Thursday, October 16, 2008

TPLF Regime's continued deception

Medeshi Oct 16, 2008
ETHIOPIA: TPLF Regime's Continued Phantasm
Sophia Tesfamariam
(Red spot : Map of Ethiopia-Tigray - Zenawi's region)
It´s election season and the American public is now bombarded with all sorts of statistics to show which candidate is in the lead. There is nothing wrong with using statistics to illustrate a point, if the facts on the ground can back them up. Someone said that there were three kinds of lies: Little white lies, damned lies and statistics, and I suppose the Embassy of Ethiopia in Washington, DC has chosen the latter to once again mislead the Ethiopian people and paint a rosy picture of Ethiopia´s economy. After the regime´s shameless Foreign Minister told the UN General Assembly that "Ethiopia was the fastest growing non-oil economy in Africa", now the regime´s cadres in Washington, DC are peddling statistics that just don´t jive with the realities on the ground.
The minority regime´s Embassy in Washington shamelessly put up the following information about Ethiopia on its site:
"…The U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has released livestock and agricultural rankings detailing the world's leading producers across a number of categories. Ethiopia, which has placed the development of its agricultural sector high on the list of national priorities, features prominently in the 2007 data…"
What the regime´s cadres do not bother to tell the readers is that the data, like the ones in the IMF/World Bank reports, were provided to the FAO by the TPLF regime itself.
Here is the abbreviated version of the list it posted showing Ethiopia´s rankings, which the regime wants the readers to believe is "based upon 2007 data compiled by the U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization":
Top 10 Cattle Countries -Ethiopia ranked 6th in the world
Top 10 Beehive Countries –Ethiopia ranked 4th in the world
Top 10 Camel Countries –Ethiopia ranked 3 in the world with 2300000
Top 10 Coffee Producers –Ethiopia ranked 5th in the world
Top 10 Donkey Countries –Ethiopia ranked 2nd in the world
Top 10 Goat Countries –Ethiopia ranked 8th in the world
Top 10 Horse Countries –Ethiopia ranked 8th in the world
Top 10 Sheep Countries –Ethiopia ranked 12th in the world
Top 10 Papaya Producers –Ethiopia ranked 6th in the world
Top 10 Sesame Seed Producers –Ethiopia ranked 6th in the world
Top 10 Chickpea Producers –Ethiopia ranked 8th in the world
Top 10 Nut Producers –Ethiopia ranked 4th in the world
Top 10 Sorghum Producers –Ethiopia ranked 8th in the world
Top 10 Wheat Producers-Ethiopia ranks 27th in the world in wheat production and is the 2nd largest wheat producer in Africa after Egypt.
Top 10 Maize Producers-Ethiopia is the 18th largest producer of maize in the world and 4th largest maize producer in Africa after Nigeria, South Africa and Egypt.
Ethiopia is also the world's 16th largest producer of avocados
Ethiopia is also the world's 18th largest producer of sweet potatoes
Ethiopia is also the world's 19th largest producer of barley
Ethiopia is also the world's 22nd largest producer of dry beans
Ethiopia is also the world's 41st largest producer of bananas
The FAO stats, like the IMF/World Bank stats do not tell of the billions in aid received by Ethiopia, the largest recipient of aid to Africa. Underlying these rosy FAO statistics, is the grim reality of a country that is in debt, in deep poverty, with over 11 million of its people dependent on food handouts and with a minority mercenary regime dependent on donors for 60% of its national budget.
The IMF/World bank and FAO´s statistics are not an accurate measure of the state of Ethiopia´s economy, or the distribution of the country´s wealth, now in the hands of a few TPLF cadres and their handlers. If Ethiopia is producing so much, and is ranked in the Top 10 list as FAO and the minority regime claim, where is the food or the revenue from the food produced by Ethiopian farmers going? Why are Ethiopian farmers the poorest farmers in the world? Who is benefiting from their labor? Certainly not the Ethiopian people!

If Ethiopia is producing so much, why is the mercenary regime still begging for food aid and more? Allow me to share the latest headlines, some from just hours ago, that tell the story of the realities on the ground:
Voice of America reported the following on 14 October 2008:
"…Ethiopia is appealing for $266 million in emergency aid for the remainder of this year to alleviate food shortages threatening the lives of nearly 6.5 million people… Ethiopia's minister of state for agriculture and Rural Development Mitiku Kassa is asking donor nations and humanitarian agencies to boost food aid pledges which already this year are believed to be well over $1 billion. The United States, the largest donor, has contributed more than half that amount…"
Bloomberg reported on 14 October 2008:
"…Beyond the number of people needing emergency aid, another 7.4 million people depend on a donor- funded ``safety-net'' program that provides food to families for at least six months of the year…"
Tim Shenk reporting for the Mennonite Central Committee said on October 14, 2008:
"…A severe drought earlier this year has left about 12 million Ethiopians in need of food assistance, according to the Ethiopian government. Of that number, nearly 5 million are at risk of starvation…Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) is distributing food to nearly 100,000 people in southern Ethiopia in partnership with the Meserete Kristos Church Relief and Development Association (MKC-RDA) and the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB)…"
A 15 October 2008 Associated Press report said:
"…Ethiopian minister says his country urgently needs US$265 million to feed 6.4 million people affected by drought. State Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Mitiku Kassa says Ethiopia needs US$225.9 million to buy food through December. The rest of the money is needed to buy seeds, provide training and toilets, among other things…"
Ethiopia is along way from being the land of "milk and honey"-even if it is in the Top 10 producers of cows and beehives according to the FAO!
When the reckless, deceptive minority regime cannot even provide for the basic needs of its people, pretending to be the economic power in the region, is not going to make it one, nor are the IMF/World Bank rankings going to elevate its stature in the international community, which is "happy riding the Ethiopian horse and flogging it at the same time". It is a mercenary regime that serves the interests of its handlers and not that of the Ethiopian people.
Not only is this posting an insult to the intelligence of the Ethiopian people, it is yet another deceptive propaganda gimmick employed by the regime to cover up its failed social, economic and political policies in Ethiopia. With millions starving and millions more disenfranchised and ignored, with millions suffering in the Ogaden, Oromo, Gambela and even Tigray regions of Ethiopia because of its racist, ethnic cleansing policies, and with TPLF cadres robbing Ethiopia´s wealth in broad day light, the minority regime´s cadres in Washington

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