Giant vultures of business are hovering over the abundant natural resources of the African continent; the old colonial masters are in the business of watching with the eye of an eagle to defend their interests against the voracious new comers like China, India Saudi Arabia, et al for the scramble of Africa. Ethiopia portrays one of the worst contagious examples in the array of African countries that are dependent on foreign aid to make up for shortfalls in their budget. Given that donor fatigue is increasing at an alarming rate and that the western major powers are confronted with global security issues, securing foreign aid is going to be a nightmare for the beggars who had rushed to Washington for a summit at the ‘invitation’ of President Obama amid his multiple problems awaiting his attention during his remaining time in power for less than two years.
Therefore the purpose of this piece is to argue that the fate of self-reliance in Ethiopia under the EPRDF tyrannical rule is in serious doubt and that President Obama has multiple problems of his own to render assistance.
The President and his intricate multiple challenges
President Obama, as leader of the free world, is leading the pack of the old colonial masters in the neo-colonial setting to redraw the political map of the African continent on the watch of AU leaders.
It is reasonable to assume that President Obama is working on a legacy to bequeath to his nation. So that he will not be recorded in history as a President who was given so much mandate by the American people in his first election to office but achieved so little. He so much entrenched in the Middle East political turmoil and, to add to his predicament, the unstable situation in Ukraine has presented him with a formidable and nationally highly popular leader with keen legitimate regional interest, Vladimir Putin – ex-KGB chief in the former East Germany and now President of Russia. Given that the USA needs the support of Russia in international affairs in various fora some coming to the security council, for example in: – nuclear weapons disarmament negotiations with Iran and North Korea; political stability in Syria and Iraq; stalled negotiation on two-state solution between Israel and Palestine; dispute between China and the US ally Japan over sovereignty of the islands in South China sea. The uncertainty of what will transpire after withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan coupled with the shaky security Pakistan where the sitting Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is facing mammoth opposition, pose a significant challenge to the President. As if these are not enough, Mr. Obama has made gay rights as a legacy of his Presidency to the extent of withholding development aids from African countries disapproving same-sex matrimony as a taboo in conflict with their cultural values and a sin according to the Scriptures – the Holy Bible and the Holy Quran
The President is ensnared in a maze of complex global issues, including climate change, due to his hesitancy to take timely action for fear of leaving behind a poor legacy. Consequently he has missed the golden opportunity of being remembered as a great leader, for leaders of such caliber emerge from extraordinary situations such as the ones our troubled world is undergoing at present. One would hope that Mr. Obama will do away with his hesitancy and take appropriate actions to reverse the worsening global geopolitics and gross violations of human rights during his remaining time in office as President.
Egypt is rising under the leadership of El-Sessi who got recognition as a mediator in the catastrophic conflict between Israel and Palestine. President Obama has therefore no choice except to embrace El-Sissi as an indispensable ally given that Egypt is also the backbone of the Arab world. The USA cannot in any way ignore Egypt in the present situation where the latter is taking a smart move of bolstering its economic and more importantly military ties with Russia.
So the African leaders have come to Washington at a wrong time to meet with the President who could barely manage to facilitate a pittance to the tune of 17 billion dollars in terms of investment pledges by private companies for the whole continent.
Luckless historical ties with the USA
Ethiopia participated in earnest in the “Collective Security” missions inspired by the United States and the United Nations. Two outstanding examples are:- 1. the Korean war in which Ethiopia’s battalion fought with admirable prowess and gallantry for which the USA paid a glowing tribute decorating the men in uniform; and 2. UN’s peace keeping mission to the Congo spearheaded and other troubled parts of the African continent.
In spite of the above contributions of Ethiopia towards Collective Security, successive US Administrations failed to reciprocate, to wit:-
Secretary of State Dallas asked Fascist Italy to move fast into Addis Ababa and stabilize the city;
Herman Cohn facilitated entry of the TPLF to Addis Ababa;
Suzan Rice, Zenawi’s ‘dearest best friend’ by her own admission in her eulogy at his funeral, strongly supported the apartheid policy of the tyrant;
Condoleezza Rice worked hard to kill passage of HR2003 in the Senate and took pride in that;
Aurelia Brazil and Vicky Middleton biased in favor of TPLF in the 2005 Ethiopian Election;
Hilary Clinton as First Lady made an official visit to Eritrea and none to Ethiopia; as secretary of state she clearly and amicably supported tyrant Zenawi;
George Bush reneged on his pledge to curtail past policy of the U.S.A. doing business with dictators;
the current Secretary of State has failed to publicly declare his stand on the rampant gross violations of human rights in Ethiopia and to denounce the active stance of the regime to nip democracy in the bud;
President Carter stopped delivery of self-defense military supplies thereby emboldening Somalia to invade our beloved country Ethiopia.
So Ethiopians are justified to say no to American double standards and demand reciprocal mutual respect as equal partners in the fight against all acts of terrorism of which the EPRDF is also a part.
Power is slipping out of tight grip of TPLF. Organizations with a mission are conceived and created. They grow at first until a point of their inevitable decay or decline at accelerating rate. This is the fate in which the TPLF is embroiled at present. TPLF is losing its tight grip on power. It is holding to its mainstay of begging which its top leaders know best. Unfortunately, some African leaders are following its example in this begging habit just as they did in stealing elections emulating the example of the tyrant Meles Zenawi who robbed election 2005 in broad daylight declaring a state of emergency and throwing the victors of that election in jail.
Opposition political entities and civic organizations should put their acts together and hasten the process of the end of tyranny in Ethiopia perpetrated by the TPLF regime for the last 23 years – taking advantage of the current internal weakness admitted by its own cadres at the top of its hierarchy including Adisu Legese who:- accuses his own party ANDM associating with G7; OPDO associating with OLF; discloses that the EPRDF is unable to hold on to power; complains that the leadership in Gambella Region is untrustworthy; calls for new recruitment of EPRDF members in cities. So the time to survive by defeating the TPLF warlords is now!
LONG LIVE ETHIOPIA!!!