Home > poems > Interview with poet Asafa Tefera Dibaba

Interview with poet Asafa Tefera Dibaba

Decorous Decorum (My People) is new English poetry book by Asafa Tefera Dibaba, published last June 2006. The book contains around forty-five poems that the poet says are songs of hope and fear, love and hate, war and peace, of gods and goddesses. The author says the poems are written to deconstruct ‘Their mindless neocolonial discourse.’
‘Their’, apparently referring to the Amharic and Tigrinya speaking highlanders whom the author thinks have subjected the Oromo people to a mere “Subject”. In one of the poems, Assafa says
I have a House
I have no home
I have a Land
I have no country I have a People
I have no Nation
Nor Nationality Or Citizenship
I am subject
I am on Exile
On my Fatherland
I am distracted.
Though I feel there is a tendency of radicalism in Asafa’s writings, considering there had been integration of the Oromo people down the line in the county’s history, I decided to interview him with the intention to create awareness than polemic.
The interview was conducted in an e-mail and there is capitalization that seems out of place which the author uses intentionally and I tried to preserve the form as it is.
By way of introduction, could you say a few words about yourself?
My name is Asafa Tefera Dibaba. Currently, I am teaching Literature in the College of Education, Addis Ababa University, (AAU) and I studied Comparative Literature at the AAU for my MA from 2001 to 2003. I studied English Language Teaching (ELT) at Kotebe College of Teacher Education in1985 and ’86 and later at Addis Ababa University from 1994 to 1997. I completed my secondary School education at Najjo High School, Wallaga in 1983. Born from a farmingfamily in 1967 at Gombo, Jarso District, Wallaga, I have come to become a Poet, unfortunately. So far, I have published five: Edas-edanas (1997, poems in Afan Oromo), Anaan’yaa (1998, poems in Afan Oromo),Danaa (2000, short stories in Afan Oromo), Theorizing the Present (2004, a critical approach to study Oromo Literature), and, now, Decorous Decorum (2006, poems in English).
When did you pick up interest in writing poetry?
Born and bred in the World torn by hunger, by want and disease, in the World besieged by injustice and social evils, we are all Poets—Oral Poets, at least. We recite our fear, our hope, our love, our hate. In every walking human being mooning on this Planet, there are unheard voices, un-echo-ed cries, and untold stories—secrets of the Heart. We all sing of war and peace, of fear and hope, of love and hate et cetera at a Time in History. Our unheard voices are all rooted in Temporal, for Our problem must be considered from the standpoint of Time. And, only Events give us a nudge in Time. We roll on our side and then sleep to the World until the slide of other Events comes and run over us, crush us. We cannot live with or without this unbearable lightness of Our Being!We sing Songs of war and peace, of fear and hope, of love and hate et cetera at a Time in History. How interesting is it to carry fire and water in the same mouth? Our poor Soul is torn in two. We have become soorboof- soorkoo or sam-enna-worq in our very being—a double standard. We are born Poets—unfortunate Poets! Our Ayyana (Spirit) sees from ‘within’ and from ‘without’, double-face, Janus-like. We Rural Boys come to school with the Provincial mind, resistant to change (?). We see the World and learn by judging, not by questioning. We do not pose questions for we are shy. Instead, we poeticize it inside and deliver it. Even so, we react in some way more critically than our fellow Urban Boys (and Girls) and so on. But I do not exactly remember when I picked up poetry as a Purpose—a Serious Purpose. I think it all started when I was teaching at Najjo High School twenty years back.
Why do you write poetry?
Poetry does sting. You sense the pain when you are stung and it never gives you a relief. There it leaves its mark. Just with few words, you can say a lot, and you do not always mean what you say. Sometimes the Intent is not in you, but in the Text. Sometimes not even in the Text, but in the outside social Context. Today Poetry has a dual function: one, to instruct, and, as well, to critique. You, as a Poet, you are a social critic. You cannot remain passive to see and submit to the status quo—unless you are a sellout, an opportunist. In Our case, now, Literature has serious purposes more than ever. In my Theorizing the Present (2004), a critical approach to study Oromo Literature from a sociological viewpoint, I have clearly stressed the purposive function and didactic role of our Literature. In a World driven by exploitation, in a World where humanity is overwhelmed by hunger, disease, want and absolute misery, in a world of inequality and injustice, no criticism can be innocent, no literature can be of purely aesthetic value.
Tell me something about the writings of Decorous Decorum? How was the experience like?
Actually, in my writings, I say many things. First of all, I try to express myself. And, in so doing, I think, I address the feelings of many yawning out there haunted by the nostalgia of the Past good old days. I say today there are things happening wrong, unjust, and inhumane. People suffer in silence very severe hardships in the name of democracy, peace and good governance. I would not say I have covered all that stuff in this thin volume. Nevertheless, I have touched on all those areas in my long poem “My People”. In the Future, if there is Time and World, hope, this madness will relapse and the Idea will proliferate.
In the prologue you talked about ‘their mindless neocolonial discourse .Could you say more on that?
In Decorous Decorum, the alliterative ‘de-‘ is an allusive remark to the de-humanization processes We are put in. It is an attempt to de-mystify the Historicism, the My stification that We have been suffering. It is an organ of the ongoing struggle to ‘de-linking’, ‘de-centring’, ‘de-colonizing’, ‘dis-engaging’ the Self from the bondage and from the mainstream discourse We have grown to experience: the Unity deprived, in its all organic whole, of equality, mutual respect, recognition, and, above all, Common Factor, a shared vision. Before We are united, tolerated Our differences, if any, We cannot talk of Unity with Others. The ‘de-‘ is the language of ‘breaking free’ and separating from a hegemonic Past and Present in a manner that is so decorous, but so curious. It is a search for the will of power through indigenizing the struggle both in its conceptual and empirical manifestations (see the title poem, ‘My People’).
What do you think the role of literature will be in restoring the dignity of the Oromo people, the theme that seems to dominate your writings?
I feel it very important for an African writer to pick up the theme that is African, and, of course, of some universal value to humankind at large. Issues of Freedom, Justice, Peace, and Equality are true to all Mankind. There is this popular theme of Unity in Decorous Decorum, the importance of Uniting our Nation. I tried to stress the need for national unity so that We can curb Our cry for freedom, justice, justice among different strata of people, equality, equality among the nations and nationalities, among Men and Women, among the Haves and the Have-nots (?), an even and lawful distribution of resources, equal job and education opportunities for all, Children’s right…(see “Udaan”). Yes, I think, all that stuff! The form is “a poetic meditation on existence” under lawlessness. In Decorous Decorum, an attempt is made to portray a system that destroys individuality through police investigations and forced confessions. It shows what happens to characters who feel “weightless” because they lack traditional values and ideals of selfhood under harsh unbearable conditions. It addresses the difficulty of maintaining standards of morality and judgment under a government that demands total submission from its citizens. It alludes to human identity in a time of police investigations, forced confessions, and ideological ruthlessness masked as democracy. Previously people used to be happy, or pretended to be happy, when their kraals were full of cattle and grain banks were full of grain deposit from season to season. Then they were farming with an ox-driven plough. Now that we are at the age of mechanized farming, extension package, pesticide, harvesting machine, what have you, who feeds his children from harvest to harvest? Are we poor because We are really poor, or because We lack the gut to direct Our rogue Leaders towards one common goal? In this respect, I would say, the Future would be bleak.
The overwhelming impression I have in reading your poetry is the assertion of the Oromo national sentiment. But your poems are written in English. One understands that there are English speaking Oromo people but won’t it be more down- to- earth to write in a language more intelligible for a common man?
The Oromo can better express himself, I think, in Afan Oromo than in English or in Amharic. But for a wider reader readership, sometimes you happen to pick up English. The problem is you cannot find adequate English or Amharic parallels for some religious and/or institutional words, and for our proverbs and idiomatic expressions. The Oromo writer expressing himself in Afan Oromo feels more at home than when trying to do so in a foreign language or in Amharic. The majority of our audience will more appreciate our works in Afan Oromo than in English or in Amharic. This is so because the language is part of them. First it is the language that they understand, and then the Text or the Intent, next—though the Intent may not wait there in Print. We did not have this Written Literature, Written Poetry before. What we had, we had it all in our memory pool. We are just starting, faltering to root our Literature in Tradition and in the real life situation of the People, et cetera. We are not constructing just a Nation; We are also constructing Our National Literature, where Our National Character will be a spokesperson of Our Common Factor. National Literatures and Nations themselves are believed to be socially constructed under identifiable political and historical circumstances. Overall, in my poems, there is this intergenerational asymmetrical junction I try to refer to. Decorous Decorum is a direct reference to the reluctance of the Age We live in. It is a nonviolent rally against the Quietude, Indifference, and Servitude of the present generation. I am saying, if the Life they live is bad, is it because the Generation lived before them was terrible, reluctant, submissive? What if the Generation hereafter will be worse? The meeting point of Time Past and Time Future is the Present, I think. If We have to act, lets act Temporal. Our grief must end somewhere. That point in Time is Here and Now—the Present!
Who are your literary influences?
My literary influences are Oromo Oral Poets of the traditional and transitional periods: Arero Bosaro and Jarso Waqo of Borana, Sheik Mohammed Xahir and Bakri Saphalo of Harar, Abda Garada of Arsi, Lucha Abba Tuggo of Wallaga, to mention but few. The three periods of Oromo Literature are: the Traditional (the time-free and time-bound) praise songs, historic war songs and pastoral songs; the Transitional protest/prison songs, and the Modern or the Contemporary written literature.
Shall we expect some more collections in the future?
Waaqa willing? Yes. Thanks.
(Decorous Decorum, was published by Artistic Printing press and the price is Birr 15.00 and can be found in many of the bookshops in Addis.)

