In Defense of Classical Ethiopianity and against Ethnocentricity – By Teodros Kiros (PhD)

June 17th, 2009 Print Print Email Email

Guided by the Transcendent, proud of my Ethiopianity, motivated by the thinking heart, and seasoned by the teaching of time, lately, I have been quietly consuming the massive literature produced by our able scholars, our committed columnists, our rightly embittered politicians, and the reading public- and I have come to the inescapable conclusion that, however, incorrect I may be, we are agonizing about the paths that our country must take, as the next election looms large, and Ethiopians will once again either perish by the votes that they make, or flourish precisely because they have deliberated carefully, uncontaminated by prejudice, unaffected by fear, and un weakened by the fact that they will have to choose between bread and freedom. Ethiopians must choose freedom against bread, and dignity over servitude.

I appeal to every Ethiopian that we use our public reason, combined with our consciences and think hard about what we must do to map out the future of our country. We must fight the ethnocentric party in power armed by the principles of Classical Ethiopianity. The road is long and time is short, but we must plant new seeds of Classical Ethiopianity to replace the poisonous weeds ethnocericiy enveloped by the shallowness of pseudo self-determination. The Ethiopian people need not be distracted by the false rights of determining their identities by wearing the garments of ethnicity when they prefer to wear the fabric of Ethiopianity, with the right to speak different languages, if they must, without locating themselves in narrow shells of ethnicity.

Everybody by now knows that the party in power is using ethnocentricity to ground itself in the Tigrean people’s heart, but the silent Tigrean majority is not taken in by this worn-out tactic. The ordinary Tigrean has seen through the dirt, and if some have not, the morally upright Ethiopian Tigreans will have to spread the new tent of humanity against Ethnocentricity. This will take time, and time is not on the side of those who rightly seek regime change.

Sculpting mature citizens who think for the nation organized by the common good, the nation’s common good, framed by genuine Ethiopianity needs time, place, and moral measure. The ethnocentricity of the last ten years has damaged classical Ehtiopianity, Ethiopia’s gift to the idea of Africanity. The wholeness of what it meant to be an Ethiopian has been displaced by the fragmentations of negative ethnicity. The opposition must redefine this damaged landscape, by a new humanity, mediated by love, forgiveness, and new thinking.

For the last ten years Ehtiopians have confused speaking a language with belonging to an ethnic tribe. Ethiopians have been freshly taught that the different languages of Ethiopia are expressions of ethnic identities, as if one cannot simply speak a given Ethiopian language, say Amharic. Tigrinya, Oromiffa, without belonging to an Amhara, Tigrean, or Oromo ethnic groups.

Put formally, one could speak an X language, without belonging to a Y ethnic group. That all that a person has to be is an Ethiopian who is born to region A, speaks language B, without belonging to ethnic group C. I call this Classical Ethiopianity.

Ethiopianity is therefore expressed through languages, which are not anchored on ethnicities. What we have in Ethiopia are language groups and not ethnic essences.

Classical Ethiopia was organized by a linguistic frame. It is this linguistic frame that contemporary Ethiopianity is seeking to destroy, and we Ethiopians must resist this destruction.

I leave it to our brilliant opposition politicians to transform this insight from abstraction to concreteness and move fast with time. We have no time now, but we do have the vision, and most importantly, we have the support of a historical people, the Ethiopian people themselves, known for their decency, their loving kindness, the vastness of their forgiving hearts, and their bravura and patience.

Let us use these resources and fight for a new Ethiopia. What will save us now is our humanity, our Ethiopianity, and the deep bonds of our sameness, and not the divisive ethnicities that the regime in power has boxed us in. We must jump out of these ethnic boxes towards the sunlight of classical Ethiopianity.

