"The thing that lies at the foundation of positive change, the way I see it, is service to a fellow human being." - Lech Walesa
Monday, 31 August 2015
Ethiopia: Is the T-TPLF Ship of Hate Sinking… S.O.S.?
September 01, 2015
by Alemayehu G. Mariam
Is the T-TPLF Ship of Hate (I mean state) sinking in an ocean of fear and loathing?
The T-TPLF is the Thugtatorship of the Tigrean People’s Liberation Front, the ruling criminal enterprise masquerading as a government in Ethiopia.
This past May, the T-TPLF claimed to have won 100 percent of the 547 seats in its kangaroo/monkey parliament in a country where the T-TPLF has officially registered some 90 political parties.
But last week, the marionette (puppet) prime minister of the T-TPLF, Hailemariam Desalegn, was not talking like a champion and strutting his stuff like he had won it all by 100 percent.
Hailemariam sounded like he was bleating for help.
Indeed, Hailemariam seemed to be frantically tapping out an S.O.S. (Save Our Ship/Save Our Souls) message.
…_ _ _ …
Hailemariam came out of nowhere swinging his battle axe against tribalism, communalism, sectarianism, ethnic chauvinism, ethnic division, ethnocentrism, arrogance and narrow-mindedness.
He was like the crazy man swinging a machete at his own shadow.
Hailemariam’s T-TPLF has been investing all of its political capital promoting tribalism, communalism, sectarianism and the rest of it for a quarter of a century to entrench itself in power; and now, they have Hailemariam leading the charge against those allegedly promoting tribalism, communalism, sectarianism?
Listening to Hailemariam pontificating about the evils of tribalism, communalism and sectarianism reminded me of lines written by the Bard of Avon in “The Merchant of Venice”:
The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose./ An evil soul producing holy witness
Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,/ A goodly apple rotten at the heart.
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!”
Hailemariam presented himself as holy witness for the cause of national unity, harmony, understanding and reconciliation:
There are the viewpoints of the rent collector (“rent seeker” [social parasite]). The first one is narrow-mindedness. The second is arrogance. Third is extremism wrapped in religion. We have to develop consensus on the idea that these are things that fragment and destroy our country. The sowing of the seeds of such destructive ideas originate with teachers. [These ideas] land on students and cause clashes and warfare, but the seed is sown from the top.
Hailemariam bearing holy witness for the virtues of Ethiopian national unity, identity and religious tolerance is like the devil citing Scripture for his purposes.
Holy _ _ _ _!
What in the world is all this make-believe righteous indignation by Hailemariam?
What is Hailemariam doing frothing at the mouth with faux righteous indignation?
Is he tapping out in Morse code an S.O.S. from the “T-TPLF Titanic” with a missing rudder heading inexorably to slam the iceberg of ethnic kililism (a 21st century version of South Africa’s apartheid-style Bantustanism)?
Is Hailemariam’s indignation an S.O.S. to save the ship “T-TPLF Dedebit” as it slowly goes down to the bottomless ocean of fear and loathing the T-TPLF had created over the past one quarter century?
Could Hailemariam be sending out an urgent distress signal for emergency assistance to save the sinking T-TPLF flagship, “The Meles Zenawi”? Too many captains fighting to captain “The Meles Zenawi” sending it straight to the bottom?
Could it be that Hailemariam is trying to cleverly use the rhetoric of national unity and Ethiopianity to get an upper hand against internal factions within the T-TPLF?
Could Hailemariam be trying to mobilize popular support for his faction of the T-TPLF by pretending to be nationalistic and patriotic?
Was Hailemariam told by his T-TPLF bosses to float a trial balloon about its new found religion of ethnic harmony and religious tolerance and see what the public reaction will be?
Was Hailemariam just talking from the T-TPLF book of talking points? (Everybody knows Hailemariam is the T-TPLF’s PR jockey. He would not dare say such things unless instructed by his T-TPLF paymasters.)
