Ethiopia of Abiy Ahmed’s ODP is a Prototype for Future African Federation

Ethiopia of Abiy Ahmed’s ODP is a Prototype for Future African Federation

Ethiopia (Great Oromia), a multi-national state in Africa (i.e. a state formed based on ethnic regions), in contrast to the mono-national states of Europe, is one of the countries still suffering from sequel of an attempt by European colonization in the region and from an impact of Abyssinian colonization over other nations like the Oromo. We all know that the name Ethiopia is a contaminated and abused name. It has got different meanings: according to the Bible, it is Cushland; according to Greeks, it is land of blacks (burned face); according to Tigreans, it is Axum empire; according to Amharas, it is Abyssinia; and according to Ethiopianists from the southern nations, it is the current geographical state. For Oromo nationalists, it is a symbol for the system of domination. Ethiopia existed as feudal monarchy till the rule of Teferi Mekonnen, as military dictatorship of Mengistu, and as dictatorial revolutionary democracy of Mele and co. Will the next step be forging of democratic federalism by ODP (Oromo Democratic Party of Abiy Ahmed – transformed OPDO to serve Oromo interest, instead of obeying the hegemonist TPLF) and others? According to program of ODP, it is understandable that the move is towards democratic true ethnic federation in contrast to TPLF’s dictatorial fake ethnic federation.

Regarding ODP’s program on fantastic administrative structure, it supports the right of all nations and nationalities to be organized in their territories at community, district, province (zone) and state levels. What a  structure! This can be a good example for the whole of African multinational states. To tackle the problems of nations in Africa and to deal with the present global challenge, Africans are trying to come together and forge USA (Union States of Africa). Till now, we are looking at U.S.America or EU (European Union) as an example. For instance, Amhara democrats, who want to get rid of ethnic federation and want to establish Ethiopia as a melting pot (melting all nations in to Amharic speakers), do look at U.S.America. as a model, whereas Oromo liberation forces, who want to establish an independent democratic republic of different nations, which may further forge union of free peoples based on free will, do like the model of EU. But both US and EU can not be good examples for Africa. US is melting pot for all nations around the world migrating to America and learning English language. EU is union of well developed and independent mononational states, all using their own respective languages.

Africa can be neither melting pot nor union of developed mononational states. The nations in Africa are diverse in development and size. What is good for Africa is to build union (federation) with autonomous national areas for all nations aka “ethnies”. Based on their size and development, some nations can forge mononational state like Oromia region. Others, which are too small to have their own state can forge multinational state like SNNP, with all nations having their own province, district or community as autonomous national areas based on their size. Relatively bigger nations like Sidama can have their own autonomous province, nations smaller like Alaba can have autonomous district, and the smallest nations like Dorze can have their own autonomous community. Based on their geographical position, certain small nations like Agaw and Harari can join the bigger neighbor nations like Amhara or Oromia, but have their own autonomy, be it as province, district or community. Such five tier organization (African federation — mono-/multinational states — mono-/multinational provinces — mono-/multinational districts and mono-/multinational communities) is the best way of administrative arrangement for Africa.

In Short, ODP’s Ethiopia model can be used as a prototype for African future federation, just changing the current ethnic federation’s fake status under TPLF to a very genuine one, for which ODF, ODP and OFC are struggling. Then, we will have not only an integrated Ethiopian union, but also an integrated continent Africa, which will be build on the center called Oromia with Finfinne as a capital. Oromia will be a sovereign state in United States of Africa, so can be Amharaland, Tigrai and other nation-states. The only question we people need to ask ourselves is that, at which administrative level are we thinking, talking and walking when we try to deal with politics? If we are ready to accept and think at level of the above five tiers, then we can look at the fact that ethnic federalism or language-based federalism, rather than geography-based federalism, is a panacea for regional union of Ethiopia and  continental integration of Africa.

In respect to the development in this direction, thanks to CUD and OLF, formation of AFD was the first nightmare TPLF ever experienced. The formation of similar alliance at home (Medrek) by the OFC and UDJ with parties of other nations was the second nightmare. But if and only if parties like the UDJ would accept and respect ethnic federation, then the move of Negasso Gidada to join UDJ instead of OFC was not disappointing for the Oromo. Otherwise, ODP’s vision is a better hope in comparison to TPLF’s fake federation, but not the best hope; PAFD definitely will be the best hope for the nations in the empire. Having Ethiopian union of nations as envisioned by ODP, OFC and ODF is really good, whereas PAFD fortunately will have the same result based on referendum by the concerned public. PAFD’s action will lead to the lasting result and the end-goal (regional union of nations per referendum), owhereas that of ODP is only temporary and leads us only to a mid-goal of nations in Ethiop, i.e to union of nations per consensus of the involved parties without taking into consideration the will of the concerned public.

The fulfillment of the above mentioned hope is because of the fact that both ODP and PAFD are on the same middle line (in the political spectrum of the empire) trying to establish union of peoples, on the contrary to the ultra-left liberation fronts needing to achieve only unconditional national independence without a possible union and  the ultra-right political parties striving for unconditional integration in form of assimilating all nations in to Amharinya speakers. Also ODF is sending a shocking wave to TPLF circle. According to its leaders, even AG7 is pursuing to achieve the goal of a union of nations per public verdict in the future union per referendum. If this is true, then ODF cooperating with AG7 and forming an alliance called Ethiopian National Movement (ENM) is almost the same to supporting PAFD. The only difference is that ODF wants to get freedom from TPLF fascists peacefully, whereas PAFD tries all-inclusive method. Then, the future political move in Ethiopia will be from the status quo (position of TPLF with its fake ethnic federation), first to position of ODP forging true ethnic federation (self-administration) and then to position of PAFD to realize the right of nations to self-determination!

According to the recent interview given by leaders of the different Oromo liberation fronts, their organizations are moving towards a united front, then further together to revive AFD (PAFD + ENM), the alliance with democratic forces and freedom fighters of other nations. This will be a very good move to strengthen the struggle against fascist TPLF. I hope this alliance in Diaspora will be reactivated soon and will galvanize the struggle for freedom and democracy at home being cooperated and coordinated with the struggle of  ODP ans Medrek.

As far as other African multinational states formed by colonial powers are concerned, they should learn from ODP’s Ethiopia two things: firstly, they need to accept and respect the God-given right of their nations and nationalities in order to help them have self-administration and self-determination, so that they can use and develop their own respective national languages instead of still worshiping colonial languages. Secondly, they need to foster ethnic federation with different administrative levels of five tiers as described above to promote cultural, economic and political autonomy of all nations and nationalities in Africa, which will be democratic bases for the future United State of Africa, the continent being free from negative influence of both the hitherto colonial borders and colonial languages.

Galatooma!

