Tribute to heroic victims of Zenawi’s Anti-Terror Law

By Robele Ababya / November 14, 2011
"Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains." – Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Ag"onizing news of torture

We have heard the gruesome news that our heroes leading peaceful struggle have been brought in chains to the Kangaroo Court in Addis Ababa. Zenawi controls all pillars of democracy as well as the armed forces, security services, law enforcement and the prison administration. He is an absolute dictator kept in power by Western donors, especially the USA and the USA. Therefore there is no fairness in the justice system to protect the innocent victims of the infamous Anti-Terror Law.

Their fate will depend on the whims of tyrant Zenawi until we in the opposition act fast to shorten their agony. The omnipresent and omniscient attitude petrified in the mind of tyrant Zenawi is driving him in committing heinous crimes in much the same way his ideological role models in the names of Enver Halil Hoxha of Albania, Joseph Stalin of the former USSR and Mao Zedong (Mao Tse-tung) of Communist China. His atrocities are becoming increasingly harsh on the watch of Western powers who propelled him to power and are still rendering him all round support despite his continuing gross violation of human rights and naked action to decimate democracy as seen in recent days in the apprehending of truly new breed of democrats like Andualem Aragie, Eskinder Nega et al who are victims of his roundly condemned Anti-Terror Law internationally.

The Western powers are embroiled in economic crisis ushered in by greed. They are in a bizarre dire situation of seeking bailout by Communist China. Thus these powers care little about the abuse of human rights in Ethiopia and chances are that their immoral flow of fund to the coffers of Zenawi will continue as long as he remains loyal partner in the fight against Al Shabab in Somalia that is believed linked to Al Qaeda. So the onus is on us Ethiopians to defeat tyranny.

I was shocked by the rosy picture painted about the economic growth of Ethiopia by a lady member of the British Trade Delegation to Addis Ababa recently. She was upbeat about the availability of exotic luxury goods ranging from modern clothing to perfumes. As far as food and drinks she seemed to say the list is endless – among them premium wine and alchoholic beverages, Italian pastas such as taliatelli, pasta al furno, pasta Napolitano, pasta carbonara among others. Yet she overlooked the sad fact that Ethiopia: “According to a new index developed by Oxford University and the UN, Ethiopia under Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is ranked the second poorest country on earth “ - vide Jimma Times Report August 12, 2010. More sadly the delegate made no mention of the ongoing wave of arrests in Addis Ababa and throughout the country.

Practical response to tyranny

The Diaspora is doing well in bring the plight of the Ethiopian people through intensified public demonstrations, vigils, meetings, and diplomatic representations among other activities. ESAT has proved effective and therefore needs to be bolstered in every way. Incidentally, I have yet to fulfill my pledge to ESAT by paying my dues.

Families of the victims of tyranny must be supported through a common pool of fund to which contributions are made. To that end, it would be prudent to organize local support groups.

No rest until the defeat of tyranny

Let the new march start afresh "Let the incoherent activities end. Let the petty bickering stop. And let Ethiopians unite against poverty, hunger, corruption, injustice, discrimination, humiliation…in their own country. Let the new march start afresh"Abebe Gellaw

The misrule of the repressive TPLF regime has produced numerous martyrs and victims of torture over the last 20 years. I fully concur with Judge Birtukan Mideksa that the people's struggle will eventually triumph over the tyrannical regime in Ethiopia. Our relentless struggle and sacrifice is therefore indispensable. We must keep on demanding and crying loud for social justice, liberty, dignity, freedom and prosperity for otherwise, in the words of the renowned Jean-Jacques Rousseau, “Absolute silence leads to sadness. It is the image of death”.

The downfall of Mubarak, Ben Ali, Gaddafi, and the impending similar fate awaiting despotic corrupt leaders in the Arab world and Africa should serve as a lesson to Zenawi that the construction of buildings, roads and physical infrastructures in cities rampant with human misery will not save him from being brought to justice for his heinous crimes including genocide. Carnal pursuits alone fall far below the eternal desire of innate human virtues manifested in dignity, freedom and liberty embedded in a compassionate society operating under the rule of law.

The vulgar claims of Zenawi who has so far been trading in the good names of the people of Tygray are leading him to a dead end. All of us in the opposition camp must act in unison to push the tyrant to reach that dead end faster.

Secretary Clinton is quoted as saying: “Democracies don’t fear their own people. They recognize that citizens must be free to come together, to advocate and agitate.” President Obama should kindly listen to the voice of Ethiopians holding candle light vigil in front of the White House; the President and his Secretary of State are morally bound to demand the immediate release of all political prisoners in Ethiopia – including the victims of the recent arrests: Andualem Aragie, Asamnew Birhanu, Bekele Gerba, Debebe Eshetu, Eskinder Nega, Nathnael Mekonnen, Olbana Lelisa, Reeyot Alemu, Woubshet Taye, Zemenu Molla.

The news of the release of Debebe Eshetu is exhilarating. The immediate release of all other political prisoners would be just as pleasant.