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Death Squad: The Dynamics of Ethiopian State Terror in Oromia December 2, 2013

Posted by OromianEconomist in Colonizing Structure, Economics: Development Theory and Policy applications, Human Rights, Human Traffickings, Uncategorized.
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JEL: D2, D6

Death Squad: The Dynamics of  State Terror in Oromia

State terror is described as a politically motivated violence,  transgression, repression, torture and   murder aimed at citizens by authoritarian governments.  Jeffrey A. Sluka (2000, p.3) has eloquently defined as:

“State terror refers to the use or the threat of violence  by the state  or its agents  or supporters , particularly  against civilian individuals  and populations, as a means  of political intimidation and control (i.e., a means of repression).”Overwhelming empirical evidence demonstrates state violence has been  standard  in Abyssinian empire and occupied Oromia in particular.

Researchers have documented that in the end of 19th century alone 5 million Oromos were victims of Abyssinian mass killings. Prominent political leaders, cultural figures, artists, writers and enterpreueners have been murdered. The Oromo sport heroes like Ababba Biqila (during Haile Selassie regime) and Mammo Walde (by Melese regime)  were murdered. Who can forget the cold blood murder  of singer Ebbisa Adunya by Meles regime killing squad? Who can forget the murder of engineer Tasfahun Camadaa by the same tyrannic state?

Abyssinian rulers has been engaged in state terrorism to maintain the status quo and eliminate the courage and  voice for change. Hence, the voice against  subjugation  has been labelled as terrorism. At present terrorism is a new ideology.

The Oromo society  under  the Abyssinian system has been  regimented by force, fear and intimidiation.  There is no recourse to justice. There is no  rule of law. The media is  wholly controlled  by the government, it  served to  regulate all intellectual, cultural and political activity, and at the same time, to defame the critics and opponents of the ruling regime. There is little room for creative work; the function of art has to be entirely political, the function of a writer  no other than that of a partisan. Freedom of Speech, of press, and of  association has been  systematically curbed. Terror has been  employed to enforce obedience. The secret police subjected the dissidents to unscrupulous intimidation and tortures in order to elicit confessions from them. The government is not only annihilated dissidents but also suppressed the opposition within its ruling party. The ruling clique systematically purged the so called anti-peace and narrow nationalists from its rank and file. The Agazi and Liyu Police are conducting systematic mass genocidal killings. Recent research conducted indicates that 0ver 87% of the political prisoners by Ethiopia are Oromo nationals.

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B-aJwZDI00JQb2RvZmV4Mm5Iamc/edit?pli=1

Reality and Vision: The Way Out

Leo Tolstoy in his masterpiece and one of the greatest novels in any language on the earth, War and Peace put forward the following compelling historical assertions:

‘All historians agree that the external activity of states and nations in their conflicts with one another is expressed in wars and that as a direct result of greater or less success in war the political strength of states and nations increases or decreases. Strange as may be the historical account of how some king or emperor, having quarrelled with another, collects an army, fights his enemy’s army, gains a victory by killing three, five , or ten thousand men, and subjugates a kingdom and an entire nation of several millions, all the facts of history (as far as we know it) confirm  the truth of  the statement  that the greater or lesser success of one army against  another is the cause, or at least an essential indication, of an increase or decrease in the strength of  a nation – should obliged that whole nation to submit. An army gains a victory, and at once the rights of the conquering nation have increased to the detriment of the defeated. An army has suffered defeat, and at once a people loses its rights in proportion to the severity of the reverse, and if its army suffers a complete defeat the nation is quite subjugated.’

Tolstoy’s logical insight and historical depiction of conquer and conquest well describes the grim realities and experiences of Abyssinian and Oromian saga of 19th and 20th century and also of the present day. As a result of  the defeat of the Oromian defence, Oromia has lost its rights and the power of Abyssinia stretched over Oromia to the extent of the destruction of  the independent existence of Oromia and its capital Finfinnee.

