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Ethiopia: Homage to Hillary Clinton's message to dictators
By Eskinder Nega
The list of distinguished American Secretaries of State is a long one. James Madison acceded to the Presidency after serving as the nation’s fifth Secretary of State in the early years of the nineteenth century. His track records on both counts were remarkable. Lincoln’s Secretary of State, William Seward, was the lonely visionary who saw wisdom in the acquisition of Alaska from Russia. America’s longest serving Secretary of State, Cordell Hull, received a Nobel Peace Prize for his eleven grueling years in Franklin D Roosevelt’s administration. George Marshall, who only served between 1947 and 1949, was critical in mobilizing support for Second World War devastated Europe. His were the most consequential two years of any Secretary of State (Foreign Minister) anywhere in the world.
But still, their many merits notwithstanding, latent Presidential potential was obvious in only a handful of them. Had he been born in the US instead of Germany, Henry Kissinger could conceivably have risen to the Presidency. Colin Powel had both the personal standing and political momentum in 2000 but fatefully pulled back from his rendezvous with history.
Hillary Clinton is also incontrovertibly Presidential material. And unlike Powell she had sought her moment in history with passion. Unfortunately, though, perhaps more because of the disastrous legacy of her husband’s second term in office, it was not meant to be.
Nevertheless, her presidential-level charisma, so to speak, endures undiminished as ever. It was discernible as she greeted Haile-Mariam Desalegn, Ethiopia’s nominal Foreign Minister, with picture-perfect blend of personal courtesy and the stately poise of an emissary of a superpower when she arrived in Addis. It was no less evident as she calmly walked past a roomful of senior diplomats from 53 African countries to take a seat next Jean Ping, Chairperson of the African Union. And it was manifest when she confidently assumed center stage as America’s first Secretary of State to address the AU, which turned out to be one of her best speeches ever.
Inspirational speeches are supposed to be the preserves of activists and politicians. Foreign policy professionals have always instinctively stirred clear from them. Granted the rare one or two good speeches once in a while, bland but reassuringly safe messages are the preferred trademark of State Department speech writers. These words could not have been theirs entirely. What appear to be Clinton’s lengthy insertions are almost patently decipherable.
“I am pleased to come to the African Union today as the first United States Secretary of State to address you,” she said. But the timing could have been better. This was in fact the speech that needed to be---but was not---delivered at the last summit of AU Heads of States, held in the immediate aftermath of popular uprisings in the Middle East.
“Today, I would like to briefly discuss three areas,” she began almost immediately. “They are democracy, economic growth, and peace and security.” But had it not been for the death of Bin Laden, security would have come first not last. After a decade in the wilderness, American foreign policy is finally limping back into the traditional mainstream where the link between US interests and the promotion of democratic values is duly acknowledged. There is no more rational for the singular dominance of the war on terror.
Thus: “First, democracy,” proclaimed a proud Hillary to Africa.
And she went on to articulate what is probably the world’s most understated fact of the last two decades: “More than half the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa have embraced democratic, constitutional, multi-party rule,” she said. The widely touted cases were then cited: Botswana, Ghana, and Tanzania. But for those cognizant of Africa’s many trails and tribulations, it was the inclusion of Niger, Guinea, Nigeria and Kenya in the list that brought tears of joy. The tide has finally turned against despots in Africa, as it had already done so in Latin America, Asia and Eastern Europe. Only the horn of Africa remains a regional holdout in the continent.
Hillary had a message for the diehards, in her own words, “the leaders in Africa and elsewhere who hold on to power at all costs, who suppress dissent, who enrich themselves and their supporters at the expense of their own people.” What thoughts were racing in the mind of her host, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, who has been in power for twenty years absent a single free election, as she uttered those words is best left for imagination. But to the discrete delight of conspiracy theorists, the lights had gone out on her just as she began to speak of democracy.
Freedom is a universal value, she asserted. There is no room for imaginary national exceptionalism for her. “If you believe that the freedoms and opportunities that we speak about as universal should not be shared by your own people, men and women equally, or if you do not desire to help your own people work and live with dignity,” she said with visible passion, “you are on the wrong side of history, and time will prove that.”
These are actually words of wisdom from recent experience in Egypt. She knows what it means to be on the wrong side of history. Not even the might of a superpower was enough to avert an idea whose time had come. And democracy is the idea whose time has come all over Africa.
It’s time for liberty, fraternity and equality. It’s time to stop the killings. It’s time to free political prisoners. It’s time to really ban torture. It’s time for free elections, freedom of expression and association. It’s time for political pluralism, tolerance of religious and cultural diversity. It’s time to end hate. It’s time to break free from the cycle of violence. It’s time to end rampant, semi-official corruption. It’s time for transparency. It’s time to be part of the international mainstream. It’s time to believe even in the impossible.
In other words, it’s time to hope in Africa. Freedom is no more a possibility but an imperative. The time has indeed come.