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ODP of Dr. Abiy in Eprdf vs OFC of Dr. Marara in Medrek

Bildergebnis für abiy ahmed

ODP of Dr. Abiy in Eprdf vs OFC of Dr. Marara in Medrek

I am one of the few Oromo, who used to advocate for Medrek struggling against the fascist TPLF. I wrote some articles in support of it; I tried to indicate that Medrek is a way forward. I noted that even Dr. Negasso’s move was not backward, but forward, as the party he joined, UDJ, and the alliance he helped build, Medrek, were promoters of genuine federation in Ethiopia (Great Oromia).

In one of my articles, I indicated why Medrek could be good for the Oromo to achieve our mid-goal in contrast to AFD, which was good to arrive at the end-goal, taking Medrek as a promoter of language-based federation. Even I went further and exalted Medrek’s Ethiopia with autonomous national areas including Oromia’s autonomy as a prototype for the future African federation. I took Medrek as a good compromise alliance, next to AFD, which really acted against the “divide and rule” game of the fascist regime. For that reason, I even recommended Birtukan “Mandela” to be formal chairperson of Medrek. Were these all “naive” assertions from me? I was also surprised by reservation of most Oromo nationalists regarding Medrek.

Oromo nation’s political interest is crystal clear: move from the status quo of domination towards realization of full national freedom. Any measure to be taken in supporting this move should be accepted by Oromo nationalists. The question now important is: can we consider that Medrek’s ambitions and actions do promote this liberation movement? I am asking this question after following Medrek’s meetings at home and in Diaspora for many years. As I repeatedly mentioned, the rhetoric of individuals and parties in Ethiopia regarding democracy, freedom, justice, development, peace, equality, prosperity, etc. is not important for Oromo people to judge who these forces are. These values are important, and no one denies them, even members of the fascist regime talk about such moral virtues.

The only important value to be taken by the Oromo as a factor to judge these politicians is their position on right of nations to self-determination, including independence and/or integration. It is clear that TPLF talks this virtue, but walks against it. Unfortunately, Medrek is not even talking about it, let alone walking it. I know OFC has got clear position on achieving and promoting Oromia’s autonomy in Ethiopian context. But, Medrek leaders talked ambiguously in all the meetings they held till now, and they explicitly told us in a meeting they held once in Washington that there was no clear agreement between member parties of Medrek on the type of federation they want to forge, if they get government position.

I personally think that the only major difference among opposition parties in the empire is their position on type of federal structure. There are two types of federalists: the ethno-federalists, who believe in right of Oromia and other national areas to be autonomous, and the geo-federalists, who want to dismantle Oromia with a pretext of fostering geography-based federation. Parties like AEUP are clearly geo-federalists. Thanks to Waaqa, these parties do no more brag about bringing back a unitary state with only one official language (Amharic). Woyane’s Eprdf is at least ideologically ethno-federalist even though it is implementing a revolutionary centralism, through which it is promoting Tigean hegemony.

According to explanation given by Medrek leaders, it seems that some member parties insist on its anti-ethnic federation position and with that, they revealed their desire to dismantle Oromia. Dr. Negasso also showed clearly his political development as he tried to describe how bad it was for Oromo from Borana to come to Finfinne, and for Amhara from Debre-berihan to go to Bahir-Dar in order to settle their court cases. His explanation implies that he is ready to accept the division of Oromia. Actually, only an  Oromo with high political confidence dare to take this position. I believe that an independent Gadaa Oromia was our goal of 1960s as we had low confidence and sow ourselves as minority at periphery; now, since the 1990s, our goal seem to be federal union in a form of ethnic federation for we already developed intermediate confidence due to our hitherto victories; of course an integrated Ethiopia (an integrative Great Oromia) will be our goal of 2020s, when we will have high confidence in ourselves and .

Interesting is also to observe that the known anti-ethnic scholars supporting this move of Medrek. Such scholars think that with their anti-ethnic rhetoric they fight against the TPLF. They still do not get the fact that ethno-federation is not only the will and wish of TPLF, but also that of some Oromo nationalists and other oppressed peoples. Specially clear is that Amhara nationalists hiding behind Ethiopiawinet do this move against Oromo’s right to self-administration. Trying to discredit ethnic-federation in favor of their alternative geo-federation is simply put a move against other people’s political will. Actually, both types of federations can serve Oromo interest as long as rule of the game will be freedom and democracy.

So, Medrek seems now not to be an alliance to promote Oromia’s autonomy in Ethiopian context, which could be a good compromise solution for the conflict between Amhara nationalists, who hide behind the mask of Ethiopian nationalism and who are advocates for unity, and Oromo nationalists, who fight for Oromia’s independence. Medrek seems to be an alliance of both ethnic-federalists and geo-federalists against TPLF just to get rid of the regime without having common vision regarding federal arrangement. How long can such alliance of contradictory ideologies hold together wass a big challenge they needed to overcome; at last UDJ (the main geofederalist) left the alliance. Public verdict in the two types of federation could have been a remedy.

Surprisingly, I have seen one young hyper-active Oromo nationalist adoring this alliance even though the position of the alliance is not same to his position on the should-be compromise solution. According to his presentation on “Ethiopian and Horn of African conference”, which took place in Virginia, he is advocate of true “ethnic-federation” as moderate/liberal position between the two extreme poles of the right-extremist “reactionary Ethio-nationalists”, who want to dismantle Oromia and the left-extremist “revolutionary or radical Ethno-nationalists”, who want to dismember Ethiopia. Is he fooling himself or deceived by the referendum rhetoric given by Medrek leaders?

Medrek leaders said that the discussion among member parties on federal structure would go on and if they would not have any consensus, they would go for verdict of the public. If they are as such democrats to go for referendum to determine the type of federation we want to have, why couldn’t they be so democratic to accept also the right of nations to decide on the type of sovereignty they want to have (e.g Oromia’s autonomy within Ethiopian union vs. Oromia’s independence without a union) per referendum?

It seems that Habesha politicians in Medrek were playing very smart politics. They used method of elites’ consensus to make Oromo nationalists in OFC accept Ethiopian unity unconditionally (without Oromo public verdict) and they wanted to use the instrument, public referendum, to decide on structure of the federation. It seems that Oromo nationalists agreed to the game. Fair agreement would have actually been either to use consensus in both decision-making processes or to apply referendum in both cases. Looking at the harmless move of Oromo politicians in Medrek, it is not surprising that we read on Habesha websites how fair Oromo elites like Dr. Negasso and Obbo Bulcha are.

When we do observe sentiment of the geo-federalists, who are claiming that “Ethiopiawinet has won” and are declaring that “ethno-nationalism is loosing” as Medrek had come forward, we just can say it is a wake-up call for Oromo nationalists to check their position. No wonder that Oromo grass-root is so cautious in supporting the move of Medrek against Article-39 and so skeptical to accept its position against the right of nations to self-determination, including independence and integration. Medrek people should not be surprised if they see Oromo mass voting for ODP (Oromo Democratic Party; change the notorious name of OPDO, which served interest of TPLF to ODP now serving the Oromo) of Dr. Abiy rather than for OFC in the coming “election”. The principle “a known devil is better than unknown angle” can prevail.

