Memorandum No. 11: All Aboard! Abiy Ahmed’s “Ethiopia Love Train”!

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እንደመር! አንቀነስ! እንባዛ! አንከፈል!

እለም አለ የፍርቅ ባቡሩ ሁላችንም ይዞ በሙሉ !

Travel Advisory: All passengers aboard Abiy Ahmed’s Ethiopia Love Train!  

The Abiy Ahmed “Ethiopia Love Train” has no brakes. It is a runaway train. It is unstoppable.

Nothing can derail the Ethiopia Love Train.

This Memorandum was not supposed to be about the Ethiopia Love Train.

I had a completely different topic in mind for this week.

Then, the Forces of Darkness struck in broad daylight on June 23, 2018 and tried to hijack our Ethiopia Love Train back to their Land of Darkness.

The Forces of Darkness tried to make our National Day of Love and Reconciliation, a day of infamy, carnage, death, destruction and civil war.

But our train is unstoppable!

Our passengers, the Ethiopian people, are invincible.

Our engineer Abiy Ahmed is untouchable.

The Forces of Darkness failed on June 23, 2018. The Forces of Darkness failed before June 23, 2018. The Forces of Darkness will fail after June 23, 2018.

It has been said all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men and women to do nothing.

On June 23, 2018, all the good men, women and children of Ethiopia came out to Mesqel Square, Addis Ababa and other cities and did something, really big.

They came out in the millions and shared their love, appreciation and respect with the good men and women who are leading them on the freeway of forgiveness, reconciliation and peace.

The Forces of Light/Love triumphed over the Forces of Darkness/Hate on June 23, 2018.

But we paid an incalculable price for our triumph.

We lost two of our young Warriors of Love, Reconciliation and Forgiveness, and more than 150 others  suffered grievous bodily harm. These are our martyrs and heroes for our blessed cause of building The Beloved Ethiopia. They shall forever be remembered in the chronicles of freedom and liberty in Ethiopia.

Let it be known to the Forces of Darkness that no act of hate, no terror and inhumanity, no evil plot, no villainous intrigue, no hateful conspiracy, no wicked machination or damnable criminal act can stop or derail our Ethiopia Love Train.

Ask not Abiy Ahmed what love, forgiveness and reconciliation means, ask our wounded love warriors Fantaye Desalegn, Etaferahu Woubshet and young Semnera Seyoum   

Some people ask, “What does Abiy Ahmed mean by love, forgiveness and reconciliation?”

Why bother to ask Abiy?

Ask Fantaye Desalegn, Etaferahu Woubshet and Semnera Seyoum.

Here is the true meaning of  love, forgiveness and reconciliation as explained by those who paid the ultimate price recuperating in the hospital.

Fantaye Desalegn

I think about my country. It does not matter if I live or die. When the people live, Ethiopia will live. Just because one individual is alive, [it means nothing]. Because Abiy is a hero, I will pay the ultimate sacrifice for him.  Abiy is the man who brought us back the love we lost. We have been healed by his words. His words give us great faith. It does not matter that I have lost my legs. There are many who [have lost body parts] by self-inflicted injuries.

Nothing has happened to me. Is it not true that a person who loves his country will strap himself with explosives [and go into battle] to save his country and people.

The people who did this [explode a bomb] are driven by selfishness and only wanted to destroy our people and country. May these people who caused such destruction of life for an insignificant amount of money get their rewards for their wickedness. It is not human beings that will pay them. God will punish them. Abiy is the man who granted mercy (pardon) even to murderers.

I have not complained or regretted even for one day that I have lost my hands or my feet. If I get a chance, I will tell Abiy by telephone or other means that losing my legs and hands means nothing. I will tell him that and give him my word.

