An Ethiopian walking on eggshells. By Yilma Bekele

June 27th, 2013 Print Print Email Email

No question I have to be careful writing this column. That is why I choose the title. Some of us are quick to take offense or assume holier than thou attitude when it comes to the subject I am gingerly trying to confront. I decided to approach the issue head on and let the chips fall where they may.

It all started after reading my friend Dr. Fikre Tolosa’s article regarding the Oromo question in our homeland. I was impressed and empowered by his lucid analysis. His grasp of our ancient history is second to none and his piece on the current situation was a showcase of his vast knowledge. The response to his presentation did not fit the gravity of the subject matter he so carefully laid out. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. I expected a mature and open discussion so we can have clarity and help us see the problem that has confounded our people for quite a long time. There is nothing like looking at an old problem with a fresher look equipped with new knowledge and experience gained from learning and observing.

Thus with my disappointment for those that claim to speak for the oppressed and down trodden I left the subject matter behind and moved on to other things. But that nagging feeling of searching for an opportunity to put the matter into some perspective stayed with me.

I was making my breakfast one early morning when I heard Public Radio discussing the anniversary of the assassination of Medgar Evers and the Mississippi of 1963. I was mesmerized by the story. For those that are not familiar with the history of America and its race relations I will do my best to give you a snapshot of the period.

The 1960 USA was a different country from what we see today. The two races white and black might as well have been living on different planets. They claim the north was a little different whatever that means but in the south USA being black was not a small matter. The State of Mississippi was ground zero for racism in its ugliest form. It was not de facto apartheid but it was definitely de facto segregation. The two races kept separate neighborhoods, separate schools and separate existence.

Medgar Evans, a veteran of World War II who fought for his country, a college graduate and a civil right campaigner applied to the University of Mississippi law school and his application was rejected due to his race. This was 1954. Mr. Evans continued his work in the civil rights movement by helping organize boycotts and setting up chapters of NAACP (National Alliance for the Advancement of Colored People) in his home state.

Some white folks in Mississippi did not appreciate the likes of Medgar Evans that were trying to upset the norm. Separate and unequal was their philosophy. Thus on June 12, 1963 a white fellow that took the distorted view to heart shot and killed Medgar Evans thinking that his act will stop the march of history. Here is the lyric to a beautiful song by Bob Dylan trying to make sense of this tragedy.

A bullet from the back of a bush took Medgar Evers’ blood
A finger fired the trigger to his name
A handle hid out in the dark
A hand set the spark
Two eyes took the aim
Behind a man’s brain
But he can’t be blamed
He’s only a pawn in their game.

How true, the hapless individual with no name was just a ‘pawn in their game’. I felt strong sense of attachment and empathy to Medgar Evans. He was not a complainer. He was an activist. Despite the danger to himself and his family Medgar worked to right what he felt was wrong. That was the story being told on the radio the morning as I was making my breakfast.

You see they were not discussing how awful it was to be a black person in Mississippi in 1963 but rather how things have changed due to heroes like Medgar. There was lynching, separate bathrooms, designated water fountains, unequal schools and a whole bunch of grievances to talk about but what was the point of dwelling on the negatives when one can construct on the positive? Slavery was an ugly period with the consequences still lingering until today. There is no denying that when you look at the America of 2013. But in that radio program they choose to take a positive approach. Remember the past but look what has been achieved in such a short time and build on that was the message.

And I thought here are a people brought with chains to serve, systematically dehumanized due to the color of their skin, psychologically whipped and untold atrocity visited on them but are triumphatically celebrating their endurance with hope and I was humbled. I was filled with a new sense of my ability to overcome and thrive. The sacrifice of Medgar Evans in Mississippi gave perspective to the suffering of my people in Ethiopia and the possibility of one day celebrating such a bright future in my ancient land. I thought of Professor Asrat that suffered for my freedom, I remembered Assefa Maru that was gunned in broad daylight for his resolve not to bow down, I stay up nights thinking of my brother Eskinder and Andulalem, Bekele, Wubeshet, my sister Reyot and many others enduring pain on my behalf. I dare not complain because it is a lot better to work harder so their sacrifice is not in vain.

My education did not end there. A few days later the same Public Radio brought out the story of race relations in the state of Alabama. This was another dramatic story with a positive twist. It took place in June of 1963 and the setting was another place of higher education. The person being interviewed is the daughter of the then Governor of the state and she was only a 13 years old girl at the time when the tragic drama took place. On that fateful day her father stood in front of the University of Alabama to block a black person from registering. The confrontation between the state and the federal government was a made for a picture moment. George Wallace the Governor lost but he made his point when he vainly declared ‘segregation now, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever.’

Peggy Wallace the daughter is one of those rare human beings that are able to emerge from such a tumultuous period with integrity. Her father redefined himself in the later part of his life but what struck me most was her statement ‘I am a Wallace but I am different.’ In the radio interview she said ‘It has taken me a lifetime to step out from the shadow of the schoolhouse door….I decided I wanted to leave a legacy for my children … one of change. If you have the courage to find your own voice, you can make change. I wanted Burns and Leigh (her children) to know that their mother found her voice and had the courage to stand for change. That she wanted change. That she did change.’

The two stories lifted the feeling of hopelessness and the heavy burden I feel when I think of my homeland. It is good to know that individual action could galvanize a whole nation to stop and pay attention. Medgar Evans sacrifices on behalf what is right and George Wallace’s defiance against what is just made people realize change is necessary. The nation was confronted with the reality that evil things were happening and no one is free when others are oppressed.

My happy thoughts were jarred when I listened to a voice of America interview with an individual presenting himself as an Ethiopian historian. Ato Gebrekidan Desta is other things but definitely not a historian. Listening to his bombastic analysis it is easy to tell that his whole purpose was to settle a score not to enlighten or find a meaning in a scholarly manner. It looks like he first arrived at a certain conclusion and went about looking for incidents to fit his theory. He reminded me of our Woyane leaders that never miss a chance to condemn the Derg while at the same time working hard to emulate and surpass the atrocity they so much hated and supposedly fought to get rid of.

Our friend Ato Gebrekidan passionately puts down early Ethiopian history and the leaders in his vain attempt to build the resume of Atse Yohanes. He dismisses all historians as tools of other Ethiopian kings while blindly forging ahead to construct his own reality regarding his favorite king Atse Yohanes. I was appalled when Ato Gebrekidan dismissed all previous historians as nothing but tools of the old regime. Such worthy intellectuals as Belaten Geta Hiruy Welde Selassie, Dr. Sergew Hable Selassie, Bahru Zewde, Richard Pankhurst, Donald Levine, Harold Marcus and other giants were all considered unworthy of respect.

I have not read or come across a historian worthy of his profession that has disparaged or dismissed the contributions of Atse Yohanes and the part he has contributed to enrich our ancient history. On the other hand there is no need to belittle and vilify others so as to put him high on a pedestal. Ato Gebrekidan speaks more like a hired cadre with a mission not like a professional, a teacher and seeker of the truth.

I am grateful to VOA for inviting Dr. Shumet Sishagne to give us a better perspective on how to look at history and how to talk in a civilized manner with the goal being to teach but not preach. Dr. Shumet, God bless him is what a perfect example of what it means to be an expert on a subject. In a calm and reserved manner he was able to give us perspective on how we view our past and how we interpret the event that took place to establish what we call home today.

Whether we like or not, whether we approve or not there is a country called Ethiopia and there are over eighty million souls that are physically and politically recognized by the international community to be residents of that defined space. While countries still are waging wars to conquer and increase their physical size we in Ethiopia have actively been engaging in dismantling the big to create mini kingdoms. The first causality is Eritrea and thanks to the largesse of the TPLF party today for the first time in our history our country does not have access to the sea. Although the TPLF party’s main agenda was to create another enclave for obvious and other reasons it did not materialize. Unfortunately there are still a few that keep insisting on resetting the clock back to the last century to the time when we each tribe or ethnic group was isolated from their neighbors and ruled by a despot, a warlord or hereditary king.

