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how prepared are the people of Ethiopia to stage a peaceful revolution? Will we succeed or could the country be thrown into chaos?
One would hope we would have learned a thing or two from our Egyptian counterparts and choose the peaceful route. One would also hope the Ethiopian armed forces would be magnanimous enough not to use lethal force on their compatriots.
Like Egypt, Ethiopia has a track record of using plainclothes security personnel, who will stop at nothing to crush dissent. This regime is even willing to foment ethnic and religious strife in order to preempt possible opposition. Given these circumstances, it is absolutely pertinent for activists to take notice of recent events in Egypt, as there is a lot to be learned there.
One of the promising signs of the demonstrations in Egypt has been the people’s ability to remain peaceful while disobedient. For decades, peaceful disobedience has been a proven tactic in bringing some semblance of decency to societies. Interestingly, authoritarian regimes prefer violent dissent, which they are confident of disrupting, as they hold the monopoly in violence.
Imagine the impression it leaves on the Arab world when Muslim and Christian Egyptians march shoulder to shoulder to demand their rights. It is a remarkable achievement when you consider, just a few months ago, these two communities were openly feuding.