Ethiopian evil debtera magic versus Tigray Christian mercy in war

Daniel Kibre, a “deacon” and Social Affairs Ethiopian Minister defames Tigrayans as demons and subhumans worthy of extinction. He and other EOC followers tell their recruits that special blessings are upon to protect them from harm and punish the Tigray. While the Tigray leadership treats POWS with mercy and has EOC priests from Tigray pronounce forgiveness for Ethiopian POWS after their rehabilitation. In the background is a rare photo of a secret book of spells used by debtera.

Religious belief and custom are affecting the Ethiopian Tigray conflict. Ethiopia is relying on ancient beliefs of magic while Tigray counters with traditional mercy. The Ethiopian leadership under Abiy Ahmed is trying to use traditional mysticism and imperial religious stature rendered by Donatistic convictions to motivate and justify its sadistic aggression while the Tigray leadership is countering these using the conventional Christian virtue of mercy. The Ethiopian leadership of Abiy Ahmed and his religious supporters use the traditionally high stature of religious leadership along with the populations belief that they may have supernatural powers which can break established moral norms to achieve ends in war resulting in a perfect recipe for genocide.

Daniel Kibre, a “deacon” and Social Affairs Ethiopian Minister defames Tigrayans as demons and subhumans worthy of extinction. He falsely pronounces that Tigrayan leadership, Tigray Peoples Liberation Front are atheists and thus not eligible for Christian mercy.  The deceased leader of the TPLF, Meles Zenawi, was a practicing Ethiopia Orthodox believer and is buried on holy ground at Holy Trintiy in Addis Ababa.

Kibret’s actions are exhibiting the classic role of a debtera. He and other EOC followers tell their recruits that special blessings are upon to protect them from harm and punish the Tigray. While the Tigray leadership treats POWS with mercy and has EOC priests from Tigray pronounce forgiveness for Ethiopian POWS after their rehabilitation. 

There was not much communication with the Eastern Orthodox Church or Roman Church for hundreds of years due in part to the expansion of Islam which isolated Ethiopia . Many cultural factors including the close relationship of the clergy to the imperial state  and a strongly pious population created a unique form of Christianity which affected their daily lives.

The power of religious leaders was enhanced by two strong cultural developments. While much of Western Christianity rejected Donatism, the idea that for a priest to be holy enough to prepare the Eucharist or give blessings must be in a state of grace with God, for Ethiopia this become the rule. This greatly enhanced their status as advisors to government leadership as well as in communicating to the population giving them a great power of influence over both.

Secondly, the Eastern tradition of great attention to mysticism was greatly stressed in Ethiopia. A few elite clergy and lay practitioners in each generation were taught secret prayers and rituals which could cure the sick, affect natural events, place curses, or even change behaviors of individuals or groups. This prayers and rituals were closely guarded secrets. Both  selected clergy and a special class of religious zealots, debtera,  have special access to secret texts which describe special prayers and rituals which can perform alleviation of suffering such as  healing of the sick but also can be used to do harm. Anthropology researcher, Diego Maria Malara,  noted  

Yet, while drawing on this tradition, the debtera’s ritual repertoire also transgresses some of its central proscriptions. Transgression, in this context, does not abolish the boundaries it violates, but reinstates their legitimacy. This dynamic prompts debtera to engage in imaginative ethical reassessments of the unstable relationship between illicit knowledge and official tenets. Through their transgressive performances,debtera enable their clients to secretly address and actualise sinful desires that otherwise remain unacknowledged or are suppressed by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.


Wounded fighters for Ethiopia were ill treated by their own government

Fighters for the Ethiopian government against Tigray were denied healthcare for their injuries and even that they existed. They suffered vocal abuse and rock pelting when they return to the border area with Amhara after release from Tigray. Photo source TGHAT

The treatment of war injured Ethiopian National Defense Force soldiers and their allies speaks volumes about Abiy Ahmed’s philosophy regarding the value of the common person. As much as possible Ethiopia wanted to portray the military action taken in Tigray as having few causalities or blood shed. They wanted to hide the fact that many soldiers in the Ethiopian National Defense Force as well as their mercenary allies, Eritreans and Somalis, were even present. When we recognized them as foreign fighters in Mekelle they were whisked away to the stadium as I describe below. This report is based upon my own experience in Mekelle as well as discussion with various persons in many regions of Tigray and Amhara. 

