Inform, Inspire, Embolden. Reconcile!

Forto 2013: A Matter of Perspective

There has recently been a spate of articles about the recent rare phenomena that occurred at Forto Baldisera, the building that houses the Ministry of Information of the current ruling class, the PFDJ.

The stories are varied and many and variously categorize the incident as an “attempted coup d’etat”, “A putsch”, “a supplication to the ruling junta” for some kind of redress and a “conspiracy by the powers that be.”  You take your pick.

There were those who praised it and those who upbraided it. I have not read it but among those who cheer-led it, according to Yosief G. Hewit,  was Saleh Younis who was awed by the  ‘clarity and economy’ of its message.  I have no reason to doubt Yosief but I can’t seem to grasp the fact that Younis will write such a thing. I don’t know him that well but he seemed a person of a fairly average intelligence to me although I could be mistaken, and I would stand corrected.

If Younis said that, then this statement will go down as one of the most quotable quotes of this century worthy of a Nobel Prize in literature. It will stand enshrined in any hall of fame along with some memorable quotes say as that of George Bush who in unguarded moment of candor was heard telling the Deputy Head of FEMA, Michael Brown, “Hang in there Brownie. You are doing a heck of a  job” or, even better, side by side with that of former CIA director  George Tenet who, responding to George Bush’s question on Sadam Hussein’s WMD: ‘George how confident are you?’ and, Tenet, in his enthusiasm to please his boss says: ‘Don’t worry, it’s a slam-dunk’. At least Mr. Younis can take heart in knowing that he walks and dreams in  the company of great men. But that is besides the point.

Most of the articles I read were in Awate, that website dedicated to what the bandit Mengistu H Mariam referentially once called Idris Awate, well a bandit. I guess it takes one to know one. But to my chagrin the only one worth reading I found was the one in Asmarino by that venerable Yosief Gebrehiwet.

Yosief has written a postmortem article on what is now referred to as the Forto 2013 and, because of his article, Yosief has come under a lot of flak from Eritreans not used to the truth.

Ismail Omer Ali (writing under the ridiculous title of ‘Operation Forto: a prelude to a final showdown’ had even the temerity to call Yosief’s article the most outlandish and to accuse him of always trying to confuse, sow doubts and a diversion from the task at hand. Yosief, a non conformist in the land of conformism, is unwittingly compared by Mr. Ismail to what he calls some ‘unscrupulous lawyers who defend known murderers’. I don’t know which murderers Yosief defended but just for the record Mr. Ismail doesn’t even seem to understand that in a democratic society murderers are entitled to their day in court. ‘Silence’ Mr. Ismail furthers preaches to us ‘is the most eloquent response to ignorance’. But his problem is he refuses to be eloquent.

What tasks at hand he has for us Mr. Ismail doesn’t say.  But he tells us the Forto 2013 was a close call for the regime. I don’t know about that but was it really? He continues in his writing  “Our people have been itching for something or someone to relieve them of their misery that they would have jumped at the chance.” Alas they didn’t, Mr. Ismail. Maybe they are waiting for you. The tragedy with Yosief is that he has this penchant to always call a spade a spade. And that shatters the shell into which the likes of Mr. Ismail have crawled into.  As the old adage has it, ‘You shall know the truth and the truth will always hurt’.

A group of young Eritreans (probably two or three) who call themselves ‘Eritreans for Democracy, Justice and Equality’ (sound familiar? We must have had hundreds of these epithets in the last twenty years or so)  have also written an article (Perspective on Forto 2013) and  praised the uprising as they believe it was. But these are people who believe that what Eritrea needs is more associations and institutions who can inspire Awate readers to action, else being young and full of vigor, why are they writing in Awate instead of demonstrating on the streets of Asmara or Keren or Massawa or even in the border areas for that matter. Believe me, we have no lack of inspiration of Awate readers only of committed revolutionaries.

Another one is by Mr. Mohammed Ahmed. The title, —‘Forte 2013 : The Covert Angle—. To make his point, Mr. Ahmed goes back to memory lane, to a so called skirmish named Togoruba. Here, he tries to inspire us by reliving this heroic past as being  ‘a history of an un-wavering struggle by and of a people who would stop at nothing to be independent and most of all-to be free no matter what the cost’. He doesn’t exactly tell us what has been the cost. But the outcome is supposed to say it all.

We Eritreans, of course, love hyperbole and we love to live in a world of illusions. We are a unique people. Unlike other people in the world, we create our own realty.

We live in a world of illusions because that is the only thing we ever had. And reality is too harsh to face.

We talk about abstract concepts such as independence and freedom and equality and justice. For me, it has always been about inclusiveness, about movement, about civic and human rights, but above all, about citizenship.

Our descent into the world of dreams all started when we were made to believe that we had to fight for our independence because we were being repressed by the Ethiopian  regime. Tell that to a people who have spent well nigh over sixty years under brutal European colonialism and who have never known what freedom is and you have a recipe for slaughter.

Thus a disagreement about the referendum articles of association and a financial spat over port levy, morphed into this belief and into an exercise in wish fulfillment in no time at all. Later on, we were told that the union with Ethiopia was annulled by the Emperor unilaterally. No such thing happened but we love fairy tales or tsewtstwais in our own parlance. The Union was formally dissolved by the Eritrean Parliament. Was there political coercion, was there arm  twisting, was there political pressure to vote for unity? Of course there was. But that was to be expected.  But there was no story of an Eritrean Parliamentarian who in the tradition of the American revolutionary Patrick Henry stood up and said. “Give me Eritrean independence or give me death.” I was not there but I can assure you, my fellow Eritreans, no Eritrean died on that fateful day.

No, we like to write our own stories and, after endless and repeated telling and retelling, we are satisfied that this is our story.

When I was young, my uncle, who had actually served in the Italian colonial army in Libya—to liberate Libya not Eritrea, for those too young to remember— told me that the Italians never advanced Eritreans in rank. The reason, he said, was we Eritreans respect authority too much hence our role as cannon fodder was taken for granted.

I once asked a friend of mine a ‘tegadalai’ why he left the ELF and joined the EPLF. He  said he loved the ELF and always will have great admiration for the movement. But he added ‘the leadership was rotten.’  I persisted what made the leadership rotten? He ticked off a number of points such as they were sectarian, ethnic, islamo–centric, and, as a Christian, he had to make choices. But then I asked him,  how was it possible for them to organize such, —as in his own words– an admirable entity, when they were all that bad.  He did not want to discuss it further and I would never know. But there is always the fallback position of saying Isaias made us say that or even better the culture of silence.

I also asked him why so many Eritreans perished simply because they had a different strategy on how the struggle should commence and why no one to this day specially in the Diaspora raised a possibility of an inquiry into such a massacre as that of the so called Menqa. Again, he preferred silence and told me these are not issues for discussion.. This is probably what my uncle and Yosief called the lack of guts to question authority or to question the very idea of an armed liberation itself.

Eritreans, as Zekere Lubona has many times written at Awate, did not, as is often told, march singing, fighting  and falling and telling their comrades to continue the struggle inspite of their demise. They did not march with enthusiasm willing to pay any price for freedom as Mr. Ahmed would have us believe.  Unlike the city elite (who  most  falsely claim they were in the thick and thin of it) it was the  poor gebars who were forcefully recruited from their villages (the culture of giffa) poorly trained, poorly equipped and sent to the front lines as cannon fodder. They were not martyred, or sacrificed. They were killed and died an ordinary death. We never raised these issues because that would be smearing the very movement itself.  And even if we did, ‘The nature of smear‘ as the author and poet James Lasdun writes ‘is that it survives formal cleansing.’

How many died? We don’t even have a number. We didn’t question because we didn’t have the guts to question. Everyone had to conform and march lockstep with the ruling elites. To even entertain the idea was anathema to the brain. We were the first ones who deployed child soldiers. We called them some kind of flowers. We never said, but this is wrong, these are children who belong with their parents, how can we do that?

Yes we like heroes and we like to invent stories with happy endings. Isaias who was once venerated as a demigod and the lion of Nacfa, has now been referred to by Mr. Mohammed Ahmed as a cowardly dictator. I don’t have a definition or a clue of what a cowardly dictator is or what a not so cowardly dictator is. But we Eritreans as (again pardon the repetition) Yosief has so eloquently put it will be waiting till the next century cheering and hoping the old men and women left behind will one day rise up to depose this ‘cowardly dictator’, and  to give us our own Tahrir Square. In the mean time, we will continue to tell our history as invented by us. Its nobility, its absurdity and cruelty, in Awate because that is what we are good at doing.

But there is a ray of hope for us. The regime will have, as was manifested twice in the last two decades, its malcontents in its ranks. And one day some of these malcontents may transition themselves from supplicants to power hungry competitors. And as is the ardent hope of another Awate writer Mr. Semere Teclemariam, we may be able then to reconcile with our new rulers and live happily ever after. Come home everyone, all is forgiven!! As one Awate writer has put it just lets have faith in our longevity, for change is inevitable. That was a brilliant discovery that I  learned in the last few days in Awate. Change as growing old, meaning, Mr. Isaias may one day also grow old and die of old age too.

