Congressional Record Statement of Senator Russ Feingold On the Political Crisis in Ethiopia – Senator Russ Feingold

March 4th, 2008 Print Print Email Email

Mr. President, I rise today to discuss the political situation in Ethiopia. The US-Ethiopian partnership is an incredibly important one – perhaps one of the more significant on the continent given not only our longstanding history but also the increasingly strategic nature of our cooperation in recent years. Ethiopia sits on the Horn of Africa – perhaps one of the roughest neighborhoods in the world, with Somalia a failed state and likely safe haven for terrorists, Eritrea an inaccessible authoritarian regime that exacerbates conflicts throughout the region, Sudan a genocidal regime, and now Kenya descending into crisis. (more…)

Mr. President, I rise today to discuss the political situation in Ethiopia. The US-Ethiopian partnership is an incredibly important one – perhaps one of the more significant on the continent given not only our longstanding history but also the increasingly strategic nature of our cooperation in recent years. Ethiopia sits on the Horn of Africa – perhaps one of the roughest neighborhoods in the world, with Somalia a failed state and likely safe haven for terrorists, Eritrea an inaccessible authoritarian regime that exacerbates conflicts throughout the region, Sudan a genocidal regime, and now Kenya descending into crisis. By contrast, Ethiopia seems relatively stable with its growing economy and robust poverty reduction programs.

Indeed, one look at the deteriorating situation on the Horn of Africa and it is clear just how essential our relationship with Ethiopia really is. Unfortunately, the Bush Administration’s approach to strengthening and building bilateral ties with Ethiopia has been short-sighted and narrow. As in other parts of the world, the Administration’s counter-terrorism agenda dominates the relationship, while poor governance and human rights concerns get a pass.

Mr. President, genuine democratic progress in Ethiopia is essential if we are to have a healthy and positive bilateral relationship. We can not allow a myopic focus on one element of security to obscure our understanding of what is really occurring in Ethiopia. Rather than place our support in one man, we must invest in Ethiopia’s institutions and its people to create a stable, sustainable political system. As we are seeing right now in Kenya, political repression breeds deep-seated resentment, which can have destructive and far-reaching consequences. The United States and the international community can not support one policy objective at the expense of all others. To do so not only hurts the credibility of America and the viability of our democratic message, but it severely jeopardizes our national security.

Mr. President, I am seriously concerned about the direction Ethiopia is headed – because according to many credible accounts, the political crisis that has been quietly growing and deepening over the past few years may be coming to a head. For years, faced with calls for political or economic reforms, the Ethiopian government has displayed a troubling tendency to react with alarmingly oppressive and disproportionate tactics.

For example, Mr. President, in 2003, we received reports of massacres of civilians in the Gambella region of Ethiopia, which touched off a wave of violence and destruction that has yet to truly loosen its grip on the region. At that time, hundreds of lives were lost, tens of thousands were displaced, and many homes, schools, and businesses throughout the area were destroyed. Credible observers agree that Ethiopian security forces were heavily involved in some of the most serious abuses and more than 5 years later no one has been held accountable and there have been no reparations.

The national elections held in May 2005 were a severe step back for Ethiopia’s democratic progress. In advance of the elections, the Ethiopian Government expelled representatives of the three democracy-promotion organizations supported by USAID to assist the Ethiopian election commission, facilitate dialogue among political parties and election authorities, train pollwatchers, and assist civil society in the creation of a code of conduct. This expulsion was the first time in 20 years that a government has rejected such assistance, and the organizations have still not returned to Ethiopia because they do not feel an environment exists where they can truly undertake their objectives.

Despite massive controversy surrounding the polls, it is notable that opposition parties still won an unprecedented number of parliamentary seats. Their pursuit of transparency and democracy was again thwarted, however, when they tried to register their concerns about the election process. In one incident, peaceful demonstrations by opposition members and their supporters in Ethiopia’s capital of Addis Ababa were met with disproportionate and lethal force that killed more than 30 people and injured over 100. In another incident, the Ethiopian government arrested thousands of peacefully protesting citizens who took to the streets in support of the opposition.

