but it is spreading taking with it the most potent type of these drugs. A lot of these drug addicts are not only hallucinating but they usually turn extremely violent when high. That is why we are hearing types of crimes with such viciousness we never witnessed before. The narcotics these days are so potent that just a single use is enough to be hooked. To be honest with you, I don’t feel safe going to places where people gather such as malls and theatres any more. But there are a few things we can do to ward off potential burglars away from our houses. First of all, leave your window shades down unless you are sitting or working outside. That is a must. Secondly, if there are two cars in the family, leave on parked outside while no one is at home. Thirdly, turn your radio on at medium high volume before leaving your residence. Fourthly, in this day and age, if you live in a detached home or a ranch town home with no security guard, you must have an alarm system installed on your property. Choose the wireless alarm system. It has been told on the mass media that thieves nowadays know how to disconnect your wired alarm system and break in your homes. It is worth it. That is what I have. When thieves see the ADT sign in front of your home or when they see a car in the drive or when they hear music from inside, they will move on to their next easy target. I pay about $37 a month for the system and it has been worth a dime. Lastly, install motion activated lights on the front and back side of your home if it is a detached one. Of course, avoiding drug infested neighborhoods by all means helps a lot and reporting drug related activities to the law enforcement folks will also help the effort in nipping it in the bud. I hope this will help.

  3. aha!
    | #3

    I may agree to your analogy that the TPLF/eprdf regime deprived us our private possessions and some that are irrepressable, referring perhaps to the silent majority of Ethiopians.

    Let us take that analogy a noch higher, knowing that the country is goverened by TPLF/eprdf regime, where eprdf is only a cover for TPLF Politbeurro and direct supporter of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism, spearheaded by TPLF against oppression of nations and nationalities by the previous regimes that created a constitution with the above ideologies that denies individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights, free maket capitalism and democracy, all of which are available to TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprises and foreign corporations engaged in exploitations, political and economic strangle hold of the country’s resources and the silent majority of Ethiopians, leaving them under abject poverty starvation and inflationary pressures. That is what has been robed from the silent majority of Ethiopians.

  4. Dawi
    | #4

    [[..That to me is too personal. Shame on you Susan Rice! Those of us that fight injustice are not fools or idiots…]]

    Brother Yelma – I truly sympathize with your situation in the burglary.

    Having said that, I am also truly amazed of your perception that you must be the “fool or idots” that Dr. Rice is talking about?

    And to going on and staunchly defending you self? :-)

  5. love
    | #5

    “The EPDRF politicians should not “burglarize” Ethiopia either. Is it not their country?” Really some. What a weak argument. You know what Yilma is trying to say. But it seems like you are giving EPRDF to give green light to their out-law behavior that they have right to burglarize. Just very weak statement that is all I can say trying to discredit Yilma for your own agenda.

    I doubt it was burgalarized as wht you think. Perhaps it is to silence you from being pro Ethiopia, obvious because the burglarizing is alleby to protect themselves they are there to threaten you.

  6. Anonymous
    | #6

    First and foremost, I’m very sorry to hear that you and your family were victims of lowlife street thugs. Let us hope they catch these hoodlums so that you and your family live in peace. I hope and pray that these street looters are not the same thugs who have been burglarizing our homeland for 22 years.
    Thank you for writing this article. I was touched and tearful. How I wish Mrs. Rice read what you’ve written. She needs to be educated; yes, I’m aware that she is a graduate of some prestigious university, but the university doesn’t guarantee its graduates to have natural wisdom, good and fair judgment. After I witnessed what Ambassador Susan Rice had done to oppressed Ethiopians, I’m very disappointed with President Obama that he assigned an incompetent person to be Ambassador to UN. But, saying that, it doesn’t mean I am going to give my vote to Mitt Romney — I have no choice but to hold my noise and vote for President Obama. Considering the comments made by Romney these couple of days, I have no doubt that Romney and Ryan are and will be much worse than Susan Rice.
    Happy New Year to all my fellow Ethiopians in and outside of Ethiopia. Peace be with you all. May this year be the end of all TPLF thugs!

