Is Ob. Lammaa Magarsaa’s “Ethiopiyan Keenya” an Oromo Politics of 2020?

Bildergebnis für Oromo politics of 2020

Is Ob. Lammaa Magarsaa’s “Ethiopiyan Keenya” an Oromo Politics of 2020?

It is interesting to observe Oromo politics nowadays. I used to advocate for Oromo unity and that is exactly happening; I tried to promote Amhara-Oromo alliance and this is emerging, despite TPLF’s divide and destroy machination. Qeerro Oromo went to Bahr-Dar to cleanse our biggest lake carrying the slogan “Xanaan keenya” and Ob. Lammaa Magarsa visited Amhara region to start an Amhara-Oromo dialogue with an intention: “Ethiopiyan keenya”. I am glad to observe my political position being implemented by the ongoing Oromo movement. Both tokkummaa/unity of the Oromo and tumsa/alliance with the Amhara are the best anti-dotes against TPLF’s tyranny. The question is only: what hindered us till now from excercising this solutions? Why couldn’t we try to come together for the sake of overcoming the challenges? One of the reasons is that the Oromo till now hesitated to accept Ethiopia as “biyya keenya = our Country”, whereas the Amhara rejected their ethnic identity in order to save Ethiopia. Now, the Amhara starting to struggle for their ethnic right and the Oromo begining to entertain the rhetoric, “Ethiopiyan keenya” are good common grounds to approach each other and fight against the fascist TPLF in unison.

When we look at the mindset of Oromo freedom fighters, we can classify ourselves into three, based on our confidence level as well as our visions regarding the post-freedom kaayyoo (goal) and according to an approach to our rivals. Concerning our level of confidence, I would like to say that we opted for independent gadaa Oromia (kaayyoo ganama = “morning’s goal”) as we were under worst oppression and had low confidence. Then after achieving some rights through our bitter struggle, we developed more confidence in our self (now have intermediate confidence) and started to entertain federal union Ethiopia (free Oromia within federal Ethiopia) as kaayyoo guyyaa = “midday’s goal”. Slowly, we are seeing and recognizing our future potential to transform Ethiopia to Oromia, so we will have high confidence in the future in order to envision an integrative Great Oromia (transformed democratic Ethiopia, which surely will be de facto Oromia), thus we surely will develop kaayyoo galgalaa = “evening’s goal”. Based on our visions and approachs to our rivals, there are the following three political generations of Oromo nationalists:

– the 1st generation are communist oriented, who believe in “my way or the high way” principle of the 1960s. Out of the three known types of post-freedom sovereignty (1. independent Oromia = Gadaa Oromia, 2. federal Union & 3. integrated Ethiopia = Great Oromia), they choose one and say “that is the only solution”. Thus, they are called “arrab-tokkee” (single tounged). Oromo nationals, who opt for the other two types (different from their position) are considered as enemies to be destroyed. For instance, the pro-independence OLF of Ob Galaasa, the pro federation OFDM of Ob. Bulcha and the pro integration MEISON of Dr. Haile Fida belong here.

– the 2nd generation of 1990s are a bit open minded and entertain two of the three post-freedom visions, but reject one of the three vehemently. As examples, the pro-self-determination OLF of Ob. Dawud entertains referendum on ‘independent Oromia’ vs ‘federal Union, but vehemnetly opposes those who struggle for ‘integrated Ethiopia’ (geo-federation); and the pro-unity AG7 of Ob. Andargachew (also Oromo) supports referendum on ‘federal Union’ vs ‘integrated Ethiopia’, but vehemently rejects any possible vote for ‘independent Oromia’. These two organizations seem to entertain a limited democracy, but just trying to dictate the public not to excercise our full right of choice. Thus, they are refered to as “arrab-lamee” (double tounged)

– the 3rd generation of 2020s is yet to emerge! There is no single organization now, which is ready to accept popular free will to choose one of the three types of sovereignty (independence or federalism or integration). Only Fayyis Oromia is advocating these approach and may be some individual politicians like Dr. Nagaaso Gidaada seem to be open for the three post-freedom eventualities. As an organization, ODF and OFC seem to develop in this direction.

We hope that the Qubee Generation will be smart enough to be open for the three types of sovereignty and to forge an inclusive alliance of all freedom fighters from these three camps against the fascist TPLF. The common denominator for the three groups can be freedom from TPLF and democracy after TPLF. Such arrab-sadee (tripple tounged) freedom fighters are unique to the Oromo liberation movement, in contrast to single tounged Africans (persuing only the independence version), who fought against European clonizers and double tounged minority at periphery (like Eritrea and South Sudan), who had only two options (independence and federation). The Oromo, as majority over all the country, have three possible types of sovereignty to be realized after our freedom (independence, federalism and integration). As far as future accomodative Ethiopia (in contrast to Derg’s assimilative Ethiopia and Woyane’s apartheid Ethiopia) is concerned, the Oromo with high confidence will be pro-integration, whereas the Amhara with low confidently will start to entertain the pro-independence politics. Till now, the two nations played the opposite (Amharas being pro-integration and the Oromo pro-independence), due to their past experience and still being fixed on Amhara’s past assimilative Ethiopia, not yet seeing Oromo’s future accomodative Ethiopia.

Oromo nationalists usually seem to have a bit conflict regarding which land to call “biyya keenya = our country”. Which one is our country? Oromia (Biyya-Oromo)? Ethiopia (Biyya-Kuush)? Africa (Biyya-Haam)? Actually, all the three are ours (Biyya-Keenya); it depends only at which level we are talking. The conflict mainly lies on claiming Ethiopia as our country. Some Oromo nationalists vehemently reject this country as their own. In reality, Ethiopia is Tuulama Empire, not Habesha Empire as usually told. It was formed by an alliance of the Habeshanized Tuulama led by Emperor Menilik and the non-Habeshanized Tuulama led by General Goobana Daacee. These two leaders were founders of the present empire and majority of their army were Oromo. We can even call it Oromian Empire and now we need to transform this to Oromian (Ethiopian) union.

The difference between an empire and a union can be summarized as: “an empire is a dictatorial bringing together of nations by force; union is a democratic coming together of nations per free will.” Gadaa Oromian independence as advocated by some nationalists can happen, either if all our neighbours reject such a union by free will and forge their independent countries or if Oromo people decide for such independence per referendum. ODF prefers the first approach (let other minority nations go from us for we are majority at the center) and the OLF opted for the second (let our people decide either for an independence or for a union)! Anyways, Biyya-Oromo is imperatively our country, Biyya-Kuush is optionally our country and Biyya-Haam is inevitably our continent (also country); we can call the three levels Biyya-Keenya! We also can call Biyya-keenya (our country) in double sense, considering Africa as our continent: both Biyya-Oromo (Oromia) and Biyya-Kuush (Ethiopia) are Biyya-keenya! Either of them or both of them can be the final result of our self-determination per referendum as planned by both the United Oromo Forces and the PAFD. As far as I am concerned, self-rule of Biyya-Oromo within shared rule of Biyya-Kuush is a pragmatic solution for the Oromo at present.

Ob. Lammaa seems to persue this option, which is shared by the ODF and OFC. Also the OLF is not far from this, it only wanted to give chance to choose for Oromo public. Having autonomous Oromia within united Ethiopia is a pragmatic solution, but the Oromo should not necessarily limit ourselves within the small Gadaa Oromia instead of owning the big Great Oromia (democratic Ethiopia). Now, Oromophobic Ethiopia, which we vehemently rejected is dying, whereas Oromophilic Ethiopia, which we want to save and keep is growing. I think this second version of Ethiopia can be loved by the Oromo and this love is an Ethiopiawinet which will be an addiction to us (“Ethiopiawinet inde hashish suus new” according to Ob. Lammaa’s recent speech in Bahr-Dar. Oromo politics of 2020 may entertain this re-claiming of Ethiopia by the Oromo and say “Ethiopiyan keenya”. If Ethiopia (Great Oromia) is ours, Gadaa Oromia is not necessarily for what we should struggle unconditionally. At the moment, we can be open for three types of post-freedom sovereignty: 1. only Ethiopia, 2. both Ethiopia & Oromia in a form of federation, 3. only Oromia). May Waaqa help Oromo nationalists to tolerate each other in persuing our common cause of freedom together and then excercise democracy in order to decide for one of these three post-freedom sovereignty options per public verdict!

Galatooma!

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Overcoming ‘Amhara Vs Oromo’ Face-off Helps an Inclusive Revolution in Ethiopia

Overcoming ‘Amhara Vs Oromo’ Face-off Helps an Inclusive Revolution in Ethiopia

We like it or not, there is a big ‘elephant in the room,’ which we all tend to evade, but the TPLF effectively exploits; i.e. the conflict: ‘Amhara unitarists Vs. Oromo unionists’. This conflict is still the main area of fear not to cooperate in the ongoing possible revolution against the fascist and racist TPLF regime. Amhara unitarists dream and wish that Oromo people share their vision, and Oromo unionists also want that Amhara elites come to their senses and struggle for freedom of Amhara people from TPLF colonization as well as for freedom of Amhara region, to live in the future as good neighbor of free Oromo state. Both blocs express their respective wish, and they do consider as if their wish is the only reality on ground, but the cunning fox, TPLF, knows very well that these two communities are not yet in a position to trust each other; its cadres exploit this situation to hinder Tsunami of inclusive revolution from emerging against their bosses in Finfinne (Tulluu Daalatti) palace.