Categories: poems
  1. Juru Alem
    November 12, 2006 at 7:20 pm

    Oh MY! i never heard of this kind of crap. He’s the # one reason why we don’t have unity in my country right now. This guy is teaching in higher education institue? I hope that he’s not teaching those kids his filthy, bias so called “oromo litrature”. He made a reference being African writer, so it seems that he’s not comfortable to say Ethiopian writer either.

  2. G.
    November 15, 2006 at 2:30 pm

    Juru It is not about being resistan to uinity.It should be on people’s willingness.
    Why should i want to live with you when you are not sensitive to my feelings?

  3. Anonymous
    November 15, 2006 at 2:40 pm

    i’m going to have to agree with the previous commment.We need to learn how to tolerate to each other.
    It is not our fault that some one in the past messed up things.Let us not repeat that.

  4. Juru Alem
    November 18, 2006 at 2:30 pm

    G, i’m sympathatic for the people who were categorized back then as a 2nd class citizens, in the same token what i’m saying is that let’s not reinvent our history or culture. Again, look around (wherever you may be), having radical ideology, hate, views, isn’t going to take us anywhere. It’ll makes us more apart and leave us in CHAOS.

  5. To Assefa
    November 20, 2006 at 2:47 pm

    I agree that many historical injustices were committed against the Oromos and other ethinc nationals.But how justified one would be to consider this in colonialist terms?

  6. kassa
    February 6, 2007 at 6:03 am

    Do you best to popularize one of Ethiopia’s culture…..but not in a way that it ignites hatred.

  7. Asafa T. Dibaba
    February 14, 2007 at 7:44 am

    Dear Juru Who-so-ever,

    When you knew injustice everywhere is justice nowhere, should you write in the Just Thinking unjust? that I doubt you knew…

    I unpretentiously appeal to your Heart to consider the questions to follow, but fairly.

    One, should a Modern American say to his fellow African- American ‘he never owned a slave,’ and, therefore, that is an excuse that there is no way he can be held responsible for Slavery?

    Two, should a young German say to his Jewish contemporary that being born after 1945, what that Nazis did to the then Jews has no any moral relevance now to his relationships to his Jews Contemporaries?

    Three, should the Englishman say he never did anything wrong to Ireland; why bring up that old history as though it had something to do with him?

    Three, should you say to your fellow-Oromo today,
    a) that you are your father’s biological son. Therefore, you cannot be held responsible for whatever wrong your father did to Others unless you choose to assume such responsibility?
    b) that you are legally a citizen of this country, Ethiopia, therefore, you cannot be held responsible for whatever your country does and has done to Others unless you choose to assume such a responsibility?

    To you, the Individualist, the narrative line (-continuum-) of life is one stretched in such a linear fashion between Birth—Life—Death, that you just break the long Narrative merely into three unconnected Scenes: Beginning—Middle—End. Once you have come to this World—not of your own free-will, as it is, then, you eat, you shit, and, you sleep to the world, the sleep to which there will be no End. That is another unbearable lightness of y/our being.

    Now, what should you condemn me for, is my another question: for being born Oromo? for writing in Oromo or in English, and not in Amharic? Or, for my persistent and firm stand to get in your way, spit in your face, when you still attempt to keep the Oromo in shackles and handcuffs? And should you praise those Oromo-born Habasha Writers (the Solomon Dheressa Amante of Sibu, Wallaga, the G/Keristos D. Nagawo of Hararge, the Tsegaye G/Madehen Qawissa of Macha, to mention but few of those who did/do your job) for they always remained loyal to the Imperial legacy of their God Father? Mind me adding one final word: do you know that Abebe Beqila, the Marathon Champion who bore the Ethiopian Flag high in Rome ended up to be Habasha, not Oromo, that Beqila is later found to be only Abebe’s benefactor, not a biological father, thanks to our meek unbiased researcher (see Berhanu Gebeyehu in Encyclopedia Aethiopica, vol. i)?

