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Tefera Gedamu interviews Dan Connell On EBC

Meet EBC with Tefera Gedamu” interviews Dan Connell on Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation.

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  • Tzigereda

    Selam Gheteb, dawit & Co,
    Will you still defend crimes of the PFDJ?
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=hWgAoFR8siU

    • Semere Andom

      Hi Tzigereda:
      Is this from the Dergi time or now? Please clarify?
      if it is now, dawit will say that this poor guy had it good, because he was fed and there were books in side the prison

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear Tzigereda,
      I was really waiting to see someone among them replying to you, But ሱቕ ( ትም ) መሪጾም ኣለው ::

    • ‘Gheteb

      Hi “እተጌ” Tzigereda,

      You are asking me if I will ” defend crimes of the PFDJ?”. Which crimes are you talking about? You have embedded a Youtube link and you are asking me to defend “PFDJ crimes” just like that.

      First, tell me explicitly what crimes, if any, is the PFDJ is standing accused of by your “እተጌ”ness? I mean you need to tell me “all the crimes” first and please don’t forget to authenticate your source, even the testimonial from the youtube link you have provided.

      Then, based on your response, I will see if there was/is real crime that the PFDJ may need to be defended of.

      • Kokhob Selam

        Dear Gheteb,
        Yes yes, the source ! Wow, how do we miss this! and what is the evidence even if this is from Weyane.. may be even the man is Al Amudis (Ethiopian Al Amudi ) brother.

        Gheteb, why don’t you be a bit fair to our people ! don’t you see the old man talking what happened to him? I beg you please at least feel what we are feeling sometime as Eritrean. I wish I read one single sentence that shows love to our people.

      • Saleh Johar

        Hi Gheteb and Tzigereda,

        I think I will interject here. I know Mohammed Hussein Al-Amaoudi–he is known as Hussein Al-Atrash, born in Ali-Ghider, belonging to the Amoudi family. He was jailed for thirteen years. Now, you can chose to disbelieve me, but I wish you understand that I know his ordeal. I know his relatives in the Ali-Ghider area.

        Hussein lost his eye sight in jail, lost his two daughters and wife–please be patient and listen to his testimony on the video-clip–it was produced by an Eritrean web TV, SMER.

        Dear Gheteb, I don’t know about Tzigereda, but I can tell you that the PFDJ is accused of arresting people without due process, keeping them in jail without a court order, and releasing them at will (if they don’t die in jail) as if they were on vacation. Please note that I am not even expressing my views whether they have a reason to arrest him or not, I guessed that would take us into a dead end and I am avoiding it. I am just accusing the PFDJ of injustice, cruelty and destroying the Eritrean dream of generations for justice and freedom–and for staying in power by the gun, but trampling on the rights of Eritrean…

        Such cruelty is difficult to understand by those who claim to have fought Haile Sellassie’s and Derg’s rule to end the oppression and to liberate Eritreans. And this is my accusation of the PFDJ: It has established a totally lawless tyranny in Eritrea where injustice has become a norm. AlAamoudi is just a sample–and I would confidently say you know it.

      • PTS

        Gheteb,
        Unless you are inclined to play Hilmi derho, it is clear what crimes Tzigereda is talking about. But if you insist on us filing charges, here are some: brutality against a law-abiding citizen, unlawful imprisonment, causing disability, causing physical, mental and emotional suffering, separation of family, wasting productive life worth of 13 years…
        These counts are just preliminay so as to book the regime into prison cell. More serious charges to follow.

    • Mahmud Saleh

      Dear Tzigereda
      Thank you for sharing this link. Genuine testimonies could not be learnt or reproduced. They can’t be faked or dramatized. They are just natural.

  • Amde

    Selam Awatistas,

    Interesting piece. https://martinplaut.wordpress.com/2016/03/28/eritreas-drought-100-crop-failure-in-key-breadbasket/

    Apparently there is 100% crop failure in Eritrea this year especially in the Gash Barka region, but the Eritrean government decided to purchase 100% food for a year. What this means is no famine. At least from what Berhanu says.

    When you think a bit deeper into it, it becomes a little strange. What is meeting 100% of food demand from international markets in the context of Eritrea? OK, you can buy wheat I suppose, but wouldn’t there be shortages in all other food items, starting from the lowly onion that goes into every pot of wot? It would constitute a very visible and notable change in the dietary mix of the average person.

    in any case, if this is true, it means some of the mining money that Isayyas and co have squirreled away can apparently be made available for trying political times, as famine most assuredly would.

    Berhanu here claims there is no inflation due to food shortage. Is that true? Also, are the currency restrictions late last year part of a proactive measure to forestall food shortage related inflation spike?

    Amde

    • Nitricc

      .
      Amde; be carful; the so-called revenge seekers might label you as PFDJist. You supposed talk all negative and supposed trash the PFDJ at everything and at every topic. For us who can see what is good and what is bad; the first priority of any government is feeding its people. You can’t avoid drought but you can avoid catastrophic famine. To get to your point the reason for fruits and vegetables availability and at reasonable cost is due the small dams that PFDJ keep working on for years while the likes of Semere were making a joke of. The small gardens on all small dam area contributed immensely in meeting the demand of the consumers. Anyway; I am glad you seen something positive that the blind revenge seekers never able to see. However; this does not mean the government is free of short coming.

      • Amde

        Nitric,

        I try to appreciate the work bureaucrats and experts do, in spite of the catastrophies their political masters usually engineer.

        Ethiopia is facing a historic drought and the government is scrambling on all fronts to do what it needs to do to make sure it doesn’t become just as historic a famine. I don’t think there is much that is different climate wise between Ethiopia and Eritrea, so I assume the drought situation is as severe or worse in Eritrea. Ethiopia has been aggressive in talking up the needs and looking for help. And yet there is not a peep about either the drought or potential food shortfall in Eritrea.

        What Berhanu says about the drought (100% crop failure in Gash Barka) is within what we would expect from the geography. The other part, that Eritrea bought sufficient food to meet 100% of the need for a year sounds a little fishy to me. Even considering that Eritrea has to feed only 5mln people, that is a huge financial outlay for a regime supposedly suffering. Makes you question where that money came from, and if it was available, why it was not invested in the economy before.

        I suppose you can meet nutritional needs by purchasing from the world market, but the supply of “traditional” food market items would be affected. Even if you put in many micro-dams, which under historic and severe drought conditions would evaporate and run out as well.

        This is a case where someone shopping for the family groceries would provide you with a ton of meaningful information.

        Amde

        • Dear Amde,
          If indeed Eritrea had bought food to feed the entire population, it would have been heard, when and from whom it purchased for e. g. wheet and other items (US, Canada, EU etc). When Ethiopia went to the market to buy wheet, the whole world knew about it. I really hate this type of politics. Look at what he said about Saudi Arabia. He said, it is a desert, but the people are never hungry. What can one say about such politicians. Still the weirdest thing was that they applauded when he said this.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Amde, Horizon and all,

            My parents live in Eritrea their entire lives. My mother was just visiting recently and all she talked about was, how things are expensive and hard to find. They have never received any FOOD from the Eritrean government for FREE, last year or any year before that. Now, my parents may be better off compared to most Eritrean population but the only time I heard the Eritrean government bought food to feed the needy was, during the 2000 war.

            I really do NOT remember reading news that Eritrean crops have failed 100% and that there was acute food shortage in Eritrea last year.

            So I think it’s politics that Dr. Berhanu is playing by making the Eritrean government looking (GOOD, or he tries anyway) he wanted to make the Ethiopian government look really (BAD).

            In my opinion, in this day and age, anyone who thinks and believes what ever Isayas Afeworki does (including my own older brother) is GOOD, I think that person needs to get his/her HEAD checked. Really.

            Berhe

          • Nitricc

            “So I think it’s politics that Dr. Berhanu is playing by making the Eritrean government looking (GOOD, or he tries anyway) he wanted to make the Ethiopian government look really (BAD).”

            Berhe-Y you are tooooooo slow for the current news and views. sad!!!

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Nitricc,

            You are correct this news may have escaped me. As I pay little or no attention to the misery of others to boost my ego, the least I can do is help if not, hope things will get better for the m.

            Tesfay

          • dawit

            Hi Berhe,

            May be you should advise your parents to move to Ethiopia, that is the place where they give free food. In Eritrea you grow your food or buy it from the market. No free lunch.” By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground” Genesis 3:19. “You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours”. Psalm 128:2

          • Abi

            Gashiye
            Now I know why your mother is still in Mama Ethiopia. Berhe has a thing or two to learn from the wisdom of your mother.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Abi,
            .
            There are changes going on in Mama Ethiopia. I was browsing the Ethiopian Aiga Forum web site few minutes ago, I clicked on a song video. The video was sort of “Fukera and Shilela” in Tigrinya. I never heard it before, is this new?
            Maybe dawit may know if this is the trend on both sides of the Mereb river.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • saay7

            Hey Mr. KH:

            You went to Aiga forum and the thing that you noticed is a song video and NOT their publishing of a fake interview with Richard Pankhurst that has freaked half of Ethiopia and resulted in them realizing it was a fake interview?

            Abi, give KH an appropriate proverb now.

            saay

          • Abi

            Hi Saay
            Do you know Richard Pankhurst son is Alula? What a name! I think all people by the name Alula are extraordinarily talented.

            I will find an appropriate proverb if Mr Kim promised to translate it in English without butchering it.

          • saay7

            Hey Abi

            We talked about this and I told you Alula is a great name—for a girl. It’s Arabic for The First, female conjugation. Al-oola. Like addressing a female Qedamawi (“Qedamawit?”)

            Saay

          • Abi

            Hey Saay
            It gets better!
            The First of its kind! The Pioneer! The Example! The Abinet!!!!
            You see in the great culture of south of the border, we use the word Emye like Emye Menelik to show affection, respect…. Qedamawit Alula! I love it!
            Alula, ebakish ney. ( just calling my qedamawi son)

          • Saleh Johar

            Saay,
            men Teleb alUla, sahara al Layali. من طلب العلى سهر اليالي
            Literal translation (for those who do not read arabic): one who aims for a high position stays up at night[s]. Can you say if Ula has a gender at all? I am not sure.

            I think the root word is Ali علي, Alia عالية او علية, Uleya علية, Alwan علوان, A’Aali ( مثلا، اعالي الجبال( I think you are saying Alula is from العلى.

            My one cent…

          • saay7

            Abu Selah:

            Why are fixing things for Abi?:)

            1. Google “Arab baby girl names”. Alula is right there;

            2. You know there are Habesha Eritrean boys named “Awel” (Qedamawi). So Al-Ula must be Qedamawit.

            3. In Arabic, constellations have Alula references, according to Wikipedia. Link below.

            4. Finally, Abi has made peace with the fact that Alula is female (which in Amharic is, strangely, a term of endearment AND mocking eg: a guy will trade his guy friend “moq blosh neber”). But, Abi, who has used the sentence “I hate Arabs!” about a dozen times here, has not reconciled to the fact that one of Ethiopias most gallant names is…Arabic.

            Don’t let his weasel out 🙂

            https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Arabic_star_names

            saay

          • Abi

            Hi Saay
            Abi believes in gender equality. A gallant Arab kicker with a female name is fine with me.
            If the Arab used it it is because they want to cover their cowardice.
            ” melke Tifu besim yidegfu”

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam saay,
            .
            O.K, o.k I will check it out. What were you doing at Aiga Forum anyway? I think that Eyob might be on to something.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Abi

            Hi Mr Kim
            Mefoker meshelel dirom yaqubetal
            Awerawerun gin kegna yimarutal

          • Kokhob Selam

            Abo

            ኣረ ኣረ – ትግሬዎቹ ከጎንደሮቹ ? ኣረ ኣልተባለም ::

          • Abi

            Kokobe
            Enezih Gonderoch wedaj yakebralu
            Engda simeTa wenber yileqalu

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Dawit,

            You just said this earlier, with regards to GoE.

            “Buy cereals enough to feed the whole population by September for the whole year. Unlike other leadership in Africa, who are stockpiling $ in Swiss Banks, the Eritrean government use it to stock pile cereals.”

            And now you are saying:

            “In Eritrea you grow your food or buy it from the market.”

            So you mean the Eritrean government is selling the food that it bought in the open market to the Eritrean people?

            bAnd Ras Hulet Milass, is that how they say it.

            Tesfay

          • Amde

            Selam Berhe,

            I can quite see where
            a) there is significant crop failure, but
            b) the government buys food, and
            c) instead of giving it as food aid, sells it through established government or PFDJ distribution channels.

            That would meet your mother’s observation.

            It would be interesting if your mother can say WHAT has gone up in price more than other things.

            Amde

          • Nitricc

            Amde; you may hide hunger but you will never hide famine. The truth is the government of Eritrea was ready and did everything can do to overcome the catastrophic drought. I know some corrupt and dishonest people are trying to take the credit away from where it belonged.

          • Amde

            Nitricc,

            Can you point me anywhere where,

            a) the government said there is drought (not famine),
            b) the government announced or reported pre-emptive action to forestall famine

            Amde

          • dawit

            Dear Horizon,
            Of course the whole world will hear the Ethiopian purchase, those who donated the money would know how their donation is spent. In the case of Eritrea, the only people to know are the Eritreans, and also people do not eat only wheat and maize, they also consume sorghum and millet. Drought should not be the cause of famine, if you have a government like Eritrea, by the people, for the people, then you give priority to the need of the people, instead of buying guns and bullets to invade your neighbor’s territories. Ethiopia is a one man country “Alamudi, gold mine, Alamudi farm, Alamudi Hotel, Alamudi cement factory, Alamudi taxi, Alamudi gas station, Alamudi tej bet, Alamudi tela bet etc
            dawit.

          • Dear dawit,

            You are saying that the Ethiopian government is not using money from its coffers, which is not true. Of the $1.4B needed, part of the money comes from the country. Of course, Ethiopia cannot handle all the expenses, and much more our people have not been intimidated to go hungry in silence, and they demand to be fed. You do not have any proof to show that the regime indeed bought food to cover the needs of the Eritrean people. Remember, up to now you were denying that Eritrea was affected by El Nino.

            If you had a billionaire who invests in Eritrea, you would have made him a national hero, and would have erected his statue. Of course, investment means profit. Otherwise, nobody is going to invest his/her good money for nothing. In addition, if in your opinion a government by the people and for the people means, a government by one man and for one man, as it happens under the dictatorship in Eritrea, indeed you have what you say. Although you live in a country that implemented it, the US, and should have known what it exactly means, you do not seem to do so.

            http://addisfortune.net/articles/ethiopia-to-buy-400000tn-of-wheat-for-drought/

    • dawit

      Selam A mde,
      It is interesting you found this piece of information about drought in Eritrea, but no famine in Eritrea. Why? The answer is clear, there is a government in Eritrea, by the people for the people. 100% crop failure because there was no rain in July the rainy season. You don’t sit and waited till October to find out if there will not be harvest in October or November. Buy cereals enough to feed the whole population by September for the whole year. Unlike other leadership in Africa, who are stockpiling $ in Swiss Banks, the Eritrean government use it to stock pile cereals. Don worry about the onions the micro dams have taken care of all the vegetables need in the country. Made forget about the political prisoners in Eritrea, they are well-fed by the government having three meals a day, but think of the drought prisoners in Ethiopia Birtukan and her eight remaining children.
      dawit .
      .

    • House of Stark

      Hi MR AMDE

      If, you control currency circulation and price of goods sold, you don’t have any Inflation.

      • Amde

        Hi House of Stark,

        That makes sense. Assuming there is no black market.

        But do you think the drought may have been a driving force for the currency change and controls? The rain failures were evident by July. The currency change/cash controls were put in place in October/November I think.

        Amde

  • Hope

    Hello All:
    I enjoyed the Interview despite being a biased one,understandably.
    Dan deserves a credit for his great job on/for Eritrea and its struggle.
    Having said that,we should also be cautious/vigilant about the other role of the Western Journalists and Self-Appointed Experts.
    It is a well documented fact that the Western Intelligence Services use “Journalists”, “Evangelists” and “Pentecostals” and worst,”Muslim Extremists and Jihadists” now-a-days to execute their agenda of hegemony and divide and rule tactics.
    The ikes of Dan and his Ex-wife or girl friend,Gail Smith, cannot be free from this business.
    Dan is not just a Journalist (Not by Profession but by experience,I guess)but more of a “Politician” as well ,BTW,and he even crossed the redline in interfering in the Internal Affairs of the Eritrean issues.
    He directly and indirectly advocated for a Regime Change in Eritrea and even for the assassination of the PFDJ Leadership(refer to his Articles and “Sermons” at asmarino.com).
    His direct role of Leadership Status to/for the South Africa based Eritrean Group tells it all.
    His comradeship with the likes of Patrick Gilks,the De Facto Foreign Minister of the TPLF Gov,not just a Lobbyist, tells it all.
    That is,you cannot TRUST the white people,as the young Gen Nittric says it,specially when it comes to African Business..
    Remember and consider the big role of his ex-wife or girl friend,Ms Gail Smith,in/for the TPLF-led EPRDF Government and since the inception of the TPLF and until this minute.
    She is/has been literally the “Advisor to the Advisors” of the TPLF Gov and its Leadership.
    Her close relationship with PMMZ and her role as a Unique Advisor to/for PMMZ cannot be ignored including her negative role in the Eritrean Business.
    Yes,indeed,that is the Modus Operandi of the Western Intelligence Services.

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Ahlan Hamed Hfoonay
    I’m not quite sure what to make of this long Hateta. Look my friend, we have transitioned from making long Hatetas to a 21st century style clear and concise comments. If you ask me why it took me this long to grasp the transition, it is the lingering effects of the genes of the very slow abagobye…haha…unless you convert your Hateta into few lines, I will place you in the “severely ignored” list. And youknow who is going to be the consulting agent for that purpose. You are not going to like it. I know it doesn’t sound good to ask a proven writer “please clarify.” But as the Tigrigna saying goes ( I guess today is for firing off sayings), cheru b’Aqma tHegom, therefore, it may as well be my comprehension isn’t up to the task. Anyway, what’s the beef of the comment apart from your rage on Dan for chronicling a struggle that knocked off all odds?obviously, that belief made Dan to say that he had a faith on Eritreans that once again they will pull it off against internal and external odds.

    • Semere Andom

      Mahmuday;
      There no beef sir,there is lean chicken breast in the comment, and where did thatt “Mizzanawi: thing of yours go., I raged?? If I was in a mood I would ask you where is the “chibttat?” but I will not
      And rage for chronicling??, I talked about Hillal and Kremer as venturing to the unknown and many things and I said Dan acted like an Eritrean instead of the of sober outsider, he is a good guy who briefriended bad guys, the guys who were in their 20s “meantom keyqqotseru ztegaddelu, qdemkum “as Sal would say;-)
      He came on his own and I am happy for what he is doing now, he comes to Canada you know 😉
      Also that unnamed kid who looked him in teh eye and told him, he inspired him before and now he knows what is going on and challenged him to write. And write, he did. i said all these things, I did not rage against Dan!

  • Abraham H.

    Hope, not important who does the interview; what is being said in the interview is what matters. Besides, Dan Connell could still give more interviews and share his views regarding Eritrea’s past and present situation with awate.

  • saay7

    Selamat Cousin Gheteb:

    I get GoE, I get ABI, but you didn’t tell us what EOG stands for.

    Now, in reference to the G-15, this is what we know and makes some of us in the EOG (whose meaning I don’t know but I am sure it is not flattering) very skeptical about the government’s (and your) claim that it had to do with “concerns of Eritrean national security.”