Many fighters for Ethiopia were scooped off the street while working as shoe shine boys or from the homes of their families with promises of bonus payments, land, and other rewards none of which never came true. Even worse when they were injured in battle they were often cursed as cowards and frequently assassinated by FANO militia behind the lines. This was part of a cover-up to minimize the portrayal of war vs a law enforcement operation. 

We know that prior to the onset of conflict between Tigray and Ethiopia on November 4, 2020 there were plans made with prominent Amhara members of the academic medical community in Addis Ababa and other Amhara centers to recruit medical staff for the upcoming expected conflict. The Ethiopian military itself normally has almost no doctors. The few military hospitals such as the largest Torhayloch in Addis Ababa relies upon many civilian full time generalists and part-time specialists usually recruited from medical school staff. In fact several years ago I was consulted by Ethiopian military leaders to discuss how we might train “military physicians” as they knew about my experience in the USA.

A part of this Tigray conflict plan was to avoid the public seeing that there were causalities of Ethiopian military personnel. This would match the concept that the operation was a “law enforcement” operation with little impact on civilians and with little sacrifice of life. In fact it was planned that a triage site and receiving center would be in the town of Woldia in Amhara near the southwestern Tigray border where trusted politically loyal doctors recruited would be established early on the fighting. Remember Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s boasting that there were few military casualties and not even one civilian killed early during the fighting.

When the Tigray Defense Force retreated and the ENDF forces advanced eventually through Tigray and finally into Mekelle they destroyed medical facilities in their path. Within their ranks were ENDF fighters mostly from Amhara and Oromo regions but also Eritrea and Somalia. For the first few weeks of occupation all these  combatants were treated initially at Ayder but not in great numbers. for long. The story we were told is that there many Tigray dead and almost no ENDF injuries. 

However the invading ENDF began to set up a sort of field hospital at the new soccer stadium in Mekelle. They began to transfer all ENDF, Eritrean, and Somali fighters to that facility. They also took almost all Tigray fighters in Ayder  to parts unknown. There was a recently built new military hospital in Tigray which was staffed with part time Mekelle University medical staff but this was closed within a few weeks.

Following the retreat of the ENDF from Ayder we learned that hospitals in Gondar, Dessie, and Bahir Dar were overwhelmed with so many medical causalities that regular civilians services were stopped or at least severally curtailed. Very few Tigrayan prisoners were seen at these facilities leading many to believe that the invading forces most likely executed immediately any potential prisoners.

Of the tens of thousands of prisoners held in Mekelle in the rehabilitation camp many were given adequate food and what health care was available. Many government employed medical personnel as well as Mekelle University faculty volunteered to care for both their own soldiers and captured prisoners in the field in makeshift facilities.

Interviews of ENDF and their allied prisoners have revealed that some were shot were retreating from the battlefield to seek treatment by FANO militia. Additionally it is now well established that commanders in ENDF attempted to hide causalities by blocking when possible their access to medical facilities. Some prisoners in Mekelle have related that many wounded were shot and placed in mass burial site.

Now we are hearing that of the 4,000 prisoners of war released who were screened and found to not have committed war crimes, many of these were captured outside Tigray, were heckled and suffered pelting from thrown rocks when they reached the Amhara borders. Subsequently they were quickly collected in buses by local representatives of the federal government and taken to parts unknown.

Abiy Ahmed plans almost $1 billion new home while giving less to Ethiopian displaced

The Ethiopian news source, the Reporter, discussed plans to build the Prime Minister and his Ministers a new palace.

Abiy Ahmed plans to spend 49 billion birr ($931 million) to build a new official residence for the head of government. While the Ethiopian government has decided to spend  a much lesser amount, 20 billion birr, ($38o million) for “war rehabilitation” which may not include Tigray based upon  a $300 million grant from the World Bank. The new palace project will house the Prime Minister and other high government officials in a special neighborhood with planned lakes and functional buildings for government business. 

Meanwhile the government has decreed that all buildings in the capital of Ethiopia will have to be painted gray. Tinted windows will no longer be allowed. A consideration is being to give exceptions to buildings owned and or occupied by international companies.

The economy of Ethiopia due to the costs of weapons, instability, falling birr value, rising costs of necessary imports including food and fuel is showing no sign of recovery. Millions are displaced without any income. Critical food shortages are occurring not just in Tigray where there is a severe widespread famine but also in many other regions due to poor agricultural production practices.