I am an only child to my mother and my father. Only one [child] of God. What is a little difficult for me to accept is the fact that, as an only child to my mother, I have lost the legs that I used to run around to make money to help her. That is what [makes me sad]. But I have brothers [who can help me]. All of them that you see here surrounding me with love are here to support for me.  If I should die, love will sustain Ethiopia. Abiy is a great man. It is the bomb that was meant for him that deflected on the hand of a woman and fell under my feet. It did not mean anything to me. I got up and walked away on my injured leg. The ambulance came. I asked them to save me. I kept my flag in my mouth. And I got to the hospital. I never took my flag out of my mouth. They removed my flag after I got to the hospital.

Etaferahu Woubshet

… The explosion occurred a few minutes after our PM Abiy finished his speech. I was there with my daughter. As the explosion occurred and pandemonium broke out, my friend who was with me [at the rally] took my daughter and ran away. I was left behind and the crowd was pushing in all directions. I was backed up to the fence by Ghion [Hotel]. There was a hole in the fence where I was standing. It is through that hole that I fell over a cliff and mangled my leg. [It is incredible anyone can survive that] but I survived. God is good. My injuries are not that extreme considering what could have happened. Christ protected me. God does not abandon his children…

Semnera Seyoum

It was peaceful at first until he finished his speech. As the Master of Ceremonies was making an announcement to conclude the program, there was an explosion. It did not make a lot of noise. I thought it was firecrackers. It didn’t sound like a bomb. People in the crowd pushed me and my leg got caught in a piece of metal and I fell. There were two federal police officers but I don’t know their name. May God bless them. They’re the ones who saved me. They carried me to an office and from there the ambulance brought me to the hospital here. I have received excellent medical care here. I am doing fine. What I want to communicate is this: Love must exist in our midst. We must love each other. We have only one Ethiopia. We have nothing else. We must love each other as we live. May God forgive those who did this evil Act. They did this because they didn’t know. They did not know the meaning of love. If they had known the meaning of love, they would not have done this. That is it. If they only knew about love. Jesus Christ has forgiven us. And we will forgive them too. May God grant them forgiveness. I am so sad because I have seen so many injured people. I am fine, thank God. It is ok. But I saw a lot of blood. It so very tragic.

As I think of my brothers and sisters who died and were injured in the explosion on June 23, 2018, I feel a piercing wound in my heart. I cry for them. Supposing they were my messengers who carried my  message to PM Abiy?

Violence is the weapon of weak, non-violence that of the strong. Mahatma Gandhi

Violence is the weapon of the coward and hater.

When I first saw the video clips of the attempted terrorist attack on PM Abiy Ahmed and his leadership team on the morning of June 24, 2018, I was overwhelmed with grief and crestfallen.

There have been speculations about possible violence at the rally. But I discounted it all supremely confident that there will be millions of eyes standing watch over Abiy Ahmed and millions of hands ready to take action to protect him.

I felt deep in my heart that the people of Ethiopia will never let anything happen to Abiy. They will give their lives to protect him. Confident in this belief, I was not concerned at all.

I felt vindicated in my confidence because those young people where the bombing was staged became the volunteer human shields for Abiy Ahmed and defeated the Forces of Darkness. God bless them all.

As I watched the video clips over and over, my grief began to give way to anger. Outrage and deep dark passions took control of my heart and mind.

I consider myself to be a man of peace, an evangelist for peace and an advocate for reconciliation. But what I saw in the video clips – the injured young people spread across the asphalt, the pandemonium and confusion — was too much for me to bear at that moment.

What evil will inflict such harm on innocent people who only wish to share their love for each other?

I felt myself drifting into the land of irrationality. I could hear the Dark Side calling me. I could hear the Dark Side beckoning me to come closer.

I wanted to give a piece of my mind to the world. I did not want to hold my peace. Peace was neither in my heart nor in my mind on the morning of January 24, 2018.

As I stewed in my rage, I came across another video clip showing PM Abiy in a T-shirt making a statement about the incident.

He was calm and composed. He showed no sign of agitation. He spoke in a measured tone. He was totally unfazed after such a harrowing experience. Perhaps such grace under fire, literally, should be expected from a tested combat veteran. But my soul was tested to the core on the morning of June 24.

