Tuesday, 12 October 2021

SHENANIGANS OF THE UNITED NATIONS


 

Wondimu Mekonnen, England, 08/10/2021

Ethiopia has recently become a permanent agenda of the United Nations.  It seems the US and its western allies are working tirelessly to bring Ethiopia to its knees in favour of a once Marxist-Leninist League of Tigray, TPLF which turned a terrorist.  Ironical, isn’t it?  In less than one year, the UN Security Council has met nine times to discuss Ethiopia. There are clearly some political shenanigans going on here. No matter when the USA attempted to get a mandate to attack Ethiopia, it failed. As its manoeuvre of the UNSC to get a green light to implement its misguided policy against Ethiopia failed to succeed the US had to resort to its unilateral sanctions.

The travel sanctions laid against some Eritrean and Ethiopian government officials by the Biden administration was a case in point here. The president of the Oromia Regional State correctly but contemptuously said the sanction as it stands does not expand to restricting him from traveling from one administrative state to the other in Ethiopia. Failing to threaten the targeted officials, the US had to come up with another scheme. This time it was designed to freeze the assets of Ethiopian and Eritrean officials in the United States. Alas! This one also failed to bear fruit, since no one except the TPLF terrorists had money in the US banks. The US then went on to declare economic sanctions wanting to put Ethiopia in a straitjacket. That did not work either. Following that, within a week the US took Ethiopia twice to the Security Council. It failed just like the previous seven futile attempts. Hell-bent on weakening Ethiopia, the US officials are now trying to cripple Ethiopian Airlines based on CNN's unfounded allegations. CNN has recently claimed that Ethiopia's flagship carrier had transported troops and military equipment to Eritrea. Ridiculous! Ethiopian Airlines categorically denied this allegation because the receipts for transporting arms and troops presented by CNN as evidence only indicated the cargo flight had carried medicines and food items. The Sudanese CNN journalist obtained strange pictures that were unknown to the Ethiopian Airlines. That is another story for another time.

On Tuesday 06 October 2021, following accusations of the US, UK, and Ireland, the United Nations Secretary-General rained his barrage of attacks on the Ethiopian Government for expelling United Nations “aid workers”. The expelled individuals were flirting with the Tigray Peoples’ Liberation Front, otherwise known as the Marxist Leninist League of Tigray. The Secretary-General said the expulsion of his staff was illegal but failed to cite breached provisions.

Jeff Pearce who has well researched into these dubious activities of the UN in Ethiopia, wrote:

“The inescapable impression we’re all left with is that the UN has not only been lying to all of us, but even lying to itself. Ethiopia restricted itself to kicking out only seven senior officials. It may need to reconsider expanding the list of those who need to be shown the door.”

Are the US and its allies planning to draft a new law for the United Nations tailored to their needs to attack Ethiopia? There is nothing in the UN charter that prohibits any sovereign country from getting rid of a foreign national that endangers the security of the country, whether that individual works for the UN or not. There is no international law that would allow the security of a nation to be compromised. 

Ethiopia did not pose any threat to the safety of UN workers. Ethiopia politely and according to the law, asked those UN employees to leave its territory for working and promoting the agenda of the terrorist group that publicly vowed to dismantle the country. We have to cite the New York Times, 12 July 2021, where Getachew Reda said: “If we have to go to hell and back, we'll do it, to destroy Ethiopia”. He has also vowed to take the war into Eritrea. What did the UN say about that? Nothing.

The Director of Tigray Media House, a US-based mouthpiece of the TPLF, Stalin Gebreressilassie said: “I am so blessed to see with my own eyes Ethiopia getting destroyed by the TPLF”. In fairness, the UN was expected to protect and stand by the founding member country that is threatened by a terrorist group armed to the teeth. The UN is failing Ethiopia for the second time, repeating its predecessor, the League of Nations. That led to the World War II. Click on the following link and listen to understand how.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFA0v9th-58

The seven dismissed UN workers were aiding the rebels by delivering communication equipment. For example, a UN World Food Programme worker, Mr. Thomas Brian Thompson, was pictured with Getatchew Reda, the TPLF spokesperson, with the satellite phone he provided him with.  He was expelled from Ethiopia, and this was officially communicated to the UN. Once his clandestine activities were unveiled, he has started to openly participate in rallies with the TPLF activists abroad wearing their flag. Isn’t that better! 

Some of those expelled were training the rebels on how to operate sophisticated military communication equipment. Some UN workers in Tigray were not even reporting to the office in Addis Ababa but bypassing and reporting directly to someone unknown to them in New York. We have heard amazing accounts of leaked staff conversations how this Mafiosi group was inflating fake numbers of the starving people in Tigray to elevate to Level 4 awareness to advance political interests. One of those expelled UN staff was heard promising the TPLF rebels that he would soon picture Tigray as another Darfur. All these had been communicated to the UN Head Quarters, but the Secretary General surprisingly denied seeing any written complaint. Clever! With all due respect, shouldn’t he have asked his personal assistants or secretaries?