The cost of food, fuel, medicines, clothing, and other consumer goods has gone up 50% the past year while the birr has is now at an all time low 0.019 to the dollar. The wisdom of undertaking the building of such a monstrosity of a palace for the Prime Minister is hard to justify.

Western Tigray mass grave exposed to wrongful DNA contamination

At the site of an alleged burial it is essential that workers wear protective suits otherwise DNA from the workers from minute skin dust and hair will contaminate the scene. Photos of the site in Northern Ethiopia show proper procedure was not done. Source Walta

Even though Gondar University and for that matter any university in Ethiopia does not possess advanced anthropological or forensic capabilities to analyze long buried remains they have made claims to the contrary. One cannot judge ethnicity by bone structure. Or even clothing as Tigrayans and Amhara in northern Ethiopia share those items if even some survived. Judging the age of remains is difficult because it is due in part to the soil composition, weather, species of insects, and other things are can be specific to region. There are only a few of these experts world wide. 

Probably one of the most important ways to analyze the remains is to get samples of DNA that can be traced to living relatives. Unfortunately when we examine the photograph submitted of the “discovery and excavation” we see that no one is wearing any protective garments to prevent incidental hair and skin dust from falling from the Amharic workers onto the scene. Contamination of human DNA at burial sites from failure to take these precautions is well recognized as a standard part of proper procedure. 

The photograph of the improper procedures not being followed and the lack of any scientific report discussing the procedures followed or more likely not followed may explain why no “scientist” has made any supporting statement. Any other place in the world would have sealed off the site and called in world renowned experts to get the best evidence of what happened.  Why did Ethiopian authorities not do the obvious?

War debt and lack of resolve to find resolution damning Ethiopia’s future

The dreams of Ethiopia becoming a middle income country have been dashed by war debt and uncertainty. Photo of Addis Ababa the capital of Addis showing high rises and modest dwellings. Source 

As a result of war debt and chaos of failing to find resolution even in the capital of Ethiopia health care access, food security, and the dream of becoming a middle income nation have been dashed. Imagine for a moment what the Abiy Ahmed led Ethiopian government could have accomplished  with estimated at least $6 billion spent on war since November 2020. This high expenditure has caused literally irreconcilable debt affecting the health and well being of all Ethiopians. Most of us remember in college learning the “guns vs butter” laws of economics but it appears the Ethiopian leadership skipped that class.  Before Abiy Ahmed came to power in 2018 Ethiopia had experienced almost a 10% annual economic growth and had hoped to reach a state of at least 25% of the population having a middle income by world standards. Instead by refusing to make progress in peaceful resolution hoping that Tigray will just starve to death the Ethiopian government has drastically reduced the quality of life for all Ethiopians.

The average healthcare expenditure per capita in Ethiopia has likely been reduced from an average $23 per capita per year to $18. While most developed countries spend close to 10% of their gross domestic product providing health care for their citizens as a priority for Ethiopia it is only 4%. Under Abiy Ahmed there have been some developments in private health care in a few of the larger cities for the 10% of the population considered middle class who make more than 4000 birr a month. With current birr value at about 6 cents to the dollar this equals about $240 a month. 

While many assume that Ethiopia has a socialized health care system without any beneficiary payment this is wrong. Except of the first month of life most health care even at government facilities requires co-pays averaging $32 per house hold per year. The high inflation of decreasing availability of jobs is making it hard for poor and middle class families to access healthcare because they cannot afford the out of pocket costs.

If the Ethiopian government had spent another $2 billion on healthcare instead of defense they could have almost doubled the current healthcare budget. More clinics and more outreach could result in better treatment of chronic illness such as diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and HIV. While only about 20% of pregnant women in Ethiopia have medically assisted delivery this could be dramatically increased reducing maternal complications and improving infant mortality. Millions cannot afford to pay for subscriptions. Increasing the availability of surgical care for treatable conditions now considered essential standard worldwide has severely dampened.

For this first time in a generation circumstances of drought, locusts, poor agricultural support, and a lack of general attention to both fertile farm lands and dryland farming are resulting in combination with war to cause the worst food shortage in a generation. Millions of displaced persons and the war environment have complicated food production and distribution even outside the besieged state of Tigray.  Ethiopia normally needs $260 per capita per year for food. If another $2 billion was spent on food instead of defense an additional 10% of the poor who make up the majority of the population could be feed.

