Houstonians Show Genorisity and Solidarity

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Houstonians show generosity and solidarity to Ethiopians in Gambela. As you know, the Anuaks were a target of genocide in the past and recently land grab again instigated by the current Woyane regime. This solidarity and generosity by Houstonians demonstrates the importance of breaking ethnic barriers built by Woyanes to divide Ethiopians.

Unless we overcome these divide and conquer scheme, Ethiopia will never be free of its current and future quagmire. Many Houstonians including myself insisted that any fund raising to assist the victim of Woyane machination or eviction  in Gambela should be inclusive of all Ethiopians.

Please read the press release  below from the Anuak Justice Council expressing appreciation to all Houstonians for showing such solidarity to the victims of Woyanes.

December 13, 2014
PRESS RELEASE. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

(Vancouver, BC, Canada) December 13, 2014 will mark the 11-year anniversary of the horrific massacre of 424 Ethiopians of Anuak ethnicity in Gambella, Ethiopia. Even though it has been over a decade, it still seems like yesterday to the Anuak, especially to those who lost members of their families. Some of the victims remain in unmarked mass graves. The Anuak as well as the other people in the region have never really recovered from this traumatic tragedy, let alone the fact that no justice has been done.

Part of the reason for this is that the lives and livelihoods of the people surviving the tragedy have been in turmoil ever since. Seventy-eight thousand Anuak and others in Gambella have been forcibly evicted from their ancestral land in order to lease the land to foreign investors and TPLF/EPRDF regime cronies. The Anuak have never been consulted or compensated as would be done in a country where there was a rule of law.

Those who survived the 2003 massacre and the following three years of destruction, harassment, and human rights abuses, only had temporary relief before the TPLF/EPRDF began a master plan to remove them from their homes and land. Those that resisted quickly discovered that their lives were in danger. Those that complied, found it nearly impossible to survive in the resettlement sites designated to them by the regime due to inferior land, difficult access to water and absent services. Many were forced to leave Ethiopia in order to save their lives. They are now living in refugee camps in South Sudan and Kenya. Yet the ethnic apartheid regime of the TPLF/EPRDF continues to round up Anuak men in Gambella who are now in prison in Addis Ababa. With all of these actions, these past eleven years have been some of the most painful for the Anuak.

Today, December 13, 2014 these Anuak refugees and other Anuaks throughout the world, namely in Europe, United States of America, Canada and Australia will be holding a memorial service to commemorate this tragedy. As they remember what took place at mid-day eleven years ago and as they reflect on the needless loss of the lives of their loved ones, it will rekindle much emotion.

Widows will try to describe what fathers, brothers, sisters, or other relatives were like to their now grown children and try to explain how a regime that is supposed to protect its citizens could do such a horrible thing to their own people. It is difficult enough when you are in a stable environment, but it is all the more difficult being in a refugee camp, trying to find ways to move on with such few resources.

In the midst of this darkness, out of the hearts of the Ethiopian community in the greater Houston Area, has come an unexpected source of hope and encouragement—a large monetary gift to help the Anuak who have been displaced. In their letter of explanation they say: “We would like to kindly request that this small token be allocated to our fellow Ethiopians that have been uprooted from their land and homes by some greedy land grabbers who have little to no regard to their fellow mankind.”

The funds will be divided between Anuak in refugee camps in South Sudan and Kenya and Anuak in Gambella. The Anuak Justice Council (AJC) has chosen to distribute the funds to both refugee camps in conjunction with the December 13th memorial gatherings in both camps; but in Gambella, no commemoration is allowed, other than privately, so we are still working out the best way to distribute the funds.

Mr. Ochalla  Abulla, Chairman of the Anuak Justice Council (AJC) was very moved by this generosity, “This gift has been a tremendous encouragement to the people in the camps, but what these Ethiopians did when they reached out to the Anuak should now be an example to all of us, including the Anuak, to reach out to others beyond their ethnic groups. The impact of this could be huge and could inspire us as a nation to help our people—not only those from our own groups. There are some other examples of Ethiopians who are already doing this. Some Ethiopians have formed small groups of five members who all contribute $20 a month to support the family of some of our Ethiopian political prisoners who used to be the breadwinners of their families.”

AJC Vice Chairman, Mr. Ojulu Lero, added his thoughts, “This gesture is reconciliation in itself! These people have reached out to the Anuak and now the Anuak can reach out to other people like the Majangir or the Oromo who can reach out to the Amhara or Tigray who can reach out to the Southerners or the Afar and so forth. It reminds me of the recent SMNE forum in Washington D.C. that encourages us to talk to each other rather than about each other. In this case, these Ethiopians from Houston helped others rather than only helping themselves. If we all follow this model of action, it will be another way to unify the Ethiopian people.  Once the people are unified, the leaders will be more unified.”

As the Anuak in South Sudan and Kenya come together on December 13, 2014, they will know they are not alone. They will be thinking of those fellow Ethiopians far away who have torn down a wall of isolation through their gift of love. These funds will be put to good use, but the impact of it will live on as building blocks to a New Ethiopia. The power of love can break the walls of hostility and division like nothing else.

