Inform, Inspire, Embolden. Reconcile!

The Bifurcated World of Eritrea’s ‘Caged’ Tyrant

In an era when the world is witnessing unprecedented technological advances, unparalleled prosperity and heightened hopes for enduring global peace, an evil regime in Eritrea continues to destroy a country by ruining its national economy, driving the youthful and educated segments of its population into exile and subjecting the rest to unmitigated repression, servitude and poverty. These injustices and the abhorrent human suffering they engender have been evident to all; yet, the tragedy continues unabated.

Sadly, the international community’s strategy for Eritrea has aimed solely at constraining the foreign adventures of the despotic regime, but has offered nothing more than empty rhetoric against its domestic atrocities. Worse, under a misguided policy of ‘constructive engagement’, the West has been propping up the regime tacitly with financial streaming of hundreds of millions of dollars annually in bilateral and multilateral aid and UN’s multi-agency assistance programs. Much of this largesse carries few, if any, transparency/accountability requirements and is therefore likely to be partially diverted to feed the police state’s rampant corruption and pervasive mass surveillance.

The Rise of a Bellicose Tyrant

Eritrean leader Isaias Afewerki had not only influenced the course of the country’s liberation struggle for most of its thirty-year history, but was its uncontested leader over the concluding stages of that history. It was thus hardly a surprise that, upon the country’s liberation in 1991, he emerged as its first president amid overwhelming popular support. Hailing Eritrea’s triumph, the world extended its goodwill to the new leader and his fledgling insurgency-cum-government. The West characterized him along with few other young leaders in the continent as “a new breed of African leaders” thought to espouse democratic governance and socio-economic transformation so essential for turning the dream of an “African Renaissance” into reality.

But Isaias Afewerki was eyeing up a much different role for himself than what Western political pundits had envisioned for him. It was as if he concluded all the domestic adulation and international hype was nothing more than goofy flattery, and wanted to prove the world wrong by revealing his true self and the level of despotism and aggression he is capable of. He thus set out on a self-indulgent ego trip to drag the country and its people through another cycle of miseries of war. In a series of military conflicts that began two years after Eritrea’s de jure independence and spanned a period of a decade and half, his government made the rounds of all of the country’s land and maritime neighbors.

The aftermath of the regime’s 1998-2000 war with Ethiopia saw an escalation of the hostile rhetoric that President Isaias had long made a habit of directing at international organizations (AU and UN) and Western powers (particularly the US). His decisions a few years later to pull Eritrea out of IGAD and the AU took his deteriorating relations with the continent and with the world at large to new heights. It was also at the close of that war that he unleashed a brutal crackdown on dissent and political freedoms in what was to be a decisive step towards entrenching himself as a one-man dictatorship.

The West’s Two-track Policy on Eritrea

By the early 2000s, the US and Western allies had come to view Eritrean militarism as a menace which must be curbed if their economic interests are to be protected, their geopolitical agendas advanced and the security and stability of their client states in the region ensured. The regime’s external antagonisms came to a head in 2009 when, following a border clash with Djibouti, it refused to acknowledge the conflict much less cooperate in resolving it. This and Eritrea’s support of armed groups in the region (including Somalia’s Al-Shabaab) provoked politico-diplomatic measures against the regime. At US’s instigation, the AU assumed the unprecedented role of presenting the UN with requests for punitive measures against one of its own member states. The Security Council acceded by imposing on Eritrea a sanctions regime the provisions of which were further tightened two years later.

For the West, imposing sanctions constituted the first component of a two-track policy of ‘containment and appeasement’ they devised for Eritrea – a sort of “Lock the beast in a cage, but feed it well” resolution! The other half of the policy, appeasement, produced cooperation agreements which have been channeling funds to the regime as outlined earlier. Interestingly, both sides seem to go to great lengths to camouflage their cooperation. The regime harps on its false claim of self-reliance and often rails in empty rhetoric against its benefactors. Western countries, on their part, dutifully include the regime in their annual list of human rights abusers, pass parliamentary resolutions condemning the abuses and engage in the theatrics of UNHRC “debates” on Eritrea – all toothless measures hardly intended to bring relief to the suffering Eritrean people.

In truth, the West have long favored the status quo in Eritrea as evidenced by their policy position, or lack thereof, towards the nation’s opposition movement. In the nearly 20 years that witnessed the brutal and belligerent nature of the PFDJ regime, not one Western country has extended political support to any of the movement’s groups, not even those with obvious democratic tendencies. All the while, some Western-backed regimes in the region have been relentless in their effort to thwart democratic change in Eritrea by conspiring to divide and weaken the movement.

Omnipotent and Defiant OR Defeated and Humiliated?

A great deal can be written about the oddity of the attitudes, functions and positions of President Isaias, their discordance with each other and their incompatibility with realities on the ground. This article, however, will only touch upon a few of the strange characteristics he has exhibited in the years since the imposition of UN sanctions on the country. And even these only for their potential merits of: (i) stimulating incisive discussions on the state of the country and (ii)  provoking readers to peer through the fog of uncertainty in search of clues on the country’s inevitable transitioning out of tyranny.

It is notable that when he began to feel the full impact of the sanctions and the international effort to isolate him, President Isaias sought refuge in Adi Halo, a rural village about 30 kilometers outside of Asmara. Having set up shop at a bare-bones construction field-camp there, he took on a full-time job ‘guiding and directing’ the construction (and lately, operation) of a 20-million-m3 capacity dam in the area. At his ‘outpost’, Isaias Afewerki is accessible to just a handful of aides who convey his orders/decisions and report back conditions. Foreign delegations representing governments and (mainly Arab and Chinese) business interests are periodically received at the site where, clad in safari-type outfit, the president is often pictured with formally dressed guests on a dusty patch overlooking the dam/reservoir!

This account and the observations listed below indicate that President Isaias is certainly straddling two contrasting worlds: a make-believe world which strokes his ego by indulging his fantasies, and a real world which challenges and negates the presumptions of the first.

  1. The president has an oversized ego and an inflated opinion of himself as becomes evident in his three-hour-long ‘interviews’ during which he lectures, seemingly endlessly, on a wide range of political, social, economic issues and even on scientific topics. Along the way, he never fails to offer his African brethren and Western leaders advice on how to run their countries’ affairs! Yet, the best display he can put up for visiting dignitaries to showcase the nation’s “progress” under his rule is just a small-capacity dam!
  2. Given his conceitedly ambitious nature, President Isaias must have undoubtedly imagined himself becoming an influential regional and even continental leader. In reality, however, he has earned himself a rare distinction of shunning international meetings and of having never exchanged visits with other leaders (except that of the Sudan) for years. He has never contributed to solving regional problems and has consistently absented himself from regional events fellow leaders attend routinely. In short, his foreign adventurism and the outside world’s reaction to it have isolated him and rendered him irrelevant to the regional agendas of peace, security, cooperation and economic development.
  3. Isaias Afewerki has usurped absolute power that can ‘make or break’ the country and has employed that power to subject an entire population to virtual serfdom. Yet he runs away from the very embodiment of that power (i.e., his so-called “President’s Office”), the population, his ministers and even his own family to hide at a rural construction-site in self-imposed seclusion!

These observations cannot fail to provoke some profound questions: What are the regime’s internal power relations and how exactly has the system managed to keep itself together? Can an aging dictator with a split sense of the self, and in antagonism with pretty much everyone around him, hold onto power much longer? Has President Isaias transformed himself into PFDJ’s “spiritual” leader whose orders and commands issued from seclusion are executed promptly and faithfully? Could it be that real power, in effect, rests in the hands of an elite group that looks upon the president as a shield from prosecution for its collective crimes, hence is willing to do his bidding? What are the chances that this group will one day soon decide that grabbing power does, in fact, provide a better shield than loyalty to a ‘caged’ dictator already sinking into oblivion? How likely is it that …… Questions worth pondering!

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  • said

    Greeting,
    In the Absence of Developed Democratic Institutions, Can the Young Saudi Crown Prince Achieve Reforms?!
    The young Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Ben Salman’s declaration to a thunderous applause in an interview before a huge crowd at an Investment Conference in Riyadh of the Kingdom’s intention to engage in serious religious Reform while undoubtedly a welcomed long-needed move, the challenges to effect a smooth transition into this change might not prove all that easy.

    This is judged by several factors and considerations that upon which the long-established legitimacy of the House of Saud Dynasty’s Rule Predicate.

    The Rule of the Century Old Second Kingdom of the House of Saud Dynasty emanating from the heart of the Arabian Peninsula predicates on the close entwining of the Wahhabi Salafi Religious Movement/Establishment and the Temporal Authority of the Saudi Dynasty. It is rather the former, the Wahhabi Salafist Reform movement that gave rise and legitimacy to the Rule of the Saudi Dynasty of the First Kingdom in the first place back in the 18th century.

    In the recent decades, and as the late King Abdel-Aziz, the Founder of the Second Saudi Kingdom, father of the current king, established clear rules of Succession that rendered legitimacy and continuity for the future Saudi Dynastic Rule. The succession rules were based on observing the following cardinal levers of power:

    • The daring successful continuing conquests by Abdel-Aziz Al-Saud establishing the Saudi Rule over current Saudi Arabia over more than two decades starting in 1909 and ending after the conquest and acquisition of the much-coveted Western Province of Hijaz in 1924 and parts of Northern Yemen, the acquisition of the originally Yemenite Provinces of Asir, Nejran and Jizan in the South West.

    • The Continuing observance of the duality of the Rule of Saudi Arabia with the descendants of the Salafi Religious Reformer Mohammad Ben Abdel Wahhab enjoying exclusive authority over the Religious Establishment as the Saudi Royalty’s Descendants assuming control of the Temporal Authority.

    • The Wahhabi Salafi theocracy became well-entrenched and well-enshrined, enjoying near full independence as Wahhabism as a Doctrine became very well-embedded into the Saudi social mores, influencing and governing the people of Saudi Arabia’s general conduct and social behavior.

