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Archive for November 2012

just a thought away

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Fate can be merciless and a regular day in the city can suddenly explode with circumstances tragic beyond comprehension. Sometimes children are left without a parent or worse.

Then there’s war.

Ethiopian born, when be was three years old nine members of his family were killed during the country’s “civil” war. The conflict was an example of the same old dance; the US supported a rebel movement attempting to overthrow the USSR-backed government. At one point during the seventeen-year struggle, America even “encouraged” and funded Somalia to wage war against the dreaded Ethiopian communists.

The combination of drought and famine is always a popular, inexpensive but effective weapon. Many, and some reports indicate most, of the 400,000 deaths occurring during the 1984-1985 famine were a direct result of government action, which prevented aid from being delivered to areas where rebel factions operated.

Nobody else in the world seemed to care, though to some extent, except for the American and USSR governments, few others knew what was going on in Ethiopia. That is until images depicting the horror, recorded by a particularly courageous, unwavering photojournalist named Mohamed “Mo” Amin were published by Western media. Then came Bob Geldof and LiveAid, etc.

The rebels extracted “victory” by 1991; lot’s of scars left behind. He’s got them.

Now 24, he immigrated to Canada with his remaining brother, an uncle, aunt and cousin, at age eight. Our paths intersected at a group class at the gym. He left a banking career in Calgary to move to Victoria six months ago to join the army or Canada’s national police force, the RCMP, having submitted applications to both. He’s been training vigorously in an effort to increase his chances of being accepted by either gun-wielding organization.

After several weeks spent contemplating the idea that the best revenge is to live well, he’s now being interviewed by a national investment company.

Lunch with Gokjohn
At Messob Ethiopian Cuisine
October 27th, 2012
Victoria BC

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Written by glh

November 28, 2012 at 17:15

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