We shall be free!
Fight tyranny form your PC. Keep posting articles on your facebook pages.
The tyrants of Africa are coming to their final days and will face the rule of law for the atrocities they have committed on the people of this great continent, the fundamental liberties and freedom of the African peoples cannot continue to be neglected, Beka! to the neo-colonial regime of ethnic federalism. Tinsae Moa Anbessa!
“The friendship between the United States and Ethiopia is one of long standing. Our association in the past many decades, I hope, has been fruitful for both our peoples. Because the United States and Ethiopia believe in the same fundamental and essential goals, it is necessary that we should put our efforts together so that we may make maximum contribution for the safety, happiness and prosperity of the generations to come.” HIM at the White House, page 153 of Selected speeches of HIM
“Neo-colonialism today takes two forms: economic and political. We recognize that economic dominance is not only often the more difficult to eliminate, but often serves as the entering wedge for political domination. We further recognize that, given the history of our continent, and the conditions under which we came to freedom, it is not unusual that, despite our best efforts, the economic independence which we seek is long and difficult in coming. Long-established patterns of trade are not easily or quickly reoriented. Let us not delude ourselves in thinking that these facts, for such they are, are of no significance for the future of Africa. But let us, at the same time, toil with all our strength to alter them.
When we consider political neo-colonialism, our desires, although perhaps no less difficult of attainment, are at least easier of articulation. We seek to avoid a rigid and inflexible posture which prejudices our position on major issues before the world. We seek to avoid alignment, to achieve true non-alignment. Our late good friend, H.E. Prime Minister Nehru of India, put it thus: ‘The only camp we should like to be in is the camp of peace and goodwill.’” Selected Speeches of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, page 269-70
“The fundamental obstacle to the realisation of the full measure of Ethiopia’s agricultural potential has been, simply stated lack of security in the land. The fruits of the farmer’s labour must be enjoyed by him whose toil has produced the crop.” Selected speeches of HIM Negus Haile Selassie I, pages 492-3
“The aim of those leaders that is based on ambition for power and personal gain is one with no firm foundation and will, consequently, crumble easily.” Selected Speeches of HIM Haile Selassie I, page 471
“Every structure must be built on a solid foundation, for those constructed otherwise would soon collapse. The proclamation by which We made land grants to the entire Ethiopian people is the foundation of this scheme. Recipients of land grants as well as those who had previously owned their own holdings do not by the mere owning of such land satisfy the requirements. They must make proper use of the land not only for their own benefit but as well to that of the people– We shall not permit any land to lay fallow.” Selected Speeches of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, page 487
“Man can only begin an enterprise, it is for God to dispose of it to a good end.” Selected Speeches of HIM Haile Selassie I, page 391
Long Live the Constitutional Monarchy!
Long Live African Unity!
Long Live the charter of the United Nations!
Fire burn down the neo-colonial regime of the alien imposed federation of secession
Rise with the Lion of Judah!
Gasha for Ethiopians!
Long Live Independent Ethiopia!
Yes it’s time for everything; that is not only theorotically but clearly must apply as much as possible . so far in Africa things waving in the dilemma of political confusion or tribal backshore despite of personal interests to corruption.
Dictatorial leadership in the nation and self benifit which stated in American foriegn polcy for americans also sided to the nagative effect .What next is tommorow interestngly wish of Ethiopian youth to Ethiopian future dream not greedy idetity fighters who still covered the real mad by the Gold.
“Fight tyranny form your PC. Keep posting articles on your facebook pages” looooooooooooooooooool is this a jock or what?
very good article.
Well, you may think you can antagonize our govt by insulting our leaders as you wish, but the fact of the matter is, you’re proofing our case of flourishing democracy and freedom of speech in Ethiopia. You’re a living example of democracy in Ethiopia. Enjoy your blabber and nonesense article. The sky is the limit. Nobody is preventing you.
You said,"It’s time for political pluralism, tolerance of religious and cultural diversity. It’s time to end hate. It’s time to break free from the cycle of violence.” are you sure you are free of these stuff?
Yes,indeed.Liberty,Equality,and of course,fraternity to all brotherly and sisterly Ethopians.
By far,Meles Zinawi is one and the only one the most henious crime committed in Africa,in paricular in Ethiopia.Two decades ago Legesse,with assumed name came as Meles entered into Ethiopia as a bandit through invasion and now is the most wanted reckless and routhless criminal on earth and is on the most wanted list waiting to be captured and arrested whereever he is.
Madame secreteray Clinton cleaarly told the mad man and Ethiopians told him too,Zinawi directly and indirectly that sooner or later he will face the fate of all those criminl dictators and terrorists in a very special way and not only he will have no one to receive him as a honarary guest in exile,he will have one and only one distinct fate that Zinawi will be capturied in any form or shape that he will be, at the time of his arrest and will face anything and everything based on the wicked and weird crimes that he committed during his twenty years illegal stay in Ethiopia while robbing and murdering Ethiopians day and night.
