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Myth, Politics, History, Religion, and Eritrean State

Human beings are endowed with that unique ability to recall our history, live in the present, and plan of future (Close to Heidegger’s notion of “temporality” in “Being & Time”). Similarly, thus, we are also endowed as F. Scott Fitzgerald quipped, with “the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.” So, I trust the reader will see today’s article in that light, the intention certainly is that. So, then, to say we struggle in this life to balance matters of politics, work, leisure, friendships, and faith is NOT to overstate it at all. The latter is the focus of today’s piece. Consider my struggles with faith. Religion was instilled in me from childhood in that venerable place Akhriya, QeyyaH Meriet.

Over the decades since I left home, I have had my struggles with staying true to its tenets. The first few years after fleeing home, I clung to it like one does to a dear life. But, by the time I lived in Cairo as a young man of middle school age, I was becoming a Ramadan-Eid-and-Friday-praying kind of a fellow.

The ebb and flow of my struggles continued to intensify when I arrived in the US. Over the last several years, however, these trios remain to be the ones that I faithfully try to follow except for Ramadan. This month of reflection and introspection I really find to be of a monumental challenge, though I do keep up with it; nevertheless, I operate at a low, very low fuel, consequently, productivity suffers along with it. With this brief personal vignette serving as a backdrop, attempts will be made to strike a balance between personal sovereignty and the freedom for an individual to believe or not to believe in the sovereignty of God. What brought this to the fore, at least for me is the interview that Alamin Mohammed Seid gave to an Eritrean media outlet.

Considering that interview, where one could make no head or tail of, what is one supposed to do: Ignore it as another bait for us in the diaspora to get into endless circular arguments about? Or do we try to elevate the discussion by bringing some of the issues he raises, namely, religion or lack thereof it (for example, atheism), myth, tradition, culture, in the context of nation-state aspirations? These, of course, bring with them other layers of issues (for example, conspiracies, fallacies, perceptions embedded within us all) that must be treated if one is going to have clarity about it all. Making a genuine attempt at addressing these issues can only help in the fleshing out process. Of course, the hope is that, at the other end of this, we will all come out with a better understanding of our human condition. Why not use literature to highlight some of the defaulted positions we the believers take as we inadvertently or not dismiss those who choose not to believe. Milton’s Paradise Lost (PL) will serve as the background that could conceivably not only shed a light but challenge us all in our presumptions. Though delving deeper on Milton’s epic narrative poem would be next to impossible to do in this short article, bringing some salient points from it, however, can give us sufficient distance to evaluate certain myths that we may otherwise have not carefully considered before. Let us then start with notions of myth, politics, and history before drawing notions of religion from PL.

The propagation of myth and its shelf life in human history seems to continue unabated for generations. In the Cambridge Companion to English Literature 1500 – 1600, Arthur F. Kinney offers a compelling testimony to this notion:

“Nothing of great note happened in 1500, and nothing of great note happened in 1600 either, as the timeline appended to this volume shows. As a unit of political history, the century effectively begins in 1485, when Henry Tudor defeated Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth field. Henry VII, as he became, was keen to present this event as a beginning: he employed historians such as Polydore Vergil and Bernard Andre to construct a Tudor version of history in which Richard III was portrayed as a murderous tyrant, and in which the marriage of Henry himself to Elizabeth of York was presented as the final resolution of fifteenth-century battles between the rival houses of York and Lancaster over the succession.” (p. 11)

What this illustrates is the staying power of myth along the historical and political trajectories, once concocted and its delivery meticulously orchestrated, there seems to not be a mechanism in place of stopping it even after its veracity was questioned and disproven. Mythology was not employed just in the written word narratives, “careful manipulation of images, even in death, was a means by which this family sought to ensure national stability and dynastic continuity. Therefore, Kinney states that “[t]his was a century in which representations were a crucial tool of government. This is one reason why its literature is so strong: as an art of representation, it knows it matters. But it is also why we should be uneasy with mythically unified tales about the period” (p. 13). Kinney’s assertion is not ambiguous at all that we should always be leery about picture perfect historical narratives because “England was frequently presented as a mixed polity, which counterpoised the power of the Crown with the moral force of parliament and counsel” (p. 13). A deep understanding of this polity is not lost on Milton who was aware, hence for being able to intricately and in sophisticatedly woven an epic poem narrative best known as Paradise Lost.

Throughout Milton’s Paradise Lost (PL), a reader is kept abreast of that elusively mythic “free will” that God claims has endowed the Angels, Adam & Eve with; and at the root of which rests a choice they make if they are going to fall like the Fallen Angel, Satan and his disciples, or, remain loyal to God’s rules. Just like Satan, Adam and Eve also make their respective choices to transgress God’s rules as they consumed the forbidden fruit and for such disobedience punishment is exacted by the Omniscient, the all-knowing; never mind that God could have prevented the temptation for Satan to disobey or could have disallowed Satan from perversely tempting Eve in consuming that “fatal fruit.” But, then, what keeps the epic’s narrative structure from falling apart, arguably, is that elusive “free will.” From a structural standpoint, Paradise Lost (PL) shows certain themes, patterns, and parallels that a reader can clearly surmise. In the case of the latter, for example, Satan’s despair parallels that of Adam’s despair, both of whom are given a chance to express their inner turmoil in their respective soliloquies. So, the notion of God’s free will, sin, and disobedience in a juxtaposition of Adam’s self-subversion, religious despair and the genesis of personal growth and other intersection in that process evident if one reads PL carefully.

The notion of free will as postulated by God is a two-edged sword that cuts its adherents both ways. On the one hand, the Angels, Adam, and Eve are free to choose their actions, but there will be a consequence for any action deemed inappropriate by God, such as when eating from the Tree of Knowledge. Now, if one were to go Freudian on God, one can stockpile, at best, a God who is not confident in Himself so much so that He does not want his subordinates to learn and perhaps challenge the notion of the “all-knowing.” But then one is quickly reminded that in Milton’s Paradise Lost, God, for all intents and purposes, is one of the main characters who should be treated as such in owing some of the human fallibilities, privy to “self-subversions” that Webber alludes to when she states that Milton does “consciously justify [] God simply by reminding us of the available tradition: from the beginning, men, when they thought seriously about life, chose to keep it; therefore, life must be valuable” (p. 518). In the same vein, Webber reminds her readers that “Adam and Eve [do] consciously [] accept their fate. Turning from thoughts of suicide or genocide to assume mortality for themselves and their descendants, they involve themselves in the creative action by which men will be redeemed” (p. 518).

Redemption or not at each turn God seems to be on the receiving end of the subversion, first from Satan then from Adam & Eve. In essence, the issuer of the very idea of “free will” seems to be not free of consequences because each time it is used God throws his forceful wrath upon those who dare exercise it. Webber believes that Milton’s “expressed subject is sin and disobedience, not heroic warfare. While his immediate story is of defeat and loss, his long-range forecast is for joy and triumph” (p. 518). Defeat, loss, joy, or triumph, at the end of the day, the human spirit seems to trump God’s notion of free will even if the corollary to such action is capital punishment, not an instantaneous one but the dubbing and imposing mortality to mankind is nothing more than a euphemistic-inevitable-slow-death, no less.

Be that as it may, approaching the issue of free-will from a different angle may even be more instructive, in this regard. For example,  in “The Verbal Gate to Paradise: Adam’s “Literary Experience” in Book X of Paradise Lost, Georgia B. Christopher captures the essence of the free will which also inculcates free to love in that “the notion that Adam eats the forbidden fruit out of “love” for Eve has recently been challenged by Dennis Burden, and it is time to challenge the equally romantic notion that it is Eve’s love that leads Adam back to God” (as quoted by Christopher, p. 69). Now arguments and counter-arguments can be made to justify one way or another, but at the end of the day, where the influence on action, any action, emanates from ought to be rendered irrelevant, once the notion of the free will is injected in the conversation. Whether Satan tempted Eve or Eve tempted Adam to eat the forbidden fruit does not stand to reason, because God must be dragged into the center of the argument, as God, the all-knowing, could have manipulated the outcome, but for His free-will-mantra, mankind goes down the treacherous path akin to the familiar proverb, “there but for the grace of God, go I.” Indeed, the only entity that does not grow seems to be God himself, managing, conducting his executive duties from high heaven, vis-à-vis proxies as He delegates the chores to various Angels depending on the type of the deemed crime deserving punishment or the good deed that deserves a reward.

The way Adam progresses and evolves in his thinking is akin to how humans develop from childhood to adulthood. Milton introduces Adam in Book IV, whereupon the reader learns of Adam as the first man to be created by God and is forbidden to eat from the “Tree of Knowledge” in Paradise. At this junction, however, it is worth noting that Satan has fallen and is going through his despair as he had been expelled from Heaven, thusly, is atop of Mount Niphates that is within a seeing distance from Eden, where Adam & Eve reside. Satan seems to be determined in executing his agenda of “bold enterprise” to oppose God’s rules and tempt mankind to exercise the free will as prescribed by God even if it comes at the expense of disobeying the very God who made those rules.

But, suddenly Satan seems to be struck by the lightning of despair, in Lewalski’s words, “falls into many doubts with himself, and many passion, fear, envy, and despair” (p. 91). What one notices then is that as Satan is going through his disparaging moments, Adam & Eve are barely at the stage of their “cloud nine” moments, moments akin to a little child’s state of bliss so long it is fed, ate, slept, and is given adequate attention by the adults, all is well and good. The caveat for Adam is, of course, at the begging of God to enshrine him with a partner, God, surprisingly, obliges in creating Eve for Adam’s entertainment and intimacies, out of Adam’s left rib.

From Satan’s viewpoint the reader is in for a treat, albeit more than just a glimpse of Adam & Eve’s state of bliss when he states that “Two of far nobler shape erect and tall/Godlike erect, with native Honor clad, in naked Majesty seemed, for in their looks Divine/The image of their glorious Maker shone,” (ll. 288-291). Satan appears to be on a jealousy and infatuation binge spontaneously; jealousy toward Adam for being created in the image of God as the reader also senses the sensuality of Adam and Eve in general and the infatuation toward Eve is particularly evident. Satan states that “Her unadorned golden tresses wore/Disheveled, but in wanton ringlets waved. As the Vine curls her tendrils, which implied/Subjection, but required with gentle sway. And by her yielded, by him best received, Yielded with coy submission, modest pride, /And sweet reluctant amorous delay” (ll. 305-311). Satan’s muse seems to be on his side prompting him to express his feelings in such lucid fashion and he is not done yet until he reaches not only the summit but the resolution to how besotted he is with Eve, tantamount to some journey of a “wet dream.” The innocence of Adam & Eve and their state of bliss is more than apparent as described by Satan. So, the struggles we undergo as we deal with the free will that we are – for all practical purposes – endowed with what appears to be the story of our humanity from its inception.

Thus, the progressive elements in our midst – at awate forum – appeared to have had trouble giving those Eritreans who may wish to distance themselves from any religious tenets, opting instead to either be agnostic or full-fledged atheists. This was notable during the reactions and counter-reactions that people were sharing about Alamin Moammed Seid’s interview in which he unabashedly wished to claim that there were no religious persecutions in Eritrea when the veracity of the matter was in stark contrast to such a false claim by the mouthpiece of PFDJ. If anything, what this brought forth for the diaspora Eritreans is that we have our limits in how far we are willing to give that freedom of choice to those who choose not to believe.

About Beyan Negash

Activist, a writer and a doctoral candidate (ABD) in Language, Literacy, and Culture at New Mexico State University (NMSU). Beyan holds a bachelor of arts in English and a master of arts in TESOL from NMSU as well as a bachelor of arts in Anthropology from UCLA. His research interests are on colonial discourse and post-colonial theories and their hegemonic impact on patriarchy, cultural identity, literacy development, language acquisition as well as curriculum & citizenship. The geopolitics of the Horn of Africa interests Beyan greatly. His writings tend to focus on Eritrea and Ethiopia. Beyan has been writing opinion pieces at since its inception (1 September 2001).

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  • bibi1

    No switch the story to Ethiopia. Focus on Eritrea. This is Eritrean page. Clashes between Eritreans who support the regime in their home country and those who oppose it broke out for a third night in a row on Tuesday June 12, in south Tel Aviv.

    Police said that four people were injured in brawls in the area of the Central Bus Station. Three of them were lightly injured and one was seriously wounded after being stabbed.

  • Selam Abi,
    I was afraid that it might start a war to no avail, and that was the reason i chose to answer the question myself, hoping that it is neutral.

    • Kokhob Selam

      Brother Horizon,

      Next time don’t afraid..Let it be… now is the time to be brave and you should not just afraid,,


  • said

    What can three Arab Ruling Dynasties learn from catastrophic end of Ethiopian dynasty .The Absolute Monarchic Rule and The Priority of Survival of the Ruling Client Arab Dynasties

    The end of Ethiopian dynasty ,the late King Haile Selassie is lesson in history ,his end was swift and catastrophic and the long proceed to the transition to the present Prime minster Abiy Ahmed Ali ,who becomes Ethiopia’s prime minister, replacing Hailemariam Desalegn, He has inherited a ruling coalition beleaguered by a power struggle within its four ethnically based parties, and a country where many are unhappy with the status quo. His government’s promise to widen political dialogue in the country
    In the 14th century Ethiopian compilation of legends, the Kebra Nagast (“The Glory of Kings According to the Kebra Nagast, Sheba subsequently gave birth to a son who became Menelik, King of Axum. And if legend is to be believed, Menelik became the founder of the ruling Ethiopian dynasty.
    As reported Haile Selassie – born Tafari Mekonnen – became emperor in 1930. In Ethiopian tradition, succession to the throne could be claimed by any male blood relative of the emperor. Selassie claimed distant descent through his father. He believed he was called to be king. In his autobiography, My Life and Ethiopia’s Progress 1892-1937, written in Amharic, Selassie set out his claim to nobility. “Thus We Ourselves, by virtue of Our descent from the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon, ever since We accepted in trust … first the regency of the Ethiopian realm and later the Imperial dignity, right up to the present, We have set out to the best of Our ability to improve, gradually, internal administration by introducing into the country western modes of civilisation through which Our people may attain a higher level; hence Our conscience does not rebuke Us.” He wrote the book while living in England, in Bath, in exile – Mussolini had invaded Ethiopia in 1935.
    Haile Selassie’s reign is extraordinary for many reasons, not least because it was claimed during his lifetime that he was an incarnation of Jesus. He is worshipped to this day by Rastafarians, who take their name from “Ras”, meaning “head” or “duke”, and “Tafari”, being Selassie’s original family name.
    Selassie’s reign is bookended by two great works exploring the meaning of royalty. In 1931, Evelyn Waugh published Remote People, an account of Selassie’s coronation. And in 1978 the Polish journalist Ryszard Kapuscinski published The Emperor: Downfall of an Autocrat, detailing the last days of his reign as “the whole court – though slowly and with dignity – was sliding toward the edge of the cliff”. Selassie was deposed in 1974. He died in prison, in mysterious circumstances, in 1975.
    In Jordan – the Official name “The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan” – with general strikes and public protests, demonstrations and even in some cases and localities outright riots – in normal circumstances invites reflections, deep reckoning and a call for accountability.

    Accountability & Transparency are the two magical expressions that found their way of application and strict observance in the legacy of the Western Political Governance for centuries giving rise and causing the flourishing of Western democracies and material prosperity. Accountability & Transparency stand witness to the impressive advancements and impressive strides in all aspects of life of the Western Societies. Accountability & Transparency are the two words, the two expressions that escape the dictionary of the long ruling of the Dynastic Regimes in the Arab Countries.

    What would normally apply in commercial corporate enterprises in terms of Transparency & Accountability – i.e. holding the elected Board of Directors and the Chief Executive Officer responsible for the economic wellbeing of the Business Enterprise as measured with the specifics of pre-set targets and financial yardstick measures – has no relevance, no counterpart, no equivalent in the far more crucial and far more consequential Political Governance of the Century Rule over the lives of populace of the longest surviving political Dynasties in the MENA region (North Africa and the Middle East).

