Ethiopia is not Yugoslavia

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In an attempt to draw a parallel with Yugoslavia, many fail to understand the sociopolitical, historical and cultural contexts of the country and its people,” said the ambassador in her published response statement on Politico.

“Those saying Ethiopia will crumble like Yugoslavia are wrong. Yugoslavia was a country created by WWI’s winners while the Ethiopian nation evolved over 2,000 years of history and has overcome many previous crises”. – Ambassador Tibor Nagy

To begin with, Ethiopia and its people are known for their cultural and religious tolerance and have lived in harmony for many centuries. There exists no enmity among the people of Ethiopia. Therefore, comparing the country’s current situation with the Balkans is a complete malposition

  • The Ethiopian state is a civilizational state that has ebbed and flowed with the times, becoming large and small at times, but the nation state has existed for centuries.
  • Comparing Ethiopia with Yugoslavia has become cliché over the years.
  • Ethiopians are intermarried and interrelated at a much higher rate than Yugoslavia ever was.
  • unlike Europe, where generational ethnic segregation was normalized, cultures and peoples of the Horn of Africa have a much more fluid structure and history.
  • Ethiopia’s ethnic boarders are fluid and not set in stone. The current ethnic regions are largely fictitious creations of the TPLF regime
  • Ethiopia was not colonized by European powers and hence its nation-state formation was more or less unadulterated by foreign powers.

Additionally, without properly understanding the nuances of Ethiopia’s political discourse and the language used thereof, foreign observers make foolish mistakes about the trajectory of this country. Hence calling for unwarranted interventions from the international community based on misinformed ideas has become a normal disoriented feature of policy making in the West. A few outsiders ever understand the complexity of Ethiopia’s body politic. But rest assured Yugoslavia style disintegration is not in the cards. The recent elite competition for power may seem ethnic based on rhetoric but it is largely a competition to grab the center. Threatening to break off the union is delusional saber rattling.

The TPLF regime, which instituted ethnic federalism upon Ethiopia as an instrument of divide and rule has exhausted its playbook of stoking ethnic division to collapse the Ethiopian nation state and declare its own region independent. Even now, after waging war the group is unable to convince the public in Tigray that session is appropriate. Yet another example of the futility of comparing Ethiopia and Yugoslavia. There is no parallel between the two.

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