outbreaks or it just does not care. For instance cholera has wiped out hundreds of people in South and South East. In other parts of the country seeing a depressing scene of humans dying on hospital concrete floors is common. Malaria and HIV/AIDS are wiping millions non-stop. The country lacks adequate medical doctors nor are there medical supply for the diseases to be treated at hospitals and local clinics. We are going back to a period that looks like when Mohammed Amin through his photography revealed to the world about the existence of a grinding poverty in Ethiopia.
People are hardly able to afford to move from place to place using public and private transportation. The prices of both long distance and short distance transportation has doubled everywhere except in Meles Zenawi’s Tigray.
Besides these horribly indescribable difficult living situations, there is a growing protest to political and economic oppression by a greater majority of the Ethiopian population. Government security forces are on everyone’s doorstep every morning you walk out and every evening you walk in. If you are suspected of having affiliation with opposition, you are gone. That is both in urban and rural areas. Where protests are very strong in Oromia and other parts of the country, people are tortured in their own houses. They will make people lie down on the ground and walk over their chest several times until they faint. They also tie water or some objects to male’s genital organs. Rapes are widespread. Especially the Agazi force and federal police do that. This force is purely from ethnically Tigrian tribe from top officials to ordinary soldiers. It is a force loyal to the Meles Zenawi regime. They do terrorise people and interrupt their activities. They do sometimes loot money from private houses and business people to discourage them in their work.
Zenawi has no legitimate fears of threat from Somalia as he claims. Rather he went to war with Somalia because mainly he wants to divert the attentions of the rest of the world from the problems that are cooking within Ethiopia because of injustices. That is why I have started my views with the deteriorating political, social and economic situations within Ethiopia. That is a very important understanding to tell why Meles Zenawi declared war on Somalia. The war hides Zenawi’s negative internal records from the west. Also it is perhaps one of the best ways for him to do some business with the United States of America and make billions of US dollars to keep him in power. But I am not sure if he will be able to regain a long lost western description of “One of the new breeds of African Democrats”.
* The author is based in Ethiopia; he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org