As I listened to PM Abiy, I tried to latch on a word or phrase in his statements that I could use to stoke up my outrage.

But his message was all about our resolve to stay the course of love, forgiveness and reconciliation come what may.

He was preaching nonviolence minutes after he was a target of a terror attack.

He was talking about continuing on our path of forgiveness and reconciliation.

He said to kill is to be defeated. To kill is to bear shame. He said we will not lower ourselves to the level of small-minded people and become small. Ethiopian are a great people. He was talking about how the hand that Ethiopia has stretched out in love, forgiveness and unity will not be folded because of this ugly incident.

“Good God!”, I cried out, still roiling in anger. I asked the inanimate computer screen, “What is he talking about?!”

Why is he not lashing out at somebody for this atrocity. Shouldn’t he say a few words to his base to affirm our righteous outrage over the wanton carnage and destruction?

I got no help from Abiy. I must speak the truth as I always do. I felt Abiy Ahmed stole my anger and rage on June 24, 2018.

I believe Abiy Ahmed stole the anger and rage of a whole nation on June 24, 2018.

Now that moment filled with the heat of passion has passed, we must all thank Abiy for steering our hearts and minds away from the low road of vengeance and vindictiveness to the high road of love and forgiveness.

I will proclaim the truth. In stealing our anger and rage, Abiy Ahmed saved us from a civil war on June 23, 2018, and forever enshrined and preserved our Day of Love, Forgiveness and Reconciliation for yet untold generations to come.

That is why in my last commentary, I did not react in the manner that has been characteristic of me for the last 13 years. I said very little. But it was not because I did not have anything to say about the dastardly and cowardly act. My heart was full of darkness. But I was overcome by the love-force Abiy Ahmed was emitting in cyberspace like photons.

As governments, organizations and individuals expressed their support for PM Abiy and condemned the attack, I must confess the voice of my inner rage kept whispering to me, “Call out the people for a  ‘Day of Outrage’.”

But I could not make the call because Abiy Ahmed drained out the darkness that had filled my heart and mind on the morning of June 24, 2018 and refilled the emptiness with his overflowing message of love, forgiveness and reconciliation.

Then I remembered what Mandela had taught. “Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace.” Abiy Ahmed showed true courage under fire on June 23, 2018 for the sake of peace.

That is why I wanted to honor him in my own little way by translating his speech at the rally and his statement following the attempted attack instead of giving in to the Dark Side.

I wanted the English-speaking world to hear Abiy Ahmed in his own words (at least in my feeble translation version of it) as he faced the fire and fury of the Forces of Darkness. I wanted the world to read the words of our young Mandela and marvel.

Such is the extraordinary young leader we have been blessed to have in Ethiopia today.

Figuring out Abiy Ahmed

Who is Abiy Ahmed?

There is only one person — a child, no more than six years old — who has  completely figured out Abiy Ahmed. I will be writing about the wisdom of that child in a future commentary.

But I like to think I have got Abiy Ahmed figured out, at least for this week. (Every time I think I have him figured out, he surprises us with so many good things that exceed our imagination.)

PM Abiy has been wildly popular because of his not-so-secret arsenal of weapons: Love, reconciliation, forgiveness and peace.

Abiy uses these weapons like Michelangelo used his rasp to sculpt his masterpieces. Every day and night, Abiy Ahmed chisels away the decades-old hatred, animosity and pain that is encrusted our hearts and minds like barnacles on a ship.  

PM Abiy said something in his speech at the rally that deeply resonated with me and gave me my “Aha!” moment. “I am here today to tell you face to face that we have a country that is endowed with great bounty and wealth but is starving for love.”

That is it!

We have all been starving for love for 27 years because we have been force-fed hate.

The millions that showed up at Mesqel Square on June 23, 2018 were all victims of the famine of love. But on that day, their cups overflowed with love. They no longer hungered for love for they found it in each other and in their Ethiopiawinet.

They say love lives in the heart.

