The Ethiopian Prime Minister Ahmed Ali Abiy and his Prosperity Party (PP) will work ahead to clean its image. No matter what sort of reports, reporting or stories that comes out from the Federal Republic. His supposed to look good ahead of elections. That is something he needs to be crowned king later in the year.
That is why all authorities, state agencies and such is putting in so much efforts to “debunk” and “dismiss” any negative story about the warfare in the Tigray Region. A war brings atrocities and deaths. That is just a matter of fact. When you operate a war and conflict. There will be blood spilled and no mercy on innocent civilians who get caught in the cross-fire. Even if the Prime Minister promise to not hurt any civilian. His army has most likely killed civilians either by bullets or by default for closing roads, shattering access and hunting for the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).
The TPLF will do their bidding against their enemies. They have to stand responsible for its actions. However, they are not in the same pickle as Abiy. Abiy have to look good and astute as a statesman. While his acting as a warlord. The PP and Abiy have already named the TPLF a Terrorist Organization and Outlawed them. So, no matter what they do. They will “win” in the end. As the state have stand accountable for the conflict and the rebuilding of the region. That is not something you can pin on the former ally and coalition partner TPLF.
That is why Abiy have hired lobbyists to look better and get better coverage. Why his government has allowed 7 media houses to cover the region and now opening up unfettered access to humanitarian organizations too. That after claiming to do so much humanitarian work itself as a government. Who is there with Eritrean army, Amhara Para-Military Group “FANO” and own national army fighting on enemy, which it has now been doing since early November 2020. A conflict that was supposed have ended in late November close to December of 2020. We are now in end of February and soon March 2021. This sad tragic conflict seems to have no end and no positive outcome in close proximity.
Even if the Prime Minister needs to grow trees, opening up industrial parks and prove agricultural output. The PM needs to show the quality of the coffee and the basis of financial growth. While asking IMF and World Bank to cover his deficits. As the state is struggling financially and needs to still look vibrant ahead. All for the sake perception, as he cannot tank everything.
Especially, when his “reforms” only have let the world see more pain and suffering. The reforms have only arrested development and detained the opposition. If has detained it… he has silenced it and outlawed it. If it is in Ogaden, Oromia or in Tigray. There is all a bloodshed, people detained and paying the price for the wrong association. That is the reaction his leadership has brought, while he consolidated one coalition into one party. The others he brought peace with after getting power is behind bars. That is the tragic enterprise of this man.
Abiy is only in it for total power. He doesn’t care how many who dies or get in chains. As long as his crowned king. The warlord, the emperor and the sovereign who gives no fucks about the consequences of his actions. As long as he gets all the glory and festivities. He needs the salutes and the praise.
That is why Abiy is reacting now. Giving some ways and speaking of investigations. Even though they will end up nowhere. Just like the Court Orders helping Oromo leaders behind bars. They are shunned and doesn’t matter, as the “Superior Order” have more value then the rule of law. That because the pride of Abiy is mattering to much. He can do this, because he has the state power and doesn’t intend to loose it.
He has to calculate ahead. As the devastations and atrocities will come out. The reports and stories, which entails horrific acts and violations against humanity. Where there been blunt destruction, death and assault on a region. All to prove a point. Burning villages and killing anyone in sight. That is the stories of war and Tigray will be no different. The media blackout, social media blackout , telephone jamming and such have helped to lesser the leaks. Only later witness stories have been let out by refugees fleeing to Sudan. Where the state also claims war-criminals have fled to safety from the state and they want them returned. So, they are planning to persist their attacks on the region for a long time.
Just as the peacekeepers from Tigray was assaulted in Juba,as their time in South Sudan was over and the commando took charge and beat them into submission there. That says it all about the state of affairs. When even the ones serving and the ones who await punishment coming home. They want to avoid that, but is punished before even entering a plane “home”. This is a story, which is reflecting how the state operates and is leaked, because it happened in Juba and not in Addis Ababa.
Abiy doesn’t want that and wants that dismissed. Its inaccurate and always wrong. Just like any other story. However, he can lie and deflect. He can say things that is easily to see is wrong. Like the time he claimed only “youth” was refugees. That was easily debunked, but proves his character and his will to peddle own propaganda for his cause. Therefore, they will go after the ones who dare to question and will most like silence the ones that dares to talk. Especially, ahead of the elections.
When Abiy again needs to be the golden child and be the poster-boy of modernity. Abiy needs to be figure and posture of flair. He cannot look like or talk like a warlord, even if his actions speak of those. As the dead are mounting up and the unknown costs of the Law Enforcement Operation is in the air. Since, the state keeps that hidden and don’t want that out.
What we do know… is that Abiy needs to look good, even when he does bad. Abiy needs to look like a saint, but that is impossible. When his men is killing civilians on a daily basis. Peace.