Famine and politics

27 Nov
One of the largest historical famines (proportional to the affected population) was the Great Famine in Ireland, which began in 1845 and occurred as food was being shipped from Ireland to England because only the English could afford to pay higher prices. 

At the same time the citizens of Ethiopia and Sudan had massive famines in the late-1970s and early-1980s. The democracies of Botswana and Zimbabwe avoided them, despite having worse drops in national food production. In other cases, such as Somalia, famine is a consequence of a failed state.

Ethiopia, which has earned the unhappy honor of being rated the globe’s poorest country by many nations, is still suffering from hunger. According to Richard Pankhurst two books, “An Introduction to the Economic History of Ethiopia” and “Economic History of Ethiopia”. Ethiopia had been visited by hunger and famine for more than 30 times, between 1st half of the 9th century and 1985.

The popular, Time magazine had posted Ethiopia as a front page host in four different occasions and one of them was Dec. 21, 1987 “Famine Hunger stalks Ethiopia once again – and aid groups fear the worst”

It is not a hidden fact that, Ethiopian politician groups tend to impose their unnecessary burden on the poor. It was recalled that TPLF’s former commander, Aregawi Berhe, said in 1985, of $100 million in aid that went through the TPLF, 95 percent went toward purchase of weapons or to support the party within the rebel movement, the Marxist Leninist League of Tigray.

In addition, in a 1985 assessment, the CIA concluded, “Some funds that insurgent organizations are raising for relief operations, as a result of increased world publicity, are almost certainly being diverted for military purposes.”

No matter which political group is accusing the other. I believe, the current 1st decision maker in Ethiopia, Ato Melese should take all necessary measures and initiatives to end this un-ending rival, Famine.

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