By Captain Woldemikael Dagnachew
Politicians of today-in-age and yesteryear continuously failed to listen, learn and level with citizens to liberate our country and shorten the sufferings of our oppressed citizens. Centuries ago, historians came up with the classic theory to explain the rise and decline of nations. The theory was that great nations start out tough-minded and energetic. Toughness and energy lead to wealth and power. Wealth and too much power lead to affluence and luxury. Affluence and luxury lead to decadence, corruption and decline. Human nature, in no form of it at all, could ever bear prosperity, John Adams wrote in a letter to Thomas Jefferson, warning against the coming corruption of his country. It is too sad that Hailu Shawul has joined the corrupted EPRDF too? For him, betraying the loyal AEUP Members and Supporters was yet another symptom of moral decay. TPLF divided Ethiopians to easily, deviously, systematically and ruthlessly rule the country and we foolishly embraced that division and remained divided for over 18 years. How stupid was that my fellow Ethiopians? Someone once said that all it takes for evil to prevail is for good people to do nothing. If this is true then, we really have to ask ourselves if good people are chosen to lead us because evil appears to be prevailing and this is becoming more apparent as we consider the level of moral decay apparent in most, if not all, of our present day politicians. How do these traitorous politicians like Lidetu, Ayele and Hailu get elected? Has our tolerant and wise society really sunk this low that whatever is wrong is right and whatever is right is wrong? Zemene GrimbiT!
I have no doubt that Prof. Tecola Hagos sounded to be an Ethiopian patriot and that I am grateful to him for spilling the beans about Halu Shawul’s past flirts with the devil. But equally I blame him for not exposing him for the past 18 long years despite criticizing most opposition parties and individuals. We could have saved our time, energy and the many millions that Hailu Shawel and his North America gangsters alleged to have stolen from the generous public in the name of Fund-Raising for Kinijit that was hi-jacked and destroyed by the TPLF with Lidetu and Ayele’s help.
Nevertheless, I was still eager to read Prof. Tecola’s articles to know why Hailu Shawel could not join TPLF in 1992 or thereafter as he admittedly wanted a position and whether he was given any position to serve in TPLF or his demands were rejected? The public may want to know also if he was used since then by TPLF as an agent to destroy Kinijit.
WHY IS THAT MORAL DECAY IS SPREADING THROUGH OUR POLITICIANS AND OUR SOCIETY?
So what has really happened to Ethiopian politics and the so-called politicians? Did we really lose our traditional morality? No, we were the victims of our own backward politics and untrained politicians we chose and trusted to lead us. It’s a sign of our spiritual and moral decay that we expect so much as a people from politics, selfish and power hungry politicians like Ayele Chamiso, Lidetu and now, Hailu Shawul who betrayed us and that we are so much less capable of seeing through their obvious and self-serving machinations.
I believe that this stems from the decline of the Christian religion; without some hope in the next world and some balanced sense of the human good in light of eternal life, politics assumes exaggerated importance. It becomes the only hope of community, human unity, the alleviation of pain and suffering and injustice. We do not only put too much faith in politicians but also blindly followed individuals like them as cults and forget that it’s a prosaic task often undertaken by venal people. Our nation is tainted with crimes against God and humanity where human rights are systematically violated, resulting in the disappearance and death of over 6,000,000 Ethiopians since TPLF seized power without being elected by the people & for the people of Ethiopia. It was winner takes all auction or political theft made between the dictatorial Derg regime and TPLF Bandits. We cannot anymore stand as mere spectators of dismal and flagrant display of historical failures to bring a very genuine social, economic and political reforms in Ethiopia. The lying politicians especially like Lidetu and Hailu and their media talking heads and the I know-it-all commentators or writers who supported them are tying to confuse the issue, to justify their ideological and practical impotence, their immorality, which has allowed a continuous rain of betrayals without any serious attempt to end it immediately and by all means. It is now, Zemene GrimbiT indeed!