    • The late King Abdel Aziz established an informal system of succession of power on the basis of seniority among the scores of his offspring of varying age of the male line. That, in many ways guaranteed the smooth transition of power, rendering overall legitimacy to the Rule of the Saudi Dynasty considering the varied ages of offspring and until the time of the current King Salman’s ascendance to the Saudi Throne on January, 2015.

    • King Salman with an apparent hidden agenda to jump the established line of succession, named his son, of the third generation, Mohammad Ben Salman, as a Crown Prince. Jumping the succession to the Third Generation without clear and an established consensus among the elderly of the Saudi Royalty could put in question the continuing ultimate legitimacy of the Rule of the House of Saud.

    • The absence of a clear vision as to the next phase or clear understanding and willingness to share power with newly created democratic institutions, the legitimacy and continuity of the Rule of the Saudi Dynasty in the absence of the established understandings with the Wahhabi authority on the basis of shared rule; this will further complicate the tasks of the young Saudi Crown Prince once he eventually assumes full authority in the few months to come.

    • What could further complicate life is the absence of full consensus among the younger Saudi Princes as well as the tribal structure of the Saudi Society that does not provide the elements of flexibility for untrained young crown-prince to ultimately ensure a smooth transition.

  • said

    Greeting,
    Heading to Midterm Legislative Elections, Trump Will Likely Have Nothing to Show

    The Republican Party is showing unprecedented signs of fissure that come November, 2018 Midterm Legislative electors, as things continue the way currently are, the Republicans are likely to experience defeat switching control of the Senate and even possibly the House of Representatives with the Democrats. Should President Donald Trump fail to pass his Tax Reform Bill, rather deep tax-cut plan through the Senate, a current hot and a pending issue, come the Midterm elections Trump would have nothing to show in terms of tangible achievements on the force of his long list of Ambitious Campaign Theme to “Making America Great Again.”

    However, despite the fact that Republicans currently enjoy comfortable majority in both houses of Congress, their lead 52-48 against Democrats in the Senate overlooks a deep split within the Republicans in the Senate where at least 5 Republican Senators do not see things eye to eye with the President as three of them, two very seasoned senior Senators, John McCain of Arizona and Bob Corker from Tennessee, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, are in a near match name calling in the open on social network with Donald Trump. John McCain got his big shot on Trump that he abhors to the core and likes to see him fail, when he purposefully dragged himself out of the sick bed to be present on the floor of the Senate in Washington to cast a Nay, along with fellow Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, to defeat President Trump’s Senate Bill to Repeal the Obamacare.

    Senator Ms. Susan Collins of Main previously joined in defeating the House of Representatives Bill to annul the Obamacare as she too would likely refrain from supporting Trump’s Tax-cut Bill.

    Bob Corker, Senior Senator from Tennessee, and Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona are mounting unprecedented most scathing personal attacks on President Trump with Jeff Flake going as far yesterday as saying from the floor of the Senate describing President Trump’s Governing Style as “reckless, outrageous and undignified behavior.”

    Senator Bob Corker, a Senior Senator head of the all-powerful Foreign Relations Committee, is in an unending blistering, name calling match with President Trump on Twitter and in the open. Corker fired back on a Trump Personal attack on him yesterday responding to the President on twitter, “Same untruths from an utterly untruthful president. #AlertTheDaycareStaff.” Just a totally unheard of open duels name calling in the annals of the Republican party.

    Now with Bob Corker declaring he will not vote for passage of President Trump Tax-cut Bill, a much touted last-resort hope by Trump to score meaningful victory after series of failures on all fronts, Trump’s attempt to deliver on tax cuts might not see the light, further worsening the fortunes of Republicans come next Midterm elections.

    President Trump’s failure of having the Tax Bill passed by the Senate would compromise President Trump’s entire economic plan with very serious repercussions on the stock market that could send stock prices on a down spin as much of the exuberance of the Dow recently hitting Record High predicates on sanguine expectations of the potential of soaring Corporate Profits; enhanced Liquidity and the mass repatriation for local investments of much of the Corporate Profits for long parked in Foreign Accounts.

    Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, a mercurial Libertarian remains another Republican Senator who could sway either way.

  • KBT

    Selamat kulukhum
    It show deception for what they have hoped ,the collapse of Eritrea and the invasion of woyane
    But Eritrea prevail and have shown courage,determination against all adversity .
    In the other side well what can I say may TPLF Rest In Peace

  • Ismail AA

    Selam Yohannes and the rest,

    This article is brand new example of fine articles that grace this forum. The style and effective impartation of thoughts are
    superb. The reader is left with an aroused appetite to re-read the material and gets in fact challenged to think harder and enquire further as the questions at the end of this article aptly stimulate.

    Weighty issues have raised and discussed about the worsening situation of our nation under the heavy burden of a ruthless dictatorship. Internal reasons as well as external forces that help prolongation of the regime have been explored. The intent to read deeper in to the personal character and behavior of the despot at the helm of the regime is an interesting bonus for reflection. Although my input would hardly do justice to the effort and time invested in the production of the article, let me scribble my views in bullets format.

    1. The so called alternative policies such as constructive engagement, US neocons creative chaos as prelude to democratization, solidarity policies for orange and spring uprisings in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, respectively, have proven to be mere euphemisms to assuage public outrages against immoral policies that shield dictators. Actually, constructive engagement was deceptive policy was first crafted by Chester Crocker, former US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs to counter onslaught on the Apartheid racist regime of South Africa. That policy was morally zo reprehensive that Archbishop Desmond Tutu had deplored as an “abomination” in 1984 from the podium of Capitol Hill. To cut a long story short, thus, the fruits policies of the appeasement are designed to prolong dictatorships as long as they serve the interest of the big powers. Eritrea’s dictatorship cannot is going to be beneficiary as long as the forces who help Isayas to emerge as a dictator decide him as liability that has to discarded.

    2. About Isyas Afeworki’s disposition persons who closely know him from early years of his schooling tell that he is not a gregarious personality, and keeps himself aloof. Fighters who observed him since his arrival in the field as ELF member corroborate such propensity. Perhaps biographers and psychoanalyst would delve into reasons for his lonesome tendencies in the interest of coming generations.

    3. In my view, the enquiry about reasons that prolong the regime and its leader is serious preoccuaption of Eritrea’s vital forces of change. Getting satisfactory and consensus based answers to this determinant matter is key to unification of the national front to challenge the dictatorship. The search for explanation should encompass internal and external spheres. One of the disabling internal factors is comformity and ambivanlence of the social and political elites that should take the lead in mobilizing the change seeking forces. It precedents could help understanding this matter, we have to see developments to the level of liquidation of General Aman Andom by the Derg that peruaded the major segment of our Kebessa elites it was time to rally behind the national liberation movement of Eritrea. Let me respectfully mention Prof. Berekhet as telling example.

    Extenally, the problem should explored in the framework of the determinat impact of regional and geopolitical interests and forces. To mention one, here, the politics Israëli-Arab conflict had and will continue to affect the trend of politics in our country and the region. If one would try to understand the former ELF-EPLF wars and outcome without considering this would not reach comprehensively convincing conclusion. US and West European policy could not operate in the region, and Eritrea as well, without approval of the government in Tel Aviv. As I insinuated above it is link in the over equation that Isayas fills and, thus, beneficiary of the gains appeasement and containment policies provide. Those policies play the game by hampering unification and empowering domestic opposition forces on the one hand, and deploying media and human rights agencies to censure the dictatorship for morally unshieldable violations but short of giving meaningful support to regime adversaries. Ethiopian governmant interaction with the Eritrean opposition cannot be appraised outside the genenal schemes of how US and allies policies and options operate.

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Yohannes & Ismailo,

      Yohannes: thank you for the well crafted piece as usual. I can’t add or oppose to this beautifully written article with its content targeted at the despot and at the shortcoming of the opposition camp. This is only to show that I fully share to your views.

      Ismailo: When you plan to comment this comment with comprehensive outlook on the domestic politics and geopolitics of the region, the way you jotted out, it would have been better to frame it in an article form to debate it side by side with Yohannes’s in put.

      One thing I understood from your comment is, that the historian’s take and perspectives and the politician’s take and perspectives are not usually the same. Though both approaches differ, both stands by their own merits and lessons. Yohannes’s article and your comment clearly demonstrates that. At the end of the day both of you are highly valued writers that gives an added value to this website. Keep up.

      Regards

      • Ismail AA

        Selam Aman,
        Thank you for your thoughts. By the way, I missed your presence for some days and started to worry. Yohanne’s contributions are great in content, depth of thought and style of transmission. I learn a lot from him, and usually agree with his ideas as we had engaged on substantial issues pertaining to how the opposition could pull out of the current immobility.
        As to writing in article form, my last one has already been long ago. Some objective circumstances played role in interrupting the modest attempts. I know I am well compensated by writer like yourself and many fellow compatriots.

      • Paulos

        Selam Professor A. Hidrat,

        There are times I say to myself “What the heck am I doing in this forum” when I see personal attacks laced with idiotic condescending tone, then I read your mature and seasoned comments and the man of the hour in every hour Ismail AA as well. Maybe it is time well spent to stick around and give it a try for one more day.

        • Amanuel Hidrat

          Selam Dr. Paulos,

          If we are going to give up by the name callers and personal attacks, I wouldn’t be in the Eritrean politics this long. I would have stopped it in 1998 when I was a lone opposer to the destructive war in the Tri-states part of the Eastern United States. The then UN ambassador Haile Menkerios had accused me in a meeting that I was working against their war effort, just him to quit two months later. While He was right that I was against the war, he was wrong when he tried to tie me with FM of Ethiopia as part of their blackmailing at that time. So my point is, if you are in politics, don’t give up, especially when you see an act of evils reign upon our people, and your conscience dictates you to act. It is “one life to live” and that is to say the truth. And the truth will set you free. Stand up with courage even if you are alone to your belief and history will absolve you.

          Regards

          • Kokhob Selam

            Yes Amuni..

            Yes..We ..all should not give up..

            KS.

          • Paulos

            Thank you Sir! That is absolutely remarkable!

