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Bridge Over Mereb and Other Rivers

[This article is being republished on awate.com with the consent of the Editorial Team of Discourse Magazine to which it was contributed. The maiden edition of the magazine which is published by The Ethiopian Foreign Relations Strategic Studies Institute appeared on Thursday, 19 January 2017. You access the Amharic audio translation of this article here. ]

In a 2010 interview, I asked the late PM Meles Zenawi if Eritrean ports have lost Ethiopian business forever or they would regain the lost opportunities in the future. He answered, “the demand of the Ethiopian economy is going to go beyond the capacity of Tajura and Djibouti ports.” He also said, “Ethiopia was beginning to develop the potassium resources in the Afar region… millions of tons per year that need to be transported” and that the closest port was not even Assab but Ti’o. And that, “under normal situation, Eritrea could regain most of these businesses and develop new businesses as well.”

It sounds presumptuous to harp only on the access to the sea when addressing Ethiopian-Eritrean relations. The two countries have deeper cultural and familial ties; it’s important to consider Assab as an opportunity for cooperation and not as a destabilizing factor. The scope of relations between the two countries should not be limited to access to ports. It is worth noting that so far, both countries have become victims of their closeness to one another.

Eritrean ports are indispensable for Ethiopia, though Ethiopia has a choice of other ports such as Port Sudan, Mombasa, Berbera, and Djibouti. If the current growth rate continues to hold, and with a population nearing 100 million, Ethiopia will need additional ports to satisfy its foreign trade requirements-more than what Eritrea could have provided. But it’s not all about seaports.

Peace and stability is vital for the Ethiopian-Eritrean border areas whose residents, ironically, never saw their relations disrupted even during the turbulent years of the armed struggle. The two countries share over 900 Kilometers long border and its security is of para-mount importance. Sparsely populated areas cannot be left open to infiltration; densely populated regions cannot be strangulated by red tapes. The two countries can ill afford a psychological wall to stand between them let alone a physical one that extremists from both sides aspire to build. Even China, which is known for its Great Wall, had to demolish it psychologically and convert the physical wall into a major tourist attraction.

The Commonality

In ancient times, the Aksumite Kingdom, which belonged to both sides, was the epicenter of an old political, commercial and cultural region whose radius reportedly extended to Mecca, Medina, Sana’a, Hadramout, and Zeila. It was an era where religions and cultures morphed, and languages enriched each other. Saint Yared, the legendary 6th century CE Ethiopian composer, who believed to have invented the Ethiopian Orthodox church chants and music notation, is a product of that Christian era when the radius of Aksum’s interaction extended further to Alexandria. It was a time when scholars contributed to a rich knowledge base, including religious studies. People moved freely from one corner to the other. Trade routes crisscrossed the sea and the land. Yet,  authority didn’t shift far from the Aksumite epicenter.

That was soon followed by the Muslim period and the region, one can argue, entered its second golden era. Arts, architecture and scholarship developed, and collaboration between Christian and Muslim scholars resulted in significant works, such as the Kibre Negest, codes, documents, epic and narratives that are much revered by Ethiopian Christians to this day. That period of religious tolerance was negatively affected by the incursions of fanatic Jesuits into Ethiopia.

Towards the end of the 15th century CE, the Moors were totally expelled from the Iberian Peninsula leaving behind Portuguese zealous with vengeful grudges against Muslims who occupied Iberia for almost 800 years. By then, the Portuguese had developed an interest in “Christian Abyssinia” and the Roman Catholic Church appointed a Portuguese national as its patriarch. In their zealotry, the Jesuits required Orthodox Ethiopians to convert to the Roman Catholic faith. They didn’t like “the [Abyssinian] Church’s tradition of dependence on the Egyptian Coptic Church.” Considering the religious relations between Alexandria and Aksum an aberration, they looked down on the Orthodox Christianity that coexisted with Islam peacefully before their involvement, and they planted the seed of confrontational posture between Islam and Christianity in Ethiopia. Finally, the fanatic Jesuits brought about their downfall when they demanded that Ethiopian Orthodox Christians be baptized anew!

The Jesuit involvement had in turn invited the involvement of the equally zealot Turks in the region, and it led to a religious civil war (1529-1543) between Hatse Lebne Dengel, followed by Hatse Gelawdeos, who led Christian forces, and Ibn Imam Ahmed, who led the Muslim forces. As coexistence between Christians and Muslims was disrupted, the region entered into an era replete with bloody confrontations that forced Muslims to cling to the wider regional affiliation of the past, while the Christians maintained weak links with Alexandria.

Most of the causes of the current predicament of both Eritrea and Ethiopia can be traced to a history of feudalism that continued until the 20th century. It is a history that made some Eritreans to accept Italian colonization, which they considered better than the Ethiopian oppression. It is also what led to the creation of the liberation movements. It is part of the history of the region that was never allowed serious closure and, therefore, the wounds continue to fester.

Blame it all on Past Ethiopian Rulers

Unlike the nation-states of the West whose social groups have mostly morphed into manageable sections, the region in question is still home to diverse societies. They were dismembered and put in arbitrary fences dividing indigenous people based on the wild and mendacious creativity of foreign cartographers. The foreigners are still active in the neighborhood. They are surveying Darfur, Sudan to build a new fence, knowing well that such undertaking ushers more mayhem and destruction.

In 1952, Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia crossed a bridge over the Mereb River to Eritrea amid fanfare and jubilation. He had presented himself as a savior, though he was pursuing goals for an imperial expansion. Soon, that jubilation waned when the appeasement and cunning politics jumped out laced with the historical feudal bitterness, particularly for the Eritrean elites, who had tasted a short-lived freedom under the British administration. By arbitrarily demolishing the Mereb fence, the Emperor cast a spell upon Eritrea and Ethiopia; that gamble was the cause of the bloody era of destruction that lasted for decades until the “independence” of Eritrea that heralded the birth of a totalitarian regime.

Though the average Ethiopian or Eritrean doesn’t wish for instability, when the elites embark on a war, many people reach for their rusted guns, if not their spears and swords. For the most part, the elites have been working from an outdated manual when dealing with social and political problems; the enmity of the border war of 1998-2000 was further fueled by parochial rivalries that are based on exploits of warlords who knew little apart from pushing bloody campaigns.

Mythology is an important component in nation-building regardless of whether the countries came into being as a result of conquests or as a creation of foreign powers. Eritrea is a victim of both. A serious researcher on the social and political aspects of the two countries needs to go deep into history and mythology, though parts of that history are too recent to be considered a myth. Unfortunately, at any given chance, those issues that are buried in a shallow layer of the collective memories of both people are invoked to serve the narratives of the present. And they are so user-friendly for the gullible. They can be shaped and molded to serve any purpose.

Mythology is an important component in nation-building regardless of whether the countries came into being as a result of conquests or as a creation of foreign powers. Eritrea is a victim of both exercises. It has gone through the course of nation-building by paying heavy sacrifices: the pain of colonial rule and the armed struggle. Unfortunately, having accomplished the glorious goal of independence, Eritreans failed in state-building. The current totalitarian Eritrean regime sits over a deformed state that doesn’t reflect the aspiration of the people. Mythology and colonization have both played a destructive role in the current predicament of Eritrea. Today it is engulfed in devastating crisis, mainly as a result of its rulers’ exaggerated self-perception, aspiring to become the alpha males of the region. And the destructive rivalry with the leaders of the Ethiopian government led to a destructive border war, which is informed by mythology and emotional grievances. It became lethal simply because enough of the elites from both countries subscribe to it and fan its flames.

Thinking of a Sunrise

Policymakers in the region cannot help the situation without understanding the social and geographical complexities – including the region’s history and mythology. Post 1991 Ethiopia chose the path of a federal system among nations and nationalities, which seems to be working fine. But some elements in the Ethiopian political landscape seem to be lost on understanding the actual complexities in Eritrea; many Eritreans suspect that is why they keep promoting the idea of establishing an Ethiopian replica in Eritrea. Many Eritreans do not condone that, and not because it does not serve the hegemonic aspiration of a certain segment of Eritreans as is widely insinuated. At the same time, many Eritreans do not want to be denied the right to decide for their own regions. Self-rule within a unitary state is the most viable option for Eritrea. Also, reinstating the traditional and historical regional division of Eritrea would be acceptable by many political parties. Power must devolve from the center so that the regions can administer themselves without a central tyrant imposing his will on them.

Throughout our remembered history, Eritrean regions, sects, ethnic groups have lived in relative harmony, and there is no recorded serious division as in recent years. The mistrust and disharmony among Eritreans are mainly the making of the totalitarian Eritrean regime, which provided a fertile ground for primordial sentiments to be revived. In other words, the situation in Eritrea is exasperated by the repressive rule of the regime. However, Ethiopia’s role in helping prevent that has not been satisfactory – not because it is duty bound to do so but remembering that none of Eritrea’s neighbors have played a decisive role in the fate of Eritreans as Ethiopia did. Thus, its active role is not only a strategic necessity but a duty. Unfortunately, the other important Eritrean neighbor, represented by the current Government of Sudan, has disqualified itself from any role by choosing to be an ally and an enabler of the Eritrean regime. Ethiopian policymakers cannot afford to ignore the gap that is widening across the Eritrean social, regional, and religious divide. These divergences are too risky to watch silently; they are cracks through which bigger determinant problems could seep-in to make it unmanageable.

Moderate Eritreans believe they have enough leverage and goodwill among their people to defeat Isaias and his regime; Eritrea’s neighbors should focus on encouraging and supporting this strain within the Eritrean political camp.

Ethiopian authorities and the Eritrean resistance forces need to reach an understanding on the strategic relations between the two countries and people; once the intents of both are declared in a sort of genuine memorandum of understanding, the Eritrean forces should be left to their own devices, with less interference to reach strategic and tactical decisions. To this date, no such meaningful debate has taken place between Eritreans and Ethiopians apart from a few meetings and seminars with unclear agendas and conclusions.

Looking ahead, the often-repeated fact regarding the close relations between the two peoples should not be taken for granted; intellectuals and politicians of the two countries need to define and redefine these relations in strategic terms. The relations should provide tangible benefits for the two countries and not be considered ceremonial speech-feelers or words uttered for mere social nicety.

Today, the bridge that Emperor Haile Selassie I crossed in 1952 is politically and emotionally demolished; physically it has remained insignificant since 1998. Instead, it is essential to building a wider, modern, durable bridge that all should be able to cross freely, without dividing Eritreans and Ethiopians into toll-collectors and toll-payers.

Between 1991 and 1997, the two new governments signed many agreements: security, financial, economic, and political. As far as Eritreans are concerned, those agreements were designed and implemented with the PFDJ, the Eritrean ruling party, as a monopolizing power in mind. Still, though many Eritreans were denied the benefits from such agreements, they accepted it thinking the situation will improve with time. They found themselves splashed with cold water when the two countries went to war, and even the uninitiated ended up paying for the consequences.

The envisioned bridge should be erected with the intention of serving all stakeholders in the two countries with impartiality, unlike the bridge that Haile Selassie crossed in 1952, and it should also not be an unfair bridge similar to the one that connected the two governments between 1991 and 1997.

Though Ethiopia has made a remarkable stride in many fields and is pursuing the right path, both countries are on the lower rungs of the development ladder and are far behind in every human development indices. Both countries need a sense of urgency to build such a bridge since in this age neither Eritrea nor Ethiopia can afford to keep on falling behind. It is a fast-moving age and the power of mythology is diminishing and losing its efficacy. As more and more countries in Africa are going through – and succeeding – in the democratization process, current and future despotic regimes will find it difficult to rule with an iron fist. Building a durable bridge is a historical inevitability.

Eritrea is very much damaged after more than two decades of brigandage and repression; the band holding Eritreans together has been stretched so much that there is a risk it might snap. If the repressive Eritrean regime is removed without dealing with the subdued political wills of the society – and tens of thousands of firearms scattered everywhere – there is a genuine fear of serious polarization that only benefits warlords and gangs. Instead of a national army, Eritrea has a large armed force that is being managed as a private militia of a totalitarian regime. That poses a serious risk to the security of Eritrea and the entire region. Unfortunately, the Eritrean opposition doesn’t fare any better; it also holds the seeds for such disaster unless it forms an umbrella group that commands political authority.

Welcoming a Sunrise

Eritrea would benefit from a developed Ethiopia. A failed Ethiopia doesn’t translate into a victory for Eritrea as perceived by the ego-driven militarist bravado of the Eritrean regime. Ethiopia’s failure doesn’t translate into tangible benefits for Eritreans. In fact, the Eritrean regime, for instance, doesn’t think of the market that the Asseb port is supposed to serve; it is content with putting a division dedicated to guarding an idle port—rumored foreign use of the port notwithstanding.

From the outset, the Eritrean case was all about freedom and justice, never for anything else. Ideologies and partisan politics were not at the core of what the average Eritrean expected after the epic struggle. Of course, ideologies are important in a struggle, for they shape the future governance of a state. But ideologies are not an end in themselves. Unfortunately, since the Eritrean struggle delivered neither the freedom nor the justice it set out to achieve, some demoralized individuals have questioned the validity of the entire journey. However, resilient Eritrean patriots simply recognize that the lofty goals they pursued are not yet achieved in full. That is a confirmation that there remains an additional journey to tread. And, hopefully, this time when the destination is reached, it will not be based on goodwill or naiveté. Real justice and freedom must be achieved. And that is why the Eritrean resistance is ravaged by mistrust and rivalry – everyone needs to hear a declaration of intents as a preliminary guarantee for the protection of the lofty goals. They should strive to disallow anyone from eroding the ideals of the struggle.

Eritreans ought to envision peaceful relations with all their neighbors, particularly with Ethiopia. Eritreans should assure Ethiopia of their genuine intents: good neighborliness, security, equitable deal in accessing the sea, trade, and commerce. Ethiopia should also assure Eritreans of genuine intents: good neighborliness, security, territorial integrity and abstention from the operational heavy-handedness. That kind of conviction in itself would guarantee a prosperous, fruitful, peaceful and stable relationship between the two countries. And in such an environment, politics will be governed by the interest of the people, not by the narrow interest of the elites.

However, before reaching there, a serious discussion should take place between Eritrean and Ethiopian stakeholders, beginning with scholars who have proven track records, not those who would like opportunistically to climb the ladder of power without proving themselves, or investing in the struggle.

About Saleh "Gadi" Johar

Born and raised in Keren, Eritrea, now a US citizen residing in California, Mr. Saleh “Gadi” Johar is founder and publisher of awate.com. Author of Miriam was Here, Of Kings and Bandits, and Simply Echoes. Saleh is acclaimed for his wealth of experience and knowledge in the history and politics of the Horn of Africa. A prominent public speaker and a researcher specializing on the Horn of Africa, he has given many distinguished lectures and participated in numerous seminars and conferences around the world. Activism Awate.com was founded by Saleh “Gadi” Johar and is administered by the Awate Team and a group of volunteers who serve as the website’s advisory committee. The mission of awate.com is to provide Eritreans and friends of Eritrea with information that is hidden by the Eritrean regime and its surrogates; to provide a platform for information dissemination and opinion sharing; to inspire Eritreans, to embolden them into taking action, and finally, to lay the groundwork for reconciliation whose pillars are the truth. Miriam Was Here This book that was launched on August 16, 2013, is based on true stories; in writing it, Saleh has interviewed dozens of victims and eye-witnesses of Human trafficking, Eritrea, human rights, forced labor.and researched hundreds of pages of materials. The novel describes the ordeal of a nation, its youth, women and parents. It focuses on violation of human rights of the citizens and a country whose youth have become victims of slave labor, human trafficking, hostage taking, and human organ harvesting--all a result of bad governance. The main character of the story is Miriam, a young Eritrean woman; her father Zerom Bahta Hadgembes, a veteran of the struggle who resides in America and her childhood friend Senay who wanted to marry her but ended up being conscripted. Kings and Bandits Saleh “Gadi” Johar tells a powerful story that is never told: that many "child warriors" to whom we are asked to offer sympathies befitting helpless victims and hostages are actually premature adults who have made a conscious decision to stand up against brutality and oppression, and actually deserve our admiration. And that many of those whom we instinctively feel sympathetic towards, like the Ethiopian king Emperor Haile Sellassie, were actually world-class tyrants whose transgressions would normally be cases in the World Court. Simply Echoes A collection of romantic, political observations and travel poems; a reflection of the euphoric years that followed Eritrean Independence in 1991.

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  • Paulos

    Selam My Good People,

    Rumor is going around that all political prisoners will be freed with in this month. If this is in fact true, I promise I won’t say anything bad about the man from then onward. He can be the President for life If he wishes to so long as he governs in fairness and kindness. That’s all.

    • Kaddis

      Gash Paulos
      እውነት ያርገው።
      People here are reluctantly asking Ethiopian POWs and prisoners with unimaginable ignorance how Shabia treats his people; let alone Ethiopians.
      Yeah; repression is contextual in our sorry states of the horn.

      • ‘Gheteb

        Hi Kaddis,

        I don’t believe even a scintilla of such kind of rumors. What I am noticing, though, is that pseudologia fantastica manifesting through rumor mongering.

        • Kaddis

          Hi Gheteb –
          Nobel peace prize was given to Obama in 2009 ( only a year after ) not for his results but for the hope. People in countries like yours and mine rumor to influence their hope to become reality. No shame on that when the ‘right to information’ is not even a thing. Does your government has spokes on every gov institution?

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Dr Paulos,

      Rumors are Rumors. Do not predicate your hopes on rumors. As a science student you argument and your hopes should be based on facts and their trajectories. Rumors are only the daily diets for the gullibles.

      • Mez

        Dear Amanuel A & Paulos,

        With the signed agreement saying: ” the war between the two countries is ended”, it clearly shows there is a fundamental shift towards PEACE.

        Now the biggest challenge for PIA will be how to move the Eritrean government policy from war time style of doing business to peace time of doing business.

        I strongly believe the PIA government will initiate chains of reforms (including releasing of non petty-crime prisoners, cascaded demilitarization, ease of doing business…) as quick as possible. I see no alternative route to this, and it can not be a mere rumor.

        The only, jet, unknown factor is how much fund the “friend of peace” donners would chop-in for the revival of the Eritrean economy and the reconstruction of war devastated boarder region infrastructures.

        Thanks

        • Paulos

          Selam Mez,

          “….From war time doing business to a peace time doing business…” That is just brilliant! Thank you.

        • Amanuel Hidrat

          Selam Mez,

          As a wish, I share the things you jotted out . But, to as a realistic move from the character so far he displayed, I do not expect him. You also are hoping to change the “policy of Bitsifrna” so as to expect money from unknown factors. All this positive predictions is coming from the visit of the Young PM to Asmara. ከም አፍካ ይግበረለይ በለት ሰበይቲ:: እሞ ከም አፍካ ይገበረልና እዩ ዝሐሸ ይመስለኒ እቲ መልሲ::

          • Mez

            Dear Amanuel H,

            You are addressing avery fundamental political item; it is challenging to exhaustively reflect on it.

            The fundamental is, after declaring peace, a) there is no need to keep an army of 200k, b) the indefinite national service induced Eri-immigrant crisis (opportunist Ethiopian, Somali,… migrants abuse it too) is a big political issue in Europe, c) if in few weeks the visa-waived crossing between the two countries start–this by itself is going to create instability with flow of peoples, services, and goods between the two countries where the boundary conditions for life opportunities are not leveled-out and synchronized, d) as you know one of the key pillars of Capitalism is financial credit. There are bilateral and global sources to access it–provided certain requirements (generally making the country credit and FDI friendly) are met by the applicant/applicants. And more. They are all time sensitive.

            Now, it is hardly possible to keep the Eritrean internal political configuration unchanged and still move on as if nothing had changed; that would create a situation, more or less, similar to the Ethiopian situation of the three years prior to PM-AAA.

            How fundamental and big the reform by PIA will be is unknown. But the bare minimum must include demobilization, release of political prisnors, ease of doing business for private citizens.

            Opening up an opportunity for divergent political views will be highly appreciated, but I didn’t know if pfdj would have the gut to do so.

            Thanks

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Mez,

            These agreements is an already cooked agreements by foreign forces. Otherwise, after a bloody war, and in a half day meeting, you can’t come with this broad agreements on different fronts. One could expect a realistic agreement in their first meeting is, to remove the clouds of war and start the demarcation of the border that was on hold for 16 years since 2002, followed by opening their diplomatic offices in their respective capitals in second or third meeting. Otherwise, leaving the border issue in the back of the burner, and going full swing in to a borderless relationship and agreements to open the flow of goods and services, and to open ports for Ethiopian goods in one day meeting, is unheard in the history of diplomatic engagements of mankind. I have the feeling the PM has come to Asmara to sign the finished product and celebrate with his counterpart the Eritrean despot.

            Keep in mind I am not against such agreements, if it would have been by finishing the demarcation of the border followed by a period of trust building. Then and only then, all the stated agreements could have realistic meaning on the ground. For intent and purposes, all politico-economic relationships requires continuous negotiations and horse trading businesses. Without that the agreement is not their own product to say the list. If the product of the agreement is not theirs, you can’t make realistic prediction out of the ground. So in a nutshell, I am not part of the predicting business.

            However, I like your “ball pointed” argument than unfiltered “long hateta” carrying contradicting ideas. At this juncture where we are in an unsettled volatile political situation, it is very hard to have a well grounded evaluations. Unless I see some one distorted our past political discourse, in which there are many by the way, I am on watching the outsider driven new movements by both governments and how it will end.

            Thank for your matured engagement.

          • Amde

            Selam Mez

            Do you think there is a high probability of an influx of Eritrean refugees into Ethiopia once the borders open?

            Amde

          • Blink

            Dear Amde
            One day Trump said the following
            Why are the elites hates me ? And he gave these reasons.
            1. Because he is smarter than them
            2. Because he is richer than them
            3. Because he became president and they don’t.

            What kind of refugees ?

          • Amde

            Selam Blink,

            Primarily economic.

            If demobilization is not done right, and economic opportunities are perceived to be better across the border.

            Amde

          • Mez

            Dear Amde,
            With the new mutual agreement you may call such a movement not necessarily refugee flow. However it may create unaccounted flow of people, and after a while a crisis.

            Thanks

          • Abrehet Yosief

            Selam A.mde,
            What does “boarders open” mean? You see before the border war, Ethiopians could come and go as they please. But Eritreans need an exit visa. Anyone older than 65 (unless on a no-leave list) gets an exit visa but under that age, you need to fulfill certain criteria. In the past, every now and then the visa restriction was loosened, for e.g. “women over age 47 could leave” or “demobilized and over 35 could leave”. When this happens, it is common for some to just leave the country while it is allowed (as the restrictions usually are re-imposed) even if they have no plan to emigrate. They typically end up in Uganda (Kenya in prior years). From there, they decide what they want to do.
            If the current “open borders” ends up meaning no exit visa, expect a deluge. People will travel just to do it, if the situation continues to be stable they will go back if not, the journey continues.
            I see invitations from Tigray for Mariam Tsion flowing, and perhaps it would be great if a pilgrimage could be allowed just as a test. That would be amazing.

          • Amde

            Hi Abrehet,

            Yes I had something akin to East Germans flowing into West Germany hen the wall fell in mind. Not clear how many of the “Ossis” stayed and became “Wessis”. The situation became legally moot once they reunified, but the social impact was apparently obvious for quite a while. Not the same situation ere – but definitely something to chew over.

