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Ethiopia in an Existential Crisis Without a Leader, But This, Too, Shall Pass

Ethiopia _ existential _ Yonas biru
Yonas Biru

Yonas Biru, PhD 
Updated on February 6,2023 at 9:35 P.M. Toronto Time

I. Executive Summary 

When it comes to facing a problem head-on, there is the proverbial ostrich that buries its head in the  sand and there is PM Abiy Ahmed who turns attention to something else. True to his character, when  the Orthodox Church conflict reached a point of national crisis, the PM ran out of town and released a  picture with TPLF leaders to show he is in control and to give the media talking points away from the  real crisis.   

The PM is being tossed around by the waves of turbulence caused by Oromo extremist forces, including  high-level officials in his own party. The crisis can be summarized in one line: በትረ መንግስት በእጁ ይዞ እና በመንበረ-ሥልጣን ዙፋን ላይ ተቀምጦ በራሱ ላይ መሸፈት የሚያምረው የኦሮሞ ሃይል ተነስቷል.  

My command of the English language will not allow me to translate the line in a way that does justice  to it. In a nutshell it means “The Oromo elite that sits at the apex of the political power structure and  controls the levers of power is rebelling against itself.” Sadly, a mind that has been stuck in 50 years of  grievance politics cannot unlearn its reflexive behavior that is primed to rebel.  

The question that imposes itself on us is: Why did the Orthodox splinter group took a bold action at  this juncture? Since  the  Church  conflict  has  been  ongoing  for  some  time,  the  timing  of  the  splinter  group’s action is a marker of trigger events. Understanding this dynamic is critical to understand how  we got where we are and how to get out of it.  

One thing is for certain. By the time, the Tigrayan Liberation People’s Front (TPLF) came to power, the  Tigrayan tribal politics had a well-developed and articulated goal that was strategically implemented.  In contrast, the Oromo tribal politics has many heads and souls. It lacks strategy and what happens is  determined by accident and chance.  

As I have noted in an earlier article titled “The Accidental Rise and the Foreseeable Fall of Abiy Ahmed  in the Land of Two Shenes”, two conflict centers have emerged after the fall of TPLF. The first is between  Amhara and Oromo extremist groups – I call  them Amhara-Shene and Oromo-Shene. The second is  within Oromo political forces.   

The conflict between the two Shenes has been raging in full earnest for nearly three years. Both see the  PM as their primary enemy and channel their wrath against each other through him. Using him as a  transmission line and converter station has allowed them to weaponize their animosity to each other  as a national conflict. This has increasingly weakened the PM, and tilted the balance of power within  the Oromo tribal forces in favor of his adversaries, without strengthening the Amhara power base. 

The conflict within the Oromo landscape involves three different groups: Pan-Ethiopianist Oromos led  by  the  PM,  secessionist  forces,  champions  of  hegemonic  Oromia  within  Ethiopia.  The  third  group  includes a shadow government within the Oromo wing of the Prosperity Party (PP-Oromo).  

The dynamics of  these  two conflict centers have all but stripped  the PM of  the levers of power. His  recent engagement with  the TPLF  that has refused  to  fully disarm and relinquish power as per  the  Pretoria agreement has signaled two things. The first signal is that he is powerless. The second is that  he is  not  governed  by  principle, and  he would  do  anything  to  stay in  power. When  seen  from  this  perspective, the timing of the splinter Orthodox group’s bold action is both strategic and political. They  acted because they believed the Oromo tribal land is his only lifeline and he will not act against them. 

By  forces of circumstances, Shene-Oromo  that was a small group of ragtag Oromo Liberation Army  (OLA) has progressively grown to a force of national significance as more Oromo tribalist forces threw  their support behind it. With the PM all but incapacitated, the contention has been between Oromo Shene and the PP-Oromo shadow government.  

The bold assault against the Ethiopian Orthodox Church has given Shene-Oromo strategic advantage  against both the PM and the PP-Oromo shadow government. The PP-Oromo shadow government that  has been supporting Shene-Oromo as an insurance policy against the PM’s reform agenda has found  itself dwarfed by it.  

Ethiopia  is  left  naked  without  a  leader  and  credible  opposition  against  emboldened  Oromo  tribal  groups that are increasingly morphing into the body and spirit of Shene-Oromo politics.  

On the bright side, there is a silver lining in the gathering dark clouds. The fact that the PM is hiding in  some distant land and the Oromo tribal government is aligning itself with the splinter Orthodox group  has created a completely new dynamic that will unravel the Oromo tribal politics. The crisis will break  the political apathy of the silent majority both inside and outside of the Oromo tribal land. Grownups  will  rise  to  take  charge as  Oromo  elders  have  done  to  disassociate  the  Oromo  youth  from  Jawar  Mohammed toward the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020.  

My confidence that was expressed last week is further inspired by the Orthodox Church that has shown  its  centuries  old  tradition  of wisdom and judgment.  Its leaders  have displayed mastery  of  strategic  thinking and leadership in framing the agenda and managing the narrative. Their response to the PM’s  speech has schooled the young PM the art and science of public relations.  

A clarion call must be made by the Patriarch of the Orthodox Church to prohibit extremist forces from  leveraging  the  crisis as a  tool  for political ends. The Church’s  followers and  supporters must  stand  guard to push back against political forces who wish to hijack the protest process. The Church must  provide a list of slogans and protest banners for national and international rallies. Every speech that is  delivered at rallies at home and abroad must be consistent and approved by the Church. 

The purpose of this article is to show that the current crisis should not surprise us. It did not happen  by accident. It happened by a slow-motion process. We will not exit from it until we understand the  process that brought us here. This requires understanding the sources of the spiraling conflict and a  sober  discussion  to  build  consensus.  Let  us  start  with  the  man  at  the  helm  of  the  political  power  structure. 

II. Abiy-Ahmed: An Ordinary Man Drowning in an Extraordinary Turbulence 

Before we judge the PM’s performance, we need to understand that governing an ungovernable society  is no small feat. From the get-go, Amhara and Oromo extremists started pulling him to their extreme  positions, denying him a space to govern from the center of the political spectrum.

On  the one end,  the likes of Shaleka Dawit want  the  PM  to “abolish  the  constitution,  dissolve  parliament, abandon the ethnic agenda, and lead a transitional government by decree.” On the  other  end,  Team  Jawar  Mohammed  warned  him  “Ethnic  federalism  engrained  in  the  current  constitution is here to stay. It’s not up for discussion, let alone negotiation.” 

These are Ivy League educated souls whose understanding of democratic governance is either  ruling by decree or outlawing political discussions and negotiation. The story of the PM is one  of reconciling such diametrically opposing, irreconcilably positioned, and deeply entrenched  political culture of helplessly hermitized (Dawit) and permanently tribalized (Jawar) political  activists. Illiterate peasants who stayed in line for hours to vote for their leaders appreciate  democracy more than their Ivy-League educated counterparts. 

Soon after he took office, the PM became a target of Oromo extremists for praising Emperor  Menilik. “አፄ ምኒልክ ኢትዮጵያን ከወረራ በመከላከልና ቴክኖሎጂ በማስገባት ኢትዮጵያን ያስረከቡን ታላቅ መሪ ናቸው.” He was  declared the enemy of Oromo when he affirmed that Ethiopia’s geographic proper and sovereign status  are “not up for negotiation.” 

