Gordon Brown doesn’t need the advice of brooding pessimists.


In response to S.M.N.E.’s Open Letter to Premier Gordon Brown


By: Dilwenberu Nega

26th March 2009.


In the twilight world of the Ethiopian-Diaspora-at-large, there are men and women who would leave no stone unturned to disparage every inroad that Ethiopia makes in the nations strive to halve the level of poverty by 2015.    And there are also, are there not, another brooding pessimists who regard themselves as the crème de la crème of the Ethiopian Abroad, that small band of toxic agents provocateurs whose visceral hatred of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi continues to make them suffer from the worst form of personality disorder – delusion of grandeur.   One such ‘toxic amalgam’ of ‘know-it-alls’ is the so-called Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia (S.M.N.E.) which has made a representation to Prime Minister Gordon Brown on behalf of “a non-political movement of Ethiopians who are seeking justice, reconciliation and peace in Ethiopia as well as in the Horn of Africa.”   It has appealed to Gordon Brown to “reconsider Meles Zenawi’s inclusion from the G20 Summit on 2nd April in London.”


A few words about the construction of S.M.N.E.’s Open Letter to Prime Minister Gordon Brown (ethio media) March 24th 2009 is called for here because it shows that the mind of the so-called Solidarity is either at war with itself or the Solidarity is at a complete loss as to what it is trying to convey to the British Premier.   A rudimentary knowledge of letter writing, especially to a British Prime Minister, would surely have alerted the Solidarity Movement of the fact that if you use the pronoun “We” in letter writing, it must have the signatures of more than one person.   S.M.N.E.’s letter has only one signatory, that of Obang Metho.   This suggests that the whole thing is either a one man show, or that the so-called Solidarity is cobbled together in similar line with what Addis Ababa’s elite call “the gin and tonic club” where you spend your spare time actively engaged in brain-storming sessions.   The second point to note is the fact that a letter to officials must be succinct.   S.M.N.E.’s Open Letter gives the impression that it is written by a novice letter writer.   You don’t have to dwell further than the opening paragraph, to realize the hotchpotch nature of the letter.   The fact that the Open Letter is couched in such a desultory manner is proof that the driving force behind the so-called Solidarity Movement is not principle, but sheer envy.   And this is bad for the so-called Solidarity Movement - who would like us to believe that it is a net work of Ethiopian intellectuals in the United States of America - because envy is regarded as a sign of the inadequate.


In vivisecting the Open Letter, we find that so much is taken for granted by the Solidarity Movement.   First, the views expressed by Obang Metho are not to be regarded as the voice of the Ethiopian Abroad.   Let’s remind ourselves that out there are hundreds of thousands of Ethiopians who are not party to the hate politics which has cocooned a minority of Ethiopians in toxic politics.   They might not have the ‘courage’ to come out at demonstrations and support Ethiopia’s on-going process of democratization and economic development for fear of being vilified and intimidated by the movers and shakers of toxic politics, but they are convinced of the fact that not only is today’s Ethiopia a great deal better than the Ethiopia they were made to flee, but Ethiopia is definitely on the cusp of a great socio-economic transformation.  This feel-good factor by Ethiopians Abroad as well as the fact that the latest “Political Instability Index of the World” has shown that Ethiopia is among the highly stable countries in the world, is proof, if proof were required, of the mendacious nature of the Open Letter.


The second point that must be realized is the fact that the decision to allow Meles Zenawi to speak on behalf of Africa at next week’s summit of the G20 has nothing to do with the British Prime Minister.   The election of someone with the necessary clout was the prerogative of Africa and the International Monetary Fund.   The pro-poor policies enshrined in Zenawinomics as well as Meles’ insistence that it is possible for African countries to develop outside the conventional templates of the World Bank and the IMF, are the sort of glittering track-record of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi which had convinced African states that Meles Zenawi would be the right man to speak on behalf of Africa at this year’s G20 Summit in London.   In an ideal world, the choice of the leader of Ethiopia to such a prominent international status would have been a cause for celebration.   Unfortunately, here in Europe and USA, we live among the brooding pessimists who turn ballistic every time Meles Zenawi worms himself up the international ladder.   This sort of envy is the worst form of envy for it tends to have a boomerang effect on the perpetrators of evil.   The main point here is that ‘lionized Meles Zenawi’ will not let down Africa as he robustly advocates for a better deal for Africa from the G20 countries.


Like in the past we are well poised to witness another of Meles’ hat tricks while those with a visceral hatred of Meles Zenawi’s leadership – the likes of S.M.N.E will continue to suffer another spell of ignominy.   The lesson, once again, is crystal clear.   The crunch politics of hate is bound to fail the perpetrators and serves no real purpose to the now free and equal nations and nationalities of Ethiopia.