Los Angeles Times
Wall Street Journal
Institutional Ethnic Cleansing, the case of Ethiopian Airlines
11 December 2020
Who would have ever imagined that in 12/2020, a leader who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize would order the profiling and purging of a single ethnic group from its most internationally recognized institution, Ethiopian Airlines? Abiy Ahmed Ali did. According to his religious followers, he is a messiah who has risen to save Ethiopia, perhaps Africa. Instead, he has allied with the devil, Isayas who has completed the destruction of a nation and is now ready to tackle a more challenging, larger nation.
Ethiopian Airlines has successfully grown to the largest airlines in Africa. It has a good reputation regarding the quality of its services and the safety of its operations. It is 74 years old and has survived through 4 regimes actually grew exponentially since 1991.It now faces an existential challenge in the supposedly reform centered messiah who was worshiped during his unorthodox alignments and realignments that Ethiopia will pay for when the dust and euphoria settles.
Abiy Ahmed Ali’s regime has found it necessary to purge Tigrigna speaking Ethiopian pilots, technicians, security officers +. This is an act of ethnic cleansing, a major factor in fueling ethnic conflict and violence. It is blatant tribalism with major consequences. For the first time in the history of this resilient institution, Abiy’s administration has started an ugly legacy which will get the airlines boycotted for good reasons, racism and eventually quality standards.
I cannot envision an institution managed and controlled by corrupt gangs who cannot distinguish their snot from their nose would be capable to keep up with progress and safety standards of airlines in the 21st century. They have shot a torpedo at the flag ship; the torpedo has struck but is quivering before it penetrates the vital center of the institution. I expect friends of Ethiopia to call and urge the administration to take reparable measures before the flag ship sinks.
Ethiopian Airlines is the pride of the country as well as Africa. Ethiopia does not have any other institution that the country can credibly refer to as institution of democracy or development. Abiy’s action is an act of desperation. He recruited Isayas Afeworki of Eritrea to destroy any sign of development in Tigrai. Astonishingly, Isayas apparently trained Shabia mechanics on a rapid dismantlement of factories, laboratories and hospital facilities. That is exactly what they did while the rest of the Shabia fighters engaged TPLF fighters. I hear the installations in Tigrai were systematically dismantled and transported to Asmara.
This will undoubtedly be shocking to most Eritreans; they too believe in hard work and earned possession as opposed to stolen goods under the guise of war. Let no one believe that this was not orchestrated with Abiy and so-called federal forces enforcing the law. DO they mean pileging and destroying development infratstructures? Abiy and Isayas planned and executed region wide destruction to make sure that Tigrai will not recover in the coming couple of decades. Meles gets an accolade for poverty reduction, Abiy and Isayas reintroduce poverty and assure its perpetuation.
Ethiopians sitting on the fence who will not join the call to justice of ethnic brutality and crime against humanity, when will you speak if not now. We will of course take the Tegaru’s case wherever it needs to be heard. The Amhara Fanos have committed genocide which will soon be proven and will haunt them for generations to come. We hold their leaders fully accountable. We also hold the owners, managers and broadcasters of hate messages that we know has fueled ethnic violence. When we establish the link of specific messages to mass killings, we will seek justice against those who disinformed and misinformed from their US social media and TV broadcasting stations. These group did not heed warnings that their messages were directly linked to violence and killings.
In the meantime, we ask the Star Alliance to review its policy and justify how Ethiopian Airlines could be allowed to continue as member of privileged companies. We appeal to the international regulatory bodies how Ethiopian Airlines could continue to operate internationally while it practices ethnic cleansing? That, by definition should eliminate it from a world that seeks unity, harmony and cooperation.
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