It would have been better if Medrek leaders came out explicitly supporting true ethno-federation and get support of all Oromo, Tigrai, Somali, Afar, Southern, Benishangul and Gambella, even if the majority of Amharas are against such federal arrangement. Now they want to appease the anti-ethno-federation Amharas and at the same time to appeal to the pro-ethno-federation others – an approach which actually may not be helpful and productive. I am afraid that they lose anti-ethno-federation voters to unitarists and pro-ethno-federation voters to Eprdf.

As I tried to describe above, the rhetoric about only buzz words like freedom, democracy and justice is not sufficient. The important issue, which actually most politicians try to evade, is the issue of federal structure. Oromo federalists in OFC seem to be compelled or convinced to forge Oromia’s autonomy within Ethiopian unity, whereas specially Amhara elites are doing every thing possible to get rid of Oromia, because they fear that Oromo elites are not for unity per se.

It is fact that the hitherto so called Ethiopian unity was built partly by the sacrifice of known Oromo military men and politicians. Starting from Oromo “migration” in 16th century, through the “democratic” election of Ras Michael-I in Abyssinia in 1877, till the end of Mengistu regime in 1991, Oromo politicians played big roles in forming and maintaining present shape of the country. The convinced pro-unity Oromo nationalists believe that even the so called Habeshas (Amharas and Tigarus) are biologically either Oromo or Agew, nothing else, but differ only in speaking specific other language called Amharinya or Tigrinya. With this theory, they try to justify their pro-unity position. But it is absurd that now at this particular post modern 21st century, Habesha politicians try to dumb Oromo and other oppressed nations by being represented in politics of the country as “pan-Ethiopian parties” like AG7, instead of showing themselves honestly as Amharas or Tegarus. Oromo nationalists say: “stop to hide behind the name Ethiopia and come as Habesha (Amhara or Tegaru), then we can make genuine alliance against the fascist regime.” I hope Habesha elites, in general, and Amhara politicians, in particular, will gradually start to take off their masks (the name Ethiopia), and approach the Oromo people being who they really are, as Amhara and/or Tigaru so that we can build common home called Ethiopia or Great Oromia or Kushland. The move of Tegaru nationalists to put on the masks, by learning from their Amhara friends, as well as the ever increasing rhetoric and song of the TPLF about Ethiopiawinet also do not change the reality.

In the future political landscape of the country, either elites of both Habesha nations, specially Amhara elites, will learn to be honest and come up showing their true nature or the Oromo nationalists will learn to wear the mask called Ethiopia and play the same game played by Habesha elites. The million dollar question is: can Oromo liberation forces learn to wear this mask (name of Ethiopia), which is accepted and adored by Western world in order to promote Oromo cause they are fighting for? We have seen how TPLF put on the mask and got huge support of their masters in the West. The choice which the Western protectorates of the country give to Oromo politicians seems to be either to wear the mask and be promoted, or to stay honest and be “punished” by power players of the globe.

Simply put, our preferable next move in Oromo liberation journey is to change the fake ethno-federation under TPLF to the true one, where Oromia’s autonomy will be respected and consolidated. I know this is program of OFC, but I have started to doubt if this is the will and wish of Medrek. I know this conflict may help a bit for cadres of the hegemonist TPLF and supporters of geo-federalists to attack Medrek. Nevertheless, the truth should be told.

I do believe that the only solution for that troubled region is liberation of Oromo nation, be it within or without a union of peoples in the region. Liberated Oromo people will be the foundation for liberation of other nations like Ogadenis, Afars, as well as for those in Benishangul, Gambella and Southern region. These liberated nations can build union for common benefit, which in the long run can include also the non-hegemonic Amhara people and Tegaru people, be it in a form of confederation or federation based on public verdict of liberated nations in the region. It is clear that the goal of OFC is a mid-point solution, which can be good prerequisite for end-point solution envisioned by the OLF. Otherwise, the chanting and the rhetoric made by Medrek leaders and supporters about mythical Ethiopia of 3000 years and their attempt to make Oromo mass to rally behind their “Ethiopiawinet”, disregarding Oromummaa, will surely be doomed to fail.

So, Oromo nationalists, in particular, and Oromo people, in general, should check if Medrek of OFC is really better than Eprdf of ODP in promoting Oromo’s cause. As far as I am concerned, any force trying to dismantle Oromia now with a pretext of opposing “division” into “ethnic regions“, despite the ‘democracy’ rhetoric it might make, is worse than the TPLF. If the choice is between this two (anti-ethno-fedration and pro-ethno-federation) movements, disregarding the sermon they always give on democracy, freedom, justice, equality, and development, no wonder if Oromo people will choose the present fake-ethnic regions and rally behind ODP till the better forces than TPLF come to the political arena of non-divided Oromia, in particular, and to that of Ethiopia, in general, to forge and promote true ethno-federation. It seems the Oromo are not yet in a high political confidence to lose Gadaa Oromia and own the whole Ethiopia (Great Oromia).
Galatooma!

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Is Abiy Ahmed’s ODP Good Enough to Promote Freedom and Democracy in Ethiopia?

Bildergebnis für OPDO Oromo flag

Is Abiy Ahmed’s ODP Good Enough to Promote Freedom and Democracy in Ethiopia?

No question that the already envisioned goal of Oromo liberation movement can be simply put as national self-determination, including and up to national independence (only Oromia), or up to union of free peoples (federal Union) or up to regional integration (only Ethiopia). Based on this general objective of the Oromo people, there are nowadays different liberation fronts and political parties operating in the name of Oromo. Even though I believe that one accommodative and inclusive liberation organization is more effective, necessary and even imperative for our struggle towards freedom and sovereignty (type of sovereignty being one of the three: only Oromia, federal Union or only Ethiopia), the currently active different factions and groups of the OLF, and other forces can be empowered separately and encouraged to work together in order to lead us in unison towards our intended destiny.

Thanks to Oromo nationalist heroines and heroes, who paid great sacrifice to achieve what we do have now in hand, Oromo liberation movement is already at irreversible level. Now we do see almost all Oromo nationals being proud of our identity; especially, the new generation is conscious enough about necessity of our unconditional freedom from the currently tormenting TPLF oppressors. The struggle for freedom from this occupying force is going on in different forms. The only difference we do observe among different Oromo nationalists is based on diverse views regarding the type of sovereignty we want to realize after achieving freedom: independent Oromia (only Oromia) or union of free nations in Ethiopia (federal Union) or integrated Ethiopia (only Ethiopia). Yet, these three types of sovereignty are not exclusive to each other, but achieving the first can be good prelude to come to the second, and then to move further to the third or vice versa. Common denominator for the three is freedom from fascism (power in Tulluu Daalatti)!

