Anole Oromo monument and Ethiopia’s history by Admasu Belay

April 7th, 2014 Print Print Email Email

The shameful Anole (Aannolee) Oromo Monument built by the racist OPDO in the Arsi region of Oromia has angered many Ethiopians worldwide. The current regime says the monument was built to remember Oromo war prisoners mutilated by Menelik. But what we fail to understand is beyond the emotional reaction, we have overlooked its historical impact.

Since the TPLF/OLF created the current ethnic federalism system in 1993, they have brainwashed many Ethiopians to see everything thru narrow tribal lense. Therefore many innocent oromos have become zombies to any tribal propaganda shoved at their throats. Otherwise, the monument has no historical base to support a single brick of its existence!

Why is Anole monument a historical fallacy?

There are three main issues with the monument.


FIRST issue involves the makeup of Menelik’s Shoan army which the OLF/OPDO want us to think are mostly Amharas. But this is completely false. All historical accounts show us that Shoa was a multiethnic region with a significant Oromo population. Even When menelik was imprisoned by the Gojjams, he was helped by the Shoa Oromo to be free and even his wife was mixed Oromo herself. Menelik’s top Minister of Defense was the Oromo/Gurage Commander Habte Dinagde and all of Menelik’s battle with the south was 100% coordinated by Oromo hero Ras Gobena Dacche. So OPDO/OLF/TPLF propaganda poison against amara has no historical base.

SECOND issue is the custom of cutting hands or mutilation which is not practiced by the Orthodox majority in Shoa. There is no historical evidence that shows such practice in Shoa. The truth is such custom is widespread only in rural corners of our country, especially among the Somali and Afar. Even today the Somali/Afar pastoralists cut off penis of enemy to prove manhood. This is banned custom in shoa. There were some wollo oromos influenced by Afar/somali culture. In fact, after the wollo Oromo calvary killed many Italians in the Battle of Adwa, they mutilated many Italian war captives. There were no rules regulating POW treatment. But the past is past, we should think forward instead of criminalizing every incident in history. Most of all, the claim that widespread mutilation was done by the shoans against Arsi is exaggerated and false.

The THIRD issue involves the details of the battle in Arsi where atrocities were committed. For instance, all historical accounts show that Menelik’s 1880s multiethnic military lost many battles to the Arsi military. He was defeated several times before his final victory. Meaning, similar atrocities were committed by the Arsi oromo military who killed the Shoans and mutilated their war captives. This was afterall over 120 years ago when human rights laws did not dictate any conflict in the world. So should we remind ourselves how the Arsi oromo killed and mutilated the Shoans? Should we build a statue or monument for the shoans killed by the Arsi oromo before another batch of Shoans revenged by killing the Arsi? Well, this would be ridiculous and childish! We will run out of stones to build monuments and Ethiopia will be filled with monuments in every corner of the country!

We can’t build millions of monuments for every event in history.
Otherwise, why don’t we build monument to remember victims of the 1500s Somali Imam Gragn Mohammed who massacred tens of thousands of innocent Orthodox amaras?

Why don’t we build monuments everywhere in Shoa and wollo to remember the thousands of Amaras massacred during the 1500s/1600s Oromo expansion? These Oromos surely did not feed their amara subjects milk and honey when they subjucated them. Why don’t we build monuments to the many wollo people killed by Emperor Yohannes’s crusades? Why don’t we build monument for the Gondar and Gojjam people massacred by the mid 1700s Oromo rulers in Gonder? Why don’t we build monuments to the thousands of Amharas in the south killed by OLF/OPDO oromos during the 1990s transition period?

Actually, murder and massacre of Amaras in this day and age of high global human rights standards is more criminal than massacre of Oromos centuries ago when such standards were nonexistant worldwide. Recent attrocities have more weight than atrocities over 100 years ago because the world has high standards and values today.

So indeed Amara people have the moral high ground in Ethiopia as they are the most victimized people throughout recent and past history. But for the sake of peace and reconcilation, amaras are not revenge minded.

But the OPDO/OLF continue to spread hatred between amaras and our oromo brothers and sisters. Today out of the over 2 million population in Arsi zone, over 300,000 are Amharas. So why create hatred against this significant Amaras living in Arsi? Why create bitterness? Certainly, there are tens of thousands of mixed Ethiopians living in Arsi as well but the TPLF regime has outlawed mixed identity. So both amaras and mixed people in Arsi today are living in state of terror because of this OPDO/OLF fake monument of hate.
It is our duty to inform our Oromo brothers and sisters not to fall to the traps being set by the OPDO/OLF/TPLF. This pornographic statue or monument of breast is an insult to the intelligence of our oromo people in Arsi.