    1. The G-15 are 15 individuals. One of them, Mohammed Berhan Blatta, recanted, and he was not arrested. Is “national security” something that gets enforced or overlooked based on what kind of letter you write?

    2. The PFDJ Central Office, in its j’accuse letter, had said that all the crimes that the G-15 were guilty of was their activity during the 1998-2000 war:

    In this destructive campaign, it is expected that the Woyane would be the vanguard. It is a campaign that it has embarked on, and an effort it has accelerated, since the day after the conflict and for the last two and half years. We can skip over the role of the traitors who collaborated with Woyane by saying it is no different from the Woyane. As for those who, in the midst of trying and challenging times, were jockeying and hustling about to exploit the situation by selling national and people’s interest for self-interest, we have seen many of these opportunists in our long struggle. What demands attention is, although very few in number, the cadres and leaders of the Front who, for various reasons (panic, hopelessness, absconding responsibility, to create political opportunities by complaining about lack of position and authority) participated in the campaign.

    http://web.archive.org/web/20020602235101/http://awate.com/Documents/pfdjmanual.htm

    It was even the entire war period, it was specifically after The Third Offensive, according to the Secretary of the PFDJ:

    “Although just before the Third Offensive, some of them may have been saying things, what brought things to the surface was after the Third Offensive. This was not a happenstance. During these trying times, while the Eritrean people and its army were heroically defending the nation using all their resources and sacrificing themselves in the thousands, they took a wrong and defeatist stand. Beginning from the day we withdrew from Barentu, they started saying, ‘We cannot stop the challenge and the onslaught of the Woyane Offensive. The Woyane won’t leave us alone unless the President resigns; so he should resign. If the Woyane occupy to the entire country, they will destroy our people so we should call on the UN and the US to take over and save us.’ For senior leaders of the Front to take this kind of stand requires accountability.”

    The natural progression is to accuse people using relevant penal code, and if found guilty (even in kangaroo court) to sentence them. The government didn’t, probably because there is no penal code against a civilian (most of the G-15 were) panicking or being hopeless in time of war.

    3. The Ever Shifting Number:

    Remember that in 2001, the Gov of Eritrea was talking about ‘senior leaders’, “senior cadres” and strongly hinting that not all the G-15 are equally to blame. By August 2001, Trgta (a youth newspaper issued by the PFDJ) was writing: “The Truth is surfacing its head: Accountability May shift from 15 to 3!” and “No Wise Men Within G-3?” I would venture that the G-3 were not Saleh Idris Kekya, Astier Fesehazion, Germano Nati. So, why have they been made to disappear?

    4. The Last Act of The National Assembly

    January 31 – February 2, the National Assembly met to indict the G-15 (in their absence, of course.) Now the G-15 were described as people “who had held high positions in the military and other fields” and accused of having “taken a defeatist position in the Third Weyane Offensive:”

    that they had proposed that the government hand over responsibility for the nation to the United States and the UN, arguing that we didn’t have the capability to stop the enemy’s advance;
    that, regardless of the dire consequences for the nation, they actively worked to bring down the President in the most difficult period of national defense;
    that they encouraged the enemy to pursue its invasion by transmitting a message to the Weyane leaders through the peace facilitators asking them if they would be prepared to stop their offensive in exchange for the President’s ouster;
    that when the Weyane invasion was foiled they insisted that we accept pre-conditions set by the enemy that compromised our sovereignty;
    that they damaged our role in the peace process by giving away our secrets to the peace facilitators and giving a false picture about our capabilities and internal political situation;
    that after the Weyane invasion was foiled with high resolve and heavy sacrifice of the Eritrean people and its defense forces, instead of correcting their mistakes, they sought to cover their shameful defeatism, pursue their frustrated ambition to seize powers, and started to wage a propaganda campaign and psychological war, using the government and Front positions that they were given to serve the people and the facilities provided to them, with the aim of vilifying the nation and its people, breaking their morale and absolving the enemy;
    that they instigated divisive campaigns to weaken the unity of the Eritrean people and pit them against each other along ethnic, regionalist and religious lines;
    that they tried to incite violence by various sectors of society, such as students and disabled veterans, and agitated for regular members of the defense forces and members of national service to abandon their defense trenches and to mutiny, and;
    that they strove and are still attempting to isolate Eritrea from the rest of the world and deny its people of humanitarian and development aid.

    Again, I ask you, does it stand to reason that every single one of the G-15, I mean G-14, did as described above? Were they given an opportunity to defend themselves?

    5. The Accusation Takes Legal Form

    The first time that the Gov of Eritrea actually started using language that makes sense from the standpoint of penal code and military conduct (as opposed to “defeatism” which I don’t think is a crime) is when it was forced to by the African Commission, and only after an Eritrean citizen brought the issue to its attention using the Africa Charter in 2007. The government ridiculously argued that African Commission has no authority because the citizen can bring this matter to an Eritrean court. The Government also claimed that the G-15 were arrested for violating Article 259 (attacks on the independence of the state), Article 260 (impairment of the defence powers of the state) and Article 261 (high treason) of the Transitional Penal Code of Eritrea. The African Commission told them exactly what we are telling it: this is arbitrary and inhumane. Why? “The Eritrean detainees have not been charged, or brought to trial. This in itself constitutes arbitrariness.” Furthermore, “holding an individual without permitting him or her to have contact with his or her family, and refusing to inform the family if and where the individual is being held, is inhuman treatment of both the detainee and the family concerned.”

    If the government is using 259, 260, 261 of the Transitional Penal Code, is it also not required to comply with all the articles of the Penal Code including the ones that obligate the government to bring the matter to a court of law and provide the accused the right to defend themselves?

    Gheteb, I am sure it is not lost on you that we are not saying we know for sure they are innocent. What I am saying is the government has the burden of proof and it hasn’t proven its case. And for someone who is always looking for evidence whenever his government is accused of something, I would expect you to apply the same standards on citizens.

    saay

    • Mahmud Saleh

      Wow!!! bxaay/ Ato/ SAAY
      This the best Hateta and hagerawi meKetawi rebuttal. Well said. I would just add a layman’s commonsense.
      Long after the war had stopped and things moved to matters of settlements (UN, UNMEE…), Sherifo was still minister of local governments and officially, albeit nominal, the vice-president; Drue, Petros, Kekya… and others continued to hold their high positions. Sherifo, was actually elected to head the commission that drafted the laws of elections. He came in direct collision with the president when he insisted the president that the election process would go as planned and the president was not legally allowed to make amendments, and then when the president shelved away that law, refusing to sign it; Sherifo got frozen (removed from his official duties); now, Sherifo becomes a target, but things were not that heated up. Sherifo gets open, soon people like Drue rally up in objecting what the president was doing of delaying or totally freezing the democratic process (a committee that was to be headed by Mesfun Hagos that should have investigated how the war had been managed was told to stop its work; a committee that was headed by Askalu Menkerios that was supposed to draft laws of party formation (I may be confused in the roles of Askalu and Sherifo, you are welcome to correct me) was frozen…all these actions led the dissenting officials in trying to talk to the president, he refused; then, after many discussions, they agreed to write a letter, they were dismissed. Up to this point the only person frozen was MaHmoud Sherifo. After this, they saw PFDJ conducting seminars that were intended to fire up the public and lay the ground for the purge. At this point, they go public to counter the accusations that were levelled against them by PFDJ. And the rest, as they say, is history.
      So, one would ask
      1. Why did the govern wait this long, allowing them to keep the high positions if they were identified as committing treason?
      Well, you don’t want people suspected of espionage, conspiracy against the state, and treason to serve in their official capacity even for a second. That tells me that the charges were bogus.
      2. What if they said “tegagina” (sorry) as the president demanded of them, and went along what the president wanted them to go? Would they still be arrested?
      Of course, not. And that tells us the charge of treason was a bogus one.

      • saay7

        Wo MaHmuday:

        Thanks, Field Marshall, and no that was not just a “layman’s commonsense”: your argument is actually stronger than mine: it deals with timeline and it destroys, conclusively, the government’s claim that the G-15 compromised national security and committed High Treason. Brief revisit:

        1. The Ethiopian Third Offensive occurred between May 12 – May 25, 2000.
        2. The Eritrea-Ethiopia Cessation of Hostilities Agreement was signed on June 18, 2000.
        3. The Algiers Agreement was signed on December 12, 2000.
        4. The G-15 write their “Open Letter” on May 24, 2001.
        4. The G-15 were arrested on September 18, 2001.

        If, as the Gov of Eritrea claimed that, the G-15’s guilt (high treason) surfaced after Barentu fell (mid-May 2000), why then did all these “traitors” continue to hold on to their position, some of them for over 16 months? Why did they continue to (a) negotiate on behalf of Eritrea (Haile Woldetensae); (b) be in charge of all internal affairs (Sherifo); run the Inland revenue (Estifanos Seyoum), (c) be in charge of the most populous administrative zone/province (Mesfin Hagos); (d) be in charge of the Ministry of Information (Beraki Gebreselassie), (e) be in charge of Ministry of Transport & Communications (Saleh Idris Kekya), (f) be in charge of logistics (Berhane Gebrezgabheir); and, unfrigginbelievably (g) be in charge of the entire defense force as Chief of Staff (Oqbe Abraha)?

        Furthermore, in which role were Germano Nati (then a university student) and Aster Fessehazion (then frozen) committing high crimes? Adhanom?

        To add to what you said about Mahmud Sherifo (he was in charge of the committee to draft laws on political formations and organizations and, to my mind, his committee drafted a fine law that would preclude Eritrea’s fragmentation along religious and ethnic lines) , this is the sequence of events that led to his demotion and eventual arrest. (He was the one getting lectured “Tgageyu alekhum” in his communications with IA.) It is from awate.com’s summary of his interview with Tsigenai:

        April 6, 2001: tSigenai, a private Eritrean newspaper, interviews Mr. Mahmoud Sherifo. States that his removal from office on February 5, 2001 was on the eve of the date that the committee he chaired, the Committee on Drafting Political Parties & Organizations, had a scheduled meeting to discuss the obstacles it had faced from the President’s office in carrying out its duties. The former minister explained that the committee was authorized by and accountable to the National Assembly, which had authorized its work at its 13th Regular Session (9/00). The committee had concluded its first draft on January 23, 2001, had disseminated copies of the draft to members of National Assembly members and had, via a request to the Ministry of Information, scheduled interviews with the government media for January 30, 2001. Said Sherifo: “Suddenly, on January 29, 2001, we were told by the President to refrain from disseminating any information. While we kept our counsel to be patient and go on preparing to inquire about these developments, we received a message from the President. And the message informed us that the President has major observations on the draft laws and that he would set the schedule on when to disseminate the information to the public.” Sherifo added that the “responsibility we were given by the National Assembly was snatched.” Asked why he thought the president would do that, Sherifo replied: “I think it is because the President has no desire to see the formation of political parties before the elections scheduled for the end of the year.”

        And this is the law on political organizations that the committee drafted which awate.com immediately endorsed. Follow it and the Eritrean opposition orgs would be reduced to, let me count, 2.

        https://web.archive.org/web/20020211232329/http://awate.com/Documents/partylaw.htm

        saay

        • Berhe Y

          Hey Saay,

          By your admission, you are old or you are getting old. :).

          Field Marshal Mahmud,

          I take all and everything bad I said about you, I am sorry. But honestly I don’t think you deserve the Field Marshal title :(.

          The Chronology of Eritrea’s Reform Movement (2000-2001):
          http://awate.com/the-chronology-of-eritreas-reform-movement-2000-2001/

          Berhe

          • saay7

            Selamat Berhe Y:

            I am not old; just grumpy. There is a difference, man.

            saay

          • Abi

            Hi Saay
            Do you expect IA to live 500 years? Are we still in biblical times ?

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Abi,
            .
            Item 1. No No, Mr. Saay is advocating a verbal boarding. That will never happen.
            .
            Item 2. I enjoyed your poem. I will never attempt to translate.
            .
            Item 3. I think we should convince the other nations in Ethiopia to make the “Fukera and Shilela” our national anthem. The Oromos and Kembatas have similar popular songs. What do you think?
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Saleh Johar

            Abi,
            According to the calendar of the oppressed, he has already consumed 500 years worth of injustice. Therefore, he has lived that long.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Abi,
            there are three kinds of souls.1. those who live only to breath doing noting and go back, again coming back to do something 2. there are who live even short time but do good to the world who may not come if there is no more debt go up 3.there are people who live but take back the world fighting against peace and go back but come again to pay their debts. IA will come back again and again to pay his debts in process every crime will come back to him in different ways..Lol. take care Abi nature is programmed with cause and effect. just joking Abo..Ha ha you may come back as an Eritrean – slave of Arab.

        • Mahmud Saleh

          Ahlan SAAY
          Thanks for providing the details. I think the issue is as clear as it was in 2001. Innocent people are languishing in undisclosed dungeons and we should never bring rationalizing stories, nor resort to the all familiar “they must have done something.”

  • Haile WM

    Selamat Horizon,

    Ghedli existed long before Dan Connell became aware of is existance, and i am not in agreement with your assessment of ghedli being confrontation between a communist regime and a rebel movement.
    The rebel movement started much before, but I do agre with you that ghedli has it’s victims and has its share of injustice, mainly towards the fighters. You say DIA is a product of ghedli (or a byproduct ) but that doesn’t delegittimate the nature of ghedli either. One of the most common aspect of revolutions is that it produces tyrants, who most of the time style themselves as the guardian of the revolution and in the name of it make plunders that are matched to the regimes they fought, nonetheless we cant say that the values of any given revolution were bad to begin with. That was true with french revolution, or the October revolution in Russia (just to mention some).

    Bear in mind that Eritreans were demanding to decide of their fate by peaceful means long before they started armed struggle. I am even convinced, had it not being to the myopy of Ethiopian regimes (that of Hailesilasie and the DERG later) the armed struggle would have not being so successful. Their response was brutality against the innocent people and the only way to defend themselves (the innocent people) was to join the armed struggle.

  • saay7

    Selamat Dan:

    Welcome to awate. I have a suggestion for the next re-publishing of your books, or update of the political dictionary that will go a very long way to healing some of our Ghedli defamers.

    Next to each name, put, parenthetically, their age. Something like this:

    Then Sec Gen Isaias Afwerki (27) was chairing the politbureau which included Sherifo (27), Berhane Gebrezgabheir (25)….

    It might help put things in perspective for our very young 40-somethings who keep railing against Ghedli.

    Saay

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Dest Saay,

      I hope you are not attempting that DIA was not the dominant force in giving the direction of the orgsnization in ghedli. If so you are in a direct collision with our own Aklilu ‘s explanation about the birth of the despot dated bsck to1976, let alone with some of us in this forum. The number of meeting whatever its nature was, it has not to do with the cause of our struggle. That in itself (number of meetings) will not convince the deniers to the cause of our revolution.

      In other word, you sound saying that the way Issayas handled the organization in ghedli and the way he is handling the stste of Eritrea. Am l right my friend?

      senay MeAlti

      • Semere Andom

        Hi Emma;
        No, he is not saying that. Let me translate Sal for you.
        he is saying, IA accomplished a lot at a young age, he was 25 when he wrote in Tigringa the “Annen Elamayin”, he was 27 when he was the sec general of EPLF, leading the liberating Nacfa, now think about you(not you Emma), what have done when you were 27,

        • Lamek

          Semere, you always speak the truth. But I would encourage you to not burn your own bridges. Play it safe. Sorry, that is all I can say and don’t ask me what I mean. Thank you!

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Lamek,

            You say that ” [he] always speak[s] the truth”. Do you have your own truth, Lamek? FYI, Semere Andom is a LIAR bar none. Now proven beyond a shadow of a doubt.

            I don’t know what your problem is, but I think your fraternization with confirmed and pathological liars has something to do with it.

            From your takes on issues, I have come to conclude that you more inclined to exaggerate and regurgitate “political truths” instead of stating the objective truth, however unpalatable and unpopular it may be to some in this Forum.

            Therefore and henceforth, I will refer you as “Lamek The Hyperpolizer”.

          • Lamek

            Hi Gheteb, I was the only person who declared publicly here that I like you. So be nice to me otherwise, I will retract that statement. I will not yet say I don’t like you though. I walk like a tortoise, aba gobye.

            Where I stand and what should be done etc. – well the likes of Semere, Saay, AH, Berhe, Mahmoud Saleh argue all the things I stand for. So to me it is redundant to say ‘release prisoners’, ‘we need constitution’, ‘Anybody but IA’, ‘rule of law…’ All of these are super overused so I come here to learn bits and pieces and have fun. That is all. When I see something I don’t like occasionally, I make my grievance known and conversely, I see something I like, I tell the writer kudos. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. Even with you, I don’t always agree with you but I just let Saay and others handle it because I don’t have enough knowledge to argue and just using gut feelings for the sake of argument is not good enough in my world. I wish more people followed my suit here rather than trying to prove something out of nothing.

            But if you ask me specifically what I stand for on anything, I will gladly entertain.

            As for Semere – I would not say he is a LIAR. He maybe factually incorrect here and there but nobody can say they get it right every single time. For example, you say Dan Connell is a partisan in the current state of Eritrea. Well, to use your own term, things are hyper-polarized in Eritrea at the moment and since there is no middle ground, there is no choice for anyone but to be at one extreme or the other.

          • Semere Andom

            Hi Lamek:
            Thanks.
            What maks Gheteb a PFDJ is not because he supports them, but he withdtwas his stand if one disagrees with him, unlike you.
            Before you graced us here, he said glowing things about me, but then I kept telling the truth, again and again and he called me CIA agent, you know who else does that;-)
            he also called me wedi mai Bella and wedi mai Laba, and wedi mai Nile and wedi mai Shefsheift, all true he did not lie, give the devil Its due or is it his due or is it her due;-)
            But what made him so mad about me is my ivestigative reporting and in this comment to you proved me right, in that he is Sirak and not Siraj when he used the metaphor of hot “dinish” instead of hot “akkelet”, the first is a Sirak metaphor and the second most a Siraj
            And by the way he has no sense of humor, non, nada, sifer, bado, hatema as his cousin with a wicked sense of humor would say;-)

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Lamek,

            Regarding Semere Andom, I was not talking about his “Parasitic politics” as that is an altogether different subject.

            I said he is a LIAR bar none, because of all the false and mendacious he made about ‘Gheteb being a Christian an Asmariono and all the other stuff he barfed.
            Challenged and confronted, the LIAR bar none, withdrew with his tails between his legs to hide behind the Tigrayit speaking female’s skirt.

            What do you call someone who makes all those mendacious statements about ‘Gheteb and when he is challenged to back up his claims publicly, he decide to hide? Yes, that person is a LIAR.

            Since Semere Andom has been lying since I don’t know when, that makes to be a LIAR bar none.
            Just like a parasite needs a host to survive, Semere Andom’s host are non other than the Eritrean Tigre speaking ( MenaEs) and some Eritrean Muslims on whose grievances he thrives and acts as if he cares by pretending to spout echoes of their religion and language.

            Thus, he is nothing more than a parasite who may have also been a beneficiary of the Weyanes financial aid.

          • Semere Andom

            Gheteb;
            Come on Gheteb, I called you many things, Sirak, an Asmarino, a Christian, a former EPLF fighter who defected. I stand by them and I do not have to prove, I am the accuser, you are the accused, You need to prove me wrong, that is how it works, sir!

          • Lamek

            Hi Semere. You made a huge mistake here. Gheteb will eat you alive now. If you survive it, I will tell you what you did wrong. Just stay tuned.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Semere Andom,

            Then bring it on.