  7. yilmab
    | #7

    Thank you all for your wonderful support and show of sympathy. As for my friend Sam here is what he wrote to clarify matters ”You cannot write something and hope readers to understand what you wrote the way you wanted it without you making it clear what you mean.”‘ I really admire your nerve to critique my piece with that sort of writing. As for the US and the Diaspora we are not in to the fantasy business the only people that can bring change to Ethiopia are Ethiopians no matter what foreigners think or do. It is good and preferable if they help us achieve freedom by standing along side of us or stop enabling the tyrants that deny us freedom. I am not happy with Susan Rice she betrayed the ideals the US stands for other than that she can go to hell with her friend. I am glad to see my friend Dawi, did you go to the funeral? I want you to know it has been the best two months of my life knowing the tyrant, killer, abuser, prince of darkness is six feet under. It is a new day in Ethiopia. His underlings are still trying to continue on his footsteps but it won’t work. may be a few months more then it will be show time, Yes I am the fool and idiot that drove the tyrant to early grave. Just watch as we write history and all the evil TPLF has done sees the light. A luta continua-the struggle continues.

  8. Anonymous
    | #8

    ዘመነ ግርንቢጥ የማይለየው ጣጣ
    ውሃ ወደ ሰማይ ሄደ ሽቅብ ወጣ
    ጋኖች አለቁና ምንቸቶች ጋን ሆኑ
    ከቀፎው ማር ጠፋ ዝንቦቹም ንብ ሆኑ.. ህዝብ አገርን ዘርፈው ተካፍለው የበሉ
    ባህር-በሩን ሽጠው-ላያስፈልግ የማሉ ..የወጣችው ጸሃይ ብትጨልምባቸው…ሊያበሩዋት ከጀሉ በጀግነነታቸው
    ታሪክ አንቅዋሸሹ – ግንጠላን ሰበኩ
    ቂም በቀል በደልን – በቁናቸው አቦኩ
    በጎጣ ከጋጣ ጥላቻ እየከኩ
    ለሁሉም አደሉ በቁጥር በልኩ
    ጀግናማ ቢሆኑ ምን እውን ቢነገር
    ከቡና ቤት ገብተው ከባንኮኒው ማገር
    ከአረቄው ከአንቡላው መሸቶቹ ሰፈር

    ስካር ባናወዘው – ወድቀውም ባልነበር
    በሚናገሩበት ማህበር ስብሰባ
    የመስታወት አጥር ፍራቻ ወከባ
    ታች እላይ ሲያቀኑ ሁሌም በአጀባ ሁሌም ተሽሎክሉኮ ከሩቁም ርቆ ..መች ጀግና ነበረ እንዲህ ተደብቆ ፈሪ
    መቶ ሰራዊት ጦር ከፊትም ከጀርባ
    ቀናቸውስ ነውና እና- ሞቱ ቢቀድማቸው
    ጽያፌው ተረስቶ የሰው ንቀታቸው
    አውቆም ተዘንግቶ ዘራፊነታቸው
    ውሸት እና ዝልፊያ ርኩስነታቸው
    የ 21 አመት መከራ ግፋቸው …የሚረሳ ይመስል ከንቱ ዲስኩራቸው መርፌ ይወጉን ገቡ ብለው ጀግና ናቸው
    የትኛው ዋሾ ነው ማንስ ጀግና ያላቸው
    ወጡም ሳይወጠውጥ ድስቱን መጣዳቸው

  9. ጉረኞች
    | #9

    You cannot make politics out of everything you hear or see. What Susan Rice said does not amount to justify for critics to wage war of words against her. What do the opposition get out of that? I just don’t get it why the staunch critic delve his finger in this childish squabble. You need to spend the time in matters that impact the Ethiopians most.