I personally do agree that now is the right and suitable time for an inclusive revolution against an internal colonizer in Ethiopia (Great Oromia). Almost all citizens and nations in Ethiopia are now calling for revolution as best instrument to get rid of the fascist regime. Of course, that is why TPLF is now doing everything under the sky to prevent us from revolting in unison. We know that, as long as TPLF is in power, we all will suffer, not only as refugees in Diaspora, but also as slaves at home in Ethiopia. Unfortunately, it seems that ‘Amhara elites vs. Oromo elites’ face-off is yet to be hindrance to the possible revolution, i.e. it is to the necessary change of tyrant regime. It seems that ‘Amhara elites vs Oromo elites’ face-off (they neutralizing each other) is a very good historical advantage/opportunity, which the TPLF regime got to rule over Ethiopia without any serious challenge and this face-off did not yet get an appropriate solution. TPLF survives and thrives mainly by dividing and polarizing ‘Amhara elites vs. Oromo elites’ as well as by sowing fear and mistrust among/between them. We do still hear/read that both camps (that of Amhara elites and Oromo elites) do live under fear and mistrust of each other, so they seem to prefer TPLF’s further rule or prefer not to allow each other the possibility of taking over power.

Despite this self-sabotage of the two camps, I think a well coordinated non-violent popular uprising of Oromo people in cooperation with that of other nations in Ethiopia is still the best way of struggle to get rid of the fascist TPLF. Actually, Oromo people do have nothing to lose, if the expected inclusive revolution comes. One thing, beside many, in favor of Oromo liberation movement, is the fact that TPLF will leave Finfinne palace, only after securing its goal, i.e. after securing an independence of Tigrai. Of course, together with such move of TPLF, Oromo state’s chance to get its freedom within or without a union is high. Because of this reason, both Amhara conservatives and the Western protectors of the country do not want to see TPLF being cornered. They surely know that cornering TPLF is almost tantamount to disintegrating Ethiopia. That is why, not Oromo people, but firstly TPLF itself, secondly the colonial-minded Amhara conservative elites, and thirdly their Western handlers, who do fear the coming of inclusive revolution to Ethiopia. Thus, democratic Amhara forces pushing for revolution are not as such very dangerous for Oromo liberation movement. Even if not Oromo region’s independence per referendum, we can achieve it’s autonomy through genuine federalism within a union, i.e. we can achieve national freedom of Oromo people as a result of possible inclusive revolution.

This is one of the reasons that TPLF cadres are nowadays very busy to hinder an inclusive revolution from taking place in Ethiopia by using their manipulation of the fact that peoples of Ethiopia are not homogeneous, but different (the colonized and the colonizer), as their instrument of division and polarization. If the scare tactics, which they try to use, hinder an inclusive revolution, the only option we colonized people do have is the anti-colonial armed struggle, on which we have to concentrate and invest most, even though it is a very difficult job, given the little support we do have from an international community. For an inclusive revolution possibly not to take place, unfortunately the pro-independence freedom fighters (Oromo, Ogaden, Sidama … liberation forces) and the pro-unity freedom fighters (Amhara, Gurage, Harari … patriotic forces) are still mistrusting each other. Both camps want to secure direction of the move after freedom from TPLF (to secure the result after revolution). The unionist bloc wants no reversal of the already achieved victory of a limited cultural autonomy on the way towards national freedom (self-determination), whereas the unitarist bloc wants to be sure that Ethiopia stays intact and possibly the process will be reversed back to unitary country.

But, why should these people worry too much about situation after inclusive revolution? Is the caution regarding unity of Ethiopia, which is lamented by pro-unity freedom fighters, different from the scare tactics used by TPLF cadres? The cadres go to Oromo forums and tell us “the worse will come; Amhara elites will take over, and there will never be free Oromo state, if you push for the revolution;” and then, they go to Amhara forums and tell them “take care, the worse will come; OLF can take over and it will be end of the united Ethiopia, if you make a revolution.” It is fact on the ground that both Oromo region and the whole Ethiopia are actually taken hostage by TPLF. Whenever Oromo force is stronger, TPLF threatens with the possibility of dismantling Oromo region (Gadaa Oromia); and whenever Amhara force is stronger, they threaten with dismembering the whole country – Ethiopia.

TPLFites use the opportunity of such division among the opposition to threaten both camps of freedom fighters. If the revolution really should happen, the two camps of freedom fighters need to be bold enough to take risk of losing their ideals after the revolution and live with a possible compromise solution. This means, the unionist bloc should be ready to lose, for instance the possibility of achieving free Oromo state; and the unitarist camp should be ready to risk their long-term goal of fostering a unitary Ethiopia. Otherwise, in short, TPLF is really lucky, there will never be an inclusive revolution under such condition of division between the freedom fighters; and getting rid of TPLF through election is, of course, very minimal; that is why armed struggle will then be the only option left. In case both public uprising and armed struggle against TPLF are not effective, should we not then be ready to be ruled by TPLF for the next one century? Not to allow TPLF to rule us for such a long time, we need to know and tackle the methods it uses, specially its scare tactics. In short, the scare tactics, which TPLF cadres nowadays do use are:

– “if revolution happens, Amhara elites can take over and dismantle Gadaa Oromia”
– “if revolution happens, Oromo elites will be in power and dismember the whole Ethiopia (Great Oromia)”
– “if revolution happens, TPLF army is not like Tunisia’s army, but will massacre civillians and take over power”
– “if revolution happens, there can be a mayhem against Tigreans, like that of Ruanda”
– “if revolution happens, there will be absolute chaos and civil war among different ethnies”

Are freedom fighters from both blocs (from pro-independence freedom fighters and from pro-unity freedom fighters) ready to deal with this scare tactics of TPLF? Can they agree on middle ground: freedom and referendum (self-determination of citizens and nations)? Those freedom fighters, who just want unconditional independence of nations without a union, must cool down and accept public verdict, as well as those freedom fighters, who wish unconditional unity, also should learn to be moderates and accept public verdict. That means both camps must agree on first get freedom from TPLF fascists and racists, and then democratically decide for either independence or unity per referendum; i.e. only democratic independence or democratic unity (independence or unity based on public verdict) can be a lasting solution. We like it or not, all peoples in that region are interdependent, be it they decide for political independence or for political integration or for a compromise middle position (federal union). The political will of peoples in the region is what matters at the end.

Unfortunately, there are still some blind nationalists in both Amhara elites’ camp and Oromo elites’ camp, who yet couldn’t see common convergent short-term goal of the two big nations, i.e. ‘freedom from fascism of TPLF.’ Such blind nationalists do concentrate only on their divergent long-term goals: free Oromia (Oromo elites’ goal) vs. united Ethiopia (Amhara elites’ goal). But, smart nationalists from both Amhara elites’ camp and Oromo elites’ camp are trying to forge an alliance to achieve together their convergent common short-term goal and then to decide on their respective long-term goals through public verdict (by referendum). The blind ones are too far from accepting and respecting the will of their respective public as a final verdict. That means, in short, blind nationalists do preach democracy, which includes referendum, but they are not yet ready to practice what they do preach. We hope the few smart and genuinely democratic nationalists in both camps, who try to practice what they do preach, will prevail to cooperate and make TPLF’s fascism a history. Here, we also can call blind nationalists as dictatorial nationalists. Those who want to achieve either ‘free Oromia’ or ‘united Ethiopia’ per public referendum are democratic Oromo nationalists and democratic Amhara nationalists, respectively. The others, who just want to achieve their long-term goal without a public verdict, are purely dictators, who can talk about freedom and democracy, but know nothing what freedom and democracy really mean.

Those of us, who do have a cognitive ability to imagine something in an abstract way, let’s just try to imagine a very big letter ‘Y’ and try to distinguish four points on the letter (bottom, middle junction, left top, and right top). Then, let’s imagine that the bottom is status-quo of Ethiopian politics, where both Amhara and Oromo nations are under tyranny of TPLF; middle junction is a point for freedom of both nations from tyranny; left top is point of Gadaa Oromia’s freedom without union; and right top is point for Ethiopia’s unity. Then, let’s imagine that this letter ‘Y’ is a figure to illustrate a route of the liberation journey for both the currently oppressed Amhara and Oromo nations from tyranny, their present common situation, towards their short-term and long-term goals. Can we imagine that these two oppressed nations do have a possibility to move from bottom (point of tyranny) to middle junction (point of freedom) together? This is our common route of journey towards common converging short-term goal. Then will come the two diverging routes towards two different and diverging long-term goals of elites of two nations: the left top (Gadaa Oromia’s freedom within or without union, which is the long-term goal of some Oromo elites) and right top (Great Oromian (Ethiopian) unity, i.e. long-term goal of most Amhara elites).

Now, if we could imagine this route of common journey adequately, it is not hard to comprehend that we need alliance of Amhara elites and Oromo elites (all-inclusive alliance) to move from status-quo of tyranny under TPLF to point of freedom from TPLF, but not necessarily to move together to right top (together to Great Oromian/Ethiopian unity) or not together to the left top (together to Gadaa Oromia’s freedom). After achieving our freedom from TPLF’s fascism together, it is up to the Oromo public to decide, through referendum, which direction to move further: to left top or to right top. If the Oromo majority will choose to move to right top, then Oromo elites’ long-term goal will be similar to that of the Amhara elites. Otherwise, if Oromo majority will choose to move to left top, no Amhara elite can hinder Oromo nation from achieving Gadaa Oromia’s independence. Just concentrating on the struggle for freedom from TPLF’s fascism, I think there are, in general, three main possible ways of struggle leading us to freedom:

– Armed struggle, which was the the method of choice by the OLF and other Oromo liberation fronts,
– Popular uprising, which is not yet tried in a well-coordinated inclusive way, but now seems to be the upcoming option, and
– Electoral struggle, which was the way chosen by the OFC and by other Oromo democratic federalists, despite undemocratic nature of TPLF in particular, and that of Abyssinian rulers of in general.

