The damage the incoherent policy of the Obama Administration caused on Ethiopians merits petition to the Federal courts

May 2, 2015

In the absence of rule of law in authoritarian ruled nations that terrorize their respective populations, what recourses the victims have when western democracies collude with depots to cause human suffering and death besides petitioning the courts in their own jurisdictions to restrain them?

by Teshome Debalke

Ethiopians shouldn’t agonize over the sad reality of President Obama’s complete flip-flop from his stated objective to stand for democracy with the people of Africa against ‘strong men’– dictators. It is one of those blunder where politicians’ over inflated promises deflates the moment it is tested in the real situations.The damage the incoherent policy of the Obama Administration

But, for the first African-American President that appeared to be concerned to the plight of people under tyranny in general and Africans in particular not to mention the beneficiary of the very civil right struggle of African Americans for democracy and civil rights that paved him the road to become the leader of the free world it is indeed a historical blunder that will be recorded as one of the darkest moments in the history of Africa.

Leaving his blunder and legacy for the historians to ponder, there are ample evidences and precedent to petition the US Federal courts for remedy on the Administration’s negligence if not outright conspiracy beyond and above the call of diplomatic duty to collude with a notorious Ethiopian regime known for its human rights violations, atrocities and corruption. Again, leaving the legal technicality for professionals to explore the legal bases, in the absence of rule of law in authoritarian ruled nations that terrorize their respective populations, what recourses the victims have when western democracies collude with depots to cause human suffering and death besides petitioning the courts in their own jurisdictions to restrain them?

There is unspoken truth western leaders have complete impunity in what they do when it comes to nations ruled by depots they like regardless of their records. This historical reality continued unchallenged to this day partly because the victims are battered by their own regimes and ignored by the enabling western democracies and international organizations.

The extensive lobbying by rogue regimes & partners and the indifference of Western governments show to the plight and suffering of the victims by financing and covering up the atrocities and corruption of the regimes not only empowered them to traumatize their people but, incentivize them to do more of the same behind the gray area of national security.

When ‘the global war on terror’ becomes blank check for the world’s depots to further consolidate their grips on power and terrorize their respective population as the regime in Ethiopia does, the legal and moral justifications for war on terror is suspended in midair for any self-described terrorist or rogue group to grab. More tragic is such shortsighted policy loaded with sound bites has far more implications for the world democracies as it is becoming common to equate authoritarian regimes as equal if not better than democratic rule.

Therefore, petitioning the Federal courts is the not only the right thing to do for Ethiopians to restrain and make the Administration accountable for its actions or inactions but, to restore people’s fate in the democratic system. The Administration must be restrained not to operate with impunity abroad by the only law it sworn to uphold.

Weather Madison, Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, or Paine there is one common fear among the Founding Fathers of the United States summed up by George Washington when he said;

“Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.”

There is no question the Obama Administration’s incoherent policy of supporting the rogue regime contributed to the suffering of the people of Ethiopia and beyond. Besides the havoc it is causing on innocent people and weakening the US’s long-term geopolitical and economic interest and the goodwill of the people to the benefit of the rivals, the policy further undermined the little legal and moral justification of empowering every big-and-small depot around the world in the name of fighting terrorism.

No one knows what drives the US policy beside the open ended ‘war on terror’ that authorized rogue regimes to terrorize their own population unabated. The visible contradiction between the official and unofficial statements of the Administration’s officials indicates; the regime’s lobbyists appeared to play major role in US policy decisions that is having unintended consequences in destabilizing the nation and the region and risking the lives and livelihoods of the population – as it evident with the numbers of people in jails on terrorism charges and the exodus of tenth of thousands of more people seeking refuge around the world, including in the USA.

It is clear by now, the former US Ambassador at UN and present Senior National Security Adviser Susan Rise masterminded the US policy on Ethiopia. She was driven more by her personal relationship with the late depot Melse Zenawi than prudent deliberation on the US interest and the safety and security of the people in nation and the region.