            A Mariam Tsion pilgrimage would be amazing. I really hope something like that is arranged ASAP. Let the churches and people of faith do their thing for a change. Organized pilgrimages to famous churches, monasteries etc is a thing in Ethiopia.

            Amde

          • Selam Amde,

            Closed borders or open borders, the effect may be the same, unless the regime in asmara is changed or changes itself. There is no guarantee that eritreans who leave eritrea, especially the young, will trust the regime and return back to eritrea, with the hope they will leave again whenever they like.

            That is why once i said that peace deal may undermine eritrean independence, and this is one of the reasons pfdj avoided peace until now when it was forced to realize that it cannot continue the same way. The similarity of both people and the hard time eritreans passed in independent eritrea, and life in eritrea or ethiopia for an eritrean is not in anyway different, etc, simply makes “identity”, which is nothing but the creation of the elite groups everywhere in the world, completely irrelevant with time. There is the saying, ‘my country is where i live as a free human being’

            Life in ethiopia has not been different for an eritrean even during the last twenty years of animosity. Only a dictatorial regime with an iron grip and closed borders, as the one that existed in eritrea after independence, can guarantee a clear separation between the two people, especially the highlanders. This is a nightmare for the ultra-nationalist elite eritreans.

    • Ismail AA

      Selam Dr. Paulos,

      For all I have been blessed to know so far about your knowledge and judgement, I should be candid to myself first and to you next and say this: This is the first time I noticed your scientific mind being swayed by emotion. As humans, we all have room for sentiments, and I do not blame you for being moved by rumor that could come true and relief families and prisoners. But what surprised me is a priori promise to accept a ruthless despot to rule for life when you and I know that experiences have taught enough to know it has never been in the nature of dictators to rule “in fairness and kindness”.

      • Paulos

        Selam Kbur Haw Ismail AA,

        The one thing that is killing us everyday is the painful situation of the prisoners where some of them have been in prison for over 20 years. Just imagine how cruel that is. It is like a farmer who stares at the sky everyday for a sign of rain. And we see for any sign including rumors if they will be freed at long last. It is just painful where as you said it, we can not afford to rely on the human intellect but on the frailty instead. Rumor being one of it.

        • Ismail AA

          Dearest Dr. Paulos,
          I can for sure concur with you about the suffering of both families and their loved ones. But the questions is you are speaking about a human being who has shed himself of any semblance of humanity. You won’t in your conscience imagine a man who killed school room and neighborhood play mates for political end would have any heart for prisoners he had condemned to dungeons for life.

  • Selam All,

    The following is supposed to have been said by President IA.

    “I would like to thank my Eritrean countrymen for their heartfelt welcome to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia and his delegation, the people of the two countries are one people living in two countries, …….”.

    Who were the people who were disgusted whenever they read “we are one people”? They must be from the pfdj camp. They even tried to rewrite history to show us that there is no connection whatsoever between eritreans and ethiopians. It is really unbelievable how times change.

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam Horizon,

      Did you ask who?
      I know one prominent Awatista, ‘Gheteb. That is who.
      It was ‘Gheteb who wrote in recent past extensively about the historical separate Eritrean existence during the era of the Axumite empire by inventing an Adulisian power center.

      You must read saay and ‘Gheteb discussions of yesterday. It was slash and burn type of exchange. Saay took the gloves off and was administering his classic zingers, including the style of ‘Gheteb’s capitalization of words.

      It is really unbelievable of the drastic changes in people. I bet like most PFDJites ‘Gheteb loves Ethiopia now, if you ask him. I think it is all because they saw PIA smiling for a change. It borders on hysteria, I tell you.

      Mr. K.H

  • ‘Gheteb

    PIA Has The Last Laugh!

    Greetings!!

    First, here is the joint communique or declaration of the PIA/PMAA summit:

    ” Yemane G. Meskel
    ‏@hawelti

    Eritrea and Ethiopia have signed a Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship today. The Agreement, which specifies five pillars, was signed this morning at State House by President Isaias Afwerki and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed

    Joint Declaration states, inter alia,

    I) State of war that existed between the two countries has come to an end. A new era of peace & friendship has been ushered;

    ii) Both countries will work to promote close cooperation in political, economic, social, cultural & security areas

    iii) Transport, trade and telecommunication ties will be resumed; diplomatic ties & activities renewed;

    iv) Border decision will be implemented;

    v) Both countries will work together to guarantee regional peace, development & cooperation. ”

    Yeah, you read it right on iv, #4, that “The Border decision will be IMPLEMENTED.

    Implement (verb)
    ” 1. put (a decision, plan, agreement, etc.) into effect.
    “the regulations implement a 1954 treaty”
    synonyms:
    execute, apply, put into effect, put into action, put into practice, carry out/through, perform, enact;

    This means, this could only mean, that the EBBC verdict or decision will be ENACTED and put into effect. Since the border is already DEMARCATED virtually, what remains is the emplacement of PILLARS to mark physically the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia.

    This, of course, would entail that the withdrawal of Ethiopian troops from sovereign Eritrean territories.

    Those who have been vociferating that the PFDJ and PIA will completely forget about the demarcation issue are yet again proven wrong. They have dissipated their energy for naught.

    And, those who declared that he final and binding border decision was “martyred on martyr day” and buried it with an epitaph on the grave site that read, “first name… FINAL and last name…. BINDING, will be spinning frantically to change what they thought would put the PFDJ in bad light. But, alas, this ain’t going to be that easy.

    Simply, the Ethio-Eritrean border decision will be implemented and thus DEMARCATED.

    Those who find themselves in the anti-PFDJ camp are acting like their usual good for nothing selves. Here is a brief snapshot or a sketch:

    1. Amanuel Eyassu, through his Assena radio, had an hour long program. He was literally up in arms, hollering and bawling, that Isaias Afwerki is about to sell Eritrea and therefore Eritrea will be united with Ethiopia through evil deeds of Isaias.

    Amanuel even tried to conjure up memories of from the political histories of Eritrea that happened in the 50s. He is claiming that Eritrea finds itself on a secondary cross road.

    2. Elsa Chirum has written a second letter to PMAA in the hope that he will do her political biddings in removing the PFDJ from power.

    3. Some in this Forum, like the chitchat one hears in hairstylist salon, are expecting Eritreans to raise up against the PFDJ because the phone lines are now open between Ethiopia and Eritrea. And, eventually PMMA is going to nudge PIA to work on improving the human right condition in Eritrea.

    4. The pathological liar who has switched between a female and a male nick names continues to lie while the Aba Guayla of KitiE of this Forum has been reduced to cheering his comrades in arms in the anti-PFDJ camp.

    All in all, the report from the anti-PFDJ camp is one of desperation and political DYSSPHORIA.

    • FishMilk

      Hi Gheteb..This is fantastic news for both Eritrea and Ethiopia! Go Eritrea go!
      Blue skies
      Smiling at me
      Nothing but blue skies
      Do I see…

      • FishMilk

        Congratulations to Eritrea (& Ethiopia)!!!!!
        We are the champions, my friends
        And we’ll keep on fighting ’til the end
        We are the champions
        We are the champions
        No time for losers
        ‘Cause we are the champions of the world

    • Hameed Al-Arabi

      Salam Gheteb,

      The border between Ethiopia and Eritrea is demarcated in the past between Ethiopian Emperor and Italy, and in 2002 confirmed by EBBC verdict. Putting pillars on the ground can be made by any Ethiopian and Eritrean government, it is a foregone conclusion.

      Dr Abie Ahmed has given Isaias a lesson in governance at his own den. Viva PMDAAA

      • FishMilk

        Hi Hameed Al-Arabi. Do you like watching Bugs Bunny Looney Tunes Cartoons?

        • Hameed Al-Arabi

          Hi FishMilk,

          Definitely, it hurt you deeply and paralyzed you like the war monger who was unable to recite one sentence about peace. If it was about war, he wouldn’t have given chance to any person to speak. I think, one lecture is not enough to tame Isaias and his cohorts, thus I request Dr. Abie Ahmed to sacrifice a little from his valuable time and give them more lectures.

          I admire Dr. Abie Ahmed who has given Isaias a lesson in human rights, freedom of movement for all citizens in and out side of their country. He stressed on making the youth perish in deserts is inhumane. He practically trained him about the meaning of transparency when he translated his lecture into Amharic language to hear the Ethiopian people.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Hameed,

            Yes in deed. When he spoke in Amharic, even though he was saying the message was for both people, the direct effect is to us Eritrean. Like you said, it’s us who are not allowed to leave our country free, who are dying in the deserts and seas in thousands, who are mistreated (tewaridna) in the hands of human traffickers, smugglers, and destitute in European cities.

            He is telling us, it’s enough and leave the people alone and give them pride to live in their country.

            We do not need any message to create but inspire by his speech and repeat it day in and day out until we achieve it.

            Berhe

    • saay7

      Hahaha Gheteb:

      That’s a lot of sweating for such a lame bake. I will come back to explain why later but fyi: what Yemane Gebreab itemized in a list today, Abiy had told us yesterday. So, as usual, a day late a dollar short. Or in the case of hgdefites, 16 years late, and incalculable losses. Be back!

      (In the meantime check if the “Ethiopians have left every inch of Eritrea”, as your huff-puff department said for 16 years.)

      Also I have terrible news for you: prisoners are going to be released.

      saay

      • ‘Gheteb

        Cuz SAAY:

        I know that your spinning is going to start in earnest to find that wiggle room. We shall see.

        But why the release of prisoners is bad news for me. Remember, I am programmed to cheer and clap and approve whatever the IA and PFDJ decides. At least, be consistent as such shiftiness is getting too old.

        Your Kbrom, the hyper-imaginative “stringer” has reported that Eritrea will be rejoining IGAD soon. What an earth shattering tidbits, given the fact IGAD has sent a letter inviting Eritrea to rejoin the organization.

        It is like someone looking at the sky with dark clouds and rumbling of thunder and says that it is going to rain. Your Kbrom’s report about Eritrea and IGAD is analogous to that.

        BTW, Kbrom is mum about the fate of General Filipos who was also seen standing close by PIA in Asmara Air Port when they saw off PMMA today.

        • saay7

          Cuz Gheteb:

          I will show you my “wiggle room” is so huge you can ride an 18-wheeler but not now. Later, I promise.

          What interests me is that you keep feigning surprise that the General-slayer (IA)* has set his sights on another fall guy (this time Philipos.) Kbrom The Reliable (ሕርር!) said that IA is setting the stage by complaining about the number of people he has arrested. (In the subcontracting services he runs, he may actually be genuinely surprised.). I asked you a specific question:

          1. Are you able to say with certainty he won’t be arrested?
          2. Are you able to say with certainty if he is arrested he will get his day in court?

          saay

          * Oqbe, Berhane, Teweel, etc inprisoned; Sebhat constantly humiliated.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            I hate when an educated people became puppets and enablers of a dictator. We have many of them. When their demigod disappears from the scene they will go to their hiding place. Imagine being in their position adoring the despot, how a shaming episode it will be.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Cuz SAAY:

            Why are you going off on a tangent and posing questions as if it was me who has been running the rumor mill overtime in this Forum and disseminating anything and everything from the grapevine.

            The ONUS is on you and your “reliable” source, the hyper-imaginative “stringer” of this Forum, Kbrom, to show a modicum of decency and substantiate all the wild rumors you have been churning out.

            Anyone within the PFDJ can be arrested anytime. But the issue is the degree of possibility and probability which you made it look like the arrest of General Filipos was imminent. Sure, there is a possibility that anyone of the PFDJ can be arrested, even including PIA.

            So, spare me all the idle talk and tell your “reliable” source to curb his enthusiasm of rumormongering and double check before posting UNRELIABLE rumors in this Forum.

          • saay7

            Cuz Gheteb:

            Sure, there is a possibility that anyone of the PFDJ can be arrested, even including PIA.

            😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

            Thanks for the laughs buddy. What a great coping mechanism you have 🙂

            saay

          • ‘Gheteb

            Cuz SAAY:

            Anything is possible, specially if you take into consideration the pressure that the PFDJ and PIA are put under these days. Add to that all the DEMANDS you in the anti-PFDJ camp are making and how you are enlightening the Eritrean population; your messages resonating with the Eritrean people so much so that I can hear the pressure valve vibrating.

            A revolution is aborning in Eritrea!

            No PFDJ II, “the Eritrean spring” is here and anyone from the PFDJ can get arrested by what will be dubbed as “The Bitweded Revolution”, you know the Eritreas version of PMAA!

            Sorry, but they are saying that the sanction on Eritrea is to be LIFTED as in Eritrea will be SANCTIONED no more!

            Wow!

          • saay7

            Cuz Gheteb:

            I very much like the “Bitweded Revolution.” Can I use it?

            Every thing Bitweded said in 1996 (forgiveness, reconciliation, humility ) was rebranded as መደመር in Ethiopia in 2018. So, Abiy is carrying on the Bitweded Revolution.

            saay

      • iSem

        Hi Sal:
        You have been so price and potent and cogent in demolishing the fallacies of your cousin, but I am not sure if you are making a dent. He even predicted that the prisoners will not be releases, this is just rumormongering he calls it

      • Nitricc

        Hey SAAY; sometimes you lose your commonsense. Say you are PMAA and you are faced what is facing from TPLF thugs. Under such situation, he has to say what he has said. I don’t what your assessments are but if the people of Tigray and TPLF doesn’t buy what MPAA is selling, nothing will be done and everything comes down to fail. So, PMAA has to reassure the people of Tigray and TPLF to come down their nerves. So, I wouldn’t read to much to it. If the government of Eritrea fails to demarcate the border; expect the unexpected.

        • saay7

          Nitricc: I missed you and can’t wait to respond to what you are saying, as soon as I understand it:)

          PM Abiy is inexperienced and sometimes he clues us in on the fact that all the terms of the deal were pre-cooked, and are being reheated for your consumption. My cousin cuz is uncharacteristically slow but I am sure it’s not lost on him that the issue of demarcation is (a) item number 4; (b) it has no timeline; (c) doesn’t mention Algiers or “final and binding.” The priority is normalization. The same thing that we could have had 16 years ago before we exiled 12% of our population. The single difference is the man Isaias is smiling at is named Abiy of EPRDF and not Meles of EPRDF or Hailemariam of EPRDF. Because the priority was not saving Eritrea but humiliating TPLF.

          I will say more later.

          saay

    • saay7

      Selamat Cuz Gheteb:

      As promised, here’s my rejoinder to your latest “If I give it a heading, it will sound dramatic” post:) Let’s begin with the heading itself: “PIA Has the Last Laugh”. Not Eritrea, not Eritrean government, not PFDJ but PIA. Why? Because this was all a grudge between IA and MZ. But, let’s move on and look at the “joint declaration” aka the US-UAE Plan (wink):

      It was clever for Yemane Gebremeskel to refer to the peace treaty as having “five pillars.” It will be a good lollipop to the pillars-loving constituency. You can’t have your wall, how about a document with “pillars” in it? Sounds great.

      1. The “state of war” will be lifted in Ethiopia by an act of parliament. It is lifted in Eritrea by the signature of one man: IA. Of course, this “state of war” was variously described as “state of no-war, no peace” and “state of bloodless war”, but let’s call it a state of war: it will be more dramatic.

      ii and iii are about normalization. I don’t know why they felt to create two entries for them. Political, economic, social, culture, security defenitely covers transport, trade, communication and diplomatic ties. But they had to do because they wanted their Five Point Plan. Remember, this is all a big Eff You by IA to Meles. The fight must go on.

      iv. “border decision will be implemented.” How? When? On the basis of what? Who cares! We will get to it when we get to it. Or, as PM Abiy send in his address to the beaming old man, “the small things we will address in due time.” (I will get back to this in a minute.)

      v. Regional peace. Well, we already know that IA has designated Abiy as his Foreign Minister because he knows he (Isaias) has totally destroyed Eritrea’s reputation with Africa and the UN and he needs a middle-man to recover it.

      The whole thing is like the man who shoots himself in both feet and then congratulates himself for finishing a marathon in 16 years. Yay.

      It is like the woman who makes a series of terrible decisions that prevent her from conceiving a child, refuses all medical help for it (they will poison me! they will retard my child) and then, a decade later, has a child. You have to congratulate her (who wouldnt!) but in the back of your mind is all the terrible decisions she made that delayed the miracle.

      Now, here is another document with 5 “pillars” from 2004 (14 years ago):

      1. Resolve the dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea only and only through peaceful means.
      2. Resolve the root causes of the conflict through dialogue with the view to normalizing relations between the two countries.
      3. Ethiopia accepts, in principle, the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission decision.
      4. Ethiopia agrees to pay its dues to the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission and to appoint field liaison officers.
      5. Start dialogue immediately with the view to implementing the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission’s decision in a manner consistent with the promotion of sustainable peace and brotherly ties between the two peoples.

      Back then, the rationale for rejecting it was that Ethiopia should not agree to things “in principle” and place its conditions for it. I made that argument, too. It would be the right thing to do. But given all the costs Eritrea was about to incur, I argued that the prudent thing to do is to accept it. Eritrea rejected it and said, nope, demarcation first. Final and binding first. Removal of Ethopian soldiers from every inch of our territory first. So, buddy, when I say “Final & Binding was martyred on martyrs day”, it is because IA said he would be talking with the Ethiopian government WHILE Ethiopia was occupying Eritrean territory. The two countries are talking, negotiating, entering into agreements WHILE Ethiopian troops occupy territories including Badme. That’s just a fact. And that is such a huge gaping hole in its argument then, and its argument now, that my 16-wheeler can drive through it, with room to spare.

      So much wasted due to unimaginative and rigid “government.” And once it loses its rigidity, it is flexible on everything.

      saay

  • Haile S.

    Selam Hope,
    If hope, peace, reconciliation and development are to prevail, the self serving stone-age philosophy that devastated Abyssinia for centuries, i.e. the war of Lesson-giver and Lesson-taker must stop. We both the supposed lesson takers and lesson giver ARE ALL LESSON TAKERS. We can drag this for some time, but it is better to do it now and stop scratching it back. The black haired young ABIY become the tallest among the now white haired old Isayas Afewerki and Seyoun Mesfin and their respective cohorts. Time for change now without a second delay.

  • Kbrom

    Hi all

    Eritrea will rejoin IGAD soon.

  • AMAN

    This move actually erases 50% of all previous mistakes automatically and solves 55% of the overall problems we currently have.
    I believe it is one of the unique and best cornerstones ever laid out for peace that needs to be cared of and build upon.
    I also agree with some critics and believe that it is not the whole pie of peace but it can serve well enough the majority of us
    and hope the rest will fullfil it 100% making it full pie .
    I would like to say congratulations for the great job done or started and marching in the positive direction.
    This train ! I say THIS train
    Is bound to Glory !
    This train !

  • AMAN

    Ah
    Greetings Awates.
    What can I say !
    .
    You deserve it Abi
    El Grandesimo !
    El Magnificiente !
    EPIC…..of the highest order !
    Superb…….! Both in style & content.
    .
    Not enough words to express it bro.
    RIP

  • iSem

    Hi All:

    IA of PFDJ Accomplishes Fifty Years Dream of Selling Eritrea Accomplished

    From the long time I have followed IA, I have never seen him so giddy, so happy, so in jubilation, smiling from ear to ear. And in a slip of tongue he said: “We have been separated for 25 years”. It is not an arithmetic error; he was deliberately referring to the referendum which was held 25 years ago to date. The last war started twenty years ago and peace was signed 18 years ago.
    He was not this happy even during the independence of Eritrea, in the speech he delivered in Asmara for the first time with his sleeves rolled, when he banned every opposition. The guy who is used to danced and celebrate with drinks after every battle seemed sad in that speech. But that was the liberation of Eritrea, this is the annexation of Eritrea, the dream of IA and his forefathers.
    Also the famous singers sang in Amharic, following in the foots steps of YG who spoke in Amharic. Famous men and women whose spouses and and kids were arrested danced to the tune and men pounded the ground, and below them, underground, in the building where Abiye delivered words of love and peace, domicile tormented Eritrean souls in the dungeon.s These are prisoners who have not seen the light of the day and who still do not know if Eri has been liberated or not.
    IA has officially sold Eritrea to Ethiopia and the mercenaries in this form are claiming victory. They are correct, it is indeed a victory, but not victory for Eritrea but for IA his handful yes men and women

    Ethiopians will roam freely to Eritrea and will conduct their trade and business and Eritrea’s will be denied freedom and will be second class citizens. Some will be fooled by the glamor of the dancing and chanting and the machines will forcefully sell the selling of Eritrea. IA and PFDJ will profit and get the much needed life line to elongate their grip
    Unless like what PMAA have done, the banned Eri opposition including the Eri Jihad are invited, the government acknowledge their existence, apologizes to the people like their new love PMAA has done and all the political prisoners and journalistic are released unconditionally, this peace deal will be the fifty year old conspiracy against the people of Eritrea and once again, and for the last time Eritreans have been given in silver platter their golden opportunity to defend their identity, otherwise the Eritreanism the rea McCoy , the one that inspired generation to bear arms to claim their identity to be owners of their density will forever be gone.

    • Paulos

      Selam Semerile,

      We shouldn’t rush to conclusion. Let’s wait with patience and see how the new development pans out.

      • iSem

        hi Paoulo
        I agree with you about not rushing, but IA cannot abandon his nature and his PFDJ that hehas created in his image cannot.But maybe when the nationalist smell the coffee and see IA for what he is, they can do something, maybe what IA thought will be his saving grace can usher his demise. Yet if IA still holds the power, the vicious cyle will stay

    • Blink

      Dear Isem
      I can’t imagine the facial expression you have in the past weeks . Damt I love bad loser because I feel I can joke with them around the clock .

      • iSem

        Hi Blink:
        My facial expression are the same, because I predicted this that one daty Ethiopia can withdraw from the border, I commented about it prolifically. So u have no idea what u talking about. I can imagine though the facial expression of the likes of you when PFDJ dissappoints u like it did, it is negotiating before withdrawal. I expected IA and the mercenaries to sell Eritrea and I criticized the opposition for not preparing for this, long time ago. Find it

        • Blink

          Dear isem
          Just read the final result of the Abiy visit to Eritrea and you don’t need to go anywhere from that. Just as an awatecom forum friend , relax your job is just starting now. Work hard for a democratic Eritrea with its borders written by blood of your own Eritreans, stop this unrealistic expectations from your TPLF bags . This is just because as a person I like you semere , by the way the Eritrean national Anthem will go on to ring at your ear and yes you heard it ,Abiy did apologize for the mistakes done and I am waiting for the dictator to do so.

          From now on wards unless you go back to attack ELF or EPLF I count you as dear friend , accept my peaceful sign .Semere you have so much to offer to the betterment of your people just remove your name from bad people.

  • saay7

    Selamat Gheteb:

    Hope you saw the word that confused Disqus: it’s between “anti-PFDJism” and “anti-Eritreanism.” I have to explain because paranoia is a feature of your warped version of “Eritreanism.”