            My challenge is still there awaiting your response. Bring yourself and your reliable sources and I will bring my evidences and many a Toronto resident to bear witness and confirm my stated identity, religion, ethnicity and the city I hail from.

            All the procedure will have to be in public and in a mutually agreed upon venue. So, start making them calls in order to pony up the money [ 50-100k USD] you have to put to back up your outlandish claims.

            I want you to know that I am not going to let your mendacious claims and insults go unanswered, however long the process may take.

            Either you have to man up and meet the challenges or you need to fess up and offer a valid and public apology with full retraction that is going to be vetted for sincerity by three Forumers of my choosing.

          • Semere Andom

            Hi Gheteb
            Since you are from Erirea and in Eritrea the accused, the victim,must prove beyond any reasonable doubt to prove the accuser is is wrong. So the onus is on your Mr, Gheteb to prove me wrong, that is the doctrine that you support and that you pick fight with people who advocate the due process that you are demanding of me. I am challenging you to live by that, Then I will apologize.

            The mendacity(a workd related to mendacious) of your logic is out of this world, you support a regime that does puts the onus on the accused and disappeared to prove their innocence, when you are the accused, you switch sides to put the onus on the accuser to prove his allegation, you cannot have your “bojjbojj” and eat it as the same time, or as Sirak would say, you cannot have your “dinish” and eat it.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Semere Andom,

            Consider this as my VERY last response to you regarding the comment I posted one hour ago.

            Disregard what I have asked of you, then you are hereby forewarned that I am going to explore all options to clear my identity, religion, ethnicity and the city I hail from.

            Rest assured that how long it may take me to drag you out to the public and face the music, I am going to pursue it however long it may take.

            [[[[[[ Semere Andom ‘Gheteb • 2 hours ago

            Gheteb;
            Come on Gheteb, I called you many things, Sirak, an Asmarino, a Christian, a former EPLF fighter who defected. I stand by them and I do not have to prove, I am the accuser, you are the accused, You need to prove me wrong, that is how it works, sir! ]]]]]]

          • dawit

            Hi SEM,
            Can you disprove me that you are not the son of torserawit from Tigray born or raised in Keren?
            dawit

          • Nitricc

            dawit; hahahah; you gave him his own medicine, lol. the guy is disgraced. he knows all the TPLF songs too, so you are not far out. lol

          • Semere Andom

            dawit, I will
            But first you need to prove me wrong for me accusing you for visiting sawa every year to rape and watch the rapes by PFDJ, I made the accussation long time ago, disprove me first.

          • Abraham H.

            dawit,
            Can you disprove that you were not Comandis, or Malisha Sirnay, or Wodo Geba? It was you who declared here your anabashed support for the previous regimes in Eritrea, not the respectable Semere Andom.

          • dawit

            Abraham H.
            I had disprove that long time ago when I was confronted by your owner here a Awate.com. I am not going to talk to anyone barking in the street. One talk to the owner is enough.

          • Abraham H.

            dawit,
            But your declared support to those regimes says it all; there is a glaring similarity here between you and the ones I listed above. They were bleeding the Eritrean people by siding with external oppressors, and you are the one who openly admitted your support to those regimes by applying your stupid blabber of “znegese ngusey”.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam `Gheteb,
            .
            I temporarily deposit my promise not to engage in a blind trust, to offer my services.
            I see business here.
            .
            I recommend you open an escrow and deposit your minimum U.S$50,000.00 to show your good faith and seriousness. Otherwise anybody can do what you are doing and get away with it.
            .
            First, of course is the needed proof that there is money.
            .
            Let us open the escrow in a neutral location between Australia and Canada. I recommend again Honolulu, Hawaii. I can be persuaded to be the Escrow Officer and administrator of the lie detector test. I insist on lie detection test, specially when it comes to Religion and Politics, I have to apply the standard lie detector tests. It starts with “What is your name?”
            .
            Part of the escrow instructions contains in the boiler plate section a condition that any lie detected would seriously service charge the funds in the escrow account. Both parties have to sign that going in.
            .
            Once the proceedings start all aspect of it will be posted at Awate on Sundays preempting the scheduled song and dance events.
            .
            In the event no one wants to open the escrow or insist opening the escrow with their Nicks, I will resign my commission and send the bill for my services and trips to Hawaii to the Awate University and close the empty escrow.
            Why bill Awate University? because it happened in their building.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • ‘Gheteb

            Selam Mr. K.H,

            I am sorry to tell you that you are putting the cart before the horse here. The first order of things is that the challenge has to be accepted by Semere Andom and his handlers.

            Then we will talk about the modalities and technicalities of how the money issue is to be handled. The issue of using a nick will become a moot issue given the fact that all the proceedings will be conducted publicly as in FACE to FACE.

            Whatever your intentions may have been, I thank you for your comments and take on this issue. I hope you will speak the TRUTH and nothing but the TRUTH and not merely spout political truths however popular they may be in this forum.

            Again, thank you, for your take and advice on this issue.

          • Ted

            Hi Gheteb, Can’t you tell he is desperate for attention. From what we know ,he is nothing but bitter rumormonger. እስዃ ትገድድ, Suit yourself if you are into talking to ገረወይና.. What i don’t get is the need to prove anything to this empty shell.of a man. Cut him loose.

          • Rahwa T

            Hi Sirak,
            Why are repeating “female’s skirt” in every post of response to SA. Are you still undermining the women’s role in the independence of your country? Didn’t you guys say that 30% of your freedom fighters were women?

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Rahwa T,

            Not only I am aware of the Eritrean female fighters, I still remember some of the lyrics from Weyanes songs. Here are the lyrics to prove you wrong that ‘Gheteb knows a lot more about your Weyane.

            ወያነ ዝሓቶ ሑቐ ዝኣዘዞ ክምልስ አየ ባዕለይ
            ምምሕዳር ባይቶይ ትካላት ወረዳይ
            ብዶንጎላ ሑሉ መሰል ስድራቤተይ
            ወያነ ዝሓቶ ሑቐ ዝኣዘዞ ክምልስ አየ ባዕለይ
            ———————-

            ወይለከ ሰመረ ዓንዶም ወይዘሮ ስላስ ውን ክትረድእ አያ መጺኣ

            ጣጣ ማጣ ጎጆይ
            ድሕሪ ደርጊ ምጥፋእ
            ኢለ ሓሪነ ናይ ልበይ ከውጽእ
            ጓል አያ ስንፍላስ —

            ስጋ ዓጽሚ ደቀይ
            ንደርጊ ከይምሕር
            ቀምሸይ ልቁልቁል
            ከም ቱኴን ክትቆጽር

            እማንኪ —-
            በታ ዘላትኒ ክቃለስ ብዓቅመይ
            ቃለይ ኣቱ ለኹ ምሳኹም ዞም ደቀይ

            Just like ወይዘሮ ስላስ, I hope you have completed a good ኩዳ for being such a good protector and defender of your types.

          • Amde

            Selam Lamek,

            I see you became “bagoresku tenekesku number 2”

            Amde

        • saay7

          Selamat Cousins Semere and Emma:

          As our neighbor the Jnub Sudani told his male friend: “enti za’elana kida le’h?” 🙂

          I think my point is very straight forward but before I re-state it, let me assure you that I am not a big fan of “…and what did you do for Eritrea?” questions. An Eritrean citizen has a right to demand justice and accountability from those who speak on his/her behalf, whether the citizen has done anything or nothing for Eritrea. That is the very definition of citizenship: that we have some rights that are not conditioned on duties. We good? Good.

          Now. You also know that, as I settle into my prematurely grumpy prematurely old chapter of my life, I have expressed my reservations of 40-something year old, one-term senators running for Presidency of these Uuuuunited States. Not to mention my amazement that a one-term senator/community organizer wrote his autobiography (!) when he was all of 34 years old (until I learned “autobiographies” are things American politicians do to pay off their student loans.) We good? Good.

          The point I am making is that I am (and I am betting most people are) willing to forgive our Ghedli leaders for their “youthful indiscretions.” And that includes, by the way, Dan Connell himself. And, um, all the Gringos you mentioned were products of The Englightenment whereas all our ghedli leaders were products of a feudal era over which their tried to rise.

          Emma, the thing that makes Aklilu Zere prescient is because he saw what others couldn’t see. But it still doesn’t change the fact that we are dealing, for the most part, with 20-something year old kids.

          saay (age: none of your business:)

    • Semere Andom

      Really Sal; healing? Are our Ghedli defamers sick now, you mean mentally sick?

      You mentioned the age of IA so often, you reminded us that he was 25 when he wrote that document that your friend and my friend Sem H is mesmerized with, you invoked quite often to remind the defamers that he was 27 when chaired the politbureau, put differently, when he was wreaking havoc. Let me remind you that it was during this age what Aklilu Zere wrote about in his start of despot piece, it was also during this time when he told I. Affa, the issue of the menkae is done with, it was when he was 27 (meanta keyqetser, meskinnay, addeka tiddeffae) when he chaired the politbureau.

      But to let me remind you that he was almost the age of Thomas Jefferson, when he really, really chaired the Politbearu, in 1977 (rem his birth year is 1945, 1946, 1947) and what did Jefferson do at 33 and what did IA do?

      And that is exactly the problem, the Gehdli was led by irresponsible kids, not that the movement lacked wise men, responsible men, who had some responsibility in life before, like Sabbe, WelWel, and others who were bullied to stay away

      James Monroe was a teenager, Alex Hamilton was 20 when they played a defining role in the founding of the USA, but they were in the company of older men 33, 39 and even 70 years old, I believe that the youthful exuberance and the sober second thought of the likes of Ben Franklin was important to temper what you would mostly likely call testosterone driven debates wen ratifying the USA constitution.
      I will say more, depending how far you piss me off;-)

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Hi Sem,
        Good argument when you compare the ages of our leaders with those of the US who put the foundations of their nation for those who are attempting to exempt from bearing responsibilities for the crimes they committed using their ages. No justice for the victims must be observed. Without that there is no reconciliation.

        Senay MeAlti

    • Pass on any other suggestions. RSP asked me about doing a new afterword for Against All Odds. I intend to use this as an occasion to address issues like this.

      • tes

        Dear Dan Connell,

        It is good here to be among us. PFDJites will follow their betrayal discourses and the die-hard Abbysianian Fundamentalists will blame you for telling the world on what was going on in the Eritrean field. However your struggle has one remarkable record till now and it is “being voice of the voiceless struggle”.

        Before you did more than you can to tell the world about Eritrean revolution, no matter how you were also deceived by the camouflaged political decency of these revolutionaries, you did what an influenced foreigner can do. And then you didn’t stop there. You continued to consider Eritrea as your home country. And when you observed political bankruptcy you raised your voice for political correctness.

        And yet, when unexpected exodus of Eritreans started to be silenced, you stood high in the tower to tell the world. What makes your work unique is that you go on and see on the reality. This helped Eritreans to give a breath through your tracked reports.

        You are the champion of the voice of the voiceless voices.

        Kudos to you Dan!

        tes

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam tes,
          .
          I have a question for you. In simple terms, what is Abyssinian Fundamentalism mean to you? Is it similar to Islamic Fundamentalism? Are you an Abyssinian?
          .
          Mr. K.H

          • tes

            Dear Kim Hanna,

            For me Abyssinian Fundamentalism is nothing but glorifying the Abyssinian-Christian Kingdom and its approach is fascistic. Because of this Abyssinian fundamentalism Eritreans and Ethiopians* paid a heavy price.

            tes

            *Abyssinia is Ethiopia but not the inverse.

          • Abi

            Hi Tes
            Long live Abbyisinian Fundamentalism!!
            Are you drinking something? You are blabbering.
            Do you consider yourself as Abesha? Wait until you get sober before you answer. I don’t want you to go Tes on me.

      • Kim Hanna

        Selam Awate,
        .
        Did the machines took over the moderating business at Awate Forum. I think common sense does seem absent from this particular decision.
        I and I presume saay would be interested to read what his response was.
        .
        Mr. K.H

        • Abi

          Selam Mr Kim
          How many times does the moderator should remind this person to start with salutations? I see a total disrespect by this person to the moderator and to the people at large.
          I support the moderators decision to delete the comment.
          All people are equal in Awate land.

          ” mukt siseba shotel yisilal “.
          Don’t you ever try to translate. This is for kokobe the gojame.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Abi,
            .
            I have to digest the Amharic line.
            .
            Yes Abi, at some level I am delighted they unceremoniously tossed him out, but my Abyssinian Fundamentalism feelings tell me it is not kosher.
            .
            If he was here all the time and deliberately did it, I would say good job. He is passing through and thought he found a friendly territory and was responding to a former comrade. The trainees at Awate zapped him. Who is next, Johar? You know, Johar is forgetful sometimes.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Dear Abi,

            ሎሌ ሲከብር ጌታውን ይከሳል፣ ሙክት ሲሰባ ሾተል ይልሳል። Spot on, my friend!

          • Kokhob Selam

            ኣድማስየ :-

            ንገርልኝ እማ ! ኣብየ -ጎጃምን መች ኣውቆት !

            የቅኔ ትምህርት በስፋት የሚሰጥበት ፡እንዲሁም እንደነ የፍቅር እስከ መቃብር ደራሲ ሀዲስ ኣለማየሁ – ኣቤ ጉበኛ ዮፍታሄ ንጉሤ የመሳሰሉ የጥበብ ሰወችን ያፈራች – በጤፍ አምራችነት ከታወቁት የኢትዮጵያ ክልሎች ቀዳሚውን ስፍራ የያዘች- የአዴት ጤፍ ጎንደር ደሴ እና መቀሌ ነዋሪዎች ዘንድ በስፋት የታወቀ እና ተወዳጅም እንደሆነ ። እንዲሁም በምስራቅ ጎጃም እነብሴ ሞጣ እና ግንደወይን ዙሪያ የሚመረተው ጤፍ የአዲስ አበባን ህዝብ ገትሮ እንደያዘ :- ጎጃም ሌሎች እንደ ገብስ ስንዴ በቆሎ ባቄላ አተር ወዘተ የሰብል አይነቶችን በማምረትም እንደምትታውቅ — ኣረ ኣረ !!! እንድያውም ጎጃም የአባይ እና ሌሎች የበርካታ ወንዞች መነሻ እንደሆነች- ኣሁን እማ ደግሞ በቃ የኣፍሪቃ ህይወት እኮ እየሆነች ነው -ኣብየ መች ኣውቆት !

            በጀግናው በላይ ምድር ማደጌ ፡ ለህዝቡ ሰላምና መረጋጋት መታገሌ ያኮራኛል :: ከዚህ የምወደው ህዝብና የሚወደኝ ህዝብ ድንበር ሊለያየኝ እንዴት ይችላል ? ጎጃምን የኣፍሪቃ ትልቛ መዲና ለማድረግ የሚፈለገውን ሁሉ እንከፍላለን!

            ኣቦ ኣትናደድ — “ዓባይ ስር ያለው በሬ ” እያልክ ዝፈንልኝ ኣብየ !

          • የሰላም ኮከብ ሆይ፣

            ካንተ ይበልጥ ጎጃምን አዉቃታለሁ ብዬ አልዋሽም። ጎጃምን በሰፊው የምታውቃት ስለሆነና ጎጃሜነትህም ስለተረጋገጠ፣ ኤርትራዊው ጎጃሜ ብለንሃል ። ይህን የክብር ሹመት ልጅ አቢ እንደምያፀድቀው አልጠራጠርም።

          • Abi

            Selam Horizon
            You don’t need to fight the Eris to bring Kokobe. We trade him with people we don’t need like Fanti melti. Easy!

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Hi Hope,

    Unfortunately, the snake has strong institutions that protect it. That is why we call it a system with a defined ideological view akin to the North Korean style. Where is tes please give him a little explanation about it though you did it once.

  • Haile Zeru

    Hi Dan Connell,

    I had/have a question to ask you? I was trying to answer it
    myself from your writings but I couldn’t. I did not read all your papers about
    Eritrea, may be it is answered somewhere.

    Now, my question is as follows. How come with all your western (American)
    upbringing and education you did not realize in the seventies or early eighties
    the dictatorial nature of Issayas’s character? That he was/is a dictator? When
    did you realize he was/is what we see now? Any red flags that you noticed but
    dismissed at that time?

    You are answering the question partially in the interview,
    but I like to hear from you by focusing on that specific question. In this interview you were asked if what you
    wrote about the struggle in the past 40 years was wrong, given the outcome. And
    you answered that question correctly for me.

    I am asking the question against the following background.

    You knew (as I understood from your writing, and you mentioned
    in this interview) about the leftist movement in the early 70’s. The movement
    was internal to the EPLF leadership. It was termed leftist extremists for some
    audiences and regionalists, reactionaries for others by Issayas and Co. There were
    also the so called Yemin and other individuals that disagreed with EPLF
    leadership in the conduct of the struggle. All were liquidated.

    Even if they are dead the questions they raised then are
    still valid (40 plus years after). They were asking for EPLF leadership to act
    in some constitutional and legal frame work, socially and militarily. These facts did not sit well (still do not)
    with Isayas, hence the purges.

    A person with your level of education and involvement
    with the struggle could have been a wistleblower already at that time. If you
    write anything negative about Issayas, most likely you could have been barred
    from the Eritrean field at that time. And probably it would not have made any
    difference other than I told you so now. But still remains a curiosity for me

  • Abi

    Merhaba HandsOffEritrea
    Yes, I welcome you again. This is an Eritrean website not a piece of property on Godana Harinet.
    I have been here long enough to take charge in welcoming the new ones with a sentence long nick.
    Be nice to me. I am the one who will be welcoming you at Asmara Airport. Of course, after we get Eritrea back.
    Take it easy.

  • Eyob Medhane

    Gash Saleh, Kokhob, Abi and Sal,

    I think this ferenj (another ferenj 🙂 ) speaks for me about new “independent” states of Africa. His view is a bit simplistic, but still he makes a pretty good point. Please read..

    http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/03/28/africa-western-sahara-morocco-eritrea/

    • Abi

      Eyobe
      What is Ras Abi doing in this list? He never believed in Eritrean struggle for independence. I care less what one ” nechachiba ” says . End of story. That Dan guy should be ashamed of what he wrote over the years. He was the other mass mobilizer responsible for all the troubles we went through. You see, these mass mobilizers are enjoying life in the West and Europe while their recruits are dead or in refugee camps all over the world. He should be in Era Ero.
      ( Kokobe, sorry I was dragged into this conversation. I know I’m not an Eritrean. No reminder needed this time. My autocorrect is working fine.)

      • Fanti Ghana

        Hello Abisha,

        “What is Ras Abi doing in this list?” Good question. I don’t know why he skipped the only one who would feel honored to be in that list and put you there instead. I think he scratched my name from his ‘like’ list when I declared “we are all Arabs.” yegoriT eyayegn naw yalew.

        • Abi

          Hi Fantish
          Ras Abi has nothing to do with wenbedewoch. He is on the other side ( the good side).
          You should be on that list as ” tazabi” or may be as ” facilitator “.

          YegoriT Trayilka!
          Yigebahal bejaka!
          Arabignan tewew leArab
          Tigrigna enzareb.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Abi,
            so now we are wenbedewoch ! emmm..

          • Abi

            Kokobe
            You have always been wenbedewoch. Sorry, tegenTay wenbedewoch. Fanti is AsgenTay wenbede.
            Why is it news for you now?

          • Kokhob Selam

            Abo,

            tegenTay yes wenbede NO.. even TegenTay not really yes.. before saying tegeTay were we one any way? by force you took my land and by force I return it.. that is all..Lol. Now PIA cheated me and I am taking him for justice. that novel ..

