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The Abiy Phenomenon

How volatile human affairs are!   A couple of decades ago, who would have thought the wave of democratization that swept the globe after the collapse of the Soviet Union would suffer such a reversal in such a short time? The world had seemed to be moving inexorably towards freedom and democracy and many experts believed the democratic wave was unstoppable.  But alas, within a decade, such predictions were proven wrong; the wave ebbed and a trend in the opposite direction begun mushrooming.  From Africa to Europe to Asia and the Americas, democracy is being challenged (or even uprooted) by populists, authoritarians and would-be authoritarians. According to a recent report by Freedom House.

“Democracy faced its most serious crisis in decades in 2017 as its basic tenets—including guarantees of free and fair elections, the rights of minorities, freedom of the press, and the rule of law—came under attack around the world. Seventy-one countries suffered net declines in political rights and civil liberties, with only 35 registering gains. This marked the 12th consecutive year of decline in global freedom.”

Once again, humans are asserting their God-given right to be selfish, brutal, xenophobic, racist, violent, and bigoted.   (Those who previously argued that the world is getting better should take note!). Amidst such disheartening trends in world affairs, it is exhilarating to behold the emergence of a leader in Ethiopia who seemingly appeared out of nowhere (though actually a veteran) to reassert the central principles of freedom, democracy, and equality. Charismatic, debonair, peace-loving, erudite, and courageous, Abiy Ahmed epitomizes the qualities of a leader that we have all been yearning for eons! His mixed heritage, his optimism, his geniality, and his commitment to peace and harmony all attest to his fitness for leadership.  When one remembers that he holds an MA in “Transformational Leadership” and that he chose conflict resolution in Ethiopia as a thesis topic for his Ph.D., it becomes clear that we are dealing here with an earnest man who has been preparing himself methodically for the very tasks he is now executing.

In a hard to follow series of sprints and dashes, he is dismantling Ethiopia’s entire corrupt structure from top to bottom smoothly and skillfully. Within months of taking over, he freed innocent prisoners; lifted the state of emergency; convened several town hall meetings; lifted the ban on all political opponents including those in exile; pledged to amend the sham anti-terrorism laws; and agreed to implement the Ethio-Eritrea border resolution just to name a few.  On the diplomatic front, he flew like a whirlwind to several countries in the region including Kenya, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Egypt, Uganda, and Eritrea.  And it seems he is just getting started.  Among other things, he plans to fully liberalize the economy; install a multi-party democracy; do away with monopolies, and reform the army.   By all benchmarks, these are astounding and extraordinary achievements!

Predictably, his quick-fire stunning accomplishments have raised questions about whether his reforms were externally driven.  In other words, some suspect that he was acting at the behest of foreign ultimatums. This is a valid concern, but I personally do not believe that international and economic pressures alone sufficiently account for all his positive and wide-ranging reforms, assertions and actions.  Moreover, in quickly and competently acting to save his country (his first priority), he showed good stewardship.

There is one possible negative byproduct of his successes however that is worrisome; The Abiy phenomenon has so electrified Ethiopia and the region that a personality cult seems to be developing around him.  Many Ethiopians are becoming dangerously infatuated with him. Due to his many attractive personal qualities and mass appeal, this is a lurking danger. Already, some are comparing him to Moses.  Just as Moses delivered the Israelites from Pharaoh, Abiy presumably rescued Ethiopians from the clutches of the Weyanes. Such sentiments are the seeds that later metastasize into a full-blown cult of a leader. Ethiopians should learn from the bitter Eritrean experience with Isaias about the pitfalls of succumbing to a leader and his persona.

In contrast to the rapturous Ethiopians, the reaction of most Eritreans had been one of dismay and confusion.  Why would an advocate of democracy like Abiy fraternize with a ruthless tyrant?  Why did he say nothing about the human rights violations in Eritrea?   This feeling of bewilderment was further exacerbated by Isaias’s excessive fawning over Abiy and his bizarre behavior and utterances in Asmara and Addis.  Terrifyingly, Isaias has become even more eccentric and erratic as a septuagenarian.

How revolting the circus show honoring Isaias was[1]! How totally out of character Isaias was throughout!  Watching them embrace, I couldn’t help wondering whether Abiy – in a Putin-like fashion – was taking the Trumpian Isaias for a ride. It certainly reeks of hypocrisy when a “champion of democracy” befriends a butcher-in-chief like Isaias but as repugnant as it was for me to witness this surreal scene, I found it difficult to fault Abiy in the context of the harsh realities in Eritrea. What would we have him do? If this man of action was to get some immediate results (such as peace and stability in the region however temporary), what other options did he have except to begin by engaging the person in charge?

We will see how far it goes but Eritreans and Ethiopians are breathing a little freely now for the first time in decades! This relief should not be underestimated. For Eritreans still living under the harsh dictatorship, this is a huge deal and anything that ameliorates their suffering should be welcome by all Eritreans in my opinion. If it turns out that Isaias sold us down the river in a deal with Ethiopia, it certainly wouldn’t be Abiy’s fault.  Moreover, we will be under no obligation to abide by anything the dictator agrees to once we take over. Until then, Isaias will continue to decide our fate single-handedly whether we like it or not. No surprise there.

Imagine how things would have fared if Abiy had instead spoken against Eritrea’s regime so early in his rule. The status quo would remain and people on both sides of the border would continue to suffer. It would be a different matter if we had an opposition that could pose a formidable challenge to the dictator, but we regrettably don’t and until we do, verbal or official support for us would unfortunately be wasted. Only a clandestine support should be expected.

The opposition should not be disheartened however. For all the theatrics, the Abiy-Isaias dalliance is at its core a weak one held by a thin thread of a common enemy. By ingratiating himself to Isaias, Abiy probably got some concessions that he wouldn’t have gotten had he instead prematurely supported the opposition.  So, we must allow for the possibility that this may be a tactical move by Abiy to secure short-term economic benefit.  At what price to Eritrea, nobody knows except Isaias.

All we know is Abiy, with a single stroke, has checkmated Isaias by depriving him of the one excuse (the border issue) he has been using for about two decades to avoid instituting reforms. Will Isaias relent?  Will he at least follow Abiy’s example by freeing all innocent prisoners and lifting the ban on opposition groups? Very Unlikely but whether he does or not, he has long lost all credibility in the eyes of Eritreans. Following Abiy’s lead, if he decides to free prisoners or lift the ban on opponents, we will take it of course but as long as he remains in power, it will all be a sham and the struggle should continue.

It is also important to remember that Abiy is not a fool.  I am sure he realizes that his long-term strategic vision of multi-nation alliance (if genuine) cannot endure for long with a dictatorial regime as a neighbor. Unless he has been a clever demagogue all along, he will therefore eventually support democratic forces in Eritrea. So, if I can give advice to the opposition, it is to be patient.  The man has been in power for only a few months; let us give him the benefit of the doubt while reserving the right to reevaluate him periodically. Meanwhile, the opposition should enthusiastically support him while simultaneously impressing upon him the shared commitment to freedom, peace, democracy, and equality.

What impressed me most about Abiy is his frank discussion about borders. Well-read and forward-looking, he understood the artificiality of the borders drawn by colonialists and the ridiculousness of fighting over them.   When he was asked why he agreed to implement the border ruling, he pointed to the obvious fact that this was already arbitrated and final.  He then went on to declare that there are actually no real borders and that he ultimately plans to open Ethiopia’s borders to all Africans.  By themselves, these are not revolutionary utterances.  The general idea of fluid or open borders and the broader quest for African unity (Pan-Africanism) that Nkruhama made famous by warning “Africa must unite or perish!”, is not new but it takes courage for a newly elected prime minister to boldly declare such sentiments within a few months of taking over.

To test his mettle in solving national and regional problems particularly as it relates to border issues, it seems Abiy has chosen Eritrea as his first trial case. He correctly deduced that he would be unable to realize any of his important goals without solving the issue of Eritrea peacefully and quickly.  Fortunately for him, in the newly minted Isaias, he found a willing partner/accomplice.

Isaias’s dazed ramblings are of course not to be taken seriously but Abiy’s viewpoints should be taken seriously since he seems in earnest about the proposals he is putting forward (though one can never be totally sure).  Let us now ponder: Putting aside the issue of greater African unity, how should Eritreans react to solicitations for unity or federation that keeps resurfacing every now and then? Should the Abiy phenomenon alter our opinions about this issue?  Questions are often asked: Why would Eritrea that has been suffering for so long and that was unable to accomplish anything substantial since independence reject such “friendly” overtures?  Why wouldn’t it be willing to draw strength by joining others?

Such questions should not be dismissed outright since there are undeniable benefits in forming larger coalitions or unions. That is why, in principle, we should all be for political and economic integration between countries particularly neighbors.  In the case of Eritrea, however, there is one crucial factor we must not lose sight of: Eritrea must first establish itself as a bona fide nation that reflects the wishes of its people.  It must first reach its age of consent so to speak as a dictator-free democratic nation before it can be given away in marriage.

If Eritrea were to unite with any country before recovering from its traumatic experience, it will be at the cost of its dignity and honor.  Those with whom we unite will forever regard themselves as our benefactors and therefore at some level, their inferiors or subordinates. They can then slowly divest Eritrea of its privileges a piece at a time.  Sounds familiar?  For these reasons and many more, federation or union with Ethiopia or any other country cannot be entertained at this time.  Neither Eritrea as a nation nor its people are ready for it.  As a distant goal however, it is ok for Eritreans to welcome Abiy’s vision of regional unity and greater cooperation in my opinion because the future will undoubtedly belong to countries that endeavor collectively.

From the above discussion, one may surmise that I have been smitten by the Abiy craze or Abiymania as some have dubbed it. No.  I remain ambivalent.  I am just giving credit where I think credit is due. If I were to tersely describe my views on the issue, I would say I am also cautiously optimistic (as Awate editorial put it) about Abiy though leaning more towards optimism.  To those who say, we have seen enough of Abiy; I am saying, no, a few months is too soon.

Will Abiy be able to bring about the change he envisions and succeed where many others have failed?   I hope so (if he is sincere that is) but he is in a precarious situation. What we all like about him may ultimately be his undoing.  He seems too conciliatory and too accommodating to survive plots against him.  At least we can count on one enemy that will leave no stones unturned to get him and it may finally come down to a showdown where only the ruthless will prevail.  If Abiy hesitates to strike at his enemies for noble sentiments, I am afraid his days are numbered.  Like Gandhi, MLK, and many others, he will be abruptly terminated.

One compelling argument against Abiy is that he is trying to please everybody including mass murderers like Isaias and Mengistu with a motto that we should forget past grievances, forgive everyone, and start with a clean slate.   Tomfoolery? Wisdom? Has Abiy concluded that this is the only stratagem that will end the cycle of violence and hate?  I don’t know but I totally disagree with him in this.

In the end, whatever we think of him right now, it is too early – as I intimate in many ways above – to fully evaluate Abiy, and we should remain vigilant. Leaders can and do change over time.  Often likened to an aphrodisiac, power is intoxicating and the longer one partakes of it, the more one hankers for it. That is the wisdom behind term limits. To his credit, Abiy has promised he will promptly end his rule at the completion of his term.  Will he keep his promise, or will he come up with some novel way of putting it off as countless of leaders have done before him?

Other pending questions include: Will he continue the current silly charade with a sadistic dictator or will he change course once he fully consolidates power in Ethiopia? Or is Abiy just a pawn in the global intrigue in our region that includes US, UAE and others?  If so, to what extent?  Answers to such questions are bound to be revealed soon and, in my opinion, it is then and only then that we will be in a position to either categorically approve or condemn him.  Until then, we will have to wait and see but for better or worse, he has become a sensational phenomenon that is bringing hope and excitement to Ethiopia, the region, and beyond.  For now, I will therefore take off my Kufia to this gallant innovator!

[1] The accolades Isayas received in Addis were probably indirectly for Abiy.  Ethiopians are so mesmerized by Abiy that they are ready to do his bidding including cheer and applaud an accursed dictator

About Ismail Omer-Ali

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  • said

    Greetings,
    BOMBINO the World’s Best Guitarist , Africa Hendrix guitarist. While indebted to his childhood influences (Jimi Hendrix, Mark Knopfler, who, because of their popularity in West Africa in the 70s and 80s. Omara Moctar, known worldwide simply as “Bombino,” is always a cause for celebration. As one of the rare musicians—“world” or otherwise—appreciated by crowds local and abroad and by fellow musicians, Bombino makes a variation of the desert blues, invented by the Tuareg, that draws equally from classic rock and reggae. The result is a wild yet accessible traversing of 60 years of rock and blues history, often within the span of a single song. He’s played with most contemporary African superstars, is beloved by Western classic rock dinosaurs.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iuc_sZtlF7s

    Hallelujah by Syrian born Mennel Ibtissem
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5ORMgl_KPE

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam said,

      He is good, but not the World’s best. Long way to go.

      Here is one of the World’s best guitarist, Jeff Beck playing ‘Big Block’:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5W3Te-ZGJcM

    • Aligaz G

      said,

      Not so much Hendrix but there is a late 60’s influence for sure. I would describe it more as a cross between Knopfler Ali Farka and Santana. Great music for sure whichever way. Thanks for the intro.

      Aligaz

  • Paulos

    Selam Moderator,

    I had a lengthy comment posted today but it is not there anymore. Not sure why. Thank you.

    • Paulos

      Selam Moderator,

      Checked not there. Thanks anyway.

      • Mez

        Hi Paulos,

        Occasionally the disq is a nightmare.

        My solution is: I keep a local copy before I upload, for other upload iteration as needed.

        Thanks

        • Paulos

          Selam Mez,

          Thanks for the advice. In fact, my comment reappeared again.

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Salam Paulos,

            My heartfelt congratulations. You have clicked the reply button again under the same thread, and your comment reappeared again, am I right? How did your comment reappeared, would you mind to share your experience?

          • Paulos

            Selam Hameed,

            Not sure to be honest. It just reappeared. Thanks.

          • Beyan

            Dottore,

            Trying to sift through endless threads is rather difficult. My limit is 100 – Anything more, I simply stop following the discussions. The sidebar fresh entries are good only for those who are wired 24/7. I am not. Those of us who wish not to miss commentaries from you would’ve been served well were it to be possible to follow you on DISQUS. In other words, your DISQUS account is inaccessible to your readers. For example, if I miss anything from the prolific Sal Y., all I have to do is follow him through his DISQUS account, where I can read to my heart’s content. So, kindly, I am asking if you can drag the comment in question up to the top of the comment section, it would be of great service.

            Good Sunday!
            Beyan

          • Paulos

            Happy Sunday Dottore,

            Very true, it is frustrating to say the least. I will definitely heed your advice. Thanks again.

            Not sure if Ayay Saleh Johar had in mind what the website turned out to be when he launched it in 2000. It is a reservoir of an immense knowledge about anything and everything. It is just amazing!

          • Beyan

            Dottore,

            The Awate Team, I am certain couldn’t have conceived this kind of a good dilemma that only their readers can solve. Here is what I mean. These tireless individuals have family to feed, which means, they work 9-5, as it were, and then they run this august website, and have been running it for 18 years without let up. You hit a sore spot here.

            From the thousands of daily readers, if only 500 of us become – voluntary – subscribers at $10.00 per month (automatically drawn from our respective bank accounts), we would’ve hired one person to run the website. Now, imagine if part of that job description were to be for that individual to go through that “reservoir of an immense knowledge” base and to furnish us with a weekly digest, how a wonderful treat that would’ve been to that knowledge we can amass in some organized way.

            At times, I wish for the AT to make the website per subscription for a nominal fee of even $5.00 a month, I think it would still have enough readers who would subscribe to the website. It is just in our nature, when we don’t pay for something we don’t give it the value it deserves. This, certainly, is a case and point.

            Sincerely,
            Beyan

          • Reclaim Abyssinia

            Im loving reading some of the comments…, some are way out of my league.
            If there is anonymous way of contributing, then im up for it. May be publish account number… Or crypto..
            Cheers,

          • Am Ne
  • Beyan

    Selam Girmay & Dottore,

    I don’t where you note disappeared to, Dr. Paulos. So, I will use this space to share my thoughts, as well to your, Girmay.

    Selam Doc.,

    As I was enjoying the anecdotal – picturesque – snippets you shared, my 14-year-old daughter tapped me in the back to say she had a scary dream. So, I thought, another vivid dream of hers that tend to be a film-length – So, I was all ears. Her dreams tend to be run-of-mill types in general, but this is the first time she’s had such a dream – a nightmare – on Eritrean streets. She and a group of her American schoolmates were being taken to a non-descript jail, and a woman was trying to help them escape, but was caught by the authority and she was hang in front of all the children. My daughter didn’t know where we parents were, but she was profusely trying to reach us, texting us, telling us that she and her friends were trying to escape, again. The film abruptly ended, however, because her mom woke her up, thank goodness, she said. This may just be because summer is over. This is their last weekend. Come Monday, they will be in school.

    That nightmare scenario aside, the juxtaposing of seemingly huge creatures versus little ones, their essential differences being a matter of scaling was an eye popper. Only those who are in the hard sciences can make it relevantly immediate. No amount of appealing, unfortunately, seem to work on those who wield political power. Why bother to reason when a stick can bear an immediate result irrespective at what expense. This is why PM Abiy’s motto of love, of speaking from the heart people are finding so appealing; so appealing, in fact, even our IA is now receptive to it – Whether it would have a lasting shelf life remains to be seen.

    Many thanks, dottore for making science so relevantly relatable.

    Girmay,

    I know it was Hateta of Mahmoud Saleh’s proportions. Hope you find it useful. One are of inquiry that can be added to the subject at hand is the role of gender in Marxist, Socialist, and Communist ideologies.

    E.P. Thompson states that “[c]onsciousness of class arises in the same way in different times and places, but never just the same way.” Class, E.P. Thompson adds emanates from “experience […] largely determined by the productive relations into which men are born. [Therefore] class consciousness” is manifested vis-à-vis “cultural terms” and their cohorts, such as “traditions, value-systems, idea, and institutional forms.” Therefore, class is not only geographically constrained but also within that geography determined by the unique working environment certain segments of society find themselves surrounded in. According to this logic, one cannot bring some working class, say, from Cuba or Venezuela and embed them in, say, in the Republic of Congo, and expect them to become working class of the same mold. This stands in stark contrast to the logic of both Steedman* and Communist Manifesto. Unlike, Steedman, who, wholesale, rejects the cultural tools as interpreting device, here; E.P. Thompson does not make any qualms about seeing class as a byproduct of cultural phenomenon, which is refreshingly interesting premise from which he seems to develop his arguments of class and consciousness to it. In contrast to the “Communist Manifesto,” on the other hand, E.P. Thompson sees culture being geographic-specific while communism would have none of the sorts.

    Have a wonderful weekend, y’all! My quota for the day has been met.
    Gotta go!
    Beyan

    *Carolyn Kay Steedman (1986). “Landscape for a Good Woman”

    • Girmay

      Hello Beyan, this was informative thanks a lot. Then I need to weave all this information and see what my brain says.
      So many wonderful people at Awate.com university

  • said

    Greeting, Ismail welcome back and you have being missed greatly,
    Eritrea is going in the wrong direction for decades on a wide range of politics, social, economic and foreign policy issues and Eritrean people are justifiably upset and sad and angry. One question we are regularly asked is, what are we suppose to do and , without being pessimistic but who are we but spectators to this high drama. We leadership a humanistic, rationalist and progressive, who can be helping transform Eritrea potential and possibility into one of Eritrea most prosperous one who can pursue radical policy and an agenda of radical social reform and looking after every part of Eritrea and welfare schemes to end upper elite domination and lift up the poor soul of Eritrea .By making better changes and questioning the existing social hierarchy and weakening it, but a leader who can release potential new forces, bringing different part of Eritrea and ethnic group and classes into the mainstream,” be it highly professional and wise leader. A pragmatic decision maker, who can display formidable skills or A fiery orator who demand future Eritrean government respect the linguistic and cultural diversity of the country’s heterogenous population.
    “What should we do?” how Eritrean people are going to organize to solve them. We are at a critical moment .Granted There are many necessary roles in the Eritrean popular movement at this time or any giving time , which means there is something for everyone to do. What are the necessary practical ingredients for winning major political and social changes and to create the conditions for change. First leaders and collective movement ,how to realize those changes, we need to understand what the various roles are that collective movement people of Eritreans need to take on and how to be effective in those roles by avoiding the past mistakes and pitfalls that could undermine collective movement work toward Eritrean society we care deeply and desire to create paradigm .
    There are many ways and direction to choose .Eritrean leadership and chosen Organizer or Change Agent .The team of organizer works to bring Eritrea people in diaspora together in proper Eritrea , to bring change and put forward solve problems, especially in a way that is empowering such as using horizontal, choosing in simple democratic processes for making effective decisions. Eritrean Change Agent ,a movement role to be played by the team of organizer ,is to grow the movement and to facilitate coordinated strategic activities desired . The mainstream person or masses , their role that the masse and supporters and helper plays very important and major role in the movement is to show that there is widespread public support for the aims of Eritrean civic movement and to bring greater legitimacy ,accountability and actability to the peoples movement. Eritrean peoples movement rebel are those who are most likely to make a lot of work and put strategical policy and mission about creating justice and democratic entity in Eritrea . When something go wrong and bad situation happens, the rebel leaders wants everyone to know and will confront the IA/PFDJ power holders about it. The role that the Eritrean peoples movement rebel plays is to highlight injustice and to take direct action in order to create the desired outcome and an agent for change in proper Eritrea and mission oriented required action for changes to occur.

    Eritrean do not luck who to be organized and to be truly effective, the roles need to be handled in ways that achieve the grand strategy of the movement.to attract and grow the movement by pulling all Eritrean people from different back ground toward it, especially Eritrean known entity and Eritrean who are not part of past and present DIA power structure. Fr sure this go with out saying to achieve inclusivity and create unity in the movement so Eritrean solidarity is voice is strengthened and Eritrean people work together for common objectives. And to make awareness and to educate and deepen the foundation of our understanding of the issues and the solutions to injustices and crisis situations that are needed to make real change .

  • Peace!

    Hi Abish

    Where are you? የት ኣለ ያስመራ ልጅ የተባለ ነው በኣዲስ ኣበባ

    https://youtu.be/80gdKIVVyFo

    في الإمارات

    https://youtu.be/9kVCwA5ZtB4

    Peace!

    • Beyan

      Selam Peace,

      Now, you got me going with the two songs that you shared. I know I wasn’t the target, but enjoyed both thoroughly. It’s an era of love and peace. Amharic and Arabic won’t suffice, here is a clip that captures the euphoria of the public inside Asmara, Massawa, and the islands surrounding the area. It was sheer joy to watch. Hope others will find it not only nostalgia triggering, when the host of the show goes to Medeber and Abashawul, I am certain, it will have a rippling effect on our poet in residence, Haile S. and Kokhob Selam. But, if the clip is too long and you have no time, for your purposes, I just wanted you to listen to the new Tigrinya song in the making. So, you can skip to 12:00 minute-mark to listen to the song.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0w9TTLzZPQ

      • Peace!

        الحمدالله انها عجبتك هي أغنية حلوة بس لو ما
        ناديتك انت دائماً في القلب وهذه الاغنية اهدا مني لكل الغالين علا قلبي وانت واحد منهم وشكرا علا الاغنية

        Peace!

    • Abi

      Hi Peace
      Thanks a million for the best music by the BESTEST of all, Astu.
      I’m kind of busy these days actively mass recurring Addis young men with Good Standing to defend and protect the Asmarino tsbuqtis.
      Thanks for Ethiopian Airlines የነቃ የተደራጀ and well equipped young Ethiopian men are flooding Eritrean cities from Asmara to Masawa.
      Good times!
      Thanks for the music. You know Beyan is an expert in anything related to music .
      Let me get back to business before the next flight…

  • Mez

    Good day @george,

    Yours is the prevailing view of people.

    But dig some data and see the numbers.

    E.g. ksa had (until Obama time) blanket security guarantee from the us; No other country on this planet. Not Israel. the different historic and current aid to israel is a one digit percentage of the business with ksa–that on a year to year base.

    Please do your due deligence.

    Thanks

  • Aligaz G

    Selam Girmay,

    Allow me to respond in the spirit of your question above (Marxist perspective) as it will be impossible for you to quantify intellectual contributions without data. Paulos just gave you his version of a 100 years homework :). But looking purely from a Marxian historical perspective au contraire to your thesis about the impotence of the Ethiopian intellectual classes the last 44 years which have completely transformed Ethiopia may be called zemene intellectual. True the intellectual classes focus exclusively on politics has cost in other areas. But Marxism vs Feudalism as you mentioned above was the event and topic of the century. Maybe you are confusing intellectualism with modernity. But then the zeroth rule of modernity is objectivism and by this I mean intellectual freedom without which real contributions in arts and sciences is not possible in the 21st century. In one of the conversations in Awate I mentioned that Ethiopian culture is finally self modernizing and this may be the event of this era. Maybe this delay is what you are driving at but you can hardly blame intellectuals for this delayed awakening. Are you aware that in 1974 most marxist intellectuals were shocked by the revolution because in their analysis another 40 years would be needed to raise up the consciousness of the people. In other words intellectuals are only yeast the rising dough or the “nikat” of the masses is the main event and this you can’t hurry.

    cheers

    • Girmay

      Hello Aligaz, thanks for joining to help clear some confusion or misconceptions I may have.
      Aligaz, could you please clarify what you meant when you said,”True the intellectual class focus exclusively on politics has cost in other areas”. Could you please clarify this quote. What aspects of Ethiopian society suffered as a result of Ethiopian intellecuals focus exclusively on politics?
      Yes you are right Paulos gave 100 years homework .I will try to get it done in 95 years.

      • Aligaz G

        Girmay,

        A huge cost of focusing all intellectual firepower of the country on Marxist Leninist politics has been the number of intellectuals killed, imprisoned or exiled (megrat or tamed). Another way to gauge the cost is the dearth of world class intellectuals for example authors scientists mathematicians etc befitting a nation of 100 mill plus which is what happens when you politicize and “martyr” almost entirely the elite of one generation. But as they say freedom is not free yada yada …

    • Paulos

      Selam Aligaz,

      This is really good stuff and glad you butt in.

      Nations are built on powerful Ideas where among other things, “We hold this truth to be self evident that, all men are created equal that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This incredibly potent pronouncement gave us the most powerful nation– U.S. of America. This is to say that, nations are not built on Revolutions or a violent Revolution for that matter but again, on Ideas!

      And of course, ideas are conveyed and refined by a certain class of the society where in a Marxist parlance–vanguards and in a Platonian lingua—Philosopher Kings. Girmay certainly insists to call them intellectuals instead. We oblige.

      Was Marxist revolution apt for Ethiopia’s social, economic and political conundrums? This is where I agree with Girmay in the sense that, the contemporary intellectuals got it wrong when they got carried away with the fad of the generation for Marxism was fashionable across the board. If the intellectual foundation of Marxism is anchored on who owns the means and forces of production, it equally prescribed for a violent Revolution for the means and forces to be transferred to the Proletariat. We didn’t have proletariat in Ethiopia, did we? What we had was a backward and agrarian society instead. Perhaps, that was precisely the reason EPRP fell through the cracks of history if you will where the other Front may have gotten the diagnosis right and of course the assertion is debatable.

      • Aligaz G

        Paulos,

        Reductio ad absurdum – the 1974 revolution was just a simple coup. I hate to defend old fashioned ideas as Abiy likes to say but revisionism has limits. Unless you are Meles 🙂

        On the other hand, 1776 in America was mostly about “taxation without representation”. End result a “new” white country where privilege was entrenched in a new plantation elite based in Virginia. Common law freedoms inherited from England were articulated but in the end slavery was institutionalized and allowed to flourish. Not a good model for modern would be revolutionaries. A revolution for landed white gentry.

        cheers

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam Aligaz,

      You said: “Are you aware that in 1974 most Marxist intellectuals were shocked by the revolution because in their analysis another 40 years would be needed to raise up the consciousness of the people.”

      Marxist intellectuals in Ethiopia were not shocked by the “revolution”, rather they were shocked to find themselves not in the driving seat but as a side show.

      To start with, in Ethiopia, in 1974 there was no revolution but only a military coup d’etat. There was no general strike or uprising by the non-existent working class no revolt by the peasantry. There were minor strikes by taxi drivers, and some student demonstrations led by bookish Marxist revolutionaries, who did not know where they were coming from and where they were going.

      There was also an ongoing Congo/Korea wars army veterans pay related dispute with the Imperial government and the Wollo famine was breaking news. The army, especially those stationed on the borders with Somalia and Kenya seized this opportunity to make demands of their own, related to pay and conditions. The individual army units quickly formed committees, lessons they learnt from the failure of Neway coup attempt. These committees, which had clever and streetwise officers among them, established lines of communication with each other, started ratcheting up their demands and began arresting most of the Royally appointed inept generals.

      In the face of army committees secretive moves, swift action and muscle flexing, the mainstream Ethiopian intelligentsia seemed paralysed, dazed and confused and frozen.

      • David Samson

        Selam Simon

        You said, “some student demonstrations led by bookish Marxist revolutionaries, who did not know where they were coming from and where they were going.”

        This is exactly what the good Professor Mesfin (I know you are not fond of him) said during his recent interview.

        He seemed to have a scorn on them.

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam David,

          Mesfin was part of the failed mainstream Ethiopian intelligentsia. He had a similar motto to “Zenegese Nugusna, zbereqe Tsehayna”, which is “Nugus ayikeses, semay ayitares” … provided, of course, the rulers are not Tigrayans.

          Mesfin was co-opted into a committee appointed by the Derg to rubber stamp the killing by firing squad of 60+ former Imperial government officials.

          On the eve of the EPLF’s and TPLF’s entry into Addis Ababa, to kick the evil Derg out, I heard Mesfin giving an interview on BBC Africa program saying something to the effect that “the patriotic people of Addis Ababa will fight against the invaders”

      • Paulos

        Selam Simon,

        That is really smart and well put. Thank you!

      • Beyan

        Hello Gentlemen,

        Interesting thread. I tend to lean toward Simon’s reading of contemporary Ethiopian and Eritrean history, where the uneducated bunch led by Mengistu mowed down a whole lot of educated lot akin to that of Polpot of Cambodia leaving no chance for the intellectuals to lead. All they had left at their disposal was to flee – Fleeing in massive numbers they did. A while back I read that there are more medical doctors in Chicago than there are in Ethiopia. Why is that? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsWiald-B40
        I bet you the same can be said about more professors in the US than there are in Eritrea. So, the educated lot in our region in particular, and in Africa in general, have been made to flee because the political climate, in Ethiopia’s case in the name of the rugged socialism the Mengistu style.

        As Paulos articulated it, Girmay, I am even sure if understanding socialism, communism, marxism will be of any value for Ethiopia or for Eritrea in order to understand the role of the educated lot being inadequate. It is human tendency: When you don’t give them room to breath, the brain drain begin to occur from top-down. The more educated ones who tend to have the means and who tend to be the ones who are at risk, like the GERD’s chief engineers, they become the casualties of unstable system. For whatever its worth, here is a little background of communism as extrapolated from “Communist Manifesto”:

        • Paulos

          Selam Dr. Beyan,

          As I always say it, this is good stuff. Thank you for the links and relevant literature as well.

          Charlie Chaplin once got in a “Charlie Chaplin Look Alike” contest and he came out second. That is to say, Marx and his extraordinary grasp of the forces behind pivots of history was distorted by the flawed human perception and that is precisely the reason they say, Marx was heard whispering in his grave that, he was not a Marxist.

          The late Stephen Hawking was asked about the main frontiers of 21st century Science and he said, “The Science of Complexity” otherwise known as “Emergent Phenomena.”

