Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Meles Zenawi I Knew ( BY BARRY MALONE)

(Aug 23, 2012, Foreign Policy)--I once asked Ethiopia's Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, who died on Aug. 20 from an unspecified illness at age 57, whether he was a dictator. He grinned and then, stopping, just looked at me. Nervously, I did what a journalist should never do, and filled the silence. "A lot of people call you that," I said.

He told me he didn't care much what foreigners thought and that the people who described him that way were rarely his countrymen. "If Ethiopians thought that I was what you say, I would not sleep at night," he said. "But I don't believe they do."

I persisted that there were indeed Ethiopians who called him a dictator and that they often gathered to protest his trips overseas -- where, with his ferocious intellect, charm, and ability to speak in perfect paragraphs, he was regularly a star at meetings of the G-20 or in the snowy mountains of Davos. Read more the original article from Foreign Policy »

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