    Evidence that PFDJ is unpopular:

    1. It knows its brand is toxic which is why it refers to itself by the two words it shares with EPLF: People’s Front (ህዝባዊ ግንባር)
    2. State violence: Escape rate matching that of those running from predatory state;
    3. Compulsion: Nobody voluntarily enlists; everyone is conscripted;
    4. Blackmail/extortion: Not being in good standing with PFDJ is not being in good standing with Eritrea. If you so much as criticize it (never mind join opposition or even out of curiosity attend an opposition meeting), you may not be able to go home, or even send a dead family member for burial.
    5. Lie: deny, deny, deny. Worst of all it lies about the items 1-4 with extreme abandon.

    What does the opposition have to show for its existence? In a country that lies that they don’t exist their existence is a form of defiance. What can an outlawed opposition do other than provide information to the brutalized people that we know of their suffering and will ensure the world knows it. Without us, your government would have gotten away with it and it hasn’t and it never will. Man, what armor are you talking about? A government that can’t protect its people or its land cannot sell itself as guardian of soverignty and territorial integrity. Sooner or later, it will (like its soulmate Weyane) face the wrath of the people. A lot of what it will do over the next few months is to open the pressure valve.

    On General Philipos. Here’s the ultimate test. Forget everything above: can you vouch for the fact that he is not going to be arrested or, if he is, he will be tried in a court of law and have the right to defend himself? You. Cannot. So the rest is all empty boasting, characteristic of PFDJ.

    saay

    • Hope

      SAAY:

      Ok ,we agree on what you listed but can U agree also on these or refute point by point?:

      “Do I need to remind you it is this very PFDJ that has not only foiled all the machinations that were hatched against it, but it has emerged triumphantly against the sworn enemies of Eritrea, the detestable Weyanes being a prime example.

      Yeah, sure, deny all you want. But you have to admit that the PFDJ has smashed to smithereens the mainstay of the support of the anti-PFDJ camp, by virtually DEFEATING the recreant Weyanes.

      You are claiming that your opposition have exposed “the sadistic nature of PFDJ” and what do you have to show for it? I told you that your anti-PFDJ camp have not made even the smallest ding on the PFDJs armor.”.
      I mean what the TPLF with the help of its Masters,its mercenaries and puppets -the Eri-Pseudo-Oppositions and the IGAD and ,the AU included, the Sana Forum,the old and new Ethio-Sudanese evil alliance,the made up stories to sanction, sabotage,to contain, to isolate, etc-Eritrea.-
      For God’s sake, this is NOT the PFDJ propaganda but all the above facts are well documented and proven.
      You never mention or consider the huge negative and destructive impact on Eritrea and Eritreans in general and on the GoE in particular with the obstacles on the PFDJ Gov NOT to govern the nation properly, like Ms Bruton said it correctly.
      But why don’t you consider the above challenges, for God’s sake?
      Don’t you believe that Eritrea could have been another failed State like Somalia or like Syria, which has been the whole evil agenda and goal of the TPLF and its Masters?
      I thought NOT only the PFDJ but Eritrea has been struggling to exist as a nation.

  • ‘Gheteb

    Hey Cuz SAAY,

    My last rejoinder to your last comment has been “PENDING” for an Hour now. Why?

    • saay7

      Cuz Gheteb:

      Most likely because you upset Disqus by using a word that is either in our banned list or has double entendre and the AI is not so advanced it knows which one you meant. Will check.

      saay

  • Kokhob Selam

    Dear All,

    The bellow post was posted..by me under an article of SGL..while I was trying to convince,

    back to the subject, If you notice in most of my posts you will find saying – no external force can force you to be in trouble unless you are ready to be forced. try it, check it, it is always your body that should be prepared to reject sickness of any sort first. say it cough or cold etc. the body should be ready to reject it and should take care of your health by taking enough food and sport to ready. then you have to take care of your hygiene. that is simple science. so you are not far from my understanding that we Eritreans has done in making the system with Haileselse. I am generalizing here. nature is perfect and gives you what you give in long run. at that time of history (before federation) most of the people were not aware of the consequence (again nature don’t care if you are aware or not- nature is nor cruel nor kind it is it – ) yet, there were people among Eritreans who cry and reject while there were people who said “ኢትዮጵያ ወይ ሞት”. and those who said “”ኢትዮጵያ ወይ ሞት” were the upper hand for different reasons internally that has given a good chance Haileslalse play it smartly. in fact the victims in this long history are not only Eritreans but also Ethiopians. Eritrean people were not given democratic choice and Ethiopians even don’t know what was going on. here the first responsible are Eritreans who decided with our making any legal process putting the choice of the people. then only I blame Ethiopian government. those who said “”ኢትዮጵያ ወይ ሞት” even paid the price before the federation was dismantled. and their children and grandchildren are paying still.
    the mistake was not uniting Eritrea with Ethiopia the mistake was that it was not democratic and legal way. it is always the same. even now Eritrea is separated from Ethiopia and confirmed legally – one one step ahead but again after all those long sufferings we have illegal government -2 steps back- that is the reason some are not swallowing the national freedom. Lol. again some are allergic to see Ethiopia around Eritrea. Lol
    “ተመን ዝተነኽሰስ ብልሕጺ ተዳህለ ” what was missing and still missing is wisdom. now that Eritrea is a nation the only choice we both people should do is cultivate love and peace among our people.

  • Abraham H.

    Selam All, because of the inevitable influence of biology and ethnic loyalty, let alone in third world countries like ours, but also in the highly developed nations; I think Ethiopians need to find a political arrangement such that there is a balance of power between the two major ethnic groups of Amhara and Oromos on one side and the rest of ethnic groups on the other side.

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam Abraham H.,

      Your point is well taken, the first attempt has to reside in the constitution and make the necessary adjustments. I don’t envision a perfect solutions but the attempt must always begin with the constitution.
      I don’t remember how many amendments the US constitution has, including the big question of slavery.

      Mr. K.H

  • Peace!

    Dear all,

    New York Times:

    “ At a state dinner on Sunday evening, Mr. Abiy announced that he had agreed with the Eritrean president to “resume the services of our airlines, to get our ports working, to get our people to trade and to open our embassies again.”

    Direct telephone lines had been restored between the two countries on Sunday afternoon for the first time in two decades.

    “There is no longer a border between Eritrea and Ethiopia, because a bridge of love has destroyed it,” Mr. Abiy said at the dinner.“

    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/07/08/world/africa/ethiopia-eritrea-peace-talks.html

    Peace!

    • Paulos

      Selam Abi Seb,

      Would you say, we can confidently say, ንሕና ንሶም ንሶም ንሕና? Or is it too early?

      • Peace!

        Paulosay,

        Eventually yes, but for now, ንሕና ንሱ (Dr Abiy-don’t mix it up) ንሱ ንሕና.

        Peace!

        • saay7

          Peace!

          Recall that in his address PM Abiy joked that he had been authorized by Isaias Afwerki to be Eritrea’s Foreign Minister and that if people see a duplication of the efforts of Osman Saleh they shouldn’t be surprised. Right? Check this out:

          https://twitter.com/igadsecretariat/status/1015971962689028096

          saay

          • dawit

            Hi saay,

            I think that message is directed towards the ‘Eritrean opposition’ groups. Ethiopia will not to present or sponsor any new idea to isolate Eritrea in the International forum, IGAD, AU, UN etc. PMAM will work hard as Eritrean Foreign Minister representative the dismantling of all isolation and sanctions using its political clout in the world. No more ‘opposition’ demonstrations sponsored by Ethiopia.

            dawit

          • Paulos

            Selam Dawit,

            That is actually a good point. How about if you try to see it from a different angle, say, the young PM can play a bridge whereby a conducive scenario can be created to bring the Opposition to the fold so that they can play a positive role in the new political process.

          • dawit

            Selam Paulos,

            Why not? I believe the ‘Love Bridge’ is wide enough to accommodate all kinds of traffics in the region. The only requirement is to dissociate themselves from their distractive path of destroying Eritrea working mostly as agents of TPLF. They have to end their game with Woyane distractive ideas to the region. They could meet in Addis, Debreziet or Awasa and adopt an agenda of peace to Eritrea. The ‘Love Bridge’ does not accommodate war mongers from supporter or opposition groups.

            dawit

          • Paulos

            Dawit,

            I am afraid you’re a bit behind. Isaias just called it quits on bashing the Weyanes. So should you for it won’t look good on you going rogue.

          • dawit

            Paulos,

            I think you may have some kind of disability of reading and comprehension. Read again Hope replies to your comment. I didn’t invent the word Woyane and if used it to refer to those who invented it, that is not my problem.

            dawit

          • Paulos

            Dawit,

            The message from the young PM was for racists and bigots like you whose heart is filled with a despicable hate. Hate will drag Eritrea back to the stone ages as it is right now where the TV footage failed to capture anything accomplished with in the last 20 plus some changes years. You can hate people to your delight but it is not going to get you anywhere.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam paulos
            HS was 30 something, mengestu was 33, meles was 38 when they become a leader of ethiopia.
            except HD all of them were older than PmAAA.
            Will u stop calling him the young pm.

          • dawit

            Selam Teodros;

            Speaking of age to be a leader of country, must put in law. From our past history Haile Sellasie, Mengistu and Meles all in their 30s when they took power lead the region to distractive wars. Perhaps minimum of 40?

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Dawit,

            Those who love the appellation of “the Eritrean opposition” group love to be in a political bubble where they daydream about what the UN, Weyanes, UN Human Right or PMAA would for them when they don’t realize that they abysmally failed in doing things in all fronts.

            Dreaming is one thing, reality quite another.

          • saay7

            Dawit:

            Well, that’s a given (Article 1 in Algiers Agreement) and is reciprocal. But that would not have gotten the giddy response from IA because according to him opposition to him doesn’t exist (ergo your placement of the word in quotation marks.). PM Abiy was saying that Eritrean gov is its worst enemy and since I am a partner, I don’t want it’s competence and bumbling nature to drag me down so I will take on the task of saving it from itself. Clever that he is, he couched it by smiling broadly and saying he had been authorized to do so by Pres Isaias.

            Your prez ate it up.

            saay

          • Amde

            Hi saay,

            That one surprised me and it elicited biggest laugh from IA.

            It seems Abiy is bringing IA in from the cold.

            Amde

          • Selam Amde,

            When i saw dia yesterday, i did not see the man i expected to see. He was full of delight as if he had won a billion dollars lottery, active, and a different man. He was overflowing with smile, hugs and even laughter. I did not see the stern, serious and unsmiling old man i expected.

            He looked as if he was relieved of a big burden, a dilemma, that he was damned if he continued to do what he did up to now, and equally damned if he stopped. Here is an ethiopian pm who gives him wings to fly with and a life vest to float.

            No borders but a bridge of love, will make demarcation and tplf irrelevant, which you cannot do the one without the other, and his hands will be free to abolish the open-ended military service. PMAA may even bestow upon him the title of a peacemaker, thus helping him that the iron his rule is forgotten by the masses.

            When eritreans see that telephone connections are restored, eal starts a daily flight between addis and asmara, connects it with the outside world, and eritrean nights are no more dark due to electricity connection with ethiopia, then, eritrean citizens will not mention the last two decades of misery and exodus.

            The ethiopian pm calling himself a fm and an ambassador of eritrea in the world stage, indicates that dia is to be brought back from the cold by the ethiopian pm, ethiopia is going to help in the lifting of the sanctions, etc, and everything we saw yesterday pointed in that direction.

            Despite the pessimism some sort of change is a must. We will see the prodigal son of africa among african leaders, in the club of african dictators. At least he will be an ordinary african dictator with signs of democracy here and there, e.g a constitution he will not respect, some human rights for his people, and asmara may be visited by some foreign delegates, etc.

            He might even start to grow more vegetables in his farm for the weekend visit by foreign ambassadors residing in asmara. We might see some new and younger face in the eritrean political landscape that may indicate a lot of things, unless he is so obsessed and paranoid with power.

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Selam Horizon,

            No wonder by Isaias much delight, laugh, vigor and liveliness. We should not forget he was in the bosom of his mama, and Dr. Abie Ahmed encompassed him with a very loving mama affection. Isaias felt in the presence of PMAAA protected from all forces that threatens him. He is truly relieved and should feel joyful.

          • Amde

            Selam Hameed,

            “We should not forget he was in the bosom of his mama, and Dr. Abie Ahmed encompassed him with a very loving mama affection. ”

            Can I ask why you say that? You are saying in effect he is articulating ኢትዮጵያ እናት ሀገሬ. Is Ethiopia his mother? If so, he has had a very strange way of showing love to his mother.

            Amde

          • Blink

            Dear Amde
            Have you figured out why PM Abiy was able to give the Ethiopia and Eritrea issues a priority and use some part of his political capital to settle the hostility? I ask this because at some time some people were saying ,” it will not be his priority “ and if I am not mistaken you were in that camp. Just Amde view is important for me .

          • Amde

            Selam Blink,

            On the question of WHY NOW, I will stick to my hypothesis that it is the external factor. The Sunni/Shia civil war. UAE long term desire/need to capitalize from running ports servicing Ethiopia/Integrated greater horn economies. USA needing to push China out of the area.

            On the question of WHY – Listen again to Abiy’s speech in Mogadishu. I think that is the beat articulation I have seen of his vision. And it is not a small one. He aims to integrate the horn and put Ethiopian Naval footprint in the Indian Ocean. When someone is seized with such a vision, no wonder the stuff we have been fighting about, such as the nature of Ethio domestic politics, Eritrean border conflict, etc appear small and petty. He has pretty much said so in almost the same words.

            Is this a ride we have collectively agreed to? I guess we will see, but we have spent the past 50 years obsessing with political independence/autonomy, when the logic of economic growth riding on economic integration has its own rules that say political entities have to give up slices of their political autonomy to better benefit from economic integration.

            Amde

          • Blink

            Dear Amde
            Thanks sir , you have been doing this kind and it is a great one. If that is the case you are right . He has a grand plan and that plan need PIA hand as well as Somalians . Let’s hope the man stays beyond 2020. Our immediate neighbors are starting to call him names and I guess all people I mean the peace loving people has to defend him.
            I just read the TPLF affiliated websites and I find zero hopeful news or analysis but I trust people like Fanti and many to push them aside. VIVA Abiy , I stood from my chair when Abiy humiliated Issaias by saying the Eritreans need peace and about the migrants . Again VIVA Abiy.

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Selam Amde,

            Dear Amde you can go back to Isaias lectures in January 2018 and hear his bitter cry.

          • Amde

            Hi Horizon,

            Yes indeed.. He himself struck gold.

            Now then, with trade starting up, where will the “border crossings” and “customs offices” be? It is astounding the borders are found to be irrelevant after 20 years. It would be Gedab News’ scoop of the century if they can get hold of a copy of the agreements signed.

            I am really happy for the people though.

            Amde

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Amde,

            It’s ironic that after all the hoopla of 20 years, IA agreed to to “5 points deal”, as per the PM Chief of stuff tweet.

            Chief of Staff, Prime Minister Office, Ethiopia

            1)State of war has come to an end;
            2)The 2 nations will forge close political,economic,social,cultural & security cooperation
            3)Trade, economic & diplomatic ties will resume,
            4)The boundary decision will be implemented,
            5)Both nations will work on regional peace

            Now let’s compare to the 5 points peace plan offer from PMMZ:

            1. Resolve the dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea only and only through peaceful means.
            2. Resolve the Root Causes of the Conflict Through Dialogue With the View to Normalizing Relations Between the Two Countries.
            3. Ethiopia Accepts, in Principle, the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission Decision.
            4. Ethiopia Agrees to Pay Its Dues to The Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission and to Appoint Field Liaison Officers.
            5. Start Dialogue Immediately with the view to implementing the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission’s decision in a manner
            consistent with the Promotion or Sustainable Peace and Brotherly Ties between the Two Peoples

            What exactly is the difference? And that’s why we “those who oppose the PFDJ” were urging them “the PFDJiet” to proceed but they insisted “final and binding” day in and out. But when IA says it’s over, they are cheering him it’s over.

            I must say, the over whelming joy the people of Eritrea displayed shows:

            1) How desperate the wanted to live in peace.
            2) How they appericiate the efforts for PMAA for making this possible.

            I hope this is the beginning of the end for a long road ahead. At least in view, our future generations will never buy and fail victims to the government propaganda of day and take our two people to death and destruction.

            I think the speech of PMAA have a lot of loaded message for us Eritreans and what to expect from our leaders and for our people. He has armed us with his words and the Eritrean people now we should start our focus in demanding our rights and focus to chart our destiny.

            Let’s forget about speculations, about interpretations, let’s use this opportunity to chart our path, just like the Ethiopians did.

            Berhe

          • Amde

            Selam Berhe,

            Isn’t it ironic? TPLF geta what it has been asking for all this time. And yet they cannot celebrate?

            One thing i am constantly struck with is how much Abiy is a man of faith. He brought up how the Eritrean religious leaders are also Ethiopian religious leaders. It might sound like a small detail, but he made a point of raising it early in his speech. I think that by itself is a revolutionary rhetorical act in an otherwise atheistic regime. He connects with people, and elevates religious leaders. Don’t be surprised if he organizes an Ethio Eritrean religious conclave. A trip/pilgrimage to Tigray AxumZion church and Negash mosque would do wonders I think.

            I was so happy and saddened to see the crowds that greeted Abiy. Sad to see how so much of Asmara is a city of old ladies. I hope next year’s crowds will have many more happy young people.

            I do not think it is possible for a PFDJ Eritrea to have normalization with an Abiy Ethiopia. Eritrea will start changing for the better rather quickly – I hope there is sufficient wisdom all around to navigate it well.

            Amde

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Amde,

            Yesterday, my Ethiopian friend called me and said, let’s go for dinner. He said, all the Ethiopian and Eritrean restaurants are waving Eritrean and Ethiopian flags in the street where most of them are located. He was right, for someone who didn’t know better, they would think, both Ethiopia and Eritrea made it to the final of the world cup.

            The joke he told me was,

            የአስመራ ሰቶች መጡ፡ የአዲስ አበባ ሰቶች ጉዳቹ ፈላ 🙂

            Something like that.

            Berhe

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Horizon,

            The despot has an insatiable ego. The new PM has opened a new opportunity for him, to extend his desire to be the bull of the Horn, the opportunity he lost in the last 20 years. Just watch in the coming years how he will interfere in the internal politics of your country. The man has no enemy except those on his way to harness his ego be it in Eritrea or in the Horn.

          • Selam Amanuel H.,

            I have the opinion that PMAA is a good omen for eritrea and her people. He will positively influence IA. The ethiopian pm no doubt will tell him that he will find difficult to support eritrea and his government in the world political arena if he still believes and functions in the same manner mistreating his people, with no sign of democracy, human rights, freedom, and politics of exclusion towards the opposition. That will make PMAA a supporter of dictatorship, that will undermine his own credibility in ethiopia and in the world community as an aspiring democrat himself.

            I thought that the reactions of the eritrean president was due to the chance the ethiopian pm created for his gradual trouble-free exit from the eritrean political scene with dignity, a chance he may never find again. If he does nothing to ease his grip on the the people, and believes that business will continue to be as usual, then the pm of ethiopia will be forced to abandon him at a certain point. That will be very unfortunate for the eritrean people, and dia/pfdj will have a very bad end.

    • dawit

      Selam Peace,

      Finally July 8, 2018 in Asmara is truly a historic day of love and peace. It seems after 25 years of searching PIA has found his spiritual son lost in Ethiopia, and PMAA has found his lost spiritual father in Eritrea. They were hugging and laughing like father and son separated for decades!

      dawit

    • Abraham H.

      Selam Peace, “There is no longer a border between Eritrea and Ethiopia, because a bridge of love has destroyed it,” Mr. Abiy said at the dinner.“ Well and good, but for the sake of excluding any future possibility of conflict between the two neighboring peoples, we need to demarcate our borders with clear pillars. In this way, current and future generations will, at least, not have the border as an excuse for disputes and war.
      So as part of the normalization process, we will have to demarcate our borders based on the eebc ruling, and since we are humans and not robots, we will have to make sure families and villages do not suddenly find themselves on the wrong side of the border when we are putting the pillars.

  • Desbele

    Dear Awate,

    Got a good news that Eritrea to Ethiopia telephone line is open today.

  • Blink

    Dear Now
    May I ask why ? I mean ,He is one of these people who can unite people for the betterment of Eritreans. He is not like the known People demanding people for power by ethnic districts nor does he say a religious dogma for our youths , he is not also someone deeply partisan. He has been advocating for peace and justice. We have people in the opposition who wanted a Tigray Tigrini or Islamists who wanted to change Eritrea as per their dogma of the unknown heaven. Many people expect more from him and less from the fringe once.

  • halafi mengedi

    Hi All,

    My last comment for a while:

    Abiy Ahmed is a hell of a brave man.

    Hm

    • Paulos

      Selam FM,

      Just these past few days, people in this very forum were saying ugly stuff as in ልቢ ትግራይ ጥውይዋይ when they were speculating about the rout PM Abiye may take to get to Keren. And that exactly in mind, the young PM was saying in Asmara today that the Tigrean people extend their love to their brothers and sisters on the other side of the river. He is indeed a brave man when he included politicians who peddle that kind of racist remark where Isaias was in the PM’s mind.

      • Desbele

        Hi Paul,
        Few blocks North of the hall of reception (Asmara Municipal) there is the notorious Kerchelie prison where hundreds of innocent Eritrean are tortured for more than 20 yrs. (Bitweded, Dr. Fitsum, Dr. Tekleab, Aster …).
        No where in the Eritrean culture or history had there been such brutality against humanity. Time to stop for Eritreans to blame others for their misery and clean their house.
        Again and again for Eritreans the challenge is:
        ሓውኻ ኣበይ ኣሎ ?
        Free prisoners and stop Slavery!!

        • Paulos

          Selam Desbele,

          I completely forgot. Thank you for reminding us where we are busked in transient euphoria to the extent of being numb about those who are going through agony when the motorcade make a glorified pass.

  • Nitricc

    Hi All; I had called for PIA to invite PMMA to Asmara right after PMAA announced his fully acceptance of the Algiers agreement. The reason I called for PIA to invite PMAA to Asmara was simply to stick it to the TPLF thugs. OH boy, did he stick it? Especially after i read this below, then the issue is even more interesting than i have guessed.
    ” 08 July 2018 – Ethiopian Airline flight number ETH8346 carrying Ethiopian Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed took a longer route (pictured) via Djibouti to avoid the Tigray airspace on the way to the historic visit to Eritrea.”
    If this is true, then, well you know. However; now PIA has won, do the right thing. For every question what was asked of political business of the nation, PIA’s answer was ” we are in war” Okay sir, now we are in peace, can we go back to our internal issues?
    First for most let the prsioners free.
    Go back to 18 months of national military service.
    Demobilized the rest of the army while keeping 30K professional well paid army.
    Establish an organ that oversees election and implementing of the constitution.
    let’s just start the normality for the Eritrean people.
    All the joy I witnessed in Asmara, it was a joy of mothers knowing their children and housbands are coming home.
    TPLF, I have nothing to say, what goes around, it comes around. common swallow your fake pride and get in to the peace process.