          The idea crudly speaking is about scaling up or scaling down in the sense that, everything around us is not only interrelated at a deeper level but made of the same stuff where the only difference is scaling. Let me illustrate: A single bacteria weighs a trillionth of a gram and the largest and heaviest Blue Whale weighs 100 million grams. The bacteria and the Blue Whale are essentially the same and made of the same stuff but differ in scaling. The Blue Whale is a 100 million times blown up bacteria. The scaling is ubiquitous including say, in companies and cities. A sleepy city say, Saskatoon in Canada is the same as New York city and the only difference is scaling. What is the most fascinating about the new emerging powerful concept in Science is that, the difference in scaling is not any random number but manifested in what is known as the “Power-Law” where the difference in the scaling is the power of 4 and multiples of 4. This suggests that, there is a hidden law not only that governs the incredibly complex dynamics in nature but it is consistent through out as well.

          The question then is, if we are intertwined in a complex web of network in ecological and social level including in a micro level, where do we find the balance so that we all live in harmony? Is it by appealing to the violent nature in all of us or appeal to Reason? This is where Marxism and its subscription to violence becomes moot but Hegel’s appeal to Reason prevails.

        • Abraham H.

          Selam Beyan, at the end of your post you wrote about Isayas’ disdain of the learned. Thanks to the internet, I’ve found an evidence of this claim about Isayas; it is actually from Eri-tv. Look at this short video clip, which Eri-tv claims to be from 1970 (about two years after Isayas broke from the ELF?). In this clip, he says:
          “…and due to the present composition of our forces, there are some opportunistic, adventuristic tendencies. But we are doing our best to solve this problem by changing the social composition of our forces, i.e., by increasing the numbers of workers and peasants and raising their ideological level to higher degrees”.
          Just three years after this video was filmed, we all know how the members of the so called ‘Menkae Movement’, many of whom had some higher education, were cleansed from the organization.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-nyoUkzxHM

  • Ismail

    Selamat all,

    Two great vices, chauvinism and machismo, have been responsible for much of the suffering in the world. Since he took office, Abiy relentlessly attacked these twin evils in a way that no other leader has ever done. He constantly spoke about the futility of killing/wars and the virtues of forgiveness. Moreover, he unwaveringly put his words where his mouse was by releasing many prisoners and granting freedom to opponents. If for nothing else, he deserves a Nobel peace prize just for this.

    I understand and share the frustration of many Eritreans but I think it is unrealistic to expect Abiy to jeopardize his chances of staying in power by prematurely supporting democratic forces in Eritrea. That is why I advised patience. To fully appreciate and understand Abiy, it is necessary to detach oneself from a purely Eritrea-centric way of thinking. If we can do so, we will see why he must first put out the blazing fire that rages in his own backyard and consolidate power.

    Politics is not an exact science and probably never will be. This is true about every discipline that needs to contend with the fickleness of human nature. In contemplating Abiy and the future, we must therefore remember that none of us possess oracular vision. All we can do is share our impressions at a given time. That is what I have done here, and I hope the article has at least made you think about the issue in a slightly less personal ways as Eritreans.

    Ismail (pointblank)
    p.s. Though I very much wanted to race after and respond to every comment, I finally had to give it up because there were too many. My heartfelt thanks to all!

    • Aligaz G

      Dear Ismail (pointblank)

      You are right “politics is the art of the possible”. Which may be why normal people exhibit a pronounced need for a shower after contact with politicians.

      cheers

    • Peace!

      Hi Ismail (pointblank)

      Thank you, that was my immediate impression. The man is a prime minister for Ethiopia and will be judged as such by his own people and country, and more importantly, for Eritreans, politics is about interest where leverage is crucial for serving ones interest and maintaining relevancy.

      Peace!

    • Beyan

      Dear Ismail (pointblank),

      I hear you loud and clear, brother. The speed at which the dialogue ensues here is becoming untenable for me to keep up as well. I have barely begun to catch up with your article and scanning through the give and take. A lot of interesting threads, but no time to read it all. Let me take this opportunity to say, it is really good to see you back. ክትናፈቕ ክትብል ከይትርሳዕ:: Keep us abreast, once in a while.

      Cheers,
      Beyan

    • abdulworld

      Hello Ismail,
      Your article brought a lot of discussion. It good everyone had something to say… in terms of sharing their view. I believe the purpose of dialogue is broaden our internal views.. and make it more robust.. or learn something new.
      I do believe Dr. Abiy is exhibiting a unique leadership style in that he is making his decision with future in mind.
      Some of decisions he has made look revolutionary or “out of world” for folks from horn and it has been received very well by some Ethiopian and Eritrean…
      Leaders in horn have been make decisions with past playing a significant role.

      The East Asian countries started at A and got point B very quickly. They got into a car called effective governance and focused on the future or point B and kept driving at max speed- maybe looking at rear-view mirror once in while.
      In the Horn, first they don’t have car called effective governance. But they have car and started at point A but unlike other countries around the world and focusing on point B… they are always looking at the rear-view mirror. So, they don’t know if they are moving forward or idle or backward. There is always constant debut about that… Eventual they just focus on how bad the Car is…and they talk about point A but never B.

      Someone comes a long and says the Car is not perfect and says it is not just the Car that is our problem but we also keep looking only in rear-view mirror that why we are not getting where we want to go.

      We need to start making decision with point B in mind… let’s start focusing on point B and forget the rear-view mirror and figure out ways to get there… I think that is what Dr. Abiy is doing for his country.

      • Selam Abdulworld,

        Maybe pm Abiy is a different type of tree that may produce a different type of fruit, if i can say so. Some have brought different scenarios for his recent absence from the news; poisoning and other reasons trying to tell us that he is afterall a short term political phenomenon.

        He comes out and tells us that he had been working hard on the crisis in somali regional state. He says, he was discussing the matter with the regional somali government, the somali elders and the somali society in general, and they have reached the conclusion that violence and killings will not create winners but losers, and the crisis is gradually deflating after reaching a consensus.

        Compare this with what could have happened with leaders like MZ, who have been called “decisive leader”. It is not difficult to say many more would have been killed, because his doctrine was “his way or the highway”, ready to use brute force, which marked his decisiveness.

        PMAA sent the federal army but told them to stay in their barracks after securing important posts in jijiga town. He believed that the show of force and at the same time negotiation were much better than the use of force. One can’t solve one violence with another. That tells that he is a different type of leader.

        Just imagine what would have been said if an ethiopian pm of an oromo origin had ordered a crackdown on the somali liyu police and the young troublemakers that resulted in tens if not hundreds more deaths. This of course, doesn’t mean the perpetrators will not face the law; they will with the help of the regional government, the elders, the mosques and somali community. That is the merit of self rule.

        Therefore, as you said a leader who wants to win the future should not look backwards to the past, especially the negative aspects of it.

  • abdulworld

    Hello Girmay,
    Why do you have look things thru the European prism with regards to development.
    “I believe if Ethiopian intellectuals have waged a successful cultural revolution like the Europeans , maybe our part of the world could have been a better place” It would be nice but not essential.

    Japan never went thru enlightenment or Renaissance periods? China went directly from feudal to communism and then its current situation? So, Did Russia? All these societies have great scientist and mathematicians, engineers, and writers, etc..
    Russia went from Feudal society to communism to Sputnik within 40 years?

  • Paulos

    Selam Girmay,

    I am not familiar with the person you quoted but what he said certainly makes sense.

    That said, if one was to pose a question in a bid to figure out how serous the Ethiopian intellectuals have thus far played in the transformation of the society, one would need quantitative analysis, if not, ought to rely on previous studies to that effect but again, if one is to infer a generalized image by putting certain parameters as in indices of progress, the role played would be affirmative, in my humble opinion that is.

  • ‘Gheteb

    The Eritrean Conjectural Inc. Is The Cowrie Shells Group (ጉጅለ ዛዕጎል)

    Greetings!!

    Political developments and diplomatic activities in both Eritrea and Ethiopia are unfolding at a seemingly warp speed, so much so that one can depict them as nothing short of being vertiginous. The aftermath of such a hectic activities has been the acute desire by all and sundry to keep abreast the going-ons in both Eritrea and Ethiopia. What has resulted from these fast paced diplomatic activities between the two neighboring countries is that it is an open season for guesswork and predictions that are utterly untethered from reality.

    political prognostication are abounding; bold predictions are aplenty; prophesies are in abundance. In short, conjectruals have become all the rage in certain Eritrean discourses. Nothing wrong with such an exercise of predicting what the future holds for Eritrea if it were not that they lack the main desideratum — being grounded in reality –, but most of the predictions are bereft of any connection to the prevailing political realities in Eritrea. Simply put, all these guesswork are just akin to a shot in the dark.

    The role that the UAE, KSA and USA has played in brokering the peace deal between Eritrea and Ethiopia is elevated to such a level that it was provided to both parties pre-cooked, cooked and ready to eat to both Ethiopia and Eritrea, as if they didn’t have a say in the kind of food they wanted to eat. Nothing could be the furthest from the truth. Sure, they helped in facilitating and opening a line of communications between the parties, in narrowing the differences and may have offered certain incentives, but the Ethio-Eritrean peace deal was conceived and carried through the gestation period, many thanks to Eritreas’s steadfast struggle against the anti-peace force — read the detestable Weyanes– and the emergence to power of PMAA. It was this pregnancy that the likes of UAE may have helped in midwifing.

    The Western powers, be it the USA or others have not offered PIA anything. The claim that PIA will be spared from referral to ICC is RISIBLE because he was not referred to ICC in the first place. This objection didn’t come from the US alone, but from China and many other countries. What makes this claim even more laughable is who is offering this immunity to PIA. Yamamoto or some Department of State underling? It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever!

    The claim that PIA is going to resign and there will be PFDJ 2.0 and all manners of change is going to happen in Eritrea or there is going to be a HUGE change in the Eritrean government this week are just a result of some bizarre mental alchemy. Nothing in the Eritrean political landscape is indicating that eventualities are in the offing. Then, the illogicalities of PFDJ 2.0 just boggles the mind.

    If “IA” = PFDJ, and IA is going to resign or to be pushed out through a “democratic coup” or through “Twgahmo 2.0”, then without IA there is no PFDJ, be it 1.0 or 2.0, tout court.

    BTW, regarding the Saudi Foreign Minister recent trip, I have a spoiler alert. You may be told that the main discussion between PIA and the Saudi foreign minister was not about the relations between the two counties, but about which hospital PIA is going to end up in his last days of his life. You may end up reading that one of the hospitals in Jeddah has been selected with a VIP section has already been reserved for IA .

    Well, that is the world of the predictors and “guess workers” of the Eritrean conjecturals Inc. or The Cowrie Shells Group (ጉጅለ ዛዕጎል).

    • saay7

      Greetings Gheteb:

      A Vertiginuous* Reply From Conjectural Inc (dba Common Sense, LLC)

      * don’t know what it means, but I am supposing fast.

      1. Guesswork, prophecy, conjecture, speculation would be significantly lessened or rendered irrelevant if Isaias Afwerki (dba Government of Eritrea) would be more transparent about its dealings with the world and itself;

      2. Or if, when it did say something, what it is saying was more than two sentences and bothered to make sense. For example, the Shabait Press Release regarding the feud between Canada and Saudi Arabia:

      The Government of Eritrea condemns the irresponsible, provocative and audacious statement issued by the Canadian Government against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to advance certain political agendas.

      The Government of Eritrea calls on the Saudi Government to take appropriate measures both for the sake of its sovereignty as well as to ensure respect of international law.

      3. As you know, the word “transparent” means “open to scrutiny” and “easily perceived.” The Government of Eritrea has policies that are not transparent (open to scrutiny), but too transparent (lack sophistication, as if the case of statement bought and paid for by Saudi Arabia.)

      4. The Eritrea-Ethiopia peace implementation was stuck due to lack of imagination and initiative. It was nudged along to the finish line simply because the interests of Saudi Arabia and UAE dictated that it be so. If Saudi Arabia was in excellent relations with Qatar, if it was in a the same cold war it had been with Iran had continued, if UAE had excellent relations with Djibouti and Somalia, if the two had not declared war on Yemen, the peace deal would have been stuck where it was, until Eritrea and Ethiopia got new leaders.

      5. There is nothing illogical about PFDJ 2.0, which is actually EPLF 3.0. It is based on precedent set before and the management style of Isaias Afwerki. Just like Isaias sidelined his competitors (and the EPLF 1987 platform) by founding PFDJ under the guise of needing “new blood”; it is not pure conjecture he will do likewise now, given that most of the ministries are run by old men.

      6. No forecast was made on Democratic Coup. Only a proposal that it would be the least risky way to manage change while an aging man with fast-declining mental capacity (and dignity) tries to cling to power. Strawman Argument I.

      7. Nobody said that the Saudi FM trip to Eritrea was to discuss last-day arrangements for Isaias in a hospital bed. What people said is that this must be related to war in Yemen, to Saudi tried to countenance Emirati credit-taking, and to show support for the peace treaty. Straw Man Argument II.

      8. But, since you brought it up, in a couple of pics Isaias Afwerki left hand does look stiff and immobile. This is consistent with someone who recently had a stroke. But this is pure conjecture.

      saay

      • Wedi Erey2

        Selam Saleh,

        Lack of Imagination? Initiative? Or TPLF? A more straightforward explanation for the timing of the breakthrough is that this was a dispute between TPLF and EPLF and now that TPLF is effectively sidelined peace became possible. That’s how most people see it. It’s not that complicated actually. Of course, if you want to keep believing Abiy’s unconditional acceptance was the same as Meles’ “in principle” then you need to make to engage in these acrobatics.

        “4. The Eritrea-Ethiopia peace implementation was stuck due to lack of imagination and initiative. It was nudged along to the finish line simply because the interests of the USA (Trump edition) Saudi Arabia (bin Salman edition) and UAE (bin Zaid edition) dictated that it be so. If Saudi Arabia was in excellent relations with Qatar, if it was in the same cold war it had been with Iran had continued, if UAE had excellent relations with Djibouti and Somalia, if the two had not declared war on Yemen, if the US elected Clinton, the peace deal would have been stuck where it was, until Eritrea and Ethiopia got new leaders.”

        • saay7

          Wedi Erey2:

          The job of a government is to solve problems. Not to articulate problems. The biggest problem facing the People of Eritrea since 2001 was (a) a predatory government began preying on them and a year later in 2002 (b) an Ethiopian Government reneged on its promise and refused to comply with its obligation.

          Not only did the government solve neither problem it compounded them by pursuing wrong policies: (a) appealing to international community for 3 years then (b) waging a proxy war against Ethiopia and internationally recognized government in Somalia.

          It made everything worse. Then after 14 years of “no dialogue without demarcation; no business dealings before troops withdrawal from every inch of Eritrean territory”, it is doing not only that, it’s giving up more of Eritrea’s sovereignty by having an Ethiopian represent and negotiate on its behalf on its vital interests.

          And that first problem of Eritreans of having a predatory state? Nothing changed.

          So, I am trying to decide if the IA led government is the worst government in the world or the worst ever.

          saay

      • Wedi Erey2

        Selam,

        “8. But, since you brought it up, in a couple of pics, Isaias Afwerki left hand does look stiff and immobile. This is consistent with someone who recently had a stroke. But this is pure conjecture.”

        Playing doctor again? At least you have learned your lesson and say it is pure conjecture. This is what someone from your team (not saying it was you) wrote seven years ago:

        “The ailment is reported to be liver disease which has manifested itself on his eyes, his face and his stomach. Isaias Afwerki has lost weight; his stomach is bloated; his eyes jaundiced and he has liver spots all over.”

        Of course, a quick google search would tell you that liver spots are not related to liver disease but is rather a common finding related to sun exposure. Don’t go back and edit it now though 🙂

        • saay7

          WediErey2:

          # 8 was moqshish for Cuz Gheteb just to (a) show him the difference between conjecture and reasonable conclusions; (b) see how he would react to it: ignore it, come up with info that shows the conjecture is false (which he could easily have), or choose the most IA-glorifying response.

          He acted exactly as I expected. 🙂

          saay

      • ‘Gheteb

        Howdy Cuz SAAY:

        I know. I know. I know. This Ethio-Eritrean peace deal is not exciting to the anti-PFDJ camp and it is so ho-hum that there is nothing to write home about. It is a peace deal without a peace dividend that only the PFDJ sheeples — a portmanteau of ‘sheep’ and ‘people’ — are the only ones smoking the peace pipe”.

        Could it be this that is prompting the anti-PFDJ elements in this feverish PFDJ tea leaf readings and to unremittingly spout predictions that are nothing less than pure guessing and shots in the dark? I wonder! I am still wondering!

        The thing that I have never been able to wrap my head around is your outlandish claim that there is no PFDJ but “IA” EQUALS to PFDJ. Based on this general premise, your conclusion that there will be PFDJ 2.0, with PIA’s exit from power is a classic example of a grievous non sequitur. What is more, is that your attempt to INSTANTIATE it by way of EPLF’s second or third congress does not hold water simply because not only PIA was at the helm, but also many of the quondam politburo members were in the executive committee of the PFDJ.

        1) Alamin Mohammed Seid
        2) Mesfin Hagos
        3) Ali said Abdella

        Your “telediagnosis” of the one picture of PIA where the arm looked like to be “stiff” is, well, off the mark by a wide margin. Stiffness of the arm could result from many other causes, such as pinched nerve, muscle weakness, joint problems and many other causes. You have to take into account the man has slept on the rocky and rough floors with no mattress and pillow through the Gedli years and as such this may have contributed to the weakness of that arm. Or, he could have hurt or pulled a muscle during some of his woodwork activities or during exercise. Remember, PIA is human and a 73 years old man, to boot.

        The point is you hastened to assume the worst and you have ascribed the “immobility”, “stiffness” of the arm, I think it is probably a temporary discomfort, to a stroke.

        Look at other pictures and you can see that PIA has the full utility of his left arm. A picture taken the same day and at the same meeting, you can see him talking to the Saudi Official responsible for African affairs. You can see that PIA moving his left arm.

        • Paulos

          Selam Gheteb,

          I must say, the differential diagnosis is pretty impressive. Experts in Ethiopian history tell us that, when Emperor Menilik was struck with a stroke, he feigned normalcy including when he received foreign dignitaries—not sure how he did it to be honest. Rationale being lest his enemies beat their chest up in jest, including lest the morale of the people drops.

          I suspect, Sal was not serious when he talked about the stiff hand where you seem to focus on it instead of rebutting the other knock out points he threw at you. Did he say, strawman argument?

          P.S. Time magazine did a profile on Isaias right after Isaias rolled in to Asmara. And the reporter said, one can hardly take Isaias for a guerrilla fighter who lived through the wear and tear of 30 years long rough life, instead, one can easily confuse him with a piano player looking at his hands. So much!

          • Ayneta

            Merhaba Paulos:
            This idea of IA as having rough life pertaining to The Ghedli period doesn’t hold any water at all. He never actively participated in any meaningful battle, now did he spend much time in the trenches as the other rank and file fighters. So I would totally understand if his hands are as soft as that of a spoiled lady of a house. The guy is a phony!
            Regarding his health, nobody knows exactly what his medical problems are, but he does seem to have some serious medical alignment as can be evidenced from his physical looks, but then it is not surprising given his age and his chronic alcoholism. But don’t attribute it to the rough life of Ghedli. He didn’t have any of it.
            I don’t total buy this ”Ghedli life was rough on him” theory. In fact it gave him his an opportunity of a life time to do what he always wanted to do: screw everyone. Imagine what would happen to him if he didn’t get involved in Ghedli. He would be an ordinary citizen ( perhaps a lousy engineer) with no history to write. So Ghedli made him glorious and gave him an opportunity to lead a country with a first iron, completely unchecked for 40+ of its history.

          • Blink

            Dear Ayneta
            Issaias is extremely rude to participate in battle but you have to remember all top ELF leaders never were near war . ELF leaders and still their remnants strongly believe in our side help than on Eritreans and actually you can see this behavior in some of the Eritrean opposition. EPLF believed on Eritreans and that is the difference between Issaias and the sabe’s .

          • David Samson

            Selam Ayneta,

            “He never actively participated in any meaningful battle”.

            In fact,he did.

            He single-handedly led (from his office) the 98 war, and we all know the outcome of it. If the war was led by battle-hardened personalities such as Petros and Ukbe Abraha, Eritrea would have fared better.

            If he guy is phony, how do you characterise the organisation and its members led by a phony guy?

            Desalegne Berekhet coined the word “Enzira”. I was shocked when I first learned the meaning and the implication it conveys. I felt Desalegne was harsh in lumping all Tegadelti in to one box. Now, I can’t help myself but agree with his word, with one caveat: exclude the rank and file Tegadeltis.

          • Haile S.

            Selam David,
            We agree Enzra (ዕንዝራ) means drone-bee, right? In that case the use of drone-bee as a metaphor could be controvertial especially when applied to IA. Does it mean drone-bee as:
            – the stingless
            – the only male in the house, the only capable of mating
            – the one who sacrifices himself after mating
            – the one who doesn’t bring nectar & pollen, the “lazy”
            – very few drone-bee have chance of mating; therefore, the good for nothing?
            – the sacrificial lamb who gets kicked out of the hive during harsh time (the poor በላዒ ውሒጣ).
            Which of these were you thinking when applying to IA?

          • Desbele

            Selma Ayneta,
            DIA is kicked out of AAU. He could end up a lousy site foreman not an engineer.
            አሁን አገር ከሚያፈርስ Foreman ሆኖ ቤት ቢያፈርስ ይሻል ነበር

          • Paulos

            Selam Desbele,

            Historians abhor the “what if” question for it throws one onto either cruel nostalgia or sigh of relief. You can call it the “Butterfly Effect” if you will but in life there are unforseen factors that determine the outcome of events where we wrestle in vain to find an answer.

            My curiosity is not what if Isaias passed his exam and remained to be an Engeener, rather, what if Isaias joined TPLF instead for he is a full blooded Tigrean. We wouldn’t have Abiy much less the Ethiopia as we know it today.

          • Desbele

            Selam Paulos
            I highly doubt he would make it to the top had he been with TPLF.
            One thing, he come out as Christians saviour by falsely projecting ELF as Muslim butcherers.
            He wouldn’t have much of the cleavage to further wedge in TPLF and exploit to his own advantage.
            Anyways it is a cruel nostalgia that I end up with the what-ifs.
            I think of him as anti-social birth defect that need to be eliminated by any means

        • Blink

          Dear Gheteb
          Did you count how many ifs saay put in his favor wishes , So many ifs and so many things . Can you imagine the differences between saay lines if Clinton was elected? Just assuming you know . Such people would campaigned for Libya type regime change. Remember saay thinks PFDJ alienated 50% of Eritreans ( low lands ) , you put that in to Clinton box and you can imagine Susan rice ugly plan .

          • Peace!

            Hi Blink,

            Just curious isn’t that sad we are stuck discussing about the number of ifs put in a paragraph while as we speak thousands innocent Eritreans who gave their life to serve the country are dying? እዚ እኳ ክውሕደና ዶክንብል!

            Peace!

          • Blink

            Dear peace
            If you really see the current situation in Eritrea and also look at our opposition leadership situation, you will end up counting so many ifs unless there is something interesting from Issaias Semere Tesfai is wishing . Don’t get me wrong with this because I am just fed up with people who oppose anything .

        • saay7

          Selam Cuz Gheteb:

          Well, you don’t need to wonder; just demand which is you right as citizen meekly ask of your government to be more forthcoming with information, so you don’t have to learn about what is happening in Eritrea from Ethiopian media. Unless, that’s ok with you: the list of things Isaiasist are ok with keeps increasing.

          If you want to understand the state of mind of the opposition, it is simple: Eritreans were in solitary confinement (in prison, confined from evenother prisoners) and now they have visitation rights from people who were once prisoners, and whose single message is, “your prison is so beautiful and your prisoner, guess what: he likes us and we like him.”

          IA=PFDJ formula applies only to post-2001 period, after he eliminated every single “no, man!” and packed his government with “yes, sir.” From the G-15, to Imaro, to Tewil…all gone. Now, with a party full of “yes,sir”, the PFDJ is nothing more than a shell for IA. PFDJ-II is only possible when IA wills it and only when it suits his personal needs. Simple math, cuz.

          saay

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Saay,

            The yes men around him goes all the way back to the ghedli era, precisely since 1973. It isn’t post 2001. He liquidated countless bright Eritreans who said “NO” and challenged his wisdom. G15 was “yes men” before they become “no men”. They were instrumental to the killing of the “no men” in the ghedli era. The only reason they came out to challenge him in 2001, was from their wrong belief, that he will abide by the rule law, and if the worst come, they will not disappear the way their colleagues disappear in the ghedli era. So Abu Salah, Issayas was brute before and after independence.

            In order to validate my argument, you need to revisit the article of Aklilu Zere (our branna), “The Birth of the despot”. In it, you will find the arrogant answer he gave them, when they asked him about the fate of their colleagues, and warned them not raise their issue anymore.

            http://awate.com/the-birth-of-despotism/

          • haileTG

            Hey Aman H,

            You are right that this cycle of elimination has been going on from IA inception as a leader(may be even earlier). There is something different about G15 though. It was a shock to the public because the ‘business as usual’ orgy of violence in meda was happening right up in front of them. It also was a watershed moment in a sense that even if more people (even from PFDJ itself as Jabir, Nurhusheen, tewil…) were liquidated after the 2001, public outrage was mute to put it mildly. I guess in most of the other liquidations except G15, perception of apparent people’s interest didn’t intersect with that of mutinous elements. G15 were viewed as championing reform and accountability in the way they were perceived by the populace.

            In other words, G15 believed they had collective decision making power even if they witnessed and participated in the destruction of collective decision making culture and helping in the making of tyranny. This shows us how conditioning operates in much subtler way.

            It is much the same as how the current reality is unfolding. Ethiopian News outlets are currently a lifeline for Eritrean population to figure out what is happening in their region and country. A people who enjoyed a public Q & A with IA every 6 months some two decades ago, have now to live under the new normal of sustenance on information from outside. Supporters of the regime can’t see this for what it is, instead rejoice on how the content of the news they gather would “humiliate of defeat” their fellow Eritreans who happen to oppose the regime. And when the same regime eventually and usually humiliates them we have no empathy for them. The cycle of liquidation of one another continues as we spiral downwards in a mutually assured enmity.

            Now, the question I am grappling with is that have we gone beyond no return of re-constituting Eritrea as it was once envisaged? Given the magnitude of the damage IA wrought among the people, could there really be a day Eritrea that was envisioned by the independence struggle will hold? I know this sounds too dark and pessimistic, but there is nothing more I wish than it would. Even if it is hard to see it panning out like that in the end.

          • saay7

            Selam HaileTG:

            Part of the reason I call this the Season of Surrealism is regarding information flow.

            For example:

            Arabnews.com (based in Saudi Arabia) quoting Fana (based in Ethiopia) reported on the news of the pipeline being built connecting Asab(Eritrea) to Ethiopia (Ogaden?) This pipelines is to built based on agreement reached between Minister of International Cooperation Reem Al-Hashimy (UAE) and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (Ethiopia.)

            Eritrea is completely absent. Absent in reporting it. Absent in being part of the treaty.

            There is no independent media in Eritrea (all journalists arrested, private press proclamation suspended) and Isaias (unelected) has unilaterally designated Abiy Ahmed to “lead us.”

            I don’t know if Eritreans are shell-shocked or all the people who can speak are in places (underground prisons) where they can’t speak.

            Our only spokespersons are Ghedli veterans and the inevitable is visiting them: just yesterday: “Veteran freedom fighters Brig. Gen. Temesghen Berhe and Tesfay Tecle passed away at the age of 71 and 69 respectively.”

            An Ethiopian awatista wrote here, hey, this surrealism you are feeling is exactly how we felt in 1991 when we lost Ethiopia. At that time, all was measured by the degree of pain inflicted on Derg and now I think it is by degree of shock felt by “Weyane and it’s appendages.” Those whom one would expect to speak have deep-dived into enjoying their season ticket to the museum. And MaHmuday, who would have been our voice of reason, ኣኾሪኩሞ and is still mad at “Weyane and its appendages.”

            saay

          • ‘Gheteb

            Hey Cuz SAAY,

            You say:

            ” Eritrea is completely absent. Absent in reporting it. Absent in being part of the treaty”.

            The pipeline that will connect the Eritrean port of Assab to Ethiopia is of course part and parcel of the UAE Ethio/Eritrean investment plan. Hey, you need to remember the billions that the Emiratis are planning to pony up for such a mammoth project.

            I wouldn’t say Eritrea is “completely absent” from the talks about this pipeline projects and other investment plans that the UAE is planning in both countries.

            I believe that this issue was discussed and Eritrea is on board and inside the loop. The UAE wouldn’t dare to invest billions without securing Eritrea’s support and agreement.

            Eritrea doesn’t need to talk about this project because it is only in the initial stage and the main issues need to be dealt with by the investor, UAE, and the main customer, Ethiopia. Eritrea had already agreed to let Ethiopia have FREE access to its ports.

            Then, this pipeline project is not a novel thing. Ethiopia used the port of Assab and its refinery for its fuel needs until 1998 under the 80:20 arrangement. Now a new deal needs to be worked out among the three partners regarding such issues and the upgrade renovations of the Assab refinery.

            PIA is fully invested and involved on this issue and his role in the KSA/UAE could not be more pivotal and decisive. I know that you keep saying he needs to tell the Eritrean people what is happening and should make an attempt of consulting with the Eritrean Opposition Groups and other “Eritrean democratic forces”. Yeah, he needs to consult with the anti-PFDJ elements until such time that “PIA wills the emergence of PFDJ 2.0”. Yeah, PIA has to will it through a “democratic coup” and by injecting new blood through an up and coming young “no men”.

            BTW, Somalia has joined Eritrea in taking to task Canada over the issues of KSA human rights issues. Wow! not only we are witnessing the blossoming of “Pan Hornism”, but also a political MOXIE against those who mindlessly poke their nose in the internal affairs of others. First, Eritrea and now Somalia.

          • saay7

            Selamat Cuz Gheteb:

            Well played, sir. If I may direct the witness’s attention to {shuffles paper} Exhibit 0811

            (Imagine here I am displaying all the shabait news about perfunctory notices of “bilateral agreements” that IA supposedly made with Iran, Qatar, hell, even the Municipality of Milan)

            You will agree with me that there is precedence for the government to announce vague agreement whose outcome is never known. We still don’t have EriTV (Ministry of Truth) telling us about the UAE presence in Asab, never mind the details of the agreement.

            On information, I think it is in the PFDJ “National Charter” that the people (not just party loyalists) have the right to information. No? I thought after IA unilaterally killed a ratified constitution (the first “Final & Binding document) you guys were still telling us the National Charter is our guise, I mean guide.

            saay

          • ‘Gheteb

            Cuz SAAY:

            Yeah, you are right that the details of the UAE base in Assab has not been publicized. But you keep forgetting that Eritrea is still a UN sanctioned nation and the details of such arrangements are not aired publicly for obvious national security issues.

            Regardless of the need of the public to know about the Assab base deal, one has to agree that this deal has served Eritrea well. I mean it was a master stroke that has facilitated all the political developments we are witnessing in the Horn these days. The Assab base along with some other bases in the Eritrean part of the Red Sea, in my opinion, is going to be part of the projected plan dubbed as “The Arab NATO”.

            I am not sure if you are familiar with this Saudi General, Anwar Eshki who has laid out the KSA grand plan of integrating the Horn of Africa countries under the leadership of Ethiopia. The Saudis have a plan of building the Al Nur bridge of connecting Yemen to Djibouti.

