The Horn of Africa Region: the turmoil and its repercussions

Tigrinya Version (PDF): ዞባ ቀርኒ ኣፍሪቃ፡ ፈጢርዎ ዘሎ ረስኒን ጽልዉኡን

The Horn of Africa is becoming an epicenter for the world’s geo-politics. The political, economic and social upheaval caused by the turmoil and the ensuing epicenter is solely attributed to the TPLF (Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front), which unleashed a homicidal military adventure against the Federal Government of Ethiopia and the State of Eritrea. The situation has become a grave concern for and within the Horn of Africa region. Anyone with a sound mind would have a hard time understanding the rationale for undertaking the latest “third offensive” given the relatively weak military, economic and social situation in which the TPLF finds itself. Its adventure is not justified nor is it morally right. It has resulted in the demise of many Tigrayan youth. Hence, the timely question is who emboldened it to undertake such a devastating war. The fact of the matter is that the TPLF relies on its enablers for survival; day dreams even though it is impossible, to one day establish the “Greater Tigray” that incorporates sovereign territory from other parts of Ethiopia and neighboring Eritrea; is known to employ World War I tactics of using human wave for attack and is led by a small group originating from Adwa part of Tigray.  

The latest war has witnessed the deployment by the TPLF of waves after waves of children soldiers knowing fully well the deadly results and evidence of the TPLF’ s callousness and depraved heart. At the last clandestine meeting they held, the TPLF declared that it was about to undertake the last chapter without regard to the ensuing human loss. The TPLF enablers are cognizant of the fact that the TPLF was no longer in a strong position as it had ostensibly been over its past 30 years of rule. But the enablers hoped against hope that they could use the TPLF as the last destabilizing force within the Horn of Africa, a region that they knew was no longer under the enablers control when TPLF was gone. Thus, they continued to provide moral, diplomatic and material support for the TPLF.   

It is about time to identify that the main players who covertly and/or tacitly support the TPLF are workers camouflaged as NGOs, philanthropy organizations and of course needless to say working as spies and mercenaries. For instance, a huge amount of supplies intended for the needy population of Tigray and provided by the World Food Program, including gas, food and medicine has been misused by the TPLF for the purpose of attaining the ill-intended so called “Last chapter” military adventure. The futile undertaking is noted by some with a vast knowledge of the region as a miscalculated and callous attempt to cause depopulation and destabilize Ethiopia and the region. Moreover, the objective of the third offensive is to, at any cost, create chaos and instability in the region using the TPLF as a tool and drag Eritrea into it, thus exacerbating the situation. There is no doubt that the actions taken under this strategy will have adverse consequences. Many politicians believe that the US administration is the main force behind this shameful strategy. Why is the USA, which is seen as the advocate and protector of human rights, maintaining blind eyed and deaf ears while children in Tigray are used as soldiers and cannon folders? This is a very important question that deserves an immediate answer. Not only is it a crime to deploy child soldiers in accordance with international law but also is ethically wrong deserving condemnation and punishment. However, they have chosen to be indifferent to the callous crimes. History and time will remember their inexcusable failure or omission to act.  
The focus of the USA administration in this matter has been on Eritrea. Even though the situation in Ethiopia is a domestic matter, the administration is anxiously trying to portray it as a regional one and single Eritrea out as the main culprit, thus paving the way for re-imposing unilateral economic and diplomatic sanctions and even go to the extent of undertaking military action against it by concocting false baseless allegations. That is the reason that they are inciting the TPLF to unleash an illegal war. This reminds us of the saying in Tigrinya  ዘይስንኻ ሑጻ ቆርጥመሉ “Zeysnika Hutsa Kortimelu” “Use other people’s teeth to bite sand”. It is in this context that we recall what the former US ambassador to Ethiopia, Tibor Nagy, had said during an interview with the BBC on March 26, 2022 in an attempt to implicate Eritrea’s involvement. He is quoted as saying that “Eritrea’s involvement is intended to avenge the war that it caused and lost in 1998 and to remove the TPLF from power… “. This was totally unexpected to come from a seasoned diplomat as it was full of lies and misrepresented the truth. At the same time, it is a confirmation of the failure of the US foreign policy. In addition, Ambassador Tibor Nagy said in an interview with a newsletter called Awasa Guardian “while I was on as an Ambassador in Ethiopia, I had a personal grudge against Isaias (Eritrean president) for intentionally starting the war in 1998”. This further shows how much his bias and personal feelings played a role and are impacting the US foreign policy in general.  
 Eritrea has sacrificed so much for the prevalence of peace and stability in our Horn of Africa region. History will remember the role that Eritrea has played starting from when it was struggling for independence until now and continues to do so in maintenance of united Ethiopia, the Sudan and Somalia. It has a solid track record and reputation. The present and future generations fully recognize and appreciate this and will continue to do so. There is no doubt that the impact will be felt beyond and outside our region. People that want to be masters of their own destiny will follow Eritrea’s suit. Our world’s geo-politics is undergoing the inevitable change. It feels like the time has come for Africans to liberate themselves from neo-colonialism and be their own masters.

Posted in: Editorial