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Not Friends, Not Enemies – Just Nations With Interests

Reviewing official statements on world perspective that the Government of Eritrea put out periodically over the last 15 years, one would get the impression that the country of Eritrea is somehow the most coveted, yet the most hated and conspired-against nation in the world! Such an impression is bound to prompt the question of why a poor, relatively young nation of 4-5 million people would provoke any of the world’s bad intentions. Specifically, what is there about the country that could possibly render it a target of the sort of international ill will and conspiracy alleged to be directed against it? But then, logic would suggest that such a cynical view of the world can only be the product of extreme case of paranoia or vicious political intrigue concocted by depraved minds.

Public sentiment and oft-repeated official pronouncements on the subject both reflect a national political psyche rooted in a notion that the world had been and continues to be unkind, if not outright hostile, to Eritrea. Indeed, it is not hard to sense that a perception of widespread anti-Eritrean animus pervades the populace. It is equally apparent that this overbearing sentiment was bred and is being sustained by persistent, vigorous political campaign designed to drive public apprehension and suspicion of the outside world to the limit.

Nurturing Fear and Insecurity

As  part of its “rule by fear” governance strategy, Eritrea’s government has long strove to instill a siege mentality in the population by harping on dangers posed by external forces who seek to “control the country, subjugate its people and plunder its resources.” Having paid dearly for their hard-won national independence, the Eritrean people feel they should remain vigilant against hostile neighbors and their allies who constitute a threat to their country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

In the main, this is a legitimate concern born out of century-long bitter experience of occupation, oppression and exploitation perpetrated on the watch of an apathetic and, at times, complicit world. Even today, this sentiment continues to be stirred up by persistent rhetoric and periodic hostilities of revisionist and colonialist forces in neighboring Ethiopia. Obsessed with  dreams of reversing Eritrea’s independence, these elements openly advocate for the country’s re-occupation and/or dismemberment. But, it is also true that this well-founded public concern has been exacerbated to the level of paranoia by a regime adept at manipulating and exploiting the public’s sense of insecurity.

The regime frequently engages in devious schemes of whipping up new emotions that would render the populace compliant enough to kowtow to its totalitarian grip of the country. Its leaders bank on a strategy of using their fear-mongering propaganda to make the public “more accommodating” to the suppression and persecution, servitude and poverty, pain and suffering that their tyrannical rule has wrought across the country.

Resentment and Confrontation

It was not long after the country’s independence that indications began to emerge of the government’s intent to impose its dictatorial control over the population and perpetuate its leadership’s rule in the country. In pursuit of these objectives, state-controlled media have worked tirelessly to ingrain the population with a sense of insecurity and an image of a hostile world ill at ease with Eritrea’s independent existence.

Government authorities have made a habit of invoking, at every turn, the 1950 UN resolution that forced Eritrea’s federation with Ethiopia in what was a cruel, contemptuous denial of the people’s legitimate yearning for freedom and nationhood. Efforts are exerted to revive the memory of this sad historical event and to plant it firmly in the national consciousness as a symbol of a hostile world that continues to “stalk” Eritrea!

The regime fails to appreciate the dynamic nature of relations between nations and views them as being largely controlled by Western powers. Its notion of present “world order” is conditioned by concepts that have long gone obsolete and events whose significance has faded with the passage of time. As a result, it is incapable of dealing with present-day issues or addressing contemporary challenges without harkening back to memories and experiences of the 1980s and 70s or, worse, of the 50s.

The concept of “supremacy of the law” is alien to the tyrannical instincts of the regime’s leaders. Lacking in legal perspective, political wisdom and diplomatic skills, the regime possesses neither the foresight to avoid run-ins with international law nor the flexibility to extricate itself from the legal, political and military entanglements it often creates for itself. These deficiencies combined with its predisposition for tyranny at home and belligerence abroad have netted the regime international criticisms, indictments and sanctions.

The regime portrays itself as victim of injustices of the international community; it does not hesitate to blame the world even for its own transgressions and their legal and political consequences. Truth is, along with “the bad and the ugly”, Eritrea’s interaction with the rest of the world has also carried “the good” aspects with it – a fact which only devious minds are apt to deny. Some examples follow and many more others can be cited.

  1. Eritrea’s Statehood: The military victory which brought Eritrea’s colonial era to a close was the outcome of a struggle which its people waged with unprecedented levels of unity, tenacity and self-sacrifice. As such, it was a national triumph for which Eritreans needed the permission or approval of, or owed gratitude to, no one.Recognition of statehood, on the other hand, is not claimed; rather, it is earned. The 1993 referendum gave voice to national aspirations of the Eritrean people and paved the way for global recognition of the country’s independence. This process which imparted legality to Eritrea’s statehood was arranged, conducted and certified by the UN. In consequence, Eritrea now enjoys the rights and privileges that its UN membership bestows. Unfortunately, this truth remains lost in the regime’s accusatory and vindictive propaganda.
  1. Arbitration of Border Conflict: The 1998-2000 Ethio-Eritrea border war ended when both countries agreed to a set of accords that came to be known collectively as the Algiers Peace Agreement. The talks that led to these agreements were made possible through the facilitation and support of the UN, AU and the U.S.A. The UN Security Council established the Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission with a mandate to delimit and demarcate their common border. It is this internationally-sanctioned mechanism and its “final and binding” ruling that affords Eritrea the legal basis to demand Ethiopia’s withdrawal from occupied territories, and full implementation of the ruling.
  1. Development Assistance: Following the government’s 2001 political crackdown, bilateral and multilateral development assistance from Europe and elsewhere underwent a steady decline drying up completely in 2011. Over this period and specially during the country’s five-year period of isolation that followed, UN funding was the mainstay of Eritrea’s development programs. Specialised UN agencies in the country supported almost fully the country’s development projects in such critical areas as water supply and sanitation, health, education and food security. But, denying this fact, the regime claims development gains of the time were achieved solely through its own efforts and resources under its “policy of self-reliance.”
  1. Recognizing Achievements: Eritrea’s early achievement of most of the Millennium Development Goals was duly recognized and applauded throughout the UN system. In a celebration it hosted with much fanfare and diplomatic corps in attendance, the UNDP office in Asmara heaped praise on the regime for its accomplishments. The latter used this recognition to argue at the recent HRC meeting in Geneva its commitment to protect and promote the economic and social rights of its people.

Need for ‘Coming to Senses’

The issue here is not whether the Eritrean people, like many other peoples in modern history, have been subjected to “international injustices” – for they indeed have, and history is their witness. What is really at issue is the regime’s utter failure to bring, over the last quarter-century, legal and political closure to this sad chapter of Eritrean history, and lead the country forward into a modern era of peace, prosperity and pragmatic coexistence. Instead, this abominably cruel regime has been instigating the population to wallow in resentment, sense of victimhood and self-pity. And in the process, it has inflicted incalculable damage on the country’s political and socio-economic well-being.

There is a lesson to be learned by the conformist elites and pseudo-intellectuals who, through their advocacy and apologetic activism, are engaged in the futile task of trying to prop up a rogue, dying regime: The world is unsympathetic to those who retreat into a corner and brood over their real or perceived victimhood. Neither is it kind to those who bark and snarl from their corner of isolation at their real or imagined enemies. No individual, group, organization or nation can hope to survive, much less excel, short of making their peace with the world in which we live – yes, with all its deficiencies and the injustices it periodically metes out to one or another segment of its inhabitants. Eritrea’s regime and its misguided apologists cannot escape this universal truth unless, of course, they heed their own leader’s advice and decide to “move to another planet!”

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  • DreadFool

    Hello to all, if for every 500 words someone would plant a tree we’d be regenerating some of the oxygen spent on these ENDLESS threads that accomplish nothing but accelerate global warming, by throwing dung in the heat of battle between these spectator keyboard protagonists…

  • Solomon

    Selamat Hope,

    Your debate of external forces and its devastating effects on Eritrea is for the sole purpose of utilizing the skilled and powerful diaspora YPFDJ and PFDJ to contribute nothing of their own and innovative creation but only what is requested of them, I.e. keep beating the drums of war against the backstaber TPLF and Eritrean crushing West…
    As far as your possibly genuine debate, you are even using your “hero MaHmood” for the purposes of your goal.

    With your full knowledge of Tegadalay MaHmood’s SaliH’s uncompromising loyalty to the Eritrean Liberation Revolution, you half heartedly agree with him on the short comings of “the one man’s” mess (instructing the young and old YPFDJ to read it as the necessary wrong right decision taken by a tough decision maker) using the catch phrase “for argument’s sake”..
    I am sorry but you trying to convince me of your level of nationalism and commitment to justice is also for the YPFDJ’s consumption you command.
    It is the narration of ” this level of comitment and by these is what it took to overcome against all odds” put together by you and Monkey y which could be the same one person? Y ask y hope?
    What you probably know about me is my commitment to organize and strengthen the YPFDJ inspire my strong opposition to GoE and PFDJ. Under your strategy and leadership the YPFDJ is an arrested development that has contributed nothing other than providing the logistics and resources as well as numbers for the counter demonstrations. The Change Seeking Vs. Ystatusquo video gamers competition is an alien Eritrean culture to MH’s and mine and before generation that has retarded the very valuable Eritrean resourcre, I.e Youth blessed with ample access to opportunity for innovation.
    Trust me dude, I have observed you and Nitricay of your adaptation and theft from others (wait for the article or a third volume..)
    My reason for responding to you is to let you know how much love I have for the YPFDJ and though you Hope illustrate to the their significant losses incurred to them and Eritrea by the very clever people using them as only fodder. The how’s ahead or along with the new model will follow. Just pace with me in down the river stream and take a good study if the ABSURD! iSEM’s article. Be the reactionary, maleable and strategic Hope that you are. You are not doing this out of malice but in addition to.self interest it us possible also due to ignorance and conditioning.
    Notice, Aya Amanuel’s positive acknowledgement of you, notice the few bricks layed and the MH AH level of conciliatory and scholarly positions they have chosen with Mr. Ismael as their third companion on a peaceful stroll through “Godena Harinet.” All of us have agendas and self interest driven by something deep. During the Proxy War in Somalia you were around to read the near lone principled stance. Same as MH I opposed everything that went against the interest of Eritrea and Eritreans. As a matter of fact I signed and circulated to other Eritreans Professor Asmerom Legesses petition against the COI and ICC not because I did not believe the allegations in the report but because I am a Justice Seeker as opposed to CS.

    Now that iSEM has moved to everyone’s dismay and a little commic relief into the relms of the absurd and twilight zone we of the reality of NOW…it is time to move again! Never mind your difficulty in comprehending my “tough english and coded language.” We are not at the stage of understanding me at this point of our interactive simulation. We are at the stage of understanding our selves first. Recall Saay7’s “subjective Vs. Objective” street lamp post light….

    I have more absurd and undisclosed data that I can pen and edit after a week or two’s thorough polishing if pleasing through propet punctuation for the sake of respectability was sought. Your pandering to Mr. Yohans Zerai by stating “they will attack you as they did Saay” for being an Eritrean scholar wasn’t lost on me as one of your faulty strategic weoponry.

    The purpose of the discussion forum and my method is to build the new model as a team! And the strong team builders are those who move with the team accordingly to what the publicly profess to be their hearts desire as did: Eritrea’s unity and maximum gains and its peaceful coexistence with its neighbors in particular a Peaceful and prosperous Ethiopia.

    Now Dear Hope, “When I move you move! Just like that.” I am moving to Mr. Semere Andom’s Agazians Article and I and naturally you will move when. It is not a choice. It is fundamental academic physics that law. When a tSAtSE moves, a Five Star General Moves, General Nitricay Moves, General Nitricay’s loyal YPFDJ soldier’s official position and policy towards all Ethiopians from enmity to amity, Ethiopians Move to Agazien Nigdet celebration of their mutual patron saint, and Kebir and Kubur resident awatistas Ethiopian Abi goes for a dip on BaHr Al AHmer with his good Arab friend who gave him refuge after RgtSe ykeAlo MaHmooday moved the Ethiopian navy during Operation Fenkil.
    So again Dear Hope, read Nitrics Move, MaHmood’s, AH, Ishmail’s, TT’s, BY’s moves in this article and then follow me to the Five Star General uSEMs Dark Den… And all of our moves henceforth should look into the benefit and friendly from.every post as opposed to the subjective us it or objective locating of the enemy or foe in every post and utilized as a leg up for the delusional and insane counter self interest strategies.
    The lessons initiated by Mr. Yohans Zerai DESERVE a good return of full comprehension and clears movement of you who are called Hope.
    “Hope, commmee to da dark side!”
    “When I move you mive ! Just like that.”

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Selam Guest
    With all due respect I beg to differ. And here are some snippets I could remember that I have been saying in this forum in regard to this matter. BTW, I’m among the harsh critics of USA policy in the region. I have commented extensively in this forum about USA destructive policies towards Eritrea. I’m against SEMG and for the lifting of the sanction; I call it unjust sanctions. I’m for Eritrea’s engagement with EU, UN, AU, GCC and other nations and international bodies. I have been attacked viciously in this forum for holding this position. I hold these positions not because I believe PFDJ is right, or the USA and UN, AU… are wrong but because Eritrea’s interest is in my heart regardless of which party rules it. I believe Eritrea’s engagement with the world, and particularly with the USA and other important world organs, brings unintended positive contributions in Eritrea’s domestic situation and in resolving the long-sanding border issue. The key in completing the border issue lies with convincing Ethiopian rulers that Eritrea could live and prosper outside their orbit. Period. When Eritrea widens its orbit of relation, when it convinces Ethiopian rulers that it could do business without them, when it shows them that it could break the encirclements they place on it; that’s when they will come to their senses. USA could not be expected to risk its interest for the interest of Eritrea. International laws and conventions were written by the superpowers. They set the UN, its branches and other regional bodies, in a way they serve their interest. The good thing we Eritreans now this better than many nations. We have been at the receiving end of this skewed policies. We know this. So, why we didn’t pursue a foreign policy that reflected our awareness of the real world. The real world is such that there is no nation in its right mind that’s ready to risk its interests for the sake of another nation. This is a given fact.
    Coming to your portion of your comment that states the USA wants to “crush” Eritrea. Again, I would be happy to read from you, but my understanding is that the USA actually does not want us crushed, but it won’t play (compromise) with its national interest either.
    – The USA, despite its historic crimes and misguided policies towards the right of Eritreans to have an independent nation, had come to its sense when Eritreans voted overwhelmingly for an independent nation and announced its recognition on the day the referendum results were announced, April, 27, 1993.
    – USA continued having friendly relations with both Ethiopia and Eritrea, heralded their leaders as new bread of African leaders
    – USA was behind the coalition that was to topple Sudanese government. That coalition’s main players were Eritrea and Ethiopia. USA-Eritrea cozy relations continued until the day the Ethio-Eritrean War of broke out.
    – USA and Rwanda were among the first nations that scrambled to stop the war; they put forward a reasonable proposal that would not prejudice the status of the contested areas. The war took its course, and we know what followed of the EEBC. Why it does not compel Ethiopia to abide by the ruling? You will have to look at Ethiopia’s response. Ethiopia is saying “Yes I accept it without precondition, but we have to talk in order to implement it…” You may recall how PMMZ put it. That he would not proceed with a decision that could divide villages or even families. Do I expect his excuses? Absolutely not. But that’s apparently sensible to the powers to be. The second point is that USA could not be expected to work against its national interest. We should know that by now. If Eritrea and Ethiopia are friends, then the USA will have no problem having friendly relations with both. But if it has to choose, we should know that it will always side with Ethiopia. It’s absurd to expect a favor from a country that you have decided will always want to crush you. I mean, come on, how is it that Eritrean leaders tell us that the USA wants to crush Eritrea (without telling us why), and then come back lamenting why the USA did not side with Eritrea!? My view recognizes that the USA will not compromise its national interest for the sake of Eritrea. It’s up to Eritrean leadership to strike a balance. The Somalia debacle was not smart at all.
    Mind you, Eritrea was not only at odd with the USA but practically with all international bodies, including WITH the somewhat independent EU.
    Regarding reconstituting Somalia and what have you, I have commented extensively on it on different occasions, but the point is:
    Eritrea should have focused reconstituting its domestic politics. How helpful would have been had the government of Eritrea listened to Educated Eritreans and other patriots including the G-15… and embark on reconstituting its domestic politics. How historic would it have been if Eritrean leaders had convened all political stakeholders in Asmara and charted out a national road map for the reconstruction of Eritrea after that devastating war? Instead, we saw Eritrean leaders more interested in the reconstruction of Somalia.
    The point: I could still voice what is in the interest of my nation without leaning on the statements of officials of the government or the opposition.
    The point I’m trying to make is this: nations are guided by their interests. No nation on this planet will sacrifice its interest for the interest of others. None. When it comes to regional and international conflicts, countries such as ours need to play it safely. We don’t command nuclear deterrence, wells of petrol (like the Gulf countries that get away with assisting groups the USA sees as adversaries); we are not Israel, a spoiled kid in the vastness of the desert of the middle east. The brunt of the USA could be feeled by countries as big as Russia. Look how Russia is put in dilemma (between swallowing its pride and risking economic collapse). Russia could weather it for a while thanks to its military and political power and its influence and its capital reserves. We need to think twice, even more, before acting out.

  • Berhe Y

    Dear Abi,

    Ok, I can breath a sigh of relief that I am off your zombie list.

    Sure, Atse Yohannes was a hero to some but he may not be to others. The deportation, forced religious conversion, terror by his generals including in Eritrea and the war adventures with Rasi Wodemichael is all but brutal glory does not escape me.

    So let’s take history all of it not just what you like. That’s been consistent with you, you refuse to hear the other side.

    Speaking of Inter-habesha rivary, I saw a video from the demonstration in Gonder on the weekend, it seems a lot series than I thought. I hope the leaders wake up and resolve what ever demands and differences they have before this changes to something ugly.

    Let’s move on, today is another day and we have more important things to worry about.


    • Abi

      Hi Berhe
      I agree with you regarding heroes.
      Ones hero can be others villain.
      For example I consider Awate a shifta while you consider him a hero.
      It’s all good.

  • Solomon

    Selamat Hope,

    Yes it is not easy. But could have done is tantamount to dHri may ab beAti. MaHmooday spoke about the now. I take the call to mean Modeling…

    Staples! “That was easy!”

  • blink

    Dear Forums
    Yesterday ,I have a conversation with my Ethiopian friend who is educated in Mekele university and he still thinks Ethiopia with 85 million people can not remain silent while the Arabs take Ethiopia’s back yard . To inform you this person is now an associate professor in Sociology , i was stand to listen some one with such caliber can think ,Eritrea is Ethiopia’s playing ground. Horizon seems his student in ideas ,as if Eritrea is not equally neighbor with Arabs and Ethiopia . DIA may do to pre long his time but the mandate of a free democratic state( Eritrea) will be also questioned by Ethiopia’s politicians if in case our future politicians join the GCC or have more strong relationship with Arabs than Ethiopia . It makes me sad to see people in this forum still buy such idea, despite the fact that they have been in this website forum for so long. Their comment goes on and on ….the same linear understanding. Eritrea is a state and people should not and must not entertain the idea of old Hailesilassie or dergi dead idea.

    Here is short but long line.

    The Eritrean people never ever has an acidic relationship with Arabs (Sudan ,Djibouti , Saudis ,and all the other arbas) for centuries but to the opposite the poor Eritrean people has never ever have a good harvest time with Ethiopia . So the illusion that Both (Eritreans and Ethiopians ) are brothers and the same people is FALSE and the facts on the ground for centuries do not support such false claim by people who want it by force.

    • Abi

      Hi blink
      I used to think Eritreans and Ethiopians were brothers until I discovered awate university . Here I learned the truth. We are not brothers. I was foolish.
      Thank you for your honesty.

      • Warsay

        Dear Abi,
        Isn’t it obvious that Eritreans and Ethiopians are adversaries and enemy states? With over 650,000 Ethiopians and 85,000 Eritreans killed in the wars from 1961-2000. That is a lot of blood spilled between two countries. That is not including the number of wounded and maimed which probably numbers over 1,000,000 between the two countries. I know in Eritrea, every family has been affected. And I mean every family literally because Eritrea is so small. There is only a 1-degree separation between an Eritrean and a fallen hero brother, sister, uncle, aunt, neighbor, childhood friend, teacher…etc The same can not be said for Ethiopia because Ethiopia is a much bigger country and the sacrifice is not born by few. That is why Eritreans will never let go.

        • blink

          Dear Abi and Warsay
          As we 3 can agree that , Ethiopians and Eritreans has never been brothers and sisters from political point of view . All southern politicians and Eritrean politicians have been telling their people lies that ,”we are the same people” , we are not and we do not seem to come to terms. what we have to copy is on how to not repeat the history in between.

      • Nitricc

        Abi: What an absurd point of view. The same people; brothers and sisters can have disagreement and can be classified as enemies of each other but it does not mean they are not brothers and they are not the same people. The cultural similarities; the phenotypic traits they display and the overall history back ground; I don’t think there is as close as this two nations as of Eritreans and Ethiopians are. It is true, due Ethiopians ignorance and stupidity, tried to humiliate and dishonor Eritreans by taking away everything Eritrean prided on. And then, Eritreans had no choice but to fight back and reclaim what is theirs. I know, Abi will come and tell you that how his corrupted and stupid leaders were good for Eritrea but what can you expect? But what Abi choose to ignore is even the children of Eritrea weren’t spared from Ethiopian tanks over running on them alive. So, yes, we are enemies but we do have close similarities. Are we the same? phenotypically; Yes, Gino? NO!

        • Thomas D

          Hi Nitricc,

          I see you have hidden love for the ethiopians. You cannot live with them and you cannot live without them:) You cannot deny that you are genetically and behaviorally more related to them than to us, the Eritreans. I can only relate you with Girma Asmerom and Sofia T. who knows ethiopia more they know Eritrea:) To you guys, it is like divorce, it is painfully hard to take…..

        • Nitricc,

          If I leave out our ignorance, stupidity and crimes, reading in your comment that ethiopians and eritreans are the closest nations in the world historically, culturally and phenotypically (genetically), is a revelation Habeshas should rejoice and remember. You should know that it will be brought as an evidence against you if you change your mind in the future.

        • Abi

          Hi General Nitricc
          ” BiTilew gelebeTegn ” ale yagere sew.
          I’ve been saying all you just said for years. I didn’t stop there. I married an Eritrean beauty. 20 some years and counting…
          Don’t preach the converted ones. Tell that to your people.

