Kangaroo court sentenced Ethiopia Review editor to life in jail


By William Davison

(Bloomberg) — An Ethiopian A Woyanne kangaroo court judge in Ethiopia sentenced three journalists, an opposition politician and another person to prison terms ranging from 14 years to life in jail for terrorism-related crimes.

Elias Kifle, who was convicted in {www:absentia} and runs the U.S.-based Ethiopian Review website, received a life sentence, said Federal High Court Judge Endeshaw Adane.

Woubshet Taye, former deputy editor of the now-closed Awramba Times and Reeyot Alemu, a columnist for Fitih newspaper were sentenced each to 14 years by the court in the capital, Addis Ababa, today.

The group were found guilty Jan. 19 of conspiring to commit terrorist acts and belonging to a banned group under a 2009 anti-terrorism law.

All five are “prisoners of conscience” and did not commit any crimes, according to London-based Amnesty International.

“We are going to appeal to the Supreme Court,” said Molla Zegeye, a lawyer for Reeyot, after the sentencing. “She did not commit terror attacks. She is a professional journalist.”

Hirut Kifle got a 19-year sentence and Zerihun Gebre- Egziabher, president of the National Democratic Party, was jailed for 17 years, said Endeshaw.

“I am not guilty,” Zerihun said to the court after the sentencing. “History will prove I am innocent.”

Since March, 108 politicians and six journalists have been arrested for having links to banned groups, according to Amnesty.


45 thoughts on “Kangaroo court sentenced Ethiopia Review editor to life in jail

  1. Berhan on

    Loughable Kangaro court sessession. The criminal turns out to be the accuser and accuser is double seating as a judge. What a resembelance to the Mandela trial. Mandela was also sentenced to life imprisonment. History repeated itself through a reincarnation of a yet another abominable apartheid of the ethnic class. It has, true to its nature and colour, convicted freedom fighters to life and near life sentences. Woyane will go down in history as the most abominable, cruel and evil force that has ever reigned on ethiopia. History will record, folk tales will be made about it. This self destructing enemy of the ethiopian people will kiss the soil and die and die the same way the south african apartheid died. It will be buried and forgotten for good. No one will want to rmeember there was ever a force called woyane as no one want to remember the evil and deeds of apartheid.

    • Elias will always remain free. The indictment and sentence is on the cowardly criminal, Meles. Once out of power, he will either be physically in prison or in a loose prison as his predecessor, the other cowardly murderer Mengistu Hailemariam.
      Elias is a hero.

  2. Anonymous on

    congratualation Elias, They just proved that you are a force to be reckonned with. You hit them where it hearts so they have to act as they know best… Keep up the good job, as for the rest of the JEGNAs, I hope it won’t be long before they get liberated ….

  3. ashnafe on

    Wow it is so amazing. They have plane to head down of all of us and they want us to be their slave. No no we need fight meleas and alamudine the two Ethiopian enamies.all perisoner and the people fight this two our enimes God bless you. we will win soon. down Almudine, Abenet and melese.

  4. Tezibt on

    Courts around the world and particualarly in Ethiopia, would be making sense if they have the presumed criminal in court to defend himself rather that convict him/her in absentia. I guess it is all BS. Good publicity for Elias though. By the way Elias, I have been trying to be so famouse like you, what should I do to be convicted in absentia. I know I can’t get it even if I pay woyane a million dollars. Enough of this jokes.