          • Abi

            Kokobe
            His Excellency Isayas Afeworki didn’t cheat you. The mass mobilization experts did cheat you. Colonel Dan is one of them. He was a paid mouth piece of IA . He wrote a book ” Against All Odds ” that is still being used as a propaganda material.
            I hope one day when you retire from the ELF leadership, you will write a book ” Against All Privileges !” “Against Ourselves!” is also a great option.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Abo,
            you still didn’t catch my real principle.. blame self don’t try to find excuses. I don’t blame others even PIA. No one should cheat me.

            Federation of HS, I am supposed not to be cheated,
            EPLF leadership till Asmara, I am supposed not to be cheated. no body was wrong, I was wrong for dealing wrongly..Lol. do you get it?

            Now, if I am Abo and start to make inventory I will not blame Mengstu – I am not suppose to go for ZEMECHA to kill Eritreans…I am not supposed to agree bombing Eritrean villages…think this way.

            Lol this is new model – love it.

      • Eyob Medhane

        Abishu,

        Belew!… Aqemeskegn eko.. 🙂

        I included you in the list, because you CORRECTLY argued that Eritrea’s independence, let us just say much less convincing.. (In our views) The writer of the article also reinforced our point, albeit he is a bit simplistic and condescending.

        About Dan Connell, well it seems the gentleman himself is in the house. So, let’s behave and be respectful to to him, as good Habeshas we are. But, I would say this. He is not a regular ferenj. He has spent a better part of his life championing Eritrean cause as far as giving the hallow, simplistic and in my view, a bit meaningless “Against all odds” rallying cry. I don’t think there is any foreigner in Eritrea as impactful as Dan Connell and his circle of groups are. His partner (I believe ex-wife) Miss Gayle Smith has Rose through ranks from a journalist covering rebel movements in Ethiopian and Eritrea (mostly TPLF) to become one of national security advisors of President Obama and currently administrator of USAID. What he says about Eritrea and Ethiopia, I believe should have a lot of weight than many other Ethiofiles and Erirofiles. I wouldn’t rule out anything, but keenly listen what Alex DeWall says about Ethiopia and what Dan Connell says about Eritrea..

    • Dear Eyob,

      Autonomy within Ethiopia is simply a non-issue for the old guards who rule Eritrea or those who want to rule Eritrea in the immediate future. I remember, a long time ago I had asked, (it must have been Semere Andom; I hope I am not making a mistake), if the federation was not abrogated, is it possible to say that Eritreans would have opted for independence nevertheless. The answer I got was simple; yes they would.

      To be an independent country was the only reason for starting Gedli, despite all the other reasons given as the initial triggering factors. The situation is going to remain as it is, until the old guards die out, the new generation gets fed up of the never-ending sacrifice, and they find out that living with Ethiopians is not after all as horrifying as they have been made to believe, but even advantageous.

      Therefore, what matters most today is to avoid another destructive war as the result of the unholy alliances that may come out of the new geopolitics of the region, more than anything else.

      • Berhe Y

        Dear Horizon,

        I think you are a reasonable person and I like engaging in discussion with you. You are make bold statement like these “Autonomy within Ethiopia is simply a non-issue for the old guards who rule Eritrea or those who want to rule Eritrea in the immediate future.”

        Let me ask you a simple question:
        – Have you lived in Eritrea during the Ethiopian Unity / Administration / Occupation

        Is your personal knowledge and experience of Eritreans, is that from Eritreans who lived in Ethiopia?

        I don’t deny that there were Eritreans who wanted independence from the beginning. And equally there were Eritreans who wanted 100% union with Ethiopia (Union Party). The autonomy / federation was reached as a compromise and you forgot to mention that Haile Selassie / Ethiopian elites and the were the first to break that DEAL.

        You also said “To be an independent country was the only reason for starting Gedli, despite all the other reasons given as the initial triggering factors.”

        Had Haile Selassie never annexed Eritrea, and the assumption that Ghedli would have been created regardless is a very wrong assumption. Based on the history that I come to know and appreciate, Eritreans elites have done all possible ways and means (peaceful means) in their power to make the union work but it’s Haile Selasslie with the help of the Union Party who broke everything they signed, which gave rise to what eventually become as Ghedli.

        Eritrea is facing a tremendous challenges today but the only salvation is the Union with Ethiopia I think in my opinion is a very wrong conclusion one needs to make.

        As much are there are a lot of failed state example after achieving independence, as the Eritrean case today but there are equally or even more states that have done really well. Current Eritrean problem is that of a dictator ship and lack of rule of low, but one is hard pressed to assume that it will remain like for eternity.

        Just look at yourselves…….what happened to DERG…

        PFDJ will be dead sooner or later…I think one needs to be really proud that after all these years of misery under the rule of the PFDJ, Eritreans did NOT resort to violence and civil war, is a miracle and I hope it continues to stay that way. This I think in my opinion that we are NOT willing to lose the hopes and dreams that we set out for ourselves and one day we will have peace and stability in our own country.

        Ethiopia for it’s own sake, it needs to fix it’s own political / democratic challenges and be a good neighbor.

        Berhe

        • Dear BY,

          I mentioned autonomy as a solution for the present Ethio-Eritrean problem in connection with the link given by Eyob, which entertains it as a solution for a similar problem between Morocco and Western Sahara. At this very point in time, any sort of Ethio-Eritrean political rapproachment is out of the question; and this I think is true. The federation was not in question.

          Please correct me if I am wrong, I think that Gedli started in 1961, while the so-called annexation occurred in 1962. This time difference has some significance. My conclusion that Gedli was inevitable one way or the other, came from a discussion I had with one of the prominent forumers of this site.

          Eritrea among other things needs Ethiopian market and resources. Much more than this it needs peace with Ethiopia and the surrounding countries. Isolation and self-reliance, I think, should be forgotten for no country is self-reliant, nor can it survive isolated, not even the developed countries. The nature of the future Eritrean government will decide on the future of Eritrea, depending on whether it is pro-peace, for integration and cooperation etc, which does not necessary mean union with Ethiopia. If it walks on the same itinerary of Badme first and then peace and cooperation, then nothing is going to change, as long as Ethiopia does not budge from its position and the world community is not interested in the case.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Horizon,
            Yep, that is also one view. aren’t one people after all. now Eritrea is in trouble and people are struggling hard. Let Eritrean won and get complete freedom form the dictator..then let people chose what is the best for them. don’t you think so?

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Horizon,

            I don’t have the exact years / dates but from the start HS took steps to undermine Eritrean autonomy. These are some of the things that sparked the whole movement..

            1) He decreed a preventive detention law that allowed Ethiopian forces to suppress Eritrean political movements and arrest newspaper editors.
            2) He forced elected community leaders to resign.
            3) He replaced the Eritrean flag with that of Ethiopia
            4) He imposed the use of Amharic in public services and schools and including a requirement if one has to peruse higher education.
            5) He seize Eritrea’s share of custom duties

            In 1957 Eritrean students mounted mass demonstrations
            In 1958 General strike were organized by unions.

            All these steps were taken way before 1961, and the struggle was done through peacefully means until armed struggle took over when all other efforts failed.

            Would it be possible to continue the struggle and for Eritreans to continue to stay with the union. Sure, I don’t think it’s a bad option but that’s the risk one runs when suppress the law.

            Personally, I do not think Eritrea need to have any autonomy or any other union at this point in time….It’s just there are so many unknowns that we need to sort out…Initially I don’t think the relation ship should be any different from Ethiopia’s other neighbors…Djibouti, Kenya, Sudan etc..and let things fall where they might be.

            As far as Badime and the ruling goes, I think Eritrean leader should negotiate the ruling and I think if the result is that Eritrea lose Badime and in return it get’s other Eritrean lands awarded to Ethiopia, I think that’s a good solution.

            Any other deals needs to follow international norms and standards …and Eritrea needs to develop it’s government structure and solve all other complex issues that it needs to solve before getting into any other Ethiopian related complexities…

            Berhe

    • dawit

      Hi all,

      To think of Eritrea as a failed states and Ethiopia as a model of development is far fetched distortion of facts on the ground and outright lie. In spite of 25 years of intimidation, repeated invasions by its neighbors Eritrea feeds itself unlike those with double digit fictional economic growth. Still Eritrea never kneel down.

      (kemu iyou zelo it werie)
      dawit

    • Haile WM

      selam Eyob,

      I think what he is saying is for the sake of stability they should have stuck with colonialism in Africa… no failed states and all would be at peace… Yeah i Know it sounds paternalistic… especially coming from ferenjies 😀

      I would like to ask the ferenji here does the world revolve around US foreign policy? how about self determination for the peoples in the world ? I mean the Western Saharan know better what suits them, more than the Moroccans and the US and their analysts I wonder.

      • [Begin comments with salutation]

        I think you need to listen again. This is more likely what you assumed before you listened and re-interpreted to make it work for you. It is not what I said (or ever thought, which you would know if you’ve read anything else of mine. But this is the problem with these chats—they are still sounding boards for everyone to voice their prior assumptions rather than actual exchanges or reflections. If you want to know my views on these issues, read “Rethinking Revolution”.

        • Haile WM

          Hi Dan,

          I think there some misunderstanding… I was replaying to Eyob on the article he posted about the issue of western sahara being independent vs Moroccan administration. and the article is penned by a certain Lester Munson.

          Besides I am a huge fan of your works, and I know your great service to eritrea and it’s struggle from early stages up to these difficult days, from all of your works I especially appreciated “Conversations with Eritrean Political Prisoners” and the reflections of the hidden party, as I was one who felt betrayed when I knew it’s existence in post independence.

        • Guilty of my own criticism: scanning an responding too quickly. Sorry. RE Western Sahara: I agree. It, along with East Timor, shares a lot on common with Eritrea in terms of its colonial history and the ways in which the US and others saw its right to self-determination as expendable for the sake of a larger ally, as I wrote back in the 70s in The Guardian. And it’s still true there today, as you obviously know. Thanks.

      • Eyob Medhane

        Haile,

        I agree with you to the point. That is why I said that his assessment is simplistic and I should have added condescending. As an Ethiopian, as much as I don’t care much for Dan Connell, most of time, (not all the time) he knows what he is talking about.

        • Haile WM

          Hi Eyob,

          I think you are ambivalent in your feeling towards Dan, as eritrean you feel a sentiment of owing him a big service, as an Ethiopian you hate him as he contributed to “break up” of your nation 😀
          this is called “dr Jekyll and mr Hyde” syndrome… saay will tell you more it 🙂

          • Eyob Medhane

            Haile,

            Asking Sal? Oooooh..I don’t think I can handle him rubbing it on my face. I’d rather google.. 🙂

            About Dan..not really. You may owe him a “big service”. To me, as I said repeatedly, he has immersed himself, forced himself between peoples, who could have resolved their own problem through their own means and exacerbated their break up and misery using his powerful position and megaphone. I don’t think I and many of my fellow countrymen, ever forgive him for that..

          • Haile WM

            Eyob,

            he was only a witness, you can’t possibly not forgive him for witnessing. The misery and all certainly would have being there, independently if Dan was there to witness it or not… any way you are forgiven for not forgiving Dan…

        • saay7

          Hey Eyobai:

          How come the chin-pullers and eyebrow-raisers never ask the same question about Namibia when they are making their exhaustive list (2) of Africans who sought self-autonomy from fellow Africans?

          And then all the newbie African countries would have a lot of remorse if the oldies—like those with 3,000 years history—were in great shape.

          By the way, what is most remarkable about Spanish Sahara is not what the UNSG said but that the African Commisioner has been going on a tweet storm about it.

          saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Well. I can say confidently that the oldies with 3000 years of history are in a better shape.. 🙂

            Did you just say “Spanish Sahara”…hummm how Colonial of you.. :-)… But I agree with you. There is some hypocrisy going on with in AU and its regional arms, when it comes to some demands of self determination. Somaliland for example has gotten the very short end of the stick. It has a REMARKABLY similar story with Eritrea, even a better one. It has gotten its independence a week BEFORE Somalia. Recognized as an independent state for a week (may be ten days) Then WILLINGLY joined Somalia. When they thought the agreement that they have made with Moqadiahu was broken the wanted to go back to their independence. Siad Barre flattened their city and made them suffer an incredible atrocity (Sorry they didn’t have a Dan Connel to tell that story for them) Then, when Somalia went to abyss in 1990, they went their own way. Since then they held consecutive democratic elections. They always had a central stable government now for about 25 years. Yet, AU, and it’s regional armies. Their former colonizers and just about every body ignored their incessant call for recognition. Yet AU tweeter storms about Western Sahara day and night…

          • saay7

            Selamat Eyobai:

            I am actually pleasantly surprised by the AU. Ever since they abandoned the misguided “non-intervention in internal affairs” in favor of Responsibility to Protect (R2P), they are slowly finding themselves doing the right thing, if only the right thing wasn’t so expensive and Africa wasn’t so poor, we would have made a lot of positive changes.

            I am conflicted about Somaliland; ask me in 5 years and 8 months–I will have a firm opinion:)

            And you are celebrating that Ethiopia tied a game. Wey Wrdet as Abi would say. I noticed that Kokhob Selam’s nephew didn’t score any points: has he re-re-discovered he is Eritrean and left your national team?:))

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            AU, even though it’s almost unrecognizable compared to its predecessor, it’s painfully bureaucratic organization. You remember just few months ago, when Erasmus Muencha trying to explain how they pay peacekeepers salaries, right? “We do have the money, but it has to be signed here, there and over there again…”.. I hope the incoming chair of the commission will make some changes…

            About Algeria game to day…The fact that we tied was not the point. We have stopped Algeria on their tracks from qualifying..(well for a time being 🙂 ) And improved our chances… Walid was injured. One of the reasons why we actually lost 7 to 1 was because of his absence… He will be at Lesotho leading the team next month…Insha Allah.. 😉

          • saay7

            Hey Eyob:

            Well, it’s progress still. Eventually AU will be like EU and you have to meet minimum requirements of you want to be member. They should modify their current ban of countries whose governments come to power via a coup (after they implemented a grandfather clause to make it not applicable on them): democratic coups* should be encouraged 🙂

            These cup qualifying matches are dependent on not just a teams greatness but the awfulness of some other random team. It’s like the Cavaliers approach to NBA championship: just ask Ted.

            Saay

            Democratic coup = coup that results in a gov more responsive to people.

          • Amde

            Selam Saay,

            “Democratic coup = coup that results in a gov more responsive to people.”

            Aren’t all coups putatively thus? I know of no coup engineer who declares his goal is to make the government less responsive to the people.

            Now, if you are just declaring your support for a coup, on the honestly reasonable assumption that anything is better than the status quo, you should come out and say so. “Democratic coup” is a contradiction in terms.

            You might even make that an actionable opposition item: How the opposition can support the coup politically, what guarantees coup leaders can get, etc….

            Amde

          • saay7

            Hi Amde:

            Oh, come on: you are just to awaken my nemesis, Emma:)

            Well, the African Union thought precisely of the sorts of questions you are asking. And they reiterated it three times: at Lome (in 2000), in Addis (2007), now known as The Addis Charter.

            The AU language is specifically condemning “military coup d’état against a democratically elected government”, the refusal of a loser to relinquish power after free/fair elections, and the attempt to seek power extra-constitutionally.

            So no disagreement on any of the above.

            What about when an African country (and this is, of course, completely hypothetical) does not have a constitution, does not have a democratically elected government, and has no intention to even address any of them and considers anyone who does a treasonous traitor (hypothetically.) The African Union is silent on that because it can’t talk hypotheticals. Thus, my service: democratic coup.

            How can we tell if the coup is democratic or not? We can’t: well, at least not immediately know if a country is going through the motions or it is the genuine thing. Is it drafting electoral laws? Is it drafting laws on political parties? Is it opening up free press? Is it opening up space for civil society? It it expanding right to freedom of assembly? Right to organize? Right to peacefully petition?

            Of course, by democracy I mean liberal democracy. I know (thank you, Fareed Zakaria) there is a movement afoot worldwide for illiberal democracy (thank you Putin, and all the Dabo First movement) but that would be my test.

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Then you pull a Madagascar.. 🙂

            You remove the unpopular president. You WILLINGLY withdraw from AU. You call election. You get a new president elected with amended constitution. Then, you come back to AU with your new ‘democratic’ credentials..Problem solved.. 🙂

          • saay7

            Hey Eyob:

            …Or an Egypt: you just have powerful friends who mediate on your behalf:)

            saay

          • Abi

            Just beautiful!
            Eyobe, ante maferiya! You just scored a hat- trick on yourself.
            Talk about an unforced error!
            Saay 3
            Eyob 0

          • Eyob Medhane

            Abye…

            Tadya ante yagere Lij eyaleh..goal siqoteribign zim tilaleh ende? Min yalehew neh, jal.. 🙂

          • Abi

            Eyobe
            Kebalebetu yaweqe …
            Did Saay tell you his countryman went for a bike race somewhere in Europe and got lost. He got lost in the middle of the race. Only an Eritrean can do this ! They found him in a farm after 24 hrs. He was so tired and exhausted he looks like a SAWA graduate.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Abi,

            Ante? I heard that..poor boy…yarada Lij bihon noro..beziaw shill yil neber.. 🙂

          • Abi

            Eyobe
            You can’t put Arada and Eritrean together. Aradochu Arada nw yalut farawochun tektew.
            ” Yeneberew endalnebere”
            According to his cousin, Mr Hope, that denbara cyclists is from Keren. No sense of direction at all.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Abishu,

            Keren? Don’t let Gash Saleh hear you…You know that, that’s his home town, right? Are you implying that people from Keren are faras?tsk tsk tsk….you got yourself in a hot water, buddy.. 😉

          • Kokhob Selam

            Abo,
            that is what happens when you stay with PFDJ and go out of your antion – you can’t see the sun. I want you to go to Asmara for some time, will accept my invitation ? I know your answer..Lol

          • Gogo

            Selma Saay and Amde ,
            I do not have a nuanced knowledge of it, but the military coup led by politically radical young officers that overthrew the Salazar dictatorship in Portugal in 1975 can lend itself as an example of a military coup that successfully made it to a constitutional government. It is claimed that the success is due to two salient factors: the genuinely revolutionary nature of the coup leaders and the intensive public engagement the coup triggered and the constant pressure for meaningful reconfiguration of the state that followed thereafter. Therefore, in this particular case ‘democratic coup’ is not a contradiction in terms and contemplating this as a possible way out for the Eritrean dilemma is, at least theoretically, not beyond the pale.

          • saay7

            Selamat Gogo:

            Yay! My “Democratic Coup” club has increased its membership by 100%. I will, of course, consider “not beyond the pale” as a full-fledged endorsement because, um, that’s what you do in politics.

            Watch out Saba and The Third Way. We are as big as your club now.

            saay

          • Fanti Ghana

            Selamat Saay,

            Hey, those of you moving slow, he means that he found the advisor numero uno.
            Thank heavens. 2 down, 1 to go.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selamt Saay,

            Forget about the democratic coup which is an utopian dream. Just dream the all familiar coup similar to those of the African countries (Sudan, Ghana, Nigeria…..etc). How do you expect from unenlightened military officers a democratic coup? Amde is right when he characterized your dream as of ” more of hope than realistic expectation”.

            Senay Mishet

          • Saba

            Congratulation Saay! Who is is the president? So that Semiruley can write the acceptance speech:)

          • Lamek

            Saay count me in. 200%. I don’t quite like ABI that much. But a democratic coup is probably the best way out. I was hoping to be the speech writer but Saba gave away that job to ‘Semiruley.’