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Selam Solomon
    I wrote my previous comment in hasty and am not sure if I underlined the juicy part of my thought, please read this in tandem with the last one. In short, what I tried to say was this:
    The discourse, or even clash, of OLD versus NEW views itself is as old as history. When societies incorporate old positions and ideas into the NEW ones, they constantly reform/evolve. Remember: the key here is the NEW. History takes its course when old ways give way to new ones or incorporate them peacefully and gradually. The key is that the new ones are NEW, and it’s the old ones that must find a creative way of adapting to them, NOT the other way around. If they could not incorporate the new and emerging ideas to the old, if they could not accommodate the aspirations of young generations, then revolution is inevitable. Now, take this general truth, and aply it into current Eritrean politics. Merek and the rest of “old guards” have the opportunity to evolve by absorbing the NEW energies, ideas and aspirations of the youth; or they will certainly be swept aside by them. I suggest that at aspirational/ideas level, there should not occur the imminence of clashes between the NEW and the OLD because they are all struggling for the same end. I think, the problem is in the technical or practical aspect of the issue. And my solution and suggestion to Medrek and the rest of the traditional political organizations is simple. Trust the new generation. Give emerging young leaders and women space. Then you will continue to be an important integral of the movement and keep being relevant. When we do that, the clashes between the OLD and the NEW will be less likely, the experience of the “old guard” and the emerging energy of the youth will sync and the old generation will keep playing its role, i.e., passing experience to the new and continuing to play its role in the shaping of the future in a way that does not hinder the aspirations of the young. This formula creates a social harmony, and is the basis of social innovations and the resilience of societies.
    I hope this clarifies things.

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Mahmuday,

      If you do not mind, I would have appreciated it with thumbs up, if you could have said it “the old idea to be negated by the new ideas” instead of corporating the new and the old. The rule of social development always follow “nagation ” and “negation of negation.” Corporating new and old ideas always slows the change or stagnate social movements. Old is old and new is new. What we need is “new genetation with new ideas”.


      • Mahmud Saleh

        Ahlan wa sahlan Emma
        Thanks, and basically that’s what I’m saying albeit in my own language. I tried to make that intent clear with the qualifying sentence “…the progressive parts of the old will keep being helpful and relevant and the irrelevant and really OLD thoughts and practices will be replaced by the new”
        I have rearranged a couple of sentences after reading your reply. Thanks again. Using the terms of historical materialism makes me feel as if I’m still in Sahel (joke is intended Emma). It’s just that I tried to avoid those terms. I don’t know if it’s a form of aversion. But yes, I agree with a strict caveat that I tend not to believe that placing lines between the old and new in our current political discourse will be helpful. Progressive ideas know no generational boundaries, although naturally the new generation will come with a leading edge. And that’s why I’m saying that the traditional organizations need to appreciate this fact. They must welcome and accommodate the aspirations of the new generation or they will be made irrelevant.

      • Ismail AA

        Ahlen Amanuel and Mahmoud,
        Interesting exchange of views. Now, the core issue here is what is the new and what is the old within the context of the relevant reference. I mean the departure premise has to do with: what is the new that we intend to bring in; and what is the old that has to make place for the former. We should stretch from there to determine the substance: is it the old culture (traditions) or some of its aspects that we need to replace with new ideas? Is the context and premise of change political culture or the dynamics that operates it?. Is it social-economic status quo that has proven obsolete and should give way to the new ? Thus, the points raised by both of you are profound and basic on both theoretical and practical levels.
        Now, if we are talking about the conditions that are currently facing our people and the political agents of change, the matter will provisionally boil down to appraising what were the old approaches that have been used to realize the aspired change in our country, and what are the new mechanisms that should be introduced to replace them along with the agencies of changes that go with them. The next crucial and challenging question will then be how do we go the course and who will be the agent.
        For instance, one of the complaints that is rampant across the wide spectrum of what we came to refer to as justice seeker camp is that the traditional organizations, and the new ones as well (civic society groups and recently formed opposition groups) is that they have become irrelevant because they have proven not susceptible to new ideas or accommodation of the new generation. But those who are supposed to replace them and the elite that advocate on behalf of them have so far equally failed. Given that they have new ideas and convinced that the old has reached a dead end, then they should organize their ideas and transform them to do-able programs and go down to the mainstream stakeholder (the people) sell them. In that case, the old would not really have chance to stand on the face of the new. Thus, the dilemma is where is the literati and the elite that should lead the way. Otherwise, complaining about failure of the old will simply remain mere label that will be repeated.
        With many thanks and warm greeting to both of you.
        Ismail AA

        • Amanuel Hidrat

          Merhaba Ismail,

          The questions you have posed to Mahmud Saleh and myself are very interesting questions, not only from the prism of the negation process of old ideas to new ideas, but also could bring into the loop the issues that one time Hailat had raised “CS vs JS”. You might ask me why? Because, the premises of “negation” and “new ideas” will simply serve to the premises of CS as oppose to JS. Hailat will sure join the debate.

          Now, back to your questions:

          (a) What is the new we intend to bring and the old that has to be negated within the context of the relevant references?
          (b) is it the old culture (traditions)? Is the context and premises of change political culture or the dynamics that operates it? Is is social-economic status quo that should give away to the new?

          Let me start with the questions that are set up in (b). Yes the old “ghedli culture” should be replaced by a new political culture of tolerance, accommodation, and political and economic fairness among our social groups. The intolerant ghedli culture is running the state of Eritrea as we speak. The ghedli culture breeds division, hate, and civil wars (save the cause of ghedli), and now by extension that culture also created all kinds of mistrust and disunity within the social and cultural units of our population. Striking out that culture should be part of the negation process. Second the current operational dynamics also specifically serve to that political culture and the leaders of that culture. Third the socio-economic status also benefits to the guardians of that political culture not to the Eritrean populace.

          So the ghedli culture and its operatives in the current state of Eritrea could be tagged as “old ideas” that should be negated absolutely. Most of the time old generations resist for changes; and since the new generation are more receptive to new ideas and changes, they will be the driving force for any foreseeable changes.

          As I have stated in many instances in this forum, that the elites within the new and old generations could propose new ideas and new state operational structure that brings unity, peace, accommodation, and equitable living in politics, economics, and socio-cultural life. Though the Eritrean elites as in all politics are divided in to two opposite political spectrum, the responsibilities for generating new ideas is depends upon them – a new idea that replaces the ghedli culture that drove out our young from the nation. My version of new idea is already in the public domain or my column file at awate.

          Amanuel Hidrat

          • Ismail AA

            Ahlen Amanuel.
            One can’t agree more regarding the postulation that the old must make place for the new when it proves hindrance to transformation to better aspects of societal life. Our case can’t be an exception to the general rule. In my view what the current regime represents in terms of intolerance, social-cultural disruption as foundations of despotism should be negated and demolished to allow space and time for harmonious political and social life, which are crucial imperatives for economic justice. In few words, thus, I cannot dissent from the general truism that dialectics of change provide.
            But having said that, the question is whether we have to submit to the preposition that the regime and its ways (culture) of doing things represent the so called ghedli culture or we should understand it as an aberration whose root could be traced back to Selfi-Netsanet’s (manifesto- Nehnan Illamanan) beginnings that incubated and fostered by taking advantage of the imperatives priority of the time had imposed.
            Here, I am alluding to for example the resolution of the ELF 1st National Congress resolution that dealt with the splinter groups that comprised the ELF-PLF of the late Osman Sabbe, the Obel faction and Selfi-Netsanet. While the leaders of the first two were condemned to face punishment, the leader of the third (Isayas) was spared even though the crime was the same by the standard of the working rules of conduct at the time. Seen in retrospect, it was deadly mistake on one hand, and a blessing for Isayas on the other. The rationale or argument that won the day was that condemnation of Isayas was politically and socially sensitive and would negatively impact the work of the Front at a time Ethiopia had been arming peasant village militias as well as training anti-insurgency police at Decamere. Unifying the people behind the Front superseded other matters.
            The point I am trying to drive home is that PFDJ doesn’t embody the ideas and mechanisms that constitute the totality of the ghedli era culture. In my view, we have to look at the matter from broader perspective that encompassed the various phases of our people’s struggle starting from the work of the parties in the 40s and 50s through the period of the ELF and the liberation fronts. That culture shouldn’t be dwarfed to what the PFDJ represents and the calamities it caused and still causing; the positive aspects of the legacy of the armed liberation era bestowed to posterity should not be undermined.
            Ismail AA

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Dear Ismail,

            The armed struggle left us with two contradictory legacies (positive and negative legacies) that are still haunting us as we speak. Positive, because the struggle made the Eritrean people’s aspiration for independence reality. Negative, because it deepened the mistrust of our social groups, breed the culture of intolerance and arrogance, and created the disunity that affect the social fabric of our society. These are facts we can ‘t dismiss from our conscience. I believe the current struggle should be, to correct these negative legacies brought with its success.My assessment might differ from yours, but I am in the fight to change those legacies and to bring the culture of tolerance and accommodations.

            Amanuel Hidrat

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Amanuel,
            Actually we are on the same page; there is no discord at all. I support what you’re suggesting and actually the endgame you aspire as well. What I am arguing is that the EPLF and its child, the PFDJ, should not be taken as standard bearer of the ghedli era culture or experience. It is actually an aberration, as I said earlier because the path it followed negates the good aspects of the Eritrean people’s values and norms. As you very rightly wrote there are indeed positive aspect of the legacy that we need to proudly embrace and try pass to posterity.
            Best regards,
            Ismail AA

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Ismail,

            I surely understood that we are in the same page. I was only trying to make my points clear to our readers, so to avoid people not to argue us out of context. Thank you Ismailo . I am enjoying your inputs with great smile of approval.


          • Mahmud Saleh

            Selam Ismail

            Could you expound on this:
            “I am alluding to for example the resolution of the ELF 1st National Congress resolution that dealt with the splinter groups that comprised the ELF-PLF of the late Osman Sabbe, the Obel faction and Selfi-Netsanet. While the leaders of the first two were condemned to face punishment, the leader of the third (Isayas) was spared even though the crime was the same by the standard of the working rules of conduct at the time”
            I’m just curious. Could you walk me through? Are you saying there were different resolutions, one preferentially tailored to save IA faction, and the other targeting Sabe and Obelyin? I’m really curious to read more on this.
            On the rest of the material, I agree. PFDJ represents the aberration of our revolutionary aspirations., EPLF alone, or ELF for that matter could not represent our collective ghedli legacy. I read your comment addressed to Emma and myself very late. You seem to have understood my intention. I’m not targeting particular organizations. It’s a general truth, and I guess, any organized social or political movement should be aware of it for the sake of triumphing on achieving its objective. I agree with both you and Emma on this.

          • Ismail AA

            Ahlen Ustazna Mahmoud,
            At the ELF First National Congress of 1971 very heated debate unfolded regarding the factions that split from the ELF and formed a kind of alliance at Sodha Illa. The agenda item was about what to do with the leaders of those factions in order to restore unity.
            Two proposals were tabled: one was condemning the leaders of the three factions who were termed responsible for rebellion and disrupting the unity of the fighting forces because they violated the rules that governed the organizational (mainly military) code of conduct (discipline); and the other was to exempt the leader of Selfi Netsanet, Isayas.
            Some delegates argued that under the then existing circumstances in Kebesa, any condemnation of Isayas and the concomitant measures against him and his follower would sensitively affect our people in that regions. At the time the Ethiopian government was arming village peasant militias, beside the recruitment and training of counter-insurgency contingent of police (komandis) at Decamere under Israeli experts. So some key delegates like Martyr Dr. Fitsum and others maintained that the any aggressive measure against Selfi Netsanet will create problem for ELF’s efforts to penetrate the highland and try to rally the population behind the struggle.
            Finally, decision was reached to condemn the leaders of ELF-PLF and Obel while Isayas was not. Instead it was decided that dialogue should take place and a committee should be sent to engage him. Regarding the other two factions the ordinary fighters wwere called upon to return to the ranks of the ELA while their leaders were condemned. As the consequence military action was taken against them.
            A committee was dispatched to Isayas but he refused to engage and the effort failed. Later his group joined the fighting on the side of the other two and until then no military action was taken against him. A year later, 1972, they formed a common front under ELF-EPLF at Beirut, Lebanon. I should note here that the faction of Obel was not that big and was reduced to individuals. So, the third faction that joined the Beirut group was what remained from the ELM under the late Mohammed Said Naod.
            Briefly, thus, this was what I was referring to in the post you mentioned.
            Ismail AA.

          • Mahmud Saleh

            Marhab Ismail
            Thanks for enlightening me on the discussions that took place in the convention. Outsiders such as EPLF fighters know only the final resolutions which contained “Eritrean field could not accommodate more than one front,” and the ultimatum that was made to the splintered factions. It’s good to know the vibes displayed in the convention.

          • Ismail AA

            Ahlen Mahmoud again,
            Just a few words on the much talked about “Eritrean field cannot accommodate more than one front” slogan, the context in which it was raised was often omitted. It actually indicated the military sense of the issue rather than political. If I would look at it from pure neutral historical perspective developments had proven the meaning of it. The field indeed could not accommodate multiple military formations and the prove of that was the counter slogan the EPLF leaders also raised that ELF is doomed to wither away. As the result the field suffered internal military conflicts that left scars.
            Ismail AA

    • Solomon

      Selamat MaHmooday, AH and All,

      It is time.

      With the permission of the teachers that I am granted, allow me to post a mathematical question from an Algebra text book…. Chapter 2, 31.
      It is a GM five percent credit warm up or rev your engines team work, alegnament….

      Prime Time:
      31. Towards your next purchase of a GM car you will be credited five percent from the price you pay each time you add to your valued possesiom up to.a maximum of $3,500. How would you have to spend to collect your $3,500?
      First answer start a a leaf thread and new permutation above.

  • said

    Exceptional Performance at the Philadelphia Democratic Convention; Should Hilary Clinton Win, the US Dollar & Economy will be on the Ascendance
    For most of U.S. foreign policy I have my reservations and U.S. reputation in the world is not shared by many around the world. The inexperience, ill-informed and untested Mr. Trump has all the makings of a diplomatic foreign policy disaster. my take in regard Democratic conventions U.S. election campaign last week that deals with domestic economics ,business and financial policy and regulation.

    Americans in general are a “Law Abiding” race when it comes to America’s internal affairs and policies. Besides, Americans in general are Institution respecting people who generally conform, at times to a fault, to Institutional By-Laws and requisites. I well recall a presentation in 1997 at a luncheon at the Boston CFA Society by the renowned investment banker William H. Donaldson, co-founder of the Investment Bank Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ). Mr. Donaldson highlighted, the savvy and hands-on American financial wiz, the core facts about the strengths of the American economy. Generation after generation, and despite the vagaries of the business cycles the epitome of the working of the Capitalist System and governing rules of a free market economy, the Americans lived to accept the American way of doing business and accepting American Economic realities.

    Mr. Donaldson spoke, as remains quite valid to this day, of three quintessential features distinguishing the American economy and the American business culture of all the economies and the business cultures of the rest of the world’s industrial democracies. As I recall, Mr. Donaldson highlighted three main components giving strength to the American economy that he elaborated as follows:

     The Resilience of the American Labor Market: Hire & Fire without unnecessary complex consequences and repercussions to the business owner in a manner that permitted the US to always easily switch to new growth economic sectors best evidenced by the CTI & Biotechnology Revolutions in the mid-1980s;

     Very Developed Legal System: that’s again provides a solid umbrella of protection for property rights, investments and resolution of commercial and business disputes within the framework of well-defined legal system and institutions; and,

     The Abundance of Risk/Venture Capital and well developed Risk Capital Institutions. Risk/Venture capital exists in the US Markets in sizes and volumes that are unmatched in any of the other Industrialized Democracies. American investors are generally less risk averse which tends to support the starting of new ventures around novel Breaking Technologies and efficient alternative business models.

    However, all been said, I would still add another very important fourth factor that might have skipped Mr. Donaldson’s mind at the time now looking back nearly two decades in retrospect. That is, America’s Endowment with some of the world’s leading learning institutions and important top centers of scientific research.

    America, in short, remains the only country among the world leading industrial democracies that enjoys the size of the market; well-developed capital markets and the general more open and less restrictive regimes for the flow of capital. None of those facts, with possibly the exception of Great Britain, are enjoyed by any of the other industrialized world democracies.

    All the above is a prelude that attests to the promises still entailed and the potentials for a thriving future American economy; prospects of economic growth and general stability of the American Economic system. It follows in this vein that the US Dollar would continue to play the role of the World’s uncontested Reserve Currency, i.e. taking the long view vis-à-vis the rest of the world’s economies.

    In our increasingly turbulent world, nearly almost unprecedented with a fast converged global village economy, the US fairs much better than any of the countries of the rest of the world. The behemoth Chinese and Indian economies remain quite dependent on the health of the US economy and the growth of trade exchanges with the US, thus, indicating that both China and India would ultimately conform to the rules and conditions dictated by American economic and trade planners with regard to more balanced trade and fair economic exchanges.

    The European Union and Japan of the open free market economies of the world are both ravaged by what seems like intrinsic endemic challenges that would for the extended foreseeable future put a huge pressure on their national currencies. As the world in addition is entering what seems like a protracted worsening security situation, Foreign Capital would increasingly seek a Safe Haven in the trade-off of Security-Return that with America’s other elaborated unique strengths above, the US Economy and the US Dollar will fare well and maintain a sustained secular ascendance for many years to come. The US Dollar will remain the world’s uncontested Reserve Currency for a very long time to come, especially with the restructuring of the economy under a Democratic Administration would spur growth; improve public financings and significantly lower the US Budget Deficit and the US Outstanding National Debt.

    In this year of American Presidential elections, should Mrs. Hilary Clinton make it to the White House and the Democrats equally do well (Quintessential Prerequisite) in the legislative elections that would guarantee the Democrats a comfortable lead in congress, the US Economy could witness a steady growth in the next four to eight years of a Democratic Administration with the exception of the first 6 quarters that could witness an economic slowdown.

    However, that been said, the first two years of Mrs. Clinton’s Presidency, there would be expected an economic slowdown – not negative economic growth – this as Mrs. Clinton starts implementing its ambitious economic plan that would exert negative effect on the US Budget in the interim. The significant increase in minimum wages; introductions of different reform including those pertaining to students’ loans; the likely lowering of taxes on low-income earners; and the expected significant spending on US Infrastructure while could cause a temporary slowdown in the US economy, it would ultimately trigger significant economic growth spurred by improved consumer spending and the creation of new US Jobs. It is Keynesian Economics all over again in a stark departure from versus Monetarists Economics of the Reganomics and Thatcherism that affected the sustenance of economic growth and dealt a major endemic structural blow to the Capitalist System ending in the huge inequality gap of income and wealth among the Americans.

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Selam Solomon

    I’m not sure if I can discuss the points you raised to your satisfaction. I will just give you my own general take, and consider it uneducated guess.

    1. I think it’s good to see new leadership emerging from the youth movements. It’s my hope that these emerging grassroots’ force, with its leadership, will be assertive enough to pressure the traditional organizations to reform themselves. I have repeatedly said that for the opposition, in order effectuate change in Eritrea, it needs to change/reform itself, organizational streamlining, refining vision and strategy, focusing on commonalities and compromising on things that hold them apart….In short, they have to build consensus on what it is that they want to do once they assume power, and listing their priorities…..and how they strive to make them happen….

    I tend to avoid old/new guard dichotomy. Individuals and organizations need to be judged by their current positions and programs not by their previous affiliations. If we focus on the NOW, we can avoid a lot of misperceptions. Take Medrek (I must say that I’m not privy to their operational details, what I know of them is what you read and listen to publicly), I will evaluate them on what they put forward now, and on how they behave now, not on who they were yesterday. This is true with the rest of the organizations. Now, if we focus solely on ideas and programs of NOW, I believe the emergent leadership of the grassroots (including youth) will find a space within the organizations since most of the programs are tailored towards a transition that is geared in creating a conducive atmosphere where Eritreans are expected to debate and shape up their future through their representatives (economic, political, foreign, social…).

    I don’t see why the ideas of the emerging youth’s leadership should not find a space within the current political discourse. This approach could not be unti-justice (for the just seekers), and unti change (for the change seekers). For the justice and change-seekers (per HTG and Solomon framing), justice is paramount. To me, change is a vehicle that is used for the deliverance of justice PLUS others, including democratic governance. Therefore, it could be inferred that the change is needed/done primarily for the deliverance of justice (in its legal, political and social connotations). Here, I see no need to categorize the forces for democratic change into new and old as long as the ideas are compatible. I think the frustration becomes stronger when the veteran cadres of the political movements fail to appreciate that with time there is cultural and capacity restraints, and for the good of the cause they have been struggling for, it’s prudent that they welcome new energy and emerging ideas. They must give space to the youth and women within their organizations and within the general political discourse.

    2. You said, “Is your last minute damage control with YOUR constructive crititique of this articles author is to perhaps slow diwn or repel a perceived impending onslaught or offensive in Medrekhs garrisons…”
    Dear Solomon: As I put it above, I have no direct relationship with Medrek, but as any Eritrean, I have a stake at what they do and am monitoring their activities. Regarding this Author, I think he needs no defense. If need be, they both can mount a sewrawi Hjoom (ha…ha) and tSATsE fortress.
    Well, the above was my 2 Nakfa worth trial

    • Solomon

      Selamat MaHmooday,

      Kab asewseil, ksHafakha amEdikhTemit, Radio ftaH.

      It is to my satisfaction as I am sure you can deduce the continuity of dialigue and partial truth.

      For now, 97¢ plus 2Nakfa
      By way of submitting a resume if you will. Aya Amanuel Hidrat term of incorporation I second the motion

  • Dear Yoty Topy,

    Please allow me to call this gene, the Habesha-Abyssinian (HA-xyz12) mutation, that is characterized by the so-called inter-habesha rivalry (a term coined by SJG), and manifests itself with the symptoms you very well described. Unless you knock-out this mutation and make it nonfunctioning, there is the danger that Habeshas will kill eachother to extinction due to misunderstandings on issues big and small, and become an endangered species, at least in the region they live today

    • Abi

      Hi Horizon
      Good point! Some Abesha are being extinct as we speak. The problem is arrogance blinded their thinking from seeing it.