  1. fish
    | #1

    i just want to know where did he (Kiros) got his so called PhD. I have never seen some one who can be a PhD. holder has such a low moral value. He has to get it from those Europian universities who are awarding Expatriate degree( meaning the degree holder can’t practice in the issuing country). Most of this government clicks buy their degrees in this way. At some point even Meles was trying to present him self as if he completed a thesis based graduate program Through a smear campaign of his so called thesis. hahahah

  2. ermias
    | #2

    it is nice article…however, it was harmony to secure X ethinic group to speak only Y’s dominant ethinik group. I hate what have been hapening in ethiopia since ethiopia is established as a country. I will be happy if we learn form all our past faults and built the classical Ethiopianity under forgiveness and mutual respects.

  3. aha!
    | #3

    Bravo! here comes a narrative and an appeal to to an ablivious diaspora of the dangers of ethnic and scessionist politics/ethnicism and secessionism. Choose freedom over slavery,as the author put it, individual freedom over ethnic right and reject the masters of those concepts and break out from economic and political strangle hold by TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprizes and human right violations.

  4. Teshome
    | #4

    Dear DR Kiros,
    I am familiar with your superb articles in the past, and I will look forward to read more of the same in the future. Tigrian-Ethiopians, with clear conscious, need to speak up against Ethnocentric TPLF leaders,who are leading the whole nation to the brink of disaster. We Ethiopians are still true believers that the true son and daughter of Tigray will make the right decision to untangle themselves from few that are determined to erect a wall of blood between Ethiopians. All Ethiopians have to make a clear distinction between the Meles and Brekets of TPLF and other who are following these gangs out of fear or connivance. Tigrian Ethiopians have to expose the conspiracy that is concocted by few against many in their name. Thanks for taking the lead.
    Thank you for being you.
    God bless you

    The time has come to test the true strength of Ethiopianity.
    Long live Ethiopia

  5. Demisse
    | #5

    Do not trust Kiros. He is unpredictible. Thanks

  6. ayele
    | #6

    If we look back in history, the name Ethiopia is given to black people. Now we have Africa instead of Ethiopia. I don’t know how we got this name “Ethiopia”. Does it include Djibouti when you say classical Ethiopianity? Ethiopia has been shrinking for years and I don’t understand who will retain the name Ethiopia at last.

    We don’t leave in heavenly earth. It is full of corruption, hate,and greed you name it its there. So it might be cruel to say but I think the Ethiopia we know today is to be the old name of Africa.

    Remember the “mesafint zemen”? That was much harmonious time for Ethiopia before king Tedrose. We are what we were. No technology or modern democracy is going to change history. We will be good neighbours with same history and culture. We have to accept this because it is inevitable.

  7. fish
    | #7

    Dear readrs Kiros is telling to wait and not to act aginst the tigree regium becuse it looks like the ethiopian ppls are moving in the right direction which means the only way to eradicate the tigree regime to stand agains them united and the time is now. It is upto the Tigrees to alighn themselves with the Ethiopian ppls and denounce the current regime. The Ethiopian ppls will win with or with out the tgree ppls. f they choose to stand by and see the out come they will for shure will be pay dearly. Ato Kiros you better talk to your own ppls to stand against meles and tell the this the time. may be for you Ethiopia looks on the brink of disintegration but like the Italians and the Shabias you might misunderstood the ethiopian mind set.

  8. Lemma
    | #8

    Do not board in the same boat with Kiros. When he gets the opportunity he will throw you in the ocean. He better talk to his banda sisters and brothers. The rest of the Ethipian people had enough. We do not need preaching from them.

    If you look at history all our misery orginated from Tigray.

  9. Fayyis
    | #9

    It is not bad to talk about “Ethiopianity” and oppose “Ethnocentricity”. Can you accept also “Ethiopianity” with Afaan Oromo as national language and Amharinya as only local language? Or you just hide behind the word “Ethiopianity”, where of course you mean AMHARANITY. As far as Oromos are concerned, there will be no “Ethiopianity” at the expence of Oromummaa. The only thing to be accepted is the Union of free and sovereign nations in the region called Ethiopia/HoAfrica, the
    END result we do persue being UNION of all mono-national and multi-national states of Africa. The question yet to be answered is: what should be the common ground/purpose for all these free and sovereign nations?