Unfortunately, such a stepwise progress of our liberation movement is now inhibited because of real lack of cooperation and coordination among and between the different Oromo political groups. Our beloved liberation front – the OLF – is already divided into different factions based on stressing tendency of the factions towards their chosen single type of sovereignty over the others, despite their common denominator – Oromo freedom. These different factions and groups are wasting most of our talent, resource and time fighting each other, instead of solving our conflict with the Oromo way of discussion (ilaa fi ilaame). Of course, such discord among Oromo liberation camp weakens the necessary strength we need for the struggle. Additionally, Oromo’s archenemy, TPLF, also works day and night to make sure that Oromo liberators be so divided, and Oromo national liberation bloc stay as weak as possible.

Some genuine Oromo nationalists did recognize this weak status quo of our  liberation camp and started to look for an alternative way of doing liberation business. They worked hard to unify the existing different factions and groups so that we could have one relatively stronger and more efficient liberation front. Despite the efforts, particularly in spite of the hitherto measures taken to re-unify the OLF, which was unsuccessful, even we could observe and register further fragmentization of the vanguard organization. At this time of our desperation, some nationals still try to find a way out of this quagmire.

One of the forwarded solutions was the now functioning #Team Lemma (ODP = Oromo Democrtatic Party, different from the previous OPDO as slave of TPLF). According to decision of this party, it already issued a call for all concerned Oromo nationals to start debate and discussion on current problem of Oromo people, and on the way how to come up with optimal solution. The different points raised in the statement are crucially important, and indeed it was an inviting message as well as a persuasive assertion.

For some known and unknown reasons, there were certain opposing voices in the Oromo community and in the cyber world against this Democratic Party. Most of the reasons given are based on the controversial prominent Oromo personalities, who are leading the party. Even one o OLF factions, which I do consider as the main stream liberation front, expressed its concern regarding this move of some Oromo nationals. The main question raised  was whether the ongoing discussion benefits or penalizes the already well established part of Oromo liberation struggle. I think the concern is legitimate and needs to be addressed, or must be considered by those who organized the engagement and by those who lead the discussion. No seasoned Oromo nationalist with sound mind does accept any move which can weaken our present power position. Any move towards disregarding the OLF and disarming OLA/WBO is surely doomed to fail.

Yet, we have to be open-minded and look at possible opportunity Honig on in ODP. It can be right move to solve our national problem and constructive means to bring Oromo nationals together. It may be the means to consolidate and empower the existing OLF and OLA by bringing a lot of non-organized Oromo nationals under one umbrella. I encourage the participants to move from the present discussion of involving only Oromo individuals to dialogue among Oromo institutions and organizations, especially by inviting the different factions and groups of Oromo  liberation movement to join the call.

One of the reasons raised to oppose the ongoing call is the allegation saying that ODP rejects the goal of an ‘independent Oromia’ in favor of supporting the union of free peoples. Thus, the Democratic Party and its leaders are accused as betrayers, capitulationists, collaborators, defeatists, Ethiopianists, foes, Gobanas, revisionists, etc. Interestingly, we observe a double-standard regarding such labellings. For certain criticizers, the members and supporters of ODP were Ethiopianists, while those within the Oromo Democratic Front (ODF) are not; or the vice versa is true, despite the fact that both groups were said to prefer union to independence. An important question to be answered here should be: are the leaders and partakers of this Democratic Party really Ethiopianists in a negative sense? To answer this basic question, we need to define two terms, Ethiopia and Ethiopianist, operationally.

The name Ethiopia seems to be defined in two ways according to Oromo nationalists involved in the hot discussion regarding the merit and demerit of the Democratic Party. One group of Oromo nationalists defines Ethiopia as the name of a territory, and thus being Ethiopianist is not as such a problem as long as political conviction of the concerned nationals promotes the goal of ‘free Oromia within a union.’ The other group of Oromo nationalists defines Ethiopia as system of colonization or system of domination, and this group demonizes those Oromo nationals taking part in entertaining Ethiopia as keepers of this system. Here again, another further question to be answered can be: are the leaders and participants of Democratic Party really Ethioianists in a sense of one definition or in terms of both definitions?

I personally think that these pro-union Oromo nationalists are not necessarily die-hard keepers of the domination system, but they are simply in favor of a possible union of free peoples in federal arrangement. As long as they believe in Oromo freedom and Oromia’s self-rule, be it within a union or without a union, they are part and parcel of Oromo liberation movement. Those who do believe in an independent Oromia can compete with these unionists when the time for referendum comes, but trying to demonize the unionists as “Ethiopianists” in a sense of keeping the system of colonization is, simply put, unfair. I just want to suggest for the pro-independence Oromo forces to have additionally our own dialogue forum among the different fragmentalized factions and groups, which want to promote independence. Then, there can be a possibility for necessary cooperation, in the future, between such purely pro-independence forum and thepro-union Democratic Party.

In case pro-independence and pro-union forces will have their separate dialogue forums as suggested here, yet unity for freedom between the two, having freedom as their common denominator, is mandatory, if we really want to get rid of TPLF fascists and racists. That is why Oromo people tried to persuade our national liberation organizations to build an imperative unity of Oromo liberation forces. Unfortunately, now it seems that such structural unity is almost impossible. Thus, we are demanding, as plan-B, ‘group of 11’ within one team of Oromo liberation movement, suggesting the importance of networking eleven organizations to struggle in unison against the archenemy. We mean by this: our different factions and groups of Oromo liberation movement can be as many as eleven if necessary, but they should learn to play harmoniously together just like eleven individuals in a soccer team do and they have to try to defeat the Abyssinian team of colonization and oppression.

It is only through such unity or alliance of Oromo liberation movement groups in one national team, that we can come to victory. Oromo people seem to have already put the solution for our problem in a short saying: “walii galan, alaa galan” (united, we stand). For the Oromo as bigger collective (as a nation) to be free, there is no alternative to this unity of purpose, if we seriously want to come out of the existing oppression. That is the main reason for the necessity of an imperative dialogue among different Oromo individuals and institutions. Thus, I do see no compelling reason to oppose any sort of dialogue blindly in general, and to vilify ODP in particular. Thus #Team Lemma’s call for working with all Oromo organizations to promote Oromo interest should be supported and welcomed. I see that, at the moment, there is no forum with an intention to prohibit our move to bilisummaa (freedom). In general, any sort of coming together of Oromo liberation groups need to be encouraged, because such unity of purpose is necessary for success.

Last, but not least, there are two universal facts, which we as a nation have to recognize, accept and realize: ‘unity is strength’ and ‘might is right.’ Simply put, there is no national right for Oromo without empowering the people in order to have might or strength. One way of strengthening Oromo nation is by fostering unity of purpose among all the fragmented political groups. I think the already started call from ODP of Abiy Ahmed can help this be materialized. Despite the concerns and fears expressed up to now, let’s go on and make constructive dialogue. As one Oromo proverb describes: ‘dubbii baha hin dhowwan, galma dhorku malee’ = it is not good to hinder beginning of any discussion, but important is to influence its outcome. Whether the already started move of ODP is so bad to prohibit or good enough to promote freedom and democracy in Oromia/Ethiopia will be seen in the future process. It is up to us, Oromo nationalists, to determine whether we can use the well performing ODP as an instrument either for negative prohibition or for positive promotion of our national purpose to achieve freedom. During our efforts to promote Oromo cause, may Waaqa help us utilize the Democratic Party in order to promote, but not to prohibit freedom and democracy in Ethiopia!