    • Yoty Topy

      Hi Horizon,

      Hear! hear! I couldn’t agree any more with you, brother!

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam Horizon,
      Ha Ha it is a scientific phenomena. Commonly known as inter-habesha rivalry, scientifically labeled as HA-XYZ12 mutation by you. It is something that needs to be studied further and broadly. It comes with good looks, but hidden in the gene pools is what Yoty Topy described as the offending recessive gene.
      The one operative phrase that nailed it is the description “that the northern one travels the more prominently it features.”
      Haile Selassie Yimoot, as long as that phrase is included in the final scientific literature, I am prepared to draw my sword and defend it till ….
      Mr. K.H
      P.S For some of you, come on, I am trying to humor you.

  • Solomon

    Dear Hope,

    Just a quick note before I commence with my new post COI modeling….

    You see Hope bamboozeling the Hafash says the untruth above. To make it seem as if I am stating that all movements and frictions between the ruled, unruled, the internal as well as external vectors have less than ONE probabilities of effecting change. Less than one with his classic Hope Strategic skills he has honed,his slight of hand. he is equating my less than one with a ZERO chance of having any effect. And his gullable followers will be mislead to believe that even the opposition or opposition minded AlSO believe the status quo of the “niHna Nisu” world order is immovable or is here to stay forever.
    Now Hope knows very well that a 99% probability of an event occurring in probability measurement is indicated by 0.99 and the probability of flipping a coin to heads or tails is 0.50 Less than One. To Hope what matters is the strategy of feeding falls bravado to the HERD Hafash whose only concern is Self Interest that is also a false conditioning.

    So Wrong Hope. The probabilities are by far more ominous than zero… Only your strategy is futile because it is asymptotically close to zero probability.

    Now to the main task at hand. The River is flowing so I better tune my ChirawaTa and run along the down stream.

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Selam Yohannes

    All in all I find your article interesting and useful. I think you could have developed your argument well had you stayed within the theme that- of course, there are competing interests in the world, and the primary objective of governments and their arms of foreign relations are to sort out the conflicting and conflating interests of world politics whereby designing a smart foreign policy that maximizes the returns from matching interests and lessening (controlling) the damages that may result as diverging or conflicting interests collide. Elected governments are directly responsible to the people who elect them; and I assume, there are mechanisms built in getting them to stay within a safe margin of error (legislative oversight, free media, think tanks, civic associations…and so on. However, unelected governments such as ours, have no leash put on them; they control the propaganda machine, hence manipulate world events to their benefit. Add to that Eritreans’ bad experience with the world. You seem to have understood this fact and put it as:

    “Having paid dearly for their hard-won national independence, the Eritrean people feel they should remain vigilant against hostile neighbors and their allies who constitute a threat to their country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

    I would say this was an excellent article (and BTW, it still is) if the target were the regime and not Eritrean people. With all due respect those who believe that the world is against us are small. People normally understand that there have been wrong policies of the superpowers, they still continue to peruse wrong policies when it comes to Eritreans’ interests. However, that should not give PFDJ a blank check for approval. The fact that it has manipulated this fact successfully takes me to SAAY’s brilliant response. It all boils down to what alternative do we put forward. Do we just continue on our “nikid Traay” of the world, and particularly TPLF led Ethiopia, has nothing to blame or we put forward an argument that acknowledges the wrong policies of some of the superpowers and their clienteles towards Eritrea and show Eritreans how our alternative strategy mitigates those wrong policies. SAAY asked just that. What’s the alternative to PFDJ’s consistent narration? The following is a brilliant argument that you made which acknowledges the fact that the world lives in a mesh of conflicting and conflating interests and that it was up to the government of Eritrea to navigate the nascent nation through those treacherous waters of world politics.

    “The issue here is not whether the Eritrean people, like many other peoples in modern history, have been subjected to “international injustices” – for they indeed have, and history is their witness. What is really at issue is the regime’s utter failure to bring, over the last quarter-century, legal and political closure to this sad chapter of Eritrean history, and lead the country forward into a modern era of peace, prosperity and pragmatic coexistence.”

    I made the same argument in my letter to Ambassador Wedi-Gherahtu. Paraphrasing, I said, “Even if you want us to believe that the world is against Eritrea, by the mere fact that you and your government have failed Eritrea in stirring it safely through tough times by pursuing a reasonable course of diplomacy, you have been failures. And this matter alone would have become enough reason to discard your government had Eritreans have a say in its affairs.”
    Lastly: Your concluding remarks were not consistent with the overall mature articulations of the article. It made you look as if you have shifted unexpectedly to a very lower gear.
    Regarding interests vs friend/enemy: I think the maxim that there are no permanent enemies, or perpetual friends but perpetual interests needs to be scrutinized. Parties of matching interests would normally be expected to be friends, but parties of conflicting interests are not AUTOMATICALLY expected to be enemies. The fact that international relations are driven by the alignments of interests is easily understood. However, when it the mismatches of interests occur, then the artfulness of diplomacy becomes important. If you take Eritrea’s case, given the fact that the Ethio-Eritrean conflict has not been concluded to the satisfaction of the parties involved, you would expect the government of Eritrea to trudge this messiness of international relations carefully; you would not expect it to confront UN, AU…and USA on their vital interests (Somalia case), instead, you would expect it to at least disagree with them in principle but refrain from working against them because they are very important in having the border demarcated. Therefore, you don’t have to be enemies even if your interests don’t match.
    I think Eritreans grasp this fact. What they don’t grasp is what the alternative-to-be has in store for them. The failure of the opposition in not articulating an Eritrean agenda that is aware of Eritreans real appraisal of the situation and how it plans to mitigate the effects of foreign interests that affect Eritrea adversely is the problem why the public seems to fall in line with the government’s version of “The world is against us.”

    • Hope

      Selam Mahmuday:

      A beautiful ,even a perfect supplement ,to Yohannes’ Arguement and to that of SAAY’s response!

      I believe Mr.Haile Derue attempted to say the same thing during his speech in Germany.

      The mystery here is that this approach is not a Rocket Science and I wonder why the PFDJ Gov could not grasp it.

      I do not believe that it has to do with Paranoia and Diplomatic ineptness or failure only.

      It might have to with the very personality and psych of the Head himself.
      That might include Pathological Paranoia besides some hidden agenda or weird conspiracy.

      Mind you that the CIA repeatedly warned the same Head to behave and to change his course.

      But here is another Arguement or fact that we should not forget:
      The Policy of the U.S. State Department on/against Eritrea is written on a hard steel since Zemene Enini

      This will lead me back Into my same confusion that,even if the GoE were/was to abide by the New World Order and to execute the above ABCs of Diplomacy and Compliance to the New Workd Order,I am skeptical enough that the same Powers and Mercenaries would have changed their destructive Policies against Eritrea.

      I am not going to repeat the same Litany that I did before to Yohannes and SAAY but what I am trying to say is that things might not be as easy as they seem to be and as easy as you put them.

      The good thing though,eventhough belatedly,the Regime Leadership seems to have grasped things after all the mess we have gone through.

      Moreover,let us not forget as well that the Regime tried to abide by and to be compliant to the New World Order when Secretary Ramisfield visited Eritrea and we all know why and how things went against the interest of Eritrea.

      All the Somsli Saga and related issues came up later and I do not personally believe that the failure has to do exclusively with the PFDJ.

      The issue,in my naive opinion,is complex with complex and intricate contributing factors that needs a comprehensive approach.

      As you said it eloquently,as concerned Citizens and presumed Opposition Camp fighting for an alternative and a better System,we collectively have failed as well miserably !

      Therefore the blame should be directed to all of us.

      • Mahmud Saleh

        Selam Hope
        Thank you for the complement.
        I would stress on matters that Eritrea controls rather than on the behaviors of others including the USA. I’m not a fan of USA foreign policy. But then we have already agreed that nations are guided by their national interests. The question should be: what does Eritrea get by pursuing policies that the USA sees as against its interests such as the case with Awey, and standing against the TFG, etc. What’s more important, the closing of the border conflict or the reconstitution of Somalia, a nation that has limited strategic influence over our national interests? Why would not the government take proactive adjustments once it saw its strategy was not working? I understand your point, though.

        • Hope

          Selam Mahmuday:

          Thanks.Points well takenl.

          Let me argue for the sake of argument only as the Somali-Eritrean saga is an obsolete issue now..

          a)From the Ethiopian perspective:

          The TPLF was acting not only for its interest but for the interest of others, which in return messed things and the Ethio-West interference was not constructive but gave birth to the notorious Al Shebab Terrorism.

          My point:

          They and their Strategy failed Somalia and helped terrorism.

          b)From the Eritrean perspective;

          As much as Ethiopia had an interest in the Somalia Affairs Eritrea as well had a serious interest not just coz Eritrea had to help the Somalis as they helped us-including the TPLF back stabber itself.

          here is the big question:

          Whose approach was better and constructive from the Somali and Horn and as well as from the west’s Interest point of view?

          -Considering all things, what Eritrea attempted could have been way better and more constructive as it was more inclusive and unifying but it was blocked as it could have served against the TPLF interest as they do not want a united and Strong Somalia. But it could have served better the interest of the Horn and that of the USA but they were short-sighted as the US Diplomats were very amateur and had no clue about their long term interest.

          -Aweyes was NOT a Terrorist but a Nationalist..

          I am trying to focus on the “Right and Wrong ” issue here.

          You omitted the negative role of the USA and the UN…

          Let me quote you here:

          “I would stress on matters that Eritrea controls rather than on the behaviors of others including the USA”

          Those things are not exclusive and you cannot separate them except in the ideal world and there is no ideal things here.

          .” I’m not a fan of USA foreign policy. But then we have already agreed that nations are guided by their national interests.”.

          The role of the USA Policy on Eritrea and against Eritrea is beyond interest issue.

          ” USA and the UN are on record for calling Ethiopia to abide by the EEBC ruling. If they could invoke chapter VII, that would be doing the right thing. But should that by itself push or set Eritrea’s regional policy in a collision course with the USA, AU and the UN.”

          The USA and the UN called Ethiopia to abide by the EEBC Ruling??? On paper,yes.

          Do you know how the Pentagon and the State department work?

          They work in a parallel line by design.

          Not sure about the last question but the USA and the UN did not want Ethiopia to abide by the EEBC Ruling let alone to invoke Chapter VII for obvious reasons, rather, they did their best against the Ruling.

          This is not to justify the mess by the PFDJ Leadership but to address the other side of the issue.

          The PFDJ was being set up right and left and ,hence,as you said,it should have taken note of where that was be leading to.

          You remided me about a senior tegadalit in one of the Asmera Hall Meetings with the some PFDJ Officials/Yemane G led meeting and she said exactly what you said:.

          “What is it that we will get by going against the interests of those international bodies, which we belong to, and the USA that we had not gotten by working with them?The question should be: what does Eritrea get by pursuing policies that the USA, AU and UN see as against THEIR interests such as the case with Awey (and other figures the USA told Eritrea were wanted), and standing against the TFG, etc. I think it was more than reckless that caused us as a nation and as a people to pay dearly. What would be more important, the closing of the border conflict or the reconstitution of Somalia, a nation that has limited strategic influence over our national interests?”
          She said it in a VERY VERY Furious Manner. She was right.
          When I read the wikileaks about the Head talking about recruiting some fanatics against the interest of the USA in the Red Sea and Gen Sibhat Efrem advising/warning him NOT even to think about it as they will destroy Eritrea if they find out,I gave up on that Head totally..
          This was leaked by a certain ex-EPLF Business man to the US Embassy…and you know who he is and was immediately kidnapped and made to disappear and hope he is alive per Mr. Salih Osman’s narration to Radio France.
          Not sure this is true as there is no way that,that Chap could have had access to the conversation of the two Leaders and he most likely made it up to get some attention as he was a hired gun by the CIA.

          I lamented about this mess many a time.
          It is an irreversible and very damaging to the maximum MESS indeed.

          • Mahmud Saleh

            Ahlen Hope
            Thanks again for the reply.
            1. Some of the points are on records (we can’t debate on USA/UN official position on EEBC ruling. I want you to share with the forum any information contrary to that. USA could choose to embolden its relation with Ethiopia for a number of regional considerations. Should that trigger Eritrea to enter into confrontations with the America AND the UN? For what? Eritrea may have interest in Somalia, but Eritrea’s interest in settling the border conflict outweighs its interest in Somalia. Why would you sweat for something that you will finally accept? Eritrea finally accepted the UN/AU/USA formula, but too late. Weight is very important when you enter the ring. That’s why the weight of boxers is constantly monitored.
            2. On right versus wrong: There are many wrong policies pursued by nations around the world but they don’t go to war or confrontation against each other because they thing the other is pursuing wrong policy. How does Somalia in the scale of priorities of Eritrean foreign policy? I would say 5-6 out of ten. Let’s say Somalia measures up 8-9 out of 10 9let’s assume Eritrea does have economic and security interests there). Would it be acceptable for Eritrea to enter into confrontations with the USA/UN? Not at all. Why? Because it knows it will come out bruised. That’s why I used the word “proactive” diplomacy. Eritrea should confront the USA and the UN ONLY when those bodies try to invade it or try to directly impose their will on it.
            3. Awey: I don’t think I use the word “terrorist”; i

  • Solomon

    Selamat Hope,

    I love the fact that you are so maleable and strategic in keeping faith or Hope alive and maintaining the course of the old vanguard of “Our ship will.arrive in a day now!” Well let me start by saying happy Sunday to you and yours before I delve into your utilization of any and everything if it is to ensure what you believe to be victory. For example, you utilized your Spam flag on my last comment which isn’t a direct assault on your person, but rather a simple breakdown of how the masses, you know the Hafash, are pipetted to stay the course in a herd mentality for over a quarter of a century.

    I just viewed an interview on asmarinodotcom with the daughterJoshwa/Fessehaye the Eritrean political prisoner incommunicado for over Sixteen years now. And, the herd mentality you are mainly delegated to are those in the Hafash in the diaspora/exile. The young Elsa “Joshwa” Fesehaye clearly states that the people in Eritrea are ordered by law to out on a show of being content when the “one full truth” is noncontentment with Eritrea’s administration management of their quality of life. Your target Hafash that you are delegated to is we Eritreans in the diaspora whether we are pro government or opposition minded. Your tasks you have delivered exquisitely by the “Hopeful Eritrean Centrists” you have succesfuly marketed yourself as. While the EPLF/PFDJ world view and or trumpeted foreign policy gives Hope to the progovernment diaspora Eritreans that their personal benefits and self interesest is safe and secure and for them to take the sacrifices others are making as a necessary collateral sacrifice, you constantly chip away by arguing vehemently, with pizaz and then some (wait for the article), against the efforts and struggles of your fellow countrymen in an effort to drag and decrease their proplbability of victory to an Eritrea that could and would be free from.the exploiters and the exploited. I am not mad at you! You are covered even by the “Its Self Interest” a universal trait Mr. Yohans Zerai has penned. You are conditioned as is the young intelect Mr. Yohans Zerai. You, the strategist, for example diminished my arguments earlier by flagging it and giving it less exposure to others while smugly catagiring my reading as out of context.Classic Eritrean vanguard GoE modus operandi. Disappear by imprisonment Jashwa and colleagues and provide the “one full truth” to the masses. I am not being argumentative here. Another example of your tacktics to exploiting for your victory is your statement of Egypt and the Gulf State Arabs presence in Eritrea which was refuted by SJG. This is the tactic of always having the boogy man South of us when there really isn’t one for the purpose of legitimizing the vanguard that whole heartedly believed what it is preaching it will deliver to Eritrea with arrogant belief that the EPLF/PFDJ/IA are in possession of THE “only one full truth!” until ITs and your genuine determination was corrupted whole.
    News flash: “It is SELF INTERESt!” Where a Supper Power like the USA narates it’s enmity with another Supper Power line China or Russia or Arabs and Islam all the while trading and cooperating on massive scales between the exploiters on both sides, the exploiters in Eritrea or Ethiopia will narate one another’s enmity and tension while underhandily exploiting the region and resources for THEIR SELF INTEREST.

    Weriduo SJG weriduom AT, Hope I am impressed, but will return to illustrate your self interest losses and where you can gain.
    I will also give the author of thus article Mr. Yohabs Zerai his due with my constructive criticism and provide the agreed upon call for a new Eritrean Model piecemiel. I have a lot to say without taking for granted our Ethiopian Exploiters brethren here as well as GoneSJ’s fleeting yet loaded “inter-habesha” rivalry.
    A new model you want a new model you will get! Piecemeal so that I am not flagged by those protecting their self interest. Why NOT me! I too have self interest as I am you. So throw away your textbooks learning and conditioning for in this new revolution powered by technology, your conditioning is no longer effective.
    Be back shortly to contribute my 97Cents worth in this very rich article and the TREND it belongs with in this post COI Eritrea.
    Don’t flag…free flow of information and knowledge I evoke!

  • Solomon

    Selamat Mr. Yohans Zerai and forum,

    There is a Global Revolution happening right now as many are aware. And Technology us the engine driving it as the forouner “said” also points us below.

    I will make my comment brief because, though my comment is not nearly as of the wall as the next, understandably, special close scruteny is being put in an attempt perhaps to stear in a predetermined,
    lacking malice undoubtedly, direction.
    I feel the need to state that this commentator is more than capable to drive with focus, as has always been the case, and contribute to the ever progressive vehicle we are all riding on. We should guard from prejudgement and exclusion be it made by a consensus or sole decision because by doing so we only hinder our selves from reaching our collective stated destination.

    I will post my thoughts after the above suggestion is fully contemplated as well as not to fall in the trap as being perceived in a negative or unflattering way.

    I believe some one said: “Etom ayteHreQue enda belu zeHriQukha kemzelewu kheA aynresiE.” Was it HTG?
    Rights and Law indeed. Sebur wede!

  • Solomon

    Selamat AT,

    I was notified that my last forum comment us deleted and the reason provided is “Detected as Spam.” If you are able to see my comment as well as analyse the cause, a rational by way of your response is much appreciated.

  • Solomon

    Selamat awate forum,

    Hope says: “To my best knowledge there is no partial but full truth.” In one of his hyperactive shots under this article, though his field goal accuracy percentage is has decreased significantly. I am using a basketball analogy to describe Hope’s absence, or sitting on the bench, recently and to come back roaring forcing himself to the staring line up because the great PFDJ strategist that he is, and I believe there is absolutely nothing wrong to being such, Hope has found in this topic and the discussions under it, yet another wiggeling and wedging space to see that HIS beloved State of Eritrea, HIS beloved Eritrean People, AND under HIS beloved GoE and HIS beloved President Isayas Afeworki are victorious over the evil designs of Ethiopian (colonizors) rulers and their allies the west who are the cause of all the ills that befell HIS beloved nation. And strategize Hope should. As the title suggests, the strateguzing is not out of malice or enmity towards Ethiopia and Ethiopians or lack of love and sympathy for those Eritreans suffering (or sacrificing). It is in fact SELF INTEREST that for as long as I have observed Hope, that propelled him to ingenuity as far as his strategizing skills are concerned. I will do a whole article on this, I PROMISE, Hope character that has in fact been a maleable and intelligent architect of Eritrea’s rulling Front for Democracy and Justice’s world view or foreign policy as enumerated by our “devils'” advocate Saay7 — giving fuel to Hope’s meticulous study of Mr. Yohanns Zerai’s article that unfroze him from the hopelessness his conciece has been feeling on the bench.
    What I would like to do right now is share my take on YZ’s article and the discussants including the silent ones on the bench that are SHAPING the “Its Self Interest” post COI Eritrean narrations.
    Starting with Hope’s statement I quoted above: Dear Hope, Yoty was right man, you are looking with this statement also, for your lost pocket change where there is light. In your statement you are adamant and consistent with your strategy for your constituents to stay the course because of THE ONLY “FULL TRUTH” you posses. It is a magician’s trick. True there is only One full truth, but what you are hiding with the slight of hand and sloganeering is that The Only One Full Truth is the aggregate SUM of a few to many Partial Truth. Why else would any breathing species congregate like we forumers do. The negative cannotation of “Its Self Interest” however has great strategist such as yourself (Look forward to the article– better I than Hyatt Adam) bombastically lay claim on numerous “only one full truth.”
    I believe, Ghandi’s Satyagraha states something like this: “in any conflict approach your adversary not with the belief that you posses the entire truth but believing that you posses part of the truth as does your adversary. And together, both of you posses the entire truth.” The great strategist that you have been and are, this you already know. The drawn out lecture about a seemingly harmless slogan is for the benefit of those you are bamboozeling against their and your Eritrea’s Self Interest.
    Let me illustrate with something you are familiar with and analogus to your slight of hand strategic slogan of “only one full truth.” Probabilities.
    The probability of OAU indicting GoE officials for change in Eritrea is less than One/Certain,
    The Probability of a democratic coup in Eritrea for change in Eritrea also less than One/Certain,
    The probability of Ethiopia invading Eritrea for change in Eritrea also less than One/Certain,
    The probability of I A resigning a lot less than One,
    And all the way to the very very very low probability Hope’s strategy of ushering change for Eritrea with Hope’s game theory expertise.
    However lot less than One/Certain Hope’s probability of success and change in Eritrea it does contribute to the aggregate sum of all the probabilities to a total sum of One/Certain victory of Change in Eritrea!
    I will be back to reflect on the rest, shortly.

  • T..T.

    Hi blank, Michael Tesfamariam, and all,

    The African Union Criminal Court (AUCC) does not focus on victims’ compensations only. Yes, the AU Criminal Courts, like the ICC, ensure fair judgment and proper administration of justices. The AUCC tries African perpetrators, such as Isayas, his generals and his party members, by investigating whether genocides committed or local/international human rights violated.

    During Hissene Habre’s trial, the AUCC assured the following two legal facts. The first fact is that, like other world, the AU judges are encouraged to ensure that the legal punishments should fit the crimes committed. The second is that, any intrusion into the judges’ ability to freely investigate and rule will amount the nation behind the intrusion as to supporting the perpetrators and encouraging crimes against the African people. Therefore, the Eritrean justice seekers trust the AUCC judges. However, the victims, family members of the victims and the Eritrean people can play a role in the other things, suggesting how Isayas and his co-criminals will be handled be it during visitation or facing the anger of the people. Eritreans are encouraged to discussion how the prison visitations of Isayas and his co-criminals should be. Avoid suggesting like extracting their kidneys or other organs and giving them to victims who are weakened as a result of their lost or extracted organs.

