Alemayehu G. Mariam
I just returned from Ethiopia after a 48-year absence. Ethiopia has changed in ways I could not possibly imagine. It also has not changed at all.
The old saying is true. The more things change, the more they remain the same. I will share my experiences in my forthcoming commentaries.
But there is one thing that has not changed: The war the Forces of Darkness are waging on our peaceful change.
To turn back the hands of time and once again sit in the saddle of power, the wicked Forces of Darkness are working harder than a three-legged cat trying to bury turd on a marble floor.
They are still masterminding and orchestrating massacres from their citadel of darkness.
They are still working day and night to divide Ethiopia by ethnicity, religion, language and region.
They are doing everything they can to beckon and to provoke the Forces of Light to cross over to the Dark Side by engaging in ethnic revenge, retaliation, retribution and reprisals.
We are working day and night to keep Ethiopia chugging along on the roads Mandela named for us, and our forefathers travelled for millennia: Goodness and Forgiveness.
Our forefathers paid with their blood, sweat and tears to keep Ethiopia united.
Today, we too are paying the same price as the Forces of Darkness continue to use our peace to wage war on us.
When we stretched our hands to them in peace, they paid their murderous thugs to lop them off with machetes.
When we opened our arms to embrace them, they tried to put daggers in our hearts.
When we offered to hold hands and walk with them in the joyous spirit of brotherhood, they tried to stab us in the back.
When we tried to reason with them that we are all bound in a single garment of destiny called Ethiopiawinet/Sewenet (our humanity in our Ethiopian identity), they clubbed us and bashed our heads with brickbats.
The Forces of Darkness deliberately mistake our patience for powerlessness; our commitment to peaceful change for cowardice; our gestures of reconciliation for retreat and servility; our goodwill for timidity and our humanitarianism and bigheartedness for gutlessness and wimpiness.
They fail to grasp an eternal truth: “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.”
No one ever won the hearts and minds of people by killing, maiming, massacring and slaughtering innocent civilians.
As PM Abiy has said so many times, “Only losers kill innocent people.”
But the Forces of Darkness continue to plan, contrive, conspire, finance, organize and commit crimes against humanity against innocent citizens and provoke us to cross over and join them in the Darkside.
They taunt us and inflame public passions with their atrocities hoping desperately to trigger an ethnic Armageddon in Ethiopia.
But there will be no ethnic Armageddon in Ethiopia. Ethiopia is irreversibly committed to the path of peace, forgiveness and reconciliation.
Hiding in their dark citadels, the Forces of Darkness think they are invisible.
They are very visible.
We can see their handprints, palmprints, fingerprints and footprints all over the killing fields of Jijiga, Burayu, Gonder, Moyale, Hawassa, Wolaita Sodo, Wolkite, Benishangul-Gumuz, Wolkait-Tegede, Raya Azebo, Gambela and Afar regions and so many other places.
The atrocities of September 17
On September 17, the Forces of Darkness brought their macabre show of death and destruction to the outskirts of the capital Addis Ababa.
Gangs of marauding thugs on the payroll of the Forces of Darkness ethnically targeted neighborhoods in the towns of Burayu and Ashewa Meda located some 15 miles northwest of Addis Ababa and killed at least 65 innocent people.
Reports indicate the victims of the ethnic violence died after being stabbed, clubbed or stoned.
Ethiopian Federal Police Commissioner Zeinu Jamal said the ethnic killings were orchestrated and orders were given “from a single command post”.
Commissioner Zeinu did not say the “single command post” was a mercenary military command post.
Condemnation of the murderous attacks was universal and swift.
PM Abiy condemned the “cowardly attacks” on innocent citizens and declared that the attacks “represent a grave concern to the unity and solidarity of our people and will be met with appropriate response.”
In a joint communiqué, the Oromo Federalist Congress, Oromo Liberation Front, Oromo Democratic Front, Oromo Unity for Freedom, Oromo Unity Front, Blue Party and Patriotic Ginbot 7 Movement for Unity and Democracy also condemned the attacks.