From these three ways of struggles for freedom, we have seen that both armed struggle and electoral struggle were not yet successful. Armed struggle is too slow because of the limited support from the so-called international community; and electoral struggle failed due to the undemocratic nature of the empire and that of its brutal rulers. The option of popular uprising was tried separately by only Oromo students during the years 2001 – 2007, Oromo public 2014 – 2017 and by the Amhara urbanites after the “election” in the year 2005 as well as Amhara public in Gondar and Gojjam 2016.

Because of such uncoordinated and uncooperative moves between elites of different nations in the country, especially due to the polarization of Amhara and Oromo elites, the hitherto fragmented popular uprisings were not successful. But in the future, it seems that there is a hope for a possible alliance of the elites from these oppressed nations against fascist TPLF, which can lead to a successful uprising and also which can be a quicker means/way leading us to freedom from TPLF’s tyranny. I think combination of the above three ways of struggles, in an optimally calculated and planned manner, is the best method, which can lead us to freedom. That is why TPLF cadres nowadays do their best to hinder this currently moving fire of revolution from liberating the whole Ethiopia. The “smart” Afaan Oromo-speaking/writing TPLF messengers are trying to do their job among the Oromo, both in cyberworld and in real Oromo community, just as the Amharinyaa-speaking ones are doing the same job among Amhara (Amharinyaa-speaking community).

If the revolutionaries in both liberation camps (Oromo unionists and Amhara unitarists) seriously want a revolution to happen against the brutal fascist TPLF regime, then their evading, shelving or undermining of the ‘elephant in the room’ is not the solution. The elites in both blocs should be realistic and pragmatic to face the main and real problem. None of the two blocs can cheat or outmaneuver the other side; they have to be able to come up with a compromise solution. I personally believe that the public verdict (the popular will of each nation) is the alpha and omega of both freedom and democracy, which almost all sides do preach, but very few of them seem to be ready to practice. Especially, elites of the two big nations (Amhara and the Oromo) should learn to prepare themselves for the fate of Ethiopia based on such public verdicts per referendum. If they are smart enough, they would settle for Ethiopian union accomodating free Oromia, free Amhara state and free other states, either based on polity consensus or as result of a popular referendum; otherwise, they should accept the possible peaceful separation of these free states to live as very good neighbors, just like that of the Czech republic and Slovakia). Another alternative for the anti-sovereignty forces is, of course, to sing like president Al-bashir of Sudan, as he did once: “welcome a neighboring nation of South Sudan!,” of course, unfortunately after sacrifice of about 2 million Sudan citizens. May Waaqa help us all understand this fact on the ground, which, of course, is still determining the move of our common foe (TPLF camp) and that of the friends (two anti-TPLF camps – Oromo unionists and Amhara unitarists)!
Galatooma!

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Oromo’s Selfdetermination Including and Upto Independence or Integration

Oromo’s Selfdetermination Including and Upto Independence or Integration

When we think and talk about selfdetermiantion of the Oromo, we usually demand only one sided sovereignty, i.e upto independence. With that we forget or neglect Oromo’s right to opt for an integration, rather than move to independence. I repeatedly put forward that Oronmo’s question should not be that of minority at periphery (upto independence) or that of minority at center (only autonomy – multinational federation). Oromo people are majory all over the country, thus need to promote Oromo centered integration of all nationalities living among and around us; being open for the minority nations to have their selfdetermination, be it in the form of autonomy or independence.

We do have in general seven types of Oromo Politicians: the Gadaas, Birmajis, Duulos, Horatas, Michiles, Robales and the Traitors (Gantuus). No question that different types of Oromo nationalists (Pan-nationalists like Baaro Tumsaa, Ethiopianists like Haile Fida, Referendist-1 like Marara Guddina, Federalists like Leenco Lataa, Referendist-2 like Daud Ibsa and Oromianists like Galaasa Dilbo) fight for freedom/bilisummaa of the Oromo. There is no difference on the cause of freedom between them.

Giving five positions the respected names of five Gadaa parties, it looks like the following:

– Pro-Ethiopia Robales strive to achieve transformation of Abesha dominated Ethiopia to Oromo led Ethiopia; i.e Ethiopia without Gadaa Oromia, but being equivalent to Great Oromia ( http://finfinnetribune.com/Gadaa/2014/1 … he-center/ ).

– Pro-Referendum-1 Michiles prefer to persue referendum on federal Union vs integrated Ethiopia; i.e Ethiopia with or without Oromia.

– Pro-Federalist Horatas opted for self-rule of Oromia within shared rule of Ethiopia ( http://www.meleszenawi.com/wp-content/u … Map-01.jpg ); i.e Oromia within Ethiopia.

– Pro-Referendum-2 Duulos are ready for referendum on independent Oromia vs federal Union; i.e Oromia within or without Ethiopia.

– Pro-Oromia Birmajis want to see an independent Gadaa republic of Oromia ( http://nikolasschiller.com/images/oromiya.jpg) within the UN; i.e Oromia without Ethiopia.

Currently, the sixth type of nationalists (Pan-nationalists), who entertain the above five moves and try to coordinate the five Oromo positions on a common denominator (freedom from the existing system of domination) are emerging. Actually, Baaro Tumsa used to promote this form of nationalism, that is why he concentrated on “the Oromo getting power in Finfinne palace (which is equivalent to freedom) by any means possible. Such nationalists represent the wholistic Oromo agenda of freedom from the sytem of domination and the post-freedom types of sovereignty being divided into the above five party positions. According to Pan-nationalists, now, the five blocs in our community can work in unison for Oromo freedom and then leave the decision on the three types of post-freedom sovereignty (integrated Ethiopia, federal Union & independent Oromia) for general Oromo’s public verdict.

Unlike the Atse-Negus culture of the Abesha, which is dictatorial “my way or the high way”, Gadaa community follows democratic Abbaa-Gadaa culture of the Oromo, which accepts the above mentioned five positions of Oromo politicians. All Oromo nationals agree on agenda of freedom from the TPLF. But Oromo politics is not mono-dimentional, it has 5 post-freedom party-politics: 1) Birmajis believe in independent Oromia, 2) Duulos promote referendum on independent Oromia vs federal Union, 3) Horatas opt for federal Union, 4) Michiles prefer referendum on federal Union vs integrated Ethiopia, & 5) Robales want integrated Ethiopia. So, in short, Oromo community is Gadaa community respecting all these five party positions.

The sixth type of nationalists (the Gadaas) dare to represent this inclusive community position. Which of the five parties can prevail will be seen in a future democratic atmosphere after freedom from the TPLF. The seventh type of Oromo politician are of course those with slave mentality serving the interest of Habesha elites at the cost of Oromo interest of freedom from the existing sytem of domiantion, whom we can call the Gantuus (traitors). For now, till the day of freedom from TPLF, the constructive and inclusive approach of the Gadaas (Baaroo Tumsa’s principle) is imperative: “We, the Oromo, must capture state power by any means necessary. In order to do this, we must clandestinely organize all sectors of our society. It is the responsibility of the young educated Oromo like you, to disseminate the spirit of Oromo nationalism when you return to your respective communities. We can only change the deplorable condition of our people by being tolerant to one another and reestablishing a necessary Oromo national unity. In this way, we can build a strong organization, capture state power and take actions that facilitate fundamental social transformation.”

I hope our G-politicians (Gadaa politicians) of AFD, B-politicians (Birmaji politicians) of ULFO, D-politicians (Duulo politicians) of PAFD, H-politicians (Horata politicians) of Medrek, M-politicians (Michile politiians) of ENM and R-politicians (Robale politicians) of CUD will agree to fight in unison against the tormentor TPLF. Of course, our T-politicians (Traitor politicians) will side the TPLF. The six pro-freedom groups are part parcel of our selfdetermination, only the Gantuu group are anti-selfdetermination. But the Gadaas are promoter of the true inclusive selfdetermination which can result an independent Gadaa Oromia, multinational federation, multiregional federation or an integrative Great Oromia (integrated Ethiopia). We have to bve open for these four lasting possibilities per public referendum at due time. The true Oromo’s selfdetermination is also inclusive of possible integration, not only independence as an end result. For now, may Waaqa help us act in tokkummaa (unity) for bilisummaa!

Galatooma!

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Irreechaa as Freedom-Fest in Bishoftu, Oromia (Ethiopia)!

Bildergebnis für Irreechaa

Irreechaa as Freedom-Fest in Bishoftu, Oromia (Ethiopia)!