    Juru Who-so-ever,
    Before you quick to unfasten your lash to defecate, look around. Why you doubt I am an Ethiopian Writer, and claim rather to be an African, when you know very well (?) that the name Ethiopia has nowadays become an Obverse, the Head, and, Africa, only a Tail of the same coin, as it were?

    I am born with a Past to the Present. To detach me from the Past is to deform my Present. Of its uncertainty, unpredictability, the exciting part of the Future is the unknown. If you have no Past, you have no history; you have no confidence in the Present, or hope in the Future.

    Unless you nudge me to add an insult to your wound, you would not have said that…if you care less for the Past, why you beat salvo, jump in joy and ululate over an erect pile of mere granite sent home from Rome? And one more project left for the Abyssinians, I rethink: the Skull of Yohannes II beheaded and taken home by the Darbush at Matamma in 1880. Why not you claim it back?

    Truly truly I say unto you: he that dies doing his duty is a Martyr.

    When the flu of an Owl back your home is much more serious to you than the innocent death of My People, why you think I give you a damn to live with you? Believe me, Oil and Water never mix, you shake it gently but in vain. And only when you get tired, you go and cry over a spilt beer. When you are back, you still find me compose an Oromo Book of Verse—Verse of Freedom. I do that very ‘filthy’ business you call the Oromo Literature…

    Remember, My Baboon. Or, where is your Head, where is your Tail…is no more a Fable.


  8. Juru
    February 19, 2007 at 8:20 pm

    You just made my point beautifully. You’re full of ….You need to loosen up, man!

  9. A.H
    February 23, 2007 at 12:29 pm

    It is sad that we Ethiopians are not still able to do away with the inflammatory, divisive, and infantile attitude of the now morbid left.Instead of facts, figures, and sober analyses, some of us can’t help drumming up charges as facts and using foul languges to present our views.
    Please, let us at least minimize dwelling too much on it or try to present facts not innuendoes.

  10. Juru
    February 24, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    Oh, Well! I’ll leave the historians to tell us what really happened to the different ethnic group back then and now. In my opinion, there’s no scuh comparison between Debiba’s claim about Oromo’s and the Holocust or slavery in America in that matter. We can be emotional about the issues we care about deeply, at the same time, we’ve to be real careful what we’re throwing out there. I felt that he’s in wrong side of history. The guy teaches in higher institute and what i learned from his e-mail response was not promising either and that really, really concerned me what’s he’s upto (that’s way beyond this point, though). Being thought by Nigerian’s is not a bad idea, i guess. Just kidding. To get our point across, we’ve to go beyond hate and blabbing with little we know.

  11. Asafa T. Dibaba
    February 27, 2007 at 6:30 am

    Juru who-so-ever,

    Remember, My Baboon? Are these your words a Bless, you think, or a Blast?
    …..I hope that he’s not teaching those kids his filthy, bias so
    called “oromo litrature”……

    Lets leave the Holocust, lets leave Slavery to History. But what History itself tells us is this: any Injustice done against Humanity is extensible overtime beyond any measure. Unless Generations agree to check its flow, it overflwos and swipes one night. That is, grievance bears revenge and ends in Protest, which leads to a Civil War.

    Can you justify why a filthy thing it is to write or to teach or to learn in Afan Oromo and not in Am-hara-ic? Why is it a bias, My Baboon? Or, why not You mind Your job, if any, and leave Us alone We do Ours (Our many many Assignments before Us)?

    Why you lack a slight sense of Recognition for this People, of what it values–whatever–when you say you have that much CONCERN? Why you lack moral!?

    And, now, you pretend to smear us, to cleanse us with your empty words of CONCERN that the burden of this whole Nation(s) fell on your shoulder?

    Thus, You let Us regurgitate the Past, frawn at the Present and lack confidence in the Future.

    Juru who-so-ever, One has got Personal Identities. Among such personal identites, one is a personal name.

    Understand what you’re saying, and what i’m meaning?

    Only then you learn what i am up to…. Thus guides me my mad Personal Ayyana.

    • Kuru Assefa
      June 2, 2011 at 10:14 am

      Asafa’s poems enlighten poetic fires even to the ungifted common human being. It is not only stingy, but enlightening inded!

  12. Juru
    February 27, 2007 at 11:30 pm

    I don’t why i’m respnding this to you, yes, i’m really concerned about your well being. you need to go personality rehab. ASAP! Your peant brain is poised with hate and unsurprisingly it’s empty. I’ll bring to the Dean a copy of your weblog post and they all learn what kind credibility as a teacher you’ve. Thank God! i’m not taught by a teacher who’s clueless like you. You’re stuck with a below 6 grade level education. Why don’t you line up next to this regime and we would have another 14+ long year to hear how you were “colonolized”. Hope, Melese will keep you on line before that happens. Please, think.

  13. Asafa T. Dibaba
    February 28, 2007 at 11:30 am

    Juru Who-so-ever,

    Treat Others as you would want to be treated.
    And, behave yourself!

  14. Samson
    March 1, 2007 at 10:44 am


    You reminded me of an Amhara lady who jumped up to the sky and nearly crushed herself against a stiff wall when I told her that I am ashamed of what Ethiopia did to me and my distant forefathers and I am not proud of being called Ethiopia. What is sad is that people like you have the audacity to skin intellectuals belonging to other ethnic groups because they have a diametrically opoosite view of their histiography than your view. It also tells us why Ethiopia is at the present predicament. The Amhara poltical establishment is a dead end poltical establishment that never sees its shortcomings and improve in a direction of societal growth, development of inclusiveness of the wide view of the ethnic spectrum of Ethiopia. You failed because you are dogmatic; you and your ancestors failed because you are blind folded by your own ego and disrespect for other ethnic groups. You failed because the Oromo people and others challenged what you had installed for them in your attempt to enslave Ethiopia. You failed because of the greed of your Neftegna fore fathers who could not see the rights of others beyond their fat bellies. You created poltical shenanigans to legitimize your rule. Ethiopia has been on the changing path for the last thirty years away from the highly centralized Amhara dominance to a more accomodative system. We are not there yet, because we are faced with another hegemonic rule. But make no mistake, Ethiopia will come out of its bad past and emerge as a truly Ethiopian state with due respect to all its ethnic group.


    You are the last gasp of the dying Neftegna politicians. Many of your fore runners have now realized what the hell their fore fathers have commited on the larger segment of the Ethiopian people. The time of atonement is not far. Swallow your ugly pride, because it has no place in any oromo heart.