African Union Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat issued a condemnation. “This criminal attack will only strengthen the resolve of the Ethiopian leadership and people to stand in unity, persevere on the path of reform and ensure the prevalence of the rule of the law.”
Not surprisingly, not a word of sympathy or compassion came out of the mouths of the Forces of Darkness. They were as silent as the grave in which their innocent victims are entombed.
It is said that killers return to the crime scene and hide in the crowd to see their handiwork.
The Forces of Darkness were nowhere to be seen, nor their voices heard in Burayu or Ashewa Meda. They remained in their citadel of darkness laughing at the carnage, death and destruction they paid to bring about.
Burayu and Ashewa Meda were the perfect cover with perfect timing for the perfect storm for the Forces of Darkness.
They used the occasion of the return of leaders of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), an exiled armed group that had renounced violence and accepted the peace offer of H.E. Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed, to do their dirty deed.
A few days before the Burayu and Ashewa Meda attacks, the Forces of Darkness tried to put on a preview of their death and destruction show by paying marauding gangs to create clashes in certain parts of the city around the sensitive issue of the Ethiopian flag. That effort failed.
The Forces of Darkness thought they could pin the blame for the death and destruction on the OLF and Ginbot 7, another opposition group that had recently returned to the country to peacefully engage in the political process, and a youth movement known as the Queroo.
They thought they could create the perfect storm of what they hoped would be ethnic cleansing atrocities close to the capital and trigger an ethnic Armageddon.
They thought they had finally found the magic formula to provoke Amharas and other ethnic groups into revenge killings of Oromos and launch an endless cycle of retaliation, retribution and reprisals.
What the Forces of Darkness intended to be an Armageddon ended up being a moment of unity, solidarity, peace and an expression of a collective inter-ethnic and interfaith determination to bring the criminals to justice.
Police have reported that hundreds of suspects have been arrested in connection with the Burayu and Ashewa Meda killings. Preliminary investigations have revealed that the thugs were paid thousands of birr to engage in the criminal acts.
Federal Police Commissioner Zeinu Jamal confirmed that the killings were “financed to deliberately disrupt the peace of the society and trying to give it the semblance of inter-ethnic clashes”.
The outpouring of support for the families of the victims of the Forces of Darkness was incredible and showed the very best of the Ethiopian character.
Political leaders, community elders, human rights activists, performing artists and ordinary citizens lined up to provide moral and material support to the surviving victims.
Oromia president Lemma Megerssa stepped forward and declared the region will take full responsibility in supporting and rehabilitating the victims.
It is confirmed that 11, 902 victims have returned to their homes. Of the 20 temporary shelters set up for the victims, 17 have been closed. 1,514 remain in temporary shelters.
“After us, Armageddon!”
The proverbial Ethiopian donkey proclaimed it does not care if grass grows after its passing away.
The dethroned kings of the Forces of Darkness in their cowardly deeds of death and destruction have declared that if they cannot have Ethiopia as their playground and plaything, she can go to hell!
That is why they are doing everything they can to create strife, conflict, division and antagonism in Ethiopia.
They are leaving no stones unturned to turn the hands of time to take Ethiopia back to their stone age (bush age) of might makes right.
They are still trying to prove power comes out of the barrel of a gun and the handle of a machete.
But they do not wield guns and machetes is in their hands.
Their deadly weapons are wads, bundles and rolls of cash stolen from the Ethiopian people over the last 27 years.
They let their invisible hands oozing with stolen billions do the trigger pulling and swinging of the machetes to take the lives of so many innocent people.
The Strategy of the Forces of Darkness to turn back the hands of time 27 years
The Forces of Darkness believe they can return to power by implementing a six-pronged winning strategy. Their strategic objective is simple: Create high impact killing events to spread fear and loathing and trigger an ethnic Armageddon in Ethiopia.
I. Depict PM Abiy and his administration as weak and incapable of governing
The Forces of Darkness desperately want PM Abiy to overreact and to act irrationally by ordering indiscriminate police, security and military action.
They believe this strategy is foolproof in two ways: a) If PM Abiy overreacts, they will orchestrate a campaign to demonize him as a dictator; b) If he does overreact, they can portray him as indecisive, fearful, faltering and weak.