Hailemariam points an accusatory finger in his tirade against the “narrow-minded”?
Who are the narrow-minded hate and war mongers Hailemariam is talking about?
Hailemariam does not name the names of the narrow-minded hate and war mongers toiling to destroy Ethiopia.
But what is the hallmark of narrow-minded person?
Is it intolerance? Small-mindedness? Hatefulness? Bigotry? Ignorance? Provincialism? Pedestrianism? Parochialism?
Let’s face it: Is there anyone on planet earth that is more narrow-minded than the leaders and members of the T-TPLF?
Is there anyone who is more backward, benighted, untutored, reactionary and downright atavistic than T-TPLF leaders and members?
The opposite of narrow-minded is open-minded.
The open-minded person is receptive to new ideas and questions everything including him/herself.
The open-minded person is always willing to listen and openly debate opposing and contradictory views.
The open-minded person accepts the fact that s/he can be wrong and will self-correct whenever necessary.
The open-minded person will speak the truth regardless of what anyone thinks.
Is there a single open-minded leader or member of the T-TPLF?
Diogenes of Sinope (the Greek philosopher and one of the founders of Cynic philosophy [whose followers believed the purpose of life was to live in virtue]), used to walk around town in broad daylight with a lamp in hand. When asked why he was doing such a strange thing, he would answer, “I am just looking for an honest man.” Diogenes failed in his search finding only rascals and scoundrels.
One could travel the highways and byways, climb the highest peaks and the lowest valleys of Ethiopia with a motorized searchlight and never find an open-minded T-TPLF leader or member. Only narrow-minded benighted rascals and scoundrels.
The sad irony is that as Halemariam points an accusatory finger at the unnamed hordes of the narrow-minded, he is pointing three fingers at himself.
Hailemariam accuses the “arrogant” ones for “causing clashes and warfare”.
Who are the “arrogant” hate and warmongers toiling away to spread tribalism, sectarianism, communalism, etc., in Ethiopia?
Hailemariam does not name names.
But there is pride and there is arrogance.
I don’t think Hailemariam and his T-TPLF bosses know the difference.
A person experiences real pride when s/he feels good about him/herself, does something good, is self-confident and tries to live a virtuous life free of deceit, hypocrisy, duplicity and so on.
Arrogance is a perversion of authentic pride. It is a form of hubristic pride driven by egotism and manifests itself in aggression, suspicion and distrust. The arrogant person is often afflicted by feelings of inferiority, inadequacy and lack of self-worth.
Let’s face facts once more. Is there anyone on planet earth who is more arrogant than the leaders and members of the T-TPLF?
To compensate for their feelings of inferiority, inadequacy and lack of self-worth, the T-TPLF leaders and their lackeys have been on a crusade to gain academic respectability.
It is a well-established fact that many of the top leaders of the T-TPLF have purchased degrees from diploma mills.
It has been reported that T-TPLF appointed professors at the universities sporting fake degrees.
The late demigod of the T-TPLF Meles Zenawi arranged to have a graduate degree delivered to him at his palace from some “Open University”.
The T-TPLF leaders and elites have kept many a diploma mill in business.
The simple point is that the T-TPLF leaders and elites want to prove to the world they are better, smarter and more important than the people they oppress. But everyone knows they ain’t _ _ _ _.
The arrogance of these ignoramuses is aggravating to many; to others it is simply laughable.
The T-TPLF and their late leader remind me of that arrogant buffoon Idi Amin whose official title was “His Excellency, President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Doctor Idi Amin Dada, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Seas and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and Uganda in Particular”.
Meles Zenawi, “the Great Leader, the Great Visionary, the Great Hero of Dedebit, the Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Seas and Conqueror of the Derg and the Ethiopian Empire and all the ethnic groups, blah, blah, blah…”
Hailemariam points an accusatory finger at unnamed “teachers and professors”.
Who are these unnamed “teachers and professors” allegedly teaching divisionism, sectarianism and mongering hate and war?