Even more, we can even be forgiven for dreaming that impossible dream that Mr. Semere hopes for. With a new leadership reconciled to our partial demands, we may even be able to shake off our mantle of being subjects in our own country and may attain that elusive concept of citizenship. A citizen, a person who fully and unconditionally participates in the political, civic and social life of his country. Lets hope because hope is eternal.

fulluy@aol.com

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  • WEDIERE

    I read the article with great amusement and disgust as the current writer seemed to be reasonable writer before this piece. IMO, he seems to be suffering from some personal problem that can’t be cured with a simple dose of common meds. Eritrean diaspora communities is sprouting with a handful disgruntled English essay smithies with an underlying message ghedli was a mistake, the current state in Eritrea is deplorable, and Ethiopia by implication was a better choice . Voices of of mistaken inclinations and followers include YG, this writer, GY in Asmarino etc. They are statist thinkers and their wishful dreams of union is just a dream. One can flip their warped logic and their dream union wish could have even resulted in worse undesirable nightmare outcomes than the current unbearable situation in Eritrea. Nothing is guaranteed in life as you may know. You may ask what could it be worse than what we currently have? Genocide for starters by the colonizers, second class status and unjust discrimination and no way to rectify it. At least now you could throw the rascal out and start from scratch. The way out of the conundrum is to not look at the rear mirror and over analyze the past (still one can learn from past history without being paranoid about the past) but look forward on how you could build a just society in future Eritrea once the unelected Isaias regime beats the dust. Throwing the baby with the bath water is neither advisable nor a smart strategy, but also a myopic way of looking at our problems. FW should know better and be ashamed of himself.

  • Alash Abelnayom

    Papillon:

    How much do you miss aite Meles? A lot or a little?

    • Papillon

      As much as the stars in the sky and the sands in the sea.

      • yegermal

        I don’t think about Meles much but how much I wish the zengar od Eritrea had preceded him to meet his creator….

      • rodab

        lol. Xbuq geberkyo. Meles kbl eko atkikuna.
        Bzebene Wube zitsememe Wube endabele mote dyu zbehal…

      • Kokhob Selam

        dear papillon and others,

        I think we all miss that wonderful man. enjoy Jebena Poems with link and you will see why we miss him.

      • Kokhob Selam

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7N8kgoy0Fo

        few people know what their aim is in living in this world and their work remain in this world after their death. Meles is among those few.

    • Zegeremo

      Fessahaye’s article has been a totall trush, and put someone in very awkward position; they cheered shamlessly when he attacked Awate writers including their favorite saal. As you know lebi Tigray is twiway..,,,they are brilliant at pretending.

      Well, if you are more loyal to Tigray than to Eritrea, then you should not be talking about Eritrean problems. Rule#1.

      • Zegeremo

        Correction: trash, not trush.

  • http://awate said

    Fessehaye Prospect of Dismissal

    You expressed surprise bordering on a kind of dismissal, arrogance and, disapproval of the prolific writings and brilliant Essay prospect of Eritreans for Democracy, Justice and Equality (EDJE), Mohamed and Ismail among others on matters of general national and public political interest. Reviewing some of the many articles covering a wide gamut of subjects of Eritrean internal interest appearing on awate site, as contributed by generally and intelligent savvy local analysts with unadulterated fresh views direct from the pulse of their localities, is indeed a very enriching, yet, quite unique article when measured against other available article .

    You seemed to express concern that such conduct is the twisting prospect of priorities and not truthful of Eritrean today and past issue that potentially would cause alienation as people generally conform and operate within the limitations of the Status Quo that by extension one can more broadly refer to as the inherent the narrow minded prospect of national and World Order.
    I wished, very much unlike in the sentiment of love once Cupid sends you arrows flying, that internal passions and craving for freedom, justice and the upholding of the dignity of man can be restrained by a faulty and a twisted rationale . Once a truly rational and a caring human detects the anomalies of existence in matters directly relating to the true wellbeing of fellow humans, foremost immediately impacting the present and future of one’s community and country men, a true enlightened patriot could never put a lid on the expressions and manifestations of one’s passions and caring for fellow citizens.
    For truly caring enlightened nationalist and honest patriots – as expressed in the broad inclusive humane and universal value sense – to brush aside their convictions and realizations of the enduring dysfunctional anomalies besetting the general good of the community and a society , is the twisting of priorities; playing the “Ostrich” in the illusion that advancement of immediate egotistical/personal gratifications supplant seeking and working for the true general good, present and future, of the community and a society at large.
    It ought by now to become obvious, even to observers with the meager intelligence of the “newt,” as judging by the havocs, mayhems and profound disruptions currently ravaging our country that that is the inevitable consequence of individuals and groups neglecting playing their priorities right, the “entwining of the immediate personal gratifications” with “true general good” of the community; the society, the nation at large.
    For some Eritrean Having tolerated for decades, as they still continue to tolerate, i.e. looking the other way, on the infested ills besetting the normal functioning of a virtuous society – virtue as expressed in the universal and inclusive sense – such as
    Loyalty to Asmara regime, favoritism, nepotism and all forms of injustices, cruel oppression and discriminations; Eritrean sacrificing their lives and are trying and hard the best they can given the very difficult situation and trying to make change happen and to catch up on lost opportunities. Had we, individuals and collectively, set our priorities right from the start: “the Entwining of individual personal interests with those of the true general good of a Society, a nation at large,” experiencing the current times of uncertainties would have long been mitigated, rather completely averted.
    “Business as Usual” is rather the motto of prospect and “Normalcy,” conforming to a Status Quo, the right order of priorities, “Me First” while injustices and outright death of one’s own country and obliteration of one’s identity are carried out by the day.

    • yegermal

      ata entay meat eyu weriduna, enda hasebe imber sebay nibeynu lelei ybil alo! weys enda kedhe eyu dilitif delo?

      • haile

        yegermal,

        lol…you’re supposed to be polite…

      • haile

        …and yegermal here is a trivia;

        The average length of Said’s sentences are 3 lines long! The longest one I found was a 5 line long whooper, try to beat that…read again :-)

  • haile

    Awatistas,

    You’ve seen the demo in Sweden. And read some comments about it. Right? Now to the right wrong part. Or what is R or W that is. t wouldn’t make much sense to answer before we’re all clear on “who” is the “diaspora” though.

    Think along the following lines, and help us out:

    Diaspora and host country;

    -what is diaspora’s relationship with the host country?
    -How does diaspora exert influence on the host country?

    Host country and diaspora;

    -What is host country’s relationship with the diaspora? [same as above?]
    -How does host country exert influence on the diaspora?

    Diaspora and homeland;

    -What is diaspora’s relationship with the homeland?
    -How does diaspora exert influence on the homeland?

    Homeland and diaspora;

    -What is homeland’s relationship with the diaspora?
    -How does homeland exert influence on the diaspora?

    Now, if you can see that each of the processes above are unique, and what’s more they all take place simultaneously, you can see the complex dynamics that drives the whole issue.

    state of things can sometimes be:

    Host’s position is at variance to diaspora’s position which is also at variance with the homeland position (e.g. Ethiopian opposition in US).

    Host’s position is aligned with diaspora’s position which is at variance with homeland position.

    Host’s position is at variance with diaspora’s position which is aligned with homeland position.

    Host’s position is aligned with diaspora position which is also aligned with homeland position.

    Through all this, host and homeland exist in clearly defined geographical, political and interest territory. While the diaspora exists in clearly defined geographic location, with in transnational political constituency and detached interests.

    Now that is something to think about…:-)

    • Yodita

      YAWN

      • haile

        Dear Yodita,

        I know this one is very boring in content. The message is directed at the higher echelon of the leaders and think tanks of the vocal opposition. That brings me to:

        Correction: [insert] “To…merahtn…liqawntn…cheletatn..teqawmo” as article lead below “Awatistas”

        there….:-)

    • hizbawi

      Selamat Haile.
      We oppose Issaias because he refused to follow and implement the rule law. He became the ruler and the law. What the opposing Eritreans did in London and Sweden during the Forto thing is disgraceful.
      I am very much disappointed with awate-team for not condemning the action of those uncivilized group of Eritreans. Wrong is wrong regardless how you slice it. One thing what the Eritreans forget too is that no matter how you slice it, you are outsider; it is not your country. Don’t get fooled with that piece of paper that will say you are a citizen. You are a second class citizen. The truth. I say they better act with civility or else the natives will bring it down to them.

      • haile

        Selamat Hizbawi,

        Yes you are right it is “disgraceful” although not clear why the “awate team” (as they’re not the flying team:) are responsible to be giving any formal response. As far as I could tell just about any body would have then to be responsible for not coming forward with an offerings of “condemning”.