    • blink

      Dear T..T

      I hope your vision is the vision of AU leaders and other funders, I really hope that is the case.BUT do you think we are idiots who do not understand how the play of power is played in Africa,Especially when it is in the playing field of EPRDF. You are as always on your own world who want to believe “every body listen and follow you”.
      DIA knew every thing about regional politics and he know how to find excuses to deflects the real issue of Eritreans.
      AU and its rulers are not capable of trusting their people certainly not their own rules.

      Eritrean justice seekers would welcome any justice , i mean any justice to rain over this evil Ganges in Asmara but we are not blind sir. The only way DIA can go to ICC or what ever African leaders can do is by the grace of USA administration or by organised Eritreans inside and outside.

      • T..T.

        Dear blink,

        You seem nice but those who are pleased with the way the tyrant Isayas is running Eritrea must be irrationals. Do you know that by taking away the rights of the people to express their feelings, the tyrant is puppetizing the whole Eritrean population including his supporters? Suffice that silencing the people through the use of fear constitutes one of the worst human rights violation.

        Imagine when the human rights violation in Eritrea is denied, ignored and rejected by any Eritrean, how hard and difficult it becomes to explain the problems of the fleeing youth to the world. Those who think that the Eritrean justice seekers are falsely accusing the perpetrators in order to expose the tyrant and his co-criminals to the international condemnation and shame should first be ashamed of their stand against the victims of Isayas. Under the disguise of nationalism defending the criminals in Eritrea is the highest crime nowadays to the Eritrean people inside Eritrea, who lost their almost all their family members and wealth to the crimes of the tyrant and his generals.

        • blink

          Dear T..T

          Yes , i agree but the question is when ,i mean any one who deny the crime committed by DIA and his cronies is equally guilty of double crime. As you know the world is not fair and it takes time for justice to settle its place. Lets hope it come soon.

          • T..T.

            Dear blink,

            I surely see and accept your points. In order to mitigate the hellish life our people living it inside Eritrea, let’s join hands in convincing the abusers in Eritrea to play it lightly. I am saying “lightly” because orders cannot be refused. By carrying out the harsh orders lightly, agents of Isayas can perform better without challenging the hard headed abusers. That will be considered, the beginning of the change to save our Eritrea. Until such time all the inhumane practices are identified and replaced by effective rules and practice, let’s all stand for doing things humanly inside Eritrea and saving our people.

  • Saleh Johar

    Selam Hope,
    You stated th following about me, “or you just want to ” defend and cover up ” for them,as you have done for the last 15 years as you never ever showed us the gut and courage to speak up against the negative role of the TPLF against Eritrea and ERITREANS.”

    Okay, my guts are not as bold as yours, that is why I do not ue my real name. No guts poor me. TPLF are closer to you than me. You check your relations o them and then come back. The sad part is that I have been writing for many years (not jut fifteen as you said) and you have not understood anything I wrote about, including what I wrote about integrity, courage, care, or justice. That shows how much I failed in communicating with the segment that you belong to. But the, a rock doesn’t absord water, my dear courageous Hope. And you want me to quote what I wrote in the last two decades here for you? Why? Would you understand it if I did? Hope, it’s another hyperbole from you.

  • Berhe Y

    Dear Abi,

    It’s a little comfort that people with your kind of thinking are no longer in power in Ethiopia. You are the Ethiopian version of Donald Trump’s, supports:).


    • Abi

      Hi Berhe
      When people like me were in power, we never saw the color of your eyes. You were in all the good places. You were the high achievers. Need I say more?

      What is wrong in supporting Trump? You have been worshipping IA and serving the Arabs all your life. Sad,

      • Berhe Y

        Dear Abi,

        If you really believe there is an Arab project to breakup Eritrea from Ethiopia and actually manage to succeed I don’t know which Arab country yiu are speaking of. The Arabs let alone to break a strong religious and ancient country, they could not even stand united to save the Palestinian people (one of their own who do not need any convincing) from the wrath of Israel. Now the rest of the Arab world is in flames, Lyibia, Syria, Yemen, they can’t even do anything about it.

        In the 60 let alone to worry about Eritreas problem, they were occupied with Israel and the war that they could careless what was happening in Eritrea. Ethiopia was in NO position to threat them that they have to manufactur a crisis in Eritrea.

        I have told you before, your measure of Eritrean was those few thousands who prosper in Addis Abeba, while the rest of Eritrean population was under the siege.

        No I never warship IA or anyone else. Did support EPLF and IA when I thought was in the right path, yes but warship never.


        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Berhe Y,
          Instead of Abi, let me answer your question and leave you with a question. I don’t think I need to come back to discuss this, if we are that far apart.
          You said, “.. I don’t know which Arab country you are speaking of.”
          How about Sudan, Egypt, Syria and Iraq to start with. How do I know? I read the bio of Ghedli leaders that passed away in recent past. Several of them were picked and trained in MILITARY and POLITICAL science in Egypt, Syria and Iraq. Some of those students met the dictators of those countries.
          As a youngster, I listened to Radio stations from Egypt in a not neighborly fashion, why would they consider Ethiopia a threat? I don’t know, maybe Nile river or something else. What do you think?
          Does it NOT sound odd to you a segment of Ethiopians being recruited in secret and being trained?
          This is what we know from very open sources now. Do you have any doubt that there was more ice under this tip?
          Mr. K.H

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Mr. K. H.,

            I didn’t read your post before I responded to Abi. I wasn’t denying the Arab countries, didn’t support us finiancially, politically and millitarly.

            I understood that he was saying as “Arabs architect the separation and armed struggle, Eritreans are a bunch of zombies who do not have brain of their own and who do not know what’s best for them, after the so many years of sacrifices, they get to install a brutal dictator.”


        • Abi

          Hi Berhe
          You proved me once again that you are still sleeping. I don’t want to get whacked by the wardiya by mentioning the Arab countries who helped your hoax independence struggle. You were just ” guday asfetsami “.
          Do you really think the Arabs should be united to help Eritrea? Really?
          Ok, I will be nice to you for a change. Ask Agent Amanuel Hidrat the countries that sent armaments to achieve their dreams. Last time he provided us with a long list of countries . You know he was sending back a ” yeqenyeley ” letter.
          Actually, he has a story to tell you regarding this very matter.
          This is how the story ends as told by the supplying agent.
          ” We don’t care who we supply the armaments as long as you fight Ethiopia.” For more information contact the receiving agent who was stationed at Port Sudan. Yes, I’m talking about Jigna Amanuel Hidrat.
          Berhe , I HATE peoples who calls me brother in my face and stab me in the back.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Abi,

            Do you think I was denying the Arab countries didn’t supply us arms and finiancial ?

            No I wasn’t my friend.

            What I am telling you is, they did not architect the Eritrean people to take up arms and fight for self determination.

            So the soviets were arming DERG and the US was arming Haile Selassie, how do expect Eritrwans to fight. Off course they will ask who ever can provide and they fight with what ever means they have.

            Have you not seen the number of Ethiopian opposition stationed in Eritrea armed and supported by the PFDJ government, including the leaders of gunbot 7, dr.

            What’s the reason do you think for them? Is it the support they are getting from Eritrea or the “lack of representation, including charges of treason” that forced them to go in exile.

            If they manage to succeed, are you going to say Eritrea, Eritrea is their determination.

            So please prove that, the Arabs were sending arms and the Eritreans were using them say before 1960, that 8 years after the federation?

            If NOT why not? In simple terms, do you think (shutting down the parliament, lowering Eritrean flag, changing the education system and teach only in Amharic / instead of Tigrina and Arabic, and shelving the Eritean constitution) is the work of the Arabs ? What do you expect the people to do, when all peaceful means failed, demonastration, petitions, labour union seatin, were arms, arrests followed, what choice does it leave?

            “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”
            John F. Kennedy


          • Abi

            Eway! Anta SebAy
            Entay konka?
            You sound awake! Two more Tim Horton’s, you will be fine.
            Berhe, you are missing my point. My point is simple. Very simple. You helped the Arabs achieved their goal. 25 years after the independence and the situation Eritreans find themselves in, you still think you fought for Eritrea. You kidding yourself.

          • Hope

            Epic Berhe:
            Though addressed to the Abi the hateful, it is well addressed to any Ethiopian,who reads this great web of Awate University..
            You sound like a twin brother of Yohannes, a hitherto hidden Eritrean Gem,–close to…

  • T..T.

    Hi all,

    BBC reported that African Union judges ordered the ex-ruler and dictator of Chad, Hissene Habre, to compensate his victims from 1981 to 1990 with the sum of up to $34,000 each. For more, please read here: and don’t be surprised that victims of sexual violence are expected to get the highest compensations.

    The Eritrean justice seekers are already in contact with the Africa Union HO, discussing those other things besides compensations to the victims of Isayas and his generals. Just to mention a few: the tyrant to be put in a bullet proof glass prison. Spitting on his face would be allowed. Unlike what the tyrant did to his victims, the Eritrean justice seekers are seeking to ensure that each of the convicted criminals will not face a quick death. Therefore, heavy punches in the face will not be allowed.

    • blink

      Dear T.T

      AU can d more but they can not and the reason is that they need a push from their funders and that is sad.
      Eritreans need a collective justice and there can no be transtional justice for Eritreans. DIA will always find some thing to say and as we can see AU are not fun of judging a siting president .

      • Michael Tesfamariam

        Selamt blink & TT
        It shouldn’t be just about compensation to victims of Issais’s generals, we should look beyond that, as we all know shocking crimes have already been committed in Eritrea by HGDEF, for which they must be held accountable, but I am less optimistic about the prospect of seen justice in Eritrea through AU, corrupt institution which witnesses crime after crime but did nothing to stop it.

        • blink

          Dear Michael

          AU is not even capable of looking after their stracture forget to panish dictators .

          Look HGDEF and EPRDF are both criminal gangs ,who enjoy killing their own people , while they sit on stash of poor man labour. If you see Ethiopia current political storm the fire is burning and if you see Eritrea crises it is a pile over a pile ,and i have idea how are AU to use their weak stick to punish these two Evil gangesters

          • Michael Tesfamariam

            Selam Blink, I don’t know what might EPRDF stand for? But I can’t take your assertions regarding Eritrea and Ethiopia away , like it lump it the situation in Ethiopia is much much better than the situation in Eritrea in terms of political and social freedom. After all this is the country which is going through democratic process for the first time in its history, you should appreciate that, it can’t be easy and smooth democratic process for people who have never been exposed to any form of democracy at all, there is always going to be difficult challenges. But to make analogy between the two, I am afraid no one matches Eritrea in terms of its appalling political, economic and social oppression at least today in this world.

          • blink

            Dear Michael

            Well ,lets see what is democracy especially in the eyes of EPRDF .
            1 . EPRDF , they come to power by sheer determination , TPLF at its core inforcer in 1991 and they still rule with out a thing of democracy ,apart from their sheer force *no structure and no stable institution to guard the so called 100% democracy of EThiopia
            2. They do the press freedom in its 1| 1000 % unless how could they do their business

            3. There is no Election in the world , where you have 1 member of Opposition in over 500 sits
            4. There is no history where one interlocked party can win 100% of votes in 85 million people and still the 6 % can rule in peace
            Lets come to Eritrea
            Yes Eritrea’s problem is much worse and that is what i care much but could HGDEF do the same as EPRDF in this Democracy in paper on top of that no institution to stand a storm , I can say it was possible and would have better for Eritrea. My argument is AU has no mirror to see these two gangs

            Democracy is not for some few people to dance over ,it is a peoples wish to rule and decide what they want

          • Hope

            Selam blink:
            The AU can play a big role by acting on behalf of the TPLF and that seems to be the whole motive of referring the COIE to the AU.And if that is the case,I am afraid of that,the Horn might go on flames as PIA said it.
            Read what the quite seemingly well informed Amanuel Hidrat said to Yohannes Zerai:
            -The TPLF is amassing troops and weapons to the Eri-Djibouti Border to capture Aseb and to hit the alleged GCC Base at Aseb(to be supported by the US and French Forces in Djibouti, most likely)
            -The Egyptian Intelligence Team was said to have visited Eritrea and told us that the Egyptian Generals were on the Ethio-Eri border a month before the latest but a brief Conventional war occurred between the TPLF and the EDF after 15 years.
            -The Bibi’s (PM Benjamin of Israel)visit to Ethiopia along with its underground support to Ethiopia and its Military cannot be ignored.
            It is very scary scenario, indeed and God forbid…

          • blink

            Dear Hope
            well i would not call EPRDF as TPLF nor do i stick EPLF to PFDJ , because they just are not the same and they do not intend to have the vision nor the goals. TPLF has done its job and the people of Tigray has nothing to say about EPRDF but they(people of tigray) feed and close TPLF from scratch .Now EPRDF is dominated by greedy traders and corrupt politicians , the same can be said about EPLF and PFDJ.

            So many people think that TPLF and EPRDF are the same just to use the history of TPLF in order to keep their beloved born again MELES dream in line. And the same can be said about EPLF , Pfdj are using the sheer determination of EPLF and the Eritrean people to just abuse the Eritrean people.

            I categorically reject any one who want to get justice based on his old and nasty claims . EPLF and TPLF are gone for good and the new once are on their own .

            Some old people from EPLF and ELF are still trying to steer us in order to keep us on their old cage and they will normally die trying but the world does not entertain people who reject change.

  • Nitricc

    Greetings the people of awate! Have you read an article and you think you got it and when you try to analyze it, then, you find out that you have no idea what the point of the article was. This article just that. What is the exact take of this article? What is clear and far from ambiguous is the article is written to appease the toothless Ethiopians and reflects the point
    view of TPLF thugs. Read this paragraph and you know what I mean

    “ Arbitration of Border Conflict: The 1998-2000 Ethio-Eritrea border war ended when both countries agreed to a set of accords that came to be known collectively as the Algiers Peace Agreement. The talks that led to these agreements were made possible through the facilitation and support of the UN, AU and the U.S.A. The UN Security Council established the
    Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission with a mandate to delimit and demarcate their common border. It is thisinternationally-sanctioned mechanism and its “final and binding” ruling that affords Eritrea the legal basis to demand Ethiopia’s withdrawal from occupied territories, and full implementation of the ruling.”

    Then what?
    It mentions nothing further more? Why is it the author so terrified to tell it as is? Why not go ahead and tell that the TPLF thugs refused to honor what they have agreed and signed for in front of international body? Why not state the truth? Why it
    is everything is Eritrea’s fault? Why it is always Eritrea is wrong and Eritrea is to blame? Why?

    The funny part is, even the Ethiopians are not happy despite the article is written to appease them. I guess they have bigger things to worry. You know, like Ras-Abi’s heart is in Gonder, beating faster with every up-rising and with every bullet fired. He could give a flying hoot about Eritrea and Eritreans. Horizon is prying in every language to every god that TPLF will stay in power despite the catastrophic up-rising allover Ethiopia. Even the government of Tigray is shaking and trampling. Read their press. He could not care and give a foot about Eritrea and Eritreans. Kim Hanna; well, he needs something to take out his frustration, so I can understand but deep inside, he knows his beloved TPLF days are
    numbered. in general; the Ethiopians could careless about nothing when it comes blaming Eritrea; they have their own darkest could to deal with. so, I will say, What a waste of time, none of the Ethiopians are happy with article despite the effort to that end.

    • PTS

      I bet you with all my money that the PFDJ’s fall will come before that of the TPLF’s. The reason being the later is not a one-man institution like the former. And we’ve seen that in action when Meles died – they had a successor their constitution recognizes. In our case, there is no constitution to rally around in times of uncertainty, and there is no known successor. When Isaias dies, things will be confusing since the public have no clue who to support and power will be up for graps amongst the big belly Generals and Colonels, through guns and tanks.
      That’s exactly why Isaias resists the idea of a Vice President.

      • G. Gebru

        Selamat PTS,
        In 1976 I happened to be in a refugee camp with some Ethiopian university students who were opposing the then Derge rule. To my surprise these students had a better knowledge of what was going on in the Eritrean field more than many of their Eritreans university counter parts.
        One day I was chating with one of them and in between our disscusion he said to me qote “you know when you look into this two Eritrean factions it looks as if the EPLF is going to swallow the ELF, but even if that happens the ELF will not die because it has structure, but if the EPLF falls it will never raise up because it lacks the structure that maintains its existance” end quote.
        It is forty years now and the EPLF/PFDJ is with out structure. But the difference is that in those days its fall would have been a factional fall, but this time it is to be the fall of braging Eritreans.

        • blink

          Dear Gebru
          EPLF won the war on a very very ugly way but ELF has died, so do their structure . we should not mix emotions with hate.

          • G. Gebru

            Dear blink, your acceptance that the EPLF victory was in an ugly way is posotive. But your blinkered view on the subject is the one which is emotional that indicates hatered. And believe me what has started ugly will end up ugly, because they had enough time and opportunity to address it in such away to avoid the divisions we are wittnesing today among the Eritrean people because of their poor handling of the states affairs, but I can not say they failed but because they are atritious and arogants. And as the Tigrigna adage says ትእቢት ንውድቀት ትቅድማ። So even though your stand to maintain what has been achieved is appriciable those you are putting your trust on them will fail you and your failure means the failure of the Eritrean people as a whole.
            God save the nation.

          • blink

            Dear G.Gebru

            ELF and EPLF are gone and Every thing behind is history ,that is what i knew long time ago. History should and must be told as it happened . twisting history helps no one but it hinder the society to learn from their past mistakes and i can see, you are the product of wrong history lesson.
            EPLF as a liberator of the Eritrean people in 1991 was accepted by acclimation of the whole people yet we Eritreans did not forget the sacrifice of other Eritrean revolutionaries like ELF. Any revolutionary movement as always is not free of mistakes ,You try to give me any example and find NONE.

            Again lets wait and see what the future holds.

          • G. Gebru

            Dear blink generally speaking as Eritreans we do not learn from history, because to learn from history means to assess your past to improve what have to be improved and even change what have to be changed for the sake of national unity and social harmoney and prosperity. But the some times you praise and some times despises who are at the helm of power have done nothing that reconcile the Eritrean people to stand hand in hand as in the gedli era. In fact they are deepening differences and fracturing social relationships be ethnic, religiuos, linguistic etc. As for the TPLFs you know is like ገዛካ ይአትዋካ ትራህካ ይሪአካ። And for your information what is going on in Eritrea is what the TPLF said and wrote about be it Isayas or the EPLF I think in the mid of 19 80s.
            Secondly their allaince was not an allaince of trust but one of sucespition, degradation and at times humilation especilly from the Eritrean side and opportunistic. It was a relationship based on the enemy of my enemy is my friend because they knew that they can not stand against the Derge separately.
            Last but not least I hope you will not be discomforted, all the present day indications show that as they came together they will disappear together with out any legacy.

          • blink

            Dear G, Gebru
            I agree next to all you said and i do not want to put any , Bothe TPLF and EPLF are past history please excuse me if i mix it up between TPLF and EPRDF . I can not refer EPRDF as TPLF because TPLF was good at its best ,because what they have done was great , Now it is just new things . I would not accuse TPLF for the mistakes of EPRDF the same is true about EPLF.

            If you can agree , i have the assumption that EPRDF and PFDJ could not live with out each other sitting on power , they both can’t live with one missing . I am afraid we have lost every thing due to a very narrow minded people on both sides. Any mistakes in Eritrea is blamed on EPRDF and any mistakes in Ethiopia is put in to PFDJ , well the people are crying a pure cry for justice and lets hope they go both to the last tunnel of disappearance.


          • G. Gebru


    • Nitricc,
      How could a non-Eritrean care for Eritrea and it’s people more than you (as an Eritrean) is supposed to care? The tragedy is that you care much more for the regime in Asmara than for the Eritrean people. The people are not even in the remotest recesses of your mind. You have shown it on many occasions. Do not blame others. You are the ones who have taken the people on a never ending Oddesy.

      You and I do not see TPLF under the same microscope. As much as I am concerned and as long as they remain relevant they will be around, otherwise, the people of Ethiopia will judge them accordingly

    • G. Gebru

      Dear Nitricc, peace be with you.
      Dear brother you are blaming the TPLFs and the people you think are supporting them. Where have you being when they did the mercenary work in favour of the then EPLF todays PFDJ.
      As far as Bademe is concerned with the passage of time nobody can tell is it Badme to be Eritrean as per the verdict or Eritrea will join it to be Ethiopian.
      No bad mouthing my friend this is my conceren.
      Thank you.

    • Hope

      welcome back general:
      You nailed it buddy,Your Excellency Major General Nittrick Eritrawi.

    • Solomon

      Selamat Nitric,

      Dude you exploded out of the gate with that THIS one.

      Anecdote: Scratch that..scr scratch.

      IOW, “Rewind it back!…when I move u move!”
      Or I can simply state, y ask y? Drink but dry. I need to continue on this track or trend of thought.

      Thug Life indeed!

  • Abi

    Hi Berhe
    You are kind of slow to catch up with Eritrean affairs. I mean you are really slloooowwww.
    Let’s wait and see if the former receiving agent at port Sudan defend himself regarding this matter.
    According to him, he received armaments from many Arab countries.
    I despise people with two faces. I feel like throwing up when I read him saying ” brotherly people “.

  • said

    A Musing my summer reading ;
    Being Lost in the Beauty of the Unfathomable World of Knowledge

    I am driven by two gripping passions in Life: 1) The Plight of my people, the Beleaguered Eritrean People as motivated by the axiom/ the maxim: “Charity Starts at Home”; and, 2) like most Eritrean of the old stocks diaspora ,The Love for knowledge, that insatiable desire to constantly learn and know more about every aspect of life.

    With regard to the first, it is an emotional issue inseparable of the natural construct of the human being with the assuaging attachment to nostalgia and the familiar of the place and kin that gets only compounded and complicated by a sense of duty to seek deliverance of one’s kin once beleaguered by inordinate circumstance of natural interventions or the anomalies of fellow human’s proclivity for aggression and rampant avarice.

    The Love for Knowledge is home from home, is born by insatiable innate craving that only gets further compounded by a sense of inadequacy of our human limitations and the ever unfathomable and unattainable universe of knowledge that forever humbles and motivates the seeker to becoming forever cognizant of one’s insignificance as perceived in the Grander Design of things.

