El dictador-diplomático de África

BRUSELAS – La reciente muerte en Bruselas del primer ministro etíope Meles Zenawi finalmente arroja luz sobre su misteriosa desaparición durante dos meses de la vida pública. El gobierno de Etiopía había negado enérgicamente los rumores de un grave problema de salud causado por un cáncer de hígado. Ahora que se pudo comprobar lo peor, Etiopía y el resto de África oriental tendrán que aprender a vivir sin la influencia estabilizadora de su gran dictador-diplomático.

Sin duda, Meles era ambas cosas. Etiopía sufrió una transformación considerable durante su gobierno dictatorial desde 1991, cuando su grupo minoritario de Tigray en el norte del país llegó al poder tras el derrocamiento del odioso régimen del Derg, liderado por Mengistu Haile Mariam (que hoy todavía disfruta de un retiro confortable en la Zimbabwe de Robert Mugabe).

Meles (su nombre de guerra en la revolución) primero se desempeñó como presidente del primer gobierno post-Derg y luego como primer ministro de Etiopía desde 1995 hasta su muerte, y en los últimos años de su gobierno, el país registró un crecimiento anual del PBI del 7,7%. Este sólido desempeño económico es bastante sorprendente, considerando la política intervencionista de su partido, pero Meles demostró ser un pragmático consumado a la hora de atraer inversión -particularmente proveniente de China- para impulsar el crecimiento.

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