Her eulogy on Melse’s state funeral exposed the origin of the Obama Administration’s unofficial policy when she traveled to Addis Ababa for the funeral and attended several prayer services in the US. Though she is no longer publicly admiring the rogue regime, the Administration officials’ public statements continue the same tradition.

The recent misspeak by Wendy R. Sherman, the Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs and the water down version posted on US Embassy website’s news titled ‘Press Availability by Wendy R. Sherman’ reviles the crises of the unofficial policy towards Ethiopia and the undisclosed reason why the Administration is supporting the rogue regime’s blanket terrorism charge for young and old, Muslims, Christians and nonbelievers and students, civil society members and journalists alike.

According to Undersecretary Sherman’s ‘interview’ by unidentified person dated April 17 2015, the complete reversal of her previous recoded statement that outraged the public and local and international organizations to respond in-kind and ask; what exactly is the Administration’s policy towards Ethiopia and who may be responsible?

When that wasn’t enough, Marie Harf, the Administration Acting Spokesperson’s statement on the anniversary of the jailed Ethiopia’s Journalists dated April 25 contradicting the Undersecretary Sherman’s statement by limiting the regime’s lawlessness on jailed journalists — ignoring the 1000s of political prisoners and the massive human right violations the regime commits in all sectors of society.

The President’s statement in his previous arranged meeting with Ethiopian regime’s officials during US-African Leaderships’ Summit in September 2014 praising the regime on unverifiable claims of legitimate election and economic growth aroused more questions on the Administration’s excuse and who may be behind misleading the President.

Whatever the unofficial policy may be, the cost to human lives and material loss is escalating as the official reports document without anyone being accountable.

In another development, the brutal crackdown of the government security force on the mourners of the recent killing of Ethiopian migrants by Islamic State group in Libya and the subsequent government response to the tragedy raise more question to the capacity of the ruling regime to govern and the Obama Administration’s continued cover ups.

Events in Middle East and North Africa that brought Islamic State and the human catastrophe that followed is not helping the Administration to come up with coherent policy beside propping up authoritarian regimes to fight terrorism. Instead of engaging civil societies and political parties with democratic credential, the Administration is caught between the terrorist groups and propping up undemocratic regimes that terrorize their own respective populations — leaving the people in the limbo where to turn for remedy.

In the age of every terrorist groups come out of the woodwork claiming legitimacy of a cause, the youth of Africa are given no choices left between state and none state actors that terrorize them equally. Therefore, by undermining legitimate democratic forces on behalf of illegitimate authoritarian regimes, the Obama Administration sent the wrong message to the youth and the population at large.

After unprecedented foreign Aid expenditure and diplomatic cover on the ruling regime of Ethiopia the US have nothing to show for it. The political, economic and security relationship between the two nations is reduced to the Administration officials’ personal feelings to the ruling party contrary to the official policy.

The unparalleled state sponsored atrocities and corruptions of the ruling party reported by several international organizations in violation of US laws are ignored for political reasons. The lobbying activities of the ruling party to influence US policy decisions and the impunity its operatives spy and threaten Ethiopians in the Diaspora and their families at home in violation of the US Foreign Agent Act and immigration laws are swept under the rag.

The regime labeling every Ethiopian that opposes its rule terrorists appears to be endorsed by the Administration unofficial policy as it was reviled by the recent speech of the Administration’s top official Wendy Sherman.

Therefore, what other remedy is available for victims besides petitioning the US Federal courts to make the Administration accountable, unless the officials are above the law in this country as they are in Africa?

Ethiopian Americans should get our act together to take a legal action against the Obama Administration and its officials for aiding abiding the rogue regime’s violation of rights and atrocities. It is way overdue to make them accountable.

The article is dedicated to Ethiopians suffering in the jails of TPLF led regime with trumped up charges of terrorism the Obama Administration choose to ignore.