    As far as I am concerned the common ground/purpose for our African UNITY must be an attempt of forging Independent Oromia, Independent Tigrai, Independent Amhara…etc in an Integrated Africa. That meanse we need to forge Independent Oromia in an Integrated Africa with Finfinne being the capital of both Oromia and Africa. Oromia being at the center, all languages (nations) in Africa can forge their mononational or multinational states. Africa will be the Language based Federation (Union) of these states with national freedom.

    We nations in Africa suffer from conflicts based on colonial borders and because of disregarding national rights as some thing “ethnic”. This desigantion “ethnic” instead of nation/nationality/people is used by both European colonizers and their puppet African colonizers aka Abyssinians. In reality Africa was borderless, all being called as Ethiopia (meanse black faced in Greek) or Sudan (also meanse black faced in Arab), both refer to land of blacks. It is true all of Africa is land of blacks.

    To tackle the problems of nations in Africa and to deal with the present global challenge, Africans are trying to come together and forge an AUG (African Union Government). We are looking at USA or EU as an example. But both can not be good examples. USA is the melting pot for all nations around the world migrating to America and learning english. EU is the Union of well developed and independent mono-national-states, all with their own respective languages good developed and used.

    Africa can be neither a melting pot nor a union of well developed only mono-national-states. The nations in Africa are diverse in development and size. What is good for Africa is to build a union (federation) with autonomous national areas for all nations aka “ethnies”.

    Based on their size and development, some nations can forge mono-national-state like Oromia. The others, which are too small to have their own state can forge multi-national-state like SNNP of Ethiopia, with all nations having their own Province/Zone, District/Wereda
    or Community/Qebele as autonomous natonal areas based on their size. Relatively bigger nations like Sidama can have their own autonomous Province, nations smaller than this like Alaba can have autonomous District and the smallest nations like Dorze can have their own
    Community. Based on their geographical position, certain small nations like Agew and Harari can join the bigger neighbour nations like Amhara or Oromia, but have their own autonomy, be it as province, district or community. Such 5 tier organization (African Federation — Mono-
    /Multinational States — Mono-/Multinational Provinces — Mono-/Multionational Districts and Mono-/Multinational Communities) is the best way of adiministrative Organization for Africa.

    In Short Ethiopian model can be used as that of African, just changing its fake status under Weyane to a very genuine one, for which OLF and the likes are struggling!! Then we will have not only an Integrated region named Ethiopia/HoAfrica, but also an Integrated continent Africa build on the center called Oromia with Finfinne as a capital. The only question we people need to ask our selves is that, at which level are we thinking, talking and walking when we try to deal with politics?? Language Based Federalism (LBF), rather than Geography Based Federalism (GBF), is the panacea for regional integration of Ethiopia/HoAfrica and
    continental integration of Africa.

  10. haile
    | #10

    i know you exactly from tigry 99.9%sure you are trying to defend woyane’s bad job don’t trust this person we are here few people living free.what do you want to say for millions of poeple sufering by woyane who is benefited by this regime any way? don’t try to cover the truth by this teory.

  11. Bekele
    | #11

    It is painful to read such articles coming from a man who claims to have a Ph.D. Education is meant to be a tool towards critical thinking, not a means to perpetuate legends and established norms even when those norms are old, ancient and do not go with the current. The demise of CUD, as we know it, came from such ethnocentric people even when they are presenting themselves as democratic. For this man, Ethiopia menas Amahara dominance, language means Amharic language and nothing else counts in Ethiopia. It is a desperate move at this juncture, because they have seen the sea of change coming. Instead of adopting to the perceived changes they want to stand in the way and give a cause for Woyane stooges. I have a Ph.D. I can understand the complex poltics of Ethiopia. We had been convinced long time ago (more than 40 years) that Ethiopia needed a change and we brought a change, not in the way we wanted, a chnage nevertheless. We belived that we had tossed out the concepts that you are harboring and are making lasting changes until it is stolen by the TPLF again. I want you to know that Ethiopia will rise up again equiped with solid democratic changes that we have not seen yet.