AFP has revealed on 21 October 2021 that Ms Maureen Achieng (pictured below), UN Ethiopia’s chief has been forced on administrative leave, citing "unauthorised interviews" in which she complained of being side-lined by UN higher-ups she claimed were sympathetic to Tigrayan rebels. Staff say: "Your job is safe only if you bash Ethiopian government."


The government of Ethiopia is accused by the UN Secretary-General of blocking aid to Tigray. That is strange. Ethiopia is making every effort to let the flow of aid to reach Tigray. Of course, the Government has to establish security checkpoints to avoid repeating the mistake of the 1980s, where, in the name of aid, weapons were flowing into Tigray, and which resulted in subjecting Ethiopia to 27 years of suffering under the TPLF leadership. 

The delivery of aid was not hindered by the Government of Ethiopia, but by the TPLF itself. Even inside Tigray, it is becoming increasingly difficult although the UN is not saying anything about it. To take the world for a ride, the TPLF invaded Afar and Amhara and made delivery of food and medicine difficult. What did the UN say about that? Nothing. To remove the difficulty, Ethiopia allowed airlift of food aid and medicine, but the planes needed to come through Addis for a security check. Rather than blaming the TPLF that is right now fighting outside Tigray, in Amhara and Afar regions, the UN that is influenced by the US and its allies is putting the blame on Ethiopia, the victim and not the perpetrators. Why don’t they simply demand Ethiopia to surrender to the terrorists? That is what they are indirectly saying. If they stood for justice, why wouldn’t the UNSC, at all, raise about the 430 trucks that failed to come back after delivering food aid to Tigray? Were the trucks deliberately left to the rebels as a form of war logistics? How about the use of child soldiers by the TPLF? Those criminals are not only allowed to break international law but also supported to do so. Isn’t that double standard?

This kind of UN Security Council meeting is strange and unheard of. Ethiopia is not the first to expel UN workers who did not respect the national law of the country. However, it looks like Ethiopia is the first for the UN Security Council to be called to take unjustified punitive action against. For example, in October 2020, Israel forced to leave 12 UN workers. Nobody called on the UN Security Council to come together and act against her! Nobody dares to suggest this because Israel has got the protection of the US and its allies. Preposterous!

All these unnecessary summons, threats and intimidations incurred on Ethiopia are not going to be helpful. As a result of these actions valuable opportunities to work with over one hundred and ten million Ethiopian people are being squandered by the very organisation that is supposed to protect them in favour of a handful of terrorists.

It is impossible to understand why Ethiopia became part of UN’s and the western nations’ “enemies list”.

 When will these political shenanigans stop? Or are they going to be allowed to trigger another world war?


Saturday, 31 July 2021

THE SILENCE OF THE TIGRAY LAMBS!

 

THE SILENCE OF THE TIGRAY LAMBS!



A Tigrayan child soldier captured at Afar Front

1. Armed groups that are distinct from the armed forces of a State should not, under any circumstances, recruit or use in hostilities persons under the age of 18 years.

2. States Parties shall take all feasible measures to prevent such recruitment and use, including the adoption of legal measures necessary to prohibit and criminalize such practices.

UN Article 4: Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict[1]

By Wondimu Mekonnen, 31 July 2021, England

“JUST EAT ME WITHOUT A PRETEXT"

An Ethiopian folklore tale goes as follows:

“A hyena somehow befriended with a donkey. They started a journey somewhere together. The donkey was eating grasses all her ways, but the hyena was starving and miserable. They arrived at a freshwater spring and stopped for a drink. The donkey waited to see where they hyena was going to drink. She went far below the downstream; from the point where the hyena was and started drinking for herself. The hyena was furious and started a brawl accusing her of spoiling the clean water he was drinking. The sarcastic donkey simply stated: ‘where did you see a river flowing upstream? Just eat me without a lame excuse.”

 

WORLD ALERT

The USA and her Western allies are looking for a pretext to launch an attack on Ethiopia to save the skin of their puppets called the “Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front” (TPLF) and dismember Ethiopia like what they had done  toYugoslavia. They issued a warning. It didn’t work. They withheld their aid money. That too did not work. They went to the Security Council to obtain permission. The Russians and the Chinese blocked them. They seem to have run out of options. Naked aggression is the only one on the table. Imagine this. What would the UK have said if some idiots had told them, not to fight the IRA when they went to Ireland to establish rules and orders there, in 1980/1990s? Well, it appears that Ethiopia does not measure as sovereign state in the eyes of these self-appointed gendarmes of the world.