For the past 27 years, hate, division and rancor were force-pumped into our veins and hearts.

Comes along Abiy Ahmed and drains out the hate and fills our hearts with overflowing love. Love of Ethiopiawinet. Love of our country. Love of each other, which is the definition of reconciliation. Love of truth. Love of justice. Love of freedom. Love of democracy. Love of rule of law. Love, love, love…

That, my friends, is Abiy’s magic.

He is the only magician I know who can take a ton of hate and distill it into an ounce of love.

He can take a heart of stone and change it into a heart of gold.

In time, I do not doubt the heartless Forces of Darkness will beat a path to his door demanding a new heart because their old one is broken beyond repair by hate. I can assure them Abiy will be glad to hand them  out new hearts with a hug and kiss to boot.

That is exactly why we must all support Abiy Ahmed. He brings out the best in us. He drains out the worst in us.

The Financial Times wrote Abiy Ahmed “may be the most popular politician in Africa” and calls him “Ethiopia’s Mandela”.

Pray tell, how is it possible for a man virtually unknown in his own country, let alone the African continent, to be called “the most popular politician in Africa” in less than 90 days in office? It defies logic and imagination.

But in Ethiopia, the continent’s “most popular politician” is just everybody’s son, brother, uncle, cousin, neighbor, friend and colleague. That is how the man, woman and child in the street thinks of Abiy. He is humble and down to earth. He has a magnetic personality and draws people from continents away. For instance, me. Truth be told, I sometimes have a hard time seeing Abiy as a “leader”, whatever that means. I see him as my brother. Our brother. Our son.

If you don’t believe me, listen six years old Sadr .

People often ask me how it is that I wrote a “Letter” to Abiy barely 6 days after he became prime minister and announced, “I regard you as the leader of Ethiopia’s youth. That said, know that I am in your corner and got your back.”

It is true I endorsed Abiy Ahmed persuaded only by watching video clips of his speeches in the few weeks leading to his selection as PM. Nothing else. But his messages in those clips were powerfully compelling, his thinking clear, his arguments logical and convincing and his demeanor, humble, sincere and open.

It was manifest to me from day 1 that we had our man in Abiy Ahmed. I knew from watching those video clips over and over that Abiy Ahmed was the undisputed leader of the Ethiopian Cheetahs (Aboshemanes) I had prophesied about and waited for the past 13 years.

In 2013, I coined the slogan, “Ethiopia’s youth united can never be defeated!” I knew then an Abiy Ahmed would come out of nowhere and lead the 75 million Ethiopian Cheetahs to victory over tyranny and into freedom.

I hope my readers will forgive me for bragging a little bit. I was the first one who pegged Abiy Ahmed as our Mandela right from day 1, not the Financial Times, the New York Times or the Los Angeles Times.  Read all about it in my April 15, 2018 Memorandum No. 1. I enumerated all of the Mandela-type qualities Abiy Ahmed manifested to support my conclusion that we have a budding Mandela on our hands in Ethiopia.

In concluding my first memorandum, I wrote, “Abiy Ahmed has the distinct privilege and good fortune to become a true Ethiopian hero by following in Mandela’s footsteps. Better yet, an African hero.”

Did my prophesy that Abiy Ahmed will “become a true Ethiopian hero” come to pass?

Better yet, do you doubt Abiy Ahmed will soon become a true African hero?

I will admit that not even in my wildest imagination did I think Abiy Ahmed would reach Mandela Heights in less than 90 days. Maybe in a few years. But in less than 90 days, for crying out loud!?

So, I must be honest and ask a gnawing question that is on my mind. Forgive me if I sound a bit greedy. Now that we have our Mandela, do we have to share him with the rest of Africa?

How close we came to the edge of the abyss: Was there a “Third Force” behind the attack?

I shudder as I think how things could have gone completely wrong on June 23, 2018.

For the first time, I came face to face with Dr. Martin Luther King’s warning, “An eye for an eye leaves a whole nation blind.”