The systemic nature of this crackdown was revealed in credible reports coming from the Oromia and Amhara regions that federal police were unacceptably threatening, beating and detaining opposition supporters. Indeed, international human rights groups documented that regional authorities were exaggerating their concerns about armed insurgency and “terrorism” to try to justify the torture, imprisonment and sustained harassment of critics and even ordinary citizens.

This tendency to portray political dissent as extremist uprisings has been repeated more recently with regards to what is being characterized by some as a brutal counterinsurgency operation led by Ethiopia’s military in the Ogaden, a long-neglected region that borders Somalia. Certainly I recognize the serious security concerns in this region, made worse by the porous borders of the failed state just a stone’s throw away.

But it is precisely because Ethiopia is our partner in the fight against al Qaeda, its affiliates and allies, Mr. President, that I am so concerned about what I understand to be a massive military crackdown that does not differentiate between rebel groups and civilians. While I am sure there are few clean hands when it comes to fighting in the Ogaden region, the reports I have received about the Ethiopian government’s illicit military tactics and human rights violations are of great concern.

I have been hearing similar reports of egregious human rights abuses being committed in Somalia, about which I am gravely concerned. When I visited Ethiopia just over a year, I urged the Prime Minister not to send his troops into Somalia because I thought it might make instability there worse, not better. Tragically, more than a year later, it seems my worst fears have been realized as tens of thousands of people have fled their homes, humanitarian access is at an all time low, and there are numerous reports of increasing brutality towards civilians caught in the crossfire. In the interest of its own domestic security, Ethiopia is contributing to increased regional instability.

Mr. President, what troubles me most is that the reports of Ethiopia’s military coming out of the Ogaden and Mogadishu join a long list of increasingly repressive actions taken by the Ethiopian government. The Bush Administration must not turn a blind eye to the aggressive – and recurring – tactics being utilized by one of our key allies to stifle dissent.

I certainly welcome the role the Bush Administration has played in helping to secure the release of many — although not all — of the individuals thrown in jail in the aftermath of the 2005 elections. I welcome the Embassy’s engagement with opposition members and their efforts to encourage Ethiopian officials to create more political space for alternative views, independent media, and civil society. These are all important steps Mr. President, but they do not go far enough.

The Administration’s efforts at backroom diplomacy, Mr. President, are not working. I understand and respect the value of quiet diplomacy, but sometimes we reach the point where such a strategy is rendered ineffective – when private rhetorical commitments are repeatedly broken by unacceptable public actions. For example, recent reports that the Ethiopian government is jamming our Voice of America radio broadcasts should be condemned in no uncertain terms, not shrugged off.

The Bush administration must live up to its own rhetoric in promoting democracy and human rights by making it clear that we do not – and will not — tolerant the Ethiopian government’s abuses and illegal behavior. It must demonstrate that there are consequences for the repressive and often brutal tactics employed by the Ethiopian government, which are moving Ethiopia farther away from – not closer to – the goal of becoming a legitimate democracy and are increasingly a source of regional instability.

Mr. President, I’m afraid that the failure of this Administration to acknowledge the internal crisis in Ethiopia is emblematic of its narrow-minded agenda, which will have repercussions for years to come if not addressed immediately. Worse yet, without a balanced US policy that addresses both short- and long-term challenges to stability in Ethiopia, we run the risk of contributing to the groundswell of proxy wars rippling across the Horn – whether in Somalia, eastern Sudan, or even the Ogaden region. And those wars, in turn, by contributing to greater insecurity on the Horn and providing opportunities for forces that oppose U.S. interests, pose a direct threat to our own national security as well.

I yield the floor.

  1. metema
    | #1

    good blace you

  2. Damitew
    | #2

    some one has to speak the truth and the reality. The tigree savages must be denied support and face the ethiopian justice

  3. | #3

    Senator Russ Fengold what a gentleman what intelligence and analysis of the true situation in Etiopia. Everytime I loose hope something like this happens and I am encouraged and my hopes about a better future goes up THE SCALE.
    THANK YOU SENATOR FEINGOLD.
    MAMUSH

  4. Aklile
    | #4

    Thank you
    Thank you
    Thank you
    Senator Feingold

    for being the voice for the voiceless Ethiopians.