As a result, the people of Oromia become dehumanised, the conquered and  the colonised  subject of  Abyssinian oppressors. The consequences of this tragedy in development studies are what Wilber (1988) calls ‘convoluted history and convoluted development.’ This can succinctly and elegantly depicted through the  Paulo Freire’s (1988) terminology of  educational process also known in his world view of the development process of the oppressed as the pedagogy of the oppressed. Development in this framework taken as  the recitation, in human history, of the progressive  freeing of peoples and nations  from the domination of nature, peoples and other nations.  Accordingly, in terms of Wilber (1988): ‘Development becomes the means, not the end, for the end is to enhance what people value. Development or growth is desirable  only if it is  consistence with people’s  deepest values.’  Development cum liberation is a means to overcome oppressive and exploitative forces of all kinds. In order to achieve those ‘deepest values’, people who are the subject of the development process have to able to hold these essential key and locus of power of this very process and their density. In the context of Oromia, the lack of  holding this essential key kept the country and the people in the present grim nature development process,  the underdevelopment or low level development trap.

In Tolstoy’s 19th century trajectory,   Russia had to liberate itself from Napoleon (France). In the Trajectory of  pedagogy of the oppressed, Freire (1988) : ‘The oppressed, having internalised the image of the oppressor and adopted his guidelines, are fearful of freedom. Freedom would require them to eject this image  and replace it with autonomy and responsibility. Freedom is to be  acquired by struggle, not by gift.  It must be pursued constantly and responsibly. Freedom is not an ideal located outside of man; nor is it an ideal which becomes myth.  It is rather indispensable condition for the quest for human completion.’ From both writers, in their evocative  delineations of human experiences,  we come to understand that the compelling realities of nations like Oromia and its people that they have to empower themselves and do their best to  earn their intimate values.

  The Critical Minimum Effort: What Role for Oromummaa?

Oromian Freedom Function

Bilisummaa  (Freedom) is  a positive function of  Qabsoo (Struggle)  and Tokummaa Oromo (Oromo Unity) (T) and the Spirit of Oromummaa ( here in after the O factor). These three variables together form the minimum critical efforts (MCE) for Bilisummaa. They are not just mere positive factors. Rather they are real causations.

B=  f(Q,T,O)

Garbummaa (Subjugation cum slavery), the inverse function of bilisummaa  is the positive function of  Abyssinian occupation (A), Neo Gobanaa’s factor (N factor) and Lack of Oromo unity(L) and  Unoromummaa (U) (lack of the Spirit of Oromummaa). These three variables (ANL) together form the primary factors or causations  of Garbummaa.

G= f(A, N, L, U)

Garubummaa (G)  is the negation of  Bilisummaa (B) and vice versa.  The N factor is the negative of the O factor and vice versa.

http://www.unpo.org/article/13167#.TmlG41taQqc.facebook

http://www.gadaa.com/culture.html

http://ayyaantuu.com/world/testimonies-of-genocide-between-1868-and-1900-five-million-oromo-were-killed-in-ethiopia/

http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/wayyaaneen-oromotaa-lafa-irraa-duguguun-itti-fufee-jira/

Interview with Oromo farmer who was uprooted by TPLF instigated conflict beween Oromos and Ogadenians

