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Your enemy’s enemy is your friend
By Leoul Mekonen
I read the following piece in Los Angeles Times under the title "Somalia could be Ethiopia’s quagmire", and I would like to comment on the Ethio- Somali war.
"The U.S. has worked closely with Ethiopia, including training elements of its military, in its four-year effort to contain the spread of Islamic extremism in the Horn of Africa. U.S. officials repeatedly have denied using Ethiopia as a proxy against Somali Islamists, and have insisted that they argued against an Ethiopian invasion with officials in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital."
It is very easy to deny the involvement of U.S. in the Ethio-Somali war. Is it politically correct to approve that U.S. is using Ethiopia as a proxy against Somali Islamists? What will be the reaction of United Nations and the Islamic states around the world if the U.S. approves the invasion of Somalia. We know that in our complicated world, the most important thing is political correctness and not honesty. We knew from experience that sometimes leaders like Yassir Arafat gave order to terrorist attacks and at the same time lament and condemn the terrorist acts. Such kind of political game is not new in our world and in some ways U.S. is also a part of this game.
When it comes to the strong relationship between U.S. and the Meles Zenawi regime in Ethiopia, the U.S. government has never been honest to the rest of the world. First of all, Meles Zenawi is holding power by squashing opposition groups who won during the May 2005 election. The Ethiopian people have demonstrated their support to the opposition groups mainly to Coalition to Unity and Democracy(KINIJIT) by flooding the streets of Addis Ababa like Tsunami. Not a single African country has witnessed such human wave of support for political oppositions as it happened in Addis Ababa during May 2005. The opposition political leaders who now languish in Ethiopia were high profile scholars who have studied, worked and lived in U.S. for many years. They are academics who have been committed to build a democratic society and there is a great deal of resemblance between the incarcerated leaders and the American civil and political rights activists of the 1960's. While U.S. was aware of the fact that the Meles Zenawi regime was tyrannical and hold power by guns, the U.S. state department kept a blind eye and deaf ears for the call of Ethiopians to denounce and stop supporting the Meles Zenawi regime. Despite to the atrocities Meles Zenawi regime inflicted on peaceful citizens, the U.S. continued its strong ties under the pretext of "war on terror".
One of the reasons for the failures of the U.S. foreign policy both in the Middle East and in Horn of Africa is, its old and short-sighted theory which is based on "your enemy's enemy is your friend". We have seen how this principle affected U.S. and our world generally during and after the cold war period. The enemy’s enemy who were supported by U.S. during the cold war era were at last turned to be the nightmares of U.S. We Ethiopians used to believe that U.S. was committed to the establishment of democracy and good governance in Africa. But to our grief and sorrow, we have learned that political interest is more valuable to U.S. than democracy and human rights. When the Meles Zenawi government was clearly condemned by the European Union and criticized for massacring more than 190 peaceful demonstrators in a broad daylight, the U.S. state department was admiring the tyrannical regime of Meles Zenawi as good ally to “war on terror”.
It is clear that the Somali Islamists are enemies to the U.S. but arming and supporting a dictatorial regime with the notion of supporting the enemy's enemy will not bring positive outcome to the U.S. as well as Ethiopians. After all, Ethiopians feel as captives under the Meles Zenawi regime and U.S. is the main contributor to the misery they face each day. During the 1960's there was a saying "if you are black, stay at the back, if you are white you are alright." Now this saying is no more valid but "As long as you stand with U.S., you are free to kill and crush" seems to be the dominant attitude among dictatorial African leaders.
How can U.S. win war on terror by supporting a regime that terrorises its own citizens? In my opinion it is lunatic to think that the Ethiopian army will crush the Islamists. Instead it will raise the patriotic spirit of Somalis and even those who have had negative attitude towards Islamists will prefer to join them. Hating Saddam doesn’t necessarily means to love USA. Any Iraqi father or mother who lost her son by American bomb will sooner or later hates the presence of U.S. army in Iraq. Any Somali who hates the Islamists will be compelled to join the Jihadists when their airport is bombed by Ethiopian troops.
To conclude my comment, it would be wonderful to the U.S. if the government shifts its attitude,” your enemy’s enemy is your friend”. This can give a short term advantage but its consequences and outcomes are grave in the long run. The U.S. can make a fundamental change in our world specially in 2007, by up holding the principles of democracy, human rights and rule of law above political and economic interests. It is smart to learn from previous mistakes and it is not late for the U.S. to make the world a better place by sanctioning dictatorial regimes like Meles Zenawi’s and promoting democratic forces. This will lead U.S. to a long lasting victory. As the Holy Bible teaches us “Man harvests what he has sown” and the U.S. must constantly evaluate what the country has harvested due to its wrong sometimes unethical foreign policy.
Both entertaining and full of merit. Thanks for the well-crafted piece Mr. Leoul Mekonen. We know that this is no one’s war but Americas in the person of Woyane.
U should thank Meles for letting you open your mouth.
If it was isayas, now you old mother and father would have been in Jail or 50,000 Nakfa!!!!
Ooopps, I forgot there is democracy in ethiopia and you should never worry about your family, and even your self. You can talk what ever you want, but remember when you transgress law, you will be punished, that is because you have not disposed your responsibilities and have abused your rights.
Crush the Jihadists!! They ain’t good for anybody.