  5. Denberu Gashaw
    | #5

    What are foreigners involving in Ethiopias internal domestic politics ? ? ?
    You should know about our Ethiopians history that Ethiopia is not under colony.
    The era of direct colony ended in the sixties, but indirect colony still controlling,weakening and killing the black race/Africans.

  6. Sheberu
    | #6

    It is time to change Ethiopias politics just like Chines style politics.

  7. WEGESHAW
    | #7

    Denberu,
    To fight colonialism and neo-colonialism is one thing, but to hide huge and heinous atrocities being perpetrated up on millions, under the cover of accusing some one to be a neo-colonialist is just a shame.
    Thank you Senator Russ Fen gold!

  8. Alemash
    | #8

    there are more than 2 millions of prisoners in America, and 84% of most of these prisoners were African americans and latinos. The Blacks systematically oppressed and getting destroyed. now how is that such a a nation who destroyes and imprisons its own black citizens try to help african blacks ? should not fairness start at home ? American senators and American politicians puring gasoline on African social problems to further the disagreement, and such practice is well known classic standard procedure. I am sure Ethiopia also will not be immuned from such western attack,specially when ethiopia start showing promising future. In old days they used to send their army to subjugate and kill africans, but now they using devide africans in some sort of jargon wage war on each other. just like they rewanda civil war, remember rewnada civil war planted by the west, and that the same thing also will come to Ethiopia soon.

  9. Damitew
    | #9

    dear alemash:
    Two wrongs will not make one right. So if the americans imprison their own ppls doesn’t mean the savage tigrees can kill ethiopians. You are comparing apples and oranges. Don’t you know that most ethiopian will choose to be in US prison than in ethiopia under the tigrees atlist you will eat three times a day and get education and medical attention. comoon lets face the reality the savage tigrees tried and failed badly and it is time for them to go.

  10. | #10

    Why is that every time you criticize a dictatorial regime,you are accused of violating the sovereignty of that country? Why is that your being a foreigner is quickly pointed out to you and again you are accused of interfering in the internal affairs of the country? Why are you given names like neo-colonialist..so on and so forth?

    African dictators,past and present have always practice this. Zimbabwe’s Mugabe,for example,now blames ALL the problems of his mis-rule on the neo-colonial interference of Britain.

    Megistu,our own former dictator,used to angirly complain about the violations of the sovereignty of the country by the neo-colonialists or ‘imperialists’as he called western critics of his regime.

    Now,the autocrat Meles does exactly the same, that is, plays the patriotic card,when westerners, particularly Americans say things critical about his bad government.

    What is interesting is that Meles and his supporters(Hi!Alemashiye,Denebe,Shebeeee) pretend to be angry and insulted that such a violation of sovereignty is happening to a country whose proud anti-colonial past they have infact held in contempt for a long time.
    Although the music has now changed ,Meles’deeply held and publicly expressed dislike for Menelik,the genius of Adowa and his repeated rubbishing of our national flag as mere ‘cherq’are things still worth remembering.

    The anger and sense of being insulted,indeed,are just pretences.The true but masked emotional reactions of Meles and his enthusiasts when American critics like Senator R.Feingold speak against the government are one of worry and nervous anxiety.

    Unlike the dictatorial Mengistu who enjoyed the support of the Russians, the dictatorial Meles enjoys the support particularly of the U.S.A and it would not be an exaggeration to say that America is now the mainstay of Meles’power.

    Meles,like his former conterpart Mengistu,heads a tyrannical regime hated by and isolated from his own people.The main stay of his power,therefore,is not the people and he is clinging to power thanks to outside help.
    Had it not been for this outside help particularly from the U.S.A and the British Governments in the form of diplomatic recognition,legitimacy,economic aid,military and security assistance,which had been and is being misused in many ways,Meles’ regime would not have survived for too long.

    In fact,the regime would have been voted out of office during the last May 2005 elections, had it not been for its massive cheating of the election results and the subsequent waves of repression it unleashed against its own people mainly misusing the various resources made available to it by outside help.

    Sadly, when that happened Westerners,particularly Americans CHOSE to equivocate and turn their gaze away from the agony and pain in Ethiopia.

    Understandably, the U.S.A,in particular has had its own ‘agony and pain’as far as fundamentalist islamic terrorism is concerned.It has its own vulnerability.