Their reaction shows how the perversion of moral values in Ethiopia and in the Diasporas has reached such a level that Ethiopian citizens are treated as cannon fodder, as peons to be used and transferred at will, peons in an immoral political process of sheer surrender in the face of TPLF’s state terrorism, of concessions, appeasement and self-destruction. Only a very harsh response to every attack against us a very painful and bloody response against the other side – can decrease the other side’s appetite to attack us and can save human lives. With the so-called “peace process” I myself used to advocate, the situation has become much worse for us Ethiopians, given that the TPLF state terrorists with automatic rifles, guns and tanks went from a few dozen before 1997 to many tens of thousands of killings, thanks to the American government of George W Bush’s brilliant idea to give them machine guns, loans & Aids to continue to loot Ethiopian wealth, terrorise the nation and now, bit by bit lease fertile lands and give away a vast place the size of an European country to weaken and destroy Ethiopia and its unparalleled history that the west have always been jealous about. There have been more and more victims of massacres since the 2005 general election. The word “peace” has been emptied of all meaning, and has become a “code word” for surrender, having been used for almost 19 years to define that which in reality is nothing but the spilling of innocent blood, offered in sacrifice to the Woyane of a murderous ideology. Those who were murdered by the TPLF terrorists, lead by Meles Zenawi (the “engineer” of the Agaazie guns, to whom he might dedicate roads, squares, football teams and tournaments in future, all under the rigorous absence of the free press in Ethiopia and the silence of the media in the West), would be called by President Obama too, who knows “sacrifices for peace and democracy”. Today, more than ever, the warning and reproach by the Prophet Ezekiel resounds profoundly true: they say, “Peace, Peace”, and there is no “peace” So, why would we want to have allies like America, It’s not only a sign of weakness knowing that the west cannot liberate us at all, but us who can liberate ourselves. Period!
As some thought all along and expressed it too, the west is knowingly appeasing the Woyanes because they have surrendered Ethiopia’s sovereignty. The gullible Ethiopians might think they have a country called Ethiopia but lately the reality speaks different. It is a country that belongs to Sheik Al Amoudin and his Arab billionaires, 1000s of NGOs and foreign forces that are running the country the way they like it. Even Hailu Shawul admitted that he was given plenty of Kurkum (a fatherly kick on the head by western diplomats in Addis) in addition to his imprisonment, which he now seemed to have accepted to be all right to be forced to sign the so-called “Code of Conduct” that destroyed his good reputation. The Diplomats argue, even the opposition leaders are dancing to their tunes and they control the country’s political affairs. The Woyanes have no other work other than celebrating food donation as if it’s their good year harvest. I don’t know how much insult and shame the people of Ethiopia can take anymore. Are you ready to betray the fallen heroes too, and give up your entire sovereignty and freedom? What a Zemene GrimbiT we live in really? What a Chat, Reggae and Traitors Twuld, we really have become? Therefore, forget, if you can, the swine flu pandemic, stormy weather and extortion, climate change, pirates, and focus instead on a deadly disease that is fast sweeping through Ethiopian politics: moral gangrene. As it infects the limbs of Politics, rotting the body tissue of Opposition Politics and its Good Cause, the stench of terminal decay becomes unmissable. The bungled attempt by Engineer Hailu against his recent critic was the latest symptom of a political necrosis too, that is destroying his own authority in AEUP.