May the actions of these and other Ethiopians like them, inspire our people to reach out to others with love, humility, and generosity. May God deeply comfort the Anuak during this time of remembrance of the massacre of December 13-15, 2003 as well as all Ethiopians who have lost loved ones over these past years at the hands of the TPLF/EPRDF. May He also bring freedom to all political prisoners from every region throughout the country who are locked up simply for trying to bring justice and freedom to Ethiopia.

______________________________________________________________

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact Mr. Ochala Abulla, Chairman of the Anuak Justice Council (AJC): Phone: +1 (604) 520-6848 E-mail:Ochala@anuakjustice.org

http://www.anuakjustice.org/141213-Anuak-Remembrance.htm

Dula

Remembering the 2005 Massacre – By Al Mariam

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 Prof. Alemayehu has written a remembrance of the Woyane massacres of 2005. Let us not forget,  it will repeat many times more unless we are willing to stop it. We have the power to stop it, but we failed to rise up to the task instead we keep giving lip service to the plight of our people.  The Diaspora has the tools to make a difference, but it has failed its moral responsibility to do so and allow the continued subjugation and humiliation of the Ethiopian people.  Click to read article: Please click here to read Al Mariam’s article: Remembering the 2005 Massacre

It is nice to read such blogs and to watch ESAT, unfortunately, these are reminders of the situation, but not a solution. Solutions come with action and organizations. If our community really wants to do something, please read my 2005  article entitled : “How to defeat Meles”. Of course, the personalities changed,  Meles is deal,  organizations such as CUD and UEDF don’t exit, and some of  tactics may have to change too, but the concept remains the same and sound in overcoming the current stalemate with Woyanes.  Please click to read the article: How to defeat Meles

Why is President Obama Hosting Some African Dictators?

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About to become a lame duck President,  Obama is holding  a roundtable discussion on Africa with African leaders. I guess better late than never. It is scheduled to be held on August 5-6 in Washington D.C. Many of the African leaders bring lots of baggage of crony capitalism, anti-Gay legislation, corruption, abuse of human rights, simply absolute lack of rule of law.

For example, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn and his party have been in power for the last 23 years, and their legacy is dreadful, as Ethiopia is  ranked the second poorest and second sickest country in the world, where over 70% of the population goes hungry on daily basis. The primary reason for the dreadful situation is government control of the economy. Creeping-famine-in-ethiopia

A young boy waiting  in front of his tukul for his mother as she arrives with a body of his 4-year old dead sister  who died of malnutrition in Shashemene, Ethiopia: Source: NBC: & .Creeping famine-is-back-to-Ethiopia

Like North Korea, the regime controls everything, spies on everybody, at the village level as well as via the Internet, even though less than 1% of the people have  Internet access. Like North Korea, the state controls all the land, telecommunication, Internet, mining, banking, and major industries directly or through cronies. 

In Ethiopia, like in North Korea,  there is no freedom of the press, freedom of assembly,  no free or fair election, no property rights, and simply no rule of law when it comes to the majority of the citizens. The ruling party representing less than 6% of the population like the old Apartheid regime rules through its private and ethnic army and cronies.

African leaders democrats, and dictators like Mr. Desalegn are coming to the USA under the invitation of President Obama for a roundtable discussion on Africa.  It would have been more natural to invite only those countries respecting and applying democratic principles. Furthermore, winning and dinning with African dictators will mean nothing unless President Obama has a concrete plan and he can make it stick.

For example, he can propose a Marshall Plan for Africa like the way Truman did for Europe.  He can prompt  African leaders to spend less on the military, because the armies are primarily used to keep the one party dictatorship, and spend more on education, technology, and economic development.  Adopt a common language, privatize the economy, end corruption, respect human and property rights, rule of law, and form a stronger economic and political union.

Raging ethnic and religious tension are primarily fueled by lack of hope and oppression. The primary culprit for the hopeless situation,  the dictators thrive and survive with U.S. support and largesse.  Some will go by the wayside without massive Western  aid. This gives President Obama tremendous leverage  to promote democratic and economic reform in the continent.  For example,  the rabid anti-Muslim and anti-homosexual  government of Ethiopia lead by  Mr. Desalegn was forced last March by Washington to rescind an anti-homosexual legislation ( Homosexuality-non pardonable) that he orchestrated  through his  rubber-stamped parliament.

The Ethiopian regime pretended for long for things that it is not in order to earn respect and foreign aid. The Ethiopian regime spends huge sums of money  to make sure the West does not notice the cruel and evil system and to portray the regime incorrectly anti-terrorist and democratic.

Azusa Pacific University Board unanimously withdrew  a plan to award an honorary degree  to  Mr. Desalegn on July 31 because of gross human rights violations by his regime (university-withdraws-honor).  In 2003, Texas Southern University canceled a planned event with an Ethiopian government delegation for similar reason.