    Meles,by dramatically invoking the spectre of this terrorism in the region and posing himself as an indispensable ally of the Americans in their worthy fight against such an enemy, has exploited that vulnerablity to stay in power.In addition to that tactic of playing the ‘terrorist card’ to stay in power, he is now using the scare or blackmailing tactic for the same end.
    By blackmailing America or atleast the conscientious members of the present Administration,saying that they are neo- colonialsts who are meddling in the internal affairs of the country,Meles hopes to stay in power while his American critics are scared of and shy away from speaking against his regime and his awefully poor human rights record.

    No country or person is a prisoner of its past,however.
    Western nations of past colonial history(that does not include America,by the way, that did not have any colonies anywhere)should not be blackmailed by every tyrant and his minion for speaking against the excesses of their regime for fear of being labelled neo-colonialist.
    Britain,for example,should feel free to criticize the Mugabe regime for its violations of human rights in Zimbabwe, as it should do the same when it comes to Meles,its key Ethiopian partner.

    In short, to speak against human rights violations,whoever the speaker, is not the same thing as violations of sovereignty of a nation.

    Truth should always be spoken and spoken with courage.Truth knows nothing else other than its own nobility.

    Senator R.Feingold,along with Senators C.Smith,D.Payne and others,is this admirably conscientious and noble mind who speaks the truth and speaks it with courage on behalf of the oppressed in Ethiopia.

    We owe him a huge debt of gratitude!!

  11. nega
    | #11

    well i dont want to say much but i wish to ask the senator of the sources of his speach. i wounder why it is in the USA that ever terrorist starts. remeber USA trained BIN LADEN. so it seems that these senators dream is not stablize any nation rather disstablize it.
    the recent policy of USA shows that they are only up to those who usually go to them and feed them any information it does not matter about its creditability.
    does it means that those o[ppostion gruops who flew a way to USA coz of their own problem are the key informants of those senators. SORRY.
    i am not saying that if there is any problem it should not be critised rather the information should not be one sided. otherwise there will be question of the neutralit. like ANA GOMEZ who finally appear to be part of the CUD’s problem by sugesting Dr brhanu to be the chair man.
    so as to me we dont care who says what PLEASE JUST CARE FOR OWN CASE SENATORS CCOZ USA ITSELF HAS GOT LOT OF UNRESOLVED PROBELMS INCLUDING THE RESENT ECONOMIC PROBLEN AND OFFCOURSE THE BIGGEST WORLWIDE PROBLEM OF TERERISM.
    CARE FOR URSELF SENASTORS ETHIOPIA HAS BEEN SOUVERGN COUNTERY SINCE THE VERY BEGGING AND YET IT WILL CONTINOUS

  12. K.B
    | #12

    What i do not understand is what constitute American congress man and American senators to intervening in other governments internal affairs and business ? ? What ever happened to the principles of democracy and democratic rights of soverign nations ? ? Or is it because according to American politicians we Africans/black race are some what trained chimps can not govern our business as independent nation ? ? Why can not the WEST recognize Africans and African countries as a nation. I am sure American senators or business people do`t involve in FRances or Germanies internal political affairs, why only in Africans affairs ?? It sounds more like “Hidden raceism”.

  13. | #13

    Dear K.B
    Did you know that one of these American politicians you accuse of ‘hidden racism’ is actually an African-American? This black man,Donald Payne,is one of the many senators at Congress who has worked hard to promote HR2003.This is a man who knows Ethiopia so well and loves her people.He is somebody who is also proud of her ancient history and her heroic anti-colonial struggles.But he is unhappy at the way the country is being ruled today where there is so much human rights abuse and as a passionate human rights advocate,he believes that Ethiopians deserve better.

  14. K.B
    | #14

    You seem to know less about the world,because Racism comes in so many colour and faces.
    By the way F.Y.I, Senator russ feingold is an JEW.

  15. WEGESHAW
    | #15

    What is the difference whether you are colonized by foreigners or enemies of the people from with in? Ethiopia is now in deep misery where atrocities are taking place with impunity, where her children are in exile due to fear of losing their lives, where most people are considered as second citizens, where the wealth of the country looted in day light,
    Where 6% minority group ruling over the rest 94%. Only one thing is allowed and that is: means of force and denying democracy.
    So HR2003 is there to correct those evil deeds.
    In my opinion any body who opposes this bill from becoming law is automatically considered as “obstructer of justice”, against freedom of the poor masses, against democracy and rule of law, against accountability.