            But, the Horn region still in a flux. Djibouti needs to be brought to the fold; Ethiopia is in serious need of stabilization; the Sudan has yet to enthusiastically buy into the KSA/UAE grand plan for the Horn. And, the Qatari Turkish influence in the Horn has to be countered and Yemen’s seemingly intractable problem has to be solved for the KSA/UAE grand Horn Of Africa plan to materialize.

            Such being the case and the state of affairs being in a flux, the need for ironing out existing issues and problems in need of solutions among the Horn counties is taking precedence. Until such issues are resolved, I think there will be a dearth and paucity of detailed information coming from the Eritrean side.

          • saay7

            Selamat Cuz Gheteb:

            Good point on the Gov of Eritrea’s hesitation on disclosing what the whole world knows. So the new enda hgdef position is not “lies!lies!” but, yeah it happened and its a good thing. But it is not going to be explained as a desperate move from an organization that took pride and bragged about never, ever, ever, ever allowing foreign powers to establish a military based in Eritrea, but a brilliant and strategic move. Ok, zbelkumo.

            Cuz, why are you ምንጥልing General Anwar Eskhi. You should also introduce him as author (multiple books) and chairman of Middle East Center for Strategic Studies. And, this is important, an alumni of Golden Gate University. (He is one of the few important alumni my university produced and we brag about him:)

            But seriously: this is my state of perplexity

            1. If there is one thing that defines Eritreans it is, “we waged a 50 year long struggle to assert ourselves as an independent country whose people will determine their future.”
            2. If there is one thing that defines Ethiopia, it is: “we have survived for millenia (with the protection of God) from all sorts of invaders, but particularly Arabs.”

            Now, this narrative is going to be changed (overnight):

            1. We Eritreans are going to subordinate our future to a foreign power, because it is not a foreign power, it is us, we are one people: Ethiopia
            2. And then Ethiopia will enter into a strong alliance with the least progressive powers in the Arab world (Saudi Arabia and UAE) as the two assert themselves for regional control against tiny Qatar, and ancient powers of Turkey and China.

            Now, do you anticipate any pushback from Eritreans who are not happy with item 1 above (no, no, not us appendages but EPLF/PFDJ military veterans) and do you anticipate any pushback from Ethoipians who do not want to be led by Saudi Arabia and Emirates. Ethiopia has a long history of managing foreign policy (excellent under both Haile Selasse, Mengistu and Meles): do you think that Team Lema has the sophistication to know what it is doing or is it all, like Trump with Obama, ask yourself what would Weyane do and do its opposite?

            saay

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Salam Gheteb,

            “The Assab base deal… was a master stroke that has facilitated all the political developments we are witnessing in the Horn these days.”

            This is a truncate and lame analysis. The master stroke has happened when Turky put her feet on Sawakin. I think you remember when your god expeditiously flew to UAE and a second immediate flight to Egypt. There was two consecutive unusual interviews in his TV channel. He spoke about the appearance of Osman in the regime. He mourned his bad lack for his enmity with Ethiopia. For the first time in his life your boss understands that his project that he worked for about half a century is a total failure. The reason, it is built against realities on the ground.

            Plan A was to fight Sudan and Ethiopia. Sudan mobilize her army and closed her border with Eritrea. Ethiopia was also on the side of Sudan and ready to fight back. I guess this plan was dropped, for its consequence will be catastrophic specially for Isaias. The vague results of plan A made them shift to plan B. In this plan, they began to court the love of Ethiopia this of course has started while Haile Desaline was still at office.

            After the unrest inside Ethiopia, Hailemariam Desaline resigned and Dr. Abie Ahmed has been elected as PM. In his election ceremony he has called for peace with Eritrea. This call was a golden opportunity for the axis of evil. They have just refined it a little bit in order to be acceptable and pave way for Isaias to join.

            The Target of this peace process was the ports of Eritrea and not the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia. First, PMAA will have a free use of the ports moreover will have a naval force at the Red Sea. Of course, this is a big deal for him that will raise his popularity among Ethiopians.

            We know Djibouti expelled UAE from her port. This has made UAE to retaliate from Djibouti. The best effective way is to make Ethiopia utilize Eritrean ports freely, and make her gradual withdrawal from Djibouti port. The main goal of UAE is to retaliate from Djibouti and Somali that is why she has already commenced her grand project for stretching pipes from Assab to Addis. Of course, this is a big blow for Djibouti. The slap that will be given to Somali is still unknown, but definitely will get her blow.

            By now we know UAE retaliated from Djibouti and Isaias has felt warm in his MAMA’s bosom. Dr. Abie Ahmed is happy with the free ports and naval force in the Red Sea. The only thing that is still vague except for the death of GERD engineer is Al SiSi pie.

            The Yemenis welcomed UAE, but now they are crying foul. Djibouti and Somali invited UAE later to expel her. What is the reason behind this contrary actions? This question should be answered by those who are in high rapture? Can Wanaw Ethiopiawi Gheteb endeavor?

          • Desbele

            Selam Saay,
            B/G Temesgen was once physically assaulted by DIA. It was the Menkae group who protested and criticized the act. Their fate was tragically sealed and ironically Temesgen end up being a General.
            I brought this for I felt its relevance with Haile TG & Simon discussion above. Haile’s assertion that evil prevails under good men’s silence is on spot.

          • saay7

            Desbele:

            He must have been frozen in between, right?

            The PFDJ follows the three stages of rehabilitating those who dissent against despotism, as described in 1984: Learning, Understanding, Acceptance.

            Learn: Under brutal punishment (freezing, humiliation, physical and mental and emotional assault), learn of the power of your abuser and the apathy of the world (particularly those you sacrificed for.)

            Understand: when punishment stops, begin to appreciate that who stopped punishing you. And how so very nice and consider he is that he stopped punishing you when he didn’t have to.

            Accept: love unconditionally and praise to the hilt.

            I see this on Twitter with Ambassador Estefanos and I feel sorry for me. And for some who went through that process and dropped off the face of the earth—Pilot Dejen—I have nothing but sympathies. They understood that at the end of the day very few people remember much less care and what’s the point

            saay

          • Desbele

            Saay
            I am not sure but መን ኣሎ’ሞ ዘይደስከለ

          • saay7

            Selam Desbele:

            Memhr Amanuel is the Jedi master of the language but here I think he is using a cynical view of the word “መደመር”. It’s positive meaning is all-inclusiveness and its negative meaning is conformity, the Ethiopian version of One People One Heart (ሓደ ህዝቢ ሓደ ልቢ (and ideology born of a song, right Gheteb?)

            But. Here’s a different view. Communal societies in Africa look at Maskows hierarchy and say, nah that’s wrong. Maslow says our needs are: 1. physiological (food water shelter) first; 2. then security; 3 then sense of belonging; 4. then prestige 5. then self actualization.

            Communal societies say: get rid of 5 which is ቀበጥበጥ Then step 1 of course is sense of belonging. Once you have that the whole belonging (community) will take care of your physiological and safety needs. After that, the community will police those who go for privilege and esteem by ocassionally shaming them and ocassionally begging them to give back to the community.

            So, medemer is all about taking care of step 1: creating a much bigger and more intimate community. And in that regard, if you judge him purely on his job description as PM of Ethiopia (and not the job IA gave him) I give him a b plus or an A minus. To be an A, he has to include the people of Tigray and court them more than he has. To be an A plus, well, he would have to act like the PM of the largest country in the Horn of Africa and properly identify the subtractors. The leader of the subtractors (a man who has been on a quest to de-Eritreanize Eritreans who don’t conform with his selfish thirst for unlimited power is the man he insists on calling Wedi Afey.

            saay

          • Amde

            Hi saay,

            I like this “different view” especially on the reversal of the Maslow hierarchy. Brilliant.

            Amde

          • Tesfu

            Dear Haile TG,
            I want to hear from you. It may not be fair, but give it try any ways.
            a) will he (dia) leave the country peacefully into exile, as Megistu did
            b) will he be forced.
            c) coup et or dead on the scene.
            Back home, we used to say. You went to Gonder, for what, did you something valuable.?
            thanks

          • haileTG

            Hi Tesfu,

            I think IA will face a coup where he will be forced to leave and end up exiled or dead! Thus C followed by B resulting in A or the last part of C. But seriously, the potential is immense. Any one thing will happen…dying in his bed, referred to ICC and jailed, getting asylum in Ethiopia, assassination, going to jail in Eritrea….many many possibilities. Currently he is in a high stakes gambit, I doubt it would be happy ever after. He has nothing to offer for anyone’s long term interest. He’s become a stepping stone for various regional and local short term interests. Even his supporters have been locked out of any information (not even a spin). They are with us waiting for news broadcast from ETV. Yemane Gebreab appears worried, his looks are consistent with someone trying to storm off to the nearest WC to beat an imminently approaching diarrhea explosion/implosion:) And Osman Salih’s appearance is consistent with someone trying to go back to sleep after bad dream (imagine Eritrean FM taking IA’s message to Eritrean FM (Abi)). When times are this dark, it is best not guess what awaits outside.

            Oh..me and Gonder…will tell you soon:)

          • saay7

            Selam HaileTG:

            Your scenarios don’t look anything like the one laid out by Semere T. His are BOLDER and assume that Isaias will live to be 110, as he told a visiting German parliamentarian in 2008.

            Also, please don’t refer to “coup” but “democratic coup.” A coup that replaces despotism and genuinely aims for democracy is “democratic coup” (please do not tell Emma Arkey I said so.)

            The internal situation is so bad that some people think it’s just lack of human rights. But Eritrea is a country where 50% of the children are raised by one parent; 17% by neither parent; and shocking levels of malnutrition that should just shame the “government” to resign just on this basis alone.

            The rest is the theatre of the absurd, only more tragic.

            The man who led Operation Fenkel, to liberate Massawa, (Battle of Massawa, 1990) Petros Solomon rots in jail; as does his wife. And his children are in exile. Meanwhile, all of us–including his children, his family, his wife’s family, are watching on TV Ethiopians swimming in Massawa. And those who were displaced by the war–the natives of Massawa and Asab–and whose return was made impossible by PFDJ, are also watching their house on TV. And, and, and: they are being told they are Weyane for not celebrating this fine, fine, peace.

            Ugg.

            But look at all the external influences:

            1. In addition to Eritrea’s despotic rule (since 1991), East Africa has some of the oldest African “leaders”: Museveni (Uganda) since 1986; Albashir (Sudan) since 1989, IOG or Guelleh (Djibouti) since 1999, Kagame (Rwanda) since 2000. Ethiopia is the exception and God knows if it would be the case if Meles didn’t die. The real exception is the unrecognized state of Somaliland (note to UN: the way for African states to be governed well is not to be recognized. How are the Arab Sahrawi people doing?)

            2. The US is declaring war on fellow members of NATO, every other week. This has not gotten to Turkey, which is in an intense competition for influence in the Horn of Africa and beyond with the “Saudi coalition.” It is complimentary to Saudi Arabia and attacks even miskin Canada.

            3. The two Mohammed bins (Saudi Arabia and UAE) are in a race to influence the entire region on both sides of the Red Sea. UAE (population: 9 million) is “leading” Saudi Arabia ( population: 32 million) and Egypt (Egypt!!) population 95 million in this transformation of the region.

            4. Tiny Djibouti said “NO” to UAE. Somalia said “NO” to the UAE.

            5. Sudan has chosen “all of the above” when given multiple choice question: Qatar, UAE, Turkey. Sudanese president has said (to knee-slapping hilarity) that the next term will be his last term. Welahi Al Azim.

            6. As Cuz Gheteb pointed out, a Saudi general (who visited Israel) said that Saudi Arabia has no responsibility for Palestinians. He wants to create an Arab Nato. Deal with it.

            Put that in your blender, y’all, tell me what’s nutritious.

            saay

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam haileTG,

            You said: “In other words, G15 believed they had collective decision making power even if they witnessed and participated in the destruction of collective decision making culture and helping in the making of tyranny. This shows us how conditioning operates in much subtler way.”

            You seem to substitute your wish and imagination for the reality.
            You also underestimate the wisdom of the people of Eritrea who are smarter than you think. You forget that the people know the guerrilla fighters inside out, because they have been bullied and abused by them for decades. They have a good memory.

            Why would they side with the G15 who, throughout their guerrilla careers, were aiding and abetting Isaias in sycophantic fashion to climb the ladders of power, in their competition against Isaias. Once bitten, twice shy!

          • haileTG

            Hello Simon,

            You said

            “…You also underestimate the wisdom of the people of Eritrea who are smarter than you think.”

            Is saving your skin when fire is engulfing your home with your wife and kids inside it “wise” and “smart”? Well, based on advise from the fire crew, may be yes but morally and naturally hell no.You do what you can.

            What you said goes to the heart of the point I made. Actually that is exactly why the regime supporters would not risk siding with those suffering the full burnt of tyranny even if they are their very own people, relatives, co-workers, grew up together and the rest. Saving one’s own skin smartness. That is neither wise nor smart in any rational argument. When all trees are fell, time will come to go for the last standing tree. The abuse and bully that you said Eritreans went through was essentially the very reason that should have necessitated to resist the malpractice and stand for the victims. Today, you hear some Eritreans mourning and others celebrating the passing of certain Ghedli era combatants members of the regime. That shows a broken/divided people finding solace from each other’s demise. Any thing PFDJ does is great news to the ears of supporters whose only yardstick is how it would humiliate the other Eritreans on the opposite side. Anything that happens to the PFDJ loyalist Eritreans is music to the ears for those in the other side too. That is a major crack at the foundation. You know how serious foundation problems are. So saving your skin at any cost has sever ramifications as clearly is the evidence born by Eritrea’s current predicament. Ultimately, Smartness and wisdom have not been our strong points all along, emotion is.

            My question is, if this approach will not change/cant change, can there be Eritrea as many envision it? Or is it that our differences are irreconcilable and the only way is mutually assured destruction?

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam haileTG,

            Your cadre like motivational speech will not move anyone.

            The fire has been engulfing Eritreans’ homes for more than 3 decades. Eritreans were called to support the revolution and they responded by giving away their fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, they have sacrificed enough, for the promise of El Dorado.

            The G15 were the elite of the guerrillas, they were part of the double crossing, the betrayals, the killings and disappearances. The G15 claimed they are democrats now, why would the people believe them now/? Are you asking them to restart the same journey again?

            Every guerrilla/revolutionary movement ends in failure anyway, in a cycle of brutality.

            I dedicate the following poem, by Edgar Allan Poe, for the long suffering people of Eritrea.

            El Dorado
            ========
            Gaily bedight,
            A gallant knight,
            In sunshine and in shadow,
            Had journeyed long,
            Singing a song,
            In search of El Dorado.

            But he grew old,
            This knight so bold,
            And o’er his heart a shadow
            Fell as he found
            No spot of ground
            That looked like El Dorado.

            And, as his strength
            Failed him at length,
            He met a pilgrim shadow;
            “Shadow,” said he,
            “Where can it be,
            This land of El Dorado?”

            “Over the mountains
            Of the moon,
            Down the valley of the shadow,
            Ride, boldly ride,”
            The shade replied,–
            “If you seek for El Dorado!”

          • saay7

            Selamat Simon:

            I think your analysis explains WHY the people didn’t more forcefully protest the disappearance of the G-15. But it doesn’t really explain why the G-15 did what they did. If a person or group of persons are willing to throw their fate to the mercy of a forgiving people and due process, what more is asked of them or can be asked of them for their role during the armed struggle? I think they were betting on the fairness of the people (that they would weigh their positive and negative contribution and forgive their transgressions—so long as they told the truth.)

            IA and company had a different view. That nothing was done during the revolution that requires assessment and all the mistakes and blunders that done just before and during the war should never see the light of day as those may be unforgiveable (too recent.) The Central Committee and National Assembly had called for a post-war evaluation, and IA & co found it critical to disappear some witnesses who would give damning testimony (exactly the way the Mafia does it.)

            On guerrilla movements, Simon, before I give you some evidence that your assessment all guerrilla movements fail, can we have a definition of it? I can think of at least 3 that were successful.

            saay

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam saay,

            Guerrilla warfare/movement is a form of irregular warfare in which a small group of combatants,such as paramilitary personnel, armed civilians, or irregulars, use military tactics including ambushes, sabotage, raids, petty warfare, hit-and-run tactics, and mobility to fight a larger and less-mobile traditional military. Guerrilla groups are a type of violent non-state actor.

            To be effective, a guerrilla movement is run top down, using the tried and tested methods of Maoist discipline, which combines both military discipline and ideological indoctrination [not necessarily Maoist].

            The key aspect that needs to be looked at concerning the G15 is motivation. Considering their lifelong dictatorial tendencies and contempt for the Eritrean people, it is highly unlikely that their motivation could have been a regret about their past and a thirst for democracy. Nearly all the G15 have been personally slighted by Isaias, such being demoted, fired, being interfered with or frozen by him. They new that the game [the guerrilla mindset] well, but they thought or hoped that their high profile status will prevent, the rules [of the game] from being applied to them in broad day light. They would not have minded ordinary Eritrean folks to come to their side, as usual, as expendable cannon fodders, but their bets were mainly placed on rescue efforts by the UN and Western nations.

          • David Samson

            Selam Simon,
            Can former guerrilla leaders redeem themselves by confessing to past crimes or excess, or are condemn to live or die with their past?

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam David,

            Theoretically possible

          • saay7

            Selamat Simon:

            On guerrilla warfare and its outcome, do you consider the one waged by Greece against Turkey and the one waged by Ireland against Britain successful ones?

            On the G15 motivation: I believe it was a series of “twhaHmo” (accountability deferred) for what they considered valid reasons. During war of independence, they said wait until we get independence; after independence, wait until referendum; after referendum, wait until ratification of constitution. After ratification of constitution, wait until its implementation. There was one Awatista, who use to say here, that the Badme war which came between ratification and implementation, was deliberately done by Isaias Afwerki to delay it.

            saay

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam saay,

            I can see now, because of the lack of examples, you are trying to scrape the bottom of the barrel.

            In the case of the Irish, what you have was not a proper guerrilla movement that followed the three stages. There were also continuous negotiations between the various factions of the Irish independence movement with the British government which resulted in Home Rule. So, it was not guerrilla warfare that brought the required result.

            On democracy, Ireland was ruled by England, later Great Britain, since the Norman conquest of 1171. The Normans were Danish, Swedish and Norwegian Vikings who first conquered Northern France, lived there for about one hundred years, and came to England through conquest because of a dynastic claim in 1066.

            Under English/GB rule the Irish have lived through all freedom movements there including the Magna Carta,Oliver Cromwell’s reign, the establishment of a Constitutional monarchy and absorbed them. So, it was highly unlikely as a tin-pot Maoist dictatorship.

            The Greek independence movement was was a proxy war between the major European powers and the Ottoman Empire. For the Europeans, Greece is the cradle of their civilisation and democracy. It was an affront to them that the Turks, who are Mongolian type people who came from Central Asia and later became Muslim, would occupy the Jewel in the European crown.

            On the G15, I find the ordinary people of Eritrea to be wise gamblers. Basic rules of gambling:

            1) Do not chase your losses, otherwise you will end up losing even more.

            2) Set a limit to the maximum amount you want to gamble.

            3) Do not gamble when you emotional or under stress.

          • saay7

            Selamat Simon:

            Nah, I picked European examples because I picked some vibes from you that you would never accept African guerrilla movements. The most obvious being of course ours which was successful in the goal it set for itself.

            On G-15, the question was not who won or lost but who was right and wrong. Of course the people bet Isaias would win because the G15 themselves had built him as Mr Infallible for decades.

            saay

          • Now inc.

            Simon,
            You said “Why would they side with the G15..
            It isn’t about supporting one group over the other. Remember, back then there was good environment for information. We had independent papers where critical commentaries were abound. There were public forums on various topics by different speakers. There was one, for example, where the President of the High Court complained about executive interference on legal matters. He was fired not too long after that. But most notably of that time was the interviews by members of the G-15 elaborating the need for reform, transparency, accountability and constitutional government.
            What kind of people wouldn’t support/need that?

          • Blink

            Dear Haile TG
            You said “G15 were viewed as championing reform and accountability in the way they were perceived by the populace.” Any Prove ? Because what I know is they been casted as weyane guys .

          • haileTG

            Hey Blink,

            In my opinion, it is difficult to find a single issue that ruptured Eritrean unity in the post independence era. PMAA’s ideology of yiqrta and love has been abundant in Eritrea right from the get go after independence. Eritreans were completely unfazed by the 30 year struggle or 2 year border conflict. There was no stopping of their zeal and determination to build their country that even Hagosh Kisha was frequently heard complaining that there was so much $$ inflow to the country that they had no idea where to store it. Everything changed with the rupture at the highest levels of their government. Sadly, the brutal faction of IA came out victorious of that power struggle, effectively dividing the nation. It was not only G15 who were cast as woyane guys. It was everyone and anyone with the slightest murmur of criticism of the faction’s leader IA. Can you point me to one single Eritrean or otherwise that had any criticism to offer and spared from being cast as a woyane guy? None.

            Just to refresh your memory, after the great shock of the loss of hundreds of Eritreans at Lampedusa,a group of Eritrean diaspora scholars wrote a letter to the GoE offering any form of support in exchange to a very mild and basic reform from this atrocious junta. They were swiftly turned away, branded as “hidden hand of Shiela K and TPLF”. That is pretty standard issue for all and any approach from an independent point view to the misguided PFDJ.

            So in short, the casting of woyane guys was not and is not a popular sentiment (IMO) rather the usual justification given by the regime loyalists to drive their side of counter motion.

          • David Samson

            Selam Blink,
            I do not know how you prove it. How do you measure perceived by the populace?

            I was in Asmara during the G-15 versus IA fell out. One way to gauge public opinion is though public media. One side had the advantages of owning all the state media while the other side had only one: private newspapers.

            This was the first-time private newspapers appeared in circulation. Both sides were given the opportunities to argue their cases. IA, not only refused to be interviewed by the private press, but was also in a mood to ridicule them.

            All daily private papers editions were sold out by 10am. If you walked down the main streets in down town, you only found “Hadas Eritrea”. Even with uneven level playing field, G-15 might have won the arguments. However, IA played foul and the rest is history.

            The Woyane card might have deceived many people at the time. No one is more Woyane than General Mesin Amare—the very same person who allegedly the G-15 had collided with, was in Asmara last week. You can’t bury the truth for ever.

          • Abraham H.

            Dear Blink, poor you! Probably you are one of those who have grown up being told falsehoods under the absolute rule of DIA; 2001-now? You said, “it is in later days that people tried to question things”; it is actually the reverse of what you are saying; many people, at least those inside the country, were in agreement or sympathetic to the demands of the G15, thanks to the publicization of their open letter and messages through the then fledgling independent media. David Samson has aptly described the mood then inside the country, not in the detached diaspora.
            BTW, the so called Weyane conspiracy, came only after the G15 were disappeared, unable to defend themselves in a free court of law, and when the predator regime had to find some reason to sell to its worshipers as to why it disappeared them. The day when the G15, and the independent journalists were made to disappear, and the following extensive cleansing of any individual deemed to be a potential risk to the primitive domination of DIA, was the time when the downward spiral begun in Eritrea. The rest is history; tens of thousands, mostly youth, exiled, an economy that stagnated for 18 years, if not regressed, and a traumatised highly polarised society.

    • Hameed Al-Arabi

      Salam Gheteb,

      Wanaw Ethiopiawi Gheteb is excited by the diplomatic show that will subside before long. He doesn’t conceive beginning and end of the drama. PMAA is swimming in plan B of the show. Whether he will be drowned by the stormed or survive the storm depends upon his experience. I wish him good luck.

      In a nutshell, the Horn of Africa stepped inside the racetrack of elephants. The little kids are happy, let them dance for the time being. They think they are real players, but they are merely tools of the game. The pirate deems he is major player in the region. This is not true, he is just an instrument in the hands of other players since a long time ago. He has led his life through feeding on leftovers. The question that requires an answer upto now is: does PMAA know the club he joined?

      “Sure, they helped in facilitating and opening a line of communications between the parties, in narrowing the differences and may have offered certain incentives,”.

      Most of the people who have discussed the peace issue were not far from what you have mentioned above. So where is your evidence to call them, “of the Eritrean conjecturals Inc. or The Cowrie Shells Group (ጉጅለ ዛዕጎል).” I think what you are exercising is real ጉጅለ ዛዕጎል. Anyone who reads profoundly what is going on in the region can understand you just speculate and consider illusion as a sophisticated analysis. I guess you are still an infant. I feel sorry to bring to your mind that you are following a route that will never connect you to the required target.

      “The claim that PIA is going to resign and there will be PFDJ 2.0 and all manners of change is going to happen in Eritrea or there is going to be a HUGE change in the Eritrean government this week are just a result of some bizarre mental alchemy.”

      This part concerns Semere Tesfai and his likes. For the first time I sense apologists differ. It is an indication of crackdown in the camp of apologists.

      “If “IA” = PFDJ, and if IA is going to resign or to be pushed out through a “democratic coup” or through “Twgahmo 2.0″, then without IA there is no PFDJ, be it 1.0 or 2.0, tout court.”

      Most of the opposition groups predicted nothing will be changed. A criminal will never surrender to justice. You have made a good job that you have confirmed it.

      Really, you are hollow, totally isolated from reality on the ground, and you enjoy a deadly shallowness.

  • Aligaz G

    Dear abdulworld

    I know you are familiar with Genetics but these days many in the US dismiss scientific results simply because they disagree. But if you have time review twin studies the nature effect really is massive. So Is there a gene effect on culture and democracy? I am sure there is and I can’t prove it but for sure it is provable. Intrastructure seems to be a new word not yet in most dictionaries but possible to look up on google. It is also possible to guess at what the PM is trying to say from context as usage has not yet been standardized. And on this your guess is as good as mine. Maybe the PM is trying to show his English mastery. Again I speculate.

  • Abraham H.

    Selam Semere, “f the opposition hopes and dreams to win and get to the helm is – not by relying on the support of its people (galvanizing the public) but through the corridors of foreign lobbies………. then, yes….”, why doesn’t the regime you prop up have some gut and let the Eritrean people decide on their leaders under a free, fair and participatory atmosphere? That is what any sensible opposition would believe in, and work for, let the people decide on their leaders.

    • Semere Tesfai

      Selam Abraham H.

      “why doesn’t the regime you prop up have some gut and let the Eritrean people decide on their leaders under a free, fair and participatory atmosphere”

      Why don’t you grow some brain cells, have a vision, corner him, deny him a single support and lead the nation the way it should be run – your way. How about that for a change?

      Semere Tesfai

      • Abraham H.

        Selam Semere T, yes, the diaspora based opposition, if any, need to better organise, have clear objectives, priorities, determination, and vision. No doubt, about this; this is the task of all Eritreans who would like to see a change to the better in Eritrea, including, many within the influence of the PFDJ itself. But the pre-requisite for success of such initiative is if there exists the atmosphere that I mentioned before. So you should not turn the ball to the disorganized opposition; the regime you support is the one that has monopolized everything in the country, hence it has to put the interest of the people above its own narrow power greed and allow the Eritrean people to take control of their nation. One basic fact that folks like you need to understand is that the country Eritrea belongs to, and is the result of the blood and sweat of all Eritreans, not to a certain political organization or even a few despots as it stands today.

        • Semere Tesfai

          Selam Abraham H.

          1. – “The pre-requisite for success of such (opposition) initiative is if there exists the (right) atmosphere”

          Wrong! An opposition party doesn’t hope and pray the ruling party to crate conducive atmosphere for it in order to win. The opposition party(s) creates it. ስልጣን ይምንዛዕ ‘በር፡ ኣይትኮበልካን ‘ዩ።

          2. – “The regime you support is the one that has monopolized everything in the country, hence it has to put the interest of the people above its own narrow power greed and allow the Eritrean people to take control of their nation.”

          THE JOB OF A RULING PARTY IS TO STAY IN POWER FOREVER!

          AND THE JOB OF THE OPPOSITION IS TO UNSEAT THE RULING PARTY BY DENYING IT THE PUBLIC SUPPORT IT NEED TO STAY IN POWER.

          Semere Tesfai

          • Abraham H.

            Selam Semere T., “ስልጣን ይምንዛዕ ‘በር፡ ኣይትኮበልካን ‘ዩ።”, yes, that is true, but there are various ways for political organizations to get to power. There is the civilized way of free and fair competition, or the destructive way through violence (this one almost always leads to worse outcome). The PFDJ and its enablers with their primitive outlook, have so far clinged to power through force and repression. So when there is no any space for any other orgs to operate within the country, you are calling for your opponents to come and get the power through force. As you very well know, a lot of blood have been spilt in Eritrea between Eritreans, so violence cannot and should not be the solution. You have to grow out of your primitive mentality of might is right, and accept the fact that Eritrea cannot develop without full participation of its people. What you have achieved so far with your power monopoly is 27 lost years, backwardness, exile, etc.

  • saay7

    Selamat Semere:

    What I enjoy most about your posts is their supreme sense of fairness. You ask everything from the accused (opposition) and nothing of an indicted criminal (Isaias Afwerki)

    So now, on top of everything, the Eritrean opposition must refrain from denying him public support. Because if they do, they are responsible for everything bad that happens to Eritrea. Sounds imminently fair to me. I don’t know any opposition anywhere in the world that is required to help the incumbent get public support but hey this is Eritrea and normal rules don’t apply.

    saay

    • Semere Tesfai

      Selam saay7

      “So now, on top of everything, the Eritrean opposition must REFRAIN from denying him public support.”

      What? When did I say that?
      If I said or implied that, blame it on my english. I think what I said is….

      “If the opposition fail to deny him public support, if the opposition remained weak divided along subnational politics to a point of irrelevance, if the opposition remained on the payroll of foreign interests, if the opposition hopes and dreams to win and get to the helm is – not by relying on the support of its people (galvanizing the public) but through the corridors of foreign lobbies………. then, yes….

      Semere Tesfai

      • saay7

        Selam Semere:

        I don’t think I have any basis for blaming your English. In any event you have clarified what the role of a government (hold on to power in perpetuity) and opposition ( to unseat the ruling party) is.

        Question: you have told us what is the wrong and improper way for the opposition to unseat the government. Is there a wrong and improper way for the government to perpetuate its stay on power?

        saay

        • Semere Tesfai

          Selam saay7

          1. – “Is there a wrong and improper way for the government to perpetuate its stay on power?”

          Of course there is – if the governing party can get away with it. But we as citizens shouldn’t allow that to happen. Let me explain:

          A. – For the past three decades, the PFDJ government has been the lone governing body in Eritrea. That means the PFDJ regime is the LONE responsible party for everything that went wrong in Eritrea over the past three decades – ethnic inequality, inequality in opportunities among Eritrean citizens (in education, health services, employment, economic, gender, age, physical disability…..), inequality in distributing resources among citizens (housing, land, fishing….)

          B. – One party rule is political stagnation, which is not good for a nation. Therefore as citizens of a free nation, we Eritreans should demand political pluralism (ideology based political competition) in our country – with well defined and prior-agreed upon strict rules and regulations – all to guarantee every citizen a plain playing-field during political competition.

          C. – Any political party that has an ambition to govern our diverse nation one day, first MUST look like the nation itself. But a SINGLE AGENDA interest/pressure groups shouldn’t – as long they don’t have any intent to govern our diverse nation.

          D. – Now that there is peace on the horizon, demanding reform in government, demanding to revise and implement our constitution, demanding political pluralism, demanding clearly defined election laws and elections….. ia an appropriate time to do.