  15. Samson
    March 1, 2007 at 1:37 pm

    To Obbo Asafa,

    You are gifted and I encourage you enlighten us more. You have a unique potential and a field that is very open for Oromo’s growth. If the critics believe that Oromo’s literary growth is anathema to their possessiveness of the wilderness, you cannot move an inch. You are testament to the strength of the inner will even when all are stuck against you as a people and a systematic effort to kill Oromo’s identity, culture, literature, language for the last hundred years. Contemporary Oromo’s effort is to assert what is theirs and to cast away what is not theirs as if a host throws away an uncompromising host. All we need is ours and ours only and let the leeches be washed away.
    I encourage you to continue more vigourously as you are our idol and you are laying ground for the next generation of Oromos growing in Orommuma.

  16. Manooyee
    March 1, 2007 at 3:30 pm

    To Obbo Asafa,

    CONGRATULATE my hero my idol.” keep pushing…Sisaye Ibsaa

  17. Tem
    March 1, 2007 at 6:25 pm

    It clear that good news travels so slow but I hear you loud and clear fast. Well done my friend. For the hard fan Ethiopians- silencing their critics bear the same similarities and characteristics be it on a discussion forum or any other arena. Labeling their critic as anti-Ethiopia is easy and working to get to the power and to stay in power. But, hasn’t done much for most of the Ethiopians, still in poverty and misery to say the least. Winning true social fairness and equality is not easy, but, as Far as we have individuals like you, with this kind of caliber is achievable. Stay on your topic and do your thing. Regardless of their criticism and intimidation transformation in governance, empowering and freeing Oromo from political injustices needs your poet.

  18. Samson
    March 2, 2007 at 12:01 am


    Where else do you expect us to go. Ethiopia is at the bottom of the economic ladder among the 170 UN recognized countries and Ethiopiua stands at 165, I guess. Oromos are trying to get out of the mysery that you and your nefetgas has put the whole nation. There is no more down ward, you have accomplished that with your “ingenuous” creations.
    Have a bone and, for once, atone to your crimes to humanity in the spirit of reconciliation.

  19. Tolosa
    March 10, 2007 at 1:27 am

    I agree with Juru!!! I love you Juru!!!!!!!! You’re a realistic person. That’s was in the past and let’s move on together. Let’s not distort our history and creat hate by blaming one another.

  20. Juru
    March 15, 2007 at 11:17 pm

    Thanks. Peace out!

  21. gurracho
    March 18, 2007 at 7:18 am

    everyone speaks what one feels. but some point at others unable to see the truth. insult, i think, means nothing except it reflects the one who insults. i see the image of the guy who talks about crapping crapping him-/her-self turning the divided buttock to the public. please, be advised to put leaves on. it’s better, i think, to critically evaluate what we’re saying and doing, even though we are doing in disguise. ‘i know everything’ is the problem we have throughout the history. please let’s have a learning mind. let’s get rid of the sport ‘ballebet hid!’ let learn sporting forward.
    thank you.

  22. benny_01
    June 7, 2007 at 5:23 am

    Dear Asafa T. Dibaba,
    Interesting start but why do you have to take it political.You are telling to the world there is an oromo nation? Are not you lying to the world?

  23. Ato Gaalata
    June 7, 2007 at 6:32 am

    Dear Asafa T Dibaba,

    Do you know the Oromo People committed untold crime to the people of the south Ethiopia? What do you say about that? People other than oromo under Aba Jiffar rule!

    In fact be it in Abyssinia or Ethiopia long history, most head of state be it Emperor or defacto emperor, one way or another an oromo. Even during zemene mensafent the yeju ( yeejuu) oromos where ruling the country.

    In fact if blame is the game of the day, Oromo rulers committed more attrocities than abyssinians!

  24. Lammi
    June 7, 2007 at 8:49 pm

    i ma sad for people like juru and his collegues. you talk of ethiopia being three thousand years old. If that is true, it was people with your particular thinking that made this empire the oldest but tail of the world. Shame on you. you have no moral to insalt Asefa T.

  25. Iwunatu Yiwuxa
    June 11, 2007 at 8:01 am

    Viva Asaffa,

    I read the comments of Juru and the likes on Asaffa’s article. I am really ashamed of these people who are echoing false propaganda they inherited from their neftenga forefathers. Though they seem to have been educated, their minds didn’t change as such. Spritually they are like their illiterate forefather who by virtue of amassing Europen weapons defeated oromo0 and the other oppressed peole of the Horn of Africa.

    When do these peole accept the reality? I think it won’t be so far.

    Let God tell them to accept the reality and create peace with the peole they colonized for a centry.

  26. Iwunatu Yiwuxa
    June 11, 2007 at 9:09 am

    To Gaalata

    Let me take your last words as you put it. “In fact if blame is the game of the day, Oromo rulers committed more attrocities than abyssinians!”. You mentioned Abba Jifaar as one of the Oromo rulers who committed crime against the southerners more than the Abbysinians. But I konw that Oromo and southern people are living side by side with out major incidence of tehe crimes that you mentioned. Of course, what can not be denied is that there could be conflicts between people licing side by side on some issues: resource utilization like water, pasture, etc. Even in this respect, as all them are fighting with similar weapons I don’t think that the crime you magnified may not occur to the degree you indicated. Do you know that one of Abba Jifar’s wife was from Yem. And I heard that these two people (Oromo and Yem) were peacefull leiving together and has respect for Abba Jifar as their king.

    I fear that what you said aboe is simply to equate the Orom rulers with that of the Abbysinians. Normally, I don’t think that the one aremd with Europeans rifels who had European advisers and the traditional Oromo Lorda equal.

    Please come to your mind and try to think logically. Don’t simply utter words for the sake fo saying and pleasing your Abbysinian bosses.


  27. June 22, 2007 at 8:42 pm

    I do have heartedly appriciation for your being so, please don’t discriminate oromo’s people, I can say few……………………, since I had been at Jimma TTC Jungle in the near past , hadaraa Waaqaa! oromoo ija takkaan ilaali

  28. Mako
    June 25, 2007 at 3:44 am

    Assefa, may God (Waaqa) bless your soul. You are where you should be. Teacher of literature at the heartland of your country’s best university. Please keep up your good work. I wish you had a webpage where we could sometimes meet you online and learn from your deep knowledge. You’re the future of justice loving people. Never let yourself to be bruised by their sharp tongue.

    I am glad that you wasted your time teaching the sharp-tongued… it seems they learned a lot from you.


  29. bishiriqaa
    August 5, 2007 at 7:29 am

    Obbo Asafaa:

    yoo ayyaanni dhalatu;

    kuun gammadee ililcha

    kuun dammaqee didicha.

  30. Wenutinya
    November 15, 2007 at 1:45 am

    This guy is not an intellectual. He is some guy who writes incoherently (in any language I would guess). He is the worst of the worst: an opportunist who changes history to suit his needs.

