By Hama Tuma
An appeal court at The Hague war crimes tribunal has overturned the convictions of two Croatian generals for the expulsion of ethnic Serbs in 1995, in a ruling hailed in Croatia as a vindication of its war of independence but denounced in Serbia as evidence of bias:
The world talks of endangered animals but there are human species that are also slated for extermination. The Serbs are the Amharas of Yugoslavia. The Amharas are a major ethnic group in Ethiopia for whose extermination the ruling Tigrean regime in Addis Abeba, other ethnic separatists, foreign powers and regional forces have all coalesced. The release of the Croatian generals accused of ethnic cleansing of Serbs while the same court has enthusiastically accused Serb generals and officials brings to mind the same old ugly double standard of the West. Voltaire once said It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets. Unless they are killers allied to the West. Many Croats were allied to Hitler and fought against the Tito (himself a Croat but a Yugoslav nationalist) led anti fascist resistance. Germany had a soft spot for Croatian separatists from the outset. Croat generals killing Serbs is ok but Serbs killing back is bad, criminal. After all, the dismantling of Yugoslavia was a Western plot and operation in the first place. In Ethiopia, the same situation was/ is in place. The most destructive regime is hailed as democratic and one of the worst dictators in Ethiopias history is hailed as a democrat because the West is duped into thinking that Amharas, like Serbs, are enemies, and Tigreans like Meles are like Croats– friendly forces. And the West is notorious when it comes to backing so called friendly forces from Israel to Equatorial Guinea, from Chad to Saudi Arabia or Bahrain and beyond.
The West always picks its targets and enemies. Resist its hegemony and you are an enemy. The Serbs with their history and proud culture were considered as an obstacle for the western ambition to destroy Yugoslavia, if not Russia, and assure Western hegemony in that part of the world. In Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa, the West considers the Amhara people as an obstacle for its hegemonic drive to control the Horn. Poor Amharas who bear the burden of suffering under repressive regimes that others try to project as Amhara are blamed for privileges that have never been theirs. Ruling class and people are merged into one to compound the plight of the impoverished Amhara people and to condemn them as oppressors. The regime that Susan Rice and others sold outs and fools consider as democratic and the monster called Meles Zenawi that they tried to sell as progressive and democrat are supposed to be (and are ) against the Amharas that are said to have dominated and oppressed Ethiopia. Revised and falsified History is presented to justify this accusation. The Meles Zenawi cabal defined its struggle as anti Amhara and anti imperialist but allied with imperialism to assume power against Ethiopia. As someone had said years ago fanaticism is the refuge of people without intellect and the dead tyrant, notwithstanding his street smart talk, was shallow to the core.
The Amharas, like most Ethiopians, have a history to be proud of, a history of resistance, nationalism and sacrifice and this is what the Tigrean dictator and his gang want to destroy. Thus, all opposition to the Meles regime was labeled as Amhara chauvinist by the late and unlamented Paul Henze and others like him. That Meles metamorphosed faster than quick from a die hard Stalinist into a self declared pro American is a miracle that only the likes of Clinton and Rice and Sheen are able to fathom. The Croat generals have been freed by The Hagues so called International Court (ICC) that follows Western diktat and tries African war lords and Serbs who are not in the good books of Washington. Charles Taylor, backed in his time by Washington and Western rubber and mineral seeking quarters, got a fifty years jail term. He was sentenced for alleged war crimes in Sierra Leone, of aiding the RUF rebels in exchange for diamonds. If Sierra Leone be the contention it is no secret that Britain and even a South African Military company called Executive Outcomes (now part of the South African Strategic Resources Corporation) fought on the side of the government and are accused of atrocities as they tried to lay their hands on that countrys diamonds. Taylor was just a competitor that had to be removed from that part of the world . Enter the ICC which has now launched a warrant against Omar Besihr but stays silent on the war crimes committed by the late dictator Meles. Why not a warrant for the architect of the Red terror Mengistu whose exile in Zimbabwe was arranged by none other than Washington? It is of no use to repeat again and again that double standard and vicious real politic have victimized us.
At issue is not whether these personalities, war lords, tyrants and generals are sympathetic people. No they are not, they were not. But Milosevic signed with Clinton the Dayton accord, Condoleezza Rice and that unmentionable Blair also went to Tripoli to embrace Khadafy, Dick Cheney went to Baghdad to meet Sadam and to back him against Iran. And so and on. Bahrain is invaded by Saudi Arabia and repression intensified without a pip from Washington or France who are no trying to oust Al Assad the Libyan way. The eulogies made by the Western leaders when the tyrant in Ethiopia died has not changed the image of his ugly and murderous regime but has only shamed them as hypocrites with only their national interest guiding themto hell with Ethiopians and moral standards! It is thus no secret that the ICC is just a political tool of Washington and colonial minded Europe. Africans are paraded and condemned. More cruel war criminals are at large, color and alliance weigh in. They happen to be the darlings of the West and none can touch them.
In his book Ethnicity and the Assault against the Nation, Samir Amin analyzed the operations against Yugoslavia and Ethiopia using ethnicity as a weapon. Meles Zenawi and his Tigrean front were weapons in the hands of the enemies of Ethiopia. Yugoslavia has been dismembered and as they say the Serbs weakened and contained. The Meles regime has incorporated into Tigrai a big slice of land inhabited by Amharas, given over land to the Sudan and continued to attack, weaken, humiliate and contain the ethnic group that it hates with venom and stringency. Ethiopian say God does not quarrel with you without preparing a feast or something good for you. We can thus find solace in the fact that the regime in Addis Abeba does not hate Amharas alone. It hates Oromos, Somalis, and Gurages. etc almost all the ethnic groups though the hatred differs in degrees and Amharas are the most hated (and feared too) by the regime. There are many who say the Tigrean regime does not like the Tigreans either. Does that bring solace? The Serbs have had a rotten deal from the dictators and their own Serb leaders. Are they to be comforted by having their own Serbia and a big Serb called Russia?
Ethnocide or genocide? At the end of the day be the big ethnic groups like the Serbs or Amharas are endangered. Just like the Hmongs, Nukaks, San and Ewe to mention but a few. The Congolese were massacred in their millions by Belgian colonialists and they are now being killed in their millions by the West for their Coltan, gold and mineral wealth. Mussolinis hordes targeted Amharas as their primary targets because they had the notion that they can mobilize other ethnic groups against them and thus divide and conquer Ethiopia. It did not work. Meles Zenawi retried the Italian fascist experiment and he also has failed. Endangered people are not easy to wipe out. Too bad for the enemies of Serbs, Amharas and other endangered people all over the world.