To the very delight of all Ethiopians,citizens of the united nations,in deed, if this cruel and lier was captured and arrested and rushed to prision a day before Madame Clinton arrived in Addis,our heart would have been filld with joy.
Zinawi is a waste on Ethiopians;what he did cost millions of Ethiopians dearly,but for everything and anything injustice that he did to Ethiopia and Ethiopians will bear him insurmountable price ;that for sure,he knows,we know too.
What Zinawi does not know,we know is the exact day of his fate.So rude and unpleasant,Zinawi gave Madame Cinton a bad look on her addressing the speech to all those it may concern.Never Zinawi had felt comfortable throughout Madame Clinton’s speech and was alone drenched in shame.EFFORT is quite larege an illegal corporation in billions of dollar comprised of all sorts of robbers and Meles Legesse Zinawi is the boss.How many lawyers can he buy to take his matter in their hand on the day of the rial?
But,first thing first.There will be head and hands on the platter before or after the crimes Zinawi committed is read from the chargesheet;then who will assume responsibility for the hearing as the trial is going on? Well,the jurors will definitely ask Azeb Golla this:- would you like to have a dinner? Of course,while Golla is in a prisioner box,not in a restaurant.We don’t know how much she committed to her marriage,but the question is,how much can she taken in the dinner? We know she has a voracious apetite for money and blood.Of course,Golla will not appear in the trial with a borrowed shoulder bag and a cell phone,or with an ibook, or with her account book.If a second chance is granted,she will definitely call the devil in hell to take away the leftover.
A desperate cry from A COWARD.
After failing to show up for a Beka Day…Now he is translating hilary’s word to his taste and relying on it to make his wild dream come true.
Eskinder stiffed me at Meskel Square on Ginbot 20th. I was waiting for him with a lighter on my hand hoping he would show up with a gallon of gasoline.
I guess he was expecting the poor homeless people to do his battle for him.
Ms. Clinton Message at the AU headquarter has been the Nightmare for
blood sucker Tyrants and Despots bleeding the poor African Peoples .Starting by their representant the
Head of TPLF bandits and the Tigre Mafiosis the Crime Minister Melas Zerafew !!!!!
By all means possible, we have to kick the dictator out of his power.
Meles had overstayed his welcome by twenty years. If truth to be told as soon as the Derg regime was toppled people’s election should have been copleted thus democratically elected ruling parties would have been in power to lead our beloved mother land. Instead we saw a one-man Mafia circle
clinging to power , in the process creating disunity, separating provincial regions into new nation leaving the nation landlocked and begging the world for aid and lately selling the land at dirt cheap price.
ይህን ያደረገ አረመኔ ወንበዴ ሽፍታ መለስ ዜናዊ የዘረፈውን ከመመለሱም በላይ ልፍርድ ቀርቦ ቅጣቱን ያገኛል ::
እ ህ አ ዴ ግ ይውደም
ህዝባዊ ትግል አሁን
Ethiopians are incredibly pleased by your direct and crystal clear message delivered in your invaluable message to Ato Meles Zinawi that he must face the consequence of refusing to relinquish power to Ethiopians.
On the other hand,Ethiopians are disgustingly ahamed of Meles Zinawi’s irrisponsible act and miscoduct that he sabotaged your speech by cutting electric energy off thinking and believing he is defending himself and the system that he built to suppress and oppress Ethiopians.
It was a pre-planned act of sabotage to disrupt and make fail your meeting with those reckless dictators addressing them the need to think democratically and find a way to pave ways to handing over power to the people whom those dictators created havoc on and bankrupted Africa.
Clearly,on the night Mrs.clinton left Ethiopia for home,Meles Zinawi felt ice-cold and in addition,the fact that Mrs.Clinton told in his face that Zinawi will regret the most if he undermines the power of Ethiopians made him felt as if he was hit by winter storm.
Zinawi is still alive and has witnessed criminal dictatos fall on the ground like dried leaves that they stood on for years,and he will witnes his own downfall on the ground that he had been standing on for the last twenty years.Zinawi,obviously has been visibly shaken and at the same time might shove all those valuable messages Mrs.Clinton put on the table into his armpits and goes on TV and fired words of insult and threat on Ethiopians,but he will for sure be receprocated by Ethiopians with equal or more action leading him to being kicked on the mouth,a blow on the head, and being tossed away into prision.
Mrs.Clinton is back home and is on doing different assignments particulary to scrutinize Meles Zinawi’s actions an inch square at a time.
i have a feeling this is meles’ last year in office.I really feel it in my bones….
nazret is blocked in ethiopia..you wouldn’t be reading this if you were in ethiopia…you don’t care about the people…
Ultimately it’s Africans that need to dream better for Africa. Clinton cannot do it, not China, or India….
long live china.
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