If you are Oromo freedom fighter you are neither stooge to Amaaraa that claims to have founded Ethiopian empire nor the imperialist that helped creating it to worry about its fall or rise. Your resilience distinguishes you from others. Empire’s fall is better than its rise for all shackled under it. Giving way for Oromummaa until Oromiyaa is freed has advantage for all rather than petty spites, clandestine activities, commitment to alien buddies and personal interest tempts one to have divided loyalty. Believe in yourself and negotiate for what suits your nation. Your priority is freeing and reconstituting Oromiyaa by any means available, never participating in dismantling her. As to peaceful and harmonious life in the region you will only be a partner with all other nations, nationalities and peoples in worrying about it when the Oromo nation is able to contribute its share with free will. For Oromo to consider the present government as Oromo is betrayal of Oromo martyrs. It will be naiveite and naked opportunism to worry about future of Ethiopia when Ethiopians are dismantling her rather than taking Oromiyaa as free and equal. So, go ahead and free Oromiyaa and make her stand on own feet first.
The Oromo people had from time immemorial a system of government of the people by the people, where rulers are elected for limited one term of office of 8 years. Principles like Gadaa, Odaa, roads, river crossings/fords are common and equal for all, were basic policies. For Oromo law is supreme augmented by Safuu, set moral and ethical standard. That is why true Oromo cannot summarily kill and torture human beings and violate human dignity. They had a system that allows all peer groups to be brought up participating in politico-social leadership training process. For those reasons and other knowledge-based practices they can be considered as missing links with ancient Kushitic civilizations. Human rights and people’s rights are listed and anyone breaking them was punished without distinction of class and political positions. Equality of human beings is one of the pillars of the Gadaa laws. For those that find themselves in Oromiyaa as captives, fugitives or taking asylum, ways of naturalization were arranged. After being occupied by force and their leadership massacred, they were not able to handle the new situation that Oromo started to act like unknowledgeable to ameliorate their suffering. But tolerance could not go on for eternity. After hundred years, the suppression and contempt has reached intolerable level that they have risen from all corners organized Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) to correct what went wrong by their sweat and blood. True to Gadaa tradition, from the beginning their struggle is aimed at bringing justice, independence, peace and equality for all.
To their understanding each person should at least a birth place to claim as one’s country. Each people should also have own country to organize and take care of. Accordingly, Oromo with firm ethnic base from time immemorial have formed a nation in their own unique way. “Oromoof biyyaa” or “biyya Oromo” (Oromo country), Oromiyaa was never erased from their memory even under years of duress. Enemies have done all they can to erase Oromo collective identity of Oromummaa. They partitioned Oromo country into units called ‘Xaqilay Gizat” and labeled them with different names. To cool down the boiling political temperature they changed that to “Astadaadar” for “gizat” implies colonization. With greater push from Oromo revolutionaries, they improved it to “Killil” or region. Not a free country Oromo claim but a region of Ethiopia. They were also forbidden to practice their culture, religion and speak their language outside home. The struggle will not stop until being recognized as a separate country from Ethiopia and interference in their internal affairs stopped. Encounter with Ethiopia in the 20th century will not make them an ethnic group in Ethiopia but a colonized nation still remaining a separate and rival nation. Even Minilik claimed to be Emperor of Ethiopia and “Gaallaa (Oromo) Countries”. To live independently or join them in some sort of union after decolonization depends on Oromo free will. Oromo shall become what Oromo want to be; not what others would like them to become.
Ethiopian empire territory or any other country’s is not eternally ordained but manmade. For whose interest is the empire being mystified? Do peoples of Tigray, Agawu, Qimaant, Argobba, Northern Oromo and others in present land called Amaaraa Region understand that the ruling class called Amaaraa is not interested in
Ethiopia but the exploitation of Oromiyaa and other former colonies in their name “Amaaraa/Ethiopia” without any domestic force sharing with it? Ethiopia has come cited as excuse from the time of “Atses” or emperors. Territories are manmade, that is why we saw changes in size of countries like Ethiopia, Somalia, The Sudan, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Indonesia etc. in our life time. Some systems die and new ones sprout out of them. Like Amaaraa did from Axum and Laastaa. Ancient Ethiopia’s polity (Kush) does not exist now but its Greek name survived adopted by Habashaa. There was nothing wrong with it had they not plagiarized its history. There are no people that do not have own history. Had they followed their own line and revealed the truth there could be many deeds that could give them pride without plagiarizing that of others. Present problems could have also easier solutions.
