Friday, April 27, 2007


(By Ethio-Zagol)
-Stephanie McCrummen is back in Addis. She is really a credit for the WaPo , a reputable paper which, nonetheless, has tarnished its good name by callously cheerleading the Iraqi war. See her well-researched piece on Somalia here. Note Kinfe Abrham's analysis. He said the situation in Mogadishu is a "hiccup". Familiar? The same word was used to describe the post-election violence in Ethiopia. You kill thousands, displace hundred of thousands and call it a hiccup. This is the zenith of Fascism. If you want to see how proud fascists some EPRDFites have become, see young Samuel Gebru's war crimes apology here.
-The Economist seemed to believe that Eritrea was indirectly involved in the ONLF attacks without offering any evidence.
-This article of the NY Times tries in the Times tradition too hard to detect invisible causes for insurgency in Somalia.
-This, This and This tell the truth in Somalia. Great work Martin Fletcher.
-Meqdela has the diary of Agazi Soldier here. ...And a different perspective about Siye Abraha's trial here.


Anonymous said...

Here is a great rebuttal of the NY Times piece by an American Columnist called Chris Floyd.
The Lies of the Times: NYT Pushes Bush Line on Somalia
by Chris Floyd

Anonymous said...

Countries like India and other are getting outsourced high-tech Companies. But Ethiopia under Tplf regime is getting out-sourced Guantanamo like Prisons. WHAT A SHAME.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Zagol.

Stephanie Mccrummen is a great journalist with great caliber. She analyizes things from the bottom. She doesn't buy whatever the Tplf goons say to paint a rosy picture on the quagmire they are in.

I don't agree on the accounts of the Economist lamenting Eritrea on the Ogaden issue. I hate the Eritrean dictator. But on the Somali issue, he is consistantly right. As we are wittnessing now, the American-Tplf invasion of Somalia only brought blood bath and human misery never seen in the history of Somalia. Jendai Frazer and some experts are scapegotting Eritrea for thier utter failure in Somalia just like Bush is pointing his fingure at Iran for the mess he created in Iraq.

Anonymous said...

Have the Tables Turned on the US in Somalia?
by David Whitehouse / April 26th, 2007

A massacre in Somalia by U.S.-backed Ethiopian forces has set off a political realignment against the Ethiopian invaders and the Somali government they installed last January.

Four days of attacks, beginning March 29, killed as many as 1,000 civilians in the capital of Mogadishu. The Ethiopians, backed by their allies in Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG), used tanks, helicopter gunships and artillery to demolish nearly four square miles of the city — neighborhoods housing Somali subclans that support militias opposed to the invasion.

Ten thousand residents fled during the attacks — on top of the 100,000 who had left since February. Doctors Without Borders reported Mogadishu’s largest outbreak of cholera in 15 years, and UN officials warned of a humanitarian catastrophe for the country’s internally displaced people, who now number half a million.

The TFG, whose leadership is skewed to favor Somalia’s northern Darod clan, was already splintering before this act of ethnic cleansing. But the slaughter sparked a key defection from the government — Hussein Aideed, a deputy prime minister who belongs to one of the targeted subclans.

Aideed made a joint statement against the occupation April 18 alongside Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, leader of the moderate wing of the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) — the group ousted in January by Ethiopia’s invasion. Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden, the former speaker of the TFG parliament, joined in the statement, which called for a common Somali front to force out the Ethiopians. Unlike Aideed, Aden was always opposed to the invasion and favored talks with the UIC moderates. For these reasons, TFG President Abdullahi Yusuf demoted him in January.

Hussein Aideed, a member of the Hawiye clan that dominates Mogadishu, is the son of Muhammad Farah Aideed — the bogeyman who haunted the U.S.-led UN occupation of Somalia from 1992 to 1994.

Educated in the U.S., Hussein entered Somalia in the 1990s as a Marine. He stayed to become a warlord, like his father, and got rich turning Somali acacia forests into charcoal for export. He posed as a U.S.-friendly powerbroker in a country that has lacked a central government since the 1991 fall of its U.S-backed dictator, Siad Barre.

After the attacks of September 11, 2001, Aideed became a CIA informant in the “war on terror” — and may be the responsible for making some of the currently unsubstantiated claims that the UIC harbored al-Qaeda kingpins. The charges of al-Qaeda infiltration were the propaganda cover for Ethiopia and their U.S. backers to install the TFG.

