In April, the website of the U.S.-led Combined Joint Task Force–Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) announced that the United States and Ethiopia had signed a new agreement enhancing a “security partnership” in counterterrorism and other realms.
In attendance at the signing in Addis Ababa was Amanda Dory, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for African Affairs, who obligingly made note of “just how progressive and strong Ethiopia is” and how “working together plays a key role in peace and security.”
Of course, the opposite argument can also be made: that American collaboration with the Ethiopian government in fact translates into enhanced insecurity for more than a few folks.
Consider, for example, the situation in the Oromia region surrounding the capital, where widespread protests have followed recent government efforts to displace an untold number of farmers as a means of courting international and domestic investors.
Five days after the announcement of the upgraded partnership with “progressive and strong” Ethiopia, a Horn of Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch reported that, “since November, state security forces have killed hundreds of protesters and arrested thousands in Oromia.”
When I visited the Oromia region in March, area residents pointed out that, while the government had for the moment shelved its land usurpation plans, this wouldn’t bring the dead people back to life.
Meanwhile, Ethiopia happens to jail more journalists than any other African country save its notoriously repressive neighbor Eritrea. Strong? Maybe. Progressive? Not so much. READ MORE AT THE WASHINGTON SPECTATOR.