Speaking of  the PM’s betrayal of  the Oromo, Milkessa M. Gemechu, a  former member of  the Central  Committee of  the Oromo Democratic Party (who is now in exile) wrote in Foreign Policy Magazine:  “Not even one year into his premiership, he was openly regarded as a traitor in Oromia.” 

Milkessa accused the PM of: (1) purging “hardcore Oromo nationalists from any role in his government  at  federal,  regional, and local government levels”;  (2) demonizing  the Qeerroo as an “ungovernable  pestilence that must be dealt with as soon as possible”; and (3) shifting the Oromo Democratic Party  (ODP) “dramatically toward the public dominance of Ethiopian nationalists who are organized around  Amharic language and culture, the Ethiopian Coptic Orthodox Church, and those who support a return  to an overtly centralized unitarist government.”

On the other hand, Amhara extremists see him as the “enemy of Ethiopia and genocider of Amhara.” One  thing  common  between extremist Oromo and Amhara  forces is  that  they  see  only  through  the  prism of a devout friend or a biblical foe. Both see the Prime Minister as a biblical foe. They both use  him as a transmission line to wage a war against each other.  

Whether the PM is an Ethiopianist, a softer version of Oromized Ethiopia, or an opportunist who would  go with what he believed will keep him in power longer is debatable among rational observers. But  what  has dominated  the political discourse is whether  he is part  of  the Oromo-Shene anti-Ethiopia  strategy bent on weakening Ethiopia to build Greater Oromia or a protégée of emperor Menilik doing  the Amhara’s bidding. This has weakened the PM and strengthened Oromo extremists.  

No  doubt  that  the  PM  is  stuck  between  ungovernable  political  forces.  However,  his  own  mismanagement has contributed and even exacerbated the crisis. As I have noted in several articles,  he has two characteristic flaws. First is his belief in himself as a prophesized redeemer of Ethiopia. This  has denied him the humility to learn  from his mistakes and seek advice and counsel  from people of  experience. Second, his narcissistic leadership style and I-know-it-all attitude have led him to surround  himself with “yes-men” subordinates. This has denied the nation a competent leadership team. What  we are witnessing is in part a product of this.  

III. The Degenerative Nature of Oromo Tribalism 

It is  hard  to imagine  a more  emphatic  curse  to  a  nation  than  tribalism. No  society  or institution  (religious or otherwise) can escape its poisonous fangs. The President of Oromo (Shimeles Abdissa)  made this clear, declaring that Arabic [Islamic] and Hebrew [Christian] names are undermining the  Oromummaa doctrine. Oromos who are named after Prophet Mohammed or the Blessed Virgin Mary,  the mother of  Jesus, are considered as offense against the Oromo liberation theology. This has led  many Oromos to abandon such names as Yohannes and Musa and take tribal names.   

In  January 2019, a political case was made  to break  the Ethiopian Orthodox Church at  the Oromo  Federation Congress  (OFC) political campaign  rally. Present at  the speech were Professor Merera  Gudina  and  Jawar  Mohammed.  Jawar  is  the  man  who  popularized “Oromia  out  of  Ethiopia” as  a  political strategy.  In his speech Professor Merera promised if his party wins  the 2020 election, its  first task would be destroying non-Oromo statutes in Addis Ababa and erecting Oromo statutes in  their place. 

Another  prominent  speaker  at  the  rally  was  the  current  spokesperson  for  the  splinter  Oromo  Orthodox Christian  group – Deacon H/Michael  Tadesse. His  speech  was  delivered in  the  spirit  of  Jawar’s “Oromia out of Ethiopia” political strategy. The Deacon’s speech was entirely devoted to get  the Ethiopian Orthodox Church out of Oromia. He used his oratorial skill to defame the Ethiopian  Orthodox  Church with  the  following  accusations,  as  Jawar  uncontrollably  giggled  throughout  the  speech as shown in the video.

• ዶክተር ብርሃኑ ነጋን መስቀል አሳልማ ፕሮፌስር መረራ ጉዲናን የምታገል ቤተ ክርስቲያን አንፈልግም 

• Oromo does not want a Church that divides Oromos across religious lines.  • Oromo does not want a Church that divides Oromos across ethnic lines.  

• Oromo does not want a Church that restricts Orthodox Christians from living with  their Muslim and Protestant Brethren 

• Oromo does not want a church that treats Oromos as foreigners and bandits 

These were all blatant and virulent lies. The political agenda behind such a venomous speech was  underlined in his concluding remarks: “From now on Oromo Orthodox Christians will be led only by  native Oromos not by መጤ (outsiders).” The መጤ may be fluent in Oromigna and a gifted preacher.  But he need not apply. The overriding litmus  test for priesthood in  the Oromo  tribal land is pure  Oromo blood.  

The fact is that current conflict in the Orthodox Church is triggered by the splinter group’s violation  of  the  Church’s  canonical  dogma.  This is  not  to  say  the  Church  does  not  have  shortcomings.  The  Church itself has acknowledged areas that need to be addressed and that corrective actions are in  progress.  One  thing  is  plenty  clear.  What  is  driving  and  fueling  the  current  crisis  is  politics  not  religious differences. Whom the faction picked as its spokesperson flashes a blinking red flag.  

The current problem exposes a fault line between two factions of Oromo. Historically, both factions  were  followers of the Oromo liberation theology. Until 2018, they collectively built  false narrative  about Ethiopia to give credence to their tribal narrative. After the ascent of PM Abiy, they splintered  into two broad groups.  

Ambassador Lencho Bati put this succinctly in a public speech, stating: “During our struggle as an  Oromo liberation front, we systematically deconstructed Ethiopia in order to construct Oromo. Now  we are in power, Oromo needs to play a different role of uniting different regions of the country.” He  continued to say “Emperor Haile Selassie was a great leader who put Ethiopia on the global stage as  a  proud  nation.  This  is  our  time  to  build  on  his  legacy  and  modernize  Ethiopia by  brining  all  Ethiopians under one tent.” He appealed to Oromos far and near to “support the PM who is devoted  to build a united Ethiopia.” 

Sadly, the other faction led by the likes of Jawar, Merera and H. Michael, want to continue their tribal  liberation narrative, focusing on Oromo v. Amhara divisive conflict. The current Church assault is a  byproduct of this political culture. 

How  did  Ethiopia  degenerate  into  such  a  state  where  divisive  tribal  doctrines  precede  unifying  religious tenets? It is to this topic that the remainder of this article turns to.

IV. The Rise of Two Shenes  

There are well over 80 officially registered parties in Ethiopia. But two groups who are not registered  as political parties are the ones who are dominating the on-air, print, and social media bandwidth,  namely Oromo-Shene and Amhara-Shene.  

Obviously  the  two have substantial differences in  their end goals. No doubt  that the  fundamental  tenets of their political ethos and ideological creeds are also different. Nonetheless, they are also alike  in  that  they  are  the  polar  epicenters  of  the  nation’s  entropic  conflicts  that  are  spiraling  into  a  deepening crisis. 

Their symbiotic existence allows them to cross-feed combustible fuel to each other and fire up the  flames of tribal conflict. One can exist without the other, but neither can dominate the political scene  without the existence of the other as its existential antagonist. This is particularly true after TPLF  self-destructed itself in a spectacular fashion. TPLF was the party that distracted Amhara and Oromo  tribalists  from going at each other’s  throats. With TPLF out of  the game,  the danger  for Ethiopia’s  existence is heightened as the two largest tribal groups battle for tribal supremacy.  