    One of my hobbies when found in a nice cosmopolitan setting with the luxury of all the accessible conveniences of a civilized existence, especially in the Western World, is to stop at major bookstores and try to pick up books relating to any discipline and branch of knowledge with inviting titles among the thousands of ones on display. As usual I went after my insatiable passion, my never waning craving for knowledge.

    Making the rounds looking for new books with catchy interesting titles, this after grabbing the latest copy of the weekly periodical UK “the Economist” that is my free regular weekly source of update of mostly recent world social, economic and political developments and analysis thereof, I swooped, like a predator, on 5 different books motivated by their dazzling titles. True to a regular habit, I wanted first to have a general overview of the contents before deciding to finally purchasing the picked up books.

    Interestingly, one of the books that I picked caught my immediate interest by both, foremost, the name of the author that I previously read for in the past and enjoyed his writings, that of Paul Johnson; as well as by the eye-catching Title.

    Paul Johnson, an Oxford University Historian, Journalist and a prolific writer never failed to fascinate me with his well-researched works and beautiful flow style as I got fully absorbed in the past by some of his writings the readings including best-sellers, “History of the Jews,” 1987; and, “Intellectuals,” 1988. Paul Johnson according to The Wall Street Journal is the most liked and read Historian by the Americans. On couple of occasions reference was made to passages in his book “History of the Jews” during separate interviews on CNN on Larry King Life by no other than then President Bill Clinton and the infamous Benjamin Netanyahu.

    The title of Paul Johnson’s book was equally eye-catching for an avid reader who was familiar with Johnson’s wonderful research and style of presentation. The Book’s title was “Darwin: Portrait of a Genius,” a short 150-pages excellent narration of Charles Darwin and his revolutionary writing in 1859 “On the Origin of Species.”

    I enjoy reading faith related books As I picked four other books on Christianity and the Lost Gospels, finally choosing three of all the five books to acquire, it was Paul Johnson’s book “Darwin: Portrait of a Genius” that I could not let go of right there and then at the Bookstore. What started as a fast review saw me hooked to the book to the finish in the span of the following next 25-hours, devouring the whole content from cover to cover. A valuable book to keep, I ended by acquiring it along with another book on Christianity, “The Lost Gospel,” 2014, by Simcha Jacobovici and Barrie Wilson.

    Incredible how human vanity leads one to believe that one is in full knowledge and acquaintance of all that needs to know until one discovers going over some new fresh interesting readings how little, very little one knows. So is the case going through Paul Johnson’s book on Darwin. Fascinating if one can read a semi-scientific book presented in the flow of poetry. This is how Paul Johnson has that unique gift to present his non-literary writings.

    While tracing in well-presented historic facts how Charles Darwin came about developing his revolutionary theories and concepts on “Evolution” and the theory of the “Natural Selection” ending with the climax of the publication of his historic book, “On the Origin of Species,” fascinating the names and works of other contemporaries of the distinct Victorian Era that revolutionized human knowledge with their epic writings. Mountains of men that revolutionized the human thought further paving the paths to new human breakthrough discoveries.

    Two of those contemporaries in particular were quite influential inspiring Charles Darwin’s works: Firstly, by far, the famous Thomas Mathus, author of the renowned book “An Essay on the Principle of Population-The Future Improvement of Society,” 1798 (ironically the time of the break-up of the French Revolution) that was acknowledged as the most influential work of its era; and, Secondly, Charles Lyell, the foremost geologist of his day, the author of “Principles of Geology.”

    As to Thomas Malthus who as a smart Mathematician took a very grim view of the future of the human race regarding ideals of future improvement in the lot of humanity considering that throughout history a segment of every human population seemed relegated to poverty. He explained this phenomenon by arguing that population growth generally expanded in times in an exponential geometric manner as food resources expanded mathematically until the size of the population relative to the primary resources caused distress.
    I first came across Thomas Malthus name and theory while reading an epic writing by Yale University History Professor Paul Kennedy, “The Rise and Fall of the Great Empires,” 1988; however, reading through the elaborations of Paul Johnson’s book on Darwin on Malthus’s theories, I am fully bought on Malthus’s theory with regard to the future of humanity as being currently witnessed with the population explosion that made things incredibly worse with the rampant unbridled and unfettered avarice of Wild Capitalism with its demonstrative arm of Mass Consumerism ravaging the environment and the whole of the Earth’s ecological systems.
    My fascination with Paul Johnson’s count of Charles Lyell’s work is the fact that geological discoveries and facts as highlighted in his epic work diametrically contradicted the story of the creation as related in Genesis, the first book in the Old Testament. As a matter of fact, and on this count, the late French author Dr. Maurice Buchaille dwelled on this issue, possibly from a narrower perspective, in his famous Book “The Bible, The Qur’an and Science,” 1976.
    In conclusion, as one expands one’s knowledge of the Universe, the humbler and far more ignorant one realizes one is.
    While this short break makes for a Short Departure from the most wasteful polemics and recriminations of the narrow world of politics and of the Mundane, one pity’s the loss of valuable time on our short passage in this ephemeral existence.

  • Observation

    ከምዚ እንተቀጺሊ ኣብ ባድመ ዘሎ ሰራዊት ከማን ክሰሓብ እዩ፡ ስርዓት ትግራይ መጀመርያ ብፓሊስ ድሓር ብፍሉይ ሓይሊ ኣጋዚ ሕጂ ከኣ እቲ ኣይንግዝኣን ብናይ ትግራይ መንግስቲ ካብ ኦሮሞ ሓሊፉ ናብ ኣምሓራ ስለ ዝተላብዐ እቲ ንምክልኻል ክዋፈር ዝግብኦ ሰራዊት ናብ ከተማታት ይሰሓብን ይዓርድን ኣሎ፡ ከምቲ ፕረዚደት ቅድሚ ሕጂ ዝበሎ፡ ዘህውኽ ነገር የብልናን መሬትና ብዘይውግእ ቀስ ጌርና ኣብ ኢድና ከነእትዎ ኢና፡ ወያነ ምእንቲ ንኣሜርካ ከሕጉሱን ከደምቲ ክኾኑን ን17 ዓመት ተቃለስሉን 100 ሽሕ ተጋደልቲ ዝኸፈሉሉን ቃልሲ ንከንቱ ክተርፍ እዩ፡ ስካብ መዓስ ብሰራዊት እንዳቀተልካ ህዝቢ ክትገዝእ ትክእል፡ ከም ኢትዮጵያ ብምትኳብ ዝኸዳ ድኻታት ሃገራት ኣይኮናን እተን ሃብታማት ዝተበሃላ ከማን ኣይክእልኦን እየን፡ እቲ ዝኸፍአ ናይዚ… ዕግርግር ከኣ ኣውፈርቲ ዘህድም ምዃኑ እዩ፡ ኢልናዮም ኔርና መሬትና ግደፉ እዚ ከባቢ ብሰላም ንንበረሉ ንሶም ከኣ ኢሎምና ንኤርትራ ከየዳኸምናን ኣብ ትሕቴና ከየእተናን ከም ሶማል ከይቀየርናያን ኣይንዓርፍን፡ ኣብቲ ግዜ እቲ ኢልናዮም ንሕና ህግ ካብ ኩሉ ንፍለጠሉ ባህሪና ዓቅልን ምጽማምን ዘይምህዋኽን እዩ፡ ንኹሉ ከኣ ቀስ ኢልና ክንሪእዩ ኢና፡ ሕጂውን ኣይንህወኽን ቀስ ኢልና ሃዲእና ንዕዘብ ኣለና። ወያነ ንህዝቦም ዘይነበረ ታሪኽ ብምንጋር ኣጋጌሞ፡ ኢሎሞ ንሕና ኢና ንሻዕብያ ናጽነት ኣምጺኢናሉ ብዘይ በኣና ኣይጸንሕን እዩ፡ እሞ ሕጂ ደኣ መንእዩ ነቅነቅ ኢሉዘሎ ሻዕብያ ወይ ወያነ? ንህዝቢ ነማዕብል ኣለና ኢሎም ክሕስው ከለው ንሕና ስቅ መሪጽና ሕጂ እቲ ኣማዒብልናዮ ዝበልዎ ህዝቢ ንርእዮ ኣለና ሳላስእልታትን ቪድዮን ናይዚ ዝካየድ ዘሎ ኣድማ ኣብ ምንታይ ኩነታት ይነብር ከምዝነበረ። ሕጂውን ዝበሉ እንተበሉ፡ ይግዓሩ ይፈክሩ ይብከዩ ንሕና ሰላምና ዓቂብና ንርእዮም ኣለና፡ እወ ንርእይ ኣላና እቲ ናብ ኤርትራ ከእትዉዎ ዝሓሰብዎ ዕግርግር ንዖዶም ክሕምሳ ከሎ፡ ንሶም ቅድሚ ሰብ ክርድኦም ኔርዎም ንሰብ ብምቅታል ከምዘይተዕርሞ፡ ከመይሲ ነቲ ዝቀትልዎ ዘለው መንእሰይ የሕዋት ስድራቤት መማህርቲ ደቂ ገዛውቲ ደቂ ዓዲ ከምዘለዎ፡ እንተ ንሕና ግና ሕጂውን ንኩሉ ንዕዘብ ኣለና እወ ንዕዘብ እቲ ንዓና ክወርር ዝኣከብዎ ሰራዊትን ኣጽዋርን ናብ ህዝቦም ከቅንዕዎ ከለው፡ እወ ንዕዘብ እቶም ትማሊ ዝፍርሑ ዝነበሩ ተጋሩ ፈቀድኡ ክሕብኡ፡ እወን ንዕዘብ እቲ ትማሊ ካብ ኤርትራውያን ዝዘረፍዎ ንብረት ብኢትዮጵያውያን ክዓኑን ክቃጸልን፡ እወ ብምግራም ንዕዘብ እቶም ሕብሪ ዓይንኹም ደስ ኣይፈተናዮን ኢሎም ንኤርትራዊ ዝሰጎጉ ትግራዎት ሕጂ ልክዕ ከምኡ ከጋጥሞም፡ እወ እቲ ናብ ኤርትራ ዝኣለምዎ ተንኮላት ኣትማን ናብኦም እንክጥምጠም፡ እወ ስራሕና ብትኩርነት ምዕዛብ እዩ።

  • Desata Tella


    ኤርትራ ናጽነታ ዝተጎናጸፈት ሃገር ኣይኮነትን!

    ሃገርና ኤርትራ ስማዊ ናጽነት ደኣምበር ግብራዊ ናጽነታ ኣይተጎናጸፈትን ዘላ። ሓነንቲ ሃገር ናጽነታ ረኺባ ከብላ ዝኽእል ነጥብታት ህዝባ ብዝደልዮ ሕግን ሕጋዉነትን ምስ እትመሓደርን ናይ ተፎጥሮኣዊ ጸጋታታ ማለት ናይ ባሕርን ማዕድናዊ ጸጋታታ ኣብ ረብሓ ህዝባ ምስ ዝውዕልን ጥራሕ እዩ።

    ሃገርና ኤርትራ ሕጋዊ ምሕደራ ዝጎደላ ጥራሕ ዘይኮነት ተፎትሮኣዊ ጸጋታታዉን ኣብ ረብሓ ህዝባ ዘይውዓለት ሃገር እያ። ምኽንያቱ ናይ ወርቅን ካሊእ ማዕድናትን ወጺኡ ከምእዉን ባሕራ ነዕራብ ተሸይጡ ከብቅዕ ካብዚ ወላ ሓደ ተጠቃሚት ወይ ረብሓ ክትረክብ ዘይከኣለት ሃገር ናጽነታ ረኺባ ከብላ ዘኽእል ነገር የለን። ብተወሳኺ መሬታ ብባዕዳዊያን ተመንዚዑ ኣብ ዘለወሉ እዋን ናጽነታ ረኺባ ኣላ ክበሃል ኣይከኣልን።

    “ብሰንኪ ባዕዳዊ ገዛኢ [ህግደፍ]ህዝባ እንዳበረሰን ናብ ስደት እንዳምረሕን እንከሎ ኤርትራ ናጽነታ ዝተጎናጸፈት ሃገር ከብላ ዝኽእን ነገር ክህሉ እይኽእልን እዩ “

    [ሃገር ሃገር ከብላ ዝኽእል ህዝባ ደኣምበር መሬታ ኣይኮነን]

  • Solomon

    Selamat Mr. Yohanes Zerai,

    A balanced with intent article. I am on the “Suque ilka meEzab diet these days.” I have never fasted though my next challenge will be a week long water only diet. Until.I master a full fast, I thought I just chime in…..


    • Yohannes Zerai

      Hi Solomon,

      Good for you! Best of luck with your fast and we will be looking forward to having you back at the forum soon.

  • saay7

    Selamat Yohannes:

    Thanks for writing a detail-packed well-argued piece.

    Allow me to take a devil’s advocate role on this and argue that there is coherence and continuity to PFDJ’s worldview. This is not to say it is the right view, or even one that advances Eritrea’s interest. But it is coherent and has the added advantage of being intellectually defensible. It is an anti-colonial, anti-domination and, therefore, anti-American worldview.

    Let’s begin at the beginning of Eritrea’s modern political history. That is to say, for the period of Eritrea’s history for which one can readily find political/advocacy writing.

    1941-1961: the argument was for liberty, independence, political rights
    1961-1971: pre EPLF, pre ELF’s First Congress, the political argument was for nationalism
    1971-1981: this was a period when, at both fronts,nationalism was equated as anti-imperialiam, anti-capitalism, anti-zionism (anti-America, pro USSR although, on paper, arguing for membership in the Non-Aligned Movement)
    1981-1987: EPLF continues with its anti-imperialism (anti-America…). ELF is no longer a player in the Eritrean field, but all its splinters, declare their fealty with anti-imperialsm and anti-zionism movement.
    1987-1997: the EPLF, after its second national congress, drops its anti-Americanism, embraces (in theory) civil liberties to include religious freedom (except for Jehovah’s Witnesses and “Pente”). It becomes a “reluctant capitalist”: that is, it accepts that the socialist experiment has failed, and it embraces the World Bank formula for privatization. Reluctantly. Like a bitter medicine that has to be taken for the sake of national development
    1998-2008: it is dealing with war and post war. The EPLF is disenchanted with the US. The post Iraq War US now has a lot of push back from the world. Its economy collapses.
    2008-present: a series of books by dissident economists, philosophers (Naomi Klein’s “Shock Doctrine”; Andrew Bacevich’s series of highly critical books of US foreign policy,Noam Chomsky’s “America’s Quest for Global Dominance”, and many many others I am not remembering) all argue that US foreign policy is based on creating chaos and managing it. This has had a profound effect on the PFDJ’s thinking class (stop laughing Hailat), not the least reason being that they saw that it was quite possible to be anti-US, anti-democratic, authoritarian and a developing state (China, Russia, Cuba, Venezuela.)

    So, seen from the above perspective, let’s look at the areas you mentioned:

    *. The US, UN had no choice but to accept, expedite and approve Eritrea’s ascension to the UN. Herman Cohen and company had tried (in the London talks) to keep Eritrea as part of Ethiopia–and Ethiopia (in the person of Meles Zenawi) didn’t want that, so it was a cause without a rebel.

    *. The development formula of the UN and its banks, back when the banks (IMF and World Bank) were the go-to-banks (before AfDB had legs), was the equivalent of raising a flag at the UN: it was the thing to do, like declaring your own currency. While the UN, to this day, enjoys a decent reputation around the world (thanks to the work of its least known organ (the Economic and Social Council, the one that oversees WHO, UNICEF, UNESCO, UNDP), there is zero goodwill towards the World Bank and the IMF anywhere in Africa.

    * Once you get to question all your assumptions, it is not unreasonable to ask: wait a minute, did the US have a role in instigating the Eritrea-Ethopia conflict? The Eritrea-Yemen conflict? The Eritrea-Djibouti conflict? Would the US really do that? If you ask Klein, Bacevich, Chomsky, I think they would say yes.

    I don’t know where Sabri is, because we kind of touched on these subjects when we were discussing the characteristic of the “developmental state” but here’s where the coherence comes in: a supporter of the PFDJ can say that the path developmental states have followed is: civil liberties that expand in direct proportion to the economic development of the state. If you ask for examples, they will give you not just the example of the famous ones (South korea, Taiwan) but the US itself: it had slavery, restricted freedoms for blacks and women, for most of its recorded history. The challenge for us, those who oppose the template of the PFDJ, is to show what our model is. Not just for bringing about change, but the post-change Eritrea.


    • Ismail AA

      Ahlen Saleh,
      First let me join you in commending Yohannes for his excellent contribution. He has courageously delved into rather difficult (qua sensitivity) issue pertaining to ingrained socio-cultural mindset of fear of the alien, which Selfi Natsnet has been exploiting since its inception.
      Having said that, I agree with the sequencing you have provided about developments on the Eritrean scene in past decades. But I remained wondering how we should define the EPPF from 1972 to 1976. That is after the three groups coalesced into one at a meeting in Beirut, Lebanon. What I am alluding to is whether we can refer to them as one trend in their ideological tendencies. For sure, Selfi Natnet did pronounce anti-imperialist, anti-zionist position due to the influence of the university students that joined it from Addis Ababa until the time you have mentioned. But the other two, especially the segment of the late Osman Saleh Sabbe never professed anything in that regard as far as I know. So, I would love to see your thoughts on that.

      • saay7

        Hala Ismail:

        Excellent question on the PLF1, II, III era of 1972-1976. To be honest, that is an area where I have a huge knowledge gap and I would welcome any input. On Osman Saleh Sabbe, shall we say he was, ummm, a gifted promoter? There was a book I read when he made a single episode–a random US congressman writing to all ELF and PLF readers about some missing Americans–into an entire book:)

        Speaking of books, what do you think of Abdella Idris’s posthumously published “Highlights of the Experience of Eritrean Liberation Front”?


    • Thomas D

      Hello saay,

      From the points you have listed, it seems the issue of Eritrea was decided by individuals. Most of your listings are based on opinions of individual hearsay or accusations of influential countries. When entities are less known, things could have said based on emotions and they cannot be presented as policies. For example, what was discussed between Harman Cohan and Meles cannot be debated as fact. It was not never official or could have been said for the sake of discussion. What I know the IA regime could simply utter something and if someone is buying it, it becomes the center of their propaganda tool.

    • Hope

      Epic Prof SAAY:

      Say it loudly and call the spade a spade OFFICIALLY.

      “Allow me to take a devil’s advocate role on this and argue that there is coherence and continuity to PFDJ’s worldview. This is not to say it is the right view, or even one that advances Eritrea’s interest. But it is coherent and has the added advantage of being intellectually defensible. It is an anti-colonial, anti-domination and, therefore, anti-American worldview”.

      You also added by saying:

      * Once you get to question all your assumptions, it is not unreasonable to ask: wait a minute, did the US have a role in instigating the Eritrea-Ethopia conflict? The Eritrea-Yemen conflict? The Eritrea-Djibouti conflict? These are now the official positions of the Gov of Eritrea. Would the US really do that? If you ask Klein, Bacevich, Chomsky, I think they would say yes”.

      These are facts and a bitter truth,for that matter, that NO one can deny.

      The answers are within your argument itself :”Herman Cohen” wanted Eritrea to remain part of Ethiopia during/in 1990 London Conference”.

      Sir,is there any plain truth and witness beyond this?

      Not sure why you ignored the chronological events and the negative role of the UN,USA and its Puppets since 1952 in defending and helping Ethiopia to keep Eritrea as part of Ethiopia besides directly trying to crash the Eritrean Political and Armed Struggle.

      I wonder even more as to why you skipped and ignored the chronology of events and the direct destructive role of the USA and its allies against Eritrea…to this minute.

      I wonder why you shied away from mentioning the role of the CIA and the Mossad as well as the M16 against Eritrea…

      As a reminder to our naïve ,if any, audience here are few of the facts that need to be mentioned:

      -Who decided to keep Eritrea to be part of Ethiopia and why?

      -Who supported the brutal Ethiopian Regimes to destroy Eritrea and Eritreans for over 50 years now–until now-as we speak?

      -Who was behind the conspiracy behind destroying the ELF and why?

      (Hint: There were Mossad agents within the ELF,the CIA-PIA kagnew Secret Meetings, the conspiracy behind the Joint TPLF_EPLF devastating civil war against the ELF,the role of the CIA led by George Bush to immediately to rehab the ELF Fighters from the Sudan after the ELF was chased out from Eritrea(Telwelde Ghebremariam,are you there?):

      -Of utmost Importance, you confirmed that Mizunghi Hermon Cohen told the EPLF in Londoan hat he wants Eritrea to remain part of Ethiopia.

      Post Independence:

      -Who invaded Eritrean Hannish Islands first and why?

      -Doesn’t Eritrea have the right and obligation to defend its borders?

      -Who was behind the verdict of giving the Hannish to Yemen?

      -What was the role of the Sudan against Eritrea under the leadership of Dr Hassen Al Turabi supported by Osama bin Ladin?

      -Why shouldn’t Eritrea defend itself against Osama bin Ladin?


      -Ask Juan William of the NPR (National Public Radio from Washington, DC)as to who funded overnight through the Irish Bank the Ethiopian war machinery and hardware and the Russian Soviet Era Top Generals, Field Marshals, the top Notch Pilots,Strategists,etc—more than 300 of Soviet era military experts,N Koreans,Ukranians,etc–included).

      -Ask the Deuche Velle of Germany as to why a top Israeli Commander was injured by the EDF Mortar at the Aseb Front in 2000.

      -Ask the CIA as to why it advised the TPLF Junta to suspend the peace talks and push for the capturing of Aseb Port in 2000.

      -who messed up the final and binding EEBC verdict and why?

      -who pushed for the ” Adjustment of Ethio-Eritrea Border–to push Baduma by few Km towards Ethiopia) and why?

      -Who wrote the SEGM Report and why?

      -Who was behind the Eri-Djibouti saga and why?

      -Who pushed Uganda to draft a resolution against Eritrea and why?

      -Who pushed against the Noble and Genuine United Somali Front for the Re-Liberation of Somalia and why?

      -Who sanctioned Eritrea x3 and why?

      -who is sabotaging against the Eritrean economy, security and Development and why?

      -Who is behind the Youth Exodus and why?

      Hint: Obama declared it officially, Amb McMullen offered 10,000 Visas for Eritrean Youth from Kenya).