‘Waraannii naannoo Soomalii, Oromoo daangaa Soomaletti dhihaattu ammaas weeyrare, namni kumaan lakkaawamu
balaa haarayaaf Saaxilaman. Gabaasaan Mayyu (ona Anniyyaa) irraa nu dhaqqabe akka mirkaneeysutti. Waraannii dhaabbataan
naannoo Soomalii kan Ogaaden fii loltoonni Liyyuu Polis kan Ogaaden keeysatti ummata shoorarkeeysuun beekkame, daangaa naannoo Oromiyaa cabseee, lafa Oromoo Anniyyaa, Mayyuu Muluqee humnaan dhuunfate. Akka gabaasaa tanaatti, torbaan dabre guyyaa
Salaasaa, tuutni loltoota Somalee lamaanuu harka tokko tahanii Oromoorratti waliin bobbahanii jiraattoota Oromoo kanneen naannoo Mayyuuqubatan balaa guddaa irraan gahanii jiran. Gaafa dura humna waraanaatiin dhufanii Oromiyaa dhunfatan, Wayyaaneen Ummata
Oromoo kan amma wayyaba tahe saba xiqqatti deebisuun nidandayama yaada ja’u Mallas dubbatee ture. Sagantaa dabaa, tan ummata Oromoo xiqqeeysuufii lafa isaa dhiphisuu kana hojiirra oolchuuf Wayyaneen, ollaalee Oromiyaa gara hundaan hidhachiiftee Oromoorratti bobbaasaa jirti. Humni Liyyuu Poolis, humna wayyaaneen jaartee hidhachiifte tahuun hubatamaadha. Tarkaanfiin Liyyuu Poolis fii humna waraana Ogaaden kan amma Mayyutti bobbahee kuni Oromoo lafa isarraa buqqisani saba biraa qubsiisuuf sagantaa lafa kaayyame dalagatti
hiikuuf duula walirraa hin cinne tahee jira. Akka kanaan baatii ( ji’a ) jahan dabre baha Oromiyaa kutaa Harar, Oromoota Anniyya, Oromoo Jaarsoo tiifii Oromoo naannoo Mi’eeysoo qubatan lafa isaaniirraa buqqiftee Ogaadenootaafii Issaaf kennanii ummatoota Oromoo fii Soomalee jiddutti xifaa uumani jiran. Baatii April tana keysa, lafa Anniyyaa ona Mayyuu irratti duulli gara Ogaadeniin baname Oromoo kumaatamaan lafa isaa, Mayyurraa buqqisee jira. Oromoon meeshaa,humna waranaatiifii lojistikii (logistics) akka isaanii waan hin qabneef lola itti baname dura dhaabbatuu hin dadeenye. Warri Oromoo Anniyyaa, Jaarsoofii Mieeysoon lolaa jiru kun eenyu faa? 1, Waraana
mootummaa naannoo Soomalii fii,2, waraana addaa ka liyuu police ja’amu, ka wayyaaneen akeeka ykn dalagaa tanaaf qopheeyfatte. Mayyu lafa jidduu Cululiifii laggeen Ereriifii Gobeelle jiddutti argamti. Lafti Mayyu ja’amtu tun hedduu guddoodha. Dheerinni isii kaabaa kibbatti km 350 ni caalti, baharraa dhihatti KM 180 ni caalti. Lola haaraya kanaan Qabeenyi Anniyyarraa a’ame (saamame); Loon 475, Gaala 25 fii Harree 15. Ummanni Oromoo Anniyyaa kan ona isaarraa buqqa’ee Huusetti walitti qabamee jiru 500,000 ni gayan ja’ama. Namoonni taniis ni jira. Lafa qonnaa kani duraan qabaniifii oomisha isaanii akkasumatti dhiisanii biraa baqatan. Ummanni Oromoo qawwee gayaa
hin qaban. Bakka heddutti mootummaanirraa hiiktee jirt. Hanga xiqqaa harkatti hafeef ammoo rasaasa hin qaban. gara geejjibaatiin
akkasumatti ir’ina guddaa qaban. Yeroo kuni tahu Soomalootaafii Wayyaanota hidhannoo fii rasaasni konkolataa, xayyaaraa fii gaalatti
fe’mee jala deema. Karaa biraatiin yoo Oromoon Anniyya humna waraana Soomalee kan ofirraa dhawan OPDOn hidhannoo ni hiikkachiifti.Torbaan dabre yeroo ummanni Oromoo Anniyyaa humna Soomalee ifirraa ittisuuf tattaafate, OPDOn ajaja Wayyaneetiin amoota Oromoo kudhanirraa qawwee hiikanii turan. Balaan ammaa tuni tan Anniyya, Jaarsoo fii Mi’eeyso qofa xiyyeeffattee miti.
Balaan tuni tan Wayyaneedhaan karoorfamte; balaa duguugiinsa shanyiiti. Kanaafuu Oromoon gara hundaan harka walqabatee, duguuginsa
shannyi kan akka ummataatti isaan aaggate kanarraa if eewaluu qaba.’ Source: Oromo social networks, 7th May 2013