Karen Bass, The United States Congress member and Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Sub Committee on Africa, said that she met the Ethiopian Diaspora on Saturday [July 17, 2021], who asked her why the US had not yet sent its military to resolve the crisis in Ethiopia’s northern province[2]Really? Who are those Ethiopians, if one may ask?

Berhanu (2021)[3] recently discovered the incestuous relationship between Western Governments and Western Media. Remember the story of WMD in Iraq? The media was going crazy about it. Iraq was destroyed by the USA and their allies but there was no WMD in that country. Remember the story about Libya’s role in the bombing of Pan Am at Lockerbie? The poor Government of Libya attempted to prove it had nothing to do with the bloody crime in vain. It even cooperated with the investigation and allowed her national, Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, to be taken out of the country to Scotland, tried, charged, and sentenced to life imprisonment. The Libyan Government had to pay a huge lump sum of dollars to the families of the victims. That did not spare poor Libya from being reduced to rubbles by the Western superpowers.

Another blatant warning has just been issued by USA to the Ethiopian Government. Although the Government had allowed to use its air and land to reach the people in rebel-held areas of Tigray, the USA is demanding unchecked supply of whatever they wished to deliver the rebels. USAID Administrator Samantha Power is going to Ethiopia this week probably to deliver an ultimatum to Prime Minister Abiy Ahamed. She will also meet leaders of the TPLFand get well entertained in Mekelle. The TPLF had vowed never to lay their arms until they toppled the Addis Ababa and Asmara "regimes". The world should have condemned the TPLF on its belligerent actions, but the USA continues to blame the Government of Ethiopia for any crime committed by the terrorists. They are attempting to twist the arms of the Ethiopian government to allow them roam as they like on the air of Sovereign Ethiopia to carry out their plans bringing weapons for the rebels in the name of aid. They wanted to feed and arm the rebels so that they would be able to destroy the age-old Ethiopia. Encouraged by the USA’s backing, the TPLF went out of its ethnic enclave and launched an attack on the neighbouring Afar and Amhara Regions with no Western Media or Governments condemning their act. Innocent Afars were attacked, and many are being killed. The Afar and Amhara local militia are gallantly resisting though. They USA is itching to bombard them like the Serbs.

The TPLF forces attacked this week the convoy of nine trucks travelling to Tigray through the Afar region[4]. One would have expected the aggression should have been condemned. No one is saying anything in the West.. However, the USA unashamedly placed the blame on the Ethiopian Government. From the video of the attack, it was evident the attackers were communicating in Tigrigna.

The USA seems to be desperate to find a reason to raise their trigger-happy fingers in Ethiopia. Here is their plan of dismemberment of Ethiopia. Geopolitics Press (GP) of 27 July 2021 came up with the suggestion on how to control the media reporting on Ethiopia while the USA is going to carry out its plan of the breaking up of Ethiopia.

“Information capacitance is key to any propaganda campaign, and in the Ethiopian crisis, it involves moderating and controlling media coverage of the war in Tigray – and armed rebellion in Oromia – in a way that disadvantages GoE. This managed media coverage is quite helpful for fusion cells located in Kenya where they work with anti-Abiy elements in the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) and National Intelligence Service (NIS) to shape public opinion in favor of supporting TPLF and Oromo secessionists. This clique in KDF and NIS has partnered with other national intelligence agencies and private intelligence firms to train media activists and promote the idea of 2 parallel governments-in-exile – the Oromia Regional National Transitional Government and the Government of the National State of Tigray.”[5]

There you go. Where is the UN? Where is the democratic world? That is why the truth could not be told to the public. The Media and the Government walk in tandem. They don’t allow independent minded people  to have a space in their newspapers, air on their radios or images on their televisions. Lord have mercy on us!

THE USA HAD IDENTIFIED ITS NEXT VICTIM 

Once the issue of media control is resolved, now check out the following link. It will reveal how Ethiopian is going to be under attack, very soon before your glaring eyes.

https://youtu.be/ZiUuvwctdXM

Have you carefully listened how Ann Garrison correctly assessed the fate of Ethiopia in the coming few days, weeks or months?

Remember, when the Ethiopian Government went into the region of Tigray to establish law and order after the rebels attacked the restive National army? The barrage of reports coming from the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, Bloomberg, the Times, BBC, Sky News, CNN, etc., about the human rights abuse, killings, rape, … you name it by the Ethiopian and Eritrean forces was deafening without any evidence. On the contrary, when Maria Hernandez, a beautiful young Spanish national and two of her colleagues working for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) were ambushed and killed in cold blood on 24 June by the TPLF[6] not much was said. Was this widely reported? No! That would have jeopardised the USA’s grand plan of dismemberment of Ethiopia.