IV.1. Oromo Shene 

Oromo-Shene is an organized political group. It uses violence as the primary instrument to advance  its political agenda in a quest to establish Greater Oromia within or outside of Ethiopian geographic  proper. Its epicenter is Wellega – the porch and altar of the Oromo liberation theology. Although it is  rejected by the Oromo masses both inside and outside of Wellega, it has become the most dominant  player in the Oromo tribal land.  

Its rapid ascension is attributable to the tension between different factions of the Oromo wing of the  Prosperity Party (PP). A tribalist faction within the Oromo-PP that is not fully on board with the PM’s  reform agenda has become a bed fellow with Oromo-Shene. This faction finances, arms, and informs  Oromo-Shene  about  the  movements  of  federal  defense  forces  to  plan  its  offense  and  defense  operations.   

Oromo-Shene’s ability to punch above its weight also depends on the powerbases of various Oromo  tribalist forces (including OLF and OFC) whose political survival depends on its existence. They all  understand Oromo-Shene’s strength will weaken the PM and thwart his Ethiopianist agenda.  

In a sort of a subversive way, Oromo-Shene has become the armed wing of all Oromo tribalist groups  who harbor different end goals, running the gamut from imposing the Gadaa tradition throughout  Ethiopia to seceding  from Ethiopia. The Oromo splinter group’s assault of the Ethiopian Orthodox  Church has elevated Oromo-Shene to the top of the Oromo tribal totem pole. 

IV.2. Amhara Shene 

Amhara-Shene, on  the other hand, is more of an off-grid and high-bandwidth network of activists  who  aim to dial  back  the  time  to when  the  Amhara  played  a  dominant  role in  state  politics. The  network’s ideological doctrine coalesces around Amhara nationalism at its nucleus from whence a  unitary mindset radiates outward and expresses itself as a national identity. The network has neither  a written manifesto nor an organizational platform. Instead, it pushes a passive-aggressive strategy  to take the Ethiopian political center stage, using grievance politics both as the power cylinder and  transmission belt of its political machinery.  

Its grievance politics has undercut the Amhara historical political wisdom that relies on the art of  diplomatic  flexibility  to  transcend  differences  and  build  consensus. Gone  are  the  days  of Amhara  subtle  and  strategic  powerplay  and  coalition  forming.  The  network’s  mantra-like  response  to  legitimate  criticisms about  its  lack  of  strategy in coalition  building  and  organizing  a  political  powerbase is: “Why are we maligned for protesting against Amhara genocide.” 

Crying “genocide” as  a  daily  staple  of  a  political  campaign has  done  nothing  for  the  defenseless  Amhara in the Oromo tribal land. Nor has it dispelled Oromo-Shene’s existential threat that hangs  over the Ethiopian skies like a dark cloud.  

Even worse, Amhara-Shene’s trademark is radicalizing the Amhara political agenda and normalizing  hostilities within the Amhara forces. Three examples drive this point home.  

• Achamyeleh Tariku (09/12/2022) called for the eradication of PP-Amhara as a matter  of first priority. “በቅድሚያ ብአዴንን ማጥፋት አላማው የማያደርግ የአማራ ተጋድሎ የውሸት ትግል ነው.”   

• Meskerem Aberra (April 13, 2022) accused Amhara-PP of playing an active role in the  slaughter of the Amhara people “ፒፒ አማራ በአሽከርነቱ ተጠናክሮ ህዝባችንን በማሳረዱ እንዲቀጥል.” 

• Girma  Berhanu  (December  30,  2022) “Amhara  prosperity  is  serving  the  Oromo  Prosperity’s interest, rather than standing up for the Amharas.” 

Amhara-PP has not been able to defend Amhara not because it wants to serve Oromo-PP but because  it has been targeted, vilified, and weakened by Amhara extremists. It was the same anti Amhara party  call  for action  that led  to  the murder of Dr. Ambachew Mekonnen on  June 22, 2019, by an Amhara  extremist  – General  Asaminew  Tsige.  General  Asaminew  is  regarded  as  a  hero  by  the  likes  of  Ambachew, Meskerem, and Girma.   

Amhara extremists have proven destructive both on the regional and national level. First and foremost,  they have denied a culture of rational discourse and consensus building from flourishing in the Amhara  tribal land. Second, whereas Oromo-Shene leverages on other Oromo forces, Amhara-Shene seek the extinction of Amhara forces who do not subscribe to its extremist politics. Third, every tribal homeland  is as much worried about Amhara-based national identity as they are about Oromummaa. 

The three factors noted above have tilted the power balance in the Oromo-Amhara tribal conflicts in  favor  of  Oromo  tribalists.  This  has  emboldened  them  and  set  them  off  onto  a  path  of  destruction,  creating seismic waves of turbulence across the nation’s political, social, and religious landscapes.  

V. The Oromo Tribal Political Culture: Schoolyard Whining Writ Large 

There is no doubt that the primary danger for Ethiopia’s survival is Oromo tribalism whose demands  cannot be met because it will never cease until the entire precept of the nation-state system submits  to the concept of Oromummaa.  

Remember this is the home of Mogassa military doctrine whose historical, ideological, and political  DNA is soaked with blood in a quest to impose Oromo traditions on other tribes by the power of the  sword. The sword was inspired by “political, military and economic considerations” as documented  in  a  book  authored  by  an  Oromo  historian (Mohammed  Hassan)  and  published  by  the  Oxford  University Press.  

Mohammed  notes:  Historically,  the  Oromo  has “assimilated  more  than  they  were  assimilated  by  others.” This included forcefully absorbing “Cushitic and Semitic-speaking tribes as clients or serfs  (gabbaro) into their tribal structure.” The conquered and assimilated tribes were forced to abandon,  their names, languages, and traditions, and politically and militarily baptized to become Oromo in  every facet of their existence.  

To top it off, Mohammed’s book reveals that new fictitious Oromo genealogies were created for the  forcefully  assimilated  tribes  so  they  can  count  “their  ancestors  several  generations  back” to  a  “hypothetical” Oromo lineage.  It was a  complete  dissolution  of  culture,  tradition,  name, and even  genealogy.  

Mohammed  further  informs  us  that  the  assimilation  process  culminated with  an  oath  taking  ceremony led by Aba Gada, repeating: “I hate what you hate, I like what you like, I fight whom you  fight, I go where you go, I chase whom you chase.” Those who refused to Oromize their body, spirit,  soul, and genealogy were wiped out of existence in a bloodshed.  

The UN defines cultural genocide as “any deliberate act committed with the intention of destroying  the language, religion or culture of a group.” Yet, the Oromo elite’s ad infinitum complaint as victims  of “an Amhara forced assimilation” is the staple of their political culture. They lament, for example,  cities such as Adama and Bishoftu were given Amhara names – Nazriet and Debre Ziet, respectively. 

Shamelessly,  they say nothing about hundreds of originally non-Oromo cities large and small  that  have been changed to Oromo names during the era of Oromo expansion. What is today Kemisse and  its surrounding in Wello was called Gegn (ገኝ). Western Wollo including Worehimenu, Woreillu, and  Borena used to be Bete Amhara (ቤተ አማራ).  

