Tuesday, May 28, 2024
HomeOpinionEthiopia Under Abiy Ahmed: Leadership, Propaganda, and State-Sponsored Terrorism

Ethiopia Under Abiy Ahmed: Leadership, Propaganda, and State-Sponsored Terrorism

Isael Ze Etiel    

Ethiopia has undergone significant changes and challenges since Abiy Ahmed took office as Prime Minister in 2018. Abiy, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019 for his efforts to resolve the long-standing conflict with neighboring Eritrea, has recently been accused of committing war crimes and genocide in Ethiopia. The country has faced ongoing ethnic tensions, violence, and genocide, particularly in the regions of Oromia, Tigray, and Amhara. The government has been criticized for its heavy-handed response to protests and its crackdown on opposition.

In the realm of politics, leadership is often judged by how a leader interacts with and responds to the needs of the people they govern. In the case of Abiy Ahmed, the current leader of Ethiopia and head of the Prosperity Party, his attitudes towards the masses he rules over have been a subject of scrutiny and debate. One common criticism of Abiy Ahmed’s leadership is his perception of the masses as ignorant and possessing short memories. This notion suggests that Abiy may believe that the general population lacks the capacity to fully understand complex political issues or remember past events and decisions. Such a viewpoint can be detrimental to democracy and governance, as it undermines the importance of an informed and engaged citizenry.

A leader’s attitudes towards the people they govern can significantly impact their leadership style and decision-making processes. Dr. Abiy Ahmed truly believes that the masses are ignorant and have short memories, which has influenced how he communicates with the public, formulates policies, and responds to dissent or criticism. Leadership is about more than just holding power; it is about serving the people and representing their interests. If a leader views the population as ignorant or forgetful, it can lead to a disconnect between the government and the governed, eroding trust and accountability, as we have seen in Abiy’s leadership since he came to power.

Dr. Abiy is accused of using grey propaganda due to his attitude towards his people. Grey propaganda is a form of information dissemination that is not clearly attributed to a specific source or entity, making it difficult to verify its accuracy or intent. In the context of Dr. Abiy and the current situation in the country, there have been various claims and narratives circulating, some of which may fall under the category of grey propaganda.

One example of grey propaganda related to Dr. Abiy could be the dissemination of misleading or distorted information about his government’s actions or policies and crimes committed by his government. This could include exaggerating successes, downplaying failures, or spreading rumours, character assassination and unverified claims to manipulate public opinion. Similarly, Abiy Ahmed has come under fire for his alleged tendency to distort the truth and manipulate facts, leading some to label him as a pathological liar. 

It is important to critically evaluate any information related to Dr. Abiy and the current situation in the country, considering the source, context, and potential biases involved. As a responsible consumer of information, it is essential to seek out multiple sources, fact-check claims, and be cautious of misinformation or propaganda aimed at influencing perceptions or opinions.

State Sponsor Terrorism 

Terrorism is a form of violence or intimidation carried out by individuals or groups to achieve political, religious, or ideological goals. It involves the use of violence, fear, and intimidation against civilians in order to achieve a desired outcome.

A state can become involved in terrorism when its government or authorities engage in acts of violence or intimidation against civilians for political purposes. This can include using force to suppress dissent, targeting specific ethnic or religious groups, or engaging in acts of aggression against its own people and other countries.

States can also support terrorist groups by providing them with funding, training, weapons, or safe havens. This support can be used to advance the state’s own interests or to destabilize a rival government, which is not usually in the best interest of its own people, like the then government was doing in the country.

In some cases, states may also engage in state-sponsored terrorism, where they directly carry out acts of terrorism against civilians in other countries, as well as their own. This can be done as a form of retaliation, to further their own political agenda, or to create instability in a region.

In recent years under Abiy’s leadership, Ethiopia has been facing a growing threat from homegrown terrorist groups that pose a significant challenge to the country’s democratic and freedom values. Two such groups, the Republican Guard and Koree Nageenyaa (“Koree Nageenyaa,” which is roughly translated to “Security Committee”), have emerged as organized and state-owned militarized entities that are causing unrest and instability in the nation.

Abiy explains that the main reason behind the establishment of the Republican Guard is to defend Ethiopia’s constitution and constitutional order, specifically by protecting the highest level of Ethiopian leadership (mainly Dr. Abiy) from threats and attempted attacks (Coup D’état). In its specific objective, the Republican Guard is mandated to use any means necessary (unlimited power). The fact is, the Republican Guard and Koree Nageenyaa (Security Community) have been established with the purported aim of safeguarding the interests of certain political factions, particularly those aligned with the ruling Prosperity Party and the government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. The Republican Guard has emerged as a crucial element in safeguarding the stability and security of the government, particularly in the context of Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed’s administration. The Republican Guard, a specialized military unit tasked with protecting high-ranking officials and key government institutions, has played a significant role in ensuring the safety and continuity of Dr. Abiy’s leadership. However, their actions have raised concerns among human rights organizations and international observers who fear that these groups are undermining the democratic principles that Ethiopia has been striving to uphold.

