Date: Sunday, 12 December 2021
On Wednesday, December 8, hundreds of people gathered at the CNN building on Sunset Boulevard to protest against CNN’s misinformation campaign against Ethiopia and Eritrea. The protest was held at the busy intersection of Sunset and Cahuenga, covering both the northwest and southwest corner of Sunset Blvd. A sea of signs with the slogan “US Hands Off Ethiopia & Eritrea,” and “CNN Fake News,” and “African Solutions for African Problems” covered the streets.
“CNN has been leading the false narrative on what is taking place in Ethiopia for the last year,” said Kaleb, an organizer with the Ethiopian community. “CNN, Fake News!” chants echoed down Sunset. “CNN is saying that the TPLF is the victim in this conflict, when in fact Ethiopian people have no yearning for the TPLF,” said Kaleb.
"CNN is saying that the TPLF is the victim in this conflict, when in fact Ethiopian people have no yearning for the TPLF
On August 9, the Ethiopian Embassy published on their site, “the TPLF terrorist group killed 240 civilians, including 107 children, in an attack in the Afar region.” Later, the Ethiopian government announced a unilateral cease-fire. As a result, the government called on “the international community to recognize that the terrorist group is undermining the peace and security of the country following a unilateral cease-fire.”
Residents who were not aware of Wednesday’s action saw signs calling out how CNN covers other parts of the world. “CNN anointed Juan Guaido as president of Venezuela when he never ran for president,” said Alejandro, a Los Angeles resident who attended the rally. “(CNN) Has been creating war propaganda for the Pentagon throughout Latin America, and now we are seeing it in the African continent.”
“Ethiopia and Eritrea signed a peace agreement in 2018, ending decades of war, they are at peace, and the US wants to reverse that,” said Ahmed, a member of the Ethiopian diaspora. “The U.S. wants to continue to divide Africa; they don’t want Africa united as one,” said Ahmed. This feeling vibrated throughout where signs read “U.S. Hands Off Africa.”
A second rally was held in front of Congressman Brad Sherman’s office on Van Nuys Boulevard to challenge his warmongering. On October 23, he stated, “but the American Navy could interrupt Eritrean commerce on the high seas at any time, and it would certainly be just to do so.” Again, the community rallied in front of his office. “We are here to let Mr. Sherman know that the people of Ethiopia do not support the TPLF,” said Kaleb.
The corporate media in the US is misrepresenting the conflict in Ethiopia. It states that the central government is waging a “genocidal” war against an ethnic minority. TPLF held power for nearly 30 years. Meles Zenawi, the head of TPLF, formed close relationships with the US in his 21 years of ruling. During that time, in 2006, he led the Ethiopian government to invade Somalia, a move backed by the US.
While the TPLF ruled, the U.S. government and the corporate media didn’t do a thing to support Ethiopians protesting for democratic and civil rights. Today, the Eritrean government supports the Ethiopian people fighting the TPLF insurgency. As a result, the Biden administration is sanctioning the Eritrean government because they are helping Ethiopians against the TPLF.
In 2018, Abiy Ahmed became the fourth prime minister of Ethiopia. Under his leadership, the country signed a peace agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea, ending decades of war. A move that earned him October 2019 Nobel Peace Prize. Today, he is the target of US imperialism.
The demonstration was called by a coalition from the Ethiopian American and Eritrean American communities affiliated with the Horn of Africa Hub and the ANSWER (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) Coalition. The ANSWER Coalition posted on their social media six points of misinformation reported by CNN that is noteworthy: