By Bora Pawlos | November 23, 2013
The question of why so many Ethiopians are forced to flee their own country in the first place. Why are millions of Ethiopians suffering around the world as helpless refugees, undocumented aliens, and, in many cases, beggars? What relegated Ethiopians to live a life of second-class, even third class citizens around the world is nothing but the repression, discrimination, and brutality they face in their own country in the hands of an ethnocratic regime well -equipped with the tools and arsenals of repression.
Millions are forced each day to choose between a wretched existence at home and uncertain search for hope in a strange land. Fed to the brutal whips of the unscrupulous and racist slave drivers in Saudi Arabia by their own government, Ethiopians cannot look for their leaders at home to come to their aid. To those unwitting sympathizers of the criminal regime in Ethiopia, the continuing suffering of helpless Ethiopians at the hands of racist Arabs should come as a wakeup call. We should not only blame the perpetrators of the crime; we must also hold accountable those who made life unbearable at home for millions of Ethiopians.
A government that demonstrates no concern for the suffering of its people that it systematically drives to a life of exile, servitude and inhuman treatment should be held accountable, condemned, and ultimately removed. Today the blood of innocent Ethiopians colors Arab streets. Let there be no doubt that their blood will not be spilled in vain. This tragedy should serve as a cause for action and for redemption. It is a call for action for those of us in the Diaspora and back home, who have served as apologists for the criminal regime, trading the time-honored Ethiopian pride and patriotism for petty material gains.
Today, Ethiopia is a country that is ruled by corrupt despots who have utter disregard for basic human rights. They are thugs that have no allegiance to the flag and depraved souls without eye of national and patriotic ethos. The sacred and time honored ethos that were protected by the blood and sweat of generations of Ethiopian compatriots are being replaced by the callous deeds of morally debauched thugs who have condemned millions to a life of abject poverty, ignorance, disease and abysmal sense of hopelessness.
An Ethiopian worker holds his baby as he waits with his countrymen to be repatriated in Manfouha, S Riyadh, November 11, 2013
For those who have paid attention to the reality in Ethiopia, it is abundantly clear that the dehumanization and humiliation of our brothers and sisters in Saudi Arabia did not begin on Saudi streets. Many found themselves facing the brutality of the Saudi police after being forced to leave their country because of a similar form of brutality at home. The fact is that most young Ethiopians, besides facing high rate of unemployment, are subject to some of the most serious rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings, incommunicado-detention, arbitrary arrest, torture, and inhumane prison conditions in Ethiopia.
Ethiopians must unite against the unscrupulous and decadent ethnocentric dictatorship that has condemned its citizens to a life of misery, dehumanization, repression both at home and in exile. We must hold those in power responsible for the tragic predicaments of our fellow citizens in Arab lands. The ultimate remedy, therefore, is for all Ethiopians to unite in common cause to bring about freedom, democracy, hope and all the requisite social and economic conditions to lead a free and dignified life in our homeland.