Rulers of Ethiopia and peoples of the colonies come from different setting. Thus, they have no common background history, political culture, language and tradition except their being Africans. No History of Ethiopia/Abyssinian civilization, political, economic or social represent the Oromo and many others except the dark colonial period of a century and half, of being colonizer and colonized. To consider them as one body and lament about impending change is misleading and a hinderance in solving problems at hand. Amaaraa is a warrior class formed eclectically from Orthodox Christians in the north speaking the Amharic language. They lived on raids and had no permanent capital until they colonized Oromiyaa. The same group recruited from peoples it came across later and converted them to Orthodox Christianity and made them join its newly developed Nafxanyaa system armed with fire spitting weapon. Amaaraa had been most of the times center of power for centuries in the kingdom of Ethiopia. It also continued as center of power since it colonized countries to its south a century and half ago. Now that center is falling and power is shifting to nations, nationalities and peoples, who were under the empire. This group calling itself Amaaraa, speaking Amharic is making last effort to remain in power. If it does not win, except for its language, it is going to be finished, for it had lived calling others’ county “Ethiopia” as its own. Its destiny is tied to that of Abiy. It is now trying this last-ditch making Isaayyaas Afwarqii its leader who is allergic to federalism and no less hates Amaaraa.
Only Amharic speaking group and those nostalgic about Western mythology and those that gained fame and benefit under that name deify the name “Ethiopia” and go out of their way to convince all under the empire to support its unitary system. Amharic speaking elites being so arrogant, they don’t even consider the more than 80 languages in the empire other than theirs. We know most were told by their parents, they are the only “Sawu lij” (human off spring); and the rest are slaves and other lowly creatures. Civilized people expect education could transform such attitude but the more Amaaraa are educated the more they went from worse to worst. It is with such background of contempt for others that all rulers used Amharic in all their communications that does not express the desire and psychology of Oromo and the rest. The others, were forced to learn the language which made them misunderstand their own people meeting the goal enemy set for them. With advent of the Qubee era that is becoming history. Oromo are now using their own language and script in every field including courts and schools. With that a big escape was made from over a century of enemy prison of ignorance.
Nowadays, they are only Amharic speakers that take stages with positive or negative views and they have no concern for others. Therefore, until a negotiated settlement is made Oromo should take firm stand. They should not officially communicate in colonizer’s language with anyone and participate in Amharic only forum for that amounts to unconditional submission. Those had been policy followed by OLF up to 1991. Until then an interpreter or a neutral language has to be used. No Oromo should complain for not being included in their forum. They have to understand that they are marginalized for not being Ethiopian. They should have their
own exclusive one to advance their own cause. Since they did not understand tolerance, apologizing for all past abuses has to be made a precondition to interact with them.
Change going to take place will be revolutionary and could bring change in lives of many. If there are those that love peace and their African identity and believe in African peoples’ equality let alone a region there will be no reason that Africa is not united fast. There is a confused #Nomore movement that seems to have no concept about colonialism, Pan Africanism, sovereignty and neo-colonialism. These do not mean being and embracing one neo-colonialist and pointing to another of same category. They should have known their own history before indulging in others. It is this that Abiy and his nafxanyaa system hopeful supporters doing. For now, let Amharic speaking group formed by Solomonic system of Yekunomlak and nafxanyaa system of Minilik brag that they are creators of Ethiopia, no argument they can have their Ethiopia to themselves and leave Oromiyaa to the Oromo.
Henceforth, there will not be one nation or one culture and one language imposing itself on others as before. The world ended this phenomenon, colonialism in the 1960s but was left in this corner camouflaged in geography and its color of skin, Ethiopian colonialism has thrived in that way. If ending of colonialism means dismantling empire Ethiopia those that vowed to get themselves demolished before her, have to get ready to pay what they vowed for that has become inevitable. The empire has decayed and cannot hold together nations under it anymore longer. All so far oppressed peoples, are demanding and looking forward for realization of their right of nations to national self-determination. Individuals born or settled in a country other than that of their own ancestors have to choose to go back there or live where they found themselves at birth as equals or where they are naturalized according to law of that land. Turning back to previous status is fait accompli.