    LET US ALL FIGHT FOR HR 2003 TO PASS!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopia!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopians!

  16. Anonymous
    | #16

    MS/MR. Alemash,

    I am impressed with your mental clarity.

    I am proud of you.

  17. WEGESHAW
    | #17

    What is the difference whether you are colonized by foreigners or enemies of the people from with in? Ethiopia is now in deep misery where atrocities are taking place with impunity, where her children are in exile due to fear of losing their lives, where most people are considered as second class citizens, where the wealth of the country looted in day light,Where 6% minority group ruling over the rest 94%.Only one thing is allowed and that is: means of force and denying democracy.
    So HR2003 is there to correct those evil deeds.
    In my opinion any body who opposes this bill from becoming law is automatically considered as “obstructer of justice”, against freedom of the poor masses, against democracy and rule of law, against accountability!

    LET US ALL FIGHT FOR HR 2003 TO PASS!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopia!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopians!

  18. Admin
    | #18

    Mr. wagasha
    Even though most of the things you mentioned is the usual tirade defamation and non sense hollow propoganda,however you raised one interesting question regarding minority…

    Mr. Berhanu Nega is wourage, wourage population constitute less than 3% of Ethiopias population, So my question for is, Is Mr. Nega Berhanu qualified to rule Ethiopia even though from monrity ?

  19. Admin
    | #19

    Mr. wagasha
    Even though most of the things you mentioned is the usual tirade defamation and non sense hollow propoganda,however you raised one interesting question regarding minority…

    Mr.Berhanu Nega is wourage, wourage population constitute less than 3% of Ethiopias population,So my question for is, Is Mr. Nega Berhanu qualified to rule Ethiopia even though from monrity ?

  20. WEGESHAW
    | #20

    Adamin,
    Is it not true that our country is in deep misery? Please read what UN wrote recently about one big region in our country, it reads as follows:

    “Death and poor health conditions of livestock, dwindling water supplies and ongoing human disease outbreaks are having a negative impact upon health, nutrition and wellbeing in the region,”Around 4,660 livestock have died since mid-February, OCHA added in a statement.
    “According to woreda (zonal) officials in Arero, limited availability of water for animal consumption is contributing to poor health of livestock and reported cases of diseases including:Anthrax, black leg, bloody diarrhoea and foot and mouth disease.”

    That was a fact not “useless propaganda”

    Is there not atrocity perpetrated with impunity in Ethiopia? It is enough to mention the Anuaks people massacre until now unaccounted for, leave alone all similar evil deeds through out the country.

    Aren’t Ethiopians suffering in exile as we speak now? It is enough to see the floating bodies of our compatriots at the coasts of Yemen.They were trying to escape from the brutal regime.

    Has Ethiopia not been robbed in day light?

    Haven’t you heard about the Ethiopian gold being stolen from the CBE,(Commercial Bank of Ethiopia)?and the head of the bank being killed

    Those are all documented facts brother “Admin”
    And so why are you blaming people just to cover the atrocities which are continued to occur? Don’t be happy brother with the blood money you might earn by defending the evil.

    Lastly, you mentioned about Dr. Berhanu; yes he was a respected elect by millions of Ethiopians who could lead the country and was able to take out the country from misery, together with all other elected leaders who were denied from taking their posts.Now democracy was denied by force and the people’s voice was stolen.

    Please stop blaming people with out facts, just to defend tyranny.