If the terrorists had succeeded in their attack on June 23, 2018, Ethiopia today would have been a nation of 100 million blind people.

But we were under His watch.

I do not speak of the abyss of war and destruction without taking note of the lessons of history.

I know how close South Africa came to complete implosion in April 1993 when Chris Hani, the anti-apartheid freedom fighter and chief of staff of uMkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress, was assassinated.

Hundreds of thousands of enraged young black South Africans flooded the streets of Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Pietermaritzburg and other cities. They marched the streets shouting, “No peace! War! War! Kill them. We want to fight!”

As the casualties mounted in the clashes, millions of South African workers went on strike. Mandela showed up in Soweto trying to calm tens of thousands of young black South Africans ready to kill or die trying.

On that day, Mandela came closest to losing all of his sacrifices. His 27-year imprisonment was about to go up in smoke, literally.

He grabbed the microphone and said, “I understand your anger. The African National Congress is a government in waiting, and we want you to remember that as members of the government in waiting, you have the responsibility to behave orderly and with dignity.”

In his eulogy of Hani on April 19, 1993, Nelson Mandela identified a “Third Force” and fingered the Minister of Law and Order and the Chief of the Army as having “a great deal to answer for” in Hani’s death and the violence racking the country.

Was there a “Third Force” behind the attempted attack on PM Abiy on June 23. 2018?

Suffice it to say Mandela saved the day in April 10, 1993. In exactly, the same way, Abiy Ahmed saved the day in Ethiopia on June 23, 2018.

Whoever the plotters are, their aim on June 23 was clear: Spark an ethnic civil war.

But the power of love vaporized their power of hate. The resurrecting power of love divine conquered the destructive power of a man-made bomb.

We must not rush to judgment

I want to say a few words about the arrested suspects, including ten or so police officials, in connection with the explosion.

I know many people have their suspicions about the “usual suspects” who may have been behind the plot or orchestrated the attack. Some may even suggest there is the invisible hand of a  shadowy “Third Force” in the plot.

At this stage, we must understand and sincerely believe those in custody are merely suspects. Nothing more. Suspicion is not evidence or proof.

That is why I ask all Ethiopians to keep their suspicions about these suspects to themselves.

It is a new day. The rule of law is rising majestically over the Ethiopian horizon. The bedrock foundation for our Beloved Ethiopia is the rule of law. All criminal suspects are presumed to be innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a properly constituted court of law with full due process accorded to them.

This is not some legal mumbo jumbo. It is the alpha and omega of a civilized criminal justice system. We must not rush to judgment. We must not allow our anger color our judgment.

I cannot emphasize it enough. Each one of those suspects in custody is innocent until each one is given a fair trial with the full assistance of counsel as guaranteed in the Ethiopian Constitution.

Though I caution the public, I have no doubts whatsoever that the PM Abiy government will meticulously follow and respect the constitutional rights of those suspected and accused in this tragic incident.

I am very happy that PM Abiy invited the American Federal Bureau of Investigation to join their counterparts in Ethiopia and get to the bottom of the plot. The FBI’s involvement will ensure that the investigation will be rigorous, thorough, comprehensive and done with a high level of professionalism.

PM Abiy has also pledged on numerous occasions that the rule of law will reign in Ethiopia. He has even said on various occasions that he would rather see a hundred guilty men go free than one innocent man be convicted wrongly.

I have full confidence the PM Abiy administration will ensure justice is done in a just way with respect to the suspects in custody.

Evil never sleeps: My prophesy to the Forces of Darkness

It is said evil never sleeps.

The Forces of Darkness will not stop with the bombing at the rally.

They will continue to plot and conspire in darkness.

They will try all manner of evil. They will pay young people in different parts of the country to provoke violence, destruction and death.

They will engage in acts of terrorism.

They will try to launch other attacks on our leaders.

They will try to sabotage key infrastructures, including power plants and telecommunications. They will do everything they can to create confusion and destruction so that they can take us back in chains to their Land of Darkness.