          • saay7

            Hi Lamek:

            Well, well, well. The Democratic Correction Club has grown by 200% and is not at 300% of its former self. This now entitles you to speak of Sabas two-person group as “izen naashti wdbat…”

            The Democratic Coup, um, Correction Club is an alternative to:

            1. Waiting for an act of kindness from IA:
            2. waiting for God and Godot
            3. Waiting for the opposition to consolidate
            4. Waiting for Cubanization of Eritrea

            Saay

          • Lamek

            Saay, I entertained ‘by all means necessary’ for a long while in my circle of friends. To me, it still sounds good personally but you have to see what the Eritrean people want. In my informal assessment, ‘by all means necessary’ is not popular at all. So I figured, well ‘by all means necessary’ could be a ripe situation for a disastrous outcome.

            1 – 4 above are not going to fly for me. So that is why I am thinking the Medrek approach might be a plausible situation. They are not super popular either in the Internets for being too secretive and what have you. Well, I don’t have too much problem with them for being closed because otherwise you can guarantee that PFDJ will infiltrate and dismantle them from inside. They are extremely good at that. Anyway, I think they have credible and powerful people working for them within the regime. I know that is not where you were going but it was natural for me to digress this way.

            Now, we need to find a good Tigrinya term for democratic coup. Whoa super long day in Awate campus for me today. That is what happens when I take a day off from school and work. I tell you, Gheteb can wear anyone out. Try him.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Saay,

            As long as you are the leader please do count me in. I think, we can safely recruit AH as well. I don’t think we will have luck with SA, he is just trouble maker and will not take orders from a notable leader.

            Berhe

          • saay7

            Selam Berhe Y:

            This is great; thank you, wow, this is great. I love a party with 4 members. Four is a great number, twice as big as 2…by the way, that’s Sabas party 2. For 2 years…but this is great. DCC is a movement, yes. A movement. It’s tremendous….By the way I know words….By the way many of my friends had been asking me why don’t you form a party. Look at what’s been happening in Addis…look what’s been happening in Asmara. Our leaders are not smart. They are not very smart. They don’t know how to negotatiate. I have the best people. The best people. The best. Look at Gogo…he is tremendous. Look at this Lamek, to be honest I don’t know him. But I hear he is tremendous. And BY, well he knows words. He knows how to win.

            But 4, that’s a big number. Many Eri opposition have 4 members. By the way, you know who else has 4? That would be ARDUF, the Afar movement that Isaias is sheltering in Eritrea. It’s a joke. These wise guys: He is getting Eritrea sanctioned to shelter 4 Afar Ethiopians? But he doesn’t want the world to know they are 4 so he has been lying doe 10 years? Sad! Our leaders are not smart. Not smart. I have the best people. The best people. This is tremendous thank you.

            You down with DCC, Berhe Y?

            saay

          • Gogo

            Selam Saay,
            The Trump-speak is funny. Are sipping tea with Trevor Noah? Thanks for the humour

          • Nitricc

            DEAR SAAY; you know I consider my self among the founders of DCC. I am fine for you to lead it but I am not fine with your attempt including every able body. Choose always quality over quantity. Now, I see you are accepting VF’s, lamek, mizan, Ermias, Binyam etc and etc application for joining DCC; seriously SAAY; the dude can’t even hold on the nick name let alone he can stand for a cause or for any meaningful purpose. So, before I object to your leadership of this noble cause of DCC; I am advising you to stop recruiting every toothless on this forum. If not, I will be forced to take over the leadership.
            Sincerely;
            Nitricc.

          • saay7

            Selamat General Nitricc:

            Well. Well, well, well, well. DCC now has 5 members.

            As for your view of Lamek, lest we have DCC1, DCC2: we are going to accept the applications of everyone, not withstanding prior identities they may or may not have had–until we have our founding congress. We are in a membership drive and we are open-minded (Tesfiya is in Phase II, dude): we will even invite Dawit to give the benediction–although, for example, you are an atheist and Gogo and I are existentialists. Observer status will be given to Ethiopians–but no voting rights*, of course: this is Eritrean solutions for Eritrean problems. So, to summarize, the DCC membership now:

            Saay
            Gogo
            Lamek
            Berhe
            Nitricc

            saay
            Self-declared Chairman of DCC

            * Exception may be made for Fanti because he is Fanti. All in favor say aye. All opposed? The ayes have it.

          • Amde

            Ha ha Saay

            That was Treemeenddooouuuss.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Hi Berhe,

            This is one of the two issues Saay and myself disagree. Saay is not realistic on this issue. He knows that the requirements for democratic coup isn ‘t there at all. I wish it there. If any coup to happen in our nation, it is a sort of the all of us are familiar with. Saay is giving unrealistic hope to awatistas.

            Senay MeAlti
            Ananuel Hidrat

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Aman,

            First thing first, please join the group and we will have democratic coup, after the coup.

            Let’s surprise how fast and how soon we can grow.

            I think to some degree, Eritrea’s current problem is ONE heart beat away. And that heartbeat will stop beating either by God or by a man, a matter of time.

            Once that heart beat is stops, I think the rest will go in disarray (nebsey AwSieni). there is no religious group, regional group, ethnic group, military group that will be prepared to die and save the dead regime.

            If I am not mistaken your disagreement, the way I see it, Saay thinks we can save / salvage the existing government functions, and reform and move forward, while I think you say, we have to establish everything and start fresh.

            Personally I don’t think both are far off…in the first case, the bureaucrats in the government institutions are really have nothing to do with the system (the PFDJ). So it could be used as a transition until the later (start from fresh, like constitution, elections, party members etc, which doesn’t exist) today and when a new formed is formed, that will take over.

            Our party can be the party that see this transition takes over:) after that we can go to retirement.

            Berhe

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            መርሓባ ሓው በርሀ,

            አነን ሓው ሳልሕን ዘሎና ፍልልያት ዋላኳ
            እንዳጸበበ እንተኸደ: አብ ሐደ አርዑት ተጸሚድና ንምስሓብ ጌና አይበጸሕናን ኢና ዘሎናሞ ቁሩብ ጊዜ ሃበና::

            አተን ጋግ ዝፈጥረልና ዘሎዋን: አብ ክልተ ጫፍ ከአ ዘቀምጣና ዜለዋን: “ጽገነውን ” “መሰረታውን ” ዝብላ ፖለቲካዊ ጥንስ ሐሳባት ስለዝኾና : ውዕልና ሐዲርና አብ መደምደምታ ክንበጽሕ ተስፋ አሎኒ ብወገነይ::: እቲ ዝተረፈ ንሳልሕ ይገድፎ::

            ምስ ሰናይ ሕልና
            አማኑኤል ሕድራት

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Hi haw Lamek,

            You know the conditions required for a democratic coup. There is no a single one to even talk about it. Wishes can not turn in to reality if the required conditions are not in the political scene of our nation. What it makes me wonder is, how weak we are to even know the limits of Eritrean politics in order to play the practical game within the limits of our politics.

            Senay MeAlti
            Ananuel Hidrat

          • Lamek

            Selam Amanuel, I agree with you there are a lot of unknowns. But I am beginning to believe that Medrek is creating that atmosphere for a democratic coup. If you listen to their radio program, you will quickly learn that they have great recruits within the high ranking PFDJ and GOE officials, perhaps in the military as well but that is a big PERHAPS. At this point, you can bet that nobody will stand on the side of the government and PFDJ if there was a coup attempt or an unlikely uprising. Power struggle between the orchestrators of a coup is a potential problem but with the exception of very few, who will fight to protect the status quo? The army is not divided in to strong supporters and strong non-supporters. Everybody is a non-supporter or at the worst, indifferent. So that is why I think a democratic coup is the most plausible and safest scenario. Ethiopian intervention is very highly disfavored by most Eritreans so that could cause a lot of problems.

          • Semere Andom

            Hi Lamek:

            You are correct in saying that the army is not divided that is it can be united to remove the government. But we are talking about the Eritrean army, the visible one, the Sawa recruits, the so called YikeAlo have been decimated to oblivion, many have left the country, a few have it good and are the ears and the eyes of the system and many are disillusioned, they lend their expertise, technical mostly, the get paid, they drink they beer, they curse their luck and their betrayers, they are powerless in terms of network.

            IA has latent army, well fed, well dressed, well groomed, well trained, they live in a paradise, To this men, mostly men, the problems that all the Eritrean people suffer from is alien to them, they can see their families anytime, they want, they sleep in their own beds most of time, if they are not in assignment. When they go for missions to Sudan or other neighboring countries, they just drive their land Cruisers and they are not stopped at any check points, so they bring with them 2 to 5 Eritreans who can pay 6000USD to get out of the country. They get rich in the side too. These people are well armed and their first priority is not to face any coup ahead-on, they make sure that it does not happen in the first place, but if it does they will protect their livelihoods tooth to nail. IA counts on them and so far they were worth investment. The rest is the starved army, mostly from NS and now some of the first round batch their kids are joining them to Sawa, and this fact jolts some of them who vowed to stay put to exile. And you have the old who are armed to guard the banks and other government offices from thieves because IA does not trust the NS inside Asmara and for his special army the guarding is menial jobs, they do the kill by hunting down citizens even snatching veterans on their wedding day with their suits to arrest them. This special IA army besides the smuggling, they have thriving business like caffes who net them millions of Nacfa monthly, someone working on their behalf, they visit to supervise and collect their profits (read their loot).

            But, a fool can only say a coup is impossible because the associations and military ties are complex and if that happens successfully, the hidden army can be deployed at the last minute. But if history is any guide there is a problem with any opposition against PFDJ, they do no not learn and most likely any attempt will fail.

            Democratic Coup is the best option if it succeeds and if we had strong people’s army that would have happened before but those you see with titles, do not have power, there are others that we do not see, who have no titles who are more powerful than the defence minister. That is how it worked in EPLF and that is how is happening.

            It is all about probability, having a DC in Eritrea is probable, but it is as slim as wining the mega lotto.

            Please do not ask me, “then what is the solution?”;-)

          • Amde

            Selam Saay and Gogo,

            Well, I have a quibble about a priori declaring an unknown (and statistically unsupportable) outcome as a tag to an event in the here and now. It sounds more like marketing to me to be honest. Whether a coup ends up with a “democratic” outcome is more of a hope than a realistic expectation. I mean, how many coups have resulted in a ch-ch-ch-chain, chain of coups? And how many have resulted in a “democratic” outcome?

            But the interesting data point of Portugal implies there may be X factors that can be identified for coup engineering to (if not guarantee, at least make statistically more probable) Y desirable social outcome. Maybe Saay can be the advisor to the advisor on what that specifically means in Asmara? Hmmm ? 🙂

            Amde

          • saay7

            Selam Amde:

            Our marketing department will have to meet to find a better name for the coup: we are considering “correction”: it works for your stockbroker.

            But, in Afeica, which has had a very negligible rate of success towards democracy regardless of the form of succession it used, you cannot mention the success rate of democratic coup, I mean correction, without providing context.

            In any event, the “Democratic Correction Club” is seriously considering this: the cause of our problems is Hegel (Marx was just copying Hegels Dialectics” and the solution will come from the anti-Hegel, which is Kierkegaad who famously said “anxiety is the dizziness of freedom–the freedom to have 27 political parties.” Well ok I modified him. But he also said that a leap of faith is the most pure act of reason. And…wait I just realized that now I have to consult with all the membership before I share our party platform.

            So this is why Saba and her The Third Way show up once a year: they are writing their platform:)

            Comrade Gogo…Mel-Alom

            saay

          • Gogo

            Hey, Saay,
            Speaking of dialectics and ‘leap of faith’, if one looks deeper I think one can sense the Kierkegaardian in Marxist Utopia or even in the Hegelian dialectics. The synapses that connects the positivist description of the human condition- dialectical materialism- and the Messianic desire to turn it around radically- Marxist Utopia- can only be a leap of faith of sorts. I think Marx himself was cognizant of the gap between theory and practice, and this can be gleaned from the fact that his greatest historical accounts of revolutionaries events are the accounts of great failures, such as the German Peasant’s War, the Jacobins in the French Revolution and the Paris Commune. The assumption here is that recognizing the possibility of failure, even when the chance of success is very slim (kem nay geli’om i’id), does not and should not automatically result in the breaking the fidelity to the cause.

            P.S. I do not know if what I said will lend itself to ‘our’ desire to find a good marketing strategy.
            p.s.s. does Saba has another member to her Blairite party?

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Saay (Aya -Adi ‘U),

            Nemesis? No buddy. ንስኻሞ የማናይ ኢደይ እምበር በቲ ባህላዊ አዘራርባና:: Right and left in the battle of ideas. Nemesis, ወሓጦ ከይትጉስሞ እንደገና እዚሐወይ::

            ሰናይ መዓልቲ
            አማኑኤል ሕድራት

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Amanuel,

            እዋይ ኣመላልሳ ! ትኾርምየኒ ከምዚኣ ገይራ ዝመሰጠትኒ ኣዘራርባ የላን :: ኣንታ ሳልሕ እኮ ዳእላን ቀልድን – ዋዛን ቁም ነገርን ድማ ይፈቱ እዩ :: ‘ምበር ክንደይ እኳ የዕዝዘካን የኽብረካን :: ድሓር ከኣ ቅድን ኣሰራርሓን ሳልሕ ዶ ጠፊእካ ! ነቶም ደቂ ሓትነይ ዶ ደቂ ኮይ (cousin) ዝብሎም መሐንበሲ ቀላይ ከይገደፍ ምዓስ ይሕምብስ ኮይኑ !!

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            መርሐባ ኮኸባይ,

            ስለ ሐቂ ክንዛረብ እንተደአ ኾይና እዚ እንዳዓወተኮ: ብዘይ ሳልሕ ከምዚ ትዕዘቦ ዘለኻ መሳጢን መሃርን ውዕውዕን (combustive) ክትዓት ክህሉ አይምኸአለን ነይሩ:: ስለዚ አቲ ዘድሊ ሞጎስ ንዕኡ በዚ አጋጣሚ ከመሐላልፍ እፈቱ::

            ምስ ሰናይ ሕልና
            አማኑኤል ሕድራት

          • Abi

            Eyobe
            I didn’t know there was a basketball game.
            7-1?
            Eway wrdet!
            It looks like our parliament with a single opposition.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Saay7,
            I wish to Welid to recover and continue playing for our beloved sister nation Ethiopia.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Kokhob,

            Ha ha.. 🙂 To you a sister nation, to him it is his nation. All to himself. Embi..we will never give him back to you.. 🙂

          • Kokhob Selam

            Eyobay,
            Ha Ha, Okay, no replacement? give us Abi please..

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear Eyob,
      “ጅብ ከሄደ ውሻ ጮህ “ኣልሆነም ? now we are in one different stage of history. nations are created and they will have to survive. It is not because they are separated they fail it is because they are unable to create good system. Even today if we want to have unity, that will not succeed for different reasons inducing the nature of “the we first” attitude What both nations should do is work on each once own problems and grow fast. Unity will come automatically …the future is for world unity leave alone Ethiopia and Eritrea. Let our grand grand children take care of that all. For now our duty is teach them love instead of hate.

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Hello again

    This is a continuation of my last comment related to this post (interview), I posted it inadvertently. So here is the second part.

    I remember Dan for the reports he made to arouse a numb world. Some of my friends remember him for the almost live reports he was making from Massawa 1977 (correct me Dan if I’m mistaken). Folks, Eritrean did not have friends let alone reporters who could attest the justness of our cause, the ferocity of the battles, the courage and determination of our people, and the crimes committed by the Derg regime on our people. Also, thanks for chronicling our struggle. Your Eritrean politico-history dictionary is remarkable. I hope you will continue refining and completing it. Here is what I remember about those dark years. We were cornered in the ravines and ridges of Sahel. Derg planned for a long running attrition, because he calculated that at the end he would bleed Eritrea to death. Our diplomats were knocking every door of the world. Eritreans who had not joined the revolution were leaving the country through the Sudan. There, cornered, and daily pounded, and the power corridors of the world would not care even to listen to us, to our people. People like Dan Connell gave us a flicker of hope. I remember when we all crowd around a transistor radio after each major operation, waiting for that distinct introductory piece of music of BBC’s Focus On Africa. Through the years, he sent dispatches, and conducted interviews about the “forgotten” war of liberation. At this point in time, my only criticism for Dan is his action to publish the interviews he made with the ex-government officials considering that they are still imprisoned. His initiative to interview them was excellent and I think they have given us an insight into the world of IA. If you are reading this comment, my question to you would be: didn’t you consider their safety when you decided to publish the book containing the interviews, some could still be considered sensitive, at least to the government that’s holding them? Knowing the political culture of EPLF, don’t you think disclosing their interviews while they are still in prison could contribute or aggravate the case the government laid against them? Did they give you the permission to publish it under any circumstance? I’m looking at it from an ethical point of view (whether given a permission or not) and from a vantage dealing with individual judgement and prudence (concerns about their fate).

    Hillal, an Eritrean given name, was a French citizen who befriended the EPLF in early 70s, and rose to be tegadalay, headed the EPLF department of cinema and photography. They say, he was a brave man and someone who was so dedicated to the cause of archiving Eritreans’ struggle. Most black and white films, such as the Afabet, 1977, close quarters fight was filmed by him. He contributed greatly to the expansion of that department. He trained many tegadelti saalti (photographers, videographers, editors and producers. He left the field in the mid eighties but continued his role as a supporter of the Eritrean cause.
    Paul Highfield was another interesting person. He entered EPLF controlled areas of Eritrea in 1985. He spent a week with us in Maria Tselam/Halhal Front. He was interested in seeing social services the Front was delivering. He also visited other areas and then returned to the UK. In his second leg, in less than a year, he decided to volunteer in the department of Education. He stayed there until the independence of Eritrea. Once Eritrea became independent he too became a citizen of Eritrea; he got married to an Eritrean liberation fighter, some one he had known from the years in the field. Today, they remain happily married and have three children. Paul speaks perfect Tigrigna. I know Dan knows him.
    There were other interesting scholars and professionals who followed the example of Dan and Christine (Hillal) such as historian, Mr. Bassil Davidson, Dr. Fred Hollows who made immeasurable contributions in the area of Eye Surgery. He started a plant that would produce an intraocular lens (I don’t know its fate). There was also Thomas Kenelly (forgive me for misspelt names), who wrote the Novel “To Asmara” .
    I want to thank all those who contributed to the cause of Eritreans. It’s our culture to thank those who have helped us even if we disagree with them on contemporary issues. So. all I want to ask the supporters of PFDJ/IA is this: even if you disagree with the current politics of people like Dan, Hillal Paul and others, don’t you consider that it’s appropriate to give them credit for what they had contributed to the country and history you are proud of? Look, PFDJ told us that Aster Feshazion, Miriam Hagos, Aster Yewhans, Haile DuruE, Mahmoud Sherifo, General Ogbe Abraha, General Berhane G/zgabhier, Mahmoud Himid, Petros Solomon, Idris AbuEare, the Journalists, the artists, the elders and the teen agers were all CIA agents, or to some degree collaborated with it. So, what’s big about labeling this “foreign” Eritreans CIA agents? I don’t know if either of them was/is a CIA agent. All I know that IA and his close clique were more close to these folks than to their Eritrean comrades. Just as, once they dissented, the regime erased the contribution of the founders of Eritrea and its revolution, it would not hesitate to erase the contributions of these foreign friends who stood with Eritrea in its darkest time.
    Regards (may edit it, sorry, in a hurry).