    Thank you

  21. nega
    | #21

    HELLO DEAR RESPECTED ETHIOPIAN,
    IT IS SO NICE TO SEE ETHIOPIAN BEING MUCH CONCERNED ABOUT THEIR OWN ISSUE AND MAKE IT A FORUM TO DISCUSSE ON.
    WELL I DO PERSONNALY AGREE THAT THE REPORT OF UN MAY BE TRUE, BUT MY QUESTION IS THEN HOW DO WE AVOID THIS PROBLEM?
    DO WE HAVE TO BELIVE ON FEW USA SENATORS TO JUST DEFAME AND CRITICES OUR COUNTERY AND PUSH THE PEOPEL TO HEAT EACH OTHER?
    OR IS BETTER TO SIT, DISCUSSE AND WORK HARD AS A NETION?
    ON OF MY FRIEND I HEARD HIM SAYING THAT PEOPLE ARE LIVING THEIR COUNTRY TO SAVE THEIR LIVE. IS IT TURE? FRINEDS WE SHOULD NOT BLINDFULL OURSELVES, ALL THOSE WHO WENT ABROAD WENT FOR THEIR OWN REASON. SO I REGRATE THAT BEFORE U GENERALIZE IT FORM UR OWN INTERST WHY DONT U UNDERTAKE A KIND OF SURVEY?

    THE MOST IMPORTANT THINK THAY WE SHOULD BELIVE IN IS THAT NO ONE DOCTOR, OR ONLY FEW INDIVIDUAL WHO CONSIDERS THEM SELVES TO BE ELIET COULD BRING ETHIOPIA FROM ANY CRISES, NETHER THOSE SENATORS WHO THINK THAT THEY ‘CARE’ FOR ETHIOPIA BY GIVING THEIR OWN BASELESS SUGGESTION. SO I SUGGEST THAT WHO EVER GIVE SUGGESTION SHOULD NOT GIVE BLINDLY AS HE HI ASLO DAFAMING A NATION PROUDE OF ITSELF AND ITS HITORY.
    WE SHOULD NO THAT ETHIOPAN HISTORY IS NOT JUST 100 YRS HISTORY AS THE SENATORS THE SO CAlled ‘ care take’ for ethiopa thinks.
    so plz senator would stick to USA issues and solve ur economic problem and help ur country economy revive? instead of wasting ur time giving baseless suggestion?
    thanks

  22. nega
    | #22

    by the way we should know that there is no democratic principle which says that majority should always lead minority.
    it is the majority party not ethinic.
    understand it.
    those who praise USA senators like thier GOD should ask the selves again.
    the real children of ethiopian are in ethiopia facing all the challenges and work for the people rather then sitting and dreaming for political power in USA.
    thanks

  23. WEGESHAW
    | #23

    Dear compatriots; Adamin, Nega, Denberu,Alemash

    Please tell us why are you against HR2003 from becoming a law in USA? I agree with you that America should not decide things for Ethiopia, but as you know the world politics is interconnected and the so called superpowers influence is affecting every country in the world, whether we like it or not.
    Despite that Americans in their governmental system have different similar bills concerning other countries. It was not new case created only for the Ethiopian situation. Why are we denying the super power country who assured to deliver $20,000,000 allocated and meant to build the necessary basements for democracy, rule of law, accountability?
    You may argue that money can’t buy democracy, sure, but at least can help build the institutions necessary to help those who genuinely try to bring about justice, democracy and accountability.

    Doesn’t that sound good for you?

    I think it sounds great for millions of Ethiopians out there.

    That is the reason I support it as individual.

    Hence:
    LET US ALL FIGHT FOR HR 2003 TO PASS!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopia!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopians!

  24. WEGESHAW
    | #24

    Dear compatriots; Adamin, Nega, Denberu,Alemash
    Please tell us why are you against HR2003 from becoming a law in USA? I agree with you that America should not decide things for Ethiopia, but as you know the world politics is interconnected and the so called superpowers influence is affecting every country in the world, whether we like it or not.
    Despite that Americans in their governmental system have different similar bills concerning other countries. It was not new case created only for the Ethiopian situation. Why are we denying the super power country who assured to deliver $20,000,000 allocated and meant to build the necessary basements for democracy, rule of law, accountability?
    You may argue that money can’t buy democracy, sure, but at least can help build the institutions necessary to help those who genuinely try to bring about justice, democracy and accountability.

    Doesn’t that sound good for you?

    I think it sounds great for millions of Ethiopians out there.

    That is the reason I support it as individual.

    Hence:
    LET US ALL FIGHT FOR HR 2003 TO PASS!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopia!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopians!

