Ginboat 7 - taking leave of their senses.



Ginboat 7 - taking leave of their senses.



Dilwenberu Nega

London 3 October 2014


As ex-prime minister of the United Kingdom, Harold Wilson, once said: “A week is a long time in politics.” He said it to underscore that a lot can happen in a week. And in the week that was, the Ethiopian abroad had a taste of that Wilsonian truism.


We watched, did we not - courtesy of Shabia’s ESAT - as 13 blurred and confused Ginboat 7’s vigilantes forcibly enter the Embassy of FDRE in Washington DC and replace the nation’s current tricolour with one without the ensign - a politically fatal move on the part of Ginbot 7, for it transmits the message that G7 stands for the suffocation, rather than the celebration, of Ethiopia’s ethnic diversities.


We also witnessed how a lonely Embassy security officer made a valiant attempt to guard the flag by firing warning shots over the heads of the vigilantes, as Ambassador Girma Birru came out, calmed the security officer and led him indoors. The security officer has now returned to Ethiopia following the Government of Ethiopia’s refusal to waive his diplomatic immunity.


Who are the winners and losers, of what for all intents and purposes, is a blatant raid on a sovereign territory which, according to the Vienna Convention of 1961, qualifies for a 24/7/365 protection by the host nation?


For sure, the Chicken Littles i.e. vociferous pessimists, at ESAT had a field day sensationalizing the incident. So too did the motley crew of absentee liberation fighters, arm-chair politicians, cyber bullies and popinjay literati, who make up G7 , bask in the ‘glory’ of the incident.


Inarguably the raid had caught the Embassy staff by dumb surprise, and lets face it, there was also a serious security lapse at the Embassy. Many of us disagree as to what should have been done even with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight. For instance, consider the three most talked about points of arguments by enraged patriots: why was no attempt made to lock the entrance to the consular section while the vigilantes were still there? Why was no attempt made by the Embassy’s horde of diplomats and local employees to form a human shield around the flag pole and defend our sacred flag? Why are the 13 vigilantes still at-large in a United States where forcible entry into private property, never mind a foreign mission, constitutes a breach of existing US law?


On the other hand, now the incident is over, there would be no point crying over spilt milk; but lessons have to be learnt, and learnt fast, not only by our Washington Embassy, but by all Ethiopian missions throughout the world. All Ethiopian Embassies must immediately set in motion a process of reviewing their internal security. A repeat performance by vigilantes, must therefore be viewed by all concerned, as a luxury which no Ethiopian Embassy can ill afford.


If a less than 15 minutes raid by vigilantes on our Embassy was planned to leave a dent on the long standing and cordial relations between Ethiopia and the United States, which under EPRDF’s tenure of office, has grown in leaps and bounds, then without any shadow of doubt the plan has collapsed like a house of cards. For a start, neither the State Department, nor the White House need no reminding as to either who Ginbot 7 is, or of what G7 has been doing to destabilize Ethiopia by forming an axis of evil with the fountainhead of terrorism in the Horn of Africa. Secondly, who decreed that Ethiopians or Americans get pneumonia when Birhanu Nega catches cold?


In fact the week also offered us also with yet another chance to be spectators of one of Ginbot 7’s magisterial theatricals. In a desperate and futile attempt - to paraphrase a saying culled from William Henry’s “Afoot in England” - “to fly like an eagle with the wings of a wren,” Ethiopia’s preeminent nonentity opposition, Ginbot 7, called on the United States of America “to review its relations with Ethiopia.” Towards the end of it’s so-called press statement of 2 October 2014 - a hodgepodge of innuendoes and platitudes - Ginbot 7 asked the US to instead align itself with Ginbot 7 for it, and not the EPRDF, “Stand for America’s values of freedom, equality, democracy and the rule of law.”


It is laughable, is it not, that a Ginbot 7 which is hell-bent on circumventing the very Ethiopian Constitution that has guaranteed freedom, equality, democracy and the rule of law to all Ethiopians, is now seen portraying itself as a custodian of these values? How funny it is, is it not, that a Ginbot 7 that had no compunction when it aligned itself with Eritrea, whose government is notorious for blatant violations of the values which America stand for, is seen lecturing Americans that it, and not EPRDF, is America’s best ally.


In the recent past, hundreds of Ethiopians have become victims of Ginbot 7’s day-light robbery as they were lured into paying USD 500 so that they become the so-called inheritors of an EPRDF-free Ethiopia within six months. That’s why I claim that the men and women at Ginbot 7 have taken leave of their senses, for how else can one explain Ginbot 7’s latest naivety to think the unthinkable: demand the USA to be its ally. Whatever next with G7!


The United States of America’s response to Ginbot 7 demand must be loud and clear: “Ginbot 7 can fool some of the people some of the time, but not all the people all of the time. Birhanu Nega: Tell it to the marines!”



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