That was the response to Dr. Fikre’s article which I mentioned at the beginning of this piece. Some were vividly remembering what happened during the period of nation building and presenting it as a crime. Fortified with imagination fueled with hate it looks like they want to settle a dispute which took place may be over a hundred years ago right now and today. Their emotional outburst confounds most that have a difficult time relating to a part of history that is old, outdated or not in the radar the average person that has moved on to other things in life. It is sad to see some that supposedly have tasted enlightenment with college degrees to prove it and tasked with the burden of higher expectations by their people sink low and peddle ethnic politics for fleeting ego massage.

No one can turn back the march of time. The responsibility with the generations to come is learn from history so what was done wrong would be righted and educate themselves and their children to avoid future mishaps. The example I gave regarding Mississippi and Alabama are perfect examples where the responsible action of using the law and open discussion have resulted bringing about a just and fair system. The job is not done yet but looking at the foundation laid it is easy to predict that whatever comes next would be positive and a plus.

If such approach can overcome the hurt and hate that engulfed the black American population that was bought and sold as a commodity, held separate and systematically kept ignorant surely in our country where the different ethnic groups have intermarried, worship together and have so much in common the chances of building an all-inclusive society is not a fools dream. There is no need to go around looking for proof when all we got to do is look deep at our own linage and see the rainbow nature of our family tree.

It is easy to hate. It is a lazy persons approach to explain difficult situations with hysteria and moronic one lines. Giving a smart and reserved response requires knowledge and common sense. Some choose to cater to the lowest denominator among us and hurl insults or question a person’s character and integrity when confronted with the truth.

Dr. Fikre’s questions have not been answered yet. Those that advocate separation and going it their way have not made their case why such action will result in a better situation for the people they are trying to liberate. They have not explained the many important but grave issues of dealing with millions of people that will be caught in the middle. This article is not enough neither would it try to point out the many consequences of such drastic measures advocated by some but any discussion should address all issues that come with acts of national divorce. On the other hand the proven and successful means employed by the US, South Africa among others should be looked up closely to solve a national problem that needs to be dealt with delicately.

I also believe while not belittling the national question to me at this moment in time the number one question confronting our country is the question of Democracy and respect for Human Right. When we deal with such burning issue the solution for equality for all Ethiopians will carry the seeds of solving the national issue. I our time and effort is better spent on getting rid of the Woyane group that is the cause of all problems and the source of disharmony among the children of Ethiopia. I urge you to please read the articles and video this piece is based on. The links are at the bottom.

http://ecadforum.com/ethiopianvideo/2013/06/19/ethiopian-history-discussed-on-voa/

http://www.zehabesha.com/amharic/archives/3573

http://www.zehabesha.com/amharic/archives/3758

http://www.songlyrics.com/bob-dylan/only-a-pawn-in-their-game-lyrics/

  1. amha
    | #1

    it is real sad to read such intellgence wasted for sake of racial hate

  2. kumessa
    | #2

    Yilma
    I read David Leavering Lewis’ book The Race to Fashioda,where a chapter was devoted on Ethiopia during the reign of Yohannes and Menelik.The glaring contrasts between these two leaders is stagerring and solidely well documented from archieves in England,France,Italy,Egypt and Sudan.He is a historian of historians. Itis a must read to understand these two giants.

  3. Dawi
    | #3

    [[..the number one question confronting our country is the question of Democracy and respect for Human Right…]]

    Oh! Bro. Yelma –

    If we want to solve civil wars, internal turmoil in a definite way “democracy now” is not going to do the job. You see, under democracy a minority waits until conditions are ripe for them to come to power and once they do, take revenge on the other group thus escalating our turmoil to eternity. However, under a developmental state authoritarian government the party rules and no more power quotas to fight for anymore until we reach middle income and “eat three times a day”.

    Latin America showed clear examples where “war lords” similar to our some so called “liberation movements” who want to rule their own fiefdoms and be the lords prevailed; there was no end to their greed. So places like Venezuela strong authoritarian government were able to end such war lord feuds.

    Therefore, economic development with authoritarian twist is the way to go. We can’t afford another “Woyane” to take over power and start the whole thing from scratch. Meles & associates took power and learnt how to manage on the “job training”; people paid a lot of price for that. I don’t think we can afford another such thing again.

    I say let us benefit from what we already paid for with gradual tweaking of the system. Meles’s vision didn’t come cheap.

  4. ጉረኝች
    | #4

    Ato Yilma
    “I also believe while not belittling the national question…” what is the national question you are not belittling? This needs detailed explanation and you should not refrain to state what you think by wrapping it in incomplete phrases. Throwing communists slogans here and there with no analysis only creates more confusion. Is it the same old national question self determination including secession?

  5. Dawi
    | #5

    [[..Under democracy a minority waits until conditions are ripe for them to come to power and once they do..]]

    Look at Egypt; The Muslim brotherhood came by elections. Now a year later Egyptians are on the streets to overthrow the “elected” brotherhood. The armed forces may step in all over again.:)

    IMO, Yelma’s “democracy now” can’t bring anything different.

    Why do we need to re-invent the wheel?

    We already know that richer, more educated and more equal countries are more likely to be democratic. Countries like Egypt and Ethiopia aren’t in that situation so they can’t play “elections” for any good. Egyptians are now practicing exercise in futility, if you ask me. It was only yesterday they were on the streets and the “ballet box”???

    What we know for sure is, once countries reach a level of development and social maturity will then seek to be liberated from the restrictions imposed by semi “authoritarian governments” such as EPRDF, to a more probable successful democratic outcome using from passive resistance to insurrection against the system.

    Meles & associated are distilled EPRP/EPDM/MLLT products with a background of Ethiopian Student Movement (ESM) of radical politics that embraced Marxist Leninist thoughts. Meles’s vision in my opinion is one of the best working practical ESM products.

    On “THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF MELES ZENAWI” by Alex de Waal, he says:

    [[..The abiding impression left by Meles …… leadership was that their theory and practice were deeply rooted in the realities of Ethiopia, and that they would succeed or fail on their terms and no others……..convinced the people, and that was all that mattered. They did not measure their record or their policies against external standards; on the contrary, they evaluated outside precepts against their own experience and logic. It was a refreshing, even inspiring, dose of intellectual self-reliance…]] http://afraf.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/12/04/afraf.ads081.full?keytype=ref&ijkey=NBplmdUjEpY2AIv

    Meles’s scientific vision is the best revolutionary thought applicable in today’s Africa. It is produced and developed locally.

    With such vision, I find HD better suited to run a country than say, the “elected” Morsi of Egypt.

    Did you see the recent interview HD gave in Amharic? He is getting comfortable with the job, responding to questions to the point and fluidly similar to his predecessor without the baggage of being an armed “liberation movement” leader.

    HD is talking “common purpose” goals like the dam, corruption etc. his persona shows nothing that support “sectarianism”. So we have hope and need to support HD to continue to play his role as leader of a multi national state for now.

  6. ጉረኝች
    | #6

    Dawi
    Despite your persistence, you can not market the interest of Tigre people with a bad trade mark, Meles Zenawi. That only makes you too foolish to me. You can not defend Tigre’s hegemony for long. The best and fair thing you can do is to think how to make Ethiopia for all, a representative government with checks and balances of power. If that is the case, you do not have to waste your time defending corrupt dictators and their cronies.

  7. United we stand!
    | #7

    Dawi is like a cult worshiper that have gone so deep with no return. Dawi justify all the wrong doings of tyrant Meles and the rest of TPLF mafia. The fact Dawi thinks that he can persuaded Ethiopians to believe that the heartless, merciless brutal dictator Meles that have left Ethiopians without seaport, the Ethiopians that have lost their land, Ethiopians that have lost their freedom, most importantly the Ethiopians their family members are still locked up in rat infested woyane prisons, Ethiopians that have lost their precious children, the Ethiopians that have lost their parents, siblings, friends and family members at the hands of Agazi Army, etc… is a sign of delusion on Dawi’s part. The suffering and a loss of one person is one too many, let alone hundreds of thousands of innocent Ethiopians. Dawi and the likes, see the progress of Ethiopia by the bank accounts of the few TPLF and his blood thirsty murderer father Meles’s bank accounts.

