The failure of Marxism/Leninism and Ethnic Federalism in Ethiopia

The current crisis in our country is painful, disturbing, and heartbreaking. Over 500 people killed, many hurt, imprisoned and many more are fearful for their lives. Once again, we are confronted with the nagging question what is wrong with our country? What causes our division? Who is responsible for the chaos, confusion, and turmoil in Ethiopia? Why is Ethiopian politics so twisted, distorted and perverted by our leaders? Will the left acknowledge any responsibility for its blind allegiance and worship of Marxism/Leninism? Those in government should be accounted for their deeds and actions. Their record must be examined, the policy prescription they have pursued needs to be investigated and analyzed, the false narrative and lies the left has perpetuated must be scrutinized.

For more than forty years’ Marxism/Leninism has dominated Ethiopian politics. The current government outwardly gives the appearance of being polished and scholarly, but they have not abandoned their core Marxist values. Liberals in the west have always been infatuated with leftist leaders in the developing world. The west has been deluded and deceived by EPRDF for the last 25 years. Meles Zenawi up until his death was looked as an enlightened and gifted leader, yet this man was a hard-core Marxist. He deceived the west with his shrewd and devious manner. The outmoded and discredited socialist ideology under the pretext of revolutionary democracy has failed Ethiopia tremendously. The visionless leadership of the Ethiopian left has brought misery, division, destitution, and misfortune to the Ethiopian people and has left the country in abyss.

History will judge harshly the left for bringing chaos and havoc to the Ethiopian people. History will not be kind to Marxist ideologues who blindly led the Ethiopian nation into endless discord and tension. History will not be lenient to those who became slaves to an abstract political doctrine. Future generation will undoubtedly condemn the left for disintegrating the country and sharpening the division and mistrust among the Ethiopian people. Wherever Marxism/Leninism played a dominant political role, the result has been poverty, loss of freedom, fear, persecution, ethnic polarization, and the loss of justice and equality. The legacy of Marxism and Leninism is corruption, dishonesty, ineptitude, and failure. Communism is responsible for the death of millions throughout the world. There is no single country in the world today that can claim success from Marxist orthodoxy. Like many countries that went through the experiment of socialism, Ethiopia has paid a huge price. Whether it is EPRDF or Mengistu Hailemariam, the mantra we hear from the left is that they have liberated the Ethiopian people from feudalism, they have abolished the monarchy and liberated the Ethiopian people from oppression and ignorance. They claim they are the champion of the poor and the oppressed, but are they? If truth be told those espousing Marxism do not care about the poor. They pretend to care, but, their concern is bogus and fake. In today’s Ethiopia, the millionaires, and multi-millionaires are Marxists and those who conveniently call themselves revolutionary democrats.

It has been over forty since Emperor Haile Selassie was unceremoniously removed from power in Ethiopia. Post Haile Selassie Ethiopia has been a total debacle. For more than forty years’ socialist ideology has dominated Ethiopian politics. From the student movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s to Mengistu Hailemariam and up to the present government, Marxism has monopolized Ethiopia’s politics. Despite what some like to believe that Mengistu Hailemariam was just another military dictator, the facts are quite the contrary. Although Mengistu came from the ranks of the military his actions where influenced by socialist ideology. Mengistu did not have a right wing political agenda. He was not interested in bringing liberal democracy to the country. He nationalized all private companies, abolished land ownership, telecommunication, banking, home ownership, hospitality industries and all private businesses and private homes became state owned. Collective farming and state-owned corporations became the norm. Ethiopia’s economy was and is still under the total control of the state. To this day land ownership is outlawed in Ethiopia.

In many ways Mengistu accomplished what the left has always wanted. Socialism was what the left wanted and he carried that objective vigorously. Encouraged by the left and his own diabolical mind, he sowed the seed of hatred and division from the outset. In November 1974 Mengistu cowardly had 60 former government officials executed without any trial and justice. Men who served their country in good faith, honorable and decent men lost their lives in cold-blooded massacre. The monarchy was abolished, those considered supporters of the monarchy, enemies of the state were killed, imprisoned and many lives were destroyed in the name of socialist revolution. Intoxicated with blood and eager to maintain political power he went after MEISON the same leftist group that cultivated the rise of Mengistu. Soon, EPRP became the target. During the period of Red Terror anyone suspected of being a member of EPRP were killed, tens of thousands of Ethiopian youth supporters of EPRP were tortured, imprisoned, and murdered. This evil man turned against his own fellow military officers and murdered and destroyed many of them. Mengistu is responsible for over a million death in Ethiopia. Just as the government of Israel hunt’s Nazi war criminals to the end of the earth, Mengistu should have been hunted like a war criminal and brought before the Ethiopian people to face justice, yet this coward and despicable person is accorded the privilege to live in comfort in exile. Although Mengistu implemented his own barbarism, the hatred of Ethiopia, the talk of Ethiopia being a colonial power, the belief that Ethiopia was founded by oppressing nationalities, the exodus to flee the country out of fear and persecution, the refuge crisis, the displacement of Ethiopians, exile, and humiliation all rose out of blind devotion of Marxism/Leninism.

As if the repression of the Mengistu regime was not enough, as if socialism has not been repudiated throughout the world, when EPRDF attained power in 1991, it had its own leftist political agenda. The arrogance of the left is unbelievable. For Meles Zenawi and his ilk the reason socialism failed was because the right people with the right political understanding and interpretation of Marxism weren’t in charge. Meles and his group believed they were the right people for Ethiopia.  Mengistu made the transition for EPRDF rule easier. He had demoralized and debased the whole country. Morale was at the lowest and the army was in disarray and had totally collapsed. When EPRDF took control of the government they continued with the socialist policy of the previous regime. Soon they implemented their own laundry list of socialist programs. From class struggle, we moved to Ethiopia being a colonial power, to Ethiopia being an oppressive country that has brutalized and subjugated her people. Identifying oneself as an Ethiopian became suspect, Amharas became the hated group, neftegna and chauvinist became easy labels, national unity and Ethiopian nationalism was frowned upon and discouraged. Lenin and Stalin’s view of oppressed nation and nationalities took center stage, the writing of Walleligne Mekonnen on the question of nationalities received credence. In his famous essay on the question of nationalities Walleligne writes that Ethiopia does not meet the definition of nation, but in Ethiopia there is Oromo nation, Tigre nation, Amhara nation, Gurage nation, Sidama nation, Wolayita nation, Adare nation and Somali nation. Oppressed nations and nationalities took the center stage in Ethiopia’s politics. The Marxist student movement of the 1970’s was reborn.