But If they like their statue, well, let them keep it. If some arsi oromos feel satisfied with such hateful statue, we say, go ahead and enjoy. But we must ask our oromo brothers and sisters to watchout for the OPDO/TPLF tactic of divide and rule! We must tell every oromo we see that history does not support such statue. Amaras have and continue to suffer in Ethiopian history but we ask our Oromo brothers to first and foremost dedicate our time to remove the TPLF dictatorship and fight for democracy together as one people. Politicizing history, creating bitterness, revenge and hate are not the cornerstones of peaceful co-existence in Ethiopia.

  1. Jojo
    | #1

    Very well explained sir. This is common sense that some oromos fail to grasp that all ethnic groups participated in the making of modern ethiopia. Even abyssinia includes oromos like the wollo oromo who were ruled ethiopia as well as were ruled under the ethio umbrella long before menelik was born.
    It is sad to see our oromo cousins get brainwashed by OLF propaganda

  2. aha!
    | #2

    I have already encapsulated the ethnic and secessionist politics and/or secessionist policies built into the constitution in terms of the ideologies of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totalitarianism and/or state capitalism. This frame work of the constitution has created an arbitrary demarcation of Ethiopian land mass by major languages of the previous provinces of various ethnic groups to serve as a prelude to boundary disputes and ethnic secessionism, campaign against Amhara ethnic group, promulgating into genocide and an ongoing ethnic cleansing, supported by the teletafi parties, the security, military and federal police forces, along with the implicit support of the loyalist opposition parties in terms of its support for current untenable constitution, denying Ethiopians of their political and economic freedom.Such frame work of the constitution calls for individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights in order have democracy and democratic government to have in place of ethnic rule of either minority now majority in the future, supporting the status quo and the current erection of a monument in terms of war skirmishes perpetrated to impose taxes over feudal kingdomes is nothing but pathetic on top of brain washing Ethiopians to think of themselves of their ethnicity before their Ethiopiawinet, maintain ethnic federalism of four subethnic group of Oromo and reinvigorating the hatred against the Amhara ethnic group, even though the Zemecha was undertaken by Ethiopians, not Amhara ethnic group during Minilik II rule, over on top the secessionist Oromo ethnic groups forming an AFD2, not a merger with Ginbot 7, affiliated with EPLF/Eritrea, that has brought TPLF/eprdf regime to power. De javu all over again for ethnic federalism, accommodating secessionism nerverthess and maintaininig totalitarianism and/or state capitalism along with the free market capitalism by TPLF/Political, TPLF/EFFORT, TPLF affiliated enterprises, cadres, and foreign corporations with non-independent branches of government under ethnic, but not democratic rule.

  3. Garo
    | #3

    The argument that Menelik did not commit atrocities against Oromos and Southern people is not convincing. If one wants to look one can find many evidence of the atrocities that Anoole symbolizes. Many of the arguments that are being made by some groups or individuals come from people who still admire Menelik’s values and his conquests. These people’s parents shared the same values.They have good reasons to believe in that because that system has been good to them.They are the beneficiary of the system that was planted by Menelik by which we are still being ruled.

    The system is not dead yet, it is just being implemented by their historically junior partners. This idea that says the people of Ethiopia lived together because they loved each other is just non sense. The unity is false unity. It is imposed by force and it may not last long.

    What we saw recently in Bahr Dar at a sporting event is not exactly the mark of unity. What surprised me the most is those people who made a big issue out of a single Odeo of an EPRDF official making some unpleasant comment against Amara are not even making any comment. Why? may be because it is their side insulting other group and that’s somehow okay.

  4. RO$$
    | #4

    Egypt and saud arabia supply the majority of the finance for this despicable monument. what does this tell you folks? There is also EU funding. the conspiracy against Ethiopia by arabs and their emercenary agents the TPLF is relentless.

  5. Anonymous
    | #5

    Penis cutting is a peculiar culture of the Oromos. The south oromos like the Guji and Borenas do it to this day. They feed you in the evening and then cut it early morning. The Afars may do it bit it is not their culture. They got it from the Oromos.Oner of the reasons they were called the gallas was because of this practice. The shewa oromos do not do this though.