  8. Dawi
    | #8

    I think Alex’s opinion is authentic. Read it if you have not yet.

    He attests that Meles made a serious attempt to develop, and apply, an authentically African philosophy of the goals and strategies of development. Consequently, he added DEPTH to what ESM lacked historically.

    Go ahead question the path he took to come to power because it has its own baggage, but, his practice, ideals and contributions are much more inclusive and they speak for themselves.

    Giving continuity to such ideals will help us go where we need to be is what I am saying.

    HD and others today has something solid to work on. The rest is not important.

    [[...Meles ...chief economic theoretician. In an episode made famous by Joseph Stiglitz,1 Meles objected to the IMF position that international assistance was too unpredictable to be incorporated into national budget planning purposes, with the absurd consequence that national spending on infrastructure, health, and education could not be increased in line with foreign aid flows. Meles produced arguments and data and forced the Bretton Woods Institutions to rethink....]]
    http://afraf.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/12/04/afraf.ads081.full?keytype=ref&ijkey=NBplmdUjEpY2AIv

  9. The Tears and Blood of Ethiopians
    | #9

    Dawi,
    Yes, we agree with you that your late father, the heartless Tyant Meles was an EVIL GENIUS that was able to manipulated leaders around the world to get whatever he wanted at all cost. But, Dawi, what you won’t accept and agree with the rest of Ethiopians is that Dictator Meles had no heart, no conscience and hated non-tplf Ethiopians and will always be remembered as the most hateful racist, heartless, merciless killer that divided Ethiopians with the help of his cousin Essays and ruled Ethiopia with iron-fist for 25 yrs. Dictator Meles will always be remembered as one of the most cruel tyrant that gave orders innocent Ethiopians to be locked up in prisons, people to be tortured, gunned-down and slaughtered, Ethiopians to be chased-out and thrown in the cold and their land to be given to Sudan and sold to other foreigners. The brutal dictator had left this land with the blood of countless number of innocent Ethiopian victims on his hands, and left Ethiopians with endless nightmares that will never be erased and forgotten for generations to come. In the history of Ethiopia, when it comes to brutality and cruelty, no one will ever match tyrant Meles, not even the other mad-dog Mengestu that was manipulated by Meles and Essays. Tyrant Meles will always be remembered as the Hitler of Ethiopia, period!

  10. ጉረኝች
    | #10

    This adventurous Alex has made a career for himself out of his association with TPLF. No wonder if he tries to praise his comrade in arm. I take it as another Suzan Rice like eulogy for a dictator who polluted his hands in innocent people’s blood. I do not know how the butcher manage to enroll as a Ph.D student when what he earned was an Incomplete Master thesis. What I observed is, the butcher has successfully created rent seeking State by creating corrupt Tigre hegemony in multi-ethnic Ethiopia.

  11. Dawi
    | #11

    ጉረኝች & #9,

    Some accuse Lenin & the Bolsheviks of “engineering famines”. That may be why I am no not a bit surprised of Prof. Seid Hassan’s write up on Meles/EPRDF as we speak?

    My friends the answer to that is a “revolution is not a dinner party”.

    Meles a product of ESM, made Marxism-Leninism relevant to the demands of winning a guerrilla war. We have gone a long way from that now.

    The following is a fact not just Alex’s or my view alone brother ጉረኝች !

    Let us give credit where credit is due and move on.

    [[..In Africa we have now like the East Asian Tigers, what are designated the African roaring lions. Ethiopia belongs to the roaring lion economy category for registering a sustained above 8 % rate of economic growth for a number of years...]] Professor Mammo Muchie, DST/NRF Research Professor on Innovation and Development.

  12. The tears and blood of Ethiopians
    | #12

    Dawi, you’re one typical TPLF.
    Patric Henry — “Give me Liberty or Give me death” 8% growth my foot! You just don’t get it! Regardless it is 1% or 8%, only TPLF mafia get the benefits and the rest of Ethiopians struggle to make ends meet and their children look for food in the city garage dump in everyday basis. Just because your pockets and plates are full and justify the looting and the atrocities of the late tyrant Meles and the rest of TPLF mafia — it doesn’t mean Ethiopians ignore and forget the horrendous crimes TPLF keep on committing on the country and the citizens of Ethiopia for almost three decades.

  13. The tears and blood of Ethiopians
    | #13

    Abugida,
    “…Noting that Woyannes, Shabias and Hatemongers are infecting our forum, we have decided to moderate every comment. Sorry for the inconvenience this may have caused you!”

    Why don’t you practice your own rules and regulations on one of the most staunch supporter of the looters and killers of Ethiopians — which is DAWI.

  14. The tears and blood of Ethiopians
    | #14

    Dawi,
    These are some of the horrendous crimes of TPLF you’re proud of:

    http://ecadforum.com/ethiopianvideo/2013/07/07/ethiopian-torture-victim-speaks-out/

  15. yilmab
    | #15

    My Dear Dawi it must feel very lonely being the only one to always praise that psychopath friend of yours. Meles was a deformed specimen of a human that fed on creating dissent, animosity and terror. He lived a worthless life feared and hated always afraid others will do to him what he did to them. His body and brain was wrecked by too much alcohol, too much cigarette and too much khat. That is exactly why his brain was warped and he was unable to produce anything of value and relate to anyone and died a lonely sick person in a hospital room in a foreign land. He was even put in a freezer for a month while those around him were looking for a way to take advantage of a dead body. As for his accomplishment the proof is all around us. We are blessed with a beautiful rich land and a very industrious people tell me how we use all this god given lottery? Ethiopians is one of the few countries that exports its children to foreign lands. They say coffee is our number one export, no sir it is people. That is so because your friend was not able to put this beautiful natural resource to good use. Today our country lives to serve one ethnic group and one family. It is a situation waiting for the perfect storm and when it happens please do not cry cause you brought it on yourself. Ethiopia is not a roaring lion under TPLF. Just because you cook the books and your enablers turn their head does not make it true. I don’t know what planet you live on but the real Ethiopia is a land of misery with beautiful looking buildings but no sustainable economy. If it was not for loans and Diaspora remmitance our country will melt down. Do you notice you Dawi is the sole supporter of TPLF, why do you think that is so?

  16. ጉረኞች
    | #16

    Dawi
    Thanks for referring me to Prof Seid article. He nailed it. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out woyane is the rent collector in Ethiopia, it is logical for even mere observer. Ethiopians are too smart to be fooled with such trivial tricks. It doesn’t look you will wake up unless everything crumbles down in front your face.

  17. Dawi
    | #17

    ጉረኞች:

    [[..Thanks for referring me to Prof Seid article..]]

    While you are at it – http://nesglobal.org/eejrif4/index.php?journal=admin&page=index look at Mammo Muchie editor’s note.

    Prof. Mammo is not soft on Woyane; I am sure Yelma will take back [[..Ethiopia is not a roaring lion under TPLF..]]after reading that because when Mammo said Ethiopia is a “Roaring Lion”, he is not making it up, it is backed with research documentations.

    BTW, Mammo is teaching Developmental Economics at Adama University after 40 years in exile.

    As far as Prof. Seid nailing it, it may be true but, I call that “Monday morning quarterbacking”; Analyzing successful revolutions after they were done; generally assumed to come from the act of complaining about a quarterback on Monday after a Sunday game is done with.

    Meles & assoc. were Marxist revolutionaries NOT Gandhi or Martin Luther king so they confronted a deadly military and did what they have to do to defeat it; period. Whether they converted food to AK- 47 or not??…………

    BTW, “mr. Tears & blood”, being a staunch opposition to EPRDF won’t stop you from collaborating with “common purpose” goals.

