A Critique of Lt. General Tsadkan Gebre Tensay’s Article By LJDemissie
“When you write from your gut and let the stuff stay flawed and don’t let anybody tell you to make it better, it can end up looking like nothing else.” Louis C.K.
Dear Lt. General Tsadkan Gebre Tensay, I hope this article would find you safe and sound.
I read your alarming article titled የሃገራችን ፖለቲካዊ ሁኔታና የመፍትሔ ሃሳቦች which is about the problems Ethiopians are facing due to all branches of the government, the economy and the media being controlled by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (the TPLF/the EPRDF) – an ethnic minority political party which is led by a few Tigrayan elites who champion their personal interest and agenda in the name of their ethnic group.
The solutions you provided are to segregate the government’s – the TPLF’s – power by checks and balances system and to develop a culture of peacefully transferring power in the next election which is about four years from today by a free, fair and transparent election that is monitored by a would be Ethiopian independent election commission, including credible international election monitors.
To vanguard the process of reorganizing the government’s functions (restraining the TPLF), to make the next election free, fair and transparent, to facilitate an orderly transfer of power from the TPLF (the dictator) to a democratically elected party, the TPLF (the hatemonger) would remain in charge of the government, including the military, the security, the economy and the media. At the end of the process, if the TPLF (the tyrant) faces an election defeat, it would peacefully surrender its power to the democratically elected party.
I liked your tone in your article because you were distressed, critical, naive and persuasive. I think you made your case pointblank by rehashing what other Ethiopians have been persistently explaining about the alarming danger of the TPLF’s ethnic political ideology to the world for more than twenty years. As I read your article, while being aware about the ongoing unrest across Ethiopia, I thought you put gasoline on the fire to hasten overthrowing the TPLF, the oppressor and the looter. For that cause, I think you contributed your fair share.
I believe you wrote your article from your gut. To explain, I loved your articulation about the Tigrayan people feeling concerning their national identity that “የትግራይ ህዝብ በታሪኩ ራሱን ኢትዮጵያ ለምትባለው ሃገር መመስረትና በታርኳ ውስጥ በተለያዩ ውድቀቶችም ይሁን ድሎች ዋና ተዋናይ አድርጎ ነው የሚያስበው። ከዚህ ውጭ በሌላ መንገድ አያስብም። አሁንም ችግሮችን ስናነሳና መፍትሔ ስንፈልግ በዚህ በታሪክ ሲወርድ ሲዋረድ የመጣው አስተሳስብ ውስጥ ሁነን ነው።” I absolutely agree with your opinion because I also think Tigrayan are a key part of Ethiopia’s history. Most importantly, history proves your verbalization is accurate.
I also think you articulated and substantiated your opinions well with some notable exceptions. For example:
1.You falsely claimed that the Ethiopian constitution was approved by the people; For example, you said that “በከፍተኛ የህዝቦች መስዋዕትነትና ተሳትፎ የፀደቀውን ህገ መግስታችንን”. (I noted your attempt to qualify your assertion about the constitution in other sections of your article.)
2.You belittled Ethiopians by asserting that they weren’t ready to knowledgably elect their leaders although you proudly stated the TPLF was a democratic party when it was in the mountains waging guerrilla warfare against the murderous dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam’s regime.
3.You think your party, the TPLF, can be reformed while I think it can’t be reformed because its Ethnic political ideologies failed it to obtain support, and it’s too corrupt. To illustrate, the current unrest in various parts of Ethiopia about a year and half after the TPLF shamelessly claimed that it democratically won 100 percent of the parliamentary seats is a prime example.
After accepting your article at face value, you appeared to me that you are a decent Ethiopian soldier who had the sudden courage and urge to ring the alarm bell to get attention from anyone to share your grave concerns and to find solutions before our country reaches a point of no return resulting a civil war that would be caused by an ethnic conflict which the infamous TPLF activated.
You also sounded to me that you are biased in favor of the TPLF’s leadership (I guessed some of them are your dear friends) because I noted that you avoided discussing major political, economical and social predicaments the notorious TPLF’s hatemonger leadership unleashed on Ethiopians; for example:
1.You didn’t share your view about ethnic politics, the TPLF’s trademark, and by extension yours.
2.You said that the TPLF has never been only a collection of just democrat, but you fall short of telling who are the antidemocrats and who are the democrats.
3.You were silent about why Meles retired you from your top military post while he let other top military leaders of your age with little or no education maintain their position. You also didn’t say a word about your current association with the TPLF.
4.You said that the TPLF’s worst personalities were uncovered when it made Meles its unbridled tyrant. And you supported your opinion by three historical facts namely: How the TPLF handled the departure of the OLF from the coalition; how the TPLF resolved its top leadership split, and how it dealt with Kinijit’s decision not to join the parliament after it won one third of the parliamentary seats in the 2005 election. However, you remained silent about your stand concerning the circumstances that molded the behavior of the brutal TPLF, and by extension the butcher Meles.
In my view, you were in a position to be an eyewitness of his worst personalities that unfolded over a period of more than three decades. I think if you had shared a flash of insight in your article by including your opinion about who was right and who was wrong regarding the reveling moments of the TPLF’s hidden personalities you would have given your readers a chance to know your stances about those tragic historical events instead of deferring the judgment to history by saying “የትኛው ወገን ትክክለኛ፣ የትኛውስ ስህተት ነበር የሚለው አሁንም ለታሪክ እተወዋለሁ”
To summarize, I liked your article’s theme and tone. I think you made great points, but I believe some of your points are a lie, unrealistic or belittling. For example, your claim that “በከፍተኛ የህዝቦች መስዋዕትነትና ተሳትፎ የፀደቀውን ህገ መግስታችንን” is nothing but a lie and is malicious misinformation. Your expectation that the hatemonger and the blood trusty monster TPLF would respect the universal human rights as stated in its constitution; it would facilitate the means for a free, fair and transparent election while it is in power, and it eventually would surrender its power for a democratically elected party is extremely naive.
I found your remark that Ethiopians are now more ready to knowledgably elect their leaders democratically than they were before, is highly offensive because it is the TPLF’s coward leadership that never had the courage to face the people’s verdict in the ballot box because it knows it would be defeated; Ethiopians would vote overwhelmingly against it.
In passing, before reading your article, I was vaguely familiar with a face as being one of the TPLF’s top echelons. I don’t remember reading good or bad press about you. Maybe I didn’t take time to learn about you because: I thought perhaps you were inconsequential in the bloodthirsty monster Meles’ leadership. And/or I may never saw you as a loyal soldier of Ethiopia but as Meles’ hired gun.
Anyway, I wish I wrote my critique of your article in Amharic because it would make the communication efficient, and I might be able to articulate my points more easily. Moreover, it would definitely help my article to get more readers. I wrote it in English because I lost my Amharic typing skills. I am sorry about that.
Finally, for sharing your concerns about our beloved country, I salute you!
The writer, LJDemissie, can be reached at LJDemissie@yahoo.com