Hailu remains a leader of AEUP but the party’s purpose will be dying, eaten away by a cascade of incompetence and turpitude cause by TPLF’s terminal disease called opportunism. It is bad enough that the AEUP Could not put an effective brake on the runaway train of Hailu. But when TPLF urge Hailu the betrayal of his friends, members and supporters, the brave, very disciplined people who stuck with him through dark nights, when Hailu the traitor and weaker finally threw in the towel, you can be sure that Ethiopian decency and patriotism are in bad decay and on death row. Hailu’s signing of a fake and biased document was fundamentally unpatriotic. Foolishly, perhaps, I had always thought he was brave and bigger than that. Worst of all, it is spectacularly inept, in need of adult supervision. He has said many patriotic things during his struggle with us and a now saying different things just before the next general election after whick he thinks would be appointed as a President to sit on that rocking chair to build his business empire. It’s telling that so many people are willing to buy this self-serving use of the passive voice. Instead of seeing an optimist politician, I instead see a typical politician, a man with great faith in himself that he hopes others will endorse him without asking too many questions. But Ethiopians are no more trusting fools after Lidetu Kihdetu’s betrayal of 2005. He is also a man that is all too plastic, willing to avoid controversy because his number one issue is not the liberation of oppressed Ethiopians, but himself and his salvific mission to riches and higher position in EPRDF government before he dies.
Hailu always wanted to be a President not because he wants to commit to any particular good policy but because he believes his mere presence will elevate our politics and his native intelligence will be able to see him through any particular issue on which he has not taken a stand up to now. He finds it unseemly and constricting to commit himself to the liberal policies he has endorsed his entire career when it was safe to do so. This is all packaging that reveals someone for whom winning will trump matters of high principle and accountability. But TPLF is not as kind or stupid as he may have thought too? He will never be a President. TPLF does not like Amharas. From now on too, Hailu shawul and the so-called code of conduct, cannot be trusted even with small change. Full marks to those on all sides of the Medrek and others who refused to sign the execution papers and refused to believe that there would ever be a free and fair election. Do we still really want thousands more aliens entering an over-crowded rubber stamp parliament only to say Squak Squack like Ducks to change nothing at all after all what we saw for five years? On 30/10/2009 Hailu Shawul grabbed the spotlight for having “no principles and no courage”. To be accused of doing a shameful thing, all because, the stink from moral gangrene was sickening. Sad!
WHEN GOOD PEOPLE IN ANY COUNTRY CEASE THEIR VIGILANCE AND STRUGGLE, THEN EVIL MEN PREVAIL… – PEARL S. BUCK
There are many good people in our country. I would even venture to state that the overwhelming vast majority of our 80 million citizens are good people. The problem is that the good people have let their guard down and allowed selfish, weak and evil men to prevail. By following those false prophets of government solving all the ills of society, we have allowed the hangman’s gallows to grow and loom ever larger over our every day existence. Ethiopia’s so-called politicians and those who are now in the corridors of power mislead the people, abused their power to only acquire their wealth. To acquire their wealth, the more greedy ones also used all means possible to get them. They enjoyed much advantage in the art of survival. Our nation being abundant with resources and of which many were still untapped, were “goldmines” to these greedy people, and by their greed, they took and swallowed like dinosaurs, whatever things that came to their path. Their greed had domino effect because they normally cried for more and when they cried for more, they then took away most of the wealth of the country like Mengistu Hailemariam the butcher and all others did, leaving the crumbs under the table to the unfortunate who are wounded and left behind with empty hands and pockets to fight for it. This was how business morality began to slide and people began to trust each other less. The effect was that, it also created a gap where the rich became richer and the poor became poorer and sicker. There was no more equality under the eyes of the law and this then affected the country’s ancient social order. At present, equal opportunities in the fields of private business, and ownerships of property and advancement of personal skills are now no more there. People no more respect each other because the more powerful creatures around them had threatened their rights. The government became less caring where tough laws were passed to control and to curtail unwarranted norms or behaviours so that the regime and few of their close friends like Sheik Al Amoudin can cause harm to the people & control social and economic order.
ETHIOPIAN TRIBAL AND OR RACIAL HARMONY THAT IS AFFECTED BY THE EPRDF
The wrong policies of the TPLF government were supposed to give equal advantage to the Amharas, Oromos, Tigrians and other natives of Ethiopia, but this was not materialized. All Ethiopians did not equally share opportunities and wealth in the country. Only those Ethiopians who support the TPLF got the added advantage over those outside them. At the same time in pursing the never-ending policy of an Economic Policy, TPLF had created racial tensions from time to time. It had been purposely created with the focus to ensure that only one particular race or group of people will continue to benefit from the wealth of the country at the expense of other Ethiopians sufferings. There will be further erosion of equality of rights and opportunities. All protection of our rights and equality as enshrined in the Federal Constitution will be further diluted or be taken away. The Federal Constitution will just become a paper tiger and will be ineffective to provide economic, security, political stability, equality, and certainty. For those who were not so fortunate than those in power and being also having not so much opportunity in their paths to help them overcome the spiralling costs of living, they have no choice, but to rob, cheat and sell their bodies, sell chat or drugs to survive. Why? Morals, trusts and integrity were no more be important to them because they had to survive. There had been much moral decay and this was a disease of the 21st century created by the thugs in the TPLF government. We must examine this moral decay carefully and we must seek a cure for it. When moral decay creeps in, our society will collapse. There will be more plunders, cheats, robbers & ruthless killers everywhere. Sadly, it is Zemene GrimbiT.
When the present parliamentarians were elected they took Oaths before the Speakers of the Legislative Assemblies and or in Parliament to protect the Constitutions. The Constitutions are to ensure equality and equal protection before the law, equal opportunity for all races in the fields of business, education, possession of property and the protection of rights of citizens, but many had failed to uphold the Oaths for fear of losing popularity, labelled as OLF or other and or be kicked out in the next election and even be beaten badly by the regime’s thugs as was after the last General Election in 2005. This then created a situation of selfishness among parliamentarians and Ministers and the attitude among these politicians were also that as long as they survive, they forgot or neglected to represent the peoples’ voices in and outside the Legislative Assemblies and Parliament. This was only to ensure their own political survival and that was what the Lidetus, Ayeles and Hailus did. Their selfishness had not been dignified. Other good brains after being been marginalized would just have their political career shortened. The end result is that the country will stand losing these honest and patriotic politicians. Many cabinet ministers also dared not to speak during cabinet meetings for fear that the leadership will not pick them in coming elections and even sack them from the fake cabinet. This was because being in the EPRDF regime’s administration; the stakes are always high especially if you are not a trusted TPLF member. This is because once elected these opportunists and ordinary yobs could also gain extra allowances if given ministerial posts. They could also gain extra allowances by making them sit in the Board of Directors of government-linked companies or in statutory bodies. Since politicians in the TPLF had played a very devious role in causing all those bad political, racial, social and economic divide, they must mend it; otherwise, it will be too late and things can explode at any time. Power had been in their hands if they continue to take away people’s land, people’s rights and discriminate them, we would in these next few years see the bad effect of TPLF’s ruthless abuses. They better call for national reconciliation soon. Otherwise, people will go to the streets and we will see that law and order would be of no effect in our country. Our beloved country Ethiopia will be like some of our neighbouring countries where elected governments collapsed by demonstrations & protests in the streets. How to cure the disease? It is very simple, but the cure would be time consuming because of the rot inside. Politicians need to take the lead because they were the causes of these diseases. Politicians and administrators created peace and progress in any society and if all take the lead, the domino effect of a better society could be felt again.
SHOULD OUR MORALLY DECAYED POLITICIANS BE HELD TO A HIGHER MORAL STANDARD?
The current poor state of the Ethiopian economy and the interests of our politicians, who are often openly supported by the government media and their blinded cadres, typically rule political trends. In recent years, many countries tried to ensure free and fair elections to have adopted several legal and regulatory reforms, and financial disclosure has been claimed to prevent political bribery in some cases.
