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Human rights lawyer vs. trained healer

PIA interview – Summary Notes

 Last week began with what appeared to be a curious finding by some pro-regime of the Eritrean diaspora, in the form of a letter dated September 17, 1945 and addressed to the then US secretary of state James F. Byrnes from the then President of a USA based Sinclair Oil Corporation (a company now known as Sinclair Oil Refinery Corporation), that attempted to sway US policy on the issue of Eritrean independence. The week ended with a six hour long interview by President Isaias Afwerki with the nation’s media, aired live from the President’s office.

The President’s interview has apparently not been reported, at the time of writing this article, by its diaspora based pro-regime news outlets as well as its dedicated cadres that normally clutter social media spaces with snippets of the regime’s propaganda materials. In addition, the interview, the final part of which was aired today (Sunday September 8, 2013), has sent a wave of speculations, as regards the possible normalization of relations between Ethiopia /Eritrea, among discussants of’s discussion forum.

IA’s latest interview, lengthy as it may, might be considered to fall under two broad categories: a declared re-structuring of the regime’s party owned business enterprises and an implied change of policy towards a long time regional arch-rival Ethiopia. The full political impact of what has been delivered, by way of an atypically scheduled interview, is yet to unfold. Many assertions that were being drummed up by the regime’s own emissaries in the diaspora, i.e. with intent to camouflage the worsening economic situation in Eritrea, were shuttered one after another during that interview. For example, the Eritrean Ambassador to the UK, Tesfamichael Gerahtu has recently been on record, speaking to VOA, claiming that the power shortages in Eritrea were natural manifestation due to his alleged expansion of the economy; as well as basic maintenance issues that were claimed to be common everywhere else in the world. Other pro-regime activists were also writing similar themed papers to explain away the situation that the country continues to experience. During his interview, IA described the situation  as “crisis”  and his regime’s current handling of the problem was likened to “a crisis management”.

On agriculture, IA pulled the rug from under the pro-regime activist’s main talking point, which is that Eritrea has attained food self-sufficiency. In fact, to the contrary, he stated that even with all the capacity combined, including those that have been accumulated over the years, Eritrea is nowhere near attaining food self-sufficiency. The interview paints a grim picture of the current reality of the state of the country’s economy in almost all of the vital sectors. Fishing and related sectors were described by IA to be underdeveloped to the point of having no such thing as fishing capacity to speak of. The ports were said to be dilapidated and incapable of meeting local demands, let alone regional or international demands. Asmara airport was said to be useless and described as nothing more than a financial liability. In fact, according to IA’s own ranking, he rated Asmara airport below that of Tesseney airport, one that is not even in service. IA also stated that everything, from basic lighting to major manufacturing activities in the country are paralyzed due to chronic power shortages.

In relation to the private sector of the economy, the President who ruled the nation with an iron-grip for over two decades, menacingly asserted that many of those citizens who aspired to engage in businesses were in fact engaging in an illegal and crooked undertakings. He blamed that his decision to shut off the private sector was largely due to what he believed to be of untrustworthy practices of those who invested on what he considered useless ventures, such as retail and hospitality sectors and lacked the required capital to invest in the manufacturing sector. The regime of IA is known to be notorious in the expropriation of private businesses. Investor guides that are published by external agencies often cite the case of the Asmara Intercontinental Hotel saga where the regime revoked the business contract of the management to later re-open the hotel as a party owned establishment. IA also blamed corrupt officials of his administration for expanding illegal business activities in the country.

In relation to the health sector, the President defended his actions to ban private health provision on grounds that those receiving services in the public sector were not being looked after as well as those opting for private treatment. He accused Eritrean health professionals of being in lacking of basic “ethical” and “moral” values in the way they carry out their practice within the private sector setting. He expressed his admiration of medical professionals in the Sudan and other countries whom he considered to have far higher moral and ethical standards than their Eritrean counterparts. The president also cast doubts as to the competence of Eritrean doctors to provide private sector health provision. It is to be remembered that even during the Ethiopian occupation, and many years thereafter, there were so many well-known Eritrean health professionals that have also provided outstanding services in the private sector. Nowadays, just like any other citizen, Eritrean doctors are required to patrol streets at night carrying AK-47 Kalashnikovs.