  • Da Yo

    Dear All,
    One thing I really don’t understand is, why are you guys blaming the guy (Isaias) for everything that has befallen? Can one man alone control 5 million people? If that is so, what does that say about you and your kind? Stop the blame game because everyone of us are responsible for what is happening in that cursed land.

    • sara

      Do yo..
      My eritrea is not cursed land, it is a blessed land that many want to own it.

      • Da Yo

        sara
        Wells sure, let’s say the land is blessed but you people are surely cursed.

  • Mez

    Dear All,

    Indeed, in the recent past, dams in the range of 20 to 50 million cubic meters holding capacity, are getting big news coverage in Eritrea–including the close attention of the President. Pictures of foundational, close to finish, finished, and water yielding dams are frequent. At times, over filled dams with surplus water overflowing structures are also in the media.

    Fresh water is the foundation for flourishing of comercial agriculture and accelerated industrialization. The systematic introduction of decentralized high catchment dam is an appreciable effort by the government. There is no extensive experience of dam building in ” highly disected gorges with rapid elevation change”.

    Wel-dimensioned culvert-spillway and mechanical structures to absorb the surplus dam waterfow-hit, looks to be areas to focus in the immediate future research. Reasonably quick 1) siltation-, 2) erosion-of structures, c) slow weathering of foundational rocks, d) means of transering the captured water to the demand centers are some of the challenges in building such dams in a national economy scale. Considering desalination technology based water supply, in some costal cities, shall not be considered as farfetched.

    For such an effort to have a national scale economic impact, however, the government may want to introduce attractive economic packages to sway-in state of the art professional knowledge and investment capital– from private citizens and for-profit institutions. As the pioneer of dams in such geographic zones, new patents could be filed–an additional income generator and global competition enhancer. All current efforts by the government could best be considered as pilot-projects for transformation of curent dominant subsistence agriculture to a comercial one.

    Thanks

  • Haile S.

    Selam Yohannes,
    Welcome back from your summer hibernation. May be it was stone-cold winter where you live. You always aim at the center of the circle; thank you. One thing that is missing in the photo, but whose spirit is present in the body of your article is the fragilized egg in the hands of that person; a fragilized Eritrea. You amply exposed how he squeezed the shell to arrive at this level of cracking. Now trying to answer to your question, and speaking of the larger eritrean elite, I don’t see any other clear motive of preserving the president and his regime other than in trying to preserve the fragilized egg he is holding between his iron-clad hands. Does this absolve us (the learned) from the obvious? Obviously NO. One way of placing ourselves on the redeeming avenue is to stop the flagellation, stop throwing stones among ourselves, talk to each other throughout the spectrum of our society, like you discussed before in your earlier posts. The biggest challenge is in convincing people like Eden Zerai (see her comment below) to stop seeing the perfect enemy in whoever justifiably critisizes the Eritrean leadership.

    • Da Yo

      Selam Haile,
      The biggest joke of the century…”Does this absolve us (the learned)”. Here is the problem with you so called ‘learned ones’ and ‘the elite’, you guys are good at talking but when it comes to action, you guys are a big ZERO.

      • Haile S.

        Dear Da Yo,
        Did you laugh at the ‘joke’? It is up to you to take it as a joke or something to ponder on.

    • Desbele

      Hi Haile,

      There is no need to convince the likes of Eden Z. The regime has done enough evil to convince anyone who cares about humanity to stand against it. It is as simple as with evil or against it! I care about how to deal with them after freedom. Confiscate their bond house built by slave labour, publicly apologize for their partnership with a criminal….
      You think your words will convince them if the everyday tragedy that befalls on our people doesnt?
      I am frustrated the likes of her diverting the agenda of discussion….cant you guys just ignore them?
      This forum is degrading in quality……I miss Amde, Serray, Hayat, Papillion

      • eden zerai

        Hi Desbele,

        This why we are called human being, b/c we hold different ideas,values, opinions and in some ways how we bring changes to what we believe in.

        I am never too shy away from discussion and will never divert from whatever agenda you are referring to.
        I try to read, know my surrounding and if i come to a conclusion that, what i believe is true then i will stand by it.

        You are assuming that my disagreement with the opposition group like you are simply to oppose. You are wrong, b/c so far from what i see in the social media ,most of the opposition group are working with the enemy’s of eritrea and working tirelessly to destroy the government with no consequences of Eritrea and its people back home. I am one person and if i have some disagreement with the eritrean government i will deal with it some other ways, but will never try to create chaos and heart my people. So i choose to defend the eritrean government b/c in return weather you believe it or not ..the government is protecting its citzens

        • Paulos

          Selam E.Z,

          Can you please elaborate on the last sentence “….the government is protecting its citizens.” Thank you.

          • eden zerai

            Hi Paulos,
            Any country with factional government protects its citzens. Providing health care, clean water, security anything that the government can provide its citizens deserves credit, when creadit is due. Even with every obstacles that faces this young nation (eritrea) the government works hard with whatever resources available at hand to look out for its citizens .

            If there no government then there is no country and its people. Look no further than Iraq, Egypt, yemen, Libya , Somalia and soth Sudan. Look at the chaos created by so called democracy.

            I have visited eritrea two years ago and I was able to do whatever I want, go wherever i need to go.
            Are there problems the government need to address? You better belive it, but we cant fix those problems if there is no peace and prosperity in the country.

            Best regards

          • Paulos

            Selam E.Z,

            Thank you. I just wanted to know your understanding about the word “protection” and what it means to you as well. I invite forumers to follow and opine on that.

          • blink

            Dear eden
            I don’t know what you are up to but it would be far better for this forum if people like you are debating than some Ethiopians acting like Eritreans to make argument and support each other.

            There are people in this forum who are hell bent to see Eritrea divided across ethnic lines and slaughter each other . On top of that these people have been begging weyane to carry them to power, there are weyane eshi gotaye too . There are unionists too one of them is Desbele.

            Come to this forum because we have great people than the people I mentioned.

          • eden zerai

            Hi blink,

            Exactly my point.
            All Eritreans will benefit if we are one nation with all 9 ethnicity and come together to defend , protect eritrea and the people and its land. We paid heavy and undeniable price for its freedom. So i rather deal with the current eritrean government than work with weyane and its puppets. My country, land , people and all its problems, so lets keep it real people.

            Thank you

          • Peace!

            Hi Blink,

            Why would a genuinely concerned (frustrated) Eritrean miss YG cronies Hayat, Serray, Pappillion who are openly against Eritrean identity and suffering from “Ghedli was wrong” syndrome and as if their demand and ambition are a prerequisite to topple PFDJ?

            ይገርመናሎ ኣቱም ሰባት

            Peace!

          • blink

            Dear peace
            Who knows if papi is Paulos or Desbele ?? I mean no body knows , what we all know is these people are not comfortable with independent Eritrea that is what I know. Their presence in this forum is not even about the dictator and how to stop him , they have no interest of such or what so ever . I have been following awatesite for a long period of time and I watched them creat a hallow relationship between the Tigrians speaking of the two sides.
            So I prefer a nationalist Eritrean than a unionist because the nationalists are a time being problem not a fundamental problem to Eritrea. Issaias will go but the disease of the people you mentioned is evil and we don’t want it.

          • Peace!

            Hi Blink,

            Putting their naive and false hope aside, I think they are responsible for creating chaos and divisions in the opposition camp to the extent the groups have now reached 20+ ( subtracted 10), perhaps the cash inflow ጉርሽ must have been real good one can’t help but to join at any cost. God knows how many leaders have never came back to their base once they left for convention. Guess who is laughing? the seating dictator.

            Peace!

          • blink

            Dear peace
            Yes you are right, let’s see what they have been doing for over 17 years, they never even participate in helping the refugees in Libya, Ethiopia and Sudan. It is some individuals who are doing everything to help not opposition leaders. When these young men come to America or Europe the leaders of the opposition complain that the youth are not doing their best. My worries is peace , what will these corrupt leaders do if TPLF cut the supply or even the Oromo or Amhara come to power?

            I believe if we can get any chance to remove the dictator ,the opposition leadership must be clean first. We must have leadership who inspire the Eritreans and take the political campaign out from a pity language and partitions . 20 ?? It is madness.

          • Peace!

            Hi Blink,

            My understanding is only change from within can sustain and restore our confidence. Eritreans in diaspora are deeply divided to the extent politics is now a personal matter: እንታይ ኢለ ማዓልካ ዝብሎ ጀብሃ እንድዩ ሻዕብያ እንድዩ and sadly enough many of us do not know what exactly our role should be perhaps because there is a severe absence of leadership.

            Peace!

          • sara

            Peace,
            Isnt papilon/hayat/wukato
            Arwe the same , whats new?

          • Peace!

            Hi Sara,

            As far as substance, they all are the same except nicknames: Muslim ( for deception), wuQato ( for neutrality) papillon ( for soft approach) 🙂

            Peace!

      • Haile S.

        Selam Desbele,

        I understand your frustration and the anger that you carry from living the country’s conditions yourself. I agree with you there are situations where it is necessary to reply verb to verb. But I think the defensive reaction of such people who see a coup-d’etat of the country’s independence with every word of opposition to the eritrean leadership is just simply out of distress and anguish. Making them realize this and that the majority of participants in this forum do not have ill-will to the country and its people is very important; they are part of us. Making them realise that the goverment they support is wrong in its political social and economic policy is part of the objectives of this forum. I hope to hear again and again the vibrant four you mentioned to reverberate that message in one way or another. Through repeated messaging who know those at the edge of conviction may come to the right side of their mind.

        • Nitricc

          Hi Haile, when people on this forum supports for TPLF to invade Eritrea; you have no idea what decent and responsible Eritreans feel and think. So, our fear of the opposition is that there are in the opposition who support an invasion by a enemy to their own country. Now, I see you are very reasonable and knowledgeable, help how am I to accept and work with such people. I need your help. How can I?