    • Nitraccay nebsi,
      The part of your comment concerning what shall be done now that peace has apparently arrived is very sensible.

      cheers

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam Nitricc,

      Man I have never seen you like this, giddy, victorious and generally happy. I read your proclamations and I hope you keep up with it in the months to come.
      The only negativity that remained was reserved for TPLF.
      Nebsi Nitraccay, even though I am addressing this post to you, it is only partly to you. I wanted to get to the others who spout so many ill conceived hurtful statements, as well.

      Half a century ago the radicals used to say “Amhara the oppressors” . When you pull out a destitute Amhara farmer (the majority) and you ask them, do you mean this?. They quickly adjust for the moment and say we mean the “elite”. The “elite” had everybody in it. Now it is Tigray and TPLF as a replacement.

      Nitricc, I now know, you don’t know too much about our neck of the woods. Ethnicity, religion, political oppression are all academic to you.
      Let me tell you a little dose and description of reality from the past, in case you are up to travel to Addis or Hawassa to celebrate this occasion in the near future.

      I am going to assume that you are from highland Eritrea. You speak Tigrinya and you might have that cut scar above your eye brows.
      The way we the non_tigre kids refer to you both (Asmara–Mekele) people was as number 11s an inside code of ID. Looking back, not nice but was internal communications not to heart anyone’s feelings.
      The reason I bring this up to you is because for all practical purposes you are Tigres to those folks in Jimma or Debrebirhan. There is no separate ID for Eritreans. If hate takes hold in these places it reaches out and touches far and wide, you included. They have all the proof they need.
      So when you visit these places stick close to the son’s of Tigray for they have their antennas out.

      I think, some Eritreans need to know that the more you encourage the non-Tigrayan Ethiopians to hate sons and daughters of Tigray, inadvertently you are teaching them to hate you. If they see you on the street, they hate you. Passport is immaterial. Of course, if you have no plans to go to Ethiopia, then it is all academic, it doesn’t matter to you.

      So let us stick to the missions of PMAA.

      Mr. K.H

    • dawit

      Dear General,
      I agree with your comment and suggestions, regarding political prisoners in Eritrea if there are any? According to Eritrean government past claim there were no political prisoners instead there are people accused of treasons endangering the national securities of the nation. Now if peace prevailed in the country, let the courts deal with the prisoners cases either formally sentence them or pardon them. As to the military services and demobilization I agree with your suggestions. As to the Constitution and elections, it didn’t stop because of the prevailing past situations. It has been going on building democracy from bottom up. I believe the process will advance quickly and the new constitution will be approved by the people. But in any case there is no rush, it will be accomplished at the right time.

      dawit

  • ‘Gheteb

    PIA PMAA Summit: A Decidedly Milestone Moment In Ehio-Eritrean Rapprochement

    Greetings!!

    In the rapidly evolving Ethio-Eritrean relations, todays visit of the Ethiopian premier, Dr. Abiy Ahmed is indeed a turning point in this budding relations. The warm welcome accorded to the Ethiopian guests is a hallmark of the Eritrean hospitality and their unquenching desire for a durable peace.

    [[ ” Some of the and songs in the streets of Asmara:

    “ኣይ ሰላም እንድያ ትሕምበብ ዘላ!”- Peace is accelerating like a speeding car
    “ኣነ ሰላም’ የ ዝብል’ ሰላም ‘የ”- I say peace, I say peace!”
    “ታዝምነያ ረኪበያ ሎሚ ረኪበያ “I got what I wished for” ]]

    The residents of Asmara came out in full volume to welcome the Ethiopian prime minister. People from all walks of life, young and old and men and women came out in droves to greet and get a glimpse of the visiting premier. After being sprinkled with popcorn, per the Eritrean tradition, PMAA was accorded cheek kissing by representatives of the nine ethno-linguistic groups of Eritrea.

    The jubilation and elation of the throng of Eritreans was palpably self-evident and the overall manifestation was a scene to behold. No wonder, then, todays event is described as a watershed moment. One only hopes that this will lead to a sustainable peace.

    Those who have been unremittingly bloviating about the fate of Assab, the following should lay to waste all your outre pronouncement to rest:

    ” Yemane G. Meskel
    @hawelti

    President Isaias Afwerki and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed have begun their tete-a-tete meetings today. The Summit is expected “to set the tone for rapid, positive changes on the basis of respect of sovereignty & territorial integrity, equality and mutual interest of both countries”.

    As I said previously, Eritrea’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are non negotiable, Assab or whatnot.

    As Eritrea moves on, with the withdrawal of Ethiopian troops from occupied Eritrean territories, the first order of business that the Eritrean government should preoccupy itself with the demobilization of those Eritrean troops who are detailed in the border areas and who have been serving in the national service.

    This will require a huge fund which I hope some of the Western countries including the UN may lend a hand. The reintegration of those who are in the Eritrean armed forces is of utmost importance and should be the priorities of priorities for the Eritrean government.

    The demobilization of those in the national service is of paramount importance because it will directly respond to and address the desires of all those Eritrean women that we saw in the streets of Asmara. These are the mothers, sisters and wives of those Eritrean soldiers who have already paid too much of a price in defense of Eritrea’s sovereignty.

    All other things including reform should be introduced GLACIALLY. Oh, yeah some even derisively call it Gobye-ism.

    The next Ethiopian ambassador to Eritrea must be either an Oromo, an Amhara or from any other ethnic group of Ethiopia to the EXCLUSION of anyone who hails from the Tigray Kilil or region. This has nothing to do with race and ethnicity, but has everything to do with lessons learnt from real experience.

    • Haile S.

      Selam Gheteb,
      An exclusionist peace is no peace at all. There should NOT be any internal or external exclusion. You cannot leave a gangrene in the middle of your belly. For how long are you going to live. Tigray is a glue between Eritrea and Ethiopia whether we like or not.

      • ‘Gheteb

        Selam Haile S.,

        I don’t think you read me correctly. I am talking about the next Ethiopian Ambassador to Eritrea. All I am calling for is that s/he should not be from the Tigray region. And, I have my reasons for it.

        I have not YET said that Tigray should be excluded from the Ethio-Eritrean peace. They can be a part of it with the proviso that the Tigray people are willing to EXCISE that cancerous lesion otherwise known as the recreant Weyane-ism that is/was hellbent in undoing Eritrea’s statehood or independence.

        You may disagree, but those who paid dearly in the last two decades defending Eritrea from all the nefarious acts of Weyane are not going to let these bloodthirsty Weyanes walk scot free. No, freaking way!

        You say that:

        ” Tigray is a glue between Eritrea and Ethiopia whether we like or not”.

        I say that is a load of blatherskite at best and a hyperbole by half at worst. Being a bleeding heart Tigrayo-phile may be all the rage within the anti-PFDJ camp these days. Of course, who doesn’t know the TPLF being the patron and financier of the anti-PFDJ camp.

        Those who are REFLEXIVELY jumping on anything and everything that challenges TPLF/Weyane and even remotely hints on raising some issues with Tigray is either called a racist or anti-Tigrayan.

        I think this is more of an indication of a FEALTY and loyalty that those in the anti-PFDJ camp are showing to their paymaster, the RECREANT Weyane and nothing else.

        • Haile S.

          Gheteb,
          On hating woyane’s policy on eritrea, you are not the champion. Many of us disappoved when EPLF was hand and glove at the expense of its own galant who paid dearly before 1997.
          It is you who is REFLEXIVELY feeling challenged or chased. When you say the next Ambassador should not be from Tigray, you are basically considering all tigrai able a weyane.

          • Paulos

            Selam Hailat,

            Isaias has more respect for those who stand up to him than his lackeys. The lady in Hijab who accompanied the young PM to Asmara is a Tigrean [A Weyane] and I suspect she will be the next Ambassador to Eritrea. And you will see how predictable the sycophants are as in they will applaud.

          • Kaddis

            Gash Paulos,
            True: both women with hijab are speakers of the parliament and Federation council from Oromia and Tigray respectively.

          • Paulos

            Selam Kaddis,

            Political statement or a sheer ride with the young PM on this historic visit? I say, the former. A message to get across that the “Game Over” was just to appease his base where the Weyanes are still kicking and the Oromos are in good terms with the Tigreans as well. If there is any icing on the cake, it was also an indication how women of all persuasion are empowered in Ethiopia.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selam Kaddis and Dr. Paulos,

            I hope I wont sound chauvinist but also the idea of starting with a female Tigrayan may have a tension-reducing quality too. In either case I think there is more to PM Abiy than meets the eye.

          • Nitricc
          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Nitriccay,

            A good one!

          • Nitricc

            Your Fitness; hahahahaha. It shows how he feels at home. it is very telling picture. I think this thing will work out. Judging from the well-come he received and the atmosphere in its self, it is real.

          • Kaddis

            Gash Paulos,
            Its a good day for many split families and hopeful this unscramble Eritrean internal governance issues. Ethiopia, Oromia situation is very fluid, a topic after the parties are over.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Dr. Paulos,

            I want to agree on the Tigrawaiti Ambassador, but it will depend on how successful PM Abiy will be in his counseling task between the two shortsighted Tigriniyas.

            If it takes 2-3 months until both embassies are fully staffed and operational, lots of counseling would have taken place by then and Eritrea may “tolerate” a Tigrayan ambassador.

            If PMA senses PIA is not ready for it, he may assign an Afar, a Southern, or an Oromo ambassador with a Tigrayan assistant whose only task will be spreading “aHwat ina” to all Eritreans for a couple of years.

            Forget all the above: I will gamble that the first ambassador will be from ANDM!

          • Paulos

            Selam Fantination,

            I in fact argue that, it is already decided for her to be an Ambassador as in for all practical purposes that is. First and for most, she speaks not only Tigrinya but she is too familiar with the psychological make up as well. Second, if things go as planned, there will be more trade relations with Tigreans than the rest of Ethiopia. As such, not only she fits in the grand picture, she is also a new face not reminiscent of the old guards if you will.

          • saay7

            Selamat Fanti:

            So, on the Ethiopian delegation:

            Muferiat Kamil, Speaker of the house and Chair of SEPDM, 1 of the 4 parties that make up the EPRDF. Makes sense.
            Workneh Gebeyehu, Foreign Minister. (OPDO.) Makes sense. (I mean why he is part of the delegation and not why he is the Foreign Minister, but don’t get me started on that.)
            Seyou Haji, Afar Region Representative, the dude who was PM Abiy when he visited the region. Makes sense, representing border state.
            Ahmed Shide, spokesperson for the PM. Makes sense.
            Fetsum Arega, PM’s chief of staff. Makes sense.
            Kheria Ibrahim, member of TPLF CC and Speaker of House of Federation.

            I think the last one is, “hey, we will bring a TPLF member as a matter of principle, but somebody who is too young and too unaffiliated with the Ghedli era for you to have bad feelings about.” They had test driven it when they got her to hold hands with Foreign Minister Osman Saleh in his visit to Addis. It is subtle. He is getting PFDJ to eat its broccoli by putting it in a fork, covering it in icecream and making airplane sounds. You know, the way you feed children what’s good for them. Well played, FM:)

            saay

          • Tzigereda

            Dear Paulos, Kaddis and Fanti,

            These two “ women with Hjab” have names:

            Muferiat Kamil; speaker of House of People’s respresentatives ( as far as I know she belongs to SEPDM);

            Keria Ibrahim; speaker of House of Federation ( TPLF).

            I doubt you would talk about “ the man with the red pants” holding similar position.

          • Paulos

            Selam Dr. Tzigereda,

            You really got me. Please accept my sincere apology. I just didn’t know their names. Thank you for reminding us.

          • Blink

            Dear Tsigereda
            You got it right , they wouldn’t dare to see men with red pants , this tells you that our mothers and sisters need new partners in order to trash out this bad culture from our society.

          • Kaddis

            ይቅርታ የኔ እመቤት።
            Its very irresponsible of me.
            Thank You for the corrections.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Haile S.,

            You don’t expect that the next ambassador to Eritrea is going to be a merchant or a peasant from a hamlet or small town of Tigray or do you?

            I am asking you to be realistic here. Those who get the nod to hold an ambassadorial position usually come from the parties or fronts or some other affiliated organization with the Weyanes.

            And, why would Ms. Keria Ibrahim, Speaker Of House Of Federation, be the next ambassador to Eritrea?

            Those ignoramus flunkies in this Forum who are unabashedly carrying water for the Weyanes, are as clueless as their paymaster when it comes to issues pertaining Eritrea. They don’t even know the name or what position the lady holds in the Ethiopian Federal government, but they have the audacity to parade their utter nescience in this Forum.

            The lady in Hijab, my foot.

          • Haile S.

            Gheteb,
            You need to be realistic too! Not all potential statepersons fron Tigray are anti-Eritrean Weyane. Besides wasn’t Dr Abiy an affiliate of the Weyane made EPRDF?
            Based on what we have seen until now, Dr Abiy and Ethiopia will choose the best fitting Ambassador that will positively contribute to the growing relationship of both countries.

          • Paulos

            Selam Hailat,

            Just to get the feel how pathetic these people as in the PFDJ goons are, read their tweeter feed, Amare’s for instance. Isaias fell short of bashing the Weyanes in his brief speech today. So did the PFDJ tweets!

          • Haile S.

            Paul,
            Man’s capability to harness his hormones is amazing. Each and everyone of us need to quickly learn to unlearn our bad drive. The PM said it well at the dinner table.
            Best

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Dr Paulos,

            The young political leader whispered at him, that it doesn’t help him (to the PM) if he attacked to something part and parcel him. ንዓንጃል ፓለቲከኛ ዘስምዕ ሰብ እንድዩ ተረኺቡ ንግዘየኡ:: ዘገርም’ዩ!

          • ‘Gheteb

            Haile S.,

            You are saying that they are going to choose “the best fitting Ambassador”…. Well, I say that is swell and dandy!

            And, that ambassador “… will positively contribute the growing relationship of both countries”

            Then, I am telling you that ambassador cannot be from Tigray. I am being very honest here about the recent history and the havoc they have wrought on Eritrea is so vividly fresh in the minds of Eritreans that no amount of the flowery rhetoric, euphoric statements and feel good pronouncements is going to erase those memories.

            I am still saying NO to any Tigrayan appointment to the ambassadorship to Eritrea. If that should come to pass, then I will oppose it VEHEMENTLY!

    • Peace!

      Hi ‘Gheteb,

      A historic day indeed. But what worries me more is the EXCLUSION of Eritreans who are dying in prisons: where is Bitwedid the hero who has sacrificed his life for the Eritrianism you are proudly preaching; where is Derue who has not only sacrificed his whole life but also one of the signatories of the peace you are celebrating….Come on, Dud:(

      ሙሉእ ይግበሮ እዩ ዘብል

      Peace!

      • ‘Gheteb

        Hi Peace!,

        Why are you bringing people who are reportedly dead, as per “your folks”, who have alleged that DuruE has passed away in prison. Or, why are you bringing Bitweded, again the Eritrean doppelgänger of PMMA, per the folks at Asmarino.com and SAAY.

        My friend, DuruE’s and Bitweded issues involve highly sensitive national security issues which neither you nor I are privy to. So, it is not as simple as you guys try to make it look so that you can go on your anti-PFDJ bashing binge. It is far more complicated in so far as Eritrea is concerned.

        • Hi Gheteb,
          If you are not privy to the cases of Haile and Bitweded, what marvelous art of witchcraft aided you to divine that it is too sensitive and complicated a matter for ordinary citizens to comprehend? Either you are privy to it or you are not.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Samuel,

            If you are in a mood splitting and re-splitting hair, you can claim that unless you see something you can’t claim what it is and what it is NOT.

            Well, you can go to the national archives and using The Freedom Of Information Act, you can ask to get a copy of some cases you may be interested in.

            If you are told that the case you are looking for is a highly classified case or a classified case, are you going to say that unless you see the files or dossier you are not going to say that the case is classified or involves sensitive issues of national security issues.

            Or, are you going to invoke full throttle EXPERIENCIALISM here.

            You have utterly misconstrued the purport of why sensitive national security issues are not public information or are publicly or openly disseminated. The main reason is that they are deemed a national SECRET and not that ordinary citizens are unable to comprehend them.

            By what an occult logic you came to that conclusion beats me.

          • Dear Gheteb,
            Fair enough. But I see multiple problems with your statement. For one, you are operating on the logic of le savoir pouvoir and assuming that whatever Power says should automatically assume Truth-status. I can understand that if you are a political operative of and privy to those who determine what constitutes a classified information and who should be framed as a treasonous enemy of the state/government. But, if you are an ordinary citizen like everyone of us who do not know nothing, you seem to uncritically outsource your citizenry/individual autonomy to ask and pass personal judgment on such vital national matter to Power. Second, premising your conclusion that these people are imprisoned because the government which you choose to bestow unqualified trust says so is a petitio principii par excellence. The government had attempted to produce a 40/50 page shoddy document which purports to list the sins of the G-15 the main of which is treasonous association with Weyane – the document read to the nation assembly in its final meeting at the beginning of 2002 and to every batch of cadre trainees in Nakfa (i was a trainee myself twice). Therefore, your claim that the government has treated the matter as highly sensitive and classified case does not hold. It has sentenced them at the court of public opinion with trumped up self-referencial charges. Therefore what should be up for a debate- if it has to be debated- is the veracity of the charges, the procedure of process and the fairness of the punishment meted out to them. As you are well aware, the highest legislative body of the country- the national assembly- had decided to establish a committee mandated to investigate the conduct of the war with Ethiopia whose task would have been, inter alia, investigating any wrong doing by anyone with the government. If the committee had done its job and the general attorney office had pressed legal charges against anyone based on its reports and the Eritrean court system was mandated to establish guilt or innocence, we would not have this debate. In a clear travesty of justice, the party which disestablished the committee took matters on its own, assumed all the roles of a judge, a jury and an executioner and cruelly disappeared the G-15. And you say, the decision of this party should be blindly taken as fair? With all dues respect I have for you, I find your position on this issue uncharacteristically irrational and even immoral.

            Thank you for honoring me with a response.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Samuel,

            Thank you brother. Not only you defended well the defenseless Eritrean souls, but you also equip us with some information, that we are not aware of (at least myself), on the establishment of a committee from the National Assembly, mandated to investigate any wrong doing.

          • Paulos

            Selam Professor A. Hidrat,

            ግድየብልካን ኣለውና ኣለዉና በላሕቲ መንእሰያት ከም ባዓል ሳሚኤል ነዛ ሃገር ተስፋ ዝኾንዋ። ኣለዉና ኣለውና ንለኽባጣትን ሓሶት ስንቆምን ኣፎም ዘተሕዙልና፣ ኣለዉና ኣለዉና!

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Samuel,

            Since I found your response to be very discursive, let me pull you back to the main issues that I was attempting to address. I will deal with them in numerical order:

            1. The issue of G-15, is treated as a sensitive national security issue by the PFDJ and the Eritrean government. My reason is simple. What they are accused of and charged with was not made public.

            You can agree or disagree on this based on what you know or what you may think to know.

            From where I stand, I have come to the conclusion that it is a national security issue, not only because the charges were not made public, buy based on my observations about the EPLF and all what the G-15 were saying in their interviews with the private news papers.

            I have NOT passed any judgement on the G-15, namely, if they have committed treason or other crimes. I don’t know why you have to digress on a tangent here and bring something that you can’t find in my response to you.

            2. You are saying that you have seen the charges against the G-15 because while you were a trainee in a cadre school you read or saw some “40/50 page shoddy document which purports to list the sins of the G-15 the main of which is treasonous association with Weyane”.

            Well, because you have read or was read to you, does NOT, in and of itself, constitute a legal document that was filed in the Eritrean court and, importantly, it doesn’t tell me anything how those within the government of Eritrea viewed the case.

            Yeah, you can make an assertion that ” It has sentenced them at the court of public opinion with trumped up self-referencial charges”, but still that is merely an assertion and you have not produced anything to back up your claims except that you saw some document when you were a trainee in the PFDJ cadre school.

            3. You are also saying:

            ” In a clear travesty of justice, the party which disestablished the committee took matters on its own, assumed all the roles of a judge, a jury and an executioner and cruelly disappeared the G-15″.

            First, I don’t recall if there was a committee established from the National Assembly to handle the case of G-15. What I remember was that the National Assembly has suggested/proposed the ‘Executive Branch’ to deal with case. So, I have no idea where you are getting this idea of a committee that was established. Never heard of it, unless it was mentioned ONLY in the cadre school “shoddy document”.

            4. You are also claiming wildly:

            ” I find your position on this issue uncharacteristically irrational and even immoral”.

            Irrational and immoral? I have NOT seen the FORMAL charges to pass a judgement on this issue. One can grandstand all s/he wants on this issue based on a lot of other considerations, be it political or otherwise, but I am not going to come out flailing here that they are GUILTY or INNOCENT without seeing the formal charges.

            And, I don’t believe even for split second that you have seen the formal charges or you were in a position to know why the PFDJ should NOT consider it as a sensitive national security issue. You can make a “moral” and “rational” judgement all you want and you can also judge others stand as being “immoral” and irrational” based not on a formal charges but on a cadre manual.

            Agree or disagree, those at the helm of the PFDJ are more aware what constitutes a national security issue or not and what issues would jeopardize Eritrea’s national unity.

            Also, I hope you are aware that the EPLF had started its cadre school in the mid-seventies. And, documents and papers that were read in those cadre schools were NOT the last word on serious issues that the EPLF grappled with in those years.

            Ergo, I don’t believe what you read or was read to you in the document that you refer as “shoddy” in PFDJs cadre school was all there was to the G-15 case.

          • Dear Gheteb,
            Thank you for your response. I will come back to you shortly.

        • Peace!

          Dear ‘Gheteb,

          I brought them just an example although it is not a secret how many thousands are dying in prison, and urging for their release is not PFDJ bashing, my friend. Who has the legitimacy to lock people and dismiss citizens concern with “It is far more complicated in so far as Eritrea is concerned.”

          Peace!

          • Paulos

            Selam Abi Seb,

            If the case against the G-15 is sensitive as in a case that could potentially put the country in danger, and if the danger is now no more, shouldn’t they see the case in a court of law and defend themselves?

            If there is a way out for Isaias, he will find a scapegoat and free those who are still alive and accord those who died a proper burial as martyrs and compensate loved ones.

          • Peace!

            Hi Paulosay,

            That’s the point precisely – if a new chapter is unfolding, then it is time for healing.

            Peace!

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam Paulos,

            A good option is to pardon the “G15” and release them quietly.

            The idea of bringing them to an open court has no benefit for the higher goal of national security; it is a recipe for civil war.

          • Paulos

            Selam Simon,

            That certainly is a good point but keep in mind that, the prisoners are Tegadelti first and foremost. As such, they won’t go quietly. They will fight back unless otherwise some sort of national reconciliation where elders get involved for the sake of long term stability. That is even farfetched for a possible scenario.

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam Paulos,

            Unfortunately, the “G-15” are not in a position to dictate what to do, unless they want to prolong the saga and threaten national unity.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Selam Peace!

            The issue of the G-15 was discussed in the Eritrean National Assembly back in the early 2000. It was deemed as a national security, as far as I can recall.

            I trust the government of Eritrea in this issue and I don’t have any appetite to see the issue of the prisoners in Eritrea cynically manipulated by those who are trying mightily to find political relevance in Eritrea.

            Who has legitimacy in Eritrea to lock people and what have you?

            Certainly, not those who have been caterwauling from the side lines and doing anything and everything to undermine Eritrea in the past two decades.

