Open Letter to Tecola Hagos – By Ewnetu Yineger, Los Angeles

September 23rd, 2008 Print Print Email Email

I read your letter to Senator Russ Feingold, Representative Donald Payne and to all Members of Congress of the United States. (more…)

I read your letter to Senator Russ Feingold, Representative Donald Payne and to all Members of Congress of the United States.

Let me examine the pertinent points contained in the letter, discarding the irrelevant, in order to build-up your case, with respect to the proposed Bill S 3457 by Senators Feingold and Leahy, and the earlier Bill HR 2003 that passed in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Basically, your opposition to the Bill is based on the assumption that it will lead to the loss of sovereignty; hence Ethiopia will be a “protectorate” of the United States. Your assertion is farfetched.

The question is whose sovereignty? The people or the ruling elite? Which of the two? The people of Ethiopia do not have sovereignty throughout their history. Sovereignty is the prerogative of the ruling elite, in our case, Meles Zenawi, Sebhat Nega and Berket Simon, who are the sovereign power in the exercise of it. Virtually, sovereignty rests within the ruling circle domain.

Mr. Tecola, if the U.S. Senators genuinely stood on the side of the people, unlike the Executive branch of the U. S. government, what is the harm? The Bill will attempt to restrain and curb the tyranny and abuse of power by Meles and Company.

Have you forgotten the post-2005 election crackdown on the position and supporters by the regime? What lesson can be drawn from the consequences of that horrendous episode? In the uneven balance of power between the government and the opposition, as well as the uneven level of playing field and rule of the game, you said, “the problems Ethiopians have with the government of Meles Zenawi is the business of Ethiopians, and solving our problems and fighting our fights by ourselves,” than seeking external aid. Such a cursory remark is hallow and empty rhetoric. TPLF itself came to power with considerable external aid. It is sustained by external aid. And there are many examples in the world. Your TPLF supporters, including yourself paraded in the corridors of the U.S. Congress to influence the position of the U.S government against the Mengistu regime.

Let me be clear, that I have supported the 1974 popular revolution, but I was not a supporter, or sympathizer of the Mengistu regime, then, nor for EPLF/TPLF either. What is the difference between Tecola Hagos and AL Mariam and his associates? Infact, the latter is on the side of history.

Being self-righteous, you are of course; negative to examine the other side objectively. To be fair, one key aspect of a difference between the two regimes, — the constitution of Ethiopia under Mengistu was voted by the people in a referendum, while the constitution of Melse Zenawi was voted by hand picked members of the National Assembly, the people of Ethiopia. In the process, the people of Ethiopia were excluded. Now, Mr. Tecola, your concern in the guise of sovereignty, is the threatening sovereign power of the troika, Zenawi, Nega and Simon. Real sovereignty is the prerogative of the ruling elite of TPLF, not the people of Ethiopia.

Anther point, Why are you posturing as an Ethiopian super patriot? Or perhaps a true Tigrean patriot? Are you trying? To save Melese and Company, in order to preserve the Tigrean hegemony over the rest of the Ethiopian people? Your patriotism about greater Ethiopia, which it was historically is, a veil to conceal your narrow Tigrean nationalism. It amazing fashion, you sound jingoistic. Why all this fuss? Fundamentally, the passing of the Bill [if it pass], in the Senate will facilitate in establishing some of the eight points enunciated by the Coalition for Unity and Democracy [CUD], now Unity Justice and Democracy Party], and other leaders lead, to “an independent judiciary, the media, the Electoral Board and the role of the armed forces/ security, and other demands, will not undermine the interest of the Ethiopian people. On the contrary, it will lay down the groundwork for building democratic institutions, to insure liberty, democracy and the rule of lows. The people of Ethiopia seek freedom to choose their leaders. They want to think and assemble and to express their views freely. They must be free first to be imbued with sovereign rights that come with all the attributes of a sovereign nation. Unfortunately, they are not free now. It requires enormous sacrifice and struggle. You are indulging in fantasy and abstract theory that has no relevance to the people. The relevance of sovereignty is to the ruling circle, which are the beneficiary of it, mainly, Meles Zenawi, Sebhat Nega and Berket Simon.

The seventeen years of suppression and subjugation of the people is all there to see, coupled with poverty, disease and hunger. What should be clear to any impartial, reasonable and rational human being is, in the 21st century, the people of Ethiopia are not citizens. They are subjects of TPLF/EPRDF rule. It must also be clear, that there is a distinction between `state` and `nation`.

Mr. Tecola, why do you really care about the survival of Meles and Company? It seems that you want to circle the wagon with your Tigrean compatriot. That is your real concern. This phenomenon is a curse to be avoided, not only by the Tigreans, but all the different nationalities of Ethiopia. It is a manifestation of backwardness and reactionary outlook. You deliberately grouped the oppositions along with Ethiopia’s historic enemies, such us Egypt, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Syria etc… this is a misrepresentation and distortion, devoid of objective reality. What you are asking the opposition is to surrender to the Melse` rule. It is tantamount to that, and the message is clear.

The problem with you, as stated in your book, Democratization? Ethiopia [1991-1994] “My views are rather more inspirational, rendered from the heart than analytical.” I will add that your brain is subordinated to your heart; hence you are inconsistent, irrational, contradictory and arrogant. Sometimes, you have the tendency to jump into the river against the tide and vise versa, without principle and character of integrity. Do you remember what you wrote in your web site a few years ago, that Ethiopians are incapable of resolving their problems, and as result, they are killing each others? Thus, as an alternative, you have suggested a “bold vision”, [As you put it] that Ethiopia to be ruled by foreign nationals, specifically, American and British academics, including Bill Gate, one of the richest people in the world, for the transition period, until the Ethiopians matured with a democratic political culture. How does your “bold vision” Correspond with your concern for the loss of “sovereignty” and Ethiopia as a “protectorate” of the U.S.?

Remember also what you stated, in your book, “what is in existence at this moment in Ethiopia is the concentration of power in the hands of a tiny group of people, a government controlled and run at will by Meles Zenawi and his close associates with no meaningful accountability”, and further more you stated that “what remained in power since 1991 is an illegitimate power structure, a reestablishment of Feudalism and autocracy dressed in new symbols with the descendants of yesterdays Feudal warlords as the main actors in this sickening political tragedy”.

How about now? Have you detected a paradigm shift? Or is the pendulum swinging back for reconciliation with Melse, in anticipation of a reward to heal your wounded ego, pride and ambition? You have already indicated in your letter, that you “are urging and advice the Ethiopian government to seek new initiatives”, concerning the impending Bill as well as the Eritrea issue in the U.S. Senate. Along the way, you are also pushing a new idea that the “Ethiopian Ambassador in Washington D.C. has failed in his mission to protect the sovereignty and dignity of Ethiopia”. To be exact, you are seeking the removal of the Ambassador and the sovereignty and dignity of the elite in power.

Finally, you have forwarded another incredible suggestion that “AL Mariam and his associates, including Senator Feingold and Representative Payne to be prosecuted with criminal charges under the Ethiopian penal code for undermining the economic vital interest and sovereignty of Ethiopia”.

This is a strange and absurd suggestion, and it seems that you are mentally unstable. I suggest you need a clinical psychiatric evaluation.

Truly,
Ewnetu Yeneger
Los Angeles

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