          • Saleh Johar

            Nitricc,

            Please do not consider this forum a war cabinet that can order an attack of a country by another. Be reasonable. It is probable that the no-war-no-peace environment, and some security lapse, could ignite a war between the two countries. Also, take note of the internal and external political dynamics in the region and you will find out that the volatile situation doesn’t need the help of the people you love to hate, in order to explode. Anything is possible. In short, be reasonable in your accusation and allegation. The PFDJ regime and its leader are moving barrels of TNT powder that can explode, anytime.

          • Nitricc

            Selamat; SJ: I didn’t blame the web-site and its forum. You are the forum cannot be held responsible
            what people say and write. All I have said and I was referring to is the likes of Semere Andom, Berhe, Thomas and the rest of the TPLF lovers who are continuing to demand for TPLF to invade Eritrea. That can’t be denied. it is the truth! So, No, I wasn’t referring to the forum, to the web-site or anyone who is associated with.
            I agree that the situation can be very dangerous and can change anytime but there is a deference between erupting war and wishing for one. I just can’t imagine an Eritrean person can wish invasion by foreign powers. After what Eritrean went through?

          • Berhe Y

            Nitricc,

            አታ ሓንጎል ደርሆ፡

            መዓስ ወያነ ንኤርትራ ይውረሩ ክብል ሰሚዕካኒ ትፈልጥ?

            በርሀ

          • Peace!

            Berhe,

            ሞይተ ሞይተ

            Peace!

          • Nitricc

            Berhe hahahha. Actually you didn’t; I just want to stick it there, at least I have not heard you say that but since Semere Andom is your friend, I figured by association you share the same insanity. Thanks for lough. lol

          • sara

            Berhe,,
            Funny…the ‘”testa di gallina”
            I felt i was going past shooq
            In asmsra…carrying zenbil.

          • Thomas

            Hi Berhe,

            I know I know I know. Many times, I remember you have challenged me when I suggested that the tplf should help us to rid off DIA.

            Peace,

            I know what you were trying to sarcastically tell nitricc, but the “hangol derho” dude is never going to get your intended message:) The TPLFs has nothing to do with what the DIA regime is doing to Eritrea and her people. It is mutually exclusive. Whether there is amara, oromo or any other tribal ruling Ethiopia, DIA will always DIA. The way I see it, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. The TPLFs hate DIA and I hate DIA, I would love to see the tplfs or any ethiopians for that matter remove the number one enemy of the Eritrean people now, THE MAFIAS REGIME IN ERITREA. It might take time, but I strongly believe the only way to get rid of DIA regime through violence. The coward mafias will never respond to anything until they are gunned down. It will only be a matter of time, but we will gain external support and we will finally smoke this people out!!

          • Nitricc

            Where is peace when you need him.
            Thomas; it funny a person in your situation to talk about ” I strongly believe the only way to get rid of DIA regime through violence. The coward mafias will never respond to anything until they are gunned down”
            You have no moral authority to talk about those things. Sit tight import your woman and keep an eye on the Birr. like the peace have given you a free advice. lol

          • Peace!

            Hi Thomas,

            Thomas Thomas Thomas I can assure you, from what have experienced and seen, 99% of Eritreans hate PFDJ and are desperate for change. With that in mind, the narrative either with us or against us is regressive to say the least. The train is slowly moving, and it is our responsibility to make sure the direction is right, the destination is fair and ideal, and the drivers and crews are sober, responsible and capable. Now, my understanding is you have no problem with intervention as long as DIA is eradicated once for all, fair enough. On the other hand, people like me are saying toppling DAI would leave the train stranded in the middle of no where, Iraq, Syria Libya, and now Yemen can be a perfect example. This is totally a legitimate concern that we should be debating in good faith. Don’t you think so?

            Peace!

          • Peace!

            Hi Nitric,

            Can’t you leave my friend Thomas alone? If you were in his shoes, I think you would have taken the same position 🙂

            Peace!

          • iSem

            Nitricc:
            Your problems get worse and worse by the day
            You take PFDJ and IA as Ertitrea. Even a German Shepherd knows that they are not the same
            And tsemam hade derfu (The deaf has only one song that he heard before he became deaf), you keep saying foreign invasion If someone is killing you, destroying the country that u so much love then he is an enemy. Since you cannot understand abstract, let me give you concrete military example, if your dad comes every night drank and beats the hell out of you and your siblings and you cannot defend yourself, would you run to the neighbours, would you call 911, that is foreign invasion?
            let me let you into some secret that they do not teach u in the alcoholic anonymous meeting of your YPFDJ, the foreign invasion concept was first pioneered by IA in Eritrea

          • Nitricc

            Semere: let’s assume and I agree there are many self inflicted wound in Eritrea by Eritreans. I agreed! the difference you failed to know and comprehend is that our self inflicted issues won’t destroy us, they may slow and hurt us, but never lasting devastation. While the foreign invasions and the impact they unleash and the type of wound they leave is for ever!!! I know I am wasting my time. can you think for yourself, for one day in your life? Your laughable and childish the drunk father example is a none starter. there is a difference how a country is govern versus how a household is managed it self.

          • iSem

            Hi Nitricc:
            This is again abstract concept, there is difference between the analogy of the drank father, it is to say that the victim is helpless and he can run to the neibours, he is not asking the the neighbor to invade his house, to take it. Even the UN report that indicted PFDJ for rape is foreign as no one in the committee was Eritrean
            On ur comment that self inflicted is less harmful is outright toothless to borrow from a foreigner (someone other than self) expression because the result of a wound is the same, inflicted by self or by someone else, again to use a concrete non abstract example, if u give a bullet to ur head and if someone give it to u, in both cases u will die. And no one ever in this forum since I joined in 2012 said for Ethiopia to invade Eritrea, invasion is ur spin, ur L word

          • Nitricc

            Semere; you might educated but you are not an intellectual. Education does Not equal intelligence. Anybody who is intelligent knows that. Now, if you were you could have understand why the foreign are willing to die for you? I know people like you may take war as a simple word but war is a loss of young, old, women and children’s lives, a loss of properties, the rape of your mothers, sisters and the humiliations they will go through, well, you have no idea and a person with intellectuality can only comprehend. Are you that naïve?

          • Haile S.

            Selam Nitricc,
            You are one of the rare smoldering volcanic supporters from whom an oppositional truth erupts from time to time, like shiro (ሽሮ) on a low heat :-). I like the “work with” part of your message. You are asking great question. Although I don’t have a magical answer, I can reflect on. I will come back to you, need time.

          • Haile S.

            Hi Nitricc,
            To answer your question on how to improve conversation and understanding between supporters and the opposition, I will use the key accusation you labeled on the opposition.
            Opposition and supporters to the eritrean leadership in this comment refer to anyone from a constituted group to verbally oppositing or supporting individual. Before going further, let me remind one of the original sins commited by EPLF first. The post-1991 original sin, not involving in the nation building all those who paid dearly for eritrean independence (absence of a coalition).
            Now back to the new “bed-fellows” TPLF & opposition and their role in further polarizing the eritrean politics: The role of TPLF in eritrean affairs is a historic one. Few years after eritrean independence TPLF is playing a re-make of what has worked for it in the past. Except this time the contention evolved to affairs between 2 state and TPLF is not alone, it is doing it under the umbrella of its country’s coalition, even involving regional states to get a better credibility. Years after the start of this strategy, TPLF got additional credibility right from its very enemy, the eritrean leadership. The leadership instead of playing intern-al/-tional politics intelligently, even after jailing its comrades, it went full throttle into what has worked for it during its Ghedli period; “we know what to do, silence we are liberating a country” “no one helped us before, no one will help us after”. This is the mission that it has mustered, a noble mission, but not at all adapted to an already independent country. The country’s youth instead of learning to celebrate the mighty Ghedli, went and is going through, the same protracted Ghedli made up by the successive incompetency of the country’s leadership. In the process of all this, the citizen and particularly the youth lost direction-of-life in their own home and leaving the country at all cost became the dream of all. And leaving through the southern border became the safest. Remember, PFDJ could have devised a multifaceted strategy by leaving enough room for its citizens to feel at home. However, as it remained in its Ghedli state of mind and a movement of one mission and strategy, it ended up ensnaring itself and its people. Do you think TPLF was going to refuse this Godsend gift. You can also argue, it was not Godsend, but deliberately TPLF&Co-concocted; TRUE. However, the result is the same, getting caught in your own snare or falling victim to someone elses is identical especially when you have depleted yourself your internal force and energy while boasting about your self sufficiency.
            Now, we can caricature on the eritrean opposition, bedfellows of TPLF ready to act on an act of others as you alluded to. But again here, when the ears of the leadership remains adamantly deaf, it is normal to speak to another ear willing to listen: and innocent listner doesn’t exist. Nitricc, it is legitimate to scrutinize this “copy-cut” strategy of the opposition leaders and the vicious cycle they don’t want to stop. And you have absolute right to question them, remind them to learn from past mistakes. But this needs to be done with full understanding of the intricacies and without taking them for an instrument of an enemy. More importantly, the questioning need to start on those who lost years of precious moments and who still want to be the sole lecturers while putting their hands on the mouth of their citizens.
            I believe, leaving aside the emotional outbursts triggered by hot discussions, there is ample material to ponder and agree on between those opposing and supporting the eritrean leadership. A leadership that has become our rift or fault-line instead of our glue between the muticolored tiles of our society and political spectrum.
            Cheers

          • Nitricc

            Hi Haile; first of all I thank you for taking the time to address
            my inquiry, I do applicate it.
            I do believe in my heart that there are more core values
            that connect Eritreans than pulling them apart. However, as a society likeevery other one, there are Eritreans who are blinded by hate, revenge, drivenby grudges that went on for 30 to 40 years. I understand the beef! When you equally sacrificed your own life, time and your youth for the nation and the some-oneto tell you other ways and to be treated as second citizens, worst you are not even allowed to visit the nation you scarified so much, it hurts and some can get too emotional to the point of overriding the very reason you fought for, the very nation. On the other token, you have the incoming generation and As any incoming new generation, they want to shoulder their responsibility to up hold, respect and built so, the nation to become the worthy of the untold sacrifices and destructions of the people, to achieve that they need to have a nation and anyone threatens the existence of the nation, not only the youth loses its mind but bites with every tooth they have. This very point is the major clashing point between the two generations. I think the old generation needs to refrain from making such comments and the youth needs to understand the pains those people are going through. Off course the government of Eritrea is exploiting this clashing point and it swayed the youth to side with the government of Eritrea. For the youth to side with government of Eritrea, it is not that the Eritreans government is democratic or an angle but the government gives the impression that no cares about the nation but ME! Many opposition figures that are supposed to fighting against the government they are ended up helping the government. When they fail to stand with border issue, the massage to the youth and Eritrean people is that you don’t care about the national security, you don’t care the 20K lives paid, you don’t care about the rule of the international law. If the oppositions are interested to win the silent majority and the youth, they better start showing that they care for the nation and her interests. You can’t just tell me that you are aided and supported by the enemy and you are going to save me from the very enemy.
            Regarding PIA, well it is what it is. He will be there till he dies and even after his time, i don’t see any opposition is part of future Eritrea, or till the oppositions wake up and starting to mobilize the silent majority,till then nothing will change.
            Respect!

