It’s often said that the actions of human-beings are unpredictable by nature. And this is exactly what happened to dictator Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia at this year’s G8 gathering at Camp David in the US.

Meles was confident, full of himself and proudly representing Africa. He was the strong man of the Horn and the West’s point-man there.

Having violently crushed domestic opposition to his rule at home and assured of Western backing, and with the African Union (AU) and the regional organization IGAD fully behind him, Meles was walking the earth like colossus.

Buoyed by assurances from all sides and his minions whispering glad tidings to his ears, Meles was expecting to deliver the good news to the rich and the powerful leaders of this world and expecting to secure their investments in his Bonze schemes at home.

Security was tight. Demonstrators were kept at bay. No noise or disturbances could reach the confines of the tightly guarded conference hall. Everything was hunky-dory and Meles was getting ready to speak.

And then the unexpected happened!

Meles Zenawi is a dictator! Free Eskinder Nega! Free Political Prisoners! Food is nothing without freedom! Meles has committed crimes against humanity! We Need freedom! Freedom! Freedom!” thundered Ethiopian journalist Abebe Gellaw from somewhere at the back, and with it, brought the conference to screeching halt for a moment.

In that second Abebe has managed to jab a needle – with his powerful voice – into the balloon of Meles Zenawi’s mendacity and lies.

There was standstill. The face of Meles said it all: he was shocked, his eyes were wide open and he seemed as if he was struck by something and was gasping for air. For a moment, he felt vulnerable and shivers were running down his cowardly spine. His panties must have become wet in that second!

The invincible Meles must have been caught off guard. Humiliated and dishonored in front of the most powerful men in the world, the physically shaken and chicken-like Meles could only hang his head in shame.

Coincidently, the only time in modern history such a magnificent feat was pulled was when an Iraqi journalist, Muntadar al-Zeidi, threw his shoe at former US President George W. Bush after he couldn’t fathom the nonsense that Mr. Bush was saying. (There must be something extraordinarily courageous about journalists.)

Mr. Abebe Gellaw’s heroic act is only symbolic and will not change much on the ground in Ethiopia. But it will, hopefully, encourage others to do the same and ultimately overcome the ‘fear factor’ which is central to TPLF rule in Ethiopia. After all, every rainy downpour begins with tiny droplets.

When that happens, a new day will certainly dawn in Ethiopia and the TPLF tyranny will be shattered to smithereens. And the Americans will always be with the winners, like they did in the Arab revolutions.

In the meantime, we take our hats off to Abebe Gellaw for being a trailblazer. History will remember him.



1 Comment

  1. ahmed says:

    “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, make violent revolution inevitable.”


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