Click on a label to read posts from that part of the world.
May 7th 2010 5:18AM Thank you for your prompt response.
While I see your criticism as fair, I must note that your response either misses the point or avoids it altogether. To address your points about me supposedly making assumptions, I'd have to first disagree with you.
Truth is, I never said you have a bias in favor of the Northern tribes. I merely stated that your source of information is incomplete and shows bias--whatever that source may be. Any allusion I made with regard to you personally goes only as far as your apparent affinity for those with whom you've found historical interest and parallel. That, if we are to judge fairly based on your other articles, is more than a mere assumption. Still, affinity for does not necessarily result in bias. To me, addressing that instead of the main issue seems like an unnecessary distraction.
Regarding the second "assumption," if you read what I said carefully, you should notice that what I said was merely that it "seems" like it. I don't know how you would call that an assumption. This is again another trivial point, in my view. Whatever the source of your information is, it's simply inaccurate.
Another thing I'd like to address, since you made a point of mentioning the locals there as one of your sources, is that the average (educated) Ethiopian is notoriously ignorant about Ethiopia's true history. Until very recently, and in many circles even today, there persists a historical fairy tale regarding the origin of the Oromo, ranging from the ridiculous (Madagascar), to the implausible (southern Africa), to the absurd (the sea).
Since much of the source of historical information taught in schools comes from annals of the Orthodox bishops and other historical scribes in the monarchy, such fairy tales have often been promulgated by the educational institutions and consumed by the ignorant public who've been given no reason to think otherwise. Of course what you read isn't directly from there, but that's another topic.
If you ever go back there again, just ask any "expert" on Ethiopian history, let alone your more likely misinformed guides, regarding when the numerically most dominant Ethnic group in the region (numbering 30-35 Million) is supposed to have appeared on the scene. They'll have absolutely no qualms about telling you that they arrived en masse less than 400 years ago from the obscure "south" or Lord knows where, with no trace of them anywhere else on the continent. How any serious person reconciles this with rationale is a mystery to me.
Anyway, my apologies for another lengthy post. I didn't mean to write an essay. But it seemed I had to make these points, even if reading it may take one ad nauseam. Now, going back to the main issue of Addis Abeba, I would still ask that you update your article, unless you have reason to disagree with the alternate account. Plenty of historical reference if you'd like.
Btw, I wouldn't have asked what region your driver/translator is from. It's wrong of you to assume that his region would have mattered to me.
May 6th 2010 10:52PM Mr. McLachlan, while I've enjoyed your series of articles chronicling your recent trip to Ethiopia, I've noticed many instances in a number of your articles that seem to suggest your source of information on Ethiopia to have come from some biased and incomprehensive sources (Wikipedia, it seems, in this instance).
I'm not going to make a list of all the instances where you made historically inaccurate statements, but I feel obliged to make one correction regarding this article. Addis Abeba was not, as claimed in your article, founded by the named empress. It had existed long before that under the name of Finfinne (a name derived from the hot springs, and less formally known as Sheggar).
What the empress' husband did was to merely occupy (through the forced and brutal expulsion of its original inhabitants) it and rename it, as many other places had been renamed following the southern expansion of the empire into Oromian territory (e.g. Adama/Nazret, Bishoftu/Debre Zeit, etc.). It's no accident the names of Addis Abeba's sub-cities like Gullele, Bole-Bulbula, Lafto, Kality-Akaki, Yeka, Mekenisa, etc. still maintain Oromo names.
Not to jump the gun or anything, but just because you seem to have an affinity for the northern tribes doesn't mean you should make careless omissions of important facts; if it is in any way intentional, perhaps even subconsciously.
I kindly request you make this correction accordingly.
Mar 22nd 2010 9:04PM Of course, he also fails to realize that Ethiopia fought off the Italians and maintained its own independence. Ethiopia isn't a nation created by a foreign entity for the sole purpose of emancipating its captives. There's not a relevant correlation between the two to even contemplate a comparison.
Sep 10th 2008 9:47PM lol. This isn't about Assyrians. Assyrians are from the middle east and their invasion of Egypt comes later on.
Sep 10th 2008 9:44PM Ahmose,
You obviously have no grasp of ancient history. "Ethiopia" was in reference to what in acient times the Bible referred to Much of Northern Africa..which by the way includes people of current day Ethiopia and Sudan.
Perhaps you should look up the definition and etymology of the word 'Ethiopia'.