            Let us call a spade a spade here. No other political group, front or force has more legitimacy than the PFDJ and the Eritrean government when it comes to Eritrea. Put bluntly, they have so far guaranteed the survival of Eritrea as a nation.

    • saay7

      Selamat Cuz Gheteb:

      Now that our unimaginative compatriots who take the same terms that was offered 16 years ago belatedly are onboard and have discovered the merits of peace, we hope they will join us in our call:

      1. Release immediately and unconditionally all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience; .
      2. Restrict national service to 18 months and demobilize with immediate effect and all who have fulfilled their mandate*
      3. Initiate immediately the process of truth and reconciliation to end the era of impunity and to ensure maximum participation of Eritreans in nation-building.
      4. Implement without delay the ratified constitution at least as a first step, pending its final fate in a people’s referendum.
      5. Lift with immediate effect the defacto state of emergency and restore the people’s civil liberties including freedom of expression and press, freedom of movement, freedom of assembly, freedom of religious rights.

      Hope you don’t wait 16 years to join in that call.

      PM Abiye said that the people of Tigray and Afar love Eritreans and Eritreans should ignore all the politicians and all the “activists” who tell them otherwise. Also, Cuz Gheteb, you should know by now that Yemane Gebremeskel is always late: PM Abiy in his dinner speech said that he and Isaias have agreed on all the terms, including some that Yemane is not aware of.

      I have never seen IA this giddy 🙂 And all this time, all people had to do what tell him how great he is. Oh, Great isaias Afwerki, read the list above and execute: the sheep will follow!

      saay

      • Paulos

        Sal,

        That was exactly what crossed my mind. Isaias looks like when someone offers a stick to someone who is drowning. He couldn’t have faked the sheer excitement in his face. More over, one hardly sees young people in Asmara except women, children and old people.

        P.S. Would you say, Yosief G’s worry is here to stay, when he said the other day that, Ethiopia may comply and agree to Isaias’ terms?

        • saay7

          Selam Paulos:

          I don’t expect for PM Abiy anything more than deal with countries at the government level. Since the government is Isaias, he will accept Eritrea at the Isaias level. Only insane governments (and their misguided supporters) refuse to deal with States until they change their governments. In fact, the 16 year delay—of Isaias refusing to deal with Ethiopia because the wrong government was in charge—is an example of such stupidity.

          So, Abiy will deal with Isaias. Where YG was mistaken, I think, is that having defined the IA regime as an unremitting totaliatarisn State, he could not see how it would loosen the reins even a bit. But even totalitarian states make policy changes or “open up” if they calculate that it is in their best interest to do so. While I am not where Kbrom is (that huge changes are coming), I am also not where YG is (no change is coming from a totalitarian state.) Some change IS coming.

          saay

          • Paulos

            Selam Sal,

            Today in his speech, Isaias said, ምሳኻ ኣለና፣ ኩሉ ዘጋጥም ሽግራት ብሓንሳብ ኮይንና ክንፈትሖም ኢና። If Abiy is to take Isaias for his words, the issue of Eritrean refugees is a big issue for Abey and if Isaias is to remain true to his words, he doesn’t have any other choice but to get to the root cause of the refugees.

            He will have not only demobilize the thousands young Eritreans but he will have to find something for most of them.

            On the other hand, if peace with Ethiopia is to make the border more porous, people will leave in droves unless otherwise Isaias meets the people’s demand which will ultimately call for a radical reform. That is to say, not only change is coming, either way, it is inevitable. The question is, where do the Opposition fit in this grand scheme of events.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Dr Paulos & Saay,

            “ምሳኻ ኣለና፣ ኩሉ ዘጋጥም ሽግራት ብሓንሳብ ኮይንና ክንፈትሖም ኢና” Does this statement also implies even to the internal Ethiopian problem? link this statement to it: “There is no longer a border between Eritrea and Ethiopia, because a bridge of love has destroyed it” synthesize and predict that follow to this event.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            Can you predict “the some change” you expect from our totalitarian regime, taking in to consideration the waves of change in Ethiopia and the external pressures that are on play upon him? I think YG also have admitted changes that does not affect his power. What he had a different opinion was in terms of uncontrolled free flow of goods of services in the northern border area of the two countries.

          • saay7

            Emma:

            I can’t, but people I very highly respect tell me that there are reforms coming. It is in the order of PFDJ-I transferring power to PFDJ-II. Please read Kbrom and Samuel and then cross-reference it with your own sources and your life-long knowledge of the scorpion. And then, watch the video of him listening to Abiy speak: the contrast is profound between a young-energetic man (PM Abiy) and an old man who looks like any well-dressed Eritrean grandpa at a family wedding (Prez IA.) Even he must feel the loud tick of time.

            saay

      • ‘Gheteb

        Hey Cuz SAAY:

        After seeing the throng of people congesting the streets of Asmara, I thought , for split second, that a UFO craft has landed there with some extraterrestrial beings. I have to pinch myself twice that it was the welcoming celebration for PMAA and not some applied UFO-logy as was claimed by certain denizens from a far-flung planet.

        Let me entertain the notions of answering the five enumerated DEMANDS you are suggesting that the Eritrean government to implement forthwith.

        Firstly, I hate to disappoint my cousin here, but I have to be brutally honest with you here. In so far as Eritrea and the PFDJ is concerned, you, I mean those in the anti-PFDJ camp and I, are in NO position to demand ANYTHING from those who paid DEARLLY in defense of Eritrea.

        1. ” 1. Release immediately and unconditionally all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience”.

        Very, very, UNLIKELY to happen anytime soon. Maybe down the road and maybe some prisoners will be released.

        2. . ” Restrict national service to 18 months and demobilize with immediate effect and all who have fulfilled their mandate*”.

        That will be contingent on many factors. First, how soon will the Ethiopian soldiers vacate from occupied Eritrean territories. Second, how ready is the government of Eritrea, financially or otherwise, not only to demobilize those in the Eritrean armed forces but to reintegrate them in a civilian society. Third, how durable is the peace with the Ethios.

        3.” Initiate immediately the process of truth and reconciliation to end the era of impunity and to ensure maximum participation of Eritreans in nation-building”.

        Sure, that will be a good idea. But, let us be realistic here. Getting to the truth is going to be much more difficult. The onus is not only on the PFDJ, but on those who have unabashedly been in bed with the detestable Weyanes and have worked hand in gloves with them.

        Getting to the truth, in the Eritrean case is easier said than done. In our case, simply trying to replicate what worked in South Africa is utterly quixotic and the acme of political naiveté.

        4. “Implement without delay the ratified constitution* at least as a first step, pending its final fate in a people’s referendum”.

        What? The man told you that constitution is DEAD. You want to resurrect something that has EXPIRED. Realistically speaking, I don’t foresee the old constitution coming back. What one hopes for is for the adoption of newer constitution, work map or what have you, that is going to be based on the experience of Eritrea/PFDJ in the past two decades. Here I am bein realistically pragmatic.

        5. ” Lift with immediate effect the defacto state of emergency and restore the people’s civil liberties including freedom of expression and press, freedom of movement, freedom of assembly, freedom of religious rights”.

        See # 4 and #2.

        Now, you are claiming that:

        ” you should know by now that Yemane Gebremeskel is always late: PM Abiy in his dinner speech said that he and Isaias have agreed on all the terms, including some that Yemane is not aware of”.

        Oh, my! Oh, my! How in God’s green Earth would you know what Yemane Gebremeskel does NOT know. I hope you are not going to tell me that the hyper-imaginative “stringer” of this Forum has whispered to your “ears only” ?

        • saay7

          Selamat Cuz Gheteb:

          As a self-appointed spokesperson of the Denizen you speak of, this does look like people who sighted a UFO. Let the readers decide (I mean the readers who form an opinion without checking to see whether that opinion is “nationalist”:)

          https://twitter.com/saayounis/status/1015619444939214848

          Ha! I also note that you have been attending the Semere T school of unnecessary capitalization and you are amazed that a citizen places DEMAND on a government. Ok, let’s go to the tape:

          Let’s deal with the “firstly.” I see that it will take you another 16 years to understand that a government does not have the right restrict the citizenship rights of anyone (I forgot, ANYONE) unless it has proven in an independent court of law that the citizen has forfeited it either by renouncing it or committing a crime as defined by its laws (not in a mekete meeting of chegwar danga:)

          1. Oh, come on, cuz: you don’t know, you don’t have a say, so don’t pretend to know on the timing of the release of prisoners. What matters is that when it happens, you will applaud it. So the thing to do is to prepare your applause hands.

          2. All the reasons you gave plus demand from Eritreans. Because, surely, your gang (the Diaspora PFDJ) is not going to: you have no stake in it: you got your conscription-age children with you and selfishness is the defining quality of the sacrifice-praising PFDJ Eritrean.

          3. Ah, it looks like this is another one of those things you will understand in 16 years.

          4. The constitution doesn’t belong to the man and he can’t declare it alive or dead. It was the first “final and binding” document he signed with the Eritrean people. So he can declare it dead every day, twice on Sunday, if the people demand it, he has no legal reasons for declaring it so.

          5. Ah, on this I actually think he will. And guess what? When he does, you will applaud it. Not you personally; I mean the whole self-declared patriots.

          On this, just compare the tweets of PM Abiy’s Chief of Staff (@fitsumaregaa) and Eritrea’s MoI (@hawelti.) The Eritrean MoI is always late and his content is always half-assed. PM Abiy Chief of Staff’s tweets are informative and timely.

          Ah, are you still arguing about the credibility of the “stringer” of this forum? He told you precisely when Abiy was coming to Eritrea (Sunday). And now he is telling you about the reforms that are coming. If I were you, I would swallow my gigantic ego, and pull your chair up and read:)

          saay

          • Abrehet Yosief

            Selam Saay,
            PM Abiy was in front of one of the bishops who wrote “ሓውኻ ኣበይ ኣሎ?” when he stated: lets stop saying “ኣነ ሓላው ሓወይ ዲየ?” lets say :” ኣነ ሓላው ሓወይ እየ”. The modern day ቃኤል who had responded “no body promised you honey” was sitting there and laughing like a buffoon oblivious to the irony.

            In my opinion, PM Abiy will gradually nudge and push Eritrean authority towards addressing the very serious human rights situation. The opening of ports and airports, the influx of visitors and workers will make the iron grip on the people unsustainable. PFDJ has a very good opportunity to start gradual transformation, give some sort of a positive spin with a good narrative and salvage their image. The program they had on Eri Tv just before the arrival of the PM is indicative of how they want the story to be remembered.

            Whether they want to or not, the influx of new people and high speed of decision making that is needed to meet the demands of the new economic arrangements will overtake the rigid structures in place. The diaspora PFDJ are completely irrelevant. They will not be the stars anymore when they visit Eritrea. The rest of us should simply continue to demand human rights to be respected.

          • Paulos

            Well said ክብርትን ፍትውትን ሓፍተይ. Well said!

          • Abrehet Yosief

            Selam Paulos,
            A simple example of rapid change. Direct calls to Eritrea from Ethiopia was illegal (countries at war). It was common for family members to facilitate calls using group call from Europe/USA and calling both Asmara and Addis for example. Now that direct link was established sometime Sunday, people on social media are exchanging their numbers with random people just to call Asmara. Just like that, information will start to flow out to audiences that were not necessarily tuned in to what was going on because they didn’t have immediate family members in Eritrea.

          • Paulos

            ፍትውቲ ሓፍተይ,

            Not sure if you’re old enough to remember but the excitement reminds me when Dergue lifted the curfew in Asmara in the mid 80s. We felt unchained for the hormones if you will had been arrested for years till we started to stay out into the night. And I can only imagine the euphoria raining particularly on the young who didn’t know any better but a wounded world.

          • saay7

            Selamat Abrehet:

            I wish he had said that message in Amharic. His tigrinya is good for hello, what’s up, but not for profound messages like that and he stumbled all over it.

            On the program that aired in Eri-TV, all the references to what IA said at the Algiers Agreement are because of all the criticisms leveled at him, the one that stings him (and the ones he wants to change) is that he is an uber-nationalist Eritrea First that his followers think he is. His ambitions are much bigger than Eritrea and that’s what he wants to get back to: the African Revolutionary. It is the “let’s build a wall! Eritrea First!” gang that will have to adjust itself.

            The Diaspora PFDJ were useful for a time but now they don’t even dominate Eritrean Twitter. The Uqub money they were sending will be dwarfed by other sources now, so they can just hold on to their Isaias T-shirts and their Nehna Nsu: they won’t even be the biggest tourist visiting Eritrea. They will be lost in the daily travels from heartland Ethiopia. And we will “continue to demand human rights to be respected.” What exactly will they demand? That we be ignored: because they don’t have their own, and if they do (Badme, final and binding) they are too chicken to verbalize it.

            saay

          • Lamek

            Abrehet, I think there is a little bit of an element of re-writing history on the part of IA. Up to the sudden arrival and swift reforms of Dr. Abiy, IA was bound to go down in history as one of the worst people Eritrea had produced. Now, he sees a huge opportunity for that to be reconsidered. As you know, we Eritreans have short memories. Some trade will open up with Ethiopia. Esbeza kulu kihasir eyu. Eritreans will be give a little freedom, at the most to go back and forth to Ethiopia. Everybody will then start hailing IA for his incredible vision and how he masterminded our survival of US led hostility and insuring our territorial integrity. Just like that that 20 years of misery and mass exodus will be forgotten. The poor TPLF will be blade squarely for everything that happened while it was PFDJ who made Eritreans and Tigrayans suffer like no other time in their history.

            IA is doing all of this to seize an opportunity so that history will be kinder to him. He still hates and despises the people he considers his enemies, namely his compatriots who are in prison and TPLF. That will never change. His despise on the Eritrean people will never change, specially those in the diaspora. They are like paper utensils, use and throw. There will be a huge influx of hard currency from leasing Assab and their meager a couple hundred dollars will no longer be useful. You will not see much of Yemane Ghebreab any more in the West. The embassies will leave the people alone and mekete meetings will slowly cease to exist.

            Ultimately, the Eritrean people will be better off in this new developments for the mere fact that necessities will drop in prices but political space will still be vacuum tight. I blame TPLF for all of this.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Cuz SAAY:

            I have already stated what I believe as realistically as possible. I am NOT a wide eyed dreamer. I know the objective realities in Eritrea and I don’t even pretend to regurgitating some ideals as if Eritrea is a Jeffersonian democracy.

            You talk about the 16 wasted years by the PFDJ in not accepting the Ethio-Eritrean peace initiative. But have you ever pondered what it is that your anti-PFDJ camp has achieved in the past two and half decades?

            Nothing! I mean nothing. Oh, I forgot, of course, you got Eritrea sanctioned worked mightily to get PIA and others to the ICC and did anything and everything that you deemed would hurt the PFDJ even when it jeopardized Eritrea’s national interest.

            You can demand all you want, but you have been demanding all these years and sorry to remind you that it has failed to RESONATE with the Eritrean people. That the messages, er, the DEMANDS you have been making has fallen flatly on deaf ears and hence why you are finding yourself in the political wilderness since I don’t know when.

            Say what you want about the PFDJ. Fact is, it is a force to be reckoned with and your anti-PFDJ camp has not made even a dent in the PFDJ armor and it will be like that for the foreseeable future.

            Regarding your hyper-imaginative “stringer” of this Forum, here is verbatim what he claimed:

            ” Unconfirmed reports are indicating PMAA will visit Eritrea next Sunday, not sure why the Ethiopian side did not announce it if it is true”.

            “unconfirmed reports” and here you are telling me to take unconfirmed reports to mean like he told me a hard and confirmable news. You can butter him all you want, but that ain’t going to add even one iota of credibility to what he barfs here.

          • saay7

            Selamat Gheteb:

            Ah, you are still in that allegorical cave, cuz. The PFDJ is a despised organization inside the country and all over the world. Your attempt to equate it with the people (its victims), the combo phrase your gang has created (“The People and The Government”) intimidates the weaklings but we know better: there is no love for the organization (the way there was for EPLF), just fear and terror of its sadism.

            So, yes, the Opposition should take a lot of credit for exposing the very nature of this sadistic organization to the whole world. This happened because we inspired and emboldened the people to speak up and tell the world. The sanctions, sorry, that was a “self-goal”: a series of blunders followed by a series of rage-triggered policies. You can give all the credit for that to your organization and its chairman.

            Whether our demands resonates with the people, or whether we were merely echoing the demands of our people doesn’t matter: what matters is that no sooner will PM Abiy be on Ethiopian Airlines en route to Addis, than the series of demands will begin. Your president has a choice: to get in front of it and pretend it is his choice, or to go to the one thing he knows: arrest people. Our great “stringer” Kbrom and Samuel say he will do the former: I trust their judgement, so we shall see. The point is that PFDJ-II can’t be worse than your PFDJ-I. Specially if it agrees to be guided by PM Abiye’s policy of addition: pardons, prisoner releases, opening up of political space and ask for forgiveness for running a police state and violating the constitution.

            I am hoping one of the things PFDJ-II will apologize for is for the lack of imagination of PFDJ-I that it wasted 16 years of young Eritrea’s life because it was locked in a grudge feud with TPLF and then took the exact same deal it would have gotten 16 years ago.

            saay

          • Paulos

            Selam Sal,

            I am not clear on the PFDJ-II. Is that the same as in there was EPLF before PFDJ? And if that is the case, do we see Isaias in PFDJ-II?

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay (Aya-AdiU),

            Man! you could fight on multiple fronts and debate with everyone, even with trollers and diehard worshipers to the despot. Keep up and stand tall. History will be on your side.

          • Ismail AA

            Hayak Allah saay,

            Optimism could be/is harbinger of hope. Nothing wrong with pinning hope on PFDJ-II. But knowing who Isayas has been since he set foot in the world of Eritrean politics, hoping that under his watch PFDJ II could be anything other than what PFDJ I has been would be as good as wishing dream at night turning real next morning.

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam ‘Gheteb,

      Quick question, suppose the Ethiopians want an ambassador not only who speaks the language but is intimately knowledgeable in that s/he can go deep through the veins in to the heart, look around and come out without touching blood. I believe that gifted individual most likely can hail from Tigray.
      Do you want a diplomatic incident before it begins.

      Mr. K.H

      • Paulos

        Selam Ato Kim Hanna,

        Isaias, today in his brief speech said, we regained all the stuff we lost. Not sure what he had in mind when he said it for one doesn’t have to scratch his head to see that is just a self-serving statement.

        In the final analysis, however, Isaias is not the loser but his unprincipled supporters. You can see how disillusioned they are. There was no talk about demarcation or of their selling brand as in “Final and Binding.” Instead, the young PM travelled to Eritrea with one message only–a borderless new reality. And Isaias agrees.

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Paulos,

          I am watching everything to see where we are going. It is really mind boggling to see all this in 90 days.
          What is it going to look like in a couple of years.

          Oh that “Final and Binding” thing, how quickly was it tossed out unceremoniously. I think you and I should pick it up and insist for the demarcation of the boarder once and for all.
          I am getting an emotional whiplash from it. Why, Why leave it ambiguous and unresolved. Let us put the mark on the ground when the mood is this charitable. Brand, when the iron is hot, they say.

          Let us not leave a potential issue for the great grand kids, in heavens name.

          Mr. K.H

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam Gheteb,

      Ambassador from Oromo or Amhara?

      You forgot that two Amhara-Oromo led regimes conducted a 30 year war against Eritrea. You need to demand an Ambassador from Kaffa, Benishangul, Wollaita or Argoba.

      • ‘Gheteb

        Selam Simon Kaleab,

        Long time since we have had an exchange. Glad to ‘hear’ from you!

        I have NOT restricted my choice for an ambassador to an Amhara or an Oromo, as anyone from any of the other ethnic group will fit the bill.

        But, no freaking way an ambassador hailing from Tigray.

        Sure, I am aware of the atrocities that the previous regimes perpetrated against Eritrea. All things being equal, the atrocities of the two regimes PALES in comparison to what the loathsome Weyanes wrought on Eritrea.

        I will even go further and say that I don’t want to see an ambassador to Eritrea, even that person happened to be a TPDM or De.Me.Hi.T ( Tigray Peoples Democratic Movement) member which is based in Eritrea.

        No ambassador from Tigray MEANS no ambassador from Tigray, tout court!

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam Gheteb,

          Nice to ‘see’ you.

          In WW2, the Germans committed an unprovoked attack on the Soviet Union, killed defenceless men, women and children not just armed soldiers. Russian casualty in Stalingrad [alone] was close to 1,2 million, on top of this almost 700,000 were wounded.

          After the Soviet victory, and the end of the war, the two countries had to exchange Ambassadors. Diplomacy should not be based on emotions.

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Selam Awatistas,

    መጀመርያ ንህዝቢ ኤርትራን ህዝቢ ኢትዮጵያን ምሉእ ሰላም ክኾነሉ እምነ:: ህዝብና ብጽምአት ሰላም ዝሕብር አጋባብ ንቀዳማይ ሚኒስትር ኢትዮጵያ ብእልልታ ተቀቢልዎ:: ሓድሽ ምዕራፍ ዝተኸፍተ ይመስል:: ብውሕዱ እቲ “ሰግለለት ውግእ” ኽሳዕ ሕጂ ዘንጻላልዎ ዝነበረ ስለዘልገሰሉ ብኹሉ ደላይ ሰላም መርሓባ ክበሃል አለዎ:: እቲ ጉዳይ መራሕቲ ንህዝቢ የጻልእዎ: መራሕቲ ከአ ንህዝቢ የፋቅርዎ ስለዝኾነ: ነዚ ዝቃላቀል ዘሎ ናይ ሰላም ብርሃን: መራሕቲ ክዕንቅፍዎ ከምኽእሉ ተገንዚብና: ሰላም ምስ ህዝቡ ዘየብሉ መንግስቲ ከአ ሓደጋ ሰላም ከምዝኾነ አይንረስዕ በሃላይ እየ::

    Dr Medhane Tadesse has given an interesting interview on the prospect of the peace, the role of the visit of the PMAA, and the future prospect to the relationship of the two countries. Listen to his interview in the middle of the of the clip at 5:46 mark.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qHWDHHB1HWM

  • Peace!

    Hi all,

    Indeed the train is moving fast:

    “Ethiopia orders Somali Regional President, Abdi Iley, to step down after a damning Human Rights Watch report implicated him and his close aides in killings, rape, and torture of civilians. Abdi Iley, who is emotionally unstable and therefore unpredictable, is said to have accepted the order.“ via Mustafa Omer

    Peace!

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Peace,

      Does he has a constitutional power to remove a leader of “Ethiopia-Somali state” who was not appointed but elected by the state population?

      • Peace!

        Hi Emma,

        Who? It was just a direct quote which I though a big development as far as the transition concerned.

        The news has been confirmed, and as for the chain of command, I am not well equipped to answer your question, may be Gash Amde chime in and help us understand.

        Peace!