The question is why has the Oromo political culture that is nothing more than a schoolyard whining  gained traction both locally and internationally? The answer is there is no concerted effort to debunk  and discredit it.  

The Ethiopian contemporary politics is dominated by contentions of regional conflicts. For example,  the Amhara see Emperor Menilik’s excursions southward as part of Ethiopia’s nation building. In the  meantime, they view Imam Gragn Ahmad’s northward military excursion as an invasion of Ethiopia  by an Islamic nomad supported by foreign Islamic forces. In contrast, Emperor Menilik’s requests for  support  from  a  Christian  British Queen  is  praised  as  international  diplomatic  expeditions  and  a  cornerstone of Ethiopia’s state building theater.  

The  Ethiopianist  elites  find  themselves  in  a  tight  spot.  They  cannot  refute  and  reject  the  Oromo  twisted  narrative  without  first  untangling  themselves  from  their  own  twisted  story  line.  Their  inability to do so has left them helpless in stopping the Oromo static fiction from becoming a dynamic  historical account.  

VI. The Oromo Effort to Resurrect Mogassa in the 21st Century 

The  current  President of  the  Oromo  tribal  land  (Shemelis  Abdisa) did  not  mince  words  when  describing his government’s plan for “the Future of Ethiopia”. In March 2022, he twitted: The future  of  Ethiopia  is  a “Gadaa system  [that]  is  a  holistic  and  deep  philosophy  with  thousands  of  years  practice in  human life  and  strong institutions. We  are working  to  use  this  rich  social  capital  and  philosophy to transform our society in all aspects.” 

In another speech he revealed that as part of this grand strategy the “Prosperity Party is built in such  a way to advance the interest of Oromo. The head of the Party will always be an Oromo or an Oromo  plant.” This was upped in a different speech. To rejuvenate and spread the Gadaa system, the Oromo  government is “spending billions and erecting Oromummaa markers in Addis Ababa.” 

It is not only the Oromo government that is aspiring to make Ethiopia under the Gadaa system. One  of the leading Oromo elites envisions that Ethiopia will be “slowly, but surely, transformed to Gadaa  democratic Ethiopia, i.e. de facto Great Oromia.” 

Neither  the Oromo  government  nor its  tribal intellectual  coteries  are  able  to  come  to  terms  that  Gadaa is  a  16th century  tradition whose  time  has long  expired. Historians  have  documented  that “After the 19th century, it was reduced to a ritual system.” It belongs to anthropological books because  it is incompatible with the 21st century complex social, political, and economic developments.  

Rather  than  spending  billions  to  teach  the Oromo  youth math and  science and  prepare it  for  the  future, the Oromo government is resurrecting the ghosts of Mogassa to help it overcome the scientific  challenges of the 21st century with 16th century tools. The people of Oromo are already suffering the  consequences.  

In the most recent college entrance national exams, the Oromo tribal homeland lagged behind the national  average.  For  example,  the  average  scores  for  all  subjects  by  regions  were,  Addis  Ababa  (38.46%), Harari (32.88), Dire Dawa (31.42%), Amhara (30.37%), Sidama (28.34), Southern People  (28.17), and Oromo (27.96). Oromo performed below Amhara in almost all areas. Of the top 5 best  performing high schools in  the nation,  three were in Amhara and one in Oromo. Further, Amhara  performed  better  than  the  national  average  by  9  percentage  points.  Oromo  was  under  by  41  percentage points. 

Japan and China had a far more developed and sophisticated traditional institutions and governance  infrastructures  than  Gadaa.  However,  Japan  under  the  Meiji  Restoration  Period  and  China  under  Deng Xiaoping figured out one cannot go forward in a reverse gear. They adopted western practices,  just like the founding fathers of the US in the 18th century modeled their democracy after Greece’s  system of self-government. It is sad to see Oromo tribalists embracing an expired village ritual when  modern societies are exploring best practices from around the world. 

It is hard to blame the Oromo alone. The sense of “we have the best tradition” is a chronic problem  throughout Ethiopia. We need  to remember “Tigryan exceptionalism” is what led  to a spectacularly  exceptional self-destruction of the TPLF. It is the same mindset that has chained hermitized Amhara  intellectuals to distant centuries.  

We, the people of Ethiopia are cursed with imagined greatness with stories of glorious past that are not  relevant to the present or future challenges of Ethiopia. I cannot think of anything of significance that  we have contributed to the World, outside of two plant-based medicines, including ድንገተኛ. Our people  still  use ድንገተኛ because  they  do  not  have  access  to,  or  they  cannot  afford,  amoxicillin. The  Oromo  fictional greatness of Gadaa is the equivalence of ድንገተኛ in a world where health science is advancing  at a dizzying speed in gene therapy, telemedicine, artificial intelligence, and neurotechnology.  

VII. The Grand Oromo Tribal Plan 

Tribalist Oromos believe they must overcome four obstacles that are standing in their way reviving  Mogassa and imposing the Gadaa system on the rest of Ethiopia. The perceived obstacles are: (1) the  Ethiopian Orthodox Church, (2) Addis Ababa, (3) Shewa Oromo, and (4) economic control. 

VII.1. Assault on the Orthodox Church 

The belief that baptizing the Ethiopian Orthodox Church with the Oromummaa doctrine will Oromize  the national political landscape is manifested in the ongoing assault on the Church. The Oromo tribal  government’s interference to help the rebel Oromo Orthodox leaders has poured gasoline on fire lit  by tribalist forces. Even worse, the Prime Minister’s speech that failed to condemn the Oromo tribal  government’s illegal action has damaged him as the national leader.  

VII.2. An Oromo Tribal Campaign on Addis Ababa 

Declaring victory on the defeat of Amhara, on September 7, 2019, Jawar tweeted: “Amharizing the  Amhara  has  been  the  most  useful  accomplishment  of  this  change.  The  ‘Ethiopian’  mask  used  by  Amhara elites to camouflage their ethnocentric interest has been barrier to real dialogue. Now the  mask  has  been  removed,  real  negotiation  and  discussion is  possible.” This is  the  story  of  Shene Amhara put brilliantly. If they did not exist on their own, Jawar would have invented them. 

Addis Ababa with its 5.5 million people has refused to be pigeonholed into tribal groups. Its people  consider  themselves  Addis-Ababans without  any  tribal  allegiance.  The  repeated  effort  to  impose  Oromo flags and Anthems in Addis Ababa are part of the futile de-Ethiopianization plan. 

VII.3. The Shewa Oromo on the Tribalist Fireline 

Shewa Oromo upholds a nationalist rather than a tribalist identity. This has made it a target of the  Oromo  tribal government. The  new Sheger  city  surrounding Addis is  designed  to weaken  certain  segments of Shewa Oromo. 

VII.4. An Oromo Economic Supremacy 

Controlling  the economy  to build  tribal power was a strategy TPLF advanced in its 27-year reign.  Corruption  under  TPLF  was  centrally  controlled,  more  like  a  well-managed  mafia  structure.  Currently, corruption is unmanaged. Every Oromo official is using his/her power to take whatever  his/her fancy dictates.  

VIII. In Conclusion 

The TPLF was a well-oiled machine that operated capably  through effective  coordination both at  home and abroad. The Oromo-PP has neither a strategic blueprint nor a functional administration.