          E. And if the PFDJ government stays in the way of all these with the intent “to perpetuate its stay on power indefinitely” then you and I will stand on the same side of the political divide. ወደሓንካ።

          Semere Tesfai

          • saay7

            Selamat Semere:

            Follow up questions:

            1. Has the government behaved in unacceptable ways to perpetuate its stay in power since 1991?

            2. If so, could you tell me what they are and can you point to an instance (from your voluminous paper trail) where you criticized it?

            saay

          • Semere Tesfai

            Selam saay7

            1. Has the government behaved in unacceptable ways to perpetuate its stay on power since 1991?

            Yes it did; and history will be very harsh on Isaias and EPLF leaders for that. ከምዘይ መጋድልቶም፡ በረኻ ደርብየሞም ክኣትዉ ኣይነበሮምን።

            I was never LP card holder, but I admit I was a strong believer on LP ideology and its leadership. Seven out of the nine ELF executive committee members knew me by name, and all except few of the RC members as well. LP senior leaders were a lot smarter and a lot more sophisticated than anyone will give them credit for.

            I truly believe, in 1991 leaving ELF leaders especially LP leaders and senior cadres behind was a grave mistake. At the end, it is Eritrea that lost an alternative leadership that was equally as good and as talented as those in EPFDJ – but I admit probably a little corrupt and easily corruptible – just a guess.

            Semere Tesfai

          • haileTG

            Hello Saay and Semere T,

            Saay, I think this is where my politics of Heart kicks in. So much so I am starting to wonder if I should have included Semere in my letter to PMAA so hastily:) It seems Semere is making sense with his current stand (even though his forgetfulness regarding those languishing in PFDJ jails in his to do list above can be given BOD). As far as his envisioned solutions were to be acted upon and allowing Eritrea to live upto its international requirements (cooperating with outstanding UN investigative mandates and all the rest), promoting her peace within itself, the region and the world, it seems a fair way forward. ሕቶ ኣይተብዛሓሉ ንሰመረ፡ ሓሳቡ ከይቀየረ ኸሎ ንደመር በሎ 🙂

          • saay7

            Selam HaileTG:

            It’s impssible not to like Semere T. And everybody deserves a BoD, and the way to give it by asking questions.

            Here he answered my question that there was a decision the Gov of Eritrea made that he disagrees with. He didn’t answer my question as to what he did with this disagreement: did he voice his disagreement in any way the he does about his disagreement with the opposition?

            I think even his answer suggests he misunderstood my question. I asked wrong and Inappriate things the gov did to stay in power SINCE and he gave me his understanding of what it did wrong IN 1991. Single year vs 27 year assessment. I mean 1 page in the 500-plus page book “The Crimes of PFDJ-Gov Officials: 1991-2015”.

            Beyond that, it’s interesting to me that his assessment of the exclusivity of the PFDJ is based on his personal knowledge of these fine upstanding men (he is their letter of recommendation) but for the thousands of people who weren’t just excluded from holding power (the one he is testifying for) he is not sure.

            Lots of works awaits HaileTG.

          • haileTG

            Selam saay (don’t lose heart 🙂

            In my days, ማትሪክ GPA 4.0 allowed students to go to medical school, 3.8 or above to Engineering, 3.0 any degree program, 2.4 and above to diploma courses and 1.6 and above to Teacher training. Depending on available spaces however the lower end as degree/diploma/teacher training entrance GPA was variable from year to year. I know Semere is performing on the tail end of the criteria for this test. But we have plenty of spaces available for low level cadre in the opposition, so can we let him in with his 0.2 GPA. 🙂

  • Hameed Al-Arabi

    Salam Semere Tesfai,

    To begin from your last statement and question: ISAIAS WILL DO WHAT YOU’RE AFRAID OF DOING.
    Now, who do you blame if that happens?

    My friend, your god didn’t commence the Eritrean people struggle. He is just the WRONG guy who boarded their struggle. The Eritrean people are not fruitless and barren as you and your likes understand. The Eritrean mother womb is fertile and gives birth to brave men and women. Don’t be mistaken and forget that you have just mounted leadership position through cunning and brutal crimes. Eritreans thought your god and his apologists are true Eritreans. Unfortunately, they have made a grave mistake. It is time now to reverse that serious mistake. It is just a matter of time and everything will be rectified

    You have to apprehend, Mr. Semere, true Eritreans who speak Tigrinia have their tribal names. They don’t need names coined for them by Isaias. The new ethnic name, Tigrina, was innovated to name only the remnants of Alula militias. Speaking Tigrina doesn’t make them Tigaru or remnants like you. If Eritreans happen to speak Amharic or Italian that do not make them Amaras or Italians. They can drop Tigrina, Amharic or Italian at any time. Specially, when they cause them serious problems. Mr. Semere, take your language and kinsfolk, and cross the border to your MAMA.

    “Eritreans or not Eritreans, people don’t govern, people don’t make rules, people don’t forgive or punish political leaders……”

    Are you to this extent naive? People govern, make rules and punish political leaders through their representatives. Please, don’t tell me you are in USA. You are a shame to reside in America.

    “If the opposition fail to deny him public support, if the opposition remained weak divided along subnational politics to a point of irrelevance, if the opposition remained on the payroll of foreign interests, ……”

    The remnants of Alula militias are one of the main reasons of the opposition failure. All issues of disparity are sown among the opposition by the fake Eritreans.

    Speak the truth, Mr. Semere, who is running Eritrea under the payroll, your god or the opposition? Shame on you! Do you lie to such high degree insensibly? If the opposition gets payroll you and your boss would have become a history since a long time ago.

  • Paulos

    Selam Aman,

    Well, Catholicism and its rituals is reflective of Judeo-Christian as much as the New Testament is not a radical departure from the Old Testament but a reformed version of it.

    American values on the other hand is based on salvation through grace centered on the individual bereft of power-institutions where later on Individualism became a political pronouncement and cultural manifestation as well.

  • Paulos

    Selam Girmay,

    The European cultural values by and large are anchored on the Judeo-Christian tenets with a stint of mythology that had helped them shape up their identity as well. Experts tell us that, mythologies and legends cultivate sense of national identities where the Homeric saga in Greece and the Rome and Romulus in Italy come to mind. The Greeks and Italians who gave us Socrates and Galileo respectively did not shove off their respective mythologies when they embraced Reason and Rationality during the Era of Enlightenment. Simply because, shared values based on common identity and sense of history glues society or people together.

    In Ethiopia, there is a powerful claim of a 3000 year history that traces back its genesis to the Solominic reign but again whether it has any merit at all becomes irrelevant for it gives the people solid identity and a powerful role in the making of history as well. That said, the role of an intellectual is to assess events including historical events critically but the appraisal of history with respect to its benefits to the present society should not be rigid based solely on reason, simply because legends and mythologies have their advantages as well. Faith for instance is not rational but as long as it fosters the society, the role of the intellectual is not to attack it, to encourage it instead.

    • Girmay

      Hi Paulos, I just researched the history of secular education in Ethiopia. Mr. Google said secular education was adopted in the early 1900s. In the case of Europe secular education started as far 1088, university of Bolonga existed . Paulos, I agree with in regards to the importance of religion. However, as you see in Ethiopia religion seem to have suceeded in sealing Ethiopia from the outside world. Which means the arrest of imagination. The Europeans had about 600 years of modern education before they waged cultural revolutionary, the Renissance period, and the enlightenment era.
      In the case of Ethiopia we only had about 120 years of secular education. In the 120 years of our modern education, I believe most of our writers focused on how great our 3000 years of history has been.
      Yes, true shared history create identity. In the case of Ethiopia, it was about hiding other cultures and lingustic heritages in order to promote Ethiopiwenet .
      However, if the emphasize has been on rational reason, equality of all men and women, and the respect of all cultural and linguistic value, Ethiopia as a union would succeed. .
      In other words, Ethiopian intellecuals have tried to define Ethiopianenet, but I think that maybe Ethiowenet should be defined by the daily life routine of all the citizens of the Ethiopian nation. For example, if you are caught not fluent in Amharic, Ethipiwenet intellecuals and their students might cinsider you a traitor or anti-Ethopwenet?
      This kind of thinking created a nation afraid of itself. Ethiopian intellecuals trying to impose Ethiowenet, but upset and fearful why it doest have blind followers, and other nationalities afraid of Ethiopiwenet. Therefore, Ethipiwenet as it has been defined might have a big role in some of the current poltical and social problems.
      I am just saying our intellecuals need to do an introspective and analyze their thinking. Is their thinking part of the problem or the solution?

      • Paulos

        Selam Girmay,

        This is interesting stuff. Will care on later on. A bit busy now. Thanks again.

      • Paulos

        Selam Girmay,

        Not sure where to start and where to finish. Really. It seems to me, the whole idea of comparing nation and state formation in Europe with Ethiopia’s advent into nationhood lacks fairness for they both are disconnected in historical trajectories.

        In Europe, the revival of the Greek Classics which had been off limits during the Dark Ages, gave Europe what was later known as Liberal Arts and Music. What’s more, the invention of the printing press was a watershed and enforced the spread of information but still it had limitations for the lingua franca was Latin which was the language of the few and the elite.

        If I could make a jump in sequence, Reformation with in the Catholic church which gave rise to Protestantnism changed the social dynamics so much so that, Calvinism emphasised on teaching the commoners in their own local language and this initiative led to the awareness of political rights as people became more literate. When this trajectory finally led to political movement and formation of Political Institutions, the Catholic church helped in the creation of Canon Laws which was of course influenced by the Justinian Cods. Collectively, the new emergence of ideas presented itself as the new civil society.

        In the mean time, Ethiopia had been bogged down in the otherwise known as “The Era Of The Princes” almost one hundred years till a centralized State was created under Emperor Tewodros. The succession of power from one center to the other weakened the state when Machiavellian Realpolitik ruled the day.

        It was not until the coming to power of Emperor Haileselassie that, Ethiopia embarked on ambitious state formation in a bid to modernize Ethiopia. There were major constraints, however. The Nobility became a major hurdle to the King as they had, for instance, a vested interest in slave ownership. I brought this up to make a point that, when the King tried to make Ethiopia a member of the League of Nations, he had to abolish slavery but the Nobility did not relent. The King however gave opportunities to young Ethiopians to go abroad for further education where the educated class remained at loggerheads with the recalcitrant Nobility where the Neway brothers come to mind. The Habteweld brothers were the product of the King’s modernizing program including the Eritrean Professor Bereket Habteselassie, for instance.

        This is to emphasis that, there was an effort to modernize the nation on par with the other modern nations but the political reform was extremely slow if not none-existent till the Revolution broke out in the mid 70s. Certainly, the Revolution was spearheaded by the intelligentsia community till it was hijacked by a military junta. When the current regime came to power, its main priority if not signature was to fight poverty and backwardness by investing in human capital and created sprouting higher learning academic institutions. This is to say that, despite the nation’s lagging behind due to unfortunate social and political breakdown, it has done well in instilling the power of Reason in the people as opposed to say, dogmas and false beliefs in a bid to transform one’s wellbeing. And certainly, the intellectuals have contributed their fair share in making that a reality.

  • Simon Kaleab

    Selam all,

    UAE to build oil pipeline between Eritrea and Ethiopia.

    Fana Broadcasting said the information was revealed during a meeting in Addis Ababa between Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Reem Al Hashimy, the UAE’s state minister for international cooperation.

    – REUTERS

    • Blink

      Dear Simon
      Is the pipe going out or going in ? Just thinking about little Djibouti crying eye. The opposition will cry for environmental reasons, I believe they have good points. The opposition must oppose anything that they did not participate. They have to cry saying our farm land will be out of business and also the birds millions of them , oh I forget the indigenous politics is also their favorite thing. One guy Twitter was showing Somalia co owner Eritrea with Ethiopia. Now the cry about selling Asseb look out of steam in their twitter account.

    • Abraham H.

      Hi Simon K, yeah, Reuters says, the oil pipeline would run from Asseb to Addis. I’m not any expert on this, but, from common sense, i think they would need strong pumps to pump the oil from the lowlands of Afar to the Ethiopian plateau? The accompanying infrastructure would also be an oil terminal at Asseb for unloading the oil tankers. Good news in general, but need stability and security in both countries, and normalcy in particular in Eritrea, if the people are going to extract a dividend from such development projects.

  • abdulworld

    Hello Now,
    Alex Jones… is performance artist.. I hope nitricc is making millions for his conspiracy theories.. Alex Jones is rich now…

  • Aligaz G

    abdulworld,

    You might want to start taking Genetics seriously 🙂 it is definitely not pseudoscience. And yes statistics should be taken with a grain of salt especially in closed authoritarian regimes but they allow you to take the temperature of the system over time. There are ways to deal with fake data. Our new PM has been in power only 4 months and already he is dismissing infrastructure for some new phenomena called “intrastructure”. One simplistic way to measure “intrastructure” is maybe to look at scientific and artistic achievements. Again indistinguishable. Don’t let the superior pr campaign fool you.

    cheers

  • AMAN

    Greetings
    Dear Awates
    .
    Shalom !
    .
    What a new millenium!
    I am loving this new millenium and what it has brought with it so much and so much more again every passing day .
    Because unlike the last few decades of the late 20th century phenomenon this millemium is so different that
    1. You do not have to wait patiently for so long that you dream and wish today;
    you get it or see it immediately when you
    wake up in the morning. You are poor today and you wake up a millionarie in the morning…… not like the long and torturous road / way used to be for human beings.
    All that you need these days is true
    intelligence of reality and society and calibrate it well to serve your dreams
    Eventually the will all come true and fall right on your feet !!!

  • Hope

    Now inc:
    He did a good job so that SA will reimburse him for the 2% income Canada blocked!

    • Now inc.

      Hope,
      Oh that’s right, he has a grudge, thus for his “e-halafnetawi” condemnation.
      It makes a little more sense now.

  • saay7

    Selamat Ismail:

    Welcome back; it’s been a long time, Ismail.

    1. I share with you all the accolades you have for Abiy as Prime Minister of Ethiopia, and more. If you were to try to create in a lab the perfect leader for Ethiopia, you couldn’t do better: Bi-cultural; from a very large ethnic group; trained in the tools of national security and predisposed to love; experienced in government; educated in technical and liberal arts; excellent work ethic and alertness to value of time; willing to share power and credit with others.

    2. I also share with you all the reservation you have about him, and more: (a) inexperience; (b) insufficiently grounded in any ideology; (c) appears to believe that love can conquer all.

    3. I don’t know if it is his strength or his weakness that has resulted in his full embrace of Isaias Afwerki. I don’t know yet if this is due to alignment of visions on Ethiopia (a unitary but decentralized state); vision on Eritrea (a semi-sovereign state); vision on the global world oder (still unipolar world, with Saudi-UAE as the regional hegemon);

    4. It is fair to state that Ethiopians have every reason to be optimistic. For Eritreans to be optimistic about Eritrea, they must believe in two equally improbable likelihoods: that Isaias Afwerki and his government will voluntarily reform themselves to make the country more livable and less predatory or that they will be forced to do so by internal dynamics.

    5. What is clear is that for Eritreans in Eritrea, this is the first time that they have said some hope that “maybe change is coming” since the military mutiny of 2013 (Forto.) And, for that alone, Abiy deserves all the credit. It is just too bad (life?) that his change wagon has all The Deplorables with it (Saudi Arabia, UAE and the Isaias regime.)

    saay

    • Aligaz G

      saay,

      The US has outsourced the region to Saudi and the Emirates. These new regional managers are now creating their team and Abiy and Issayas are their first picks. Yes Issayas is giddy and the opposition both sides of the Mareb are furious but such is life. There is now talk of a new great game or scramble. The Abiy side interesting flubbed their lines in the pr campaign by criticizing Islam in the gulf. How ungrateful. Issu on the other hand has been disciplined and on point even willing to attack far off Canada for the sake of team spirit.

      cheers

      • saay7

        Selam Aligaz:

        If Abiy criticized Islam the way it’s practiced in Gulf Arab countries, he is a hero to billions of Muslims in the world.

        If Abiy told that directly to the UAE crown prince, billions of Muslims are grateful.

        If Abiy made up the story in his address to Ethiopian Muslims in the US, he still spoke to their heart and practiced politics.

        I expect Abiy to fix whatever nuttiness IA expressed in his meeting with the Saudi official. He is Eritrea’s Minister of Fixing IA blunders. Didn’t you see how he fixed it in his meeting with UN sanctions committee and then, his delegate, fixed all insults the Eritrean delegate heaped on the UNSC?

        saay

        • Aligaz G

          saay,

          Agreed. But I also notice a most favored son type of response from the Arabs towards Abiy. Anyhow I expect message discipline will be tightened from now. Populism has it’s own limits. On the hand when Issayas went off the reservation rhetorically, domestic audiences had their own wait a minute moment. Still the score is Issayas 1 Abiy 0 vis a vis the new masters.

          cheers

        • Eyob Medhane

          Sal,

          What? When did that happen? I mean when did Abiy fix UNSC meeting on sanction and how on earth did I miss it and how dare you that you didn’t tell me about it?

          “..God will get you for this, Walter.. “… :- )

          • saay7

            Eyob:

            He tried to fix although as they say you can’t fix stupid.

            HaieTG commented on Nebil (Eritrea’s) yelling at UNSC and telling them if they don’t lift sanctions they will forever lose credibility with the world (😂) and the Ethiopian delegate appealed to their reason that removing sanctions would enable Eritrea to help constructively with IGAD, AU and region.

            saay

          • Ismail AA

            Selam saay, Aligaz et al,

            The Saudis and Emaratis fulfil paymaster hegemon role within he framework of outsourced proxy strategic rivalries in the region. The playing theatre is confrontation with Iran within the larger scheme that involves Russia, China and regional allies. The hot spot after Syria and shifts of fortunes there, Yemen remains to be the hot spot where horrendous violations are taking place with impunity. Their war effort there has been facing stalemate due to, among many other things, shortage of manpower. Purchasing it in Sudan and other poor countries has greatly diminished due to exhaustion reinforced by overdue or betrayed promised payments.

            Now, and in my view, a look at the current noticeable diplomatic and friendship building campaign with Abij and Isaya could be lacking in thoroughness if one would exclude suspicion about the Saudi-Emarati interest in search soldiers for their losing war in Yemen. It worry us as Eritreans since we had enough precedents and reckless despot. One of the issues the two sides discussed in Asmara was the security, and I know what that is supposed to mean under current circumstances. So, I missed any allusion to this matter it in your back and forth exchanges.

          • saay7

            Hala Ismail:

            I would add Qatar and Turkey to the list of countries whose influence that the so-called “Saudi Alliance” is trying to counter. Since Eritrea took the principled stand of joining the Saudi Alliance in 2015 (and by “Eritrea” of course I mean Isaias; and by “principle stand” I mean the exact opposite of what the regime bragged about for years) then its like any alliance: like Luxenbourg supporting US because both are North Atlantic Alliance. Ethiopia is not a member of the Saudi Alliance, yet. It’s probably one of the 17 things that’s giving Hayat nightmares: Abiy may just join it.

            Whenever I ask my friend SGJ about this issue he shakes his head at me and tells me my mistake is in assuming Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman etc are countries when in actual fact they are just families with family disputes.

            On Yemen: Eritrea has offered its second most important asset (ports as base to commit war crimes on Yemen.) Its first is manpower. Will Isaias commit them to Yemen? What I know is: does he have absolute power to do so and will his supporters either deny he did and/or justify that he did? Yep. Like I said, I don’t think IA and PFDJ believe in anything except surviving and “winning.”

            saay

  • Berhe Y

    Hi Nitricc,

    These Saudi guys are a real nut job. Canada FM issued very mild tweet advocating for “SA to respect human rights of activist” or something.

    What they do to retaliate?

    Call their embassy
    Asked all they visa students to relocate (leave, close to 15 thousands of them)
    Ordered to fire sell all assets and investments they own
    And go on tweeter war, criticizing Canada on “howaboutism”.

    I am really worried for our region, what these prince will bring.

    Berhe

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam Berhe Y,

      At the risk of being accused as Arab hater. Let me tell you the major concern I have.
      It is the heavy involvement of the Saudi and Emirate in Eritrea and Ethiopian affairs. Both Eth./ Eri. at a point of weakness and venerability are prime targets for whatever the Saudi/Emirate want to use them for. It appears we have no practical defense.

      Their Arab money pretty much have corrupted many of the European countries, leave alone Africans. The former officials of Europe work for one of the lucrative business owned by the middle east operatives.
      There is a French historical palace that is purchased by Saudi Prince for hundreds of million dollars for his vacation house.
      None of these European countries dare say no to whatever unreasonable request being made. Everything important is done behind a veil of secrecy. They make public what they want to make public.

      The actions of the Saudis in Canada is to teach and show to the rest of the liberal democrats what the penalty will be. It certainly would be noticed by everyone.

      What chance do Eritrea and Ethiopia have to protect their own interest against unreasonable demand. Haile Selassie is spinning in his grave.
      That is my apprehension in a nutshell.

      Mr. K.H

      • Berhe Y

        Dear K.H.

        This is the tweet
        “Canada is gravely concerned about additional arrests of civil society and women’s rights activists in #SaudiArabia, including Samar Badawi. We urge the Saudi authorities to immediately release them and all other peaceful #humanrights activists.”

        And the reason for it “the FM was
        concerns about the news that several social activists had been arrested in Saudi Arabia, including Samar Badawi, a women’s rights activist who is the sister of imprisoned dissident blogger Raif Badawi, whose wife is a Canadian citizen and lives in Quebec.“

        And for this:
        They demanded apology, Canada didn’t offer. So they retaliated:

        1) expelling the Cdn ambassador
        2) asked all students (16,000 of them) and patients in hospital to relocate.
        3) suspended flights to Toronto
        4) suspended all trade
        5) asked to sell all assets they own to sell “at what ever cost”.

        Annual trade beteeen the two countries is 4B. It’s not much for the two countries.

        And the Eritrean government issue a statement supporting Saudi and criticizing Canada.

        Canada is seeking a seat at the SC, now it seems not possible without their support and the Arab world and whoever they influence.

        Berhe

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Berhe Y,

          It is the behavior of an insane personality. In the age we live in that type of personalty seems to pay dividends. The unpredictable nature of it plays well in the risk aversion prone world.

          I am surprised about Eritrea issuing a statement of support for Saudi Arabia. I saw a picture of PIA sitting with the Saudi FM. I did not like his body language, one bit. He has lost his “GIRMA”.
          Please tell saay that PIA is still holding the foreign minister’s portfolio and not PMAA. ( wait tomorrow I might read Eth. support too.)

          Mr. K.H

          • Berhe Y

            Hi K.H.

            I don’t think Ethiopia would be foolish enough to support SA.

            IA may be in retaliation of Canada expelling the diplomt and freeze on 2% tax.

            But he puts PMAA in tough position if they are seeking that.

            Berhe

      • Selam Kim Hanna,

        Maybe you remember what H. Cohen had said few years ago,“beware abyssinians, while you are at each other’s throats, the arabs are coming to the western shore of the red sea”, something like that, and he was proved right.

        A day or two ago, a saudi warplane bombed a bus carrying children in yemen, and 29 below 15 yrs olds were killed, and nobody says nothing. Trump and britain continue to sell arms to the saudis and uae, so that they would continue to gain billions from the blood of innocent yemeni civilians, women and children, the main victims of the saudi and uae lead war with their mercenaries against yemen.

        Ethiopia maybe forced to say NO at one stage when she sees that her sovereignty is being undermined, and it might even end up being ethiopia’s responsibility to save eritrea from their predatory hands, because the present regime and its supporters see only the cheese and not the trap. This holds true for ethiopian rulers as well to a certain extent. Look at dia’s opportunistic behavior, condemning canada (remember, it is a canadian company that keeps him afloat for so long), and standing on the side of the saudis, which shows that this person has only very short memory. Opportunism has always been his modus operandi all throughout his life.

        When the saudis had a problem with trump, they used a similar tactic of blackmailing the usa with the possibility of withdrawing a trillion dollars of investment in the country. The saudis are acting like the economic masters of the west, and they are not aware that they are empty handed without their oil, which will be losing more of its value in the future. It is trump and his associates who are keeping the value of oil for the sake of the billionaires’ club, to which trump belongs.

        The erratic behavior of some rulers of the horn, their opportunism for the sake of survival and their readiness to function as proxies, has drawn the interest of oil rich sheiks, who believe that God gave them the power of oil to enslave the world.

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Horizon,

          I hope you are right that the Ethiopian leaders have the capacity to say NO at an appropriate time. It is really a trying ZEMEN. Part of the reason is everything is going on within a tent of a tent, that is how they operate. There is a lot, I mean lots and lots, we don’t know.

          You mentioned Cohen. I remember reading his statement of encouragement to both sides. He is playing his game.
          I have another memory. (I hope the wrong moderator is not tending the store today.)
          It was Haile Selassie who always warned that the Red Sea is in the cross hairs of the Arabs to convert it into the an Arab Lake. For all practical purposes another of his prophesies have come true.

          Mr. K.H

          • Paulos

            Selam Ato Kim Hanna,

            Spoke to someone who has just arrived from Addis today and he said, the situation in Ethiopia is really really scary. Feels like 1974 all over again.

          • Kaddis

            Gash Paulos –

            The situation is yes scary – but 1974 level, I am not sure.
            Just to focus on the power circles – Jawar and EPRDF only – yes there are spoilers like the Somali special force and OLF ..however
            Jawar – is making a state visit – )) and bold enough to tell us ( as we knew ) team Lemma was coordinating with them during the protest.
            So highly likely – he will put his weight on Dr Merara party OFC ( very quit currently for a reason) and they will merge or alien with the new OPDO. So he is out of the protest mood and playing real politics.
            Jawar – is again bold enough to say the TPLF in Mekele ( not the entire TPLF) and 4 killo needs to narrow their difference.
            Given the federal structure of interdependence – there is high hope they will settle or EPRDF 2.0 is just playing us as loosely aliened parties

            The lawlessness in the south – still volatile – but not in full force of increasing in size. OLF in Asmara looks coming to terms. How Isayas is retaining its hand here is too early to say
            The Amhara region – very good news – is finally getting its acts together and coming out of its confusion of ruling the nation or ruling its region.
            In a related note; the Amharic / unity bloc you saw in numbers in DC, LA and in Addis min-parties – are also coming to terms of winning pockets of cities and woredas rather than landslide nation wide.
            There are more Amhara nationalist parties coming out and definitely will not dare to scare the Oromo / Jawar power – which is a good news.
            The Somali region violence shows many things – such as the gov media and its handlers are the same as before ( one sided narrative), Abiy needs to wise up or he needed to show the federal power ( including the military ) is still strong and spin the public view to its side…
            The constitution – for the first time in 27 years – is the least vilified at this moment – gives me hope.

            It could be as usual – I am the least informed AddisAbaban -)))

            Cheers,

          • Paulos

            Selam Kaddis,

            As usual spot on assessment and we are grateful for that. The nation certainly is stepping on uncharted waters where as you have aptly put it, new players are hoping on the train if I could use the new political fad. That said, it is rather natural that the players can diverge and converge in a bid for strategic alliance based on Realpolitik or based on authentic ideological differences.

            The looming danger appears to me, if the emerging new phenomenon is based on a zero sum game where the intended target and on the losing end is TPLF in particular and Tigreans in general.

            If it is anything a blessing in disguise, the new dynamics has helped TPLF to regroup and get glued to their otherwise jilted constituency. Already the rhetoric coming from Meqele is radically changing from custodians of a United Ethiopia to Tigrai First mantra. And there is a sense of betrayal from the power be where the Front’s contribution to the positive side of present Ethiopia is in a denial mood including by people who came to power with the helping hand of the Front as in Werkneh, Hailemariam and Shigutie to mention but a few who are cuddling the young PM who is at serious odds with the young and old guards of the Front. I think, it behooves the PM to come clean and express his stand if he is EPRDF or OLF or anything in between. Simply because, if his strategy is to destroy EPRDF from with in and aligning with Isaias to that end, the Federal state to the very least may cease to exist. One can not wage love by spreading vendetta.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam kaddis
            U forgot to mention one very important event on power circle. Jawar discussion with colonel demeke.
            I think u r kamekele

        • abdulworld

          Hello Horizon,
          I think there is a lot of show.. but it is mostly just Arab Braggadocio. In terms of IA and Canada… there is more history there than just Saudi thing. Canada expelled Eritrean “diplomats”… over 2% stuff.. Also, Canada is allowing Eritrean in Canada to see Nevsun over slave labor charge…
          I think the Saudi Prince on the hand is trying to be Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum of Dubai with 2030 vision and other hand neighborhood Big dog… he is politically and diplomatically immature…
          I personally don’t think he will have much of impact in Horn. It would be nice if can throw that money into infrastructure development in Horn..

      • abdulworld

        Hello KH,
        Other kidnapping and keeping folks hostage at Sheraton or using their un-used weapon they purchased for last 30+ years from America in poor Yemen.
        I wouldn’t take these Arabs countries seriously except for encouraging them to invest their money… and bring first world port facility… and infrastructure investment which they can’t take them..

    • abdulworld

      Hello Berhe,
      I think Saudi are thinking if superpower america doesn’t say anything about our human rights- how can Canada saying anything… we will teach them a lesson… they probably took that asset out Canada and moved to America… The Saudi deal with America is that American money goes to Saudi for Oil and Saudi invest that money back in America or western countries. So, American money always comes back to America via Arms sells or investment in citicorp..

      The Arab countries can only destroy or damage other Arab countries… they are full of a lot braggadocio.. I wouldn’t take them to seriously.. except to encourage them to invest and throw their money our way..

      • Berhe Y

        Hi abdulworld,
        Honestly I don’t think Canada wanted this. They probably should have thought about it better and find different way to advocate for the Canadian citizen. Would they do that to China, probably not. They would think it hard and do it via other diplomatic ways. Now that it’s out, I don’t think the PM will back down but instead take what ever consequences that may be. From the public reaction, I think the majority are saying, it’s the right thing and we support you. So the PM may see this as political gain and advantage for next election.

        The question is, now that Canada not much to lose, how far they take it. I hope they continue to criticize them and continue to highlight all the suffering they are creating. They may be able to convince some of the EU countries and may be a good opportunity to help highlight the suffering they are causing in Yemen.

        This will probably wake up some countries to follow suit and if it continues then the Saudi will be in a pickle they don’t know how to get out. I hope Canada takes this further.

        If the PM is like his father, he would.

        Berhe

    • Blink

      Dear Berhe
      I am shocked Canada being kicked out of their 13B dollar arms market and also 3 B another trade . Kicking from young Saudi leadership may be Trump is in the dunk , who knows.

      • Berhe Y

        Hi Blink,

        The arms deal was a bit of controversial that the public was criticizing the government. The US didn’t want to get involved to help settle the dispute (if you call that) so Trump being all about winning I am not surprised.

        But the public reaction is positive and in support of the government. The Cdn PM is not backing down, I guess he doesn’t have much to lose, as it is considered not much to lose.

        I don’t know if they cancel the arms deal, but they probably have a clause that will pay them handsomly if one breaks the agreement.

        I think the loss of Visa students will probably affect the university budget being its close to school start and not enough time to replace them in the short term.

        Other Canadian politicians are seeing an opportunity to build pipeline west to east Canada and stop importing oil from them.

        Like everyone is saying, it’s to teach a lesson and warn others.

        Pretty childish I think.

        Berhe

        • Blink

          Dear Berhe
          Yes pretty childish from the Saudis, I mean since when do people think KSA is the land of rights. I mean Canadians must support their government on this and I hope the EU stand up to the ME spoiled brats on this issue. I am not sure Trump will say a word because he do like dictators . Human rights activists overwhelmingly stay silent if the accused is from a ME Muslim country and I think this game has to come to an end . Remember a Muslim human rights lawyer accusing the Saudi from a UN office is unimaginable . Canada has to stand firm on this not to be intimidated by a religious lunatics.