  12. Ethiopian
    | #12

    This is a wonderful article! This article is written in favor of Ethiopianity and against most of you who commented above! For instance:

    “Fish” commented “Dear readrs Kiros is telling to wait and not to act aginst the tigree regium becuse it looks like the ethiopian ppls are moving in the right direction which means the only way to eradicate the tigree regime to stand agains them united and the time is now. It is upto the Tigrees to alighn themselves with the Ethiopian ppls and denounce the current regime. The Ethiopian ppls will win with or with out the tgree ppls. f they choose to stand by and see the out come they will for shure will be pay dearly. Ato Kiros you better talk to your own ppls to stand against meles and tell the this the time. may be for you Ethiopia looks on the brink of disintegration but like the Italians and the Shabias you might misunderstood the ethiopian mind set.”

    You dumb ass TPLF banda! We will destroy you anti-Ethiopian mercinaries! You cannot hold Togray hostage and disintegrate Ethiopia! Our Northern people will eat you alive by themselves! Tigray is a place of Ethiopian genesis where its people have died in defense of Ethiopianity!

    You people should make sure these TPLF bandits don’t influence our politics! We need to make them irrelevant by setting the agenda!

  13. አንድ አገር አንድ ህዝብ
    | #13

    ዶ/ር ኪሮስ እጅግ ሊመሰገን ይገባል:: ኢትዮጵያውነትን መስበክ ከመቼ ወዲህ ነው የወያኔ የሆነው:: ይህንን ጽሁፍ የሚቃወሙት የወያኔ ደጋፊዎችና ጽንፈኞች ብቻ ናቸው:: በርታ ዶ/ር ኪሮስ…የሚቀጥለው አስባሳቢ ፍቅር ሰባኪ ወደ አንድነት መንገድ የሚመራንን ጽሑፍ እንደምታቀርብልን::

    የኢትዮጵያዊያን አንድነት ያሸንፋል::

  14. h.a
    | #14

    Let us use these resources and fight for a new Ethiopia. What will save us now is our humanity, our Ethiopianity, and the deep bonds of our sameness, and not the divisive ethnicities that the regime in power has boxed us in. We must jump out of these ethnic boxes towards the sunlight of classical Ethiopianity.

    JUMP OUT OF ETHNIC BOX- this is a good expression, and timley, if we want to save the nation.
    We have to think out side of sense-perseption, outside of ourskin so to
    speak. True human intelegence, what makes us different from say animals
    is ability to think irespective of sense perception.

    I will take a correction.

  15. Ogina
    | #15

    h.a,
    stop to live in Ato Obang’s utopia. His both premises are wrong:
    - no body in the world puts his “ethnicity” aka nation at second place to humanity. This may sound morally good, but it is politically wrong. Germans are first German and second Human. The same is true for British, French, Americans, Japans, Chinese…etc. None of them talk: first our humanity and then second our nation aka “ethnie”.

    - “if we all are not free, no one is free” is also the reverse of the reality. The reality is: “hulum berun biyatseda, ketemawu yetsedaa yihonal. That meanse if every one make his nation (“ethnie”) free, then all will be free. So Oromos need to free them selves, so Ogadenis, Gambellas, Amharas, Sidamas…etc. Of course each can cooperate to tackle common enemy, but each is responsible to free its own nation.

  16. h.a
    | #16

    I just could not make any sense of this
    “Put formally, one could speak an X language, without belonging to a Y ethnic group. That all that a person has to be is an Ethiopian who is born to region A, speaks language B, without belonging to ethnic group C. I call this Classical Ethiopianity.”

    any one who can help, thank you

  17. Ye Kanadaw Kebede
    | #17

    “Everybody by now knows that the party in power is using ethnocentricity to ground itself in the Tigrean people’s heart, but the silent Tigrean majority is not taken in by this worn-out tactic.” I have two questions for Dr.Kiros: If this statement is true…why is the majority silent for so long? You are telling us (ethiopians) what to do and how to think, Did you ever talk to Aboy Sibhat, Meles and others? if so what are they telling you?