    • Fanti Ghana

      Hello Mahmuday,

      As usual, very thoughtful and informative the way you showed gratitude to those who deserved it. I remember what we used to think of a white female journalist/supporter who took a black and white still photos of burned tanks after TPLF’s first battle with Derg. She was literally treated as our angel.

      “…my only criticism for Dan is his action to publish the interviews he made with the ex-government officials considering that they are still imprisoned. ”

      That worry is understandable. However, I believe he is aware of it because he mentioned that they very much knew what will happen to them for conducting that interview. So, I would imagine that “what will happen to them” has to be fresh in his mind. The one possible reason he would go ahead and publish it is if and only if they had insisted for him to publish the story for the greater good regardless of the consequences. He may even have delayed it as late as he could hopping for their release. Another unpleasant scenario could be either he knows that they are all dead or near death in which no amount of consequence matters. He may even think of it as “mercy killing” if you will. What an awful thing to think about.

    • The interviews were done with full expectation they’d be published. In fact, as the situation in Asmara got more and more tense, Haile, Petros and the others made an effort to get more on the record before they were arrested, as they expected to be. I understand y
      our concern over their safety but frankly, you don’t really think they were held this long over specific charges, do you? I think we’d both agree (and they would as well) that their arrests were politically motivated and the refusal to release them is, too, as well as by the regime’s worry at public reaction to the condition they may be in, if still alive.

      • ‘Gheteb

        Hi Dan Connell,

        You say:

        ” … their arrests were politically motivated and the refusal to release them is, too, …”

        My only question to you is: how sure are you that “their arrest” [ the G-15] is not over national security issues which obviously the Eritrean Government is not/ was not going to speak of publicly as any responsible government wouldn’t ?

        For you to assert that their arrest was politically motivated, you have to be darn sure and convincingly confute that they were not arrested because of national security issues or concerns.

        • Lamek

          Hi Gheteb, can you enlighten us exactly how they were compromising or could have potentially compromised national security? Leading up to their arrests, they were asking to meet with Isaias Afwerki repeatedly and all he said was ‘tigageyu alekum’ (you are making a mistake). There was no more national security to speak of at that time except threats to his absolute power. Ethiopia had more or less accomplished what it wanted and could have done more if it wasn’t for the goodwill of the late Prime Minister Melles Zenawi. Please don’t insult our collective intelligence. We are being insulted enough by IA day and day out.

          • Haile WM

            Hi Lamek,

            the problem here is they were accused and nobody can question the motives, the double standard is if you question if their arrest is/was politically motivated, they will ask you if [you] “are darn sure and convincingly confute that they were not arrested because of national security issues”.
            Ironically that doesn’t seem to be applied to those who are accusing the G15 (Iseyas and his stooges), none can ask them “are you darn sure and convincingly confute that they were not arrested because of political motivations and their challenging iseyas’ power”.

            In PFDJ world the cost of proving and providing evidences is upon us the people who doubt (do you have evidence to doubt?!?) not the other way we (the people) asking do you have evidence for accusing people of treason.

          • Abraham H.

            Selam Lamek, that was a very good slap in the face for that blind Isayas worshiper.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Abraham H,

            You must be one really EMASCULATED person to enjoy vicariously that Lamek “slapping me” so, so violently.

            Are you that effete not to be able to face ‘Gheteb directly or are you that hopeless as a water carrier of the Mederk folks who are hopelessly hog tied to the execrable Woyanes.

            Thanks God that I haven’t sold Eritrea down the river. I would rather die as a “blind Isayas worshiper” than readily carry water for the recreantly perfidious Weyanes for mere pittance.

          • Abraham H.

            Hi Gheteb,
            No need for me to reply to you as I agreed 100% with Lamek’s rebuttal to your outlandish comment. Besides, don’t take this so seriously, it is just a war of opinions.
            And I notice the Medrek folks are giving you a bit of headache and sleepless nights these days? Yes, these folks have, indeed, risen to the call of their nation and are working with other Eritrean patriots to up the challenge against the tyranny. I’m convinced they will eventually succeed in their holy mission of ridding Eritrea of its menace, hopefully with the help of the regional organization of IGAD.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Lamek,

            You are convinced that the issues that the G-15 were raising on those critical days were not issues of national security concerns. Well, from where I stand and what the Eritrean National Assembly agreed upon it was a national security issues and concerns by half.

            The fact that you didn’t hear about it, say, from ” a bank teller” or “a friend who travelled to Eritrea” DOES NOT lessen nor mitigate the serious charges that the G-15 are standing accused of. I won’t belabor this issue any further as I will dilate on it on another thread.

            You say that, ” Ethiopia had more or less accomplished what it wanted and could have done more if it weren’t for the goodwill of the late Prime Minister Melles Zenawi”.

            Horsefeathers! Ethiopia DID NOT achieve diddly-squat politically or militarily. They were not able to effect regime change in Eritrea and they failed abjectly and militarily the EDF preserved its capacity through a smart strategic withdrawals to fight and face the Ethiopian armed forces another day.

            It faced the Ethiopian armed forces which was overstretched and fought it and by the end it was a stalemate. In the Asseb front, the Weyanes 19 military offensives were foiled and the dream of capturing Asseb was buried in the hot sands of Dankalia.

            Your misapprehension that if it weren’t for Meles Zenawi the Ethiopian army would have done more damage is, frankly speaking, pure hogwash. Only those Ethiophiles entertain such kinds of phantasm.

          • Lamek

            Hi Gheteb, in reading the exchanges between the G-15 and Isaias Afwerki, they were raising issues of national concern, sure I agree. But they themselves were not a threat to national security. They were asking ‘let’s do an evaluation of what we did right (if any) and what we did wrong’ fully anticipating the repercussions (courtesy of Dan Connell and others). What evidence do we have that they were CIA agents? The burden of proof is on Isaias Afwerki and his regime because they are the accusers.

            On your second half, from my limited understanding, in wars, battles are won and lost but the warring parties are judged by the final result. Ethiopia skyrocketed post war and Eritrea plummeted to the ground post war. Again, I am not ashamed to tell you that I am not a scholar of Eritrean affairs but I am a curious spectator. If Ethiopia had waged more and more offensives, it would have quickly been unsustainable for Eritrea by the shear number of Ethiopians that could be deployed to the border and to inside Eritrea as they are now.

            Look in hindsight, Ethiopia was virtually unaffected by the war for the long term but we have yet to recover from it. So yes I stand by my ‘misapprehension’ that the Ethiopians are much better equipped and suited to sustain protracted and long wars than us. The Ethiopians have got us exactly where they want us. If this is not total victory, I don’t know what is.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Lamek,

            Okay, let me just ask you one final question.

            Taking into consideration the recent Ethio-Eritrean history of wars and conflict, if sheer numbers of soldiers and a superabundant supply of war materiel were the determinant factors, then how come the EPLF defeated the Ethiopian armed forces so decisively?

            Mind you here the Ethiopians had the numerical superiority in number of troops, may be a 20 to 1 advantage and they were armed to their teeth thanks to the Soviet Union’s patronage.

            What followed the Ethio-Eritrean war and what still continues unabated is not merely the works of Ethiopians and the effects of the border war, but a well coordinated campaigns by the US and Co. to totally isolate Eritrea diplomatically and strangulate it’s economy through sanctions and other concerted moves.

            Had the EEBC verdict was implemented and in the absence of the continual belligerence that Eritrea has been facing, I am more than 100% sure that Eritrea would have achieved tangible progress and developments in all of the spheres.

          • Lamek

            Hi Gheteb,

            …all that you said…hence Dan Connell’s “Against All Odds.”

            There is no question there. A lot of what you said above is true. My main contention, however, is numbers matter for the long term. Sheer determination will win you lots of battles but protracted conventional wars are not that straight forward.

            I don’t doubt the sheer determination of the Eritrean people for self administration, liberation, and independence, and they will always do everything to have those precious things in life. But you do have to put some blame, if not all, on IA’s absolutely disastrous handling of foreign affairs and public relations. Saay has written extensively about this and I am sure you can find everything as I can tell you are very savvy. In any case, I will let you handle your much bigger sized detractors as you refer to them as.

          • Nitricc

            VF; you said

            “Ethiopia had more or less accomplished what it wanted”
            What was Ethiopia intend to accomplish when your masters decided to invade Eritrea?
            “and could have done more if it weren’t for the goodwill of the late Prime Minister Melles Zenawi.”
            If Ethiopia accomplished what ever it wanted as you said above; what more are you suggesting; when you said they could have done more? What exactly did your midget master did to stop the war?

            Thanks;

          • Fanti Ghana

            Hello Lamek,

            I know you love me, and you know I love you, and we both know we love PMMZ but “…the goodwill of the late Prime Minister Melles Zenawi” has to be removed from anything you say from now on. He made a calculated political decision and nothing more. The short version is that some commanders tried to hijack the war and he stopped them. If you want the longer version bring your own beer.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Lamak,
            ኣንታ ደይ “ክበልዕዎ ዝደለዩ ኣባ ጉንባሕ ሲ …” እንድኣሉ ነገሩ : ንሶም ድማ ቆራሪጾም ከይድርብይዎ እንድዮም ተጋግዮም :: ኣይለበሙን !!ንሓንሳብን ንሓዋሩን ጉዳይ ምተዓጽወ ነይሩ::ሕጂ ንእፍሊ ወኻሩን ኣህባይን ሃገር ደርይብዮማ:: እንታይ ይግበር ኮይኑ !ከምቀደምና ምግዳል እዩ ::

      • Mahmud Saleh

        Selam bxaay Dan
        Thanks for the reply, and welcome to awatista forum (or welcome back). The saying goes around here, “Once an awatista, you will always be an awatista.” So, come again please.
        I agree it was a political decision, and this forum has pretty much agreed on it. It was just a feeling that I was carrying. In fact as soon as I posted that, I went back and read some of the documents I have collected. In an interview (not with you), Mahmoud Sherifo was asked about possible scenarios awaiting them. He predicted that the most likely scenario was that the regime was going to arrest them. In another occasion, another veteran EPLF told me that, in the final months, they were aware tat they would be rounded up. Whether they expected to be treated this badly any once guess. I believe during the ten post independence years (1991-2001), they were gradually isolated from the privileged club. It appears that they were somehow disoriented in recognizing that a paradigm shift had taken place, that the so called new-blood group had actually displaced them in the decision making process; that the old networks they had cultivated had long been disrupted, etc. So, I understand that their disappearance was caused by a political consideration. Whether I would choose to hold on its publication or making the choice you made to publish it would not make much of a difference. I would reiterate the importance of the interviews. I actually said once in this forum that those individuals who braved to speak out left behind important footprint in the endeavor of completing our knowledge about the inner dynamics of EPLF leadership. Thanks again.

    • Lamek

      Hello Mahmoud Saleh, I know you don’t think of me that highly and you started giving me names and your sons Ted and Nitricc run away with it. But that is okay, I always take the high road. Here is my issue with your comment. You start making good points but you always have to cap it with something that annoys the heck out of me. Please read your statement below.

      “Knowing the political culture of EPLF, don’t you think disclosing their interviews while they are still in prison could aggravate the case the government laid against them? Did they give you the permission to publish it under any circumstance? I’m looking at it from an ethical point of view (whether given a permission or not) and from a vantage dealing with individual judgement and prudence (concerns about their fate).”

      Knowing the political culture of EPLF, don’t you think it would make no difference how much evidence they have against anyone once in their eyes or blacklist? Does it make any difference how much anybody incrimanates himself once in the judicial (or nonjudicial) detention of the EPLF?

      Please tell me why you asked Dan Connell that ill-advised question.

      • Nitricc

        VF; lol! Keeping the sliver bullet to myself for identifying for your future emblazonment. why would you show your hand all they way for every one to see. Lol; Mahmuday never said anything to the so-called Lemak; if so, what makes to say …. “Hello Mahmoud Saleh, I know you don’t think of me that highly and you started giving me names and your sons Ted and Nitricc run away with it. But that is okay, I always take the high road.”
        You mean Mahmuday said something when you used to be Mizan or VF. Lol don’t worry everything is fake as you are lol

      • Mahmud Saleh

        Selam Lamek,
        There is a saying that goes like “who he asks is a fool for a minute, he who doesn’t ask is a fool for ever.” But again that’s if you are conversing with level-headed folks. That’s a question that every damn sincere reader. Dan answered it, and I have done my own hindsight consideration. So, asking isn’t bad my friend. To come to your question, you are absolutely right it would not make a difference, but it was a question that came to me at the end of the comment, a feeling that has been latent since I read those interviews. I hope you read my answer to Dan. One more thing, you commentedon your perception of how I judge you. That’s wrong. Who am I to judge your intelligence? Dear Lamek, I write to say something and I don’t really think nor care who it’s going to please or annoy.

        • Lamek

          Okay thank you MS. Point well taken. I will be off your back. 🙂

    • Gogo

      Selam Mahmud,
      Good job for acknowledging those friends of the Eritrean Revolution who did an unforgettable and remarkable work in breaking the Ethiopian ‘regime of truth’, out of an endearing loyalty to progressive ideals. The we-did-it-alone-against-all-odds narration sometimes did not take into account the kind of support and sympathies that we got from many a such friends. I was once reading a report on the establishment of the Research and Information Center for Eritrea, a precursor to the current Research and Documentation Center, and was pleasantly surprised to find big names such as Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marques and the imminent Yale sociologist/historian Immanuel Wallertsein in the list of those who supported its formation.

    • saay7

      Hala Field Marshall Mahmuday:

      I actually perfectly understand your question. If the G-15 were expecting to be arrested, but were also expecting that there would be such a loud outcry that the Gov of Isaias Afwerki would reconsider its decision, the next thing to say is not just, “oh well, they were naive” but why didn’t we? What is our role when it comes to people remaining in prison year-in and year-out? People who don’t know why they were arrested? And they were released, why they were released? One horrible thing replaces another, until evil become banal, and our memories can’t cope: I just (heard? read? got a call?) that an Administrator at Afabet who was arrested 10 years ago, was released and he doesn’t know why he was arrested and why he was released?

      Isaias Afwerki and Co are so thin-skinned one always has to think: I wonder if doing X actually aggravates them more. For years, specially when I heard that some G-15 members were not just arrested but some of them were being beaten as they were frog-marched to the trucks waiting for them at dawn, I used to think, “I wonder if these morons took a satire I had written [What Time Is It] so seriously.” (This is why I hate satires now, Semere.) Maybe as a society we are just not developed enough for them. So Dan’s book was published in 2004: can we really rule out that the venegeful lot at PFDJ didn’t use that book as more grist for the mill? I mean: these are people who have interviewing visiting Eritreans and showed them reports that were written about them by the spy network in Diaspora.

      In the interview, Dan uses a phrase to explain why Eritrea youth are running away at such huge numbers: “a culture of violence” in the EDF and the national security system. I had a scary thought: Isn’t it possible that this ‘culture of violence’ is so ingrained now in the EDF and the security system that they don’t even know they are doing it? The last time I visited Eritrea, down by Idaga Lakka, there was a “thief! thief!” cry: they caught this skinny little boy and everybody just took turns beating him senseless. So, the scary thought: is violence not just a culture of PFDJ but an Eritrean culture? And, if it is, what is our basis for our eternal optimism that everything will be fine?

      saay

      • Mahmud Saleh

        Ahlan Saleh

        Thank you for understanding the spirit of my questions. You said, “can we really rule out that the venegeful lot at PFDJ didn’t use that book as more grist for the mill? I mean: these are people who have interviewing visiting Eritreans and showed them reports that were written about them by the spy network in Diaspora.” That was my concern. And if it was me, I would probably hold onto the publication. However, the contrary could also be true, and that’s once those individuals were taken en masse their fate was closed. Therefore, where there is no hope of getting any form of rudimentary hearing, whatever adds up to the case would not change their fate. You would fear that it might affect them negatively if there were a sort of hearing. There is no doubt that copies of those interviews were brought to them. Another point I reconsidered is the timing. Look at the trajectory Ustaz Saleh: The investigation and “trial” of menkae (1973) were more open than what Yemin movement of 1976 got. Because Menkae Cases were relatively open and discussions among tegadelti were going on, including questions of their fate…Yemin round up and sentencing were more silent. The 1980s passed without any investigating committees . The 1990s, well you know it; we might have regained some press activities, however the judicial culture remained stuck at its 1980s. All the round up of tegadelti, and religious leaders happened while we were celebrating. Come to 2014: I think, relatively, Eritreans were more hopeful in 2004 than they are today. Considering the amount of dissent voices we were getting and the open interviews the G-15 members were making, it might be true that Eritreans were bolder in 2000 than they are today, and the government is more oppressive today than it was in early 2000. In short, I’m trying to make the point that as time keeps moving forward, Eritrea’s judicial and political management has been receding into the past.
        Answering your questions are crucial to avoiding another round of similar fate.

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Good morning Saay,

        You should have reached to a conclusion long ago, that they are brute bandits and kidnapers that hold the societies by sheer force and intimidations.

        Senay MeAlti

  • Mahmud Saleh

    Selam All
    The interview was conducted professionally. Both Tefera and Dan stayed composed and on topic. Dan is probably among the few foreigners who know the history of Eritrean struggle, its internal and external dimensions and the interplay of factors which determined each phase of that history. He continues engaged with issues related to Eritrea. For that I thank him from the bottom of my heart. We thank people who stood with us when the world looked the other way, no matter how currently we disagree with them. If we disagree with them on contemporary politics we say so, but we always thank them for whatever they did in the past. Personally, I see him currently active in illuminating the plight of our refugees. I thank him for that too.

  • saay7

    Hi Handsoff Eritrea:

    I recommend to all new Awatistas that they take some time to observe the interaction between and among Awatistas. For example, you will lean that if Someone has a long name, it will probably be truncated. Mahmoud is called “Mahmouday, The Greatest, or Field Marshall.” Nitricc is called General Nitricc. Fanti is His Fantiness. Etc. Eyob well nobody likes Eyob so we just call him Eyob.

    Point is every house has its rules and then terms of endearment for those who are familiar with one another.

    And usually people whose first few interactions are battling the moderator don’t last very long. Because instead of playing the game and having audience enjoy them, they are constantly complaining about the ref. Very distracting.

    Saay

    • Lamek

      Selam Saay, absolutely enlightening. I love it. What a relief to learn that we have only one Gheteb! Can you imagine one more Gheteb? Don’t get me wrong, I really like that dude but woo he is a hot potato, hard to handle.

    • HandsOffEritrea

      Hi saay,

      No problem minster, but it rather felt redacted than truncated.

      By the way, what do you think now about the link Dan that I shared earlier?

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    O ‘Saay (Aya adi ‘U)

    Am I listening my voice in Dan ‘s interview? Did I hear saying a ” sytem?” Or is it only my ears?

    regsrds

    • Eyob Medhane

      Aman,

      Yes you did hear “system”.. You know Sal is always wrong.. 😉

      • saay7

        Selam Emma, Eyob:

        It is a system in the sense that “System of A Down” is a “system.” It is a band, ante fara.

        I haven’t watched the video yet, so let’s wait, but I know that Dan is a fine researcher and writer. And for a guy who didn’t major in journalism, he is a good reporter. But I have read someone in these fine pages saying things like Dan Connell made “a fine living” from his books. People: his books are published by Red Sea Press and I very much doubt Dan made more than $5,000 from all his books. The world is not as fascinated by Eritrea as we Eritreans and Ethiopians* are. Somebody also said there is “a special place in hell” for people like Dan? People: how about you dial it down a bit? “There is a special place in hell” was used by Madeline Albright for women who don’t vote for Hillary. It is a completely useless statement now thanks to your overuse. Yes, I am looking at you Eyob who first used it on Dr. Bereket. Maybe there is a special place in hell for people who misuse the phrase “there is a special place in hell”? If there is hell, never mind a special one, where are Stalin, Hitler and Pol Pot supposed to go then?