      -And for God’s sake, who is vetoing against lifting the sanctions against Eritrea and why?

      And you are still telling us that the PFDJ is paranoid!!!

      Let us not insult the Intelligence here.

      Plus, there are well informed Eritreans as well here in this forum.

      Come on Salih Younis and Yohannes Zerai,this is NOT Rocket Science and an Eritrean Second Grader can tell all these.
      BTW,with all these challenges mentioned above(but only the tip of the iceberg),how in the HELL would you expect the PFDJ to be perfect or not to be paranoid?
      For God’s sake, what would you do if you were challenged with the above tough challenges, other than ranting behind the computers in a comfort zone?
      Plus,the PFDJ is a Political entity made up of Human Beings and Politicians.

      And finally:
      Not only If you ask Klein, Bacevich, Chomsky, I think they would say yes but if you ask every rational human being under the sun will say yes..

      • Kim Hanna

        Selam Hope,
        Just to shade a little light on the matter, SAAY’s post used a lamp for you to use. The operative words were “a devil’s advocate” which you missed or ignored. It reminded of a related story I heard a long time ago. I will tell the story because it might be “educational” as Yohannes Zerai, said.
        An individual looking for lost pocket change was looking for it under the street light. Somebody like me stopped by to help look for the money. Finally after unsuccessful search the question of where the general area the money was lost came up. The individual pointed an area 50 meters away. When asked why he was looking for the money here when you lost it there. His response was very similar to a lot of posts at Awate Forum.
        He said it is because there is light here and darkness there.
        Take the lamp with you. Make an effort. The TRUTH shall set you free.
        Mr. K.H

        • Hope

          You missed my point and I deliberately put it in two parts as I did to Yohanes.
          I supplemented to what SAAY said but at the same time I tried to challenge or provoke him for being ambiguous and only partially telling the truth.

          Was not sure about your truth though as I was trying to tell the truth in its totality!
          To my best knowledge,there is no partial but full truth.

    • Hope

      Dear Prof SAAY:

    • Yohannes Zerai

      Hi Saay,

      Thank you for your informative comment. I agree with you that Eritrea’s political forces have maintained a generally consistent worldview for much of the period you have reviewed.. But I have problems thinking in those terms for the last 15 or even 25 years when collective political thinking within the ruling group ceased to exist and the views of one man dominated the political landscape. I am mindful that there is a well-developed and respected political thinking about the role of the U.S. in today’s world that generally agrees with some of the ideas that are being advocated by the only political force in Eritrea. But it is one thing to hold such a political view at the theoretical level and even have a government use it as a cornerstone of its domestic and foreign policies; it is quite another for a small nation to take that world view to the level of a crusade to overtly and incessantly engage in the criticism and condemnation of a world power, its actions and its political ideals. That sounds to me like picking a fight when you really don’t have to.

      So, my concern is not so much Eritrea’s political thinking as it is the way in which that thinking is being practiced and perhaps being expounded. I simply do not see the benefits to the Eritrean people of a ruling group getting unnecessarily entangled with America and its allies time and again only to drag the country from crisis to crisis – wars, isolation, sanctions, condemnations and all. It appears that the government has almost ceased to govern and instead has transformed its responsibility to one of creating unneeded confrontations and managing their devastating consequences – the same thing that it criticizes America of doing but without even part of the international (or at least regional) influences, domestic and external alliances, wherewithal, etc. befitting a nation of its standing (vis-a-vis size, economy, etc.) in the world.

      I will stop here for now, but will shortly follow up with a brief opinion on a couple of points raised at the end of your comment.

      Thank you

    • Yohannes Zerai

      Hello Saay,

      (Part 2)

      As you hinted in your comment, the U.S. may well have had a hand in Eritrea’s post-independence conflicts. But we also cannot deny the fact that the government had been trigger-happy in dealing with all of them. It did not give itself the opportunity to carefully and quickly assess the options that might have been available to it before reverting to the military option. Instead, it just walked right into the trap set up by enemies/adversaries whose interests, intents and machinations it claimed to know so much about!

      But in general, what bothers me often is this: Isn’t it wiser to investigate, learn and establish intentions and plans that adversaries may have against you; and once you determine what they are up to, to prepare to defend yourself and your interests against them? – defend oneself preferably by circumventing the dangers posed by them and tactically undermining possible implementation of the schemes they have against you. I just cannot see the wisdom of spending so much time and effort on complaining endlessly about actions and plans of others, but fail to deny them the excuse to carry out the very plans that you abhor.

      As a final point, I am in total agreement with you that it is imperative that an alternative model or path is developed for the country. That effort must certainly be a critical component of the movement that is being waged to bring about change.

      • saay7

        Selamat Yohannes:

        I would rather focus on your last paragraph, which was the purpose of my playing the devil’s advocate to begin with.

        The PFDJ just organized an international conference on Eritrean studies. Based on the control-freakish nature of the PFDJ, it is safe to assume that the papers it approved for presentation were screened, and the subjects fall within the comfort zone of its censors. You can find the abstract of the dozens of papers presented here:

        As bad as it is for the government to organize two (and only two) Eritrean studies conference in the last 25 years, as bad as it is that the recent conference doesn’t even acknowledge the first conference (in 2001), as bad as it is that there was no paper presented on constitutionalism, and only a cursory (safe) presentation (if at all) about governance and justice, my point is that all of that is by design, and the balance of what IS included should give us a picture of what PFDJ values, and that it draws a fairly coherent worldview. What should concern us is that we in the opposition haven’t managed 1 and we don’t appear to have evolved beyond declaring our fealty for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights*.

        So, my question, if we were to organize one, what would our Call for Papers be like? And how would what is being presented differ from the 3-4 dozen papers presented at ICES by the government?


        * Not that there is anything wrong with that, to quote Seinfeld.

        • Hope

          Selamat SAAY:
          Finally, you got my message but thought you are/were going to write a Huge Article on this Topic.
          I think you should, if time allows, as the Conference,as I did my best to challenge the GoE Supporters at TN,missed and ignored the main Topics that need to be addressed.
          The other issue I was expecting to respond to was on the Interview of Yamane GhebeAb with the German Journalist.
          I know you have been busy but I thought those issues need to be refuted and challenged.

          • saay7

            Selamat Hope:

            I try not to write articles, huge or small, about subjects that I don’t have much information on. All we have so far from the International Conference on Eritrean Studies are the abstracts, and even then we don’t know if they were presented (we know for sure one wasn’t because the author passed away.) Let’s wait for the papers to be published.

            What we can say is these events are not scholarly excursions but PR campaigns to push the PFDJ narrative; and saying that deserves a tweet, not an article. One of the presenters, Tanjar Mueller, already said that her initial paper was rejected, and she had to submit one that can pass the test of the reviewing committee


        • Yohannes Zerai

          Dear saay,

          Thank you for the information you provided regarding the recent conference on Eritrean Studies held in Eritrea. I had of course learned from the news that the event was underway in Asmara. But, I had remained unaware that the proceedings of the conference has been published and made available to the public. I will make time to at least skim through its contents.

          As regards the main subject of your comment, let me make it clear at the outset that I do not claim to have fully grasped what EXACTLY it is that you are asking. Either the power of thinking that produced the question is way over my head – and I mean this with all sincerity, or you have been deliberately vague in framing your question thereby leaving much to the imagination. (The latter would be akin to the “Allow me to take a devil’s advocate role” preamble with which you prefaced your comment of a couple of days ago.) Or it may well be that I am reading too much into what was perhaps intended as a “straightforward” idea. Whatever the case may be, there would be no point in attempting to “answer” a question I am not clear about. So, instead, I will share ideas that I know are relevant to the overall sense of your comment.

          I will defer, to Part 2 of my response, the views I have on the issue of what needs to be done in order to develop a model that could challenge (or replace) the one that is being pushed by the PFDJ. In this first part, I will briefly comment on some aspects of the said conference.

          First of all, I totally agree with your observations regarding government’s screening of papers submitted for presentation at the conference; absence of any linkage between the conference and the only other one on the same subject that the government ever held in the last quarter-century; and the constraints that the government had imposed on both the range of topics scheduled for presentation and the level of detail to which they can be discussed. Given these facts, there could be no mystery about why the government decided to hold a conference on Eritrean Studies at this particular time. At a time when its tyrannical rule of the country and its abhorrent human rights violations are being assailed internationally, it does not surprise me to see the government doing things it believes would improve its image. I therefore see the conference as an effort set out to: (i) target an international, not a domestic audience; (ii) deal with issues of some relevance to the country, but not with a scope and extent that would threaten to identify the country’s critical problems, blame them on the government and expound steps that must be taken to resolve them.

          Normally and logically, a conference is not a one-time event, or an event that appears in isolation – something that happens spontaneously and leaves no traces behind once it is all over! Rather a conference is a landmark of work in progress. It is a stage in a long-term effort undertaken in pursuit of lofty causes, and it is held to allow individuals and/or groups working for the same cause(s) to “touch base” – i.e., to identify problems encountered, assess progress made and share ideas for pushing the process forward effectively and efficiently. The Eritrean government’s objective, on the other hand, is simply to improve its image, and holding a “stand alone” conference is an effective tool that could help it achieve its objective provided everything else works out well for it.

          In contrast, the process of developing a rational model that Eritrea must adopt as a worldview or a strategy for its security, peaceful coexistence and prosperity is, needless to say, DIFFERENT! So while organizing a conference at a proper time and at the right stage in the process of developing such a model would be an absolute necessity, trying to hold a conference to start the process itself would be nothing less than a non-starter!

          In my next comment, I will try to express my views on what I think would be one possible way of initiating an effective model-building process.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Dear Yohannes,

            Please continue your engagment, for you are by far bringing cautious ideas but yet very educative than the piece itself. At the end of the day, only those who have the grip of geopolitics and the politics of mutual national interest will prevail in this turmoil region of ours. Those who are sawing the seeds of fear and phobia are the causes of instabilities, our disunity, and mutual mistrust. If somehow contribute on those aspects of national concerns will also move us in the positive direction. I am enjoyong your political moves and your ability of stirring and bronging big issues to a national debate.

            Sometimes it is good to have the back sit to watch, learn, and identify the nature of the debate and the movers and blockers of ideas. It is a good tactics in strategizing for the intended next move. So far I am in tune with your conceptual atguments, and hopefully will continue to be so. Usually I do not jump to participate in a debate when someone whom I agree with is doing well in the debate, I only give signals of approval. And that is precisely doing that.

            Senay MeAlti
            Amanuel Hidrat

          • saay7

            Selamat Yohannes:

            My fault: I am not writing clearly, so let me try to be specific.

            In the spirit of our friend, Emma (Amanuel Hidrat) who is always reminding us to narrowly and accurately define our opponent, I quote Sun Tzu who said:

            “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

            For a long time, I have often struggled with the question of whether PFDJ is malicious or stupid and the answer is, “it depends.” What I was trying to say is that–notwithstanding how long the current incarnation survives–it appears that the PFdj has embraced its pre-2nd congress ePlF policy: socially, politically and economically. The organization that surfaced in 1994, whose first act was demobilizing soldiers, liberalizing the economy, and charmed all with its preference for, nay the necessity of, political pluralism and the sovereignty of the citizen is no more. What we have in place is the old organization that believed in mobilization, collectivism, and the supremacy of the Front. In fact, my linking of the abstracts of the International Conference of Eritrean Studies (ICES) was to show you that it is intellectualizing this, a sharp contrast from the Eritrean Studies of 2001.

            Thus, I argue, its philosophy is coherent and intellectually defensible. And, I ask, where is our coherent and intellectually defensible alternative? Let’s know our opponent, let’s know ourselves, and then we have a good shot at victory.


          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Merhaba Saay (Aya Adi-u)

            In respect to your question in the last paragraph of your comment, I could simply say this: Yes we do not have a collective, coherent, and intellectually defensible alternative. But we have many individual’s coherent and intellectually defensible philosophical arguments and proposals out there. The only lack in the opposition camp is “organization” and “organisational disciplines”.We are not excelled by PFDJ on ideas but on organisational operations and disciplines. That is my observation in the last 20 years. I wish we could have an open town hall meeting to argue our positions and test the defensibilities of the opposite philosophical arguments. But they know the weakness of their philosophical arguments and chose only to dismiss the call for an open intellectual engagement.

            Amanuel Hidrat

          • Yohannes Zerai

            Hello Saay,

            The clarification you provided has removed my doubts as to whether I had understood the idea that you wanted to communicate to me, and I thank you for it. With the benefit of the additional explanation, I can now see that I was, after all, not too far off in my tentative impression about your message.

            As I had hinted in my earlier response, I have some ideas on the issue and (whatever they are worth) I would have liked to share them with you and with Awate forumers. However, I now feel that ideas on such a weighty and complex issue need to be developed further and presented in a well-articulated proposal perhaps in the form of an article to be posted at Awate.

            For now, and taking my cues from the Sun Tzu quote you referred to (plus your own statements), I believe it would serve us well if we all agree on the true nature of what you termed a “coherent and intellectually defensible” philosophy that the PFDJ has ostensibly developed in recent years. My understanding is that beginning in 2001 – but perhaps even much earlier, albeit in a less assertive fashion – the “philosophy” that has been guiding the policies and actions of the party, hence the government has been that of Isaias and Isaias only. It is a well known fact that for the last 15 years, there has been no institution, group or individual that can challenge any aspect of the way the president has been running the country and interacting with the outside world. Given this truth, I do not understand how one can attribute the existing “philosophy” to the PFDJ or the GoE.

            But more important than, though related to, the above is the issue of the dynamic process that ideas contributed by individuals or groups must go through before they could give rise to a coherent, fully developed and well-articulated philosophy. The dynamic process I refer to would, of course, comprise presentations, discussions, consultations, debates, etc. involving ideas contributed by a multiplicity of stakeholders both inside and outside of government. We all know that such participatory process has been totally NONEXISTENT even in its most rudimentary form in Eritrea. Not to deny that the president may have changed, modified, expanded his thinking on issues as he naturally should i.e., he may have revised his “philosophy”. But that neither qualifies it as a national or even government philosophy nor certifies it as having developed pursuant to an inclusive evolutionary process of change. In truth, the notion of developing a genuine national philosophy has long been rendered redundant by (i) the president’s unilateral and emphatic statements about the course that the country shall follow in all aspects of national endeavors and (ii) the realization and acceptance by all that institutions and government officials have one and only one role; implementers and messengers of the president’s whims, desires, wishes and decisions; nothing more than that.

            Finally, I see the recent conference on Eritrean Studies as a show put on to create an impression/expectation on external forces that the government may be seriously considering reform of its governance policy as well as foreign policy. Conference participants could not have been given any chance of proposing strong and non-conformist ideas much less debating, articulating and buttressing a national/government philosophy – for no such philosophy really exists! I bet nothing was given to the conference by way of a “philosophy” that is claimed to be guiding government functions and national affairs!

        • Solomon

          Dear Saay7,

          A Guinese Stout Beer TV advertisement of staring two old professors in a scientific lab went like this:
          Profesor1: “Profesor!”
          Profesor2: “Yes, Professor!”
          Profesor1! “Guineas in a bottle!”
          Prifessor2: “BRILLIANT!”
          Prosessie1: “BRILLIANT!”
          Professors 1and 2: “BRILLIANT! BRILLIANT! BRILLIANT!”


  • said

    Greeting Yohannes,

    Thank you for an excelent article.

    Humility in understating Eritrean politics. Living Life in Vanity and the Ever Disillusioned Crowd

    Once a mortal endowed with the unfettered curiosity for knowledge seeking to attain objective reality in its ultimate detached expression crosses a certain threshold, a certain level of a higher plateau; a deeper sense of alienation and estrangement judging from the optic of conventional wisdom never compromise one’s vision and insistent resolve to persist in the unending endeavor seeking to uncovering the truth as removed from self-righteous colorings and the despondence of inherent stereotypes of Eritrean politics and all sort prejudices that come with it . It would be overly pretentious for any mortal to claim approaching that station of knowledge; however, as one goes far on that route, one’s vision of reality and the truth renders one’s readjustment to the banality of conventional wisdom not an option for consideration.

    I could never pretend I am ever near that level of development in my level of conscious awareness; spicily to Eritrean politics, yet, and by the same token, I can never assume that whatever level of discoveries on the unraveling of objective reality that I thus far came across- meager and insignificant as it can be described within the context of the perceived broader Grander Designs – has not altered my vision and set a wedge of relating to the laity’s, across many different cultures, uniquely and spicily to Eritrean nation , a conventional wisdom. In my utter vanity, however, immune from the pursuit of narrow self-interest of self-actualization, I can comfortably profess that our humanity at Eritrean scope, at this particular juncture of humanity’s level of conscious development, is a Lost Herd ensconced in the narrow confines of their common cultural experiences and very adulterated; very skewed perceptions of reality of Eritrean politics .

    Paradoxically, Humanity at large, and despite the incredulous jumps in technological breakthroughs – totally unprecedented – remain captive to their inherent limited cognitive abilities and insulation to the confines of their hereditary conditions and very limited cultural exposures. This truth in a vast converging universe by the force of preponderant technological discoveries, while compounds my sense of alienation judging from the optic of conventional wisdom, leaves me, nevertheless, fully satisfied viewing objective reality from a different optic.

    This explains my small effort and adherence to Eritrean politics and to Free Thinking!

  • Yoty Topy

    Hi Yohannes,
    With all due respect sir, I really don’t buy the notion that some how Eritrea was colonized by Ethiopia. This is a made up history that has never been duplicated by any other African scholar. I bet you that most Africa students of history would find this proposition laughable. To suggest that Eritrea was an Ethiopian colony ; is not only meritless but also does deservice to the dark history of African colonization. What is wrong with ‘secession’ anyway ?Is it not romantic enough ?

    • Dear Yoty Topy,
      One is forced to say that it the result of the culture of victimhood. The world community is puzzled to hear that there is an African country that has been colonized by another African country. It must be the oddest form of colonization, where the colonized could become ministers, generals, the most successful business men and woman, etc. How many African countries would have liked this type colonization. That is why the world community does not buy into the Eritrean Renaissance under the real and apartheid form of Italian colonialism and their suffering under the non existent Ethiopian colonialism. They fail to understand that this culture of victimhood has no buyer 25 yrs after Eritrean independence. All nations resort to their true past history to help them move forward, but in this case, it is meant to live in it forever. People make their own choices. They are free. As much as ethiopians are concerned they must dream, work and live for the future, for the future belongs to those who want to have it

      • Abi

        Hi Horizon
        ” a culture of victim good ” is understatement. It had been used effectively by the urban mass mobilizing elites in the center of Addis and other cities to mislead the people and fight against their own interest. Now, His Excellency IA is using it to colonize his own people.
        Hey, they got what they wished for. Colonization!
        Self determination led to self colonization.

        • Thomas D

          Hi Abi,

          I firmly believe in freedom of speech and you are really a cool and funny guy. Just simply advice from your brother, please try to understand what caused the Eritreans to step up and fight the ethiopian brothers furiously.

          What can you say about the ethiopian and mostly from the oromo ethnic group coming in waves to Eritrea and in numbers you cannot imagine with tanks and other sophisticated weapons to reverse the peoples resistance. You think the ethiopian armies were coming with breads and beverages to feed the Eritrean farmers. We know IA is cruel; and he will be first and the last dictator in Eritrean history. Talking about Ethiopia’s current situation, I believe Ethiopia is advancing fast and I give credit to the current rulers for opening up Ethiopia to the world market. I recently visited Ethiopia. It is really fascinating to see Addis Ababa now than to see her in 1995. The entire city is under construction. To navigate around the city, you have different choices of streets, highways and with so many new banks, hotels/restaurants and different people from all the world visiting. Outside of Addis, the city of Debrezeit and Awasa are refreshing. After seeing these developments, I suggest the Ethiopians to work with the current government and work towards more of improved political system than it is now. Other than that, it think people should never try to interrupt the current economic and diplomatic gain…………….

        • Thomas D

          Hi Abi,

          I firmly believe in freedom of speech and you are
          really a cool and funny guy. Just simply advice from your brother,
          please try to understand what caused the Eritreans to step up and fight
          the ethiopian brothers furiously.

          What can you say about the
          ethiopian and mostly from the oromo ethnic group coming in waves to
          Eritrea and in numbers you cannot imagine with tanks and other
          sophisticated weapons to reverse the peoples resistance. You think the
          ethiopian armies were coming with breads and beverages to feed the
          Eritrean farmers. We know IA is cruel; and he will be first and the
          last dictator in Eritrean history.

          Talking about Ethiopia’s
          current situation, I believe Ethiopia is advancing fast and I give
          credit to the current rulers for opening up Ethiopia to the world
          market. I recently visited Ethiopia. It is really fascinating to see
          Addis Ababa now than to see her in 1995. The entire city is under
          construction. To navigate around the city, you have different choices
          of streets, highways and with so many new banks, hotels/restaurants and
          different people from all the world visiting. Outside of Addis, the
          city of Debrezeit and Awasa are refreshing. These places are best for
          tourists and situated for entertainment and business attractions. After
          seeing these developments, I suggest the Ethiopians to work with the
          current government and work towards more of improved political system
          than it is now. Other than that, it think people should never try to
          interrupt the current economic and diplomatic gain…………….

          brother Abi – you see I have great wishes for Ethiopians and we would
          like to see the same for your brothers and sisters on the other side of
          the border:) I know you don’t like a serious talk but please do not
          reject my brotherly advice:)

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Yoty Topy,

      You are right, it neither fit to the classical colonization definition nor did to the modern neo-colonization of our time. But the ELF organization characterized it, that Eritrea was a “special colony” or “ፍሉይ መግዛእቲ”. It was a new phenomenon that occure to Eritrea under Ethiopia and Spanish Sahara under Morocco to serve to the strategic interest of the big powers (especially USA and Great Britian) during the cold war and national liberation era.

      This issue was debated with EPRP in the field regorously, and in fact they welcomed ELF’s characterization as new phenomenon of subjugation that does not fit to the classical definition of colony. In anh case Subjugation is subjugation wether Eritrea was a colony of Ethiopia or special is colony

      • Abi

        Hi Ato Amanuel
        “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” Voltaire.