They brag things were different when they were in power. The country was stable, no demonstrations, not a pip out of anyone.
Today, under PM Abiy it is all anarchy and chaos.
In the end, their aims are fourfold:
1) Discredit, embarrass and generate public doubt and lack of confidence in PM Abiy’s leadership.
2) Force PM Abiy to declare a state of emergency and begin a crackdown just like they did over the past couple of years and impose extreme hardship on the population and trigger mass unrest.
3) Completely delegitimize and undermine all popular support for PM Abiy and his administration.
4) Undermine international confidence in PM Abiy by undertaking their criminal acts while he is on diplomatic mission abroad and getting foreign embassies to declare travel advisories.
II. Divide and create antagonism between and among opposition groups and the government
The Forces of Darkness have a dual strategy for opposition groups. They aim to kill many birds with one stone.
First, they hope to buy off opposition leaders with the billions of their stolen loot. They think everybody has a price. It is a matter of how much. Give cash and bling to opposition leaders and get them to eat out of their hands and toss them in their back pockets.
Second, sow the seeds of distrust, fear, division and antagonism between PM Abiy’s government and opposition groups in the country, particularly the OLF and Ginbot 7, two opposition groups that have agreed to wage a peaceful political struggle going forward. If they can get opposition groups and the government to start pointing fingers at each other, they hope it will not be too long before they start talking with the muzzle of their AK-47s.
Third, delegitimize, demonize and dehumanize opposition groups. The Forces of Darkness hope to create the public impression that those they once deemed terrorists are still terrorists in our midst, courtesy of PM Abiy Ahmed.
They want the public to believe PM Abiy is letting “terrorists” run amok and free.
Fourth, the Forces of Darkness aim to stoke anger, animosity, bitterness, hatred and ill-feeling between opposition groups and the PM Abiy administration.
Hyenas steal the quarry from fighting lions. The hyenas feast on their stolen quarry as battered lion limp back to their dens licking their wounds and hungry.
The Forces of Darkness hope to return to power as the opposition and the government pointing finger and hurling accusations at each other.
III. Depict themselves as victims and likely targets of ethnic genocide
The Forces of Darkness have two strategies to restore themselves in power and to escape accountability.
There is no question the Forces of Darkness want to return to Ethiopia and sit in the saddle of power.
I have seen them sitting in stunned disbelief how their planned 100-year rule came to an end only after 27 years.
I have seen some in slobbering in despair that all is lost and whispering, “Woe is me!”
They did not know all good things must come to an end. The gravy train is gone, forever.
They should not be surprised. Hitler’s vaunted Thousand Year Reich of the Master Race lasted only twelve years, four months, and eight days.
There will never be a 100-year rule because, as Mandela said, we are building a new nation; and “Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.”
The Forces of Darkness also seek to escape accountability. To accomplish this objective, they perpetuate propaganda that the rest of Ethiopians are planning to conduct ethnic genocide.
They try to flimflam people into believing the Oromo-Amhara unity will inevitably result in a Rwanda-style genocide.
They aim to avoid responsibility by scaremongering.
But the Forces of Darkness have fatal weaknesses.
Their first greatest weakness of the Forces of Darkness is that they do not know themselves.
They really believe they are so crafty and clever, they could outfox, outwit, out-think, outsmart, outplay, and outmaneuver any one. That is how they have themselves for 27 years.
They think they are the bravest and most cunning.
They truly believe the rest of Ethiopians are damned “fools and idiots.”
The second greatest weakness of the Forces of Darkness is that they believe they can return to power and solve political problems by killing, jailing, torturing and abusing power.
Their third greatest weakness is they have no idea what time it is.
They are still walking around with bush mentality. They still live by the law of the jungle.
But back in June 2007, I told them exactly what time it is.
Using the words of the great American civil rights leader Harry Belafonte, I told them it is time to “hammer out love between the brothers and the sisters all over the land”, called Ethiopia.
I told them it is time build a free society and heal the wounds of ethnic hatred and division.
I told them it is high time to start construction on a new society based on the rule of law, respect for civil liberties and human rights.