        Saying that, I don’t blame the youngsters (embassy…ok [mentally] youngsters) for expressing frustrations in such a stupid form. You need to remember that Eritrean diaspora intellectuals have long abandoned their ranks and the whole scene is PFDJ playground.

        Why do you think there is so much harping going on from the PFDJ side? Especially in view of the question I posed earlier as “homelands influence on the diaspora.” (Yawoooon yodita:)

        Regards

    • hizbawi

      Haile, believe it or not the awate-tea are the only, I am petrified to say this, resembles to what the real definition of opposition. To me they have shown great responsibility and care to mix everything in one bag like every so called opposition are addicted in doing. Therefore, the awate-team had an obligation to say the wrong doing just wrong. They could have shown the class and maturity they seem to possess and acquires. But they failed. Looking at the faces there were people older than me, they don’t even guide and advice the youth about civility and what is right? Anyway, what tragedy is, that the supporters of PFDJ are well organized while the opposition are nothing but good for illegally break entering and arson. Now, go figure what our options are. Even what is more intriguing is that the PFDJ diasporans thinks they are the defenders of the state while the diaspora oppositions considered the enemy of the state and should be barred all to gather. Dangerous!

      • hizbawi

        to me they have shown great responsibility and care to mix everything in one bag like every so called opposition are addicted in doing.

        please read as
        “…to me they have shown great responsibility and care NOT to mix…”

        thanks, i really suck lol

  • http://awate said

    Fissehaye what prospective?
    True learned moral proposition and prospective. That the central struggle of our lived existence is the realty and determination of what is true and what is false. Is it our ignorance and inability to strive for, to dissect and discern, to find out, receive and to know real truth. War and violence? Is what we really see what we get? Are we all bound to truth-shattering illusions and removed from realty? How do we find out and know what we are told and presented is true? Has the misuse of force and power in our nation and our society so distorted the meaning of truth and false are indistinguishable, or much worse, morally relative? These are questions of important in our politics and interpersonal relations and the result of consequences of untruth grow tall geometrically.
    When YG a major propagandist and progenitor of illusion and perceptions in our mist society adhere falsely and some are till today loyally to the DAI and his corny, they continually falls, stumbles, seeks and practices to always mislead the nation.
    Perhaps with your proper perspective and with your genuine insight into the character of our nation and its recent history. May be you should have warned us about the road DIA he had taken us from day one and sensible warnings about the difficulties ahead and catastrophic is looming? .
    A serious and clear warning that as a people we have failed to heed. A mistake of historic dimensions, you could have warned us. Of the coming of a dictator? Your warnings could have being a prophetically accurate and outspoken truthsayers? or Could it be basic element of this horrible and deadly misfortune is the clear but not because of the absence of intellectual rigour in the political thought of our founding fathers of the 50th and 60th .The present dictator regime is the problem. The role of our political observers or philosopher is not only interpreted our measurable situation the world we live in. The point, however, is to bring change it and warn us?.

  • rezen

    Re: Forto: A Matter of Perspective by Fessahaye Woldu

    Commentary

    I started reading the article in a public library. In the third paragraph I burst into a short-pitched laughter! The lady next to me glanced at me cautiously, with a visible sign of fright on her face, thinking this Black Dude must have gone ‘banana’! I managed to quickly press the “print” sign on the computer; grabbed my copies; and left the library………

    Actually, the article is not a laughing matter – it contains serious subject matter, with sprinkle of humour here and there, making the entire article delightful that one cannot help but lament deeply about the voyage of Eritrea. In my vocabulary, I call it ‘The Eritrean Tragedy’ – something that could be avoided but, for some mysterious character flaw or psyche, the ‘players’ prefer to proceed to the cliff, with their eyes wide open.

    Retrospectively speaking, The overall subject matter, in all its varied facets, has actually been exhaustively and extraordinarily covered and hammered in the greatest details since about 2008 by the famous writer Mr. Yosief Ghebrehiwot, affectionately called YG. Who can ever forget his famous “Romanticizing the ghedli”? It was a daring, trail-blazer, eye-opening, game-changer to multitude Eritreans, in a society where independence of the mind has no place at all. No doubt, he has his detractors. Mr. Fessahaye Woldu put it succinctly: “Yosief has come under a lot of flak from Eritreans not used to the truth” Indeed!

    But I am being carried away! I should be writing about Mr. Fessahaye Woldu’s current Article. I enjoyed it and found myself in tune with the points he raised pertaining to Eritrean Tragedy. In bird’s eyes view, he treated the points he chose to address elegantly with light humour too. I chose to point out here to the following quotation as a truly telling malaise in the Eritrean Tragedy.

    “We Eritreans …love hyperbole and we love to live in a world of illusions. We …create our own reality. We live in a world of illusions because that is the only thing we ever had. We like to write our own stories and, after endless telling and retelling, we are satisfied that this is our story”, totally oblivious of the interdependent world, I may add.

    Needless to say, Mr. Fessahaye Woldu would also have his own share of detractors too – not on rational analysis but based on the legendary Eritrean emotional characteristic on narrow parochial matters. Will there ever be a change? Mr. Woldu put it in the following manner: “… change is inevitable …Change as growing old, meaning Mr. Isaias may one day grow old and die of old age too” Ah, what a TRAGEDY!

    Thanks, Fissehaye.

    All underlines are mine

  • http://awate said

    Salamat Biskut
    Eritrea had the potential to be Dubai of east of Africa.
    Labeling the making of “Dubai” in its current unique example of an open international modern “City State” as a miracle wouldn’t be too farfetched. The transformation of a small Gulf locality drenching with the generally inhospitable sweat and dust of the desert into a coveted international tourists’ attractive destination in a matter of a few decades is a miracle by all counts. For a desert locality to spring to world attractiveness in a mind bugling short time as measured in a historic scale with comparable number of pouring in foreign tourists to those visiting important culturally rich countries as France and Spain, that’s by all means, an incredible achievement.
    Modern Dubai is invariably the true example, possibly the first and only in this modern age of the converging concept of a “Global Village” in all its wide insinuated integrating concept of humans, systems, technology and efficient creation of value in all their apparent and practical connotations. It is very rare in history, with the exception of the making of Singapore in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, that the singular vision of one man, the ruler of the tiny Emirate of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Ben Rashid Al-Makhtoum, ending by finding expression on the practical wider plane despite constraining inherent traditions, ravaging contradictions, limited material resources and other overwhelming odds.
    For a formidable idea and a none restrained vision ensconced in the cerveau, the mind, of a mortal as a model, regardless of status and rank, to ultimately find an exact expression in immeasurable scale at the implantable practical level during a part of one’s life time, that’s truly unique and justifies the labeling of a miracle. All factors of success seem to have harmoniously blended together in the singular mind of a mortal that finally found expression in the exactitude of precision and completeness that rendered “Dubai” what this desert locality what now it is. It is economics in reverse, where supply precedes demand to creating the conditions that supply in the exactitude of what’s craved for creates the desirable demand*.
    A visionary commences perceiving of the creation of value, even from the apparent virtual neant, as also in the example of so-called Asian Industrial Tigers, by the very conceptual idea of the creation of value in the abstract and the inherent formidable challenges for its application that within and by themselves are rendered the very source of value.

    • yegermal

      Headline (by one of DIA’s robots): Today 22-03-3013 Thousands Swedish-Eritreans demonstrated against the arson and Swedish media’s harassment. Not a single person among the thousands has the courage to stand across the presidential palace in Asmara, holding a sign reading “President Isaias, Eritrean youth is dying in the deserts of Sinai. What are you going to do about it?”. And if you’re wondering why these people can take time off from work anytime they want to demonstrate for a dictator that does not pay their Swedish rent, wonder no more. The majority of them are moochers living off the generous Swedish welfare or disability system.

    • wediere

      Said,

      Well said, however that opportunity came with the independence when there was so much good will afforded to DIA. The only opportunity that remains is how positive we play in an integrated regional economic development, but that is a pipe-dream if we can’t have harmony within.

      At this stage as Eritrean we don’t need a patron, who dreams on our behalf to become African Singapore or any well doing nation. Let alone an individual, even a centralized government is not one that I would like to see in the near future.

      Enough lessons were learned from mafia gang running the show and with their “Hasad” character, when entrepreneurship is regarded as opportunism in the negative sense, no serious investment or business could survive without giving them substantial shares. In the name of protecting Eritrea’s interest they have been at liberty to demonise anything good that comes from the private or have gone as far as eliminating individuals who were able to work within the intolerable business environment. Worse, they made themselves unaccountable, have been siphoning the wealth of the country they supposedly care for…we are supposed to TRUST them that they are not in the act of stealing while mistrust others who sweats to help themselves and others…..

      With a decentralised government, even though weaker and difficult to fast track national developments, it is a prize worth paying to empower the people to be creative an innovative to run their affair within their region and environment without the pestering of a potentially incompetent government that would stifle organic development.