          • David Samson

            Selam Blink,
            I do not recall any previous USA’s admin have openly criticised or have raised the issue of human-rights. Saudis have been shielded from criticism because they have a leverage on any western countries; they have been cleverly playing with their Petro-dollar asset since the Kingdom had discovered oil.

            It does not appear Canadians have vested interest in KSA. No any foolish Western government would Jeopardise its national interest and act restlessly by appearing to be a custodian of human-rights.

            Voters will always forgive if you appear to act on their self-interest , even if your actions appear to be immoral.

          • Blink

            Dear David
            Very true . Money talks, after all the modern world politics is all about interest.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Blink,

            I don’t think religion (Muslim) has anything to do with it, except the ruling party and so much money and power of influence.

            I am sure Canada is not the first and others will do as well. I think this time, the younger prince whose power seems have no limit.

            Sooner or later the problems they are creating will come back and bit them.

            Berhe

          • Mez

            Dear Blink,
            In the world of realpolitik since the end of WWII, the KSA is the single most important closest ally of america on our planet–much closer than countries in nato or israel.

            Please don’t fly over happenings so fast. History has a lot to offer.

            Thanks

          • Blink

            Dear Mez
            I know Saudi has good relationship with America but I didn’t know Saudi has better relationship than Israel or other NATO countries like UK . Now you have the right to say anything just as you are saying now.

          • Mez

            Hi Blink,

            Dig out the data and you will better understand it.

            Thanks

          • Blink

            Dear Mez
            I never heard the two US house debate Saudi interest but they do for Israel and what ever you can dig up in any place that can not be any kind of more to Saudi than to Israel.

          • Mez

            Hi Blink,

            No country built a nation from text books and open-to-public news.

            Just ask yourself why the OPEC crisis in the mid 1970ies (I think) messed up american economy; and not the seemingly perpetual israeli-palestine conflict–this year in year out.

            Any how thank you.

          • Blink

            Dear Mez
            I took three courses about oil market and specifically about OPEC and also the crises in 1973 as well as 1979 of the Iran thing And in these courses the American free market guys wanted to play the hard ball even though the total output decreased by below 4% but not only that the relationship is actually mutual even though sometimes Americans twick the Saudis in favor of Israel (The U.S. favored the establishment of an independent Israeli state, but Saudi Arabia on the other hand, the leading nation in the Islamic and Arab world were supporting the Arab position which sparked up their first conflict.)

            Now which congress can campaign on the interest of Saudi openly and get elected? None as the favoritism of Saudi is too low in fact below 28% . I am not saying they are enemies but the relationship is more thicker with Israel than Saudi and especially at this time where American shell oil is in par to match OPEC and beyond that the public do sway in favor of Israel . The OPEC power is not like 1973 as their power evaporated so do the interest. I am convinced that Israeli do hold a big card than Saudis . The Saudi students in American universities make up 3.7% of total foreign students but if you imagine the investment of American Hedge Fund management in take in to Israel chip market is simply beyond any guess . All in all the power of oil in the American market is loosing its steam by the day but yes the Saudi clam are on power thanks to American support.

          • Mez

            Dear Blink,

            You may be trying to understand from the wrong persoective.

            Refer some work from 1) Zbigniew Brzezinski and 2) others who deal with the geopolitics of oil over the past seven decades.

            Thanks

  • Mez

    Dear @George,

    What do you do with the productive and hardworking 7+ mion souls?

    They are the biggest assets.

    Thanks

    • Kim Hanna

      Mez,

      I think, @George belongs to that special group of people who hate their great, great grandfathers/grandmothers for being who they are.

      i noticed, some among this group actually claim their ancestors came from Amhara (Gonder – Welo) not Tigray.
      I didn’t know the Amharas had wings to fly over Tigray. What do you know. I come to think of it they are calling the Amharas angels now as if they hadn’t called us everything else few decades ago. Live long enough, you will see everything.

      Mr. K.H

      • Teodros Alem

        Selam k h
        Speaking of hating grandpa, grandma, based on ur comment here in awate, i mean if what u saying is true here in awate, u must be no 1 self hating person in the world by hating not just grandpa, grandma but urself.
        But the reality is u not what u said u r . u r one big hater maybe because of slavery( grandpa,grandma) or the known tg.
        By the way, identity is dianamic.

        • Kim Hanna

          Selam Teodros,

          1110000111 xxxyyy nnnnnnn cccc 111000111

          Mr. K.H

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam k h
            I don’t know what that mean but thank u for proving me right.

          • @george

            Dear ta

            I like your attitude, keep it up. Everything absolutely absolutely nothing in common with tigray dishonest culture.

      • Mez

        Hi Kim H,

        What needed is a modern railway connection from Asmara to the new line in Mekele.

        That way people will have (both ways) an opportunity to see and interact, with each other, before the imagination based statements thrown here and there.

        PS: About the long live…is a good idea, but make sure your retirement is not swindled by trump & co.

        Thanks

  • Nitricc

    Hi All; I think there is bigger problem in Ethiopia. I was watching PMAA receiving the Saudi foreign minster and while PMAA was greetings the Saudi minsters, i see a body guard standing behind PMAA. This tells me there is a seiroues security problem. I can understand in public places and Airports but inside PM’s office, in front of foreign visitors? Something is up. I got to believe his absence for the last few days, something happened. You don’t just let your armed guard in Bete-Mengist in front of foreign delegates. What is your take?

    • Blink

      Dear Nitricc
      There was a rumor by esat that the PM was poisoned using poison in water and esat said they got information but still it is rumored news just like our rumors factory .

  • Paulos

    Sammy,

    I forgot to mention in my earlier comment. I want you to read this book. I am not only recommending but I say, it is a must a person like you read it. The title is, “Brave Genius: A Scientist, A Philosopher, And Their Daring Adventure From The French Resistance To The Nobel Prize.” The author is Sean Carroll.

    It is beautifully written, the triumph of the human spirit in the face of unimaginable despair and a story of two extraordinary men of their time as in the Existentialist Albert Camus and the father of Molecular Biology Jacques Monod. Again, it is a must read book!

    • Girmay

      Hi, Paulos thank you for bringing up European Renissance history. Many European intellectuals of that period attacked Europen feudal cultural values. That was the period when Europe successfully divorced feudal values.
      Ethiopia never had Ethiopian cultural Renissance period. Ethiopian intellecuals worship Ethiopia’s feudal history. In my opnion Ethiopia and Eritrea will never establish sucessful political culture without cleansing the feudal values printed in our conscious.

      • Paulos

        Selam Ghirmay,

        Value is rather a tricky word where it can be blurred to the extent of misleading the discourse at hand. If my reading of your comment is right, the Era of Enlightenment shredded to pieces the then prevailing fundamental understanding of reality as in Superstition and dogmatic religious underpinnings as well. It was certainly the birth of Reason and later on Rationalism and Empiricism.

        Not sure if they were the values of the feudal system per se, rather the product of the religious institutions where Industrial Revolution has to wait for almost one hundred years till it came to the fore. In fact, one can make the argument that, the value of the European aristocracy as opposed to the feudal system was Heroism and Recognition [Hegel’s main theme as the main driving. force behind history]. On a side note, it was these values that Nietzsche yearned for and he attacked Science and Socratic values including Christianity for their demise with in then rising new cultural values.

        In Ethiopia including in Eritrea, it is rather difficult to see in isolation our core identity and values from the thing you attributed to feudal values what exactly they maybe. If what you had in mind was the tendency to solve conflicts through violence as opposed to through dialogue, I would say, it is could be the human element than a certain value.

        P.S. In the book I mentioned, the title in fact says French Resistance not Renaissance but still glad you brought up the interesting comment on your part.

  • Abraham H.

    Dear abdulworld, thanks for the feedback. I get your message, we have got to give recognition to those very few courageous amongst us, at least, as they tried what most of us have shied away from or did not have the gut to do. Nothing infuriates me, for example, when I see people, some even claiming to be justice seekers, when they berate the G15 for not being careful when they challenged DIA.

    • abdulworld

      Hello Abraham,
      People want change but I sometimes wonder if they know or have they developed the best strategy to bring out that change… If you have want democracy or healthy civil society you have to celebrate action of people fight against oppression no matter who they are…
      Recognizing and celebrating the action is one way to build the moment…
      You can be critical of strategy of G15 in private but in public you should celebrate not the people but “Action”…
      The same with Forto…
      I personally believe that Eritrean opposition still see things from ELF/EPLF prism so for them.. celebrating action of G15 or Forto somehow is like celebrating elements of EPLF… not Eritrean who chose to stand against oppression…
      The sad reality is that more Eritrean died from ELF vs. EPLF poison than any Ethiopian government.. That poison still permeates Eritrean at home and diaspora… and unfortunately that some of poison is passed on future generation.. Children model their elders…

  • Blink

    Dear Now
    True in a sense if you took Eritrea = Issaias, but I usually see Eritrea differently .

    • Abraham H.

      Dear Blink, yes Eritrea is not supposed to be equated with DIA. Unfortunately, facts on the ground, i.e. how all decisions are taken in the country today, actually for at least the last 18 years; it is not a wild generalization to claim, Eritrea = DIA. Who made this possible? The tight security apparatus of the dictator+the complete militarization of the society that keeps all the youth under the control of the police state starting from age 17+the no questions asked, no demands placed, Nsu Nhna+the desperate general populace of the country that cannot pose any threat when its youth are exiled or held captive by the regime under the endless so-called national service/national slavery.

  • Sarah Ogbay

    Hi Ismail,
    Thank you for this timely article.
    I don’t know about Ethiopia but Eritrea is not breathing any differently just because Abiy and DIA hugged or have this weird relationship. What changed in Eritrea except more worry and more confusing about what is going on between these two? Any sign of relief? Any prisoner released? Any military service demobilization steps? Please enlighten me.
    Hope is good but it comes with faith and Eritrean people have lost faith in this regime. Unfortunately many of us are in denial mode believing it is too early to expect….etc. In fact this is the time when we should be more active to avert any irreversible damage from happening. We need to find Abiy an equal befitting/matching counterpart who can equally defend his own people.
    Finally, if we think that for socially, economically and most of all politically weak Eritrea መደመር is advantageous, we are just sealing our fate as well as the fate of the future generation.

    • Mez

      Dear Sarah O,

      Probably time to go on the streets for the millennials in Asmara?

      They are the one who are technologically saavy to bring the old guard on the toe. And it is their future, there land, and their turn.

      Thanks

      • Desbele

        Selam Mez
        It’s hard to say Asmara millennials are tech savvy. It’s not their fault,there was no education for the last 20yrs. Internet penetration is less than 1%.
        The university has changed into a military boot camp. Every imaginable institute they could gather and advance a cause is dismantled-down to the family level. No hope from them.

        • Mez

          Dear Desble,

          With the millennials in a big trap, what will have come next.

          Please advice.

          Thanks

  • Teodros Alem

    Selam girmay
    There is a difference between lying, deceiving and opinion.
    Don’t feel sorry about me, am not mad at all, it is just i don’t respect deceivers, liars. That is all but i feel sorry for family members of liars, devil advocates.

    • Girmay

      Hi Tedros, ok I will leave it at that. From I think everybody coming to this forum is not trying to be a king. We are just expressing our opinions. When we express our opnion sometimes we can be wrong. It might seem deceiving to you but to those people who hold a certain opinion they have their own reasons for them. In that case it will be kind of you if show them your disagreement with proof.
      I just think that might be a better approach. However, when we use words such as lier and other unnecessary words, it might not be conductive for discussion.
      This is just a brotherly advise. Take care for now.

  • bardavidi

    Give him Time.
    The Good Doctor So far is doing good and heading to the right direction.You can not be everything to every one.There is always opposition no mater how good and well to do you are.The most Important aspect of the change is that Ethiopia is getting Acustomed to Peacefull Transitions from one Leader to the other. That by itself is a Progress most Nations in the Area including Eritrea can only Dream about.
    The second and best outcome is that the Pressure is being Applied to Isaias and company with a Direct Engagement.rather than Hostility.That he would not know how to deal with. Lets wait and see…… Selah

    • Hameed Al-Arabi

      Salam bardavidi,

      There is a maxim in Tigrinia that says tell me your friends and I will tell you who you are? The good doctor has joined the axis of evil. I guess your expectation will only yield a pile of ash. Dr. Abie didn’t choose the right partners for peace. What is built on falsehood will remain void. It is unwise to expect positive results from mistakes.

      Sometimes errors seem to be correct, for example inside examinations halls, but will remain errors. You will understand it is an error when you get out of examination hall, but it is too late to rectify your mistakes.

  • AMAN

    Hello
    Dear Awates
    .
    Shalom !
    .
    How are you doing this new season ?
    I hope you are doing well and everything is going fine.
    We would like to hear from you
    so that we can say or do something
    of importance.
    Otherwise, everything is going so well and fine for me.
    .
    Shalom Again !
    AMAN

  • Abraham H.

    Selam Awatista, the usually talkative Dr. Abiy is not in the news media the last few days. Where is the good Dr.? Even when there has been so much disturbances and killings in the Ethio-Samali killil, nothing is heard from the PM, who is used to give a speech as soon as such situations arise, but where is he these days?

    • David Samson

      Selam Abraham,
      He is now back to work after extended honey moon period.

      • Abraham H.

        Dear David Samson, I hope what you said is true, as I don’t want him any harm. But the pattern is a bit abnormal.

        • David Samson

          Selam Abraham,
          He invited most Ethiopians’ opposition parties and personalities to return home. He has now a real job at hand. You have Ethiopiawnet and other Ethnic based parties playing out for next election.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam david
            I got bad news for u, most of Ethiopiawenet and ethnic based parties came to the middle now days , thier main difference r just names and only few things so u will see them merging eachother and forming parties soon.
            And comparing things from 4- 5 months ago ethiopia is much better now. So…

          • David Samson

            Selam TA,

            You are really a funny guy!

            When did I wish bad for MamaEthiopia?

            I just articulated the way I see political development in Ethiopia.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam divide
            I didn’t see u articulated like this when ethiopia poltics was in a much worse situation . but what i hear from u is always be the same articulation with that of tplf so don’t blame me. I mean ur views and that of tplf r the same. If u say dont match, ….

    • saay7

      Abe:

      You worry too much:) The Prime Minister of Ethiopia is “Team Lemma.” Lema was the man who was going to be the pilot but ended up being the First Officer (due to some weird EPRDF rule), so now it is a joint leadership with Abiy and Lema. My guess is Lema is in charge of Ethiopia while Abiy is handling the Eritrean portfolio by the powers vested in Isaias Afwerki. Recently, one of my personal heroes, Eritrea’s Akabe Member of the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahdo Church (the temporary patriarch, as recognized by Alexandria, while IA keeps the Patriarch under arrest for no godly reason) sent him a video asking for his help in mending the Church.

      So, don’t worry about Ethiopia: it is a pilot, a first officer and a second first officer. Worry about Eritrea which is yet to see a peace dividend from the peace treaty. And I really, really, really want to believe FishMilk, but the last time he had sensational news (prisoners at Adi Abeyto released! Read all about it at a fake facebook page called Eritrea Press!) it ended up being just the usual lies the PFDJ peddles, which lies as easily as it breathes. (Assuming it is breathing.)

      saay

      • Semere Tesfai

        Selam saay7

        “Don’t worry about Ethiopia: it has a pilot, a first officer and a second first officer, and a constitution people use to argue use and abuse of power. Worry about Eritrea which is yet to see a peace dividend from the peace treaty. And I really, really, really want to believe FishMilk, but the last time he had sensational news (prisoners at Adi Abeyto released! Read all about it at a fake facebook page called Eritrea Press!) it ended up being just the usual lies the PFDJ peddles, which lies as easily as it breathes.

        Saleh: Today I’m going to make a bold prediction; and I’m inviting/challenging you to make a bold rebuttal – which is a whole lot easier to do. And here is my prediction:

        1. – The current Ethio-Eritrean “warm” relation was was cooked way, way, way back. It was just marketed and sold to the public during Abiy/Isaias visits to Asmara and Addis to maximize the political capital of both leaders and their team.

        2. – Among the many issues that were discussed and agreed upon (border demarcation, trade, movement of people, opposition forces to both Addis and Asmara, the Woyane role in future Ethiopia, Ethiopia’s role in the Red Sea Horn region, Eritrea’s role in the region as trusted and loyal ally of Ethiopia…..) I truly believe peaceful transfer of power in Eritrea, political immunity (sovereignty) with an ironclad guarantee (assurance) for Isaias Afewerki, the aging and frail top PFDJ leaders, and to the senior PFDJ cadres was agreed.

        3. – When Isaias Afewerki showed all the emotions when he was with Dr. Abiy, it was an expression of trust he put on on Abiy (his life, the life of his family, his legacy, the life of his friends and colleagues, and the fate of his country). Because the power, influence, and access to the powerful Ethiopia has can’t be underestimated. Because Isaias Afewerki, his family, his legacy, the safety and security of his colleagues and friends, the peace and security of the nation is as good as the honest commitment of Ethiopian leaders.

        4. – That as an objective to move foreword, Isaias Afewerki has invested heavily on Ethiopia and Ethiopian leaders (since Ghedli years) of all political denominations. And outside the Woyane circle, he has earned a lot of respect from all, especially from the Amara and Oromo political brands.

        5. – Soon, the usual will happen (a) world wide PFDJ conference (congress) will take place (b) laws, constitution, policies…… would be revised (c) new PFDJ blood would assume leadership role (d) the new leadership will grant immunity to all Tegadelti and Non-Tegadelti PFDJ top and senior leaders

        6. – If there is a good consensus on the PFDJ congress, very young leaders with a long term will be elected/nominated. If there is not much consensus, an older guy will take a leadership role with a shorter term limit to help build higher consensus.

        7. – To reward and to honor Isaias, the Ghedli leaders, and the Ghedli generation, Ethio-Eritrean border will be demarcated with a funfair before PFDJ congress and the new leadership.

        8. – Isaias Afewerki, as an ex president of Eritrea, his safety and security protected, will live in Eritrea antil his time of death.

        9. – The Eritrean opposition, former Tegadeltis and Non former Tegadeltis alike, should stop criminalizing Isaias and PFDJ and join this political venue to stay relevant.

        Semere Tesfai

        • saay7

          Selamat Semere T:

          How can you make bold predictions and not have anything in caps? Kidding! Everybody is so touchy. Ok, lets see:

          1. – The current Ethio-Eritrean “warm” relation was was cooked way, way, way back. It was just marketed and sold to the public during Abiy/Isaias visits to Asmara and Addis to maximize the political capital of both leaders and their team.

          Agree, and I have said as much many times. In facts, Reuters has a report about that: that it started in 2017 during the reign of Hailemariam Desalegn who says that after the death of Meles Zenawi, EPRDF had agreed that it needs to unconditionally accept Algiers Agreement. Then came the UAE and Saudi Arabia with their dinars, for the purposes of blocking out Qatar, Turkey and China. Bribed Ethiopia big bucks; Eritrea was already bought.

          2. – Among the many issues that were discussed and agreed upon (border demarcation, trade, movement of people, opposition forces to both Addis and Asmara, the Woyane role in future Ethiopia, Ethiopia’s role in the Red Sea Horn region, Eritrea’s role in the region as trusted and loyal ally of Ethiopia…..) I truly believe Western and regional powers as brokers and guarantors (a) a blueprint for peaceful transfer of power in Eritrea (b) political immunity (sovereignty) with an ironclad guarantee (assurance) for Isaias Afewerki, the aging and frail top PFDJ leaders, and to the senior PFDJ cadres was agreed by all.

          Agreed, for the most part. The immunity was for IA only, and it was given by US via UAE and Qatar. Neither IA nor the rest of the countries give a hoot about the “frail top PFDJ leaders.”

          3. – When Isaias Afewerki showed all the emotions when he was with Dr. Abiy, it was an expression of trust he put on on Abiy (his life, the life of his family, his legacy, the life of his friends and colleagues, and the fate of his country). Because the power, influence, and access to the powerful Ethiopia has can’t be underestimated. Because Isaias Afewerki, his family, his legacy, the safety and security of his colleagues and friends, the peace and security of the nation is as good as the honest commitment of Ethiopian leaders.

          Agreed, but I would put it differently. It was the happiness and marvel of a guy who learned that he just got away with it. He was on the path to ICC just a few months ago, and now serious people are talking about MoIbrahim Award and Nobel Peace Prize.

          4. – That as an objective to move foreword, Isaias Afewerki has invested heavily on Ethiopia and Ethiopian leaders (since Ghedli years) in all Ethiopian political denominations. And today, outside the Woyane circle, he has earned a lot of respect from all, especially from the Amara and Oromo political brands.

          Mixed. I agree that he has always been about Ethiopia, but about Ethiopia of his vision: One Ethiopia. That’s why he hated TPLF’s vision for Ethiopia and that’s why he was so comfortable with Gnbot 7 even when it ocassionally said that to it, “One Ethiopia” means Ethiopia with Eritrea and ports. There was an EPLF veteran, the front’s representative to Somalia during Ghedli who was interviewed by Assenna a few years ago (I forget his name; iSem will come up with it.) He says he arranged a meeting for the Sidama Liberation Front to meet with Isaias and when they told him their objective included secession from Ethiopia he was so mad and so incensed by this heresy he shouted at them. Some of my oppo comrades have attributed all sorts of heritage-ancestry explanation for this, but it was an ideology for him: Emama Ethiopia must be unified and it must be a unitary state. (And yes I believe Mesfin Hagos’ narration: he wouldn’t have minded Eritrea being part of Ethiopia if he could rule it and if it could remain a unitary state, which was heretical to TPLF’s vision of Ethiopia as a federal system.

          5. – Soon, the usual will happen (a) world wide PFDJ conference (congress) will take place (b) laws, constitution, policies…… would be revised (c) new PFDJ blood would assume leadership role (d) the new leadership will grant immunity to all Tegadelti and Non-Tegadelti PFDJ top and senior leaders

          The Front will forgive itself? Or the leaders of the front will forgive themselves and, in the process, forgive those whom they victimized? I don’t see it as in the nature of petty Isaias: there will always be someone who want make the cut. And, no, it won’t be “the PFDJ’ making the decision; but Isaias Afwerki, personally, going over every file of the thousands (I am going to say tens of thousands but please don’t faint) of prisoners.

          6. – If there is a good consensus on the PFDJ congress, very young leaders with a long term will be elected/nominated. If there is not much consensus, an older guy will take a leadership role with a shorter term limit to help build higher consensus.

          There is no such thing as PFDJ consensus. There is an IA wish list, and that’s all. And yes, as I said, there will be a PFDJ-II.

          7. – To reward and to honor Isaias, the Ghedli leaders, and the Ghedli generation, Ethio-Eritrean border will be demarcated with a funfair before PFDJ congress and the new leadership.

          This is creative, something that a PR mastermind would come up with. I will make a bolder prediction: it will happen with TPLF presence and by then TPLF will have shed its decrepit leadership and the PFDJ will declare that one as its victory too:)

          8. – Isaias Afewerki, as an ex president of Eritrea, his safety and security protected, will live in Eritrea antil his time of death.

          Agree, except it will follow the model of another moralizing dictator, Julius Nyerere, who died in Ireland. Isaias will be in a Saudi hospital. Remember, African tyrants never build anything worthwhile, not even a hospital they have enough faith to die in.

          9. – The Eritrean opposition, former Tegadeltis and Non former Tegadeltis alike, should stop criminalizing Isaias and PFDJ and join this political venue to stay relevant.

          Yeah, Eritrean oppositionist, why are you such party-poopers? We arent you celebrating when there is nothing in it for you?

          Things your boldness got timid on:

          * The fate of the exiled Eritrean freedom fighters now in opposition
          * The fate of Eritrean refugees in Sudan, Ethiopia, Israel
          * The fate of the non-PFDJ prisoners
          * The fate of National Service.

          saay

          • Paulos

            Sal,

            I think his name is Yemane Tekhlegergis.

          • Hayat Adem

            Hi Saay,
            That was a quick rundown and a fun. Your line below will stay in my mind for a while. It was not even your main message but strangely, it hit something in me.
            “African tyrants never build anything worthwhile, not even a hospital they have enough faith to die in.”

          • saay7

            Selam Hayat:

            The dictators spend all their life exiling their people. And when they die, they too die in a foreign country either because they were run out by, or in a foreign hospital.

            The president of Angola’s president (unemployed) is the richest woman in Africa. They stole enough money to build first world hospitals. Yet the guy goes to Spain for medical care and he will probably die in a Spanish hospital.

            This gives me an idea for a morbid article for my blog: guess where this African tyrant died? Or maybe give the city and country and ask “can you believe which African tyrant died here?” First one: Ohio USA.

            The most unique (the one I was hoping would Isaias Afwerkis roommate) is a man given a life sentence by the African court for crimes against humanity he commuted. A Chadian he will die in Senegal, with the testimony of his victims ringing in his ears.

            saay

          • Eyob Medhane

            Sal,

            I can’t believe that you downgraded Isabela Dos Santos, as a “richest woman in Africa”. I hope you won’t do that again, because I will have you know that she’s got her own death squad. I am just saying what ‘disrespecting’ her would entail. She actually is the second richest black woman in the WORLD after Oprah Winfrey.

            In 2014 in her very short stunt as Minster of Petroleum Resources in Angola, she came to Addis for a meeting at AU. She demanded two floors to be freed for her at Sheraton for her and her security detail. Sherton politely declined. You know what she did? She went to Radison Blu not too far from Sheraton Addis and locked the whole damn hotel for 36 hours. It was all over Addis papers and FM radio, Radion Blu had to come out and explain their embarrassment away… Aleko Dangote, the richest black man in the world (who Isayas dropped his name with disdain several times, before he got a man crash with AAA) practically spends half year in Ethiopia, even he has never done that… 🙂

          • saay7

            Eyob:

            I apologize. I’m really really sorry, I apologize unreservedly. I offer a complete and utter retraction. The imputation was totally without basis in fact, and was in no way fair comment, and was motivated purely by malice, and I deeply regret any distress that my comments may have caused her, or her family, and I hereby undertake not to repeat any such slander at any time in the future.

            My favorite scene from A Fish Called Wanda.

            Also speaking of families, her brother is no slouch. He has one of the cushy gigs (wealth fund manager managing assets like his fathers name) that also made him a multimillionaire. But the new president wants to plug in his family to suck at the Angolan petroleum tit and he sacked him.

            saay

          • Semere Tesfai

            Selam saay7

            Saleh: thank you for the articulate lengthy feedback – which I agree on most what you stated. And thank you for engaging.

            Semere Tesfai

      • Semere Tesfai

        Selam saay7

        “Don’t worry about Ethiopia: it has a pilot, a first officer and a second first officer, and a constitution people use to argue use and abuse of power. Worry about Eritrea which is yet to see a peace dividend from the peace treaty. And I really, really, really want to believe FishMilk, but the last time he had sensational news (prisoners at Adi Abeyto released! Read all about it at a fake facebook page called Eritrea Press!) it ended up being just the usual lies the PFDJ peddles, which lies as easily as it breathes.

        Saleh: Today I’m going to make a bold prediction; and I’m inviting/challenging you to make a bold rebuttal – which is a whole lot easier to do. And here is my prediction:

        1. – The current Ethio-Eritrean “warm” relation was was cooked way, way, way back. It was just marketed and sold to the public during Abiy/Isaias visits to Asmara and Addis to maximize the political capital of both leaders and their team.

        2. – Among the many issues that were discussed and agreed upon (border demarcation, trade, movement of people, opposition forces to both Addis and Asmara, the Woyane role in future Ethiopia, Ethiopia’s role in the Red Sea Horn region, Eritrea’s role in the region as trusted and loyal ally of Ethiopia…..) I truly believe Western and regional powers as brokers and guarantors (a) a blueprint for peaceful transfer of power in Eritrea (b) political immunity (sovereignty) with an ironclad guarantee (assurance) for Isaias Afewerki, the aging and frail top PFDJ leaders, and to the senior PFDJ cadres was agreed by all.

        3. – When Isaias Afewerki showed all the emotions when he was with Dr. Abiy, it was an expression of trust he put on on Abiy (his life, the life of his family, his legacy, the life of his friends and colleagues, and the fate of his country). Because the power, influence, and access to the powerful Ethiopia has can’t be underestimated. Because Isaias Afewerki, his family, his legacy, the safety and security of his colleagues and friends, the peace and security of the nation is as good as the honest commitment of Ethiopian leaders.

        4. – That as an objective to move foreword, Isaias Afewerki has invested heavily on Ethiopia and Ethiopian leaders (since Ghedli years) in all Ethiopian political denominations. And today, outside the Woyane circle, he has earned a lot of respect from all, especially from the Amara and Oromo political brands.

        5. – Soon, the usual will happen (a) world wide PFDJ conference (congress) will take place (b) laws, constitution, policies…… would be revised (c) new PFDJ blood would assume leadership role (d) the new leadership will grant immunity to all Tegadelti and Non-Tegadelti PFDJ top and senior leaders

        6. – If there is a good consensus on the PFDJ congress, very young leaders with a long term will be elected/nominated. If there is not much consensus, an older guy will take a leadership role with a shorter term limit to help build higher consensus.

        7. – To reward and to honor Isaias, the Ghedli leaders, and the Ghedli generation, Ethio-Eritrean border will be demarcated with a funfair before PFDJ congress and the new leadership.

        8. – Isaias Afewerki, as an ex president of Eritrea, his safety and security protected, will live in Eritrea antil his time of death.

        9. – The Eritrean opposition, former Tegadeltis and Non former Tegadeltis alike, should stop criminalizing Isaias and PFDJ and join this political venue to stay relevant.

        Semere Tesfai

        • Ismail AA

          Selam Ato Semere Tesfai,
          Having followed your views through yourtings in this forum, I read what you have written as wishes and aspirations and not as “predictions”.

        • Hameed Al-Arabi

          Salam Semere Tesfai,

          WANAW Ethiopiawi Semere says:

          “9. – The Eritrean opposition, former Tegadeltis and Non-Tegadeltis alike, should stop criminalizing Isaias and PFDJ and join this peaceful political course to stay relevant.”

          Mr. Semere seem to be relaxed. Is it hallucination or the end of a tough mission rest? Isaias handed Eritrea in your name to Ethiopia. He has informed the world openly that he is an Ethiopian and any one who thinks contrary to that doesn’t know history. Isaias has made a period for your mission. You know well, Mr. Semere, Eritreans will never prostrate in front of your MAMA. Eritrea will be healthy without you. You have created a lot of problems among Eritreans. You have divided Eritreans along the lines of religion, language and region. These are the most loved topics for you and your likes since the forties of the last century. Now, all Eritreans whom you swindle conceive profoundly why you were raising those topics.

          In 1991 at the drum bits of independence celebrations, Isaias declared that all Fronts should join independent Eritrea as individuals. The independence celebration drum bits equals the peaceful political course Hashawiye. In the past he invited all Fronts to join at the ecstasy of independence and today are requested to join at the rapture of peace. Between these two dates, 1991-2018, Eritreans have passed through unprecedented tragedy. Anyone who thinks to join Isaias at his peace rapture really suffers of a short memory.

          For half a century, Isaias perpetrated internationally documented crimes against humanity. He is deemed a fugitive from justice for the past two decades. He seizes every regional opportunity to board a new ploy in order to continue his hiding from justice. Certainly, his running from justice doesn’t make of him a triumphant guy. It is understood by all that no criminal surrenders to justice by his own will. As far as there are safe havens for him he will continue to hide. He will ride any opportunity that he thinks will make of him an innocent person.

          ANYONE who thinks a professional criminal will drop his brutal attitude is a million times fool and extremely naive.

