The Ethiopian minority regime (Weyane) launched yet again another open aggression on Thursday 15, 2012 over the southeastern territories of Eritrea, and on Saturday over the northwestern sections near the illegally occupied town of Badme, under a pretext of retaliation for what it termed as Eritrea’s subversive actions. A couple of months ago tourists in the Afar territory of Ethiopia were attacked in a cross fire between Ethiopian troops and an Afar rebel group called ARDUF. ARDUF has been battling the Ethiopian regime for more than two decades for marginalizing the Ethiopian Afars. Its sporadic confrontation has become at times deadly, especially in areas where tourists visit the volcanic marvel of the northern and northeastern Afar territories. Among many of their complaints, lack of equal sharing of the resources of the region and the monopoly of the tour companies by Tigrayans are stressed.
The aggression might seem as a surprise to some, but the racist Weyane has been instigating skirmishes here and there across the borders for many years. What is new in this situation is that it has admitted openly that it has violated Eritrea’s territorial integrity and it will continue to do so. But why the regime has shown dangerous overtures and has become bellicose in recent years? Why are the responsible people at the UN keeping mute every time the Ethiopian regime violates neighboring countries territories? It won’t be difficult to figure out the reason behind all this indifference by AU, UN and EU. There is no doubt in my mind that without a tab at the shoulder by the
United States, the leaders of the Weyane regime, ridden by inferiority complex would not unleash flagrant and provocative acts on its neighbor Eritrea. The United States and the European Union members, especially France are responsible for letting Weyane become so belligerent, untamed spoilt child of the Horn of Africa. The US Government alone has been pumping close to 5 Billion USD per year to the regime for its services as a stooge, and a delivery boy; outsourcing its ill-conceived foreign policy in the Horn of Africa. The State Department believes that Ethiopia is keeping its interest in the Horn of Africa, which is fighting terrorism, but it fails to understand who the main actor is in destabilizing the Horn of Africa.
The regime in Ethiopia has divided its people into ethnic enclaves suspicious of each other so as to avoid any cohesion among the people. The divide and rule mantra has been the guiding principle of the Weyane regime since its inception. It has been antagonizing the Amhara people as chauvinist “neftegna” when they show any sign of taking over its power. It divided the Oromo people into two antagonistic groups by favoring the one that it created. It didn’t spare the Muslim community either. The Muslims in Ethiopia have been living in peace with their Ethiopian believers of other faiths for centuries. But in recent years, Weyane has unleashed its weapon of divide and rule by classifying the Muslims as Wehabis, Khwarigi, and Al-Ahbash groups – considering one group as a moderate the other as conservative and militant. Obviously, the regime survives in murky waters, and many Ethiopians consider the regime illegitimate, especially after it lost the 2005 election and stole it by brute force. It gunned down close to 300 innocent souls under a pretext that they were bank robbers. It divided the Ethiopian opposition leaders as moderates and chauvinists.
It considered the then leader of the most popular group Kinijit, Engineer Hailu Shawel as an extremist and Dr Berhanu Nega as moderate, in an attempt to create a wedge among the supporters of the group. In 2003, in the Gambela region, when armed rebel groups, who have deep grievances on the Weyane government’s nepotism, attacked settlers from the highlanders of Tigray and Amhara, the regime vented its anger on unarmed innocent Agnuak native and killed close to 2600 people, but no one from its backers and handlers reprimanded for its atrocious acts.
When a semblance of peace prevailed in Somalia in 2006 by an amalgam of Islamic Courts, UIC, after many years of chaos, the minority Ethiopian regime was quick to be on the forefront to do the dirty jobs of its handlers. Soon it started to divide the leadership of the Somalia group who controlled Mogadishu and other capitals into Moderate Islamists and Extremists. It invaded Somalia with the US intelligence aid, and dislodged UIC from power. This ill-conceived adventurous aggression has become a source of instability in Somalia. A more radical group known as al-Shabab was formed in retaliation to the blanket killings of innocent Somali citizens, and raping of their women and children by Ethiopian troops. This radical group introduced a new method of engaging the enemy – suicide bombing, which was alien to the Somali psyche.
The US State Department fails to see the big picture of the Somalia Crisis. It focuses on the unipolar issue of Islamic terrorism, and to that end it supports whoever is willing to do the contract job of fighting terrorism. All these indifferences by the UN and EU to the wanton aggression of the Weyane regime bolstered its divide and rule policy over the Horn of Africa. The United States is using the same failed
policy of the Middle East in the Horn of Africa. No matter what the Israeli government does in the Middle East, it doesn’t say a word because Israel is its democratic alley, and using their veto power at the UN, they continue to frustrate any tangible move to stop the Israeli from their illegal settlement.
Ethiopia is considered an ally and therefore it has to be protected at the AU, EU, and UN at any cost regardless of its human rights violations, its belligerent and bellicose acts towards its neighbors. Just like the Western powers are concerned about the lives of their people, they should also be concerned about the millions of people in the Horn of Africa whose lives are at stake because their weapons, given to their allies are killing people. More than a decade ago, close to 125,000 people died when the Ethio-Eritrea war broke. Yet again, the irresponsible Ethiopian regime with its backers is saber rattling for another full-scale war, with unpredictable outcomes.
Woyane has openly declared it wants to change the Eritrean government by any means necessary. To that end, it had accommodated, funded and armed an assortment of Eritrean opposition groups that want to divide Eritrea into ethnic and religious enclaves – just the way it wanted. The chaos that they want to create in Eritrea will definitely have a ripple effect with grave consequence to the Greater Horn and to whatever the US and European interest might have in the region. Eritrea is relatively stable within itself compared to Sudan, South Sudan, Ethiopia, and Somalia, where religious and ethnic clashes are a norm. It is trying its best to reach the Millenium Development Goal (MDG) without begging for alms from donors. Its economy is showing signs of upward trend, thanks to the booming mining industries. However, the irresponsible minority government of Meles Zenawi and the US continue to lobby at the UN for blocking any investments in Eritrea. Strangely, instead of rewarding Eritrea for its efforts of self-sufficiency, the US government is on a full gear to discredit the efforts and stigmatize Eritrea at any occasions. Eritrea’s hands are tied by the US sponsored sanctions of arms embargo, and Weyane is fully loaded with US arms and surveillance drones, and has become more bellicose. The regime’s handlers should know that might is not right and the rule of law should be prevailed.
Yusuf A. Mahmood.