      • saay7

        Emma:

        He didn’t remove him. He asked for his resignation after Human Rights Watch detailed an extensive report about what everybody knew: that he was a warlord whose cruelty was tolerated by the Meles regime in the name of “pacifying” Ethiopia’s Somalia State. And he resigned. Good riddance. The only reason that’s not all we are talking about is because of the PM’s visit to Eritrea.

        saay

        • Eyob Medhane

          Sal,

          Oh my GOD…you threw Abiy’s Tigrigna, under the bus, you drove on it and backed up and finished it… 🙂

          On your opinion on Abdi Omar Mohammad, I think you should cut him some slack. Yes. He is a bit of authoritarian. But, for the region, he had done a lot. Jigjiga, the capital of Somali region, a place that was a desert outpost has changed to become a metropolis unrecognizably. In a place where there was a place with hardly paved roads, with on 10 years it has two airports which rival airports in capital cities of some African countries. Somali pastoralists have on call vets to treat their camels, where ever they go in the region….Most deapite his authoritarianism appreciate that. I am not endorsing his cruelty. I am just paying the devil his dues. And of course on HRW report, they may have mentioned that he fired a gun on the ears of Geoffrey Gettlman just to scare him a bit and I don’t think that’s a bad thing.. 🙂 (I am joking) But, I think HRW may have held some grudge on him, because of that. All in all, I believe, it may be time for him to go, but without humiliation. He also owes the country for keeping al shabab at bay and keeping us safe..

          • saay7

            Eyobai:

            No, sir, I did not: his Tigrinya is good enough for a tourist asking for directions. It is not fit for such a weighty subject (human rights) to such an august audience (bishops), specially if he is going to stumble all over it. That’s all. In actuality, he went much further than I thought: no more of our people dying in the deserts was a direct: stop your predatory practices and chasing your people to IA. Let’s stop making ourselves the laughingstock of the world, again: directed to himself and IA and since he is new, by definition: directed at IA, who was too giddy to notice. Imagine an Eritrean saying the exact same thing Abiy said: he would be in jail, right now, as I type this.

            On Abdi the monster. Let’s see if you can tell the difference between these two sentences which I actually once used on an employee:

            “You are so good at your job, you make people forget you are a pain in the neck. When I start saying “You are such a pain in the neck, you make people forget you are good at your job.” you will be jobless.

            Apply as needed.

            saay

      • Teodros Alem

        Selam amqn h
        Do u believe from the bottom of ur heart in what u said or u just say it to offend what u precived ur “opponent”?
        Every day a lot of prove coming out of ethiopia and eritrea peoples that shows u r wrong again and again but u still don’t get it.

        • Amanuel Hidrat

          Selam TA,

          Read what Peace has came with the info. Read my question to Peace. And read your reply again. Do you notice how irrelevant you are? You are only trolling after my comments, and you don’t have any idea what the debate entails. Why don’t keep quite and learn. To know your limits is wisdom.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam aman h
            Let it be am irrelevant and reread what u wrote urself, u description abdi as elected leader of ethio Somali, after so many prove, u must have known by now u r simply trolling after everything u have no clue about.

  • Peace!

    Hi all,

    Peace is the only battle worth waging.
    — Albert Camus (1913-1960)

    A historic day indeed! It feels like independence day in the streets of Asmara. Hopefully this marks the beginning of better things and the end of all our misery.

    The US embassy Asmara Eritrea: Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and President Isaias Afwerki have demonstrated courageous leadership by taking these steps toward peace.

    Ethiopia and Eritrea have a critical role in promoting stability and prosperity in the Horn of Africa. The United States looks forward to a full normalization of relations and the realization of our shared aspirations for both countries to enjoy enduring peace and development.

    Peace!

  • Paulos

    Selam My Good People,

    Time to bounce back to reality.

    The people came out in droves to welcome the young PM. I invite you to imagine this: Imagine the people in the same number and vigour coming out to stand up to Isaias’ tyranny and unimaginable cruelty.

    Imagine the people coming out in droves to demand the release of all political prisoners where at this very moment their where abouts is in dark underground dungeons including underage children.

    Imagine the people coming out in droves asking for the end of impunity and respect for Rule of Law and Accountability. And asking for the implementation of the Constitution. Just imagine……the same women and men of all ages coming out saying no to tyranny…..Just imagine…

    • Haile S.

      Bonjour Paul,
      The men and women, young and the old did it today in asmara. As the tigrigna saying goes ንለባም ደርጉሓሎ፡ ንዓሻ ኣምተሉ. We will see which one is IA.

      • Paulos

        Bonjour Monsieur Hailat,

        They say, over 50, one can not pretend. If any, only so much one can pretend. The young PM to his credit reached out to the nations in the region after he did serious cleaning up in his house including freeing up political prisoners and inviting back all political dissidents.

        I couldn’t help thinking, if there were any members of say, Sherifo’s family with in the cheering crowd. Or Petros Solomon, Aster Fissehation, Senait and Ermias Debessay, Dawit Isaak, last but not least the family of the young and beautiful Ciham Ali Abdu.

        Again, the crowd and a bunch of gutless cowards here in this forum can pretend but no one can arrest the flow of time and the day of reckoning is not far when true celebration and the freedom of every Eritrean echoes in the streets of Asmara.

  • MS

    Selam All
    I hereby introduce our next post-conflict Ethiopian Ambassador to Eritrea, the honorable Dr. Fanti GHana, for his dogged persistence on fairness, and his contribution on making this forum Eritrean-friendly.
    For some reason, i overworked the last six weeks- as many articles- and in one of them concerning the visit of Eritrean delegation to Addis Ababa and the warm welcome it received there, I gave Ethiopians heads up that the next round would be about an Ethiopian delegation visiting Asmara and that it would meet an even more welcoming crowd. I concluded that article with the following;
    “Thanks go to the people of Addis Ababa and and particularly to my favorite Ethiopian artist, Mahmoud Ahmed, for the warm reception you threw for our delegation. Ethiopians, better watch when your delegation, hopefully led by Dr. Abiy Ahmed, lands at Asmara airport. Welcoming Asmarinos will be there. Anyway, በጣም ታምራላችሁ። Just perfecting my Amharic for my visit to Addis next year, Inshaallah.”
    Well, Asmara showed its generosity. I hope we put this sad chapter behind us for good. The train has definitely been picking speed. The worries and priority of the people in close proximity of the conflict is to have normalcy back. Time for those anti-peace pockets to make a strategic move before it is too late.
    http://www.erigazette.org/?p=11726
    Also read/listen to my latest article “Qluwlaw.”
    selam/peace.

    • Blink

      Dear MS
      You have been to all kind of fights on behalf of Eritrea and Eritreans , many people do it but not like you sir . I listened your YouTube video and look at how many people listening to it , far bigger than many other. This peace hopefully will nock down the animosity between the two people as well as lead to Eritreans internal issues . As respectful person with large number of followers I hope you continue to play your service. Again silencing the sound of bullets was not easy for Eritreans and let’s hope this hold strong aspirations for peace.

      As always thanks

    • Hameed Al-Arabi

      Salam MS,

      You were lecturing us that you are from the opposition camp and now you are telling us it is “Time for those anti-peace pockets to make a strategic move before it is too late”. I wonder and want to ask you: Did Isaias change his position towards the people of Eritrea? Did Isais announced reconciliation among the people of Eritrea? Did Isaias released all prisoners? I didn’t see any change or reasonable position in Isaias policies to board his train. If you don’t mind it, please enlighten me what changes has occurred in Isaias in order to hasten and catch train with you and your boss before it is too late.

      • Kokhob Selam

        Yes Hameed Al-Arabi,

        Mahmuday was always unclear to his stand..But now he has completely became PFDJ..

        KS,,

    • Saba

      Dear MS,
      Today the winner is the Eritrean people. Anything can be done if you stand with the Eritrean people: constitution, freedom, democracy etc. Those who are anti-PFDJ are solely of Anti-PFDJ, not FOR Eritreans. They can not celebrate any achievement of the Eritrean people. If it was a negative thing they will be all over the internet writing. Now Tirkim. They came with fake statistics to argue against MDG achieved by hard working Eritreans.
      Thank you MS for standing for the Eritrean people. You have been model on how to oppose the PFDJ and still stand with the Eritrean people. Those who stand only to be ant-PFDJ will never understand what you stand for.

      • MS

        Selam Sabina and blink
        Dear both, thank U for the nice words. Actually, I don’t deserve those accolades. Both of you put up a tough fight against elements who have been frequenting this forum for the sole purpose of demoralizing Eritreans. Unfortunately, as long as folks keep confusing policies of a government with the interests of the state, the fight will continue. We don’t do it for recognition or for any political ambition. We do it simply because we feel we are duty bound. We don’t need the “green light” or a tap on the shoulder from PFDJ to do what we do, we don’t either quit by hostile opposition from the Wayanistas.
        The great General, Nitrickay, ST, Hope and the rest share it.
        For Hamid-AlArabi and his kind of opposition, here is an improvised poem.
        ሳዓት ኣኺላ
        ባቡር ነቂላ
        ኤረ ፍሽኽ ኢላ
        ትሕንበብ ደልዲላ
        ኣርክብ ትብል ኣላ//
        PS; the link to my article has been wiped by the moderator. I know it is Sunday, and I see links other folks have provided are still there. Anyway, if the problem is with the publisher (meskerem), then I will try another website:
        http://www.snitna.com/articles/Hopeful-Times.php

        Peace!!

    • dawit

      Dear MS,

      Welcome back to your true self. Yes the last 20 years was a time of confusion but today PIA is receiving his lost sons and daughters starting with PMAA. He was his lost son in Ethiopia. PIA also today appointed PMAA as honorary Foreign Minister of Eritrea, which means all the 20 years efforts of isolating and sanctions on Eritrea will evaporate, when Ethiopia uses its political capital for the benefits of the two peoples.
      “Egle beAl Sebir Midir Tsebhilu”. That was my mothers favorite Tigre saying. Ib aman et midir Eritrea wo Ethiopia the Sun is shining bright for all to see. Time for peace and development!
      Yes, “Time for those anti-peace pockets to make a strategic move before it is too late.” because this train is not to waste time, it is travelling at light speed.

      I read somewhere a quote from Lenin,
      “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” How true in our own history.

      Take care.
      dawit

      • MS

        Ahlan dawit
        No, welcome back to you, Sir. You were the one missing in action. As far as holding a different viewpoint is concerned, I’m not for any particular strain of politics. That’s primarily up to the Eritreans who have no country other than Eritrea, the people who have been through all the ups and downs in maintaining life in Eritrea. I never preached I had a better idea or a role substituting theirs. I have always preached change should come from within. I argued against violent or divisive designs. I fought tooth and nail against those who tried to subdue Eritrea through the support of unjust sanctions, demonizing its people and history, and the ones who fought hard to isolate it; deny its development funds, etc. I was against those who mischaracterized our brave young people as slaves, etc. The difference is that I give credit to the steadfast people of Eritrea while you tend to give it to the “z negese ngusna” mantra, your own words.
        Anyway, I don’t blame IA on this particular issue. It is good to see him relaxed and finally showing his human side. I never saw IA this happy and relaxed. It was good that he gave credit to the welcoming spirit of the people of Eritrea.
        Dr. Abiy was magnanimous in his speech. He said, ” The rain of happiness that has poured on Asmara today could inundate the Horn of Africa.” That was a beautiful metaphor.
        Good to see you back dawit. Your Tigrayet is perfect.

        • dawit

          Ahlan Mahamuday,

          Thank you for the welcome spirit my brother, but I never left the battle at Awate, I was following the issues by glancing and the posts. I just decided for a while not to participate to the back and forth sterile arguments by more or less the same people.
          I agree with what you wrote above about your stead fastness on the issues you mentioned. My only difference with you was about the leadership of Eritrea. Yes still, my stand to my “Z negese ngusna” is in its place until I see an alternative than we have. At a time when all Eritrean enemies from right and left were trying to sabotage Eritrean peoples struggle by targeting eliminating its leadership, by focusing and demonizing PIA, I stood firm saying he is the legitimate leader of the Eritrean people and I didn’t want to change a horse in the middle of a race. In that regard at times you were wobbling. But the other day you firmly stated “PIA is my president”. And that was my ‘Welcome home’ message to you. Yes the Eritrean people who stood steadfast behind their leadership finally brought back peace to the region. I also agree that I never seen PIA so jubilant with smiles all over his face and body. I believe finally he found his ‘lost son in Ethiopia’, after searching for five decades. PMMZ fooled him with an artificial smiles and closed fist, but PMAM came with natural smile and open hand for peace. The people of Eritrea and its leadership recognized it and grab the moment.

          Take care brother and peace to all!

          dawit

          • MS

            Ahlan dawitom
            haha…remeber IA himself taught me not to worship him. So, I don’t, I will never let anyone steal the credit of the unsung heroes. But he never asks you guys to shower him with accolades. Anyway, has taken a prudent step in ambushing all the enemies of Eritrea. I’m ready for constructive engagement from now on. ናይ ውድባት ሓሸውየ ኣብቂዑ እዩ። Just to annoy Emma. BTW, he was wrong to declare that in 1991, but he would be right if he declared it today. I have written two parts about the stagnation of the opposition. While preparing the third part, the Ethio-Eritrean peace development moved so fast that I am holding on to it. I think they will be declared dead, I mean the TPLF appendages. I never criticize self-respecting Eritreans who exercise their rights to criticize the government. I opposed them when they supported sanctions and other issues that I thought hurt the state.
            But I have been against those who had complicated Eritrean politics by siding with the despicable leadership of the TPLF. I still believe, after a period of peace and stabilization, Eritrea should rally its human resource including inviting those who have been opposing the government peacefully. But that is for another day. For the time being, I’m processing PMAA to Eritrea and the reaction Asmarinos gave the Ethiopian delegation. It is amazing. It is good. Some folks are sad for a known reason but that is life. Politics has its own cyclic motion.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Mahmuday,

            እንታይ ዲና ተሰማሚዕና: አይንቶኾተኽ ዶ’አይተበሃሃልናን? ዝፈረምናሉ ቀለም ከይነቀጸ:: ወረ እንታይ ኢኻኸ ትብለና ዘለኻ? “IA himself taught me not to worship him”. Really? Do demigods tell to their subjects not worship them? You can’t stop from surprising me by bringing any kind of accolades to this despot until he disappear from the scene. Wow. Please don’t do it to annoy your opponents. Just do it because you trust him and you believe on everything he does. If you do it that way, it is halal for. Second, you made it clear that you are not for pluralism. That is a clear position. ዝኾነኾይኑ ዕድመ እንተለና ብሓባር ክንሪኦ ኢና ናይ መጻኢ ክስተታት::

  • Paulos

    Selam My Good People,

    This is indeed a great day for both countries. The lady in Hijab is TPLF. No?

    • Abraham H.

      Selam Paulos, yes, there are at least two moslem women in the Ethiopian delegation, both of whom have recently been elected as speakers of the two houses of Ethiopia. Keria Ibrahim, from TPLF, is the speaker of the house of federation, and Muferiat Kamil, SEPDM, is the speaker of the house of representatives.

  • Hameed Al-Arabi

    Dr. Abie Ahmed is a very sophisticated leader, it will not take him time to read the very minute mind and superficial mentality of Isaias Afwerki.

    • Peace!

      Hi Hameed Al-Arabi,

      Welcome Back.

      Peace!

  • Kbrom

    Hi all,

    It is a new chapter and opportunity for Eritrea, may be the greatest opportunity for peace and prosperity ever after the 1993 referendum. The one-million-dollar question is will PIA seize this golden opportunity to declare peace, reconciliation, release of prisoners, and most importantly rule of law, or he will use it yet as another opportunity to strength the rule of one man.

    TPLF was defeated by people not because it is TPLF, rather because it opted to reign through the domination of one ethnic group in all political, social and economic life of Ethiopia. Hence, the lesson of the popular uprising in Ethiopia is more directed to PIA than to the Eritrean people, because if the domination of one ethnic group is told ‘enough is enough’ definitely domination of one single man over the entire people will have its ‘enough is enough’ day.

    Very few people have ever expected the Ethiopian flag to wave in Baduma and Asmara at the same time, but it is happening right now. Nevertheless, if that leads to peace, rule of law and respect of sovereignty and territorial integrity of Eritrea – let it be, as they say, there is no good war and bad peace.

    Today, the Eritrean Marching Band played በዓል ደማ እንዳልቀሰ ተደምሲሱ to the delegation of the state of በዓል ደማ and yet we have smiles in all faces, that is the power of peace.

    Congratulations to the peoples of Eritrea and Ethiopia on this historical day!

    • FishMilk

      Hi Kbrom. Indeed it is a great moment. Positive reforms will surely come for Eritrea, as Eritreans living inside of Eritrea will not accept anything less, but likely at a much slower rate of speed than what we are now seeing in Ethiopia as security concerns of the PIA/PFDJ will be of paramount importunity. PIA will be performing a balancing act on a tight rope in this regard: Need to satisfy public appetite for change but not at a cost of risking loosing control of the Government or the country. Lest us also not forget, PIA will not likely take any real substantive actions on the home front until the TPLF and Ethiopia’s Northern Military Command completes withdrawal from Badme. In this regard, the ball is now in the TPLF’s court.

    • Dear Kibrom,
      It is indeed historic. The huge outburst of love, joy and humanity Asmarinos have shown today to the visiting Ethiopian PM is the function of their high hopes & expectations that peace b/n the two countries would be the beginning of Eritrea’s journey to normalcy on all aspects of our national life. Any Eritrean political force- either the opposition or the government- which ignores this do so at its own peril.

  • Abraham H.

    Hello Awatista,
    እቲ ግበር ተባሂሉ እሺ፣ ኣይትግበር ተባሂሉ ከኣ እሺ ጥራይ ዝብል ህዝቢ ኤርትራ፣ ሎሚ ንግሆ ንልኡኽ መንግስቲ ኢትዮጵያ ብድሙቕ ኣቀባብላ ተቐቢሉ፣ ንሰላምን ቅሳነትን ዘለዎ ክቱር ድልየትን ሃንቀውታን ብግብሪ ኣብ ጎደናታት ኣስመራ ክገልጽ ኣርፊዱ።
    ነዚ ከምዚ ዝኣመሰለ ሕያዋይ ህዝብስ፣ ሓሳድ ኢሳያስ ‘ዶ ምመርሖ! እቲ ተስፋ ዘስንቕ ነገር ግን፣ ኩሉ ግዜ ህዝቢ ነባራይ ኮይኑ፣ ስርዓታት ግን ሓለፍቲ ምዃኖም ኢዩ። There is a light at the end of the tunnel.

  • Selam All,

    “Welcome brother Abiy Ahmed” in four languages, in the center of asmara. Eritrean and Ethiopian flags together in the streets. Who could have imagined this few months ago?

    The composition of the ethiopian delegation will be very important. It may be the reflection of the political situation in the country. Who are tplf members in the delegation, will be interesting to know.

    • Blink

      Dear Horizon
      I didn’t see Arkebe May be others can say more . All in all Eritreans showed their love for peace as THE PM ABIY is deserve it all. All this can be all orchestrated by PFDJ but still very very important stage on our region especially to Eritreans as this can unlock the imprisoned , suffered . What ever the pessimist say really don’t matter because they never did this on their own because of the failure they choose in the last 18 years. Now is the game for all Eritreans who love peace and justice to hold on their breath and fight tooth to nail to force Issaias resign and pay for his crimes before he solidify his successor and write all rules on his way.

      I wish my heartfelt wishes to all Eritreans who guarded Eritrean 1000 km borders-because they thought it was danger from weyane to rest your legs and eyes . I wanted their wish to come true even at this 18 years bleeding time was really really hard for them not for these Macdonald and KFC people.
      Let’s give peace chance because people can change not by your prayers or false fictional characters they change because they just wanted to change .

      With out the bleeding nose of the Qero or any other guys this change would have come and ABIY , well this can be called the beginning of Ethiopia with out the Habesha quick fight behavior.

      • Selam blink,

        Could you believe your eyes, i could not. This must be the second time asmara is living such a celebration. The first on independence day almost 3 decades ago, the second today. It is a crime to separate these people and make them enemies of each other.

        Please. Tplf, come and be part of the history that is being made before our own eyes.

        • Blink

          Dear Horizon
          I couldn’t imagine this , I never thought this was near at our gates but thanks again to these who made it to be. Let’s hope this peace will not bi for cameras shows I mean let’s the people in Tigray show their love for the ordinary Eritreans.

        • halafi mengedi

          Horizon,

          Disappointed not see anyone representing tigray. Whoever is acting as barrier need to rectify this asap.

          Well, will be taking several trips abroad in the coming months. It seems I will miss much the discussion here in such monumental time. Thanks all and Peace!

          Hm

          • Selam Halafi Mengedi,

            It is indeed a disappointment if there was nobody from the tplf. It would be a good idea if tplf at least issues an official statement, adding may be its own opinion for the success of the peace initiative. Non-participation and complete silence may look like opposition to the peace plan. You see, it is my opinion that peace between ethiopia and eritrea must include tigray to be a complete success.

            Wish you enjoyable and productive trip.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Horizon,

            I didn’t get a chance to say this to Amde some days ago when he made similar call for TPLF to visibly join, but you now gave me another chance.

            I hope I am not the only one thinking this, but I think it is important for TPLF to take the back seat for PM Abiy’s efforts to work. I know it would be great to see TPLF celebrating along, but unfortunately, it has the potential of unnecessarily ruining everything. Whether by choice or by force, where TPLF is right now is the best place for it to be.

            This beginning is a key victory for both peoples however small. If nothing else, if this change relaxes PFDJ enough to result in reduction of the number of Eritreans leaving the country, if it results in reduction of the number of people arrested for being “Weyane messengers,” if farmers along the border areas get to sell their eggs and goats without fear, if Tigrayans get a chance to discuss their grievances with the now available full time TPLF, it is already a victory.

            Some TPLFites may take this as a bitter pill for now but it is also a cure, so they will be okay. The only remaining question is what to do or what happens to Eritrean opposition, and I am hoping PM Abiy to have one more magic wand for that too.

            I was thinking earlier when someone quoted PMA as saying “there is no more border” whether that could mean all Eritreans including the opposition are welcome to stay/live in Ethiopia freely. Why not, from what we have seen so far, every solution to every problem PM Abiy has proposed is the simplest and yet the most shocking, effective, and elegant one.

            To live freely anywhere means long separated families will get a chance to meet because there will be less “border security” to scrutinize traveling Eritreans. This also means there is something for the opposition to look forward to. They may have to change tactics, but they will be able to demand for democracy and justice with a better chance of access to more Eritreans to recruit. I think I am up to something on this!

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam Fanti
            Yes u must be up to something, 1st, the way i see it there will not be any chance of access to recruit for the opposition of both countries.
            2nd, if the views of eri opposition is similar with that of some forumers here, from now on tplf should distance itself from them because it will more harm the relationship of both parties by extension thier constituency.
            3rd, for those real opposition who demand justice and democracy, as u said it 3A might will come up on one more workable wand for that too

          • Abraham H.

            Dear HM, yes, the tone between pfdj and the tplf is definitely long way from normal, but there is a member of the tplf in the Ethiopian delegation. Her name is Keria Ibrahim and she is the speaker of the house of federation.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam HM,
            Have a good trip. Even if you couldn’t join the discussion, you could read on off and on to keep yourself in the loop.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selam halafi mengedi,

            Have a safe trip!

            Do not worry about Tigray not having a representative. PM Abiy is more Tigrayan than many think. Can’t you tell by his smile?