    As the Political System in the West evolved towards true representative democracies – the Self-Governance of the States “By Elected Representatives by the People, Of the People and For the People” – The Absolute Monarchic Rule in some major Arab Countries only remained intact; remained above the law; remained above Accountability and the call for Transparency.

    A Century-Old Rule by same Ruling Political Dynasties got only more absolute – Beyond Accountability & Transparency – with the cosmetics, in some instances, of claims of political reforms touching on appearances as totally void of the substance and reaching deeper into the form.

    The General wellbeing and the Future of the Countries and the people Ruled for a near Century by Arab Ruling Dynasties seem to only lead to more uncertainties as continuously gets bleaker and is in constant state of reversal.

    Ironically, all three of the Ruling Arab Dynasties that sprang into existence with the Advent of Western Hegemony, “Sphere of Influence,” in North Africa and the Middle East, very much conformed to the regional strategies and geopolitical plans of the hegemonic Western powers, as they often rightly referred to as the “Client States.” The surviving interests of the Ruling Dynasties took precedence, and at times, conflicted with the general interests and the future wellbeing of the interests of the general public; the popular constituencies, the ruled masses.

    In brief, one finds answers to the puzzling state of affairs in Jordan, the rich Arab Oil Sheikdoms and North African Morocco in the above preamble – as all ruled by same long surviving political dynasties outside the Accountability and the Transparency dictates.

    Prior to the coming to power of all three of the above Ruling Dynasties, Israel as an expansionist colonialist political entity coming to existence at the expense of a whole Arab people never was a living thing. Israel, following in the same Western Sphere of Influence, was created and continues to grow in strength and aggressively flourish under the guise, as in some circumstances as the case of Jordan, the direct infringement on the National Sovereignty, territorial integrity and long-term security interests of the subject Client Arab State.

    Despite all the calamities befallen the Arab countries during the long past century; however more in particular the past half a century since the 1967 six-day war and the loss of Arab territories to Israel, same Ruling Dynasties Survived, intact, all through the consequential major Arab calamities; Arab catastrophes, national reverses and irredeemable national setbacks.

    Ironically, all three Ruling Dynasties proved loyal clients to the same Western hegemonic forces as these hegemonic forces proving biased, double-standard and conspiratorial operating in close collaboration with colonialist Israel against the legitimate national aspirations and the legitimate national rights of the people and the constituencies over which same dynasties continued to rule.

    In Conclusion, and for one to gain a better understanding and insight of the workings of these Ruling Arab Dynasties, as well as the secrets for their long survival; it would be advisable if one could consult with certain readings, three specific excellent books, extremely well-researched writings by Western scholars and Western authors. The following books give more than glimpses, a rather good account, of the Genesis and the survival tactics of the three Arab Ruling Dynasties despite the huge reversals in the fortunes and future wellbeing of their constituencies:

    1) With Reference to Saudi Arabia: “The House of Saud,” 1979, by the Guardian’s David Holden as completed by the co-author Richard Johns after David Holden was found dead in his car near the Cairo Airport as he was preparing to write a book on Anwar Sadat following Sadat’s recent visit to Jerusalem and its attendant aftermath. Further, it would prove relevant and instructive to consult with another reading that caused a huge controversy at the time of its release as relating to Saudis’ Policies towards Yemen; i.e., “Saudi Arabia: The Ceaseless Quest for Security,” 1988, by the Israeli Harvard Scholar Nadav Safran.

    2) With Reference to Morocco: “NOTRE AMI LE ROI,”1990, by Gilles Perrault, that greatly infuriated Le Roi Hassan II who went on a rampage wanting to buy all copies of the book from all the Western Bookstores. Every detail in this sweeping book is factual as I once lived part of the Moroccan story.

    3) With Reference to Jordan: “Lion of Jordan: The Life of King Hussein In War and Peace,” 2007, by Oxford Israeli Scholar Avi Shlaim, gives a near full account of the Rule of the Hashemite Dynasty during its second true founder. Excellent reading of a sweeping background with new revealed secrets made possible by declassified documents and the late king Hussein’s personal cooperation with the author during part of the writing of the book that took 10 years to finish.

    What truly stopped me in Avi Shlaim’s revelations that kept my jaws wide open, that in many ways sums up the essence of this article as to what extent Ruling Dynasties go to ensure survival of the Rule of the Dynasty as a priority, is the episode of the king’s close military advisor at the court, Emile Juma’iyan effecting a secret visit to Tel Aviv in 1960 as the emissary of the king. The purpose of the secret visit was to meet with Israel’s Chief military Intelligence, Chaim Herzog (later became a President of Israel; he was the father of Isaac Herzog, the current head of the Israeli Labor Party). The Purpose of the visit was to receive assurances that Israel would not move to occupy the West Bank, considered at the time part of Sovereign Jordan, should the king move to invade Syria to cause the breakup of the United Arab Republic under the rule of Nasser as Syria at the time was part of that Union

  • Beyan

    Selam Awatawyan,

    Instead of listening to the usual Sunday morning talking heads, how about listening to an expert on African state of affairs, where it will make our parochial squabbles minuscule by comparison. This scholar is the Noam Chomsky of Africa – Vastly knowledgeable about the state of Africa, seemingly in its entirety. It’s no more than 8 mins, please give him your ears and along with it your mind and your heart:

    Good Sunday!

    • Kokhob Selam

      Thank you Beyan,

      This is great idea of our days.


    • Selam Beyan,

      These gentlemen are discussing about things africa should have done yesterday and not tomorrow. African countries should have learnt to be at peace with each other more than 50 yrs after they got rid of colonialism, they should have implemented by now at least basic democracy and good governance, open borders and free trade and free movement of people. All these are ideas of a very fundamental importance. The question is, are africans ready to implement what they say or are they going to continue the status quo? Most probably the latter. How much serious are they?

      Another main problem is the absence of infrastructure development that connect african countries to each other, which is still at a very low level, and they have to invest on roads and railways. In addition, they should insure peace and security, and they should learn to have respect for each other.

      They said that it is easier to immigrate to another continent than within the african continent. Of course, the economy is an important factor, on top of security problem due to the absence of democracy and good governance in a continent that has chosen to remain behind.

      Most important is the absence of democracy, goodwill, education for all, and the existence of widespread corruption and nepotism that have shackled africa and it cannot move forward.

      Finally, i would like to ask this question: Is pm Abiy a typical african politician or is he different from others? Let me answer myself: only time can show, although the early signs seem hopeful.

      • Beyan

        Dear Kokhob Selam & Horizon,

        While in full agreement with the points raised, while the issue being addressed is a macro level of half-a-century back and how to ameliorate past missed opportunities, I firmly believe it is a good starting point to begin to think beyond the tip of our respective noses. What we continue to discuss day-in-and-day-out it, like most of the continent, dealing is nothing less than that, albeit from micro level standpoint.

        I try to steer clear from Ethiopia’s sociopolitical discussions, not because I don’t care, but because the micro level discussions, the devil within Eritrea’s proper, the homemade tyrant’s snake oil has been so poisonous, so polarizing, so next to impossible to think of nothing else but of wishing to see the day of the day one can say good riddance is deferred; every day the man at the helm, in charge of the country is every day that the pain magnified, making it next to impossible for me to bring up Ethiopia’s enviable sociopolitical landscape. But, fairness demands that honest questions receive an honest response. So, the question of whether PM Abiy is “a typical african politician or is he different from others”, from where I sit, over 10K miles away, such vast distance doesn’t even blur my vision to unequivocally affirm that he is not your ordinary politician trying to sell Ethiopians that snake oil, there just is no sentinelled watchdog groups needed that the man is clean, sincere, and wants what’s best for not only for the nation but for the entire Horn and beyond.

        • Kokhob Selam

          Dear Great thinker Beyan,

          I am really for the same aim truly hopefully the leaders are reading what we are talking about now at this very moment, African unity is possible, it needs willingness and movement. Yes last years it was not done and that doesn’t mean now we can’t do it, We have to stand firm on this really unity..

          Why it was not possible, we have to list it down and remove the obstacle of those past years and move on for our united Africa,.,

          That may take great minds and like yours.. but let it be,

          Dr,Aby has to take great step to wards this African unity thing.. From what we all witness is he is advanced least now he is one of the advanced great leaders of our times..


          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Kokhob Selam,

            It is really great to read you.
            I am in agreement with you. Even though, we have to wait for result, he appears to be bold enough to do what he believes or believes to be effective for the country at this time.

            There are so many moving parts and factors to manage and deal with, it requires a cut above the gift of a normal leader.
            He has earned sufficient trust from the majority of his colleagues to be the Prime Minister for the project.
            For now that is good enough for me.

            Mr. K.H

          • Beyan

            ክብረት ይሃበለይ Kokhob Selam,

            Indeed, we’ve been looking for and using the Western framework to understand and resolve our challenges when they remain to be the culprit of the miseries of the continent from which we hail. The noted Kenyan scholar, Ngugi, who refuses to write his original work in English language before he writes it in his mother tongue, the Kikuyu language with the exception of “The Colonised Mind”, which I believe he wrote in English when he was a student in Great Britain. This is why I am always envious of Eritreans like you who seem to produce the written word in Tigrinya like it is a walk in the park.

            At any rate, I was reading in an interview Ngugi did with Cantalupo in 1993 that speaks to how the West destroyed many of the African cultures:

            “…African cultures during the colonial era suffered structural damage because of colonial domination. In the era of slaver, there was even greater damage, because the meant the removal of human beings, who are the basis of the development of culture. There was structural damage to a people’s capacity to evolve their own languages and their culture. There is a necessity of cultural give and take on the basis of economic an political equality between groups. Otherwise, as in the case of colonial or ne-colonial imbalances, the cultures of those who are the victims of imbalance are likely to be deformed. In a situation of economic and political equality between groups, cultures can develop on the basis of give and take. Countries will borrow from each other naturally those elements that are healthy to each country” (“Non-Native Speaker, 2017, p. 168).

            So, Kokhob Selam, I urge you to keep on keeping on with that unique signature Tigrinya poetry that you keep gracing Jebena with.


  • said

    One to read and quote from revolutionary critical thinkers that can be meaningful and relatively useful to Eritrean situation
    “Just as none of us is outside or beyond geography, none of us is completely free from the struggle over geography. That struggle is complex and interesting because it is not only about soldiers and cannons but also about ideas, about forms, about images and imaginings.”
    ― Edward W. Said, Culture and Imperialism
    You looked at Edward Said, and you saw him in a direct line from the most revolutionary critical thinkers of all time – alongside Aime Cesaire, Frantz Fanon, V Y Mudimbe, Enrique Dussel, and of course Antonio Gramsci and Theodore Adorno.
    Said attracted an entire generation of critical thinkers from every continent on planet earth.

  • blink

    Dear Beyan
    You don’t need to say this really. It would have mattered greatly if Abdulworld view was about your views because that you can revisit your claim and reach at certain point to reverse his assertions. I always find your articles easy to understand and well articulated.But I am not good at reading social science articles. Because my life has been all but numbers , probably I am the worst at writing anything even a greeting is just not my favorite. I do like your style because I think I can say I understood them from my side.Even though I don’t like your views on heritage thing 😂 I do enjoy everything about your ink. I have been in this site long enough to know many esteemed writers and it has been good time spent following you sir. Cut that heritage thing though ,again jokingly.

    When I was in South Africa , I used to go to English major students to help me with my grammar just for the first pages of my introduction pages of my report. I am good at finding any discrepancies in books and especially books filled with numbers or books with certain patterns, I can think what I’d do without caring because what I write is all again number but you can’t think what you would do if you didn’t write. It has been a great time reading you sir .

    • Beyan

      Thank you blink. I admire the tenacious nature I see in your interactions in this space. You maybe a number’s man, but you come across as one who is well read and whose ability to question – sometimes gets the better of him – like when you oppose, with vehemence, I might add, to anything Tigray and Amhara. I just wish we see our commonality rather than our minuscule differences, we would’ve been in a far better place as people of the Horn. I shudder to think the monumental opportunities we squandered. The history of the Horn belongs to us all, irrespective of how we identify ourselves today.

      I appreciate your kind words, until our next interaction, keep on pondering so long you have the time and the energy to do it, but don’t ever let it over-consume you is my humble suggestion.


  • Ismail AA

    Dear Beyan,

    Damn Disqus ! you were missed in the past couple of days when we needed you under your own thread. If I were the one to whom you have just responded, I would celebrate because I succeeded to share your time, which I am sure is very preciously constraining. Critique by first impression call is different from what you have generously provided. Hope it will be received with open mind.

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Selam Abdulworld,

    If people can not have their own brand idea, can’t they promote the idea of the great minds, if they believe on the premises of the ideas already out there? There is nothing wrong to argue by writing articles to the ideas out there if you believe on them. There is no wisdom in criticizing writers because they do not have their own original ideas. Think about it.

  • Selamat Professor Beyan, Professor Denmarkino Paulos AArkey, Abrehet and all,

    Allow me to share experts from Gilgemesh and from the Asra Hasis a section regarding Lady of the Rib, Nintu. Apparently or according to the Sumerians, it all started with the god workers or angles going on strike from their work. This led to the creation of Adam. In the second verses I am sharing, make not of Nintu (also known as Lady Rib).

    1. Gilgamesh column iv:
    *** A cold wind passed and made him lie down. Sleep came over him, rest of man kind. In the middle of the night his sleep ended, he rose up and said to his friend:

    “Friend you did not call me, why am I awake?
    You did not touch me why am I troubled
    No god passed by; why are my limbs paralyzed?
    Friend I saw a third dream And the dream I saw was
    in every way frighting.
    The heavens cried out earth roared
    Daylight vanished and darkness issued forth
    lightning flashed fire broke out
    clouds swelled it rained death
    The glow disappeared the fire went out
    and all that had fallen turned to ashes
    let us go down to the plain and consider this


    2. Asra Hasis

    And let man bear the load of the gods
    They called up the godess, asked
    The midwife of the gods, wise mami
    “You are the womb godess (to be the)
    creator of mankind!
    create a mortal that he may bear the yoke
    Let him bear the yoke the work of illil
    let man bear the load of the gods
    Nintu made her voice heard
    And spoke to the great gods
    it is not proper for me to make him
    The work is Enki’s
    He makes everything pure
    If he gave me a day I will do it
    Enki makes his voice heard
    And spoke to the great gods
    On the first seventh and fifteenth of the month
    I shall do a purification by washing
    Then one god should be slaughtered
    And the gods can be purified by immersion
    Nintu shall mix day
    with his flesh and his blood
    The a god and a man
    will be mixed together in clay
    Let us hear the drumbeat forever after
    Let a ghost come into existence from the gods flesh
    Let her proclaim it as his living sign
    And let the ghost exist so as not to forget (the slain god)
    They answered yes in the assembly
    The great Anunaki who assigns the fates
    On the first seventh and fifteenth of the month
    He made a purification by washing
    Geshru a god who had intelligence
    They slaughtered in their assembly
    Nintu mixed clay
    with his flesh and blood
    They heard the drumbeat forever after.

    In the above two excerpts you probably can see Miltons angle gods, Satan are the striking workers, the Igigi. rational for Milton’s epic poem as well as numerous duplicates unauthentic post Sumerian stories about Adam, Eve etc… can be drawn from the above and over a million tablets of which only about 20 percent has been examined.

    My focus will be on numbers and mathematics particularly Base 69, Plato’s sovereign 60^4, number, the 432, 144, 72 the golden ratio ወርቃዊት ምቅሊት፠
    For now let me speak a little of the inquiries I have been pursuing lately. Vedic mathematics, the Pythagorean Plato, harmonics and Feng Shen, the art of geomancy – the placement of objects in relation to the flow of qi “natural energy.” I will be elaborating on Base 60 Sumerian mathematics and numerous pertinent numbers/degrees/frequencies a little later. For now I will provide the readers with the Lo Shu Magical square, 3*3 like your article’s photo. Every raw, column and diagonal sums to the same amount, in this case fifteen.
    Lo Shu (There is a story about sacrifice to river god and turtle which I will relate with a story later.) There is talk about Ethiopia the African China these days and much ado about TPLF and so I will now give you the 3 matrix I will dub G15:
    [4 9 2]
    [3 5 7]———————–> On the Seventh and 15th of the month,
    [8 1 6]
    Proceed with taking the sum of the columns, rows and diagonals all – 15.