What makes Oromo tribalism dangerous is that it is not controlled and managed. The government both at the federal and regional level are ran by default on auto pilot. Autopilot does not work when there is turbulence, and the system is unstable. That is why we see the PM meltdown every time there  is a problem. We saw his reaction when Eskinder took Addis Ababa by storm, when Fanno Amhara  threatened his administration, when Oromo tribalists tried to Oromize Addis Ababa, and now when  a rebel Oromo group piked a fight with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. He comes across as arrogant  and threatening.  

There is a possibility for the PM to declare a state of emergency to make himself relevant in the new  political environment. This is difficult because he is sandwiched between neither and nor. He cannot  take on the rebel Church group because the last lifeline he has is the Oromo card. Nonetheless, he  cannot come out and throw his weight behind them because that will be the end of his political life.  

For all practical purposes, Ethiopia is in a crisis without a national leader. This can be a blessing in  disguise for several reasons. First, the Oromo tribal politics is in a disarray at a time when it is seen  as a threat to the very survival of the country. Second, at a time of its weakness, it picked up a fight  with the most powerful institution in the country that has unlimited number of followers who are  ready to die defending it.  

Ethiopia’s political problem was apathy that is reflected by the size of the silent majority. አይጥ ሞቷን ስትሻ ስታበዛ ሩጫ ሄዳ ታሸታለች የድመት አፍንጫ or so say Ethiopians, the ድመት being the silent majority. Ethiopia  needed to break the apathy to defeat Oromo tribalism.  Oromo tribalists did the job for them.  

Ethiopians of all creeds, beliefs, and persuasions must rise to crash the dangerous Oromo tribalism that has breached the final frontier that serves as a constraining line of faith and religion. Even worse,  tribal forces of evil are killing peaceful believers for protecting their house of worship. Today, it is the  Orthodox Church. Tomorrow it can be be Muslims, Catholics, Protestants, or any other house of belief.  

All religious institutions must rise to support the Orthodox Church. All political parties must add their  voices to the chorus of protest without piling their agenda on the Churches struggle for survival. The  role of  the diaspora is critical in exposing  the mass murder of Christians in  their Church grounds.  What is needed is a trigger point to coalesce forces of peace and unity. 

The Church’s followers and supporters must stand guard to push back against political forces who  may wish to hijack the protest process. All slogans and banners used at support rallies at home or  abroad must be approved by the Church ahead of time. Every speech that is delivered at rallies must  be reviewed and approved by the Church ahead of time. 

May God protect the Ethiopian Orthodox Church from the evils of tribal forces. 

Read Full article in PDF file HERE

Editor’s note : views in the article reflect the views of the writer, not the views of borkena.com

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22 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Ethiopian Fellows, : When God needs to punish Israel, He said “I will do to you what I have never done before and will never do again” Ezekiel 5:9. Please All Ethiopians all around the world, imagine this statement was given to the beloved instruments (Israel) of God to show Him in the world arena…. They failed and receive this saying followed by His brutal Judgments…. who we are (Ethiopians) after all not to receive more unless we turn our face to Almighty God?.. we know our trespasses and it is lack of Humanism and excess of pride more than the Devil as if we are much more than the others both intrinsically and extrinsically….. One solution exists for all…. Being Humble and set around the table… to talk, to take time for repentance and perform reconciliation…

    • Stop sacrificing lives of children, elders and vulnerable pppl at risk for the sake of economic interest of EOTC synod Stop sacrificing lives of children, elders and vulnerable pppl at risk for the sake of economic interest of EOTC synod

      The only solution to this problem is to come to the table , reconcile and acknowledge those Bishops . Blessed are the Peace makers(Mathew 5.9)religious leaders , mainly in EOTC synod, should set a great example for their laity by reconciling and making peace but not by working with those who defame, plot, insult and threatening and warning the state officials . It is unbiblical and never expected from a bishop or even a monk.

      They should not put children and anyone at risk for them to enjoy a better slary and gifts from the laity by occupying a large dioceses and highly paying parish churches.

      Many ring leaders of the movement are solely concerned about their power, landgrabbing and all sorts of econmoc interest and religion is a cover and mask to veil their true face.

    • “The Church must provide a list of slogans and protest banners for national and international rallies. Every speech that is delivered at rallies at home and abroad must be consistent and approved by the Church. ” this phrase looks good, but in reality we see orthodox believers asking the overthrow of Prosperity party and its leaders .

      Does EOTC synod support that ? It looks they support it. Don’t put vulnerable people at risk for the economic interest of Bishops and leaders of parish churches. family members of the departed souls will certainly not be happy and don’t accept the death of their beloved ones as martryrdom. Yewelede aytsedkim

      they will be saddened without limit and disappointed by the action of church leaders and their religion

      Therefore, stop this nonsense in the name of religion whose objective is to preserve econmic interest of bishops and mahibreseytan.

  2. All I can say is if anyone of us cannot be a solution to our beloved country, please let us do her a favor by not being part of her problems. ” Kebero siyaut yamer siyzut yednager” . Leave the political and social system to work itself. Long live our country. Ethiopia will definitely WIN with or without us. May the Almighty bless her and washout all her problems.

  3. ጥሩ ጅምር ነው። የአባ ባህሬይን ትርክት በ2023 ማንበብ እድገት ነው። በሚቀጥለው ሙሉ የአባ ባህሬ ፅሁፍ ይሆንልሃል፣ በርታ! ምናልባትም የተረት ተርት ኤክስፐርት ልትሆንም ትችላለህ።

    በዚህ ዘምንና ጊዜ እንኳን ገዳን መፍጠር ለመረዳት አቅሙ የለህም። በጥላቻ የተሞላ ግብዝ አእምሮህ ውስጥ ንፁህ ሃሳብ፣ በተለይም የምትጠላውን ማስገባት በግድ እንደ መጋት ነው። ሆኖም ገዳ የኦሮሞና የኩሽ ስልጣኔ ነው። ስለጠላኸው የትም አይሄድም፣ ይስፋፋል፣ ያድጋል፣

    አብይ “you are not worth my time and attention” ያለህ ትክክል መሆኑን አረጋገጥን። በመጨረሻ “PhD” የሚለውን ማእረግ ብታነሳ ጥሩ ነው። (እፍረትን የምታውቅ ከሆነ)! ይህ የጥላቻ ቅብጥርሴ PhD አይፈልግም።

  4. Interesting observation and insightful commentary especially vis-a-vis the ever morphing crisis, grievances and perplexing issue of Oromo identity politics. It seems while the Oromumma crowd are complaining ad nauseum about injustice done on them by the state in the past , they have qualms about inflicting pain and imposing their will on others or even worse. What’s worse yet , the target of their wrath are directed not only to Amhara, eventhough they are their rivals or an alter ego entity, but other communities and people who had similarly marginalied and suffered the most. Coming to this particular regime and Abiye’s dismal failure , incompetence, corruption, it has been free fall or autopilot for sometime and there surely there exists ompeting and intertwined political groups operating within and without of the Oromo and Amhara camps. The only remaining question now is whether it is by design where Abiy is willing quixotic player in the sinister scheme and conspiracy 1from the get-go or whether he is helpless victim who accidentally caught off guard or wheher he is simply mumbling fool who doesn’t know right from wrong, or what to do next and how to untangle himself from web of deceit and faux leadership persona ability that he weaved for himself and for his close gullible Abiy-maniacs