    Tell me, what fate has the common Oromo peasant faced that the Amhara, Tigrinya, Guraginya or any other group has not faced. This is a farce. Of the millions of Ethiopians that have lived through the millenia only about 250 have been crowned Emperor and have enjoyed that pomp and privilege that entails. The rest of us are just hard working, family oriented people who want to live out our lives in fear of God and in peace. But people like you are easily brain washed and now try to brain wash others. In the end, the truth always comes out. Asafa, you are an intellectual midget. Equivalent to a child.

    All Ethiopians have suffered at the hands of poverty, war and instability. I am tired of a few people from some ethnic group saying they were treated poorly.

    Asafa, you have to do better than this.

  31. Hidar
    November 15, 2007 at 9:36 am

    To Wentuniya,
    Are you saying that the Amharas and the Tigreas were denied of thier rights of using thier own languages? Haven’t they been promoting thier culture freely while others were made to be ashamed of it?
    As recent years as years the Derg yeares, the Oromo people were refered with a vulgar name that I don’t like to repeat here.
    There might have been some changes in recent years but they are too little and too late.

  32. Poet Asefa, Yibertu!
    November 23, 2007 at 2:22 am

    Juru or Jilu?

    “I’ll bring to the Dean a copy of your weblog post and they all learn what kind credibility as a teacher you’ve.”

    This comment of yours shows how a little man you are!

    Endante ayinet dekamoch (dedeboch) meweyayet siyakitachew, wede masferarat yigebalu. If i were you, I would be ashamed of myself for writing such a garbage. When do we learn to welcome different opinions.

    That country is going to hell because of individuals like you who have a mind of a dictator.

    And you advocate for “unity” when you are not even able to accommodate different perspectives. Wake up.

    So Jilu go and le-“dean”-u Akatir. Akatari.

    To Poet Asefa:

    Thank you for your polite responses….that shows your maturity.

    I hope to read your books sometime soon.

    • Asafa T. Dibaba
      June 30, 2009 at 8:56 am

      My Dear,

      These people have no sense of ‘SAFUU / Morality.’ That lack leaves them stuck in Animism, far back, wiz zeir monolithic perception.

      Leave zem back.

  33. Asafa the Great!
    December 19, 2007 at 8:52 am

    Thanks Brother for telling the fact without getting into the dirty talks of poor Neftegnas.

    The one thing that amazes mose about Amharas most is, their not being ashamed all the crises they subjected us all these years. You had a chance to change the country to a better situation, and you yourself claim to have that chance for 3000 years. But at the end of the 3000 years, we are witnessing where we are now mostly because of the system you created.

    As to the suppression of oromos and other nations, it is on;y 17 years since it become a normal thing to speak in public with afaan Oromo.

    But the Good things is Oromo youth are learning fast and there is no turning back. My dear poor Neftegnas your time is over never to come again.

    Keep on the Good work, Prof. Asafa

  34. Boree
    January 23, 2008 at 8:27 am

    I always hate people with unrestricted desire to rule others.If they could not escape from the instinct behavour to rule others they are necessarliy endowed with instnict behavoiur.Asefa, in true sense, if we are out of animalistic camp ,he is not a man to be critsised.He is not against unity.He always cry for unity. But un dessoved freedom,justice and integerity is his common and sacred words. Really an intellect word. Who have ever cried more than him for humanity- its fundation ,justice, equality,and being than becoming.

    Those who have given negative refelection up on him are nerally grown up in “empty shell famliy’ or a community with out moral integrity and rootless society.Who do not give care for the county as well as for humanity.He is really a teacher. Not Daftara.Who speaks english withs Geez dialect. Hvae you ever noticed your fellows ” professors’ the way the speak english. It is as foul as your society’ flesh body.

  35. Seenaa
    January 24, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    Dear Asaffaa

    A big thank you obbo A. Dibaabaa! You really deserve our appreciation! Please keep up the good work! We have a huge homework to do and we have lost toooo much time! Encourage our Oromo youngsters to write the many unwritten fables, stories etc … of Oromia bal’oo from Sololo to Walloo, from Beegii to Jijjigaa!

    Heedduu galatoomi! Oromoof bu’aa guddaa buusaa jirta, nuuf jaabaadhu. Addaggee fi kashalabbee waliin mataa of hin dhukkubsiin, jiruu heeddutu si eega! Oromiyaan si galateeffatti.


  36. Boree
    January 24, 2008 at 2:45 pm

    Assee Hudee Oromoo. I would again thank you. Please I would like to take this chance to appreciate you students to write their MA thesis in line with yours. As my fiend has just said drive through the breadth and the width of the land of Oromiya. What matters if your parents have born person like you. I mean identical twins. Few in age buy immense in idea, Asse, Hundee deserves great attention from Oromo people. I always read again read his book Decorous Decorum I hate my people, it makes me always restless. If many Oromo WOULD HAVE BEEN READ THAT BOOK, WE COUD HAVE A HOUSE AND A HOME, A LAND AND COUNTRY.

    Thank again my Hundee

  37. Gurmeesa Mo'aa
    March 3, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    Asafa Dibaba,
    Tell the truth the way it is. These people who glorify themselves are dusts of history. They are blind people who do not see that their days of self-glorification are numbered. Their Meles is a dead horse who is surviving by killing Oromos. The Habashas think that insulting and killing people are heroism. They are intellectual dawrfs, and do not dare to see an intellectual star like you. You are the product of Oromummaa, and you are not an individual. These idiots do not understand this reality. By their empty and abuse words, they want stop Oromo heroes like you. Keep up with your knowledge of liberation. Please continue to dismantle Ethiopian racism and terrorism.

  38. March 3, 2008 at 6:13 pm

    baga dhalatte Asaffaa! ilmi gumaa hin baafne hin dhalatiin dhalates hin guddatiin jedha Oromoon.Atis baga seenaa Oromoodhokate ykn kan jallate baga hamma dandeessu ifa baafte.Gochikee Oromoof gammachuu
    halagaafimmoo balaa dha.Ati jabaadhu fayyaa siif haa kennun siin jedha.

  39. M2008
    March 4, 2008 at 12:19 am


    I don’t understand what the fuss is all about. Is it because a guy by the name of Asafa Tefera Dibaba wrote few lines of poetry in Afan Oromo? What is wrong with that? Or with writing more lines in English? He may even write in Amharic. I take it that he is an intellectual and is not out to ethnicize knowledge!

    I don’t understand why our country will break up because someone wrote poetry in his mother tongue. It should be the other way around; that is, a nation’s demise is proportional to the level of illiteracy and censorship. In short, self-expression is by far better than silence.