      • Ismail AA

        Selam Amanuel,

        Yes, Amanuel, the ELF came to that conclusion after intensive debate within the classical ideological context that governed imperial nations for seeking to curve colonies, which had to do with industrial production, need of raw materials and markets.
        The debate happened during the drafting of the National Democratic Program for the First National Congress in 1971. I would expect Herui must have said something on this issue in his new book. Along with personalities like as the late Azein Yassin, he played key role in the drafting of the ELF political program.
        The matter was handled in the background of the socio-economic status of feudal empire-state of Ethiopia at the time vis-à-vis the rudimentary capitalistic economic setup Eritrea inherited from the Italian colonial period. The understanding was that backward economic formation that existed in Ethiopia could not qualify her to curve Eritrea as colony. That was thus, the reason why the ‘special colony’ characterization was used.
        Actually, the ELF cadres sometimes preferred to use the term “annexation”, since it was actually an illegally annexed territory under international law which had obligated both countries by virtue of United Nations Resolution. Thus, in my personal opinion “annexation” might have better description of the relationship between Eritrea and Ethiopia.
        Ismail AA

    • Hope

      Hello Yoty Topy:
      Slice it or dice it in any way you would like, it is what it is.
      Eritrea was created in 1890 or so like any other African Nation or colony and as such,it was supposed to be an Independent Nation in 1950s and 60s like all other African colonized nations but was forced against its will and by force and at a gun point to be federated first then to be united with Ethiopia for ONLY and ONLY one reason:
      “For the interest of the USA”-‘ in the very words of John Dallas.

      • Abi

        Hope Nebsi
        The best thing ever happened to Eritrea and Eritreans is when the Great King Hailesilassie brought Eritreans back to the motherland. They flourished under his rule. They flourished even more under Abyotawi Meri Mengistu.

        • sara

          Ato Abi,
          you said ;Hailesilassie brought Eritreans back to the motherland—
          indeed he hauled everything valuable in Eritrea including those you mentioned.
          the same as what TPLF did after kicking Abyotawi Meri Mengistu.

          • Abi

            Hi sara
            Where is my coffee? Still waiting..
            The Greatest Eritrean Thinker Yoseph G. once said, ” Eritreans need a larger space to flourish.” You see sara, we gave you what we had. It seems what we have is not good enough for you that you left us looking for a much larger space. This time you are all over the world.
            I’m not sure if the King hauled you and everything valuable to the motherland. Why? He let you have it all until you suffer from affluenza.
            The same goes to TPLF. It showed you a better way of hauling yourself. It is a very efficient way of moving from place to place or country to country. They call it “U-Haul”. You U-Hauled yourself out using a referendum trucks.These trucks are 98.6% more spacious than the competitor.
            BTW, Abyotawi Meri Mengistu is dearly missed by Eritreans in Eritrea.

          • blink

            Dear Abi
            Come on , you do not mean it , when you said Dergi is missed by Eritreans waww . Dergi is a murderous regime with no to compare. We do not miss dergi , FI we did not miss any thing from Ethiopia . SO who say they miss Dergi are cowards who drink innocent Eritrean blood in order to feel accepted by unionist . Do not look to the unionist they are just loser .Loser are always with bad dream.

            You can see EPRDF are on the hills of death and i feel sorry Every Oromo and Amhara , welkait, Sidama and others blame Tgrai People. Tigrai people has nothing to do with this hyna in EPRDF belt nor do PFDJ represent one part or ethnic in Eritrea . These organization should be question on their own merit not on the back door of old historic TPLF and EPLF.

          • sara

            Ato Abi
            com on why coffee, its tea time! just bring with you sukar on your way from dukan.
            look Mr Abi. what great thinker are you talking about,i don’t know the name you gave but i am sure he is one who tells or writes you and your friend would like to hear.
            we know our greatest thinkers, and their thoughts are daily reflected in this forum that is why you are here 24/7 reading them wondering what to make of them.
            BTW, you are right the colonel is considered as a missed member of a junta
            who bled Eritreans. indeed they are looking for him.

          • Abi

            Merhaba sara, blink
            I agree Mengistu was a world class brute until you started governing yourself.
            Hey, Mengistu did not tell you to go and live where the water is .Mengistu used to airlift basic necessities to Asmara while fighting the wenbedewoch. Mengistu let the children study in the universities while fighting their parents. Mengistu send Eritreans on scholarships knowing they join EPLF. The kindness of Mengistu towards Eritreans is unmeasurable and unmatched . When it comes to Eritreans, Guad Liqemenber Abyotawi Meri was an angel.
            You welcome. I mean genzebkum!

            Sara, qeldun aqumina bunawun afyiw. Yemin shay new Arab yimesil?

      • Yoty Topy

        Hi Hope,

        “When a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”

        I will believe it when I read it in an African school textbook. In the meant time , these are all opinions. And you know what they say about opinions -don’t you ? Everyone has them 🙂

    • blink

      Dear Topy

      Yes most African history scholars (would , will ) say We Eritreans were part of Ethiopia and the reason for this misunderstanding is that all these students were told by Ethiopian writers , so you see ,they just heard the wrong story and now we are telling them the true history and they will listen not hear.

      • Yoty Topy

        Hi Blink,
        This wouldn’t be the first time nor the last time that Africans would be lectured about history and governance by Eritreans . Would it be ? My friend , ever since the Eritrean cause emerged on the African political stage in the early 90s , we have been told all sorts of things .
        I am all for self determination whether it is Oromos, Somalis or Eritreans but this idea of colonialism is absurd and like I said no self respecting African scholar would touch it with a 6″ foot pole.

        • blink

          Dear Topy

          Good that you admit you are being lectured by Eritreans about Eritrea, that was the case for revolution too. We were under house arrest in our own country by invaders and the world misunderstood that we were as if in our home and abused by our leaders , The fact is we did it for a perfect reason to open fire . In 1940th we demanded for our house and in 1952 we did the same but in different way . In 1961 we refused Ethiopian aggression with more solid voice and in 1991 we defeated the invaders by force , in 1993 we approved our decision with our Vote , where all the deniers could not do their evil vision at the cost of Eritreans . what kind of opposition or voice do you need ?? we have our own internationally recognized border in 1903 and before that too . imagine 2nd world war was in 1945 and as it is 1914 the first .what prove do you need to make you admit Eritrea was not like Tigrai or other regional Ethiopian zones. what kind of information do you have to read to admit that all African scholars were just bowing to Haile silassie .

          I could not believe you did not sit at your chair when heavy hitters were giving lecture about this . You have been in this forum far too long yet , you did not attend Saay or saleh gadi lecture about this issue bad student is always late and misinformed (it is a jock , I mean the last sentence ).

  • sara

    Dear Mr zerai,
    Haven’t they (westerners) said , why do they hate us.? While, written and not yet written history has all the answer.
    So what is wrong if we say why are they always against eritrea ! Past and present history is generous with facts and figures.

    • Yohannes Zerai

      Dear Sara,

      There would be nothing wrong with pondering that question if it were not premised on an erroneous assumption. The U.S. and its allies forced Eritrea to be federated with Ethiopia not because they “hated” us, but because their political, economic and military interests demanded it – as cruel as that “reasoning” is. Likewise, all the injustices perpetrated against us during the long liberation struggle were a consequence of decisions made and actions taken by “the powers that be” to protect and advance their national interests!

      Allowing yourself to be a captive of your emotions serves no useful purpose except incapacitating you and allowing your adversaries to take advantage of you. Viewing things through the prism of national (or people’s) interest frees up your intellect to devise ways of skillfully protecting your own interests and foiling external machinations that try to undermine them.

      • haileTG

        Hello Yohannes,

        Thank you for a nice article! I think PFDJ don’t really believe the world “hates” them or is “against” them. If they really believed that then one would question why they rely on begging full time. PFDJ is an organization that would go as far as Crimea to beg for Russian alms and throw their body flat on the ground for European 200mill Euro. They had offered the US’ war on terror our nation Eritrea to serve as a base and now became a Saudi bombing and refueling base against Yemen with no questions asked. They know no diplomacy or have sense of direction, But on the flip side, assume they heed your advice, what is in it for them? A rope to hang with? 🙂


        • Yohannes Zerai

          Dear haileTG,

        • Yohannes Zerai

          Dear haileTG,

          Well said. I totally agree with the idea that your rhetorical questions convey. There is no question that the “world-hates-us” message is a manipulative tool that the regime uses to advance its own narrow interests; but, of course, it believes none of it! So, my article represents just a modest attempt to reach those who fall for it, and to point out the fallacy of this claim and the damage it is doing to the country’s national interests.

      • sara

        Dear Mr Zerai
        although i agree with your “reasoning” I didn’t say why they “hate” us, but are against us, quite different i guess. as for the being captive to emotions well well Mr Zerai do not draw
        us back to the heart and mind issue discussed here earlier.
        any way i like your article for its content and cordiality which is rare this days.

      • Zara Yaqob

        Hello Mr. Zerai,

        I suppose you chose to ignore the fact that those factions vying for independence were serving the interest of Arab nations, Italy and to a certain extent Britain. In order for Eritrea to exit this quagmire you currently find yourself in, you need yo start taking an honest look at history. That is facing the harsh reality that the first seed for the idea of independence was supplanted by foreign powers mainly Italians and Arabs. And later by the Brits.

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Zara Yakob,
          As someone said, foreign powers always behave and act in their own self interest. They look for a fertile ground to plant their seeds and you see their harvest. They are doing fine. The blood of indigenous people is of no concern to them.
          The lowland, Muslim Eritrea needed only a little nudge to pick up arms against the well advertised “Christian Island,” Ethiopia. They never wanted to be part of Ethiopia. With time others followed.
          Many posts ago I said, Muslim Eritrea prefer to be a big fish in a small pond as opposed to be a small fish in a big pond.
          The U.N’s three options in the 40s of A) splitting Eritrea and attaching the parts to Sudan and Ethiopia, B) federating Eritrea with Ethiopia and C) outright independence of Eritrea, C was with the least consensus, not out of malice but of the viability question.
          Later on C. was achieved by force. The viability question has to play out for the next few generations. Ethiopia, for its own self interest, with all the problems it has, need to stay clear off and stand as far as possible on this journey Eritrea is on. Ethiopia need to be careful of terms like “brotherliness” “Abyssinianess” “neighborliness” “economic integration” etc. marketing strategies, it is bogus, the same old neighbors we had are still there with improved positions.
          Mr. K.H

          • Abi

            Hi Mr Kim
            NO relationship is the best relationship between the two ” brotherly ” countries.

          • Dear Abi & K.H.,
            The relationship between Eritrea and Ethiopia since 1998 is that of no relations, and it is going to remain so for the coming generations, until one of the two cannot stand anymore the burden of the economic and human cost, or another phenomenal change takes place in the region and may be in the whole world, as the one we are already living through. Our discussion is mainly on why it should be so, and not really to bring change and reconciliation, which are extremely elusive. Bring all the great minds of the world to solve the ethio-eri riddle and it will defy any solution. That is the sad reality, and the two people are going to live with it until one of the two comes out a winner, or both get feed up, or…… may i say till kingdom come.

          • Abi

            Hi Horizon
            This is my solution
            Give back Badime, close the boarders and forget about them.
            We don’t have to complicate matters.

          • Dear Abi,
            I think that things are more complicated than that. There are already hundreds of thousands of eritreans living in refugee camps and among the Ethiopian society, and as long as the situation in Eritrea is going to remain as it is, more will come in the future, whether Ethiopia closes her borders or not. In addition, one cannot lock the door with a visitor still in the house. That is how complicated things are. The result of the sins of the elites is going to stay with the people for long. Eritrean elites have no solution for their people, Ethiopia has no right or obligation to find a solution on their behalf, and things are going to remain as they are.

          • Yohannes Zerai

            Dear Kim Hanna,

            Dear Kim Hanna,

            Just to briefly address a couple of strong statements in your comment for which there is no factual basis or credible evidence.

            1.You state “ The U.N’s three options in the 40s of A) splitting Eritrea and attaching the parts to Sudan and Ethiopia, B) federating Eritrea with Ethiopia and C) outright independence of Eritrea, C was with the least consensus, not out of malice but of the viability question.” The 1950 Eritrean question was an issue related to one of the most critical geopolitical considerations of the time involving major powers like the U.S., U.K. to mention a few. The then U.S. Secretary of State is on record as having officially and publicly declared that U.S. national interest was at the center of the 1952 UN decision. That decision was the cause of so much destruction, human suffering and death. I therefore find it puzzling how you found it in your conscience to ignore these facts and claim that “viability” was the basis for that infamous decision and that no malice was intended!

            2. As for the question of viability you alluded to, one can equally try to make a case and recklessly state: “Let’s see how the continuity of Ethiopia as a unitary state plays out in the next few YEARS!” Such statements serve no good purpose except exposing our biases and ill will toward others. The world would be a much better place if people could learn to spend more time wishing good for themselves than they do wishing ill for others.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Yohannes Zerai,
            You said with a little discomfort, “…Let’s see how the continuity of Ethiopia as a unitary state plays out in the next few YEARS!” You have no argument from me. I said Ethiopia “with all the problems it has” including the one you mentioned.
            It appears currently the thinking leaders of Ethiopia are struggling with all the problems at the same time and it is my hope they address each to a manageable level, to continue the economic progress.
            My aversion to any involvement in the neighbors problems, specially this one, without a justifiable national interest is a sure way to over complicate our own to the nth degree.
            What foreigners like U.S, U.K said and did in those days requires a lengthy “Mohamud Saleh” size post. There were other many players but it is my belief that the determining factors were what I put down for this post. No ill will or wish was intended.
            Mr. K.H

          • Yohannes Zerai

            Hi Mr. Kim Hanna,

            That is well and good, thank you. But, please do not equate an explicit “repudiation of recklessness” with just a “little discomfort”!


          • Abbi-Addis Ababa

            Hi KH

            I agree with you and always feel no so good to hear this ‘abyssinians, brotherly, etc’ terms from my ET folks and term ‘economic integration’ from it’s political leaders. This is a situation created after 30 years armed struggle and a knock out 99.8% choice. I kind of feel it is dangerous to touch anything that didn’t finish it’s full course. Short cut will always birth a nightmare ex: Sara n Hagar

        • Yohannes Zerai

          Dear Zara Yaqob,

          You claim the Arab nations, Italy and Britain as having brought about, or at least enabled, the independence of Eritrea. Let’s look at the facts:

          1.The Italians have much extensive trade relations with, and provide greater political support to, Ethiopia than is the case with Eritrea.

          2. The Arabs (particularly Saudi Arabia and Qatar) have investments worth several billions of dollars in Ethiopia. In one single agreement signed in a single day less than a year ago, Qatar invested 2 billion dollars on four manufacturing projects in Ethiopia! Saudi Arabia is one of the chief beneficiaries of the land-grab venture that the Ethiopian government has been promoting in Oromia and the Southern Regions of the country. In contrast, there is no Arab investment in Eritrea – None.

          It was an Arab country – Yemen – (with whom Ethiopia maintains a defense treaty) who kidnapped at its international airport a prominent, Britain-exiled Ethiopian opposition leader while in transit, and rendered him to Ethiopia. By the way, have you ever heard of the “Sana’a Forum”? It is a trilateral alliance that comprises Ethiopia and the “Arab countries” of Sudan and Yemen. It would be very educational for you to research what exactly motivated the establishment of this alliance.

          These are some of the facts of the matter. But, I guess it is okay to tow the old line and sooth one’s emotions by continuing to believe that Arabs are the enemies of Ethiopia, that Eritrea was created by the Arabs and that “it exists to serve their interests”!!

          3. Britain funds major development projects in Ethiopia to the tune of 100s of millions of pounds. Britain along with the U.S. “chips in” more than 60% of the Ethiopian National Budget in the name of External Development Assistance. Eritrea receives NO assistance of any kind from Britain.

          In “deference” to the Government of Ethiopia, Britain cannot even ensure legal representation for its national – Andargachew Tsighe – who has been languishing in prison in Ethiopia following his abduction in Yemen two years ago. Oh, not to forget! Britain was also one of the principal architects of the U.N. resolution that ceded Eritrea to “our ally Ethiopia” in 1950. I guess all of the above qualify Britain as the “creator” of the State of Eritrea and a force for its protection, sustenance and well being!!

          Conclusion: It is unfortunately extremely hard to get rid of biases, fixations and paranoia inculcated by decades of dogged state-sponsored propaganda and misinformation campaign spanning the lifetimes of successive governments.

          • Zara Yaqob

            Hello Mr Zerai,

            I’m talking about events that happened 60 years ago and you’re talking about current events Lol. And in case you missed the news, Eritrea is leasing its land, sea and airspace to Saudi and UAE. Qatar is leasing Assab for 30 years. The saying ‘Ertran le Arab LisheTuat neww’ had afterall every bit of truth in it…

          • Yohannes Zerai

            Selam Mr. Zara Yaqob,

            Yes Sir, that’s exactly what I did. You wrote about the past; and I wrote about the present so as to complete a brief “narrative” of the geopolitical treachery that brought Eritrea to where it is today. Actually, part of my response does go back to 1950 in connection with the documented actions and intentions of the “age old” friends and benefactors of Ethiopia and whom you desperately tried to “credit” with “having created or helped create Eritrea”.

            1. Those powerful people with bright, but crooked minds who decided the fate of the Eritrean people in their absence and against their wishes were not playing children’s game when they worked on that infamous U.N. resolution. They were, as part of their long-term strategic PLANNING, giving shape to what they wanted to see happen today! What you see happening today – and what I wrote about in my earlier response – is the outcome of that hard work of theirs which is yielding just the results they had planned for. Yes, the whole story needs to be told, not just fragments of it!

            2. No, I did not miss any news, thank you. Eritrea, like any other nation, reserves the right to building relations with any other country it wants. But (i) given the manner and circumstances under which the decision to invite U.A.E. into Assab was made, (ii) considering the long-term interests of the Eritrean people and (iii) mindful of the need to stand for peace in the region, I and and all right-thinking Eritreans have condemned the arrangement made by the country’s dictator. But on the flip side, you must agree with me that part of the blame for this outcome should be placed on Ethiopia’s doorsteps for deciding to use its new “regional power” status to support a hostile, belligerent and bullying stance in the neighborhood. Well, as they say what goes around does indeed come around!

            Finally, please go back and read my earlier response again – the Arabs that you are scared “Eritrea will be sold to” are, for better or worse, pumping some of their petro-dollars into the Ethiopian economy; not into the Eritrean one; they have had a military alliance with Ethiopia for the last 13 years with the primary intention of “encircling” Eritrea.

          • Abi

            Selam Yohannes
            I think you need to do a little research about Eritrea. Wasn’t Eritrea the bully in the neighborhood? The ” baby” Eritrea was running in every direction to fight with each neighboring country before it was able to walk. That is bullying.
            Ethiopia has never been a bully. Never. We are a peaceful neighbors for all.

            Regarding the Arabs investment in Eritrea, contact the urban mass mobilization elite Jigna Amanuel Hidrat. He will proudly tell you how much weapons the Arabs pumped into Eritrea . He was the receiving agent at port Sudan .
            Good to see you gone.

          • blink

            Dear Abi
            You have been in this website for long , i mean enough to know you well. But you still need a lesson from both sides of the aisle. You have been wrong on every line ,i mean minus your jocks . Can’t you allow us to at least talk what matters to us (Eritreans).
   has allowed you to run wild and rant all over Eritrean issues ,identity and far more illogical ideas.

            Ethiopia has never been a BULLY waww , to just make a comment, here is the few lists that your teacher forget to teach you about Your leaders.

            1. Ethiopia was and is a bully nation who does not have any clue on how to be a good neighbor
            2. Ethiopia was and is a country where the few Elites dance on the dead body of the majority in its soil and abroad.
            3. Ethiopia was and is a country where their leaders wage a war or invade their neighbor to make a point to the west (e.g Somalia )
            4. Ethiopia was and is a country where the basic right of human being is ignored to assist the few super rich
            5. Ethiopia was and is ruled by dictators who has no shame to murder innocent Eritreans just to show how far they can go to be killers.(e.g Hailes silassie , Derg and Meles)
            6 Ethiopia is a country who borrow billions of dollars to wage a war they can’t win (e.g Eritrea and Somalia) and the list can go on and on up the liquidation of OROMO people.

            All the list i am making is regarding the rulers of Ethiopia not the peaceful people who has no chance to say a Thing.

          • Abi

            Hi blink
            A very bleak assessment! Some I agree wholeheartedly, some I don’t.
            I don’t expect things to change in the blink of an eye.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Dear Yohannes,

            Just keep your cool head as it is. From this geopolitical reality of the horn, and the competitive national intetests of the countries in the region, you will surely face many “temper provocative individuals” to divert you from addressing our national issues and the “peace sensistive” argument you are trying to make.

            Actually, extending the politics of the middle East to the horn which seems getting root as we watch, is bringing the worst tension on the borders of the two countries. The visit of Egyption intelligence to Asmara, bringing the military command center of the gulf states into Asseb, the positioning of msssive Etnhiopian army on the Eritro-Djbouti borders, are the signals of preparation for war of destruction in the region. The issue is what can the peace loving citizens do to avoid the clouds of war. The recent border skrimishes are the symptoms of building arms for the unholly proxy-geopolitocal-war in our region. What are your thoughts to it?


          • Yohannes Zerai

            Dear Amanuel,

            Sorry for the delay in responding, but thank you for sharing your caring wisdom, brother. Your valuable advice is well taken.

            In my opinion, all three governments in the region (i.e., Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti) are playing Russian-roulette when they engage in a dangerous politico-military game in a region where they all have already raised the stakes by inviting in a plethora of foreign elements – powerful countries and not so powerful ones. All three governments share some basic characteristics: they are all dictatorships; they all believe they need the protection of a “big brother(s)” against external foes and perhaps internal ones as well – Eritrea is the most recent to join this “Club of Surrogates”; they are not known for their political acumen, diplomatic skills and statesmanship. These distinctions constitute a very dangerous mix, and any miscalculation by anyone of these desperados may throw the whole region into turmoil.

            The haste and recklessness with which all three are allowing tension to build up in the region is, to me, indicative of one thing; the overarching reason for this tit-for-tat escalation is not so much the long-term interests of their respective peoples as it is their own short-term agendas. All three governments have internal problems that can potentially bring them down any time. So each may be thinking of turning the present crisis to its advantage; prolonging its stay in power and knocking down one or two – as the case may be – of its adversaries in the Club! I believe that, to achieve these results, none of them would hesitate to put the well-being of their peoples and the peace of the region in jeopardy.