‘According to reports obtained by HRLHA from different sources, this government-backed violence that has been going on in the name of border dispute around the Anniya, Jarso and Miyesso districts between the Oromia and Ogaden regional states has already resulted in the death and/or disappearance of 37 Oromo nationals and the displacement of about 20,000 others. Around 700 different types of cattle and other valuable possessions are also reported to have been looted. The reports indicate that the violence has been backed by two types of armed forces (the Federal Liyou/Special Police and the Ogaden Militia) from the Ogadenis side, while on the side of the Oromos, even those who demonstrated the intentions of defending themselves in the same manner were disarmed, dispossessed and detained. Despite these facts, the reports also dissociate the Ogadeni nationals from the violence mentioning that they have never made claims of ownership of the piece of land in the name of which the government-backed violence has been taking place. HRLHA has also learnt that the said piece of land was demarcated and declared to be part of Oromia Regional State during the 1996 referendum.Among the 37 dead and/or disappeared Oromos Mohamed Kasim and Kadir Ali were local Oromo elders who were killed by the armed government forces in an effort to resolve the violence in a peaceful manner. According to HRLHA informants from Anniya, the hundreds of thousands of displaced Oromos from Rasa Harre, Marfata, Qillee, Mulqee, Dirraa, Waldayyaa, Biqqoo and Libee community fled to the highland areas in Eastern Hararge Zone in search of temporary shelters and other basic needs. The reports add that the displaced Oromos did not get any kind of help from any local, regional, or federal sources. More worrisome is that there are no hints as to when and where the violence against innocent civilians is going to end. Besides, the fact that the governments at various levels turned blind eyes and deaf ears toward such deadly and destructive violence for this all time strengthens the allegations that the federal government and the ruling party are behind the conspiracy of clearing the area suspected of harbouring armed opposition groups of anything on it.The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa urges the Ethiopian Federal Government and the Regional Government of Oromia to discharge their responsibilities of ensuring the safety and stability of citizens by taking immediate actions of interference to bring the violence to end facilitate the return of the displaced Oromos back to their homes. It also calls upon all local, regional and international diplomatic and human rights organizations to impose necessary pressures on both the federal and regional governments so that they refrain from committing irresponsible actions against their own citizens for the purpose of political gains.’ http://humanrightsleague.com/2013/05/ethiopia-loss-of-lives-and-displacement-due-to-border-dispute-in-eastern-ethiopia/

‘Over 20,000 people are displaced and some 37 are dead, as the notorious Liyu police ( TPLF proxy mafia in Somali region) expands its invasion deep into Eastern Hararghe zone. Previously the Liyu Police paramilitary force invaded and ransacked the Moyale town in Borona zone. About 13 Borana zone officials, including the chief administrator Kano Jilo, who complained about 4th Army division watching idly while the town was invaded, were thrown to Kality jail where they still remain. Although technically a branch of the Somali regional government, in reality Liyu police is directly controlled by General Abraha Woldemariam of TPLF’s Eastern Command. The TPLF strategic objective simple, they want to provoke conflict between Somali and Oromo communities in order to make it difficult for OLF and ONLF to function in the region. You might recall The Daily Mail’s report that revealed British government’s planning to give £15 million to fund this mercenary paramilitary group.’ Jawar Mohammed, 8th May 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=SSFJHxCTbVs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSFJHxCTbVs&feature=share
https://soundcloud.com/voa-afaan-oromoo/afaan-oromoo-news-1730-20#play
http://www.gulelepost.com/2013/01/17/the-notorious-somali-region-liyu-police-invades-villages-in-eastern-oromia/
“Tigire ruling elites often misleadingly frame genocidal massacres against Oromo in various parts of Oromia as “inter-communal violence, ethnic conflict, border conflict or water conflict” in order to absolve themselves from responsibility and possible future indictment in local and international courts. For at least two decades, genocidal massacres against Oromo have been framed that way in order to cover-up the deliberate effort by TPLF elites to either reduce Oromo by attrition to a minority population or to destroy them fully so that Tigireans can take over Oromia and its resources. That is their long-term plan. Aslii Oromo, an exiled Oromo political prisoner and torture survivor, cited the late Ethiopian Prime Minster Meles Zanawi ( from Tigray) who said, “We [TPLF or Tigrean elites] will reduce the number of Oromos from 40 million to 4000 without the knowledge of the world.” Yet, many, including some well-meaning Oromos, have hesitated  calling widespread massacres against Oromo a “genocide”, and  comfortably stayed on the human rights violations side of a much protracted problem. Ethnic Tigire elites declared their intent of destroying the Oromo partially or fully and have acted on their declarations. Where they did not declare these intents, they can be inferred from the actions of singling out and massacring and displacing Oromo en masse or selling their lands to land grabbers by the millions of hectares. Even an airhead would understand that no one group will massacre other groups just out of love or to do them some favor by killing them off of their land.  Calling massacres against Oromo “genocide” has been avoided mainly because some people make false strategic calculations and believe that it is enough for the Oromo to claim human rights abuses instead of claiming genocide too. Human rights violations are indicators. There are some who see the talk of genocide as an inflation or overstatement. But, connecting evidence on the ground can show us that massacres in Oromia are  indeed conspicuous acts of  genocide.Let’s just go beyond routine condemnation press releases, which echo the official framing of such massacres as “border conflicts or ethnic clashes etc”, and come to grips with the reality–genocide. The methods are multi-pronged: direct massacre, displacement, landgrab, spread of lethal infectious diseases, starving, withholding services, destroying crops to just list a few.  In the process, it becomes important to see these massacres as part of an ongoing genocide, “the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic,racial, religious, or national group”http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/patterns-of-genocidal-massacres-against-oromo-in-oromia-ethiopia/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=7DWBrtXzOHA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=YpW49tnIi3k
http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/oromo-freedom-from-what-and-for-what/
http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/a-nonstop-genocidal-war-waged-against-the-oromo-people-for-more-than-a-century/