When I write about freedom in this essay, I mean political freedom as central concept in our political thought, and as one of the most important features of free nations and democratic societies. Freedom has already been described in various literature as a relationship free of oppression or coercion; as the absence of disabling conditions and the fulfillment of enabling conditions for an individual as well as for collectives; or as the absence of lived conditions of compulsion, such as economic compulsion in a society. Although political freedom is often interpreted negatively as freedom from unreasonable external constraints on action, it can also refer to positive exercise of rights, capacities and possibilities for action, and exercise of national or social rights. The concept can also include freedom from internal constraints on political action or speech like social conformity or inauthentic behavior. The concept of political freedom is closely connected with concepts of civil liberties and human rights, which, in free nation-states and democratic societies, are usually afforded legal protection from the state.

Irreechaa is a day of national celebration in Oromia, especially in a sense of Thanksgiving to Waaqa or God. It is primarily originated among the Blue Nile-bound Cushitic people, including the Oromo thousands of years ago. Nowadays, at national level, it is celebrated in Bishoftu town of Oromia at Lake Arsadii (Hora Arsadi) on the last sunday of september or first sunday of october. During the festival, Aba Gadaa (traditionally elected national leader), other community leaders as well as Oromo community at large give thanks to Waqaa for the blessed transition from rainy season to bright and colorful Birra (spring) season. Regarding the fest, the following call is already made by the the Oromo youth (Qeerroo) struggling for freedom to all individuals and groups, who are interested in celebrating the next Irreechaa festival:

“Welcome to the coming Ayyaana Irreechaa (Irreechaa festival)! According to the Oromo calender, end of September is the annual Thanksgiving day – Irreecha Birraa – of the year. An Irreecha Birraa is a celebration that repeats once in a year in birraa and involves special activities or amusements. It has a lot of importance in Oromo people’s lives. We celebrate Irreechaa to thank Waaqa for the blessings and mercies we have received throughout the past year at the sacred grounds of Hora Arsadi. The Irreechaa festival is celebrated every year throughout Oromia and around the world, whereever diaspora Oromo live. We do celebrate Irreechaa, not only to thank Waaqa, but also to welcome the new season of plentiful harvests after the dark and rainy winter associated with nature and creature. On Irreechaa festival, a collective of friends, families, and relatives gather together and celebrate with joy and happiness. Irreechaa festival brings different peoples closer to each other and make social bonds. We, Oromo people, celebrate Irreechaa festival in order to live our tradition as a society. You are all invited to be the partakers of our joy!”

Actually, Irreechaa festival is not only traditional, but it is also day of celebrating and time of living out freedom amidst phenomena of colonization, oppression and subjugation of Oromo people. Irreechaa is a Freedom-Fest, as a friend of Gadaa.com once coined it. It is the day, on which all Oromo in every walk of life do feel to have freedom from the year-round TPLF’s tyranny. The Oromo of every creed and region do celebrate Irrreechaa in unison – as a nation, despite the heavy siege of TPLF invading army surrounding the Hora Arsadi sanctuary, where the celebration takes place at national level. About 3 million Oromo come together every year to exercise this spirit of freedom and unity, which can help the move of our people towards achieving national sovereignty.

In America, Freedom-Fest is an annual festival where free minds meet to celebrate great books, great ideas, and great thinkers in an open-minded society. It is independent celebration, non-partisan, and not affiliated with any organization or think tank. Freedom-Fest invites the best and the brightest from around the world to talk, strategize, socialize, and celebrate liberty. It is open to all and is purely egalitarian, where speakers, attendees, and exhibitors are treated as equals. Since its inception, Freedom-Fest has met in Las Vegas, the world’s most libertarian city. It’s open to anyone who enjoys a wide interest in books, art, music, film, and drama in all topics, including science, philosophy, economics, health, sports, technology, business, religion, law, and politics. Freedom-Fest attracts people of all walks of life and across the political spectrum to learn, debate and honor great books, great ideas, and great thinkers. I think Oromo people also can extend the Freedom-Fest of Irreechaa from its present only and purely cultural show to such more educative sessions in the whole week of the festivity in Bishoftu town.

Moreover, interestingly, there was not any disturbance or violence observed during the hitherto Irreechaa festivals (except the last year’s massacre perpetrated by TPLF fascists), despite a huge mass celebration. It shows that Oromo people do know our limitation as we also strive for our liberation. Even in a free society like U.S.A., the day of freedom is celebrated with caution. It is said that freedom only flourishes within limits. Humans were created, not only as volitional and moral beings – able to choose between right and wrong, but they were also created to be dependent creatures, meant to flourish within established limits. If they choose to live outside those limits, they would experience even to the extent of having the ultimate limitation: death. The hitherto fall of humanity was a rejection of limits and a bid for limitless self-rule disguised as freedom. The Oromo people, as the believers of Waaqa Tokkichaa (one God), know our limitation very well and do celebrate the Freedom-Fest without going out of the sound limitation to affect freedom of other nations and nationalities we do celebrate with and live with.

Because of such liberation move of Oromo people with the very deep consciousness regarding our limitation towards perceiving, accepting and respecting freedom of others, no invited African in particular, and no other nation in general, should feel insecure when going to Hora Arsadi to celebrate the Freedom-Fest. Especially, Africans, who did already experience what a life without freedom means, can celebrate this day with Oromo people, who are still living under colony of Abyssinian elites. It is only on the day of Irreechaa that this great people feel a bit free to get together in mass, despite all sorts of intimidation from the tyrant regime. I think, particularly Africans should try to know this real Oromo issue, which is already clouded by the rhetoric of Abyssinian elites, who are presenting Ethiopia as the “only non-colonized land of Africa.” They need to face the reality, in contrast to Abyssinian elites’ legendary rhetoric, so they can look at the fact that the head office of AU is in Finfinne, an occupied capital city of the still colonized Oromia.

The reality on the ground speaks against the legend or the myth that “Ethiopia (Abyssinia) is the paragon of freedom, as an exemplary to other African nations.” Abyssinian elites and their Western handlers try to present Abyssinian empire as if it is the permanently free land in Africa, in contrast to the fact that it is a prison house for some African nations and nationalities, which were free until the time of the scramble for Africa, in which Abyssinian king, Atse Minilik, was the partaker. Actually, Oromia, in which Oromummaa (healthy Oromo patriotism) is flourishing despite the subjugation, can be seen as a prototype of African nations with an egalitarian ideology struggling for national freedom. In fact, Abyssinian elites are anti-thesis of such freedom, because of the fact that they have neither democratic culture nor an incentive or intention to develop it. They know that their economic and political interest on Oromia is better respected under an authoritarian or totalitarian regime serving their domination. They are conscious enough about the fact that any step to be taken towards democratization of Abyssinian empire (if possible) is a measure leading to decolonization of Oromia.

To hoodwink all oppressed nations in the empire and international community at large, Abyssinian elites do try to sell their history as an anti-colonial, whereas their true move was in reality that of black colonial rule. A classical example of their presentation is the ongoing veneration given to their king, Atse Minilik, in the song by the Abyssinized Oromo singer, Tewodros Kasahun Garmaama (Teddy Afro): “xiqur-sew/the black person.” The king was celebrated as an anti-colonial fighter against European colonizers, even though the other side of his history shows that he is also part and parcel of the colonizers, who subjugated some free African nations. However paradox it may sound, I do respect the victory, which Africans got over European colonizers in the battle of Adwa, where also Oromo generals and fighters took part. But this should not be taken as a cover or as an excuse for the crime, which the Abyssinian king, Atse Minilik, committed against Oromo people and other occupied nations of the empire.

In short, it seems that the Abyssinized Cushites like this King have been culturally degenerated to serve Western colonizers in order to subjugate African Cushites, who are proud of their true identity and preserved their culture, despite all sorts of pressure from the Middle East and from the Western World. The whole oppressive move was started as the Abyssinian proxy oppressors of Axum empire got a chance to attack and destroy Cushitic civilization in Meroe. Since this era, gradual destruction of Cushitic culture and identity took place in the whole northern and central part of Cush territory, where mainly the Agaw people live (Agawia or Agaw-Midir). Such destructive influence later extended towards south and also affected Oromia to some extent. Now this destructive move, which started in Meroe by Axum’s king, Ezana, and also perpetrated by Adwa’s warlord, Meles Zenawi, need to be reversed.

The main force, which can be in a position to reverse this move is Oromo national liberation movement as an anti-dote to Habeshanization process. This Oromo struggle is a movement for freedom of Oromo people and even that of neighboring brotherly nations from the de-autonomizing Abyssianism. The values of Oromummaa, such as freedom, Gadaa (democracy) and independence will surely prevail over the core characters of Habeshanet like authoritarianism, subjugation and exploitation. That is why the predicted eventual and inevitable triumph of Oromummaa over Habeshanet is regularly celebrated by Oromo people during the yearly Freedom-Fest at Hora Arsadi. Now, Oromo youth invites especially all African nations, who know what colonization really means and who do value the need of freedom from such oppression, to be part of freedom celebration of Irreechaa.

The Freedom-Fest is considered as symbol for an accommodative and integrative move of all Oromo from different regions and religions. Even though the festival is usually associated to Waaqeffanna, the African Traditional Religion (ATR); nowadays, it is almost recognized, accepted and honored as a national holiday of the whole Oromo people. Of course, it is true that this African Traditional Religion is one of the best instruments used in liberating the captive minds of alien ideology, especially that of the Abyssinized Cushites, who are victims of political and religious indoctrination from the Middle East and from the Western world. Notwithstanding such influence from foreign world, Freedom-Fest is based on purely African value of Cushitic origin, so that it may promote the tendency of some Abyssinized Cushites like the Agaw to resurrect and revive their priori identity.