  5. Ittu Aba Farda on

    Now we have to rally around this man who brought the 1st well endowed printed magazine about the affairs of our country decades ago. This is an assault not only on Obo Elias but on all of us who decided to differ with the Weyanes. We all count on the well-enforced fence we all adore – The US Constitution. That is a raging ring of fire that protects us all from an over-blown rage of this goon from Dedebit. It is really sad day for all humanity. When Burma is releasing political prisoners, this specter from Adwa is sending hundreds to his dungeons. But there is nothing he can do to our brave son Elias. Now I heard that his cadres here in the USA are counting on a change in the US government. They hope that Obama will lose and extremist figures like Gingrich to win the next election. The Weyanes are so emboldened by the handouts they are getting from China and India that they don’t even care about the aid they have been receiving from the USA. That can be the beginning of their undoing. This goon from some joints up north should be encouraged to push on that path. Who knows he may start flapping his stinking mouth and join his comrade-in-arms Hugo Chavez mumbling about ‘US Imperialism’ soon. But what he may not know is the ‘wealth’ of China and India is generated right here in the Good’Ole USA. If China starts doing something stupid that catches this country’s attention, that will be tantamount to waking up a resting Giant. Then we can see how this faddy economic growth China is boring us to death with will really be sustainable. Almost everything imported from China used to or can be made here in the USA. We should stand in unison and condemn this act of freedom suppression.

  6. Banda/meles-azebe court sentence??? what do you expect from Banda??ß
    Meles Bequa!!!!!

    Meles Bequa!!!
    Meles has to Go!!!!!!

  7. Woyannes usual jock but that does not mean they will stay that long undr woyannes they will be history before 2012 ends ,and their main jocker will face justice in an Ethiopian court and later to icc and the freedom fighters like Elias and others sentenced by kangaroo court are our heroes their history will be written in a golden print.

  8. samuel on

    I really don’t understand the Ethiopian People unless they are coward what are they waiting for it’s clear Woyane will do anything to stay in power. The North African Countries the people live a better life than the average Ethiopians but they made a change if the Ethiopian people are afraid of dying they should worry about that since they have been a walking dead for the last 20years already. can we imagine less than 5%of the people controls the 95% what a shame if this is not fear there are no other explanation for it , what is a point every time Woyanes Kill,Imprison,etc for us to do a candle light vigil us you see Woyanes does give a dam even if we lit candle from here to the gate of addis. we know that those woyanes are coward they don’t even trust their shadow i don’t know why we are afraid of them if we go out and demand our right may be sacrifice a little freedom it’s not far away .

  9. Johnny on

    This is non-sense.Woyanes approved this verdict jus to scare others fighting for democracy.
    Ethiopians should not be frightened and discouraged rather should strengthen their unity.

  10. Anonymous on

    Knowing how Meles and his thugs have been operating for the last 21 years, this is expected from them.
    Congratulations Elias for receiving an outstanding award of Medal of Honor! Here is the proof that you are indeed standing for justice for the 87 million Ethiopians who have been denied justice by the despicable tyrant Meles and his TPLF that have been slaughtering innocent Ethiopians, robbing Ethiopia and selling Ethiopia. Thank God for United States of America that has given you and millions of Ethiopians a place to live and exercise freedom of speech, press and the right to organize. You are a true son of Ethiopia! we are very proud of you! Please keep up the great work you are doing! God bless you, your parents and the rest of your family. Deaths to the molacha leba weyanes!

  11. Anonymous on

    We need to act with what ever we can to overthorw this Woyane junta, they will silence everyone one at a time. Ethoipan rise up before to lat.

  12. Gabriel on

    It is American Complacency that has put the Ethiopian jurnalists and political opposition personel to untold suffering in the hands of the authoritarian leader of Ethiopia. At the end of the day it is the US policy that has encouraged the prime minister of Ethiopia to use terrorism law on its own people. It is the regime that is terizing the people and it is the prime minister who is a terrorist.

  13. Pacifier on

    The only thing I’m wondering is why is it that the Ethiopian people are waiting for? Get rid of this junta called WEY-ANE now! Off course it’s easy to say than done. They’re the ones with the army, intelligence and so forth but we should learn from the Arab revolutions. They did it while they were in the same situation we are in. We have to get organized. The facts are people are going to die but will be worth it. Look how other Nations have done it. Its time to stop this madness!

    • it is not funy when u put yourself in Reeyot place or in others. not funny at all!! i am realy sad!!