Once again democracy took low priority. EPRDF plunged Ethiopia into another predicament and confusion. Divide and rule emerged as the standard operating procedure of the government. The campaign to demonize Ethiopia became customary. Those who called themselves Ethiopians ended up being called Mengistu supporters, neftegnas, feudal, right-wing fanatics and backward. The new leadership under TPLF labeled themselves as revolutionary, reformist, progressive, dynamic, intelligent, and forward thinking. In many ways those in the left who pride themselves in being smart and clever are the ones who are shallow, pretentious, egotistical, and fake intellectuals. The left’s instinct and impulse is always towards totalitarianism and dictatorship. Gunned to our head Ethiopians under the present government are forced to pledge allegiance to ethnicity rather than being an Ethiopian. Revolutionary democracy has created a climate of corruption, shady dealings, and shameless disloyalty among the people. Trust and friendship, virtue and integrity has become unfashionable and obsolete. Being identified as Habesha, Oromo, Amhara, Tigre etc. has become more acceptable than being Ethiopian. Ethiopiawinet has become a disgraceful word.

Some question what is Ethiopiawinet? Ethiopia for who? The implication here being that Ethiopia is an Amhara country, therefore, Ethiopiawinet means nothing. For the left, the Amharas are convenient enemies. It feeds their narrative and political strategy. One is the oppressor; the others are the oppressed. One is the victimizer, others are victims. This fiction has been peddled as truth by the left for years and it has been accepted as factual by some. The truth is Ethiopia is not an exclusive Amhara country, never was, and never will be. The notion that our forefathers from all ethnic groups died and fought bravely against European colonialism to build an Amhara nation is revolting. Some have taken boyhood personal slight and grievances as a sign of group oppression. Derogatory words and name calling hurts, but bigotry and ignorance exists everywhere. Some believe that the prominence of the Amharic language is proof of Amhara domination. Linguistic rights and languages are important legitimate questions. Who in his right mind today would diminish the proud history of the Oromo people, the Amhara people, the people of Tigray, Sidamos, Gurages, Somalis or the people of Afar and multitudes of other ethnic groups of Ethiopia? Who in his right mind would debase the culture, tradition, religion, language, and music of all Ethiopia’s people? However, one also cannot deny that having a common language has advantages in a diverse country and the Amharic language good or bad has played a positive role in easing communication among Ethiopia’s people.

During the scramble for Africa European powers such as England, Italy, Germany, Spain, Portugal, France, and Belgium destroyed existing African self-rule and colonized the African continent. The only two countries that remained free and independent from European colonialism was Ethiopia and Liberia. Yet, the left draws false analogy between European colonialism and Ethiopia. Our ancestors understood the importance of one country. Unlike Europeans who came from another continent to exploit Africans and seize Africa’s resources and impose their superiority, Ethiopia did not venture outside her territory to impose her will on other people and exploit the resources of other nations. Just because some intellectuals from the left believe that Ethiopia has colonized others, it does not make it a fact. Just because some left-wing professor in the west expresses in print that Ethiopia had colonial ambition this does not make the claim a reality. To compare European colonialism of Africans and Asians to Ethiopia’s natural desire to form a centralized government, one nation, one country is absurd and ridiculous. For the left, our fathers, forefathers, and ancestors be it Oromos, Amharas, Tigres or other ethnic groups are referred as feudal, unsophisticated, naïve, and unintelligent. Traditional leaders are caricatured as buffoons and clowns and the country itself is ridiculed and mocked brutally. The monarchy has been condemned for Ethiopia’s poverty, blamed for corruption, social injustice and for being backward. Holding past grudges is the trademark of the left. Meles Zenawi vehemently opposed the statue of Emperor Haile Selassie to be built at the African Union headquarter in Addis Ababa while defending the decision to have a statue built for Kwame Nkrumah on the basis that Nkrumah was a Pan African leader. Haile Selassie is looked as the oppressor by the left and Stalin who has murdered millions is venerated as the champion of oppressed nationalities by the Ethiopian left. Who are our heroes in Ethiopia today? Does the young generation have anybody to look up to?  For today’s ethnocentric leaders, multitude of liberation movements of all sorts, their mentors are Marx, Lenin, and Stalin. Yes, they may not quote Lenin and Stalin like they used to, but, their heart and mind has not changed.

See Also:  Ethiopia police find mass grave of 200 people

Action speaks louder than words. While government elites and their cronies are getting richer in today’s Ethiopia, the poor are getting more destitute and impoverished by the day. Life for the peasant, the worker, the city dweller, the working poor, the unemployed, life for the average Ethiopian is bleak and gloomy. We are all mortals, full of many weaknesses and human deficiencies, but the left thinks they are flawless. They alone know the truth, they have the solution to Ethiopia’s problem, they have superior knowledge and intellect, they exclusively know what is good for the Ethiopian people, presumably the rest of us are uninformed, uneducated, and basically ignorant. Our role is to be docile. We should be thankful of their insightful leadership! It is this kind of perception and arrogance that drove the current government to subdivide Ethiopia along ethnic lines. The condescending attitude that we are better, we know more, we are superior, we have all the answers makes them feel they are entitled to rule forever. If you have disdain for others, if you feel you are perfect, why do you need a loyal opposition?

Ethnic federalism is looked upon as a moral achievement by this government. The dogma we here constantly are that nation/nationalities in Ethiopia have achieved equality and fairness thanks to the brilliant leadership of TPLF. For the last twenty-five years, this government has been instigating, provoking, and fanning the tension of ethnic division in Ethiopia. Divide and rule is the accepted policy of this government. Ethnic political parties are encouraged and all-inclusive national political parties are looked with suspicion and ridiculed. Yet, today, the current government acts shocked and surprised by ethnic polarization and schism in the country. They think we are a bunch of fools! How a political party that hates and vilifies everything Ethiopian governs the country is a huge mystery? How a party that encourages ethnic groups to dislike Ethiopia remain in power is beyond comprehension? From the very outset TPLF and OLF shoved their rigid left-wing agenda by subdividing the country along ethnic lines without analyzing the long-range consequences. Who gave TPLF and OLF the authority to dismantle Ethiopia’s internal boundaries? Was there a call for a referendum to approve or disapprove such a drastic measure? The historic provinces of Ethiopia, Eritrea aside, Gonder, Gojam, Welo, Welega, Ilubabor, Kaffa, Shewa, Gemo Gafa, Sidamo, Arsi, Bale and Harar except for Tigray were wiped out and turned into nine Bantustan ethnic domain. Afar, Amhara, Gambela, Harari, Benishangul-Gumus, Oromia, Somali, Southern Nation, Nationalities and people’s region and the expanded Tigray region are the creation of TPLF and OLF. Our forefathers had more common sense than the so-called intellectual elites of present day Ethiopia. The balkanization of Ethiopia along ethnic lines and the tearing down of Ethiopia’s internal boundaries to satisfy the fantasy of some is a major historical blunder. Artificially created ethnic boundaries equivalent of South Africa’s apartheid system is looked as progress by the left. Tribal politics, division, separation and segregation by ethnicity are regarded as normal. Responsible, competent, and moral leaders and governments throughout the world reject and condemn tribalism and ethnic politics. In Ethiopia, the ruling party advocates ethnic political parties and is the major proponent of Ethnic Federalism and tribal politics.