President Obama can rise to the challenge if he dared too. Pushing democratic values and free market  economic development strategies are critical. President Truman provided a lifeline to a devastated Europe and created strong democratic allies for the U.S. The total cost for the Marshall Plan from 1948-1952 was $13.3 billion.  President Obama has the option to embark on a  similar, bold political and economic agenda for Africa, while opening a huge market three times that of Europe for American businesses.

By Dula Abdu,  dula can be reached at dula06@gmail.com  (article was adopted from previous articles from similar topics).

 

Ethiopia’s future is bleak and Scary

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Ethiopia is the unhealthiest and the second poorest country in the world. Ethiopia the unhealthiest-country in the-world and the second poorest.

This is despite the regime  telling the world that it has ushered the fastest growing economy and plan to meet the Millennium Development  challenge. For the last 20+ years, countries like Singapore, Indonesia, China and many Asian countries were able to transform  their economy because they had a  leadership that put the interest of the people rather maintaining just power. Now a creeping famine is taking a toll mostly among the children.

Creeping-famine-in-ethiopia

A young boy waiting  in front of his tukul for his mother as she arrives with a body of his 4-year older dead sister  who died of malnutrition in Shashemene, Ethiopia: Source: Creeping Famine: Alemayehu G. Mariam. Creeping famine-is-back-to-Ethiopia

Hate to mention it, to get the jest of  the Ethiopian economics, read my piece entitled “Voodoo Economics”.   Ethiopia is the least connected country in Africa in terms of  the Internet, because the regime of Meles Zenawi  denied  the Ethiopian people access to technology, nationalized land, telecom, and other industries that are critical to grow an economy. Thus driving the country to the dark ages economically and socially.

In 1996, knowing the reality of Ethiopia, with the help of the Mickey Leland foundation,  Ethiopia was granted $12 million U.S. dollars to wire with broadband Internet Ethiopian schools to give Ethiopia a leg up and to leapfrog it into a technology driven society to rid off its perennial famine. This opportunity was exceptional because no other country had such undertaking in place due to the infancy of the Internet then.

Meles  and Dawit Yohaness refused the grant because they were afraid the people will use the Internet to organize and overthrow them. Their interest came before the interest of the very survival of Ethiopia. In 2009, we tried to ship a container to supply 15 high schools with computers, the regime again refused to accept it and the Djibouti government ended up confiscating the container.

By deploying  ethnic biased economic policy and governance, the current regime is pushing Ethiopia into a brink of disintegration and the peoples life at risk. With their huge PR machine, they won accolades from Nobel laureates such as Joseph Stiglitz and others for their economic policy despite deploying a very centralized and crony capitalism.  They masked the stats to record a double digit growth and some agencies took the numbers for granted and gave the credit to the regime.

Ethiopia by any definition is no more economically viable and politically stable nation. Even if the current regime relinquishes power,  Ethiopia has little chance of becoming  a viable nation because of many missed opportunities. Subsequent rulers have succeeded in fracturing  it as a nation and degraded its economic viability. Sad to say, the future is bleak and scary. NBC news nightly-news narrates about the creeping and perennial famine.

According to many observers, the streets of Addis are filled with hapless and young prostitutes as young as 12  who are forced to chance the odds of disease and other crimes to just barley put food on the table for their parents.

Jonas Clinton of Canada, a development expert and a visitor to Ethiopia described his feeling as ” sad and confused” because the streets of Addis are literally full of young prostitutes mirroring the poverty that exists in the country and could not reconcile of what he heard of Ethiopia.

Pilot, Hailemedhin Abera Tegegn hijacked his plane to show the world the horrible situation in Ethiopia for Ethiopians. He took the most unimaginable and desperate action  in attempt to tell the world that something is indeed wrong with Ethiopia.

Even Ethiopian who were abused and sometimes rapped by Saudi Arabian Shabab were found to be sad and confused to return to Ethiopia. The question is why feel miserable and scared to return home from such a brutal Arab country.  Because the Woyane Ethiopia is scary , as well as bleak.

The poverty and ethnic conflict in Ethiopia is manmade.  In order to overcome poverty, you need  talented and trusted leadership. Unfortunately, things have progressively gone wrong for Ethiopia to recover from this potential made Armageddon and it may be too late. According to the annual Human Development Report Ethiopia has the second highest percentage of people who are MPI poor in the world,  next to the west African nation of Niger, ranking at the bottom. The MPI measure deprivations across health, education and living standards.   The MPI goes beyond previous international measures of poverty. It is holistic and includes nutrition, child mortality, years of schooling, school attendance, cooking fuel, sanitation, water situation, electricity, floor, assets and more. Government control of the economy and cronyism have a choke-hold on economic activity. Detailed Report just for Ethiopia.

Ethiopians need peace, security  and development. However, it will not have peace and security as long as the regime policy of divide conquer is in place. There will not be development as long as the state or the Woyanes control all the facets of the economy. The wanton killing in Ambo and the arbitrary arrest of journalists are a few examples of a government ran amuck against its own people. Given the current state of conditions, Ethiopia’s future is scary and bleak.