It is funny that, Somalis are saying that a muslim don’t kill a muslim! haha I thought Shiats and Sunnis in iraq were muslims, who are just bombing everything on their way!!! That is the work of extrimists which will be avoided soon. No talking , no proxy bla bla staff. That is ofcourse for they lay men who don’t have the courage to perform the deeds.
Well said article!
‘Googmangoog’ Zenawi made Ethiopia, for the first time in History to invade other country. Ethiopia was known to defend itself when irrational powers dare to touch her. Now Zenawi, Wedi Adwa, invade Somalia to make America happy and invest poor Ethiopian soldiers for a greedy rewad of billions of dollars. Dradeful Mistake of course! Fellow citizen of Ethiopia ,please understand the proxy war we are now. Meles tried ethnic politics for his survival and the promissed cesession of Eritrea, now he is using religious conflict for his few time in throne.Wake up! people.Remain in peace with your brothers and sisters muslims and christian of both ethiopian and somalians . Please once again let’s show the world we are the only country who practised both islam and christianity from their births up to now with great tolerance and brotherhood. Let’s not listen Libnadengel’s drum of war or Ahmad Gragn’s destructive call. There is no prtugees here to save us,the portugeese is there to fuel it.Let them clean their mess,let them fight their fight.Being poor wouldn’t make us to wage a war or a wealthy nation.That is colonialism.Mind again, love your brothers and sisters not The US dollars!
Finial green light from us to foot soldres Melelse and TPLF.
After a failure in Iraq and no way out of it US administration is blessing a conflic in the horn of africa.The talk in washington goes like this
For those of us who are still thinking us policy will solve our problem let us think twice
Let educate the mass who our enemis are let not spent time on our small differences and foucus what makes us one as human beings we all want our freedom,liberty,justice ,rule of law
under democracy.Let remove dictators and replace leaders of the people.
The new cave in Somalia for Ermias and his elite nefts had already abandoned by our brave defence forces, I don’t know where else are they trying to go? We will come to Asmara too.
Traitors like you cannot speak for Ethiopians. You are a fringe element Ethiopians would rather bring to justice.
what a comment! i totally agree on almost everything you have said & this is what all of us should know about u.s policies"politically correctness” and self interest everything else is after that so let’s don’t expect u.s to stop the dictator from doing all this arrogant things.
the somali people has to stand for themselves since nither meles nor islamist extreemists will do good for somalia. & for us is better stand up for our God given & human rights.God give us strength!
You are entitled to your opinion. However your article does not have a balanced view.
First of all, When i read the title i thoght you were talking about AFD, Shabia, and UIC. The title definetily fits them. then i went on with the rest of the article and I DISCOVERED YOU ARE NO DIFFERENT THAN THOSE KINIGEET BABIES.
Second, if you think US is using Ethiopia for proxy, what do you have to say about Shabia using UIC???
third, you chose not to mention the threat and JIHAD declared by the UIC several times. Shouldn’t UIC kept their wide hole shut and not bad mouthing us, if they did not want us to come after them. don’t you think they absolutely invited us to this shit?
Fourth, comparing Iraq, and Somalia, shows how weak your analysis is and clearly exposes how badly you want Ethiopia to loose this war so you can sit in arat killo. from where i am sitting you are going to rest without waking up from your dream.
Fifth, thinking Meles miscalculated shows how ignorant, short sited you are like your kinigeet compatriots.
Sit tight and enjoy the ride, Mr.
It is very unfortunate but the U.S. preaches democracy but has always been on the side of “friendly tyrannts” and they are asking why they are hated by the world. It is better if they ask why they are loved despite the atrocities they are committing around the world.
Your comment is very honest; exposes that the USA is the main culprit behind most of our misery. However, the majority of Ethiopian commentators including opposition groups have not been bold enough to speak their mind and tell our people that the USA can not be trusted and is not our friend. President Mugabe once said some thing like: “White man cannot be a friend…He is a boss".
USA and Zenawi supported Somalia in the previous Ethio-Somali wars; USA supported Zenawi’s guerrilla during Mengistu’s regime; again USA is supporting a dictator & child-killer Zenawi. Well, it is true: “Man harvests what he has sown”
Peace for all!
peace for all black people
wake up you people
ANTE DOMA RAS LOUL WHERE EVER:
Lemin beamarigna reesun atitsifewum?
The new cave in Somalia for Ermias and his elite nefts had already abandoned by our brave defence forces, I don’t know where else are they trying to go? We will come to Asmara too after one year.
Another DENKOR on the web. By implication you are telling us that you are a freind of melese’s enemy and that is the UIC at this momnet.
Wake up man! As far as this world is concerned, America is the most Just nation ( although not perfect).
For now we have to join Zenawi Principle, but we all know the war is wrong. we all have to pray for the soliders to come home save and join their family.
-H/selase relied on the US he came down when the US got stung in vietnam and froze all it’s forign policy
-H/mariam relied on CCCP he came down after they were wooped in afganistan
-meles relies on bush’s who is a failed states man
even a cocaroch can figer out whose house will burn and leave ,but then again they say cocaroches will be the only ones to servivor “The Bomb”
DON’T MISUNDERESTIMAT ANYONE ESPECIALY YOUR ENEMY or Your enemy’s enemy
I look at the pictures and it hurts to see people who look so much alike kill each other. Our language and culture is different but our people have inhabited the horn of Africa as long a man has exisited. Muslims and Christians can live side by side practicing their faith. I hope there is a quick resolution to this issue.
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