If federalism is indeed the solution to Ethiopia’s problem, why ethnic federalism? Are we Ethiopians so naïve and inept to believe in a fiasco called Killil? Why divide the country along ethnic lines? Why take land from one area and arbitrarily give it to another without considering the aftermath? What was wrong with the historic provinces of Ethiopia? Why did these provinces not become federal states? The people of Gonder, Welega, Gojam, Harar, Arsi, Sidamo, Kaffa, Shewa, Tigray, Ilubabor, Gemo Gefa, Arsi, Bale could have been federal states. Each state/province can elect their own governors, mayors, city counselors, provincial legislatures, national legislators, school administrators and local government leaders. Police, fire, and health can be administered and run locally. States can select their own regional language. Each province or region can promote their own agricultural sector and develop their economy as they wish without the interference of the national government. Yet, to redraw the map of Ethiopia and assign groups artificial areas known as Killil is an immense political failure. To claim that each ethnicity should live in so-called designated area and homeland analogues to the hated apartheid system of South Africa is insanity. The idea that some cities in Ethiopia are designated as multi ethnic cities is laughable. Every Ethiopian should be free to live anywhere in the country. People should have a right to settle in any province, city, or locality. The rights of all Ethiopians should be fully protected by the state government as well the federal government. All Ethiopians should have the right to move and work anywhere in the country. People should have a right to sell and own property at any place regardless of their ethnicity but above all Ethiopians have a right to raise their family peacefully in any province/state regardless of their ethnic origin. Imagine twenty-five years ago, if the provinces were given the chance to govern themselves, if decentralization of power was genuine, if authentic federalism was established, if the authority of the national government and the provinces were clearly defined, where would we be today? Yet in the last twenty-five years we have been told to swallow a sham, fake, and unworkable apartheid like political arrangement called Ethnic Federalism.

Anyone who has taken a college freshman class in American government knows about the three equal branches of government, the executive, the legislative and judiciary body. An elementary government course teaches about separation of powers and checks and balances. It is because of separation of powers that the three branches of government function independently. It is because of checks and balances that the legislative body can check the over reach of the executive branch. It is because of separation powers that the judiciary and the courts act autonomously. Federalism is a constitutional arrangement where power is shared between the state and the federal government. Under federalism there are two levels of government, the state government, and the federal government. In a mature democracy, the constitution clearly defines the relationship between the states and the federal government. Do we have federalism in Ethiopia today? Are the so-called Killils in Ethiopia federal states? Is there an independent legislative branch and free judiciary body in Ethiopia that challenges the ruling party? How can there be checks and balances, how can there be separation of powers when one party dominates everything including the claim that it has won 100 percent seat in parliament? If the executive branch and certain selected cliques monopolize and control the government and do not allow the voice of the opposition to be heard in parliament and public forum, is this not dictatorship?

Despite the constant complaint we hear from some groups, Ethiopia in a lot of ways is no different than most countries in the world. Many countries embrace diverse population within their borders. Countries don’t take controversial step of dividing people along ethnic lines. If each ethnic group identified itself as a nation, the idea of statehood, nation-state becomes confusing and complicated. For the left, mistreated and neglected minorities and groups are referred as nation. In the United States and Canada native Indians have embraced the term nation to emphasize their identity. Some in the left suggest that African Americans and the people of Quebec in Canada are nations. On the other extreme, white nationalist’s neo-Nazi groups advocate white nationalism, white supremacy, and white nation. The dictionary definition of nation is an ethnic community bound by common language, culture, and ancestry. However, the definition of nation within the context of an ethnic community tied together by common language, culture ancestry does not mean statehood. Nation does not mean political sovereignty or independence. In spite of how some within the Ethiopian community act as if they are separate and apart from Ethiopia, at least to this date, there is no independent country called Oromia, Tigray, Amhara, Harari, Somali, Afar, Benishangual, Gambela or Southern nations. The assumption that the term nation implies sovereignty or national independence or statehood is an illusion. The culture, language and music of all ethnic groups must be respected in Ethiopia, but the claim that each group must preserve its culture by artificially dividing people and creating sham borders is very destructive and toxic. Imagine in the United States if the current states were dissolved and in their place a homeland for the Irish, Germans, Jews, African Americans, Poles, Italians, Japanese, Mexicans etc. were established and balkanization became the norm, the idea of statehood and one country would become meaningless and irrelevant.

Although the United States had its own gloomy history starting with the treatment of indigenous people, slavery, legal segregation and discrimination, the internment of Japanese Americans into labor camps, most Americans have respect for their country. Yet in Ethiopia thanks to generation of leftist leaders, Ethiopia and Ethiopiawinet is despised. Our common history is maligned. Who can forget when Meles Zenawi proclaimed Ethiopia’s history is just a mere one hundred years, who can forget when this man said Ethiopia’s flag is a piece of rug, who can forget when Meles declared Axum, Lalibala, Gondar, harar iconic historical heritages of Ethiopia are not important in values to all Ethiopians. The left has been spewing poison and division for over forty years. Is there any wonder why Ethiopians cannot get along with each other or trust each other? Is there any wonder why there is not one single strong national party that represents all Ethiopians regardless of ethnicity or class? How can there be unity when cooperation is despised, how can unity work when one ethnic group is pitted against another? How can there be an agreement on anything when people are told to hate their country. Our forefathers left us one country, we are desperately trying to smash the country into pieces and in the process, create poverty and destitution for everyone. The left and the present government has deliberately divided the Ethiopian people to further their agenda. The Ethiopian peasantry and the Ethiopian masses are used and manipulated at their whim. Forty years after the end of the monarchy, we Ethiopians are more divided, distrustful, confused, frustrated and are worse in many ways than we were forty years ago, when is enough, enough? Flashy buildings in Addis Ababa and the expansion of road networks in the country are not the only means of measuring growth and development in the country. Shiny buildings don’t mean anything if there is moral decay and ethnic division in the country.