But there is no return to the Land of Darkness and Hate. Once you have seen the light, it is impossible to return to darkness.

The Forces of Darkness must know one fact above all else: We now have a million plus Abiy Ahmeds in Ethiopia. They will take on the cause if Abiy Ahmed cannot for any reason.

Let me speak truth to the Forces of Darkness: You number only 100. We are 100 million strong, Ethiopia-strong!

You have as much chance of defeating the Warriors of Love, Forgiveness and Reconciliation as a snowball has in hell. No pun intended. You know more about hell than anyone since you live there.

Let me prophesy to those living in the Land of Darkness.

Listen well!

For the past 13 years, I have been telling you what will happen if you continue in your evil ways. Go back and read my weekly commentaries.

Since 2011, I have been repeating to you time and again Gandhi’s immortal and timeless prophesy, “When I despair, I remember that all through history, the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time they seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it, always.”

You are no longer invincible. You have fallen and will never get up!

In June 2013, I prophesied you are “consigned to the dustbin of history” because “Ethiopia has arisen.”

In May 2015, I prophesied, “the sandcastle you built in Ethiopia will be wiped out in only one swift wave of popular fury.”

Every week, for the past 13 years. I have been telling you that the way of truth, love and nonviolence will win in the end.

In 2006, I prophesied we will defeat you “not on the battlefields soaked in blood and filled with corpses, but in the living hearts and thinking minds of men and women of good will.”

In June 2018, we have defeated you. The way of truth, love and nonviolence rules the hearts and minds of Ethiopians.

Heed my prophetic words. Go back and read my hundreds of commentaries over the past 13 years. All of my prophesies have come to pass.

I will give you my final prophetic warning.

Abiy Ahmed is the best friend you can have at this time in Ethiopian history. He is your protector from the Prince of Darkness. Ahmed is the love force that stands between you and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Try as you may. But you will never be able to hurt Abiy Ahmed because he is under the protection of the Prince of Peace.

No evil shall befall him. He shall not fear walking in your valley of the shadow of death for he walks under His wings.

Take heed of my prophesy in 2013.  I warned that you “Shall Inherit the Wind” if you keep up with your evil ways: “Meles and his worshippers have profoundly troubled the Ethiopian house and they shall inherit the wind!”

In June 2018, I am telling you — pleading with you to take note – that Abiy Ahmed is the only love force that stands between you and the vortex of a tornadic wind.

If you insist on harming Abiy Ahmed, I will assure as the sun will rise tomorrow, you will be gone forever with the wind.

If you insist on harming him, your swords will pierce your own hearts.

So, let it go.

Let my people go.

Go in peace and love.

Ride into the sunset, in peace and love.

Enjoy, for however few years you have left, the fabulous wealth you have accumulated over the past 27 years.

And we shall inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity.

There is a better way… the Abiy Ahmed way of love, forgiveness, reconciliation and peace

I have good news for our brothers and sisters who lost their way and got stuck in the Land of Darkness.

Come out and join us on the Light Side. Come out and let the light of our love shine upon you.

You will have an honored place in the Ethiopian sun with all of us. The Land of Ethiopia is vastly more beautiful than the Land of Darkness.

Come join us and let’s hold hands and walk together on the two roads Mandela named for us: Goodness and Forgiveness.

Come aboard our love train. If you do, I will fight for you with every fiber in my body.

Those of us who have been touched by the Light of Love, take notice.

We are just as flawed as our brothers and sisters from the Dark Side. The only difference between the two of us is that, by grace,  we have been blessed to open our hearts  and let the light of love shine in our hearts. That little light of love compels us to rescue our brothers and sisters blinded by hate from the heart of darkness.

But we should also look inside ourselves and see what evil lurks in our hearts and minds. Have we truly purged the hate, revenge and vengeance from our blood?

We must not take a holier-than-thou attitude because as we point an index finger of evil at our brothers and sisters on the Dark Side, three fingers are pointing at us.