          • Haile S.

            Selam Nitricc,
            Thank you too. I suggest you to turn your face away from the grudge-filled ghosts of 30 to 40 yrs. BTW, I haven’t seen any of these in this forum. If you are associating those genuinely but angerly expressing their concerns with the grudgy ghosts, then it is up to us the rest to reformulate their anger and send it to our leaders who only want to be cajoled not only for the small right things they do, but also for the big miss they commit and throw on the back of others. The biggest virtue in leadership is listnening to you citizens bitterness, inexistent in our leader.
            Nitricc, Isayas and his colleagues could have done a lot of good things without giving the warm chair they are sitting on. If some people say he need to go it is because they haven’t seen a micron of attempt to listen and change on his part.

        • iSem

          Hi Haile S:
          I disagree with you! Not that your comment is wrong, it is noble, but context matters. The difference we have with PFDJ supporters is not that of differing of ideas and philosophies, which is good for the mind, soul and country and humanity.
          We are faced with two distinct human nature: those who want to feed of the mayhem and those who want to create a normal country, one that make mistakes and that is not perfect.
          So this notion of they are part of us is misguided, naïve and in some cases a deliberate ploy to mislead us not fight, to think of them as our own. They maybe part of us by citizenship, by ethnicity, by pedigree, by nationality, by history, by our common struggle etc., but they at not part of us on what matters, they want to destroy us, want to blossom and prosper by our suffering.
          Now thinking of your enemy as part of you and peaceful struggle has worked for Ghandi and Mandela, even to some except for Palestine, but the English oppressors, the Apartheid killers, the Israel occupation add some inkling of humanity, some sanity, some vision as at one point they were shamed by their own actions on the powerless people, for example, the late Shimon Perez once said, they (Israel ) were shocked when we shot at under-age kids and a PLO former fighter said we accomplished more with the Intifada than with the violence. The application of these concepts, love thy enemy, does not work with Ghaddafi, Saddam and Assad, and PFDJ
          In the talk with Dr. BB, the son of Solomon Habtom (died in PFDJ prison) and a nephew of Ogbe Abraha asked him about negotiating with YPFDJ, asking them to support justice and we can concede to lift the sanction etc., I do not rem what BB answered as I was shocked by this naiveté
          The YPFDj were rightly described as Hitler Youth and they are these corrupt kids, who parents were running to the the PFDJ meeting and never brought them properly, never taught them manners, and truth and all the things that matter. I assume that there are some good people who are misled in them, but the majority are brainless failed ghetto kids with some smart at the top benefiting and misleading,
          the YPFDJ and PFDJ are not part of me, I have declared eternal enmity again them.

          • Haile S.

            Selam iSem,
            I completely understand you. Just trying to to keep the hope rolling. As you mentioned, there are, I would say many, innocently-convinced among the PFDJ O&Y. Talking of YPFDJ, I had my share of encounters and always felt the unpronounced looser coming in my direction, but I don’t stop from exposing my thought in case, who knows, it knocks the nerves sometime later.

  • Kokhob Selam

    Dear Yohannes,

    What, should we do? I am asking after reading everything of your above article..Now do you think he is alone? He has a lot of people following him..these you can see them ..the problem will be solved if we let everyone work on himself –soul searching project..really ..

    KS,

    • Yohannes Zerai

      Dear Kokhob Selam,

      You asked “What, should we do?” Well, that is a million-dollar question the answer to which we all have to collectively provide as the sum total of the little ideas, concepts and insights that each one of us should contribute to the struggle for democratic change. Hopefully, the movement and its leadership will in due course integrate and consolidate these (individual and group) contributions into a well-defined, multi-element strategy for bringing down the dictatorship. In my opinion, one such element would relate to the views and positions that the movement must adopt vis-a-vis the class of Eritreans who are presently collaborating (or had collaborated in the past) with the dictatorial regime.

      The position of many change/justice-seekers on this issue has been a rejectionist one: accusing and condemning such people for the “crimes they have [purportedly] committed against the people.” But if we are to remain true to our principled opposition to Isaias’s injustices, we should not appear to be taking the law into our own hands by arbitrarily branding these people “criminals”. That judgement must be deferred to a time when legal and judicial order will have been restored in the country following the eventual demise of the tyrannical system – a time when the Eritrean people will have the chance to take a judicial stock of the injustices perpetrated on them by known individuals and groups.

      Instead the movement should, in the meantime, focus its efforts on winning these elements over into the opposition camp and co-opting them to share their first-hand knowledge of the nature of the dictatorship and their insight into the workings of the system. We all know that one of the techniques by which the PFDJ-regime has been sowing discord and promoting suspicion/friction/animosity within the opposition movement involves having its agents infiltrate opposition groups and recruiting insiders as moles and double agents. So, the opposition should stick it to the regime and force them to taste their own medicine by embracing disgruntled insiders and get them to help with attacking and weakening the system FROM WITHIN. For maximum cumulative results, this strategy would be undertaken in parallel with other equally effective elements of a suit of strategies that the movement will have arrayed against the regime.

      We need to admit here that, by virtue of the roles they played in the system, insiders are more valuable assets to the movement than many opposition activists can hope to be. Unfortunately, a great number of well-meaning justice-seekers are inadvertently hurting the movement by scaring off such potential assets through their vindictive and accusatory rhetoric.

      Thank you

      • Kokhob Selam

        Dear Yohannes Zerai,

        Yes Sir,,I am totally convinced..Thank you for well arrange above explanation..That was really unexpected reply . I am sure that is… what was perfect collection of words..

        KS,,

  • Paulos

    Selam Yohannes,

    I always enjoy reading your articles. And trust me, I read them from beginning to finish with an interest. Than you.

    If I may add, I say, there is a bifurcation in the person of Isaias as well. One of the rising stars in Japan’s film industry, Takeshi Kitano, a brilliant actor-director who won prominence after Akira Kurosawa (read: The Seven Samurai among others), in his films, he enforces Yakuza ridden plots where his brutal vengeful proclivity doesn’t end in the death of his enemies but he makes sure that the dead body is physically rendered nonexistent as well. Death for him is not the end of breathing-life as we know it, rather the end of a breathing-life in his own terms where Scarface and Al-Capone pale in comparison.

    In a world where politics and war overlap and intertwine, Clausewitz, the man who saw war not as a random phenomena but a system with its own logic and rationale, tells us that, defeat in war is not the total surrender of the enemy, rather, defeat is when you break the spirit and sense of moral of the enemy to the extent the enemy is unable to come back and engage you in another war.

    Bifurcation in the person Isaias–the thug in a block and the President of a nation is a stark reminder except the fact that, his enemies where he is determined to break their spirit are not external forces but his own people. Isaias broke the cultural barrier with no compunction what so ever when he rendered the remains of a person nonexistent in his own terms when the remains of that person was blocked from having a proper burial in his native country. The strange thing is, not only he is destroying the morale of the people but he sets the tone of the “national discourse” and we talk about them (the latest interview comes to mind). He reins over our psych as well.

  • eden zerai

    Dear Yohannes Zerai,

    I will give you credit for how well the story is written , but the animosity you have toward the leader of Eritrea is all there for anyone who wants to read between the lines and also makes me question if you are truly eritrean. I say this b/c after what eritrea and its people have been through for the past 10 years b/c of the sanctions that was put on the young nation and was able to get out of it strong seems to bother you. The president of Eritrea is not hiding anything and he was able to win b/c eritrean are hard working people ( they don’t depend on handouts from foreign Aid and this whats holding the country together. You need to stop sabotaging Eritrean people and let them be. Don’t pretend you care and trying to speak for eritrean. Look at other african countries as well as westerners for their crime and maybe then you can come to a different conclusion. The eritrean government didn’t ask its citizens to leave…it was the westerners who created all the chaos.

    Every story that comes out of this awate.com is all negative and makes me wonder , if anyone from there is and representative or true eritrean. Its not b/c of different opinions on political issues but more on what you guys stand for(trying to destroy eritrea). The eritrean government represent the eritrean people and you can’t separate the two.

    • Berhe Y

      Dear Eden Zerai,

      Let’s assume that, those of us here in Awate that oppose the government of Eritrea, are trying to destroy Eritrea.

      Let me ask you, if you are a regular human being and when are you willing to call on justice.

      How long one must be put in prison before the loved one are notified about the where about, the crimes one suppose to have committed?

      What’s reasonable for you….5 years, 10 years, 15 years, 20 years…how long is long enough for you.

      Suppose you have a brother, a sister, a father a mother or a relative who disappeared from the face of the earth without any trace by the government of Isayas Afeworki?

      Would you be ok with it?

      Let’s forget the UN, the US, Ethiopia hatew qetew…what would have done about it?

