By Selam Yehun
Your words and actions in relation to the war launched in 2020 by the TPLF in Northern Ethiopia are causes for serious concern. You have thrown out the window all pretenses of neutrality and moral standards. You are standing firmly against international law as it pertains to sovereignty, territorial integrity, state responsibility to maintain law and order, and the right to self-defense. You are recklessly throwing around terms like genocide, ethnic cleansing, and famine, merely to sensationalize the conflict and put pressure on Ethiopia and Eritrea. While totally ignoring the egregious crimes of the TPLF group and the enormous suffering inflicted on the victims.
Of course, your illusion of moral superiority might cloud your vision to clearly see what your words and actions amount to, i.e. complicity in, and aiding and abetting high crimes. So, let me put it in words that you will understand. Assume that a soldier deliberately opened gun fire and killed people at a military camp in your country. Security forces take action to stop the killing by disarming or shooting down the perpetrator. In these circumstances, would you request both sides to lay down their arms?
Now, imagine the perpetrator is not 1 person but 250,000 armed men and women. The initial victims were some 30,000 soldiers barracked in about 200 sites. At exactly the same time, on the 3rd of November 2020, thousands of their former comrades and an army of men and women start shooting at them. Thousands got killed, the rest brutalized, some run over by heavy trucks.
The insurrectionists stole all the tanks, artillery, rockets, weapons under Ethiopia’s Northern Command with plans to march to the capital city and capture state power by force; and later on, oust the government of Eritrea and annex Eritrea in part or as a whole.
Now, at what point would you shout ‘ceasefire’?
When the terrorist group is killing unsuspecting soldiers, stealing heavy weapons, killing civilians, looting and destroying property, commandeering humanitarian aid and vehicles, ridiculing calls for ceasefire…or
- When the legitimate government takes action to assert the monopoly of the use of force by disarming or using force to put down the insurrection?
- Over the past two years, this question was posed to you on multiple occasions,
and every time you have chosen B.
We noticed that your love for peace and rejection of conflict depends onthe direction the wind blows. We observed that you turn a blind eye when your favorite insurrectionist group starves civilians and commits war crimes. We know you are not interested in a ceasefire and peaceful solutions when the insurrection was going according to plan. Now that things have ‘spiraled out of control’ for your favorite insurrectionist group, you want a ‘timeout’, for it to reorganize, mobilize more cannon-fodder and launch another round of invasion. What makes you think that any self-respecting state and people will allow your campaign of destruction to continue in a loop?
Thanks to the mouthpiece of the insurrectionists, we know that you would not mind if they toppled governments by force, as long as they add some tokens from other ethnic groups. We know that you would cry with joy if your favorite insurrectionists marched northwards, to dismantle the government you love to hate and cobble together a puppet administration. And that you would look the other way if the insurrectionists annexed Eritrea in part -as they did for 2 decades – or as a whole.
Insurrections are treason, and that states have a legitimate right to self-defense and to cooperate with each other to act against mutual threats. In your country, if a single person killing civilians or security personnel is neutralized using force, why wouldn’t other countries take measures to subdue insurrectionists that vow ‘to go to the depths of hell’ to dismantle the states.
Do not be surprised if we do not take your plea for ‘an end of hostilities and call for ‘negotiations’ at face value? Knowing that you were, and still are, aiding and abetting a terrorist group, and using your media and diplomatic clout to legitimatize the war of insurrection.
With all due respect, you cannot deceive us with your veneer of humanitarianism, human rights and pacifism. We know your true colors, aiding and abetting the TPLF minority regime to wreak havoc in our neighborhood for 27 years. Your cry of ‘hurray’ while directing the insurrectionists to Addis Ababa and Asmara still rings in our ears.
Please note that the winds of change are blowing in our neighborhood, trying to stop them is an exercise in futility.
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