Galatooma!

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Flags for Gadaa Oromia of Galasaa Dilboo, Union Oromia of Abiy Ahmed and Great Oromia of Haile Fida

Flags for Gadaa Oromia of Galasaa Dilboo, Union Oromia of Abiy Ahmed and Great Oromia of Haile Fida

The Oromo liberation movement has got two wings and a backbone as three important positions, from where it is fighting against the enemy. One wing wants to establish an independent Gadaa Oromia, which will have influential position in whole region of the Horn, i.e only self-rule of Oromia as objective. The backbone pushes to liberate Union Oromia (Oromia within Ethiopia) and to make Oromo region a leading nation-state of the whole country, i.e self-rule of Oromia and shared rule of Ethiopia. Another wing strive to transform the whole Ethiopia to democracy, if necessary name the country as Oromia and promote Afaan Oromo to federal language of the country, but disregarding self-rule of Oromo national area, i.e only shared rule of Ethiopia (Great Oromia) as post-freedom objective. These three parts of Oromo national liberation movement are now trying to harmonize their moves against our common current enemy – the fascist and racist TPLF. Accordingly, we now find Oromo national liberation movement in whole spectrum of opposition parties and liberation fronts against the oppressive regime. Surprisingly, there is no organization on ground to represent the whole national liberation movement coordinating and accommodating the three parts. This reality persuades us to think that Oromo liberation in one of the three forms is inevitable, and the possible future three types of our sovereignty are not as such disadvantageous for Oromo people.

The three parts of our liberation movement are results of the three approaches, which Oromo nationals have towards our history. It seems that we are treating our history in three dimensions: (1) as only conflicting parallel history of Oromia and Abyssinia, such as Minilik’s invasion and the so-called Oromo expansion; (2) as both common proud history and conflicting parallel history of Oromia and Abyssinia. (3) as only common proud history of Oromia and Abyssinia, such as Adwa battle. Now, we do see that the consequences of these three approaches are three possible post-freedom destinies regarding future Oromia’s sovereignty (Gadaa Oromia, Union Oromia and Great Oromia). If we want to achieve our freedom efficiently, despite these different views, we have to firstly try to fight together for our common freedom from Abyssinianist elites’ system of domination, and then settle to choose one of the three types of sovereignty based on version of Oromo history we respectively do have in mind. It is clear that:

– those, who perceive only the conflicting parallel history, prefer liberation in Russian style (Gadaa Oromia of Ob. Galasaa Dilboo). Russian elites dismantled Soviet union and established the Russian federation, which uses Russian national language, the federation which still does have an influence on its neighboring nations, because of its economic and military strength. Does this way of dismantling Abyssinian empire and fostering the highly wished independent Gadaa Oromia to have a further influence over other liberated neighboring countries more advantageous than the other two types of sovereignty?

File:Flag of the Oromo Liberation Front.svg

– those, who tend to accept both the common and conflict part of our history opt for liberation in the Anglican model (Union Oromia of Dr. Abiy Ahmed). English people liberated themselves from the 700 years rule of Roman empire, formed England as an autonomous region and united it with the neighboring others to form United Kingdom; they used English as working language of the Kingdom. Can’t Oromo state, being autonomous and free from alien forces, be united with neighboring autonomous regions to forge a United Ethiopia, similar to that of the United Kingdom and promote Afaan Oromo to a working language of the union?

Bildergebnis für fayyis oromia

 

– those, who do believe in only common proud history, tend to choose liberation of Oromia in Indian type (Great Oromia of Dr.Haile Fida). The Hindi people liberated themselves together with all nations and nationalities in their region and named the whole country as India, made Hindi the working language of Indian federation and, of course, divided the national area of Hindi into multiple federal regions. Why not we, the Oromo, liberate the whole nations and nationalities in the empire, promote Afaan Oromo to the working language of the federation and call the whole country Oromia with the historical local Odaa’s of Oromia (Odaa-Bisil, -Bulluqi, -Bultum, -Gaarres, -Makodi, -Nabee and -Roobaa) being the future separate federal regions of the country?

All Oromo nationals are entitled to choose what we believe is the best for our nation; what matters, at last, is, of course, voice of Oromo majority. I think Oromia’s self-rule and/or Ethiopian shared rule should be an agenda of the Oromo, in contrast to the federation or separation goal of Tigrayan elites. Interestingly, the three Abyssinianist groups (elites of Amhara, Tigrai and Eritrea) have got only one option respectively in their political struggle: Amhara elites still can only sing about the Indian-type for they know that Amharinya has got privilege to be federal language of the empire; Eritrean elites, as a minority at the periphery, were so insecure to live within the union so they had only an alternative of separation (Russian-style); Tigrayan elites can neither have language privilege to opt for Indian-type nor the capacity to live alone as an independent nation in order to choose Russian-style, so they do stick to Anglican-model. But, the Oromo and Oromia, being the majority and the largest area at the center, can play all the three cards (Anglican-model, Russian-style and Indian-type) as long as rule of the game in the region will be freedom and democracy. So, let Oromo people use our advantage and coordinate our struggle with all pro-freedom and pro-democracy forces in the empire against TPLF to come to the position of voting for one of these three options we do have.

As far as I am concerned, all the three ways and visions are not harmful, but the decision must be made by the politically-conscious Oromo polity and Oromo public per referendum, when the time comes. This short essay is a bitter pill I wanted to present to Oromo foes, who are delighted by observing division of an Oromo liberation vanguard (the OLF) into three. For their information, OLF has got in its pocket, from the very beginning, only one goal of freedom, which, at the same time, can be interpreted as three types of post-freedom sovereignty (Gadaa Oromia, Union Oromia and Great Oromia). It plays with these three cards of sovereignty based on the objective reality it is in, i.e. according to the “here and now” of situations (according to the Zeitgeist)!

Galatooma!

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Can Dr. Abiy Ahmed be de Klerk of Ethiopia and Who Will be Mandela?

Bildergebnis für abiy ahmed

Can Dr. Abiy Ahmed be de Klerk of Ethiopia and Who Will be Mandela?

Both Habesha elites and their Western handlers are always busy to deal with Oromo liberation movement. It is not hidden fact that Ethiopia (Great Oromia) is project of the West to use it as a bulwark against influence of Arabs/Islam in the Horn of Africa. The views stated in this short essay are personal, which can be complimented or condemned; the author invites his readers to do the feedback. The question to be answered hier can be: is it by chance or by calculation that Birtukan Midhagsaa once upon a time has been just promoted to the level of “lady liberty,” “queen Midhagsaa” and “Ethiopian Mandela”? How about Dr. Abiy’s promotion now? Why do Oromo elites always be selected to manage crises phases of Ethiopian state (e.g Qusee Dinegde, Teferi Benti, Tesfaye Dinqa, and now Abiy Ahmed)? The answer is in short as follows.