I told them it is time to rekindle the spirit of democracy from the smoldering fire of popular anger and loathing.
I told them it is time to reconcile, to bury the hatchet. Time to set aside differences and work for a common cause, the holy cause of human rights and democracy in Ethiopia.
I told them it is time to engage in constructive dialogue over the important issues facing the people and turn our attention away from petty differences.
I told them it is time to build bridges and reach out to those of us in the Diaspora and to build bridges between groups and to tear down the walls that keep us isolated in our little camps.
It is time to say No to ethnic politics, and Yes to human rights and democracy.
I told them. I did! I did!
But they did not listen.
Now I am telling them, it is time to MEDEMER.
IV. Provoke other ethnic groups in Ethiopia to rise up against “Oromo rule”
The Forces of Darkness have launched a campaign of psychological warfare against Oromos.
They seek to manipulate public opinion to trigger a mass uprising and backlash against PM Abiy and “Oromo rule”.
They want to tar and feather PM Abiy as an “Oromo leader”.
They want to provoke the people to rise up in anger and fury and engage in atrocities against Oromos.
They want people to violently overreact to the atrocities they themselves unleashed through their paid thugs and stoke the fires for an ethnic conflagration that will consume the entire country in an Armageddon.
They want to create uncertainty, despair and instill fear and trepidation in the population.
By planning and financing terrorist acts to be committed by unemployed desperate youths, they aim to generate oversized consequences.
The Forces of Darkness want to instill fear and trepidation in the Ethiopian population.
They aim to use their stolen loot in high impact events to obtain oversized results in terms of the popular reaction.
V. Create Oromo-phobia
The Forces of Darkness have a two-pronged strategy to neutralize Oromos.
First, they are hell-bent on spreading Oromo-phobia.
They are leaving no stones unturned to demonize, dehumanize, ostracize and scandalize Oromos.
Second, they aim to depict the administration of PM Abiy and the Oromia regional government as weak, indecisive, hesitant and unsure.
They cannot govern
Third, they aim to stoke the fires of ethnic hatred between Amharas and Oromos.
For 27 years, they created and maintained ethnic tensions, polarization and division between Amharas and Oromos.
They claimed Amharas and Oromos are natural and historical enemies, and if they unite it is “because we did not do our homework.”
They have said Amharas and Oromos are like oil and water. They don’t mix.
They even said “Amhara and Oromo are like “chid” (the chaff from Ethiopia’s staple food teff) and fire (the equivalent of fire and highly combustible pampas grass). They must never be allowed to come together as one.
PM Abiy has news for them. At the conclusion of the 9th Annual Conference of the Oromo Democratic party PM Abiy said (author’s translation):
It is impossible to divide Amhara and Oromos. Those who try to divide Amhara and Oromos do not know Ethiopian history. The conspiracy to create interethnic clashes will not work. The effort to divide Oromos and Amharas, Sidama and Wolayita, Oromo and Somali and other groups is a vain effort. Our journey of peace will not be sidetracked by bumps in the road. Those who waste their money and time on [such evil deeds] should refrain from such activities.
VI. Spread disinformation that Ethiopia is a divided country in imminent collapse
The Forces of Darkness want to tarnish the image of Ethiopia today as the leader in the African peace movement.
They want to create the impression that ethnic cleansing is taking place in Ethiopia. Anarchy rules in Ethiopia and the country is on the verge of collapse.
Just yesterday, Leymah Gbowee, the Liberian Nobel Peace laureate, said the 2018 World Peace Day should be dedicated to Ethiopia and Eritrea. “As we celebrate world peace day, it is my prayer that our world will continue to move one step closer to global peace. This day must be dedicated to Ethiopia and Eritrea, for putting their political differences aside and daring to invite peace back into their midst.”
The Forces of Darkness want the international image of Ethiopia to be a land of conflict, strife and ethnic polarization.
They want foreign embassies to issue travel advisories so that diplomats, business persons and tourists will be afraid to come to Ethiopia.
They want to depict Ethiopia to the international community as a country on the verge of collapse and civil war.
They will not succeed!
The Forces of Darkness will continue with their evil deeds and we must not take their bait
We must all face some painful facts.
