- Retractions (USA Today, Boston Herald, CounterPunch, etc)
- Support for the repressive regime of Ethiopia
- Monopolizing the nascent Ethiopian private sector
- Suspicion of spreading Wahhabi Islamic influence in Ethiopia
- Charges by the US of financing Islamic welfare organizations suspected of terrorist links
- Buying influence at the highest levels of Western governments (high powered lobbyists, etc)
- Suppression of free speech under guise of figthing libel (Ethiopian Review, Ethiopiawinet Radio, etc)
- Boycott of Pepsi products manufactured by Al Amoudi companies following the controversial 2005 Ethiopian election
- Reputation tainted and checkered by entanglements arising from the momentus events of 9/11 and the uprecedented May 2005 Ethiopian election
Al Amoudi donning a Nib T-shirt to show his support for the repressive Ethiopian regime. He has since lost his stature and popular appeal as well as seen his name tarnished.
You will recall that as a result of my exercising my democratic right during the recent elections in Ethiopia, there have been campaigns of hate and vilification against me, both in Ethiopia and abroad.
These have been more virulent as a result of campaigns repeatedly conducted by a certain individual via a radio program called "Ethiopiawinet" against myself, my family, my close friends and my associates in general. These attacks involved, not only attacks against our honor and reputation, but were maliciously designed to force me to leave my country and people to whom I am deeply attached and to abandon the many investments in Ethiopia and the large number of employees and their families who are dependent for their livelihood on these investments.
You live in a country (USA), where the economy is so well developed and respect for basic democratic rights are so prominent than anywhere else in the world. As such, you are fully acquainted with these democratic rights and their limits in society. Accordingly, you know full well that every one has the right to support or oppose any political party he so chooses. Surely, there is no breach of law in pursuing such venue.
I am an Ethiopian by birth and there is no negotiation or dispute on this matter. I am, above all, deeply attached to my country above anything else in this world. As a result, not only do I wish my country of birth well, but also never hesitated, say what you like, to act in her betterment and well being. My investments in Ethiopia are to improve the livelihood of my people and help in the development of my country, and not as some might think to amass personal wealth or siphon my country's wealth. All my acts are transparent and public knowledge. I need not prove this. The Ethiopian people shall bear me out.
We are all born Ethiopians. But this is not good enough! We need to do more to improve the lives of our people and help in the development of our nation. No amount of proclamation of love for your country, from abroad is enough. This could only be seen as an empty rhetoric and would lead us nowhere, unless it is followed by actual deeds.
Rather, I suggest that we join forces to improve the lot of our country. Recrimination of one another leads nowhere and therefore should stop. We are one of the least developed countries not only in the world, but also in our own continent of Africa. One reason for this is the continuous fighting that has become synonymous with us Ethiopians.
You be the judge!
Campaigns of defamation are conducted against me, my religion and my associates for no reason other than being found guilty for investing in my motherland for the benefit of my people, with money that I have earned and acquired form overseas. So, do I really deserve all this? I leave the good judgment to the Ethiopian people.
Doubtless, no one would wish to have their rights violated. Many of you have sent me letters of comfort by fax and other means. And to that I am deeply indebted to all of you.
Needless to say, I support the introduction of democracy into Ethiopia and the rise of multi-party politics, where people can elect through a fair and just election process, their government and the maintenance of law and peace as well as the safe transfer of the country to future generations. Equally, I am a staunch supporter for the rise and flourishing of independent media both at home and abroad.
However, this does not give individuals the right to use the free press to spread lies and innuendos on individuals. As such, an independent media requires a sense of responsibility. Other wise, any thing to the contrary would be harmful to the country and to the development of democracy in Ethiopia.
I believe you all know me well. I would rather let the facts and my endless effort to help my country and people speak for me.
I myself hold no grudge against anyone in particular. But I insist that there be an end to all transgression against me, and those who bear responsibility for character defamation and false allegations should learn that there are consequences for their action. And with that, I hope they will learn that braking the law does not pay.
Mohammed H. Al Amoudi
Retraction by counterpunch.org
August 17, 2005
ALEXANDER COCKBURN, JEFFREY ST CLAIR, BECKY GRANT AND THE INSTITUTE FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF JOURNALISTIC CLARITY, COUNTERPUNCH
We published an article entitled "A Saudiless Arabia" by Wayne Madsen dated October 22, 2002 (the "Article"), on the website of the Institute for the Advancement of Journalistic Clarity, CounterPunch, www.counterpunch.org (the "Website").
Although it was not our intention, counsel for Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi has advised us the Article suggests, or could be read as suggesting, that Mr Al Amoudi has funded, supported, or is in some way associated with, the terrorist activities of Osama bin Laden and the Al Qaeda terrorist network.
We do not have any evidence connecting Mr Al Amoudi with terrorism.
As a result of an exchange of communications with Mr Al Amoudi's lawyers, we have removed the Article from the Website.
We are pleased to clarify the position.
Al-Amoudi Refutes Time Magazine Accusation as Unfounded
29 Nov 2002 (AddisTribune)
The Ethiopian-born Saudi tycoon, Sheik Mohammed Hussien Al-Amoudi, denied a report filed by Time magazine that had alleged that the Sheik was one of the over hundred Saudis and members of the Saudi Royal Family who have been allegedly financing Al-Qaeda, which is responsible for the 9/11 attack on the twin towers of New York.
The report by Time magazine said sources had pointed to it that the Sheik was one of the Saudi organizations and Royal Family members that allegedly financed the attacks on America on September 11, 2001.
A press release by the MIDROC Group issued last week said the report by the Time magazine was “baseless” and was made “to undermine the Sheik’s development efforts” in Ethiopia, a country he considers as his second home.
The report by Time magazine said some 150 Saudi businessmen and organizations would face lawsuits from the families of those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attack on America.