The funniest part is that the establishment of the Republican Guard doesn’t have legal grounds; it was directly ordered by Abiy Ahmed without the acknowledgment of Field Marshal Birhanu Jula , who is the current Chief of General Staff of the Ethiopian National Defense Force since 4 November 2020. The activities of these groups have included acts of violence, intimidation, and coercion against political opponents, journalists, and civil society activists. They have also been accused of carrying out extrajudicial killings and other human rights abuses in the name of maintaining law and order.

The emergence of these homegrown terrorist groups, or state-sponsored terrorism groups that terrorize the people, carried out with the active support of the Abiy government to commit assassinations and violence by non-state actors, is a worrying development for Ethiopia. It threatens to derail the small progress that has been made towards building a more inclusive and democratic society.

The Ethiopian Republican Guard, a recently organized security service in Ethiopia that is out of the national intelligence and security service agency, has been accused of engaging in a range of illegal activities including kidnapping, adoption, assassination, and other human rights violations. The formation of the Republican Guard security service has raised concerns among opposition parties and human rights organizations about the potential for abuse of power and violation of basic rights.

Reports have emerged of the Koree Nageenyaa and Republican Guard security service targeting political dissidents, journalists, and activists who have spoken out against the government. Many individuals have been forcibly abducted from their homes or workplaces, with some never heard from again. Families have been left devastated by the disappearance of their loved ones, unsure of their fate or whereabouts. 

(Photo Source – Open Source, Edited by Writer)

Last week, the killing of Bate Urgessa, a senior official of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), in Meki, Oromia region, was a deeply concerning and tragic event. The fact that the government has been accused of involvement in his death raises serious questions about the rule of law, human rights, and political freedoms in Ethiopia. Accusations of the government’s involvement in the killing of opposition figures like Bate Urgessa only serve to exacerbate political tensions and deepen mistrust between different groups in Ethiopia.

In addition to kidnapping, the Koree Nageenyaa (Security Community)  and Republican Guard Security service has been implicated in cases of forced adoption, where opposition parties leader, journalist, and people against the government are taken from their families and placed in unknown locations. This practice has caused immense distress and trauma for families who are unable to locate or reunite with their missing families.

Furthermore, there have been reports of targeted assassinations carried out by the Koree Nageenyaa (Security Community) and the new Republican guard security service against individuals perceived as threats to the government or its interests. These extrajudicial killings have instilled fear and insecurity among the population, leading to a climate of repression and intimidation.

The actions of these groups are a clear violation of human rights and international law. The government must be held accountable for these abuses and ensure that those responsible are brought to justice. The international community must condemn these actions and pressure the Ethiopian government to respect the rights and dignity of all its citizens. It is crucial that steps are taken to dismantle these groups and put an end to its reign of terror. The protection of human rights and the rule of law must be upheld to ensure a safe and just society for all Ethiopians.

In conclusion, a leader’s attitudes towards the masses they govern are crucial in determining their effectiveness and impact. Abiy Ahmed’s perception of the people as ignorant and having short memories may have significant implications for his leadership and the future of Ethiopia. It is imperative for leaders to respect and empower their citizens, rather than dismiss or underestimate them. The Republican Guard and Koree Nageenyaa (Security Community) represent a serious threat to the democratic and freedom values of Ethiopia. The government must act decisively to dismantle these groups and uphold the rule of law to prevent further destabilization of the country.

As doomsday prophecies, in the coming days, weeks, or months, Abiy’s government plans to launch a terror attack through its organized terrorist group. This group targets civilians, prominent politicians, schools, public infrastructure, and other facilities to portray Fano as a terrorist organization to the international community. By doing so, they aim to create a negative perception of Fano and incite hatred towards the group. Additionally, the government utilizes this situation for propaganda purposes. This strategy mirrors the government’s past actions during the Tigray War, where they controlled the media narrative to demonize the TPLF.

Overall, state terrorism is a serious violation of human rights and international law, and can have devastating consequences for the affected populations, and it is crucial to approach any information related to Dr. Abiy and the current situation in the country with a critical and discerning mindset. Staying informed through reliable sources and fact-checking can help navigate through the complexities of propaganda and ensure a more accurate understanding of the situation. However, it is important for the international community to closely monitor the situation in Ethiopia and take action if necessary to prevent any human rights violations or destabilisation of the country. This could include diplomatic pressure, sanctions, or other measures to encourage peaceful resolution of conflicts and protect the rights of all individuals in Ethiopia. It is crucial for the international community to work together to promote peace, stability, and respect for human rights in Ethiopia.

Editor’s note : Views in the article do not necessarily reflect the views of borkena.com

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