The Forces of Darkness will not stop their evil deeds to plunge Ethiopia into chaos.
They will not stop trying to make Ethiopia killing fields for an ethnic Armageddon.
They will not stop recruiting desperate unemployed youths to do their dirty deeds.
They will not stop trying to turn the hands of time to the past 27 years!
What can we do?
First, we must not panic and resort to overreaction every time the Forces of Darkness commit their atrocities. Like all terrorists, the Forces of Darkness aim to cause panic, alarm, confusion, fear and hysteria in the population. If people panic and overreact every time they commit atrocities, that will only encourage them to commit more atrocities. That is why we must be measured in our response to the acts of terrorism by the Forces of Darkness.
Second, they want to spark the flames of an ethnic Armageddon by provoking people into acts of revenge. We must not take their bait and engage in acts of ethnic revenge, reprisals and retribution.
Third, we must separate the wheat from the chaff. The Forces of Darkness are well-known. They represent no ethnic group, only their private greedy interests. We must heed PM Abiy’s advice. “We must separate the thorns from the rose flowers. Because of one crooked tree, we must not destroy the whole forest.”
Fourth, we must maintain unflagging vigilance. Neither freedom nor peace come without a price. If Ethiopians do not want a return to the last 27 years, they must defend their newfound freedom and peace with their blood, sweat and tears. We must remain watchful over those who operate secretly in the dark.
Fifth, we must not be shocked by the evil deeds of the Forces of Darkness. Since their inception, they have lived by the law of the jungle, the law of the bush. They seized power by killing, maiming and torturing. They remained in power killing, maiming and torturing. Now that they are out of power, they will continue to kill, maim and torture to return to power.
Sixth, public safety is not only the responsibility of government. It is the duty of all citizens to stay alert and vigilant and to say something when they see something out of the ordinary to each other and to law enforcement. It will not be possible for the government to prevent all attacks by the Forces of Darkness because there is no foolproof method of preventing terrorist acts. But if Ethiopians make it their civic duty to stay vigilant, there will be far fewer of them.
Seventh, I call on civil society organizations, faith-based institutions, political parties and associations, traditional and cultural organizations to launch a campaign of “See something, Say Something”. Such a campaign has been very successful in America and there is no reason why it should not prove to be successful in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia has risen!
Peace is divinely ordained for Ethiopia.
The collapse and implosion of Ethiopia is greatly exaggerated.
There is no force on earth capable of returning Ethiopia to the darkness of the last 27 years. None!
In 2013, I prophesied the Forces of Darkness have profoundly troubled the Ethiopian house and they shall inherit the wind!
Behold the Forces of Darkness today twisting in the wind.
In 2016, I prophesied that I was sure as the sun will rise tomorrow that whatever the Forces of Darkness do to Ethiopia today will not matter tomorrow. Did I get it right?!
Decades ago, the Forces of Darkness set out to bury Ethiopia in a graveyard of ethnic hate and sectarian conflict.
Today, Ethiopia is rising from the graveyard of minority ethnic rule and oppression.
In the risen Ethiopia, there shall no longer be first class and second-class citizens.
In the risen Ethiopia, ethnicity, religion, language, region or gender shall have no more significance than the color of one’s eyes.
In the risen Ethiopia, human rights shall be guaranteed to all.
Long ago, Kwame Nkruma, Ghana’s first president prophesied “Ethiopia Shall Rise”.
In 2013, I announced that good news to my readers.
In September 2018, I was blessed to set foot in a risen Ethiopia.
I never thought in my wildest imagination that I will live to see the risen Ethiopia Nkrumah talked about.
It was a dream, a pipe dream, for me to see an Ethiopia free and marching on the road to democracy, freedom and human rights.
I owe a special debt of gratitude to PM Abiy.
When he visited the U.S. in late July, he issued a challenge to all Diaspora Ethiopians. “You do not know your country. You do not know your people. Many of your people drink water from the same river their cattle do. Come and see for yourselves.”
I thought it was futile and useless for me to go back after 48 years (save for the three or so months in 1974).
But PM Abiy’s words haunted me as I dithered and wavered about going.