    Perhaps what we need to do is learn Afan Oromo so we can read and understand what the poet is trying to tell us about death, war, love, etc. And we should be rejoicing because someone chose to contribute to our understanding of self and others from a uniquely different point of view.

    If Asafa is a poet/intellectual worth his salt, he should have his poems also in Amharic. His ultimate concern should not be limited to the Oromo but to all of humanity; not to degrade but to ennoble. And that includes Amharas, the Oromo, Tigrayans, African Americans, Caucasians, etc.

  40. H. T. Dhugo
    October 18, 2008 at 11:09 am

    Hi Folks!

    In his poems entitled “My People (Decorous Decorum)” Asafa (2006) lucidly expresses and brings to attention the political silence of the Oromo while and after the May 2005 “elections” despite the no-gain of the people from the “elections” both quantitatively and qualitatively. The poems are the profound reflections of the versatility and professionalism of the poet in pulling together his personal, political, linguistic, cultural and poetic resources. Linguistic beauty of the poem is shown in the poet’s contextual use of Afan Oromo dictions in English sentences. A myriad of Oromo words are seen in the poems which are philosophically value laden; are very much in use by Gadamojjiis and Elders with crystallized experiences. Instances of such a language include words such as Faarsaa, Geerarsaa, Malkaa Irreessaa, Hora Arsadii,Finna, Hoo’u-qubaa, Heera
    and Seeraa and so on. They make greater senses when looked at from context in the poem itself. Of course, there are Greek and Roman vocabularies intertwined in the lines of the poem beautifully.

    In the content it appears that he criticizes the present silence of the Oromo
    People which is arguably absolutely contrary to the deadly circumstances in which they are caught and are stifled. On this ground, he urges for an immediate withdrawal from this passive state of mind and physique.

    In the opening stanzas a between the line comprehension shows he satirizes the quietude though it appears he is extolling it. In stanza 3 the poet likens the depth and breadth of the present silence to “Malkaa Irreessaa” , “Hora Arsadii and Waqaa”. He speaks of the people as the appropriate beings to tell its plights during what is described in the poem as “these long nights”. In the next stanza the poet presents the disparaging views of aliens to the Oromo and its movements. In stanza 5, 6 and 7 he suggests that there is a critical step to be taken by the people: “when the road taken is wrong, the road not taken is right”
    (Asafa 2005:3).

    Most striking to me, in stanza 23(P.7) the poet invites his people to make
    weapons with which to fight for the injustices in Biyya Oromo out of his physical being. This alludes that everyone must present himself as a price for freedom rather than praying to stay alive to see a free Oromia. This stanza is one of the few stanzas that stand out from the whole poem and containing the overwhelming theme of the poem:

    better later than never, My people.
    make a bow and arrow out of my bone
    make a string and sling out of my skin
    make storm out of my anger
    and tempest out of my tear and blood
    make mud out of my flesh
    make glue out of my sweat
    and protect this Land, bond this Nation
    before you die. If we are not living,
    then why not We die? (7)

    In the foregoing sections of his poems, the poet exposes the corrupt
    characteristics of the people namely making ‘love with concubines’, ‘settling disputes and appeasing gods’ and ‘effervescing on fabulous feast’. In the wake of these preoccupations with their corrupt behaviors they could not respond to timely calls of struggling for survival and fatherland. In stanza 23, however, he overwhelmingly emphasizes that they must stop all forms of corrupt behaviors contributing to their passivity and in return leading to the postponement of the “an ended quest”-Reforming the Oromo Nation and protecting it. Otherwise the plights, disillusionments, destructions, exploitations and suppressions will endure on the people. The ironical state of having a house and no home, having a land and no country, having a people and having no nation nor nationality and having
    no citizenship will prevail producing more subjects, exiles, and distractedness in the Fatherland of the Oromo people:

    I have a House
    I have no Home
    I have a Land
    I have no Country
    I have a People
    I have no Nation
    nor Nationality
    or Citizenship-
    I am Subject
    I am on Exile
    on my Fatherland,
    My people,
    where is my Home
    what is my country
    Who am I?
    or, what is the difference? (10)

    (Asafa Dibaba 2006).

    Overall, Asafa seems to speak in the poems that it is only possible to have a home, a country, a nation, Nationality and Citizenship if only one comes back and examines ones conscience and takes pragmatic actions to possess all that are naturally his/hers including his/her life an

  41. nufyad
    December 12, 2008 at 10:29 am


    There is no way for me to know whether I will be properly understood, My People, but it is my duty to write and reach out to you. For you know that we are going through a time of great destructions and disturbances. You also know our life is a challenging and often unfair struggle. We all know that many a time we have wished in our dreams, in our desires, in our hopes and prayers, to be freed of this crushing fatality that is turning our life into a bizarre and an endless row of pitfalls and failures.

    This is why today I am writing to you, My People, another non-binding, unrestricted offer, after I once lashed into you in my Decorous Decorum (2006). Here again I am not to bring love and affection to you, but to make an ever glowing Fire in your chest that no power on earth shall extinguish.

    When freedom is not free, My People, Power is expressed as a Control, not as a Discipline!

    Biopower is a form of power that regulates social life from its interior. It follows, interprets, absorbs social life. Every individual embraces and reactivates Biopower of his or her own accord. Its primary task is to administer life. Biopower thus refers to a situation in which what is directly at stake in power is the production and reproduction of life itself.

    According to the co-authors of Empire (2000), Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, biopolitical power is expressed as a control, not a discipline. It extends through the depths of consciousness and bodies of the population and across the entirety of social relations. In global pancapitalism, we live in a society of control rather than a society of discipline. In the society of control, biopolitical power comprises the whole of society; it produces the social body, and our individual bodies. It is the ground of all productivity and therefore the ground of life. Within the society of control “power is exercised through machines that directly organize the brains (in communication systems, information networks, etc.) and bodies (through welfare systems, monitored activities, etc) toward a state of autonomous alienation from the sense of life and desire for creativity.” Under global capital, Biopower mostly creates wealth and power for others and is not under individual control.

    Biopower manifests or express itself in our everyday lives! Our labor and what we do for a “living”—whether manual or bodily (agricultural, factory), mental/intellectual (knowledge work, immaterial labor), and affective (emotional, service, maintenance of self, family, community)—can be said to be a product or expression of Biopower.

    In his final books the French Philosopher Michael Foucault works with a system of control, not understood by traditional concepts of authority, which he calls bio-power. Bio-power can be understood as the prerogative of the state to “make live and let die”, which is distinct from the rule of sovereign power which would “let live and make die”. This attitude toward the lives of social subjects is a way of understanding the new formation of power in Western society. By Foucault’s book CARE OF THE SELF (1984), pleasure is found in regulation and self-discipline rather than in libertine or permissive conduct. Pleasure also encourages resistance to the state through the development of individual ethics towards the production of an admirable life (one can see my web on Oromo Morality at http://www.buzzle.com/articles/asafa-dibaba-and-the-prevalence-of-the-oromo-moral-order.html).