    “For the last ten years Ehtiopians have confused speaking a language with belonging to an ethnic tribe.” Is this a typing error or you have problem counting?

  18. Boss
    | #18

    Horn of Africa + Sudan + China + Iran + Russia will pay the dearest price for their worship of the beast. Wait and See. And the new Ethiopia will emerge as one people and great. Mark my words.

  19. Molla
    | #19

    I am not one of those who would psychoanalyze authors intent than what is presented. In this case the author is walking the fine line of resorting to Abyssinian history while talking to Ethiopians. There are some who, despite all historical facts, would like to equate Ethiopia to Abyssinia. Ethiopia is sick today not because it wants to go back to those ancient years, but becaue it wants to move forward with a bright future to all Ethiopians. Leaders are holding the Ethiopian people from moving forward and Ethiopians are asking all to unite behund the philisophy of participatory democracy. Some would like to see Amharic as a divine language, but others are seeing the issue of language as a cause for far more sinister motive. I believe it is appropriate for Oromo language to be considered as an officialanguage so that we thwart the tendency of the poliical organizations to use language as a rallying cry for or against. Walking on a fine line for so long is not going to take us any where. Let us be proactive and deny the TPLF not to use language as a dividing principle.

  20. fish
    | #20

    Woyane and tigree ppl has no difference. Please, stop hitting around the bush they know it and we also know it. They are opportunistic peoples blinded by fear and inferiority”ዓውቆ የተኛ ቢቀሰቅሱት ዐይሰማም”. They have to proof to Ethiopian ppls that they are different from TPLF. The proof of burden lies on them not the other way round they have committed the same crimes by associating and benefit from the crime.

  21. Anonymous
    | #21

    I would like to thank all the readers who engaged my article, including those who misunderstood me.
    I simply want to repeat again that I wrote this piece as an Ethiopian who did not choose to be born as a Tigrigna speaking Ethiopian, and proud to be the son of the historic Ethiopia who gave us Aksum, Lalibela, Adwa, the fertile lands and languages of the South, the beautiful people of Gambella, the Great adminstrators of Showa, the civilization of Gonda, and much more.

    For me, to be an Ethiopian is a synstheses of the mosaic of languages, traditions and rituals of a hisorical people.

  22. teodros kiros
    | #22

    I had already sent a comment, without my name.

  23. teodros kiros
    | #23

    I will repeat what I said. I thank all those who engaged with my article, including those who misunderstood me, and those who genuinely disagreed. I wrote the piece as an Ethiopian who did not choose to be born to a particular language group. I stress how proud I am to have been born to the historic Ethiopia who gave us the obelisks at Aksum, the heroes of Adwa, the adminstrators and writers of Shoa, the churches of Lalibela and Gondar, the poetry of the Southern people, the beautiful artists of Gambela, and the gifted traders of Gurage Land, and much more. As an Ethiopian I wear these beautiful fabric of classical Ethiopia.

  24. Legie
    | #24

    I have been through very dangerous and/or a joyous time being a son in this regime. What I have noticed; I could say > 75% of tigrain are benefited from this regime by this or other ways looking the other fellow citizen worse and even sometime a case for many deaths. I will like say My fellow citizen Dr.Kiros,and some of his friend to take little step to reach out what the rest the nations then only then appreciate Ethiopianity from that spot in the new era. God bless Ethiopia

  25. Molla
    | #25

    Teodros,

    You are singing the same song again. You are advocating “classical Ethiopianity”. As far as I understand classical Ethiopianity claerly means Abyssinia. I wil havo no problem if you resort back to your Abyssinia and dwell on that nostalgia with likes. But I and the southern people have noting to do with it as per Meles’s own affirmation. You may argue that you are against Meles’s philosophy. We have known for quite a long time that people in the north have a very distorted view of the south which had led them to create an an atmosphere of occupation and exploitation. Your perceived solution for the current crisis is based on those perceptions.