Under Abiy Ahmed religious co-existence in Ethiopia is waning fast

Riots between Christians and Muslims with many deaths have broken out in Gondar and the capital of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa, as the Islamic holiday of Ramadan comes to an end. Source My View on News

Abiy Ahmed in trying to manipulate and coerce extremist religious leaders of Ethiopia as well as diaspora has created havoc. Although many Ethiopians have for years presented Ethiopia as an example of religious harmony between Muslims, Orthodox, Catholics, Protestants, and Jews the reality is there have always been undertones of conflict. For the most part until recently cooler heads prevailed with many religious leaders being united in calling for peaceful co-existence that recognized each group had an appropriate and respected place in Ethiopian society. 

 This stability began to change with the coming to power of Abiy Ahmed. It was hoped with his mixed ethnic and religious ancestry a new era of harmony would come. He claimed a new state of medemer alleging a united national identity. However the largest part of his power base has been Amharic expansionist Orthodox as well as evangelical protestants. To some extent he tried to make the Tigray a “straw man” enemy against which various ethnic groups and religious views could unite. He has often rather falsely claimed the  Tegaru, the people of Tigray, are a godless people forgetting the the Orthodox Church had its origins there. It also has longstanding albeit small but significant populations of Muslims and Catholics.

What he did not predict is how a new struggle would emerge for power in Ethiopia between these groups based upon old wounds. Between Muslims and Christians there are some major differences for example in how important historical events played out. For example Christians believe that Christian King Negas welcomed Muslim refugees fleeing the pagan Saudi rulers. Many Ethiopian Muslims believe that the monarch was converted to Islam.  

The struggle for dominance between Islam and Christianity continued until the nineteenth century when the Tigrayan monarch Yohannes compelled Muslims to convert to Christianity. The Muslim ruler Mohammed is claimed by many to have converted to Christianity changing his name to Mikael. However many in the Wollo region of Amhara belief this was not a true conversion but a temporary act. After Yohannes was killed in battle, the Amharic emperor, Menelik II carried out vicious atrocities against Muslims and pagan worshipers especially the Oromo. 

The Ethiopian Orthodox Church until the twentieth century did not consider Oromos or the people of Southern Ethiopia who were of Cushitic origin unlike the Semitic peoples of the north to be fully human. Slavery of Oromo and southern nationalities was common by Amhara interests in response to the religious determination. This ultimately lead to the introduction evangelical Protestant movements. 

There are major diaspora supporters of Abiy Ahmed especially in the United States who feel strongly that God intended for Ethiopia to be a Christian country. They oppose the pantheist traditional beliefs of many Oromos as well as Islam. Traditionally under the Amharic monarchy, Muslims, Oromo pantheists, and Jews were often not allowed to own land. By aligning himself with those holding extremist views in the exiled synods of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and evangelical protestants Abiy Ahmed has given new voice to their claims that Ethiopia is a “Christian” nation. Yet even among them there is now fighting over who has rights to traditional religious areas such as Meskel square in Addis Ababa. In recent years there have been increasing attacks on mosques and churches throughout Ethiopia. Abiy Ahmed’s ally, Eritrea, has defaced and ransacked both Christian and Muslim places of worship as well as killing innocent worshippers.

Meanwhile although the “official” census states the population divide between Christians and Muslims is about 60% vs 40% there are many areas where Muslims predominate such as in Harar and the traditional regions of the Afar and Somali people. It is well documented that the population growth of Muslims is likely increasing faster then the Christians. Many outspoken Muslims believe they are undercounted.

There is little doubt now that Abiy Ahmed rather then bringing unity is fomenting division and distrust in Ethiopia. Whereas Christianity and Islam preach peaceful co-existence and civil society the regime of Abiy Ahmed has been exactly the opposite.


Rob and torment Tigray: Abiy Ahmed’s New Version of the “Good Samaritan”

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has twisted the Jesus story of the Good Samaritan from giving charity to one of deprivation and torment

Many school children in Christian settings often learn the story told in the Gospel of Luke about a Samaritan who helps a Jew he finds on the road who was robbed and injured even though he is an enemy. Instead Abiy Ahmed and his allies who claim Christian mandates as justification for evil have twisted the classic story of charity to a new narrative. They now practice the idea that in such an encounter one should give just a drop of water and a grain of rice to the starving while robbing them of all their possessions. Faith has been replaced by blasphemy they celebrate the holiday with violation and deprivation.

