Interview on Ethiopia: Identity Politics, Nationalism, and way forward – By Birhanemeskel Abebe, (J.D)

EXCLUSIVE: Sife Nebelbal Radio nterview with Birhanemeskel Abebe, (J.D). (Must Listen)


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  1. the administrator,
    you are entertaining so so stupid idea! Your guest is talking something not at home. Amharic is a language spoken by almost all Ethiopia. I work in all almost all part of the country, and except in some pocket areas, i am able to communicate in amharic. Hence what he said, amharc is spoken by 20% is false!
    The other important issue you deliberatly overlooked or twisted is that, jawar didnot said what you said, he didnot said i am oromo. That is no problem, i am too, when asked i always say i am oromo. But crytal clear he said, i am oromo first and Ethiopia is imposed on me. It is going to take you any distance by twisting clearly fabricated things. I never imagine from you called jouranlist, to fail to separate between what jawar said the form of question you are asking now.

  2. This is very serious and sensitive topic. I thank the guest speaker for his interesting and rational views. I agree with the truth as he put it forward. I think it is high time for us to have this type of healing and refreshing conversations. I hate those who preach us and our people hate, lies and partisan propaganda. I hope ESAT, VOA and other media outlets will take note of this move forward with this type of conversation. Thank you Zehabesha for posting this. This is serious staff.

  3. This is another version of the tplf ethino politics that seek legitimaze the racist ethnic politics that put forward by the tplf leadership. The example should be drawn from the united states not from swiss, because both three languages in swizeland are drawn from three independent state ie, italia, German and france and more importantly three etnic are settlers not natives.in Ethiopia there is only Ethiopian not ethnic setteleres. the guy is a tplf sourogate. At any rate, there is state building not crime one another in Ethiopian history. If history should be thought as it is, then , first should be solved the issue of immigration.

  4. To be honest with you I couldn’t stand listening to this interview. I am running out of patience. I do feel nauseated and it sounds to me like total crap. The fact of the matter is the interviewee is retarded mind Eriterian (Birhanemeskel) with no intellectual capacity and simply he is regular lay man who only has deep hatred to Ethiopia in general and Amharas in particular likewise his fellow country men late Meles Zenawi,Bereker Simon,Sibhat Nega and many others. All the problem you have recounted are currently existing in Eriteria not in Ethiopia, go and deal with it instead of talking based on lies. Mind your business living Ethiopia for Ethiopians.

  5. Brother degefa.
    I think the person was saying Amharic is spoken as a first language by 20% of the population. There are people who speak more than one language. Now you don’t have to exaggerate the figures to make your case. Amharic is not spoken by everybody in Ethiopia but by a significant portion of the population.
    As far as Jawar is concerned, that is just how he feels and that is his right It is not up to us to tell him how he should feel.

  6. @degefa, you have no idea on the demography of the country. No Amharic is not spoken by “almost all Ethiopians.” You might have travelled around the country and encountered people who speak the language. Some people in urban speaks Amharic, however If you go to countryside people speak their native languages. Be it Oromo, Somali, Sidamo, Afar, and others. You assume that because people in cities speak Amharic and therefore most of people in the countryside speaks Amharic language as well. The fact is only about 17% of the empire population live in the cities. Even if we assume all urban duelers speak Amharic that won’t add up to be “almost all” as you stated. So get your fact straight before throwing things out.
    If you think Ethiopiawenat is not imposed on Oromo and other ethnic groups in the empire you are ignorant of your own history.

  7. Belachew
    In Ethiopia there are different nations and nationalities with different histories.
    United States is a country of immigrants not Switzerland.USA choose democraticaly to adopt english official language.Switzerland agree to have french,german and italia as official language ,native languages not immigrant as USA. Even smaller LUSEMBURG has 3 official languages.fench,german,luxemburg language.
    Since 99 percent of somlalis,99percent of afars and 90 percent of Oromo (in harague and in bale) the other part i dont have idea, DONT speak amharic we must respect these will and make all these languages official in ethiopia and not impose amharic as the only official language.
    Those who want peace and equality,justice will accept my proposal. Those who think they are above athers will try to impose and will fail.
    About immigration ,you know who has immigrated in every corner of the country.