Hailemariam’s accusations against Ethiopian “teachers and professors” are pretty specific and horrific. He says the most enlightened members of Ethiopian society are the source of the country’s political and social problems. He tarred and feathered them as hatemongers, particularly among young people.
Is it not a fact that the most ignorant and most benighted T-TPLF rulers of Ethiopia are the ones who have been spreading hate, tribalism, sectarianism, communalism, etc. for the past 24 years?
I am just wondering: Is the T-TPLF getting ready to do another wholesale, mass purges of the universities of “subversive teachers and professors”?
The T-TPLF has its predictable style.
Before it pounces on its victims, it first starts demonizing them.
Then it begins a campaign of vilification and defamation in the media.
Then it scapegoats them.
Then it sends out its goons to threaten and intimidate its victims.
Then it pounces on them like a snake on a field mouse by suddenly arresting them and filing trumped up terrorism charges.
Then it will let them languish in prison for years by obtaining endless continuances in its kangaroo/monkey courts.
The writing on the wall seems pretty clear.
Ethiopian teachers and professors who are not towing the T-TPLF line better get ready because the T-TPLF is coming to your campus to purge you and clean house!
Get ready for another round of arrests on terrorism charges!
In 1993, The T-TPLF did something very similar. It branded professors who did not support it as “arrogant, narrow-minded and divisive” and fired them wholesale. That list included:
Prof. Mekonen Bishaw
Prof. Solomon Terfa
Prof. Sibehat M. Hazen
Prof. Taye W. Semayat
Prof. Fisseha Zewde
Prof Mesay Kebede
Prof. Ayenew Ijigu
Prof. Alemayehu Haile
Prof. Mekonen Dilgassa
Prof. Tamre Huwanda
Prof. Beyene Petros
Prof. Alemayehu Tefera
Prof. Admassu Wasse
Prof. Asrat Woldeyes
Prof. Dawit Zewde
Prof. Asfaw Desta
Prof. Taye Mekuria
Prof. Ayele Terfe
Prof. Befekadu Degefe
Prof. Hailu Araya
Prof. Alemayehu Haile
Prof. Taye Asefa
Prof. Worku Tefera
Prof. Negatu Tesfaye
Lecturer Solomon Wondwosen
Lecturer Hulu-anten Abate
Lecturer Shiferaw Agonafir
Lecturer Mekuria Assefa
Lecturer Feleke Desta
Lecturer Aklilu Tadesse
Lecturer Berhanu Bankashe
Lecturer Lealem Berhanu
Lecturer Aynalem Asheber
Lecturer Prof. Tsehaye Berhane
Lecturer Mindaryalew Zewde
Lecturer Ayele Tarekegn
Lecturer Zeryihun Teshome
Lecturer Fekade Shewakena
Graduate assistant Meskerem Abebe
Who are the professors, teachers and other educators the T-TPLF has slated for firing in 2015?
We are waiting with bated breath!
Hailemariam talked about “religious extremists” mongering hate and war hiding behind their faith.
Who are the “religious extremists” Hailemariam is talking about?
A couple of weeks ago, a T-TPLF kangaroo (monkey) court railroaded to prison 18 young Ethiopian Muslims (which Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, USCRIF, African Human Rights Commission and so many others have deemed peaceful protest leaders and activists) to serve between 7 and 22 years in prison for “terrorism”, i.e. for promoting sectarianism and communalism.
The young Ethiopian Muslims were “convicted” on trumped up charges of “attempted terrorism, conspiracy to establish an Islamic state, and public incitement.”
The T-TPLF monkey kourt sentenced Abubakar Ahmed, Ahmedin Jebel, Yasin Nuru and Kemal Shmsu to 22 years each.
Monkey kourt defendants Munir Hussien, Sabir Yirgu , Bedru Hussien, , Mohammed Abate, Abubeker Alemu were given 18 years each.