The more I thought about it, the more I was convinced PM Abiy is right.
I had to be reintroduced to my country and my people.
I had to see and talk to those people he said drink the same water as their cattle from the river.
I spent just a few days in Addis. I spent most of my time in the countryside (geter).
I met an Aba Geda (traditional leader) named Abdul Jabar in Sof Omar (named after the saintly Sheik Sof Omar Ahmed and home of one of the most spectacular and extensive underground caverns in the world) in Bale Zone.
In the grand beauty of Sof Omar, the Aba Geda forced me to witness the ugly truth about Ethiopians drinking muddy water out of the Weib River.
It was a total shock to me. I had traveled nearly 10 thousand miles to be confronted by the stark reality PM Abiy talked about.
I was heartbroken. I wanted to cry but I was too embarrassed.
For the past week, as I turn the turn the spigot in the kitchen, take a shower, and especially watch the sprinklers gushing out clean water on the grass in my backyard, the image of Abe Geda Abdul Jabar, seared in my conscience, stands pointing an accusatory finger at me.
Perhaps I should not have gone back to Ethiopia and face such a painful reality. Perhaps I should have stayed in the capital and hanged out at the posh tourist spots. I would not have to carry such a heavy burden now.
I have always said to those much is given much is expected. I must bear the cross of those who drink water with their cattle and do everything I can to make sure they are entitled to the most basic of human rights: Clean water to drink.
I get deeply emotional as I write these words.
There are many beautiful countries in the world. I have been fortunate enough to see quite a few of them.
Forgive me for being partial, but all things considered, Ethiopia is the most beautiful country in the world.
I don’t have to say much more about Ethiopia as others, strangers, have said it all.
Rough Guides, the well-known British travel guidebook and reference publisher whose slogan is “Make the Most of Your Time on Earth”, in June 2018 ranked Ethiopia the No. 1 Most Welcoming Country in the World”. Many nice things have been said about Ethiopians.
I agree wholeheartedly that Ethiopia is the one place one would want to make the most of one’s time on earth.
The people in the most welcoming in the country are not concerned about killing each other in ethnic conflicts.
They want to live in peace.
They don’t want to hate; they want to love.
They don’t want to kill their brothers and sisters; they want to heal their wounds.
I feel for Ethiopia after 48 years as Shakespeare’s Romeo felt for Juliet when he first saw her, and she stole his heart: “Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope’s ear, Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear.”
Romeo was helpless under Juliet’s spell because she outshined all other women.
I am helpless under Ethiopia’s spell. The beauty of Ethiopia and the Ethiopian people outshines all others.
But you do not have to take my word for it. Go and find out for yourselves. Just be forewarned. There is no escape once Ethiopia casts her spell on you!
I find it strange repeating PM Abiy’s words as my own to Diaspora Ethiopians.
It is true that the vast, vast majority of Ethiopians do not know their country and their people. The vast majority of Ethiopians live in the countryside, the geter. That is where you must go to meet, greet and talk to them. Ask them about their lives, their hardships, their children, their neighbors and their country.
Hanging around the capital and urban areas is great for a few days, but to know Ethiopia and the people, it is necessary to go where the people live and struggle to make ends meet.
It is easy to pontificate on Facebook and conduct war of words in social media or blog weekly about one thing or another.
There just ain’t nothing better than the real thing.
As they say, “Be there or be square.”
Medemer is our only way out
PM Abiy has offered us a way out of 27 years of bondage and has shown us the way to a promised land of peace, reconciliation and forgiveness.
It is the way of Medemer.
Ethiopians have an old saying. “If spiders’ web could be made into twine, it could tie up a lion.” If thousands of spiders could come together for a common purpose (“Medemer) and work together, they could snag and bag that big ole king of the jungle.
If 100 million Ethiopians could only lend each other a hand (“Medemer”), they could uplift not only their country but also the world.
“Medemer” means to help each other. To help means to give a hand, not a handout but a hand up.
I believe Medemer is a uniquely African perspective.
In the past, we have practiced the ideologies of communism and capitalism.
Communism aimed to make victors of the oppressed and victims of the oppressors.