There shall be no time for settling scores and getting even. There is only time for love, forgiveness, reconciliation and peace.

That is what our young leader is teaching us. Of course, he did not invent these things. He learned them from Gandhi, Martin King and Nelson Mandela.

Now, we must learn from him.

We must offer our hands and hearts in peace to our brothers and sisters trapped in the Dark Side.

A philosopher once said, “When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks into you.”

When we look into the abyss of hate, the abyss of hate is looking at us and beckoning us seductively.

Let us not forget that “He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster.”

On June 24, 2018, that monster reared his ugly face in my heart. But Abi Ahmed chased him away in a jiffy.

At this critical stage of our history, I want all of us to shine the light of love on that monster that remains hidden in our own hearts.

So long as we take our daily dose of love and forgiveness, that monster of hate lurking in our hearts shall remain powerless.

I feel deep sadness when I think about how things could have been different over the last 27 years if love and unity had ruled our hearts and minds instead of hate and division.

How different things could have been if the Forces of Darkness had chosen the path of light and love?

How different could things have been if they had toiled to unite us instead of divide us; spread love among us instead of creating kilils of hate in our hearts and minds? How different things could have been?!

But it is never too late to do the right thing. There is never a wrong time to do the right thing.

I have joined Team Abiy Ahmed (which has 100 million members) to become a force multiplier (amplify his efforts).

When I joined Team Abiy Ahmed, I felt the When the Saints Go Marching in

Oh when the saints go marching in/ When the saints go marching in/
Oh lord I want to be in that number/

When the saints go marching in/
And when the sun refuse (begins) to shine/… When the moon turns red with blood…/

On that hallelujah day/… Oh when the trumpet sounds the call/…

Oh lord I want to be in that number/…

Some say this world of trouble/ Is the only one we need/
But I’m waiting for that morning/ When the new world is revealed/…

When the revelation (revolution) comes/When the revelation (revolution) comes/
Oh lord I want to be in that number/ When the saints go marching in/

When our leaders learn to cry/When our leaders learn to cry
Oh lord I want to be in that number/When the saints go marching in/
I want to be in that number…/

In my April 22, 2018 “Memorandum” to PM Abiy, I wrote, “My views on the TPLF are well known, but with the positive and uplifting messages of PM Abiy and Obbo Lemma Megerssa, I have changed my mind even about the TPLF. We are all capable of good and evil. Dr. Martin Luther King rightly noted, “There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.”

What I am trying to say is simply this: If I, who have claimed to be holier-than-thou for so long, can change and embrace love, forgiveness and reconciliation, so can everyone.

We can all be the change we want to see, as Gandhi taught.

I am confident we will win over our brothers and sisters living in the Land of Darkness with the most powerful weapon in the universe: Love. 

The price of daily victory over the Forces of Darkness

There is no permanent victory over the Forces of Darkness. We can only keep them at bay one day at a time. But the price of daily victory is unrelenting vigilance.

That is why the people of Ethiopia must keep their eyes open and remain watchful in their villages, towns, streets, neighborhoods, markets, schools, churches, mosques and in every other place. They must say something to law enforcement if they see something that does not look right. Every man, woman and child must remain alert and report all suspicious activities immediately.

On June 23, 2018, the people of Ethiopia saved the day. They are now officially the guardians of the Love, Forgiveness and Reconciliation Revolution Abiy Ahmed is leading.

They must remain eternally vigilant to protect themselves, their families, their relatives and friends, their communities, their leaders and their country because evil never sleeps.

The slogan of American Homeland Security is, “See something, say something.” It is a slogan intended to engage the American public in protecting the homeland through awareness-building, partnerships, and other outreach.

I see no reason why we cannot have a similar campaign to raise awareness, build partnership and undertake other public outreach to protect the Ethiopia Motherland.

The Ethiopia Love Train shall chug along… choo, choo! (እልም አለ የፍቅር ባቡሩ ኢትዮጵያውያኖችን ይዞ በሙሉ !)

