By Elias Kifle
This past weekend (July 1st – 3rd) the Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America (EHSNA) held a highly successful Ethiopian festival in Washington DC. During the same period, on July 2nd, members and friends of Ethiopian Review gathered to celebrate the journal’s 20th anniversary. I participated in both events and left with a feeling that Ethiopiawinet has been reborn in North America.
Two days before Ethiopian Review to hold its 20th anniversary event, the Woyanne junta held a televised press conference to falsely accuse me of organizing terrorist activities. It’s clear that Woyanne’s intention was to terrorize people not to attend Ethiopian Review’s event for fear of being accused of supporting a “terrorist.” The propaganda did in fact scared off a few individuals, but the event achieved its objectives, i.e., celebrate our past achievements and recommit ourselves to work harder in the future.
The highlight of Ethiopian Review’s event were the speeches by Artiste Tamagne Beyene and my father, Kifle Seifu. Watch the video below.
(I will post the video of Tamagne’s speech shortly.)
Guest speakers included Ato Neamin Zeleke from Timret; Dr Aklog Birara, a senior economist at the World Bank; Ato Masresha Tilahun from Ethiopian National Youth Movement; and Ato Abebe Belew from Addis Dimts Radio.
There was also an auction to raise funds for Ethiopian Review’s 2011 expansion plan.
The event was concluded at 6 PM and most of us went straight to the Ethiopian Festival that was underway at the Georgetown University in Washington DC.
When I arrived there, I could not believe my eyes. The stadium was filled with thousands of people of all ages — from small children to the elderly. I knew the festival would be a great success, but not to this extent in its first year.
As we all know, the Woyanne junta that is currently looting and plundering Ethiopia has been trying to destroy Ethiopiawinet in the Diaspora by infiltrating institutions and turning them into its own political tools. One of its victims was the Ethiopian Sports Federation in North America (ESFNA) that had been hijacked by Woyanne businessman
Sheik Al Amoudi. This past weekend, Woyanne’s Diaspora campaign, financed by an annual budget of $40 million, has finally been dealt a major blow. Ethiopiawinet is being revived once again thanks to a group of patriotic Ethiopians who came together to organize such a spectacular event.
At the stadium, I met several Ethiopians from as far as California and Calgary, Canada, who came with their families to participate in the festival. It was a great feeling to spend time with them.
The organizers, led by Dr Shakespeare Feyissa, Ato Tekle Abebe, and Wzr. Meron Ahadu, did a magnificent job that has exceeded every one’s expectation.