  25. bbwan
    | #25

    dear WEGASHEW,
    I REALY APPEACHIATE YOR CONCERN OVER ETHIOPIAN ISSUES.
    LET ME ASK U ONE QUESTION. WHAT WOULD THIS HR 2003 IT BENEFIT THE POOR ETHIOPAN?
    DO U THINK THIS WILL CHANGE THE SITUATION IN ETHIOPA?
    TELL ME ONE EXAMPLE IN WHICH ITS SYSTEM HAD BEEN CHANGED BY SUCH PROTOCOLS?
    PLEASE FOR ME THIS KIND OF BILLS RATHER DEVASTATE.
    DONT U THINK THAT IT COULD BE BETTER FOR ETHIOPIA IF THOSE ETHIOPAN FRIEND TO MEDIATE THE OPOSTIONS WITH THE RULING PARTY THEN IMPOSSING SUCH SHNCTION?
    WHAT DID PEOPLE OF ZEMBABEW BENEFITS FROM SUNCTIONING PRESIDENT MUGABE? AS FOR ME IT IS THE POOR WHO ARE STILL SUFFERING MORE THEN THE LEADERS.
    SO LETS SEE IT IN DETAIL WHO WILL BE THE REAL VICTIM? THE POOR AND HELPLESS PEOPLE OR THE LEADERS?
    DOES IT MATTER FOR THE POOR IF THE LEADERS ARE BANED FROM GOING TO USA?
    I DONT THINK SO. THERE FORE ME I SUGGEST TO THINK BEYOND THE BILL. LET GIVE SUGGESTION WHICH COULD PROBABLY BRING PEACE AND UNITY AMONG THE OPPOSITION PARTIES.

    THANK U FOR UR CONCERN OVER THE ETHIOPIAN ISSUE

  26. Medeksa
    | #26

    Facts about historical social injustice and educational discrmination in Ethiopia for the last 100+ years of Amharas domination of Ethiopia.
    The last to Amharas tribalist kings destroyed Ethioipa, and Ethiopians harmony more than any other enemy.
    The southern Amhara shameful kings (Menelike and Haileselassie) blindely discrminated againest non Amharic speaking Ethioipans (Oromos,Tigreans,Welayetas,Gambelas,afars,wourages,wolloyes and semen Amaras). The oly people who profitted out of Ethiopia the 100 years were Debub amaras.
    I.E, These shameful Amaras kings introduced educational discrmination, by denying educational opportunity and access to all non amhara Ethiopians. that is why they instituted all high schools,colleges,vocational and universities only in their own Amara regions only. This is why today even though amaras represent less than 23% of Ethiopias population, but they represent 79% of Ethiopias professional jobs in Ethiopia. this is why today we have more amara professors and doctors than oromos.
    This educational injust and discrmination also created economic class which gave Amaras economic advanatge, and created fake aristocracy class only from single tribe (Debub Amaras).
    The Amaras kings were masterplaning to keep Oromos and all other non amharic speaking Ethiopians in second class citizenary through discrmination, specially for oromos the Amaras kings were planing to keep oromos in perpetual slavery by denying them education.
    The last shameful kings also sold all major strategic Ethiopias ports and lands,included Dejibuti to france,Eritrea to Italian and Somalian lands and ports to Italy and brits.
    These shameful amara kings also invaded masslaughtered Oromos and stolen oromos land (Showa province included Addis Abeba),these stolen oromos land still under amara domination/colonization.
    This why today there is big mistrust and imbalance between Ethiopian tribes.

  27. Ali
    | #27

    I did not know that Dr. Nega was worage, not bad for worage. Historically the name “Worages” some what associated with as shoeshining and shopkeepers in Ethiopia history.

  28. Addis
    | #28

    Mr. nega,

    You are right true hero Ethiopians are in the country fighting to eradicate poverity,illitrace,mass starvation. But these dumb Ethiopians here collecting welfare complaning why Ethiopia is bad. Fact is Ethiopia been poor for centures because of people too negative and prefer to complain like retarded child than do something positive, if you are concern for Ethiopia and Ethiopians, then do you share stop blaming others. Ethiopia is not perfect and will never be perfect, but we can make better if we think positive act upon it. Remember, It is not the government that plant better tomorrow,but people. Thus, let us stop complaining do our share regardless the government situation. Let us learn from Asians and the Chines,the chines do not have no democracy nor legit political opposition regardless the chines economy is growing faster than any country in the world.That is because of the people not the government.