Prison terms of 15 years were handed down to Ahmed Mustefa, Khalid Ibrahim, Sheik Mekete Muhe, Sheik Seid Ali and Mubarak Adem.
The T-TPLF monkey court handed out 7 years to Yusuf Getachew, Nuru Turki, Murad Shikur and Sheik Bahiru Omar and were jailed for less terms of seven years each.
Are there other “religious extremists” still out there hiding under rocks to create destruction?
When Hailemariam denounced “religious extremists”, is he making a subtle announcement that there will soon be another round of “Muslim terrorist” witch hunts?
T-TPLF’s Tar Baby: “Ethnic federalism (kililism)”
The problem for the T-TPLF after 25 years is that its divide and rule strategy based on ethnic hate and religious intolerance or “ethnic federalism” has grown up to bite it in its behind.
What is the T-TPLF’s “ethnic federalism” (kililism)”?
“Ethnic federalism” is a warped T-TPLF ideology that asserts at its core
there is no such thing as Ethiopia or Ethiopian history.
“Ethiopia” is an imaginary concept that exists only in the minds of members of particular ethnic group.
“Ethiopia” is an international juridical fact that came into existence barely a century ago.
“Ethiopia” is a mere collection of disjointed “nations and nationalities”.
“Ethiopia” is an aggregation of mutually exclusive populations with mutually exclusive and antagonistic interests who are held together and forced to coexist together ONLY by force of arms.
“Ethiopians” are “governed best” as a bunch of insular ethnic, linguistic and religious camps with antagonistic interests.
Ethiopians who think they are “Ethiopians” are ethnonationalists whose hidden agenda is to dominate other groups.
the existence of the very idea of “Ethiopia” means the failure and eventual destruction of the T-TPLF.
“Ethiopia” must be destroyed in fact, in thought, in history and indeed and buried at all costs for the T-TPLF Empire to thrive and mushroom.
So what’s up with the T-TPLF now?
Well, it seems the T-TPLF is beginning to publicly acknowledge that the chicken has finally come home to roost! (Maybe?!)
Regardless, the seeds of “ethnic federalism” the T-TPLF sowed nearly a quarter of a century are now ready for it to harvest.
The T-TPLF’s harvest of hate
The T-TPLF set up ethnic federalism to maintain its chokehold on power, to control. Now, ethnic federalism has grown up and strong and is slowly choking the T-TPLF.
The T-TPLF sees the writing on the wall, listens to the “teachers and professors” and the young people. It does not like what it sees and hears.
As Pitrim Sorokin said, “Hate begets hate, violence engenders violence, hypocrisy is answered by hypocrisy, war generates war, and love creates love.”
Scripture teaches, “A man reaps what he sows.”
Is it time for the T-TPLF leaders to face the music?
The T-TPLF scapegoats the “teachers and professors” as the propagators of the gospel of ethnic division, tribalism, communalism, sectarianism and the rest of it.
Let the truth be told!
If indeed the teachers and professors are the vectors of hate infecting the youth, who appointed them to become teachers and professors?
Who fashioned and introduced the so-called “heritage history” in the university curriculum?
Heritage history is based on the notion that the “interpretation and presentation of Ethiopian history to date is shrouded by myths, biases, and imbalances in coverage and stereotypes, which are reconstructed from only written documents. The reconstruction and rewriting of our national history calls for an urgent use of alternative sources…
Who created curricula for grade school and high school students to learn only about their own ethnic group and no one else?
Who made and implemented a segregation policy in schools so that children grow up thinking that their classmates are their future enemies?
Who made and implemented a Tower of Babel policy to make sure Ethiopians of different ethnic stripes are incapable of communicating with each other with a lingua franca (common language)?
Who created the following “kilils” (“ethnolinguistic-based-regional states”): Oromiya, Amhara, Tigray, Afar, Somali, Benishangul-Gumuz, Southern Nations, Gambella and Harar, (Addis Ababa/DireDawa as “federally” administered city-states)?