    You all remember that unless you recognize yourself in what I just said, there is no use for you in reading me any further. If this is the case, please accept my apologies for intruding into your life and don’t read me to the very end. And apologies to too many of you who are violent in your words against any substantive Injustices imposed on our people but reformist in your deeds, or mediators. Yes, you think you have got a lot to lose if violent, and better you remain a mediator. Let the Peasant and the Youth and our Students get stifled in the smoke for they have nothing to lose now but got to gain everything at the crack of dawn, particularly Freedom!

    When Freedom is not free!

    But if, my people, as I do feel, you have a difficult situation, whatever the reason, if you feel you are hopelessly stuck in this infernal mire of ill-fortune, if you are determined to stop living entrenched in difficulties of every kind, then why not you join hand in hand, take over the Cause, own your Noble Cause—you remain dispossessed otherwise—and deliver yourself safely out of this fatality that embraces you in its vicious arms and keeps you away from a life of harmony, a life of fullness, happiness, safety, and love for those who truly matter to you?!

    Just one simple word, My People. When Freedom is not free, you will certainly ask yourself how consequential this narrative may be. Indeed, is it not surprising to hear such a discourse offering an immediate assistance for our destructed cause? You must know, My People, that our entire life has been dedicated to helping the poor, the needy, those in suffering, those overlooked by good fortune. Now we have nothing else, My People, but the courage to move on and struggle in a cruel and unfriendly world, a world built on inequity and injustice, ever since we happened to be in this Empire. We see our people starving, freezing, stricken with illness, homeless, jobless – and you have to know to what lengths we need go to soften their life of misery, My People. Think of those thrown behind the bar, without fair charge. Think of our Youth dismissed from school and universities forced to flee their country, but to go where? And for how long you remain silent, reluctant, reformist, when you see the day counts, and still stuck in darkness?

    For those of you who have no Vision, Dream, or Purpose in Life, your life has been devoid of reflection, meditation and contemplation. Watch out, where you are and where to! The great beyond has given us the power to foretell events and act to prevent harmful and devastating consequences. When that Immediate Complementarily with our Ancestors breaks, we came to be in this wrong track! I am writing to you, My People, this my Free Horoscope that I had to write to you, as a Poet has to write to all Mankind, to those who are going through times of grievance, plagued by lack of freedom, problems of all kinds, sentimental setbacks, and loneliness.

    My People, it’s true, our desperate situation in which we find ourselves stuck today would not work out only in a matter of time. For we have already contributed much into the Problem, then we are not even on the verge of clearing what are the internally motivated factors and what are the externally induced ones inflicted on us by Others, etc. This very fact has caused my humble recognition to travel well beyond geographical boundaries, to My People living wretched in this Empire, and to those living and working in Diaspora hunted by the muffled voices of the citizens back home, without me ever paying any importance to it.

    And still, I am but a humble servant of my Cause, that our Common Factor we once vowed Kaawoo Qabna! Kaawoo Qabna!

    Yes we have this Noble Cause to serve, namely, that in a Free Nation, in a Free Country of peace, democracy and abundance, on Oromoland, Oromia, the torch of Endurance, Perseverance and Commitment and Action shall remain glow to Mankind!

    When Freedom is not free, My People, the answer is YES but what is the QUESTION?!

    When Freedom is not free!

    (Please see http://www.californiachronicle.com/articles/80275)

  42. rashe
    March 18, 2009 at 6:21 pm

    Be Rational, for all who have willing to learn in others reference,be positive . Could’nt have right to explain his feeling? i feel, i felt , i found, remind ur self

  43. Nufyad
    June 1, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    Asafa says

    From whose vantage point you tell me to be ‘Rational”?

    I am saying We are Different: One is a “No-saying” Martyr, the Other is a “Yes-saying” Slave, to repeat Nietzsche’s Genealogy of Morality in the non-Nietzschean context. The No-saying is the Man who’s innate desire is always seeking Justice if not Victim him/herself, but the One when it comes to the collective shared experience.

    The Yes-saying is the Animal who lives only on fulfilling his bestial vices, benefitting out of the Human evils, the status quo he struggles to maintain. Anyone voicing, verbalizing those predicaments, though the voices are crippled by the fear of the consequences, struggling to exact social justice is IRRATIONAL to the Yes-saying Animal crooked by the immediate need like you?

  44. Alanfataa Roorroo
    June 23, 2009 at 11:08 am

    Bravo Asafaa! You are exposing whtat you and your nation are forced to taste. Each of your statements becomes the best medcine for those adicted to sucking Oromo blood. Those hynas remains scraching Oromo flash like Juru still wanted to continue what their anscestor had done on Oromo.
    Juru , it is better for you if you not attempt to write about justice being endorsed with in injustice. You attemted to defend what does not concern you. What relation do you have with Cush Ethiopia. Have you forgotten that you are the descendent of poverty driven immigrants from South Arabia. Rather You are not luck not to be taught by instructors like Asafa who frankly tell who you are. You are unlucky that your mind is filled with the rubish materials collected by your letter literate instructors. It is better for you to keep silent to save your roaring hyanas in Oromo land. Are you provoking your anscesters deeds at chalanqo and Anolee? That will not happen on Oromo again; but wait for the reverse.

  45. reosque
    June 23, 2009 at 11:34 am

    serena ryder casino nova scotia samtown casino shreveport la seneca casino falls .sunglasses in casino royale odawa casino packages atlantis hotel casino las vega casino map .vega casino houghton park casino .new world casino john mccain casino incident lennon casino stardust hotel and casino las vegas .must be island casino longview .it called .may be .could is focused on sky ute casino shuttle hotel casino in san diego ought to Here you search goldvictory casino sometime party city casino no deposit bonus krugersdorp casino You search here burswood casino accommodation as a result of now inside ohio casino issue 6 sharm el sheikh casino should not I need dads casino night The telefono casino monte picayo spirit mountain casino buffett monte casino il grande Ok, here hard rock casino in las vegas genting casino valley view casino yelp colma casino More information on adware casino Links
    paying tax on casino winnings bus foxwoods casino .The best Other seneca niagara casino is focused on littlewoods casino promo code Links carnival casino .Is the .it contain .wathc often la lumiere casino plenty jackpots casino compare The bangor casino The best of casino free goldbetting casino loutraki casino ballys casino resort I need new mexico resort and casino above this .

  46. Asafa
    June 25, 2009 at 5:21 am


    …..”sheikh casino should not I need dads casino night,…”




  47. Asafa T. Dibaba
    June 30, 2009 at 8:26 am

    Hi, Hypocrites,

    “Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you’re a man, you take it.”