  5. Interesting observation and insightful commentary especially vis-a-vis the ever morphing crisis, grievances and perplexing issue of Oromo identity politics. It seems while the Oromumma crowd are complaining ad nauseum about injustice done on them by the state in the past , they have no qualms about inflicting pain and imposing their will on others or even doing worse. What’s worse yet , the target of their wrath are directed not only to Amhara, eventhough they see as are their rivals or an alter ego entity, but other communities and people who had similarly marginalied and suffered the most in the past . Coming to this particular regime and Abiye’s dismal failure , incompetence, corruption, it has been free fall or autopilot for sometime and surely there exists competing and intertwined political groups operating within and without of the Oromo and Amhara camps. The only remaining question now is whether it is by design where Abiy is a willing quixotic player in the sinister scheme and conspiracy plot from the get-go or whether he is helpless victim who accidentally caught off guard or wheher he is simply mumbling fool who doesn’t know right from wrong or what to do next and how to untangle himself from web of deceit and faux leadership personality ability that he weaved for himself and for his close gullible Abiy-maniacs

  6. Increasingly it is becoming clear that Amhara religious bandits and political elites are not rational, not rational at all. They are not seeking the best possible solution for Ethiopia. For sometimes, they are encouraging to overthrow Ethiopian constitution, to antagonize Prime Minster and to smear Ethiopia with all possible means. Amhara forces are constantly looking for problems in government policy, thus igniting anti-ethnic rhetoric 24/7 with media crusade in full force.

  7. Stop sacrificing lives of children, elders and vulnerable pppl at risk for the sake of economic interest of EOTC synod Stop sacrificing lives of children, elders and vulnerable pppl at risk for the sake of economic interest of EOTC synod

    We advise you to change your move and choose dialogue on behalf of demonstartiona and fano backed violence . You can’t be a martyr(Semaiit) by fighting with Oromo Orthodox Tewahedo believers who share the same religion and country with you all. YOu can’t inherit Kingdom Of God by defaming, insulting our bishops or any one. This is not part of Christian ethics.
    You were supporting all foreign forces and islamic states supporting Abiy Ahmed . You were also supporting the killings of Oromos by Fanos brutally. You must exploit the fasting days to repent and come to your senses and ask forgiveness from your brothers and sisters of the same religionand all citizens that you may offended before. There is no biblical verse that encourages to fight for power and economic interest fo bishops . It is suffice for these bishops to earn small amount of money that is adequate for survival . They are helding rich people as their children of confession and they amass big money every great religious feast. Don’t equate christian martyrdom with dying for financial interest of Bishops .
    Where there are 2 or 3 people , there is Savior Christ and we believe there exist a church. You can’t say church is disintegrated and Ethiopia is destroyed because Oromiayaa established its own ecclesiastical administration .YOu can’t oppress Oromiyaa and block them from fully exploiting their language. You can’t justify yourself by saying “everyting that lasts 1800 years and should still stay intact. Coptic church was colonizing our people and stealing our resources in th from of gifts and payments , and that corrupted system has been removed for ever. And likewsie, amhara elites hegemony should not be mainatained in Oromiyaa. However, We love Amhara christians and non Christioan ordinary people as they have contributed to our church directly and indirectly while we oppose strongly those who want use the church for econmic and political gain stealthly and secretively like socalled mahibrekidusan , mahibreseytan aand fanos who killed our people and do desecrated our church by performing military training in our church and hinding weapons inside church yard.

    Last word, stop putting children, elders and mothers into your violent demonstration summoned by your selfish synod dominated by amhara religious elites who want to twist the government for their own sake by suppressing the rights of revered Oromo to be led by his/her own people and not to use his or her own lovely language. BIble advises discussion, reconcilation and respect to one another but not demonstartion , defamtion and insult and all other irreligious acts you doing now. Remember for every damage, loss of lives , Ethiopain Orthodox synod leaders and ring leaders of the demonstration should be held accountable. Remeber many people died due to suffocation and chaotic stampede without any sort of reaction from officers and government forces. Don’t put indanger the lives of poor naive Orthodox Church Tewahedo belivers, our brothers and sisters, children, mothers, elders, vulnerable people suffering heartattack and etc

    Revered people of Oromo , regardles of your happines when we were suffering and kileld by fanos, urge you to come to dialogue and solve current problems without being selsfish and imposing your economic interest. WE are asking to use our language and choose our own leaders born to Oromiyaa . Don’t be suppressive and remember we are asking our own resouces and we are living in our land. You are imposing your interest upon Oromos who live in their own land!!! Come to your senses and behave as christians and don’t be taken away by carnal selfish lust

    One Synod, One Patriarch momevent is now hijacked by Fanos and their supporters like Tamagne Beyene, Debtera Habtamu Ayalew, Neamin Zeleke , Abebe Gellaw, and many more multi degree murderers who have no religion at all, but want to come to power by a bloodshed of innocent people including Amhara naive civilians.