    Abrehet taught me the Tigrigna word AnguE meaning Giant. Apparently it is a derivative of Sumerian Anunaki. I am quite sure the numbers and matheatics to follow will pull Prof Paul slightly from his passionate engagements with Amde Aya ISmaeil and Aman etc… Considering he just read The Mathematical Universe,,,

    Oh yeah next magic square will be 4×4 #34 for Saay’s 7 + 2X = 27 and 27 is the note Pythogoras attained by doubling and doubled further to 54, 108, 216, ***432***Hz for the tone A.

    AmergitSAtSE Counter Narative 2018, X is
    Abu AAshera Weapon X – Evolution.

    • Ismail AA

      ሰላም ጻጸ ሰለሙን ወዲ ሓወይ.

      እዚ ትጽሕፎ ቋንቋ እንተዝፈልጦስ ክንደይ ምተመሃርኩ ነይረ። እቶአም ዝርድኡካ ተዓዊቱሎም ኣቅኒኦኒ።

  • blink

    Dear Hope
    There is no a true organised opposition who can fill the gaps after DIA . There alpha names we see talk, these are all an angry old people who are very angry because Issaias smashed them to the dirty ground and now they get a space to throw their anger due to DIA evil plan to destroy Eritrea. These people you say they care for Eritrea and still have dreams to sit at the chair ruling Eritrea are fake. They can say all the necessary things but deep inside they are fake and more dangerous than Issaias. We can see them with their longer beards and horrible cross as well as 🌙 moon shaped ideas to force on Eritreans across religious, ethnic and regional lines. I have always wished these people to care for Eritreans and demand on Eritrea’s sovereignty but no they are happy to trade any part of Eritrea just as DIA is doing and they are doing just fine by getting paid from anyone who has evil plan to Eritreans.

  • FishMilk

    Hi All. Opposition camps early list of candidates to replace PIA includes: 1) Mickey Mouse, 2) Donald Duck, 3) Goofy, 4) Meles Zenawi, and 5) Cinderella -for gender sake. As a package deal to replace PIA and the PFDJ, Snow White and the Seven Drarfs are leading the pack.

    • halafi mengedi


      Obviously, each of this ‘candidates’ couldn’t do worse than IA. But more importantly, Eritrea has plenty of capable leaders and Eritreans can pick up the right one given the opportunity, and it the opposition camps are not the ones denying Eritreans the right to choose their leader.


      • saay7

        halafi mengedi:

        Ah, the irony! An organization that doesn’t know who the Vice President of the country is and has no clue who will be Eritrea’s President when the one we have meets everyone’s fate, is worrying about who the leader of the opposition is😂 You would think that is more consequential to Eritrean than who leads the opposition but they have perfected “hey, look over there!” to a science.


        • halafi mengedi


          Especially, FM’s level of ‘hey, look over there’ is unparalleled. I imagine him of having a very long neck (side effect of eating too much fish and milk?), can’t see the fire on his feet, but can see all the other fires miles away.


        • FishMilk

          Hi saay7 and halafi mengedi. So, as we speak, who do you see as good potential candidates to replace PIA under two scenarios: 1) PFDJ remains in tact, and 2) PFDJ is abondoned. Please no grey answers!

          • saay7


            But I don’t want to play your “look over there!” game 🙂 The much more important question is who is the # 2 in Eritrea in case (when) Isaias dies.


          • FishMilk

            Hi saay7. Avoidance is hardly any different from ‘hey, look over there!’ No? Obviously, I cannot force you or others to give an answer that you do not wish to provide. I have given two clear scenarios. Your question of who take charge in the absence of PIA but with the PFDJ still in tact, is quite different from who would be in charge with both PIA and the PFDJ out of the picture. The vast majority of commenters here wish for complete removal of both PIA and the PFDJ and in such instance, a replacement of PIA would,come from outside the PFDJ. So, can we have names of those non-PFDJ origin candidates you believe would be suitable to replace PIA? As for PIA”s VP, it is Charlie, who would take over pro tem, and shortly thereafter, handover to Woldai.

          • saay7


            CHARLIE is IAs VP? 😂

            And this is written where? There are few heavily armed people who don’t think CHARLIE should be the MoI much less the prez


          • blink

            Dear FM
            Kerenelos and some from Al- Nahda party are leading the pack to the throne but first they have to pass through the Medrek group and the game is on . Kerenlose is looking at ex EPLF and ex-PFDJ packs who are extremely sensitive to see . Old ELF activists are tired and are going through a tightrope to climb the leaders of the marathon game , I think they are all gone but who knows .

            Ahmm saay is also considered by his highlanders brothers , he can get a considerable amount of support from Tigrinya speakers but I guess that is too early to say . SG will not run but people will be foolish to ignor his way too. Ali salim will cry day and night if the power goes to people like saay again because I cannot imagine the pain at his beja state if saay and his pals trushed him . He will cry and say , oh again the highlanders .

            Ahmm Amanuel Hidrat will always go his hiding places. Who do I forget Beyan ahmm forget him , we only need his expertise because he will always rood for the heritage with his roots in Tihlo land. Damt I forget the guy what was his name ? Don’t mind he is not important.

            Dr. Asefaw and his friend Professor Berket the guy who is evil from his brith will tell us his love for Addis , cut him lose .

            Who else ?

          • halafi mengedi


            Since you asked for no grey answers:

            1) Charlie, then Woldai
            2) Charlie, then Woldai

            And I am not messing with you.


      • FishMilk

        Hi halafi mengedi. I never said that opposition candidates would need to emanate from opposition camps. Rather, the point that I am making is that opposition camps have nobody in mind to support as a replacement for PIA; at least they are not making their desires clearly known. And, that indeed is a major weakness of opposition camps, they are more scattered than a shotgun.

        • halafi mengedi


          Again, Eritrea has plenty of capable leaders (in pfdj, in organized opposition or in unorganized opposition) and Eritreans can pick up the right one given the opportunity, and it the opposition camps are not the ones denying Eritreans the right to choose their leader.


  • FishMilk

    Hi Hope. Indeed the opposition camp simply seems to be shouting to vent anger. And if they do have somebody in mind to replace PIA/PFDJ, then they are simply afraid,ashamed or embarrassed to say who it is. Makes one very suspicious. The latest news that you mention from Saudi Arabia would be great for both Ethiopia and Eritrea.

    • Paulos

      ሰላም ዓሳፀባ,

      እዚ ድያብሎስ ኣብ ኤርትራ ዘሎ ምስ ጠፍአ: እግዚኣቢሄሪ ዝቐብኦ ሰብ ክመጽእ እዩ።

  • saay7


    I could be wrong but I don’t think I asked why any of the fronts (ELF, EPLF, PFDJ, TLF, TPLF, EPRDF, OLF, ONLF, SNLF) used the word “Front” in their name. It was a trick for one single party, to justify single party-hood by claiming its a movement that has room for all viewpoints. I learned this when I first heard the song Eminence Front by the British band The Who decades ago. (eminence front? It’s a put on! Come on to our party dressed to kill!)

    Here, have a listen:


    • halafi mengedi


      Even one of the agazian groups calls it self something something Front. I think it is a nod of acknowledgement to the big facial front people in horn africa have.


      • saay7

        halafi mengedi:

        Wait. Wait. There is more than one agazian group? What happened did they have irreconcilable differences on how to treat the non-agazian in Eritrea? One group said, “lets deport them” and another said, “let’s let them leave as second class citizens” and they just couldn’t come to an understanding and they created two fronts?


        • halafi mengedi


          Well, if one is to believe the number of facebook pages who claim to be agazian org. May be aman the zehabesha can enlighten us.


  • FishMilk

    Hi all. Who will lead Eritrea? Since almost all here do not wish to make any efforts to engage PIA/PFDJ and instead are adamant on their complete removal, who do you have in mind to take over leadership of Eritrea? It for sure won’t be somebody from California or the diaspora and instead will be home grown and spring from within the country. It also will not be a person or group that has set foot in Ethiopia since 2001. So, you want to create vacuum conditions for anarchy to prevail?

  • Ismail AA

    Dear Ras Abi,

    Again, you really excite your reader. The good thing is you don’t y take yourself serious, when you look for loopholes. Even when you know it is a typing mistake, it is still an opportunity to be seized as a means to evade and go around an issue. Anyway, anyone has the right to comment in anyway chosen.

  • saay7


    This is a version of የኢትዯፕያ ታሪክ as told by Weyane that you can add to the mix:

    1. In 1990, all of Tigray was under the control of TPLF.
    2. Because TPLF had given Tigrayans mixed messages (mission of TPLF is (a) to liberate Tigray or (b) to revolutionary-democratize Ethiopia), TPLF need to get buy-in from Tigrayans on its future direction.
    3. This period is known as ደውታ (pause or standstill)
    4. After it got the go-ahead from Tigrayans that its goal should be to democratize Ethiopia, then it moved for coalition-building and creation of EPRDF.

    A cynical person would say that TPLF was not getting a buy-in from Tigrayans but conditioning them (“raising consciousness” in the parlance of leftys.) If T Kifle was here, I would have asked him why it didn’t change its name from TPLF to TPRDF but he is not here. I think you probably disappointed him.

    Also, it will still be game 7 because (I hate to admit it but truth is truth), one LeBron = one Warrior team. They eked out a victory in their home turf due to pure luck.)


  • Ismail AA

    Selam Ras Abi,

    You never fail to excite. ምን ነው ወጡ ላይ ላዩን ወሰድክ. You didn’t want to read the qualifier “by” in January 1990. That means developments had preceded that date. Moreover, the concern at 1991 was not the same two years late in 1093.At that juncture the the void of authority had been already filled, and danger to country’s unity was reduced or even allayed.

    • Kokhob Selam

      Dear Ismail AA,

      You are right when you say ” At that juncture the the void of authority had been already filled, and danger to country’s unity was reduced or even allayed.”

      It was the most dangerous time for Ethiopia, but then the man PMZ (Meles) was clever, see things then and solve it.

      Now all Ethiopians have accepted this new development, the man is wise as you are witnessing..


  • said

    When Islam visited and profoundly Reformed rather, the most practical and more immediate, the Religion and the State intertwined, as religion to be treated in all matter purview and responsibility of the state centuries back , is was the fastest and shorted solution, today very much lies at the lingering ills of the many societies, preventing their deliverance and joining in the process of modernization and constructively connecting with the rest of the world community. Trust between Islam and the West has indeed been broken… We need to realize that colonialism did much more than simply damage Muslim nations and cultures. It played a major part in the suppression and eventual disappearance of knowledge and learning, thought and creativity, from Muslim cultures. The colonial encounter began by appropriating the knowledge and learning of Islam, which became the basis of the ‘European Renaissance’ and ‘the Enlightenment’ and ended by eradicating this knowledge and learning from both from Muslim societies and from history itself. It did that both by physical elimination – destroying and closing down institutions of learning, banning certain types of indigenous knowledge, killing off local thinkers and scholars – and by rewriting history as the history of western civilization into which all minor histories of other civilization are subsumed.”
    “As a consequence, Muslim cultures were de-linked from their own history with many serious consequences. For example, the colonial suppression of Islamic science led to the displacement of scientific culture from Muslim society. It did this by introducing new systems of administration, law, education and economy all of which were designed to impart dependence, compliance and subservience to the colonial powers. The decline of Islamic science and learning is one aspect of the general economic and political decay and deterioration of Muslim societies. Islam has thus been transformed from a dynamic culture and a holistic way of life to mere rhetoric. Islamic education has become a cul-de-sac, a one-way ticket to marginality. It also led to the conceptual reduction of Muslim civilization. By which I mean concepts that shaped and gave direction to Muslim societies became divorced from the actual daily lives of Muslims – leading to the kind of intellectual impasse that we find in Muslim societies today. Western neo-colonialism perpetuates that system.”
    As reported by historian and a note . (John Marshall, John Locke: Resistance, Religion and Responsibility)
    Thomas Jefferson, one of the most important Founding Fathers, the principal author of the United States Declaration of Independence of 1776, and the third President of the United States (1801-1809), identified Francis Bacon, John Locke, and Isaac Newton as “the three greatest men that have ever lived, without any exception” in his 1789 letter ordering portraits of them from the American painter John Trumbull. Jefferson considered John Locke (1632-1704) the most important thinker on liberty, and Locke’s ideas and theories heavily influenced Jefferson and his writing of the Declaration of Independence. Furthermore, the document’s list of reasons and circumstances to seek independence from Great Britain reflected Locke’s philosophy.
    Credible historical evidence demonstrates that many Founding Fathers of America were either “deists” or “Unitarians.” Islamic thought directly contributed to both of these Enlightenment ideologies through figures like Michael Servetus, Henry Stubbe, John Toland, Stephen Nye, John Biddle, and Charles Blount, and movements such as the Socinians. Some of the leading Founding Fathers were directly influenced by English thinkers such as three famous great men John Locke, Isaac Newton, and Thomas Hobbes, who were also exposed to Islamic sciences, philosophy, theology, political thought, and morality.
    John Locke inspired another Founding Father, Thomas Paine, in his radical ideas about revolution, and also influenced George Mason, James Madison, Benjamin Franklin, and John Adams regarding principles of freedom, liberty, and government. Locke’s writings were part of Benjamin Franklin’s self-education, and John Adams believed that both girls and boys should learn about Locke. French philosopher Voltaire called Locke “the man of the greatest wisdom. What he has not seen clearly, I despair of ever seeing.”
    Carl Becker’s famous treatment of the Declaration of Independence is a scholarly witness to America’s Lockean longing for independence. Becker observed, “Most Americans had absorbed Locke’s works as a kind of political gospel; and the Declaration, in its form, in its phraseology, follows closely certain sentences in Locke’s second treatise on government.” Many other scholars such as Louis Hartz, Charles A. Beard, and Jerome Huyler who differ on numerous details and points of analytical substance agree on the Lockean foundations of the American Constitution and Locke’s influence on American civilization. Huyler, after a detailed analysis of the period, called “American founding as essentially Lockean.”
    Adversaries of Locke, such as John Edwards (1637-1716), an ordained deacon and English Calvinistic divine, accused Locke of being a “Mohemetan” because Locke’s theological insights, moral philosophy, and political outlook resembled Islamic teachings. John Locke advocated that the Anglican as well as the Catholic Church should do the following: reject its hierarchical structure and authority and its alliance with corrupt monarchs; abandon its superstitious theology including beliefs in mysteries and miracles, especially the irrational dogma of the Trinity; and forfeit its innovated creeds and sacraments, pagan liturgy, customs, and traditions in favor of one requirement for membership and salvation: to acknowledge and believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah. Justin Champion and others have shown that John Locke’s adversaries saw him as a Muslim who interpreted the Christian Gospel in light of the Koran (Qur’an). Champion stated.
    John Locke possessed a copy of the Qur’an and was influenced by Muslim philosophers, especially Spanish philosopher Ibn Tufayl (known as Abubacer or Ebn Tophail in the West) whose philosophical novel Hayy bin Yaqzan (The Self-Taught Philosopher), was one of the main sources of Locke’s theory of tabula rasa.
    Ibn Tufayl, the mentor, teacher, and trainer of Ibn Rushd, in Hayy ibn Yaqzan depicted the development of the mind of a feral child “from a tabula rasa to that of an adult, in complete isolation from society” on a desert island, through reason and experience alone without the help of any book of law or revelation. Following him, Locke hypothesized that the human mind was a blank slate or tabula rasa. In contrast to pre-existing Cartesian philosophy, Locke maintained that humans are born without innate ideas, and that human knowledge is attained by experience and sensory perception. Man discovers through reason and experience ideas about external nature, God, and morality. This theory of mind is often cited as the origin of modern conceptions of self, consciousness, and identity. Locke formulated this theory in “An Essay Concerning Human Understanding” in 1671, the year when Hayy bin Yaqzan was published at Oxford in Latin and Arabic. G.A. Russell calls this work “with perfect justification, a case study for the main thesis of Locke’s Essay.
    like other reformists, believed the Church used the doctrine of original sin and philosophy of innatism to subjugate the human mind and abuse power. Their laws, doctrines, practices, institutions, and scriptural interpretations were hostile to rational discourse, reason, and science. They also believed that the Church teachings were utterly incapable of verification. Ibn Tofayls’ theory of tabula rasa, a clean slate, and pure human nature at birth and education and development through experience and reason provided Locke with ammunition he used very well. The result was Lockean sensory-based epistemology well-explained in his Essay Concerning Human Understanding.
    As the Christian mysteries by nature were not verifiable, and by definition not known, to Locke they were just mysteries or fabrications. God could be known through nature and its laws, reason, morality, and good works. This scheme of salvation through moral actions and good works closely resembled the Islamic understanding of eternal success and salvation and resonated well with the objectives of Islamic law (Shari’ah).
    Since the times of Abu Hamid al-Ghazzali (1058-1111 AD), and Abu Isaac al-Shatibi (d.1388), significant developments were made in the formulation of the theory of al-maqasid or the objectives of Islamic Shari’ah. Al-Shatibi, the Spanish Muslim jurist, summarized objectives of the Islamic Shari’ah as the preservation of “life, religion, family, property, and reason.” Throughout history Muslim jurists have insisted that Islamic law has come to protect the universal inalienable God-given rights of life, religious freedom, and liberty to choose and protect one’s family, property, and human intellect. Although the objectives have been verbalized in different terms over the centuries the original intent has not changed. Contemporary Muslim scholars tend to use modern terms to depict the historic objectives of the Islamic Shari’ah. The Qur’anic dictum of common human origins from Adam and Eve dictated absolute human equality (49:13) and universal human dignity. (17:70) These Qur’anic concepts of common origins, absolute equality, and human dignity formulated the foundations of God-given, inalienable, and universal human rights. This tradition of inalienable human rights was commonplace among the Spanish Muslim philosophers, jurists and political thinkers.
    Muhammad ibn Tufail (1105-1185) in his philosophical novel, Hayy ibn Yaqdhan, known as Philosophus Autodidactus in the Western world, emphasized these inalienable rights of humanity. This philosophical novel was an influential bestseller throughout Western Europe in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The Latin translation was prepared by Edward Pococke and first appeared in 1671, as noted above. G.A. Russell in her book The Arabick Interest of the Natural Philosophers in Seventeenth-Century England has shown that Locke read Hayy bin Yaqzan and changed his political outlook. “The circumstances established beyond doubt that Locke had detailed acquaintance with the Philosophus Autodidactus. He could only have been unaware of it, were he the victim of some gigantic conspiracy…”
    Locke summarized the inalienable human rights as life, health, liberty, and possession. In his famous Two Treatises of Government published in October 1689 with a 1690 date on the title page, Locke stated, “No one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions.” He incorporated ‘reason,’ the fifth objective of Islamic Shari’ah, as the fundamental source of all his religious, political, and scientific thinking. Many historians such a J.R. Pole in The Pursuit of Equality in America History has shown that Thomas Jefferson took Locke’s tally of inalienable rights and summarized them further into life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Jefferson argued that liberty, health, and property on their own do not guarantee happiness. One has to make proper choices to attain true happiness. Therefore he maintained that the pursuit of happiness, rather than just property or family, is the inalienable human right.
    Therefore, the American dream of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” is a summarized version of the five objectives of Islamic Shari’ah highlighted by Ibn Tufail and incorporated by John Locke in his Treatises. There is no inherent conflict between the American dream and principles of the Islamic Shari’ah. Americans need not fear Islam or Islamic Shari’ah and Muslims should not hate, despise, or doubt the American dream. In its purest sense, it reflects their religious ideals and a manifestation of their lost legacy.
    NOTE.John Marshall, John Locke: Resistance, Religion and Responsibility, Cambridge University Press, 1994, p. 350

