Mengistu, Haile Mariam

(1937?– )
   Ethiopian head of state from 1977 until forced to flee to Zimbabwe in the face of rebellion in 1991. Having led a military coup that deposed Emperor Haile Selassie in 1974, he triumphed in a struggle for power, and subsequently oversaw the transition of Ethiopia into a “socialist” state based on Marxist ideology. Born in Addis Ababa he began his military career at the age of 17 as a cadet in the Ethiopian army and by 1974 had attained the rank of lieutenant colonel. He took part in a failed coup against Haile Selassie in 1960, but was pardoned. After the 1974 coup he liquidated his rivals and gained the support of the Soviet Union and Cuba. As early as 1974 the newly formed Provisional Military Administrative Council (Dergue) called for the creation of a socialist Ethiopia, and the Marxist direction of Ethiopia under Mengistu was signaled by the creation of the Union of Ethiopian MarxistLeninist Organizations as the sole legal party in 1977. In 1984 the Workers’ Party of Ethiopia, committed to Marxism–Leninism, was formed with Mengistu at its head.
   Mengistu’s Marxism consisted of a concentration of power in the hands of the state, to be exercised on behalf of the people without the need for democratic structures or procedures. Agricultural land was nationalized and efforts were made to end poverty, with the grander aim of leaping from feudalism to communism. However, Mengistu’s regime was unable to prevent near economic collapse and famine, let alone bring about the communist ideal. At no time did the regime enjoy peace from either civil unrest or external conflict, with wars involving Somalia and the region of Eritrea throughout much of Mengistu’s rule. Civil war eventually led to Mengistu’s flight to Zimbabwe in 1991.

Historical dictionary of Marxism. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — Chairman of the Derg and Head of State of Ethiopia In office 3 February 1977 – 10 September 1987 Preceded by Tafari Benti …   Wikipedia

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  • Mengistu Hailé Mariam — Mengistu Haile Mariam መንግስቱ ኃይለ ማርያም Mengistu Haile Mariam 1e Président de l Éthiopie …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — Existen desacuerdos sobre la neutralidad en el punto de vista de la versión actual de este artículo o sección. En la página de discusión puedes consultar el debate al respecto. Mengistu Haile Mariam …   Wikipedia Español

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — መንግስቱ ኃይለ ማርያም Mengistu Haile Mariam Mengistu, en 1986. Mandats 1er président de la République populaire démocratique d Éthiopie …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — Hailé Mariam Menghistu (Harar, Etiopía, 1937) es un político etíope. Militar de ideología marxista, tras luchar en la guerra secesionista de la provincia de Eritrea se convirtió en uno de los dirigentes del golpe de Estado que canalizó el… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — Mengịstu Haile Mariam,   äthiopischer Offizier und Politiker, * 1937 (Angabe umstritten); nach militärischer Ausbildung 1974 maßgeblich an der Absetzung von Kaiser Haile Selassi I. beteiligt, war 1974 77 Erster Stellvertretender Vorsitzender des …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — /meng gis tooh huy lee mahr ee euhm/ born 1937, Ethiopian political leader: head of state 1977 87; president 1987 91. * * * born 1937, Kefa province, Eth. Ethiopian army officer and head of state (1974–91). Mengistu headed a group of rebel… …   Universalium

  • Mengistu, Hailé Mariam — (n. 1937, provincia de Kefa, Etiopía). Oficial de ejército y jefe de estado etíope (1974–91). Encabezó a un grupo de soldados rebeldes que derrocó a Hailé Selassié (1974). Después de asesinar a sus rivales, se convirtió en el hombre fuerte… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Mengistu Haile Mariam — /mɛŋˈgɪstu ˌhaɪli ˈmariəm/ (say meng gistooh .huylee mahreeuhm) noun born 1937, Ethiopian soldier and politician; head of state 1977–91 when ousted in an uprising …   Australian English dictionary

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