  18. aha!
    | #18

    I think Yilma Bekele is drawing parallel between the United States to that of Racism of Civil Rights movements in the United States, the constitution of which grants the rights of the individual to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness to that of TPLF/eprdf regime that gives precedence to ethnic and secessionist rights to that of individual freedom, liberty and equality, in addition to ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism and/or State Capitalism, which the other dimension to the forces based on Ethiopian Nationalism versus Ethnic Nationalism supported by TPLF/Political, TPLF/EFFORT, TPLF affiliated enterprises, cadres and foreign corporations of Totaliarinsm and/or State Capitalism as the economic model that Dawi vouches for in terms of vision of the late Prime minister Meles Zenawi, that does not lend itself to free market capitalism in terms of private land ownership as one of the means of production for the silent majority of Ethiopians, except for TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprises TPLF/EFFORT, cadres and foreign corporation in terms of the lack economic freedom, in addition to the lack of individual freedom, liberty and equality to super cede ethnic and secessionist rights. It is I presume it is the rights of the individual to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that Yilma Bekele draws parallel to that prevailing in Ethiopia under the TPLF/eprdf regime, a coalition of ex-liberation fronts with its constitution based on Ethnic Nationalism as opposed to Ethiopian Nationalism under the goals for unity, territorial integrity, sovereignty of Ethiopia and Ethiopians, where the last item refers to individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights for Ethiopians to be governed by a truly democratic, but not by either minority rule now and majority ethnic group in the future in a bicameral chamber of parliament of the minority ethnic coalition on one side and the majority ethnic group on the other, absent of independent branches of government.

  19. ጉረኞች
    | #19

    Dawi
    As usual you misread or purposely twisted Prof Mamo’s argument to fit your illogical arguments based on the midget’s fake ‘theory’ you are advocating in this forum. Either way it is not helpful to mis-characterize someone else arguments. Fact matters, my friend. That is why we fail to agree so far in anything,by distorting facts, don’t you think my friend?
    First, I like to extend my appreciation to Prof Mamo for being brave enough and go under the nose of the butchers to do what he has to do. That is what all other should do, follow his lead. I do not know what you want to prove, but the only thing Mamo Muches lecturing in Adama proved to me is he become more bold in what he tries to accomplish, nothing more! Regarding to the reference that Ethiopia being “roaring lion”, he has not said in this write-up (unfortunate for you) that he has proved that there is 8% econ growth by his own study. He jut referred the claim of 8% economic growth to explain even if there is can it translates to economic development. The answer was an emphatic NO. He explained that the existing ethnic corruption has reached a stage where we can not remove it and poverty can not be eradicated. This is what his one of student said about is, my friend.
    “This came from one of the bright female students where she provided a
    way to neatly differentiate conceptually economic growth from economic
    development. Economic development includes a growth path to realise poverty eradication, creating new employment, human development and
    reduction in inequality. Economic growth mainly highlights by drawing
    attention to rates of growth of per capita income and gross national
    product. ….. The The current roaring lion’s economic growth is often driven by services, construction, tourism, infrastructure, foreign
    multinational and business penetration and a number of such factors. It is not often related to the structural transformation of the agrarian economy through a process of innovative industrialisation”.

    Note the last sentence, my friend. Meles has been trying to make the corrupt ethnic government none other than RENT COLLECTOR by killing the capacity of Ethiopian investors who would have created value to the economy.

  20. Dawi
    | #20

    [[.. The current roaring lion’s economic growth is often driven by services…]]

    If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and walks like a duck – then it is probably a “roaring lion economy” kind of duck. :-)

    Ok – at least we agree that Meles made Ethiopia’s economy a “roaring lion” one; let us stop arguing on that from now on.

    What made Meles sleepless was the flicker of hope his party started continues because development and strong state are prerequisites for democracy and human rights in our country.

    As far “rent seeking” is concerned, the ‘developmental state’ Meles argued should be obsessed with value creation, (away from the past & present rent seeking) making accelerated and broad-based growth a matter of national survival. So we have a long way to go!

    The works of Prof. Mammo and others is the ground work needed to reach where we want to be in human development and achieve middle-income status in a short time.

    My brother, if you assume that I “purposely twisted Prof Mamo’s argument”, it is only your perception. I am only saying let us give credit where credit is due and let us not play a zero sum game in Ethiopian politics.

  21. Kato
    | #21

    It is sickening to read that jibber jabber of the sattelite. That audacity is staggering, could it be a sign of brain amputation? The only thing we are witnessing is this, as the saying goes “the more the monkey climbes the more it shows its ugly bottom” We have seen that for quite a long time now. And whatever this sattelites chant is, it is not going to change the sad reality. It remains ugly. The tipping point is not far out and the wrath of the people of Ethiopia will devour this treacherous regime and all that is associated with it.
    Stop telling us in that mourful wish wash, that blood stained and make believe economic growth, is a mere stinking dish wash. Who is profiting from that walk on dead body growth? The dirt poor? and there is one with that staggering audacity out there to tell the poor wait until, I quote “once countries reach a level of development and social maturity will then seek to be liberated from the restrictions imposed by semi “authoritarian governments” such as EPRDF, to a more probable succsessful democratic outcome using from passive resistance to insurrection against the system.” What is this talk all about. What is implied here is the following
    1) reach a level of development and social maturity. How? if the people are not enabled to be part of that development. What has EPRDF DONE TO ENABLE THE PEOPLE? Except intimidate, incarcerate, terrorize and suppress? while allowing its own affiliates to thrive where law has no role to play whatsoever. That is the EPRDF’s plan to achieve social maturity. Yes, put the carriage infront of the horse in fact even no horse in sight.That is the scientific plan out of which a few will have ample time to ruin the country and enrich themselves and no questions asked. What a reasoning!
    By the way, semi authoritarian regime: really? Implying we all should consider ourselves lucky that we are allowed to gasp for air under the yoke of this regime. What other signs does anyone need to call this regime by its name: Criminal
    By the way our people are socially mature they do not need a dictator to teach them how.
    2) and the climax now. A government (regime) that allows development and social maturity so that the people one day rise up in insurrection or as scribbled passive resistance to insurrection, to bring about democracy. what is this? It just doesn’t rhyme. Now here again what is being said is have patience and subject yourselves to this scientifically proven EPRDF until there is development and social maturity and the moment we wake up we will find out that the poor are still poor the needy even more in despair, the rivers dried up and polluted, the country naked, and the train already gone. Then it is too little too late for insurrection. Why wait then? Insurrection now wouldn’t you say? Who knows when this so called development is going to trickle down to the masses. A level of development and social maturity can not be achieved without economic liberty and in order for that to function there needs to be a level playing field for all and where all are equal under the law.
    I wish HD a lot of luck and if possible success.

    At last freedom to all and Ethiopia and Ethiopiawinet will prevail.
    Respectfully

  22. Kato
    | #22

    It should read
    remove stop telling us
    “that mournful wish wash of a make believe economic growth is nothing more than a stinking dish wash.

  23. Dawi
    | #23

    [[..Why wait then? Insurrection now wouldn’t you say? Who knows when this so called development is going to trickle down to the masses…]]

    Like Egypt??
    Oh, we’ve been there, done that, had our thrill and don’t want to go back there again! The Ethiopian Student movement (ESM) was probably the baddest (like you Kato-Anbesaw..)in Africa but we learnt our lesson the hard way. We have done “insurrection” overthrown existing governments and waited our “Hail Mary” actions to bring us manna from heaven by handing it first to Derg and later to Woyane/EPRDF. The leaders of these groups had good intentions but, had to learn on the job running a country for god’s sake!.

    Former Marxists of ESM such as Meles contributed to “developmental state” theory as it applied in an African setting and created a platform. That is what is called Meles’s vision today. Another ESM,we talked about earlier, Prof. Mammo is teaching a course at Adama University “presenting to students theoretically, conceptually and mathematically by bringing concepts as the ethnic fractionalization index where ethnic from say, two major ethnic groups, too many as possible were explored to discover how varied patterns of ethnic diversity composition impacts either negatively or positively to rates of economic growth. Along with ethnic alignment or misalignment…”

    “no investigation no right to speak” seems to be the motto back home.