Amnesty International reports that more than 80 Somali men, women and children are still locked up without charge as “terror suspects” in secret jails in Ethiopia. They were captured by U.S.-trained Kenyan border security forces in January and February.

The detainees were fleeing a region where Ethiopian tanks were advancing and the U.S. carried out air strikes to assassinate supposed al-Qaeda leaders — but instead killed 70 Somali herdsman, according to the aid agency Oxfam.

Despite his checkered past, Aideed, together with his two new anti-Ethiopian allies, has deeper roots in the southern capital area than the TFG. The three could represent the face of a future Somali government. If so, it would be a coup for Isaias Afwerki of Eritrea, who brokered the discussions among the new allies and hosted the announcement of the alliance in Eritrea’s capital of Asmara. Just weeks ago, it seemed like Ethiopia and the U.S. were succeeding in installing a Somali government to their liking. Now Isaias could end up being the kingmaker.

Eritrea, a breakaway province of Ethiopia and now its regional rival, has a longstanding border dispute with Ethiopia that broke out into war in 1998. It is a one-party state with anti-imperial pretensions left over from its rebel days. Once supported by the U.S. when the USSR was aligned with Ethiopia’s Mengistu Haile Mariam, Eritrea has since become estranged from Washington, and the U.S. government supports Ethiopia’s border claims.

In the past two weeks, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer stepped up her invective against Isaias for “supporting terror.” Although Eritrea is a secular, mixed-religion state, it has had ties to Somalia’s Islamic courts movement — in part to keep Ethiopia tied down in the south, away from the border with Eritrea.

The appearance of Aden and Aideed in Asmara, however, changes Eritrea’s role, increases its regional stature, and raises the stakes for the U.S. if Frazer and Bush continue on their belligerent course.

In other circumstances, Bush might want to escalate the conflict into a regional war, but the U.S. is already overextended by its wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. And because Mogadishu is still a battleground — with 130 more Somalis killed last week — the Ethiopian invasion force can’t count on African Union members sending troops to relieve them. Only close U.S. ally Uganda has sent troops so far.

The U.S. may hope to arrange a face-saving settlement to allow Ethiopia’s Meles Zenawi to declare victory before retreating. It’s conceivable that the U.S. would put its blessing on a Somali government that includes moderate Islamists, and draws a line against UIC militants. Some in the administration seem to have favored this course all along.

But the separation of the UIC’s two wings may be impossible to achieve, since they are currently united in a common front against Ethiopia and the TFG.

For these reasons, the conflict may grind on. The Ethiopians can’t simply retreat, since the Yusuf government — the one they want — would collapse without its support.

But if the realignment of Somali forces takes hold, conditions are not stalemated. Things are moving against the U.S. and Ethiopia. Even if they have many more cards to play, the invaders seem to have a losing hand.

Anonymous said...

Come on people, we all know the Ethiopian Government acted on behalf of the US government. Meles is no fool to get himself into this situation. He has got his hands full in Ogaden and in the north with 'Arbegnoch Ginbar' not to mention chasing all Ertrian agents operating in the country. But he is in a situaion where he has to make a choice. Bush made his case plain clear. He said 'You are either with us or against us'. He choose to be with the Americans, considering the world we live in today, that is not a bad choice to make. Even a prosperous developed country like France cannot stand against America. In my opinion the best chioce for the EPDRF government would be to make friendship with his own people first, but i think when it comes with the foriegn policy we need to look the real source and cause of all actions.

Anonymous said...

The last anon you need to see things clearly here.The full responsblity to invade a neigbhouring state of somalia squarel rest on PM.MELESE AND HIS PARTY T.P.L.F.HE WAS UNDER PRESSURE BEING THREATIND OF SOME FORM OF
sanction BY U.S and donner states.As a result, contrary to what you assert that ,melese is no full but have no choice but to obey U.S, he is the one who proposed to America that if he can be used he is there to serve.I belive out of his own initiative he volinteered to run his mercenery erand.This is also result of ethiopia being ruled by one PARTY(T.P.L.F).HAD THAT NATION BEEN GIVEN AN OPPORTUNITY FOR MULTI party system to function,then,in such environment Melese's postion could have been defeated. Now, the pm has made desscion;any one who is in a postion of making decession,bear the responsiblity that goes with it:accountablity.Let us not forget this,Ethiopians have dearly payed with their life demanding representation in the poletical process.It was in attepting to divert attention from this domestic situation that the government was forced to make,what it thought a tactical move,that landed it in to slipery road.

Anonymous said...