Yet, even the most striving reforms were often destabilized and taken advantage of, in the name of money and glory. However, the fundamental factor that governs a nation’s political tendency is what people believe about right and wrong, what they aspire for their lives, what virtues they practice, what responsibilities they undertake, what ideals they shape and what vices they condemn. In other words, the fundamental factor in a well-governed state is moral. When it comes to good politics, immorality is a fundamental notion of the viewpoints of all political parties that are involved. For example, in the United States, conservatives oppose abortion defending the human rights of the unborn child, but they don’t support social programs that would ensure help for uneducated people. Liberals oppose death penalty on the grounds of diminishing human lives, but they strongly support abortion. Obviously, both sides are inconsistent and immoral and yet to their own minds, they try to do the right thing under the umbrella of politically correct behaviour. The problem is that in a politicised world governed by collective thinking, people typically do not question the purposes or actions of political leaders because they have voted for them. Lying and the distortion of truth become indispensable tactics for the success of political systems. Politicians imply a system of beliefs that establish their judgment on the morality of a bad situation. This explains the numerous scandals of political corruption in United States, but also in our Mother Ethiopia.
As you may all heard too, Jack Abramoff was found guilty of conspiracy, tax evasion and corruption. Duke Cunningham pleaded guilty of conspiracy to commit bribery, mail fraud and tax evasion; President Bill Clinton was accused for lying about his relations with Monika Lewinsky; and further was investigated for his relation to the White-water Development Corporation while he was Governor of Arkansas; Kenneth Lay was found guilty of security fraud and his name was related to the known Enron scandal along with the names of 158 elected Republicans and 100 Democrats in Congress in 2001. Most of the politicians, lobbyists or political allies were found guilty and sentenced for their committed political crimes. Others are still waiting for their fate in the International Court at The Hague. Meles & Co; soon would be one of them too? Yet, this is only the tip of the iceberg. We all live in an infected moral society that promotes individualism as a result of a totalitarian system of political influence that accepts a total collapse of values. And this is the result of the collapse of the political system that values irresponsibility and selfishness instead of the responsible social behaviour. State interests considerably overshadow nation’s interests. Often politicians promote the notion that we are whom we vote for, fighting for ceasing the cultural, social and ethnic conflicts around the world and having a vision of a better world to live in. Moral and political issues should be resolved under a new spirit of compromise and cooperation. Politicians should definitely reorganize their principles and reaffirm their values. They should always strive to re-establish their links to fundamental spiritual values in order to influence society both in individual and collective level. Spiritual and moral values should be the foundation for new economic, social, spiritual and cultural concerns so that politicians are able to get free from the influence of the media, greed and apply their political systems to the best of the society. The Ethiopian government should also effectively redesign the terms of employment in public service, then incentive policies would be improved and would mobilize political will for the sustained anti-corruption and anti-division. But is TPLF controlled the right kind of government for Ethiopia & even for any country in this world that would be willing to eradicate division and corruption? I very much doubt it and in fact further say that TPLF is a 21st Century political disease that poisoned, decayed and destroyed civility and morality in our country.
To awake in people a new sense of responsibility is an intricate task, especially when political and state interests are being put at stake and or at risk. However, the moral strength of a society is the reflection of the life of its members and therefore politicians should acquire a brand new perspective on politics. An issue, which received little attention from politicians and media in the election campaign, is the spiritual and moral decay of our nation. The TPLF and most opposition party leaders do not have all the answers. A spiritual and moral revival is the only answer. This will in time inspire and uplift politics and our society. It is important for all political leaders in our country and also in Diasporas to remember that they are setting an appropriate example for the general public. Often, good people can have a poorely misguided ideas. One can be a political street fighter while remaining civil, moral and patriotic. The key is to stick to the issues and remain loyal. I encourage MEDREK’s political leaders to step back to consider whether they are setting a good, civil example for the citizens of our country and all their future decisions to be for the benefit of Ethiopia, all Ethiopians and not for their personal benefits. The public should also help them to never negotiate out of fear and never fear to negotiate with nasty TPLF.