That is the main reason to invite Africans in particular, so that they can have a yearly “pilgrimage” to Hora Arsadi in order to help revival and survival of the African/Cushitic/Oromian value system of freedom as well as strengthen their faith in Waaqa Tokkichaa without overtaking an alien culture, which is usually mixed in the political and religious ideologies we do usually import. Just to give the celebration more international dimension, I would like to recommend the Freedom-Fest take place, at the same time, not only in Bishoftu, but also in the capital city  at Hora Finfinne or Hora Gafarsaa. Of course, heartily invited for this festival are at first place the Habeshanized Cushites (Amhara & Tegaru), who already lost their tradition, which was more or less similar to that of the Oromo, including the Irreechaa celebration. In this way, the Freedom-Fest, which is part and parcel of the Oromo national liberation movement, can also liberate even Abyssinians from their false identity.

But, not to confuse Abyssinian colonizer elites, who are our classical foes, with the Abyssinian mass, which can be liberated as part of the solution being our friends in the struggle for freedom, let’s look at the following short formula, which can serve as a summary and help us to differentiate foes from friends in Oromo national liberation process. Foes vs Friends: ADF <===VS===> (EDF <—–&—–> ODF). Here the acronyms ADF = Abyssinian Domination Forces; EDF = Ethiopian Democratization Forces; and ODF = Oromian Decolonization forces. Obviously, ADF are the enemies of our national liberation struggle, whereas the two parts of Oromo national liberation movement (EDF and ODF) are friends of our struggle, but they are rivals to each other for they are competing to realize alternative ways of coming to the same freedom. Unfortunately, the conflict between the later two is wrongly considered as irreconcilable, and they are considered as enemies to each other, so that they sometimes fight one another instead of targeting the real enemy (ADF) in unison. Actually, it is a normal political competition between the liberation forces in the Oromo bloc, who do have different approaches in finding the solution for our national problem. This confusion regarding foes vs friends still exists in debates, discussions and disputes, which are going on in different Oromo media. In fact, Ethiopian democratization is a covert form of Oromian decolonization, for any attempt to democratize an empire is tantamount to decolonization of the subjugated nations as already seen, for instance, in the Soviet Union.

I hope this artificial conflict between the Oromo national liberation forces can be resolved gradually and events like Freedom-Fest can contribute a lot in bringing together such Oromo freedom fighters with different approaches. Thus, the Irreechaa festival can also be considered as a way to reconciliation for different citizens and collectives of Oromo nation. I would like here again to encourage rival Oromo groups to celebrate the Freedom-Fest with this mood of araara (reconciliation), and we do invite other nations of the empire as well as that of whole Africa and even the international community to be part of the day, which is symbolic for many things: for freedom, reconciliation, Oromummaa, and which can be used for revival as well as survival of African indigenous culture and tradition. Above all, Irreechaa festival is the day of tasting freedom amidst the ocean of oppression. But, the freedom we repeatedly taste on this day must be extended to whole life of the nation through our bitter struggle. As already well put by Dr. Martin Luther King: “freedom is never voluntarily given by oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” May Waaqa help us liberate ourselves as a citizen and as a nation, not only on the day of Freedom-Fest, but also permanently in the future. Anyways, we wish all Africans and others, who are interested to celebrate the day of Irreechaa together with Oromo nation, a happy Freedom-Fest!

Galatooma!

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Good Antidote Against TPLF’s Divide-and-Rule Machination in Ethiopia

 

Good Antidote Against TPLF’s Divide-and-Rule Machination in Ethiopia

I wrote some articles regarding and supporting Medrek, PAFD and ENM (Ethiopian National Movement) and pointed out their few weak areas. As I have already mentioned, the main conflict in Ethiopia (Great Oromia) is the conflict between two forces, i.e. between anti-Oromia (anti-Gadaa-Oromia) forces mostly represented by reactionary unitarists, who are parts of the unity camp, and pro-Oromia forces of national self-administration represented largely by Ethiopianists as well as by nationalists of the other oppressed peoples. This conflict was regarded as irreconcilable, and the lucky TPLF used this schism as a chance for its divide-and-rule method.

Thanks to the far-sighted leaders of the OLF and the CUD, this barrier was overcome for the first time; and these two organizations formed AFD in 2006, which was the nice start of cooperation between these two seemingly diametrically opposite forces. Unfortunately, there was a big opposition against AFD from three directions: the ruling fascist TPLF, the right conservative Ethio-nationalists and the left radical Ethno-nationalists, so that the alliance could not live longer. Additionally, it could not continue because of the split inside CUD into factions and due to withdrawal of EPPF from the alliance.

I think the time for AFD as a Lasting solution for the troubled country has not yet come, but the future is in favor of AFD’s program of forging a union of free peoples in Ethiopia. In the future, both Ethio-nationalists (most being Amhara-Ethiopianists) and Ethno-nationalists (like the Oromo nationalists) will agree on the common ground as a strategical goal for both camps – union of free peoples. Just like France and Germany were enemies to each other in the past and now are the two strong pillars of the European Union, both the future free Amharaland and free Oromoland will be two pillars of the union of free peoples in Ethiopia, which will surely work together for peace and stability in the region.

The similar alliance as a mid-solution towards AFD’s end-goal is Medrek, which was formed after deliberations and discussions among moderate politicians of Ethiopia for about two years. We know that both anti-Oromia forces like UDJ and pro-Oromia forces like OFC were working together against the fascist TPLF. This alliance also got oppositions from three sides (from TPLF, right concervatives and left radicals). There were oppositions specially from the conservatives, who seem particularly to curse the political move of moderate Ethiopianists organized under UDJ in Medrek. I have already discussed why these die-hard unitarists did Support TPLF during election 2010 instead of cooperating with the unionist genuine opposition alliance, Medrek, in one of my articles. I tried to show also the opposition to UDJ and to Medrek from some nationalist Oromo individuals’ and groups’ point of view. But, UDJ in Medrek was the only one who attempted to move from far right to the middle. Both the left radicals and the right extremists do forget that Medrek is a compromise middle position, which could bring the apparently irreconcilable two forces together and help them work cooperatively against the worst evil in Ethiopia – i.e TPLF. This cooperation of the two opposite forces against TPLF was really the impossible made possible. Now the Ethno-federalist ODF and the Ethio-federalist AG7 repeated the same process by forging ENM, which seems to be a Mid-referendist, being open for both types of federation as a result of public verdict .

Who Opposes ENM?
As a compromise alliance, ENM, of course, can not have the whole program of either the multinational parties or that of the mononational forces, but only the mini-program as a common ground. Is this agreement of the hitherto seemingly irreconcilable forces on common program not the impossible made possible? Yes, it is! But, unfortunately, it had got oppositions from three directions, including from slaves of the TPLF. To describe the three oppositions directed against Medrek and now against the ENM in short, they come from:

– the fascist ruling party, which wants power by any means = dictatorial autocratic force of TPLF;

– the reactionary right extremists, who want unitary Ethiopia by any means = dictatorial unitarist forces;

– some Oromo organizations, which want Oromia’s independence without a possibility for union by any means, including TPLF slaves, who sometimes try to pretend in cyber-world as pro-independence Oromo. The true pro-independence forces also seem to be dictatorial liberation fronts, but they are the radicals, which the Oromo should have against naturally dictatorial fascist TPLF and reactionary unitarist opposition groups.

Alliances like Medrek and ENM seem to be theoretically forums for Ethio-federalist liberals and Ethno-federalist moderates, i.e. for democratic forces, which do struggle for forging of freedom and democracy, including self-administration of nations as well as for human rights of individual citizens. Such alliances are the best antidote against TPLF’s divide-and-rule machination. Medrek, despite its certain weak points, is thus the right move to the right direction. Surely, the integrating figure, Birtukan “Mandela”, had played a big role in initiating, forming and holding together the alliance; she was a role model even in her physical absence (because of her imprisonment) from the real political platform in Ethiopia.

Being Critical Supporter of ENM
After I had written critical articles against the anti-Oromia’s position of UDJ in Medrek, I got feedback full of concerns from both the anti-Oromia and the pro-Oromia forces. The concerns revolve around the “un-productivity” of my criticism specially during the past sham elections in Ethiopia. My view regarding such concerns is contrary to what I got as the feedback. I am a critical supporter of Medrek, PAFD and ENM. The alliances really did very magnificent job in making the impossible be possible. Such moves should be encouraged. But, to have a lasting solution, the alliances should not make a compromise on Gadaa Oromia’s local unity, just as it didn’t on the whole Ethiopian national unity. My criticism on this point doesn’t mean, I and Oromo nationalists are against the alliances. I just wanted to stress that accepting two levels of unity (Oromian unity and Ethiopian unity) unconditionally might help the alliance to have very stable mass base it needs. As expected, TPLF slaves tried to use my criticism on Medrek as a chance to “show that EPRDF is better than Medrek.”

Unfortunate to these slaves, Medrek, PAFD and ENM are actually alliances of the 21st century, which could accommodate two trends of the current global politics: the trend of promoting national freedom and the trend of fostering regional union. The reactionary right extremists reject politics of national freedom as something “politics of clan” whereas left radicals tend to ignore the necessity of regional union for common benefits of all citizens and nations in the Horn. Medrek, PAFD and ENM, on the contrary, are de facto multinational coalitions, which have a potential of development to multinational merger, which is usually longed for and advocated by Ethiopianist forces on the contrary to the right extremist anti-Oromian forces, which are not multinational per se, but are Amhara nationalist forces which want to dismantle Oromia with the pretext of preferring geography-based federation (Ethio-federation). The move of UDJ and AG7 to the middle line of Medrek and ENM respectively was what made them more progressive than the obsolete right extremists.