As not to go to war, self-determination was accepted and put down in the constitution as law. But only Nafxanyaa system hopeful are refusing to abide by it and went to war to reverse it. Their continued existence as a group depends on their ability to impose their will on all peoples of the empire. They may try some battles but they can never win the war. Their elites have contempt for the people they were born and brought up with and cannot imagine to live with them as equals where their folks have no upper hand. Group called Amaaraa as told several times in composed of Tigraaway, Agawu, Qimaant, Argobba and Northern Oromo, which are demanding for self-determination separately. To get upper hand they have to get rid of strong rivals. That is why they have opened multifaceted campaign against Oromo and Tigraaway forces, OLA and TDA. Ambition of Amaaraa elites has to be curbed to bring peace to the Horn and Africa as whole and their international relations.
Under Abiy Ahmad Ali, one is told daily, that others ancestors, culture, history, tradition and what belongs to you are given Habashaa label; enemy leaders that have denied Oromo freedom, human rights, resources and own labor are made your heroes. Accepting these as normal and submit to his guidance as coming from “Son of Abbaa Gadaa” indicates only one’s mental crisis. How would a genuine Oromo consider himself when he/she alone is standing while most Oromo are falling besides him/her like flies. Is not it hypocritic to talk anything about the Oromo without showing compassion for those suffering under Abiy’s henchmen? Can’t they see had he been son f Abbaa Gadaa he should not have killed his Karrayyuu fathers? He has clearly shown them that he is Amaaraa stooge. For instance, he shivered when they demonstrate their anger for releasing Jawar and Abboy Sibaat from prison. It was their directives that caused their imprisonment and also sent Abiy to war in the first place. Such misuse of power for him and for them has to end to bring peace to the region.
That seems what is happening, a force more important and beneficial than them and Isaayyaas is asking for change of direction. This could be the first step to break Araat Kiiloo, Baahir Dar, Asmara conspiracy.
Oromummaa is presumed of being a feeling all true Oromo have in common. it is orientation they went through as babies, toddlers Gaammee, Qondaala and so forth or any other setting under Oromo family. It is sharpened by experience they went through in life of youth and adulthood, love and hate, wisdom and ignorance, courage and cowardice, compassion and cruelty talked about their people. Only death releases one from Oromummaa good or worse. It is the concern for wellbeing of Oromo of all walks of life. It is a patriotic feeling to defend Oromiyaa’s independence and freedom of the Oromo and their inhibited use of their language and Qubee, their sovereign right over Oromiyaa. Loyalty to Gadaa heritage wherever one is another aspect of Oromummaa. Above all it is the observance of Safuu, ethical standard as set by ancestors and updated by Oromo revolutionaries of generations.
How can Oromo persons defy all principles of Oromummaa and talk ill of own kin standing in enemy camp? Even their forefathers’ adage (if they are Oromo) says, “Halagaatt garagalii alanfadhu, firatt garagalii liqimsi”. They need to absolve themselves in Oromo way. Oromummaa or Oromo nationalism is a liberation ideology not of domination. Many interests are engaged in suppressing Oromo political consciousness. Unless the Oromo show concerted effort breaking the siege will be very difficult. Early world nationalists were successful for giving all benefit of the doubt for struggling compatriots. That is what is required from true Oromo at this moment of their history. It is not I love and don’t love; I suspect or not suspect someone but to break out of situation of national shame in unison with determination. Ethiopia had never been friend to the Oromo. Even when a person helped to power is at the helm her animosity did not stop; she rather converted that person to enemy number one. To pass through this cruel period, it requires to say, “My country right or wrong”.
Empire Ethiopia is supported by Amaaraa nafxanyaa, big powers with nostalgia for imperialist days and interest, galtuu/dependent Oromo, etc. For this reason, those that want to stand with one leg on each side have to come to attention on Oromiyaa side and make her self-reliant first. To create a democratic coalition, each partner has first to democratize. Those that do not have common political outlook end up in autocratic governance for they cannot create democratic union. The enemy is one that speaks to them in alien language and force them to listen and denies the Oromo have sovereignty over Oromiyaa. Still if they were not using Oromo nationals who are not sensitive to national pride they could not have stood against the Oromo for a moment. At present the enemy is PP and its Amharic speaking supporters. They are openly showing their hatred and contempt in public. No excuse for the Oromo to stand with those and participle in all Amharic speaking conferences. The present controversial constitution is the result of huge sacrifice. Since then, much more sacrifices are made and more benefits not less is expected this time. Oromiyaan haa jiraattu!
Honor and glory for the fallen heroines and heroes; liberty equality and freedom for the living and nagaa and araaraa for the Ayyaanaa of our fore parents!