See Also:  Ethiopia's stunning reforms now challenged by deadly unrest

In the grudge filled Ethiopian politics everything has been distorted. One cannot tell what is true and what is fiction. Some who oppose the current government have the same political prognosis and opinion as the government in power, they parrot the same language and espouse the same ideology. Like in the past they feel they can do a better job because the wrong people are in power. No, the wrong idea is the problem. Marxism/Leninism under the guise of revolutionary democracy is the problem. Socialism is a defeated system, no matter what you do to make it look good, it is still a failure. Ethnic federalism is a disaster; it is a fraud! Creating ethnic homeland is deceitful. The proliferation of ethnic political parties are deceptions. Does anyone honestly believe that breaking Ethiopia apart and creating mini segregated countries will bring peace and prosperity in the territories? Does anyone believe that independent Tigray, or independent Amhara or Independent Oromia has any chance of succeeding as a country? Those who are advancing such theory are delusional and are doing a great deal of disservice to the people. State capitalism is unfair and unjust. The selected few, the connected and the cronies of the present government are getting prosperous while the great majority are languishing at the bottom. The mighty dollar has become king, everyone is out for himself, damned Ethiopia is the prevailing attitude!

Reshuffling faces without changing our mindset and attitude will not change anything. Has the Ethiopian left learned anything? I doubt it. Fanaticism of the left as well as fanaticism of the right including religious extremism is dangerous. However, it is not an exaggeration to claim that Ethiopia has been infected with left wing fanaticism for over forty years. Ethiopia’s left are not social democrats, or liberals we see in the west. The left in Ethiopia defines democracy within the context of Marxism. What is democratic centralism if not a Leninist principle? In Ethiopia, the government owns every piece of land. Why are people not allowed to own and cultivate their land? Why are people not allowed to sell, exchange and transfer land? In the past the demand of the Marxist left in Ethiopia was land to the tiller? Whatever happened to that aspiration?  What is sacrosanct about land ownership? The government is the largest landowner in the country. In Ethiopia, the national government controls the purse strings tightly. How money is spent, how resources are allocated are determined by the government. It can lease land and break the lease if it desires, the government builds homes and condominiums to groups it favors and signals to others if you behave you will get a token appreciation. The government shows generosity to one group over another based on ethnic grounds, government contracts and largesse are allocated to cronies and associates. The relationship of the Ethiopian people and the government is one of subservient subject and the government as a provider.

What is the role of government? Why does government control every aspect of our life? When will dependency on government end? Why is the media run by the government? What is the purpose of having the ministry of communication? Should not the media be independent? Is it not the role of the media to be a watch dog against government abuse and overreach? How can the media report facts accurately if the government controls it? Does having fifty or sixty mini political parties in Ethiopia accomplish anything? Where are the strong principled national political parties that stand for ideas, a party that is inclusive, a party based not on ethnicity, but focused on fundamental democratic principles? Has Ethiopia produced one or two strong national political parties in the last forty years the likes of ANC or the Congress party of India? The Indian National Congress Party led by Mahatma Gandhi liberated India from British colonial domination. The African National congress played a major role in defeating the apartheid system in South Africa. The ANC produced a powerful leader as Nelson Mandela. Why are Ethiopia’s opposition parties divided and splintered? The competition among the opposition has always been I am a better leftist than the other and if imitation is the sincerest way of flattery, EPRDF should be flattered. Ethiopia is full of parties organized by ethnicity. Now that all are organized by ethnicity, what then? If the idea of some in the opposition is to imitate TPLF, where is the change?

Finally, it is not just condemning the ruling party in power, what do we Ethiopians want? Do we want one country or not? Marxism and leftist ideology has been tried in the past, it did not work. Now that we have reached the lowest level, what kind of country do we want? What kind of political system do we aspire? What kind of government do we yearn? Do we want federalism or unitary system of government? What are the pros and cons of federalism and unitary system? Most countries in the world have unitary system of government where the central government plays a dominant role. China, France, Italy, Sweden, England, Japan, and most countries in Africa have unitary system. Does Ethiopia need a unitary system? What kind of federalism do we want? Do want ethnic federalism or do we want federalism based on Ethiopia’s historical provinces? Has ethnic federalism brought equality in Ethiopia? Has ethnic federalism brought unity or division among Ethiopia’s diverse population in the last twenty-five years? Do we want a presidential system or parliamentarian system? What are the pros and cons of presidential system versus parliamentarian system? Do we want term limits for our politicians? What is the role of the military? What is the function of the police? Should the military remain a neutral body? Is the role of the military to defend and protect all Ethiopians from foreign aggression or is the task of the military to protect the government in power? What does Democracy mean to us? Ultimately, realistic goals and aspirations must replace dogma and false conviction. Leadership means the ability to unite a divided people. We don’t need leaders who divide us by ethnicity, religion, class, or region. We don’t want leaders who forecast Rwandan style genocide in Ethiopia, we don’t want leaders who use scare tactics to remain in power. The peddlers of bitterness and division have been in power for long. Forty years of hate mongering is enough!

Why did Marxism become a magnet to Ethiopians from all ethnic groups? Ending poverty, improving the standard of living of the Ethiopian people, bringing justice and equality, eliminating disease, delivering food and shelter to the poor, elevating the educational system of the country is a desirable goal, but to be deceived and controlled by a single ideology is mind boggling. The left has been doing everything possible to discredit Ethiopia and they have done a good job at it. The people of Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, and people throughout the world identify themselves proudly by the birthplace of their country. Yet, we Ethiopians are afraid of identifying ourselves by the country of our birth as if being Ethiopian is disgraceful. Are we Ethiopians so impressionable and gullible to fall for every outlandish, fictitious fantasy of the left? The reason for the longevity of the present Ethiopian government is not very complicated. The Ethiopian people are divided, disunited, and fractured. Ethnicity divides people. The longer the opposition is stuck in the quagmire of ethnic politics, the government will no doubt feel jubilant and the division will guarantee the duration of EPRDF in power. Yet, if people are united, if opposition groups merge together and speak in one voice, the government will begin to shake and quiver quickly. No draconian law, no emergency mandate can stop the momentum, the force, and the power of a united people.

Marxism has been a monumental failure in Ethiopia. Ethnic federalism disguised as progress is aimed at dividing people for eternity. Whether it is Mengistu Hailemariam or Meles Zenawi and now Hailemariam Desalegn when leftist dictators are pushed into a corner they always resort to violence and brutality. Killings and imprisonment, fear and intimidation and ordering the armed forces to kill civilians are the tactics of tyrants. The latest number, 500 Ethiopians killed, many imprisoned and more to come this is the legacy of leftist rule in Ethiopia. These people don’t have any remorse, no shame, no conscience, and no regret in what they do. After the death of over 500 civilians if Hailemariam Desalegn had any inklings of integrity, he should have resigned. Where is accountability when government officials act as if they are above the law? In a democratic society where the rule of law is respected, the Prime Minister, the President or a King is not above the law. At some point, I suppose, we Ethiopians may see a day where all are treated equally before the law.

Anonymous.