Ethiopians learned a national life lesson on June 23, 2018. It is a profound lesson. Violence begets violence. Love begets love. Hate begets hate. Peace begets peace. War begets war. Forgiveness begets forgiveness.

A smile begets a smile. Abiy Ahmed smiles and all of Ethiopia smiles with him.

That is the dialectics of love, forgiveness and reconciliation.

PM Abiy said in his speech at the rally the love and peace that is raining on Ethiopia will continue.

I say, let the love rain and the love shine on Ethiopia.

Nothing can stop our train chugging along the two railroads Mandela named for us: Goodness and Forgiveness.

So, our brothers and sisters living in the Land of Darkness, come out. Hop on the Ethiopia Love Train. Let us embrace you. Why stand in the way of a fast moving love train when you can come aboard and ride first class with your brothers and sisters?

Become winners because love always wins over hate. Come walk with us on the Light Side.

Give us a chance to fight you for your love! We don’t want to fight your hate.

Count up (ተደመሩን) with us! Be Force Multipliers for love, forgiveness and reconciliation, not a Force of Darkness.

Stand with us in the shadow of love!

Ethiopia Love Train song

Back in my day, we used to dig the O’Jays. Love Train was one of my favorites.

I don’t know how much young Ethiopians today know of that great rhythm and blues group. I still remember vividly their message of love, peace and unity nearly five decades later.

I dedicate the O’Jay’s “Love Train” song as the perfect soul and love music to honor our journey to our destination upon the hill, “The Beloved Ethiopia”, with Chief  Engineer Abiy Ahmed at the controls of the Ethiopia Love Train.

Let’s all get aboard the Ethiopia Love Train and sang it our way:

People all over Ethiopia (everybody) / Join hands with Abiy
Start a love train, love train/ People all over Ethiopia (all over Ethiopia, now)
Join hands with Abiy (love ride)/ Start a love train (love ride), love train
The next stop that we make will be soon/ Tell all the folks in Oromiya, Gonder, Bahr Dar,
Mekele, Sidama, Afar, Southern Peoples, Benishangul-Gumuz, Harari, Somali and Gambella too/

Don’t you know it’s time to get on board
And let this Ethiopia Love Train keep on riding, riding on through/ Well, well
People all over Ethiopia (you don’t need no money)/ Join hands with Abiy (come on)
Start a love train, love train (don’t need no ticket, come on)/
People all over Ethiopia (Join in, ride this train with Abiy)
Join in (Ride this train, y’all)/ Start a love train (Come on, train), love train

All of you Ethiopian brothers and sisters in America, Europe/ Scattered all over the world
Tell all the Ethiopian folks exiled in South Africa, Saudi Arabia and Israel, too/
Please don’t miss this train at the station/ ‘Cause if you miss it, I feel sorry, sorry for you
Well/ People all over Ethiopia (sisters and brothers)
Join hands with Abiy (join, come on)/ Start a love train (ride this train, y’all), love train (come on)
People all over Ethiopia and in the Diaspora (don’t need no tickets)/ Join hands with Abiy (come on, ride)

Start a love train, love train/ Ride, let it ride
Let it ride/ Let it ride
Ethiopian people, ain’t no war/People all over Ethiopia (on this train)
Join Abiy (ride the train)/ Start a love train, love train (ride the train with Abiy, y’all)
People all over Ethiopia and in the Diaspora (come on)/ Join hands with Abiy (you can ride or stand, yeah)
Start a love train, love train/ People all over Ethiopia (‘round Ethiopia, y’all)
Join hands with Abiy (come on)/Start a love train, love train with Abiy in Ethiopia.

All Aboard Ethiopia Love Train!  እለም አለ የፍርቅ ባቡሩ ሁላችንም ይዞ በሙሉ !

                                                 እንደመር! አንቀነስ! እንባዛ! አንከፈል!

ETHIOPIAWINET TODAY

ETHIOPIAWINET TOMORROW

ETHIOPIAWINET FOREVER!