    • FishMilk

      Hi said. The number of States with bans on Sharia Law will only continue to grow. Since 2010; there have been more than 200 anti-Sharia bills presented in the U.S. The American masses are speaking and the American legal system will not and should not enforce the decisions that have a religious foundation. Sharia Law is simply not conducive with a secular society. However; you might find one of the countries which have instituted Sharia Law more accommodating to your taste. Maybe you can check out Yemen, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Sudan or Somalia. Strange, people tend to only talk of reliegoeous freedom and democracy once out of countries that have Sharia Law and no political freedom.

      • said

        Selam FM:
        You miserably failed to understand ,I was quoting and highlighting from historical book with reference as not attribute it to me.
        John Marshall, John Locke: Resistance, Religion and Responsibility, Cambridge University Press, 1994, p. 350.This book provides a major new historical account of the development of the political, religious, social and moral thought of the political theorist and philosopher John Locke. It offers reinterpretations of several of his most important works, particularly the Two Treatises, and includes extensive analyses of his unpublished manuscripts. Professor Marshall’s arguments challenge many other scholars’ interpretations of the character and influences of Locke’s moral, social and religious thought and provide an alternative account.

        This book offers significant revision to our understanding of John Locke and in particular his Two Treatises on Government
        Presents major accounts of Locke’s moral, social and religious thought
        Contains extensive analyses of many of Locke’s unpublished manuscripts

        Today there is no single countries in all aspect ably sharia law ,only façade practice as case in KAS. There are tens of secular failed countries from Haiti to rich oil country Venezuela and south Sudan .The deal of a “Society of Al-Mouwataneh,” the appearance of a potentially promising Secular Society in the making as many countries in world be it in Africa or Asia and Middle east the Iraqis – as true of the Egyptian and Syrian societies – were endowed with the essentials, foremost a slowly growing Middle Class and the generally prevalent Secular political discourse, that given the right circumstances, that process, slow as it was, could have catapulted the entire Arab societies to modernity and ultimately to the establishment of enduring Representative Democracy, Rule of Law and an outreaching balanced Socio-economic development.

        However, unfortunately, most sadly, that is not had to you why

        Ironically, the truth looking at it from a different angle, there was lurking fundamentally below the surface two or three overlooked fundamental facts, realities, that perennially thwart any attempts at potential genuine bids at Arab renaissance and Arabs’ bid to true Representative Democracy, more Just Distribution of National Wealth and prevalence of the Rule of Law. Among these impediments to legitimate Arab bids to Revival, listed in the order of importance, are the followings:

        1) Reformed Islam as an archaic stifle controlling epistemology, as a dominant heritage and a historic narrative;

        2) The exploitative hegemonic Designs of the Duo culprits of the close alliance of the exploitative and hegemonic forces of Western colonial Imperialism- ever more assertive and flagrantly, more pre-emptively reaching; finally, by corollary,

        3) The Lackey Arab Regimes, the subservient vassals tying their narrow interests following on the leads, dictates and the policies (Sphere of Influence) of the Western Oligarchs of Western Imperialism as now increasingly relegated to act freely to western as a new Middle Eastern regional superpower.

        Thus, no wonder that all the beautiful veneer of a civil society, prosperous and promising was vanished and was short-lived, as in no time the veneer was tragically peeled off, in possibly a matter of a few months, into a long era of series of ruthless dictatorship. Now – after the Anglo-American illegal invasion and further destruction of Iraq in 2003 on trumped up and fabricated lies – Iraq is lurking under Islamic Sectarian-Division and a fragmented society splintered into fighting minorities.

        The Western Imperialism and the Ambitious designs. Ironically, it is the West that always breathes life into extreme Islamic Salafists, supporting theocratic Arab regimes, and, invoking Islam for the advancement of Western Imperialist Schemes as vividly demonstrated at different stations in recent Middle Eastern history starting with the Backing of the Mujahedeen in the 1980s in the anti-Soviet Afghanistan War dragging the country back to the Stone Age; and, belatedly, most recently, as still going on, actively supporting the hordes of Salafists internecine war Libya.

        sadly, the West – omnipotent and omnipresent – deploying regional vessel state as the advanced Spearhead to implement its regional hegemony, stands, with Israel, as the decisive force PREVENTING an early Religious Reform in the Middle Eastern Region (Some argue plausibly that revisiting and effecting profound transformation to the better of the Islamic Historical Narrative & Islamic Heritage governing the pervasive epistemology is a futile exercise – this is why the best and shortest venue is the for countries by chose and election as democracy can choose what they want of State & Religion and the total of the tributaries of Islamic Institutions would be the shortest and more practical option).

        As to the Arab lackey regimes, autocratic dictatorships, the tentacles of Imperialist- Octopus’ designs, their demise would only follow the demise of the Western – counterproductive designs and sinister schemes to keep the Arabs and the Middle East at large at bay, forever backward and engaged in futile internecine struggles, rather, ensuring its continuous slippage to the Abyss as the past more than half a century witnesses to that truth.

  • blink

    Dear Abi
    Mengistu was a pledged dictator and he was fighting for a United Ethiopia the only difference for him is that he committed an heard crime while he was able not to . He could have convinced Eritreans to stay. Almost all Ethiopian leaders failed to make a single decision to rest the United Ethiopia in one. Meles committed endless crime and yet he failed to obey by the international rules just like Haile and gad colonel mengstu worst of all he cut ethiin emergency. Meles was a crooked killer.

    • Teodros Alem

      Selam blink
      U said “mengestu waa a pledged dictator and he was fighting for a United ethiopiathe only difference ifor him is that he committed an heard crime while he was able not to.” That is why he called a murderer dictator.
      About meles r u gonna wish him a happy tileho in tigrai or what? The consequence of his idiology killed and still killing more than mengistu did in ethiopia and eritrea.

      • blink

        Dear Teodrose
        True Meles killed and still killing innocent people while displacing over one million people from their own home. He throw millions of Barrels to get fire in the womb of Ethiopians.

        • Teodros Alem

          Selam blink
          The killing of over 800000 drought victims in 1977 ec , the immigrant in both eri and ethio. The ethio soldiers in Somalia etc. He his one of the mian player in all of this.

          • blink

            Dear Teodrose
            I think weyane killed more people but since the white projects were too many and too big normal people did not speak or see these killings as weyane doing.

  • Paulos


    Did he have to destroy my family to unite Ethiopia? It gets not only personal but the pain is too deep to bear. If you think two wrongs can make one right, it is moral equivalence at play where only history absolves either the Colonel or TPLF. If history is already here, let the nation be a witness if it is better off now as opposed to when the butcher was at the helm.

    • Amde

      Selam Paulos,

      “When all you have is a hammer, every problem becomes a nail.”

      That is the problem with using a military approach to a political problem. And why in principle military persons should be kept the hell away from politics, even though some countries get lucky.

      I am sorry for your pain and your loss.


      • Paulos

        Selam Amde,

        Thank you my brother.

        Colonel Mengistu Hailemariam was short among the tall; he was dimwitted among the bright; he was with less good looks among the handsome. If the odds were too high, he was a freak of history not a fluke in history to ride the mantle of power. High of a price had to be paid where a proud and a great nation like Ethiopia was to be reduced into children dropping like flies and bullets that had to be bought back after they had eliminated bright minds and visionary souls.

        In all fairness, perhaps he was a product of his own generation but if he is going to reflect back, he can only find absolution if he recants and asks for forgiveness for the unbearable pain he had caused on innocent citizens.

        • Teodros Alem

          Selam paulos
          Sorry i didn’t see it that way. By the way mengistu killed two of my cousin and arrested my big sister for long.

          • Paulos

            Selam Tedros,

            I am sure you didn’t see it that way. And all my sympathies for your loss.

        • Amde

          Selam Paulos,

          I think it is a mistake to think of him and people like him as an aberration. I don’t know what proportion of a population carries the level of psychological manipulation and sociopathy he had, but I think there must be a set of conditions where such a personality can get to the levers of power that will magnify their malignant effects. We were just unlucky – the country was ready for change, the derg voted structurally to stay stagnant, the student movement was very left radical in the sense of expecting bloodletting to be a necessary and unavoidable condition for change, and the cold-war confrontation was hot.

          He absolutely deserves a huge part of the blame of those years, but we would be kidding ourselves if he is made the scapegoat for everything. The drought famine deaths are basically reruns of the Stalin and Mao leftist follies of social engineering in agriculture – I doubt they would have been different if another leftist revolutionary party was in charge. Prisons, tortures, extra-judicial killings – a reading of the French revolution shows they are almost a mathematical certainty when a revolution happens. Revolution devours her children but she is shown to have a very ample appetite for the innocent, the bystanders and the passer-byes. Violent suppression of insurgencies – that too is not unique.

          Consequently, imagine the sort of personalities, practices and institutions that survive and emerge from all that.

          My hope is we don’t get into a forgive and forget mode. The victims should have a say on the question of forgiveness, but making him a special one-off evil caricature blinds us from looking at the circumstances that allowed a sociopathic psychological manipulator to climb to a national stage and have absolute power. I absolutely believe that were it not for the institutions and political realities of the US, Donald Trump has it in him to be a Mengistu. And how would Isayyas be different if there was a domestic insurgency?

          This year has been surprising so far, so who knows, but I doubt very much Mengistu would be open to asking for forgiveness from the countless victim families of his era. I think even 27 years later he is still in a defiant sulky mood. I am not even sure what value it would give the families of victims. It would just seem insincere and for many it would just re-open wounds But it is definitely something he can do from afar even as a gesture.


          • Paulos

            Selam Amde,

            When one is included into the statistics, it becomes dry where the human emotion and pain lose its meaning. We need answers. We seek answers. We need closures to our wounds and pain. When we do, the books can only offer us intellectual explanations why things happened the way they did as in how Mengistu came to power. These explanations have limitations for they are not only disconnected but undermine the human condition as well.

            The reality is, Ethiopia was a one man nation and the citizens were under his cruel mercy. My family for instance were hardly in politics but they were murdered by the direct knowledge of the higher up. And no intellectual justification can fix the wound. He needs to ask for forgiveness and it is only then PMAA’s white dove remains untainted.

          • Amde

            Selam Paulos

            “He needs to ask for forgiveness and it is only then PMAA’s white dove remains untainted.”

            I completely agree and to be honest with you I am not even sure this whole forgiving Mengistu thing is worth the political capital for him. It does not make sense.


          • Paulos

            Selam Amde,

            PMAA is young and an idealist where he sees the world not as it is but as it ought to be. It sure is a mistake to think of Ethiopia of 100 million people as a family of two adults with kids. Mending fences and healing wounds doesn’t cut it in a neighborhood with conflicting interests where a handshake is returned with missing fingers. He needs to read “The Prince” not “How to….” books.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Dr. Paulos,
            keep up your inquisitive mind and your intellectual engagements and explanations. I am enjoying all your commentary entries.

          • Paulos

            Selam Professor A. Just at,

            Thank you for those kind words and glad you found them engaging. I don’t see you much these days. Hope all is well with you.

          • Kim Hanna

            Selam Amde,

            Mengistu Hailemariam is all what Dr. Paul said and more. From my perspective let me add that Mengistu effectively destroyed the so called Shoa Amhara elites, those who survived dispersed all over the world. Some might not shed tears for them but I do. Mengistu is evil.

            In my opinion, the perfect storm of MeQeghnet, Marxism, Jimmy Carter, Castro and naive patriots produced the condition to play out his role.
            I get agitated when I hear pardon or invite to Addis for this evil man.

            However, having said all that, I have to give him credit for 2 specific contribution he made during his reign.