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam Fanti
            Isn’t tigrai ethiopia? i mean the peace deal is between ethiopia and eritrea, that means by default tigrai is included because it is part of ethiopia.
            If the ambassador will be from what ever trib he come , he will be the country ambassador.

      • woldeab

        Selam Blink et al
        You forgot the lady who raised Abiy and inculcated in him ethiopiawinet is Habesha?

        • Blink

          Dear weldeab
          I promised SG not to use the word just for the sake of going along with out being called racist unless you know well OROMO do not see themselves as Habesha. What I see about Ethiopiawinet is a pure one with out the Habesha killers . Mentioned this many times but here you are.

        • Paulos

          Selam Weldeab,

          Heads up in order. If you’re new to the forum, I suggest you select the people you converse with for your time will be well spent. And of course, as much as your input is of a substance, you learn something from the forum as well. Remember, misery loves company and I am sure you don’t want toxic and misery.

  • Nitricc

    Hi All; here is timely song for peace. i agree with him.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2mkjUJUA5w

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear Nitricc,

      Do you hear the music?

      I will respect your choice..

      KS,,

      • Nitricc

        Hey KS, here is funny for the weekend. very funny.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBpOxWUpBMA

        • Kokhob Selam

          Dear Nitricc,

          I am really sorry for this is known for awate,com participants ..Really sorry brother this was the link was attached by Dr. Beyan Negash,,

          KS,,

          • Nitricc

            Hey KS; it is weekend light up and have fun some fun my man. I really don’t care who linked or not, i found out to be funny and i shared it with you. what is the problem, brother? take it easy my man.

    • Abrehet Yosief

      Selam Nitricc,
      He is saying “There is no need for any discussion, first implement the decision.” He sang it before the June 20 announcement of the President. Here are the lyrics:
      ፍርዲ ቤት ዓለም ፈሪዱ ምስ ኣኸተመ
      የለን ዘረባ ዘረባ ምስተደርገመ
      ኣብ ግብሪ ይውዓል እቲ እማመ ብዝቐደመ
      ሕጊ ናብ ግብሪ ንኽተርጎመ

      • Nitricc

        Hey Abrehet; exactly!!! there is no other way. Any thing short of that is the greatest insult to the people of Eritrea and treason to the nation of Eritrea. I can understand for PIA the need to score some grudges but it can’t be at the expense of the people and Eritrea. What the people and country endured and paid for can’t be lost to anything, after all we paid 20K of our best.

        • Abrehet Yosief

          Selam Nitricc,
          Well. He is arriving in Asmara now. EriTv live broadcasting through Eastafro.com

          • Nitricc

            Hey Abrehet; I am fine but we must stick to what matters; the issue that costed us so much must be the end-point. The border must be demarcated and the Ethiopians must vacate the land, the end of the story.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Nitricc,

            Now, at this very moment Dr.Abiy is in Asamara ,,,Congratulation !!

            KS,,

  • Alex

    Hi @george,
    You know given the opportunity there are many capable man and women in Eritrea that can lead the country when PIA retires.

  • FishMilk

    Hi Fanta Ghana. A couple of years ago you said that ’Ideally, the opposition groups in some semblance of order will take over with the help of the TPLF to allow a transition to take place’ Further you said that ‘Keeping in mind the inherent fluidity of what the TPLF will want with Eritrea, the best that can be hoped for Eritrea (whose body-politic will be molded by the TPLF to accommodate the TPLF’s interest) is to become a client-state to the TPLF.’ Grateful for your thoughts now given the rapid change of events.

  • Kbrom

    saay

    You asked

    Do you think the aeeitrean delegates read the letters they were asked to carry by IA and AA?

    Let me tell you first that this ‘letters’ are the formal one, PMAA sent in April a handwritten letter to PIA through a third country; the third country asked the letter should be written by hand so trust will be built. Following the first letter there was continuos memo correspondence phone calls and one face to face meeting between April 6th – June. What is happening now is not a spontaneous event rather the package of agreement is already finalised.

    Early April PIA received EU delegation in Asmara. The delegation advised him that they came to discuss about refugees exodus, to which he replied the political landscape of horn of Africa has changed from now on we will discuss only as the main power of the horn and not as junior partner because the Ethiopian hegemony has came to an end. He coined the term ‘new regional prosperity package’, and most of the contents in the new PMAA – PIA package are from that package which include regional integration, trade, investment, etc.

    What will happen on Sunday’s visit? I do not know, but think that some of the package contents will be announced or/and bilateral agreements memorandum of understanding ( transportation, ports, trade) will be signed, joint committee would be formed.

    PIA is also stating that Eritrea will initiate same peaceful initiative with Djibouti and Sudan.

    People are so excited in Eritrea, not only because of the peace atmosphere but because the atmosphere of receiving head of state by itself was almost forgotten event. The young generation U25 do not know Ethiopian flag this is their first time.

    ኣመል ምስ መግነዝ ከምዝበሃል Eritrean media did not announce anything ምምሕዳራት ከባቢ are telling people to come out, clean their kebabi, and because ኣብ ኣዲስ ኣበባ ዝመጹ ኣጋይሽ ስለዘለዉን ሰዓትኩም ኣኽቢርኩም ልክዕ ሰዓት 7፡30 ክትርከቡ ብጥብቂ ነተሃሳስብ። Some times you struggle to understand the logic of what they do; there is a big banner near Expo and one near bar Zili which bears in 40000 size fonts Welcome Dear Brother Abiy Ahmed and MUCUK TEMEETEM and ye thy are telling people to keep the visit secretly.

    • saay7

      Selamat Kbrom:

      Thank you, kbur ato kbrom. Before I go the meat of the issue and my follow-up questions, how do you spell “third country”? Is it UAE or USA? I have information on how the Yamamoto trip was triggered (it was not a push by State Department but US congress) but, per the Eritrean Ghedli tradition, let’s say ግዜን ኩነታትን ምስ ኣፍቀደ:)

      If “protecting PMAA” means let’s give him the political space to consolidate his power, that will be another open-ended Eritrean commitment. And unless the Scorpion has changes his nature (and you keep telling us he has:) that means Eritrean soldiers embedded somewhere.

      I was telling a friend that I left Eritrea very early but even as a child, I had seen a huge welcome posters for the wife of Iran’s Shah. People older than me tell me about a visit by Queen Elizabeth and Marshal Tito. Part of the reason young Eritreans are treating the Eritrean flag at Municipio (Mazagaja Biet) is because they have never seen a foreign dignitary visit Eritrea. So it is not just they don’t know the Ethiopian flag, it is that they have never seen a foreign dignitary visit and his flags waving all over. Omar Al Bashir and Kaddaffi just sneaked in and out.

      Thanks for the heads up!

      saay

  • FishMilk

    Hi All. One sure result from Ethio-Eri peace overtures is that both Ethiopian and Eritrean opposition groups, members and financing will significantly go down. On the Eritrean side, opposition groups will now become: 1) Self-help mental health groups, 2) AAA groups for distressed YG adherents, or 3) Geriatric Eritrean dating clubs.

    • Saleh Johar

      Fihmilk,
      Please choose one because the two are contradictory:

      Are you happy because…
      1) The PFDJ and Abyi made peace… (political peace), or
      2) you believe your ill wishes for the opposition will be realized… ( naked hate)

      • FishMilk

        Hi Saleh Johar. It is not an ‘either/or choice’ that I need to make. Peace between Ethiopia and Eritrea is certainly to be celebrated. However, forgiving and forgetting, specifically those Eritrean opposionists, who have for years collobarated with the TPLF in their efforts to force change in Eritrea, while the TPLF not only refused to unconditionally accept the EEBC final and binding decision but also strategized to economically isolate and strangle Eritrea and her citizens; is an entirely separate matter. Personally, I am not willing to forgive this category of Eritrean oppositionists. However, I wholeheartedly support any Eritrean opposition efforts, past or present (not done in collaboration with the TPLF), which strives address the whole set of sins which have been committed by PIA/PFDJ and associate lack of government accountability.

        • Hameed Al-Arabi

          Selam FishMilk,

          You seem to forget Isaias collaboration with TPLF to crush Eritreans in the eighties of last century. A serpent doesn’t forget or forgive; but we do. You can turn the pages of history instead of crowning yourself as a judge. I wish peace to all Ethiopians; but Eritreans are still far from peace.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Hameed Al-Arabi,

            Welcome back.

            KS,,

          • FishMilk

            H Hameed Al-Arabi. I’m not living in the 1980s, and I’m not a supporter of PIA; your words therefore have little meaning to me. However, I am glad that you are not again trying to push your pro-Sharia law agenda for Eritrea.

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Salam FishMilk,

            Isaias has imposed siege on the people of Eritrea since independence a way back from the UN blockade and the formation of the Eritrean opposition. All Eritreans are victims of Isaias and his cohorts.

            Isaias should understand he is dealing with a totally different person. He should stop playing with his tail against Dr. Abie Ahmed or the slap of this tolerant PM will be quick and deadly.

  • Blink

    Dear rahwa
    How odd is this , Ethiopia have another new year ? What year does your 4000 years history start?

  • Saleh Johar

    Hope,
    Please, get lost. You have no content to engage and waste my time with you. It’s only that you are annoying and I have to show you what you lack in character, intelligence, and demeanor. That is enough for an empty shell.

  • Alex

    Hi Rahwa,
    I don’t see PIA leaving his power by September 11 this year. Hopefully he soon will do the right thing to relinquish his power to next generation peacefully.

  • Abi

    Hope Nefse
    The Eritrean way is the most natural way.

  • Paulos

    Selam My Good People,

    As it happened, Gidey Zeratsion, Aregawi Berhe are back to Ethiopia including the Dergue guy Kassa Kebede. This is essentially good as they will contribute to the ongoing democratic process. One can only hope Isaias takes similar measures by releasing political prisoners and by welcoming other Eritrean Opposition figures from Diaspora.

    • Saleh Johar

      Hi Paulos,
      Are you serious! People like Hope will rather receive Ethiopians in return for a privilege to blunder the country (remember Hope said he wants to go to Gondar to teach them business and invest) They will never promote the idea of reconciliation. That is why the PFDJ and its appendages should be considered an enemy of reconciliation, thus the enemies of Eritrea. I know they are willing to sell Eritrea piecemeal. Welcoming opposition! That would be a sign of the end of the world for them.

      • Paulos

        Selam Ayay,

        What are they expecting to become of us then? Rot and die in exile? The news footage shows, G’dey and Aregawi being received at the airport by family members and a communications director of the young PM as well.

        Imagine, these two, as you know are founding members of the Front till they parted ways. And here they are getting some slack which was unthinkable as they assumed that that was it for them. And I still hope that, Eritreans including those who are rotting in prison get a break and see a ray of hope. It is possible!

        • Saleh Johar

          Hope,

          Even if that decision is made, by miracle, you will find the stone heads, Nhna Nsu cult, demonstrating against the decision. They are heartless brutes who have no compassion for their brethren. nedi’aa gedifas, nme tnafiq eyu zbahal!

        • FishMilk

          Hi Paulos. For Eritrean oppositionists such as yourself, who have been supporting the TPLF and vacationing in Tigray, I am sure that PIA/PFDJ will give you expedited visa service. Sorry but you guys now have to,pay the piper.

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam Paulos,

      Kassa Kebede is a notorious drunkard and a shady character [based on very reliable personal information from people who knew him socially and at work during the pre-EPRDF eras] who should be thoroughly investigated for committing possible crimes against humanity during the Derg era.

      Kassa is the son of Degiat Kebede Tessema, a close confidant of Haile Selassie. Kassa was close to Mengistu Hailemariam. There is a striking facial similarity between Kassa and Mengistu, which led to many rumours about the two being siblings.

      Considering Kassa’s shady behaviour, could he be on a reconnaissance mission? He can be up to no good.

      • Paulos

        Selam Simon,

        The resemblance with Mengistu is striking and certainly the commonality doesn’t end there. Mengistu committed crimes against humanity and I suspect Kebede as well if not an accomplice to it. My own family among the thousands was destroyed by Dergue. And it would be a travesty of justice if they both are allowed to have it easy as they had hitherto anywhere but in Ethiopia.

  • saay7

    Selamat Rahwa:

    First of all, the awate currency is Satoshis so please convert your dollars to satoshis.

    Secondly, can you define the terminologies here? For example, when you say “out of power”, would that include him operating things behind the curtain as an advisor?

    saay

    • rahwa

      Hey saay7,

      I am not picky. I’ll take anything. I just want to win. I’m habesha and you know we live for “I told you so.”

      • saay7

        Haha Rahwa:

        “I told you so” is NOT a habesha thing; it is universal across every culture I know. Lot of American country and western songs have that theme. What’s confusing me here is that expression is used when you predicted something bad will happen and it happens. So what would be so bad about IA leaving 🙂

        saay

  • Paulos

    Sal,

    “…..Eritreans treating the Ethiopian flag like a UFO*….” That is damn wicked. You made my day. You should see me laughing! 😂😂😂

    *Does anybody know what UFO stands for with in the Eritrean context?

  • Abraham H.

    Selam Awatista, later today, I’m going to post a video clip from the bomb explosion during PM Abiy’s rally which makes me suspect that the attack was orchestrated by the Abiy camp with the obvious objective of demonizing and alienating the tplf and Tigrayans from the Ethiopian people. All the intense media campaign by the federal news media after the incident as well as the demos that followed it points in the direction of a planned vilification of tplf and Tigrayans.

    • Mez

      Dear Abraham H,

      This will be a very series accusation; though nothing is impossible.

    • Selam Abraham H.,

      I am sorry to say that your last comments are far different from what we used to see coming from your side. This is a very very serious accusation that could have had very serious consequences in a country where ethnic politics is the norm.

      I wouldn’t have to wait for the video to say that you made a grave mistake with your allegation, because it requires a group of experts and not a single person to suspect, and much more to prove it from a video clip.

      Ethiopians are not short of reasons to be disappointed by the way tplf ruled over the last 27 yrs, and they did not need a staged assassination attempt. Fortunately, no such thing seems to be in the mind of ethiopians, from what i saw in the demonstrations. Their problem is political power and not ethnic hatred, tplf as a political party and as an undemocratic government and not the people of tigray. If the demonstrators chanted in different ways, they had in mind the party actors and not the ethnic group. God save ethiopia from such things. Including the whole ethnic group in any discussion will not help in any way imaginable.

      PMAA has no anti-tplf or anti-tigray agenda to die for; for ethiopia’s cause, yes. This again is a very serious allegation. He speaks their language which means he either lived with the people, or he believed that they are people worth to learn their language. Let’s all be careful, because our words may have an impact of one sort or other.

      • gebremdhin yohannes

        Selam Horizon
        It is very easy for you to condemn TPLF now, as if you were not the staunch supporter of EPRDF in this forum in the past , and why did not the government release the information then, I don’t know and you don’t know who the perpetrator is don’t come to the defense with out any information just wait like any body else, and please .don’t be apologetic for the demonstrator’s you can speak for your self not for those who were spreading hate and ” he speaks their language ” who are thy? and who are you? who is he? it is them Vs us now Yigermal. I don’t mind if you have this color in the past I know people in fact I have friends who a strong stand against EPRDF from the beginning I respect them, but you no, you were a strong supporter in the past you never voice any thing against EPRDF not at all , all of a sudden you woke up from your sleep now , dear Horizon there is a thing called integrity.
        FYI I don’t support the explosion who so ever did it is coward
        peace and reconciliation to the common people of the region

      • Abraham H.

        Selam Horizon, I think you are making a lot out of my personal suspicion regarding the bomb attack in Addis. Remember I’m just a private person of no significance at all to the ongoing political situation in your country. I expressed my view based on my gut feeling and tid bits of observations here and there. To me, the prevailing antagonistic relations between team Lema/Abiy/Federal gov and the Tigray gov/tplf is very worrying. PM Abiy, instead of resolving whatever differences he has with tplf through the mechanisms of the eprdf, he seems determined to take his fight through popular agitation and through the media. He seems to be working very hard to gain political leverage from the Ethiopian people through rhetoric, combined with toxic campaign against the tplf, instead of the existing institutions of the federation and the existing constitution.
        Here is the video clip I’m talking about which shows the seconds before and after the bomb blast:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HX6eNxK6Kn8
        What makes me suspicious?
        -The bomb blast happens not during the beginning or during the course of the speech but after PM Abiy finished his speech and was seated behind the podium well surrounded by his body guards and other people
        -The bodyguards are clearly agitated in the seconds before the blast
        -The body language of some of the officials sitting with the PM tells me they are anticipating something; in particular look at the body language of Demeqe Mekonen, the deputy PM, sitting by the side of Abiy. He is clearly tense, his shoulders raised, arms stretched, visibly on the hook.
        -When the blast happens, the reactions of Abiy, Demqe and others are not that of surprise. On the contrary, the woman in blue sitting next to Abiy is clearly shocked by the blast with visible grimace on her face. The darker guy behind her is also clearly moved by the blast, ducking his head as it happens.

      • Blink

        Dear Horizon
        I urge you to scan such people’ motive . And please remind these people change that we see in Ethiopia was not cheap and it was not given as clemency because TPLF love to other Ethiopians. The price tag for the change was expensive to many young youths and also to their families. Some people in this forum are taking it as if this change come from hate to Tigrians or on the opposite side as of TPLF gave up their power . So expect a fake video and with that a motive to paint the new hope in our region as bad.

    • Peace!

      Hi Abraham,

      Does that change the fact that the people have already spoken? The change has started four years ago due to monopolies of major sectors by TPLF elites. The deadly responses to the peaceful protests,too, has its own share for the current emotion outbursts. Who needs a false flag for that?

      Peace!

      • Abraham H.

        Dear Peace, “Does that change the fact that the people have already spoken?”. Of course it does. I’m only speculating, but if it is by any means proven that the bomb blast was a deliberate act by the Abiy gov to discredit the tplf/Tigray, then it would completely unravel the political situation in Ethiopia, in my opinion. Whatever wrong that might have been committed on the Ethiopian people, the entire eprdf gov system and the Killil governments are responsible, including the team Lema/Abiy, etc. They were and continue to be part of the system, so it is just futile to try and heap the burden on the tplf/Tigrayans.
        Plus, I want to remind you, never ever underestimate Harbegna Weyanay:-)

        • Peace!

          Hi Abrhilay,

          That was if it turns out to be true. But I see no motive for the Good Dr to do such dirty thing when TPLF has publicly made itself unpopular. The current situation has its own roots and big regional and geopolitical players. The sooner the transition ends the better for both countries and people.

          As for harbenga Weyanay- እታ ቖርበት– ካብ ምጥባሓ ድዩ ወይስ ካብ ሙውጻኣ እያ ኮይናታ. No other way but to accept and live a normal life.

          Peace!

  • FishMilk

    Hi All. Should the door open for Ethiopians to apply for Eritrean visas, it will be strange that it will be easier for them to enter Eritrea than it will be for Eritreans living in the diaspora that have not paid their 2% tax obligation.

    • halafi mengedi

      Girmay,

      That would be very bad for regime supports because majority of them don’t pay 2% tax.

      Hm

      • FishMilk

        Hi halaf mengedi. Unfortunately, in addition to,generating much needed hard currency, Eritrea’s tax scheme for its expatriates, also has served an inteligence/security modality to identify those ‘true’ to the regime. In addition, any Eritrean that has set foot in Ethiopia since the end of the Ethiopia-Eritrea war, has a high chance of being black listed.

        • halafi mengedi

          FM, gh,

          What we need to do is enforce the 18mo national service requirement and make sure it applys to all citizens , inside and outside Eritrea. That way, we ensure everybody contributed to equal level, more or less. Otherwise, the burden will be on some while others avoid.

          Hm

    • Berhe Y

      Hi FM,

      This is the perfect example how your leaders have been treating their own people.

      I know in thousands years the other Eritrea ethnic group would rule us like this.

      Now you know why…,

      And stop comparing to the US, for god sake. Why doing you compare with the rest 193 countries in the world first.

      And the US is not blanket tax payment, it’s usually to catch those who avoid paying taxes, and never double tax their citizens, but they expect them to file. A US who works in Canada does not pay Canada and the US at the same time, so stop the comparison.

      Berhe

      • FishMilk

        Hi Berhe Y. Stop comparing Eritrea’s overseas taxation scheme against the U.S.? It is the U.S. that hipocritically to the lead in pursuing Eritrea on the matter; some other countries would later fall into chase. The U.S tax scheme is applicable to ALL expatriate U.S. citizens wherein after a certain non exempt tax threshhold, 28% (and upwards) tax, against overall worldwide derived income is applied. What you are referring to in Canada is U.S. exemption against double taxation. Which means that if Canada applies taxation on a U.S. expatriates salary, then that amount/percentage is not also subject to U.S. Federal tax liability. U.S. citizens are also painfully aware of FBAR reporting which requires U.S. citizens to declare overseas bank accounts with more than US$ 10,000 at any time of the year, as interest on these accounts is also taxable. Yes, at least most Americans know that Federal taxes should not be involuntarily applied, but that is indeed the case.

        • Berhe Y

          Hi FM,

          I don’t know and I don’t really care much how the US system works. But I can tell you, the US citizens pay a lot less tax compared any other G7 countries in the the west.

          What ever the US does, at least it’s accounted where the money goes .

          Where does the 2%tax Eritrea collects go? Have you seen the audited books of the government?

          Who is the person that have 695 million dollars hidden in the Swiss account? Where is the money the ERITREAN government collected from the sake of the gold in swiss?

          That’s what you need to clean up first. The 2% is a leverage to spy on Eritreans and nothing else, all is spend paying the spies like you in the west, it’s a control mechanism.

          It never serve the country or the people.

          Berhe

          • FishMilk

            Hi Berhe Y. When mentioning taxation rates in other G7 in the West, you are confusing domestic tax with expatriate tax issues.

          • Nitricc

            Hey FM; forgive Berhe; he leaves in Canada, he has no idea what taxation is? He is just telling you what he has heard people talk about taxes and taxation. Everyone pays tax to the US government and do you think we have a say what the government does with our taxes what we paid for? We just pay because it is our duty to do so. He is amazing person. talking about being slow!!

  • Saleh Johar

    Hope,

    Are you a bigot?
    Just read what your uncircumcised fingers typed:

    1. “Do you know the Sudanese Fanatic Muslim at one point, who has become a Famous New Born Christian Evangelist in the Sudan?”
    2. “Not sure what Koran teaches about this but that is what my Book teaches me.”

    And the pretention: “Forgive so as to be FORGIVEN…..Love one another….Love thy neighbor …”

    Do you know what that means or you are just parroting it? I despise PFDJ worshippers.

  • FishMilk

    Hi All. The -onus of responsibility- focus for honoring the border agreement will more visibly and progressively shift towardss Ethiopia’s Northern Military Command which is controlled by the TPLF. At least for the short term, PIA only needs to sit back, smile and welcome PM Abiy and Ethiopians; fully knowing that whatever is agreed between PM Abiy and himself, can only materialise if PM Abiy is able to force the hand of the TPLF. In either scenario, wether PM succeeds or fails, PIA comes out smelling like roses.