      Regards
      AOsman

      • http://awate Amanuel Hidrat

        Wedi Ere,

        I can’t agree more. That is the only way out to our malaise in particular and the region in general. Amen to the idea you have espoused.

        Amanuel

      • http://awate said

        Osman,
        Dubai A good Model to copy? For the future of Eritrea
        I totally agree with you said and much more, my point was meant, what we can learn from Dubai susses in very short span of time. Eritrea given its strategic and geographical location. Like Dubai a successful model to copy close to so many regional market .With behemoth India in an incredible mode of growth, however, constrained by the inherent limitations of bureaucracy and force of tradition is only a short bird flight from Dubai, that’s a natural market to cater for. This, especially with mushrooming Indian Middle Class strata possessing much added purchasing power seeking outlets for consumer spending and that is not too geographically removed shopping and recreation touristic destination that the new Dubai currently represents. The burgeoning and increasingly higher value economy of neighboring behemoth India justifies the creation of the services that complement and caters to some of the high-value needs of that burgeoning economy. The new “Dubai” appears conceived to partly answer to those needs.
        Dubai, in its new visionary creation, especially with the locality’s long historically enjoyed trade ties with neighboring India and the significant constituency of Indian entrepreneurs currently residing in this desert locality who play instrumental networking role in the advancement of economic ties between the new Dubai and the Indian sub-continent, Dubai enjoys in that relation the much added advantageous prospects of positioning Dubai as a high-value economic sourcing destination for Behemoth India.
        Another economic behemoth, neighboring Eritrea Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest exporter of petroleum, is a wealthy nation with huge surplus funds seeking investment outlets regionally and internationally. This holds true at both the individual consumer level as well as at the more macro-corporate level. For the much more traditionally and socially restrictive environment of a much more populous Saudi Arabia that’s awash with wealth, the openness and the variety of consumer products and services that neighboring modern “Dubai” provides renders Dubai a natural nearby outlet, a breathing space to enjoy at a crow’s flight.
        Dubai a traditional trade partner and adding a much higher value to the Dubai economy as it transforms into a sophisticated higher-value economy.
        As it is true in all situations of carefully and closely nursed concepts of developments and increasing specializations, the new emerging reality creates a life and a momentum of its own with the passage of time that renders that reality increasingly more unique with yet further added distinct values and competitive advantages automatically attached to that uniqueness. Dubai appears to increasingly classify under that definition.
        All been said, and notwithstanding the utility that the “Dubai” concept renders regionally, even increasingly internationally, the very uniqueness of the “Dubai” concept, that borders on the none restraining utopian concept of laissez-faire, living free happy medium reality within the bounds of respect of a broad framework of law.
        Dubai was created as a concept with minimal commensurate material resources, is a unique creation, a concept that stands as a testimony to the genius of the artist creator of modern “Dubai,” Sheikh Mohammed Ben Rashed Al-Makhtoum, who is no less endowed in his creative genius of the Masters that shaped the universe of creations that humanity at large to this day is enchanted with their soul enriching eternal melodies, paints, architectural splendors and other culturally and spiritually enhancing creations

    • yegermal

      ok, we got it! Dubai is a miracle. Now can you go back to your original assertion that Eritrea under DIA reach the economic heights Dubai did under Sheikh Mohammed Ben Rashid Al-Makhtoum, instead of giving us more examples (India esh we esh0 to your already valid point about Dubai? God, I detest kolel!

  • Papillon

    Medhanie Alem Tewahdo Orthodox Church produced more Ph.Ds, MDs, Engineers, Accountants and University Lecturers than any other church in Asmara that I know of. The church could as well be easily confused with a Jesuit-confession or a Calvinist-orientation where its emphasis in the imperatives of education is the very kernel of her “doctrine”. One could as well argue that, most of the congregation hail from a relatively well-off families with a strong penchant for higher learning. It was with in this rather unique backdrop that, Qeshi Dr. Fitsum Gebrenugus and Qeshi Dr. Tecleab Mengsteab stood tall on the altar in their formative years and in the years after they took on their respective careers as well.

    When Tecleab is a bit of an introvert and soft spoken whose knack for writing eclipses his sermons, in a sharp contrast, the ever dynamic Fitsum captivates the congregation every time he takes the lectern where he cites the verses of his breathtakingly brilliant mind. I remember in my teenage years attending the church where people would stand outside as the hall gets fully packed every time he preached. Not only that he “was” a gifted preacher but a born-leader as well where his imposing personality touches warmly those are around him. Sure enough, as both came of age in the church, they both went to Medical School in Ethiopia in the late 80s and specialized in Psychiatry and Endocrinology.

    As I have stated it in other threads, as the church later on faced difficulties, the challenges got exacerbated when the government not only intervened with in the operatives of the church but also felt threatened as it took the teachings for a weaklings or “self-defeat” as its (the government’s) mantra is obsessed with a sense of patriotism. Moreover, the high-priests grew suspicious of the new leaders where the former took excellence in education something confined only to Protestant persuasions. With in this rather disturbing tensions, the “conservative” high-priests accused the new leaders as such and the government saw an opportunity to get rid of them where its domain remained seamless. It has been almost a decade since Qeshi Dr. Fitsum Gebrenugus and Qeshi Dr. Tecleab Mensteab disappeared into the dungeons somewhere, anywhere and nowhere in Eritrea. True, Fitsum was the only Tigrigna speaking Psychiatrist in Asmara where in Psychiatry language is one of the vital elements in establishing a rapport with a patient as opposed to getting history through an interpreter.

    Sadly enough, Eritrea is suffering from what Psychiatrists call “Isolation of Affect” where people are acting as if nothing happened or everything is fine and dandy. Lately, news of course based on scant resources are coming form Eritrea that, a number of journalists who had been in prison for a number of years are released. But of course, the reason for their imprisonment is not only obscure, the reason for their release is based on pathological impulses as well. If the selection of releasing prisoners is based on alphabetical order, the release of Fitsum and Tecleab will be a long while when “J” for journalists and “P” for physicians are far and apart.

    • Ghezae Hagos

      Dearest Papillon,

      In short, (let me learn how to:), in short, only a certifiably insane leader imprisones the nation’s only psychiarist.

      • Papillon

        Dearest Ghezae,

        In Chile they were dubbed “The missing” and in Argentina “The disappeared” and I sure hope that, we will not have to look for a tag-word if you will as we search for them in post-Isaias Eritrea.

        Haft’kha.

      • yegermal

        perhaps the “forgotten” is already the term we can use in the context of Eritrean disappeared. So countless and egregious are DIA’s crimes against the Eritrean people (humanity) that we have become numb and forgetful..

      • Ghezae Hags

        Dear Papillon, and Yegermal,

        The ‘forgotten’ is quite fitting. Put aside the millions who ‘forgot’ and shrug off the terrifying fact that Eritrea has arguably the biggest number of prisoners of conscience in THE WORLD PER CAPITA ( appx. tens of thousands in myriad underground jails)! Even those of us who believe we do remember them are doing bad job of remembering considering the lack of urgency and our sad state of opposition to Issayas’s tyranny. It doesn’t appear we remember the victims of PFDJ that heap up as we speak. May be it is too much…M. Arnold put it, ‘we forget because we must; not because we will.’

    • Zegeremo

      Good point, but do you know your champion Meles did a lot worse than that to Ethiopian Muslim scholars. Hypocrisy?

      • T..T.

        Zegremeo, we shouldn’t misunderstand the good intention of the Ethiopian govt. Because the Ethiopian leadership has nothing to fear of, it is just calling on the Ethiopian muslims to unit under one leadership. Unlike Isayas, who would have welcomed their fragmentation, Meles wanted to see the mosques united irrespective of their difference. However,some are Saudi financed and some are rejecting foreign fundings and emotions running high as the result.

      • yegermal

        Having trouble detaching from Meles and Ethiopia? When are you kolels gonna accept Eritrea as a separate country that will be judged on its own merits and no longer on the “Fs” or “As” Ethiopia receives?

    • rodab

      Miss Papillon,
      You’ve stated the truth about Medhanie Alem Church. People like Drs Fitsum and Tecleab, Keshi Ghebremedhin, Negassi & Birkti, Issak, Samson and many other hardworking folks made it such a great Church that attracted countless youth. Of course things are different now but under the right conditions, the Church will quickly regain its fading glory.

    • Asmara

      Pappilon,

      I take this is your way of telling YG(And the writer of this article) to F*** off, right?

  • biskut Birham

    Eritrea is part of greater East African region. It is our door to Middle East for IGAD. Please work it out your difference for the sake of Eritrea. By doing so it will bring a bright day for the whole of Africa

    • http://awate Amanuel Hidrat

      Biskut Birham,

      It will happen as there is no other alternative to progress.Indeed there is a way how to handle it, but it is only when they stop their “awlo” and focus to the real problem.

    • haile

      bishkoti,

      That is now a keen observation that those aspiring for greatness would do well to heed!