THE CHILD SOLDIERS

Here comes the juicy part. The USA could not always cover their backs. On 14 July 2021, The New York Times published a report by Declan Walsh and Finbarr O’Reilly, unwittingly glamorising the “gallant” children of Tigray, fighting enthusiastically for the independence of Tigray[7].  What the two did not realise was the fact that the use of child soldiers is an international crime against human rights and UN Conversion on the rights of the child. Ethiopians and friends of Ethiopia immediately downloaded the article and photos of the children for evidence. Jeff Pearce[8] pointed out that the use of child soldiers by the TPLF was the violation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The US and its Western allies who are hunting to this day Ugandan Joseph Kony, accused of the use of child soldiers went “shtum!” about the fact that the TPLF was using children as young as 13 years old to fight the national defense army. The New York Times has since then been editing and re-editing, the latest being on 28 July, weeding out texts and photographs referring to the children. Too late! The cat is already out of the hat.

 

After reading that disgusting article, Jeff Pearce, wrote: 

There was an immediate rush of back slapping all around. Rashid Abdi called it “groundbreaking war reporting/journalism.” Simon Marks, who got kicked out of Ethiopia, suggested, “Give [Declan Walsh’s] thread a read.” To no one’s surprise, Cameron Hudson wrote, “bravo for the amazing reporting.” The Telegraph’s Will Brown gave it three clap emjois. Journalist Hasfa Halawa called it “powerful work.” Journalist Claire Bolderson called the photos in the article “extraordinary.

And yes, they are. And some of them are frankly disgusting”.[9]

Those children were barely able to carry the guns. The following video shows petrified child ordered to operate a heavy artillery gun. The adult males were laughing and encouraging her to get on with it by saying “ajuwa! Ajuwa!”, which means “be courageous, be courageous”!


Walsh and O’Reilly might have succeeded in weeding out the narrative and pictures referring to these children from New York Times pages, but their dead bodies are littering the farm fields of Afar region, where the TPLF deployed them to capture the Afar land. “It would take us 10 days to bury them all.” says an Afar farmer. The children were given drugs and cookies and sent to fight. Some of them dropped their guns at the first sound of gunshots and run into villages begging to hide them. Others dropped their guns, raised their hands up in the air and run to the Ethiopian Defense Forces and the local militias to surrender. Click on the following link for more details about the unfortunate children of Tigray.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sULw5tHfjw

 

You just pity those kids. No single Western Media or aid organisation dared to mention about this tragedy. If that crime was committed by the Ethiopian Government, imagine the barrage of condemnation. All the newspapers would have published pictures of dead bodies of the children lying everywhere. The televisions would bore its audience to death with 24 hours continuous screening videos of these unfortunate children, to steer emotions of the innocent people.


One would ask who is going to stand up for these children? Where is UNICEF? Where is the Red Cross? Where is the Amnesty International? Where is the Human Rights Watch? Where is the United Nations? Well, the western world may hide the crimes of its puppets but it is not going to be hushed under the carpet for a long time. The tax paying kind-hearted citizens of these countries need to know. The voice of the truth may not get a space on their mainstream media but thank God there is the social media.

Once the TPLF knew it was wrong, initially, its cadres started lying about their crimes, by saying those children were not fighters but they came out to celebrate the victory of their elders. With guns? Whatever they said it didn’t make sense.  So, they blatantly started saying “if they are old enough to be raped, then they should be old enough to fight.” Is there such a clause in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child?

The children that Finbarr O’Reilly glamorised in his Instagram were not carrying toys but deadly rifles.


By now some of these children are lying dead. Some of them are hiding among the locals. Some of them have surrendered and looked after by the Ethiopian National Defence Force and the Amhara local militias. How about the trauma and nightmare those spared children had to endure, even after this conflict is over?

These children are forcefully snatched from their parents and put at the fighting front with guns. The Ethiopian Government ordered the National Defense Force to leave the region to avoid the causalities of these children. The TPLF, who saw the advantage of deploying child soldiers is still forcing the parents to hand them over and putting them on firing lines.  The world is looking away for now. But, for how long?

Those who put arms into the hands of children instead of food, books and toys commit a crime not only against the little ones, but against all of humanity. #ChildrenNotSoldiers
Pope Francis

In the ideal world that should be what the pontiff had said. Unfortunately, the world is run by superpowers that may pull the law to punish whom they don’t’ like but look away when it is broken by one of theirs. Unfair world!

The lambs of Tigray are silently going to their abattoir. The world media is gagged by the Superpowers policies in the name of their national interest. Who will stand up for the silent lambs of Tigray?