  24. Anonymous
    | #24

    @Dawi

    Ok, Let’s reason together. It is really interesting that you picked up that word “insurrection” and find that to be amusing. I was arguing along your own lines of what you scribbled I quote again:

    “once countries reach a level of development and social maturity will then seek to be liberated from the restrictions imposed by semi “authoritarian governments” such as EPRDF, to a more probable successful democratic outcome using from passive resistance to insurrection against the system.”
    I provided an argument (refer to the above comment under #21) why this thinking is destined to fail. I guess, you simply overlooked that portion, may be was not convenient!

    I agree with your argument about the ESM etc. That was a train wreck and an emotionally driven uprising, without real leadership and strategy behind it though the intention was noble in character. Intentions alone won’t suffice we can agree on that. That lesson is well learnt and the activities we are seeing nowadays are a whole lot different that those sad days.

    As for Egypt, please understand that the people of Egypt were able to elect their leader in line with the countries constitution in a democratic way as opposed to what we have seen in Ethiopia. The Ethiopians were denied the fruits of their hard fought victory and paid for that with their lives. Even in that context, the Egyptians are way better of than we are and in deed one giant step further. Something you should keep in mind.

    By the way thanks for the sarcastic compliment. I like to believe that a bit of an Anbessa character is in me, whatever your interpretation of Anbesaw is.
    That aside, one more thing to the below I quote:

    “Former Marxists of ESM such as Meles contributed to “developmental state” theory as it applied in an African setting and created a platform. That is what is called Meles’s vision today”

    a) Can you describe the Platform that was created? and for whom? If that platform in deed is there who profited from that?

    b) The African setting that is stated above, how does that line up with the facts on the ground in Ethiopia?

    I am hoping this “Developmental state” does not mean deprive the people of their freedom and democratic rights while at the same time the regime propagates that make believe democracy and an all is well politics to lull the donor countries so the flow of aid money continues unabated? A politics of arrogance that is based on fire power, a politics of “shut up” because the regime knows what is best for you etc.. That unfortunately is not going to cut it and is going to fail.
    I do not think that the Ethiopians are going to stand at the side lines, watch and do nothing while they are being denied their basic rights so who are we to tell them not to stand up for their rights?

    I like to believe that your intentions are well meant though I have difficulties to exactly nail what you are standing for.

    Respectfully

  25. Anonymous
    | #25

    Dawi,
    The evil possessed Adolf Hitler that died with the blood of over 21 million people on his hands had a dream too, and he was also loved and admired by people who had/have the same sick mentality as his. For the sake of Ethiopians, thank God the Hitler of Ethiopia is 6′ under and may the loving God serve the same fate to the rest of ruthless and merciless killers of Ethiopians.

  26. yilmab
    | #26

    Ato Dawi, there is something called ‘disclosure’ here in the west. It means if you are in any way connected to the story being discussed you in fairness should divulge that info so the participants can take into consideration. Which means if you are connected to the regime, if you benefit in any way from the regime and if you are related to any official you tell us. That being said your claim that the dictator contributed to the ‘developmental state’ theory, and created a platform is not true because for the simple reason that such claim can not be supported with facts. That is unless that drunkard former AAU president and currently “Meles Foundation’ employee comes up with some crap and puts Meles’s name on it. Good Luck. Meles can talk, Meles can claim knowledge on any subject, Meles can BS in any forum but his knowledge was very shallow and would not pass any scrutiny by those that have mastered the subject matter. Furthermore if such animal existed Meles had twenty years to put his theory into practice with no one to challenge or stop him because there was nothing of value in that brain of his other than evil there he failed. But if his sole purpose was to have revenge on those that he felt did not accept him he succeeded. His Tigrean people today own everything of value in the country and he died as one of the richest people on earth. Where do you think all that billions that left Ethiopia according to the world bank went to? You keep harping about some pie in the sky theory where a few will rule by force, get rich and then the vast majority will benefit after a long patient wait. That is called justification for crime in the name of some defangled theory. You are all alone.

  27. Dawi
    | #27

    [[ The evil possessed Adolf Hitler that died with the blood of over 21 million people on his hands had a dream too..]]

    Some has compared HIM (during Ethiopian famine) and Mengestu same as Hitler. Like you, critics of both President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama have compared the two to the Third Reich and Hitler. Hitler created Volkswagen to help get out of recession and Obama/Bush bailed out GM by improving the Volt is the same to you?? etc. is what you types are saying..

    You calling Meles a dictator is not enough; which he was particularly playing the role of the leader of the “developmental state” he created at the end. Before that he was not a lone leader, it was a group.

    It is a shame you have to go on and trivialize the suffering of the 12 million people who were killed under Hitler, as well as the tens of millions who died as a whole during the war.

    What worries me is that at some point among the present opposition who identify with their own ethnicity first and only second as an Ethiopian, a real ethnic demagogue might come to power to fulfill your wishes and when someone calls him/her Hitler his ethnic or otherwise supporters will shrug it off because folks like you have trivialized the word “he is Hitler”.

  28. Kato
    | #28

    Truth be told:
    Arguing on the surface doesn’t help.
    I was hoping for a well founded reasoning with the mind set all of us deserve the benefit of a doubt. With the mind set, let us reason together with the facts being our guidance.
    Wrong is not going to be right or lies won’t be truth even if repeated again and again.
    I get it, it just doesn’t make sense to reason with the unreasonable hell bent to die for an agenda packed with lies.
    Good Luck

    The truth shall set you free one day
    Respectfully

  29. Dawi
    | #29

    Brother Yelma – I write my assertions strictly from my own perception after evaluating documents available for the public.

    I observe and listen what serious folks like Prof. Mammo, Tecola, Messay and others write in forums & otherwise. BTW, I admire Prof. Endreas for going back after the revolution and serving in the reconstruction of his country to the best of his ability. If you assert he made mistakes it is because he tried to do something in deeds to help country.

    My observation of other “developmental states” tells me that it is the economic and social development what leads to democratic demands from the citizens. This is so because it is when people have their basic needs met that they may start valuing the increase of political freedoms over further increases in development. So “long patience wait” is much better than repeating the same mistakes and chaos again and again

    It seems to me it is a requirement that you & I and other Ethiopian Democracy advocates understand that the swiftest path to development (a prerequisite for a sustainable liberal democracy) is the “developmental State” succeeding in providing the basic needs. I don’t see any other system existing today that will do the trick faster than that however, I feel the fight Eskender, Andualem and others are doing will help open up the political space and is necessary. I am sure HD and EPRDF understand that and would accommodate such opposition sooner or later depending on their level of feeling secure. IMO, Meles’s vision
    is capable of accommodating all opposition.

    As far as documentations of Meles’s knowledge is concerned there are plenty out there. One is a book titled “Good Growth and Governance in Africa Rethinking Development Strategies”. It was edited by renowned economist Nobel laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz with others. Meles Zenawi begins his article stating that:

    “The political and economic renaissance of Africa is an issue that continues to preoccupy Africans and non-Africans alike. Various methods of achieving such a renaissance have been proposed, mostly variations of the dominant neoliberal paradigm of development. My argument elaborated elsewhere is that the neo-liberal paradigm is a dead end incapable of bringing about the African renaissance, and that a fundamental shift in paradigm is required to effect a revival. In this paper, the focus is on the theoretical or conceptual limitations of the neo-liberal paradigm and the need for African states to move towards becoming developmental.”

    Off course about 8 years ago Meles wrote a draft paper, titled ‘African Development Dead Ends and New Beginnings’ that argues the need for replacing the neo-liberal paradigm with a developmental state paradigm in Africa.

    What more do you want? “developmental state” is an established methodology for quick development; his contribution is showing how it can be applied in the African setting.

  30. yilmab
    | #30

    There you go again dear Ato Dawi hanging on to a phrase and running with it to deflect the discussion from your hero. No one ‘trivialized’what Hitler did but rather place Meles in the same league since both were obsessed about their ethnicity one Arayan the other Tigrai. Then you brought out the scare card about what will happen to us if TPLF disappears. I have noticed you like to always twist peoples words or create a dark scenario instead of sticking to the point. There is no such thing as ‘developmental state’, there is no written thesis, no theory vetted by scholars and no place on earth where it has shown to work. Ethiopia today is a dictatorship of one ethnic group with a confusing set of rules and philosophy neither socialist or capitalist. It is a welfare state where the country’s budget relies on subsidy from EU, rich countries and loans. It can not feed itself and it is in the bottom of all human development index. This is the way Meles left Ethiopia.It will take us a long time to stand up on our own two feet.

