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The Genocide in Tigray—The Amhara Elites Make It Possible

The Genocide in Tigray—The Amhara Elites Make It Possible

Aynalem Sebhatu 05-23-21

The Amhara elites have been actively orchestrating the genocidal war in Tigray for over six months now.  All I can say is there are people who clearly did not get the memo.  As one explores to understand the war in Tigray, looking for evidence of the different roles the Amhara elites played in the war effort, one finds them playing a central role and are increasingly playing a prominent role in the devastation of Tigray.  The effects of the genocide war on the people of Tigray are unconscionable, and sadly-- the Amhara elites make it possible.

The demolition of Tigray is part of a vicious war campaign against the estimated 7.5 million people of Tigray.  To this genocidal campaign, the spoils of the war are divided among the Amhara and Eritreans. Northern Tigray goes to the dictator of Eritrea and southern and western Tigray is included to the Amhara regional administration. Therefore, these areas of Tigray should be sanitized and ethnically cleansed by any means necessary.  

Political elites of Amhara have used diversionary external policy in order to distract the people of Amhara from the injera and wat issues within their region. The political elites skillfully diverted the attention of unemployed youth to organize under Fano and special forces to find an adventure in the “wild west” of Tigray.  They awakened and misled the young about Welkait and Raya (western and southern Tigray) and prepared them for war against Tigray.  The Fano and the Amhara extremists’ first taste of blood of Tigrayans took place in different places of northern Gondor in 2016. They killed and expelled thousands of Tigrayans without mercy while the regional officials looked away. Some of the victims were born and raised in Gondor and have no idea where Tigray is. Alas, a significant number of the Tigrayans were forced to move to western Tigray in 2016 and after. They thought they were in their ancestral land and safe but the trail of hate followed them again in fateful days of November 2020.

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Since the war against Tigray started on November 4th, 2020, thousands of Tigrayans were literally sliced and diced to their graves in western and southern Tigray. . Thousands are in prison dungeons and more than a million flee to central Tigray and beyond. Over 60,000 became refugees in Sudan. The wave of atrocities committed by the Amhara militia and Fano, is a historical throwback to the Menelik era (1889-1913) and the real enactment of the Neftegna era which the Amhara political elites have been accused off by the Oromos, the Somalis and the Woliytas. It is a political irony and blunt hypocrisy when the Amhara elites are complaining about what is happening to the Amhara outside their regional administration.

The Amhara elites show no interest in resolving conflicts using constitutional means and following the rule of law of the country. In part the enthusiasm of the Amhara extremists is directed against the very existence and structure of federalism thereby against the constitution of the country. They set out to expand their borders through the use of force, it does so in ways that require misleading the people of Amhara in facing serious sacrifice of blood and treasure.  All these human sacrifices, wastage of resources and political capital is done in the name of the people of Amhara.

It is a strategy of political survival for the leaders of the Amhara region, and it fits very well with the political calculation of Abiy Ahmed. All along, Abiy Ahmed’s political strategy has been to create chaos in northern Ethiopia and in Eritrea.  He would love to see the mutual destruction of Eritreans, Tigrayans and the Amhara so that his dreams of becoming a king come true. The Amhara elites are also praying and hoping for the continuation of the bloodletting between the Eritreans and the Tigrayans forever.

The people of Amhara under the leadership of their political elites found it easier to accept the rapes and killings of Tigrayans or Oromos or Gumuz not by changing their moral standards so much as by changing the range of people to whom it applied. They could place their political and physical targets “beyond the pale” and so keep their moral standards for their political allies. This political vendetta quickly closes down the “other Ethiopians” for whom the country should remain open and it is going to be a huge burden on the future of the people of Amhara.

The Amhara elites rank high on the list as a group suffering a serious case of cognitive dissonance. The Amhara forces (the Fanos, the militias and the special forces) will commit the worst acts of ethnic cleansing under the sun towards a group of people they deem “other” and then claim with a straight face it is not what it clearly is. The dissonance leaps up and takes up an “Amhara genocide” at almost every turn of the conflict.

Once the hate of “other Ethiopians,” lack of understanding the equality of nations and nationalities of the country, the feelings of centralizing power and a sense Amhara grandeur sets in and mix with cognitive dissonance, these people act irrationally and dangerously—every federal regional state or every nationalities of the country are a threat and changes for the better makes them uncomfortable.

The Amhara political elites have been called upon to clear away the fog that conceals the location of that chauvinist mind-set by separating a healthy dose of Amhara nationalism from the Amhara chauvinistic extremism. But to no avail so far.  However, the question remains: where do the Amhara elites go from here?  What are the short-term and long-term intentions and expectations of the Amhara elites? Ironically, for boasting to build a country founded on a vision (they call it “vision Ethiopia”), there appears to be none. Their vision is based on their hope that “other Ethiopians” will somehow magically disappear. Or that the past unitary state with its centralized power driven by the Amhara with its tentacles of instruments of oppression and unequal rights of nations and nationalities of the country will somehow lead to peace and harmony. Neither is based in reality; this is a blurred vision and it is a great recipe for a disaster.

Tigray will prevail!

Eternal glory for our martyrs!


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