            A) He repelled a well prepared Somalia’s claim and invasion of 1/5th of Ethiopian territory.
            He was the right man with the right alliances (Russia &Cuba were on the other side a year prior) to do the job.

            B) He nationalized land in Ethiopia at great cost preparing the ground for EPRDF to chart the developments of today.

            Mr. K.H

          • Paulos

            Selam K.H.

            Well said! Thank you.

    • Saleh Johar

      Hi Paulos,
      Try to be patient with Abi, when it comes to Eritrea, he acts like a typical Tor Serawit we used to see abusing the people since we opened our eyes. He is witty, okay, but he forgets that as soon as it comes to insult and show his true views when the chance avails itself. Like his comment “In due time” always eying the Assab. I am suspicious of the Qey Bahrachin crowd and there are the most violent Ethiopians among that crowd. Believe me, they kill every walking Eritreans just to recreate the empire if they believe they can pull that together.

      Abi might not know it, but it shows in his intermittent outbursts. He loves to hurt people who try hard to be friendly with him. I know I do and his comments really hurt and I cannot be inconsiderate like him because I do not want to hurt the gentle Ethiopians here.

      • Paulos

        Selam Ayay,

        Certainly judgements could get muddied with unnecessary emotions and outbursts but we are all mature enough to realize where to draw the line so that wounds are left unscratched. This is beyond politics. I like Abi. As you put it, he is witty and at times he could be hardheaded but if all of us here have something in common, it is the bright future ahead.

  • ሰላማት በያንን ኩልኹም፡

    ኣመጻጽ’ኣ ወይ ኮምፑተሺን ቁጽሪ ሹዱሽተ ሚ’አትን ሱሳን ሹዱሽተን፡ ብ ማጂካዊ መረባዕ ቅድሚ ምክፋለይ፡ ምስ ፕሮሰሺን ኦፍ ዘ ኤክዎናክስ ስል ዝኾነ ቀንዲ ትሕዝቶኡ፡ ኣብ ዝ ታሕቲ ምስ ኣያና ሳልሕ ዝተኻፈልኩዎ ኣብዚ ከስፍሮ ኢየ። መበገስየይ ናይ ማጂክ መረባዕን ቁጽሪ 666 ካብዚ ክኸውን ኢዩ።

    Selamat Ayya Saleh,

    Excellent topical address as always. With regards to knowledge increasing with a geometrical progression, allow me to add just a little (my preference would be some sort of visual animation… another time..)

    The golden age is one of four eras of humanities consciousness. Many human cultures including the Greeks divide the processions of the equinox into four; The Iron, Bronze, Silver and Golden Ages. The Golden age is when human consciousness and knowledge is at its highest if not at its complete fulfillment. And we are fast approaching the golden age of humanity as we are on the cusp of ushering in the Aquarius constellation in the procession of the equinox which is a 360 degrees rotation that takes 25,920 years. In an average human age, 72yrs, the procession of the equinox would have moved 1 degree. If the sky is divided into 12 constellations, one constellation is replaced in the next procession every 2160 years. So if the three wise Magi of Persia is now conjured in your mind, yes the new star born, a new king for a new constellation is along those thoughts, but I digress…
    Every 2160 years or every 30 degrees of rotation we enter an age. I believe we are currently in the Silver Age–30 degrees of silver and will be entering the Golden Age in Aquarius. But it takes ሰላሳ ወለዶ ሰብዓን ክልተን ዓመት ዝቆዘሩ። ካብ ፓይሲስ ን ኣክዋሪያስ። ዓሳ ወይ ፓይሲስ ምልክት መሲሒን ምስ ትዕዘብ፡ ኢቲ ክርስቶስ ዝተወልደሉ ዘመን ፈለማ ፓይሲስ ኮንስትላሽን ስለ ዝኾነ ኢዩ።
    ግን ብዛዕባ ፍልጠት ናይ ሱሳታት ከመይ ጌሩ ይድልብ ስግብ ዚ ናይ ሎም መን’አሰይ ኢዩ ኢቲ ቀንዲ ምጽሓፈይ። ብ ብይናሪ ጂኦመትሪካዊ ፕሮግረሽን ከም ዝበልካዮ ኣይኮነን (2,4,8,16,32..) አዚ ዝበልካዮ ፕሮግረሽን ጾታ ኣብ ብዙሕ ህልው(ርያለቲ) ኣለዎ አወ። ኣነ ከም ዝመስለኒ ግና፡ ፍልጠት ብ ናይ ፊቦናቺ ሲክወንስ ፕሮግረሽን ኢዩ ዝድልብ ዝደላልብ። ኣብ ለዕሊ ‘ዚ ኽ’ኣ አቲ ምቅሊት ዝዖበየ ወለዶ ንዝነኣሱ ወለዶ ን ወርቃዊት ምቅሊት ይ’ኣክል። ወርቃዊት ምቅሊት ከ’ኣ ዳርጋ ክልተ ሲሶ ሓድጊ ገዲፋትሉ ንቲ ን’ኡስ ወለዶ፡ ታራኻ ኢዩ መድረኽ ኢላ፡ ከምዝ’ስኻ ለባም ለበዋ ጌራ ተቕርበሎም።
    መኣድኻ ይዕጊቡና ኣቶ ሳልሕ። ንት ሓደ ክልተ ሲሶ መሌካሉ። ወርቃዊት ምቅሊት = 1.618


    AmergitSAtSE Counter Narrative 2018; 2X + Saay’s7 = 27, X is
    Abbu AAshera Weapon X – Evolution!

  • FishMilk

    Hi All. SG Gutteres’s recent appointment of (TPLF) Maj-Gen. Gebre Adhana Woldezgu Commander of the U.N. Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) is a complete utter joke. No simple vetting process was undertaken which would have easily revealed the Major-General’s vast repertoire of crimes against humanity. Where do TPLF criminals go to once they are no longer welcomed in Ethiopia? They are of course hired by the U.N.! Once PIA retires, maybe the U.N. can then give him a job!

  • سلامات ياموعليم اوستاز بيان, وكولم موعليمات في عاوتى:

    المعجزة صغيرة
    الانسان المقناطيسية
    رقم واحد: فصل الرب النور و الظلام
    منز برء الخليقة المغناطيسية قووية للغاية اساسية لابعد الحدود
    لاشي في عالمنا كن سيوجر هنا بدونها حتي نحن البشر.
    من البداية, اكتشف الانسان المغناطيسية!

    مربع سحري وحساب ست مئة وستة وستون ، وسوف
    أتطرق إلى تعليقي التالي.

    ን’አሽቶ ሚራክል
    ማግኔት ወድሰብ
    ካብ ፈለማ ፍጥረት ህላውነትን ሓይል ሓይሊ ማግኔት ወይ ማግኔቲዝም ኢዩ። ብዘይ ማግኔት ዎላ ኢቲ ብርሃን ቀድሚ ኹሉ ተጠቕሰ ኣብ መጽሓፍ ቅዱስ ብርሃን ኣይ ምሃለወን።
    ኣምላኽ ኢሉ ብርሃንን ጸልማትን ይፈላለ።
    ወድ ሰብ ማግኔት ካብ ዘለልዮን ዝፈልጦን ዝኾነ ነገር፡ ነሕና ከይተረፍና ብዘይ ማግኔትዝም ክንህሉ ኣይምኽ’ኣልናን።

    ናይ ማጂክ መረባዓትን ኣማጽ’ኣ ቁጽሪ ሹድሽተሚ’አትንሱሳን ሹዱሽተን ክኸውን ኢይ ኣር’አስቲ ዝመጽ”አ ረአይቶይ።

    In addition to the above regarding the force of magnetism without which nothing would exist in creation, in my next comment I will introduce magic square and the computation of the number sixhudred sixty six.
    I just happen to be leafing through a book titled:Identity and the Life Cycle, Erik H. Erikson and I learned of Emanuel Kant’s coordinates of the moral burgher to be “the stars above him and the moral law within him.
    Whereas Freud says the coordinates of the moral burgher lays between the id within him and the mob around him.
    And the superego is the internalization of all restrictions to which the ego must bow.
    I am still reading and perhaps after I finish it I will make sense of all the psycho babble including that of PMAAA’s flavored with the “Me too hash browns and green eggs and ham tag”

    Ps: don’t know whats up with the three wacky editors. please forgive and I will figure it out.


  • iSem

    Hi Beyan:
    You are on fire. If the unhinged interview of Alamin can squeeze such a gem from you then we have to interview him and put up with him for the unintended good results.
    Your article is loaded a lot of points and if the high spirituality of Ramadan that comes with low calories makes you so creative to weave LP, Adam, Eve and Satan and relate it then we have to beg God to make it longer: Ya Rab Ramamdan da muttu lenna: please God elongate Ramandan for us 🙂

    Your concluding remark is even more potent, the choice Eritreans have specially those fighting for liberty, they cannot have it both ways, getting freedom for themselves and denying it to others. If that is the case, then we all have become PFDJ, PFDJ got all the freedom for themselves, they move freely, they talk freely, they can even talk about rule of law,but if you do you will go to Ela Ero.
    The ideas the EPLF’s second congress enshrined about the freedom of faith is the problem that some are saying about atheisits: the Pente and Johavas were not supposed to be allowed in Eri because they were western inspired faiths and true to their word, they have locked them in fox holes. Any liberty lovings person should be concerned by that
    So liberty lovers and liberty seekers you can pray to ur God to unleash is Sodom and Gomorah wrath on the Atheists, but do it in your house and mosques and churches, they are here to stay and even worse you will be confronted with gay marriage and transgender issue in Eritrea
    If we erect a government that does not leave us alone then we have merely replaced PFDJ like PFDJ has replaced Dergi and all the ink and suffering would be in vain, that is the message that bro BN has intimated, I maybe wrong, though
    And also to do it in Ramadan for some one named Beyan Negash takes courage and am not taking about he braving the low calories and energy
    Any attempt to ban and repress ideas that one abhors should alarm you. the notions of free speech and free faith should be embraced by all of us even if we hate it in our personal lives because Eritrea is not this mystical place, it is a geography who is shared by its residents and citizens, like roommate and if the roommate pays his rent washes his dishes and does not disturb you while you sleep must be free who to date, who to worship and if he watches porn in his room. If you are offend move out, change room mates. We cannot worry about ppl who are offended by some of the roommates, Eritreans
    BN has a reason to tell you about the educational system in SA, one of the results was to
    create two separate colors for christian and muslim iqamma (residence card) and when the police asks for it and sees it is the wrong color he recites a wuhabbi aya and does not touch it. Irony is the Quran tells them otherwise
    Still this article has a potential to spin off articles to enlighten may of us, but the big shots here are not touching it, and there is a commandment against not touching it as well, do not make me recite it:-)
    Beyan Negash, welldone

    • Beyan

      Selam iSem,
      I am humbled with your commendations to my bringing this rather difficult subject matter that should belong in the realms of the home-front, not in the public sphere. Unfortunately, when, in broad daylight, public officials begin to toy with these deeply personal affairs that one is supposed to engage in for spiritual sustenance, then, the citizens must begin to come out of their shelled-spiritual spaces and address these issues out in the open. These religious intolerances have been going on for far too long to not be talked about. Eritreans needs to come to terms with the issue of faith moving forward, post the current regime.

      You’ve read how Dr. Paulos made eloquent and logically reasoned synthesis as to why an individual believes in the Providence beyond the surface level many of us have an understanding of Adam and Eve. Equally eloquently, Ismail AA has given it a treatment from its pragmatic sociopolitical trajectories as it applied to those Eritreans who put religion in the back-burner as they went into the fields, the valleys, and the terrains of Eritrea’s landscape, as it were, willing to pay the ultimate price to bring Eritrea’s sovereignty to bear. What he saw there and years later what became of some of his progressive comrades reverting to the societal whims of bringing the equation of religion back into their lives that appeared to have left him jaded, to say the least. You’ve seen Haile S’s versatility in the way he synthesized from the deep understanding he has of our cultural traditions and their dispensations when applied to faith. I saw Sal Y’s timely dialogue a father was having with an astute child peppering her dad about the inconsistencies she saw in the way he practiced matters of spiritual frontier in his private life.

      And now, iSem, you’ve come up with your own challenges to us all as you made a connection to the heart of the matter to it all. Freedom and liberty’s attendant twin is that individuals should have the right to choose. This is where literature can play that critical role of a catalyst in giving us sufficient distance from our own subjectivities as we grapple with matters of faith, liberty, freedom, choice, etc. In “Non-Native Speaker”, Cantalupo (2017), stipulates that “[l]iterature should never be allowed to veil or deny such a human reality. Literature, however, presents the reality of a nation in addition to, even as a part of, such painful facts of history. Furthermore, the reality of a nation as realized through its literature can outshine the all too human and all too common historical failures of human politics and governance” (p. 88).

      Cantalupo is painfully aware of the fallible nature of humanity to accept notion of authorship without its attendant shortcomings. To that end, he states that those authors who opt to “…covering up and/or exposing any and all of the gruesome sides of the history of nations” (p. 88) notwithstanding; those who excel at telling it like it is, “their authors inevitably seem to prevail, and their names achieve a kind of unique indelibility that only the rarest political leaders attain” (p. 88). Cantalupo goes on to list impressive number of preeminent European authors and that of the US to, in the end, ask the readers to think of politicians who may have been popular at the time when these literature geniuses were alive. The point being that the staying power of literature is not to be underestimated. Of course, this is not to miss the fact that “political powers that be or the supreme responsibility of good governance should be denigrated. [And that] without it, writers no more than anyone else can survive Hobbes’s state of nature” (p. 88).

      So, iSem, the awesome power of literature is one that can become our savior from our self-distractive selves. Cantalupo asks, “…[I]s a nation even conceivable, or little beyond that, without its literature, both for its inhabitants and for anyone else who would recognize it? Then, he goes on to quote one stanza from Isayas Tsegai’s poem that he helped translate:

      When I saw the world didn’t care
      If I was stripped of everything,
      Even my dignity, And beaten like a slave
      Less than human,
      I lost all sense of peace except ins aying
      I am also a person. I’m an Eritrean.

      May Eritrean literature proliferate. I firmly believe that will be our indispensable companion as we struggle to find our path to salvation, as it were, to salvage our nation.


  • Paulos

    Selam My Good People,

    As things are rolling fast in Ethiopia, Colonel Mengistu Hailemariam is most likely the next in line to be pardoned. Should Eritreans have a say should he gets pardoned?

    • iSem

      touch the nearest wood:-)

      • Paulos


        ካን በቃ ናብርኡ አብ በረኻ እዩ ኢልካ ሐሲብካ ዕንጨቲ ሓዝ ኢልካኒ: ናብራ በረኻ’ኮ ቀደም ኢና ገዲፍናዬ::

        • iSem

          Hi Doc:
          I always knew you are sharp, but did not know u have good sense of humor, a type of humor that I relish
          My only beef is that you have clued it PFDJ speech, they will literally translate that instead of ፎእ በሎ or ቱፍ በሎ

    • Ismail AA

      Selam Dr. Paulos,
      Though account should be taken that nothing can be ruled out in politics, I think the soil (Hamed) any where in Ethiopia and Eritrea would vehemently resist the force of the pickaxe and shovel and allow making a space for his remains.

      • Paulos

        Selam Kbur Haw Ismail AA,

        At one time I was in a Taxi in Addis and as it happened, the driver had a picture of Mengistu in a military fatigue glued to the glove compartment. And when I said to him that customers may find it offensive, he said, Mengistu is a hero who fought for a united Ethiopia. When I asked about the hundreds of people he murdered, he said, it is sad but it is expected in any revolution.

        And I am sure a lot of disgruntled Ethiopias share the guy’s repugnant feelings. Freedom of speech is noble but rooting for a mass murderer is unforgivable.

        • Teodros Alem

          Selam paulos
          U see the difference between mengistu and meles?
          For most ethiopian mengistu is one of them but a murderer dictator but meles is a murderer dictator but don’t consider belongs to part of the society .U see what ethnic poltics means?