  14. Alefa on

    It is a mater of time very soon these freedom fiters will be free, and melese with his servants will go to jail.

  15. Eden1 on

    I think you need to post CPJ’s version as well which stimulate discussion due to the specifics.

    In any case,journalists in actual prisons are suffering as of now.

  16. Anonymous on

    Melles is very desperate and acting irrationaly everday. He is only digging his grave faster. He is now paranoid, scared, confused, in denial and would do anything to stay in power. Time is running out.

    Tew belut

  17. araya on

    Moron woyane tugs. They are embarrassment for Ethiopians to have them as leaders in the 21st century.

  18. Weygud on

    No surprise there. Elias is innocent of all the charges and what do the Weyanes do – Senetnce him for life. Remember, one can not expect the Weyanes to care for Ethiopia and Ethiopians. They consider themselves non Ethiopian.So, anyone that works for the good of Ethiopia is enemy “Numero 1”!

  19. Gezaee H. on

    I have no words. I personally oppose Elias Kifle’s strategy, but to put Elias in life prison is laughable. What did Elias do? did he kill any Ethiopian? Anyone can tell me what crime he has committed?

    I have to be honest very much; I do believe strongly we do not have a united civil based ideological movement which is really giving more opportunity to Meles. But putting journalists in 14 year imprisonment is just nonesense.

    When Meles Zenawi does alot of crime, there is no law that holds him accountable and responsible? He can go away with every crime he committed but when we citizens oppose we are jailed for life?

    I have said many times, let us dissolve all the opposition and form a new civil movement that is all inclusive and then Meles will start farting immediately. But no Ethiopian wanted to do that? This is a big problem. Why we cannot have a national agenda that can be accepted by all Ethiopians of all ages?

    The Oromos wanted an Oromo leader? The tigreans wanted a Tigrean leader? The amhara wanted an amhara leader? The gurage wanted a Gurage leader? …. We are not better than Somalian honestly. The problem in Somalia is the same thing. Somalia has not have government for the past 23 years because every tribe in Somalia wanted to have thier own chief to be the president of Somalia. But they could not get that now right. Ethiopia is not different from them. Ethiopia has a nominal government not because Meles is loved by Ethiopian but because has the military might only. I do not believe Meles can be elected to lead Ethiopia even for one day if there was genuine free and fair election.

    Now, Meles and co will continue terrorizing our peopel if we do not do anything. It is real now Meles feels he is invicible because he has accumulated alot of money and he has freinds like China, even USA and other interest groups.

    I am asking, why we do not form a national civil movement? perhaps it is good the old generation to give up and let the young generataion organize themselves in a new way. That is what I support myself. If there is any Ethiopian movement that an ideology that accommodates every Ethiopian equally and that is not oromized, amharized, Trigrianized, Guragized,… then I am prepared even to give my life. But I will never support or join OLF, ONFL, G7, EPPF, TPDM, EPLF,….

    I mean this from my heart. I do not want an Ethnized Ethiopia. I do not want oromia ethnic state, I do not want amhara ethnic state. I do not want tribal state of Ethiopia. I wanted an Ethiopia where Ethiopia belongs to all Ethiopians, not to oromo or amhara or tigrie. The whole nations in the world are like this. Why is Ethiopia has to be an aparthied state in the 21 century? why? why is that Ethiopia has to be landlocked? because Meles Zenawi ill in his head? if Meles is sick and ill, why do the 91 million people have to be ill?

    Again, dissolve all your useless factions, and form a national alliance now and we can all say enough is enough. Otherwise, Meles will put more people in prison if we continue dividing and insulting each other. Meles designed this ethnic federalism, not because he wanted to benefit Ethiopian, but to divide and conquer. Divide and conquer the best strategy to manipulate any human society. Meles has helped to stay 23 years on power. It is a tested method used by colonialists to manipulate their colonies. You can manipulate any society for by thier culture and language. I actually did this in anthropology course that people who use such methodology are selfish and they exploit such thing to satisfy their unbounded greed. Imagine Ethiopia divided into amhara , oromo, … etc in the 21 century? Why? I do not understand? I wana live in my country anywhere? I do not wana ask permission to amhara to live in Bahdar? I do not wana to ask permission to live in Debrezeit?