Who wrote “Article 39” of the T-TPLF constitution: “Every nation, nationality or people in Ethiopia shall have the unrestricted right to self-determination up to secession.”? Is Article 39 the ultimate time bomb the T-TPLF has buried in the Ethiopian body politics and timed to go off when the T-TPLF is swept into the dustbin of history?
Who totally controls, dominates and monopolizes all political representation, decision-making and public space in the kilils?
Who has been principally responsible for creating tensions and animosities and armed conflict between ethnic groups and communal and sectarian strife and warfare in Ethiopia?
Who tried time and again to stoke the fires of ethnic and sectarian warfare in Ethiopia?
What has been the record of “ethnic federalism” (or monkey see, monkey do federalism) in practice?
In “ethnic federalism”, who makes all of the important decisions? The T-TPLF’s state within the state? (The T-TPLF O.G.s or more accurately O.T.s , original gangsters/original thugs?)
How does “ethnic federalism” actually work?
Do the T-TPLF “executive committees” decide and pass on their decisions (“democratic centralism”) for implementation to the kilil stooge governments?
Do “executives and members of the regional councils” simply rubberstamp the “federal” decisions?
Who totally controls the purses of the “regional governments”? Who controls the revenue and budgets of the “regional and district governments”?
Why did the T-TPLF pass a “law” and give itself the power to intervene militarily in the regions and suspend regional administrations whenever it feels like doing so?
Do kilil “governments” have the ability or option to deviate from the political, economic or social agenda fixed for them by the T-TPLF bosses?
Does the T-TPLF rig situations to force the various kilils to fight each other for crumbs from the T-TPLF tables?
Has kililism brought about an end to complaints of historical grievances by oppressed ethnic groups and minorities or fueled a resurgence of insular ethnic consciousness and armed struggles towards secession?
The T-TPLF invented “ethnic federalism” to create and maintain permanent divisions among the people of Ethiopia by creating ethnic identities and mutual suspicions, fear and loathing.
The T-TPLF invented “ethnic federalism” as the ultimate weapon to bury Ethiopia and on Ethiopia’s gravesite build a monument to itself.
The chief architect of the T-TPLF found himself buried in the grave he dug for Ethiopia.
The fact of the matter is that ethnic federalism is a system of divide and rule and a system created to make all other ethnic groups servile to T-TPLF rule.
After a quarter of a century, ethnic federalism is making Ethiopia less and less governable for the T-TPLF. The T-TPLF has made ethnic relations worse than ever. The T-TPLF established ethnic federalism to mobilize support for itself and against other ethnic groups.
The ultimate question is whether Ethiopians of all ethnic and religious stripes feel more free, more empowered and more confident of their future under the T-TPLF than at any other time?
Jig is up T-TPLF!
It has been said that, “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”
The T-TPLF has been fooling all of the people for part of the past 25 years and some of the people for the whole of the 25 years. But no more!
So, the T-TPLF is now fooling itself.
The T-TPLF wants to saddle the “teachers and professors” for the hate the T-TPLF has nurtured and spread for the past quarter century to keep itself in power in Ethiopia.
The T-TPLF does not know what to do.
There is no question in my mind that the T-TPLF is sending out an urgent message, an SOS, to anyone listening to save it from the ethnic fires it has set.
It is possible that the T-TPLF sent out Hailemariam to float a trial balloon for its newly found nationalism and patriotosm. I think that trial balloon floated like a lead balloon.
It seems that the T-TPLF bosses are beginning to read the writing on the wall that they will surely buried in the ethnic grave they dug for Ethiopia and are now frantically trying to save themselves by talking about national unity, a common identity, patriotism, etc.?
Am I over-reading and over-analyzing Hailemariam’s tirades? Do T-TPLF leaders have one more trick up their sleeves? If there is positive public reaction to Hailemariam’s expression of faux righteous indignation, perhaps they can run with it?
The writing on the wall
A demographic tsunami is overwhelming the T-TPLF.