      :-)

  • zero le zero

    Zegeremo

    you said to Semere “You still didnt get it. It is the ego, stupid! If I were you, I would take a cold shower and read the comment again.”
    What is the need for calling names like..Stupid..etc…well for the sake of argument I think you are the one who needs a shower of any kind for that matter. Behave…
    Zgerim Neger iyu.

    • Zegeremo

      Lol…it is a coined phrase!

      Regards

  • haile

    Awatistas – here is a suggestion:

    … OK an interesting event first. I once heard that a couple of candidates were fighting for a local constituency some where in Europe (..anywhere in the vicinity of Athens will do). When the voters came to examine their candidates background, they learned that he held two Ph.D’s two separate fields of expertise. It turned out that they rejected him right away for fear that he might be UNSTABLE!

    Back to my suggestion, i.e. if my story seems to “fall through” just forget about it (and I assure you that IQ has nothing to do with it), the point is that Eritrean problem is multi-disciplinary in nature. And would be analysts would make themselves (and even greatly their readers) a huge favour if they stick with one area of specialization. Here goes the various specialization they could choose from;

    – Human rights law expertise – areas of interest include: G-15, journalists in detention, religious freedoms, freedom of expression…

    – International Armed conflict resolution expertise: areas of interest include: Ethio-Eritrea, Djibouti-Eritrea

    – Politics and Diplomacy: areas of interest include: US-Eritrea, IGAD-Eritrea, Eritrea and the UN…

    International Human Rights law (IHL): areas of interest include: refugees (Sinai), army deserters, POWs…

    -Leadership: areas of interest includes: the top job

    ….

    The problem appears that most of our cyber analysts seem to jump from one field of expertise to another seamlessly, which just results heaps of comments that only increase the waist line, rendering us compulsive agitators.

    All the ideas presented through such approach hence die unceremoniously, without the opportunity to translate into actionable pieces of information.

    So, my suggestion is for our would be analysts to choose a single area of specialization and build the arguments you believe in with in that area. After doing so for few years, you not only have developed the discussion here, but also can put together all your manuscripts together and submit it to your local mortar and brick university for consideration of some real academic certification.

    Now back to that unstable guy…:-)

    Cheers

    .

    • haile

      “one of” their candidate’s…
      two PH.D’s “in”…

    • Semere Andom

      Haile:
      Eritrean problem is not complicated. It is simple, so no need for this multi-disciplinary specialty you mention. We need more mechanics to fix the cars that Eritrea has manufactured over the last 3 scores of years, starting in Sahel. We need more minewal to maintain the high-tech invisible micro-bridges that Eritrea is building. We need more lap-dancers for entertainment, this will help to bolster Eritrea`s tourism industry. If Eritrea cannot produce enough stripers we can import them from India and Thailand. Doing this will elevate Eritrea to the level of Singapore. Also we need to add another tribe to our 9 tribes, Amharic speaking Eritreans are increasing in number, even those born after independence when they go to Kenya they become fluent in Amharic. Thus we need to engineer new ethnicity. We can call them Amharina tezaerbti, and this way we can be linguistically very diversified and rich. We can all speak multiple languages and export that talent to other countries for good pocket change.
      Also we need a new religion to worship the golden-words that Isaias uttered long time ago, when he was single-handedly charting Eritrea`s future.
      Also we need lots of jewellery technicians to polish the Bisha gold harvest, so that we can create a golden statue for Vladimir Putin for we just discovered that his great, great, great, great; great aunt was born in a small village called adi-BegiO in the southern region.
      Also crucially important is that we need lots of people who know how to compute the length of time it take for a well-fed government official`s body to shrink. Lest we waste real estate when building and designing cells in Era-Ero. Now this task is performed by the mathematician extraordinaire, Dr. Gideon Asmerom, but it is taking its toll on his time from doing other equally important job: spreading the “gospel“ of Isaias to the Diaspora.

      Semere

      • haile

        Semere;

        What a nice way of putting things in perspective … :)

        Thanks

  • zero le zero

    This reminds me of “Meskerems’s” plain field attitude.
    Folks, You denied YG to defend himself, and you have a boxing ring with one boxer running around and claiming victory.
    In the name of the heroes who paid the highest price we are all playing a game of dirty politics. stop

  • http://awate said

    Fessehaye
    Tell us your truth and forget matter of perspective?
    May be your Illusion is perhaps the only reality and truth. How demagogical naïve? you need to corrected your opinion on illusion. It is impossible to ignore truth and reality.

    {Moderator: Kindly note this is a forum, it is not a place for four pages lond comment. We have brought this to your attention several times. Please don’t make us work needlessly.]

  • T..T.

    Let me add, Semere:
    Besides Shabia’s failure to transform itself todate, the Shabians have had bad luck to have Isayas as a leader. Isayas believes in power and that power is toxic because he is focused on his personal agenda. Me only; for me only; and for my sake let there be no open discussion/cooperation and that is why he uses coercion and blackmailing. Imagine, most of the time, he (Isayas) glares at and sometimes slaps/punches the higher officers/generals to impose on them blind action or to demand total compliance.

    • Semere Andom

      Selam T. T
      I agree what you say about DIA, but we should not exonerate the personal responsibilities of others like Romadan, Ali Said, Haile Deru and most of his peers in G-15. Blaming only IA sounds like the discussions that I have every day with my Eritrean friends who attribute all African ills to the European colonization including the Rwanda genocide, totally making the Africans, who seem to have a knack of producing dictator after dictator blameless for their own affairs
      If G-15 had handled IA after independent and a different leader was chosen Eritrea will be in far better position and we could have stopped in their tracks the ghedli de-romantics from evolving to ghedli bashers and the ghedli romantics from descending to ghedli sanitizers.

      Semere

      • T..T.

        You’re right, Semere. Isayas is not only and that’s why I said his love for power is poisonous and contagious. Contagious, in a sense, that all the higher-officials and generals are now corrupted and involved in all unacceptables. However, I would count Haile Deru out of the list. But, no doubt, the Massawa group is equally criminal and heavy handedly involved in causing all the sufferings the Eritrean people are living everyday.

  • Mohammed Ahmed

    Hi Fessehaye,

    Obviously you made it very clear that you hate YG (not that anyone could care less anyways) but the problem is – you want to goad others to do your laundry. In other words, you bring here every filthy diatribe YG has thrown against Eritreans to desecrate anything and everything they stand for and then you expect to see people taking your bait as though they are naïve and gullible.

    You throw the bone and then you sit back cross-legged and watch who will bite. Well guess what? I am sure you can tell that so far, nobody took your bait. Readers here have more discerning abilities than you give them credit for – and that my friend, should be lesson number one for you.

    The problem is, you may or may not espouse divergent views from YG’s but your piece here amply demonstrated that you also suffer from the same ailment he does, regardless of your personal opinions and outlooks.

    It is all about egos, isn’t it? How some feel deflated if they are not made the center stage of attention for others to oscillate around – even if that comes at a cost – a terrible cost of striping themselves bare of their souls.

    It can’t even be called self-loathing because even in that – there is some degree of remorse a person feels. Most of the Ghedli-bashers with YG as their super-egotistic high priest were never part of the Ghedli experience in its truest sense – so in all honesty, none of their verbiage could be seen as self-criticism which the young and the future generations could learn from – just self-adulation rituals of some maniacs.

    But here is some advice for you for whatever it is worth. Even if you were to see your shrink, I think he would have recommended the same advice.

    Take Ismail Omer’s advice on the YG issue to heart – but first stop twisting what Ismail said on the issue.

    When Ismail asked others to ignore YG, he wasn’t asking for him to be muffled – obviously an un-democratic act which would curtail free speech – even a lay person could tell you that.

    What Ismail was asking his peers to do was to ignore your feigned-mentor, YG for the persistent drain that he has become in getting them bogged down in endless and futile debates that lead nowhere but to satisfy his insatiable ego. They had better things to do, he advised, than to feed the insatiable ego of a maniac.

    Again, any lay person could tell you that abstaining or boycotting (all that Ismail asked of his peers) is a democratic right in any civilized society. No one could be coerced to say either “yes” or “no” – they could abstain or boycott if they so choose – it is a democratic right. Yet you (by feigning) and your likes cried wolf saying that Ismail was advocating for censorship as if the readers are too dump to discern for themselves what was said and intended. How condescending.

    All your deeply flawed assertions were what gave you away by the way, but also your silly attempt to be a provocateur and all that “cheerleaded” stuff didn’t help either. Take Ismail’s advice (another important lesson) and I am sure you will be able to take charge of your ego-driven demons.

    Regards

    Mr. Moderator
    This message has been sitting in your hold bin for quite sometime now. Kindly let me know if there are any reasons for the continuous pending status.
    Thanks

    • Semere Andom

      Mohammed Ahmed:
      Why is the ghedli so sacred that it should not be touched? We know the mighty jebha was a sectarian group that admirably transformed itself to a true national and vanguard organization in the 1969 congress. EPLF never attained Jebha’s achievement till today, The concession they allowed like celebrating Sept 1 and reluctantly crowing Awate the father of the Eritrean revolution do not account as they are mere appeasement motivated instead of core principles

      I would choose the ghedli bashers hands down to the ghedli canonizers like you. It is this lack of scepticism that led us to forget the heroes of Togorba, Call it skirmish, war or battle, they were gallant fighters. Your tendency to get offended at a different perspective is the very telling and the very malaise we are trying to eradicate.