          • Paulos

            Selam Tedros,

            I really don’t understand what you are saying? But if I have to make any sense of it, why was Meles buried with honor and dignity if he was a mass murderer and if Ethiopians did not consider him as one of them?

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam paulos
            Let me put it this way.
            For people in most part of ethiopia mengistu considered nationalist ethiopian just like the people but a dictator.
            Meles in the other hand considered tribalist dictator who don’t care for the whole of ethiopia.
            Am not the one who saying this but it is a general view among most part of ethiopia. Peoplw don’t fell he is thier dictator.
            Why meles buried in addis because that is his country, his family want it too or some other reason.but it is nothing to do with the people opinion.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Dr. Paulos,

            I understand your difficulty in making sense of issues when politics lose direction and mix up with sentiments to give you a mish-mash of the two. It’s like trying to separate mechanically a mixture of flour and fine soil. Consider this: had Meles and his then powerful organization with and equally powerful EPLF behind him declared a Tigrai republic and left the rest of Ethiopia to sort out its fate, what would have been the situation now? Irrespective of other things, would not history give Meles Zenawi credit for keeping the country together?

          • Paulos

            Selam Kbur Haw Ismail AA,

            That is actually a brilliant point. One of the issues that you hear people talk about is that, what could’ve happened if TPLF went its way by breaking Tigray from Ethiopia-proper. Surprisingly, the hypothetical seems to bring people back to their senses as they can not bear the scenario and tacitly they give credit to the man for opting otherwise.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Dr. Paulos,

            People with broader knowledge of Ethiopia’s diversity within the context of its complex imperial history do appreciate the imperatives needed to keep the country together. I remember we had exchanges with friends like the Amde about the fluidity of the situation right after collapse of the Derg regime, especially when the army disintegrated and soldiers vanished into their respective ethnic enclaves. Consider what continuation of that void of authority at the centre could have delivered.

          • Tedla

            Selam Paulos,

            Ismail suggested TPLF, backed by EPLF, could have separated Tigray from the rest of Ethiopia and declare independence and let the rest of the country to its fate and you replied “That is actually a brilliant point”. I disagree.

            1) I think the people of Tigray would have suffered massively from a communistic-like dictatorship had TPLF decided to take that route. At least in the current arrangement, TPLF bigwigs have to keep tab of a bigger nation, and bigness had the effect of passivating their inherent authoritarian nature. Of course, they still keep tight control of us Ethiopians, but they also found other opportunities to look into. Such as enriching themselves with ill-gotten wealth, and at a much larger scale than would have been in an independent Tigray.

            2) Even more forcefully than now, they wouldn’t have allowed any opposition in an independent Tigray. And they’d have crushed any opposition if it ever rears its head. During their struggle years, they were reported to have committed massive crimes against the people they were supposed to liberate, including, lest we forget, letting the Derg criminals rein bombs on people of Hawzen.

            3) As in politics, more so in the economy: the Party would have monopolized the economic and business life of the newly-minted state, and most of the population would have been reduced to poverty by now. I think if they were to rule just Tigray, they would have introduced forced labor by now.

            4) If such a scenario had come to a pass 28 years ago, the rest of Ethiopia would have been a liberal capitalist state by now, far wealthier, far more dynamic, and with progressive and competitive politics to boot. Not the kind of stupid, regressive and oppressive Ethnic politics currently imposed from the Leninists.

            To sum up: I’m glad TPLF chose to stay within Ethiopia because otherwise Tigreans would have been crossing dangerous seas and deserts now in search of a better life.

          • Paulos

            Selam Tedla,

            Not sure where to start. Really. You sound like a shadow government as the Brits would say it.

            Lidetu Ayalew, to his credit said something about TPLF when the Opposition remained clueless about the political reality in Ethiopia. He said, the Opposition do not have an inkling about the nature of TPLF for it is the first step to be taken if one is to engage in the dynamics. And you certainly don’t strike me as an exception.

            Thing is, you portray TPLF as a separate entity when the Front is part and parcel of the Tigrean people. In fact, if the Tigrean people remained suspicious of any Front including EDU and EPRP, it was a stellar success for TPLF to have the Tigrean people convinced about the very spirit of the Front.

            Consider this: If Tigreans have cultural commonality with Eritrean Kebessa including language in comparison with the rest of Ethiopia, why did they not only claim to be Ethiopians but shouldered the brunt of defending Ethiopia since time immemorial? Simply because, not only they are Ethiopians through and through but they bled and died for the nation so that Ethiopia one day would be hailed as the “New China of Africa.”

            What you said about Hawzien is not only laughable but a classic scenario where a person of your caliber compromises his intellectual integrity. Not sure where you were when the Front had to help the people get to Sudan in a rather dire circumstances when famine from above and a military junta here on Earth was determined to finish them off. And do you know what the Tigrean people said at that time? ወያነና ከተድሕነና እያ::

          • Tedla

            Selam Paulos,

            “Not sure where to start … ” – if only you started some place in my reply so we have a useful back and forth.

            In the first place, unless you’re deliberately misreading me, I didn’t say TPLF leaders are non-Ethiopians. However hard you try to read between the lines, you’ll not find that kind of thought – for the simple reason that such thoughts can never occur to me.

            It’s not for me or others to decide someone else’s identity. An individual or a group entity may reject or claim its own heritage. If TPLF or some other group claims it’s Ethiopian or not, that’s entirely their choice, and I don’t see any problem in the outcome. Can it be otherwise? Didn’t say anything of that sort – so that’s a non-starter.

            I mentioned Hawzen to point out TPLF’s nature, the extent they go to get to that place of “stellar success”. The first time I saw the Hawzen video, I was very depressed, as were my college friends at the time. As it happened, though, there is more to the story than the inexcusable Derg brutality. Now, if you know, for certain, that TPLF didn’t supply a deliberate misinformation sacrificing innocent civilians to radicalize the people and get more support in the process, then it’ll be a useful lesson for me, and I’ll apologize. But if the story is true, I think it should at least give you a pause.

            Before you pull in other theatrics on me, let me state this: To the utter amazement of my friends first at school and then later at work, I actually supported TPLF, and especially Meles, for the ploddingly obvious reason that they defeated the hated Derg regime. They paid a heavy sacrifice, and a good part of their adult lives for the cause. For these reasons and more, it was easy for me to be a supporter. Most people (ordinary people, not the ethnic entrepreneurs) immediately disliked them for their ethnic politics. Not surprisingly, thus, I was pretty much the only person among my peers (including ethnic Tigreans) defending them for a long time. Until 2005 and its aftermath. That pretty much shuttered any hope I had for a free and open Ethiopian society, and Meles seemed to me effectively a suave, English-speaking version of Mengistu. All this is to state that I didn’t denigrate Tigrayans, because that’s not in my nature. If anything, I think, I was partial to them in my reply to you.

            Until you decided to talk about non-sequiturs, the discussion was about a hypothetical: were TPLF to go its own way, how would things have turned out. I thought that was an interesting question. And remember, as a highly armed and determined political group, it has the powers to do literally anything to bend its will to what it considers its people. Even now.

          • blink

            Dear Paulos
            Why don’t you put your reference against the bombing then , you have been portraying EPLF as a separate entity from our society with full of lies ,which is your strong side and here you are shouting like a mad dog to defend weyane as Engels of the 2018 Jesus kids ,protecting their opponents!! It is one thing to defend weyane but to claim “ Thing is, you portray TPLF as a separate entity when the Front is part and parcel of the Tigrean people“ and then slush EPLF in to pieces with your so called fake doctors friends in this site . You have simply an matched character to sleep under the radar of a mishmashed maintainers.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Ismailo,

            Excellent questions. I am curious how the Ethiopians like Amde, Abi, Horizon, Kaddis, Admassie, Eyob, Kim ….etc will tackle your question. Amde, can you hear me?

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam ismail
            There is no way history give meles credit for keeping the country together . what meles did was cracking the togetherness of ethiopia.
            If his fight was for democratization of ethiopia without tribalism than u can say history will give him credit for making the country democratic(a mechanism for ethnic q too).
            Dictatorship and tribalism is the root cause for not to keep the country together and meles has it all.instead of arguing what if he had declared independent tigrai and try to give him undeserved cradit, it will be good to admit tribalism was a mistake.

          • Ismail AA

            Selam Teodros

            I am not sure of what the meaning of ” togetherness of [E]thiopia” is. Worse yet, I do not get how “tribalism” fits current Ethiopia.

            Now, my understanding of Ethiopia and its history was an empire run relationships of kingship-subject, and not ruler-citizenship. The coherence and strength of emperors at the center were crucial imperatives to sustain their rule; otherwise any weakness entailed rebellion at the peripheries. That was why we read in Ethiopia history intermittent interregnums.

            At least from the decline and fall of the Zagwe’s at Lalibela led to the shrinking of the “togetherness” of the parts. Then you have the so called restoration in 1270, and territorial expanse change from one emperor depending on state of power up to the centralization at Gonder. The collapse of Gonderr brought the ruinous Zemene Mesafint until an ambitious warlord emerged from Quara and restored some sort of chaotic centralization.

            One could go on citing examples along the country’s historical narrative. Thus, if one is aware of such background, don’t you think the risk of another destructive interregnum was real in 1991 which the EPRDF under Meles Zenawi had avoided?

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam ismail
            I born after the revolution(1966 ec) and when i grow up ethnic was not a big deal and even we think it is some kind of backward thinking.
            We know that there is a lot of language and traditions in ethiopia and it wasn’t a big a deal and we don’t even know which traditions belongs to which ethnic. We think we all r the same except a little bit people in sou.

          • Amde

            Selam Gash Ismael and Gash Amanuel,

            I think i will respond on the last hypothetical, i.e. basically Melles did a historic service by choosing to keep Tigray within Ethiopia and thus maintain the country’s unity. I think if this was an easy and viable option they would have done it, and I am convinced for a not-insignificant faction of the TPLF this has always been the preferred option. But it was impossible then as now. Independent Tigray would be too small and too weak. Tigray+Eritrea is a formula that looks nice on paper but dead on the ground as seen by the challenges of today’s Agazian movement.

            The country is so populous, large and diverse, center-periphery struggles are a natural feature of the system (to paraphrase Saay, I don’t think of this center-vs-periphery tension as a bug, but as a feature). “Center” was defined as basically whoever excelled at the art of the use of military force and intrigue to be the most powerful.

            But I think there is a qualitatively different political meaning to “the center” since late 1800s and any period before. Basically, before the advent of the idea of government as agent of modernization, a Neguse Negest (the political expression of the united entity) was really interested in taxing his subjects and maintaining hegemonic position over the other princes. And that was really it. As late as the 1980s my own grandmother was astonished at the idea that government was responsible for the welfare of its citizens since she grew up and lived with the notion of that rulers were elected by God and subjects’ duty was to obey, pay taxes and otherwise fend for themselves. (It is funny how such conversations gain more weight over time)

            The thing with modernization era is, whoever becomes the “center” takes over the modernizing mantle.
            That brings with it many goodies that make the center qualitatively much much more powerful than the periphery. Remember, for the most part, the historically contending units saw themselves as more or less equivalent in competing with each other in what mattered – political/dynastic alliances, peasants that can be dragged into war, weapons that can be bought. Who lost and who won was determined by the outcome of single battles or series of skirmishes. But by the time of Menelik’s, Shewa had access to what was available to sovereign powers. The battle of Segelle had an AirForce for the Shewan side for example. That was just one of many benefits the center started to have that its competitors simply could not (issuing one’s own money, getting international loans/grants, centralized communication etc…). So inevitably the center got stronger throughout the past century.

            So TPLF wins and enters Addis. If let’s say it decided to split from Ethiopia, it would be walking away from the tax revenue and other economic opportunities the center offers. Even if they decide to take whatever can be taken, that still leaves future cash flow for somebody else to benefit from. It makes sense then for them to stay and maximize their benefit from it. And once they decide to do that, it logically follows they will permit no competition internationally (leading to the currency spats leading to the Badme war), and domestically (virtual monopolies under state and party businesses).


          • saay7


            I move that these chronicles of Amde, disbursed throughout various forums under various articles be organized as “Amde Annals” for ease of reading and research.

            So moved.

            Do we have a second.

            I will second that.


            Mr Chairman, this is long past due.


            Cricket sound.

            Let’s put it to a vote. All in favor? (A chorus of aye.). All opposed (cricket sound). Abstentions? I mean besides you China, you abstain on everything.

            Motion passes.


          • Kim Hanna

            Selam saay,

            I would like to submit an amendment to the motion that just passed.

            The title “Amde Annals” be changed to “Amde’s Qum Neger”.

            Mr. K.H

          • saay7

            Mr KH:

            Well, then your application has been submitted and is pending board approval. Denied

            — A frequent line from one of the best-animated (and well written) Netflix shows.

            So, um, the title. No.

            Wait, we are voting , huh? Ok, my African got the better of me. Ok I suppose if the people want to reject an alliterative title (Amdes Annals) for something that threatens to be boring and insulting (Amdes Qumneger) let the people decide.


          • Amde

            Hahaha Saay,

            China is such a b*tch.

            Thank you Saay, now I have a swollen head.

          • Ismail AA

            Selam gash Amde,

            Let me kindly ask you to have a look to my responses to Ras Abi and Horizon.

            Your elaboration on the prerogatives of whoever sat at center of power vs the peripheries is excellent, and cannot be gainsaid. Meles Zenawi and his front might have weighed the situation in the way you have explained. The point I tried to discuss is probably result of reflection on past experiences of power relation at various imperial epochs. I think I have cited a few instances yesterday.

            There is no issue in times of peace under strict control from the center. The trouble started when that control got weak or absent just like what happened in Gonder at closing years of 18th century, or death of Emperor Tedros. Yohannes had to fight wars against the claimant of Gojjam as well the claimant in Shewa to restore assertion under his suzerainty. When pervasive control as was under the Derg collapse the certainty of the future cannot predictable.

          • Selam Ismail AA.,

            “አብሮነት -Togetherness” in my opinion is the amharic translation of ‘unity in diversity’. At least this is what i understood. Modern times bring modern vocabulary, and young people love language modernism.

            In addition to what Amde and Tedla have said, i would like to add that in 1991 the region of tigray has just come out of a devastating civil war in which catastrophic wars were fought, two biblical famines of the 70s and 80s had occurred, and a mountainous arid land that produces very little was the trophy for tplf at the end. Cessation could have been a suicide, which tplf silently avoided in 1991, and chose the most lucrative scenario, which was to lord over ethiopia.

            Yes, ethiopia could have immersed into a civil war, not for any other reason, but mainly due to armed olf, whose leaders were very thirsty for power, and they were so hateful of the amharas and ethiopia. All of them, tplf, eplf and olf, had drunk from the same fountain of hate.

            As Tedla said the people of tigray would have been today in a worse situation than eritreans. Independence will have brought stick and not carrot, slavery and not freedom, and economic devastation and not prosperity. Independence was not a situation where tigray could insulate herself from the raging fire that consumed the rest of ethiopia.

            We have heard of wars of independence and secession, especially in africa and europe, but usually it is/was about regions that are resource-rich and developed, and not regions that are/were in utter poverty like the rest, as in our case.

            Would tigray have done any different today if she takes the way of independence? Nope! As you americans say. For good or bad, and for better or worse, ethiopians are stuck together. Therefore, it is better that ethiopians cut their bs narcissism in their poverty.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam horizon
            How big was the olf at that time? How many oromos knows olf even existed at the time? Which people were the supporter of darg more?

          • Amde

            Selam Teodros,

            By 1991, OLF was really very well known. They actually blew their chance. When the Derg fell, much of the Oromo speaking officer corp (which probably constituted the majority of the Generals) and soldiery could have joined them. But they insisted on this very exclusivist and fanatical view on independence, and operationally they just were not prepared to absorb a lot of new people and run an administration. Imagine if the OLF in 1991 had the rhetoric of today’s Lemma even if they did not mean it.