This is not the first time Ethiopia has been let down by the international community. Here is an excerpt from the famous speech of HIM Haileselassie I, at The League of Nations in 1935, when our fathers were ignored and side-lined like now, to let Italy overtake our country.

“Apart from the Kingdom of the Lord there is not on this earth any nation that is superior to any other. Should it happen that a strong Government finds it may with impunity destroy a weak people, then the hour strikes for that weak people to appeal to the League of Nations to give its judgment in all freedom. God and history will remember your judgment.”

God indeed remembered their judgment. The world plunged into World War Two immediately. Now, God will judge again with regards of the silence of the lambs of Tigray. Unless justice prevails, then expect World War Three. 

"From the distance, God is watching us!"



[1] https://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/opaccrc.aspx

[2] https://www.thereporterethiopia.com/article/ethiopian-diaspora-asked-us-military-intervention-tigray-says-congresswoman-bass?__cf_chl_managed_tk__=pmd_ed5f37562395bb70b31d33e53379094f717ebfec-1627622923-0-gqNtZGzNAyKjcnBszQi6

[3] https://www.eurasiareview.com/06072021-incestuous-relationship-between-western-politics-and-western-media-case-of-ethiopian-conflict-oped/

[4] https://www.reuters.com/world/africa/ethiopias-tigray-forces-enter-neighbouring-afar-region-afar-says-2021-07-19/

[5] https://www.geopolitics.press/from-basma-to-ethiopia-how-c2fc-is-using-lethal-journalism-to-conduct-information-warfare-and-lawfare-against-ethiopia/

[6] https://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/what-we-do/news-stories/news/ethiopia-msf-demands-investigation-killing-three-staff-members-tigray#:~:text=The%20MSF%20team%20members%20killed,a%20clearly%20marked%20MSF%20vehicle.

[7] https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/11/world/africa/tigray-guerrilla-fighers-ethiopia-army.html

[8] https://jeffpearce.medium.com/ethiopia-the-tplfs-sacrificial-lambs-e7b069747fdc

[9] https://jeffpearce.medium.com/ethiopia-the-tplfs-sacrificial-lambs-e7b069747fdc

Sunday, 11 July 2021

“MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING” (William Shakespeare)

 By Wondimu Mekonnen, England UK, 08 July 2021


The Blue Nile Fall

Ethiopia Could become 21st Century Colony of Egypt” Rev. Jessy Jackson[1]

 Introduction: The Blue Nile

The Blue Nile is a cause of disagreement among Egypt, The Sudan and Ethiopia. Since Egypt was the major benefactor of the Nile so far, she acts if she had a sole proprietorship over the entire River Nile. In fact, eleven countries have rights over the Nile. They are Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, Egypt, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, and Kenya.  

The River Nile is made up of two rivers: The White Nile and The Blue Nile. The White Nile Starts its journey from Lake Victoria, in Tanzania, joins the Blue in Khartoum, Sudan, and travels 2,300 miles to water Egypt. The Blue Nile (Abay - ዓባይ in Amharic) starts its journey from the highland of Ethiopia, Gojjam, from a spring called Gish Abay[2] (translated the Baby Blue Nile), the voluminous among sixty revers flowing into Lake Tana and flows, about 901 miles before it joins the White Nile, to form The Nile. The irony is, the Blue Nile contributes 85%[3] of the water that flows into the Nile Delta, in Egypt. The Nile is really the Blue Nile.









The Dispute.

Although there are 11 Nile Basin countries, the dispute is among the three countries: Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia. History tells us that Egypt deployed her army and fought against Ethiopia from 1874 to 1876 to control the source of the Blue Nile, but was devastatingly defeated (Czeslaw, 1959) by Ethiopia. Can you believe Americans fought against Ethiopia alongside the Egyptians (ibid)? During the scramble for Africa, British colonialists’ ambition was also the capturing of the source of the Nile. They partly succeeded in subjugating four of the Nile Basin territories ruled nothing to construct on the Nile without obtaining permission from their Headquarters in Cairo. When it came to Ethiopia, however, they used their diplomatic skills to tie her down with treaties. One such treaty is the 1902 Anglo-Ethiopian treaty, whose main objectives was the demarcation of border between Ethiopia and their colony, the Sudan. However, outside the objective of the treaty, they maliciously inserted an annex which forbids Ethiopia constructing, any work across the Blue Nile, Lake Tana, or the Sobat (Baro), without the knowledge of His Britannic Majesty’s Government of the Sudan (Marcus, 1963). This has been taken as a bible verse for the Egyptians, 65 years after the last British soldier left the territory in 1956.