“The research and information unit of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) has conducted a study on the allegiance that accounted for some political prisoners to be sentenced or otherwise been unjustly detained. The herewith attached partial list of political prisoners has been collected from prisons of Kaliti, Torhailoch (Military Police Prison), Maikelawi and Kilinto. Almost all prisoners are charged for act of terror, violation of territorial integrity, attempts to overthrow the constitutional order by violent means and being suspected member of OLF or any other organizations. These political prisoners are ranging in age from young high school and University students to elderly civic society leaders. Professionally, they are also diverse – from farmers, businessmen, government employees, political leaders, journalists and etc. The overwhelming portions are Oromos and some are also from different nations and nationalities of Ethiopia. Most of these political prisoners already gave prison service for several years; many of them are tortured and subjected to irreversible mental damages, and some of them were shot to death in the course of time. Since the fall of Transitional Government in 1992, Ethiopian authorities continued to severely restrict basic rights of freedom of expression, association, and assembly. Violation of human rights is a daily record of the regime. Instead of solving the root cause of political conflict, it rather declared war on the Oromo people and its vanguard Organisation, the OLF. Consequently, many thousands of Oromos and other nationals were arbitrarily arrested and detained and remain at risk of torture, ill-treatment and extrajudicial killings. Many of them were executed during peaceful demonstrations due to excessive use of force by police or security agents. The TPLF regime promulgated and adopted the restrictive Anti-Terrorism Proclamation in 2009. This regime, which from its very initial, was known for its massive human rights violations is currently using this law to justify all atrocities it conducted. In this attempt to hood wink opinions of the international community, the EPRDF regime is still trying to make others believe that the current problem of the empire is act of terror but not deep rooted political conflict of domination. The OLF vehemently opposes any forms of terrorism and reject the use of terrorism neither as a form of struggle nor also for suppression of dissidents by states. Thus, we denounce the Ethiopian state terrorism that is used to crush any form of struggle and decent. OLF is cognizant of, and appreciate the concern of various human rights advocating organizations and some democratic governments that expressed their concerns about Anti-Terrorism, Press and Civic society laws of Ethiopia on various international forums. In a country like Ethiopia where the government structure is monopolized by a single ethnic group, legalizing the abuse of the universal human rights is a way that leads for the establishment of a totalitarian system which is more sustaining than a simple personal dictatorship. Therefore, OLF alarms that the dangerous political development sustaining over Ethiopia demands more than just a concern but towards a proactive action of the international communities and UN member states. We denounce legalized form of state terrorism and call up on the international community to exert diplomatic pressure on Ethiopian government to release all political prisoners unconditionally and repeal these brutal and repressive laws.”

http://qeerroo.org/2013/12/01/the-legacy-of-violence-state-terrorism-of-tplf-led-ethiopian-government-using-anti-terror-law-on-political-dissident-must-end/

‘The study confirms that there is clear nexus between authoritarian rule,
man-made famines, and genocide in Ethiopia.’

http://www.codesria.org/IMG/pdf/Mekuria_Bulcha.pdf

Copyright © 2013 & Oromia Quarterly 1997-2013, all rights are reserved. Disclaimer.

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Comments»

1. Beatris - December 3, 2012

Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if
you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet
my newest twitter updates. I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

oromianeconomist - December 16, 2012

Thanks, try on wordpress as it has this function to select from

2. Genocide and the Suffering of beleaguered Communities:Between 1868 and 1900, five million Oromo were killed in Ethiopia and it is still happening with Intensity | oromianeconomist - April 9, 2013

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