Challenges of ENM – What It Needs to Work On
The only Thing AG7 in ENM needed to learn was not to strive only for Ethiopian unity, but also struggle for Oromian unity with autonomy and even push further for Horn unity or African unity, of course, Finfinnee being the political center for all these four levels of unities. Giving priority for unity at Ethiopian level, ENM’s vision should be to establish union of free peoples in Ethiopia, taking Oromian unity as an example of national freedom. If all the member parties of ENM agree on such common ground, then its three opponents (fascist TPLF, right extremists and left radicals) will have no chance to disintegrate this modern alliance of the century.

ENM, as the impossible made possible, has survived two big challenges till now as its leaders already described, i.e. the challenge of coming up with the mini-program, which took them many years of wrangling with each other and the challenge of assigning needed candidates from the competing rival member parties for the common alliance. Yet, it still should overcome the following three other challenges to survive further and to become reliable force of the future in Ethiopia:

– the upcoming challenge, where the emotionally charged moves of the different constituencies with different (anti-Oromia & pro-Oromia) interests may pull and push the coalition towards disintegration. We do observe that both the die-hard Ethiopianists and others want to instrumentalize the alliance in order to assert their respective political will. If the leaders can manage and overcome this challenge, the victory can be the source of their future strength, which will benefit the alliance;

– It is not hidden that the ruling fascist regime plays with divide-and-attack method to destroy ENM, just as it did to CUD and UDJ. We have observed how the regime orchestrated the quarrel between the two factions of UDJ just to make them appear ridiculous in front of their constituencies, to destroy the image of the party in the donors’ group of international community, and to divert attention of the leaders and members of the party from election campaign;

– the challenge of accommodating both Oromian unity and Ethiopian unity, the failure of which can be a cause of disintegration in the far future, if not in the near future. Only when all member parties accept and respect Oromian unity as they did to Ethiopian unity, that it is possible to have a very stable base for further survival. Any schism like Ethno-federalistr ODF vs. Ethio-federalist AG7 can make TPLF cadres to jump up and down as well as to try as usual pouring benzine on the conflict.

Anyways, only by correcting the mistake of trying to dismantle Oromia per referendum, ENM will have lasting support of Oromo people. AG7’s main agenda (Ethiopian unity) without consent of Oromo elites and support of Oromo people is fake and only temporary. If ENM corrects this mistake in its further deliberations and discussions, then no question that victory will be for both Oromia’s unity and Ethiopian unity (goal of Ethiopianists from both Ethio-federalist and Ethnofederalist camps). I hope in the long run that the right extremists (Ethio-centeralists) and the left radicals (Ethno-separatists) will also come to their sense and accept this noble compromise solution for Oromia (Gadaa Oromia) and Ethiopia (Great Oromia), at least temporarily till the time for AFD’s final solution (inclusive self-determination) comes. Even though it is not as such easy to reverse the formal ethnic federation, not accepting such compromise only leads to both disintegration of Ethiopia (fear of the right extremists) and to a possible independent Oromia surrounded by chaotic region (fear of the left radicals).

That is why I have tried to put forward my criticism against AG7’s position of anti-Oromia and against ENM’s position of referendum on the God-given right of a united Gadaa Oromia to exist. If referendum concerns only Oromo, it is not bad; but if the public of referendum includes all non-Oromo in Ethiopia, it is just unfair. As usual, the fascist TPLF cadres have tried to use my criticism as if there is irreconcilable discord between the ODF-wing and the AG7-wing of ENM. But, the wise political leaders in ENM have already told us that the deliberation and discussion on this issue would go on. This is very commendable and hopefully these leaders will come up with consensus also on Oromian unity, not only on Ethiopian unity. On the day they achieve this, then the time for the demise of the fascist TPLF, the weakening of the right extremists and the moderation of the left radicals will not be far. Additionally, I am sure in due time it will be clear for the organizations like AG7 in Medrek that dismantling Oromia is not as such a free ride.

The AG7 in ENM was doing smart politics in working not only with “multinational” forces, but also in accommodating national forces in order to make them accept and respect its main agenda, i.e. Ethiopian unity. Thanks to the farsightedness of AG7 leaders and the leaders of other member organizations of ENM, we are with new good beginning. I asked Waaqa to give them more knowledge and wisdom to help the coalition last long and be fruitful by making all nations of Ethiopia to rally behind them against the fascist regime.

By Any Means Necessary – Including Through Sham Elections
Otherwise, we know that all citizens of the empire go out to vote in sham elections under a very undemocratic circumstance. There were different opinions given in different websites on what to do, the ideas ranging from importance of boycotting to the necessity of participating in elections. I personally do support the participation, and encourage the opposition leaders, their members, supporters and the whole mass against the TPLF to be vigilant and seek the way how to keep their voting cards not be misused by the mafia regime. In case the election will be rigged, again mass uprising using all methods of peaceful struggle is to be recommended. We should consider the sham election as part of our struggle against tyranny, and we need to intensify the ongoing peaceful uprising against tyranny. I hope Medrek will take the leading position and make also a sort of cooperation with other genuine opposition parties, which is very mandatory to compel the fascist regime to respect the public verdict.

ENM – as a diaspora Medrek
Medrek kind of coalition is forged in Diaspora, which involves the “multinational” organizations like the AG7 and the national fronts like ODF hopefully having both Oromian unity and Ethiopian union as their common purpose. If this is the case, the demise of the fascists will not be postponed. It is only the lack of such dynamic alliance which has given the regime the chance to live longer. Specially, the new generation should come forward and take the leadership. Birtukan was just a symbol for the renowned Oromo elites and talents who served the country just to be treated unjustly at last. Only the likes of ENM, who made the impossible be possible, can be the panacea for such misuse of our talents and the trouble in the region.

I wish also in the long run that the reactionary unitarists in the opposition camp learn from their real political experience and be transformed to unionists, similar to Medrek and ENM. Such transformation of the unitarists as well as formation and consolidation of an alliance of all the unionists, which do believe in both Oromian unity and Ethiopian union of free peoples, is the best remedy to liberate Ethiopia from tyranny. I do believe that ODF of ENM is dedicated to this goal even though AG7 is on a process to digest it. Sure is that in the future, let alone the liberal AG7, even the right extremists will learn to accept and respect this middle Position of the ODF, if they want to save Ethiopia from disintegration by transforming it into a genuine and lasting union of free peoples.

But despite its anti-Oromia Position of Ethio-federation,  AG7 deserved respect of Oromo people because of their progressive approach to work with Ethno-federalist national parties like ODF as well as for their help in making the impossible be possible, on contrary to the reactionary, right extremist, unitarist Ethiopianist parties, which hitherto used to demonize such Oromo national organizations as clanist parties. This modern and tolerant approach of the member parties of Medrek and ENM to each other, in spite of their differences, shows that such alliance is better than the EPRDF. That is why I wished good luck for Medrek of Birtukan “Mandela”, hoping that it will promote the true Oromian unity within the whole Ethiopian union. Now, I would like to say the same to the ENM leaders: Ob. Leenco Lata and Dr. Berihanu Nega! May Waaqa help such modern alliances against the fascist TPLF!

Galatooma!

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The Dergist-Woyanist Handshake is Anti-Thesis of Freedom & Democracy in Ethiopia

The Dergist-Woyanist Handshake is Anti-Thesis of Freedom & Democracy in Ethiopia

Few years back, surprising and “shocking” news came out of the Abyssinian empire, i.e. the handshake of Woyane’s ethno-dictator Mr. Meles Zenawi with Derg’s ethio-dictator Mr. Hailu Shawel. What did these two persons have in common? Why did the handshake happen? Why was it surprising to most Great Oromians (Ethiopians), in general, and “shocking” to the Amhara, in particular? Did the “Oromo factor” play a certain role for the handshake to happen? What was the relation of this handshake to the hitherto attempts made to achieve the necessary compromise between Amhara democratic forces and Oromo federalist movements in the formation of an inclusive alliances like Medrek and ENM?

Looking back at history of the empire in the last about 150 years, Amhara and Tigrai elites used to compete on the issue of who should be the empire’s dominating force. Till 1991, Amhara elites were the dominating force whereas Tigrai elites had the junior role of cooperating for common benefit. Both used to oppress and exploit Oromo people, in particular, and all oppressed nations in the empire, in general. Since 1991, they exchanged their roles so that Tigrai elites became the dominating force, and Amhara elites adapted to play junior role, and yet both elite groups are prospering at cost of the oppressed nations.

Now, the struggle of oppressed nations is slowly getting momentum, and all nations, including the currently-subjugated Amhara poor, are trying to come together to challenge the ruling Tigrean elites, and also struggle against the few cooperating Amhara and Oromo elites, who are still benefiting from the system. The main goal of Oromo nation’s struggle, being led by Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), and that of other oppressed nations is to get rid of the Nefxenya system of domination (domination by using Nefx or gun). For the oppressed nations, the 21st-century Tigrean Nefxenya is not different from the 20th-century Amhara Nefxenya.

