Sources say today that local militia and soldiers for the Ethiopian army have taken the town of Kobo in northern Wollo, as well as nearby Waja, and are advancing south towards Woldia. In the small town fighting, two lorries were captured, a few pieces of artillery and several light weapons.
This is what they call “spot news,” and I don’t normally devote a Medium article to spot news. But if Ethiopian forces can take Woldia, this would mean an ENDF strategy of encircling the enemy has a very good chance of working. It’s exactly how the Patriots and the British and colonial armies beat the Fascists way back in 1941. Surrounding the Italians on all sides, they closed a mighty fist and crushed them.
There’s word that the communities of Hayk, Worebabo and Bistima north of Dessie have already been brought up under control of the Ethiopian forces and local militia units.
The TPLF followed two routes to take control of Kombolcha. One was east of the town towards Bati and then to Burk, the border area between the Amhara and Afar regions. The objective was to penetrate deep into Afar and control the main Addis Ababa-Djibouti road, what’s considered the lifeline of Ethiopia. But the enemy forces were repeatedly beaten and forced to scurry back to Bati.
The second route was running southward, following the main road to the capital. The TPLF advanced and took a small town named Harbu and then Kemissie, about 43 kilometres away from Kombolcha, where the TPLF looted and vandalized the town. But local residents fought back, with many fatalities on both sides.
From Kemissie, the TPLF headed seven kilometres south to a spot named Chefa Robit, where they encountered a heavy attack by ENDF forces both on the ground and from air support. Sources say they were encircled and badly beaten, with more than 70 fighters killed alone by a single bombardment. The ENDF now has the enemy on the run, retreating back to Kemissie, and heavy fighting is reported to be taking place between government forces, with the local community providing assistance, and TPLF fighters.
And despite the TPLF controlling Dessie, there were exchanges of fire on the city’s outskirts Thursday, with Dessie youth and members of the army involved in the fight. It was these skirmishes that led to the retired colonel and traitor Geush Gebru, commander of the May Day Division being captured.
Fana Broadcasting did a brief online story on November 4, but there are some very interesting items left out that were in his television interview. For instance, he claimed he was “forced” to join the TPLF army and blamed the conflict on the November 3 coordinated attack against the five outposts of the Ethiopian army’s Northern Command, which resulted in thousands of murdered Ethiopian soldiers.
Geush apparently explained that Tigrayan residents of Dessie as well as some TPLF fighters donned Ethiopian army uniforms, and because the ENDF soldiers were expecting reinforcements, they didn’t realize the betrayal until the enemy was on them.
But… He says the TPLF do not have enough weapons for their individual fighters. According to Geush, if 800 fighters are equipped, 600 others without weapons are made to march along. The rationale behind this is macabre — and vaguely reminiscent of unarmed Soviet soldiers fighting against Nazis in the Second World War. The unarmed soldiers will pick up the weapon of their fallen friend and move the wounded or bury the dead.
Geush also claimed the TPLF forces were nearly defeated at Dessie’s outskirts, and they were losing thousands, hence the decision to pull back. This is partially confirmed by Getachew Reda himself, who apparently made a tweet about it that he later deleted.
Meanwhile, the word is that another colonel by the name of Desta was captured Thursday with the help of Djibouti security. He was trying to enter the Afar region by organizing Tigrayan refugees to become guerrillas. The Djibouti government agreed to hand him over, along with those refugees who were implicated.
Sources have provided photos of dead TPLF soldiers from the fighting. A WARNING about the grisly nature of the shots. Please don’t share them on Twitter or social media. Don’t subject folks to this stuff; if they want to view it in context, they can come to read this story, but shouldn’t be traumatized by it leaping out through their screens on a Twitter post.
If you see these photos misused by TPLF propaganda trolls, please put corrections out on social media, make it clear that these are combatants who died in battle and cite this article as the proper source.