  29. | #29

    Hi again K.B
    I may not know a lot about the world.But I know this.An African-American or a black person can not be accused of being racist towards a member of his own race or color.
    On the other hand,you wrote’..F.Y.I, Senator russ feingold is an JEW…’.What is wrong with being a Jew? You know what,this is an anti-semetic garbage from one who lives in a his ignorant and bigoted world.You must be ashamed of giving that as a piece of information.
    By the way, that says a lot about your Ethiopian Politics!

  30. WEGESHAW
    | #30

    Dear bbwan,

    Thank you for our discussions,
    I’ll try to answer your questions:

    1) Ethiopia is ruled under atrocious and brutal regime. HR 2003 deals on the way to bring about freedom in peaceful way.Bear in mind, that many people have lost their hopes on the peaceful way of struggle.

    2) Judiciary system has completely collapsed in Ethiopia, There is a one man “Kalashnikow rule”,HR2003 urges to make the judiciary system free.

    3) Democracy was reversed by the means of force as we saw it in the 2005 election.HR2003 advocates for true democracy.

    4) HR2003 stands for the rule of law and accountability. Thousands of Ethiopian mothers are denied even to know where their beloved children are thrown to be eaten by wild animals, etc. the list goes on.

    That is the reason I support it as individual.

    Hence:
    LET US ALL FIGHT FOR HR 2003 TO PASS!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopia!
    HR 2003 is good for Ethiopians!

    Thank you

  31. Betew
    | #31

    Mr.Adim,

    Yes you are right,Berhanu Negga is not Amara, he is proud worage. And he is smarter than Amaras (Taye and Hailu).

  32. K.B
    | #32

    Mr.Anonymous,

    Have you heard of “HOUSE NIGGER” ? House Niggers are the one who work againest their own race by being accessories to the other.
    Regarding the senator being “JEW”, there is nothing about being Jew, the matter of fact the entire Northern region of Ethiopia(Gonder,Tigre,Gojam,Eritreans and half of wollo regions have Jew blood in them).

  33. | #33

    Dear K.B

    Cut this crap out! One can see the self-jestfying nonsense for what it is.

    Let me examine what you say more closely.

    You may,say,betray the interest of your racial group.You may,out of your weak group position,work for the dominating group that keeps your group in bondage.A’house nigger’is that betrayer of group interest.A’house nigger’,however,is not someone who can be called racist towards another’nigger’.In order to be racially discriminating against another person, you must necessarily be from a DIFFERENT race and hold a PRIVILEGED position than the person you subjugate because of his/her race.The honorable Senator Donald Payne,the topic of our discussion, is none of those things that you imply him to be.

    Following that crass remark of yours,here you are again trying to stupidly justify yourself by telling us what we already know about our people in Ethiopia.So what the heck if some people in norther Ethiopia have jewish blood in them???

    Dear K.B, liberate yourself from your ignorance and stinking prejudice before you preach about the’…democracy and democratic rights of…’

  34. yimechen
    | #34

    Yimechen
    I like those debates.
    I like your concern about your country.and this is one way of exercising democrancy.pass it to your next generation.
    but there is one thing that i hate from all the comments and which can even devastate all the good part of the debate, that is that oromo…….amara……tigre…..gurage…
    with out those very danger words, it is realy constructive debate.
    ene negn
    yimechen

  35. Miki
    | #35

    If US officials can be held answerable for every reckless foreign policy, caused by their egotistical attention on details, our world today would be a better place!

    Dear Senator Russ Feingold can you be responsible for the wrong doing of our leaders…in our area…by helping the failed state and finding the middle ground to work together with new Somalia. Stop the genocide In Sudan. Negotiate for accessibility with the people of Eritrea and get rid of the authoritarian regime that exacerbates conflicts throughout the region by way of helping radical groups operation. We Ethiopian can help Ethiopia and become free….If we have a little help for your government? Can your government, minimizing any wrong ideology and the many slip-ups with Ethiopian dictatorial regime?
    Let history change itself for now!

    Thanks

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