Keystone cops, prosecutors and judges in a police state
By Prof. Al Mariam/December 18, 2006
Here I go again, talking about human rights! Everyone else is talking about war and rumors of war. I am still talking about human rights in Ethiopia. Again! Do I sound like a broken record? I don’t mind.
Ah! Yes. 12 years — very long years — later, we finally find out the guy living in Zimbawe is a genocidal maniac and gross violator of human rights! It takes 12 years to identify the perpetrators of atrocious crimes committed in 1977? Justice in Ethiopia must not only be blind, deaf and mute; it must also be paralyzed.
But, wait. I just remembered. There is a new show in town: “It Takes an Eternity to Get Justice in Ethiopia!”? Quick, get the smoke machine and mirrors!
On February 19, 2007, the judges in the “Kality defendants’”? case will make a ruling on the sufficiency of the prosecution’s evidence, and determine whether the defense should present its case. These defendants — patriotic opposition political leaders, human rights defenders, journalists, civic society advocates, and all among the best and brightest sons and daughters of Ethiopia — face persecution because they committed the crime of standing up and defending human rights and democracy in Ethiopia. They stand accused by notorious criminals whose hands drip with the blood of the thousands of innocent victims.
The principal aim of this analysis is to take an in depth analysis of the government’s case against these patriotic Ethiopians, and demonstrate that the whole case against them is a thinly veiled legal lynching by Zenawi and his regime. This analysis will show that these patriots are not only victims of a sordid political persecution, but also that their “trial”? represents a systematic and calculated effort to stamp out all political opposition and dissent in Ethiopia.
Many Ethiopian human rights advocates regret not having the honor of defending these great patriots in a real court of justice. But we shall stand for them and with them — and all other political prisoners — and their cause of freedom, human rights and democracy in Ethiopia in the court of world opinion.
Towards the end of this analysis, I advance a simple proposal to secure the release of the Kality political prisoners and all other political prisoners in Ethiopia. I remain convinced that while justice is long delayed in coming to Ethiopia, it will come soon; and when it does, it will flow like the mighty waters of the Blue Nile and uplift the righteous and wash the wicked out to sea!
To read the superb political essay by Prof. Al Mariam, download here as a pdf file.