There is no ethnic group that was created by the TPLF in Ethiopia
Tigrai Online, Sept. 21, 2017
Ethiopia will survive as a country only if it is home for all its people equally no more no less!!
All the Ethiopian ethnic groups have been present in Ethiopia as long as the formation of the present day Ethiopia. Every Ethiopian ethnic group has its own language, culture, heritage, history and identity. None of the Ethiopian people have been given an identity by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, all of them were born with it in Ethiopia.
Since time memorial all these Ethiopian ethnic groups lived side by side in peace and in war. As far as recorded history can be traced back hundreds of years, there was conflict between many of the ethnic groups in Ethiopia. The Tigrai and Amhara fought bloody civil wars in the 16th and 17th centuries about religion, land and supremacy.
One example of this wars is the 1700s battle of Inticho between Emperor Eyasu II of Gonder and the King of Tigrai at that time Raesi Suhulmichael Hisqiyas. This conflict developed when Emperor Eyasu tried to annex a swath of land bordering Beja-Medri (Begiemidr) near the Angereb River. The Emperor wants the lands to be incorporated to Amhara land for his hunting expeditions because he loved hunting elephants and other big game animals. The King of Tigrai at that time Raesi Suhulmichael protested the Emperor’s move. The dispute escalated into a full blown military confrontation and the armies agreed to meet in the town of Inticho. The battle raged for five days and at the end the conflict was settled by mediation. The Emperor was forced to withdraw out of Tigrai and he went back to Gonder. Emperor Eyasu accepted the ancient border of Tigrai which was the Angerib River. The Tigrai and the Amhara fought countless wars like this against each other and the battle of Inticho is one example.
We can mention many more examples of wars fought between two ethnic groups in Ethiopia. In fact most of Ethiopia’s history is about endless civil wars and ethnic conflict throughout the land.
At the end of the 18th century as the Amhara Kings become more powerful they were able to suppress any ethnic group that challenged them. As the Amhara kings expanded their territory and they strictly enforced homogenization of other nations of Ethiopia, the inter-ethnic conflicts seemed to disappeared, but they didn’t they were suppressed by the powerful Amhara kings.
The more the Amhara identity was forced on the majority of the people the more other ethnic groups revolted against it creating anger and hatred towards them and the anger was simmering underneath the appearance of calm.
When the oppression reached its highest point it exploded into armed violent liberation fronts in all corners of the country. The Somali, the Tigrai, the Oromo, the Afar, and many other Ethiopian ethnic groups started armed struggle against the domination of one Ethnic group.
The Tigrai people had waged a bitter armed insertion (the first Woyane) against the central government from 1935 to 1940s, but it was brutally squashed with the help of the British Royal Air Force bombarding the city of Mekelle.
The people of Eritrea didn’t start a 30 year bitter armed struggle and eventually decided to go on their own way because they were showered with love and endearment. The Eritrean people left Ethiopia because they were tired of the horrible treatment at the hands of the narrow tribal kings.
When we hear day in and day out about how the Ethiopian people lived united in love and harmony for centuries, we wonder if people are talking about the same Ethiopia the majority of us know or another Ethiopia in a parallel universe?
The Ethiopia we know before EPRDF was poor, weak, torn apart by civil wars among ethnic groups, land of starvation, and at the brink of disintegrating. That is the Ethiopia we know and the entire international community knew for the past 100 hundred years before EPRDF.
When the TPLF/EPRDF removed the last government, Ethiopia was in shambles. EPRDF introduced a new era of equality, prosperity, development and national pride. It was a new dawn for a truly united, strong, and glorious Ethiopia.
In the new found freedom ethnic groups are openly expressing their identity and reasserting themselves. Obviously in this situation there is going to be border and other conflicts. The reason is for majority of Ethiopians it is the first time they got a chance to claim what is rightfully theirs. It is only natural for people to try to get the bigger part of the pie. As long as the greed and the desire to have more does not get out of control and lead to war it is not unheard of. That is where the federal government should reign in to protect the people and enforce the law.
The remnants of the old regimes instinctively wanted to reverse what has been achieved so far by the Ethiopian people and the EPRDF government. The guardians of poverty only highlight the weak parts of federalism. The good thing is there are many people alive today that remember what Ethiopia used to look like back then and we have live history stirring at us and reminding us how dreadful it was.
The only viable option for Ethiopians and Ethiopia is to straighten the few wrinkles of our federal system and plough through in the same path. It will still be a little rough, but it will be rewarding when we reach the top.
The Ethiopian federal government should do more than celebrating flag day and nationalities day. It should make itself stronger, bigger and decider. The federal government should establish real institutions that nurture unity of the people in practical terms.
Those who are working tirelessly to undermine the Ethiopian government are blinded by their wish to get to power, if they succeed in their endeavor there will not be a country to govern.