    Wake up all and smell the coffee, and unite as Ethiopians.

  20. Gezaee H. on

    One more thing,

    You may not agree with me, but No american or no Chinese nor Korean or no Russian or no Briton or … can liberate us if we do not liberate ourselves? our ancestors did not beg anyone to stay free from colonialism? The begging trend of Ethiopian is not good. Have vision and stand for it. American, Briton, Chinese, Indians,… they are all after business. If you tell me American government will liberate you , you are wrong. American themselves are very very honest about this. Because they do not hide anything about thier interes. Americans are not Arabs who work under darkness. Americans tell you front, first is American interest. The rest is secondary or even does not exist. Democracy is a cover plan for the gullibles only?

    Let me tell you one thing? Who killed the 75 Ethiopians and 7 Chinese experts in Ogaden? Who declared it from London? and why from London? how would a democratic country host a rebel that kill innocent Ethiopian and Chinese experts ? who did it? do you believe ONLF did it?

    The world is full of sharks brothers and sisters. Thanks for life experience. We know now how the world is run

  21. hello on

    Woyanne’s colonial rule of Ethiopia is unsustainable, hence all these desperate drama. Mass uprising is a very easy and short way to rid the woyannes. Any prolonged struggle would not do for the simple reason that the USA has decided in favor of its own perceived strategic advantage against the basic dignity of 95% of 90,000,000 Ethiopians. It will continue to pumper and spoil this butcher for as long as possible. With spontaneous mass uprisings the USA will dump the butcher in a drop of a hat like a used condom. Please, fellow Ethiopians, lets focus on creating the ground work for MASS UPRISING, and the butcher and his wife will be history in a mere 72 hours. God bless Ethiopia. Ager wodad.

  22. Mulugheta T. on

    Hello Elias Kifle the GREAT (keep it up),

    Sentencing you in absentia is a rediculous thing that I ever heard. But on the other hand, this is nothing new from the Woyanes.
    To me, this shows that the minority Tigrayan regime of Woyane-beggars are afraid of us all and are on the road to collapse. Elias, Eskinder, Yenesew and others are the symbol of resistance of Ethiopians at home and in the diaspora. Woyane has not only sentenced you using their kangaroo court, but we (the whole genuine Ethiopians) are also.
    So, the only choice we have is to win this war against the Woyanes and free our people from those beggars. If Woyane unleashes a war against Eritrea, then that must be our time to send them home. To do this, we have everything what we need in our hands. We have the soldiers within the army, the people of Addis Ababa and other big cities.
    Especially, the army (Amharas and Oromos) must not be deceived by money once again because Woyane is promising them more salary.
    Instead, there must be a mutiny within the military. Oh my people in the Ethiopian army: Stand up for the right of your people, unlesss history will judge you one day. The time has never been appropriate like today and let us use this opportunity to get rid of those beggars. We need a tahrir square like that of Egypt in Addis Abeba soon.

    WOYANE MUST GO.
    A WAR AGAINST ERITREA IS OUR CHANCE TO REMOVE WOYANE FOREVER.
    A PEACEFUL ETHIOPIA WILL PREVAIL.
    .