Read More News Here Source link

Recommended For You

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

The failure of Marxism/Leninism and Ethnic Federalism in Ethiopia

The current crisis in our country is painful, disturbing, and heartbreaking. Over 500 people killed, many hurt, imprisoned and many more are fearful for their lives. Once again, we are confronted with the nagging question what is wrong with our country? What causes our division? Who is responsible for the chaos, confusion, and turmoil in Ethiopia? Why is Ethiopian politics so twisted, distorted and perverted by our leaders? Will the left acknowledge any responsibility for its blind allegiance and worship of Marxism/Leninism? Those in government should be accounted for their deeds and actions. Their record must be examined, the policy prescription they have pursued needs to be investigated and analyzed, the false narrative and lies the left has perpetuated must be scrutinized.

For more than forty years’ Marxism/Leninism has dominated Ethiopian politics. The current government outwardly gives the appearance of being polished and scholarly, but they have not abandoned their core Marxist values. Liberals in the west have always been infatuated with leftist leaders in the developing world. The west has been deluded and deceived by EPRDF for the last 25 years. Meles Zenawi up until his death was looked as an enlightened and gifted leader, yet this man was a hard-core Marxist. He deceived the west with his shrewd and devious manner. The outmoded and discredited socialist ideology under the pretext of revolutionary democracy has failed Ethiopia tremendously. The visionless leadership of the Ethiopian left has brought misery, division, destitution, and misfortune to the Ethiopian people and has left the country in abyss.

History will judge harshly the left for bringing chaos and havoc to the Ethiopian people. History will not be kind to Marxist ideologues who blindly led the Ethiopian nation into endless discord and tension. History will not be lenient to those who became slaves to an abstract political doctrine. Future generation will undoubtedly condemn the left for disintegrating the country and sharpening the division and mistrust among the Ethiopian people. Wherever Marxism/Leninism played a dominant political role, the result has been poverty, loss of freedom, fear, persecution, ethnic polarization, and the loss of justice and equality. The legacy of Marxism and Leninism is corruption, dishonesty, ineptitude, and failure. Communism is responsible for the death of millions throughout the world. There is no single country in the world today that can claim success from Marxist orthodoxy. Like many countries that went through the experiment of socialism, Ethiopia has paid a huge price. Whether it is EPRDF or Mengistu Hailemariam, the mantra we hear from the left is that they have liberated the Ethiopian people from feudalism, they have abolished the monarchy and liberated the Ethiopian people from oppression and ignorance. They claim they are the champion of the poor and the oppressed, but are they? If truth be told those espousing Marxism do not care about the poor. They pretend to care, but, their concern is bogus and fake. In today’s Ethiopia, the millionaires, and multi-millionaires are Marxists and those who conveniently call themselves revolutionary democrats.

It has been over forty since Emperor Haile Selassie was unceremoniously removed from power in Ethiopia. Post Haile Selassie Ethiopia has been a total debacle. For more than forty years’ socialist ideology has dominated Ethiopian politics. From the student movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s to Mengistu Hailemariam and up to the present government, Marxism has monopolized Ethiopia’s politics. Despite what some like to believe that Mengistu Hailemariam was just another military dictator, the facts are quite the contrary. Although Mengistu came from the ranks of the military his actions where influenced by socialist ideology. Mengistu did not have a right wing political agenda. He was not interested in bringing liberal democracy to the country. He nationalized all private companies, abolished land ownership, telecommunication, banking, home ownership, hospitality industries and all private businesses and private homes became state owned. Collective farming and state-owned corporations became the norm. Ethiopia’s economy was and is still under the total control of the state. To this day land ownership is outlawed in Ethiopia.

In many ways Mengistu accomplished what the left has always wanted. Socialism was what the left wanted and he carried that objective vigorously. Encouraged by the left and his own diabolical mind, he sowed the seed of hatred and division from the outset. In November 1974 Mengistu cowardly had 60 former government officials executed without any trial and justice. Men who served their country in good faith, honorable and decent men lost their lives in cold-blooded massacre. The monarchy was abolished, those considered supporters of the monarchy, enemies of the state were killed, imprisoned and many lives were destroyed in the name of socialist revolution. Intoxicated with blood and eager to maintain political power he went after MEISON the same leftist group that cultivated the rise of Mengistu. Soon, EPRP became the target. During the period of Red Terror anyone suspected of being a member of EPRP were killed, tens of thousands of Ethiopian youth supporters of EPRP were tortured, imprisoned, and murdered. This evil man turned against his own fellow military officers and murdered and destroyed many of them. Mengistu is responsible for over a million death in Ethiopia. Just as the government of Israel hunt’s Nazi war criminals to the end of the earth, Mengistu should have been hunted like a war criminal and brought before the Ethiopian people to face justice, yet this coward and despicable person is accorded the privilege to live in comfort in exile. Although Mengistu implemented his own barbarism, the hatred of Ethiopia, the talk of Ethiopia being a colonial power, the belief that Ethiopia was founded by oppressing nationalities, the exodus to flee the country out of fear and persecution, the refuge crisis, the displacement of Ethiopians, exile, and humiliation all rose out of blind devotion of Marxism/Leninism.

As if the repression of the Mengistu regime was not enough, as if socialism has not been repudiated throughout the world, when EPRDF attained power in 1991, it had its own leftist political agenda. The arrogance of the left is unbelievable. For Meles Zenawi and his ilk the reason socialism failed was because the right people with the right political understanding and interpretation of Marxism weren’t in charge. Meles and his group believed they were the right people for Ethiopia.  Mengistu made the transition for EPRDF rule easier. He had demoralized and debased the whole country. Morale was at the lowest and the army was in disarray and had totally collapsed. When EPRDF took control of the government they continued with the socialist policy of the previous regime. Soon they implemented their own laundry list of socialist programs. From class struggle, we moved to Ethiopia being a colonial power, to Ethiopia being an oppressive country that has brutalized and subjugated her people. Identifying oneself as an Ethiopian became suspect, Amharas became the hated group, neftegna and chauvinist became easy labels, national unity and Ethiopian nationalism was frowned upon and discouraged. Lenin and Stalin’s view of oppressed nation and nationalities took center stage, the writing of Walleligne Mekonnen on the question of nationalities received credence. In his famous essay on the question of nationalities Walleligne writes that Ethiopia does not meet the definition of nation, but in Ethiopia there is Oromo nation, Tigre nation, Amhara nation, Gurage nation, Sidama nation, Wolayita nation, Adare nation and Somali nation. Oppressed nations and nationalities took the center stage in Ethiopia’s politics. The Marxist student movement of the 1970’s was reborn.