          • Semere Tesfai

            Selam Hameed Al-Arabi

            1. – “You have divided Eritreans along the lines of religion, language and region. These are the most loved topics for you and your likes since the forties of the last century.”

            ስምዓኒ ሓሪራይ፡ I know I’m old, but, but, but me Semere Tesfai “divided Eritreans along the lines of religion, language and region……. since the forties of the last century.” I think that is a stretch!!

            I’m sure when you said “you”, you were not referring ethnic Tigrignas – I’m positively sure about that.

            2. – Now seriously: Al-Arabi, this is my thing. I said this before many times to many people here at Awate, and let me say it to you now.

            We Eritreans, have criminalized our political differences for three quarter of a century (from the 1940s until today) – from the times of Kebire Ibrahim Sultan and Wel-Wel To Ela-TaEda, to Barka-LaElay, to Geregr, to Weki-Zager, to Hashenit, to Gardelli, to Mogoraib and Halewa-Sewra, to the 1980-81 civil war, to May Habar, to the G-15…….. and many, many, many more killing and suffering in between.

            AND THIS HAS TO END; AND IT HAS TO END NOW!

            Just for once – let’s ask ourselves these questions. What have we learned from our past madness?. How could we move forward differently? When could we see our political differences as a blessing that has to be celebrated instead of as a curse that has to be vilified ridiculed and violently eliminated?’ When?

            ነንሕድሕድና ምውንጃልን ምቅትታልን፡ ትማሊን ሎሚን ኣየርባሓናን፡፡ ፍታሕ ኣይኮነናን። ጽባሕ ምድጋሙ ‘ውን ጽላለ (insanity) ጥራሕ ‘ዩ ክኸውን ዝኽእል። ንሕሰብ!

            Semere Tesfai

          • Hameed Al-Arabi

            Salam Semere Tesfai,

            I agree with you that Eritreans want to stop this madness that lasted for three quarters of a century. In 1991 all Eritreans were hopeful that madness will cease to function, but Isaias who made it to continue in the seventies of last century has insisted to take it further to 2018. Now, my friend Semere, whom do you think should stop his madness from all Eritrean, Isaias who has all the powers of the country in his hands or those who are living in misery? I think Isaias and his apologists should stop their madness. The ball is in your goal, you can shoot it wherever direction you choose.

            Mr. Semere, the road to reconciliation, peace, stability and development is plain. Isaias has to hand over Eritrea to the people of Eritrea; this is the first condition that Isaias should comply to perform. If Isaias handed over his responsibility to the people of Eritrea, then the people either will forgive him according to positive roles he has played or sentence him according to severe harm caused to Eritrea and Eritreans. I think most probably the Eritrean people will forgive Isaias if he passed his responsibility peacefully to all Eritreans, not to a chosen group as you mentioned in one of your comments.

            Look, Mr. Semere, If Isaias passed leadership to a certain biased group, he will be blacklisted forever in the history of Eritrea. I think, the people of Eritrea are broad-minded and tolerant people just Isaias should take the right step. I hope all his apologists assist him to take the right decision, enough is enough.

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Selam Saay,

        FishMilk is a PFDJ operatives. After he told us “a fake news or a lie” about the release of prisoners of Adi-Abeyto, how could you trust him, whatever he brings as good news to this forum? I haven’t seen any reliable info from all he tried to bring them to this forum.

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam Amanuel H.,

          I have a conjecture: FishMilk ≡ Kalihari Snake.

          • Blink

            Dear Simon
            As we all know Reuters are the god fatherhood fake news especially the news about Africa and people can actually trust FM more than these MSM . Do you think MSM are being racist plus an arm of the third phase of colonialism.

        • saay7

          Selamat Emma:

          I try to live by the rule of Give BoD: give people the benefit of the doubt. He can be an operative or a victim of operatives. After all, nobody questions the credential of the awesome Radio Erena but it too was swindled by the “400 released from Adi Abeyto” story. Even Reuters was swindled by “the pro government Eritrea Press.”

          Saay

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Aya-Adi’U,

            “The benefit of doubt” are only given to (a) unintentional mistakes (b) one who apologize to his mistakes when told otherwise (c) one who made caveats to his claim. Otherwise, one who throw any kind of info to bring confusions on the issue at hands are not candidate for “benefit of doubt.” Don’t you think so?

          • saay7

            Selam Emma:

            Yes, you put it very well.

            saay

  • Brhan

    Hello Awate and writer Ismail,

    The opposition has to invest this phenomenon:

    PIA had had a position where he declared that there will be no talk before Ethiopia pulls it forces out of Eritrea. His supporters rallied behind him because for them it was a sovereignty issue. Now that he abandoned that position, thus deceived his supporters, it is time for the opposition to outreach those supporters, specially those who believe in Eritrea’s sovereignty and who also believe on the proverb: fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me!

    Thanks,

    • Semere Tesfai

      Selam Brhan

      “PIA had had a position where he declared that there will be no talk before Ethiopia pulls it forces out of Eritrea. His supporters rallied behind him because for them it was a sovereignty issue. Now that he abandoned that position, thus deceived his supporters, it is time for the opposition to outreach those supporters, especially those who believe in Eritrea’s sovereignty…”

      Brhan: As you’re fully aware, it is not just Isaias Afewerki and his supporters who changed their position 180 degrees. All those on the opposition camp who were ridiculing the PFDJ camp has reversed their position 180 degrees as well. They were for negotiation before demarcation, now they are against it. Hypocrisy on both sides? Not exactly. It is not as simple as that; it is more complex than that.

      IT IS ALL ABOUT YOUR POLITICAL CALCULUS

      Let me explain: If you’ve a peace-partner that you trust, you don’t burden your peace-partner. You do your part in every way possible, to see him succeed – in effect you deny his enemies any help from you especially during critical transition period. Therefore……..

      During the Woyane era, the Eritrean opposition, trusting Woyane to do the right thing, they were willing to discuss other issues leaving the border issue on the backburner.

      And today, trusting the Abiy government as a reliable peace partner, and trusting the Abiy government, at the end of the day to do the right thing, the PFDJ regime is putting the border issue on the backburner – for a shinier immediate reward. That’s all.

      Semere Tesfai

      • saay7

        Selam Semere T:

        WRONG!

        Just kidding. Were you, by any chance, a fan of The Maclaughlin Group? The moderator used to say that a lot.

        So while you guys were trading places, you forgot about my group (ረጊፅኩምና ሓሊፍኩም): (1) it was right to dialogue before demarcation in 2004 and it’s right to dialogue before demarcation in 2018. You dialogue with your enemies and people you don’t trust; (2) it is important to prioriotize demarcation then and it’s important to demarcate it now because these two countries, Eritrea and Ethiopia, have a long history of switching from best of friends to mortal enemies, and the demarcation would remove one excuse they will use. For some of us demarcation never was and never is about keeping the two people separate (as some of the wall advocates were saying). They can’t be separated: they (border-area people) truly are one people separated by colonial powers. What we were and are saying is we have never been placed to have sane politicians and we would like to remove one of their excuses.

        saay

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam Brhan,

      Isaias’ supporters are not floating voters. As long as he is alive, whatever he says they will agree with him. The reasons are:

      1) Isaias has what his supporters want i.e. access to Eritrea.

      2) They distrust Isaias but they distrust the opposition even more.

      3) They suffer from revolution fatigue i.e. they dread the prospect of another violent upheaval.

      • FishMilk

        Hi Simon Kaleab. Well….almost right…at least up until an hour ago. HUGE changes in Eritrea Government now being discussed. I’m off tomorrow night to Asmara for 1-week.

        • Abraham H.

          Dear Fish, who is discussing these HUGE changes, and what is the objective of them?

          • David Samson

            Selam Abraham,

            FM has access to some senior officials within the GOE. FM, to some extent is an ‘Insider’. He is now in Italy and flying to Asmara tomorrow, hopefully to update us if ‘Gobye’ is out of his closet.

          • saay7

            David:

            Correction: gobye is never in the closet. It’s just sometimes he flips on his back, and can’t upright himself without help. Usually a big stick.

            saay

          • David Samson

            Selamat SAAY,
            Can’t help myself from bursting in laugh.
            Help? Where is his soul mate? I suppose, he must be busy with his own domestic chores.
            I thought, nowadays, we have some gadgets to replace the old stick-made from woods.

          • Paulos

            Funny!

          • Nitricc

            Hey SAAY to bad it wasn’t the stick of the oppositions. hahahahah. Do you know why PIA laughs whenever the Eri opoostions are mentioned? it must be the sticks of the oppositions. lol you should let him have it for his shortcomings but you should also give him his props. PIA didn’t abandoned the Ethiopian oppositions who were stationed in Eritrea, he made the deal everyone of them to enter in to Ethiopian negotiation table while the Eritrean opposition who were stationed in Ethiopia were asked to leave or cease to oppose the Eritrean government. This alone should tell you everything about the greatness of the man. He is in a complete charge. The truth.

          • Abraham H.

            Selam David, I think FM is one of those pfdj thugs who keep peddling 03 news in order to mislead and give false hopes to their subjects. He could also be someone of those who record videos and take pictures of Eritrean pro-justice demonstrators in the diaspora in the hope of scaring them to silence. I never believe folks like FM; the great Kibrom is more reliable and trustworthy, of course, he is not in their company.

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam FishMilk,

          Good luck!

          But, seeing is believing.

          • FishMilk

            Hi Simon Kaleab. I sincerely hope that matters pan out. We desperately need to open the door for Eritrea’s gifted acamadecians, such as yourself, to return and contribute to long overdue intellectual rebuilding.

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam FishMilk,

            I am a nobody. But, I know many Eritreans [with no political motivations] who are applying their skills all over the world instead of helping their country, due to lack of personal security in their homeland.

            The last time I checked, Woldeab Yishak, an odious man and a sycophant, was squandering World Bank and UNDP money by importing many Indians with fake qualifications, rather than employing well qualified Eritrean professionals from abroad.

          • Desbele

            Selam Simon
            Woldeab Y is a real disgrace in the history of the university. I am not sure but I heared the best days of the university were under Dr Tewoldebirhan G/her during derg time-ironic!

        • Berhe Y

          Hi FM,

          Kibrom wrote the other day, something like “Isayas will leave power for immunity and Sibhat Efrem will form traditional government etc etc”.

          I would have thought it was good wishing but coming from Kibrom, who knows.

          When you hear such unbelievable news, in Eritrea you ask “men kimewit delyu” “who is dying”. I was going to ask him that but I couldn’t find the comment and forgot where to look.

          So I thought I ask you instead, who is dying ?

          Berhe

        • Beyan

          Bon voyage, FM. Hope you make it back safe and sound. May your optimism on Eritrea’s future of peace prospect reigns supreme. More than anything else as Simon mentioned below, please encourage those you know, if they happen to have some sphere of influence where it matters, to at least begin inviting scholar Eritreans who have immense experience in higher education to help rebuild the Asmara university’s institutional infrastructure. That will be one major sign that the country is finally finding its way to be part of the civilized world.

          You know, FM, “The Against All Odds Conference” was held in Expo in 2000 to assure the world that Eritrean languages will not only be preserved but also will continue to be written in their native alphabets. To that end scholars the world over were invited and collectively they came up with a declaration in how to preserve such a heritage.

          Notice how the right hand didn’t know what the left hand was doing. Bear with me as I explain, if you will, please. The same year, the year 2000 was the beginning of the end for Asmara University. This same year, the Asmara regime hatched a plan to not accept any incoming freshmen to the AU. It did the same the subsequent four years. So, when the last batch of students graduated, in 2004, the university was closed for good. Now, how is it possible for intellectuals of high caliber from abroad to be duped into believing that Eritrea was going to shine in literature, poetry, and the like when it all along knew it was going to close the very institution that produces thinkers, artists, professionals in so many fields?

          I find this mind-numbing, to say the least. I hope this time, the Asmara regime will right the monumental wrongs it made, in all other arenas. I think inviting and guaranteeing the safety of its intellectuals irrespective of their political stands to come and help in rebuilding the nation afresh. That will be the day I know the hopeful signs are beginning to emerge from the peace process that started at a breathtaking speed.

          I would have to see a formal invitation being extended to the relentless two activists in this august website, Sal and Sal, along with civil societies, opposition political groups, and many others to come home for me to say, finally, the country is on the right footing. But, I know this is more of a pipe dream than anything else. But, I am glad dreamers like you, FM, are headed home to see with their own two eyes and I hope you will give us your objective assessment, and not one that’s clouded by Higdef lens.

          Sincerely,
          Beyan

    • abdulworld

      Hello Brhan,
      You make a good point. I doubt there are many supporters. I don”t even know what exactly is supporter in IA context.
      I believe there are many Eritreans who are not happy with direction their country is or has been going to say the least. Many Eritrean don’t want their people to scatter around the world as refugee or indefinite military service, etc… They just want a healthy and productive society.

      Yes- border issue was re-made as existential threat. We will not give up an inch and Ethiopia has withdraw for peace, etc.. now I don’t know what is new spin..

      I think it is important to document IA decisions and impact it has having on the country and its people.
      1. Remember learning after war with Yemen Petros Solomon negotiated a good deal for Eritrea and Issias came in under determined him and got worst deal for Eritrea.
      2. After sending army to Badme- the whole world community asked him withdraw and let United Nation.. this lead to war and death of thousands of life and economy regressed…

      The reality is if you look at a lot of his decision they have had horrible consequences on society. It is not about winning his “supporter” but informing Eritrean people their misery is not caused by some external threat by their own leaderships and its decision. This is not about IA and his supporter but future generation of Eritrea.

      IA can always tap that Eritrean narrative of US vs the rest of world. The 30+ years struggle has cemented the narrative it is world vs Eritrea. As long as that narrative is repeated over and over it becomes a “reality”. United nation, united states, ethiopia, Sudan, etc…
      So, again this is not old time supporters or folks from Gedhli generation- this sort of approach is for future.
      In the PDFJ language they are called “Youth” in Ethiopia they are called “Leaders.”

      The “Youth” eritrea haven’t suffered or experienced 30 years struggle for independence so external bogeyman is not so strong.. especially when look across and see someone like Dr. Abiy…
      They are more receptive and aware that their suffering is due IA and his group and documenting all the horrible decisions by IA just reminds he needs to go..

      I don’t think much persuasion or influencing is required..

  • Robel Robe

    On the foot note about the accolades Issayas received in Ethiopia 🇪🇹 mainly a young crowd born after Eritrea 🇪🇷 secede , I (Ethiopian) followed their interviews and almost universally as you guessed it, it was for Abiy and the Eritrean people that received Abiy with joy and excitement… ለአብይ የአስመራ ህዝብ ላሳየው ፍቅር መልስ … is what I heard.
    On the ‘integration’ aspect in most of my discussions with my fellow Ethiopians the kind of integration we want to see in the region is in the model of the Ethiopia and Djibouti 🇩🇯. Friendly , open border and free trade. No political integration.

  • dawit

    Selamat Awateans,
    I noticed many confusions about the simple motto of ’dawitism’ Znegese ngusna zbereq tsehaina”
    saay7 thinks God made a mistake iby appointing 2 Kings HSI and G Aman in 1974. Gods appointment is not for life, if He is not happy with your performance in leading the people in peace and justice He will throw you from your duty and appoint a new leader and that happens with HSI and G Aman was elected.
    Simon Kaleab wrote “if Ismail became king of Eritrea dawit will not have prpblem, accepting him as a king”. That is true. But Ismail can not be apppnted by God to be a king by sitting at Internet cafe and Starbucks Cafe writing insults through the internet. HSI was elected to lead his people at age of 14. In his time he abolished slavery in Ethiopia he led the country against Italian invasion and difeated colonial aggressor Brought Ethiopia from ‘donkey age to jet age” expanded education throughout the country. General Aman as young soldier he fought fpr Ethiopia against Italian occupation. He lead Ethiopian soldiers in Korean War under UN. He lead Ethiopian army in defending their country against Somal aggression. He slept with his soldiers in Ogaden desert. He was loved by his soldiers . He was the most loved Ethiopian generals.
    PIA accomplishment. I don’t have the space and time to write his life long achlvments. There is no leader in this present time through out the world. There is no King, Queen, President, Prime Minister that can be compared in this planet.
    It is sad to notice many Eritrean worship European Kings and Queens, pray day and night for their health and long life and wish death for President Isaias! I can only think of such people as pure racists.His acomplshments for his country and people is more than anyone of them except his skin color!

    Long Live PIA and Eritrean people!

    Awet Nhafash !

    dawit

    • Ayneta

      Ata Dawit:
      Nezi hatew ketew titsiHfsi ezi kulu kolol….bilash eka..

    • saay7

      dawit:

      Nice try 🙂 So much ተረር here to correct and so little time. But let’s gice it the space it deserves:

      Your Elect of God is only understood RETROACTIVELY: if Mengistu Neway coup had won (instead of the Derg coup), he would have been determined as the Elect of God.

      Aman Andom (notwithstanding all his other accomplishments) was brought in by the Derg to be the non-scary face of the Revolution and when his time was up (literally months later), he was outsmarted by Mengistu and killed in a shootout. So God elected someone to be king for months?

      Then what did God do? Elect Tedferi Bantu for months and then said ah, forget it, we will give Ethiopia to Megistu for 15 years.

      Now, since your motto is “whoever is crowned is our king”, Mengistu, who didn’t achieve power by “typing behind a computer was your (as an Ethiopian) king, right? Has to be. By definition.

      Or are there periods where God takes a leave of absence, and like Isaias does with the Minkstry of Defense (during a state of war we are now told) vacant for years?

      Then God appointed Isaias to be king of Eritrea, liberated and unliberated. (Because, according to you, Haile Selasse had stolen Eritrea, and God couldn’t have also not had an Elect for this blessed land.)

      I do agree that there is none like Isaias Afwerki in Planet Earth. On a per capita basis, he brought about the death, torture, disappearance, exile of more of his people, for longer period than any other contemporary. He build more prisons, went to war with more countries than any other living head of state (look it up.). And if he is Elect of God, then God does work in very mysterious ways.

      saay

      • Amde

        Hi Saay,

        This back and forth reminded me of a joke I heard from a comedy team (Zedo and Dersu) on an Awasa FM station.

        Subject is the begging styles between AddisAbabns and Awassans.. how the AddisAbaban is so smooth he makes a move on the girl he is begging coins from, while the Awassan is annoying. In any case, the it goes like this:

        Beggar: “ስለ ማርይም እርቦኛል! ከበላሁ ሰማንያ ሶስት ቀን ሆኖኛል”
        Girl: “አንተ ውሸታም.. ደሞ እንዴት ነው ሰማንያ ሶስት ቀን ሳትበላ በህይወት ያለህው?”
        Beggar: (without missing a step) “ለሱ ምን ይሳነዋል!!”

        Indeed.. logical conundrums are the province of mere mortals. How can one argue with the “ለሱ ምን ይሰነዋል!” logic.

        Amde

        • Aligaz G

          Amde,

          I think this dawit character is a pente. Render unto Caesar… and pray for your leaders etc. Maybe you should mediate.

          • Amde

            Selam Aligaz,

            No this is no new Pente thing.. it is a very old school Abesha thing.

            There was a discussion I listened to with Dr. Messay Kebede at some event. He was talking about how the Rases (መሣፍንት) fought HaileSellasie tooth and nail on the first constitution. As an example, Dr. Messay raised the issue of the succession of the monarch. The language was pretty much boilerplate European monarchy stuff about eldest legitimate progeny (son?) taking over when the Negus dies. The Rases however argued that “ሞአ አንበሳ ዘእምነገደ ይሁዳ” meant whoever was of Solominic blood (which they collectively counted themselves as being) was in the candidate pool, but the “ሥዩመ እግዚአብሔር” meant the post of ንጉሠ ነገሥት must be someone elected by God. God in his wisdom elected Teferi son of Mekonnen. But who knows, next time round it could be another princely grandson of another Solomonic Ras who would be so elected. They argued that this newfangled idea of limiting the crown to just one line was decidedly heretical.

            It was thus.

            Dawit is infuriating but at the same time a window into a very old (and hopefully well past) political philosophy. The religious justification of monarchic and feudal authority by the Orthodox church made the 60s generation student movement and pretty much all modernizers to go to the extremes of rejecting religion altogether and holding in public almost atheistic views. Dr. Abiy’s “ፈጣሪ ኢትዮጵይን ይባርክ” invocation in public is so revolutionary simply because religion has been so absent in our public life. Astounding really when one sees just how religious society is and yet for over 40 years now elite opinion has been to scrupulously avoid any peep of religion or spirituality.

            Amde

          • Aligaz G

            Amde,

            Of course there was no public discourse from our leaders about religion since Janhoy because they were all communists and hated God except Abiy. And for him maybe we should find a tiny residual aliquot of solomonic blood through his mother naturally and call it a day.

            I really think dawit is a pente. Maybe we should ask him 🙂

          • Amde

            Selam Aligaz,

            Asking is indeed a propos.

            But I have a cousin of a cousin. Her father is Orthodox her mother Pente. So we ask, what are? She says “both”. We say, funny but how so? She says, “Pente on Wednesdays and Fridays when not in ጾም season, but full blast Pente until ጾም is done.

            She has a rationale.

            I am afraid Dawit will say he is both and explain it by “ለሱ ምን ይሳነዋል!”

            🙂

            Amde

          • Aligaz G

            Amde,

            Also they have habeshasized pentedom if you have noticed. But now we start straying into YG territory. Verboten here.

            By the way many of the “progressive” rases also petitioned Janhoy around the mid 60’s to set up a constitutional monarchy and deal with the land tenure issue. If I remember right his response was gizot.

          • Saleh Johar

            Hi Aligaz,
            The Selefi Muslims, particularly Wahabbis also believe in narrations that command people to have unwavering loyalty to power and be subservient to authority.

          • Aligaz G

            Dear Saleh,

            I agree. Hence Marx’s opiate of the people and all.

          • Saleh Johar

            Aligarh,
            True but I do not subscribe to Marx, on religion 🙂

            I think what tyrants do is, like a kidnapper put drugs secretly in the victim’s drink, they inject religion with hallucinating drugs. And they do it perfectly.

          • Aligaz G

            Saleh,

            Indeed The Almighty was the one who ordered prayer for tyrants no need to confuse the sacred and profane. And Marx was a snake who promised everlasting knowledge. To tell the truth what you are describing with the coolaid sounds like date rape. But what we are discussing is much more serious. No? 🙂

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam dawit,

      Fact check:

      “HSI was elected to lead his people at age of 14.”

      – He rose to power through palace intrigue and coup d’etat.

      “In his time he abolished slavery in Ethiopia.”

      – He did this while screaming and kicking. When Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery, he said: I am naturally anti-slavery. If slavery is not wrong, nothing is
      wrong. This is a world of compensations; and he who would be no
      slave, must consent to have no slave.

      “He led the country against Italian invasion and defeated colonial aggressor.”

      – He did a runner rather than lead a guerrilla army. The British defeated Italy because Italy was part of the Axis powers. If Italy was neutral or part of the Allied powers, the British, in typical fashion would have thrown HSI to the dogs.

      “Brought Ethiopia from donkey age to jet age, expanded education throughout the country”

      – No invention, no skills transfer, feudal land system, no class mobility. For example, Japan was humiliated and was forced to open up to the West in 1850. To beat the West, Japan adopted the West’s own technology. They followed a simple principle: Every family said “our children must be educated better than us” and applied this principle recursively. In 1919, that is within 69 years, Japan was invited to the Versailles Conference as one of the major world powers. The rest is history …

      [Reference: Conversation between Physicists Feynman and Yukawa, Surely you are Joking Mr Feynman]

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Selam Simon,

        Are you a historian by profession? You made your arguments always based on history. Just my observation.

        • Berhe Y

          Dear Emma,

          I think Simon is a physicist or a mathematician or both.

          Berhe

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam Amanuel H.,

          No. I am in the BIDMAS and equations profession.

          • David Samson

            Selam Simon,

            Is it PEDMAS, BODMAS or BIDMAS?

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam David,

            ‘I’ for index [indices].

      • saay7

        Simon:

        The funny thing about dawit’s greatest hits of Haile Selasse is that he recorded all the misses and forgot the hits.

        In my view, his greatest talent (and what accounts for his very long reign) is that (a) he was able to identify, earlier than many, that after World War II, it was the US and not the UK that was going to be the dominant power; (b) he pursued, relentlessly, Massawa & Assab, and he got them, on a platter, after 40 years of hard work.

        What do you think?

        saay

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam saay,

          I agree with you.

          • saay7

            Selam Simon:

            Absolutely. There was a real competition where to headquarter the OAU, and he won that contest by selling the Ethiopian mystique cleverly. (He also almost singlehandedly retired the word Abyssinia and replaced it by Ethiopia.)

            In የኢትዯፕያ ታሪክ, there was one pic that I think had a life-long aversion to propaganda: it showed him, behind a wheels-mounted cannon, and the caption read “his majesty leading the Patriots in World War II.” It didn’t say if it was taken right before he sneaked out or right after he sneaking in via Sudan.

            saay

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam saay,

            A similar picture is included in the book ‘King of Kings: The Triumph and Tragedy of Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia’, by Asserate Kassa’s son.

            In the book, HSI is also painted as a whiter than white saint who could do nothing wrong, struggling financially to make ends meet, and there is no trace of his Muslim Oromo heritage either.

            The only down side comments against the Emperor the author makes is to bolster his own family’s positive credentials such as “my granddad had priority to ascend to the Ethiopian throne but let HSI take the chance anyway”, and “my dad was always telling the Emperor to abdicate the throne in favour of his ‘reformist[?!]’ son”.

    • Kim Hanna

      Selam dawit,

      Hello there, welcome back.
      I am now convinced, that you were developing this evangelical scholarship roll out. It took you less than a year, congratulations.

      You have the perfect stew of facts, nonsense and fiction lined up for the upcoming sermon. Now, hopefully, all you need is an Obama quality voice, a good promoter and a sharp dresser to nail down that successful evangelical career.

      Once you reach that critical mass of followers, more dough becomes more exposure and the sky is the limit.
      I promise to attend one of your convention center services anywhere in the US. At the end of the sermon waiting in line among the parishioner I will say I have seen it all at Awate.

      Mr. K.H

    • Aligaz G

      Dear dawit, maybe you are trying too hard because you can actually describe both Izzu and Janhoy in one long runon sentence each (grammar optional because we are Africans)

      Elect of God PIA is the alcoholic Father of Eritrea who has declared himself Emperor for Life and tolerates zero opposition and talkback because he is allknowing and too busy nationbuilding.

      Elect of God Haile Sellasie was the abstemious religious Father of Modern Ethiopia another also extremely busy nationbuilder who overstayed his welcome but luckily and fatally couldn’t resist dabbling in revolution at the tender age of 84 would otherwise still be ruling to this day.

      cheers

      • Paulos

        Aligaz*,

        Isaias is the surrogate father, I would say.

        *When you pronounce your name, sounds like Ali-Gas as in ፈሲ፣

        • Aligaz G

          Paulos,

          No by any measure he is the father. Revisionism has limits unless you are Meles.

          Actually pronounced like Gazprom (full of gas)

          cheers

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            Funny. The very name of this website honors the father. We can go back and forth on who the real father is to the extent of ending up on Maury Povich Show. Revisionism? Sounds mouthful. Far from it.

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            You are right sometimes big words hide small ideas. But seriously you should be in the delivery room if you are the father.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            I agree. Isaias was there with the “Push, Push” lot but the midwife saw something else coming out following Eritrea. A “Wheelchair.”

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            None of these guys are saints. Our guy used to be part of the Gestapo. But he saw the light on the road to 4 kilo. Such is life

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            What if he is confusing the in-coming train-light with the light to 4 Kilo? Perhaps.

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            We can’t know. He is still in the the wilderness.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            Not sure if the “Wilderness” is metaphorical as in a contemplative moment or lost in the woods. That said, this is by far the most trying moment in the history of the nation. Isaias can certainly talk but the people take him for a born-mute and speculate about his thoughts. Bizarre!

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            Look at all the classical revolutions and you will notice at least a generation or more of despair following. No need for speculation.

            Many fathers might claim insemination but in the end you can’t choose your father.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            I agree. One can not choose his or her father but one can disown his or her father unless the father owns all the judges lest make the claim legit. Obituary will read, “The last screw-up African leader.”

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            Yes unfortunately it looks like father and sons have irreconcilable differences but as they say let not your enemies rejoice. I suppose this is not the time to talk about prodigal sons or about lost sheep but sometimes sheer stupid optimism is what is needed. Sorry if I am getting carried away with the new testament stuff blame it on your nom de guerre Saul of Tarsus. And the Chinese talk about eating bitter tears.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            No worries. Road to Damascus changed the world for good. If Trotsky was for a Universal Communism, so was Saul turned Paul for Christianity.

            Out of infinite but finite improbable scenarios, there was one probability to make life possible. And one can make the argument that we are the product of optimism. No?

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            Actually in our universe the probability for life is infinite. Re-read the good book.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            A logical Awatista says, probability and infinity are contradictory in terms. There is no probability in infinity. If the range of a certain outcome is infinite, that means, the outcome is not only possible but the outcome is definite as in 100%.

            Another Awatista in the classroom suggests in a question format something else. What is the probability of life in a FINITE universe? Then the Awatista adds, what is the essential element of life to have it in the universe so that there can be the possibility of life? It is Carbon.

            Carbon and the young PM as in Dr. Abiy have a lot in common. Not only they are both cool and all but they are both diplomats par excellence as well. They mingle easly and get along with everyone including with the nasty highly reactive elements as in the Halogen family and the hard nosed Northerners near the Mereb river. Then, the Awatista says, that is precisely the reason clever people say, Carbon has something called Chirality as in in its four valance electrons, it can share each with any element as in the young PM’s መደመር sort of thing. Thing is though, here on planet earth, most of Carbon is found in the ocean where as say, in Venus it is in the atmosphere and that makes it a Greenhouse gas and that is the reason Venus is not suitable for life.

            The other element essential for life is Hydrogen. But the fact that it is so light, earth’s gravitational force can not keep it in the atmosphere or grounded if you will and it escapes to the outer space. Luckly though, we have it trapped in water as in arrested by oxygen as in handcuffed but busts out of prison every time there is fire as in when water is converted to gas.

            And another clever Awatista says, we can get Hydrogen if we react an acid say, sulfuric-acid with metal say, zinc but that of course is complicated. When the discussion all of a sudden heats up in the classroom, another Awatista says, suppose earth was extremely heavy as in Jupiter, would it be able to hold Hydrogen in its atmosphere? Fair and smart question. It certainly can and in fact that is the reason Jupiter has plenty of it but elemental Hydrogen is toxic as in it is essentially what an acid is all about and that is the reason Jupiter is not suitable for life.

            The other element essential for life is Nitrogen but in the middle, the bell went off and class was dismissed…And the teacher said, will pick up tomorrow…

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            Chirality? You are bringing back O Chem nightmares. Let’s stick with easy things like Creation and the Universe. If you believe in an Infinite All Powerful Creator then probabilities and statistics are for the birds paraphrasing Albert. Every breath is an affirmation of optimism. We are creatures (as in created) with inbuilt yearning for Good and affinity to The Infinite. No need to struggle against our own nature. To struggle is to be lost.

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            This is really good stuff. Heading out now. Will carry on later. Glad you’re in this Forum. Buona Giornata!

          • Paulos

            Aligaz,

            Arguably, this is one of the most difficult ontological challenges there is. Why is there something rather than nothing? Was there a purpose at all to bring the Universe into existence? Well, individually, as in in terms of every person’s fate in life, life is not deterministic but collectively, that seems the case as in determinism appears to govern. Human history seems to be guided by a providence into the realization of a collective consciousness [You can read into it as God or if you are a big fun of Hegel like moi, you can call it Absolute Idealism.]