  6. Southerner
    | #6

    If Menilike was an Oromo, then how come he systematically mass genocided oromos ?
    If Menilike was an Oromo, then how come he banned Oromo language from every oromo region and forced Oromos to speak Amharic language in every Oromo local government offices and oromo courts ?
    If Menilike was an Oromo, then how come he stolen Oromos land to give it to his Amhara tribes men ?

  7. As Me
    | #7

    Today’s’ Ethiopia land has been a source of diversified human being for thousand years. That land has been crossed through and inhabited by our ancestors. while the most recent indigenous people were nelotic, omotic and cushitic(Agew) speaking people. They were invaded by Semitic speaking from north and cushitic (Oromo,Afar,Somalis) speaking from south and south east. So this was going for centuries and there was war and peace with these Ethiopians.
    We can not be one and the same because we are beauty in diversification. We can not be separated because we are weak to stand alone. So what we do not need is politicians who play these polarity, but respect our differences at the same time strengthen our unity.

  8. ወሎ ዋ!ስል-ቤተ አምሐራ
    | #8

    አዳሜ ታሪክን እማታቅ ዝም ብለክ አትዘላብድ-ወሎ ዋስል የ ሰፈሩት ኦሮሞዎች ቀደም ሲል በ ጣልያን የተመለመሉ መርሲነርዎች ናቸው ምክንያቱም አማራውን ለማዳከም-ከዛም ይህው ተግባር በ ሚኒልክ የ ጦር አበጋዞች ቀጥሎ ተደረግ ምክንያቱም ግዛት ለማስፋፋት, ይህ ድርጊት ዳግም ተከናወነ በ ዲቃላው ሃይለስላሴ(እሳቸው ራሱ በ አባት ኦሮሞ ናቸው).እና የ ሸዋ “አማራ” ከ አጋሰስ ኦሮሞ ጋር ተደባልቆ የ ራሱን ወገን እንደ ጅብ ቀርጥፎ በልትዋል! ጋላን ማመን ቀበሮን እንደማመን ነው-! በ ግራኝ መሃመድ ያለው ወረራን ተከትሎ የሰፈሩት ኦሮሞዋች በ ቁጥር ያን ያህል ናቸው ያው ግን በጊዜ ብዛት ቢበዙም! በተረፈ ምድረ ሸዋ” አማራ” (እሱም አማራ ከሆናቹ ነው) አሁን ጥሩ ትምህርት የተማርክ መሰለኝ! ክርስትና ተነስቶ እና አማረኛ ስም የ ያዘ ሁሉ አማራ አይደለም-ገቢቶ? በተረፈ ጣልያን ሲያካልል የ አምሐራ እምብርት የት እንደሆነ በደንብ ያወቅ ነበር-ካርታውን ተመልክታቹ ተረዱ! ሸዋን ራሱዋን ለብቻዋ ከልሎ ሸዋ ብልዋታል ምክንያቱም ” it was the land of no one but every one-albiet the fact that the dominant group is galla-its historical inhabitats are hadyas, gurages, sidamas, tigre werji, gafats, damotes, Some Amharas”!!! እና ሸዌዎች ጠቅልሎ ሳይመሽባቹ ራሳችሁን ለዩ ከ አሳማ ጋላ-የመሰረታችሁት ዝምድና በ አሸዋ ላይ እንደተሰራ ቤት ሆንዋል-ያንን ግን እውነተኛ አማራውን ርስት እና ውርስ ቀምታቹ-የ አምሐራው አስተዳደር ከ ልብነ ድንግል ብዋላ ፈርስዋል-እኛ ነን ወራሾች እንዳትሉን ታድያ-? ለማንኛውም ይህን በሰፊው የምያስረዳ መጸሃፍ አንድ በገብያ ላይ ይገኛል-በቀቡ ደሞ ሌላ ብቅ ይላል! ምድረ ከረፈፍ ሁላ-ለወገንክ አልሆንክ ወይ ለራሳቹ! ማፈሪያዎች!

  9. Dema
    | #9


    You idiiiot!, Nobody said menelik is oromo! Stupiiiid!
    And menelik did not force anyone to speak amharic. Btw, menelik spoke afan oromo, he was multilingual.
    Anyway, it was haile selassie(half oromo dictator) who enforced amharic language nationwide.

    Btw, why are your oromo people living far north in tigray and wollo ?
    Historically oromos expanded and subjucated more lands than amhara..,.look at the current map and you will see that oromia region is 2 times the size of amhara region


    Oromo is 33 million and amhara is 30 million so their land should have been same size but oromia is double the size of amhara….this is because pre-menelik, the oromo warriors were conquering and violently annexing land everywhere in east africa.
    We amharas look at full history as a whole, while you olf oromos look at narrow history only from the last 100 years…,that is why we will never agree on anything!