The T-TPLF is now seeing clearly the boomerang effect of its ethnic federalism/kilil policy.
There are now millions of young people throughout the country who have caught on to the T-TPLF tricks.
They do not want to be ruled by a gang of ruthless thugs. They want their own government. They want freedom, democracy and respect for their human rights.
They are biding their time. They are writing names down every day. They know their friends and their enemies.
For over 25 years, the T-TPLF demonized the “Amhara” as the oppressive evil forces that has spread misery and suffering in Ethiopia. That manipulation worked for a time but it no longer works.
The T-TPLF is the “new Amhara.” They are hated passionately by all. (I was there was a way to sugarcoat this fact but there isn’t.)
This is an undeniable fact! I am not saying this because I am against what the T-TPLF does.
Our elders used to say “Our children are today’s seeds and tomorrows flowers. (Yezare ferewoch yenege abebawoch)
The seeds the T-TPLF sowed nearly 25 years ago have grown to become a harvest of hate.
I do not have a personal axe to grind against the T-TPLF or its leaders or members. I could not care less about any them as individuals.
I am against the evil things the T-TPLF leaders have done and are continuing to do in Ethiopia to destroy the fabric of that country by spreading ethnic hate and sectarian discord.
But if they are sincere and genuine about initiating dialogue and debate about a new Ethiopia free of ethnic and sectarian hate, I am all for it.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. taught that “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
As a human rights advocate with absolutely no interest in political power, I am willing to talk to anyone about fighting hate with love.
Dr. King spoke of that love as “agape”, the highest form of love which manifests itself as brotherly and sisterly love, love of community, “the love of God for man and of man for God.”
I hate hate because
Hate caused the deaths of 6 million Jews and untold number of Christians and others during the reign of the Nazis in Germany.
Hate killed millions of people after India got its independence in 1947.
Hate killed millions of people in Bangladesh ((East Pakistan) in 1971.
Hate killed over a million people in Biafra.
Hate killed tens of thousands of people in Burundi in 1972.
Hate killed millions of people in Cambodia between1975-79.
Hate caused the deaths of a million innocent people in Rwanda in 1994.
Hate killed millions of people in the South Sudan between 1985 and 2015.
Hate killed millions in Ethiopia.
I don’t want to see hate kill any more of my Ethiopian brothers or sisters, or for than matter any other human being.
Ethiopians must learn from history: Kill hate in their hearts and minds before it kills them!
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” said Nelson Mandela.
It has been said that “Ignorance is a most powerful weapon in the hands of tyrants.”
The best way to fight fire is not with fire, but with water.
The best way to fight hate is not with hate but with love and enlightenment.
The best way to fight ignorance is with knowledge and education.
I do not wish the fate of Rwanda, Cambodia, South Sudan or the countries to be the fate of Ethiopia.
If Hailemariam’s declaration is even a faint reflection of the T-TPLF realization and desire that it is better to stop the hate and begin a process of healing and reconciliation, then I am fully for it.
I know there are many who believe that the T-TPLF is an organization and its leaders are beyond redemption, beyond hope and despair.
There are those who say a spotted hyena cannot change its spots even if it wanted to.
I think it is possible to rise up from the pits of ignorance and hate and accomplish great things.
But we must all learn and unlearn.
The things we can learn and unlearn if we only try
So many are the things we can learn and unlearn if we only try.
The T-TPLF leaders could learn so much from Dr. Seuss (yes, the author of “Cat in the Hat”): “Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!
The thinks the T-TPLF is thinking too save itself and keep itself in power forever.
The thinks the T-TPLF can think to forsake its ways of hate and think its way back to love.
But the key to our problems as Ethiopians is to “think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks we can think up if only you try!
Are the chickens coming home to roost, T-TPLF?
Sapere aude! (Dare to think/know/be enlightened!)
Professor Alemayehu G. Mariam teaches political science at California State University, San Bernardino.