The 21st-century and modern Nefxenyas have ruled over Ethiopian peoples in the last 26 years, specially by using divide-and-rule method. They have managed to sow discord among Amhara democratic forces, which are pro unity, and Oromo freedom fighters, which are pro freedom of nations. These two pro-unity and pro-freedom forces have been fighting each other, thus TPLF has managed to rule without facing any cooperated and coordinated challenge from the two big nations.

Thanks to the farsighted OLF leaders and some representatives of Amhara democrats, certain discussions have been going on for the last many years on the issue of finding common denominator to forge an alliance and fight against the fascist TPLF. They tried to look at two virtues (freedom and democracy) as strong sides of the two nations. Being pro-unity is strong side of Amhara democratic forces, and being pro-liberty is strong side of Oromo liberation fronts. Both tried to reconcile these two important virtues so that it might be possible to achieve both national (Oromian) freedom and regional (Ethiopian) unity. This effort showed good results by forging AFD (the Alliance for Freedom and Democracy) in 2006, and by forming Medrek as well as ENM. The coming together of Amhara democratic forces and Oromo freedom fronts in these alliances has been very shocking news for TPLF fascists.

Now, pro-democracy and pro-freedom forces, both at home and in Diaspora, are coming together for common denominator of struggling for freedom and democracy in the region called Great Oromia (Ethiopia). Amhara democrats have started to recognize the God-given right of Oromo nation to self-administration and autonomy; Oromo freedom fighters have started to say: “if there will be no Abesha domination, there will be no necessity of Oromo liberation in a sense of secession.” That is why Medrek was forged as a compromise and good “midpoint” solution based on a predetermination by elites to fix the conflict between Amhara and Oromo. Of course, the “endpoint” solution will be the confirmation of Medrek’s position by the self-determination of each concerned nation, which seems to be the position of PAFD now.

Both the above mentioned solutions (that of Medrek and that of PAFD) are anti-dotes against the 20th-century Nefxenya, for which Ato Hailu Shawel’s supporters are nostalgically longing for; Medrek and PAFD solutions are also anti-dotes against the 21st-century Nefxenya led by TPLF. So, common view of the two Nefxenyas (apartheid politics of Woyanites and assimilative politics of Dergists) is their anti-democracy and anti-freedom position. We can see that the “shocking” handshake of the two men was a symbol of cooperation of two dictators against emergence of the very constructive pro-democracy and pro-freedom alliances – like Medrek and ENM.

Mederek, with its potential, was the good challenge against TPLF fascists, if the “elections” were really free and fair. It is crystal-clear that TPLF will never allow it to be as such, so that the other option would be the struggle by all means as AG7 and OLF are trying to do. There is still a probability for Amhara democrats in Diaspora rallying behind AG7, Shengo and EPRP to forge a new alliance similar to AFD with freedom fighters like the OLF, ONLF and SLF — all to be helped by Eritrea against the fascist regime in Finfinne.

TPLF was under immense pressure in last years from Medrek at home, from pro-democracy forces in Diaspora, from famine in Ethiopia, from the international community and, of course, from the Eritrean government. Being under such dire situation, the hegemonist Meles got a saving handshake from the Dergist Hailu Shawel, who seemed to have obsolete mentality. It is fact that Hailu Shawel does have support of many Amhara, who are emotionally attached to him, not based on reason, but just based on the false Ethiopian patriotism. I hoped they will now slowly and surely get the true color of such dictators, and that they will opt for the genuine and lasting solution as pro-democracy Amharas in AG7 are trying to do. The lasting solution can be union of all nations in the empire based on self-determination as PAFD put it.

To answer the questions I raised at the beginning:

What did these two persons have in common?
– The two dictators had in common the purpose of opposing any movement for freedom and democracy for they know that realization of these two virtues means an end to both Nefxenya systems.

Why did the handshake happen?
– The handshake happened in order to save the Abyssinian system of domination, in which both Amhara Nefxenya elites and Tigrai Nefxenya elites used to prey on oppressed nations, like the Oromo. They were on their last attempt of saving the system not to be destroyed by all pro-democracy and pro-freedom forces (including Amhara and Tigrai democrats).

Why was it surprising to most Ethiopians, in general, and “shocking” to the Amhara, in particular?
– The handshake was surprising to all Ethiopians because of Mr. Hailu’s and his friends’ hitherto arrogance and their show not to have any relation with the TPLF; it was “shocking” to the Amhara for it made them to be seen as boot lickers of the TPLF. The picture of Ato Hailu bowing so low to the feet of Aite Meles is very humiliating for the supporters of Ato Hailu, to say the least.

Did the “Oromo factor” play a certain role for the handshake to happen?
– Of course, the “Oromo factor” played an immense role for the handshake. Conservative Amharas like Ato Hailu used to believe and they still believe that “it is better to be ruled by Tigreans for 100 years than to be ruled by Oromo for 1 day.” They know that true democracy and freedom means appropriate share of power for Oromo people. This group does have more fear from the Oromo in power than from Tigrean in power. So, the handshake can be perceived as that of two Nefxenyas taking vows not to leave Oromo region (Gadaa Oromia) free from their exploitation and oppression. It is a symbolical agreement to continue their system of domination, be it Amhara Nefxenya or Tigrai Nefxenya, in the Finfinne palace.

What is the relation of this handshake to the hitherto attempts made to achieve the necessary compromise between Amhara democratic forces and Oromo federalist movements in the formation of alliances like Medrek and ENM?
– The handshake was simply put an anti-thesis to cooperation of Amhara democratic forces and Oromo freedom fighters in Medrek, ENM and AFD in order to forge a common home in that region based on democracy, equality, freedom and justice. It seems that TPLF was trying to lure certain Amhara forces away from forging such an alliance with Oromo fronts. If such handshake succeeds in the future, then TPLF’s divide-and-rule tactics between Amhara forces and Oromo fronts will revive again.

The division of political camps in the empire is slowly becoming clear: dictators and fascist Nefxenyas on one side, whereas democrats and freedom fighters on the other side. TPLF with its moles, like Lidetu, Ayele and Hailu, being in the first group, while Medrek, with its pro-democracy supporters at home and in Diaspora, in the second group.

What was the implication of the handshake on the Oromo liberation movement? It depends on the definition we give for the word liberation. If it is “liberation” in a sense of the status quo as OPDO people try to convince us, then the handshake is good to keep it. If “liberation” means self-determination in the form of Oromia’s autonomy in Ethiopian context, like what Oromo federalists in Medrek want to realize, then the handshake is against it. If we mean “liberation” is self-determination leading to Oromia’s independence without union of nations in the empire, the handshake is almost similar to that of Hitler with Mussolini to subjugate the free world. Simply put, such handshake is anti-thesis of the alliances like Medrek, and it helpes the TPLF to secure its power further based on its method of divide-and-rule. The only question to be answered is: did Ato Hailu do this intentionally being the “smart TPLF supporter” or did he do the job unintentionally being the “stu*pid anti-TPLF”, who was just naively instrumentalized by the canning fox?

Galatooma!

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An Accommodative, Re-united and Inclusive OLF

Bildergebnis für OLF flag

An Accommodative, Re-united and Inclusive OLF

As repeatedly wrote by Oromo journalists and scholars, unity for freedom is a panacea for the hitherto Oromo predicament; nothing otherwise can be seen as an alternative. That is why the main enemies of Oromo liberation movement are targeting unity of Oromo liberators, especially concentrating on unity of those, who are rallying behind the OLF. Since culmination of the century long spontaneous, uncoordinated and sporadic Oromo resistance against colonization into an organized struggle led by the OLF, almost all politically conscious Oromo nationalists did struggle together as supporters, members or sympathizers of this beloved liberation front. It is a known fact that there were pro-independence and pro- union  individuals within this organization fighting for freedom of Oromo people. Such inclusion of the two camps (pro-independence of Oromia and pro-union of Ethiopia) within one liberation front is not unique for the OLF. Most liberation fronts, which we do know in history of struggle for freedom of their respective people, have got such an inclusive tendency. They accommodated both pro-independence and pro-union forces, which do have freedom of their respective nation from any sort of domination as a common denominator, till the day of public verdict per referendum.

Such accommodative and inclusive liberation fronts do know the natural law, which  shows that any liberated nation can freely vote on the controversial issue: independence vs. union. Consequently, they do try to avoid any conflict regarding this choice between the two types of national sovereignty until they do achieve freedom of the people they struggle for. I think, the OLF was also formed in this sense; thus the name – Oromo liberation. It seems that the founders gave this designation deliberately, instead of the names like Oromian independence front or Ethiopian union force. In reality, we know that the OLF explicitly and implicitly used to accommodate and include pragmatically two sorts of forces: OFI and OFU; the acronym OFI = ‘Oromo for Freedom and Independence’ (pro-independence nationalists), whereas OFU is ‘Oromo for Freedom and Union’ (pro-union nationalists). These two forces have freedom as their common denominator, hence the inclusive front is known as liberation front. In the fight for freedom from colonial subjugation per bullet, these forces needed to work in unison in order to bring Oromo people to the level of freedom. After achieving liberation, they would advocate and promote their choice and version of Oromian sovereignty (independence or union), which they want to realize through ballot box.