Once again democracy took low priority. EPRDF plunged Ethiopia into another predicament and confusion. Divide and rule emerged as the standard operating procedure of the government. The campaign to demonize Ethiopia became customary. Those who called themselves Ethiopians ended up being called Mengistu supporters, neftegnas, feudal, right-wing fanatics and backward. The new leadership under TPLF labeled themselves as revolutionary, reformist, progressive, dynamic, intelligent, and forward thinking. In many ways those in the left who pride themselves in being smart and clever are the ones who are shallow, pretentious, egotistical, and fake intellectuals. The left’s instinct and impulse is always towards totalitarianism and dictatorship. Gunned to our head Ethiopians under the present government are forced to pledge allegiance to ethnicity rather than being an Ethiopian. Revolutionary democracy has created a climate of corruption, shady dealings, and shameless disloyalty among the people. Trust and friendship, virtue and integrity has become unfashionable and obsolete. Being identified as Habesha, Oromo, Amhara, Tigre etc. has become more acceptable than being Ethiopian. Ethiopiawinet has become a disgraceful word.

Some question what is Ethiopiawinet? Ethiopia for who? The implication here being that Ethiopia is an Amhara country, therefore, Ethiopiawinet means nothing. For the left, the Amharas are convenient enemies. It feeds their narrative and political strategy. One is the oppressor; the others are the oppressed. One is the victimizer, others are victims. This fiction has been peddled as truth by the left for years and it has been accepted as factual by some. The truth is Ethiopia is not an exclusive Amhara country, never was, and never will be. The notion that our forefathers from all ethnic groups died and fought bravely against European colonialism to build an Amhara nation is revolting. Some have taken boyhood personal slight and grievances as a sign of group oppression. Derogatory words and name calling hurts, but bigotry and ignorance exists everywhere. Some believe that the prominence of the Amharic language is proof of Amhara domination. Linguistic rights and languages are important legitimate questions. Who in his right mind today would diminish the proud history of the Oromo people, the Amhara people, the people of Tigray, Sidamos, Gurages, Somalis or the people of Afar and multitudes of other ethnic groups of Ethiopia? Who in his right mind would debase the culture, tradition, religion, language, and music of all Ethiopia’s people? However, one also cannot deny that having a common language has advantages in a diverse country and the Amharic language good or bad has played a positive role in easing communication among Ethiopia’s people.

During the scramble for Africa European powers such as England, Italy, Germany, Spain, Portugal, France, and Belgium destroyed existing African self-rule and colonized the African continent. The only two countries that remained free and independent from European colonialism was Ethiopia and Liberia. Yet, the left draws false analogy between European colonialism and Ethiopia. Our ancestors understood the importance of one country. Unlike Europeans who came from another continent to exploit Africans and seize Africa’s resources and impose their superiority, Ethiopia did not venture outside her territory to impose her will on other people and exploit the resources of other nations. Just because some intellectuals from the left believe that Ethiopia has colonized others, it does not make it a fact. Just because some left-wing professor in the west expresses in print that Ethiopia had colonial ambition this does not make the claim a reality. To compare European colonialism of Africans and Asians to Ethiopia’s natural desire to form a centralized government, one nation, one country is absurd and ridiculous. For the left, our fathers, forefathers, and ancestors be it Oromos, Amharas, Tigres or other ethnic groups are referred as feudal, unsophisticated, naïve, and unintelligent. Traditional leaders are caricatured as buffoons and clowns and the country itself is ridiculed and mocked brutally. The monarchy has been condemned for Ethiopia’s poverty, blamed for corruption, social injustice and for being backward. Holding past grudges is the trademark of the left. Meles Zenawi vehemently opposed the statue of Emperor Haile Selassie to be built at the African Union headquarter in Addis Ababa while defending the decision to have a statue built for Kwame Nkrumah on the basis that Nkrumah was a Pan African leader. Haile Selassie is looked as the oppressor by the left and Stalin who has murdered millions is venerated as the champion of oppressed nationalities by the Ethiopian left. Who are our heroes in Ethiopia today? Does the young generation have anybody to look up to?  For today’s ethnocentric leaders, multitude of liberation movements of all sorts, their mentors are Marx, Lenin, and Stalin. Yes, they may not quote Lenin and Stalin like they used to, but, their heart and mind has not changed.

See Also:  Mass grave with 200 bodies unearthed in eastern Ethiopia | Ethiopia News

Action speaks louder than words. While government elites and their cronies are getting richer in today’s Ethiopia, the poor are getting more destitute and impoverished by the day. Life for the peasant, the worker, the city dweller, the working poor, the unemployed, life for the average Ethiopian is bleak and gloomy. We are all mortals, full of many weaknesses and human deficiencies, but the left thinks they are flawless. They alone know the truth, they have the solution to Ethiopia’s problem, they have superior knowledge and intellect, they exclusively know what is good for the Ethiopian people, presumably the rest of us are uninformed, uneducated, and basically ignorant. Our role is to be docile. We should be thankful of their insightful leadership! It is this kind of perception and arrogance that drove the current government to subdivide Ethiopia along ethnic lines. The condescending attitude that we are better, we know more, we are superior, we have all the answers makes them feel they are entitled to rule forever. If you have disdain for others, if you feel you are perfect, why do you need a loyal opposition?

Ethnic federalism is looked upon as a moral achievement by this government. The dogma we here constantly are that nation/nationalities in Ethiopia have achieved equality and fairness thanks to the brilliant leadership of TPLF. For the last twenty-five years, this government has been instigating, provoking, and fanning the tension of ethnic division in Ethiopia. Divide and rule is the accepted policy of this government. Ethnic political parties are encouraged and all-inclusive national political parties are looked with suspicion and ridiculed. Yet, today, the current government acts shocked and surprised by ethnic polarization and schism in the country. They think we are a bunch of fools! How a political party that hates and vilifies everything Ethiopian governs the country is a huge mystery? How a party that encourages ethnic groups to dislike Ethiopia remain in power is beyond comprehension? From the very outset TPLF and OLF shoved their rigid left-wing agenda by subdividing the country along ethnic lines without analyzing the long-range consequences. Who gave TPLF and OLF the authority to dismantle Ethiopia’s internal boundaries? Was there a call for a referendum to approve or disapprove such a drastic measure? The historic provinces of Ethiopia, Eritrea aside, Gonder, Gojam, Welo, Welega, Ilubabor, Kaffa, Shewa, Gemo Gafa, Sidamo, Arsi, Bale and Harar except for Tigray were wiped out and turned into nine Bantustan ethnic domain. Afar, Amhara, Gambela, Harari, Benishangul-Gumus, Oromia, Somali, Southern Nation, Nationalities and people’s region and the expanded Tigray region are the creation of TPLF and OLF. Our forefathers had more common sense than the so-called intellectual elites of present day Ethiopia. The balkanization of Ethiopia along ethnic lines and the tearing down of Ethiopia’s internal boundaries to satisfy the fantasy of some is a major historical blunder. Artificially created ethnic boundaries equivalent of South Africa’s apartheid system is looked as progress by the left. Tribal politics, division, separation and segregation by ethnicity are regarded as normal. Responsible, competent, and moral leaders and governments throughout the world reject and condemn tribalism and ethnic politics. In Ethiopia, the ruling party advocates ethnic political parties and is the major proponent of Ethnic Federalism and tribal politics.