In 1929, Anglo-Egyptian treaty signed between Egypt and Britain on behalf of her colonies, i.e., Sudan, Kenya, Uganda and Tanganika, Britain made another favour to Egypt She recognised Egypt’s historical and natural rights over the entire water of the Nile (Kimenyi and Mbaku 2015). In 1959, Egypt made a benevolent gesture to the Sudan. She allowed the Sudanese to use 18.5 billion cubic meters of 84 billion cubic meter, while it would use 55.5 billion cubic meters, accounting the rest for evaporation. The share of Ethiopia and the rest of the Nile Basin countries were totally ignored as non-existent because their god, the British said so.

However, Ethiopia never accepted any colonial treaties. As far as she is concerned the 1902 treaty was about border demarcation although Britain had maliciously inserted something unrelated to the boarder as an annex. Egypt should have learned from another similar colonial treaty of 1989 at Wuchale called Ethio-Italian Treaty. Ethiopian sooner discovered there was variations between the Italian and Amharic Translation of Article 17 which led to the Battle of Adwa. Italy lost that war.

The Egyptians knew very well that Ethiopia would not honour any colonial treaties signed behind her back but still chose to cling to it. Egypt used various tactics to prevent Ethiopia from using the water of the Blue Nile. She lobbied funders never to give any money to Ethiopia that would allow her to build any dam over the Nile. That was a successful tried and tested strategy by Egypt still working to this day. If Ethiopia gets her own capacity to build the dam with her own internal resources, Egypt threatened to take military action. At one point, President Gamal Abel Nasser of Egypt was quoted for responding to a journalist who asked him what he would do if Ethiopia built a dam over the Nile, “I will have my breakfast in Cairo and lunch in Addis Ababa.”

His Imperial Majesty Haileselassie I of Ethiopia commissioned German experts to carry out a plan and feasibility study of a great dam over the Blue Nile. He approached friendly countries for help with the plan. He could not find any one to help him fearing Egypt. Therefore, he wrote the following statement and filed it and filed together with the copy the feasibility study. “If we try to build a dam over the Blue Nile, we do not have the capacity (resources). When we asked friendly foreign countries to help us to build the dam, they were not willing to help not to offend Egypt. However, the next generation will build it with its own resources (money). Until such time, the study will be kept in safe place.” He then ordered to place an artist impression of the future dam on the currency of the country, which depicted his dream one day to become true.

Sometime in early 2011, Meles Zenawi, the former Prime Minister of Ethiopia came over the study and the words of his Imperial Majesty. Next morning, he announced his intensions on the Parliament. On 02 April 2011, Ethiopia started the construction of Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

Let us look at the following facts[4]:

Country

Renewable Water Resources, billion m3 /year

Water Resources per capita, billion m3 /person/year

Water Dependency, water coming from outside the country, %

 

 

 

 

Ethiopia

122

1,162

0

Sudan

38

933

96

Egypt

58

589

98

 

The above table clearly shows nothing flows from another country into Ethiopia, while 96% of Sudanese water and 98% of the Egyptian the water, the Nile, flowed from the outside.

Let us look at another fact which may clearer the air:


Two Ethiopian adages explain this unfairness. One of them goes like: “I am denied the soft part of my own bread (በገዛ ዳቦዬን፣ ልብ ልቡን አጣሁት)” and the other goes like: “The mother of Abay (the Blue Nile) goes thirsty (የዓባይን እናት ውሀ ጠማት”). While Egypt and Sudan swim in Ethiopian waters, year in year out Ethiopia faces draught and famine. Why is that? The reason is that Egypt and Sudan had a pact that cuts out Ethiopia out of using her own rivers. Now all that is coming to end and they nervous.

At first, Egypt was not bothered too much about the construction of the GERD, because she had made sure no international funders would assist Ethiopia. She also believed Ethiopia did not have the capacity to finance such a grand dam by her own.  She thought Ethiopia’s ambitious foolish dreams would never material. However, once started, Ethiopians started pulling her resources internally and from the Diaspora.

The initial plan was to complete the construction of the GERD in five years. One year later, on 20 August 2012, PM Meles Zenawi was officially declared dead. Egypt thought the dream would die with him. However, Ethiopians did not stop constructing it, though at a terribly slow pace. The corrupt officials of the Tigray Liberation Front (TPLF), Meles’s own party dragged it far too long. The construction seemed to go nowhere as Egyptians predicted.

In 2018, TPLF corrupt officials lost their grip to power, following Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn resignation. Dr Abiy Ahmed the new Prime Minister became the Prime Minister. Things started moving. The new Prime Minister began stamping on the corrupt officials. TPLF officials withdraw to their ethnic enclave, to Tigray and holed there. Investigation was launched into why the construction of the dam did not go as planned. The chief engineer was mysteriously killed alleged to have committed suicide. Some corrupt high-ranking officials, including a top general were arrested while attempting to leave the country. A new project management team was brought in to run GERD construction. It progressed with a new vigour driving Egyptians crazy.