  26. aha!
    | #26

    Bekele! TPLF and EPLF are the originators of the concepts, and you are from the group indicrinated by that concept of divide and rule and create a stife among ethnic groups. TPF could not steal it from itself, while you you enjoy the ethnic right to the absence individual right handed over to you. That is a change brought about by TPLF, nevertheless a change for distintegration and divide and rule colonial policy. How could be a lasting change when it had left in turmoil for the last 18 years and devastating war from the previous 17/18 years by TPLF and EPL. You do not have to be a PhD to figure that out against the harmonious co existence of Ethiopian ethnic groups for centuries to the present confinement of ethnic groups to their own boundries except for TPLF. Where the individual freedom of movement and settlement anywhere in Ethiopia, where is the freedom of assembly, the press, the media and other forms of communication systems, with respect to a change you are boasting about? You have the right to defend your point of view, but not to demean that somebody elses academic standing.

  27. Selam Le Ethiopia
    | #27

    Dr. Kiros,

    I share your views and what our country and people need at this crucial time in our history is unity so that we can focus on our major problems: poverty, backwardness, etc.

    I am not an Oromo, but I grew up among the kind and wonderful oromo people. I speak affan Oromo much better than some ethnocentric idiots who talk nonsense (see comment #9). You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that in a united and democratic Ethiopia where everyone’s vote counts, the major beneficiaries will be our Oromo brothers and sisters. It is easy to hide in Canada, Ohio, or Minnesota and engage in stupid ethnocentric diatribe, and what it does is prolong the life of the thugish regime of TPLF.

    Dr. Kiros’s message to all Ethiopians is:

    Preach unity of human kind, get out of your outdated ethnocentric box, liberate yourself from your old world of being suspicious of other people, and join hands to bring down the 800 pound gorilla suffocating the Ethiopian people.

    Peace and freedom to all.

  28. Yeqoraw Kassa
    | #28

    Dear Dr. Kiros,

    I generally do not rad your articles because you have supporting EPRDF in the past. This article is very good and have to use it’s ideas as it is enshrined in our mind through thousands of years of ethiopian statehood. We have to stick Classical Ethiopianity at any cost. We have to defend united Ethiopia as we it is delivered to us from the Axumite period. Ethinocentred policies would finally lead to the dismemberement of Ethiopia and to the neocolonization of Africa. If we make Ethiopia as a united language using a predominantly one national language, as it has been for centuroies, we could see a powerful and economically advanced nation within a short of period time. The Tigray-Ethiopians should wake up and take the responsibility to defend Ethiopia. They should reject ethnocntered policy of Meles Zenawi and his eritrean henchmen. Tigray-Ethiopian should pay the necessary sacrifice to defend a united Ethiopia with her Red Sea ports. The secession of Eritrea has nothing to do with democracy. Tigray-Ethiopians should lead and ethiopians will follow.

  29. Fayyis
    | #29

    No wonder Abeshas are unity freaks, whereas Oromos are pro liberty!

    Three years back the enthusiasm and the idea that AFD can be the right way to bring the polarized Abeshas and Oromos nearer to each other, back to their common sense and help them to think and act reasonablly has engulfed a lot of people. I also personally tried to promote the success of the alliance. But unfortunately I encountered many extremist
    Abeshas, who persistently preached anti-Oromo notions and who were against the self-determination of this great nation.

    The issue of unity, self-determination and independence is not on which we can convince Abeshas. Here based on the benefit they expect almost all Abeshas are for “UNITY” and the majority of Oromos are for SELF-DETERMINATION which can lead to Oromian Independence with in or with out Ethiopian union based on free will of Oromos disregarding any imposition
    from Abeshas.

