Sunday, July 21, 2013

Shinn Interview with Awramba Times

The Awramba Times interviewed me on 5 July 2013. The hour long program moderated by Dawit Kebede and Yared Tibebu aired on 21 July 2013. Issues covered included Ethiopia-US relations, Meles Zenawi, Hailemariam Desalegn, President Obama's trip to Africa, Susan Rice, China-Africa relations, Nile water, Renaissance Dam, Egypt, human rights, neocolonialism and ethnic politics.

1 comment:

  1. I listened to the interview. Professor Shinn , unarguably, is on top of almost all the issues raised. The journalists could appear more professional both interms of presentation and substance as well as having more updates on Ethiopia. I would not write these lines should Yared and Dawit have done their homework before they satdown with Professor Shinn.

    In light of his close involvement on the debates surrounding the construction of the Rennaissance Dam, I was expecting the journalists would be more interested on his views on the consequences of the Dam on the regional balance of power than the statements of Susan Rice at the funeral of Ethiopia's former Prime Minister. If there is anybody interested to talk about Suzan Rice in relation to Ethiopia, in my view, it should be the impact, if any, of her appointment as the National Security Advisor on the relationship between Ethiopia and the USA.

    The views of Prof. Shinn on the consequences of the dam on Egypt is clear and easy to understand which all Ethiopian journalists and even Ethiopian politicians need to promote and build on it. Most, including politicians in Ethiopia, agree and raise as a concern that the amount of water reaching Egypt during the filling phase of the dam will decrease. On a couple of ocassions, Ambassador Shinn however, explaines how the amount of water reaching Egypt has not always been consistent and fluctuating depending on the amount of rain in highland Ethiopia anyway and this should not be a big concern.

    If there is any ocassion, in the future where Ethiopia has to nominate an international expert on the Nile water issues, I think Professor Shinn, subject to his acceptance, would be the right figure, not because he is sympathetic to Ethiopia, but also his views are fair and knowledge based. If I had a chance to talk to Professor Shinn, I would ask him if he would accept such a role. I would also address him as a professor.

    Asrat Tadesse