      Berhe

      • eden zerai

        Hi Berhe,

        Have ever heard the word maximum security if the crime committed are horrendous . B/c any crime/treason committed against the country is punishable by law. I dont know the people you are referring to? But i can asure you that any family of mine who has been arrested by the eritrean government has been released and i hold no animosity towards the government, b/c at the end of the day eritrea is my country and would never work with the enemy to destroy it.

        All the questions you have asked are fair and reasonable, however we agreed and disagree how we hold the government accountable.

        All i ask is that the people at awate.com work in trying to bring peace and not get Tangled up on personal issues and think about the eritrean people back home. One government doesn’t stay forever but the country and its people will live.
        Like i said , all the questions you have asked apply to me but i will still defend the government,the people and my ountry. No offense !!!

        • MS

          Selam eden zerai
          You said, “Have ever heard the word maximum security if the crime committed are horrendous . B/c any crime/treason committed against the country is punishable by law.” Of course, you are alluding to political, some of them are well-known founders of the country we are proud of. Then you added that you don’t know the people BerheY was referring to. So, a couple of points:
          A. How do you conclude the people BerheY is referring to could have committed treason against their country if you don’t know them and the process that had led them to be arrested? How could you imply that those brave men and women must have committed treason before they are even allowed to see a judge? Don’t we invoke the overused legal principle that someone is innocent until proven guilty? Why are you denying them the benefit of the doubt? The group we are talking about is comprised of prisoners of conscience. It includes veteran leaders of the armed struggle that liberated Eritrea; journalists; diplomats; elder (senior) persons; underage kids; men and women, etc. They have not been given a due process, their families don’t know their whereabouts, etc. Dear eden, have you thought “I don’t care if they are criminals are innocent but their basic human right should be observed?” Would not you treat others as you would like to be treated? Some of them have aged out without seeing their children; others have passed the rite of passage to manhood/womanhood in prison. I would want you separate what you think of the opposition or the outside world could be doing to Eritrea and what the Eritrean government is doing to Eritrea. Criticizing your government makes one more patriotic and caring.
          B. It appears you are merely communicating the version of the government. I think our trust to the institution of power should be reasonable because if we fail to inquire and investigate the policies of a government then we are reduced to passive citizens or subjects.
          C. I think it is good that you are critical of Awate.com or any other opposition institution, be it mass media or political organizations. I would only hope the same curious mind is also employed in looking at the works of the government critically. I don’t speak of AWate, but I can assure you that the majority of participants are peace-loving. They want to see a better Eritrea. I think you can contribute positively to making the forum better by presenting your ideas without unduly accusing folks. It also helps if you don’t generalize. If you have a problem with an individual’s viewpoint just mention that person and specify your target because the readers of the site are diverse and the participants of this forum also happen to be very diverse.
          D. Opposing the government does not mean wishing bad for Eritrea. Opposing a government is a duty of every citizen. There is no question that there are few who use the situation to attack Eritrea and its sovereignty but separating the chaff from the wheat will be your homework.
          Regards.

          • eden zerai

            Dear MS,
            Of course everyone deserves the benefit of doubt, however the government of eritrea found them guilty based on the information they had at hand.
            I was referring to those leaders we entrusted to lead us during the war in 1998 and those who worked with the enemy. They let young men and women to their death. I want those leaders in jail and finish this sentence whether that’s life in prison. Even if this leaders were war heroes during the arm struggle.

            MS….i don’t question what this leaders fought for and what they have sacrificed before. I am question them what they did during the 98 war with weani and what they did in trying to create chaos in eritrea. Whatever the circumstances the eritrean government did find them guilty.

            If we have other prisoners and we know they haven’t committed any other crime other than the oppose the government or have a different political views than the current government then i will fight for their right and stand for justice, but it doesn’t mean i have to work hard trying to destroy eritrea . I will always stand with all 9 ethnicity and defend the nation.

            By the way, your points are well taken and i like reasonable people.

            Best regards

          • MS

            Dear eden zerai
            I’m not here to argue. You are telling me that whatever the government says is right; whatever the government does is justice. It is your prerogative to believe what you believe. However, it is good to know that the people who were actually running the war are not in prison. In addition, they were not even close to being privy of military operations, if you know the MO of EPLF and by extension the Eritrean government. None of them commanded the war. They were all kept in dark and that was the primary reason for appealing to the president for evaluating the process of the war and assess the dame it had caused. The war officially ended in December 2000, and they were arrested in September 2001 simply because they did not want to stop using their right to call for an assessment of the aftermath and an investigation into the conduct of the war. Do you have any tangible crime that they had committed?
            I think we need to be careful from criminalizing people before they see their day in court. They still have friends and family members. They were in their positions long after the war had ended. They lost their positions and their liberty simply because they refused to be coerced into silence. The bottom line is that it does not bother me if you hold what you believe in to be true but when you come out public accusing people of treason, I think it is a modest request that I ask you why you believe so. I think you will serve yourself and us better if you state that the government accuses them of treason and you believe the government. That way we can save time and energy.
            Thanks again.

    • iSem

      Hi Eden:
      There is no need to read between lines here or regarding the “animosity” against someone at the helm and is destroying the people and country.
      Now Eritreans are the most abused and looked down becase no one advocates on their behalf, case in point if the corrupted Sudanese arrest Eritreans even if they have legal UN refugee permits during the Romadan season to collect money, the Eri government does not vouch for them, when Eritreans have secured legal visa to leave to USA or any European country, the corrupted officials at the airport will tell them that their visa forged so they pay up 200USD, they do that because the Eri do not not a government that represented them ,we were better off without the government and any animosity towards this kind of government and leader is more than justified unless you are one pf the beneficiaries of the cruelty and organ trafficking money. people are not Jesus and we cannot expect to love our enemies or bless our tormentors or say to God, forgive them for they know not what they are doing. And we run out of other cheeks to give to be slapped
      No need to squint your eyes to read between line, above lines, below lines, here you have it, undiluted , uncoated with honey or sugar or sweetener and unrepentant: ” I have an eternal animosity against PFDJ, its leaders and IA and its functionaries and supporters

      • eden zerai

        Hi Isem,

        All i can say is wow!

        You cant hold the government accountable for the crimes of others, if people are not turning them in.

        I do however agree with you that ,if anyone from eritrea Secure legal visa to any other country. ..they should be able to leave, b/c as a human being there is this thing call free will and no matter what ,that person is going to look for a way out ( illegally ). So there aee some errors that needs to be fixed.
        Also keep in mind that there are others forces at work here that will do anything in order to undermine the government(i am talking about opposition group within the government)

        But no matter what your mind is alrwady made up so i cant change how you feel, so again we agree to disagree.

        One last thing….no i dont benefit as you stated from any of the money that you allege they charge at the airport or any place for that matter.

        • iSem

          Hi Eden:

          Nice try: yes, I am holding your government accountable for crimes of others in this case the Sudanes se for not acting its fiduciary and for he human trafficking for profiting form it and now protecting its people even in its own borders, so what is a government for if it cannot advocate for its ppl or protects them in their borders, PFDJ has done nothing like that and you should look in the mirror and feel ashamed for labelling criticism as animosity

          Other forces? what other forces, if there are it is IA who brought them, CIA and TPLF and are you saying that the g-15 by opposition within the government or element?

          Eden, you told Berhe that the government releases prisoners and to prove that you mentioned as example your family, now you are not telling the truth because Berhe is talking about political prisoners and no political prisoners in the history of IA has been released, never!

          if your family were in prison for other crimes then I congratulate you and ask you how long were they detained for and did they defend themselves, were they nai hadera prisoners? did they defend themselves?

          • eden zerai

            Lol, i have nothing to be ashamed of. I still stand with my people and its government.

            Second. ..what makes you think that all those people you alleged are held as a political prisoner’s did not commit other crimes (e.g treason, domestic terrorism ) . Just like you are asking for justice, so do the eritrean people back home you havw asked the government to hold this people accountable . There are two sides to a story.

            As for my family…. I won’t sit here and explain the reasons but all i can tell you is that in your eye the crime of my family would have been Injustice. They did their time and were released. They were never beaten, if that was the question you asked.

            As for the other stories, i will leave it as ( we agree to disagree)

            Thank you for your time

          • iSem

            Hi Eden:
            Like any good and devout supporter of the butcher regime with every comment you humiliate and exposer yourself.
            Who decides the g15 or the 10k prisoners the butcher of Sahil with the support of your ilk has disappeared that they committed crime,
            Any one who were released from prison and never beaten or tortured are those who murdered and raped because these crimes are minor in PFDJ are small time crimes that are necessary and inconvenience of doing business and I do not have to tell u what business is the PFDJ in
            standing with the Eritrean people at the same time standing with PFDJ is called an oxymoron statement

          • eden zerai

            Hi isem,

            You are actually dealing with one of the reasonable supports of eritrea. I am sick of people pretending to be eritreans and speak for me as i keep to my self, but i had enough . If you oppose the government thats your right and you and i have no problem, however when you try to take down the country b/c of your hate towards the government then you better believe i will stand for eritrea.

            As for the rapist and murdered comment , it far from the truth. If we ever cross paths you will have a different conversation with me.
            FYI…DONT MAKE THIS PERSONAL NEXT TIME. Keep it professional.

          • iSem

            Hi Eden:
            Well, I was careful not to make it personal, read my rapist comment again
            I tell u that I am Eritrean, and I think everyone who opposes PFDJ is Eritrean, if I were not, I would not waste talking about country and ppl not my own
            Still, reasonable or not anyone who supports PFDJ under the guise of country is the enemy of the ppl, a justifier of the crimes, a denier of PFDJism. A reasonable person would not touch PFDJ with 6 ft pole as they say
            Take down country? I am trying to defend the very essence of the country: the PEOPLE
            If u are anguished by the taking down of the country, u have to watch PFDJ and IA and do not call give the animosity label to the ppl here, if u are worried about the country they are ur allies
            Eden, Eritrea, the country which includes the ppl and the land has one existential enemy and it is not TPLF, it is not Awate, it is not Yohannes Z, it is not CIA, it is not God, it is not even the Satan, it is PFDJ, a regime u support by hiding behind the country

          • eden zerai

            Hi isem

            I will end this conversation with a smile.
            B/c i will not lie you did make me laugh. And dont take this as sarcasm, i really mean it.
            Good luck

            Best regards

          • Nitricc

            Eden: “professional” You are expecting way too much from this creature. And Give semere Andom a break. he is under extreme depression. He is always hoped and wished that His TPLF thugs to do the job of getting rid of PFDJ and to his dismay; The weyane are in a breaking of elimination. Semere doesn’t hate PFDJ, he hates Eritrea. His love to the TPLF thugs are not secret. May be he is from Tigray, who knows.