  • Hope

    Abi:
    Why not?
    Jerusalem is the Oldest newest Capital City of Israel and both Keren and Jerusalem have almost the same Landscape but keren has a big potential to be bigger city than Jerusalem..
    Keren was the first and the oldest Capital City of Eritrea.
    From Elaberid toTinquilahas…from Shifshifit all the way to Katsetay–thru Mariam DeArit.an dthis will make .a beautiful Mountainous City with the best weather/climate..
    .
    BTW,Hagaz and Keren style full of Mint Berad Shahi is on me.

  • saay7

    Ras Abi:

    What do you and I and YemaneG, Gemane G/Meskel, Osman Saleh, Elias Amare, Gheteb, Nitricc have in common?

    We don’t know the answer to your question. Send your letter to “Office of the President.” No address needed, no “personal & confidential” needed.

    And Kbrom told you: you are getting Massawa and Assab. How much? your birr is no good here! No, really, it’s no good. Be nice and share the port with UAE, US and YPFDJ. They are already rehearsing your national anthem: When you believe in one man, you believe in nothing and everything.

    saay

  • Fanti Ghana

    Hello Everyone,

    I am not sure what to make of this report. It contradict the reasons I thought were keeping TPLF quiet. If this report is indeed from TPLF’s congress (it is missing a stamp; very unusual), it seems to be sounding an alarm.

    http://www.aigaforum.com/news2018/tigrai-parliament-resolution-07062018.pdf

    • Selam Fanti Ghana,
      It must be important. What does it say in few sentences. Do you have the time? Thanks.

      • Fanti Ghana

        Selam Horizon,

        I was just trying to get to the source and it is looking more and more an individual’s opinion. Generally, the core message is that the constitution is being ignored, proper constitutional channels are being skipped, individual/s are making national decisions beyond their mandate.

        It very much contradicts my observation and what Dr. Debretsion has been saying thus far. It doesn’t look like an official TPLF statement, but it puzzled me why Aiga Forum posted it as if it is one without including the author’s name.

        It looks fake.

    • Hayat Adem

      Hi Fanti,
      You were away or quiet like the Tplf, it felt forever. Pls stay around.
      I don’t know if it makes any difference with your point of concern but this link took me to the Tigray parliament’s resolutions not to Tplf congress’.

      • Fanti Ghana

        Selam Hayata,

        Sorry, I saw ‘guba’e’ and I interpreted it as congress, but that is the one. It looks like a facebook entry by someone, but its presentation at Aiga is somewhat misleading.

        • saay7

          Selam Fanti:

          I know things are tough, but is there a shortage of semi-colons and full stops in Tigray? That resolution was made up of sentences longer than the one Charles Manson got.

          saay

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Saay,

            I need to be appreciated right now more than ever. I posting it here as soon as I read it because it made me feel stupid given what I said yesterday, but I felt obligated to show “professional decency.”

            Then I went back looking for proof of its origin and I ended up at someone’s facebook page. I am feeling miserable.

          • saay7

            Fanti:

            Awate hereby declares tomorrow Fanti Day. Ere Ghana. Things are better with a bottle of Fanti.

            Also. At what point will TPLF stop saying that it brought about change in Ethiopia at considerable sacrifice? Is there, like, an expiration date?

            Happy Fanti Day!

            saay

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selam Saay,

            Hahaha, you picked one of the few phrases I would like us to stop using. PR has always been TPLF’s Achilles’ heel. There is collective assumption that people wouldn’t oppose us had they knew what we did, why we did it, and how much it cost us.

            It is usually meant as “show us some respect” but it makes revolutionaries sound mercenaries and comes out as “reward us for it.”

            PS:
            Earlier I posted a link with hesitation but I was going to argue that it is “Saturday” in the east if caught. However, now, I must ask: Can I post the picture I promised you?

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Fanti Ghana,

            Berhe Y was recommending one of your recent posts about …a double edge sword… I couldn’t find it.
            You have been missed, I thought you were back there trying to understand what is going on.

            I have issue with your response to saay. History is History.
            You may be shy to talk about self congratulatory type of statements. I have no problem with congratulating TPLF for their untold sacrifices to this point. We all know where we were and where we are now.
            Even now, we are adjusting to accommodate everyone using the same systems and tools left for us. It is everybody’s hope they navigate through to the calmer waters.

            Mr. K. H

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selam Mr. Ambassador Kim Hanna,

            First thing is first. You have always been incredibly level headed, fair minded, and an honest ambassador (except when dealing with Nitricc, hahaha), I really want to say thank you for being a good example for the rest of us.

            Communication wise, the only time TPLF did it right was a few months before the TPLF-OLF war almost 40 years ago. Once it deemed the war was eminent, we were told to distribute flyers to all Eritreans especially to OLF member households in the Sudan that said “this is not a war between Tigrayans and Eritreans but between two political organizations…” including a brief list of what TPLF thought was the reasons for the war. I have never seen anything like it before or since. TPLF always had communication issue include this moment.

            So, true, history is history, but what Saay said and I agreed to is the endless repetition of something that should be obvious or at least it should have been made obvious by the responsible party in the proper time and place. The way some do it however comes out as self-pity than an attempt to inform and it is making some of us cringe.

          • saay7

            St Fanti:

            That looks like an excuse to me. Cloud technology is everywhere and costs nothing or next to it. You have to upload “the pic” and share the link. ህዝቢ* ይሓትት ኣሎ!

            Saay

            * “ህዝቢ” in its self-serving meskerem/Semere T/PFDJite definition : me and my friends.

          • Fanti Ghana
          • saay7

            Selam Fanti:

            Google photos are not cooperating with you. It is your Raya-Azebo duty to declare war on Google photos now:)

            Can’t wait to see the photo!

            Saay

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selam and sorry Saay,

            Try it again. I think I stopped one step short of sharing earlier. I have edited the link above.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            Isn’t it the same talk with us Eritreans too, talking about the sacrifices we pay, more often than them? Why it becomes new to you now?

          • saay7

            Emma:

            Just because we do it doesn’t mean it’s right. The purposes for their use by TPLF and PFDJ are exactly the same:

            * as conversation enders: disagreement is then interpreted as disrespect for the sacrifice
            * as a way to induce guilt. Like the way immigrant parents tell their children: I made so many sacrifices for you: now do as I tell you.
            * as a way to create a permanent ruling class and the ruled.

            In Ethiopia, it there is one more reason its bad: they are reminding people of a long civil war by constant reference to who killed and got killed. Worse, they are saying this “people’s revolution” is just lip service we pay: it was actually our revolution.

            Compare this with the way Abiy Ahmed politely corrected the Afar elder when he said “the EPRDF defeated Derg thanks to his cohesion ንፋስ እንዳይገባችሁ” Actually, he said, the Derg defeated itself when it started killing and mass execution of itself. It was the people who removed it and all we in EPRDF did was to point out “here is where it’s wobbly, here is where it needs a push and mobilized them.”

            See the difference?

            saay

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            If the prime minister had said : “……Moreover, Derg defeated itself when it started killing and mass execution of people . It was the people who removed it and all we in EPRDF did was to point out “here is where it’s wobbly, here is where it needs a push and mobilized the people.” This is conceptually and programmatically wrong (a) derg is not defeated itself. He was defeated by joint forces of EPLF (waging for 30 years) and TPLF (waging for 16 years), though the winding down of the war, some other Ethiopian forces joined it. In politics, his words are “the art of exploiting the mind of apolitical mass.” Wars are defeated by “organizations and their leadership.” If that was the case there is no a hated government like PFDJ and the Eritrean people who hated it could not defeat it without a formidable organization and competent leadership. So It was false statement but attractive to rally the people around you.

            Second, you don’t invoke “patriotism and sacrifice” simply out of the blue. Look (a) those who despise our struggle and our icons in the struggle (b) look how the cause of our struggle undermined as Arab motivated struggle (YG in mind). You bet, patriotism and sacrifices are proper to invoke them and remind our people to fight them. The same can be said for TPLF and Tigrain people. Do you ever think that the Oromo and Amara people will honor the heroes and heroines of Tigray who are fallen to defeat the brutal Derg? Just watch the you-tubes of their demonstrations in Bahir Dar and southern states lead by their elites. That will give to make a second thought to the importance of invoking of patriotism and sacrifice. Indeed very important when your sacrifice is undermined.

          • saay7

            Emma:

            How is it “conceptually and programmatically wrong” to say that a people’s revolution belongs to the people?

            As for honoring martyrs, the dinner honoring PM Abiye in Eritrea was opened with a moment of silence for Eritrean AND Ethiopian martyrs. And that was the perfect occasion for it. What I was pointing out is when a political party like TPLF uses it as a preamble in every policy statement and pronouncement to claim total ownership of the revolution and its sacrifices.

            saay

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            Conceptually & programmatically implies to the revolutionary leaders, who “conceive the revolt” and who lead with clear “programatic cause.” The reason political practitioners say “people’s revolution belongs to the people” only when the “conceived idea” and the “program” drafted by the revolutionary leaders is endorsed by the majority of the people. As simple as that. Wars are won by organizations and their leaders. No but and if to that basic conceptual comprehension. So conceptually, because they conceive the idea of revolution, and programmatically because they lead them with clear political program.

          • saay7

            Emma:

            Ok, you win Emma:)

            saay

    • Abraham H.

      Dear Fanti Ghana, I’m afraid but the concerted media campaign by the Abiy/Federal gov and the pfdj against the tplf is leading me to suspect that dia and PM Abiy have signed a secret pact to form a common front against the tplf. I’ve mentioned this a few days ago, and if the situation is not addressed within the eprdf very soon, it will definitely lead to serious conflict.

      • Fanti Ghana

        Selamat Abraham H,

        I know the whole thing is curious and there is no one who can say what is what with authority on this, but I just don’t see for what purpose PMA would conspire with PIA.

        • Abraham H.

          Dear Fanti, I think the answer is pretty simple: the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Abraham H,

            That kind of mentality in Ethiopian context is PIA’s domain. I hope he doesn’t miscalculate again. The last time I checked, Tigray is Ethiopian. Other Ethiopians conspiring with Eritrea against Tigray is treason of the highest order.
            Fishmilk, was moaning a while ago about Ethiopians entering Eritrea might become easier than Eritreans visiting home, we are entering the silly season again.

            Mr. K.H

        • Berhe Y

          Hi Fanti,

          I feel like the PMAA is going too fast and it does seem that he can do what he wants. For example, when he lifted the ban on the organization or media outlet who were deemed illegal, by the courts I assume, what power he is using to reverse the court decision. Is it the PM power and the constitution that gives him to do so?

          Shouldn’t you think a court decision should be reversed by the courts through some sort of due process instead of the whim of the leader or the majority parliament he controls?

          Berhe

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Berhe Y,

            No doubt every thing is going too fast, but he is playing politics so well I have to admire him. At the extreme end of what can be said regarding what he he is doing is that he is hanging EPRDF with its own rope.

            mistake 1: some withing EPRDF are blaming him for doing what they themselves promised the public they will do. They must either accept or admit they lied.

            mistake 2: they admitted corruption has gone rampant including within top leadership for a long time. Then what guarantee is there at least some of these sentences were not passed by corrupt officials? What guarantee is there the accused will get a fair sentence now if taken to court?

            Mistake 3: we are at the edge of collapse as a nation but please slow down?

            I don’t want to sound callous about the implication to Eritrean opposition because I strongly believe everything will work out for the better at the end, but I support everything he has done so far for several reasons but zero fact based reason not to.

          • Saleh Johar

            Fanti,
            I wish you would take the callous Hope for a weekend to teach him some wisdom. Will you be willing to accept a job offer to reform our stone heads? Thank you for accepting and for willing to work for free. Dealing with stone heads and for free? That will surely secure a place for you in heaven.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Memhir,

            Hawey, Hawey. AHbiTuka do?

            I wholeheartedly accept the blessing. While we are at it:
            I need only two hours with Nitricc, 3 days with Hope, and 6 months with blink (he needs to be reconstructed from ground up).

            I will be back in few hours!

          • Saleh Johar

            Hi Fanti,
            As noble as you are, I was sure you would accept. I already telegrammed your acceptance to Heaven, reservation of a beachfront space is underway.

            However, I have to suggest a change in the time allocation. I only agree that Nitricc needs the shortest time. But please change Blink’s allocation to two days, and increase Hope’s time allocation to one-year and make it extensive training–even that is just a gamble.

          • Blink

            Dear SG and Fanti
            I didn’t know you guys were funny too . This is just hilarious and amusingly funny that you find the time to do this . SG you know for a fact I don’t like your love for Habesha dancers and I don’t understand your way of lecturing and on top of this fact I will never ever lectured in Ethiopia by one of your Habesha, I don’t like you people .
            Fanti 6 month , what are you talking about ? I am not like SG or any Habesha bla bla . I don’t belong to your brothers Tigriana .

            SG just tell me what’s that you wanted to change in me because I can actually comment in this forum without showing my true understanding. One thing that I will not trade is I hate your Habesha thing. I wanted Eritreans to have good relationship with non Habesha and they are Oromo , Yemenis and Saudis .

          • Saleh Johar

            Blink,
            In fact I like you as a person, I just don’t like your racist take and misrepresentation. For example, how do you know of my “love for Habesha dancers”? It is your creation. But then, that is also based on your racism. I will be okay with you if you stop your racist remarks. If you do not believe me, look it up in any dictionary and you will know you have that.

            I will give you an explanation from Mr. google:

            rac·ism
            /ˈrāˌsizəm/
            noun
            prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior.

          • Blink

            Dear SG
            I never thought in my whole life that I am racist but since you insist I am one of these racist people, I will try to see from your side and I will cut that from now onwards . What else do you wanted me to remove because I really don’t want to go to Fanti in order to be lectured how you people are one people (Habesha) damn I am saying the word again.

          • Saleh Johar

            Hi Blink,
            It’s okay to choose to be anything you want and no one should insult you for your choice. However, you have to respect the identity of others. And it’s ancient to insult people based on their identities. That’s my only point. I hope you will see it from the perspective of those in the receiving end if your unnecessary assault.

          • Desbele

            Selam Saleh,

            What a blessing to know that there is common understanding on who the stone heads are in Awate. FG identifies them immediately and prescribes appropriate dosage.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Fanti,

            Thank you for letting me what you think. May be my question wasn’t clear, I was asking what powers the PM is using to make all the changes, including the courts decision.

            I get what you said, if the previous decision was based on corrupt officials, but even if that’s the case, in my opinion, investigation should have been conducted and if that was the case, it can be reversed through something that make sense and not the whim of the leader.

            What if he passes another decision that the parliament doesn’t agree or against the public interests, how is it possible to keep the PM accountable and in check?

            For example the bomb in the rally, the arrest and dismissal of some, appears to be to quick of an action that I don’t know unless they caught them in action.

            And there is not much public knowledge what’s is going on, no press release, not having their lawyers to defend them etc.

            It’s a slippery slope once start going that path, no matter how well intention his actions are and how well he has done.

            Berhe

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Berhe Y,

            These and similar questions are obviously very important Berhe Hawey. All the cautionary statements and warnings some Awatistas are making are also very important and they should be taken seriously.

            However, it is a little too early to form strong opinion one way or the other, and I am guessing most of what I am saying, but let’s expect the positive first and hope for the best.

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Fanti Ghana,

      The communique of TPLF is indicating that there is a breach of Federal laws by the government of Abiy. If this accusation is true, it is a serious accusation and is detrimental to their unity and stability.

      I think about two weeks ago I read in this forum, that the governor of Tigray Dr Debretsion had sent a committee to study on the attack of Tigrians in the southern state. The communique seem to include their grievances to the Federal Government and suggest to compensate the victims of the attack.

      • Fanti Ghana

        Selamat Kibur Amanuel Hidrat,

        I know for a fact some people within TPLF have issues with the speed and content of what is taking place, but I am not sure that communique is official TPLF statement.

        Tigrayans have been demanding to know what is taking place throughout Ethiopia, and TPLF seems to be caught between trying not to look like a Tigrayan-only government in one hand and failing in their task of representing Tigrayans in the other. They say that there is ethnic based attack among many Ethiopians, not only Tigrayans, and a lasting solution can only be found by solving the root cause nationwide. Trying times, to say the least.

        The vilification of TPLF for one reason or another has never stopped since day one. The real question now is what can PMA do at this moment. If he condemns it in public, he risks looking like same old EPRDF and loses credibility on the promise to change, if he does nothing he is perceived as part of that vilification campaign for a sinister motif.

        To his credit, he recently told the public politely to reduce (stop) demonstration and to go back to building the nation. I personally, don’t think PM Abiy has any ill intent toward anyone. Unfortunately, he is unfairly being attacked based on intuition and fear and that bothers me.

        As recently as a few days ago, he said “TPLF is not Tigrayan people”, and you may have noticed what followed. It reminded me the moment PMMZ said “it is just a piece of cloth” referring to our flag and the wrath that followed. PM Meles was taken out of context then and PM Abiy is being taken out of context now.

        PM Abiy is fully aware that he is inviting reductionists, expansionists, Dergists, Maoists, Fascists, Decent Nationalists, and what have you into the same pot. The gamble is that eventually those who truly care about their country will find one another, form a force, and defeat everybody else. If I am wrong about this whole thing we are all in trouble, but I am enjoying this picture with high optimism for now.

        • saay7

          Fanti:

          Once upon a time (1989), on the eve of the collapse of the Derg, in a land far, far away (Dedebit), TPLF (actually Meles Zenawi) created the blueprint for OPDO and ANDM. Their membership was primarily from Ethiopian POWs of TPLF and EPLF, with special emphasis on excluding anyone with any higher education. The goal was for the TPLF to create Amharic-speaking and Oromiffa-speaking Trojan horses who would execute the TPLF edict. Every time they asserted themselves, the TPLF and its designated delegate to the fronts called for an evaluation and eventual dismissal of the members who were accused of being narrow-minded (if OPDO) or chauvinists (if ANDM.).Their portfolio was managed directly by PM Meles Zenawi whose management tools included public humiliation of the assertive ones. This cycle went on until the TPLF made its worst mistake (Addis Master Plan) which generated fierce opposition from OPDO cadres which emboldened the Querro movement. ANDM would join in, thanks to the political skills of Lema Megersa.

          Story told and narrated by: Junedin Sado
          Source: https://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/amharic/en/audiotrack/power-struggle-between-tplf-and-opdo-junedin-sado

          (So Fanti, I believe this narration and I have told a version of it since 2000:) Nobody is reading us; it’s just me and you: could you blink twice if you agree?)

          saay

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Saay,

            Scrap that entire post from your mind. This claim happens to be one of the things I know for sure not to be true.

            I read that super long article at oPride you linked a while back which basically says “no Oromo does wrong” and “everything TPLF does is evil.” It included similar statements as Junedin’s.

            It is a mistake to assume personalities like Abadula (a seasoned soldier), Adissu (jegna tegadalai), and many others like them were just being lead whichever way by a few Tigrayans for decades.

            Do you know there are some people who believe TPLF leadership is hand picked by EPLF to this day, never mind the seventies?

            Anyway, if it looked slow tomorrow or some other time, I will say something about the parts I know during the earlier relationships between TPLF, EPRP (ANDM), and OLF (OPDO) which will give you some ideas how it may have progressed.

    • Peace!

      Hey Fantish,

      Good seeing you back:) just a quick question: Do you think TPLF is ready to accept a majority rules democracy without conditions?

      Peace!

      • Fanti Ghana

        Selamat Peace!,

        Broadly speaking, TPLF will not oppose anything that is constitutional. What makes “majority” rule tricky is that it is not necessarily always fair or just. Take for instance the US. If the US adapts a law that says “whatever majority Americans voted for shall be done” and the majority are white Anglo-saxons, blacks and others will potentially always be marginalized.

        So, what the heck, here is official statement by TPLF: “we support whichever is most just and fair and satisfies the majority.”

        • Peace!

          Hi Fantish,

          Thank you sir. I totally agree, but what is the option then, Lebanon style government/democracy?

          Peace!

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Peace!

            I think for countries like ours, a mix like what EPRDF and several opposition parties were haggling over about a year ago is the way to go. They agreed on 85/15 last time but I am not sure if that is enough.

            I have a feeling the opposition accepted it realizing that they will not get a better deal at this time. 60% majority vote and 40% first past the post with a few clauses added to account for some difficulties would be reasonable in my opinion.

          • Peace!

            Hi Fantish,

            Agreed. It is just እዚ ተሰዊእናሉ ደሚናሉ እንዲና attitude better use it for making Tigray Great, not scrambling for power. Eritrea is a victim of similar attitude-ንመምሃሪ ዝኸውን.

            Thank you, ደሀይካ ኣይትሓባኣና

            Peace!

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam Fanti,

          You have made a good point, but your example is only theoretical.

          In the developed countries, in the context of a united country, people do not vote along ‘race’ or ethnic lines, but mainly along party political lines. For example, in the USA, people from different ethnicities voted for ObaMao’s politics.

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Simon Kaleab,

            I stand corrected! That statement shows I am stuck in my “Black Studies 101” from the 80s based on USA of the 60s. Unfair statement on my part.

            Thanks.

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam Fanti,

            Although your argument is theoretical, it is unbeatable.

            The joint Amhara-Oromo elite who ruled the Ethiopia for hundreds of years are now demanding more of the same under the guise of 3rd world democracy aka dictatorship by numbers.

  • Selam Abi,

    Is asmara street still there in addis? Just imagine if it is changed to isaias afeworki street, like jomo kenyatta, tito street. The love affair is sometimes frightening. Ethiopian flag flying in a square in an eritrean city, amharic songs heard on loudspeakers, just unbelievable; what next?
    Guess, who would be among the first visitors flying to asmara? Of course, Ras Abi with his eritrean wife.

    • Abi

      Hi Horizon
      እዩት ሲጠረጥር ፣ እዩት ሲያውቅ።

  • saay7

    Abi:

    Forgive the typo but….Done!

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Df7-BtvU0AA1cxI?format=jpg&name=medium

    ሌላስ…ምን ልታዘዝ?

    Saay

    • Abi

      Hi Saay
      ሳተናው ሳይ !
      Life size statue on Godana Abiy. Can you get it ready before Sunday?

      • saay7

        Abi:

        Sure, buddy! Everything must go!

        We will replace the HSI statue pointing to the Red Sea. ኤርትራ አትሸጥም አትለወጥም….ኪራይ is a different story. You can pay in dinar exchangeable birrs

        https://goo.gl/images/JLZpWD

        saay

  • Nitricc

    Ras Abi: I never thought this will happen this fast, but Shaebia made a mistake, they displayed the wrong flag. They should have the original flag so, to expedite TPLF’s mental break down. I can only imagine the pain Hayat and TPLF thugs are going through.
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DheY3d-XkAAb5E9?format=jpg&name=medium

    • Abi

      General
      Shabiya always wrong:)
      TPLF and Agazian hidden rodents who keep telling us Ethiopia will disintegrate without TPLF on the throne are dying of frustration.
      The suicide prevention hotline is ringing nonstop.
      Long live peace loving people.

      • Nitricc

        Ras Abi; is this enough for you? looking at the pic, Asmara must be true is the best city. it looks western countries looking at the pic.
        https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Dhg7nyCWAAA9mA-?format=jpg&name=large

        • Abi

          General
          Never expected to see this kind of thing this soon. Unbelievable!
          Is there any curfew imposed right now? Where are the people?
          Asmara looks like just the way we left it 27 years ago except it is much quieter now.
          We will fly it for you in no time.