  31. Dawi
    | #31

    Brother Yelma,

    For your information Meles is part Raya Oromo, kunama and Tigrean per Prof. Tecola. As his wife is an Amara, his children can only call themselves Ethiopians. So you are wrong in your assumption.

    Meles was a former ESM, Marxist and the leader of MLLT that led the TPLF.

    TPLF/EPRDF army brought him to power; it was a challenge for him to bring and reach to a soft landing of a multi national ideal Ethiopian State. Fulfilling the needs of the horse (united front)he came to power with is part of the political game. I think it was Prof. Messay who wrote how they try to do that with Burma’s military power. It was not an easy task for anyone.

    Meles’s final vision of the “developmental state” formula is similar to the Asian Tigers kind. The fact that he passed the torch to HD to do the job says it all. He mentored and chose someone other than a member of a TPLF to lead the country. HD who has no baggage of being part of the liberation war shall prove himself over time that the renaissance of Ethiopia as a “developmental state” is possible.

    [[..Hitler did but rather place Meles in the same league since both were obsessed about their ethnicity one Arayan the other Tigrai…]]

    TPLF has its own draw backs but its leader is a former ESM and a Marxist revolutionary and you know damn well the truth of the matter is that Hitler’s National Socialism ended when Soviet troops captured Berlin in 1945.

  32. Kato
    | #32

    Dear Mr. Dawi, would you agree if one raises a child in an authoritarian manner that this particular child will rebel at one point sooner than later? Consequently destroying everything what that authoritarian parent has tried to build. It doesn’t matter whether that authoritarian entity did that in a good or bad will. In the Ethiopian context the latter holds true. That is destined to happen if that child is not raised in a fashion that his or her individual personality is not taken seriously and dialogue is in the forefront on a daily basis. Persuasion by an inclusive discussion and not by simple blunt authority. Do you really believe there aren’t enough Ethiopians in Ethiopia that possess equal or better knowledge than those in the regime when it comes to leadership. Why not include them and have their words heard instead of throwing them in lice infested jail houses. Is that the developmental state you are advocating for, Really?
    Do you think that is the way to go?
    Be reasonable
    Respectfully

  33. Anonymous
    | #33

    Dawi,
    I’m afraid, you’ve lost your credibility a while ago — PLEASE STOP! YOU WON’T BE ABLE TO CHANGE THE MINDS OF ETHIOPIANS WHO EXPERIENCED HELL UNDER TYRANT MELES. THE LATE TYRANT HAD NO HEART, CONSCIENCE, LOVE, COMPASSION, KINDNESS, AND MERCY! HE WAS SIMPLY AN EVIL MAN, PERIOD! How pathetic, you recognized the sins of the other bloodthirsty dictator Mengestu but you won’t accept the WHOLE truths when it comes to the sins of your father tyrant Meles. No matter how much you try and try to twist, misinterpret, and change the subject of the shocking and ugly history of the brutal dictator Meles — in the minds of over 86 million Ethiopians who experienced and witnessed the brutality of the evil dictator that ruled them with iron fist for 22 years, the dictator that took away their freedom and dignity, the precious lives of their loved ones and friends, the tyrant that hated Ethiopia left Ethiopia landlocked, the very vicious man that chased Ethiopians in Gondar and gave their land to Sudan, kicked out and massacred 500 Gambelans and sold their land to foreign billionaires, the subhuman that incarcerated thousands of law abiding Ethiopians, the plunderer that looted Ethiopia and the very cruel dictator that gunned down young men, women and children on that dark day in May 2005, the evil-demented man that massacred unknown number of innocent Ethiopians will always be remember as the Adolf Hitler of Ethiopia, period!

  34. yilmab
    | #34

    Dear Dawi, do you know who the following people are – Alex de Waal, Joseph Stiglitz, Professor Mammo Muchie, Prof. Seid Hassan, Prof. Tecola – they are all names mentioned by you in the above discussion. You see my point is that you do not have any proof on the ground to show how your tyrant friend did as a leader using examples of his accomplishments. What you do is bring character witnesses to show what others said about him. Why go there when you have the living proof in front of you-the land and people of Ethiopia. By the way most of your quotations are cherry picked and presented out of context. Your aim is not to learn or teach, to discuss to enlighten but rather to win at any cost. Again I present you Ethiopia that was ruled by Meles Ashebari Zenawi for twenty one years and is still the sick man of Africa. Her daughters are in the middle east as maids to degenerate Arabs, her boys are all over the world risking death and her people back home are divided in to ethnic bantustans and ready kill each other. Your developmental state blah blah is a useless psudo intellectual clap trap not worthy of second glance. A person is judged by his accomplishments and Meles has nothing to show for it. Now I believe you are either trying to be funny or gone the deep end when you tell us Meles is Oromo and your witness is no other than his cousin Prof Tecola. I really don’t care who his parents are but I distinctly remember him saying he was proud to be born from the golden race of Tigrai, it is possible someone lied to him too bad he died not knowing he is Oromo.

  35. Dawi
    | #35

    Kato:

    [[..Do you really believe there aren’t enough Ethiopians in Ethiopia that possess equal or better knowledge than those in the regime when it comes to leadership..]]

    Our problem is fighting the vices that divide us such as religion, tribe, gender or places of origin. It is the responsibility of each of us to isolate and censure anyone who entertains promotes or nurtures disrespect, hatred and mistrust in our country.

    We need to overcome the lack of established institutions to function continuously as a productive and well run state. It is not necessarily the personalities; individual leaders count but they come and go. We probably should have thought about that before we overthrew the past governments but, that is the past. HD seems to posses the all inclusive personality today.

    Why not start with him and help him out to succeed?

  36. Dawi
    | #36

    Anbesaw – Kato/#24….I missed your comment:

    [[.. reach a level of development and social maturity. How? if the people are not enabled to be part of that development. What has EPRDF DONE TO ENABLE THE PEOPLE? Except intimidate, incarcerate, terrorize and suppress? while allowing its own affiliates to thrive where law has no role to play whatsoever. That is the EPRDF’s plan to achieve social maturity...What a reasoning!..]]

    My thinking is the authoritarian developmental state is a path from civil wars and ethnic tensions to focus on development. It will save us time and help us by path immature intellectuals & ethnic demagogies.

    If you read what distressed brother Yelma lately regarding an Aljazeera show that focused on the Oromo issue somewhere else and how the “Ethiopian political analyst” Jawar disappointed him and few other folks by explaining that he is an Oromo first and then an Ethiopian, you see the immaturity of such intellectuals to a certain extent.

    Such an individual is the chosen political analyst on Ethiopia on VOA & other Ethiopian sights. I guess they can’t find someone who considers him/herself an Ethiopian first for the job. :-)

    You see under a semi-authoritarian system the government has total power and hence, there are no power quotas to fight for as in democracies where “elections” bring demagogues like Morsi of Egypt to power and once it does will start taking revenge on other groups, thus escalating the conflict between factions.

    That is what is happening in Egypt and your wish of that kind of craziness on us is simply lunatic, IMO.

  37. Anonymous
    | #37

    Dawi,
    Don’t blame us for SEEKING JUSTICE FOR ALL ETHIOPIANS. Unlike you and the likes, close to 90 million Ethiopians have no peace because of the deafening sound of the innocent Ethiopian victims. You and the likes of you have chose to close your eyes, ears and conscience not to see, not to hear and not to feel the humiliations, the despairs, the screams for help, the cries, the hurt, the agonies of the never ending nightmares of the countless number of Ethiopian mothers and fathers that have lost one or more children at the hands of TPLF… the unknown number of children that have lost one or two parents… the siblings of the victims… the grand parents and all the family members of staggering number of Ethiopian victims that have been and being tortured and slaughtered by the one of the most hateful racist brutal dictator Meles and his brainwashed TPLF servants that hate Ethiopia and Ethiopians. The proof of their despicable crimes are impossible to hide and ignore. The Woyane prisons are over full with lawful crimeless patriotic Ethiopians — their only crime is seeking DEMOCRACY and FREEDOM FOR ALL ETHIOPIANS.