    What ever we preach, be it unity, self-determination or independence, primarily it is for the sake of economical benefit!! Unity, self-determination and independence per se are not the highest moral goods. They are the meanses to the END, to what ever is good in general and to
    the economical gain in particular for those who preach them respectively. To comprehend this, it would be good to look at the following interesting and simple analogy:

    Let’s assume a personified Tigray does have only 10 Birr, Amara 100 and Oromia 1000. Now these three persons try to agree on the way how to live together. There are three options:
    1) They can live under the condition that one robing the others if he has pistol (power).

    2) All live together united in which they use commonly and share equally what they do have in
    common (1110 birr: each taking 370).

    3) They live separated and each using his own possesion (Tigray uses his 10 Birr, Amara his 100 and
    Oromia his 1000).

    Any way, who do you think tends to robe the others, who do you think advertises unity and who do you think wants separate life? No question the person Tigray if he has pistol in his hand robes the other two, who do have more than what he does have. The person Amhara preaches unity, because he knows he gets more (which is 370 instead of his only 100) if
    unity is successfull. The person Oromia tries to resist both to hinder the lose he suffers (which is totally 630 Birr: 360 to Tigrai and 270 to Amara). So he rejects unity and struggles against roberry. He knows how much he looses!

    So we now can see why Tegarus came with gun and loot what ever they can from Amhara, Oromia and other national areas. We also understand why Amaras untiredly cry for unity, as if unity per se is an absolute moral virtue. It is not the unity what is important for them, but the “270 (370 – 100) birr” they gain if they live in unity with Oromia and other rich areas. That explains their schizophrenic charachter in which they on one side persistently “request” that Tegarus better declare their independence and go to their “dry land”, whereas on other
    side they persistently cry against the possible “secession” of Oromia. Tegarus’ motto towards Oromia is “becebexa wede asharo texega” and that of Amaras’ is “cibix qolo yizeh wede asharo texega!!” They came to us with their meager resource and consume massively our abandont resource (asharo). That is why, it is understandable if Oromos reject the Abesha
    type of unity in which the grand children of Minilik and Yohanes rule the whole corner of Oromia and consume the whole “asharo” of Oromo people. Only fool Oromos accept such unity and tolerate such robbery.

    The alliance, AFD, seemed to be the attempt of Amaras and Oromos to get rid of the looters, so that the sharing of Amaras and the saving of Oromos may rise from “370 to 550 Birr”. That was the win-win arrangement made between CUD and OLF. The question which remained to be answered was: what will happen after they get rid of the looters? Will OLF
    arrange to live further with only this almost half of its peoples’ possesion at the hand of Oromos or will it also get rid of the sharing (consuming) Amaras, so that Oromos can own their whole “1000 Birr”?!!

    There were three possibilities to be achieved:
    1) Forging Horn of African Republic in which the kilils will be dismantled as extremist Abeshas wish to see. That meanse both the looters and the freaks continue to devour on the ressource of Oromia.

    2) Formation of Horn of African Federation in which the national states will have their own genuine autonomy and the looters and the freaks get advantage of Oromia’s resource only indirectly through federal government.

    3) Arrangement in a form of Horn of African Confederation which enables all states to use their own resources and seek help from their neighbours only in case they are in crisis.

    The last two could have been the possible out comes of the effort of AFD. Both can fullfill the goal of both self-determination and unity. OLF by advocating the very important element of democracy, i.e. self-determination, showed its commitiment to democracy. Accordingly, unity
    can be the result of self-determination. Unity with out democratic decision of the public is dictatorial unification like that of unifying Jugoslavia by the dictator Marshal Tito. Independence with out genuine and free self-determination of the public is also dictatorial liberation like that of liberating Eritrea by dictator Isayas. So self-determination is the concept against both dictatorial liberation and dictatorial unification. Ethiopian “unification” from Menilik’s era to Meles was dictatorial. Abesha extremists still preach the unconditional
    unity (want to dictate unity) and they reject the self-determination of Oromo people and others. But it is only the decision of the people which matters. So both pro-independence and pro-unity parties should just bring their arguement to the public when the time comes and then live according to the verdict. It was just commendable to see CUD and OLF leadership agree on the basic need of freedom and democracy which can lead to the stable and new type of unity (unity of autonomous nations in which individual and collective rights will be fully respected).