      Your unbecoming comment of the mental state of your nemesis reminds me the words of the late Sherifo, who replied with arrogance ad rebuke that EPLF does no entertain lunatics when asked about Dr. Tesfazion Medhanie’s book. It turns out that he was the lunatic.

      If you want to hear just “ fars weld farsotat” or “Lemin Leminey”, Ali Abu’s Shabait is your best friend.

      You got to admire YG and here is why: when the war started and before he was a PFDJ supporter and he had a panic attack when Barentu fell under the Ethiopian soldiers. He believed in benevolent dictatorship, a self serving oxymoron to my mind. Now he has unshackled himself. Granted emboldened by the initial admiration he was carried away and he stretched he metaphors until the sheerness was too strong.
      The debate is healthy even if some of us resent the so called unionist, we can only defeat them with the merits of their ideas, otherwise we all are pfdj and our citizenship is merely a mere :-)

      Your diction in this rebutt is lifted from the play book of PFDJ put-downs:
      Semere

      • Zegeremo

        Semere

        You still didnt get it. It is the ego, stupid! If I were you, I would take a cold shower and read the comment again.

        Regards

  • Amanuel

    Hi Fishaye

    “When I was young, my uncle, who had actually served in the Italian colonial army in Libya—to liberate Libya not Eritrea, for those too young to remember— told me that the Italians never advanced Eritreans in rank. The reason, he said, was we Eritreans respect authority too much hence our role as cannon fodder was taken for granted.”

    I am confused by this paragraph first, your uncle served in the Italian colonial army in Libya to liberate Libya? Eritreans served in the Italian colonial army to colonise Libya not to liberate it as you claimed. Second army by it nature is authoritarian and most those who advance in rank are disciplined and respect authority. In fact Eritreans were advanced in rank my grandfather was Sheka and his friend was Bashay. Get real mate.

  • Sele Haqi

    Dear all

    First of all I’m falling in love with the writing style of the Ex dragon lady,Papillon.What a beautiful writer she is.Grace the Awate pages with your captivating writing style.I simply love it.

    What has happened with progressive writer Fesshaye Woldu on this article.It seems he has decided to escape and join those class of people who chose to belittle and demoralise our  past and present struggle at a time when we needed them most to help us find a solution for our current troubles.Next time we might see his articles in Asmarino.

    Our intellectuals or at least those we see them writing articles and are from the highlands seem to regret joining the struggle for freedom and already started missing mama Ethiopia.All of them are escaping from the independent Eritrea website (Awate.com ) to the website with unionist tendencies.Where is Our Zekere Lebona ,the Guanguls and now Fesshaye Would is making all the gestures of escaping to the obvious.We need such beautiful and sharp minds to offer solution to the current misery of our people and in democratic and free Eritrea they can have all the time and the history department of the University to teach us about our past history.

    Why is YG stack in the past without offering any solution to the current problem.One article by Saleh Youns,same march different drummer,has answered all his Halewlw of the past years.The guy keeps telling us we were wrong without shame or respect to all the sacrifice and destruction.

    Once again lets keep hope and assure our people that we will prevail and will also be better than the country YG fancy.

  • T..T.

    Hello Alash Abelanyom Ab SeTAh Golgol

    You said, “my reaction to this whole forto 2013 thang: *YAWN*.”

    There is a big difference between a word that induces yawning and a word that induces nausea. The yawning inducing word signifies expectation of success, peace, tranquility and all the best. Whereas, the nausea inducing word indicates that you hold grudges, hidden hatred, deprivations of hope, and all the worst of the worst against that word. Should Forto be your yawn-inducing word, its opposite should be “Isayas” a nausea-inducing word. Lucky you,you enjoying a yawn-inducing word which also also evidences that you have clean hands and you are not a criminal that involved in killing innocent lives, purging innocent kids/sisters/mothers/brothers/fathers in the name of Nhna-Isu, Isu-Nhna. At a table of negotiation, if you yawn it means you want to shake hands. In case of a negotiator from the Isayasist side, s/he does not yawn but open eyes from a falling hammer on head.

  • haile

    Awatians;

    Let me just avail myself to help saay with some ideas to use for lyrics in his up coming awlo (hurry up ma’ bro. we’re waiting, and alash abelnayom is yawning too)
    You see it is all about love (not worry, I am not going soft on you, again!). This is going to be heavy on analogy, imagine your family. What ever you call your family that is…for some people the term may expand as far as a whole region or religion and for others it may contract as narrow as the only person out of all their immediate blood relations (home, siblings…) who is still braving to remain in speaking terms with them.

    The concept, however, remains the same. Whatever holds this cohesion manifests numerous qualities. You don’t put them down, you don’t ask them back for the money the borrowed from you, you don’t stand by when a stranger is attacking them, you share your happy and sad moments with them, you try to give them stuff that you think is useful to them, you mention them proudly in your conversations, you jealously guard them. Let’s even say this person is your first born child. If you are unlucky to have this type of cohesion threatened by conflict in the ‘family’, you get to know who your friend’s are. If you are confiding about how nasty your family member is with others, you are likely to get one of the following:

    – Wow, poor you, how mean can they be….
    – It is ok; they’re your family, try not to take it to heart…calm down and try to diffuse the tension…

    Now, there is nothing we disapprove of (and sadly love to chew on with the traditional coffee ceremony..so and so tehaniqu bla…bla..) as a family that doesn’t care and watch out for each other.

    It is like yigermal telling us how nice yg is in person than wrapped around his dr’Eto articles, while all we wonder is whether yegermal himself is as snappy little fool as he seems in his short comments in here. Most likely not, but he sure knows to differentiate that distinction in yg, but hopelessly failed to apply the kernel principles there in.

    We are all at it, if some one comes along to give as the mature and astute advice as the second one listed above, we are quick to get into fatalistic mode that would simply increase the distance between us. YG has been using all his efforts in vain. Really, I don’t remember using the word ‘vain’ and felt so satisfied with it to simply follow it with a full stop, period, arb’Ete neT’bi.

    For what ever it is worth, yg has been exorcising his demons on pages and pages of [to be fair…bulls cr@p would’ve made] inappropriate and inaccurate revision of Ghedli that has made little dent in the publics mind. I suggest he double’s (triple for best results) the length of his articles and try his luck with it. The Eritrean Ghedli is what holds the Eritrean family together, and sure remain to be so for generations to come. And, if I may borrow S.Gadi’s catch phrase (whenever he catches phrases that don’t sit well with the PG) YG’s narratives will always face the trash bin, as long as he acts like the second guy in my example above.

    Regards

    • haile

      correct: “like the firt guy” in last sentence.. I wouldn’t be as harish as the electricity board that betrayed the poor guy in the dark in my earlier post. saay is game with that…don’t get me pull my hair ou…it is already on fire…:)

    • yegermal

      “It is like yigermal telling us how nice yg is in person than wrapped around his dr’Eto articles, while all we wonder is whether yegermal himself is as snappy little fool as he seems in his short comments in here. Most likely not, but he sure knows to differentiate that distinction in yg, but hopelessly failed to apply the kernel principles there in. ” WHAT? How is that for short:)

      • haile

        yegermal

        saay has suggested we introduce our family members to each other, in keeping with flow of nicety. In that spirit, I would like you to meet my younger brother you may wish to spend some time with. He is nerdy, and likes to be addressed with his full name as en’AL abuKh…say hi too :)

      • yegermal

        hahaha chill , no need to bring fathers in the discussion. They are old and honorable:)…besides cussing speaks volumes about the type a person you are.

  • Mohammed Ahmed

    Hi Fessehaye,

    Obviously you made it very clear that you hate YG (not that anyone could care less anyways) but the problem is – you want to goad others to do your laundry. In other words, you bring here every filthy diatribe YG has thrown against Eritreans to desecrate anything and everything they stand for and then you expect to see people taking your bait as though they are naïve and gullible.

    You throw the bone and then you sit back cross-legged and watch who will bite. Well guess what? I am sure you can tell that so far, nobody took your bait. Readers here have more discerning abilities than you give them credit for – and that my friend, should be lesson number one for you.

    The problem is, you may or may not espouse divergent views from YG’s but your piece here amply demonstrated that you also suffer from the same ailment he does, regardless of your personal opinions and outlooks.

    It is all about egos, isn’t it? How some feel deflated if they are not made the center stage of attention for others to oscillate around – even if that comes at a cost – a terrible cost of striping themselves bare of their souls.