        It is as if there is no….system to your thinking.

        saay

        * By the way Dan left the US for Africa to report on the Ethiopian revolution. It is only because the Ethoipian revolution was so boring and over-reported and the Eritrean revolution so exciting and under-reported that he discovered our Ghedli:)

        • Eyob Medhane

          Sal,

          Honestly, I was kind of surprised by only the last four minutes of this interview. The rest, for me it did not contain much of new information. I was delighted that Tefera asked him that he (Dan) was a big contributor to creat the personality cult by writing “against all odds” (which y’all made a slogan out of) I was satisfied with that question and noticed a little squirm of Dan, when he was answering it. However, at the end of the conversation, his assessment of Eritrea’s future actually aligns with what I think. Which is that there will not be a civil war to the magnitude that is Somalia and Libya, because of power vacuum.

          And Sal…No..

          Dan did not leave the US to report on Ethiopian revolution. (I just don’t think so.. 🙂 ) He was just in such for his own Che Guvera to play with, and when he probably heard that there was a revolution in the Horn of Africa, he thought he would find his toy there. He probably found Isayas was more attractive than Mengistu to romanticize and write about, because Menge was too messy and complicated… 🙂 There. I fixed it for you.. 🙂

          • saay7
          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Oh come on..That was his own account..What?! Did you expect him to say that “I went to Horn of Africa, because I heard the socialist revolution there and there may be a chance to find my own Che to play with”? Of course not. He had to make it a bit presentable..brush it up.. 😀

          • tes

            Hello Eyob Medhanie,

            I don’t think you have a reference when you state as you did. Everything is coming from your perceived conception. If you have any material source that you can bring for us well and good, if not th only material at hand we have is his own personal biography.

            For what ever mission he went, Dan was very sympathetic to the Eritrean cause and still he stands for it. I won’t wonder if you oppose his friendship with the Eritrean revolution as I have a general map of your thinking line. But here save your own perception and accept what Dan is saying about himself.

            tes

          • Eyob Medhane

            Tes,

            You are right. I don’t have any “evidence” or I heard Connell say that. All I have is a gut feeling! and by now I assume that you easily can figure out that O don’t like the guy. He is one of those ferenjs (in my opinion, and please feel free to disagree) that goes into a far away and foreign society, forces himself in and pontificate about that particular society, in order to shape it to what he imagines it should be shaped in to. Not only Dan Connell, I really am not fond of a whole bunch of them Ferenjis in Ethiopia, too. He is not with a company of himself. There are a whole bunch of them…

          • Nitricc

            Hi All; I don’t see any salutations on this post; in fact never used one but he is allowed to post as he wishes. the point is why is he not following the rules? isn’t supposed to be the rule of the forum? I don’t care if he uses salutations but why is for some people applies while for others doesn’t. is this how the real Africa works? AT if it the rule; make it one; if not you can’t be selective.

          • PTS

            Nitricc,
            If you address ppl by name, that is one forum of salutation. Salutation doesn’t necessarily mean the lengthy ‘deHando aleka, sdra kemey alewu, qoluu ke gobizomdo, kunetat ayerke kemey alo, dehai adi alekado…
            Let it go man. Tootkless ppl like Semere and VF are laughing at you, exposing their non-existent teeth.

          • Nitricc

            PTS; I am done! no worries. It must be African thing. As far as i am concern a rule is a rule;the end of story.

          • Abi

            Hi PTS
            It seems impossible to teach a decorated General to salute.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Abi,
            .
            Good to hear from you. That is funny, PTS and yours.
            Our Nitricc marches to his own drummer. Sometimes he picks fights with saay, his defender and mentor. Sometimes he is stickler for some rules like a good General.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Abi

            Selam Kim
            I understand the General’s frustration. I see the wardiya is having hard time teaching salutations to Collonel Dan.
            Wardiya : “Ej nisa ”
            Dan : “Alnesam”
            Wardiya: ” TeTew bel”
            Dan : ” what”
            Wardiya : ” eway Tigab”

          • HandsOffEritrea

            Hello Eritrean, a gut of an Eritrean never lies. Maybe ‘Good Cop Dan Connel’ can explain this to his admirers why is this classified for his ‘own safety’…mind u it’s from the 70’s
            https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/1978KHARTO00531_d.html
            Say No More!

          • saay7

            Hey Handsoff:

            Nah, this is a lot more interesting: from back in the days when Isaias Afwerki was Isaias Afework:)

            https://search.wikileaks.org/?q=afework

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Are you sure, you didn’t miss anything from “Hands off” comment? Let me point it out for you. He “bestowed” (rolling my eyes) the “honor” on me of the title “Good Eritrean” 🙂

          • HandsOnEritrea

            Hey you:

            Am I supposed to click all them links to get your point? Do not be lazy, please be specific. I read the Iraq visit but then nothing was there all it did was it reminded me of my father when he was sent by ELF to take military education in Iraq. Then I said F the rest not to waste my time.

            By the way, the subject is about Dan Connel. Pls be warry of him.

            PS: I have changed the name to make you happy.

          • saay7

            Selamat Handsoff:

            There is a piece in the link for everyone:

            * Bad Cousin Semere A will have a field day, point to Isaias role as a unity-spoiler provoking my good cousin Mahmuday;
            * Nehna Nsu gang will be very pleased because they will see consistency in their hero;
            * Our Ethiopian friends will see the hands of Arabs all over it;
            * Those who dismiss US diplomats will see (if they are honest with themselves) that the analysts from that period got it mostly right;
            * Those who have read the late Osman Saleh Sabbe’s book at how he took credit for the liberation of the two Americans (CISCO) will smile;

            Now tell us why we should be weary of the great Dan Connell exactly?

            PS: I didn’t ask you to change your name. Handsoff, handson, LookMaNoHands, makes no difference as long as observe the posting guidelines: stick to it and don’t change it every five minutes; (b) start your posts with proper salutation by addressing people by the names they chose.

            saay

          • HandsOffEritrea

            Merhaba Saleh,

            I will focus on the Dan Connell bit, the rest is history and a matter of perspective and for any Ethiopian friend who hates our relationship with the Arabs I tell them that they are our Ethiopian Enemies and InsaAllah they will suffer in this life and rot in hellfire in the hereafter.

            Why we should be wearry of Dan is becoz I FELT he is a spy for the USA. Once I met him at SOAS London and we had a long discussion and when I asked him that ‘If he writes an Article for Peace in the Horn of Africa and articulates the things we were talking about then the Ethiopians will act on the Principled they said they accept and PIA will not get an ‘excuse’ to keep an state of alert. Do you know what he said to me….”You Eritrean, who do you think you are?” And that left me thinking one thing and that he was there to challenge peace and tranquility.

            And now when I saw an academics work classified by the state department…I now KNOW he is up to no good and he is a spy/puppet handler or whatever evil doer he is.

            Wedehanka,

          • Abi

            Hi HandsOff
            What does InsaAllah means? I think it means “God willing” . Am I off?

          • HandsOffEritrea

            Slightly off, precise would be Allah Willingly.

          • Abi

            Hi HandsOffEritrea
            Do you believe God Willingly punish people here on earth and let them rot in hellfire in the hereafter? I’m very weak when it comes to religion. Tell me more.
            InsaAllah you stay around. Welcome to Awate Community.

          • HandsOffEritrea

            Hi Abi

          • Sorry, but this is nonsense. I would never have said “You Eritrean, who do you think you are?” You either misheard or made this up.

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hi Dan Connell,

            Regarding the claim by the person nicknamed “HandsoffEritrea” that you said to him “You Eritrean, who do you think you are?”, it falls in the realm of “he said” and “you denied”. You have both equal dibs to the validity of your claims or denials. This is in the absence of verifying his claim or your denial by other independent means, Viz,, independent witness or other audio recordings

            By the way, do you remember ever reporting or saying to some people in the liberated city of Keren in 1977 that you saw “Amma retreating from Dogali” ( Massawa environs) when the EPLF was getting ready to attack that very Ethiopian garrison town?

            Of course, Amma being the ELF in the EPLF parlance.

          • HandsOffEritrea

            Hi Dan Connell,

            The phrase ‘You Eritrean’ was auto corrected by my phone keyboard, “You Eritreans” is what I intended. But here you go, we shall see what you say now because I will repeat the same discussion we had.

            After your presentation of “a slide show and lecture drawing on recent visits to refugee camps and communities in Ethiopia, Sudan, Egypt and Israel”. You showed some intriguing photography in your presentation some of them showing the houses of the smugglers and their balloon drones with cameras, and also many victims of human trafficking.

            Of course, as the presentation intended I was very touched by the imagery and also some interesting remarks were made by you when you finished the presentation in which you said “internally it is up to the Eritreans in what they do with their country”. Being my first encounter with you I was mesmerized by the fact that you said the above comment as I have had heard some good and bad things about you but that comment was like the perfect song, beat, melody, poetry… and everything nice, nicer and nicest a foreigner whether a friend of Eritrea or not would say to my ears and get a gate to my heart!

            Then, after I approached you I asked you why is this happening in front of you, me and the whole world where the situation is so horrendous but also yet we can clearly see the culprits in front of our eyes in close personal camera range.

            After drawing your attention to the letter by PIA to the UN which “the Government of Eritrea emphatically request[ed] the UN to launch an independent and transparent investigation of this abominable affair so as to bring to justice the culpable parties.” I suggested to you that it would be very important to grab this opportunity and for the UN to at least respond to this and have a front door access rather come through the back door and that we should lobby across the world for pragmatic and swift response to this mayhem, because it is more than political bickering (http://awate.com/behind-isaias-afwerkis-crocodile-tears-about-human-trafficking/) and discourse, as people were and are dying.

            I said to you, given your history and your academic stature coupled with your personal interest in Eritrea, it would be very helpful to echo your presentation globally and that we, u and everybody that has an interest in at least mitigating that horrendous trafficking, torture and drowning circumstances should take this opportunity given by the “rigid” government of Eritrea to the UN to knock its front door as per the invitation.

            Of course your presentation, was not only the photography, it was also titled “Eritreans: Migrants or Migrating Refugees” in which the diabolical situation to draw “Where is the line between a “migrant” and a “refugee,” when motives, routes and experience among political refugees, economic migrants and victims of trafficking overlap?” was up for debate.

            You have your opinion of course, and you were citing many reasons to draw the line but also you hastily mentioned that the government of Eritrea uses BADME as an excuse to avoid democratic governance, refuses to talk to Ethiopia and wants keep the limbo situation.

            When I shared my opinion with you and I asked you to devour the complexities of the “No Peace No War” situation that is keeping Eritrea in an ULTRA ALERT mood since the “Guarantors” failed to adhere to their signatures. I argued you that the Ethiopians are not really looking to talk to Eritrea, because if they wanted, at least IGAD table was the opportunity for them to talk to Eritrea but I’m sure you know more than me it has nothing to do with Ethiopia since the guarantors have up to the right of Article 7 of the UN charter to carry their duty.

            In summary there where basically 3 things I communicated to you and I asked if you may, to articulate for the main stream media in USA and Europe.

            1. UN should support to create an investigative team into the immediate issue of Human trafficking.

            2. Lets deny the Eritrean government the “excuse” to keep the Eritrean people in ULTRA ALERT by echoing the enforcement of the last signature of Eritrea, Ethiopia and the guarantors. (of course the situation is different now, it is TPLF crying the No War No Peace is not working enough to kill Eritrea).

            3. Efforts should be put to sit the countries of IGAD together and if Ethiopia want to talk to Eritrea then that table at least was open in a regional level, given the bilateral level is impossible.

            I argued you, the US and UN need to understand and act on that and if you as Dan Connell support that call, I said to you I am sure it will have ears to fall to in the west…your answer was “You Eritreans, who do you think you are? That the world will do you that for you”, I was shocked and I came to a sudden realization if I may say like an epiphany, that you was in that room for nothing else but to traumatize us with the same despair that we experienced by ourselves.

            And to saay7, after you asked “Now tell us why we should be weary of the great Dan Connell exactly? What exactly did you find–or think you found– in the Wikileaks you shared?” your “Fearless news, analysis and opinion on Eritrea and beyond” chose to self-censor itself. I think any thoughtful, should least think ‘Why would a freelance journalist in this case Dan Connell cable would be classified by the US State Department, and “withdrawal card” by WikiLeaks? You do not have to respond, keep it diplomatic…but come on saay, let’s be fair to our own conscience, you cannot show your known normalcy bias towards Isaias Afworki on this by showing me a WikiLeaks link and say Isaias Afworki is mentioned in this one as well 😉

            PS: I do not have a personal love or vendetta against Isaias Afworki and I’m not interested to listen to the “naïve” who thought “..the situation in Asmara got more and more tense,” and that ‘the people of Eritrea will react accordingly to their call’ that was a dishonest calculation of the national mood at that moment of time or beyond as the understanding of the people and pragmatism of the government is outweighing your “naïve thoughts”. I hope all the ones in their 27’s and around right now, we think about the long term aspect of our lively hoods and nation than getting fooled by the ones who got fooled!

            Peace and Love to the People Of Eritrea,

          • HandsOffEritrea
          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Hi Eyobay,

            Whether you like it or not Dan’s report both on the “Ghedli” and on the “state of Eritrea” were/are facts on the ground. Whether you support or oppose the cause of our revolution, just see his report from the optic of journalism. If you have anything to dispute from his report, we would appreciate, otherwise I don’t like the reports from ferenji is not an argument.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Aman,

            I don’t think I said “I hate reports from Ferenjis”. I sad “I don’t like HIS kind of reports and reporters”. His kind as in, condescending, sanctimonious, those, who are in it for themselves to satisfy their ego and to feed their youth dream to befriend a Che Guvera type of revolutionary. They end up immersing themselves into societies that they don’t understand, yet pontificate about it, u till kingdom come. It’s those type that I said I don’t like..Not normal reporters…..

          • saay7

            Hi Tes:

            One of the many things that gives Eyob a mental breakdown (it is a very long list) is calling him Eyob Medhanie as opposed to Eyob Medhane. The former, according to him, is Eritrean and the latter, according to him, is Ethiopian. That one letter “i” between “n” and “e” will set him off.

            Also, he doesn’t like Dan Connell and Dr. Berekhet for “breaking up my country”–can you imagine how fragile it must have been for a couple of guys to break it up? And he also doesn’t like Ferenjis, except Haggai Elrich, Sylvia Pankhurst, Richard Pankhurst, Paul Henze… 🙂

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Tes is a new dude..(I don’t think this is the same Tes that declared everybody is “dead” to him, is he?) Anyway, please don’t frighten him by listing about my “likes” and “dislikes” on our first stroke on conversation. 🙂

            I actually said, these couple of guys “contributed to breaking up my country”. I was just acknowledging their “contribution” along with Arabs and .. (Don’t get me started with the list of contributors 🙂 )

            My favorite ferenjs list got a whole lot longer, as Hagai Erlich and Richard Pankhurst got a bit old and on the way on their “departure”.. 🙂 I will submit the new “favorite Ferenjis” list soon. Stay tuned.. 😀

          • Abi

            Eyobe
            This is a new tes. The old Tes is dead. This is the reincarnated version.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Abishu,

            I think I like this tes.. 🙂

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam tes,
            .
            His early visible known career was being a spokesperson of Gehdli. He did it wearing the uniform of journalism and truth telling. I read his reports in real time. I could see it through him then as I do now.
            .
            So when I say he bears some responsibility for his role and contribution, I am spot on.
            Isn’t it interesting how he ended up in Ethiopia/Eritrea.
            Those western revolutionaries and hippies of that time search for adventure and excitement to have a meaning for their miserable lives. They used their “ferenji” card to have access and acceptance by the locals. Dan used his English literature to write his piece on world stage. A career was/is founded.
            .
            You, tes and other Eritreans say he is a great man from your perspective.
            I and few Ethiopians, specially now in hindsight with the full knowledge of what transpired and is transpiring, say he is evil.
            We just have to agree to disagree.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Eyob Medhane

            Kim,

            Very well said. The problem is I really am concerned that Connell’s manipulation skill will be reincarnated through someone else or himself and create another havoc in our region again….

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Eyob Medhane,
            .
            Thanks and thanks again for keeping saay, busy. I was getting ready to give you another good blessing and found myself not being able to top the previous one. I will work on it.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • Saleh Johar

            Dear Eyob and Saay,

            Saay, you should congratulate Eyob for finally finding the culprit. He always thought it was the Arabs to blame for the Eritrean revolution. Now he discovered it was Dan Connell who instigated us. Yetabatu frenj 🙂

            Eyob, I am a bit disappointed. You just learned the difference between a nation and a country, from an article? Wasn’t this at the center of our many debates–you considering Ethiopia a nation while I insisted there are many nations in Ethiopia, the country? Okay: Haile Sellassie believed he lorded over a nation (the peripheries surrender to the center and assimilate), Mengistu just copied the Stalinist social structure (Kebele) and for the first time in the history of the country, EPRDF recognized Ethiopia is not a nation but a conglomerate of nations and nationalities. Please teach as much people as you can, we can’t afford to have people who think we are “One People, One Heart”, both South and North of the Mereb. 🙂

          • PTS

            Kim,
            Let’s see this from a different angle. If the average Ethiopian has unfavorable view of pro-independence Eritreans (or non-Eritreans, for that matter) and on the flip side, if the average Eritrean has unfavorable view of Ethiopians that are against independence, who would you say is more justified?

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam PTS,
            .
            The non-Eritreans must be set aside for a special treatment, since they don’t care for either one of us.
            .
            It is a difficult question you pose, since we are talking about the past. I have to go back to my safe answer and say, we have to agree to disagree. Each side came with a split desire, as you know.
            .
            However, today in 2016, the average Eritrean’s unfavorable view of Ethiopians against independence of Eritrea are more justified.
            I hope I answered your question and hope it was not a trick question.
            .
            Mr. K.H

          • saay7

            Hey Eyob:

            You know how I feel about the music of that screecher Tilahun Gesese? But I do like an answer I am told he gave a stubborn interviewer to brush him off: “ይሀ:ሆድ: ይፈጨዋል::” What does it even mean when you say “find [his] own Che to play with”? I mean he went to Asmara and within weeks, your guys gave him the ultimate material that got published in the Washington Post: Derg brutality. Did he make that up?

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            I will get back to your ongoing bashing of Kibur Tilahun Gessese.. 🙂

            Please refer to my response to Tes. I don’t like the guy. I don’t trust his motive, no matter who handed him any sort of material. I do believe that, if it were Derg in the bushes and if it committed the same kind of atrocities, it would have gotten a good press from Dan on Washington post. His fetish is with the Marxist guys in the bushes, acting like Che Guvera. Not with the Marxist guys in the palace, who just talk about Che Guvera. His thing is not (I don’t believe) who committed atrocities. It is with ‘whose atrocities sound romantic’? You see, if it were about someone committing atrocities, with the same stroke of his pen that he wrote to WP about Derg’s atrocities, he would have written about Mnq’ae, which he has mentioned in this interview. He didn’t. Why? Because that was a “sexy” atrocity, that should not be maligned… That is my point, sir..

          • saay7

            selamat eyob:

            I am dying here. Lollll It was a typo man:) And my amharic is better than your Tigrinya. It is MenkaE (bat) and not Mnqa’e (to crack.) So there.