  10. Garo
    | #10

    You are very generous when it comes to the Amhara population. Where did you get those numbers from? Did you also include the Qemant, Agaw Gumez, And a large number of Tigrigna speaking of Gondar? Who believes your number or the number that is being dished out by TPLF any way. Because these people also have agendas. So keep jacking up your numbers. We know Oromos are half the population of Ethiopia.

  11. Qaanqee
    | #11

    ” FIRST issue involves the makeup of Menelik’s Shoan army which the OLF/OPDO want us to think are mostly Amharas. But this is completely false. All historical accounts show us that Shoa was a multiethnic region with a significant Oromo population”, Mr. Writer- nobody denies Oromos served in that country’s military and nobody is blaming the poor Amhara who is staying home and struggling with daily life…and feeding the insatiable ruling class of the country

    “…many innocent oromos have become zombies to any tribal propaganda shoved at their throats”. Mr. Writer, so you think Oromos just accept whatever is thrown at them and need your super brain to think for them….

    Many of your other gibberish is not even worth responding to.

  12. diinqa
    | #12

    you amhara people will never go back to the power and you rather accept federalism live in peace in your barn land .
    victory to Federalis

  13. Oromia
    | #13

    Victory is always on the side of the just. Shine Oromia! Its amazing to see people here in 21 century clinging to the same old feudal mentality. particularly those Amra elites still to the present day are messing up the country’s politics. I would rather work with the Somalis than those hard headed Amara elites. I feel very sorry for the naive honest humble people of Amra who has nothing to do with what their elites are doing.

  14. Mamo
    | #14

    Some olf goons are fools. Just because their olf agitated their primitive tribalism, they think they can slaughter all Amaharas. The fact of the matter is when they savagely destroy many poor Amharas in the 90′s, they got away with it. I don’t think talking them to forget the past and move to the future makes that much sense to these fanatics. Amhara should bear in mind that appeasing politics doesn’t work, getting organized is the only way to repulse any future attacks to our people.

  15. Dayu
    | #15

    This is self-emulation. How sad! The achievements of Menilik and his contemporaries is a huge asset, a history capital that all people of Africa and African origin are proud of! Now by doing this you are destroying your own value! You are throwing dirt and blemish on your own proud history. How sad! how sad! how sad. When you come to your senses one day, you will regret it bitterly!

  16. aha!
    | #16

    Diinqa! The concept of federalism can still function by resorting to the old provincial boundaries, with assorted ethnic groups residing in each of the provinces with private ownership of land anywhere in Ethiopia in a free market capitalism as in the USA, with individual freedom, liberty and equality as the center piece of the constitution. This frame work of a constitution is amenable to democracy than the current constitution with ideologies of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totalitarianism and/or state capitalism that denies the Ethiopians individual freedom, liberty and equality in preference to ethnic and secessionist rights, free market capitalism, Ethiopian nationalism, territorial integrity and the sovereignty of Ethiopia as a negative force of disintegration, the continuation of which serves as a prelude to secessionism, future boundary conflict and an ongoing ethnic cleansing. While allowing the development of languages and cultures in various localities, economic development can take place across ecological regions with each individual operates in a free market capitalism to have access to the piece of the pie under fair competition in economic and politics, rather the current set up under TPLF/eprdf, where the teletafi parties operate on a leash, by TPLF Politbeurro, where the Oromo killil mengist, at least have their own leaders, but the Amhara killil mengist do not even have leaders from among their own and never think of themselves as Amhara first and Ethiopians second. All they complained in the past was about taxes imposed on them to run the country, while some feudal kings refuse to pay taxes, by saying “yigebir kalchihu zingerom yigebir yengus aydelem woye yemichirrew midir”. The downfall of previous regime of HIM was brought down by student movement on class struggle for workers rights and land reform albeit in a Marxist-Lenninst ideology, which gave way to those ex-liberation movements fighting against oppression of nations and nationalities, that created ethnic federalism, secessionism and totalitarianism and/or state capitalism that does not allow for democracy and free market capitalism to the silent majority of Ethiopians, except for TPLF/Political, TPLF/EFFORT, TPLF affiliated enterprises, cadres and foreign corporations.

  17. Quarie
    | #17

    Arsi oromos have been mutiliating the breasts of their neighbour halaba ethnic group women just recently(>2007 G.C). & This what they learn from menelik soldiers?