Capitalism promoted a society divided between winners and losers. If you are poor, you are a loser.
Medemer is fundamentally based on the belief that Africans, not just Ethiopians, can establish just societies on the belief that we can all be winners.
Medemer winners put themselves in the shoes of the other person. They engage in genuine dialogue, are open minded and receptive to different and opposing points of view.
They look beyond inflexible positions to find common interests.
They avoid gamesmanship because they believe the game of life is give and take.
Those who have followed my commentaries over the past 13 years know how much I detest zero sum games where one side wins all the time and everybody else loses every time.
I went to Ethiopia to Medemer.
There are no losers among those who practice Medemer. Only winners.
The Forces of Darkness have one and only one choice. Medemer or to be consigned to the dust bin of history!
We have an extraordinary leader in Abiy Ahmed
The international media is raving about P.M. Abiy Ahmed.
CNN has tried to explain “Why Ethiopians believe their new prime minister is a prophet.”
The Economist is trying to figure out why “Ethiopians are going wild for Abiy Ahmed.”
Al Jazeera wonders if Abiy Ahmed it the real thing: “Are Ethiopians blinded by Abiymania?”
The New York Times says Abiy Ahmed is the “most closely watched leader in Africa.”
Black Star News has declared, “Dr. Abiy Ahmed is a legitimate Nobel Peace Prize candidate.”
Herman Cohen, former U.S. Assistant Secretary for African Affairs, tweeted: “For the first time in my professional life, I am nominating someone for the Nobel Peace Prize: Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. If he brings multiparty democracy to #Ethiopia, the entire Horn of Africa will be transformed for the better.”
It is all incredible. Beyond anyone’s imagine.
Abiy Ahmed has been prime minister of Ethiopia for only 175 days, as of this writing!
We have a man for all seasons in Abiy Ahmed.
I make no apologies when I say that there is no leader in Ethiopia today who can hold a candle to Abiy Ahmed.
He is a leader of extraordinary intelligence and worlds apart from the herd claiming to be national leaders.
He is a critical and strategic thinker.
There is no private Abiy Ahmed and public Abiy Ahmed. What you see is what you get.
Abiy Ahmed says what he means and means what he says. He tells it like it is. That is why the people love him.
That is why I believe Abiy Ahmed is the political leader of the greatest virtue Ethiopia has produced in living memory.
Truth be told, I tremble to see the day when opposition leaders line up to engage him in debates in the 2020 election.
My advice to those opposition leaders in my generation is simple:
Walk away from the political platform in dignity. Your time has long passed. Don’t embarrass yourselves going up against the younger leadership. It is their time. It is their day. Ethiopia is the country of the young. We don’t speak their nor do we know what they want. I can assure you they do not want our leadership. They want their own.
So, I beg you all: Let’s all fade away from the political scene with dignity and honor. Let us rally and champion our Abiy Ahmeds, Lemma Megerssas, Eskinder Negas, Andualem Aragies, Nigist Yirgas, Muferiat Kamlis, Emawayish Alemus, Abubakar Ahmeds, Okello Akway Ochallas, Demeke Zewdus and so many others.
It is their time!
My message to Diaspora and all Ethiopians: We are rising, we are growing
The winds of peaceful change are blowing in Ethiopia.
Those who try to stop the peaceful change will end up inheriting the wind.
Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow.
Back in my day (having lived 48 years in America), we used to sing a special song:
Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow/ Don’t stop, it’ll soon be here/
It’ll be here better than before/ Yesterday’s gone, yesterday’s gone/
Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow/ Don’t stop, it’ll soon be here/…
We [Ethiopians] are growing [rising] Growing [rising] higher and higher
We are growing [rising] Growing [rising] higher and higher…
Hear the children, hear the children
They are talking to you
Hear the [peace] wind blow, hear the [peace] wind blow
It is blowing for you [and for me]…
Ethiopia’s best days are yet to come.
Let Ethiopia rise and shine like the sun over the African continent!
HEAR THE PEACE WIND BLOW IN ETHIOPIA! HEAR YOUR CHILDREN TALKING TO YOU…