Previously in power for almost three decades, the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) of Ethiopia finally is approaching their end days and as we say here in the Horn of Africa, “they are digging their own grave”.
The TPLF has been Africa’s, if not the world’s, most corrupt, brutal, genocidal regime for the past 30 years. Removed from national power in Ethiopia during the peaceful revolution of 2018, the peace deal the USA brokered left them holding out in their home province of Tigray, one of Ethiopia’s smallest minorities.
Providing refuge to wanted criminals and then sending their paid agents to commit murder and ethnic mayhem across Ethiopia these past two years, the TPLF has done its best to bring havoc to the country, in other words, “digging their own grave”.
The hatred felt throughout Ethiopia if the opinions being voiced in a half a dozen languages via satellite television is anything to guide us by, putting these gangsters in their grave once and for all is long overdue. The Ethiopian Parliament voted unanimously to authorize doing so with all the many ethnic-based factions united in this.
While the world was distracted with the US election, the TPFL launched an attack on an Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) logistics base in Tigray, apparently hoping to capture weapons. The attack failed but Ethiopian blood was shed and lives were lost by a regime that claims to be their fellow Ethiopians.
The brutality the TPLF gun thugs exhibited towards the captured Ethiopian army personnel shocked all of Ethiopia, with those refusing to join the TPLF shot down in cold blood and the rest stripped naked and forced to walk barefoot across the Eritrean border. Reports of hyenas eating the bodies of Ethiopian troops sickened the country even more.
On Nov 13 PM Abiy gave the encircled #TPLF leadership three days to surrender. The offer expired today, as #Ethiopia federal forces draw inexorably closer to Mekele. Int'l leaders should urge TPLF to surrender peacefully to end the humanitarian crisis facing the Tigrayan people.
— Bronwyn Bruton (@BronwynBruton) November 16, 2020
This literally was the straw that broke the camels back and Nobel Peace Laureate PM Abiy Ahmed picked up the gauntlet the TPLF mafia threw at the feet of the Ethiopian people and declared war, something all to overdue for most of the country.
Abey had been patient, almost painfully so, when the TPLF assasinated senior ethnic Amhara generals in 2019, trying to provoke ethnic warfare. Then when they instigated the assassination of the popular Oromo singer and youth leader early in 2020 and sent their paid agents to burn, loot and murder afterwards, Abey bided his time, all the while tightening the noose around the TPLF bandits.
With the pressure increasing daily and their own people increasingly restive, the TPLF held another of their “100%” elections, awarding themselves every single seat in their so called Tigray assembly recently.
Abey has been one step ahead of them since before their ouster from national power in 2018 and in a series of moves that foretold what lay in store, Abey, in a dramatic strike kept completely secret until it was implemented, ordered the replacement of the Ethiopian currency, the Birr.
With only 90 days to exchange their literally billions of birr, with no possible explanation of how they acquired it, the TPLF found themselves facing bankruptcy, unable to pay their security forces and maintain control of the TIgrayan people.
Then Abey went to Sudan and arranged the security of the Sudanese border so as to close the back door of escape. Increasingly hemmed in by their traditional enemies the Afar to the south and the Amhara to their west, with the Eritrean border to their east heavily militarized and impenetrable, their only escape route was through Sudan, traditionally a porous, easily corrupted border.
With the new government in Sudan allied with the Ethiopian government of Abiy and now close to Eritrea again, the TPLF capos and their henchmen are now effectively trapped.
The TPLF has been threatening to launch an all out war against the government of Abiy Ahmed for months, growing more shrill and alarmist by the week. Then they did it, attacked the armed forces in their base, and the die was cast, no going back. PM Abiy has taken up the challenge and has begun to mobilize the Ethiopian army to put a long-overdue end to a murderous lot of gangsters as you will find anywhere.
Before this, the TPLF response to the steadily growing pressure from all sides has been to try and further enflame ethnic hatred through assassins-for-hire, attacking Oromos in particular, blaming Abiy Ahmed all the while. They have made desperate appeals to their erstwhile supporters in the EU, UN and AU as well as the human rights mob such as the International Crisis Group (funded by the National Endowment for Democracy/CIA and George Soros) and the usual suspects i.e. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
To hear die-hard criminals claiming to be persecuted and treated so unfairly would be amusing if the TPLF were not so dangerous. A cornered hyena is the most dangerous sort all, too willing to attack anything and everything it can reach.
Then on the night of November 9th, as the advancing Ethiopian army gathered at their doorstep at a town in west Tigray, the retreating TPLF death squads began their bloodthirsty work, literally butchering with machetes and knives some 500 seasonal workers at their dormitories.