If federalism is indeed the solution to Ethiopia’s problem, why ethnic federalism? Are we Ethiopians so naïve and inept to believe in a fiasco called Killil? Why divide the country along ethnic lines? Why take land from one area and arbitrarily give it to another without considering the aftermath? What was wrong with the historic provinces of Ethiopia? Why did these provinces not become federal states? The people of Gonder, Welega, Gojam, Harar, Arsi, Sidamo, Kaffa, Shewa, Tigray, Ilubabor, Gemo Gefa, Arsi, Bale could have been federal states. Each state/province can elect their own governors, mayors, city counselors, provincial legislatures, national legislators, school administrators and local government leaders. Police, fire, and health can be administered and run locally. States can select their own regional language. Each province or region can promote their own agricultural sector and develop their economy as they wish without the interference of the national government. Yet, to redraw the map of Ethiopia and assign groups artificial areas known as Killil is an immense political failure. To claim that each ethnicity should live in so-called designated area and homeland analogues to the hated apartheid system of South Africa is insanity. The idea that some cities in Ethiopia are designated as multi ethnic cities is laughable. Every Ethiopian should be free to live anywhere in the country. People should have a right to settle in any province, city, or locality. The rights of all Ethiopians should be fully protected by the state government as well the federal government. All Ethiopians should have the right to move and work anywhere in the country. People should have a right to sell and own property at any place regardless of their ethnicity but above all Ethiopians have a right to raise their family peacefully in any province/state regardless of their ethnic origin. Imagine twenty-five years ago, if the provinces were given the chance to govern themselves, if decentralization of power was genuine, if authentic federalism was established, if the authority of the national government and the provinces were clearly defined, where would we be today? Yet in the last twenty-five years we have been told to swallow a sham, fake, and unworkable apartheid like political arrangement called Ethnic Federalism.

Anyone who has taken a college freshman class in American government knows about the three equal branches of government, the executive, the legislative and judiciary body. An elementary government course teaches about separation of powers and checks and balances. It is because of separation of powers that the three branches of government function independently. It is because of checks and balances that the legislative body can check the over reach of the executive branch. It is because of separation powers that the judiciary and the courts act autonomously. Federalism is a constitutional arrangement where power is shared between the state and the federal government. Under federalism there are two levels of government, the state government, and the federal government. In a mature democracy, the constitution clearly defines the relationship between the states and the federal government. Do we have federalism in Ethiopia today? Are the so-called Killils in Ethiopia federal states? Is there an independent legislative branch and free judiciary body in Ethiopia that challenges the ruling party? How can there be checks and balances, how can there be separation of powers when one party dominates everything including the claim that it has won 100 percent seat in parliament? If the executive branch and certain selected cliques monopolize and control the government and do not allow the voice of the opposition to be heard in parliament and public forum, is this not dictatorship?

Despite the constant complaint we hear from some groups, Ethiopia in a lot of ways is no different than most countries in the world. Many countries embrace diverse population within their borders. Countries don’t take controversial step of dividing people along ethnic lines. If each ethnic group identified itself as a nation, the idea of statehood, nation-state becomes confusing and complicated. For the left, mistreated and neglected minorities and groups are referred as nation. In the United States and Canada native Indians have embraced the term nation to emphasize their identity. Some in the left suggest that African Americans and the people of Quebec in Canada are nations. On the other extreme, white nationalist’s neo-Nazi groups advocate white nationalism, white supremacy, and white nation. The dictionary definition of nation is an ethnic community bound by common language, culture, and ancestry. However, the definition of nation within the context of an ethnic community tied together by common language, culture ancestry does not mean statehood. Nation does not mean political sovereignty or independence. In spite of how some within the Ethiopian community act as if they are separate and apart from Ethiopia, at least to this date, there is no independent country called Oromia, Tigray, Amhara, Harari, Somali, Afar, Benishangual, Gambela or Southern nations. The assumption that the term nation implies sovereignty or national independence or statehood is an illusion. The culture, language and music of all ethnic groups must be respected in Ethiopia, but the claim that each group must preserve its culture by artificially dividing people and creating sham borders is very destructive and toxic. Imagine in the United States if the current states were dissolved and in their place a homeland for the Irish, Germans, Jews, African Americans, Poles, Italians, Japanese, Mexicans etc. were established and balkanization became the norm, the idea of statehood and one country would become meaningless and irrelevant.

Although the United States had its own gloomy history starting with the treatment of indigenous people, slavery, legal segregation and discrimination, the internment of Japanese Americans into labor camps, most Americans have respect for their country. Yet in Ethiopia thanks to generation of leftist leaders, Ethiopia and Ethiopiawinet is despised. Our common history is maligned. Who can forget when Meles Zenawi proclaimed Ethiopia’s history is just a mere one hundred years, who can forget when this man said Ethiopia’s flag is a piece of rug, who can forget when Meles declared Axum, Lalibala, Gondar, harar iconic historical heritages of Ethiopia are not important in values to all Ethiopians. The left has been spewing poison and division for over forty years. Is there any wonder why Ethiopians cannot get along with each other or trust each other? Is there any wonder why there is not one single strong national party that represents all Ethiopians regardless of ethnicity or class? How can there be unity when cooperation is despised, how can unity work when one ethnic group is pitted against another? How can there be an agreement on anything when people are told to hate their country. Our forefathers left us one country, we are desperately trying to smash the country into pieces and in the process, create poverty and destitution for everyone. The left and the present government has deliberately divided the Ethiopian people to further their agenda. The Ethiopian peasantry and the Ethiopian masses are used and manipulated at their whim. Forty years after the end of the monarchy, we Ethiopians are more divided, distrustful, confused, frustrated and are worse in many ways than we were forty years ago, when is enough, enough? Flashy buildings in Addis Ababa and the expansion of road networks in the country are not the only means of measuring growth and development in the country. Shiny buildings don’t mean anything if there is moral decay and ethnic division in the country.