          • saay7


            On the Power of P: An Unstudied Coincidencd

            TLF came before TPLF. It was TPLF that marched to Addis.
            ELF came before EPLF. It was EPLF that marched to Asmara.
            OLF came before OPDO (or whatever it was called back then.) but it’s OPDO in the Oromia state house.

            That’s the Power of P.

            When EPLF was changing its name it decided to keep two words from its name. P and F. Peoples Front.

            What does this mean? You and tsatse need to come up with a formula why this happens because 2 is a trend and 3 is a phrnom.


          • Amde


            This does require the TsaTsestic treatment.

            Conterfactuals blablabla but who wouldn’t want a crawl into a numerological (and whatever its letter-equivalent ) rabbit hole?


          • Teodros Alem

            Selam Amde
            I wasn’t in the country at that time 1991.but my question was before derg collapse.
            I use to go to stadium in addis back 1980/1 ec and one of the strong team was the army and the vast majority of the supporters was oromos and mengistu admirers. Even in the neighborhood i noticed that.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Horizon,

            Thanks as always for elaborating the term I couldn’t related to the current political set up. I agree that time changes and brings with it new things in myriad aspects of life including politics.

            My point id specific to the events of 1991, and collapse of the Derg authority and possible challenges (please read my response to Ras Abi). It has nothing to do with with viability or otherwise of Tiigrai as separate entity. Perhaps what you and dear brothers, Tedla and Amde could have been the likely consequences.

            But that is beside my point because the issue was about who from among the contending forces could assert will and power to safeguard the country intact: OLF, Somalis, the very much divided and tired groups and parties in exile!.

            I think the TPLF and powers that advised it (international player such American and close allies) to established EPRDF saw the danger. Mr. Herman Cohen’s sleep denying worry was what could happen in Addis Ababa right after Mengistu fled and his successor general (forgot the name) entered the French or was it Italian embassy, and his soldiers dispersed.

            How the TPLF manipulated the coalition to its advantage in governing the country is another issue, and we all know how things had developed, and in which direction they are moving at the present.

          • Selam Ismail AA,

            If the following clause was indeed in the so-called “Tplf Manifesto”, i.e. [The final goal of the TPLF is to secede from Ethiopia as an independent “Republic of Greater Tigray” by liberating the lands and peoples of Tigray], lands which included from begemdir, eritrea and the port of assab, it is difficult to believe that tplf had the will to safeguard the country intact, although it had the military power.

            That the west was against the disintegration of ethiopia, then and now, is very plausible, and most probably the usa had exerted its influence and power to restrain tplf from implementing its plan of “greater tigray”. Therefore, “plan B” was implemented, and it was to form a coalition government composed of the main ethnic groups that could keep the country together.

          • Ismail AA

            Selam Horizon,

            What you have quoted from the TPLF Manifesto is correct. But we have watched it abandoning its initial position, and Albanian version of Marxism as well, through the years simultaneous with acceptance by the cold war era stakeholder powerful nations of its role in fighting the Derg regime.

            Actually, the TPLF was not the only one that steadily changed stated political-ideological positions through enticements from the powers I mentioned; the EPLF too changed many things in its political program.

            Thus, by January 1990 when a congress (conference) that produced the EPRDF coalition, the TPLF leaders had abandoned their earlier convictions in favor of pan-Ethiopian (patriotism) nationalism. This could have been due to changes that had been taking place in the then superpower relations, among many other things, the weakening of the Soviet Union which was the main source of support to the Derg, and providing real possibility of its defeat.

          • Selam Ismail AA,

            I find somehow difficult to put on the same page “tplf’s pan-Ethiopian (patriotism) nationalism”, especially during its early years in power, with its rhetoric such as, the ethiopian flag is a piece of rag, ethiopian history is a hundred years history, ethiopia is not meant to be unless…, …..and many more. Ethiopianism was a bitter pill it was forced to swallow in latter days due to circumstances.

            As much as i am concerned and most ethiopians, i hope, after drawing the necessary lessons from ethiopian history over the last half century, what matters most is what everyone should do from now onwards in order to avoid self-inflicted damage, when ethiopia has strong enemies who are ready to exploit their weaknesses and their internal conflicts. That is the most important thing for ethiopia right now, and that is where the new mindset rhetoric the new pm is talking about comes in.

            Allow me to add this at this point as a sideline. In my opinion, a silent revolution is taking place in ethiopia despite what the cassandras say. Ethiopians are infatuated with things that are happening in their country as they see prisoners who were incarcerated by the eprdf itself are being released, even the victims are satisfied with the new situation without having grudge for the new pm, the opposition is hopeful, authoritarianism is gradually being dismantled and the anti-terrorism law and the soe are waiting their turn. All these when those who oppose him from the very day they heard his name still demean him and continue to live in denial.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Horizon,
            I think you agree with me that concrete policies transcend rhetoric. It is gratifying to know Ethiopians to be looking forward and engaging in peaceful transformation of their country.

          • FishMilk

            Hi Ismail AA. A few comments. It was Tesfai Gebre Kidan who you were thinking of who took over from Menghistu and had later sought refuge and died at the Italian Embassy in Addis Ababa. We remember him well from his bar hopping days in Asmara. Buy him a few too many drinks and he would readily spill his guts of Derg intel. In regards to Tigray seceding from Ethiopia, many can still remember discussions of old emanating from the TLF and TPLF wherein the Agazian dream was constantly brought up but rejected by the EPLF. In regards to 1991when Menghistu flew the coup, it was in fact both the EPLF and TPLF which were controlling the action in Addis Ababa (and most of Ethiopia). We were told that OLF forces numbered up to 10,000 at the time but nobody believed it and anyways, they were so poorly organized and equipped. In days of old, the OLF had offices in Sudan and Somalia. In regards to the TPLF and EPLF abondoning Hoxhaism, I really do not believe that PIA has abondoned the ideology. Lastly, to comment that modern day Ethiopia, inclusive of its majority non-Habesha population (i.e. Oromo), has scant semblance to an Ethiopian Empire of old called Abyssinia.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear FishMilk,

            Thank you so much for letting me refresh my memory about Gen. Tesfai Gebre Kidan. Never knew about his days in Asmara. By the way, what was his fate; I knew he had his stay in that embassy prolonged.

            At the initial phase of the TPLF as resistance front, the core of its ideology rested in the concept of self-determination up to and including secession. The idea of separation was thus on the cards. And, floating the debate on possibilities of pan-Tigrian future was also there. But as you have written there was no appetite for that on the Eritrean side because there was clear discordance of endgames. For the Eritreans, the issue was termination of forced and illegal annexation through unilateral violation of internationally sanctioned arrangement.

            Divergence of causes had served for intermittent, and at times bitter, ideological disputes between the TPLF and EPLF leaderships, which abated through the years due to political and military expediencies that was encouraged by foreign strategic stakeholders.

            Regarding control of Addis Ababa after the collapse of the Derg, you correct that the allied forces fronts at the time had filled the power vacuum. Moreover, the OLF was a weaker player because the EPLF and TPLF were chosen by USA and allies suitable to fight the Derg and end the influence of the Soviets in the Ethiopia and Horn in general due to their strategic value of geography. The OLF constituency was considered remote and expansive.

            On source of ideological emulation, I am not sure whether the EPLF had an assimilated ideological conviction. Its relation fluctuated between Chinese and Soviet versions depending expediencies. Under the PFDJ, the policies appear to exhibit traces of the former.

            Besides, you are also correct that demographically, which can translate in future to political weigh, the old heartland of Abyssinia is not comparable to current Ethiopia.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Selam Horizon,

            The political manifesto of TPLF reads as “ self-determination upto secession” as their political principle . This in itself is enshrined in your constitution as article 39. Hence there is no change before and after they come to power. I do not see any change in their belief. I do not see also any substance in the argument that says “have changed their position”.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam aman h
            Agree with u for the first time and what u said above makes a lot of sense. After tplf friendly(puppet) gov in eri replaced PIA , every body will see they don’t change in their belief.

          • Ismail AA

            Dear Aman H,

            As I have noted in my response to FishMilk just moment ago, you are absolutely right the ideological core of the TPLF. The principal founding leaders of the TPLF had carried that idea from their student activism days. It is also true that they had enshrined the concept in the current constitution. Unity of the country had needed an incentive that could be sold to the centrifugal forces that awaited historic opportunity that became available with the collapse of the Derg. This had entailed constitutionally sanctioned option that promised opportunities for self assertion down the road in case there was need. Of course, the TPLF itself was potential beneficiary.

            However, what the TPLF had abandoned was the socio-economic aspects of the Marxist (Albanian) socialism. It had settled for markt economy in the framework of developmental state policies.

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Merhaba Ismailo,

            I agree. Indeed “The ideological core of the principal founding leaders of the TPLF had carried that idea from their student activism days.” I remember one of their founders Embaye Mesfun known as “Seyoum Mesfun”, who was my classmate, borrowed my historical materialism book, took it with him at the end of 1974 to build a liberation army. You are also right they have abandoned the Marxism economic philosophy when they found a new path, the “New Democratic developmental state”a pragmatic economic philosophy, that turns the face of Ethiopian economy in many aspects.

          • Selam Amanuel H.,

            There is a big difference between “article 39” of the ethiopian constitution and the “tplf manifesto of greater tigray”. Article 39 gives the right for self-determination up to secession, but nowhere does it say by incorporating other people’s land.

            Even the name “greater tigray” shows the expansive – colonial nature of the state they wanted to create. By bringing the whole of the afar state and the port of assab into their dominion and their new border as far south as djibouti, and by targeting lands in amhara state and eritrea (some are today under their control), this was the way to build greater tigray, unless of course you say that the manifesto does not say anything about land and there never was such a concept as greater tigray .

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam horizon
            There is no different in tplf belief between artical 39 and the greater tigrai. They can’t be politically correct to use the word greater tigrai while ruling or part of a ruler in ethiopia.

          • Admassie

            Selam Amanuel Hidrat,

            1. You said “The political manifesto of TPLF reads as ‘self-determination upto secession’ as their political principle.” I think it is not so obvious as you have stated it.

            What was so clear
            under part ” II መፍትሔው”, article “ሀ. ብሔራዊ ትግል” of the first edition of the February, 1975 TPLF Manifesto, was the following sub article:

            ” ሀ.ዓላማውና ሥራው፡-
            የትግራይ ህዝብ ብሔራዊ ትግል ፀረ-የአማራ ብሔራዊ ጭቆና፣ ፀረ-ኢምፔርያሊዝም እንዲሁም ፀረ-ንኡስ ከበርቴያዊ ጠጋኝ ለውጥ ነው። ስለዚህ የአብዮታዊው ትግል ዓላማ ከባላባታዊ ሥርዓትና ከኢምፔርያሊዝም ነፃ የሆነ የትግራይ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ማቋቋም ይሆናል።”

            But, going through the whole content of the Manifesto, and knowing the mindset of the majority of the Tigray people, I believe the intent of TPLF was not separation, rather, as you have stated it, was to have the right of self-determination upto secession.

            One can find this
            under part “I. አሁን ስላለው ሁኔታ”, article “1. ፖለቲካዊ ሁኔታዎች”, the Manifesto cites Lenin’s quot as relevant. “ሐ. ብሔራዊ ተፅዕኖ
            …በተጨማሪም ሌኒን የመገንጠል አስፈላጊነትን ሲገልጽ፡- ‘የሕብረተሰብ በመደብ መከፋፈል ለማጥፋት የተጨቋኙ መደብ አምባገነንነትን እንደሚያስፈልግ ሁሉ የማይቀረው የብሔሮች መዋሃድ ሊገኝ የሚችለው መሽጋገሪያ በሆነው የብሔሮች ነፃነት፡- ማለት የብሔሮች የመገንጠል መብት ሙሉ በሙሉ ሲኖር ብቻ ንው።’ ይላል።”

            I say also, in light of my understanding above, The word “ሪፐብሊክ” in the “…የትግራይ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ማቋቋም ይሆናል።” could mean “የራስ ክልላዊ መንግስት”.

            Therefore, I do not think TPLF changed its stand towards unity on its way of victory in 1991, I believe it was there through out.

            2. Regarding what would have happend to Ethiopia had TPLF chosen to secessed in 1991, I would say, the best scenario, we would have been still in war. Ethiopia proper would have civil war internally as well as with Tigray and Tigray would have additional front with Eritrea. The worst scenario, Ethiopia would have been disintegrated.
            Here, I share Ismail AA’s reply to Horizon.

            Admassie A.

          • Teodros Alem

            Selam admassie A
            1st, republic and a state r different.
            2nd, let alone tigrai which consider nothing and even derg evacuated knowing there is no importance to ethiopia, even eritrea’s separation which consider a head don’t made ethiopia disintegrated.
            I know from the beginning u r made to love beloved tg by tplf but don’t forget am Biologically programed to love Ethiopia.

          • Abi

            Hi IsmailA
            Very interesting question you raised. The short answer is the people of Tigray are so thankful that the “Visionary” Meles decided to stay in Ethiopia.
            I don’t understand why you and Paul are trying to convince me Meles did a big favor for Ethiopia? Earlier Amanuel Hidrat was warning us unless TPLF remains with eprdf Ethiopia will be disintegrated. That is an absolute nonsense!!
            Why do you guys think we ( non Tigray) people don’t matter? Why should our fate decided by the Tigrayans?
            Don’t you find it a little weird?

  • saay7

    Selamat Beyan:

    ረመዳን ምድሪ ኣይተዛርበና. But if you insist, this conversation happened last week. The names have been withheld to protect the guilty:

    Daughter: dad
    Dad: uh-huh
    Daughter: is it true that in Ramadan, for the whole month, Satan is chained.
    Dad: uh-huh
    Daughter: papa
    Dad: uh-huh
    Daughter: this begs a question.
    Dad: and I am sure you will ask it
    Daughter: yeah, but rhetorically because u don’t have the answer
    Dad: shoot
    Daughter: why isn’t Satan chained all year round? Why only in Ramadan?
    Dad: exactly
    Daughter: so you don’t know either?
    Dad: subject, freewill, verb, predestination, predicate.
    Daughter: papa?
    Dad: uh huh
    Daughter: you suck.
    Dad: thank you. There is a commandment about that so watch it.


    • blink

      Dear saay
      Who wrote the commandment will be the second question and she will go on and on while her father run miles away from every single question. I still don’t understand why Beyan put myth and religion as if they have different meaning? Religion is the oldest myth to human being.No offense to these who go on fasting but I don’t understand what they are looking after in a specific month.

  • Amde

    Selam Paulos,

    This is indeed a gem.

    I have a question on your thought about what the concept of Man or Woman would be if the average life span goes to 200 years or more. I am a bit partial to the ideas of Aubrey DeGrey (I think that is his name) who argue that the first person to live to be 1000 years is already born. Basically, he argues that we are within about 30 years of having death by old age will go the way of smallpox. It does seem to imply that child-bearing will be a feature of extreme youth.


    • Paulos

      Selam Amde,

      I guess Disqus was down. I couldn’t comment.

      I certainly remember the guy where he got everyone excited when he declared that Methuselah is here and now. I guess the question is, is it necessary for the human species to live longer much less a millennia. Please bear with me for I am going everywhere as I try keep the comment less cluttered.

      Consider this: Why does pregnancy lasts only 9 months? Why not say 2 years or three months? There seems to be optimum range where the human body functions best. What if there is some sort of biological clock lurking and ticking away where the human body is programmed to expire at a certain period and time. On a cellular level, Apoptosis otherwise known as Programmed Cell Death, the body induces certain cells into death at certain point where their longer stay is considered detrimental for the body. And imagine, if there is a collective Apoptosis that guides the body into its final state.

      It gets rather interesting when we see the effect of Telomeres on aging where it is one of the hotest areas of researches in Medicine. In fact, the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2009 went to the people who discovered the effect of Telomeres on aging.