Amnesty International reported that survivors of this shocking massacre pointed the finger of blame squarely at the TPLF killers. At first, the western media tried to spread the blame, or at least to confuse just who was to blame, but Amnesty’s report this time played it straight, and the whole world can see once again just what an inhuman, barbaric lot of murderers the TPLF really are.
The position of #Ethiopia is not averse to dialogue. Rather mediation at this point will only incentivize impunity. No government in the world would sit and negotiate with a sub-national entity that has openly attacked the constitution & vowed to attack its capital” – Amb Redwan pic.twitter.com/Fa4nOq5v0n
— Billene ቢልለኔ Aster Seyoum (@BilleneSeyoum) November 16, 2020
This wasn’t the first time, no, no, no. The TPLF has a long bloody history of massacres. When they invaded Eritrea in 2000, something new PM Abiy has apologized for, pretty much any civilians they could catch were butchered. Eritreans are all too familiar with their Tigrayan neighbors and knew to flee with only the clothes on their backs, children in hand, 1.5 million of us, when the TPLF broke through Eritrean defenses.
In early 2000, the Anuak people of Gambella, home to 2 billion barrels of oil or more and some of the richest agricultural lands in Ethiopia, were targetted for a massive wave of ethnic cleansing including a series of bloody massacres by TPLF death squads.
At the end of 2006, the TPLF sent it’s army into Somalia at the behest of their overlords in Washington D.C. and during their two-year occupation, slaughtered over 50,000 Somalis.
In 2007, they responded to an attack by ethnic Somali fighters in the Ogaden region of Ethiopia to mount a complete food and medical aid blockade that lasted until the peaceful revolution of 2018. While drought, famine, and even at least two cholera outbreaks (how could cholera have entered the Ogaden when there was such a draconian blockade?) the TPLF sent the “Liyu Police” death squads rampaging across the Ogaden.
The TPLF has instigated innumerable massacres where their agents flamed ethnic tensions into a conflagration, with hundreds at a time slaughtered and over 1 million Ethiopians internally displaced, refugees in their own country.
As the Ethiopian army advances on three fronts towards the TPLF capital of Mekele, the cornered hyenas of the TPLF have become ever more dangerous or at least trying to be. While their own “army” conscripts put up their hands in surrender in front of the advancing Ethiopian government troops, the TPLF launched rockets into Eritrea, with three landings in a cow pasture on the edge of the capital Asmara. They then announced that they were officially at war with Eritrea who has carefully refrained from putting boots on the ground in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia has a large modern army with over 20 advanced Russian fighter bombers while the TPLF lost all of its airforces in 2018, taken from them by the new government of Abiy Ahmed. There is simply no way their gun thugs known as the “Agazi”, with their white helmets, alongside miscellaneous death squads can fight a conventional war with the Ethiopian government.
In typical bandit style, the retreating TPLF has begun taking hostages, starting with Ethiopians working for the UN aid agencies. Their last stand will be in their capital Mekele in their south and don’t be surprised if they prevent the civilian population from fleeing, using them as human shields to slow the Ethiopian army down and limit the use of the airforce.
The military end of the TPLF is not far off, days rather than weeks, but once the fighting ends the real hard work begins. The TPLF regime has been in power for almost 30 years in Tigray and they have their enforcers in every village in the province. Truth and Justice committees will have to be implemented in every village, bringing to justice all those who committed crimes against the Tigrayan people while under TPLF protection.
As with all weeds if you just cut off their heads, and the Ethiopian government has issued wanted posters for 68 of the top TPLF capos, the weeds will only grow back in time. You have to pull weeds up by the roots, TPLF roots, from deep within Tigrays villages, and this will take enormous energy and resolute, incorruptible leadership. PM Abiy Ahmed has his job cut out for him for years to come through the benefits of a finally peaceful Ethiopia that will be welcomed across the country.
There is a joke making the rounds of Asmara that goes like this, “Do you know Abiy Ahmed father’s real name?”. Many Asmarinos know it to be Ahmed Ali? No is the answer, Abiy Ahmeds father’s real name is “Wedi Afom”, Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki’s nickname. In other words, the over 50 years of hard-won wisdom of Isaias Afwerki is guiding Ethiopia’s leadership, something PM Abiy acknowledged openly back on July 8, 2018, when he said, and I quote “don’t worry Isaias if leading us”.
Now that the TPLF “has dug its own grave” and is about to be buried once and for all, the benefits for the rest of the Horn of Africa and East Africa will bring a blossoming of peace and prosperity, prosperity based on mutual cooperation for our regions good, and to hell with the western banksters and multinational bloodsuckers. The death of the TPLF will deprive the CIA, whose agents groomed and fed the TPLF mafia from the earliest days of its largest, longest-lived, and most successful project in Africa in the past 40 years.
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Thomas C. Mountain is a historian and educator living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. Reach him at thomascmountain at g mail dot com.