  23. Mulugheta T. on

    አይ አሜሪካውያን! እንደው የቃላት ጦርነቱን ስታውቁበት፡፡ እዚያ ዋሽንግተን ቁጭ ብላችሁ እዚህ ችግር ውስጥ የሚገቡትን ሰዎች ስታበረታቱ እንደው ትንሽ እንኳን አታፍሩም፡፡ እናንተ ነፍሶቻችሁን ልታተርፉ አምልጣችሁ እዚህ ያለውን ሰው ነፍስህን ስጥልንና መጥተን እንግዛህ ስትሉት ትንሽ አይከብዳችሁም፡፡ እናንተ ነፍሳችሁን ለማዳን በዱር በገደል፣ በሰማይ በውቅያኖስ ተፈተለካችሁ፡፡ ሀገረ አሜሪካ ቁጭ ብላችሁ ማክዶናልዳችሁን እያጣጣማችሁ በኛ ደረቅ ዳቦ መግዛት ቅንጦት ሊሆንብን ትንሽ በቀረን ሰዎች ነፍስ ላይ ትወራረዳላችሁ፡፡ እዚያ ቁጭ ብሎ እዚህ ያለነውን ሕይወት ለመምራት ስትሞክሩ ግብዝነት የሚባለውን ቃል ትረሱታላችሁ፡፡ እባካችሁ እዚያ የሰው ሀገር በመሆን የተሰማችሁን የዝቅተኝነት ስሜት Inferiority complex ለእኛ የሚሻለውን ፍለጋ እንደ ተሰደዳችሁ አድርጋችሁ በማሰብና በመደስኮር ለማሸነፍ አትሞክሩ፡፡ ከሀገር የወጣችሁት ለመኖር ነው፡፡ እኛም እዚህ ያለነው ለመኖር ነው- ኑሮ ከተባለ፡፡ ተዉን እንኑርበት፡፡ ችግራችንን እናስታምምበት፡፡ ተዉን እናልቅስበት፡፡ እውነት የምታስቡልን ከሆነ እባካችሁ ተዉን፡፡ ራሳችን ለራሳችን እናለቅሳለን፡፡ ተዉን!

    • Abesha on

      Mulugheta, you must be one of the Woyanne to accuse the Ethiopian diaspora for the misdeed of Woyanne. Mulugheta what you need to know is that the Ethiopian diaspora will not be silenced and keep fighting the Woyanne misdeed and expose the corruption to Western leaders. We don’t give you and your boss Woyanne the peace of mind. We keep on campaigning and be a voice for the voiceless Ethiopians. This is exacly what Elias and other true son and daughter of Ethiopian doing. While the Woyanne at thier insugency time 21 years ago, you think the Woyanne only fight its war with Derg in Tigray region? The Woyanne supporters in the West didn’t campaign? If they campaign then why you didn’t call them the Western world diaspora with inferiority complex?

      Mulugheta, let me tell you one thing. The Woyanne days in power are numbered. The Ethiopians people are now more united than ever. The political parties like OLF & G7 are now more united than ever. The West will see the political dyanmics and may switch thier side to the opposition like OLF & G7. This has been seen in Tunisia, Libya and Egypt and Ethiopia is not different from the arab countries. When the Western power switch thier side they will facilitate the Ethiopian neighbouring countries like Djubuti, Kenya and South Sudan for spring point for the Ethiopian opposition attack aganist the Woyanne. When that happen the diaspora will go and join them in thier fight to bring democracy in Ethiopia just like the Lybian diaspora did. So Mulugheta don’t cry baby & you better join the people in their fight.

  24. Web-Neh Haimanot on

    First sham on US becouse he serve them by killing Ethiopian and without them he sis nothing.He is slave by brith and hate everything. The only option we have is get we weopen against the Tigria Woyanowech and kill them one by one.They killes us for long and we can’t stand before we weap them.Doen to special interset Sionis Groups and Hate them after I hate Meles Tigria.t

  25. yebbo on

    The woyane gujile are the devil incarnate. The devil woyane is here to steal, kill and torture people. They are selling our land to any bidder with a dime, selling our children to homosexual bidders in the name of child adoption, maids are sold as slaves to work for arabs, and those unfortunate enough to live in the country are being brutalised.

    The devil woyane’s brutality is at its peak and we know this because the woyane see any one and every one as their enemy, and that should only speed up their eternal demise.

    Long live Ethiopia and its heroic sons and daughters who in the face of adversity are tenaciously fighting the devil woyane tooth and nail.