            On the optimistic side of things, it is possible that a major event or a new development occurs in the short-term that would change the political and military equation of the region in a way that defuses the existing tension. One such event/development that could potentially provide a way out of the present debacle is the end of the war in Yemen. This would hopefully obviate the need for U.A.E to maintain their present military facility at Assab, and impel them to focus instead on the use of the rumored 30-year lease on Assab for expanding their commercial interests in the region. Another sure way of bringing peace to the region is if we become lucky enough to witness the departure of one (or preferably both) of the main protagonists in Ethiopia and Eritrea from power – a possibility that I believe is not too far-fetched given the current realities in the region.

          • Dear Yohannes Zerai,

            Your analysis of the clouds of misfortune and war coming to the horn from the GCC countries is really interesting. Mr. Cohen had said, beware the Arabs are coming to the horn, and we literally ignored his words.
            If I am allowed to say my own few words, some of our leaders seem to have been attracted by the cheese coming from the GCC, and at the same time they are blind to the trap they are falling in to. As you said, the end being power for the leaders of the region, this should not have justified the sacrifice of the people on the altar of power mongering, for this will be the outcome if the leaders do not show interest in the people they rule. The chance of visionary leaders being born in the region is unfortunately remote. That is why our people are condemned to live under perpetual war, poverty and famine.

            A seaport without a hinterland has no economic viability, and if the GCC remain permanently in the area, it is mainly for military reasons rather than for economic benefits. Moreover, UAE’s plan to lease the port of Berbera is seen as a sort of encircling Ethiopia and not as an economic investment. With Djibouti a Muslim/Arab country that can easily be bribed to close the door on Ethiopia, the encirclement will be complete. Ethiopia has already pointed out that she will be forced to act, if she sees any development against her national interest. This shows that these petrodollar rich Arab countries are not coming in peace but, with sinister plans, and DIA much more than any other person is falling into their trap.

            Finally, violent departure of any one of the two protagonists does not seem possible, at least for the time being. Nevertheless, the departure of one of the protagonists in general terms, as long as the two systems of government remain in power, is going to change nothing. That was the case in Ethiopia; for nothing changed when the late PMMZ was replaced by PMHMD. If there is going to be change, I think that it will come mainly from the Eritrean side, when the belligerent DIA goes due to natural reasons. Let us all hope that he is not replaced by another cloned DIA, for such developments are most often the case in our region of the world.

          • Hope

            I hope Yohanness will come back with his genuine and unbiased/object view and response to your response to him.
            Until then,here is my question to you:
            -Who do you think boycotted the Aseb and Massawa Ports and why?
            -What do you think “forced’ Eritrea or “Dictator PIA to invite the UAE and Saudi Arabia–after lots of patience and after serious sabotages by the same enemy that forced Eritrea to defend itself?
            -Don’t you think that,Eritrea,as an Independent Nation,has a legitimate right to lease its Ports to any one, who can afford it?
            -If Djibouti is selling its Port right and left to any Power under the sun;if Ethiopia is selling its land right and left to any Bidder for cheap cash by displacing its own citizens,why can’t Eritrea do the same if it wants to do so and it believes that it is it is for its best national economic and security Interest?
            -If the Evil Axis of the Sanaa Forum was doing its best to encircle Eritrea, why can’t Somalia or even Eritrea do the same thing to encircle Ethiopia to defend themselves?
            I hope Yohannes Zerai considers the above and the questions I posed to SAAY as to why Eritrea should remain” Paranoid” and defensive legitimately.
            -If you think Ethiopia has the right to defend itself by all means possible including using its support from/ by the USA,Britain,Israel,etc….,why can’t Eritrea,Djibouti and/or Somalia use the same excuse and justification to defend themselves by any means possible?
            Egyptian Generals are in Somalia,S Sudan and Eritrea…as the Israeli and USA Military Advisors are in Ethiopia.
            If Ethiopia were/was to behave and to avoid bullying on its small neighbors and avoid being a mercenary agent against the same peaceful neighbors, and has worked for a peaceful co-existence and Regional Integration, all these mess could have been avoided.
            There is a saying in Tigrinya:
            “Ed shenahit tsenahit”.

          • Hope,
            It is a long time that you are putting similar questions almost to everybody you meet on the way. It is not because you are looking for answers, but because you think that this way you are making a point and you are defending DIA and the PFDJ. You have your own answers, and there is no reason for anybody to waste his/her time.

          • Hope

            Selamat Horizon:
            It is ONLY fair to answer the questions you were asked.

          • Saleh Johar

            Selam Horizon,

            I will present you with two quotes that attracted my attention:

            1. Hope claims that “Egyptian Generals are in Somalia,S Sudan and Eritrea…as the Israeli and USA Military Advisors are in Ethiopia.”

            I call that unfounded bravado which unfortunately poison the debating atmosphere because it is not true.

            2. You wrote, “…as long as the two systems of government remain in power, is going to change nothing.”

            I believe even if the two governments change the situation will reappear behind a different mask, it will not go away. I have always held that the problem is the inter-Habesha rivalry, it has always been there. Could you remember any confrontation in the region that a Habesha force is not part of? Can you think of the current problems in the region that Habesha is not part of? My dear, it is the war culture and nothing will be resolved until that aggressive culture is reformed.

            Read all the vitriolic comments that could have been made at any time in the past, as far back as the 16th century. The same arguments, the same bigotry, the same threats and aggressive behavior.

            In 1997, the situation was boiling just like it is now though similar military maneuvers are missing this time around. At the end, the agitators who had no stake in the region and who would not be burned by the fires they help ignite, were all screaming and making absurd remarks. I have seen and wrote about such people who spent hours drawing military attack and retreat strategies on napkins. They just treated it like a walk in the park. At the end, they lost nothing but the region is still licking its wounds. I see them again now–all the bravados, the provocations, the militancy, the bigotry, etc.

            My friend, just like there were no Israeli bases in Eritrea’s Red Sea (though the Arabs claimed that for decades since the sixties) there are no Arab military presence in Assab (though many are talking about it as an established fact).

            Finally, I was disappointed that you wrote the following:

            “With Djibouti a Muslim/Arab country that can easily be bribed to close the door on Ethiopia, the encirclement will be complete. ”

            Was Djibouti not a Muslim country when Ethiopia was investing heavily and praising the partnership all these years? What warranted the change of attitude towards Djibouti, which has always been a loyal ally and an economic partner of Ethiopia?

            My final advise, be very careful when handling the politics of religion in the region. It is so volatile and it should be handled with extra care.

            I hope you understand my perspective.

            NB: I must thank Yohannes for coming with this brilliant article that has touched on critical issues. I hope he follows it through–the potential risks lurking in the region, for example.

          • Dear SJG.

            On most of the points in your comment, i really cannot agree more.

            I like the term “inter-Habesha rivalry”, because it is the right termnology that can vividly explain most of our problems and predicaments, and we have no other people to blame but ourselves. That is why ethio-eri problems are unique and the world community finds it difficult to understand (and they are forced to explain it as an example of two bald men fighting over a comb).

            As much as Djibouti is concerned, i brought it on theoretical ground that today’s frienfds could be tomorrow’s enemies and vise versa. The situation on the ground today between the two countries could not be any better. Nevertheless, we should not forget that we are talking about politics with its plasticity, and it can easily be molded according to the regional and world situation. I might not know much about the Arab League, but I think that it is a coalition of countries that have similar principles, which means that when the situation demands it is their obligation to show unity of opinion and action. Otherwise, there is no reason for its existence. Therefore, when Arab countries meddle in politics of the horn, saying that we feel uneasy is a natural reaction for most peoples of the horn. I think that this stand has no religious extensions. A large portion of our population are Muslims, and all religions have the obligation to live together on equal terms and in harmony.

          • T..T.

            Dear Horizon,

            The political realities nowadays, post the Arab Spring, tell us that the Arab League is no more existent. With the exception of Kuwait and Oman, the Arab Gulf countries are no more considered part of the true Arab world. Their line of politics is different and does not serve the old Arab League. Therefore, the following countries: Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen already said bye bye to the Arab League. Pre-the-Arab Spring, the Arab League members were not glueable because of the deepening political crack. If money could silence the Sudan, the Sudan that suffered a lot under the dirty politics of Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Emirate, would money buy back Libya, Syria, Iraq and Yemen? If yes, how much money can that be? The Iraqis were forced to compensate Kuwait with $5 billion for damaged caused by Saddam. How much will Libya, Syria, Iraq and Yemen will claim?

            We can speak of a new face for the old Arab League. The game played by Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the two Wahabi-governments is not healthy. These two governments, their only difference is that the Saudis believe in religious affairs administered by Mufti and the Qataris have the religious affairs under the ministry of religion. But let’s see what they did in Libya and Egypt. The Saudis supported Sissi and the Qataris stood with Morisi. Similarly, they are divided in Libya. One thing here, the Saudis don’t trust the Egyptian Brotherhood because of their politics including their Bin Laddin like political views.

            From the above, what do you think of Isayas’s relationship with them. It seems it is not something new. It was there since 1970s. That is why they rushed to help Isayas by killing the Sanaa Club. Otherwise, Yemen was not a threat to them.

          • blink

            Dear T.T

            I strongly say this “As an ordinary Eritrean citizen, I am very grateful for the price the heroes of Eritrea paid to Free us from Your country” and i always felt that the Arabs has nothing to fear or attempt to inflict a wound to Ethiopia , so get over your hate of Arabs. They are Eritrea’s neighbors and we will always have a relationship under any government. I always find it difficult to read all Ethiopians understanding of Arabs . Shame that you feel entitled to lecture Eritreans about Arabs while you lack every thing to do so .

          • Berhe Y

            Dear blink,

            If I am not mistaken T.T. is Eritrean and as an Eritrean one can be. He is entitled to make his point, and you don’t have to feel that you own all knowledge of Eritrea and it’s neighbors. Here in AT university all ideas and opinions are welcome, you just have refute or disagree with if you find something you don’t agree with.

            Muzzling people, I know it all, we have to trash it with the dictator IA and his PFDJ government.


          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            If and only if ” you are not mistaken” in which i hope you are mistaken on his nationality. Come on ,you are a house hold name in and you can pock the smallest point in any once idea. Lets come down to what is our disagreement with T..T (even if he is Eritrean in which it does not matter ).
            When it comes to Arabs ,we Eritreans will always have a healthy relationship with Arabs than Ethiopia , You want prove ,just see our history. Arabs are by far the best friends of Eritreans than any one at any time. Personally this is my own understanding and i do not cry to say i represent all Eritreans. whether you like it or not T..T view on this matter is 100% in line with the view of Ethiopians.

            why is that ,we should take extra care when we talk about Arab relationship with Eritrea ?

          • sara

            Dear blink
            You know , the arab bashing, moslems trashing coming from you know …has encouraged many to come out their cocos nest to spit their hatred when they are confronted by the truth.
            The truth is eritreas past and future is linkd to Arab world.those who don’t understand…. let them drink water from the sea.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Sara and all,

            Although there is no problem for Eritrea to have relation ship with anyone, to state that “Eritrean past and future is linked to the Arab world” does sound as if Eritrean future is solely depend with the Arab world.

            Eritrea fight for self determination was not for Eritrea future to depend with the Arab world or anyone with that matter. Eritrea like all nations of the world is member of the UN and it’s free to make any relationship it wants with anyone without needing approval from any body, as long as it’s done by the mandate given to the government of the day by the people through democratic election.

            It should have relationship with the Arab world, it should have relationship with the western world (EU and Americas), It should have relationship with the S. American countries, it should have relation ship with with the far east countries and it should have relationship with all it’s neighbors and all African countries.


          • sara

            Dear Mr. Berhe
            you said “Eritrean past and future is linked to the Arab world” does sound as if Eritrean future is solely depend with the Arab world. well, Mr. Berhe read above and below in this forum and tell me what the others are saying about Eritreans history and story in habeshaland-africana historians do not recognize etc
            then, isn’t it true/right Eritreas future lies with Arab world.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Sara,

            People can say what ever they want but they have no right to dictate our future and our relations that we set to forge with anyone and we don’t need approval from anyone. I can tell you as an Eritrean habesha, I do feel that we need to continue to have our relationship with the habesha people of Ethiopia and others. The habesha people of Eritrea and that of Ethiopia have no issue dealing with each other and living side with side. We can say the same thing about Eritreans from the lowlands and that the people of Sudan. And goes the same with Eritreans from Afar and that of Djibouti and Ethiopia. And for Eritreans in the Red sea they have no problem with the people of Yemen or S. Arabia.

            Eritreans have proven time and again, where ever they go in any part of the world, be it African countries, the middle east, Europe, North America, they are capable of integrating, respecting the law of the land and minding their own business and life peacefully.

            Again I am talking about Eritrean people and I am not implying others are not the same, but to show that if we are capable of living among the many countries peacefully as people, I am sure that our politicians when we have the right politicians are MORE than capable of doing the same politically and diplomatically. The problem is, we have never been blessed with good leaders that can represent us truly and lead us.

            The problem is sara, with good intention if you say, our future is only tied with the Arab world, and someone says, our future is only tied with Ethiopia and Habesha land, we create unnecessary problem that we have no control of. Why should we fight who we need to have relation ship, if we can have peaceful relationship with everyone. If there are others who have problems with Arabs, or others who have problems with Ethiopian habesh, let them take their fight or bring the peace they desire in their own and it has nothing to do with us.


          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            Yes you are right we can have relationship with any one and no one is arguing against it . But T.. T and others from south always feel the urge to tell us that our relationship with arabs is one sided ,while they completely forgot the bad relationship we have with Ethiopian for almost centuries . No good news ever had been in between . if we can add up all these bad result ,it all come from Ethiopia . That is simple as that.

            I think there was one comment where SALAH GADI put it perfectly the inter-habesha thing .

          • Abi

            Hi blink
            The best r/p b/n the two people going forward should be NO RELATIONSHIP.
            I have been promoting this noble idea for a while.
            Don’t you agree?

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Blink,

            Just because we didn’t have bad relation ship with the Arabs doesn’t mean the history of the Arab world was all rosy and peaceful. The have their share of inter-Arab rivalry still rocking hovac to their people even today. They may be didn’t have war with us, because of the proximity and the rulers of Ethiopia who were able to fight them back. The war between Egypt and Ethiopia happened in GuraE and Gundet (I don’t know where that is) but I am sure Eritreans have something to do in that war. The same can be said when Yohannes was fighting the Mahdi from Sudan, Eritreans for better or worse were part of the war.

            Egyptians were fighting Sudan, Moden day S. Arabia was fighting for land and expansion of its empire.

            Europe was not in a different position, be it the Ottman Empire, the French, the British, the Russians and the Germans had their share if inter-Europe Rivary. Asia was no different, Japan, China, Korea were doing their inter-Asia rivalry.

            I am not trying to pale the negative consequence of that time but I think the Habesha, because they were rulers with upper hand they were doing the rivalry. If other ethnic group were the rulers, we probable would be talking about that rivary.

            While most of that time rivary have been settled after the Second World War, may be with the exception of the Arab world, it seems ours seem to continue because may it’s not fully settled in, and may be the reason this keeps coming back.

            I think our rivary and that of its consequences really pales compared to the many others around the world. If Germany and France, Germany and England, America and Japan, Japan and Korea are able to settle in, make peace and move forward there is nothing that we can’t do or achieve.

            As Eritreans we have to stay strong and positive until we find permanent peace, all our adversaries we should be able to resolve with diplomatic tactic and using the full legal and international venues that we have at our disposal. If we are weak and divided, they will find ways to crack our union and break us apart and I the process swallow all or part of us.


          • Saleh Johar

            Hi Sara,
            Do you mean all the sea water, including the Red Sea water? Assab will not be a port anymore and those Janhoi guys threatening us will stop doing so. Brilliant solution 🙂

          • Berhe Y

            Dear blink,

            I do not disagree with you. But we can’t deny there are Eritreans who are either mislead or have their own experiences or have their own bias towards the Arab neighboring countries. Though very few, there are Ethiopians in this forum (like Fanti Ghana) who have first hand experience with the Arab world that have similar thinking as that of yours.

            Although I consider T.T. one of the well informed Eritreans and I don’t necessary agree that he has similar view like some Ethiopians, the point I want to make is, let are be open to any ideas including the wildest ideas and we should be able to defend / refute them.


          • Saleh Johar

            Hi Horizon,

            Most Ethiopians (most Habesha) follow the politic of the Middle East third hand, news curated and molded by those who control of the tools that shape worldview and perception. For those of us who follow it first hand, and who do not need cultural translators, it is elementary that there is nothing called unified Arab policy (As TT explained). Just like we can not talk of one African policy bin regards to Eritrea, for example. African unity is even better compared to the unity of the Arab world. If you think that the Arabs can pose a combined Arab threat on any country, think again. There is no Arab risk targeting Ethiopia and there was none except in the minds of the ancien regime and its cult members. I can bet on that though I wish I had a means to guarantee you that 🙂

          • blink

            Dear Saleh Gadi

            I always said the same argument you made but people always accuse me of hating Habesha , as you said there is no history in the region with out the inter -habesha war times .

            The question is how do we reshap this ugly behaviour of habesha in order to live in peace. It is very big task that can not attained at one generation or even century.

          • Hope

            Selam Yoihannes:
            Thank you for your down to earth civility coupled with objective and genius assessment and judgment.
            Take note that you might be the next victim after SAAY by those hypocrites and they are ey(e)ing on you for your sharp mind and knowledge..

          • sara

            Dear hope,
            you are right that is what I also noticed . No worry about SAAY, they tried and failed big time.

          • welde

            Dear Yohannes Zerai,

            So do you think that PIA, allowed to sell/rent Eritrea’s, airspace, its land and the Assab port to the Arab countries in order to subdue Ethiopian ,”regional power”, status? Do you really think these countries will save Isayas ,if Ethiopia decides or judged it to be in its interest to remove IA ones and for all.? I don’t think so, even Isayas now that to be the case. The only reason he is selling the land , port and airspace is for the money. period. Lets not over exaggerate the UAE,,Saudi Arabia, military prowess.

            kind regards,

          • አዲስ

            Dear Yohannes,

            Is that suppose to be a rebuttal to the question Zara yaqob raised? Especially in light of the topic at hand (Not friends, not enemies…just interests) can you honestly argue that it was not in the interest of Italy, Arab nations and England for Eritrea to secede?

            If one follows your logic in the above comment, there won’t be countries that will engage in commerce or diplomatic relationships and still be geopolitical rivals (in the case of Arab countries with Ethiopia) and interests remain constant through time (in the case of UK,Italy with Ethiopia).

            “It would be very educational for you to research” how Eritrea became a state 🙂

            In conclusion: For me, whether Eritrea was created by false narrative, “propaganda and misinformation campaign spanning the lifetimes of successive” generations is a moot point. Eritrean people have sacrificed their lives for it and for better or worse have a country called Eritrea now. What I suggest for my fellow Ethiopians is that to focus on the interests of Ethiopia with regard to discussions about Eritrea or any other country and leave the exercise of coming to terms with ones own history to the Eritreans themselves. After all, in the scheme of things, Eritrea as a state is still a toddler not old enough for scolding. So a little bit of understanding and patience from one of the oldest states on Earth is necessary.


          • Yohannes Zerai

            Selam Mr. Addis,

            The point of departure for, and honestly obsession of, SOME of our Ethiopian brothers regarding Eritrea is what they think “others” (i.e., the Arabs, Italians, British, etc..) “wish to do with Eritrea.” They never seem to want to consider Eritrea itself, its people, its history; they never make an attempt to learn what the Eritrean people want to do (and can do) with their country although manifestations of that aspiration abound in their recent history.

            As observed in SOME Ethiopian friends, these shortcomings are symptomatic of their own narrow ethnic-based perspective which prevented them for too long from relying on and having faith in the Ethiopian people; instead, looking up to (and believing in) their autocratic rules and their Western sponsors is all they were able to experience. That, unfortunately, is the only prism through which they are capable of viewing any other country/people in the neighborhood. Trying to make them see what they don’t see would, therefore, only end up being a futile exercise – at least for now.

            Before we part ways, let me tell you Mr. Addis that I am surprised by your audacity to advise me to “research” how my country “became a state!” – just surprised and nothing more. That statement carries neither intelligence nor respectability to be worthy of a reaction more profound than that.

            Have a good day

          • አዲስ

            Dear Yohannes,

            I will skip the first two paragraphs of your reply and comment on the last one as I am not here to defend SOME hypothetical Ethiopians.

            I will say this: I like the fact that you find that advice audacious because it was intended to be just that. But it’s amusing to me that you’ve failed to recognize I’ve put it in a quotation because it was not my advice. I borrowed it from you to show you how it’s neither an intelligent nor a respectable way to conduct a discussion. I have also included one more quote in my last reply directly from you to drive this point. Here’s hoping you won’t miss that too.


          • Hope

            Selamat Yohannes:
            This is fantastic rebuttal and argument to those Ethios obsessed with the ‘Arabism” of Eritrea.
            You put in a sweet and short verse.
            I wonder what they could have said if what Saudi Arabia and Qatar have invested in Ethiopia was invested in Eritrea.
            Here is some addendum:
            1-Libya and Yemen contributed lots against Eritrean Armed Struggle.
            2-The Arabs contributed tremendously–politically, diplomatically and financially against Eritrea during the Hannis Islands crisis and succeeded in helping Yemen get the Hannish Islands.
            3-Contrary to their assertion, Britain has been NUMERU UNO Enemy of Eritrea and Eritreans but the Numero Uno supporter of Ethiopia…in all aspects..politically, diplomatically and financially…and media wise as the BBC led by Patrick Gilks and the other guy I hate to name his name…the de facto Amb of Ethiopia to the BBC.
            I told you repeatedly that these people here are for a purpose and could be part and parcel of the TPLF Propaganda Team to come in here and to create chaos and mess among Eritreans and yet–well accepted and well trained with a unique hospitality by the AT and!

          • Hope

            Correction: read “object” as “objective”.
            “..well trained” as ” well treated”

          • bibo ergo sum

            Dear Hope,

            Why not use the ‘edit’ feature on your post to correct those rather than another post. I like the list of recent comments posted on the right side and you are unnecessarily flooding it. Please take note.

            Awate Reader

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Dear Yohannes,

    Good reading. Please keep up the flow, you have a lot to contribute in stirring the issues at hand to find a rational and objective settlement.