The neighbors must believe in the dream too
Going forward, Ethiopia needs friends who are not only in awe of mighty Ethiopia but are understanding that their own parochial expectations are not at odds with Ethiopia’s ambitions.
With the exception of Kenya and Djibouti (a very tiny country that houses both Chinese and US military bases), all of Ethiopia’s neighbors are not reliably stable countries. Unfortunately, the maturity needed to walk through this field of landmines is also not something the Ethiopians currently have.
That is not to under-emphasize what Prime Minister Ahmed has been working at. On the road to the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019, Ahmed was committed to repairing fractured relationships with neighbors as well as meaningfully mediate in their politics.
Ethiopia needs the soft power credit which could take decades to solidify.