  26. Anonymous on

    What Woyanes did to Elias, a kind of remind me a little bit what happened to me the other day as I was walking in hurry to get to work: three young teenagers with their pants almost down to their knees, approached me and asked me for a few dollars for cigarettes, I said to them, sorry boys, I don’t carry cash with me, and I said to them jokingly, haven’t you heard Obama’s message to teenagers like you to pull your pants up? then my God, the filthy curse words started flying out of their mouths, thank God though, it was not bullets. I looked at them and felt deeply sorry for them that obviously, they were not thought manners, discipline and respect. No doubt, these kids will grow up and be problems to society like Woyanes are to Ethiopians. It is unfortunate and saddens me deeply that Ethiopia is under lawless, undisciplined, ruthless, thieves who have no clue about the RULE OF LAW.

  27. save ethiopia on

    በ መጀመሪያ ደረጃ ስለዉጪ ስላሉት ኢትዮጵያውያን ያገባኛል የሚል ከሆነ በሊብያ አገር በ ሌላ የ አረብ አገር የሚሰቃዩ ብዙ ኢትዮጵያወያን አሉ በቂ :: ለምን እንሱን ሲረዳ አይሰማም? ሁለተኛ ኢትዮጵያውያን ተቃውማአቸዉን ውጪ በደንብ ካላሳዩ የት ያሳዩ? ኢትዮጵያማ እያፈንካቸው ነው:ዎያኔ ቅዱስ ነው ስላላሉ:: ኢትዮጵያኖች mars ቢሄዱም እኮ ትከሳቸው ይሆናል: የፈጣጣ ነገር እኮ አይታወቀም:: ዎያኔ ደሞ ስማ ማነው መንግስት ያደረገህ ነው እና ነው ፈራጅ የሆነከው? ለራስህ እራስህ እንጂ እንደ መንግስት እውቅና የሰጠኅው የ ኢትዮጵያውያ ህዝብ እኮ አይደለም::ባልጠፋ መንግስት:: ለሰላም እና ለነጻነት ዉጪ የዎጡትንም የምትከስ ከሆን ምን ያህል ገብጋባ ችጋራም መሆንህን ነው ምታሳየው ለነገሩ እንከዋን ችጋራም ባትሆን ኖሮ አመለካከትህም እንደዛ አይሁንም ነበር:: ዎያኔ የሁነ አባባል አለ በእንግልዘኛ ሰምተኅው ይሆናል No body is perfect አንተ ግን ትጻረረዋለህ አሜሪካ ድረስ እን ኤልያስ አገር:: በጣም ችጋራም ነህ ባትሆን ኖሮ አታደርገውም ነበር ግን ነህ እኔ ቀድሜ ልብላ ነው ምትለው:: ምን ታድርግ ሳታስበው ገነት ገባህ: ከዛ ላለ መውጣት የምታደርገው ትርምስምስ አቤት ;ስንት እርቀት እንደሚዎስድህ አብረን እናያለን:: ስማማ ዎያኔ በ 99.6% አሸንፈህ ለምን ግን ጋዜጤኞቹን አሰርካቸው ለ 0.4% ብለህ?

  28. save ethiopia on

    ምን ያህል ገብጋባ ችጋራም መሆንህን ነው ምታሳየው ለነገሩ እንከዋን ችጋራም ባትሆን ኖሮ አመለካከትህም እንደዛ አይሁንም ነበር:: ዎያኔ የሁነ አባባል አለ በእንግልዘኛ ሰምተኅው ይሆናል No body is perfect አንተ ግን ትጻረረዋለህ አሜሪካ ድረስ እን ኤልያስ አገር ትከሳለህ የት ይሂዱ ግን? በጣም ችጋራም ነህ ባትሆን ኖሮ አታደርገውም ነበር ግን ነህ እኔ ቀድሜ ልብላ ነው ምትለው:: ምን ታድርግ ሳታስበው ገነት ገባህ: ከዛ ላለ መውጣት የምታደርገው ትርምስምስ አቤት ;ስንት እርቀት እንደሚዎስድህ አብረን እናያለን:: ስማማ ዎያኔ በ 99.6% አሸንፈህ ለምን ግን ጋዜጤኞቹን አሰርካቸው ለ 0.4% ብለህ?