Oromo national liberation movement is simply an anti-thesis of both Arab invasion and European intervention in the Horn of Africa. The whole story started as Semitic influence began 3000 years ago. At the time Judaism reached northern part of the Horn and some people started to believe in it, Waaqeffata Oromo rejected the new religion. As Christianity was on its turn to influence the region, Waaqeffatas resisted it. When Arabs started to invade Africa to expand Islam about 1000 years back, Waaqeffata Oromos rejected it; and, therefore, they were given the name Qaalla, from which Gaallaa (meaning ‘NO Sayer’) was derived.

However, this resistance was not absolute for certain parts of Oromo people were gradually influenced – i.e Christanized (Semitized) and Islamized. One European writer in 14th century wrote that the Christianized Oromo (Christian kingdom of Ethiopia) in today’s north Shewa of Amhara region had government controlling territory of about only 1000sq.km., being surrounded by non-Christian Oromo. This suggests the fact that today’s Shewa Amhara were the converted and gradually expanded Christanized (Semitized) Oromo. Leaving the Agaw/Oromo part in the northern Gojam, Gonder, Tigrai, Eritrea and western Wallo, who lost their identities and became today’s Amhara and Tegaru, the Amhara of north Shewa seem to be the lost (Christanized/Semitized) Oromo as well as the eastern part of Wallo is an Islamized Oromo.

The so-called 16th century “expansion/migration/invasion” of the Oromo was in reality self-protection from both European Christians led by the Portuguese and Arab Muslims led by the Ottoman Turk. These two fought in the Horn to get influence, and at last, the Oromo defending warriors defeated both invaders and ruled over Gondar dynasty for about 300 years. The Oromo started to lose influence in this region as Agaw (Qemant) warlord called Tewodros got support from Christian Europeans and attacked specifically Oromo rulers of Yejju dynasty in the mid-nineteenth century; then followed Agaw-Tigrai warlord called Yohannes – again with help of Europeans –, who persuaded Oromo of Wallo to be Christanized by force; at last, Menilik of Christian Tuulama Oromo became partner of European colonizers, as they had their conference of scramble for Africa in Berlin at the end of nineteenth century, and he got modern weapons and invaded the whole Gadaa Oromia and southern nations.

At that time, the two nations of Abyssinia (covered with their Christian/Semitic name of Amhara and Tegaru) waged a devastating war of colonization on the Oromo and other nations by using weapons they got from the West. European colonizers endorsed and supported the formation of Ethiopian state; then, they protected the empire from the “hostile” Arab world; and now they are using the same empire as a bulwark against “Muslim terrorists” from Middle East. But, unfortunate to the West is that the elites from the two Habesha nations are also competing and fighting against each other for dominance, so they have become more liability than asset, not to give peace and stability needed in the Horn.

The main threat these Western protectorates of Ethiopian state see against their project is Oromo liberation movement. That is why they sabotaged and hindered all the hitherto Oromo freedom uprisings. They were involved in hindering the success of Raya Oromo uprising, Bale Oromo revolt, Oromo movement in Me’ison during Derg era and, of course, in sabotaging the move of OLF in 1991/92. It was because of Oromo liberation movement that Habesha elites and their European/American sponsors opted to divide Somalia and caused havoc for the last many years, thus preventing Somalia from being sanctuary for Oromo armed struggle. Just to mention as example, the invasion of Somalia in 2006 was because of the threat which the TPLF regime felt from OLF and ONLF, who had a possibility to use Somalia as sanctuary.

This way or that way, both Habesha forces and their Western sponsors want to keep Oromo liberation movement under control. Peaceful uprisings against tyranny of the Oromo in years 2004 till 2007 made these two forces to think a modern way of tackling this “Oromo problem.” They promoted Birtukan Midhagsaa from no where to the position of Vice President of the Amhara-oriented major opposition party (CUD) at that time. It seems not to be by chance, but by calculation. Since then, all of them (the ruling Habesha/Tegaru regime, the opposing Habesha/Amhara forces and their American/European sponsors) were preparing her to be seen as a national figure – their main goal being to attract Oromo towards accepting fake Ethiopiawinet (equivalent to Habeshaeinet), on contrary to the flourishing Oromummaa (part of true Ethiopiawinet, i.e Kushawinet).

Birtukan was well-groomed to this status just to distract Oromo’s attention away from the liberation struggle and to destruct the Oromummaa movement. She was given a position of “Ethiopian Mandela” and Ethiopiawinet was preached contineously in her behalf by both Habesha groups. This might have attracted attention of few gullible Oromo, but it could not divert the move of conscious Oromo nationalists from unconditional liberation of both Oromo and Oromia. We have already seen how “lady liberty” made politics out of the chance she got just because of her Oromo origin, the chance which was based on calculation in order to deceive Oromo people. Has she been a puppet of Habesha colonizers to oppose Oromo’s just cause or had she use her chance to bring the lasting solution in Ethiopia? She had to choose between these two options.

How about now? Is Dr. Abiy promoted for the same purpose of diversion or can he be Ethiopia’s de Klerk to dismantle TPLF’s apartheid system and foster democracy? In case he is for the first option and starts to sing the same song of Habesha colonizers, i.e. ignoring Oromo’s question for national freedom and citizens’ liberty, he will be no better than our colonizer Menilik (who also is said to have had Oromo background), emperor Haile-Sillasie (who is said to be 4/5th Oromo), and dictator Mengistu Haile-Mariam (whose father is said to be Oromo). Being biologically Oromo actually doesn’t necessarily mean being politically Oromo or psychologically Oromo. To be politically Oromo, he needs to work further for Oromo’s national interest; to be psychologically Oromo, he needs to identify himself with all problems of this oppressed nation. Of course,  Dr. Abiy is the only one who identified himself as Oromo and wanted to struggle for Oromo cause and entered Tulluu Daalatti (Menelik) palace and hopefully he will not betray his own explicit mission and vision.

If he chooses the second option (i.e. use his chance to bring lasting solution in Ethiopia), then he really can be de Klerk of Ethiopia and lead the highly needed transition to democracy. Then, he should have in mind that the only lasting solution is Oromo people’s national freedom, be it in the form of Oromia’s autonomy within Ethiopian union (true ethnic federation) or Oromia’s independence within African union based on free will of Oromo people. He, as well as his American/European sponsors, also should have this solution in mind. They can not cheat, ignore or convince the Oromo by suggesting any other solution. If they reject this, the alternative is to live under misery and poverty till Oromo and Oromia will finally be free.