  38. Dawi
    | #38

    Brother Yelma,

    [[.. Meles is Oromo and your witness is no other than his cousin Prof Tecola...]]

    I didn’t expect such a backward labeling from someone like you on a somebody who supports your “extremist” views on this forum.

    I remember when Prof. Tecola was compelled to explain his family line years ago after being tired of folks like you who label individuals based on their names or what have you alone.

    I say we are all “cousins” however, you and I are maybe a closer cousin to Meles than the good Prof. :)

    If you disagree, prove it! :) … knowing you choose innuendos than anything else many times I don’t expect you to do that…..

  39. ጉረኞች
    | #39

    Dawi
    You think you can convince people by mis-quoting, misrepresenting and twisting sentences. I do not think that is a winning strategy particularly when you are facing with rational adversaries. In this case, it seems you run out of arguments. The way you quote and then misrepresent what Yilma Bekele is saying is so bizarre. May be you do not think we the readers read what is written or you do not take time to understand what is written. Aren’t you the one who said Meles is from Raya and Tecola knows about it? Yilma stated differently what you you said. If he is blamed for backward labeling you should the biggest share of the blame for misinforming the reader and him to think that Meles is an Oromo. I’ve been reading your post for a long time, I think it is time for you to take a break, it is clear your grievance to Meles has taken a toll on you.

  40. Kato
    | #40

    @Dawi
    “My thinking is the authoritarian developmental state is a path from civil wars and ethnic tensions to focus on development. It will save us time and help us by path immature intellectuals & ethnic demagogies.”
    To the above comment the following:

    Can you explain why then the same develpomental state ie. the regime in place, actually is the one that instigated ethnic tensions from the onset and is still doing so? Why is it so that you in fact are contradicting yourself everytime you scribble down things?

    To your comment:

    “You see under a semi-authoritarian system the government has total power and hence, there are no power quotas to fight for as in democracies where “elections” bring demagogues like Morsi of Egypt to power and once it does will start taking revenge on other groups, thus escalating the conflict between factions.”

    and hence your argument, be sujected to the regime and give them another 22 years and let them do whatever they deem right without any accountability whatsoever. That thinking is not going to take us a long way. The chances of a society succeeding under the umbrella of democracy is way greater than the authoritarian style since this style of leadership always leads to corrupt officials and will implode at a certain point in time. By the way democracy needs to be exercised in order to excel in it. So we have lost 22 years of huge opportunity to learn how to exercise democracy in line with our constitution and under the law that is equally applied to all in all walks of life. SO if there is any authority then it WILL HAVE TO BE THE LAW AS DEFINED IN THE CONSTITUTION and not an authoritarian regime where the law is shunned at all times. Aside the imploding of this regime, AUTHORITY is extremely destructive because it breeds hatred and the result will be exactly what you stated as a concern “REVENGE”. No one in his right mind want that. So had you taken the time and thought twice you would not advocate for this style of leadership. I am sure you must have heard about the statement “UNCHECKED POWER CORRUPTS, AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY”. This is exactly what is happening within that regime.

    Lastly, with all due respect I say, you have a warped image of something that you only seem to see and propose to you as hopefully civilized personalities, LET US AGREE TO DISAGREE, and call it a day.

    Good Luck to you

    Freedom to all Ethiopians

  41. Dawi
    | #41

    ጉረኞች:

    [[...Yilma stated differently what you you said. If he is blamed for backward labeling you should the biggest share of the blame for misinforming the reader and him to think that Meles is an Oromo....]]

    I quoted Prof. Tecola on who Meles was but, Yelma tried to create doubt by calling the Prof. Meles’s cousin; insinuating the scholar is not a credible “witness”. That was not called for.

    BTW, Meles, during his last breathing days was working on Ethiopian renaissance & global issues; I don’t think the rest of us should be offended like Yelma by him for calling the people he was born and raised in “golden” in the past. I don’t see anything wrong with that. It was his way of giving respect and being affectionate to family, friends & the region he spent most his revolutionary days. We all show love to our loved ones but move on to do a bigger & grandeur job in the larger country of ours. That is natural & was exactly what he did if you ask me.

    The bottom line for me is his grand “vision” of the ‘developmental state” was an all inclusive one destined to bring Ethiopia to its historical greatness. The icing on cake was his timely mentoring and preparing HD who hails from a multi-national state of Ethiopia to take over his position of leadership. Selecting HD tells us who Meles really was; a great Ethiopian!.

  42. Anonymous
    | #42

    Dawi said:
    “…The bottom line for me is his grand “vision” of the ‘developmental state” was an all inclusive one destined to bring Ethiopia to its historical greatness. The icing on cake was his timely mentoring and preparing HD who hails from a multi-national state of Ethiopia to take over his position of leadership. Selecting HD tells us who Meles really was; a great Ethiopian!…”

  43. The voice of Ethiopia
    | #43

    Dawi said:
    “…The bottom line for me is his grand “vision” of the ‘developmental state” was an all inclusive one destined to bring Ethiopia to its historical greatness. The icing on cake was his timely mentoring and preparing HD who hails from a multi-national state of Ethiopia to take over his position of leadership. Selecting HD tells us who Meles really was; a great Ethiopian!…”

    Dawi, you’re simply laughable and delusional at best. You’re part of the TPLF group that believe justice is only for a few TPLF minority group. Sad!

  44. Dawi
    | #44

    Brother Kato said,

    [[..SO if there is any authority then it WILL HAVE TO BE THE LAW AS DEFINED IN THE CONSTITUTION and not an authoritarian regime where the law is shunned at all times. Aside the imploding of this regime, AUTHORITY is extremely destructive because it breeds hatred and the result will be exactly what you stated as a concern “REVENGE”. No one in his right mind want that. So had you taken the time and thought twice you would not advocate for this style of leadership. I am sure you must have heard about the statement “UNCHECKED POWER CORRUPTS, AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY”. This is exactly what is happening within that regime…]]

    IMO, what you wrote is a neo-liberal crap. Let me go on and explain:

    I will point out some things on the fallacy of the “democracy” you are talking about a little. Off course Meles had come up with a distilled product eloquently when he arrived to the conclusion that “the neo-liberal paradigm is a dead end incapable of bringing about the African renaissance”.

    China and India both became a state in around 1949. They started with a population of about 500 million, China a one party system and India a semi “democratic” one. Seventy years later the Chinese state created successful physical infrastructure and delivered basic services to its people. India in some places is comparable to our country despite its rapid growth and has essentially deteriorated over time both in basic law and order and delivering services. ”Untouchables” still exist in that country for god’s sake!

    China has paved the way for economic development and a number of non-economic changes which have benefited the population and provided a decent level of living for the large majority. This could not have been done without strong leadership bent on pushing such policies, perhaps even to the point of employing coercion against oppositions.

    We can go on with Russia and China. The two were similar during Perestroika times when they try to break from “communism”. Soviets were engaged in “democracy” liberalization as you are suggesting however, China went into increasing economic liberties. You see political liberalization in USSR was taken by demagogues (in our case think of what Jawar & associates can do?) and couldn’t break away from the ethnic demagogues and dinosaurs of the communist part, so Gorbachev /Russia didn’t choose the economic route and disappeared in thin air. On the opposite China committed to path of economic liberty because its semi-authoritarian governing body didn’t need to consult the morons that say “my ethnic first and country 2nd.

  45. Dawi
    | #45

    The voice says:

    [[..Dawi, you’re simply laughable and delusional at best. You’re part of the TPLF group that believe justice is only for a few TPLF minority group. Sad!..]]