      As you may recall, the autosomal cells in the human body contain 23 pairs of chromosomes situated inside the nucleus. And the chromosomes have the appearance of a shoelace where the telomeres is located right at the end of the chromosome and as a shoelace is bound by a tight binder at both ends so that the lace doesn’t get messy so to speak. And what is most interesting about the telomeres is that, every time the cell divides, the telomeres gets shorter. And that is precisely the reason cancer cells are dubbed immortal, simply because the telomeres on cancer cells doesn’t get shorter and it stays the same.

      It seems, the telomeres is programmed to expire at some point where it is detrimental to tamper with it as much as one tries to prolong life say, to a couple of hundred years much less a thousand years.

      The other thing that stands to reason contrary to the idea of life prolongation is the relatively recent rise of chronic illnesses including Diabetes, Heart Disease and Alzheimer’s among other diseases. If say, the average life span in the 1800s was 35, circa 200 years later, it is 82. But the increase in average life span comes with a heavy price.

      Again, please bear with me. The human body has only so much energy to utilize with in a life time. The energy expenditure is essentially divided into two: Reproduction and Maintenance. From birth to a certain age, the whole system and energy is geared to prepare the body for reproduction. And after certain years as in when reproduction is done, energy expenditure is geared to fixing worn out cells as the person starts showing chronic illnesses say, Arthritis for instance.

      And when the life span increases and when the supply of energy starts to get depleted, the body doesn’t know what to do with the over long years accumulated worn out cells and the worn out cells become chronic as in Coronary Artery Disease and Alzheimer’s among others. When the average life span was 35, chronic illnesses were hardly ever. If gaining extra more decades to life comes with a trade off and a high price, just imagine the trade off, if we are going to live for one thousand years.

  • Ismail AA

    Dear Dr. Beyan,

    At first glimpse, and seen from ordinary reader’s perspective like myself, the title falls on the mind as so loaded in every aspect that it is terrorizing. But thanks to balanced combination of skill and store of knowledge the material has been made clement to me though I was penalized to the reading twice.

    There is no question that much of the material handled here have been, and will remain, controversial and engage superior minds as long as humans exist. The multifaceted aspects – history, faith, philosophy, socio-cultural phenomena etc. – that got fare share in the analytical narrative of this piece are so profoundly challenging in time and space. I see no wonder to note that the passions of two best minds among us in this forum, Paulos and Haile, and each from own perspective, have been already challenged to add valuable in puts that allayed my fear, and enticed me to go back to re-read the material.

    Leaving the heavy lift to fellow forumers to educate me and interested other participants, I will apply to myself the notion of our Tigrigna speaking community’s proverb about a person knowing own limits: “ጭሩ ብዓቕማ ብ ብርዒ ትሕጎም”. Thus, I would like to focus on two points Dr. Beyan stated, namely the relationship of “personal and God’s sovereignty”. I think this matter has been at the core of intellectual (both from secular and religious vantage points) of discourses through centuries.

    Requesting in advance to be corrected from erudite forumers, I think the whole purpose of those discourses on levels of disciplines of knowledge was to draw a line between those two concepts. In other words, existence of the being (man) within the context of temporality that Dr. Beyan has alluded to courtesy to F. Scott Fitzgerald, was assertion of man’s personal sovereignty within his/her environment – starting from family unit to nation-state systems, and its correlation with God’s sovereignty. Scholarships through many historical phases of human existence had consume time and energy in the great search of thinking systems that accommodate both notions that has brought us brought to the modern age of collectively organized under national states that should abide by the ultimate compromise written in to covenants and constitutions that allow human members to exercise personal sovereignty in making their own choices. This was possible by way of separating religion from politics in governing the affairs of peoples. The great point of compromise here is what a person wants for himself should not pose as hurdle to the other to exercise that same right. Agnostics, atheists and the believers should exercise there choices in an environment of harmony within the temporal context covenants and constitutions provide.

    Hence, to cut these remarks that could extend due to the broadness of the notions raised in this threat, let me jump to the last paragraph, which I thought was the very reason for Dr. Beyan to decide to spare time and energy to come up with this excellent piece. Personally, I did not at all had any problem with fellow Eritreans enjoying there sovereignty to choose whatever they want be in relation to faith or religion or any other persuasion. But the point that should be stressed (at least in my case) I believe there is a huge difference between pronouncing mundanely positions on religions or other “isms” and those who do it as conclusions reached through proper intellectual rigor. This was the point, I also tried to stress in comments I had scribbled under previous threads.

    And, to explain this point further I know many former professing atheists whose positions were transient and failed to resist the collective sovereignty within their communities be it cultural-social or religious and then turned to the opposite radical extremism. Some of the bearded fanatics who chopped fellow human beings heads or open chest of dead bodies and ate hearts of what they believed were enemies of their faiths were once upon a time seculars (agnostics to atheists) or followers of one of the “isms”.

    I remember, moreover, some of peers who during their time in the field (ELF) who had turned to leftist persuasions such Marxism, and erased borders between faiths to engage in cross-faith marriage or and married outside the requirements their faiths prescribed and graced by children, hastening to correct mistakes and rushed to baptize their children right after they were out of the field and confronted the realities collective sovereign requirements of their communities. Such experiences in life, thus, render one to be cautious when meets persons who profess particular position on religion and socio-cultural notions of communities. Of course, they are entitled to their personal choices and should be respected as long as they reciprocate in relation to their counterparts or believers.

  • Beyan

    Selam Hakim Paulos,

    When you noted that DISQUS might have devoured your response, I was really agitated to hear, because I know how frustrating it is when DISQUS decides to eat up my responses. I’ve been burned too many times now to try to give my response from this space without any mechanism for a backup. Most of the time, I write it on word these days, then, copy and paste it. But, I can see how tempting it is to just write an impromptu reaply, which I do now only when I know it is going to be a brief one. Look at the gem that would’ve been missed. Thank you dottore, your entries without a fail are first rate – as always. I wouldn’t wanna add anything for fear of tainting it. I know I will re-read it to really digest its depth and breadth. I am just leaving a little opening in case I wanna come back with some input.

    Good day!

  • Paulos

    Selam Dr. Beyan,

    Disqus ate my comment. Oh well, too bad. Thanks for the great article though.

  • Haile S.

    Selam Beyan,

    Superb! I thank you for daringly bringing such a subject into the open. Daring, because everytime a subject touching religion comes into discussion, we have had difficulties handling it. Here by citing some chapters of Paradise Lost, you are calling for tolerance to ways of looking and the different understanding and interpretation of religious writings and most importantly to differences in general. Your summary of the book was a delicious treat. You explained the core message of Paradise Lost in a nice methodical setting and analysis worthy of a man of social arts. You rode the fine lines of intellect nothing sinful that God wouldn’t have permitted when he gave us the leashed free will. You put it well “The notion of free will as postulated by God is a two edged sword that cuts its adherents both ways….” The free will was the biblical big-bang that didn’t explode to its full capacity. We humans are the victims of this free-will that was not really free. Ever since our exile from paradise as the result of transgressing its binding side, we are in an everlasting search of salvation; everything we do in terms of belief revolves around it. This search of salvation has been the cause of dissent, quarrel and even war, especially among ‘us’ the monotheists. ‘Us’, whether I consider myself an atheist or not, we are all together in this self interrogation. Your call for tolerance to differences is timely. Bringing such a subject into the open may be viewed as incongruous, but not really so. Our political leadership throw during their discours words and concepts like belief, secularism etc just like that when it serves their mighty hands. Being deprived of means from answering them directly, we are reduced to talking about it wherever we are. Therefore no subject is incongruous even at a period when we are fasting in search of our eternal salvation.

    • Beyan

      Selam Haile S.,

      Not only your grasp of the importance of the topic is lucidly and thoughtfully articulated, but the spirit in which you pieced together is remarkably enjoyable. As you rightfully insinuated, matters of religion are difficult to discuss – whether in person or through the written word – but trying we must. The kind of hateful rhetoric that comes through the virtual medium these days, mind you, from all sectors of our society, is truly baffling.

      But, when it comes to humor I enjoy Egyptian ones, because they seem to have this knack for understanding the human condition in all of its essences with all of its ironies. Or it is entirely possible that it is attributable to part of my adolescence and early teenage years being spent there that their humor appeals to me. As coincidence would have it, a friend shared with me a clip where the setting is the battle between the sexes, this time it was between a husband and a wife. You know, they go through back and forth of how women are better and superior to men and vice versa. The last dialogue is where the punchline that is relevant to our discussion under religion here. So, the woman pulls her ultimate call, the religion card on her husband in how “heaven is under the feet of mothers” as is stipulated in Islam. Now, the audience is clapping, the man repeats part of her words “heaven, oh heaven, now she is talking about heaven…” [until the clapping tapers off and for maximum effect…]. He then goes, “you got us down in one fell swoop, with one apple, from heaven.” Now, the audience is in rapturous laughter. I know humor doesn’t translate well, but we Eritreans are way too serious on matters of God, heaven and hell. I don’t have that disposition – Sal Y. might pull this kind of serious matters with humor, but not I – to pull off some such heavy topic.

      Your points are, nonetheless, well taken. We have to be able to talk about these matters. Otherwise, as you rightly surmised, the regime will use these touchy subjects subtly to inject the seeds of doubt into the gullible people. The Akhriya uprising was a case and point. And, what we are hearing in its aftermath from the regime through its mouthpiece is exactly that. They send individuals bearing Muslim names to say this, that, or the other as they do the same thing on the Eritrean Christians, I am certain. We saw that play out during their relentless attack on the Jehovah Witnesses where people of Christian faith in dehai in 1995 openly were saying ጽቡቕ ገበርዎም::

      But, if we begin to talk and communicate on these matters across the religious divide, we wouldn’t be fooled by rhetoric of the sorts we are now hearing from, not only the regime, but also from the so-called opposition groups who now want to push Eritrean Jeberti, for example, far away from Tigray. It used to be that we are Tigrayans until they realized that they would be pushing themselves along with us to the same territory. When some of us gladly began to claim our ancestral land being from Tigray but proud citizens of Eritrea. Nevertheless, they seem to have found the solution to this: They are now pushing us further out to Somalia. I am sure, they would be kind enough to allow the likes of me to keep my name (Beyan Negash as it is borrowed from Christian highlanders. I am hoping, at least for a good measure, on humanitarian grounds before they send me off to my now ancestral land that these high school dropouts determine was my identity, Somalian. Hope they would have mercy on us all is what I can say for now. This would’ve been hilarious if they aren’t dead serious about their project and rattle off their gibberish, inexplicable, and incomprehensible narrative. Hey, all bets are off now as to what the future holds for Eritreans once the demise of the regime becomes a reality.

      Boy, will we have a lot to contend with, the first one of which, I would suggest is that we build a stadium size psychiatric facility with endless benches to treat us from various PTSD related mental health we maybe suffering from and don’t know it. I am sure, the former colonial powers will come in handy with their expertise, white gowns and all, to give us that helping hand before we commit, well, I am not ready to go there yet. But, it is bleak, I know.


      • Haile S.

        Thank you Beyan,

        Since we are created in the image of God, the good thing that we do lets say, laughing and joking, must be a reflexion of his. I cannot imagine a God so serious with no smile on his face listening to the Egyptian jokes you told. Me, I enjoyed them laughing to a cough.
        But let me say this about the ‘swiffer sweepers’ who spray their tigray- and somali-labeled liquid detergent over Eritrea and try to cleanse Jebertis and others very swiftly. They are fooling themselves. Eritrea is like its terrain composed of multitude of rough hardened and well cemented people where the fragrance of social peace can grow more outlandishly provided we water ourselves well and dilute these inefficacious propoganda by talking what binds us, but also with tolerance what separates us like the current subject. If, a humongous IF, their detergent works, it will uproot a lot starting with the ‘swiffer sweepers’ themselves.

        በያን፡ ጸብሒ-ጾምካ፡ ምልካፋ ጥንቃቐ ዝበዝሐ ይመስል እምበር፡ ንዝሓየኻ’ሲ ብጣዕሚ ምቅርቲ ስጋ ዝመልኣ ዝግኒ እያ። ብኡነት እየ ዝብለካ፡ እስማዒል ይመስክር! እዚ ጳውሎስ ዝበሃል ሰብ እሞ፡ ይትረፍ’ዶ ከምዚ ዝኣመሰለ ዝግኒ፡ ዋላ በርበረ ደፍዲፍካ ዝቐነየ እንጀራ እንተሃብካዮ፣ ነታ እንጀራ፡ ነቲ በርበረ፡ ነታ ሰራሒት ኢድ ክሳብ ሞለኲለን (molecule) እዩ ዘድንቐን ዝገልጸን። እዞም Salን Salehን ዝበሃሉ ግደፎም፡ ኣጸዋውመኦም ከም ተዋህዶ እዩ ዝመስል፡ ስጋ ዝበሃል ኣይንለክፍን ዝበሉ እዮም ዝመስሉ።
        ወደቦይ ሕድራትን ክብሮምን ግና “ወደ’ርብዓ ዘርባዕብዓ” እናኣመኽነዩ ቆጽለነጽሊ ይሕሸና ኢሎም ዳርጋ ከም ኣቡነ ገብረመንፈስ ቅዱስ ‘ካብ ገጽ ኣንስቲ ገጽ ኣናብስቲ’ ቢሎም ንበረኻ’ዶ ንደብሪ ዝጠመቱ እዮም ዝመስሉ።
        ኣብረሀት ሓውተይ ግደፋ፡ ኣይኣ፡ መባህረሪኣ ኮይኑሎ።

        • Paulos


          That is so funny. You should see me laughing. Glad you are back. ናፊቕናካ ቐኒና ክቡር ሓው::

        • Beyan

          merHaba Haile S.,

          Anta sebay, English entebelnas, Tigrinya; Tigrinya entebelnas, Amharinya. I am sure, if there were those who understand French, you would’ve written in that language just as well. What a gift this is, cherish it, embellish it, and above all, enjoy it!

          I wish I can take solace in your comforting words about these by-products of a generation led by a tyrant whose education never rose above high school and his honchos, probably worst so. An Auschwitz survivor, Primo Levi (1919 – 1987) who said it best when it comes to evils amongst us: “Monsters exist, but they are too few in number to be truly dangerous. More dangerous are the common men, the functionaries ready to believe and to act without asking questions.”

          All it took was half an hour of listening time from the two hours that the incoherent poison they were spewing for me to feel the chill. I am reminded of a movie, “Sophie’s Choice”, which I saw when my language capacity to understand English language was not up-to par. But, I vaguely remembered the references to the heinous hate-mongering who explicitly wanted the extermination of the Jews in Poland. I found this text online:
          “The query: “At Auschwitz, tell me, where was God?”
          “And the answer: “Where was man?” ”
          ― William Styron, Sophie’s Choice

          I am very leery of opposition politicians who are showing a complete disregard to these hate mongers, because anyone who openly criticizes these bozos is relentlessly insulted, attacked, his personal character is maligned. Either it is the fear of the latter or that they truly are implicitly supporting the message being conveyed – inadvertently or not. Ignoring something like this does not make them go away. It emboldens them.

          At first, it was only one person. Several years later, his disciples are popping up from Israel. I wish this was a weekend, I would’ve shared a documentary that speaks to the systematic way Islamphobia was orchestrated by some Israeli lobbyist groups in the US. This is researched material from The Center of American Progress by a team of researchers. If you type this, you will easily find it on you tube: Wajahat Ali- Israel Lobby Ties to Islamophobia. Now, it wouldn’t surprise if these kids aren’t receiving some sort of funding from some Israeli groups. I am not one who searches for conspiracy theories, but this one is worth exploring.

          Be that as it may, in a country of law and order, one has a recourse. Not only that, but also, there is a way of running them bankrupt via legal means, you know going after their money for damages and stuff. In places like Eritrea, these kinds of incessant messages – if they become mainstream – there is no turning back.

          Haile S., I appreciate your input. We have a much bigger fish to fry, don’t we? Finding a way of ridding ourselves from the monster of our own making is priority number one. We can also chew and walk at the same time is all what I am trying to say here.