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Ethiopia says it is outraged with the way the US magazine, Time, depicted the country’s leader when it had announced the list of influential people of the year.
Time magazine has included Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Ethiopian-born US citizen and computer scientist Timnit Gebru in the latest list of 100 most influential people of 2022.
Time said Mr Abiy’s peace treaty with Eritrea ”planted the seeds for an Ethiopian civil war’.’ It also stated that Mr Abiy, together with Eritrea’s leader, ”launched a military campaign against” Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) leaders.
In a letter to the magazine Mr Abiy’s office said they are ”dismayed” with the way he has been represented as well as the portrayal over who started the country’s civil war.
It describes his depiction as a ”character assassination” and accuses it of echoing the narrative of the TPLF – the regional party that has been fighting federal troops in the north.
It has requested the magazine give an explanation. There has been no immediate comment from publication.
All warring parties have been accused human rights violations in Ethiopia’s civil war.
The conflict in Ethiopia started on 4 November 2020 when Mr Abiy ordered a military offensive against regional forces in Tigray after TPLF forces seized a federal military base.
Once you are in the jaws of the western media you better find the right tool to ease their grinding bite otherwise you will be as good as dead meat. Many of you have been underestimating the diplomatic skills of Debre and his predecessors. They knew someday, sooner or later, the people of that country will throw them out of office. In my opinion they knew that the very day they decided to march all the way to Addis/Finfine. They did not sit back and wait until things start unfolding. They went to schools and placed their cream puff of the crop in every influential private institution in every country in the West. The media? They’re there. Powerful lobbyists? They have hired the best ones available. Campaign fund? They come with deep pockets filled with wealth pilfered from the national coffers of starving people. On the other hand what was the opposition doing? Some of these groups chose to run to Asmara looking for some gun bite to eat. Some others came here and Oceania to show off their speech skills bashing everyone they don’t like. They showed their high level skills in how to belittle and despise others. Debre and his group were busy making their outfit united and stronger while the opposition was breaking up in hundreds of miniscule and denuded groups. It is paying off big time for Debre and his group. They invested heavily for the rainy day and now they are reaping what they skillfully sowed for almost 3 decades. They may be unceremoniously gone from the capital but their influence still intact in the West and Oceania. Just look at what Mrs. Baker wrote about the PM. It is just a photocopy of Getachew Reda’s press briefing. Did she bemoan the crimes committed on the innocent civilians of Afar and Amhara regions by Debre’s soldiers with the same intensity? I have not noticed it. Is this what you can call an independent media? I am not sure. If this makes Time as such then I’m gonna get confused about the true/right definition of ‘independent’.
Ittu Aba Farda,
Are you trying to defend Abiy A.? Is your point that none of what the TIME says is true? TPLF is effectively using the media because it is enabled by misdeeds of Abiy himself. Look what’s he doing right now! Arresting journalists and activists who possess opinion different from his and his government. Governments including the U.S. have expressed concern about this worryiing fact. Do you have anything to say about this? Media – Independent or other – can’t lie if the subject is indefensible. And Abiy is one.
I don’t think you have read my comment with undivided attention. The basis for my criticism of Mrs. Baker’s piece on PM Abiy was for its being totally one-sided. Please re-read my comment and you will find this line: Did she bemoan the crimes committed on the innocent civilians of Afar and Amhara regions by Debre’s soldiers with the same intensity? I have not noticed it.’
Also if you had the chance to read many of previous comments on this esteemed website and other platforms with open mind you should have known me by now that I did not spare anyone. I have cried foul on anyone who I found to be at fault. That is the fruit of my independence since I started tinkering with politics regarding the old country in the 1960’s. My comments are always my own as I see them. I don’t belong to any group that I have to worry about that I may ‘offend’ someone especially those who are sitting at some Burger King speakeasies, college campus orphanages and missionary canteens dreaming about and conniving hopelessly to carve out a territory just to make it their personal fiefdom. Meanwhile I recognize the right of others if their opinion is in opposition to mine. That is their Allah given right and it is inviolable just as mine. Peace!!!
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