    If you look into some “successful democracies” in Africa like Kenya, South Africa, Ghana etc you will be shocked because what is claimed as “democracy” in our continent is the rituals of “elections” (procedures) as opposed to its content so it has very little to do with democratic functions.

    ANC has little to show in economic and social fortunes of the ordinary black person; most of them today are poorer than they were under apartheid. With a population of just under 50 million people, blacks constitute 80 percent and today, 48 percent of blacks are unemployed; 33m live in poverty.

    South Africa isn’t the only one as other poor multi ethnic/racial nations suffer a similar distortion. Off course India is as an example: In most of the standard stuff it scores alongside democracies like Norway and the USA with regular elections and changes of government. But in public services like access to education, health, clean water, etc, it scores are similar to or worse than failing states like Pakistan and Bangladesh. Why has democracy in India failed to promote service delivery to the citizen? We already know. Correct?

    Well, elite in particular ethnic demagogues in India bargain for positions of power and privilege in both the central and state government using appeals to ethnic identity. They argue that appointing them to positions of power and privilege demonstrates inclusion of the wider ethnic group and should come first before roads, hospitals and schools (that benefit the masses of poor people). These arguments are wide spread among ethnic demagogues in Africa today.

    Here comes the bomb my brother!! Unlike South Africa or India little Rwanda economic and social indicators for the most ordinary people show a continuous growth curve in social and economic well being: 97 percent primary school enrollment, 92 percent of the people on medical insurance, 75 percent access to clean water; 97 percent of pregnant women attending antenatal care, infant and maternal mortality are all going down etc.

    How come it is a minority-led government in Rwanda that is doing such things but not the majority one of South Africa’s ANC??????? So please don’t tell us minority/majority crap but what kind what paradigm is followed.

  46. Anonymous
    | #46

    For the last 25 years, TPLF have been robbing the country, locking up, torturing and killing hundreds of thousands innocent Ethiopians. The other bloodsucker Dictator Mengestu seems an angel, compare to that brutal dictator Meles and the rest of TPLF. If he EU and US really want to find out the crimes of TPLF all they have to do is, pressure the tplf regime to give them access to visit all the prisons and follow the European and the US taxpayers aid-money that have been stolen by tplf and stashed around the world, period!

  47. Kato
    | #47

    Dear Dawi,

    Well let’s keep on going: I really find this discussion intersting since my belief is it is the idea and not the person that matters.
    You forgot to elaborate on your comment from above. Comment below I quote.

    “My thinking is the authoritarian developmental state is a path from civil wars and ethnic tensions to focus on development. It will save us time and help us by path immature intellectuals & ethnic demagogies.”

    Can you explain why then the same develpomental state ie. the regime in place, actually is the one that instigated ethnic tensions from the onset and is still doing so? Why is it so that you in fact are contradicting yourself everytime you scribble down things?

    Now back to the authoritarian developmental state you lovingly confuse with
    economic and societal achievements. Please read this article written by a Chinese scholar then may be, a big may be, you might see the light:

    “Authoritarianism not key to China’s economic success
    November 20th, 2011
    Author: Yao Yang, Peking University

    International observers frequently link China’s economic success to authoritarianism.

    And when it comes to the comparison between China and Western countries, the issue is often framed by the contrast between the Beijing Consensus on the role of government intervention and the Washington Consensus on the role of the free market. But authoritarianism does not explain China’s economic success, nor the success of any other nation. Rather, China’s economic success is primarily the result of three decades of market reform: if government intervention were the key to economic growth, China would have succeeded 30 years ago, when the state governed all aspects of society. But China began its economic reform precisely because the old system of an all-encompassing state-run economy did not work.

    Some observers accept the market’s importance, but still believe an authoritarian government is necessary for economic success — it can mobilise large amounts of resources and make quick decisions free of non-economic interference like labour unions. But international experience shows that these authoritarianism-plus-free-market regimes do not last long. Such governments ultimately only serve the interests of a small group — often a handful of elites who monopolise the economy — and become a hindrance to innovation.

    The Chinese government has played an important role in promoting the country’s economic growth, but the root of this contribution is not in authoritarianism. Instead, it is in the government’s disinterestedness toward society; China’s policy makers have successfully taken a neutral stance when it comes to the divisions among different social and political groups. Because of this, the government is able to allocate resources according to the productive capacities of different groups, so economic growth can develop faster. A disinterested government can appear in both authoritarian and democratic states, so long as the right social conditions and political arrangements are in place.

    In this sense, authoritarianism does not explain China’s economic success, and nor does it fully characterise the Chinese system. While the Chinese political system may be authoritarian in its outlook, it still has a degree of responsiveness and flexibility that is not entirely devoid of democratic elements. In the West, democracy is often equated with free assembly and competitive elections. But this view disguises some of democracy’s more-substantial values, such as a government’s level of accountability and responsiveness.

    In China, while institutions still need to be strengthened, the country’s officials are increasingly being held accountable for their actions — either through the formal channels built into the establishment or through popular views in the media and over the internet. And in terms of responsiveness, the government is undertaking initiatives to improve the quality of life for China’s 1.3 billion people. Many authoritarian regimes also have trouble with succession, but China has managed to avoid them, as legislation and much of the government’s decision-making process have been institutionalised. Taking this into account, calling China an authoritarian state is an oversimplification and a result of the dichotomised approach that has dominated Western political thinking since the Cold War. At the end of the day, there are also authoritarian elements in democratic systems. Although the US Supreme Court justices are not democratically elected, for example, no one denies the Supreme Court is a cornerstone of America’s democratic system.

    All this does not deter some international observers from trying to link China’s economic success to authoritarianism. In so doing, those observers intend to discredit China’s current prosperity. But if it were a result of authoritarian rule, China’s present success could not be labelled as such. Instead, the outcome would be irrevocably tainted by repression and coercion, and detested by the people. This criticism will not hold: Chinese people are enjoying more freedoms than ever before.

    Yao Yang is Director at the China Center for Economic Research and Deputy Dean at the National School of Development, Peking University. A version of this article was first published here at CCER.

    Tha last sentence he wrote is important for you so that you understand:
    ” But if it were a result of authoritarian rule, China’s present success could not be labelled as such. Instead, the outcome would be irrevocably tainted by repression and coercion, and detested by the people. This criticism will not hold: Chinese people are enjoying more freedoms than ever before.”

    Can we say that in the Ethiopian context? A BIG NO:
    The message is, it is not Authority (coercion, intimidation, killings, incarceration etc) that brings prosperity it is THE WORD YOU DO NOT LIKE TO HEAR, all inclusive under a rule of law. Including the demagogues but rest assured, they will burn their tails off really quickly like all shooting stars do.
    Please switch the lights on so that you can see.

    Lastly remember “ETHIOPIA IS NOT CHINA”

    Respectfully

  48. Dawi
    | #48

    Bro Kato:

    [[..the regime in place, actually is the one that instigated ethnic tensions from the onset and is still doing so?..]]

    That is a popular slogan many like you dish out however, ethnic tensions, civil wars & poverty were the “Trade marks” of our country & that was what overthrew the past regimes. Woyane may not have resolved it but attempted a different approach.

    We can’t say Woyane made Jawar Mohammed or the others? Can we? They certainly didn’t make Isayas who was under the payroll of Egypt before Woyane existed??

    Yes Woyane made us land locked thinking that solved the 30 year war with Eritrea however, that created even more disaster for us later. So it is still needs to be resolved.

    It was only after 2000 that Meles started implementing his “developmental state” paradigm. That is after the Eritrean war, Seye & assoc. were kicked out and so on and so forth. As long as you understand that, I don’t have any problem with your post on China.

    Meles said Africa’s first post-colonial decades were one “Dead End”.
    Allowing the market to rule after that was another lost decade of “Dead End”. And he pointed out that the neo-liberal paradigm does not allow for technological capacity accumulation, which lies at the heart of development. For that, an activist state is needed, that will allocate state resources.

    So we only just began & is work on progress.

  49. Kato
    | #49

    Dear Dawi,
    Let’s move on.

    Long live our heroes that speak truth to power. Freedom for all

    Ethiopia will prevail

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