EZ, calling a HIGH SCHOOL teenager a FASCIST is really messed up. He just disagrees with your assessment that war crimes have been committed. I don't believe war crimes have been committed either, so you have one more fascists who disagrees with you. As to the Hiccup statement. Yes it was a Hiccup. The trouble during the election was a hiccup. And not much of a Hiccup as you can see because the reality dictates that it was a minor hiccup. Has economic progress declined. Nope. Has there been uprisings of the like you were wishing for, NOT. We are preparing the celebrate the millenium with thousands of the opposition sympathizers. What is that? A Calamity? Please. The Ethiopian Defense Forces are worthy of praise. Their professionalism has been attested to from the various peace keeping operations they have carriedout. All the propganda of Islamic-terrorist is not going to defame our gallant forces, who by the way have crippled the terrorists from the AYR sub-clan, thus, another bad news for you and your likes. TEKATELU, Ethiopia is rising from the ashes and you just can't stand it because your particular kind of person is not at the help of power. TEKATELU!

Anonymous said...

hey anoy above ur sick. sick to be an Ethiopian.ur tplf who be glad to kill man kind so ur fashist like this kid and kinfe abreha and ur party.go to your earthly hell.

patriotic-ethiopian said...


Anonymous said...

During the election period, Tplf supporters were heard saying that Kinijit can not take over power. Thier argument was not because Kinijit lost the election or lacks the knowledge and capacity to lead Ethiopia but kinijit doesn't have any army. That is when I realised that the army was not Ethiopia's but Tplf's. Now they are telling us that the army is Ethiopian and we must support it. Which one is true? the one they told us during the election or the one they are telling us now?

Abebe Bekila said...

Excellent point made by the anonym above.

Yes! TPLF supporters answer the question.

Make up your minds, Does the ARMY belongs to Ethiopia or TPLF?

Anonymous said...

Africa’s Horn Ready to Blow
April 27, 2007
Prepared by: Eben Kaplan

Violence in the Horn of Africa is not unusual. Somalia has witnessed almost constant skirmishes between rival warlords in the sixteen years since it last had a functioning government. In neighboring Ethiopia and Eritrea, lingering resentment over a 1990s border dispute has left the two countries perpetually at each other’s throats. Thus, when the United Nations describes the latest eruption of violence in the Somali capital of Mogadishu as the worst in over a decade (Guardian), it gives cause for some alarm. Pitched battles have forced one-fifth of Mogadishu’s 2 million residents to flee the city (AP) and the UN humanitarian chief worries those numbers will climb. In the capital, bodies of those caught in the crossfire lay rotting in the streets, as residents are too fearful to retrieve them (BBC).

According to Idd Beddel Mohamed, Somalia’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, the current episode pits Somali government forces backed by Ethiopian troops against a band of “ragtag militias” loyal to the warlords who in recent years have been the main power brokers in the country. Experts say the warlords seek to keep the chaotic status quo in which they thrive, but have been joined by a number of Somalis angry with Ethiopia’s intervention. Among these are said to be remnants of the Islamist militias that in 2006 threatened to topple the Somalia’s ineffectual Transitional Federal Government until Ethiopia intervened with U.S. backing. A new report from Britain’s Chatham House looks at trajectory of Somalia’s Islamist movement, arguing that external intervention destroyed relative stability (PDF).

While Ethiopian tanks rumbled through Mogadishu (Reuters), Somali separatists launched a grisly attack on a Chinese oil installation in Ethiopia, leaving seventy-four dead (CSMonitor). The perpetrators of the attack, the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), claimed the raid was retribution for the mistreatment of ethnic Somalis in Ethiopia. Addis Ababa quickly accused Eritrea of starting a proxy war (VOA) by backing both the ONLF and insurgents in Mogadishu.

The United States appears to stand by Ethiopia, a democracy that professes to share its interests in the war on terror. The relationship recently came under scrutiny when reports revealed U.S. officials had interrogated terror suspects (HRW) in secret Ethiopian prisons, and again when the New York Times revealed U.S. officials looked the other way when Ethiopia violated UN sanctions by purchasing arms from North Korea. In a recent Foreign Affairs article, John Prendergast and Colin Thomas-Jensen of the International Crisis Group argue that Washington’s obsession with counterterrorism in Africa’s Horn is undermining efforts to bring stability to the region. Indeed, Somalia’s National Reconciliation Conference, the process most experts cite as the best hope for the nation, was postponed earlier this month due to the fighting.

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