As the new reformist government started taking the GERD seriously, Egypt woke up from her hypnotic stupor superiority complex. She became extremely agitated and started running up and down like a headless chicken looking for a new weapon that would stop Ethiopia. Military threats did not work. She started diplomatic onslaught. That too did not carry her far because no one had the leash to pull Ethiopia back. She was forced to the three party the negotiation table to end her monopoly over the Nile River. She wanted to dictate her terms referring to those dead colonial treaties that Ethiopia did not care about even when they were alive and kicking. The Sudan, Egypt’s junior partner, was negotiating half-heartedly, because she knew she would benefit from the construction of the dam, in many ways.  However, she did not want to offend Egypt. She knew first, the dam would save her from the annual flood that killed people and animals and destroyed crops. Secondly, she would get cheap supply of electricity. At the First Arab League on issue, Sudan stunned them taking an opposite and refused to condemn Ethiopia.


Photo: courtesy of Eng. Abebe Gashaw, my best friend who went to Gojjam, the source of the Blue Nile, and took this picture depicting the life of our poverty-stricken women collecting would fire to cook for their family


Ethiopia kept on reassuring Egypt and Sudan that the construction of the dam would not affect their water supply. However, Egypt could not just the idea of sharing the Nile with the mother of the Blue Nile. She wanted 100% of it. What an irony. A sovereign country has right to use its own natural resources without asking anyone. Water is a natural resource of the country of its origin, as much as oil is the natural resource of the country where it is found. Normally, the downstream countries pay for the usage of the water[5]. However, Egypt had been using this water for free for centuries. Just as much as Egypt and Sudan are not sharing their oil for free with Ethiopia, Ethiopia would have had the right to make them pay for it too. However, that was not the case. Ethiopia just wanted to have the dam, generate electricity, and bring 60% of her people out of darkness and poverty. Egypt would still get the water she needed, but greed did not let Egypt swallow these facts.


Whether Egypt likes it or not, Ethiopia was going to finish building the dam. The only way out from this quagmire for Egypt and Sudan is negotiation on the equitable use of the Blue Nile River. Not military action, no orders from USA no threats from European powers would stop Ethiopia from using her God-given water in any way she likes.  No one has leash to stop the constructions the dam because Ethiopia is building it with its own children’s sweat and blood.

Egypt found sympathy in the USA who offered to mediate. Ethiopia rejected any external mediation, but the three should sit together agree on how to share the water. Somehow, when PM Abiy Ahmed went to the USA to take part on UN meeting, President Trump met him and proposed to facilitate negotiations. His country was supposed to be an observer. Well, Ethiopia agreed to that, but then Egypt wanted the lion’s share of the water as the prescribed of her former colonial masters.  Ethiopia rejected that outright. The meeting ended without any solution. The USA dropped her observatory role and came up with a proposal calling back all the three to come and sign it. After all these 100 years of working with the Ethiopians, the USA did not know Ethiopia at all. Ethiopia categorically rejected the mediation of the USA. If any mediator was needed, then it had to be the African Union. That infuriated the USA. Trump with withheld some of the aid money to Ethiopia. That did not break Ethiopia either. He suggested Egypt bombed the Dam. That cost him election[6].

Fast forward! A milestone on the project was achieved. Ethiopia went on to announce the first filling would take place during June/July heavy rainy season of 2020. On 26 June 2020, Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia agreed to delay filling the dam for a few weeks. Nature took her own course of action before anyone could say anything. Heaven opened her gates and poured the rain over Ethiopia. On 21 July 2020, Ethiopian prime minister, Abiy Ahmed, announced that the first filling of the dam has been completed. The early filling of the dam was attributed to the heavy rains which had nothing to do with the Ethiopian Authorities. Egypt did not lose a drop of water she needed as result of that. Neither the Sudan lost any. To the contrary, the rain fall in Ethiopia was so heavy that Cairo was flooded. So much for the cry of lack of water in Egypt. “Mach ado about nothing”!

And yet, Egypt had been going mad for last year one year. She had enlisted the Arab league, who had no leash over Ethiopia. She had appealed several times to the Security Council but achieved nothing. She did not want the mediation of the African Union in contempt of the organisation. No power on earth would stop Ethiopia from finishing the dam and using her God given water to generate electricity power.