This was the idea, which helped Oromo nationalists from both independence bloc and union camp to struggle together being organized under the original OLF till some factions started to separate themselves and pursue an exclusive goal of either independence or union. Unfortunately, bashing each other as “enemy of Oromo objective” (pro-independence factions labeling pro-union groups as traitors, and pro-union ones calling pro-independence fighters as reactionaries) is the daily practice we do observe. As far as I am concerned, the rhetoric of exclusiveness we hear from such factions is not advantageous. Actually, both the exclusive pro-independence factions and the exclusive pro-union groups can not replace the imperatively and optimally required accommodative, strong and inclusive Oromo Liberation Front, which was envisioned by founders of the organization. The unfortunate discord between OLF factions and the division we do now observe is simply enjoyed, promoted and entertained by our foes, especially by the TPLF.

The current polarization of OLF into the purist pro-independence and pro-union factions do serve only the hegemonic mission of oppressive TPLF, which wants to fragmentize and weaken Oromo liberation movement. Especially, it is easier to attack pro-union forces for they are usually misunderstood, as if they are collaborators, just because of the mere fact that the oppresors also sing about union/unity. But, the union, about which Oromo liberators talk, is diametrically opposite to what Abyssinianists sing. The union envisioned by Oromo liberators will be the result of a democratic public verdict per referendum, while that of Abyssinian elites is a product of force by rejecting right of nations to self-determination. If pro-independence Oromos can see this different connotations of the term ‘union,’ surely, they do stop mischaracterizing pro-union Oromo nationalists. Then, it will be easier to re-unite the OLF and forge the one inclusive of both pro-independence and pro-union. Only a fool liberation front does want to be a purist (exclusively, either pro-independence or pro-union) organization. The smart one is inclusive of both pro-independence and pro-union nationals, as long as both groups struggle for freedom from tyranny. I don’t understand why the OLF should be such unwise and exclusively one group, instead of trying to be inclusive, strong and integrative national liberation movement.

I personally registered this problem of division, which we do have in the OLF, and tried to promote an accommodative and inclusive position of the original OLF, because of its liberal and open-minded ideology in accepting both independence and union as possible goals by stressing self-determination right of Oromo people to choose from the two types of Oromian sovereignty (vote for either independence or union). Such liberation front, which can accommodate and include both forces of Oromo liberation movement, is still desperately needed in order to fight in unison for freedom, and then bring Oromo people to level of decision per referendum. Unfortunately, even the faction, whom I considered to have such position by emphasizing self-determination, is now becoming an exclusive faction. Its members and supporters seem to have reacted against the step taken by pro-union groups, which decided to work with Habesha “democratic” forces. As a reaction, the hitherto inclusive faction started to stress an exclusive independence and to denounce pro-union groups as traitors of the objective. In reality, Oromo’s goal is inclusive; it is a ‘self-determination, including both independence and union.’ As a principle, any Oromo individual or institution has right to opt for either independence or union at the time when Oromo people at large will exercise our right to self-determination per referendum.

That means, supporting a union is not wrong in principle, as long as the decision will be left for Oromo public. The problem in Oromo politics is that the terms ‘federation’ and ‘union’ are already contaminated by dirt of the oppressive system of Abyssinianism (the term ‘federation’ is spoiled by misuse from Tigrayan hegemonists, and the word ‘union’ is corrupted by abuse from Amhara assimilationists). Thus, the Oromo and other oppressed nations do perceive both terms as a smokescreen used by the subjugators. It seems that only two other words, i.e. ‘independence’ and ‘Oromia,’ are not infested by Abyssinianists, even though we nowadays hear and read from certain TPLF cadres, who are camouflaging as radical supporters of Oromian independence, just for the sake of cursing, insulting and vilifying pro-union Oromo nationalists; their main aim being to sow a discord between the two blocs of Oromo liberation movement (pro-independence and pro-union factions). Here, what actually matters most is not the position of their gut, but more the direction of their verbal gun.

Foes of Oromo liberation movement, who are now trying to pour benzine on the conflict, do differ from genuine Oromo nationalists in ‘direction of their gun.’ Our enemies direct their gun (verbal bullet) on Oromo nationalists, who do have different approaches towards Oromo people’s freedom and Oromia’s sovereigntiy, whereas genuine Oromo nationalists, consequently and consciously, try to direct their gun unto the current tormenting enemy – the colonizers now ruling in Finfinne palace. Our foes do shoot continuously Oromo nationalists, who do have different approach, whereas the genuine Oromo nationalists try to tolerate all Oromo political groups, which are having different tactics and strategies towards both freedom and sovereignty. So, let all Oromo nationalists check the direction of our gun. We do have no problem with the different positions of our gut; we can love independence or union as some of us do claim, but just let’s wake up and see how many Oromo nationalists we sometimes mistakenly kill with our verbal bullet. Accordingly, both pro-independence Oromo nationalists and the pro-union ones need to refrain from unnecessary orgy of throwing stones at each other, and they better concentrate on feasible methods we can use to shoot in unison at the main current enemy – at TPLF.

Even if the two Oromo camps (pro-independence and pro-union) stop quarreling, we yet can ask: is a move of the factions to purely exclusive positions of either independence or union better than having only one accommodative, strong and inclusive OLF? I think these moves of both pro-independence factions and pro-union groups are premature and timing of an argument on the two types of Oromian sovereignty now is wrong. The two competing groups (pro-independence and pro-union) could have stayed together in one accommodative OLF and fought in unison for their common denominator, i.e. for Oromo’s freedom. After achieving this, they will have an opportunity and an option to forge pro-independence and pro-union political parties in order to compete for a public vote so that they respectively can realize independence or union per Oromo public verdict. Therefore, I am personally against the move of OLF factions to an exclusive position of being purist, who are advocating either only independence or only union. I believe that the accommodative, potent and inclusive OLF can liberate Oromo people in a more effective and efficient way than the currently fragmented factions, which now quarrel on the untimely debate regarding independence vs. union, can do. This is a topic, which should have been discussed thoroughly after achieving together Oromo’s freedom. Now, our burning agenda should have been ‘tyranny under Habesha rulers’ vs. ‘liberty of Oromo people.’ If we can concentrate on this timely issue, we can see only two camps fighting each other: camp of the colonizers and that of the liberators. We should notice that the liberators’ bloc includes both pro-independence and pro-union freedom fighters.

In reality, who are these two blocks in Ethiopia? To my understanding, the ruling regime of TPLF and other Habesha forces, which are against right of Oromo people to self-determination, i.e. those which are against freedom of Oromo people are in the camp of colonizers. Ginbot-7 belongs here, in case it rejects this God-given and Man-made right of nations. All freedom fighters, be it they are pro-independence or pro-union, “legal” opposition at home or “illegal” rebel in Diaspora, those in alliance with Habesha forces or those without such alliance, are part and parcel of the camp of liberators. I do believe that tactical alliances should not be a reason to categorize pro-union forces into the camp of colonizers; accordingly, pro-union Oromo organization at home or in Diaspora, which are now trying to work with Habesha opposition forces against the currently tormenting fascist and racist regime, belong to liberators. I think they do not make any compromise regarding freedom from Habesha dictators, even though they usually have a rhetoric of preferring union to independence.

Thus, my recommendation to all pro-freedom Oromo nationalists (which includes both pro-independence and pro-union groups) is, in general, if possible, to re-unite the OLF to its original accommodative, well functioning and inclusive vanguard front. To realize this, all individuals and factions (both pro-independence and pro-union), who chose the exclusive way and left the original inclusive front, must try to be back and galvanize the struggle together. If this re-unification is not to be materialized, then let’s at least unify the pro-independence forces under one structural organization of OFI (Oromo for Freedom and Independence), and the pro-union forces in another separate organization of OFU (Oromo for Freedom and Union). Actually, there is no reason why all pro-independence Oromo fronts can’t merge; the same is true for pro-union forces. If we have such united only one pro-independence front and only one pro-union force, the two can try to cooperate and coordinate their move to achieve in unison their common goal: ‘Oromo’s freedom from Habesha rulers.’ Then, of course, will follow their competition to win the hearts and minds of Oromo majority to materialize their respective vision regarding the type of Oromia’s future sovereignty: either independence or union.

The now existing dynamic momentum in Oromo liberation bloc must be strengthened further; no Habesha regime, be it from Amhara or from Tigrai, is ready for freedom and democracy, as they usually claim. We have to keep in mind that there is no short cut to freedom, except the only way of using bullet; that is why OLA (Oromo Liberation Army), being effectively led by the one accommodative, re-united and inclusive OLF, is an alpha-and-omega of Oromo liberation struggle. Just as Wallo Oromo warriors could assassinate the Amhara warlord, Theodros, at Maqdala; and the Tigrai warlord, Yohannes, at Matamma (Oromo Muslims fought besides the Sudanese against Yohannes to revenge the forceful conversion to Christianity he ordered in Wallo), now the gallant Oromo freedom fighters should get rid of the modern Tigrayan warlord ruling in Finfinnee palace and have to liberate Oromia, be it in a form of ‘Oromia’s independence within African union’ (vision of the pro-independence fronts) or ‘Oromia’s independence within Ethiopian union’ (plan of the pro-union forces). As I repeatedly put in my hitherto articles, these two goals are not contradictory and exclusive to each other till the day of final verdict by Oromo public per referendum, but the aim of pro-union groups can be a very good prelude to an objective of pro-independence factions or vice versa; thus, the two goals are complementary to each other. May Waaqa bless us to get this fact that having an accommodative, re-united and inclusive OLF is more efficient in leading towards freedom, and may He help us to discard the fiction we nowadays started to believe, i.e. a fallacy of thinking that forging a purist either pro-independence or pro-union OLF is better!

Galatooma!

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