  29. Aware on

    I think the verdict is correct if you see from wayane side. elias creat a sever headache that will never cure , weyane never recover from it. elias make the most dangerouse move going to asmara and intervie PIA. by doing that he show the whole world eritrea is at peace with it self unlike other nations. coperation with the nation that help them selfs eventully will yield to the benefit to all particpant.
    weyane knew deep inside any wind comes from the north will finsh them with a speed of light. that is way they can not stand any this kind of nature.

  30. save ethiopia on

    ሌላ የመጨረሻ ጥያቄ መሳርያ የያዘ ብቻ ነው እንዴ ስለ አገር የሚያውቀው? በ እርገጥ ችጋራም ነህ ሳታስበው ገነት ገባህ . ከዛ ላለመውጣት የምታደርገው ስግብግባዊ አመለካከት ያሳያል:: ሰላምን እና የነጻነት አየር ለመተንፈስ ኑሮዋቸዉን በአሜሪካ ይደረጉትንም ታሸበር ጀመር አረ ምን እንበልህ አሳፋሪ ችጋራም:: እንደመንግስት እውቅና ለራስህ የሰጠኅው እራስህ እንጂ እንዴት ውዱ የኢትዮጵያ ህዝብ ላፋታ እንክዋን እንደመንግስት ቅውቅና ይስጥሃል? በ ተረፈ ሻብያ እንዳትለኝ አደራ ካልከኝ ደሞ ሻብያ ያልሆኑትንም እንዴት እንደምትለይ ንገረኝ

  31. Anonymous on

    FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! THAT TOTTA MELES IS SO OUT OF CONTROL, NOW HE THINKS, HE IS A LION…

  32. Ethiopia Negash on

    Forming a Guerilla Journalism in Ethiopia is a must======It sounds like some of the writers here are surprised by the verdict but majority of them agree that it was not a surprise to them. To most of us who live outside Ethiopia it is clear that there is a dictatorship in the country that is suppressing the basic human and democratic rights of the people. The dictators power is enforced by terrorizing the population by punishing some of the people with “treason” and “terrorism”. As I have said before, dictatorship happens in a county when the state has absolute power. Every aspect of the citizens’ public lives and the various spheres of society are under strict control of the government. When dictators become desperate the first step they take is to eliminate the opposition, kill students, teachers, workers,journalists, dismantle their associations, ban their news papers and magazines. The most they attack will be the media that does not work for them and the journalist who refuse to be instruments of the government’s propaganda machine. I personally have nothing good to say about this government of Ethiopia.
    Therefore, we all know that the state media is not on the peoples side. So a sustained security siege of the opposition media and the outright closure and prosscription of newspapers should lead to a section of the media to go underground and stay in business of fighting the dictatorship. Just like a guerilla warfare they can use a hit and run strategy in attacking the government’s policies, tell the people the truth behind the lies that is being said by the state media.
    when the state media does not tell the reality, the underground media will fill in the crucial gap in keeping the people informed of what is going on in the government and specially talk about the things the government wants to hide. This system constitutes an alternative media which allows the civil society to express itself in the face of authoritarian closure. This does not mean that the underground media becomes a news media of the opposition parties or organizations. It is simply a media that writes about the truth that is going on in the open by the government.They need to tell the people this government like all the other governments will fall if they rise up together and say enough.
    Guerilla journalism worked in other countries but we have to remember that it is not a dinner party. Just look what happened to the journalists who were sentenced to long term imprisonment for “the crimes they committed” with their pens and papers.They wrote and taught the people and on the planet of dictatorship this is a serious crime.
    Finally, I think some rich Ethiopians who live in the country should be approached to help the underground journalism financially.

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