Well, when you say nothing happened, you can’t explain what happened. But the world knows something happened and you know you can’t go on saying nothing happened. That’s the quandary of the Eritrean regime. But it is not its first quandary, and it always stumbles around for an answer. It feeds its surrogates some misinformation but because its surrogates are not experts at misinformation, they always screw up.
Case in point: the story told by madote.com and dehai.org. As we explained in a previous blog, according to madote.com, the soldiers who took over the Ministry of Information were just a “handful” of people. Terrorists who threatened to kill their hostages. Nonetheless, the Eritrean government allowed them to leave the building.
Of course, the problem with this story is that (a) the whole world knows the soldiers were not a handful; (b) the Ministry of Information employees know they were not terrorized and (c) there is no government in the world–least of all a totalitarian one like that of Eritrea–which will just allow terrorists to just leave.
That’s where “Tesfai Germen” comes to the rescue. Who? He wrote an article in Tigrinya for the rabid pro-Isaias website, alenalki.com. Who is “Tesfai Germen”? Well, if you are familiar with the Tigrinya diction and style of senior Eritrean government officials, you will know who he is. If you are not, well, let’s all pretend Tesfai Germen is a composite figure of the Isaias regime. His story patches all the holes, and fixes all the mess that the amateur propagandists at madote put out:
According to Tesfai Germen, why, yes, there was an organized army (not a handful) present at the Ministry of Information. But they were innocent people (not terrorists) sent to the Ministry of Information because they were told there is work to be done. Who initiated the campaign? Why, just some sell-outs who were apprehended in less than 10 minutes.
See how it is done now, madote.com? Learn from the master of disinformation “Tesfai Germen.” He is telling you that, in the business of disinformation, you do not have to be truthful (that claim that “it was all over in less than 10 minutes” is, of course a lie). You can be truthful, if it serves your purpose. He is teaching you that truth is optional, but coherence is not. You don’t have to tell the truth, but you must be coherent: that is Disinformation 101. So all you dehai.org and madote.com contributors: if you have chosen misinformation and disinformation as legitimate means of “protecting the nation”–and you have–please try to be coherent.