    It can’t even be called self-loathing because even in that – there is some degree of remorse a person feels. Most of the Ghedli-bashers with YG as their super-egotistic high priest were never part of the Ghedli experience in its truest sense – so in all honesty, none of their verbiage could be seen as self-criticism which the young and the future generations could learn from – just self-adulation rituals of some maniacs.

    But here is some advice for you for whatever it is worth. Even if you were to see your shrink, I think he would have recommended the same advice.

    Take Ismail Omer’s advice on the YG issue to heart – but first stop twisting what Ismail said on the issue.

    When Ismail asked others to ignore YG, he wasn’t asking for him to be muffled – obviously an un-democratic act which would curtail free speech – even a lay person could tell you that.

    What Ismail was asking his peers to do was to ignore your feigned-mentor, YG for the persistent drain that he has become in getting them bogged down in endless and futile debates that lead nowhere but to satisfy his insatiable ego. They had better things to do, he advised, than to feed the insatiable ego of a maniac.

    Again, any lay person could tell you that abstaining or boycotting (all that Ismail asked of his peers) is a democratic right in any civilized society. No one could be coerced to say either “yes” or “no” – they could abstain or boycott if they so choose – it is a democratic right. Yet you (by feigning) and your likes cried wolf saying that Ismail was advocating for censorship as if the readers are too dump to discern for themselves what was said and intended. How condescending.

    All your deeply flawed assertions were what gave you away by the way, but also your silly attempt to be a provocateur and all that “cheerleaded” stuff didn’t help either. Take Ismail’s advice (another important lesson) and I am sure you will be able to take charge of your ego-driven demons.

    Regards

  • http://yahoo Meretse Asmelash

    The writer mixes the good, the bad, and the ugly together. I wonder if this a fair share in today’s politics.

  • Alash Abelanyom Ab SeTAh Golgol

    my reaction to this whole forto 2013 thang: *YAWN*

  • Salyounis

    Selamat y’all:

    First, some “programming update” to use the parlance of American media: Rodab had asked a question on Forto 2013; I said we would come up with an update, but we are running a little behind. My apologies Rodab.

    The best line written about the reaction to Forto 2013 was, in my opinion, by Selam Kidane:

    “My Heroes of Forto2013 are not the philosophising men (it is almost exclusively men!) who do a post mortem of every action and prepare the ground for inaction.”

    Even though she later on spoiled the fun to say that the line was not written in reaction to the posts by the grumpy old men at asmarino but grumpy old men everywhere, it was still spot on.

    One of the more interesting parallels that emerged after Forto 2013 is between those who believe Isaias Afwerki will rule forever, and those who believe that change can only come from Ethiopia and that we should ‘pressure’ Ethiopia to help. (I will leave aside for now the other parallel of the invitations– one to “pressure” Ethiopia to comply by EEBC, and the other to “pressure” Ethiopia to practice the magic words of Gam Man Gam Man and help us remove Isaias Afwerki) Both sides were shell-shocked and had nothing to say for a while, but now, they are out preparing the ground work for more inaction.

    Here’s another parallel: to the Isaiasist–who have now changed the story from “it was just a handful of people” to “it was Isaias just practicing a fire drill”–a mutiny against Isaias is unthinkable because Isaias is so beloved by everybody (including those he has made disappear, don’t you know.) For the Ghedli de-romantics*, a mutiny is unthinkable because of what they told us (and they have been telling us non-stop) about the Eritrean character: we are weak, fearful of authority, and incapable of doing anything unless we are forcefully conscripted.

    Both sides, for completely opposite reasons, are incentivized to minimize what happened on January 21. Of the two, and this is relatively speaking, the more honorable position is that of the Isaisist because it is based on their love of Isaias Afwerki. For the Ghedli de-romantics (aka Ethiopian romantics), their certainty that Forto 2013 has failed (assuming anything at all happened on January 21 and they are not so sure anything did happen) is based not on objective analysis but on their contempt of the Eritrean character. According to them: we were not capable; we are not capable; we will never be capable. The end.

    saay

    * Fessehaye Woldu has been writing at awate since 2001 (as have Ismail Omar Ali, Mohammed Ahmed and Semere Habtemariam (not Teclemariam, for God’s sake) and I had considered his writing (and his apparent unawareness of writers who have been writing on the same pages as long as he has) as typical Afro-centric, let’s-build-a-bridge-to-the-world, I am-too-big-for-Eritrea, pan-Africanism. This is the first one I have read which confirms him as another Ghedli revisionst talking about child soldiers, and uncles demeaning their countrymen and their words accepted as wisdom. I think I am going to call my Somali uncle (I don’t have one, but how will you know?) and ask, hey, Waria, I mean Uncle Abdi, you Somalis can never be accused of being fearful of authority: were you given much promotions by the Italian fascists? No? manage la miseria.

    • haile

      Selam SAAY,

      Just proved my comment earlier that, on every other issue (apart EEBC :-( ), you simply rock man!

      Superb.

      • Salyounis

        Selamat Haile:

        Thus begins the awlo. You know, Haile, don’t make me start a new debate by listing all the things that are more important than demarcation. Just words that begin with a “d” to make it a challenge:) Like deforestation. Demarcation and deforestation are, of course, closely related, but one requires a generation to reverse (we lost 5.5% of our forest over a 20-year period), the other requires a man to meet his maker.

        saay

        PS: Thanks!

      • haile

        saay

        “we lost 5.5% of our forest over a 20-year period”…which 20-year period? honestly! not clear at all…I am an avid reader of Hadas Erena…:)

        Cheers

        • Salyounis

          Selam Haile:

          That issue of Hadas Eritrea was not published because, you know, not enough forest. The years in question are 1990-2010. The source is the UNDP report that everybody spent a great deal of time not reading:)

          Saay

    • http://Awate.com Nuradin

      Salam Saleh,

      The Somali says there is no honor in demeaning one’s country. But there’re always those who do it for living, if you know what I mean: those that exagerate the wrongs of their countrymen while being ‘ambivalent’ or trivializing the threats posed to their nation and the atrocities committed against it.

      The Somali says with friends like that – in the opposition camp – who needs enemies.

      Btw I was incensed by the reference to Hamid Idris Awate (May he rest in peace) as a bandit. That is when I stopped reading this brouhaha.

      Nuradin

    • yegermal

      Hello Sal,

      Do you happen to be in possession of the brilliant article by Burhan Ali ( I think) titled “Ras Woldemichael vs. Yohannes IV”. Forgive me if I butchered the title, but it dealt with the Badme debacle and how DIA was played by the bright and conniving counterpart from Tigray. I hope I am not making this up:). It would be a good read for the demarcation kings/queens. Thank you in advance for pulling it out of the your magic hat.

      • Salyounis

        Selamat Yegermal:

        I couldn’t find the article in question, which is not Burhan’s best work anyway* Here’s the consolation prize: Burhan Ali’s best work focused on his specialty: schooling Egyptians on their woeful scholarship.

        http://web.archive.org/web/20101121193255/http://awate.com/nile-politicsegypts-kiss-of-death/

        n’egre mengedey, I found this which is so weird now, given Forto 2013. It is a translation of a Tigrinya article at shaebia.org (4/4/2002), a reportage of Isaias Afwerki’s visit to Gerset (when Mustapha Nurhussein was the governor of Gash Barka):

        The formal inauguration celebrating the occasion were marked by the opening statements of Mr. Mustafa Nurhussein, the governor of Gash Barka. After asking, “how was your day? How is your week? I hope you are pleased” and getting assurances of “we are pleased”, he continued: “Dear President, Brother Isaias Afwerki, praise be that you got to meet the people who, for 30 years, rallied around the Revolution while in exile.” Continuing on, he said, “dear guests, praise be that you got to meet the leader of our 30 year Revolution, the heroic combatant, the deliverer of freedom and the current president, the heroic Isaias Afwerki. On your behalf and mine, please permit me to thank the beloved president who, now as ever, having said, on his own initiative, ‘it is a must that I meet with my people who were repatriated; I must spend a day with them and know of their condition’ interrupted his [important] national exertion and volunteered to commit his time and attention to you.”

        saay

        * there is a Tigrayt expression about a monkey who was swinging to get a banana. After repeated effort, it failed and consoled itself by saying, “meh, they weren’t ripe anyway.” :)

    • rodab

      Thanks Sal for the update and no worries, no rush. Besides it’s not like we have plans to travel to Mars anytime soon, so we will be waiting for the articles right here on Earth :-)

  • haile

    Awatistas,

    “As long as it (an issue) remains invisible, it is guaranteed to remain insoluble.”
    Margaret Heffernan, Willful Blindness: Why we ignore the obvious at our peril

    People like YG are caught up in a circular trap that revolves around the notion that one needs to be in the past to explain the present, and the present is only good to serve as a past when you do the same once you get to the future (still with me? …saay is coming with an awlo in just a second:)

    Till then, let’s have a quick peek through the Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince:

    “- Why are you drinking? – the little prince asked.
    – In order to forget – replied the drunkard.
    – To forget what? – enquired the little prince, who was already feeling sorry for him.
    – To forget that I am ashamed – the drunkard confessed, hanging his head.
    – Ashamed of what? – asked the little prince who wanted to help him.
    – Ashamed of drinking! – concluded the drunkard, withdrawing into total silence.
    And the little prince went away, puzzled.
    ‘Grown-ups really are very, very odd’, he said to himself as he continued his journey.”