            Here is where it gets weirder, is there something called “Nothing” where Einstein famously put it when he said, “God abhors vacuum.” To put it differently, is “Nothing” negation of space? The closest we can get around the rather nerve racking question is when we define the two familiar parameters of space: Area and Volume.

            Area as you know helps us to approximate a two dimensional coordinates in space and Volume helps us to figure out coordinates in three dimensional space instead. Then the question becomes, what is the smallest possible Area or Volume of space we can examine? Or is space continuous so much so that, it can not be reducible as in an atom is the smallest unit of matter.

            Let me back up a bit and upend the question and inject the hard sciences into Geometry. As you know, there are four fundamental forces of nature: Electromagnetic force, Strong force, Weak force and Gravitational force. All the four forces are Fields in the sense that, every part of each field takes a specific parameter. Not only that, every field has two manifestations: a Wave and a Particle. Now, if Gravitational field propagates through space, it must be a Wave and a Particle as well. And if it is a Particle as in if Space is a Particle, it must own a reducible smallest area possible. The particle of space is dubbed Graviton. Here is the fun stuff: If Electromagnetic field communicates with itself through Photons, the Strong force through Gluons, the Gravitons communicate with each other through something called Entanglement. The entanglement which is the communication of the Gravitons generates space as in it creates the thing we call Space—weaving a fabric of you will. This phenomena takes place in a Planck’s scale which is in a one trillionth of a millimeter and you can imagine how incredibly small it is but it appears to us as a smooth “fabric.” This means there is no such a thing called, “Nothing.”

            The question still persists, if there was never “Nothingness,” was there ever a Beginning at all? Again, we are back to one of the fundamental theories of the hard sciences: Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle. The more we get or zoom-in to the smallest areas of space, The less accurate the momentum of the space becomes and essentially we can never be Certain if there was something called the “Beginning.” What we have instead is a cycle of eternal being as in the Universe was never created not destroyed, pretty much like the First Law of Thermodynamics where energy is neither created nor destroyed. In the scale where our reality exists, Area and Volume are just approximations of the things we can not perceive but in a very strange way, they work for us!

          • Aligaz G

            Dear Paulos

            I left to do real world stuff for a few hours but man i came back to find you giving full scale chemistry courses for Awatistas and posing deep cosmological questions on the side just for fun. Busy man. Anyway for the sake of polite conversation let me start by suggesting a simultaneous reading of Hawking, Mandlebrot and Hegel for interested bystanders who maybe wondering where this sort of conversation ends. Anyhow I agree that ultimately continuum mechanics fails us but our perceptions are scaled at newtonian levels. So in the end and to hopefully close this topic we are reduced to a sort of intuitive analysis where we attributize meaning and good as infinite as symmetric and as beautiful. In other words you will know evil when you see it. The mathematics of all this is where the rubber meets the road. Please dont go there 🙂

            cheers

          • Paulos

            Selam Aligaz,

            Thank you so much. We are here to learn from one another and it is kinda a jolting the mood of the Forum into something of a nerdy but fun stuff. Thanks again.

          • Aligaz G

            Paulos,

            You are welcome.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Dr Paulos,

            Generally, “Chemistry” is the most hated subject by students. I don’t know how many will enjoy the chemistry metaphor you use in our political discussion. Just me think.

          • Paulos

            Selam Professor A. Hidrat,

            In fact, I would argue that Chemistry is the mother of all the sciences. Maybe next time will illustrate why that is the case.

          • Amde

            Selam Paulos,

            Beautiful…

            Amde

          • Paulos

            Selam Amde,

            Thanks. Glad you like it.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Paulo,

            You forgot earth, may be you will come to it. Look it up Bill Maher commentary Earth vs Mars (for all those Mars travel worshipers…I am looking at you my friend iSem:).

            Berhe

          • Paulos

            Berhino,

            I did mention Earth 🌎, the beautiful Blue Planet.

            We left off on Nitrogen yesterday when class was dismissed.

            Nitrogen makes up 78% of the Earth’s atmosphere but it is kinda strange why it takes pretty much all the space for itself. Well, it probably has a lot to do with its stubborn nature where it is rather difficult to seperate it from its twin partner as in it comes as N2. And that is the reason, it takes a bacteria in soil to have it “fixed” into Nitrites [NO2] or Ammonia so that plants can use it to build themselves up.

            The trick is, if it is stubborn and hard to crack as a rock, one can use it to build something and that is precisely the reason, it is one of the main component of Proteins, or DNA including most if not all medications [It can hold and ground all the molecules together in the compound, in this case the particular medicine from flying out so to speak as bricks hold the aluminum on the roof of a house.]

            On a side note, the Habber-Bosch Process was one of the greatest inventions in Science and particularly in Chemistry where the duo were able to “fix” or convert atmospheric Nitrogen to Ammonia artificially. Ammonia for us humans is toxic and every time we consume protein, we get ammonia as the end product but thanks to the liver where it converts ammonia to a less toxic compound Urea. Sorry got carried away.

  • Girmay

    Hi all with the rise of Abie many Eritreans declared Eritrean opposition parties will be dead or incapacitated. Nitric even went further to explain the 5 stages of grief. On Meskerem. com I read a story that the Eritrean opposition will be deported from Ethiopia .
    In my opnion the Eritrean opposition and justice seekers struggle and scream for justice has been planted in the mind and heart of every Eritrean. That scream has parked in the conscious of every Eritrean. Even those who don’t support the opposition suffer anxiety caused by the scream of Eritrean justice seekers . For these reasons I believe that the Eritrean scream can not be deported. How can you deport an anxiety?
    In conclusion the scream of Eritrean justice seekers have landed in the conscious of every Eritrean. The only question is how long will Erittrens live with this anxiety? No Ethiopian hypnotist prime minster can cure this anxiety. Only Eritreans have that power. For me this is the ideal way to change because the world has seen enough black on black crime. Eritreans should not kill each other to effect political change.

  • Mez

    Dear Ghirmay,

    You brought an important theme. What is honesty as is seen by a politician, educated professional, or in any person’s day to day life?

    Then I may say a word or two on ” To them honesty means singing Ethiopiawenet.”

    Thanks

  • saay7

    dawit:

    That’s great and all but in 1974, as an Ethiopian, which “elect of God” would you have chosen: Haile Selasse I or Aman Andom? Looks like God chose two that year and there was an overlap of elects of God.

    In general, what happens when there is a coup and one elect of God (by definition of he wins, he is elect of God) overthrows the king (also, by definition, to be king, he was elected by God)?

    saay

  • abdulworld

    Hello Ismael,
    Hello Ismael
    In terms of democracy, I believe the raise of populism and xenophobia is largely due
    neo-liberalism and its affect on lives of average citizen of lot of developed countries.
    You can article from Guardian
    “The fatal flaw of neoliberalism: it’s bad economics”

    In terms of Dr. Abiy fully liberalizing the economy I have heard time believing that Ethiopia would such disastrous road… No country has industrialized using that approach.

    I don’t know about Cult of personality- I think what I am noticing is that
    85 million Ethiopia people got a dynamic leader who is from their generation.
    These people who have known Meles/Hailemariam leadership only.
    It could turn in Cult but it is too soon.

    “In contrast to the rapturous Ethiopians, the reaction of most Eritreans had been one of dismay and confusion. Why would an advocate of democracy like Abiy fraternize with a ruthless tyrant? Why did he say nothing about the human rights violations in Eritrea?”

    I don’t understand your statement above. I am one of those
    Eritrean who is not dismayed or confusioned by Dr. Abiy behavior toward Eritrean government.
    I actually believe is decision to stay out the Eritrea’s internal problem fits into
    basic practice of conflict resolution.
    Dr. Abiy primary job is to lead Ethiopia and do what is in best interest of Ethiopian.
    1. Bring peace between two countries by implementing court result
    2. Find additional ports for Ethiopia for its economic growth…

    Involving himself in the internal governance affair of foreign country is diplomatically naive
    and foolish especially if it harms the above two interests. Next do you want him to
    start criticizing Sisi in Egypt to return to democracy or call Guelleh in Djoubt… or Museveni
    or Bashir…

    “How revolting the circus show honoring Isaias was[1]! How totally out of character Isaias was throughout!”
    This reminds of every American president holding hands with Saudi absolute monarch..
    It is called diplomatic norm of civil societies..

    “All we know is Abiy, with a single stroke, has checkmated Isaias by depriving him of the one excuse (the border issue) he has been using for about two decades to avoid instituting reforms.”
    I think this is all in your head.
    Dr. Abiy is playing the game of “how do I maximize and get best deal for ethiopia and its people”
    If he got his Phd in the area of conflict resolution- the first rule is never personalize, don’t take fixed positions, focus on your interests and find best strategy to meet all your interests preferable win/win strategy… He probably understands Issias more than Issias understands himself. Dr. Abiy had to climb thru ranks of Ex-Guerilla fighter in EPRDF..
    had to manage those egos and navigate around to get to where he is at 42 years old.

    “he will therefore eventually support democratic forces in Eritrea.”
    I would assume his primary focus is to meet interests of Ethiopia.
    If Issias passes and another dictator replaces- as long as new dictator doesn’t
    intefer with interest of Ethiopia.. I can’t see Dr. Abiy doing promoting anything or
    getting involved in Internal Affair.

    “Eritreans react to solicitations for unity or federation”
    As an Eritrean I find this ridiculous. Eritrean government had border
    problem with Yemen and war skirmish with Sudan… After those issues got
    resolved or addressed- were we talking about federating with Yemen or Sudan.

    Why is any Eritrean talking about Federation in 2018. After independence,
    you had a dyfunctional government- so do many African countries after independence.
    It is called Freedom. It has its price.
    Let’s have peace with all neighbors first and sort our own problems.

    “One compelling argument against Abiy is that he is trying to please everybody including mass murderers like Isaias and Mengistu”
    No! He taking the kind of action an intelligent leaders does to meet the interests and need of his people for now and future. It is generational paradigm shift on how to address political issues and conflict. It might be looking like a “please everybody” in couple of years it will be the norm.

    “Or is Abiy just a pawn in the global intrigue in our region that includes US, UAE and others? If so, to what extent? Answers to such questions are bound to be revealed soon and, in my opinion, it is then and only then that we will be in a position to either categorically approve or condemn him.”
    This is more of conspiracy…
    Maybe a better question at least for me- do his actions and conduct meet the
    interest of his people? Is he an effective leader? Or will Ethiopia as country be in better condition after he leaves?

    • Saleh Johar

      Hi Abdulwirld,
      You have presented a compelling argument. If I were an Ethiopian I wouldn’t find anything against it. However, you would face difficulty to embrace gestures simply because it harms you and I think it’s civil and human that we express our dismay. At the end of the day, even Mengistu was working for the interest of his country as well as any leader who wreaked havoc on another country was doing it for the interest of their countries. If you are on the receiving end, what you do is what we are doing. We can’t just brush it off and say “ we’ll, he is doing it for the interest of his country”. Personally I leave that to those who benefit from the gestures and I advance the interest of my country, from my perspective. In short, whether it is al Bashir or abi, they should not be left alone when their moves hurt us. That’s what we did when the soviets, Americans and the rest supported our tormentors. So, it is important to choose from which perspective you support a move or reject it. Would you be kind enough to explain all that you said again, but this time from an Eritrean perspective? I am sure you will reach a different conclusion.

      Thank you

      • abdulworld

        Hello Saleh,
        I fully agree with your sentiment that we have to vocal and constructively critically of any leader whose action we believe harms the Eritrean people- as Eritrean citizens.
        I also believe we have to fully understand the roles and perspectives of other leaders.
        I personally believe Dr. Abiy behavior is strictly for benefit of Ethiopia and Ethiopian. That been said.. open border and international commerce is one way the misery of average Eritrean in Eritrea can be minimized.

        As student of social movements and history- I believe revolution or change happens only when people see good example or taste something better.. That never happens in isolation or because of suffering.

        20+ years of isolation has only kept IA in power and changed nothing. Isolation is IA default setting.. it is like going back Nakfa.
        Dr. Abiy criticizing erratic IA would create more misery and isolation for Eritrean. Just like like Mugabe- I expect IA to hold power until his last breath.

        The only thing that can dislodge is minimizing the isolation- that is when people say.. “hey I hate our system.. look at their system”.. “why are not doing this or that”… that start happening when interaction happen..

        I just believe that implementing border ruling and open trade will benefit Eritrean people not because the deal is negotiated well but it less burden of average Eritrean whose leaders are dysfunctional.

        of course people in diaspora, whose life is not completely impacted by IA behavior can disagree or worry Ethiopian leader performing diplomatic greetings or worry about real democracy which is non-existent in whole horn.

        • Acria

          Selam abulworld,

          Your premise will only work if people are free to move between borders. As an Eritrean, I have no clue who will be freely moving in and out of Eritrea. What will be the requirement? Age limitation? Military service? Student? Etcetera. So, it all depends how the PFDJ will implement the so-called open borders. Moreover, democracy is not a foreign concept to Eritreans, it is just that there is nobody courageous enough to fight for it and there are some elements in the society that want to hold on to power forever and are afraid to implement it.

        • Aligaz G

          Dear abdulworld,

          I have seen several posts discussing genetics in Awate and nature vs nurture is an interesting way to look at Ethiopia and Eritrea. For the interest of conversation let us put aside the technical studies that show it is impossible to genetically differentiate the populations of the two countries and simply focus on “nurture” at the national level. Let us simplify further and consider the Eritrean case separately. Here we have after separation (for lack of a better word) 50 years of Italian colonization followed by 10 yrs of British administration followed by 10 years of uneasy federation with Ethiopia followed by 30 years of war of independence with Ethiopia followed by 27 years of homegrown dictatorship。Now what is really interesting is that after all this complicated and meandering life history most of Eritrea’s gross national metrics ie life expectancy, gdp per capita etc are very similar to Ethiopia’s numbers even after a solid decade plus of 11% growth in Ethiopia while Eritrea languished under sanctions etc. This outcome similarity further reminds me of identical twin studies. Now Saleh Johar should not be be worried unnecessarily about this twin effect because while separated twins may be so close as to even give their pets the same names they have separate wives and children and a different life history. But as twins separated we speak authentically for one another and about one another -no need to ask for permission.

        • Kaddis

          Dear Abdu – amazing reflections
          I mentioned several times – the horn is a funny place in terms of International Relation – in need of dealing with ICC run away, unrecognized nations presidents ,failed state president, fragile nation PM elected 100% ( my country Ethiopia) two presidents in one ( Kenya) and the longest rebel leader to date ( Isayas) 🙂
          Hope to read more of your take in between travels
          Cheers,

        • Berhe Y

          Dear Abdulworld,

          Thank you for well thought out argument. I really like the way you think and how you see the current developments from a positive side (including for the Eritrean side). I hope I am not putting words in your mouth but that’s how I read it.

          I like they way you framed the current situation and what the future story can look like

          “The only thing that can dislodge is minimizing the isolation- that is when people say.. “hey I hate our system.. look at their system”.. “why are not doing this or that”… that start happening when interaction happen..”

          Since you mentioned that you are a “student of social movements and history”, what do you see the best circumstances in terms of short, medium, and long term strategy in building and transforming our country and our society to democratic ideals.

          Berhe

        • Abraham H.

          Selam abdul, you said “The only thing that can dislodge is minimizing the isolation..”, I’ve been convinced long time ago that Eritrea’s pure and simple problem is the Eritrean dictator. And as you said he has no plan whatsoever of ceding power to the people. So the simplest and fastest solution to this impasse has been to take out the dictator. The problem is as simple as that, but we need someone with balls to do this; until then, we continue to suffer. It is so terribly sad, an entire nation to be held hostage by a useless aging criminal.
          PS. to all Awatista, there is a video from the eritv that shows “a tour of development sites” with the Somali president. In this video I’m finally convinced that the Eritrean dictator has really gone mad; absolute power has lead to his final insanity. In one way this is good news to the Eritrean people. BTW, that video has no comments apart from the waving of hands of dia and, of course, the theatrical koboro junkies.

      • Simon Kaleab

        Selam Saleh GJ,

        “even Mengistu was working for the interest of his country as well as any leader”?

        As far as his country is concerned, I thought, the butcher donkey didn’t have a clue where he was coming from and where he was going.

        • Saleh Johar

          Yes Simon,
          I agree. But the logic is used to show that people work for their country but many times the outcome is disaster as evidenced by Mengistu and Isaias. I was trying to hit the Chelle argument.

  • saay7

    Selam Ghirmay:

    I am afraid I disagree with your take. If someone can be an Eritrean and American at the same time, why can’t he be Ethiopian and Eritrean? I call dawit perhaps the most honest awatista because he declared himself of having both identities when it was unpopular to do so. Dr Bereket Habteselasse said less than that and people set their alarm to wake up early and condemn him. The only difference? dawit is a fan of Isaias Afwerki and Dr Berekhet is not.

    Identity is a complex and layered issue people should be allowed to identify themselves however they choose.

    saay

    • Hayat Adem

      Hi Saay,
      If this is the same dawit who proudly declared many comments ago here that it was okay with him to advance sneaking hands on women after darkness came, well, well, I have no country I manage but he is a persona non grata, a person not appreciated in my personal heart.

      • saay7

        Selam Hayat:

        There were two dawits one with small “d” and the other with big “D” and I don’t remember which one it was but yes you are right not to appreciate him in your heart because he wrote some terrible and spiteful things and, of course, he completely and totally misunderstood Tsigereda’s rememberances from her days as a female tegadalit and how sexual harassment was a daily event for her.

        As terrible as that d/Dawits postings were, there were others much worse. And for those who want to read how terrible people can be when they choose to be reckless, they can revisit that article Mstir Leyti/Secret of the Night.

        Related: one more reason that the National Union of Eritrean Women (NUEW) will forever be remembered as infamous: they never had anything to say of all the sexual violations, sexual slavery documented by the Commission of Inquiry on Eritrea, which should be called by its real name “Testimonies of IA/PFDJ Victims.”

        saay

        • iSem

          Hi Sal and Hayat:
          Yes it was this dawit, the dawit with small d that said those words and, Hayat and I and many others had vigorous back and forth with him. And dawit the IA and said whom ever God crowns is our king went further and made it personal and said: “I have 3 beautiful daughters, Ivy league students and they were a product of my skinny arm sneaking

  • dawit

    Selamat all

    What Eritrea needs is stability and peace to its people and those are being provided by the present leaders. PIA has provided that as liberation leader and for indipedence Eritrea since 1991. The so called opposition leaders are unable to unit. If given the chance to lead the nation would they would plunge the country into civil wars that we observed in many countries. The jihadist, crusaders and tribalism would find a fertile ground in Eritrea. You can call him dictator or devil, the Eritrean people from all walks of lives identify with him.

    Long live PIA and Eritrea!

    dawit

    • saay7

      dawit:

      You know where HaileTG was this whole time? He was translating the report of the commission of inquiry to Tigrinya (good job Haile). And this is what it says about the man who gave Eritrea peace:

      ​ኮምሽን፡ ገበናት ኣንጻር ሰብኣውነት፡ ማለት ገበናት ባርነት፡ ማእሰርቲ፡ ግዱድ ምስዋር፡ መስቀይቲ፡ ካልኦት ኢሰብኣዊ ተግባራት፡ ምህዳን፡ ጾታዊ ዓመጽን መቕተልቲ ብዘይ ሕግን፡ ኣብ ኤርትራ ካብ 1991 ንደሓር ከም ዝተፈጸሙ ንምእማን ዘኽእል ጭቡጥ መርትዖ ኣለዋ።

      ብዘይ ጭቡጥ ሕጋውን ምምሕዳራውን ጽገና፡ ኤርትራ ናይዞም ገበናትን ግህሰታትን ተሓታትነት ከተረጋግጽ ከም ዘይትኽእል ኮምሽን ትድምድም። ስለዝኾነ ድማ፡ ባይቶ ጸጥታ፡ ንኩነታት ኤርትራ ናብ ኣኽባር ሕጊ ናይ ኣህጉራዊ ቤት-ፍርዲ ገበነኛታት ኣብ ግምት ንኸእትዎ ከመሓላልፎ ትመክር። ከምኡ ውን፡ ኣባላት ሃገራት ሕቡራት ሃገራት፡ ንዝኾነ ኣብ መሬተን ዘሎ ብኣህጉራዊ ገበናት ዝተጠርጠረ ውልቀ ሰብ ናብ ሕጊ ናይ ምቕራብ ወይ ምጥራዝ ግዴተአን ከተግብራ ትመክር።

      Has the meaning of the word “peace” changed? So if a government terrorizes and tortures a people and changes the country into prison, we should reward him and keep him in power?

      saay

      • dawit

        Hi saay7,

        I didn’t know Haile TG was employed by the commission of inquiry to translate fabricated lies to Tigrinya. What a wast of time and effort! I know the commission had errand boys and call girls including lawyers and journalists propagandist anti Eritrean people . What did the commission accomplished? It did not prevent PIA from establishing Peace with Ethiopia at the right time!
        dawit

        • Acria

          Selam dawit,

          When was the right time? Was it 1998? Or 20 years later? I think the right time would have been 1998. That would have given us a good amount of time to measure how IA and his party will fair in the heart of all Eritreans during peaceful time.

      • Semere Tesfai

        Selam saay

        1. – “You know where HaileTG was this whole time? He was translating the report of the commission of inquiry to Tigrinya (good job Haile).”

        So……….. denigrating and criminalizing PFDJ and Isaias Afewerki is his job description?

        Outside the human rights business thing, does he has any other job to earn a living? Just curious to know!

        Semere Tesfai

        • Berhe Y

          Dear Semere T.

          “Outside the human rights business thing, does he has any other job to earn a living? Just curious!”

          Just a hunch, he is probably one of the best Eritrean journalists.

          Berhe

      • haileTG

        Hey saay,

        If I had the chance to be part of that great feat, I would have found a way to include dawitom and Semere Tesfai just for the heck of it:) BTW I don’t think they know that “twisting the commission’s position” on online forums was also included in the report where it documented how the employees of the commission were personally harassed by PFDJ’s chair throwing squads.

        Anyhow, I am trying to go slow on evaluating/judging PMAA as per the topical issue in this section. If you remember our Heart vs Mind topic we argued about before my absence, PMAA seem to vindicate the point that the Heart can indeed be brought to the political fora. Yeqrta’na fiqr, gimb mafres, d’yldle megenbat… wow way to go Abi…forget Esu…Abi y’shala be’meto etif!

        On a serious note though: I have a small advice for PMAA. For dawitom take it to addis for me on his next trip?

        Dear PMAA

        ኣብ ልብኻ ልቢ ክውስኸልካ ማለት በሰፊው ልቦናህ ልብ እንድጨምርልህ ያህል stay away from identity politics. It has a subtle way infiltrating your best of intentions. In addressing a question from a young journalist Tigrayan lady regarding her question of people involvement in settling some of the sticking parts of the border area, you said that you viewed this position as emanating from the notion that “እሱ የኛ ሰው ካልሆነ፡ ኣይቻልም” attitude. I doubt it that such is the case. I don’t think even someone from adigrat was in their mind when they said that. They meant the actual people in the border area. Given the heightened identity issues in the current Ethiopian politics, it is easy to make such quick conclusions. However, energizing identity can’t be done without heavy investment on arrogance. If we think in terms of a Russian Doll, if identity is the outer doll, inside it you’ll find arrogance, inside which is anger and inside which is then found conflict and violence. I like your stand so far but wish you to be alert of the seductive evil of energized identity. ሌላ ቢቀር ከወንድማችን ሰመረ ተስፋይ ተማሩ ኣቶ ኣብይ። ሆዱ ሳይቀር የሸበተ ቂል ሆኖ ቀረ ያውላቹ…

        • saay7

          Haha HaileTG:

          Ok, I take it back. You were not in the Himalayas or translating the CoI report to Tigrinya (it was a joke Semere T); you were actually enrolled in advanced classes of Dale Carnegie’s “How To Win Friends & Influence People” because I would have written a different letter to PMAA based on the same video we watched. Ok, I will. (Remember, in the heart vs mind, you know my position so I won’t do the ልብኻ ልቢ ክውስኸልካ stuff, but I won’t begin with “what the hell is the matter with you?”, as Hayat might. Hayat was with you on that heart thing and you know, with the heart, it is always steaming)

          Dear PMAA:

          In 1994, when you were 12, I watched President isaias Afwerki addressing Eritreans in Washington DC. New to power, he was entitled to all the respect befitting a man who led the movement that Eritrea of Derg and its brutalities and had successfully led Eritrea’s referendum and statehood. The hall was packed with adoring fans. Except 1. The questioner stood up to ask a question: she was a woman, veiled, and she asked a question that the president didnt like. The crowd booed her but the president quieted them, encouraging her to finish her question. And then he berated her. This got the adoring fans to cheer him. Which got him to berate her more. This got the crowd to a frenzy. This got the president to berate her and whatever ethnic group he assume she was. This got the crowd roading. Which got the president…..

          Similarly, Mr. Prime Minister, you–a man who is always exolling women–got one question asked by one woman, a woman whose question you didn’t like, a woman whose question you assumed was not her but driven by a facebook campaign, and started condescending to her. This got your adoring fans to cheer you. Which got you to berate other people whom you assumed gave her the question. And so, Mr. Prime Minister, take a break from adoring fans (for 3 months): take questions from independent journalists (if they exist), get them from your critics, get out of your bubble before it swallows you up whole.

          saay

          • Semere Tesfai

            Selam saay7

            “Ok, I take it back. You were not in the Himalayas or translating the CoI report to Tigrinya (it was a joke Semere T); you were actually enrolled in advanced classes of Dale Carnegie’s “How To Win Friends & Influence People…..”

            للأسف……. ‘The cat is out of the bag’ so to speak – so soon. Let’s just see how effective it is in its hunting skill. I hope it is not overrated!

            And you know Abu Salah how much I adore, respect and trust you. I do adore you so much – I will never ask ‘how did you know so much about HTG invaluable contribution’, never!. WORD.

            Semere Tesfai

          • saay7

            Haha Semere T:

            This is an excellent question but lucky for us all, I have the answer.

            The last time Haile TG was here was in August 13, 2016. He reappeared in August 2018.

            The Tigrinya edition of the 2016 Commission of Inquiry Report was published on September 25, 2015. At 5:52:10 AM.

            So, clearly, what happened was HaileTG invented a time machine in August 2016, went back in time to September 2015, translated the report to Tigrinya, then was coming back to August 2016 but, due to exhaustion. put the wrong year (a common mistake with Delorean cars) and showed up two years later.

            And that’s the truth.

            HaileTG, when your team translated the paper from English to Tigrinya, Arabic, French, Russian, Chinese and Spanish, you forgot to include one critical language: Amharic. This is why we are having a hard time convincing our Ethiopian brothers and sisters that if you knew what this man (IA) and his team and sadists perpetrated on your own Eritrean brothers and sisters, you would have been less flippant and less Kissingery than you have been.

            Love you back, Semere!

            saay

          • Semere Tesfai

            Selam saay7

            1. – “The last time Haile TG was here was in August 13, 2016. He reappeared in August 2018.”

            I’ll be damned!!! Didn’t know human rights classes take that long. No wonder they pay them handsomely!

            2. – “The Tigrinya edition of the 2016 Commission of Inquiry Report was published on September 25, 2015. At 5:52:10 AM.”

            That precise ha! That day must be a memorable one. Me? I don’t even remember this year’s, my birthday dinner with that accuracy.

            3. “HaileTG, when your team translated the paper from English to Tigrinya, Arabic, French, Russian, Chinese and Spanish, you forgot to include one critical language: Amharic……..”

            Are you mistaking HTG for Kibrom TG now? Anyway………

            In all honesty: let the guy do his job. I’ve full confidence in him.

            Semere Tesfai

  • dawit

    Me Ismail

    Your pesimist article is based on the usual hatred of jihadist and crusaders campaigns against Eritrea and its leader PIA since 1991. What evidence do you have to claim PIA as mass murdere to lump him with Mengistu HM? PIA is the most loved leader in the Horn of Africa! The world have seen it in Addis when thosands pour in the street contrary to 30 years of Woyane propoganda to paint Eritrea and PIA as devils in the world.

    Long live PIA and PMAAA

    • Simon Kaleab

      Selam dawit,

      We all know that Isaias is not a democrat, he is a dictator, clear for all to see.

      But the question is, can Ismail OA, who uses carefully chosen universal phrases such as democracy, rule of law and freedom of the press, be a democrat himself?

      • saay7

        Selamat Simon:

        But more importantly, from dawit’s perspective, can Ismail be an Elect of God? God only elects one at time (one Supernatural one vote) except with Aman Andom and Haile Selasse, when there was a system error and God had two.

        saay

        • Simon Kaleab

          Selam saay,

          dawit’s position is clear, his proud motto is: “Znegese Ngusna, zbereqe tsehayna!”

          If Ismail OA tries and succeeds to become the king of Eritrea, dawit will not have a problem.

          • saay7

            Selamat Simon:

            Like all systems, dawit’s has a bug: what happens when there are two kings and there is no King of Kings? He calls Aman Andom a king and Haile Selasse a king but what was an Ethiopian to do in 1974? And since dawit declared himself an Eritrean and Ethiopian long long before the ተደመር movement), whom would he have pledged his allegiance to?

            saay

          • Simon Kaleab

            Selam saay,

            dawit is more sophisticated than meets the eye.

            He operates like Computer programs written in Object Oriented Languages. The name of the game is compartmentalisation. He uses different Functions for different tasks. So using the same variable name in different Functions will not create clashes because the variables exit in different memory locations. On this issue, I certify him to be bugs-free.

            Sorry to be boring, but I thought you are into Computing and IT.

          • saay7

            Selamat Simon:

            And you, sir, are an excellent lawyer.

            But even you can’t sell pseudoscience as science. dawits theory is pseudoscience, it meets Poppers test for it: always verifiable but never falsifiable.

            saay

        • Ismail AA

          Salamat saay,

          Isayas is disappointed with God and angry at Him because He has not found yet a worthy candid to consider after the two you have mentioned; tired of waiting and now he is septuagenarian and running of time.

    • Nitricc

      Hey dawit; do you remember, “The Five Stages of Grief:

      DENIAL

      ANGER

      BARGAINING

      DEPRESSION

      ACCEPTANCE”

      As we speak and with events that are unfold, PIA heaters and
      the oppositions are going through serious grief. What stage do you think the so-called oppositions and the anti PIA gangs are in?

      • Hameed Al-Arabi

        Salam Nitricc,

        You are mistaken, the opposition are not going through serious grief, but through a serious transformation and maturity. The veil you have worn for a long time has been exposed to all Eritreans, even the naive ones. Isaias has clearly declared that he is an Ethiopian and by default all worshipers of Isaias are Ethiopians. In the past decades Eritreans were wondering: Why these guys are cruel and un-sympathizers with the dilemma of Eritreans? Many Eritreans were unable to deal with this obscure phenomenon upto the level of opposition leaders. It is amazing, they claim they are Eritreans, but they hate Eritreans except those applaud for them.

        I am not fabricating charges against them. I will just give you an example and you judge yourselves. Let us take you the issue of Mustafa Nur-Hussein, Abdallah Jabir and martyr Saeed Hijai who were most loyal to Isaias, but within twenty-four hours they have become Jihadists and Islamists. Even Saeed Hijai move was a rights demand move. Anyone who stands in front of Isaias on his mission to his mama faces death and life imprisonment in dungeons. I don’t think the privileges they have gotten in Eritrea will be available for them in Ethiopian among hundred million plus competitors. Any how since it is their true homeland they may accept anything. Anyway it is good for Eritreans these vague creatures to come down from their shoulders. Good luck WANAW Ethiopiawi Nitricc.