During the Easter season while millions of Christians around the world recognize the message of hope Jesus gave to mankind the leadership in Ethiopia has built a golden calf in a cruel mockery.  Many Ethiopians used to celebrate the holiday by buying a chicken to prepare the traditional doro wat but now that Abiy Ahmed’s reckless military spending has caused the price of a single chicken to soar to one thousand birr, three times the normal price, but now this time honored family tradition is not possible. Even the palm oil which used to cost about 300 birr for a month’s supply now cost over a thousand birr. While Abiy Ahmed feasts like a king Tigrayans are dying of starvation, Oromians are being killed, and about two thirds of the rest of Ethiopia is facing increasing food shortages.

Whilst videos of wealthy Ethiopian government supporters practicing their holiday hypocrisy emerge on social media prideful presentations celebrating this new “ethos” of torment showing truckloads of looted family possessions from the poor Tigrayan farmers in Western Tigray deliver their booty to Gondar. All the while the United Nations and many Western civilizations who also learned the story of the Good Samaritan  as children now as adults seem to have forgotten it. During this holiday season one thousand a day continue to die in Tigray from starvation and lack of health services.


Reflection on the Easter story and the perseverance of Tigray women

Mosaic of the Three Marys who discovered the resurrection of Jesus from the Nea Moni Monastery in Chios, Greece dated 1100AD

Over the past year I have been repeatedly struck by the sacrifices and endurance of Tigray women in the Ethiopian Tigray conflict. I used to live a block from the Mekelle University Business School campus where there was a statue of young teenage female fighter who died fighting the Derg and I am deeply sorry I cannot recall her name but the symbolism and message that sculpture carried I do understand so clearly now.

During the Easter season we mostly think about the sacrifice of Jesus on cross who was resurrected on the third day after his crucifixion. What we often do not focus on is the courageous and caring role women played in Jesus’s human life as role models and care givers who themselves suffered for the benefit of others. Mary known as Mariam in Tigray whose love and care for her son whom she had to watch suffer on the cross. God choose the “three Marys” to be the first witnesses to Jesus resurrection and tell the Apostles. More then once God has chosen women to be messengers of faith, hope, and truth. The women of Tigray have repeated that role. They often bear the greatest burdens of sorrow while showing the most courage.

Even though terrible atrocities were suffered by hundreds of thousands of Tigray women including rape, mutilation, watching their loved ones killed or starved, displacement, and isolation from family they as a group have shown a superhuman resilience to survive. Young women joined the Tigray Defense Force, other women while trying to keep their children alive still cooperated with community efforts to gather food and water. They willingly gave up their sons, brothers, husbands, fathers, and even grandfathers to join the armed struggle for freedom at their own personal peril.

When I review who is on social media writing in support of humanitarian aid and the suffering of Tigray I see many young diaspora women, often highly educated with advanced degrees and successful professional careers in developed countries, who mobilized to save lives and spread truth to the world. Most of them identify themselves openly risking not only ad hominem personal internet harassment but even physical attacks at demonstrations by agents of the Eritrean and Ethiopian governments.

Many times these virile attackers on Tigray women are anonymous making one wonder if they are really ashamed of what they do. The others who I will not name attack the womanhood of Tigray diaspora which only degrades the speaker by demonstrating her ignorance. They never talk about relieving suffering but instead are filled with hate and a unending pre-occupation with vengeance. I pray they will let the God into their hearts because mercy and peace are needed now more then ever.

I further pray the world will accept the Tigray women as messengers of truth and act without haste to relieve the suffering.


Specific claims regarding skeletal remains in Western Tigray are beyond Ethiopian capability

Publication of a report of skeletal remains in Western Tigray which pro-Abiy Ahmed supporters claim are remains of those massacred in the early 1980s fail to offer what if any scientific analysis was done other then by researchers at Gondar University which does not have the resources to make such an analysis.  Photo Source Walta

The sudden publication of photographs from an alleged mass grave site in  Western Tigray by Amhara news sources boldly claims that these findings are ethnic Amharas who were killed in the early 1980s.  This report omits any scientific data or methods used to reach this conclusion. Interestingly this was announced at the same time as a damning report on human rights violations of Tigrayans in Western Tigray  by Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International. This conclusion apparently was made by “researchers” at Gondar University unidentified by their area of specialty or training. It seems highly unlikely that a team from Gondar University with their limited capability could publish such a report in a recognized peer reviewed journal. That would be the gold standard of expertise.