    • In every corner of the world we live, a formation of nation/state never been a smooth transition and Ethiopia as part of the world too has the same fate of history (even better compared to most nations history) however, thanks to the Asmera, Adwa askeries, the case of Ethiopia becomes hot ball for the last 40 years. Using few naïve students of the sixties they instill ethnic politics as no 1 issue and herby tried to disintergrate the country: look the Italian when they invade Ethiopia they put the current map of the tplf ethnic bounderies as a machanisim of dived and rule. Ethiopia is blessed having many ethnic with different language and most of them are not reach enough for working languages. U can give what ever version u wish to give, but Amharic was better suited for working language and has been for long time on practice: me nor you were responsible how Amharic become medium of interaction, but to reverse it is a none add up stupidity the worst kind. We need to move on: we should not be pray to the woyane askeries. All kings aside the tigre intruders are mixed with the oromo or other ethnics, do we say no? No!!!: the Swiss case: before the formation of Swiss, Italia, German and France were states with strong identity. Both citizens of the 3 state settled in swiss with their own identity and language with the support of each country and settled in Swiss. (Swiss was formed after the three states. u were wrong. USA despite many country of orgin, ethnic orgin languge diffrences but lived uner the roof of English: even the German, the Italian French and Spanish aaccepted English as their own language and cherish it: why not we?. The Eritrean askeries complain learning Amharic but accepted Arabic as their own. Did you remember when the gurage was asked to learn schools in their language? who prevented as speaking our language when we wish? and declined. Solusion: Ethiopianet regardless of ethnic affiliation; individual liberity, citizen right under the rule of law and individual right for all. One vote one person, that is the solution not snoring on ethnic identity forever.

      • What does Ethiopianism mean? You are suggesting the status quo should not change. This means Abysianism should keep on dominating without change. This is unacceptable for the Oromo. If we want Ethiopia to continue as a country, we need to change. We have to accept that we can and should be Oromos, Sidamas, Wolaitas, Tigre, Amharas, etc, first and also Ethiopians. And mind you you people should be allowed to choose their identity in that order. If an Amhara chooses his Ethiopia identity first let him, but an Oromo should also be allowed to choose his Oromo identity as primary if he or she so wishes or is inclined.

  8. Wow the guest lucks of ethiopian history and he should read more to to understand about the question of YIKRTA silemalet. YIKRTA MLET TIRU NEW but Who is going to ask paradon to whom!!!! Ok the guest has not also reflected some very facts about demographic data. Any way the quest should have read more to give concrete justifications for his points. Anyway I called the elits of the ethinic groups for not to be an instrument of woyanne politics to continue which is spreading hostility between the two major ethincs of the country.

  9. Jawar Mohammed said he will kill christians, that is why people are against him. Nobody protest because of his being Oromo, there is nothing wrpng for saying oromo, amhara, gurage, wolaita and so on, don’t try to cover Jawar mohammed’s crime.

  10. Honestly, how do people who oppose every views want Ethiopia to move forward? Is the status quo acceptable? No. Do we want the Eritrean route? I want to hear them. Glad we started this conversation away from home… here in the Diaspora. Sadly, we are not close to each other let alone to own a common homeland… it is so sad

  11. Belachew,
    Based on your analysis one can easily form a narrative right now which will be the historical fact in the next few years time. “The Oromia state formation was not a a smooth transition as a formation of any nation”. Most of all Amharas have objected to it vehemently, but the determination of oromos and other democratic forces ion Oromia could not be persuaded to the contrary.
    So the gist of the story is that you make your narratives to suit your ethnic agenda. You should understand that others have the same capacity and even more since they have a legitimacy to the cause. Imposition of one ethnic groups grand design has never been a good working formula and that is why you guys are going to fail.

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