          • eden zerai

            Hi Nitricc,

            Thank you

    • Nitricc

      Hi Eden: I see your point and what the negative people in here At awate failed to understand is, the denial of facts and the unfairly criticism of the government of Eritrea, plays the opposite of what they trying to achieve. I agree no government should be free of scrutiny and criticisms but to deny the facts and the reality on the ground is dishonesty. In a way i can understand their frustration. They hoped pray the Eritrean government will fail and the hoped and prayed TPLF to do the job for them. Now, things are turning the way around, I expect the unfairness, the negativity and the frustrations to double down. The Eritrean government does make moves that are totally bonehead moves, not to be outdone, the so-called oppositions make even worst one. I think by what is going on in Ethiopia; I am sensing that there will be fast moving change in the horn of Africa. The fall of TPLF won’t be a failing tree in the forest. So, I can understand the negativity and the their pain that comes with it. please forgive them.

    • sara

      Hello eden,
      Hoping you are the eden i know
      Nice to see you here…but your way of entry to the show has made me think twise before i started punching the keyboard.
      Stay around.

    • Paulos

      Selam E.Z.

      As the Brits say it, do come more often for it is essential to have diversity of opinions. Welcome!

    • Yohannes Zerai

      Dear Eden Zerai,

      Apologies for the tardy reply.

      The article consists essentially of: (i) what I consider established facts and (ii) my best level analysis of the significance and/or impact of those facts viewed in the grand scheme of the country’s politics, governance and social conditions. Be that as it may, I do not expect you or anybody else to agree with any part or all of my analysis. Should that be the case, however, I would expect people to counter my arguments and refute my conclusions point by point with corroborating evidence. That kind of rational approach to the debate would advance the interest of constructive discourse which would hopefully narrow differences between Eritreans who espouse disparate views on the realities of their homeland.

      Fellow Eritreans who, out of genuine concern, express their views about their country with passion – whatever those views may be – are NOT enemies of Eritrea. True enemies of Eritrea are those who try to muzzle fellow citizens simply because they hold views that are different to their own. They are those that call others names (and label them enemies, traitors, sellouts, etc.) for no reason other than the views they expressed. By doing so, they sabotage potential processes of dialog, understanding, reconciliation, consensus and harmony among citizens. Their actions instead promote discord, friction, division and animosity among a community that can ill afford to be preoccupied with such regressive attitudes and actions.

      Thank you.

      • eden zerai

        Hi yohannes,
        No problems for your tardiness . As for your reply, point taken.

        Thank you

  • blink

    Dear awate Family
    I hope this will not be an intrusion to John article but I sense it will not .some in the opposition are lobbying the Europeans not to close the Libyan rout to Europe. I am some of the people who believe this rout has to be closed once for all. Arguing against makes you a murderer if not the shark in the sea.

    • sara

      Blink,
      Do you have any reference on this info you said about the opp.
      Share it with us

      • blink

        Dear Sara
        You can Google or Contact Selam Kidane as well as Daniel Rezene , i can give You their Tlf number if you wish . They are opposing the closing of the rout for reasons far away from the benefit of the real refugees in Libya. I find their crying to be false . Just look at selam Kidane house asmarino independent

        • Nitricc

          Hey Blink, I am not surprised at all. It is a matter of income. those people are living of Eritrean misery. Even the so- called priest is under investigation. That is what they do for living, human trafficking is their business, off course they will oppose to closing any human trafficking routs. They are getting paid for the misery of the Eritrean youth. Don’t worry, there will be a judgment day.

        • Berhe Y

          Dear blink,

          What exactly do you mean by “Just look at selam Kidane house asmarino independent”.

          Closing the boarder in Lybia will not solve the problem in Eritrea. The true solution would be for the EU to force / make the Eritrean government change it’s policy on basic freedom of movement.

          1) Implement the NS as per term limit
          2) Give Eritreans the right to move freely in their country and exit if they wish so as long as they have done their obligation.

          Then Eritreans do not need to go to Lybia / Sudan or any other place but they will leave their country freely like all normal human beings do.

          If there are still Eritreans make it to Europe, then the European countries would be able to deport them to where they come from. That’s the real solution and not turning around refugees and closing boarders where they will be subject to torture, sexual assault and victim of human trafficking.

          ፈታዊናን ጸላኢናን እንተንፈልጥ ዶ አይመሓሸን፡፡

          Berhe

          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            I agree with your points but what is the point of closing the rout, for me it is saving people from drawing in to the sea. The EU can take them from refugees centers or they can press the government to change its policies. Selam Kidane is opposing the action by EU . EU has their interest and that is up to them . The opposition has to work with Europe in order to close the rout as it is a killing place.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear blink,

            Well you didn’t answer my question, what exactly you mean “Just look at selam Kidane house asmarino independent”

            It’s expect from those PFDJ sympathizers to black mail and accuse people who are doing more than their share to save lives.

            You may agree with the policy of the EU to close the route but that’s not going to solve Eritrean people problems.

            I don’t know what Selam reason is, but I read a statement by Daniel Mokennen at Asmarino and his reasons are as follows:

            “The EU is already working with Libyan coastguards to forcibly return Africans to Libyan detention camps in which rape, torture and slavery are routinely practiced. Finally, closing the Central Mediterranean route for refugees desperate to escape Africa’s notorious dictatorships will have a disastrous impact on people – many of them children – who have risked all to flee from repression.”

            This is a valid reason and you may disagree with him but it’s not because Daniel and others like him who are working day and night to fight the regime are benefiting from. There are many Eritreans who own homes around the world and they are not because they are human traffickers.

            Do you think if Lybia is shutdown that the migration will stop?

            Berhe

          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            The EU is not asking Libya to return the refugees to a rape house that is just a smear campaign and false , the EU is setting up a mechanism in which the rout will not be in the interest of the refugees not to EU but Daniel and selam are beating the drum as if the rout is safe , why did not they raise the issue long time ago that shows the danger and the negative effects of it? selam was the first to use the dead body to raise awareness but not to stop it , I see what you are saying but I disagree with Daniel and selam way . I see them as if they are accepting the rout . On which is the EU neglecting its share ? How is the EU abandoning the people in Libya ?

            Selam and Daniel argument has no water in it , they seem to be happy to see the rout open .

          • Berhe Y

            Dear blink,

            It’s okay to disagree and you hold different position.

            What I am disagreeing with you is that, why are you implying that they wanted the route open because of other motives? You should own it and take it back.

            I don’t know what you have done to help Eritreans, but I know Daniel and Else for the past 15 years, and their interest is nothing but the walfare and wellbeing of Eritreans.

            You may disagree but I know they are close to the action and they have been helping a lot of Eritreans for the past 15 or so years. We know they have not created the crisis in Eritrea and I can tell you they will be delighted if Eritreans stayed home and the problem resolved.

            But because the route to Libya is closed, it doesn’t mean that will solve the problem at home. Yes it will solve the European problem, the same government who are propping up the regime with millions of dollars so the can stay in power.

            What do you suppose the returned migrates will happen when they are detained in Libya? are they going to be in vacation in the Mediterranean sea?

            The traffickers will find a way weather there is Libya or not…

            Berhe

          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            I did not accuse the two of any benefits as I know nothing about such thing, second I did not mention Elsa at any point. I don’t believe the rout is a solution to the problem at home and I don’t see it as a solution for the refugees in Libya too. But if it is closed and all the money invested in the big ships is channeled to Libya , Sudan and Ethiopia to put all traffickers in prison the death will not happen, third Daniel and selam could advocate for a proper settlement of Eritreans to a third country.

            The problem at home increases by the amount of people went to Libya . Issaias is happy for the traffickers to get a job and who else is happy about an open rout ???

            Guess the toothless leaders who campaign at the behest of dead Eritreans . We can actually find this in their Facebook page using dead Eritreans for political game .

            What I do to help my brothers and sisters is not as a bragging right here but I admit I don’t have a big 80,000 euro yearly expenses too.

          • Nitricc

            Hi Berhe; why are you afraid to call the border demarcation. Unless the border is demarcated and TPLG leaves Eritrean land there is no implementing the NS term or any kind of relaxing things. the key is to settle the border thing and you side step it. It is okay call it for what it is. Don’t go in circles.

        • sara

          blink,
          unbelievable expenditure to conduct meetings in Europe, imagine how many schools,health centers, could be built if that money was spent in any developing country like ours.
          Brussels conference 377,000 euro
          Frankfort meeting 193,224 euro
          total—- 570,224 euro expenses ..
          who is financing this programs? i doubt it is membership fees from our compatriots. any idea.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Sara and blink,

            Can you guys provide more details in this numbers you are throwing at and alleging that there is some “money” being embezzled.

            Berhe

          • sara

            bro- berhe,
            i didn’t say “embezzled” i am only curious who is funding such gathering, and of course i wished such money was partly spent on helping the needy any where in the world.

          • Berhe Y

            Hi Sara,

            That’s was for blink. You mentioned big numbers and I don’t know the source of these numbers.

            I am hard pressed to believe that:

            1) conference would cost that much
            2) hard to believe they spend that kind of money on matters related to Eritrea (assuming based on what you said should be spend on the people instead).

            My skeptisism is the democratic institutions are accountable to some body, be it auditors, oppositions, the people, journalists etc. They can’t shift money around at will without justifying. Only dictators can do that..,

            So it will help if you provide the source of the information.

