Author Topic: In search of leadership, reconciliation for peace or peace for reconciliation?  (Read 415 times)

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In search of leadership, reconciliation for peace or peace for reconciliation?
By Obo Arada Aba Shawl

August 3, 2015

The Background, the Belief, the Relational Politics aka BBRP of Ethiopia and Eritrea is now fully blown and blooming at the same time.

The Background

Colonial relational politics started in Eritrea some 78 years ago (1896-1974). Revolutionary politics commenced in Ethiopia some 41 years ago (1974-2015). All in all 119 years have passed without common understanding of politics and revolution. Is this a tragedy or a comedy?
It is a tragedy to those who honor the war drum by Ginbot 7 leadership and a comedy to those voters who had gathered in Meskel square in order to celebrate their electoral victory.
It seems to me that neither fighting in the battle fields of Nakfa, Barentu, Afabet and Badme could fetch peace nor the Referendum for Independence bear reconciliation. This is a tragedy of the first order.
While the second order of tragedy is the fact that Ginbot 7 won the election and its leaders failed to take political power and accomplish the voter’s wish lists up to the end.
If battle fields, war, referendum and election did not work for Eritreans and Ethiopians, then what works for is a real puzzle for me. May be the answer lies somewhere else?

The Belief

It is a well-known fact that the names of Ethiopia and Eritrea have originated from the Greeks and we see the Greeks today where they are. Although we know that both Eritrea and Ethiopia, archaeologically and morphologically; historically and culturally; religiously and linguistically share in common, nowadays we see people categorically denying their very recent common name of Abyssinia Ethiopia.

As indicated above, for 119 years, they have been bombarded by slogans of “my skin/bone or my blood is better than yours.” What a belief system!
Genuine daughters and sons of Eritrea and Ethiopia fought for a national identity i.e. citizenship with all its rights and responsibilities. What happens now is far from the course of reconciliation and peace.

The Revolution and the Politics

The TPLF and the EPLF were once had a buddy relationship. It went as far as brotherly comrades. These comradeship ended up in war for two (1998-2000). Now the ethnic relationship is perhaps budding, no one knows for sure but it is not a panacea for conflict resolution. The way forward is reconciliation with the understanding of historical perspectives of the Ethiopian Revolution and the politics of today. Reconciliation does not mean first fight and then make peace and reconciliation.
The relationship between reconciliation and peace has been addressed in my Amharic article in Amharic titled “ERKNA & SELAM”.

The Leadership style

Eritrea and Ethiopia have reached a critical time for leadership style. The EPLF has not figured out how to lead the Eritrean populous. Eritreans are still not sure about the two elements of Geography, physical and political geography of Eritrea. The Eritrean leadership mainly composed of a strong male and a weak female could not break the impasse of Ethiopian multiple personalities. The alternative seems to topple the TPLF leadership via a proxy war just as the TPLF did in Somalia.

The Ethiopian ethnic federation led by the TPLF will not stand to see especially this style of threat coming from their half-brothers and sisters. The alternative is to topple the EPLF leadership.
What a scenario and what a country ready for disintegration while the whole world is looking up for integration. Is this a tragedy or a comedy of the 21st century?
I hope it is a comedy initiated by Yemane Gebreab, special advisor to the Eritrean President and perpetuated by Berhanu Nega and his disingenuous friends.

The Eritreans want reconciliation for peace whereas the Ethiopians want peace for reconciliation. This can only be achieved if the leaders of EPLF allow the Eritreans mass to use the SEA i.e. freedom of Speech, Expression and Assembly. After arming with these freedom and liberty, then they can negotiate for peace. The current strategy of proxy war is not tenable. Eritrean lives should be spared at any cost.
The Ethiopians should demand that their votes would be counted and respected. The Ethiopian Revolution has costed us with too many lives not to become puppets of a narrow nationalist but a model of the whole wide world for peace and prosperity. Going to war without making peace with its own citizens would be disastrous. The leadership style based on ethnic minorities is also like those of EPLF is untenable.

So what is the best solution for both countries? It is the way of EPRP i.e. Eritrean/Ethiopian Revolutionary Party. The collective leadership of EPRP was designed not on a single leader such as Isaias or Meles but on a collective psychic leaders based on Culture Identity. We have to note that the psychic of the TPLF is based on blood identity while that of the EPLF is based on skin/bone identity.

So it seems easy for all the peoples of Ethiopia and Eritrea to choose which ideology or theology serves them better. It is all about choice and voting.
Truth will prevail

For questions and concerns

mailto:oboaradashawl@gmail.com