See Also:  Ethiopia: Talk of Peace Fails to Quell Ethnic Clashes

In the grudge filled Ethiopian politics everything has been distorted. One cannot tell what is true and what is fiction. Some who oppose the current government have the same political prognosis and opinion as the government in power, they parrot the same language and espouse the same ideology. Like in the past they feel they can do a better job because the wrong people are in power. No, the wrong idea is the problem. Marxism/Leninism under the guise of revolutionary democracy is the problem. Socialism is a defeated system, no matter what you do to make it look good, it is still a failure. Ethnic federalism is a disaster; it is a fraud! Creating ethnic homeland is deceitful. The proliferation of ethnic political parties are deceptions. Does anyone honestly believe that breaking Ethiopia apart and creating mini segregated countries will bring peace and prosperity in the territories? Does anyone believe that independent Tigray, or independent Amhara or Independent Oromia has any chance of succeeding as a country? Those who are advancing such theory are delusional and are doing a great deal of disservice to the people. State capitalism is unfair and unjust. The selected few, the connected and the cronies of the present government are getting prosperous while the great majority are languishing at the bottom. The mighty dollar has become king, everyone is out for himself, damned Ethiopia is the prevailing attitude!

Reshuffling faces without changing our mindset and attitude will not change anything. Has the Ethiopian left learned anything? I doubt it. Fanaticism of the left as well as fanaticism of the right including religious extremism is dangerous. However, it is not an exaggeration to claim that Ethiopia has been infected with left wing fanaticism for over forty years. Ethiopia’s left are not social democrats, or liberals we see in the west. The left in Ethiopia defines democracy within the context of Marxism. What is democratic centralism if not a Leninist principle? In Ethiopia, the government owns every piece of land. Why are people not allowed to own and cultivate their land? Why are people not allowed to sell, exchange and transfer land? In the past the demand of the Marxist left in Ethiopia was land to the tiller? Whatever happened to that aspiration?  What is sacrosanct about land ownership? The government is the largest landowner in the country. In Ethiopia, the national government controls the purse strings tightly. How money is spent, how resources are allocated are determined by the government. It can lease land and break the lease if it desires, the government builds homes and condominiums to groups it favors and signals to others if you behave you will get a token appreciation. The government shows generosity to one group over another based on ethnic grounds, government contracts and largesse are allocated to cronies and associates. The relationship of the Ethiopian people and the government is one of subservient subject and the government as a provider.

What is the role of government? Why does government control every aspect of our life? When will dependency on government end? Why is the media run by the government? What is the purpose of having the ministry of communication? Should not the media be independent? Is it not the role of the media to be a watch dog against government abuse and overreach? How can the media report facts accurately if the government controls it? Does having fifty or sixty mini political parties in Ethiopia accomplish anything? Where are the strong principled national political parties that stand for ideas, a party that is inclusive, a party based not on ethnicity, but focused on fundamental democratic principles? Has Ethiopia produced one or two strong national political parties in the last forty years the likes of ANC or the Congress party of India? The Indian National Congress Party led by Mahatma Gandhi liberated India from British colonial domination. The African National congress played a major role in defeating the apartheid system in South Africa. The ANC produced a powerful leader as Nelson Mandela. Why are Ethiopia’s opposition parties divided and splintered? The competition among the opposition has always been I am a better leftist than the other and if imitation is the sincerest way of flattery, EPRDF should be flattered. Ethiopia is full of parties organized by ethnicity. Now that all are organized by ethnicity, what then? If the idea of some in the opposition is to imitate TPLF, where is the change?

Finally, it is not just condemning the ruling party in power, what do we Ethiopians want? Do we want one country or not? Marxism and leftist ideology has been tried in the past, it did not work. Now that we have reached the lowest level, what kind of country do we want? What kind of political system do we aspire? What kind of government do we yearn? Do we want federalism or unitary system of government? What are the pros and cons of federalism and unitary system? Most countries in the world have unitary system of government where the central government plays a dominant role. China, France, Italy, Sweden, England, Japan, and most countries in Africa have unitary system. Does Ethiopia need a unitary system? What kind of federalism do we want? Do want ethnic federalism or do we want federalism based on Ethiopia’s historical provinces? Has ethnic federalism brought equality in Ethiopia? Has ethnic federalism brought unity or division among Ethiopia’s diverse population in the last twenty-five years? Do we want a presidential system or parliamentarian system? What are the pros and cons of presidential system versus parliamentarian system? Do we want term limits for our politicians? What is the role of the military? What is the function of the police? Should the military remain a neutral body? Is the role of the military to defend and protect all Ethiopians from foreign aggression or is the task of the military to protect the government in power? What does Democracy mean to us? Ultimately, realistic goals and aspirations must replace dogma and false conviction. Leadership means the ability to unite a divided people. We don’t need leaders who divide us by ethnicity, religion, class, or region. We don’t want leaders who forecast Rwandan style genocide in Ethiopia, we don’t want leaders who use scare tactics to remain in power. The peddlers of bitterness and division have been in power for long. Forty years of hate mongering is enough!

Why did Marxism become a magnet to Ethiopians from all ethnic groups? Ending poverty, improving the standard of living of the Ethiopian people, bringing justice and equality, eliminating disease, delivering food and shelter to the poor, elevating the educational system of the country is a desirable goal, but to be deceived and controlled by a single ideology is mind boggling. The left has been doing everything possible to discredit Ethiopia and they have done a good job at it. The people of Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, and people throughout the world identify themselves proudly by the birthplace of their country. Yet, we Ethiopians are afraid of identifying ourselves by the country of our birth as if being Ethiopian is disgraceful. Are we Ethiopians so impressionable and gullible to fall for every outlandish, fictitious fantasy of the left? The reason for the longevity of the present Ethiopian government is not very complicated. The Ethiopian people are divided, disunited, and fractured. Ethnicity divides people. The longer the opposition is stuck in the quagmire of ethnic politics, the government will no doubt feel jubilant and the division will guarantee the duration of EPRDF in power. Yet, if people are united, if opposition groups merge together and speak in one voice, the government will begin to shake and quiver quickly. No draconian law, no emergency mandate can stop the momentum, the force, and the power of a united people.

Marxism has been a monumental failure in Ethiopia. Ethnic federalism disguised as progress is aimed at dividing people for eternity. Whether it is Mengistu Hailemariam or Meles Zenawi and now Hailemariam Desalegn when leftist dictators are pushed into a corner they always resort to violence and brutality. Killings and imprisonment, fear and intimidation and ordering the armed forces to kill civilians are the tactics of tyrants. The latest number, 500 Ethiopians killed, many imprisoned and more to come this is the legacy of leftist rule in Ethiopia. These people don’t have any remorse, no shame, no conscience, and no regret in what they do. After the death of over 500 civilians if Hailemariam Desalegn had any inklings of integrity, he should have resigned. Where is accountability when government officials act as if they are above the law? In a democratic society where the rule of law is respected, the Prime Minister, the President or a King is not above the law. At some point, I suppose, we Ethiopians may see a day where all are treated equally before the law.

Anonymous.

Read More News Here Source link

Recommended For You

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.