By Seifu Adem
AG7 and ESAT have been waging a fierce battle for the last few weeks and months. Their fight was not against woyanne; it was against groups or individuals who question their legitimacy, especially leaders and activists of #AmharaResistance. The main reasons of the war (of words) between AG7 (ESAT) and leaders and activists of #AmharaResistance are two: ownership of the ongoing protests in Amhara region, and the latter’s move to form a new political party that “represents” the Amhara people. Each of these deserves more elaboration:
It’s to be remembered that AG7 tried to hijack #OromoProtests by spreading a false rumor that its forces were leading the protests in Oromia. Even Professor Berhanu Nega went on TV and ordered his members “to join and lead” the protests. But when they knew that their lies were exposed, they came up with excuse saying #OromoProtests was aimed at breaking Oromia from Ethiopia. Their activists and analysts wrote again and again and again that #OromoProtests was led by Oromo and Muslim extremists.
So, they set condition saying the only way #OromoProtests could get their support was only if they denounce “tribalism” and change the name of the movement from #OromoProtests to #EthiopianProtests. Tamagn Beyene, Derege Habtewold, Fasil Yenealem and many other lieutenants repeatedly said the issue of Ethiopia was non-negotiable. Poor kids!
When the people of Gondar started protests against the regime in support of the Wolkayit Tsgede Amhara Identity question, the homeless AG7 and its mouthpiece ESAT claimed they were leading both armed and peaceful resistance against the regime. ESAT broadcast a minute-by-minute breaking news, at times punctuated by statements of the leader of AG7, about people of Gondar and how proud Ethiopians they are. They used the “Oromo people’s blood is our blood” expression of solidarity by people of Gondar to ask all Ethiopians to follow AG7’s leadership.
However, their cynicism has no limit that they rarely mentioned the real question of Amhara people, the Wolkayit Amhara Identity question. They even refused to call the Amhara people by their name and kept saying “the so-called Amhara people,” “the region they (TPLF) call Amhara,” “people of Gondar,” “people of Gojjam” etc.
When Oromo people reciprocated to the unsolicited and any string-free “Oromo people’s blood is our blood” in kind and showed willingness to cooperate to remove the regime in power, AG7 and ESAT posed as representatives of Amhara people and offered to hold meetings. This is where their clash with the #AmharaResistance began.
Activists and leaders of #AmharaResistance warned time and again saying the leadership of AG7, most of whom are from Guraghe, Wolayita, Hadiya, Sidama, and some with Oromo blood, do not represent the Amhara people. They said any negotiation with them is not only meaningless but also bound to fail. So, any time AG7 breaks breaking news through ESAT saying their forces destroyed the regimes forces on a certain mountain in North Ethiopia, activists and leaders of #AmharaResistance say either the news about the war is false, or it was led by local Amhara farmers, if there was any war at all. In retaliation, AG7 and ESAT have waged a nonstop war against leaders and activists of #AmharaResistance. They have not only denied them access to their media, they have also demonized them as “narrow nationalists.”
Now, activists of #AmharaResistance are working hard to establish their own media and form a political party that represents the Amhara people. So far they have held many successful meetings of big crowds. Henoke Yeshetlla and co. are working day and night to make this reality.
Confronted with this reality, AG7 and ESAT have to come up with something they believe will distract everyone’s attention: turning against #OromoRevolution. In Sisay Agena’s “Yehasab Menged” and “ESAT bezih Samint” programs, they picked on Liban Wako’s London speech saying Oromo activists intend to create an independent Oromia. They also emphasized lack of transparency about the ongoing Oromo conferences and conventions as evidence that Oromos are intent on breaking Ethiopia into pieces. It’s no wonder that they broadcast these programs a day after Professor Mesfin Wolde Mariam published a short article in which he blamed all problems on members of Ethiopian diaspora, especially the Oromos.
The main reason AG7 and ESAT are doing these nonsense is clear: to present themselves as the only option for united Ethiopia. They understood that a strong Amhara nationalism will render them obsolete. So, they have to use people like Liban Wako as a scapegoat to discourage Amharas from supporting activists like Henoke Yeshetlla. Will they succeed