I personally hope that he would opt for the second option (use his chance to bring lasting solution in Ethiopia). I am optimistic that he can be a bridge for the political blocs (unionist liberators led by Oromo nationalists and democratic unitarists led by politically Amhara elites). Whatever the motive of Habesha elites and their sponsors in promoting him, he now has a potential to make politics in the empire a bit lively. This can be seen  as a threat for the TPLF regime.  We are eager to see, if he really can make OPDO-ANDM cooperation attractive and promote it to become a needed hinderance to the TPLF dominance. If the two opposition blocs (unionists and unitarists) could play smart politics, surely the new “de Klerk” of the empire – Dr. Abiy will clearly see that nothing will happen at the cost of Oromo liberation. The unitarists also should acknowledge this fact and come to their sense; nothing can hinder Oromo liberation movement from achieving its objective.

All Habesha elites’ political moves (such as promoting the Oromo “lady liberty” to use her as champion of the “peaceful struggle” and to divert attention of people from armed struggle) and now promoting Dr. Abiy to appease the Oromo can not distract our attention or destruct our liberation movement. Oromo nationalists should move forward in our struggle for freedom and liberty, despite all these manipulations. It is encouraging to hear and read that OLF-mindset is moving forward in unifying Oromo organizations. I encourage Oromo leaders to push further and make the unity bigger, i.e. include all Oromo freedom fighters in different organizations. After consolidating this unity in Oromo liberation camp, it is not unproductive to forge alliance with non-Oromo forces of freedom and democracy in order to compel the apartheid regime to succumb.

Once, we wanted to see how constructive “lady liberty” plays in consolidating Medrek at Home and in supporting (of course, indirectly) formation of alliance in Diaspora against the fascist regime. The common ground for both alliances should, of course, be Oromia’s autonomy within Ethiopian union (vision of ODF and OFC) or Oromia’s independence within African union (vision of OLF and UFIO). The cry of obsolete minded Habesha feudal lords to get rid of Oromia can not be a solution at the moment, but a cause for further misery. Thanks to the persistence of Oromo liberation movement, nowadays a lot of anti-TPLF forces started to call their struggle as a fight for freedom. These people are joining indirectly Oromo freedom fighters. That is why I dare to say that Ethiopian struggle is now transformed to Oromo struggle, not the opposite as Dr. Haile Hirpha once said: “Oromo struggle is transformed into Ethiopian struggle”.

Anyways, we congratulate Dr. Abiy for being promoted to Prime Minister of Ethiopia; whatever the motive behind that promotion is and we will watch his further political move. Will he move with obsolete-minded TPLF leaders, who still want to keep the status quo at cost of Oromo liberation struggle or with  modern-thinking OPDO leaders like Ob. Lemma Magarsa, who are searching for lasting solution? Waaqa help him to choose the second! As far as Oromo cause is concerned, let alone any possible move of instrumentalizing Dr. Abiy, even all the atrocities made for many centuries didn’t hinder us from struggling for our God-given cause of national freedom and citizens’ liberty. That is why I wanted to see Dr. Abiy act as de Klerk and foster a transition to democracy, so that an Ethiopian Mandela can be the true example of Nelson Mandela, rather than being cheap puppet of TPLF.

Last but not least, to answer the question I raised in the title, history written by professionals will show us why this young Oromo man is now well-groomed, adored and respected by Habesha elites and their Western sponsors. I wish Oromo politicians be vigilant and look at the probable mischief hiding behind all the theaters. We can speculate a lot, but good is to follow the reality and then act accordingly. Whether his life/political experience is by chance or by calculation will be seen and told in the future. Be it whatever it is, the message we, Oromo people, should send to his promoters is that nothing at the cost of Oromo nation will benefit their own interest and that of all nations in the Horn. As long as the Oromo and Oromia are under oppression and occupation, thinking about democracy, peace and development of the region is simply a pipe dream. I hope they all start to struggle for release of all political prisoners, in case their motive is really to advance human rights. I wish they all come to their sense and promote Oromo cause as part of the solution, and I wish good luck for  Dr. Abiy – the potential de Klerk of Ethiopia, hopefully not Medwedev of Ethiopia to be manipulated by Putin of Ethiopia (by Abay Tsehaye)! Who will be Mandela of Ethiopia to take over power from him in the future can be our next topic of discussion.
Galatooma!

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Ten Political Types of Oromo Elites and Ethiopian Political Spectrum

 Bildergebnis für odaa tree

Ten Political Types of Oromo Elites and Ethiopian Political Spectrum

Oromo elites can be classified in to 10 categories based on our political view regarding freedom of our people and sovereignty of our land. To describe the ten types and show their position, let me use Odaa tree as a metaphor. Imagine Odaa with two legs and one junction of its stem from which seven branches sprout. Put at left leg Ethio-fascists, at right leg Ethno-fascists, at the junction Ethic-nationalists, on the far left branch Ethio-centeralists, next to it Ethio-referendists, at center left Ethio-federalists, at the middle Dual-federalists, at center right Ethno-federalists, next to it Ethno-referendists and at far right Ethno-separatists. To elaborate them more:

  • O-1 are Ethio-fascist elites like Mengistu H/Mariam, who nostalgically wish to re-establish Derg style assimilative Ethiopia and such elites are comfortable in accepting and assuming to be amharanized.
  • O-2 are Ethno-fascists like Muktar Kedir, who adore Woyane’s apartheid Ethiopia and want to keep the status quo.
  • O-3 are Ethic-nationalists like Fayyis Oromia, who vehmently reject the above two positions, but support the following seven visions of Oromo freedom fighters.
  • O-4 are Ethio-centeralist freedom fighters like Haile Fida, who want to forge centeralized democratic Ethiopia in which the Oromo play our legitimate role of majority being free from any sort of domination and marginalization.
  • O-5 are Ethio-refendeists like Birtukan Midhagsa, who persue the idea of having referendum on centeralized Ethiopia vs geo-federalized Ethiopia after freedom from TPLF.
  • O-6 are Ethio-federalists like Andargachew Tsige, who believe in geo-federation as an optimal solution after freedom.
  • O-7 are Dual-federalists like Marara Gudina (once I heard him saying ethnic federalism is not bad, but the Oromo should not die for it; as far as there is freedom, the Oromo get no disadvantage from geo-federation), who are open for both geo-federalism and ethnic federalism.
  • O-8 are Ethno-federalists like Bulcha Damaqsa, who advocate for ethnic federalism as best type of sovereignty after our freedom.
  • O-9 are Ethno-referendists like Daud Ibsa, who promote self-determination in a form of public verdict on ethnic federation vs independence.
  • O-10 are Ethno-separatists like Galasaa Dilbo, who fight for an independent republic of Oromia unconditionally.

The first two groups are reactionary anti-freedom movements, the last seven are all freedom fighters and the third position is inclusive to help the freedom fighters agree on their common agenda of freedom and then leave the decision on the post-freedom type of sovereignty for public decision. The last seven groups have no difference on freedom cause, but follow different pre-freedom strategy and envision different post-freedom sovereignty.  Furthermore, recent events have crystallized the normally cloudy Ethiopian political spectrum; clear distinctions have emerged among the various forces playing major roles in Ethiopian (Great Oromian) politics: the opposition camp (comprising of Unitarists and Federalists), the rebel camp (Unionists and “Secessionists”) as well as the camp in power (Hegemonists).