            And by the way, just so you know: you are agreeing with PFDJ. I know that will keep you up at night but those guys also hate Dan Connell now. I hope you enjoy your bed and your strange bedfellow now. So there again:)

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            Ha ha… I thought you just got turned to “google translate”.. 🙂

            Here is the thing. The distaste that I have to Mr. Connell and the distaste that PFDJ has for him are two totally different distaste. I can list a whole lot of things starting from his contribution of breaking up my country. PFDJ has only one. He did not toe their line. He crossed them by questioning, what the hell they are doing. I hated his hypocrisy. They hated that he is not hypocritical enough. See the difference?

        • Amanuel Hidrat

          Ahlen saay,

          You said: “The Eritrean Ghedli was under-reported. ” Very true buddy. Once upon a time (sometime in early 1977) Dr. Tesfazion Medhanie had visited the field (meda) on the ELF side. When he saw all the departmental activities of the organization, this is what he said: ” ጀብሃ ከም ሐደ ዕውር መስትያ ዘይተጸባርቅ እያ ” ክብል ገሊጽዋ:: ስለዚ እቲ አበሃህላኻ ካብ ሐቂ ዝረሐቀ አይኮነን:: ካብኡናብኡ እኳ ወጸእተኛታት ንምአታው ሜዳ ሻዕቢያ ይሕሹ ነይሮም::

          ሰናይ ምሸት

        • Semere Andom

          Hi Sal:
          I agree, Dan could not have gotten rich by writing books about Eritrea, he would have been better off, had he trekked the Himalayas to writhe about Buddhism the time he started with Eritrea, America was starting its fascination with the East and Buddhism.
          But he did get rich differently, he enriched his life and experience a unique perspective, and it took guts to be embedded among Eritreans, strange language in a strange place. Even before him, Kreimer was embedded with ELF in 1968 and he gave us some history early on. Both were young, gusty and idealistic, my hats off to both. I am sure you know that I do not like his romantic views then, which leads me to the Eritrean intellectuals who probably converted him to an EPLF romantic from his outsider, dispassionate role. EPlLF was good at attracting foreigners , also there was a French journalist, Christian Hilal, the rumor or 03 channels was he saw Amed Hilal die in the war and he took after his name. He helped them a lot, but in the late 1980, he had a falling out, and I heard that they gave him a good send off party. I also heard that he visited Eritrea after independence.
          Oh, I also heard that Mahmuday was in the send off party:-)

          PS: I am using the word heard to avoide Mahmuday asking me, evidencesss:-)

    • Haile WM

      Selam Aman,

      I think you and saay are not that distant in your views, you claim there is a system, Saay claims there is not a system but a dictator and every thing revolves around him.

      How about a system that revolves around a dictator ?

      could this be to some agreement level between you two ?

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Merhaba Haile WM,

        You are right. We are coming closer and closer by the day. We are refininig the issues and how we should tackle them. If the issues are not defined correctley, we can not come with the correct political tools to face them and the nature of government in place of the existing. It is okay as to the conceptual approaches and understanding we are coming closer. Actually other than those who support to the regime of Asmara, the differences with the rest of us is bridgeable and manageable. It does not worry me that much. Debates will refine them slowly. How ever when things diverted to non issue chat it cringes me a lot. Hailat, all in all except the destructors like Gheteb

        • Haile WM

          Selamat Aman,

          true, debate is the way to narrow the differences in our understanding of the main eritrean problem and it’s solutions.

          And never mind about Gheteb and his likes, they are of two kinds: the commodity believers and the obscure sides, the former being benign (the Mekete people), the later are of sinister nature, they hide in artificial language focusing more on form rather on content, (Cromwellian era english). I wouldn’t worry, their target is not the average eritrean…

  • Sarah Ogbay

    Hi All,
    This is indeed an interesting interview. An important message that Dan put on the table for all of us to know and learn is that what we have in eritrea is a ‘system’ that has been running from the ghedli times. A system that thrives on ‘control and secrecy’ instilling fear and submissiveness in the society; a system that feeds on blood of those thought to have concerns; a system that has morally, physically, emotionally and socially disabled many. This system was created and is run by willing able people on board led by DIA. It is a system, as Dan implied, that has failed to transform itself into conventional government. Therefore, we all need to understand how complicated the situation is and how complicated it will be to get rid of it. Sometimes some of us believe it is only the DIA who is doing things but systems like this do not run for such a long time by one man. Whether we like it or not, able and willing people around him do all the dirty job. They are the ones who fend off change from settling in Eritrea. Think of what happened to wedi Ali’s coup attempt. For many in this system, it is a missed opportunity to make up for all the wrong they have done our people. But they deliberately acted against it. So we need to buckle up against a system whose cruelty and desperation for power has no match.

    • Lamek

      Dear Sarah. DIA is their spiritual leader. It is amazing how people see him in completely different lenses. Yesterday, I a couple aqcientances and myself were talking about one thing and another and then it came to one of the two’s visit to Asmara a year ago. He said he went to some hotel behind Nyala or in that area. I don’t remember much any longer. Anyway, he was telling us what his friends told him while he was at that hotel and it went like this” eti SEBAY ab memerekta nayza hotel metsyu neru. b tsiruy ed teserihu kikewin tesfa egebr eluwom’ He was saying this admiringly of DIA.

      Anyway, it is incredibly murky to say there is a system but you made a compelling argument there. But knowing how much control DIA has on even the minutest things, I hesitate to say there is a system. But yes there is a system and without him that system would be unsustainable because nobody can amass that much control. He worked for this since 1966 or probably even before.

      • Sarah Ogbay

        Hi Lamek,
        Exactly, he and some of the people who considered him a comrade worked together to create a system that classifies the citizens into different groups layered according to their loyalty, ability to keep secrets and ruthlessness as well as naivety. Although commitment and comradry are said to have been the pillars of Ghedli, most fighters did not know about the secret party, how and why some people were disappearing,and the ultimate intention of the monsters leadership, etc. How could this happen unless there is a system. After liberation, DIA was not the one who was going around telling lies about G11 etc. ‘cowing people into submission’ and fear and hatred. He just sits and controls. People around him have free will. Who would stop Monkey from shooting DIA, who would stop Filipos from detaining him, leading a mutiny? It would not be difficult for them to do it to bring about change. Unfortunately they are willing parts of the system that does not allow change. It abhors change.

  • sara

    Dear awate
    Our Dan the MUZU NGU is roving the neighborhood to celebrate 28th year the demise of NADEW EZZ, i felt from the interview he is still sentimental about those good old days, how about that KOKOB?

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear sara,
      before jumping to that first announce and accept now that my massage bellow is correct. then I will again listen to find out if what you are saying works..Lol.

    • Ted

      Hi sara, Eritrea is the most gifted country with different flavored Mazungues. The historians, the activist of some kind, the lobbyist, the humanitarians, the politicians, the prosecutors and plenty of “journalists”. As it has been true for decades, for obvious reasons and curse for Africans, it tastes better and carries weight when the story is told by white person’s head. Those with strong opinions to see our country” prosper” also claim to have good relationship and understanding of of our psychic. They recorded our intimate moments and took pictures with a community to be self appointed spokespeople of our grievances. In the struggle for justice, It felt natural for our oppositions to drop everything they do dealing with Eritrean matters to follow them in every meeting halls and Youtube chat rooms. Not to be out done, Eritrean Gov has its own, those make it viral and break the internet every time they speak in support of GoE but they are few and far between.

      Dan authored many flattering books and articles how EPLF crushed the most powerful army of Ethiopia for independence, now in the twist of events, he is in Ethiopia talking about EPLF from different angle. It won’t be easy for Ethiopians to reconcile the past and present Dan but for the person who invested so much in Eritrean affairs for “reasons”, Ethiopians are forgiving and understandable of his situation.

  • Hayat Adem

    Dear Awate,
    great interview = great interviewer + great interviewee

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear Hayata,

      record this and remember me..similar type of interviews will be done in our EriTv–when it really serves the truth..that will not be far INSHA’ALLAH.

      • Hayat Adem

        Khokobay, I’ll.
        And the one point that left me fixated was what Dan said of the G-15 that they knew two things to happen as early as 9 months before their arrest: that IA would move to detain them and that the people would rise up in opposition of the move. They predicted IA’s action correctly but their expectation from the people failed to materialize. Dan said, “they were so naive and so was I.”

        • Kokhob Selam

          Yes Hayata, yes.
          you know we have to say the truth even if it pains. See, those guys knew what will happen and they could have destroyed the group once and forever but the biggest problem for them was they couldn’t swallow and accept their old mistakes and try to repair PFDJ instead of burning it. What I am saying it to you today is not new –I have said it when they were still in power. IA is holding the hand of everyone who committed mistake with him in back history. And this is the worst obstacle every ex-Eplf leader is facing. It requires great heroism to fight self and say the truth.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            ሰላም ኮኸባይ,

            ሐጂ ግርም: ” ዓወት ንሐቂ ” እዋናዊ ጭርሖ ንእዋናዊ ቃልሲ:: አታ “ዓወት ንሐፋሽ ” ትብል ጭርሖ: ንነዊሕ ዓመታት መሸቀጢ ኾይና ሰለዘገልገለት: ንህዝብና ብሐቂ ሐሳስያ ገይራትሉ እያ:: ስለዚ መተካእታ: ንህዝብና ዘዔግብን ንእዋናዊ መድረኽ ዘገልግልን ሃሰስ ምባል ናይግድን እዩ ነይሩሞ ትርሐሰና እዚሐወይ::

            አማኑኤል ሕድራት

          • Hayat Adem

            Hi Kokhobay,
            I’ve always liked your liberated views and your beautiful verses. But these recent days, i am witnessing more, like a fire of truth pounding out of your very chest. Way to go Kokhob Haqi, keep shooting! Awet n’Haqqi!

  • dawit

    Dear n-Cosine Dan Connell,
    The other Muzungu ‘Advisor to the Advisors’ to UNSC, SEMG and COIE the UN outfits visiting Sudan, Djibouti and Ethiopia making another fresh interviews of so called ‘Eritrean Refugees’ for the next 1000+ pages reports to refer PIA and PFDJ to ICC to have a regime change in Eritrea. The problem how do we prove those refugees are not Ethiopians, Sudanese or Djiboutian? There are 10s of millions of drought victim from Ethiopia, Sudan and Djibouti, but what prevent those to walk to refugee camps already setup permanently to host so called ‘Eritrean refugees’?

    • kazanchis

      you are not serious, are you? So there are no refugees fleeing Eritrea? Is it all conspiracy? How could you be so uncompassionate about the nightmare of your very own people? It starts to shock me the level of inhumanity among pro-isayas camps.
      The drought affected people doesn’t need to be camped at this very moment and you really don’t have to bring them here for your clumsy debate. Eritrea is an independent entity and can you just depict it as such? Can you also complete three sentences without saying Ethiopia?

    • Amde

      dawit,

      your delusions are very creative.

      Amde

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam dawit,
      .
      You told me once that you are an Eritrean and also a full blooded Ethiopian. Now when I read some of your comments, the little empathy I expect from an Ethiopian is missing from most of your posts. What is up?
      .
      Mr. K.H

  • sara

    Dears
    Thanks Dan for coming here to comfort our worried neighbors with their current situation, its like don’t
    worry even your northern neighbor has same same problem, the only difference is i cant be there to report about it, but thanks i found some dawn here to bring you this information… calm dawn… you all are the same habesha —— other MEZUNGO —ala saay.

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear sara,
      so now the lesson is for Ethiopian leadership but not for you and me..Lol.

      I will put it this way-

      1..” you are doing fine and better than your neighbor who doesn’t have any system and who cause all sufferings of his own people – keep what you gained so far and find healthy solutions for problems you are facing internally ” this is the massage he sent to EPRDF.

      2..then there is a massage to Ethiopian opposition too :-
      ” you can’t solve your problems by getting help from PFDJ as they even couldn’t lead their nation ”

      3..and there is a massage to Eritrean opposition ” what you ask for is correct and keep fighting for your right and justice.”

      Thanks to Dan for being so friendly to both sisterly nations. he told us why our young is leaving his hard found nation and even suggests us to create schools in refuge camps of Horn.

  • He is also to blame for what has happened in Eritrea and the whole region. By romanticizing Gedli out of context and by not telling the whole truth, he shares the blame. When he wrote his against all odds, he knew he was helping in creating a personality cult. He stood for the fragmentation of Ethiopia, and now he talks of a regional integration and cooperation, after the damage has been done. Do not trust such ferenjis.

    • Eyob Medhane

      Horizon,

      Absolutely. I am glad that Tefera blatantly asked him that…

      • Kokhob Selam

        Dear brother,
        There are a lot of lessons to be learnt here in this interview. The man didn’t say Eritrean national struggle was wrong. What he is exposing is the leadership of EPLF and more than that PFDJ wrong deeds. I wish all who were supporting EPLF come and say what they witnessed as he has done.” it is better late than never “as it is said.

        But let us be very practical and ready to accept what has happened. we have been discussing and debating over Eritrean past struggle now for long time and yes nothing can change the truth. we should not deny Eritrean national struggle was something we can’t escape from and it is a struggle for justice. if the high rank personalities, intellectuals and leaders of Ethiopia were wise enough and those narrow minded among Eritreans were open to hear the choice of people from the beginning we could have saved millions of peoples soul wasted and we could have been advancing by now even united. It is all about love and harmony.

        It should be very clear that, just because PFDJ came leading the nation without rule doesn’t mean the long struggle was wrong. Eritrea will become free of PFDJ soon or later and horn will be working united against poverty respecting the citizenship of people. That is what we should work for now. Past is only a lesson and that over.

        I don’t mean you are against the above view but I am just reinforcing it.

        • Eyob Medhane

          Kokhob,

          You what is frustrating me? The number of rational folks like you are getting scarce in these debates, by the day.. 🙁

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Eyobay,
            in fact I am facing both opposite views that are dreaming to exploit the present of PFDJ..one wants to tell us Eritrea don’t deserve independent and the other tells us independent is only assured when PFDJ leads the nation. Eritrea is a nation that deserves to be and Eritrea should be under legal admin by removing PFDJ is my stand.

          • Eyob Medhane

            Kokhob,

            I am going to say something that will earn me a lot of grief.. 🙂 Here it is..

            I recently read an article that outlines the difference between a nation and a country…

            I think Eritrea is a country. I doubt that it is a nation…

          • saay7

            Selam Eyob:

            I wish Disqus accommodated GIF, because this is where I would put the much-missed Jon Stewart {{{ shuffling his hand in hurry up motion, looking directly at the camera, and then}} GO ONNNnnnnnnnnnnnn?

            Do tell us more how Eritrea is a country and not a nation and shall we presume Ethiopia is a country and a nation? Go On…details, please.

            saay

          • Abi

            Kokobe
            Eritrea should never be an independent country. Don’t try to convince me otherwise. It is wrong from start to finish. Wrong ! Wrong! Wrong!

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Abi KEMEY QENIKHA?

            why I have to try to convince you if you don’t want to be convinced, man. The king and his ministers were not convinced , Mengstu with his military junta were not convinced.. even still there are big heads who are not convinced. IA is not convinced etc..who cares .. what mattes is I am convinced since the case is my own case. Eritrea will continue to be independent and the job is not over we are here to make it democratic nation. what do you say? don’t be convinced if you want as that is nothing for you – it is not you country.

          • Abi

            Kokobe
            Thank you for reminding me that Eritrea is not my country. I keep forgetting important things. Sorry.

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dear Abi,

            if you carefully observe to my principle, – problems are to be solved within – works very well. circumstances are always 2nd. If you fail to solve problems without you even lose within. Ethiopians are not suppose to fight with Eritreans at all.. during the king years, what Ethiopians are supposed to do is clean his administration and offer unity to Eritreans. you can’t force people to be under you .. you can create unity by having equal rights. That is what your Derg miss.

            people are not interested of creating new nations in this world.. they are after their rights. when you fail to get your freedom with others, you find your way to be independent. Now, one complete history is over and you should work hard for your nation and I should work hard for my nation.. if things go well we can still respect our history and create a united nations…why not? But that all can be done with full interest of people not by force.
            if people don’t want they can live in peace separated and that is also fine. freedom, peace and development is what people need all other choices are methods or roads.

            but now don’t underestimate my love to my nation – remember we Eritreans have paid our lovely children when Cubans and Yemens were burning our beloved villages.

      • Nitricc

        Hi All
        This post contains no salutation why is not deleted? I don’t think you get it where I am coming from. if it is the rule; make a rule.

    • Haile WM

      Hi Horizon,

      what do you mean when you say “romanticizing Gedli out of context and by not telling the whole truth” ?
      I mean whose truth is the “whole truth” ?
      I am at odds with the term “romanticizing Ghedli”. because now and then I read and hear it but can’t really understand what does it mean. does it apply to other happenings in our region or it is only a matter that is specific?

      any way Dan is a good chap… blaming him… well I think there are so many people [ferenjies] to blame for taking sides and the perispectives, but in the whole big picture they are insignificant in the flow of history, they are part of the mechanism not an essential one though.

  • Stefanos Temelso

    The problem of PFDJ and its supporters is that they can only say to such a glaring truth “It is all lies” and they cant produce any concrete evidence that Eritrea is in a good shape. For example like other governments PFDJ cant say “we provide our people with electricity, water and basic commodities, our people have the right of movement or the right to travel etc” Their leader on the other hand destroys by saying, “people go to where water is located not the reverse! The people are spoiled they are asking for pasta and they want to eat three times a day etc.” So, how can supporters of the regime defend it? They do not have the moral ground or the facts on the ground! What happened last week (releasing Djiboutian prisoners) for example is a big slap like the drafting of the constitution.

  • Nitricc

    Dear AT; i see you removed my post; is any reason for the removal? i understand, you got the power to do what ever it pleases you but how little respect for your forum members and tell us why you deleted the post. how hard is it to share your reason so, we don’t have to waste your time as well as ours. it is strange you have an issue with an Ethiopian interviewer and a white man interviewee about Eritrea. My bad; i should have confirmed and applaud the toothless analysis by washed up white man. I don’t have to like agree everything you post. now, what do i do wrong; bad enough to delete my post?
    thank you.

  • Nitricc

    Oh boy now one confused white came out to mumble something; I bet you every revenge seeker will come out in droves to bow to the white man and will tell how great the white man is. it is sad a takes a white man to tell you about your own country? What is it every word a white man has to say is the absolute truth and every one is bending to say-Yes-sir?

  • Kokhob Selam

    Dear awate friends,

    Isn’t strange some Eritreans don’t know and even some knows and try to defend it when such and outsider knows it and expose it so clearly? where are supporters, tell us what really you think about the above interview.

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Hello Awate staff,

    This is a remarkable interview by Dan. In that (a) it maps the realities of Eritrean refugees and immigrants all over the world (b) it explains the nature of the EPLF leadership in the field and when they run the country without accountability (c) it reflects how the population become submissive to the power (d) It touches the social fault lines within the society. The silver lining or comforting prospect from his interview is (a) the internal conflict does not have the prospect of the Somalian and Libyan disastrous collapse (b) The desire of the population for change. All in all a good insight to the Eritrean problem.

    Regards
    Amanuel Hidrat

  • PTS

    Dan is a great guy. It is sad he is banned from visiting a country he paid so much for.

    • Nitricc

      Hi PTS
      This post of yours contains no salutation why is not deleted?

      • PTS

        His Nitriccness,
        May be because I refer to Dan by his name and not by his skin color. Just a hunch. I bet you like Thomas Muntain.