Also, I strongly urge them never to give in to the TPLF’s selfish, devious, mischievous negotiators and foreign government diplomats bullying, to agree to anything that only benefit the ruling party to stay on power at a cost of the sufferings of the Ethiopian people. Those that push “their selfish wants and rights” push the nation into more dangerous chaos. This time, it is do or die time for the opposition. TPLF’s drama must end or be stopped with blood and sweat if at all necessary. We must say enough is enough! Why too? Ambassador David H. Shinn who was a former U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia said, “The United States can impact the situation on the margins, but it does not have the power to force fundamental change even if there was agreement on what that change should be. The fact is that U.S. leverage is much more limited than most in the Ethiopian Diaspora believe. As a reader during the past 25 years of political commentary by the Ethiopian Diaspora and based on my own contacts with that community, I am really struck by the prevailing belief that the U.S. government has the ability to change Ethiopian polices and alter the fundamental direction of events in Ethiopia. This view is misguided. The opinion piece goes on to state, Congress should hold hearings and enact legislation to help Ethiopians create the conditions that are necessary to ensure that food aid is never needed again. The implication is that the U.S. government can resolve Ethiopia’s governmental, demographic, political and social issues. The United States can impact the situation on the margins, but it does not have the power to force fundamental change even if there was agreement on what that change should be. Those in the Ethiopian Diaspora who oppose the Ethiopian government usually suggest that American assistance to Ethiopia can and should serve as the leverage for forcing change in the country”. Zemene GrimbiT!
The TPLF government & pressure groups who call themselves foreign diplomats, who always pretended to care for people’s rights and the well-being of Ethiopia, but gave no thought to how rights can operate in conscious society gives rise to respect for individual rights. There is no end to the so-called rights, which was always demanded. A right-and-freedom-conscious society in effect recognises a few rights and neglects many others for the sake of peace but does not work with TPLF as proved time and time again. The rights that are recognised are those, which are demanded by the powerful, the aggressive and the nasty authorities like TPLF leaders. There cannot be a human-right without a duty. An endless cacophony of demands by foreign embassies in our country for rights has become a dominant feature of modem Ethiopian politics (fed by bad legislation, loans & food aids which encourages these demands). At the same time, there is a deafening silence on the question of individual liberty & democracy. History has continually demonstrated that the greatest of civilizations decline and fall when they succumb to indulgence at the expense of discipline and endeavour. The fates of Egyptian and Roman civilisations are prime examples. It is not too early for Western Civilization to heed the supreme lesson of human experience. It is time for them to stop appeasing tyrants like Meles Zenawi and lecturing us democracy.
The moral and spiritual decay of the nation is the root cause of the escalating political, economic, social and other problems, which confronted Ethiopia. The major political parties, many political activists, government servants and statutory employees of TPLF, (there is no EPRDF), media & educationists are not seriously confronting this on-going decay to unite and defeat our enemies. There are some genuine politicians too, among the above that are conscious of the problems but are oppressed by the secular institutional structures and obstacles. Some, who are totally antagonistic to good moral, confronts this minority, and spiritual values, as well as those who profess commitment or who are nominally religious, but at the same time pursue and promote secular ideas, ideologies and goals that indirectly if not directly, undermine the spiritual and also the good moral. The latter are unaware of the effects of their actions. There is no indication that Government, the educationists or the media have any answers to our problems. Our moral and spiritual decay is at the root of most known problems. The future of Ethiopia must depend on a spiritual, moral and patriotism revival in unison, which alone can inspire and uplift the political, economic, legal, educational, social and other sectors of Ethiopians life and make possible productive change and development. This task rests with all religions who believe in God and who recognise God’s Lordship over the earth and all who freely dwell on it. May our Almighty God eradicate evil from mother Ethiopia? May God help the opposition politicians not to be outsmarted by TPLF too? Amen!!
Long Live Mother Ethiopia and Her Loyal Children Who Stood By Her, When The Going Got Tough!
(The author of this article can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org)