One of the major revelations of this spectrum is that the hegemonists in power have other middle-seeking competitors, namely the federalists in ENM (Ethiopian National Movement) and Medrek as well as the unionists in AFD and PAFD. It is to be noted that, for the past 27 years, the TPLF has been colliding elements in the unitarist camp with elements in “secessionist” camp so that it can be regarded as an inevitable “arbitrator” in the middle between these two uncompromising camps. As Medrek and ENM emerged as middle forces mobilizing peoples in Ethiopia from north to south, from west to east based on policy of consensus, TPLF has sensed that as a threat and sided with extreme unitarist elements to derail the democratization process based on real (true) language-based federalism principles inside one Ethiopia, as stated in ENM’s and Medrek’s Political Program.
“Secessionists” are simply unionist liberation fronts, which opt for unconditional independence because of the ignorantly arrogant position of unitarists and hegemonists to block free move of nations in the direction of true language-based federation and constructive union. Otherwise, we have never heard or read members in such organizations explicitly opposing possible future union of free peoples in this globalized world. They are simply the frustrated ones, who are accused by TPLF as “secessionist” because of their legitimate demand for national liberation. Potentially, this group can be inline being positioned between Federalists and Unionists considering the short-goal, middle-goal and long-goal of Oromo liberation movement. Federalists are for the first goal, “Secessionists” for the second and Unionists for the third.

Unitarists also talk about federalism, but their version of federalism is geography based, and they mainly aim to dismantle Gadaa Oromia. Additionally, they vehemently oppose the right to be politically organized as mono-national party. They claim to be multi-national party even though they are de facto nationalist organization promoting Amhara national interest.

The difference between Federalists and Unionists is that the federalists want to achieve a regional Ethiopina union before or without national sovereignty like Oromia’s independence (it is pre-independence union), whereas the Unionists want to promote a regional union after or with national sovereignty (post-independence union). According to unionists, it is only the free will of liberated nations/peoples which should give up certain part of national sovereignty for the sake of common regional benefit, just as nations in the European Union gave up certain part of their sovereignty to forge EU.

Diagram showing Ethiopian Political Spectrum


Galatooma!

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It is High Time for the Oromo to Instrumentalize the Name Ethiopia 

It is High Time for the Oromo to Instrumentalize the Name Ethiopia 

Nowadays, there are significant number of Oromos, who try to entertain the idea that the Oromo can instrumentalize and use the name Ethiopia and Ethiopiawinet for the sake of promoting Oromo cause of freedom from the Habesha system of domination. Also there are some, who just blindly love Ethiopia and want to keep its territorial integrity, but do not have the Oromo cause of freedom at heart. Especially the vocal ones in the cyber world can be divided in to five:

  • those, who still have the dead assimilative Ethiopia of Amhara elites in mind and want to resurrect it.
  • those, who want to keep the status quo of Tegaru elites’ apartheid Ethiopia.
  • those, who strive to change this status quo to true federal Ethiopia, also by fighting against the pro-independence Oromo.
  • those, who prefer this true federation, but cooperate with pro-independence Oromo to achieve their goal.
  •  those, who think that the future accomodative Ethiopia is de facto great Oromia, thus consider all forces struggling for freedom from TPLF and for democracy after TPLF as friends.

Actually the name Ethiopia is more appropriate for Cush (Oromo) than for the Habesh (who claim to be from Semetic origin). The name Ethiopia, despite its original meaning (land of the burnt face), has got a positive connotation due to its association with the Biblical Cush, its relation to the famous Cushitic civilization and due to the myths built around the name by Europeans. But the name is contaminated and spoiled by Abyssinian elites, who stole the name and misused it:

– they made the name Ethiopia be equivalent to the land of Habesh, not to that of Cush!

– they told a fiction that the Oromo are newcomer to this Ethiopia!

– they systematically marginalized all Cush nations from the political center!

– they demonized the Cushitic cultural heritage like Waaqeeffannaa, Odaa, Gadaa, the Cushitic tricolor (black-red-white) and replaced them with Habesh elements!

– they made the name Ethiopia be the same to their system of domination in form of monarchy and theocracy!

– they purposely oppressed Cushitic languages, specially Afaan Oromo and prevented them from being working languages of the whole country; in contrary, they imposed their Semetic languages on all Cushitic nations!

– today Ethiopiawinet in reallity means Habeshawinet, not Kushawinet as it had to be!

– etc

When we look at the above maneuvers from the Habesh side, it is really very legitimate that most of the Oromo in particular and some from the other Cushitic nations in general reject this name Ethiopia and the citizen identity – Ethiopiawinet. If Ethiopia should survive in the future, it has to regain its TRUE Ethiopia nature (being Cush) and has to be devoid of the Habesh elements (Pseudo-Ethiopia). That means, the future NEW Ethiopia should be:

– equivalent to the land of Cush (the future True Ethiopia), not land of Habesh (the present Pseudo-Ethiopia)!

– with Oromo as the political center and political majority!

– with all Cushitic nations be main participants in the political center!

– with Cushitic cultural heritage (Waaqeffannaa, black-red-white flag, …etc) be main elements of the True Ethiopia!

– with no domination of Amharinya and Orthodoxy!

– with Afaan Oromo and other cushitic languages be primary working languges of the whole country!

– equivalent to Kushawinet (True Ethiopiawinet), not to Habeshawinet (Pseudo-Ethiopiawinet)!

– etc

If these things may not hppen so that the New and True Ethiopia will be de facto Great Oromia, we, the Oromo, will give Pseudo-Ethiopia a good-bye kiss and move for our independent Gadaa Oromia unconditionally. So, the future alternatives are either an independent Gadaa Oromia or an integrative Great Oromia. Till this will be clear, the Oromo people have got a very legitimate reason to reject Ethiopian identity and instead name the country Oromia, instead of Ethiopia. But, now is the high time for Oromo politicians to instrumentalize the name Ethiopia to organize an all inclusive anti-TPLF struggle. Using the name Ethiopia is easier than promoting the name change to Oromia.

Above all, the existing Habesh regime intentionally targeted Oromo nation and it is doing the worst state terror in the name of Ethiopia on this noble people, so that the name Ethiopia is now very negatively associated in hearts and minds of Oromo people, thus we can at least use the name Oromia and Ethiopia interchangeably. I suggest to Oromo polity to use the name Ethiopia, because the past asimilative Ethiopia of Amhara elites is already dead, the present apartheid Ethiopia of Tegaru elites is almost dying and the potential accomodative Ethiopia of Oromo elites is the future. The Oromo can change the content of Ethiopia from Habeshawinet to Kushawinet und use the name for our adevantage. After all, the popularity of the name Ethiopia was caused by the world class Oromo heroes like Abdisa Aagaa and world class Oromo athlets like Abebe Biqilaa. May Waaqa help the Oromo and Oromia (Ethiopia)!

Galatooma!

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