Ethiopian army “out of action”, observers say

Source: RFI

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Soldiers of the Tigray Rebel Forces in Mekele. (Photo Illustration).
Soldiers of the Tigray Rebel Forces in Mekele. (Photo Illustration). AFP – YASUYOSHI CHIBA

The Ethiopian army is now “out of action”. That’s the opinion of Matt Bryden, director of Sahan Research and former UN investigator, who adds that the current situation of the federal government is “rather desperate”. For him, the Tigrayan rebellion took advantage both of the poor command of the federal forces “purged of its Tigrayan officers before the start of the war”, but also of the equipment which fell into its hands during its push on Mekele.

The Ethiopian federal government has called on the regions to help, in the face of the surge from the Tigrayian forces fighting it. Oromo, Amhara and Afar civilians have been called upon in recent days to defend Ethiopia with arms in hand. This mobilization according to ethnicity raises fears of an even more violent turn in the war and, according to observers, also reveals that the federal forces are no longer able to fight on their own.

The same goes for William Davison, of the International Crisis Group. For him, the general mobilization of the Oromos, Amharas and Afars is explained by “the military necessity ” and “the urgency of unity ” of Ethiopia in the face of its losses. “The last advantage that Addis Ababa can oppose is the number of soldiers potentially recruited “, he explains “but it is to be feared that this will only result in more deaths and increased ethnic polarization “, he concludes.

► To read also:  Tigray: the Amhara population is mobilizing against the rebel offensive

Militarily, the goal for the government is now to protect the strategic Djibouti-Addis highway, say the two analysts. Its capture by the Tigrayans “would change everything “, according to Matt Bryden. But for William Davison, it is difficult to see how “less trained and less armed ” militiamen  could turn the situation in favor of Abiy Ahmed, after the Tigrayan forces resisted the combined effort of Ethiopia and Eritrea to undo them.


  1. It was the barbaric treatment of the people of Tigray that made them rise up and fight all forces of evil and defeat them. Abiy and company wanted to wipe Tigray and they failed miserably. It was a divine intervention that gave strength, will and know how to punish the invaders.

  2. Oromian are with no doubt fights barbaric Abyi government not anyone else. Abyi picked all Oromo youth from their home, street, market and every where and forcibly load them on lorry for war front.
    I will say do not fight but surrender yourself then fight back the 4killo parliament hyena!!

  3. The director of Sahan Research could add also one important thing: it looks like many soldiers of the Ethiopian army do not have enough motivation to fight and die, or their motivation dwindles quickly. As it happened many times before, despite a huge propagandist turn out, the result of mobilisation will probably not be very significant. Taking part in meetings is a fun, but it is difficult to see Amhara civil servants or Addis Abeba urban youth getting recruited in the army, trained and fighting, save changing the balance. Abiy Ahmed should finally see that his policy failed and look for other ways – smth he had to do months ago.

  4. Abiy is not qualified to lead and manage a country as important as Ethiopia. Everything he has done and the consequences, thereof prove he was the wrong horse to bet on. Everything about him including and BioData is phoney and full of extravagant claims

  5. The war in Tigray brought out the evil that has been long hidden in the country called contemporary Ethiopia. A country recently created through forceful amalgamation of many nationalities with different and opposing national aspirations and purposes. Abiy failed to realize that a country he was touting as unified is nothing more than an oversized asylum holding a destitute population hoping to escape from the asylum. By declaring the genocidal war on the people Tigray he awakened the deep desire of the nationalities to escape from the grip of Amhara chauvinists who have long taken other nationalities for granted.

    Abiy and the so called “Ethiopians” in collaboration with foreign armies, invaded, murdered, looted, robbed and raped the people of Tigray with abandon. Now, after suffering a devastating defeat in Tigray, Abiy and his Amhara cousins are calling Tigrians “cancer, weed,..etc.,”. They have called for extermination of the people of Tigray and are mobilizing the masses for such purpose and the masses are blindly responding to do the evil bidding.

    Will the people of Tigray ever feel safe in Ethiopia again? If Abiy and his Amhara cousins can commit such a heinous crime against Tigray, what will prevent them from doing the same to the Oromo, Benshangul, Gambela, Somali, Sidama, Afar,…etc. All nationalities need to carefully weigh the cons and pros of remaining as a part of Ethiopia. Ethiopia is now like a rabid vipers den, a land of people gone mad. Those who chose to remain in it are doing so at their own peril.

  6. Abiy Ahmed is a mistake from the beginning and should never have become president of an important country like Ethiopia. To save Ethiopia from collapse Abiy should be convinced to resign.

  7. Abiy Ahmed is in his last days or weeks in office. He did everything in his power to force the people in to submission, he failed. He can’t stop TPLF’s advance to Addis. He already lost all bargaining power to negotiate his safe exit. Its over.

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