Ethiopia has very little resources for carrying out these studies . There is no reliable DNA sequencing facility in country and no significant post-graduate training program for this advanced area of inquiry. There is basic training for entry level forensic technicians. Mekelle University and St. Paul’s Medical School in Addis Ababa have post-graduate training programs in forensic medicine.

Just looking at the photo the changes seen of the bone look more recent then one would expect from a 20+ year mass burial. Even stalwart Canadian political science academic perennial defender of the Abiy Ahmed, Ann Fitz-Gerald, said that the remains should be evaluated by a panel of experts. 

A proper scientific inquiry would require internationally recognized scientists to study the remains. We know that deterioration of skeletal remains can vary greatly depending upon the chemical composition of the soil and temperatures. There does not appear upon my initial review of published literature to be much if any research on this in Ethiopia. Additionally, trace DNA can often be recovered from such remains. This could traced to living relatives to help identify the ethnicity of those buried. Given this lack of expertise it would seem that Ethiopia would welcome the United Nations mandate to investigate human rights violations in Tigray and Ethiopia rather then oppose them.

The brutal occupation of Western Tigray over the past year and a half with hundreds of thousands of missing persons makes the Tigray government concerned that these remains are more recent and Tigrayan. The only way to know the truth is to proceed with the best scientific inquiry following international standards.


Saving the life of a poor Tigray farmer tells the story of what Tigray has lost in Ethiopian blockade

In 2018 a poor 23 year old farmer from the distant countryside in Tigray had been brought by his concerned family to Ayder Hospital in Mekelle rapidly deteriorating with a brain tumor. A donated 3 Tesla MRI allowed diagnosis of a brain tumor and the creation of a safe route to surgical approach.
The following is a story of a single patient treated at Mekelle University’s Ayder Hospital where I was the Head of Neurosurgery. You can multiply the saving of this one life tens of thousands of times to recognize the work of our hospital. Originally written in 2018 in an international neurosurgery forum before the Ethiopia Tigray conflict. It was a time of hope. I have altered the writing for a different audience here to show how life was improving in Tigray. That we could bring something new to Tigray and help the farmers whose lives had seen too much killing and death in the past. I pray these days will come again. Advocates for blockade of Tigray which denies medical care to the people of Tigray try to paint them falsely as less then human. Instead the reality is that most of them are poor farmers living a hard life.
A Day in the Life of a Neurosurgeon at Mekelle University Ayder Hospital
As the family said goodbye to him he left the ICU for the operating room. He had been intubated and resuscitated in the emergency room where he presented with coma. A young uneducated farmer from a remote primitive area who had been deteriorating for a year and half. Tumors in this part of the world are large and angry because they present so late. The MRI of the brain showed a 10 centimeter tumor in the fourth ventricle which was highly vascularized. This is the type of case neurosurgeons dream of, a mix of danger and hope. Besides giving sophisticated medical care we were building capacity to continue this care for future generations by training surgeons, anesthesia professionals, nurses, and others to serve more than a 7 million population.
The residents and fellows do the initial opening until the back of the brain is exposed which takes the first hour of surgery. Through the donated microscope I can see the tumor erupting to surface with very swollen blood vessels around it. Instead of the ependymoma (an easier tumor to remove) this was going to be hard. I begin working a millimeter at a time. Gently dissecting tumor from brain, isolating and separating scar bands and blood vessels. Using directed light and magnification for the next 8 hours I cannot take even a 5 minute break. Removing the tumor means there is constant blood loss. The brain receives more blood than any other organ. Tumors cause extra blood vessels to grow into them. As you control one bleeder another 2 start.
By the fourth hour into surgery he has lost 5 liters of blood and his blood pressure is fragile. By the sixth hours there is still about 20% of the tumor left which is covering the cerebral aqueduct. This must be removed to allow flow of cerebrospinal fluid. We are millimeters away from vital areas that cannot be damaged. A wrong move could kill or result in crippling paralysis.
Another 2 hours goes by and there are times when the blood loss starts again and pressure gets low even with another 2 units. After 8 hours from the beginning of my part of the surgery the tumor is completely removed. The patients blood pressure is holding thanks to high dose epinephrine (a drug to raise blood pressure in critical patient). Now comes the hardest time. Will the patient wake up? He goes to the intensive care unit and we wait. After a few hours he begins to move in a way that suggest he will emerge from coma. This is the life of neurosurgeon. Fighting to stay on the brink of life for hours at a time. 
He left the hospital fully functional and returned to his farm. I pray he has survived the war. One precious life saved and the building of hope for a better future.