Monday, July 25, 2011

Ethiopia's security or Crisis- Africom Study- fact or fiction

Global Strategic Enterprises, Inc for Peace and Prosperity-

Dear Global Citizens and Friends of African Union and Ethiopia

It appears that the Washington Based Center for Strategic Studies has teamed up with The AFRICOM, Pentagon's Africa Command based in Germany, Djibouti and with representations in Addis (African Union) has commissioned a very interesting Risk Analysis Research on Sudan and Ethiopia with rather interesting scenarios and perspectives.
Daniel Berhane has posted some summaries from the Ethiopian report with the following interesting comments that need further clarification and input from the African Perspective.  African institutions and Research Centers should develop their own risk analysis projections based on facts on the ground via Scientific framework of qualitative and quantitative data analysis protocol.

I have read the whole paper of Terrence Lyons and his team, and I believe  it is not presented fairly here by Daniel who has focused on  EPRDF rather than the holistic approach of the prospect of security in Ethiopia and the Horn, etc.  The  whole document can be found at the  following link

This is a very interesting perspective as one can always look at the mirror and find some body else's image, if one is not careful.  The scenarios need to be based on qualitative and quantitative data on the ground.  Perhaps the impending famine in the Horn and Food Price Insecurity might play a more important role rather than the party politics as depicted here.

Please review the recent Central Statistics Office report on Inflation for further information.

Yes the Horn of Africa region is a very dangerous neighborhood and we need more research and perspectives.  I  trust other African Union Institutions will also publish their perspectives to complement or to challenge Terrence Lyons and CSIS perspective.

All the same here is Berhanu's perspective for the record and I look forward for your perception and perspective once you read the whole document.


Highlight: The choice of a long-term successor to Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is likely to expose tensions within the ruling EPRDF and its ethnically defined sub-parties. Constant vigilance is required to prevent Ethiopia’s enemies in Eritrea and Somalia from linking up with internal armed groups such as OLF & ONLF.
    The Washington based think tank, Center for Strategic and International Studies(CSIS), a brief study report titled ‘Ethiopia: Assessing Risks to Instability’ and dated June 2011.Meles Zenawi with Donald Kaberuka (left) and Abdoulie Janneh (centre)
    The study is part of a series that assesses the risks of instability in 10 African countries in the next decade. It is AFRICOM, the US African Command, which commissioned the study project.
    The project is prompted by the recent developments in Northern Africa and Middle East, which took US officials by surprise. Thus, this study project is intended to identify potential causes of instability and to enable US  policymakers devise responses and contingency plans in advance.
    However, the study cautions, it is not meant to provide a hard and fast predictions and should be treated as a ‘thought experiment’. It notes:
    The intention is not to single out countries believed to be at risk of impending disaster and make judgments about how they will collapse. Few, if any, of the countries in this series are imminent risk of breakdown. All of them have coping mechanism that militate against conflict, and discussions of potential ‘worst-case scenario’ have to be viewed with this qualification in mind.
    So far two papers, on Ethiopia and on Sudan, have been released.
    The paper on Ethiopian is is authored by Terence Lyons, a long time commentator on Horn of African politics and a professor at George Mason University. He has served in election Logo of EPRDF - Ethiopian peoples' Revolutionary Democratic Partyobservation missions to Ethiopia in 1995 and 2005. In addition to his profile, it is likely that he enjoyed a wider cooperation from US diplomats and military attach├ęs, as the study is commissioned by AFRIOCOM. Thus, despite some inaccuracies and hasty inferences observable in the paper and the author’s political bias towards EPRDF, it is likely to be informative, at least of one weighty perspective on EPRDF. With that in mind, I decided to share you the section of the paper on what may destabilize Ethiopia and how.
    The papers summarizes the major points as ‘key stress points’. Those are:
    • In the short to medium terms, Ethiopia is likely to remain stable but brittle. The authoritarian ruling party, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), has consolidated power across all levels of government and society, efficiently suppressing political opposition.
    • The choice of a long-term successor to Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is likely to expose tensions within the ruling EPRDF and its ethnically defined sub-parties, and exacerbate friction between some of Ethiopia’s most volatile regions.
    • Ethiopia faces multiple security threats, which taken alone can be contained by the military but if combined would threaten to overwhelm the state, triggering serious instability and violence. Constant vigilance is required by Ethiopia to prevent its enemies in Eritrea and Somalia from linking up with internal armed groups such as the Oromo Liberation Front and the Ogaden National Liberation Front.
    Pondering on what factors could collapse EPRDF’s rule and destabilize the nation, the paper provides the following analysis. (acronyms at the bottom)
    How EPRDF will fall - Terrence Lyons analysis of Ethiopia
    How EPRDF will fall - Terrence Lyons analysis of Ethiopia (2)
    There are also a few more interesting points in the paper that I hope to present it. You may download and read the paper here – ‘Ethiopia:Assessing Risks to Instability‘ – (link).
    Abbreviations = EPRDF – Ethiopian peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Party; OPDO – Oromo Peoples’ Democratic Organization; ANDM – Amhara Nation Democratic Movement; TPLF – Tigray Peoples’ Liberation Front; SPEDM – Southern Ethiopian Peoples’ Democratic movement; OLF – Oromo Liberation Front; ONLF – Ogaden National Liberation Front.

    No comments:

    Post a Comment