            Berhe

          • sara

            Berhe,
            Indeed the amount large,it hard to belive they will spent on eritrean case etc,
            But belive me not, that is what i heared from people on the know.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear sara,

            It seems to me as my grand mother use to say “ሓሰኻ ደምበሲ አብ ዝለምለመሉ”. People who have no qualms as to the way the PFDJ spends the money, e.g. over 700 million dollars stashed somewhere in Swiss bank but they all get all edgy when Eritrean NGO or civil society get little amount of money to cover their expenses.

            We should expect that from PFDJ and their sympathizers (like Nitricc) but those of us who claim to oppose the dictator, we should be restrained from accusing people without evidence. Otherwise what’s that separate us from the PFDJ then?

            Berhe

          • Nitricc

            Hi Berhe; who has a chicken brain? you or me? I am trying to help you out of the stupidity but you won’t do it. Amazing! Okay let’s assume that PIA have 700 million dollars in Swiss bank. Fine, the guy eating dust in Adi-Halo and he is 71 years old man, even if he had the money what is the point for him to have that money. I know you are known for your critical thinking but why is it so hard for you to understand? Considering what the country went through it is impossible for anyone in Eritrea to amassed that kind of money, NONE! My wish is one day you will be able to think.

          • Berhe Y

            Nitricc,

            For sure you are hangol derho. Who am I suppose to believe. Hard paper evidence or your assumption. Why is it impossible for PIA to have that kind of money?

            Let me give you an example, do you remember the money they were selling to give land to people. I have seen a list of at least 6000 Eritreans who purchased the land. And they paid minimum of 10,000 dollars, that’s 60 million dollars..and they have been doing that for the past how many years…

            All the money that’s suppose to be paid for NS development work…is all going to PIA and his cronies.. Hagos Kisha had global satelite and Global Internet access where ever he travels….and all he does is check stocks…and monitor the money. Someone told me who use to travel with PIA with them (former journalist).

            Berhe

          • Nitricc

            Why is it impossible for PIA to have that kind of money? Because there is something called commonsense! Sunshine!! The country just came from 30 years of bloody war, there was economy worth calling an economy, everything is destroyed, you have hundreds of thousands former fighters demanding and you must take-care; you have an entire population on your back. Then 5-6 years passes by and you are back at the most costly and bloodier war ever. I understand you have no idea how costly it is the human and material cost to manage a war. Once the war passes the country was cornered by three corners of her neighbors, Sudan, Ethiopia and Yemen, the idea was to kill by suffocation; fights a fight of her life. Then the UN, AU and USA comes after her with every economic sabotage and sanction and the country fights all of them just to survive, all of a sudden, the man who led the fights of all able to stash 700 million dollars. I think what fails you and Semere is that, since you live in a welfare state I don’t think you guys understand the cost and its analysis. I say this because who can fail to understand the hardship Eritrea went through? Who will believe that after all what happened that PIA can stash 700 million US dollars? No one not a reasonable person with function
            neurons, NOP!

          • iSem

            Nitricc;
            let me help you with an other abstract notion. Let me first be devil’s advocate and agree with u there is no hard evidence that the 700 million does not belong to the richest man in Eritrea, DIA
            But what is money used for, it is to buy luxury things after the basic needs of shelter and food etc, so IA had all that the luxury beyond the basics, so how is he paying for that do u know how much DIA makes,. His trips to Adi Halo can only fool the fools and the, money for everyone and DIA included, it is not the end, it is the means to the end, which in this case is power and DIA uses his power to disappear ppl for eternity and to make ppl some ppl even more retarded
            U disagreeing with me is not a problem, if there is no disagreement there is no growth intellectually in ppl and a country without dissenting voices will be retarded like Eritrea has now become, first wrap ur head around these basic rudimentary to debate lofty ideas with ppl here
            IA uses the power and how does he drive the power, because he controls the security and how does he control security, because he controls the coffers. Forget the 700 mil, it is peanuts, DIA controls the GDP of the country. The Adi Halo starvation is an urban legend perfected from the Sahel days when IA wrote his name with bullets on the rocks, or his comrades restrained him with chaines because he wanted to fight in a battle or he was just here cooking for the front line tegadelti, it fooled the gullible peasants back then now it fools the low IQ, who IQ gets lower by Adi Halo

          • Nitricc

            Semere: you are everywhere; you can’t have it both ways. I am talking about the financial claim that he has 700 million US dollars in Swiss banks. I am telling you it is impossible to embezzle that kind of money, with span of time, with dangerous and costly war for survival; there is no freaking chance to put aside that kind of money. I understand, since you don’t know war means and how costly it is, but am sure you can put one and one together. You can’t even claim the money may came from the sale of the gold, this happened before the gold , then the question for reasonable people should be, how on earth is possible that PIA can amassed that kind of money. This is my point! And I am not arguing about PIA total power and his absolute political control. You are talking about his political control and I am disputing that. And Trust me when you say “His trips to Adi Halo can only fool the fools” What you don’t get is, he is 71 years old, if it is true what you are saying then PIA fooled no one but himself. He is 71, man? Think!!!

          • Berhe Y

            Nitric,

            So you are saying this 700 million that was attributed to an account to Eritrea is false and a lie?

            Hard to believe, hard to justify, I understand but are saying it’s a make up story and has no truth what so ever?

            Just yes / no answer is enough.

            Berhe

          • Nitricc

            Berhe, we know Eritrea was selling passport to Arabs and Any rich Arab could have deposited the money as Eritrean. Those days people will do anything to hide their money. There is no way in hell any Eritrean can stash that kind of money, PIA no PIA, any Eritrean born Eritrean.

          • Berhe Y

            Nitricc,

            You go through different hoops and get an excuse that doesn’t add up just to defend the corrupt Isayas A.

            You know if people have that kind of money to hide, they would not go to some lawless country to get a passport. They have lawyers and advisories and there are all kind of countries who would be happy to take three money (invest) and get permanent / citizen ship.

            Those that were buying passport from ERITREAN must have been desperate people who have no choice.

            So if the ERITREAN government have nothing to do with that money, what’s so difficult to challenge the journalist to correct the story ?

            Are you saying IA would rather protect the “corrupted” individuals who are hiding money than to protect his government and the country?

          • sara

            Berhe..xaeda…
            I think we shouldnt be sensitive to such revelations, if we are going to correct our current statu qua.
            Why not be thrifty in doing their activity..and save money to use it for supporting people related needs.
            Let me give you an example, once i had an opportunity to travel out to attend a symposium,it was sponsored by a corporation and all expences paid.
            You know what i did…i arranged my stay with eritreans i know back home to host me for those days.
            That way i saved some good amount of foreign currency to take home.ofcourse i spent some buying staff i hardly can afford from my sallary,
            But big chank was sent to my family back home.
            Now, as nitric always says..
            The moral of this comment is,let us spend with consiferations even it is given to is by others as there are others eritreans who are desperately in need of it.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Sara,

            Where is your source for the figures? We don’t have a problem for asking accountability. The isssue now is, where did you get those figures of expenses for the Brussels and Frankfort conferences you provided us? The forumers asked you the same question and you failed to give us. I hope it is not a cooked figures.

          • sara

            Ato Amanuel,
            you know this kind of information will not be available for the public unless subjected to scrutiny by concerned authorities if there is any suspicions going forward with their activities. i could ask the same thing about the expenditure of gatherings in Ethiopia and some could give any figure but if i ask the sources i am sure no one will tell the sources.
            but one thing though Mr Amanuel… i am sure you have attended many meetings in your profession sponsored by J&J , imagine the logistics of organizing such international gathering and you can do the maths to come with close to the figures i mentioned for both Brussels and Frankfort meetings.
            with respect

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Sis Sara,

            You can accuse them of not having transparency and accountability, but you can’t make your own figures to convince your readers. To fabricate an issue is more sinful than to hide the facts. While you have many issue at hand to argue with, you don’t need to make up one. Eritrean politics has plenty of unresolved issues and focus on them.

            Regards

          • sara

            Ato Amanuel.
            “Ms abeytee aytmelales..”
            I stiil carry lt with me from home.therfore i will heed your advise and leave it until one day it pops out in public.

          • Berhe Y

            Dear Sara,

            Xaeda’s TiHshiyo dAe.

            With all due respect, what you do in your private and personal matter is your own choice. It’s up to you how you would like to spend your money. If it was up to me, I would rather see the ERITREAN people including my family instead of waiting handout from me or their relatives, but create their own opportunity without depending on anyone.

            You know there was a time where Eritreans didn’t have to friend on anyone to feed themselves and create opportunities for themselves, like any normal beings.

            It’s really sad that, it’s becoming a distant past that we can’t even think that is possible, with the way the current government have reduced our people to.

            Kab KufuE zgebruKas kufuE zmhuriKa.

            I think it’s your obligation to ask and investigate and find to the bottom of it when money is spend on the name of Eritreans.

            You can’t take numbers at face value thrown at and for repeating it without hard evidence. And all that is possible through access information if one tries hard.

            As to Ethiopia spends on Eritrean opposition to hold conferences, well Ethiopia is not exactly democratic country which will open its books to anyone to see unlike most democratic countries.

            Berhe

          • blink

            Dear Berhe
            Which numbers?? Be specific when addressing because this thread became to long and very hard to search every comment you made. The 4 million birr of awasa ??

          • blink

            Dear Sara
            It is not about the amount but what did you do with that money is going the question. In awasa the opposition spent 4 million birr and the exchange was not like to day. Now let’s assume this Brussels money was well spent . But let’s see the people who were there . The French guy plaut , van renzi too , much of like that.
            Berhe thinks the opposition has the right to spend money where ever they got for 17 years. He wanted us to see them like PFDJ . Aren’t we working to demolish PFDJ ? How can we compare ourselves with them.

            Berhe if you are thinking about the Euros on the name of speaking for Eritreans, that must be a great service if it was spent to close the Libya rout not to continue open it. You want source about that money right , do you want the name of the account holder . It is in public domain . Not that difficult to know it .

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