  10. aha!
    | #10

    The issue is not what UN Ambassador Susan Rice said or did not say about the late Prime Minister Meses Zenawi, but what the individuals in the silent majority of Ethiopians do individually and in unison for being denied of shared ownership of Ethiopia with freedom, liberty and equality superceding ethnic and secessionist rights after ratifying the constitution and forming a democratic government thaat rules by the consent of the governed, not by ethnic rule of either majority and/or minority ethnic rule the way it is set up now by ex-liberation fronts spearheaded by TPLF with a contitution of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism built into it.

  11. Zerayakob Yared
    | #11

    ማን ላይ ሆነሽ ማንን ታምያለሽ!?

    ጠቐሜታ የብሉን ተባሂልካ ከይትግለል እንዶግዳ ሕሰበሉ! ቅድሚ ሕጂ ቐበጥበጥ ክብሉ ናይ ምግላል ዕጫ ዝበፅሖም ካልኦት, ሎሚ ብጠጠዎም ኣሞራ ይበልዖም ስለዘሎ,”እኔን ያየህ ተመከር እንዳትቀጣ” እዮም ዝብሉ-ዝምህለሉን ዘለዉ! ንምእማን ፀገም እንተድኣ በፅኢሑካ, ሳተላይትካ ናብ ሸነኻት ጁቢቲ, ባርካ, ወ’ሲናይ ገፅካ ዘርግሕ! ሳተላይት የብለይን ብሃላይ እንተድኣኾይንካ ድማ ናብ ኣስመራ ገፅካ ተደዋወልሞ በዝዘለናዮ እዋናት ኣብ አስመራ ናይ ላንድክሩዘር ሽም “ልዋጭ ኩሊት” ዝብል ሓዱሽ ሽም ተዋሂብዎ ከምዘሎ ክገልፁልካ እዮም!!

    ሓሲብና ንምዝራብን ዓቕሊ ይሃበና!

  12. Anonymous
    | #12

    @aha!
    The americans and Susan Rice are the true friends of ethiopia.They support the policy of EPRDF BECAUSE of their real will to find a lasting peace based on the equality among all the people.The federalism remain one of the best solution.Please read Walleligne Mekonnen ; What are the Ethiopian people composed of? I stress on the word peoples because sociologically speaking at this stage Ethiopia is not really one nation. It is made up of a dozen nationalities with their own languages, ways of dressing, history, social organization and territorial entity. And what else is a nation? It is not made of a people with a particular tongue, particular ways of dressing, particular history, particular social and economic organization? Then may I conclude that in Ethiopia there is the Oromo Nation, the Tigrai Nation, the Amhara Nation, the Gurage Nation, the Sidama Nation, the Wellamo [Wolayta] Nation, the Adere [Harari] Nation, and however much you may not like it the Somali Nation.
    This is the true picture of Ethiopia. There is of course the fake Ethiopian Nationalism advanced by the ruling class and unwillingly accepted and even propagated by innocent fellow travellers.
    What is this fake Nationalism? Is it not simply Amhara and to a certain extent Amhara-Tigre supremacy? Ask anybody what Ethiopian culture is? Ask anybody what Ethiopian language is? Ask anybody what Ethiopian music is? Ask anybody what the “national dress” is? It is either Amhara or Amhara-Tigre!!
    To be a “genuine Ethiopian” one has to speak Amharic, to listen to Amharic music, to accept the Amhara-Tigre religion, Orthodox Christianity and to wear the Amhara-Tigre Shamma in international conferences. In some cases to be an “Ethiopian”, you will even have to change your name. In short to be an Ethiopian, you will have to wear an Amhara mask (to use Fanon’s expression). Start asserting your national identity and you are automatically a tribalist, that is if you are not blessed to be born an Amhara. According to the constitution you will need Amharic to go to school, to get a job, to read books (however few) and even to listen to the news on Radio “Ethiopia” unless you are a Somali or an Eritrean in Asmara for obvious reasons. Walleligne Mekonnen
    This is the solution forthe erhiopia of today.