    The other option which actually doesn’t seem to be in a sense of the alliance, AFD, was the establishment of independent states, like state of Oromia republic, Amhara, Ogadenia…etc. Then Oromia is the only master of its own “1000 Birr”.

    The three enemies of such alliance are:
    1) Weyane, who wants power by any meanse!! = dictatorial autocratic front

    2) Extremist Amhara-Nefxenya, who wants unity by any meanse!! = dictatorial unification force

    3) Some Oromo organizatiuons under ULFO, which want Oromian independence with out a possibility for a Union by any meanse !! These also seem to be dictatorial liberation fronts, but they are the best medihanit against the naturally dictatorial Abeshas.

    Alliances like AFD seem to be theoretically the forums for moderates i.e for democratic unification forces and democratic liberation fronts, which struggle for the forging of freedom and democracy including self-determination to achieve independence of nations either with or
    with out a union according to the verdict of the public. But still Abeshas persisted to preach their unconditional unity and yet say nothing in support of self-determination of Oromos. OLF seems just trying the alliance against the dictatorial nature of Abeshas. It is very difficult for Abeshas to be democratic. They do have their own version of democracy. Tegarus’ democracy excludes power transfer and Amaras’ democracy excludes self-determination of nations. Power transfer meanse for Tegarus lose of “pistol”, which they need for looting, that meanse it is a lose of “360 Birr”. Self-determination meanse for Amaras lose of “unity”, which they need to keep their empire, that meanse it is a lose of “270 Birr”. Both excluded concepts (power transfer and self-determination) are the core of the true democracy. Unfortunatelly it is impossible to convince both Amaras and Tegarus on these respective virtues. They can only be compelled to accept them. OLF is the power which tries to compell Tegarus to accept the democratic power transfer and force Amaras to accept the democratic self-determination of peoples. Alliances like AFD can be effective to compell Tegarus to give up power (their profit) but yet the alliance of only pro-liberation oppressed
    peoples is essential to compell the Amaras to give up their colonies (profit). Any ways the end goal of Oromo liberation movement is to make Oromos the master of our “1000 Birr”!

  30. Molla
    | #30

    Yekoraw Kassa,

    You have the right to live in your dream world as long as you keep that dream to yourself. The problem is when you want to impose your dream on the rest of the Ethiopian people. Then we have the right to reject your dream and fight it with all our might. You cannot hide behind Ethiopian unity to advance your language , your culture and your system of domination. This is not the 1950s when your forefathers promulgated the Amharic language as an official language with total disregard to the sensitivity of others. I abhore TPLF’s rule over the Ethiopian people. But by the same token we have to come to terms with the inevitable outcome of what many have died for-equality, justice and peace. To understand the unwilling co-existence of people forced by the imperial governments you can dig historical facts with an open mind and go through.

    Eightenn brutal years under the rule of the TPLF should be enough to teach you the reach of our differences to unite behind common concepts. The issue now is can we learn from our failures and sit around a table to formulate what can unite us and what visions we have for the future. Opposition forces need new visions that have the capacity of bringing a larger population to participate. Falling back to the past is a no go. Otherwise we are going our separate ways.

  31. teodros kiros
    | #31

    After I read the latest condition of the brilliant Birtukan, and the decision of the Prime-Minister to stay in power, I have come to the conclusion that we must fight this regime now, before every dissident is subjected to torture, and Ehtiopia officially becomes A tyranny, ready, capable and willing to silence dissent by massive imprisonement of every Ethiopian, who fights etnocentricity by the mantle of Classical Ethiopianity.

    The time to organize and march in millions is now or never.

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