    The last thing a person in obvious situation of difficulty needs is hard punches to knock their perception of self-worth. By revising the history of a people in the worst possible worst form, the target is of course obvious. That is to hammer the foundation as hard as you can to see the whole house in a pile of derbies. The good thing is that YG’s sense of spatial positioning is as shaky of his arguments, and is only likely to be read by the people he makes out the bad guys of his fictional narration. Hence, just incurring him losses.

    The question is that if YG has so much ‘gut’ to confront injustice, why is not willing to write at such length calling for the resolution of the border dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea? That would have brought him real people to listen to what he has to say, as opposed to ghosts from a distant past, who mean little to the current situation.

    • Papillon

      Dear Haile,

      I can’t believe you’re gravitating the “ghosts” of demarcation to this thread as well. You remind me the character Bubba in “Forrest Gump” as he talks about “Shrimp” in any and every conversation. Was hoping we would give it a rest.

      Haft’kha.

      • haile

        Dear Papillon,

        haha…himam aloni himam hager….Forst Gump? You just trying to annoy me real hard, right? No luck! :-)

        Regards

      • haile

        Papillon,

        Here a song that talks about future, standing on the present, unlike yg’s ghost speech!

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6iXI33wnRZM

        enjoy

      • Papillon

        Dear Haile,

        Thanks for the song. I love it.

      • yegermal

        My feeling exactly!

      • yegermal

        hman aloka alright! but not nay hager!

      • yegermal

        I met YG in person. He is actually funny and lighthearted…much more enjoyable than he appears in his fluffy articles. To be sure, he has a lot of followers although most (like YG himself) are people that were of age during gedli era but never participated in the struggle. And here I am not questioning their nationality or identity; just making note of their experience.

  • Papillon

    Dear Ygermal,

    True the article is poorly edited if it was edited in the first place that is. That aside however, when the issues he raised are open for a debate, one thing I disagree with him is his take about Sal. I say, Sal is one of the most intelligent Eritreans I have come across to in my life where he is endowed with an incredibly powerful mind. The jewel in him would have been of a great asset in a free and democratic Eritrea.

    Haft’kha.

  • Semere Tesfai

    “Eritreans….. did not as is often told, march singing, fighting and falling and telling their comrades to continue the struggle…. They did not march with enthusiasm willing to pay any price for freedom….Unlike the city elite (who most falsely claim they were in the thick and thin of it) it was the poor gebars who were forcefully recruited from their villages (the culture of giffa) poorly trained, poorly equipped and sent to the front lines as cannon fodder. They were not martyred, or sacrificed. They were killed and died an ordinary death.”

    I guess Mr. Fessaheye Woldu has never heard the story of ZEMACH and their AZMARI, a place called TATEQ (ታጠቅ) or a term AFESSA? (ኣፈሳ).

    Mr. Fessahaye: from the most powerful (USA), to regional powers (Ethiopia), to the smallest countries – that is what nations do; because every citizen of a nation has an obligation to serve his/her country.

    Since he is not going to believe me, can someone tell him a story, a link, a video……something about the story and fate of ZEMACH.

    One more thing, we Eritreans don’t agree on million things but cutting the umbilical cord from MAMA Ethiopia is not one of them. Just in case you don’t know.

  • Afabet

    I honestly can’t read anymore articles about Forto/Enda Zena. Wake me up next time there is a real coup. Thanks!

  • selamawi

    It is refreshing to read articles like this, but as Amanuel Hidrat points out we need solution oriented road-map.

    All Eritreans need to UNITE, ORGANIZE UNDER ONE UMBRELLA, USE ALL RESOURCES AVAILABLE and march towards Eritrea.
    The peasants and pastoralists (YG referred to) have been paying heavier price than the rest, and pfdj is bent to perpetuate this until the Nation is ruined beyond repair.

    It is unbelievable that we should divide in over 30 pockets and pray Manna to come down… then hope to march to Asmara peacefully. To make things worse the leaders of these little groupings are grandfathers who should be retired peacefully before they are pushed.

    Salvation of Eritrea = Unity of all Eritreans and better coordination of the meager resources that we have. The situation is getting out of hand in Eritrea and spilling to the Sinai, to Sahara/Libya, to the Mediterranean sea, to God knows where! Is this time for ideological differences really?

    May God forgive us!

    • Gumare

      Yosief Gebrihiwet never referred to pastoralists in the context you mention…do not comment on things unless you are truthful and honest.

  • denden

    A mavrick man or a unique Eritrean stands alone of all the population of Eritrea!

    What amzes me about our Eritreans so called learned or int6electuals they have the temerity to belittle Eritreans, they are full of themselves at best patronizing worset they an ashamedly tel us how arrogant they have become pointing their fingers at others and in the midest they forget themselves to be inclusive.

    • Semere Andom

      Taba Denden, there is a saying in one of the official languages in Eritrea: Arabic. It goes like this: “Al Girid Yahkim b’yamu” (Even the monkey has his chance to reign). Well it is true in Eritrea, the monkey is ruling now.

      If you feel that that the intellectuals are belittling you, maybe it is their time now.

      Moderator: I have a suggestion, can we ban demeaning names in this forum, like stone or gobo;-)
      Emba Denden, what is your issue with the intelligentsia?
      Semere

  • araya

    One of the news that was gave me a worst headache this year was, the news of the ND linebacker Montoya Tie. Every news media reported to the point of preposterous about the death of his none existence girlfriend. I am telling you, this Forto thing is getting up there. OMG! enough already. Are we that much losers? There was nothing but PIA perfecting Le Chatelier’s Principle. You must relief a buildup pressure before it explodes. And that is what exactly PIA did. ufffffffffff

  • yegermal

    Writer’s confusion with “where” and “were” aside, what happened to giving perspective on Forto 2013…as the title implied? I guess “we Eritreans” do not only love hyperbole but we write for the sake of writing!

  • Papillon

    I can already hear knuckles cracking and pencils sharpened and the bell is about to go off for a “showdown.” I love Awate as the adverts have it, “Don’t leave home without it” and “I can’t believe it is not Awate.”

  • http://awate Amanuel Hidrat

    Dear Fesshaye,

    Though you have “some” valid arguments in your piece, your critic is a little bit harsh to pull the debate to convergence.As everyone one of us loves and falls to critic, no one of us is proposing solutions to our malaise, making our people (the most victimized “gebar”) at the center of our politics. Our people deserve solution from you and the rest of us. At this point analyzing the nature of the regime and its institution has taken more than its due. Our people deserve to find exit strategy from you and others – the Eritrean intelligentsia. Just a reminder tapping on your back…if at all works.

  • T..T.

    On the issue of demarcation, I reiterate that the Forto operation repealed Isayas’s self-declared No-Peace No-War status of Eritrea and called for immediate implementation of the pigeonholed (put aside and ignored) constitution.

    Quick history on EPLF and TPLF. The EPLF had melting pot and as the results the ELFers did not impact the border agreement. However, the TPLF had no melting pot policy and as a result the ELF-friends within the TPLF, like Siye and Sium staunch enemies of Isayas did not change their behavior nor change themselves to accommodate Isayas. Therefore, cooperative equilibrium cannot be expected to resolve the border issue without dialogue in order to settle the interlocking interests associated with absorbing the resentment of those affected by the border adjustments. The only way out is a re-adjustment to balance the commitment loss or they should find financial empire like Qatar to help uphold the commitment loss through financial compensations to those affected by the agreed redrawing of the map.

  • Papillon

    Dear Fessehaye,

    What have you done!!! You must have “bribed” one of the Awate-staff otherwise your article wouldn’t have or couldn’t have made it to be read. YG is rendered an outcast, a renegade and a mutant-virus who should be locked up with in the confines of Asmarino where the ranting against him can practically be heard through the walls of Awate as it reverberates in Asmarino. You must have been away on vacation with in the last month or so as Awate “moved-on” from YG-bashing to “demarcation, demarcation, demarcation or………..give me death” ad nauseam. Now you’re brining us back into our old “fold” where we will be at the mercy of the YG-bashers and identity-handlers as we are just returning back from the burial ceremony of the “hatchet”.

    • Zegeremo

      I think you are getting bitter. Isn’t better to write an article and challenge the writer than jumping at every article and attack DIA, and defend Meles? You need to respect any writer who tries to add something to the debate.

      Regards

      • Papillon

        Dear Zgeremo,

        I guess you’re reading something that is not there. Where does it say anything about Isaias or Meles in my comment to Fessehaye’s article? Bitter? Far from it.

        Haft’kha.

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