  13. YISEWRENE KEMEAATUU
    | #13

    SEE NOW ?!

    I TOLD YOU SO……

    I ALREADY KNEW IT LONG TIME AGO HOW MUCH THE
    WOYANNES WILL LIKE AND CHERISH THE LIE……
    THEY LOVED THE LIE TO DEATH.

  14. Tariku
    | #14

    Do you think some of this woyanes are sane ?
    They are desperately trying to save the sinking
    ship of woyane with its ethnofederal cargo!
    kkkkkk….kkkkk…..it hillariously funny scene.

  15. TESFA
    | #15

    ME ABAK AGEBAH SELE ETHIOPIA ETHNICS GROUP .
    YOU PEOPLE ARE NUMBER ONE TO INVEST IN ETHIOPIA I CAN NOT BELIEV IT
    MELESE KICKED YOU OUT NOW YOU BACK .

    WHATS YOU COMPLAYING FOR WHY YOU DON TALK ABOUT YOUR BLOOD SUCKER PRESIDENT ISAYAS WHY YOU DON LEAVE US ALONE YOU FU…BASTERD.

    ETHIOPIA IS IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.
    FETARI BEREKETUN AWREDUAL.

    YOU TALKING AMHARIC LANGUAGE BLHA BLHA BULL.
    GO TO NIGERIA WHAT DO THEY SPEAK ENGLISH KENYA ENGLISH,ANGOLA PORTUGES,
    NORTH AFRICA FRENCH,THANKS TO ETHIOPIA YOU SPEAK TIGREGNA.

  16. GLOBAL MONITOR
    | #16

    THE MORNING MONITOR

    ETHIOPIA AT A NEW DAWN!
    ETHIOPIAN NATIONALISM RISING
    AS TPLF CRUMBLES DOWN.

    TPLF AFTER DECADES LONG OF DECAY AND
    UNACCEPTANCE BY THE ETHIOPIAN PEOPLE
    IS CRUMBLNIG FASTER AS WE THINK.
    NOW IT IS A CONFIRMED TRUTH THAT TPLF
    HAS BEEN KEEPING IT A TOP SECRET THAT
    IT HAS RECEIVED SERIOUS FATAL POLETICAL
    BLOWS BY THE OPPOSITION AND ESPECIALLY
    BY THE G7 AND DIASPORA POLETICAL GROUPS.
    SOME ANALYSTS CONFIRM THAT TPLF IS IN
    DISSARAY AND ITS OLD GUARDS IN CONFUSION
    OF WHAT TO DO AND SOME ALREADY DESPERATELY
    TRYING TO SALVAGE SOME OF THE DYING SYSTEM
    AND THEIR BELONGINGS AND POSTS IN THE GOVT
    AND THE ADMINISTRATION DUE TO SEVER BLOWS
    AFTER BLOWS DISORIENTED THE ETHNICALLY LED
    ORGANIZATION.
    MESKEREM ABEBE
    @GLOBAL MONITOR.COM

  17. bacheru
    | #17

    for what good is this analogy, one thing is sure, the article makes sense that the author admit to be one of the foolish or more precisely one of the idiots the PM refer to. What can be more foolish than to compare thieves with elected govermenent(stolen or not). I bet, if the burglars managed to bring the good neighbourhood house for whatever reason in their possesions, only you as an idiot will keep on calling them burglars and spent decades after decades with futile arguments, instade of trying to articulate why they came to posses your house and what remedy you have if any. Where as the bruglars with all their won rights can do what ever they like with that house of you, competely unimpressed of you, i must add, you will keep on calling them housebreaker without bringing any substance to support the claim. Sure enough, you will then wonder why others are not ready to give any attention to your case. I also bet again, that you will take many more decades to even grasp the issue at all!

    Go and enjoy your low life, –sitting inforont of your docmicel like most of your neighbors and counting who went up and down and when! With this at list, you will fulfill a purpose.

    you make my day

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