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Op/Ed

In many ways than few, the Ethiopia of 23 years before look nothing like the Ethiopia of today. Nor should it, under any circumstance, look the same anyway – for better or worse. Fortunately, Ethiopia is a lot better today than it was then; and not without proof. Ethiopia’s absolute command-turned-mixed-economy was a source of pain for its citizens; communist Ethiopia had little space to accommodate its educated youth; and famine was a thing scheduled to strike at a disturbing interval of every few years.Today that Ethiopia has turned the tide upside down and is at a point of no return to that place. That is one reason worth celebrating.

Gordon Brown

By Gordon Brown

LONDON – It has been eight weeks since the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram abducted more than 200 girls from their school dormitories in Chibok, in northern Nigeria’s Borno State. The geopolitical implications are now ramifying across Africa.

Chad, Niger, and Cameroon are being drawn into the crisis, owing to growing suspicion that some of the girls are being held on their territory. And, though a recently signed memorandum of understanding offers Nigeria security assistance from the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and other powers, residents of remote villages in northern Nigeria, fearful of night raids by Boko Haram and running out of food and supplies, are fleeing to mountain caves or bigger towns.

From the print edition

Once again Ethiopia is in the headlines.It is not for its dazzling double digit economic growth, nor for its once familiar tale of famine and poverty that it tries so hard to leave behind, or not even for two consecutive mega state visits by the US Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang; but for its inexplicable and heavy-handed onslaught against three independent journalists and a group of six bloggers, who were detained from their homes on Friday April 25th and Saturday April 26th by plain-clothed security personnel.