      • dawit

        Hi Nitricc,
        I believe they are still stuck in stage 1. They can’t believe their eyes and ears. They still sing their old song DIA this DIA that after 30 years yet PIA is accomplished miracle in the region.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Dawit

      I think what you say there makes profound sense. You are just objecting to my comparing Isayas to Mengistu. I will therefore take it back and declare instead that he is greater than even Mengistu!

      Incidentally, why juxtapose our great leader to PMAA? Let us just chant, Long live PIA!

      Ismail (pointblank)

  • Selam Amde,

    OPDO to change its name to ODP (Oromo Democratic Party). Is OPDO ahead of others, when it insinuates that from strictly an ethnic party, it is moving towards a democratic party of the oromo people. Democracy is a broad and inclusive term.

    Does it mean, “ኢትዮጵያ የጥቂቶች ብቻ ሳትሆን የሁላችን ጉዳይ ናት፣”? Maybe, we will teach you how to govern a country. Is this among the first steps PMAA is taking on his promise for a democratic ethiopia? He had given his word in public before his audience that ethiopia will be democratic, and one cannot be democratic when strictly ethnicist. It should start at home, and it seems that he is doing that.

    • Teodros Alem

      Selam horizon
      Opdo(revolutionary oromo pary)
      Odp(a democratic oromo party) or (a party that want to govern it’s constituency).
      Both of them r oromo based party.
      The rest show how ur brain function.

    • Amde

      Selam Horizon,

      Well, to me the more interesting implication of this name change is that the long rumored change of EPRDF from a front to a party is not in the works for the congress in September. Why bother rebranding an Oromo party if the goal was to form a national one?

      The EPRDF brand is just toxic. Don’t be surprised if ANDM rebrands as well, maybe even back to its original name (EPDM I think). Word is the Southern coalition is less so nowadays, with the Sidama elite aggressively pushing for Sidama statehood – which would possibly force the creation of a number of new states in the south. In the EPRDF franchise system, every ethnic state gets its hegemonic ethnic party – so if statehood does go through, expect the Sidama party to leave SEPDM and demand the same number of seats as TPLF or ANDM in EPRDF. And TPLF is no longer Swaggering in Sheger, but is
      Moody in Meqele. I think the Asmara Rapprochement was rather ravaging for them.

      So unless Abiy does a believable version of “We should hang together because we would most assuredly hang individually” to get them to keep the front for political survival, I don’t see how EPRDF survives too long into the next Ethiopian New Year.

      And even if he could talk them into sticking together, despite his claim of desiring democracy, I see a major problem with how he convinces an EPRDF at meto-be-meto to be open to free competition when the outlook is only down. It may sound nice at EPRDF central, but there are armies of cadres and bureaucrats who don’t see why they have to lose their perks for some ideal.

      OPDO is on the horns of a dilemma – namely, stay Oromo or go National. All the daughters of OLF as well as OFC will now be competing against it in Oromiya, pushing it to stay Oromo. But the non-Oromo public’s adoration of Abiy and Lemma’s pumping of Ethiopiawinnet has shown them this huge constituency is up for grabs, bringing with it international cachet. Hmmm… What to do? what to do?

      Funnily enough i think it is the 2020 election calendar that is driving the pace of change. When considering where TeamLemma wants to be – transition from “Ethiopiawinnet vs Oromumma” to “Oromumma as a foundation stone of Ethiopiawinnet” – it is a daunting challenge to do in a generation, let alone in mere two years.

      Did you see how the proposed logos look like Obama’s?

      Amde

      • Selam Amde,

        Thanks a lot for the elaborate response. I am really happy i asked you.

  • Aligaz G

    Dear Ismail Omer-Ali

    The response of the Eritrean Opposition to various Ethiopian leaders since 1998 is interesting to say the least. Their main point of contention with PMAA seems to be that he is embracing dictatorship in Asmara purely for political gain. However, the same Eritrean Opposition had no qualms with embracing Melesean dictatorship in Ethiopia as long as Ethiopia maintained a military, diplomatic and economic stranglehold on Eritrea ignoring the fact that Ethiopia is a poor nation with finite resources. Admittedly there were many push factors that finally lead to peace and normalization between the two countries but surely it has always been obvious to all that sanctions were never going to bring about regime change in Asmara.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Aligaz,

      Excellent points. Thanks for your comments

      Ismail (pointblank)

  • Ismail AA

    Hayak Allah ሙጋዖ እንቛዕ ናጋድ ቢልቢልተ

    This is superbly written assessment article that leaves virtually no crack for critique. As a matter of fact, if I would write that those who didn’t read anything and those who have been reading and hearing a lot of things could come out as equal beneficiaries from this article and its thorough coverage, I wouldn’t be accused of exaggerating. Credit has given to the principal actor (PMAA) where it’s due, skepticisms and benefits of doubts have been served where they should, and things that the future will have to tell have been left to the future itself.

    Having read this article to my best ability, I came to the conclusion that it can serve our understanding better if the reader would figure out where to draw the line between the Eritrean affairs and the Ethiopian affairs. This could facilitate characterization of the steps Prime Minister Abij has been taking within proper and objective contexts. I thought this is one of the points Ismail tended to make (stand for correction if I misrepresent your view).

    On the Eritrean side, the moves (combination of niceties and politics in admirable way) that been made aim at pure political and diplomatic undertakings with the hope that if they would consummate are hoped to open the way before net economic benefits. So far, the internal dilemma and predicaments of the Eritrean people have found no way to interest agenda of the good Doctor. That is why ignoring (I do not know what might be going behind the iron curtain of secrecy) the internal problems of Eritrea – and for the reasons the article has discussed – has been sending confusing signals that ranged from unlikely mellowing of the dictator and him allowing cosmetic and self-serving changes, mixture of hopes and desperations on organized or spontaneous opposition enclaves, and up to and including hopes for resurrection of the long dead projects like re-unification in demoted or upgraded federalist notions. Even the remnants of the defunct school of unionists have found reason to speculate. Thus, on the discussion about Eritrea and possible developments – short and long term – I agree with Ismail.

    On the Ethiopian scene, PMAA and his governing coalition are out to face more real and challenging issues than the rather easier policies in relation to Eritrea. Success or failure with the latter might not cost him as much as the rewards and losses successes and failures in Ethiopia could grace him or curse him. Here too, the challenges range from keeping the ruling coalition on his own terms, harnessing the numerous and contradictory stakeholders within reasonable process to needed democratization, the acute demand and supply as well as infrastructure related economic challenges and more importantly safeguarding national unity. As you have very well assessed, bold measures have been undertaken that are crucial to sedate the near eruption rebellions the country has been facing during the past two or more years. Releasing prisoners and preaching peace and love for reconciliation have been successful in garnering crucially needed across the board support base. The reasonable and phased durability of this support is going to be crucial, which will by and large depend on the quality and substance a concrete and coherent governance programs would have to offer.

    Thus far I have seen less of practical task program that projects executable policies and more response to concerns and demands program focused on the skill of salesmanship. In other words, the Prime Minister has been presenting himself as skillful preacher and public relations expert and practitioner politician. Needless to state though preaching something by appealing to human good will and love is an easier venture because one does not have to deliver on personal level. But, the role becomes burdensome there is no personal cost to pay if failed. For a politician in search of professional legacy or glory delivering material and spiritual solutions to stakeholders’ needs is serious and risk business. Here is where Dr. Abij’s unfolding program of calming the situation of the country will have to give way to concrete proposals his governance policy program, which the public will demand sooner than later.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Ismail (moksi)

      Very well said Muga’e! As you beautifully and thoughtfully articulated, Abiy’s political and diplomatic acumen will be severely tested in the near future. Undoubtedly, he will continue to face monumental challenges in Ethiopia as he contends with racial, tribal, and regional tensions that have been festering for years. Hence, it will truly be a moment of truth for him and Ethiopia. If he succeeds in bringing harmony or at least some semblance of stability in Ethiopia, it will be a boon not only to Ethiopians but to people in the region as a whole. Generally, a country at peace with itself and its people will be least likely to go looking for trouble with our neighbors. The reverse is also true. The Eritrean government is a notable example.

      Ismail (pointblank)

  • Selam Ismail O-A,

    I am not a fanatic of federalism between the two countries, or any other arrangement that could bring the two countries very close together, mainly because there is not the bona fide wish by most eritreans, does not involve the majority of eritreans especially the lowlanders, there is not the mindset, for some there is fear for the independence of eritrea, and as you said it will be at the expense of eritrea’s dignity and honor if carried out at this period in eritrea’s history, etc. As much as i am concerned, it is repeating the same mistake for the second time.

    In addition, as you said, if one has to wait until dictatorship is defeated and democracy and economic prosperity comes to eritrea, and the dignity and honor of eritrea is protected, (which brings identity and honor to the forefront for evaluation in comparison to the whole situation), i do not know after how many decades that is going to be achieved, certainly, ethiopia will not be waiting at the same spot until eritrea is ready. The gap could widen more, political and economic integration with all the neighboring countries, as has already started may have been accomplished, and finally eritrea coming to the scene to be federated will not be anything special for ethiopia.

    Therefore, it seems that the idea of federation should be put in the back seat, until maybe it is completely forgotten. I even believe that with the toxic blood between the two, the best thing is to have no other relations beyond a formal relationship between two sovereign countries, at least for the coming two generations.

    The Abiy phenomenon has a limit in what it can do with eritrea. He has to stand for ethiopia’s national interest. The national interest of both countries had always been conflicting, and time will show how long they can continue to travel together the same course, until they come to a crossroad. Therefore, too much should not be expected either from the one or the other.

    PM Abiy has to consolidate the reforms he brings, which is the most important phase of his endeavor to change ethiopia. He has to bring back on the bandwagon a renovated tplf lead by young tigrayans, while the old will gradually and honorably go to their pensions. He has a very big job of appeasing and correcting the distorted understanding of ethnic federalism that has created instability, and probably amend the constitution, without dismantling ethnic federation. In other words, his hands will continue to be full, and eritrean issue will not be his major undertaking, and eritreans are expected to prepare the road of rapprochement themselves, and everything should not be expected only from the pm’s side, if there is anything to be achieved.

    In my opinion, the fact that ethiopians are infatuated with the phenomenon Abiy comes from the fact that he is the product of diverse ethnic and religious origin, he is not from the established power base of the ethiopian polity, he rules a diverse country that is ethnically diverse and politically very active, unlike in the past, and the possibility that he will create a personality cult is more or less impossible, and i think that PMAA knows that such scenario will work against him. MZ tried to a certain extent, but he did not succeed.

    Finally, I believe that PMAA has no means to force IA to change, but to work with him and to remain relevant, IA maybe obliged to bring some change to his country. Otherwise, this time over, he will remain the lonely old wolf nobody is interested in, not even his arab friends. That will be too bad for eritrea.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Horizon,

      Yours were the type of commentary that force one to think hard. Thank you very much for your very insightful comments.

      Ismail (pointblank)

    • Hayat Adem

      Wondim Horizon,
      Your points are generally okay on the many things and very loaded and clouded on others. I will mention two of the latter:
      1) You said: “The national interest of both countries had always been conflicting…”
      How so! Of the many countries countries in the entire world, I would argue Ethiopia and Eritrea are a rare pair in total complementary default. Here is how I see it:
      Economy and trade: the best mutuality when you complementing interdependence. Such are the two economies.
      Cultural and social values: the best proximity and closeness comes from greater similarity and commonness in values, Such are the two societies.
      Security and threats: Ethiopia and Eritrea are basically one security spot. The have a shared security zone and common threats.
      2) I see you are putting so much faith on Abiy. What did he do so far except disrupting and stirring the status quo? I mean, that could be always the starting point to effect change but we are not getting the feel of it yet. You have to see what this man has for the nation as a vision. What you are seeing is the kind of enthusiasm you would see when a new company manager comes and stirs the hives, where new excitement and new doubts come to the house. Usually, the excitement is louder than the doubts, until such time comes where they exchange actors at the ladder.

      • Selam Hayat Adem,

        Two countries and two people who are totally complementary to each other by default do not find themselves on a permanent war footing, and a mechanism of mutual destruction and even complete annihilation, if possible.

        As much as the ‘economy and trade’ are concerned, remember, it was the lopsided and exploitative practices eritrea wanted to apply, be it in the port services, the ethiopian refinery at assab, currency manipulation and trade in ethiopia’s exportable items, etc, that brought the war of 1998-2000. Still, although they do not say it, nevertheless, many believe that “singapore eritrea” could be created only on the back of ethiopia.

        Eritreans, especially the elites, (we should leave out the ordinary eritrean, because they never were the decision makers), never believed in the ‘cultural and social values’ similarity and commonness, between the backward feudal ethiopians as they said and still say, and purportedly colonial and cosmopolitan elite eritreans. We all remember the socialist ideologues of the time, who said eritrea was more developed than ethiopia economically and socially that, as finland was left free by Lenin, eritrea should be left to go her way. Unfortunately, there was nobody to listened.

        When were ethiopia and eritrea at peace and cooperation? Start from 1986. Eritrea has always been on the opposite side, whenever ethiopia was in danger. Almost all the security threats ethiopians are aware of, came through eritrea, and in the future it will be the same. Remember, what you yourself said last time, “bravo egypt”, on its success against the gerd you were too quick to celebrate, which shows the ‘one security zone and the common threat’ you believe in. You were fanning the last instability in the somali zone, defending the constitutional rights of a criminal, completely forgetful of the victims, unexpected of you some time ago.

        What you see in pm Abiy depends on where you stand. If a mountain (tplf) divides you from him, you are not going to see anything. As an eritrean stop defending tplf 24/7, and start demanding from the pfdj regime to release the tens of thousands in eritrean prisons, dungeons and ship containers, end the undeclared permanent state of emergency, ask for the opposition to return home, limit the extended military service, tell them to bring refugees back home, start some developmental projects, etc. All these have evaded you, because your priority is tplf. You do not accept it, but pm Abiy is accomplishing all of these, and oddly you will continue to deny that he has done anything good for ethiopia. You should know that things did not stop happening in ethiopia the day tplf left power.

        • Hayat Adem

          Horizon,
          You are wrong: I am always on the side of Ethiopia and I have always despised Egypt when it comes to Ethiopia and the Nile. I whole heartedly support GERD. I never thought you would mistake me on this particular point. I have been on record and loud on this point.
          What I opposed in Jigjiga was the federal intervention to dislodge a regional governnent. That was uncalled for. I think what Abiy did in the Ogadeni region was so reckless and wrong. That shows how unfit he is to lead that country. He might be more dangerous than that. The atrocities in Somali are to be condomned in strongest terms. Who caused them and who was rsponsible for them? I don’t know. I think they happened after the intervention. I am also told they were committed by people who were organized by Abiy’s team to counter Abdi Illey. Remember, Abiy really uses conflicts to his manipulation. That was what he did in Awassa. Abdi Illey had a pacifier role in this confllict.
          What you said on the incompatibility of the national interest of the two countries is based on history and misguided practices. My thoughts were based on the normative maximization and realities. We don’t have to model our future on repeating past mistakes. We can redesign the future relations to exactly mirror our realities.
          You don’t have to advise me on what issues to focus. You are saying many things about Eritrea. I never minded.
          Also, You can hate Tplf 24/7 and that will never be my problem at all. Look, here above for example: I am not saying a word on TPLF but you are, you brought it. You said more than a word.
          I think the Tplf are okay and adopting to the new situation as they see it fit but you wouldn’t forget them, it so seems. Abiy is taking all the power and marginalizing Tplf left and right. They are complying and not pushing back. But no body is appreciating them. The Tigray people are being hit and many Tigriyans are being killed by mobs. The Tigray people are holding their bearings high and never were once caught acting or reacting wrong. No body from your side is appreciating this fact.
          It seems there is a fasy depreciation of rationality

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Hayat,

            Dislodging the leader of an autonomous state, is an act of “centralized unitary government”. It is not an act of a leader of a Federal State. He forget that he is the head of the Federal government. Hayat, soon after assuring the worshiping of the public to him, he will use his excessive power to quell any grievances on his government. Give him two years, and you will learn many thing. Governing and addressing grievances are not the same with mobilizing by rhetorics.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Amanuel Hidrat,

            The behavior of a ” centralized unitary government” sounds like a technical political science term. Let me avoid it.

            My very very very limited information informs me the Fed. Gov. behaved as a federal government should.
            If you have the nuts and bolts of the problem and the solution being addressed as we speak, please let us know.
            You start with a ready made blame Abiy first and learn the facts later kind of approach. Some of your unnecessary adjectives betrays your attempt at objective observations of this particular incident.

            Mr. K.H

          • Blink

            Dear KM
            Remember Abdi illy is a ruthless killer and what abiy did as a leader is cut the owner of the criminal hand justifiably. Forget about the Federal or central thing because the guy you are debating has been on salad dressing to weyane. He has zero credibility to say the least about Federal or central government politics. He is just angry because Abiy is stopping the bleeding.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam blink
            U good ,except people can miss weyane thing. How can people can miss the root cause of the problem? The weyane .
            Even if ethiopia disintegrated not just 9 place but 49 places , people don’t miss weyane. Because people believe the root cause of the problem is weyane manipulation of somehow manageable problems to the present day problem by in order to divide and rule. Blink.

          • Nitricc

            Hey Aman-H i know you must appease the TPLF apologist, Hayat but where is your common sense? First, Somali region was established by TPLF as a safety net and to sabotage the Federal system of Ethiopia. None of the Killiles have a special force but Abdi was allowed to have one. There were eleven churches in that region and ten of them were burned to ashes. Are you suggesting the federal army shouldn’t be involved to restore orders? I really believe taking out Abdi is the greatest victory for the Abiy administration and the well being of Ethiopia. I agree with you ” Your can’t govern by rhetorics” i.e. what is the problem if the federal G acted with next solution, Force? I personally think that PMAA needs few courses from PIA how to use force. It is Africa and you need the gun. From what i see, the PMAA administration will turn to the most forceful act than ever Ethiopian seen. So, i suggest you throw out your white-man kind of analysis and face with the reality in the ground. The Oromos are determined to do whatever it takes to unseat the TPLF and anyone who challenges them. There is new report by former Abdi Ali’s member who let everything out about the intentions of the special forces of the Somali killil. the showdown is on and you will see many things coming to light. there are rumors that PIA will step down from Eritrean leadership to go to Ethiopia to teach PMAA how to solve things the right way : – ).

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Nitrickay,

            Pls Read what A Federal Government entails. And then reread my comment,

          • Nitricc

            Hey Aman-H: i don’t know anything about federal government but i have the sense it should protect the well being of the people. When the thugs are trying to ignite a religious war, I don’t believe the federal government should stay neutral. Like i have said, i have no idea how the arrangement works but I believe the federal have the power and the responsibility to interfere with happened in Jijiga. just me think. However; i confess, I don’t know and time permitting i will read to it.

          • Selam Hayat Adem,

            There is one thing on which we should agree, that is, whatever you say and whatever i say on the topic of the change that has come to ethiopia, you cannot convince me, nor can i. There is a big difference between your view point and mine.

          • Hayat Adem

            Hi Horizon,
            I agree. But that bothers me really every time I part ways with people i think are reasonable. What keeps two people of reason and good purpose apart? The answer is because there is a bias in one or the two of us. The question then is: do we let the bias stay roommate with us or tackle it with logic and facts?

          • Selam Hayat Adem,

            Sometimes it is not a bad idea to let go for the time being, when we have entrenched opinions, biased or not biased. Time sometimes gives the answer. More facts and realities in the future may clear the political landscape.

            Much more than my opinion and your opinion or any other opinion, it is the wellbeing of the people that is a lot important. I am not the type of person who does not change his opinion no matter what. Simply that we should not draw conclusions when the process is still in progress. PM Abiy may prove or disprove himself with time. The problem is that we can’t know unless we give him the necessary time.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Horizon,

            I think you are on target at least on the main 2 points.
            A) Ethiopia and Eritrea having a “total complimentary default” “cultural and social values” “a shared security zone” are the old concepts reasonable people banked on and lost.
            That mentality must never be repeated because Eritrea’s central intrinsic problem that existed before exists today. The entry of Ethiopia into the picture can only magnify the problem.
            Besides why give or hand deliver a ready made weapon to our enemies. They were good at it then and with experience will be good at it again.
            The solution in essence is this: You stay in your house and we will stay in our house and do business as business people do, legally and above board. Let the business relationship dictate how close or how far we need to be.

            B) Dr. Abiy had the tiger by the tail. It was handed to him.
            He is working with everyone to get the tiger under control.
            Hayat, dismissed him on day one with flimsy excuse. Never provided a reasonable explanation for her position. (She always did before.)
            As you said we have to allow a little time to answer some of our unanswerable questions and biases. Who knows it might be the eternal question of half empty half full dilemma.
            Horizon, it is always a pleasure to read your strong support of Ethiopia.

            Mr. K.H

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam mr k h
            I dont know which kind of isolated place u living and it looks like u don’t have clue about the present mindset of ethiopians from all walks of life’s except the internet(almost eprdf internet).
            But i can tell u this, now days non tigrai ethiopians favor eritrea much much better than tigrai.call me what ever u call me but that is the realities on the ground.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam hayat
            R u saying the somali thing just started 4 days ago? i know u here to defend tplf in everything but almost over 90% of ethiopia problems is directly or indirectly came from tplf’s ideology which is driven by just rejecting and hating ethiopiawenet.
            U said u were always on the side of ethiopia, not egypt, that is funny, really funny. Egypt might have some kind of problem with ethiopia when it comes to nile but i can tell u this they don’t want to destroy ethiopia just because inferiority complex or any other stupid reasons just like tplf do so pls hate ethiopia just like egyption do, not like tplf do.

          • Admassie

            Selam Hayat and Amanuel Hidrat,

            (Dear Hayat, I am always short of words in admiring you and proud of your unflinching stand in seeing the positives in the relations of our two peoples.)

            The Ethiopian Somalie state administration debacle is very sad, but was not unexpected. The tension was building up for the past few months. But, the major incident flared last Saturday was due to the conference held in Dire-Dawa (according today’s amharic reporter). The conference was about ES political situation which Abdi Illy, the president of the regional state, who is (including his administration) accused of several human rights abuse, is not happy with. He is said to have sent Liyu police to Dire-Dawa trying to influence the conference from happening. In the meantime looting, killing of people and burning of churches was getting to the news. It was rumored then that the army and the federal police arrested Abdi Illy. But now the rumor seems untrue. Untill Monday the military and the federal police did not enter Jigjiga nor did they arrest the president (according to state communication minister). On Tuesday, news came that the ES administration requested the federal government to deploy the military and the president resigned.

            These be the back ground of the debacle, here is my dilemma between respecting the constitution and averting a disaster.

            Article 51 #14 of the constitution says ” [the federal government] shall deploy, at the request of a state administration, Federal defence forces to arrest a deteriorating security situation with in the requesting State when its authorities are unable to control it.”

            It is clear the constitution is protecting the independence of the state administrationa in handling its own intetnal affair.

            But, what if the one that cause the security deteriorates to the extent of genocide is the state itself and is unwilling to invite the federal government to interfere? What do you say?

            Admassie A.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam admassie
            I can’t believe u said this. Man, i thought u can’t think outside of tplf box but again u have a completely different views from hayat and at the same time u short of words in admiring her nonsense? What she tried to do is protecting tplf from the blame on what went wronge in es. I don’t know what u trying to do but u somehow make sense today.
            Did u scared or what?

      • Reclaim Abyssinia

        Hi all,
        It has been a month or two since I started reading posts on this site, and I must say it’s an amazing discussion you guys have here.

        I have been completely disconnected from East African Politics for many years, probably until the disturbing refugee crisis in the Mediterranean become the biggest hit on the news, and also the recent political change in Ethiopia, Abiy’s ( አብያችን), which grabbed my attention, “አንድነት,” in cushitic term….

        I specifically found Hayat’s posts most interesting, informative, jaw-dropping and entertaining to read (no offence to other contributor/posters), maybe I just intend to agree with almost everything presented by Hayat.
        I wish for Abiy’s an initial vision to become possible, but as it has been pointed out by Hayat, there is some weakness in him.

        So….. just out of curiosity,
        Hayat, are you affiliated with any political party? If yes, I’m hoping that you will tell us .., if you are not, would you start one in the horn of Africa anytime soon ቀርኒ አፍርካ?

        G’day and Cheers,

        • Blink

          Dear Reclaim Abyssinia
          What a nickname you have and what you are saying about Hayat tells others about you and it seems like the same wheel

        • Hayat Adem

          Hi RA,
          This is a very nice compliment.
          1) I am not affiliated to any political party.
          2) I would if someone like yourself can assure me success:) The truth is I never think I am the right material to start one, at least as yet.
          Thanks so much

          • Reclaim Abyssinia

            G’day all,
            Thanks Hayat and Blink,
            I am back at it again, as a part time political junkie, i like to hear new ideas float around in the political sphere. So i am wondering if the only people that can govern in ethiopia and eritrea are the military? Is that something you don’t have and probably the only missing material from you?
            In addition to that, do you think East-Africa will ever have some kind of unity in near future for the common interest of fighting poverty.

            I was having the same discussion with friends from somalia, ethiopia, south sudan and Eritrea, and the somalian think, it’s impossible as the value and virtue of somalia is completely different than Ethiopian.
            Cheers, RA

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam r a
            The somalian guy might be right and he has a strong argument.
            But the thing is commonality of language, culture or religion don’t mean u have the same or similar value and virtue.
            If u follow ethiopia’s poltics. Clearly u will see the value and virtue of different societies of ethiopia is completely different to eachother, spacially amara and tigrai. The reason it was confusing to see was the old narration but now it is getting clearer.
            So agree with the “Somalia” guy except he is wrong on seeing as the whole of ethiopia as one.

  • Acria

    Selam Ismail,

    I appreciate the time you took to write such a timely and well written article. I do agree with most of your statements. Nevertheless, I personally think that we Eritreans have lost our dignity and honor during the sad brotherly infighting of ELF and EPLF and the subsequent 27 years of one party dictatorial regime. Eritreans are demoralized and, with weak opposition to bring any change, are looking for anything to escape from the iron-clad rule of the Isaias regime.

    Free, independent, and democratic Eritrea is an ideal goal. For the people back home, not the diaspora, federation, unification, or anything that will bring them peace is a reality that can’t just be ignored. The realization of democracy through those avenues is a challenge; and, indeed will be dealt with a wait-and-see approach.

    • Girmay

      Hello Horizon, thanks for that analytical response to the well written article above . I could be wrong but I think Abie’s disrespectful response to the young Tigrean women shows his deep hatered toward Tigreans. Abie has plenty of time to teach customer service to the hospitality industry but Tigray only gets attitude from him.
      Additionally, he said when Oromo and Amhara add up great things happen. You don’t need to be a majority to hear everything. You just need to ears. We are watching and hearing all his plot against us. Don’t forget his 100 days sweet talking to Ethiopia was also the 100 days of Tigreans been attacked all over Ethiopia. Did he make effort to talk to the youth about that? Nope, he didn’t.
      Abie has now started problems in Ogeden to settle old communal grudges between Oromo and Somali region. Do you think this is the right action of a democrat? What happen to his promise that major government decisions will be debated in parliament and televised? If he was a democrat he should have been sensitive about the bitter history that existed between Somali and the Oromo. Nope that is not what happened, instead he is flexing his muscle with the life of our Somali brothers and sisters. Abie’s attack of the Somali region happened the same day Jahar entered Ethiopia, why? Did you read what Jahar wrote on his facebook page about his plans to go back to Ethiopia. If you read it you will realize that Abie attacked Somali region as a gift for Jahar . In other words, it was like a fire work to receive Jahar. This is totally unfair. This will unite all the Somali clans in the Ogeden region.
      In Conclusion, our Hanah Montena is an Abed of rich oil countries who will take the whole Ethiopia down with him. So far all of you are judging by the cover of the book. Wake up 2018 save the horn of Africa. We habesha people and horn African people started out smart. But as time progressed we got dummer and summer. The world on the other hand got smarter and smarter.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Acria,

      I agree that “the sad brotherly infighting of ELF and EPLF ” was indeed an ugly episode in Eritrean history but I think real demoralization begun in the subsequent 27 years under the dictatorship and also in the weakness of the democratic opposition

      Ismail (pointblank)

      • Acria

        Selam Ismail,

        Indeed Eritrea has been polarized since the ‘Gedli’ times. Moreover, the blind supporters of the PFDJ regime, for one reason or another, and the discovery of democracy in Western countries by the opposition and sorts are some of the problems that let our beloved Eritrea become a forgotten and undesirable land. Moreover, the fleeing of our youth at any cost did make matters even worse.

        Unless there is a major democratic transformation, Eritrea will be lost forever to us Eritreans and will be overrun by Ethiopians and become their mecca. The PFDJ regime is an optimal stimulus for Eritrea to become part and parcel of Ethiopia. It is too late to stop this kind of wind from blowing from the south: it has been in the works for the last 27 years.

  • Girmay

    Hello dear Ismail thank you for writing this article . I hope you also accept my apologies because I have total different opinion than this article .
    Dear Ismail one of the most common characteristics of habesha and horn African intellectuals is that they tend to celebrate too early. You are celebrating his good qualities while you warn Ethiopians about the danger of personality cult.
    You called him a hero for freeing prisoners while he is waging a war in the Ogeden region .
    Both Tigrean and Amharan intellecuals had an issue with the green, yellow and red flag, and now Ethiopian flag has been replaced by Oromia natonalistic flag.
    You see Abie has totally hypnotized Ethiopian intellecuals with his sweet words, and now Ethiopian intellecuals at home and abroad are clueless that Ethiopia is now the second Yemen.
    Abie is now our Hanna Montenna, he has turn grown up Ethiopian intellecuals acting like teenagers worshiping their idol. What a shame?
    I am not suprised Ethiopia as a country has been around for thousand years but yet its a fractured society. Honest intellectuals can not blame the past 27 years as the cause of the present reality . I blame our instable Ethiopian intellecuals who always go to sleep when Ethiopia needs them the most .
    In conclusion , I can make a bet that Dr. Abie is the greatest hypnotist who put Ethiopia to sleep and when she woke up she found herself a well cooked sheep.

    • Acria

      Selam Girmay
      Really? What’s up with all the exaggerations and falsehoods? For example, some Ethiopians don’t like the star emblem in the flag, not the actual colors.

    • Peace!

      Girmish,

      A little bit honesty can’t hurt. One should read the current situation in terms of peace and stability that gives people a chance to accumulate the potential they need to fight and defeat poverty, literacy, and other social challenges. Politics is a process that requires continuous citizens’ involvement to which peace and education are a crucial prerequisite.

      Peace!

      • Acria

        Selam Peace,

        Lack of education coupled with tribalism is what is dragging Ethiopia to be relatively poor despite its infinite natural and human resources. No wonder, the ‘En’demer’ mantra is very appealing no matter how challenging it will be.

    • Ismail

      Selamat Girmay,

      You may be right about intellectuals celebrating too early but if you thought I was celebrating, you are wrong and you didn’t read my article carefully. Yes, I praised Abiy but I also emphasized in no uncertain terms that this is a conditional praise that is tied to his current accomplishments. I don’t know if you agree but I am of the view that we should not ignore his current accomplishments just because he has not resolved this or that issue in a few months. Nor should we discount what he has been doing just because he may slip in the future. That is all I am saying.

      Abiy, the “greatest hypnotist”? I wouldn’t totally rule it out. Something along those lines was what crossed my mind when I wrote “Unless he has been a clever demagogue all along”.

      Ismail (pointblank)