The second filling of the dam was fast approaching. Egypt has been crying for help. Tunisia came to her rescue[7], using her position as rotating presidency of the Security Council as a non-permanent member. She unilaterally drafted a resolution to be discussed and passed at UN Security Council meeting, on 08 June 2021, supposed to prevent the second filling of the GERD. Well, even had the Security Council would have unanimously passed that resolution, it had no power prevent the filling of the dam. Nature once more pre-empted them. Once more, one day before the UN Security Council came to sit to discuss Tunisian resolution, on 07 July, heaven opened her gets again and started filling of the dam without asking anyone’s permission. It is a rainy season. Rain is falling everywhere in Ethiopia. It continues at the rate is raining now the second filling would soon be over.

However, these days there is a military action talk on the corridors of Egyptian authorities, after failing to gain Security Council Resolution and ordered the parties to the negotiant table at the mediation of African Union. Bad idea.

Egypt should realise that Ethiopia has no control over the nature. All she had done was constructing the dam, waiting for the rain. Here we go again. Sudan was flooded the other day. Egypt is getting its water. “Much ado about nothing!”

 

Conclusion and Recommendation to Egypt and Sudan.

Egypt needs to wake up and smell the coffee. Ethiopia does not mean to harm her neighbours. Therefore, cooperation and not confrontation solves her problem. All Egypt and Sudan need to do is to sit together with Ethiopia and discuss about it.

There is a more pressing issue that is threatening to dry up the Nile. Unless Egypt and Sudan and all friendly international nations cooperate with Ethiopia, there will be no Blue Nile water or the Nile Perch soon. Lake Tana, from where the Blue Nile gets its largest proportion of the water has been invaded by an alien weed, God knows where it came from! It is called water Hyacinth (እምቦጭ), an invasive weed posing a grave threat to Lake Tana. While Egypt and the Sudan are running on the corridors of USA, UK, European Union, Arab League and United Nations, to stop the construction of the GERD, Ethiopians have been fighting alone to combat the weed for the last four years. Where are those who care about the Nile? Just like our government is trying to construct the dam alone, the nation is battling alone against the weed that is threatening to dry up Lake Tana. No lake Tana means no Blue Nile. No Blue Nile means no Nile at all. If we fail defeating the weed, it is not the dam that is going to deny water to Egypt, but it would be the invasive alien weed.


If Ethiopia loses the battle, against the weed, at least she has other rivers to live on. Egyptians and the Sudanese are the big-time losers. Therefore, attention should be diverted from fighting against the construction of the dam, to battle against the weed.

This dam is meant beneficial not just for Ethiopia alone, but also for Sudan, Egypt, and neighbouring countries as it is going to regulate the environment and the flow of the unruly Blue Nile water. Experts and scientists[8] predict that if the dam is completed with the help and cooperation of countries, it would be capable of handling a flood of 19,370 cubic metres per second, would also reduce alluvium in Sudan by 100 million cubic metres facilitating irrigation of around 500,000 hectors of new agricultural lands. It is also expected to reduce 40km of flooding in Sudan, upon its completion. So, while the benefits outweigh the cost, why not join it, rather crying wolf! “If you don’t beat them, join them”.

 


 

References

1.   Jesman, Czeslaw (January 1959). "Egyptian Invasion of Ethiopia". African AffairsOxford University Press58 (230): 75–81. JSTOR 718057

2.   Marcus, Harold G: (1963) “A Background to Direct British Diplomatic involvement in Ethiopia 1894 – 1896”, Journal of Ethiopian Studies, Volume 1, No 2, pp 121-132.

3.   Kimenyi, Mwangi S and John Mukum Mbaku. (2015) The Limits of the New Nile Agreement. Available at: https://www.brookings.edu/blog/africa-in-focus/2015/04/28/the-limits-of-the-new-nile-agreement/ (Accessed: 11 July 2021)

4.    



[1] https://ethio.news/2020/03/04/ethiopia-could-become-21st-century-colony-of-egypt/

[2] https://www.researchgate.net/publication/271492402_Gish_Abay_the_source_of_the_Blue_Nile

[3] https://www.brookings.edu/blog/africa-in-focus/2015/04/28/the-limits-of-the-new-nile-agreement/#:~:text=About%2085%20percent%20of%20the,comes%20from%20the%20White%20Nile.

[5] https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/7/8/jordan-israel-agree-to-water-deal-more-west-bank-trade

[6] https://www.independent.co.ug/trump-warns-ethiopia-of-egyptian-attack-on-dam/

[7] https://www.egypttoday.com/Article/1/105810/When-Tunisia-s-draft-resolution-on-Ethiopian-Dam-crisis-to

[8] https://www.water-technology.net/projects/grand-ethiopian-renaissance-dam-africa/#:~:text=The%20dam%20will%20be%20capable,in%20Sudan%2C%20upon%20its%20completion.