  18. dfer
    | #18

    “Victory is always on the side of the just”. Not really. In that was the case Oromos would still be in southern tip of Ethiopia and Kenya.

  19. dfer
    | #19

    Of course Oromo are not going to stop Amharas from power. Then who will? Woyane? No, when the levee breaks, you Woyanes would simply run crawling back to the wings of Amhara, as you did for the past millennium.

  20. abatte
    | #20

    It is only Egypt and the ethnicist fascist groups that it supports who are behind this project and try to discredit the warrior king Menelik. Menelik is the pride of the black man all over the world. Black liberation movements started after Menelik ousted the invading fascist European army from Etyhiopian soil.

    Three thousand Men Killed, Sixty Guns and All Provisions Lost.

    Baratieri’s Strategy Condemned.

    All Available Steamers for Transport of Reinforcements to Abyssinia are Ordered.

    Persistent Rumor of Ministry’s Fall

    Rome, March 3 – The present campaign against the Abyssinians threatens to become one of the most disastrous in which the Italians arms have ever taken part, and what the final outcome will be it would be hard to predict. It was rumored today that the latest defeat of the Italians by King Menelik had compelled Ministry to resign, owing to the popular disapproval of the Government’s policy, but tonight this report is denied.
    Details received here today of the defeat on Sunday of the Italian Army show that the Italian losses were very heavy, they being placed by some at 3,000 killed. It is still impossible to ascertain the precise losses, but popular opinion credits the report that the number of killed is not overstated. Thus far the reports make no mention of the number of wounded. Among the dead are Gen. Albertone, Commander of the Left Brigade, and Gen. Dabormida, Commander of the Right Brigade.
    The news of this latest disaster has caused the greatest excitement throughout Italy, and the Opposition party is taking advantage of it to make violent attacks upon the Government’s policy in attempting to extend the sphere of Italian influence in Abyssinia.
    The Pope is greatly disturbed by the news.
    Among the many reports current today was one to the effect that Gen. Baratieri had committed suicide, being unable to endure the humuliation of his defeat.
    Published on March 4, 1896 in the New York Times.
    Read original story from NYT
    On March 2, 1896, the New York Times wrote the following article.
    ABYSSINIANS DEFEAT ITALIANS.; Both Wings of Baratieri’s Army Enveloped in an Energetic Attack
    Massaowa, March 2, 1896 – Gen. Baratieri attacked the Abyssinians yesterday. Gens. Albertone, Arimondi, and Dabormida commanded the left, centre, and right brigades, respectively. Gen. Ellina commanded the reserve.
    The Italians captured the passes leading to Adowa without opposition. Gen. Albertone, with four native battalions and four mountain batteries , engaged the enemy, but where soon overcome by overwhelming odds.
    Gen. Arimondi was ordered to cover the retreat, but his position prevented him from complying with the order. The Abyssinians in the meantime made an energetic attack, which soon extended to the whole Italian front and enveloped both wings.
    A desperate struggle ensued. and finally the Italians were compelled to abandon their positions. The nature of the ground prevented the batteries from moving. The Italians are retiring behind Belesa. The losses sustained are unknown.
    The New York Times
    Published March 3, 1896

  21. Sileshi
    | #21

    The erection of this statue shoud at the bottom say ‘ Based on the fiction written by Tesfaye Gebreab.’

  22. Worku tesfaye
    | #22

    Why u dividing oromo?shoa,arsi,walo etc.
    Even now u criticizing tplf for any activities.but all ethinicities cadre involved.zat was wy minilik a head responsible for mitilated and kiiled many oromo.
    What ever amhara or oromo did mistaken action,currently reconciliation and widely thinking positive and left hx as hx.
    Pls…learn we should from mandela,German vs Jewish,American vs herosima.

  23. Suliman
    | #23

    Everyone is taking this issue with great emotional dexterity. The bottom line when previous leaders are criticized first and for most there need to be hard core evidence. Second, all societies throughout history at one time or another has done the same thing: that is invaded or raided one another. Third, the past history of any nation must be criticized through norms and standards of that historical epoch. To use the twenty first century western standards as a universal principle as a tool to critique the history of the nineteenth century Ethiopia does not make one a critical thinker but one that can be dubbed as Affair west. Most southerners like to portrait themselves as true Afrikaners yet in practice they readily promote foreign ideas. Why do I see such inconsistency among OLF guys? Take for instance the foreign borrowed Latin alphabet for Afan Oromo language.

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