Finally it seems it is sinking in the mind of Ethiopian soldiers who were former TPLF rebels that there is something un-Ethiopian about Prime Minister Meles Zenawi.
The Afar people are no secessionists. Their legitimate claim is "we have been Ethiopians since creation and no force would rob us of our inalienable rights to remain Ethiopians forever."
The only person who is opposed to this fundamental right of the Afar people is, ironically, the prime minister.
Meles has been fighting against the Afar Revolutionary Democratic Unity Front (ARDUF) rebels since he seized power in May 1991.
ARDUF rebels claim their Red Sea-straddling home region has been annexed by Eritrea. When they carried this message to the United Nations in New York City during the so-called Eritrean Referendum in 1993, they met with other diplomats from around the world.
The diplomats confided in the Afar leaders that an Ethiopian leader leading a campaign for the weakening and destruction of an allegedly his own country, a leader who solicits the support of the UN system to turn his country into a landlocked, besieged nation is unheard of, and could be a perfect example to do a lasting damage to the national interests of the Ethiopian people, and pose