    Malcolm X

    See this Interview and guess WHAT!

    VF: Your name became popular among some Ethiopian internet forum participants lately because of your writings on the history of the Horn of Africa and the Middle East regions. Many participants in the forum have tried to characterize you with different groups such as Islamic fundamentalism, member of Egyptian intelligence, member of Al Qa’ eda, enemy of Ethiopia, hired by the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF). How do you define yourself as far as what you stand for goes?

    Prof: I have no contact with all these numerous groups that are in conflict with one another! I expressed – not very much until now but enough I think – a resolute rejection of the Islamic fundamentalism and extremism. I consider this movement’ s various branches have long been manipulated by colonial powers, France and England. I do not consider anyone belonging or accepting such groups, ideas, and strategies as a real Muslim. They are miserable victims that help in professionally and irreversibly denigrating Islam; you can call them anything from puppets to Satanists. Hatred, you know, is particular to Satan, according to all the religions of the world! If we go back to Ancient Egypt, we learn that the anger, the extremely negative expression, the hysteria in the discourse are all indications that the person in question has been ‘ invaded’ , possessed if you like, by Seth, the ancient Egyptian ‘ Satan’ . Now, when I hear some ‘ sheikhs’ in delirium during their supposed ‘ khutbah’ , the Friday prayer sermon, my mind goes to Seth! I do not have anything in common with them!

    Member of the Egyptian intelligence? This is a funny reproach, since I have always criticized strongly the present state of Egypt; what I have repeatedly published about Pan-Arabism, denouncing this falsehood as colonial tool of infiltration and destruction, contravenes the basic interests of present day Egypt! How can I work for a country the policies of which I strongly refute?

    Enemy of Abyssinia? I was never! And why should I be? Enemy of the Ethiopia of the Ancient Greeks and Romans, i.e. the area of present day Northern and Eastern Sudan? Why? I loved, studied, and explored the area, as much as I loved Axumite Abyssinia. I passed exams on Gueze texts at Sorbonne with Maxime Rodinson. Why hate? Simply, I specified what is correct as a term for the national name of the country that has its capital in a city that they do not call after its original and true name, Finfinne, but they name ‘ Addis Ababa’ . The real name for that country is Abyssinia. Period.

    Hired by the OLF? Well, this is also funny! First of all, there should not be an Oromo Liberation Front; the Oromo people have their own right to self-determination. As the majority in the existing country, Oromos must form the bulk of the army officers, the administration personnel, and the academia. Oromo language must be the official language of the country. Amharic is the language of a minority; it does not have the status of a national language. Second, I do not think that the OLF would seriously hire any scholar who never studied either Oromo language or any other modern Khammitic language, Berberic, Haussa, etc! Why for instance should the OLF hire an Egyptologist? It makes no sense. That is if the OLF, or any Liberation Front, hires a scholar whatsoever!

    How do I define myself? Well, in this regard, I am what I have always been, namely a Historian, Orientalist, Egyptologist, who studied the Ancient History of the Red Sea and the Eastern coast of Africa, as well as the navigation and the trade from Egypt to India. An Egyptologist who explored in-depth Ancient Sudan, that is Ethiopia of the Ancient Greeks, someone who visited and carefully studied almost all the archeological sites of Northern and Eastern Sudan. An Egyptologist who reached Punt – Somalia, out of his love for the famous text ‘ Expedition to Punt’ by Queen Hatshepsut!

    VF: You have a very impressive knowledge of history in general and the history of the Middle East and Horn of Africa regions in particular. In your discussions, you seem to focus on historical identity than current reality. For example, you have indicated that several nations in the Arab League have non-Arab identity from history’ s perspective, but identify themselves as Arabs. Some contemporary scholars argue in favor of judging people on their own merits. How can we bring together such differing views?

    Prof: Well! Good question! We will never! We must go back to the origin of the two approaches; we will never bring together, we will never merge, we will never mix Voltaire with Rousseau! These two 18th c. philosophers are like oil and water! You opt for this or you choose that! This is all! Well, this is all, as far as the intellectual, philosophical and academic spheres are concerned. But when it comes to politics, the transplantation of the predicament means just wars, wars, and wars! Thousands, millions of dead and invalid people, just for the search of a chimera! I believe that with the maturity of the 20th c. we came to understand that if the Chinese think they are Chinese, and at the same time the Indians think they are Chinese too, then perhaps we should search another planet to settle on! It is not that tragic, but we simply cannot, the Mankind cannot afford another war for identity purposes, whenever the identity becomes the field of demagogic, irrelevant politicians manipulated by the merchants of the nations. That is why I believe that it is very serious and very responsible academic an attitude to dismantle forever the disastrous spectrum of the Pan-Arabism. At this moment, I prepare a long series of articles on the subject. Bear in mind that before it touches politics, it exercises a tremendous impact on the social development, and creates its own dynamics. A false identity means always a permanent underdevelopment. Furthermore, it is not an issue for disputes only! When an entire people identifies erroneously its past, let it be with a people that does not exist anymore, when a people attempts to acquire an undisputed identity that is not his, the door opens for ideological extremes, political myths and ideological inconsistencies that lead to very dangerous fields. You cannot identify yourself today with the ancient Sumerians – an unclaimed identity – and go unpunished! Side effects will lead to ideological extremes. There is no innocence in such a claim!

    But after all, what are the leading countries of the world? The answer is simple: those where people who know best and more accurately their past. Self-knowledge is essential for a person, and consequently for a people.

  48. Alanfataa roorroo
    July 1, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    Many modern Abyysinians whose thinking is not released from their ancestors of Menelik period are shouting for the unity under Amharic langauge , Orthodox Christianity and Amhara workers dominance. Specially their Amharic which they thought never develop unless Oromo langauge is eliminated. In this week such people are making hot debate on ETV to which the Oromo people pay majorty of the taxation to it. What so ever they are to do things may be bad for the like people living in Oromia. The Oromo nevewr submit their freedom again to such trush, bull minded, over eaters and barbarsim. Surprisingly what they are doing is what leads the Oromoi to declare their total indepedence. We are ready to counter attack them. Many Oromos like Asfaa is coming out of their educational duties.

  49. June 12, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    Great message!

  50. September 26, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    Profesor Asafa T.Dibaba
    You are philosophical & Critical person. Go to the end and Your God is marching on!!

  51. OBAK
    December 28, 2011 at 6:10 am

    there is no knowledge than knowing yourself. Asafa knows himself very well ,but people like juru never do that .they will float on identity crisis that their father imposed on them.being a literature student, I cannot see people saying oromo literature as if oromos red necked. but the reality is that we are ……………………

  1. May 17, 2008 at 5:45 pm
  2. November 8, 2008 at 12:10 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: