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Monday, 11 February 2008

Dotcom not Africom!!

Tedla Asfaw
United States  proposed African command(Africom) is ready to open offices in different parts of Africa according to VOA Amharic( Feb. 11).  Many Africans are suspicious of this "new interest" in Africa  whereas unelected leaders of the region who are now wrapping themselves as an ally on "war on terror" are welcoming such moves to continue their hold on power.
We have sixteen years of USA direct involvement in Ethiopia's internal affairs by its embassy in Addis   supporting  and promoting unelected TPLF/EPRDF disregarding the human right violations and extrajudicial killing and in fact the  relation after 9/11 went even further by arming the regime in the name of fighting terror and supporting the invasion of Somalia  a year ago.
What is Africom has to do now which USA embassies did not do before? Is it maybe to expand regimes like TPLF/EPRDF through out Africa by opening offices close by and working full time?
Rather Ethiopians and many other Africans need "dotcom" and expansion of information highway which the regime in Ethiopia and other dictators in Africa hate and block because information will challenge  their hold on power by educating the public. 
How can we believe the opening of new office by Africom will make difference while  program like VOA is jammed  not to reach  millions Ethiopians and USA officials never condemn such action. Can we believe such illegal actions will be controlled much closer maybe by Africom?
USA involvement deeper in to Africa is just not different than former colonialists rush to have foot hold on  Africa by sending their missionaries first and later the army. I do not believe Africom will promote democracy or alleviate our economic hardship as it claims.
USA should help promoting  free flow information by investing on Internet and broadcast its radio program free of jamming and not opening additional offices to work with the tyrants who care less for the well being of their citizens.
The least USA can do for Africa is not to finance unelected regimes in the name of "war on terror" and work on all the in formations available in public and make prudent decision which will benefit its interest in the long run, however, opening another office which will waste tax payers money is the worst choice.