  8. ፍትሓነገሥት ከዓረብኛ ወደ ግዕዝ በሗላም ወደ አማርኛ የተተረጎመ የሕግና የሥርዓት መፅሓፍ ነው፤ሕግና ሥርዓት ደግሞ እንዳስላጊነቱ በሊቃውንትና በሊቃነጳጳሳት ጉባኤ ሊሻሻል፤ሊታረም ካስፈለገም ሊሻር እና በምትኩ ሌላ ሕግ ሊወጣ ይቻላል፤፤በውሥጡ የተካተቱ ከዶግማ ጋር ግንኙነት የሌላቸው የፍትሓነገሥት ህጎች እንዳስፈላጊነታቸው በሊቃውንት ሊታረሙ ና ሊሻሻሉ ይችላሉ፤፤አብዛኛውን ጊዜ ተግባራዊ ከማይደረጉ ህጎች መካከል ለመጥቀስ ያክል የንስሓ ቀኖና ወይም የሥርዓት ሕጎች እና የቅዳሴ ሥርዓት ሕጎችን መጥቀስ በቂ ነው፥፥ነገሩ የሥልጣን፤ርስትና ጉልትን የማስጠበቅ፤ምዕመናንን ወደ አንድ አጥቢያ ቤተክርስቲያን ብቻ እንዲጎርፉ በማድረግ ገቢን የማሳደግ፤አሥራት በኩራትን በገፍ የመሰብሰብ፤እና የመሳሰሉ ኢኮኖሚያዊ ጥቅማጥቅሞችን የማስጠበቅ ዓላማን ለሚያራምዱ ሰዎች የቀኖና ዶግማ ጉዳይ የሚገዳቸው ስላልሆነ አውቀው እንደተኙ አውቀን ለመቀስቀስ ጊዜ አናጠፋም፤፤ነገር ግን በቅንነት፤ባለማወቅ በጥቅመኞች ተሸንግለውና ተገፋፍተው ብሎም በሃይማኖት ሽፋን ተገፍትረው ክቡር ሕይወታቸውን እንዳያጡ በአካል ጉዳት የተነሳ ከቤተክርስቲያኗ አልፈውም ከፈጣሪያቸው ጋር ሊጣሉ ስለሚችሉ ሕዝበክስቲያን ይህንን እንዲያስተውሉ እንመክራለን፤፤የወለደ አይጸድቅም እንደሚባለው በዚህ ትርጉም የለሽ ረብሻና ሰልፍ ወገኖቻቸውን የሚያጡ ሰዎች ልጄ ፀደቀ ሳይሆን ልባቸው በሀዘን እንደሚሰበር የሚያውቁት እነርሱ እንጂ የልጆዎ በረከት ይድረሰን ለሚሉ ያልተነኩ ግልግል አዋቂዎች አይደሉም፤፤ሰማዕትነት የሚገኘው ቤተክርስቲያንን ላቃጥል(ላን፥ዽ፥ ላፍርስ)፤ማዕተባችሁን ላስፈታቹ(ልበጥስ) ፤ምዕመናንን ካህናት በሃይማኖታቸው ብቻ ልግደል የሚል ሲመጣ እንጂ በቋንቋዬ ልገልገል የራሴ አባቶችን ልምረጥ በእነርሱም ልመራ ልገልገልም ካለ የአንዲት ኦርቶዶክስ ተዋህዶ አማኝ ጋር በመጋጨት የአባቶችን ስም በማጥፋት(በማጠልሸት) የሳይበር ጥቃት በመፈፀም አይደለም፤፤ልጆቻችሁን እና አረጋውያዩን ከተቻለም ራሳችሁን ከዚህ የዉሸት ሰልፍ ጠብቁ ጳጳሳቶቻቹ ስለእናንተ አይሞቱላቹሁም የሚቀበሉት መከራም አይኖርም የሚታገሉትም ለክርስቶስ ሳይሆን ለሥልጣን ለብር ና ለገፀበረከት ነው፤፤ምክንያቱ አጭር፥ቀላል እና ግልፅ ነውይኸውም በአንድ ጠረጴዛ ስር መጥተው መነጋገርን ፤ እርቅን፥እና ሰላምን ጠልተው የሰይጣን ፍሬዎችን እያረቡና እያሰራጩ ይገኛሉ፤፤እነርሱም ትዕቢት(ጥንታዊያን፤ህጋዊያን፤በሚሊዮን የሚቆጠር ተከታይ ያለን በተከታዮቻችን ብዛት ከማንኛውም የፖለቲካ ድርጅት ይልቅ መንግሥት አቤት ወዴት እስካላለን ድረስ ለመንግሥት አሥጊ የምንሆን ስለሆን የሚል ውሥጥ ለውስጥ የሚብላላ ብቻ ሳይሆን በድፍረት የተነገረ ነው)፣ውሸት ይህም የተለየ ቤተክርስቲያንን አልተለዩም ብሎ የሀሰት ማስተባቢያ መስጠት፡በይፋ የተለየ ቤተክርስቲያን የራሱን መሪና ሲኖዶስ ማቋቋም ና ፓትርያርክ መሾምም እራሱን ይመለከታል የጊዜና የዝግጅት ጉዳይ ብቻ ነው፤ ፤አድማ፤ስም የማጠልሸት ሥራ ላይ ከተጠመዱ ጋር የግብረ ሃይሉ ዋነኛ መሪ በመሆን፤ዜጎችን ለፖለቲካ አላማ መጠቀሚያ ማድረግ፤ወዘተ፤መንግሥት ሃይማኖት በማይለይ መልኩ የሁሉም ዜጋ መሪ መሆኑ እየታወቀ ከአንድ ጎጥ በመጡ ሰዎች ለሚመራ አንድ ሃይማኖት ደጋፊ ብቻ እንዲሆን በመማለድ የሌላውን የዜግነት መብት እንዲጥስና እንዲያስር ግፊት ማድረግ፥ይህን ለማስፈፀምም አውግዘናቸዋል፤ኢሕጋዊ ናቸው ወዘተ በማለት በዓለማዊ ና ሓገራዊ ህጎች ተቀባይነት የሌላቸው ራስወዳድ የትዕቢት መመሪያዎችን ብሔራዊ ህጎች ተደርገዉ እንዲቆጠሩ እየሠሩ ይገኛሉ፤፤እነዚህ የኦሮሚያ አባቶች በኢትዮጵያ ኦርቶዶክስ ተዋህዶ ሥር ሲያገለግሉ የነበሩ ደግማውን ያልሻሩ ህጋዊነት ያላቸው ናቸው እነርሱ ኢህጋዊ ከተባሉ በአቡነ አብርሃምና አቡነ ጴጥሮስ የሚመራዉ ሲኖዶስም ኢህጋዊ ይሆናል ምክንያቱምየቤተክርስቲያኗን የማውገዝ ሥርዓት፤ሂደት፤ ህጎች የጣሰ እና ከተወጋዡ ጋር የተደረገ ቀጥተኛ ውይይትና ተግሳፅን ሳይከተል በስሜታዊነት የተላለፈ ግዝት ወፈገዝት በሚባል ፈሊጣዊ አነጋገር ውሥጥ ይካተታል፥፥ ጥቅምን የማስጠበቅ ዉግዘት ነው፥፥ይሄደግሞ ኢመፅሓፍ ቅዱሳዊ ነው፤፤የቤተክርስቲያኗ ትምህርት መሠረት ሰማንያአንድ መጻሕፍትን ያቃለለ ግዝት ነው፥፥እኔ ከዘሬ ሃይማኖቴ ይበልጥብኛል ብላቹ ከዚህ ሃይማኖት መሰል ንቅናቄ ጋር የምትሳተፍ ምዕመናን አትሸወዱ በጥቂት ሰዓታት ውስጥ ወደ ፖለቲካ ንቅናቄ ተቀይሯል፥አካላችሁንም ሆነ ክቡር ህይወታችሁን ለጥቅምና ርስት ጉልት አስጠባቂዎች ና በሃይማኖት ሽፋን ለሚንቀሳቀሱ ፖለቲከኞች፤የፓለቲካ ተንታኞች መጠቀሚያ አትሁኑ፥፥ከአንዲትቤተክርስቲያንልጆችጋር፤በመጣላት፤የሊቃነጳጳሳትን ስም በማጠልሸት ፥አድማ በማሳደም ና በአድማ በመሳተፍ የሚወረስ መንግስተሰማያት የሚገኝ ሰማዕትነት የለም፥በቅዱሳት መፃሕፍት አልተፃፈም፤፤ቤተክርስቲያን ለሁለት ሲኖዶስ ከተከፈለች ኢትዮጵያ ልትፈርስ ነው እያላቹ የሀሰት የአድማ መፈክር በማንገብ እናንተ ፕሮቴስታንቱ፤ካቶሊኩ እና የእስልምና ተከታዮችን ከእናንተ ጋር እንዲቆሙ ስታደርጉ ቋንቋዬን ለቤተክርስቲያን አገልግሎት ልጠቀምበት በአባቶቼ ልመራ ያለን ስትከለክሉ ከጎናቸው የሚቆም ሰው ያጣሉ ወይም እነርሱ እንደኛ ያሻቸውን ማድረግ አይችሉም እኮ እያላችሁን ነው፤፤አታፍሩም፤፤ለከት የላችሁም፤ላይሰሙ አዉቀው ስለተኙ ያገሩን ሰርዶ ባገሩ በሬ እንዲሉ አባቶቻቹ እርቅና ሰላም እንዲያስተምሯቹ ወትውቷቸውእነርሱም ወደ ልባቸው እንዲመለሱ ምከሯቸው፤፤የደጋጎች ልጆች ልብ ለአባቶች እንዲሰጣቸው የነነዌ ጾም የእውነት የንስሓ የይቅርታ እንዲያደርግላቸው እንጸልይላቸው፤ ልብ ይስጣቹ አስተዋይ አዕምሮን ያድላቹ፤አሜን

  9. The so-called Oromo question is slowly revealing itself to be a trojan horse of any Ethiopian enemies (TPLF, Egypt, Sometimes USA)

  10. It is clear Ethiopia has fallen in enemies hand waving the Arab countries flag.
    When most Oromos are Muslims praying in Arabic, even adapting the most extremist Wahabi that existed only in Saudi Arabia. Praying in Arabic, the foreign language for Jawar Mohammad, Abiy and the Oromo Muslim and Pente extremists is not a problem but the native language Amharic that most Oromos speak and write becomes a threat to their dirty political agenda.

  11. Preference of which language one communicated with the Higher Being depends on the perception assocuted with it. Among many Oromos and some others associate with oppression and past abuses I guess. I met Some Somali who finished high school in the 1970s and speak fluently but don’t want to speak because they associat with bad experience including murders of their parents and ancestors by the Ethiopian army of Amharic speakere. It is sppsychologica thing I guess.

  12. I want to interject something here that is not related to the old country but it will affect members of our Diaspora living in northern New Zealand. Cyclone Gabrielle is heading your way and is gunning on the Auckland area as Cat. 2 cyclone by this coming Sunday. There has been reports that the city is already dealing with destructive flooding. Stay safe!

  13. Thank you Dr., for another detailed article on recent Ethiopian internal conflict…

    To summarize, the situation in Ethiopia at the moment (since 2018) looks like, one ethnicity is asserting itself as a “distinct group” or “more equal than the others” 80 or so ethnicities in Ethiopia, (not sure what the reasoning might be for them thinking that way…, for one, could it be Shemelis Abdisa’s “Gedda system”, which most of the country never heard of..??) .

    In short, these few “leaders/activists” among us, are totally focused on the rearview-mirror (of history), and are unable to unglue themselves from it, which is dangerous and is preventing them from looking-forward, & see as to what it coming ahead…
    If one can draw an analogy to depict this behavior, it would be of, a car driver who is fixated on a “rearview-mirror” for too long, looking at the last “bump on the road”, totally being oblivious that, there might be a few more like it on the road ahead, even worse a CLIFF, a “great-canyon”… like the one in the movie “Thelma & Louise” a 1991 film….

    (1) On recent High school exam results…

    “In the most recent college entrance national exams, the Oromo tribal homeland lagged behind the national average. For example, the average scores for all subjects by regions were, Addis Ababa (38.46%), Harari (32.88), Dire Dawa (31.42%), Amhara (30.37%), Sidama (28.34), Southern People (28.17), and Oromo (27.96). Oromo performed below Amhara in almost all areas. Of the top 5 best performing high schools in the nation, three were in Amhara and one in Oromo. Further, Amhara performed better than the national average by 9 percentage points. Oromo was under by 41 percentage points.” Dr. YB

    Sadly, the above stat from the recent Grade 12 matrix exam result, (by region, you provided) suggests that, they are leading the young-people in Oromo, in the wrong direction…( like the saying : “be careful what you wish for”).

    (2) The current church Assault…(fracturing of Orthodox Church followers)

    “Sadly, the other faction led by the likes of Jawar, Merera and H. Michael, want to continue their tribal liberation narrative, focusing on Oromo v. Amhara divisive conflict. The current Church assault is a byproduct of this political culture.” Dr. YB

    If the main reason for the current chaos within the church is ( as some in the comment suggested) “sharing of Church-income”, (from whatever source), than it could be discussed and resolved by the Church standardizing all Church-income to be used within the Church it is collected. That is all it takes, very simple.

    (3) “…. Jawar’s, “Oromia out of Ethiopia” political strategy. ”

    “Another prominent speaker at the rally was the current spokesperson for the splinter Oromo Orthodox Christian group – Deacon H/Michael Tadesse. His speech was delivered in the spirit of Jawar’s “Oromia out of Ethiopia” political strategy. ” Dr. YB

    With all the conflict & ethnic-cleansing & displacement that went on in the Oromo region, (particularly in Welega area) for the last 4 years; and the responsible leaders and the law cannot “clamp down” on these criminal activities by a few criminals , then Jawar’s, “Oromia out of Ethiopia” political strategy wouldn’t be a bad idea for the rest of Ethiopian population to leave in peace.
    The election-commission could run a “referendum” in each former provinces of Shewa, Arusi, Welega, keffa, Harar & let people vote, get it over with.
    The rest of Ethiopia, perhaps by inviting back Eretria to join the Ethiopian Federation, would be the next step to bring about and rebuild Ethiopia anew, with a spirit of true comradery & brotherhood.

    Countries with multiple ethnicities… that can be used as an example:

    Russia:
    Russia, with over 200 + ethnicities, are using their diversity as a strength not a weakness and share their unique cultural and traditional collection as a gift to their Nations-strength and as a result they are one of the super powers on the planet.

    They focus on their similarities not their differences, and they have more religious groups than we have in Ethiopia and yet there have no problems but are stronger because of it.
    Russia has one “official” language & one flag that define Russia; the largest nation by land mass on the planet; which is rich in resources, Ideas, human capital & innovation…

    India:
    India has similar situation as Russia, yet they have no problem living together…

    If Russian and Indian people can live together in peace and harmony, then we Ethiopians across our nation can learn to live together in peace and harmony, else the rest Ethiopians that value their diversity in culture and traditions as a strength could hold hands and march forward; with the friendly & “happier “Oromo as our neighbor.
    We should wish them well!!!

    Be well.

  14. Humble Commentary, 9 Feb 2023
    a) There is no doubt that the ETHIOPIA that the OLD GENERATION know is gone with the wind — in all directions.
    b) Consequently, a simple advice will do: ENJOY YOUR SHORT LIFE, USING THE MEMORY OF THE GLORIOUS.
    c) PLEASE, NEVER TWIST YOURSELF WITH THE PAST GLORY OF ETHIOPIA.
    d) It is worth repeating the promise on the TITLE: “Ethiopia in an Existential Crisis Without a Leader, But This, Too, Shall Pass”
    e) Of course:>> “this too shall pass away” but no creature on earth knows what that “future” will look like.

    f) Yes, “F” for failure!!! What is known is that the ETHIOPIA, at hand, is strange and completely out of phase of the PAST GLORIOUS BEAUTIFUL ETHIOPIA; ADMIRED BY THE WORLD. Consequently, Dear Honest, Humble, Ethiopian: Gear-up and find a better way of preparing yourself for the eventual FINAL END >>> that NEVER changes.

  15. Great insight!!
    It is this imbalance from both ethnic sides making the boat to sink. The annoying part is both extremists are not insightful. We shall see, we will collapse all unless we end the stupidity of old traditions of grandiose superiority. Thank you sir!!

  16. Good article but several flaws and incorrect assumptions including:

    1) Abiy is not pan-Ethiopianist!
    2) There is no Amhara Shene!
    3) Oromo PP and Shene work collaboratively!
    4) Oromo PP is a backward thinking entity with 15 century mentality!

  17. These is the best-written piece I saw in recent months by far.
    For Amhara Shene deniers, you heard him. They do exist.
    For Oromo Shene, there are more of you than the one in the Wolga bush.

    Yes, all of us in other tribes we see you both the same. Destructive, selfish arrogant etc…..

    Thank you!

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