In connection to the construction sector, the President lamented the corrupt and greedy nature of those who sell or rent premises as well as those who intend to invest in the construction sector. He accused land owners of illegal activities as well as being backward and not knowing the true value of the land. This is presumably the reasons that the dictator had to intervene to ban all construction activities. Such a ban also included those people who purchased construction rights from the regime in good faith but were later cheated out of the deal.

Regarding water shortages in the capital and environs, the president contended that it is the people who needed to go to where the water is and not the other way around. He criticized the residents, who are going without water supply for months on end, for being inconsiderate of other fellow citizens who live in remote parts of the country, who are even far worse off than themselves. The president did not have any foreseeable plans to present at the interview; rather he condemned the greed and inconsiderate nature of those complaining about the water shortages.

The president was upbeat about the prospect of fiber technology that is claimed to being introduced in the telecommunications sector. He did not, however, illustrate how the project was being financed or what made it a priority in the face of the dire realities of a nation going for broke.

In relation to the forceful arming of civilians and the economic losses being suffered by those who have to attend daily training as well as duties of guarding regime buildings, IA denied that such cases were widespread occurrences. It is a well-known fact that the regime threatens to shut business premises, if owners fail to send their employees to receive fire arms. Many services in Asmara and other cities are often held off during en-mass rounding of citizens or other activities related to the civilian arming, trainings and guard duties.

Reacting to a question relating to the mining revenues generated so far, IA was initially seemed to be confused and unable to understand the term “mining revenue disclosure”, and soon launched into what appeared to be tirades of verbal abuse which alleged that the people forget to factor in the fact that the mining company’s declared revenues don’t actually translate into final payouts and that the government has been underpaid to the extent of potentially having to reconsider existing mining agreements. IA, also lamented the lack of sense by those asking for the revenues to be declared, in that they fail to appreciate the fact that his regime actually spends billions of dollars a year in subsidy and development projects. He dismissed whatever revenue was being asked to be accounted for, as something that wouldn’t even meet the nation’s six months energy expenditure. He dismissed the question as immature.

The president has also answered questions regarding the human trafficking ordeals of the Eritrean youth. His responses to such questions are omitted here. The reason for the omission is to do with the fact that the IA regime is currently under investigation by multiple UN empowered monitoring bodies that are tasked to ascertain the extent of the regime’s complicity in those acts.

All in all, it was clear that IA had no intention of dealing with the above mentioned questions, i.e. other than to degrade, humiliate and threaten the populace with the regime’s well established acts of severe violations in human rights.

On Ethiopia

Perhaps, his sudden shift of tone towards Ethiopia, the references that IA made concerning some signed “contract” to develop the port of Assab, the complete silence regarding the border demarcation, the reference to Ethiopian government as “goblel” roughly meaning big guy, as opposed to what he used to call them, “kedemti” meaning housemaids, and many other cues have led to wild speculations that the regime is [or has] already taken steps to mend relations. IA has spoken of Ethiopia’s right to use the Nile for the millennium dam and belittled some of the technical concerns raised by Egypt and the Sudan. Throughout his interview, IA argued the seriousness of the power shortages that Eritrea is faced with, and spoke positively regarding the prospects of Ethiopia’s proposal to generate electricity to meet its own needs and export to regional countries.

Gone are the “mekhete” mantra and in comes “Complementary and Durable peace”.

Gone are “resolute rebuff” and in comes mutually beneficial regional projects.

Gone are the last 12 years “Woyane conspiracy”  and in comes the post-cold war uni-polar hegemony over the last 20 years.

Gone are “Weyane invaded Somalia” and in comes “regional countries might have intervened for national security considerations”

 Gone are “national defense” and in comes “nation building” over generations to come.


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  • haile

    Selam saay,

    Here is the latest from VOA, do you think that eza “complimentarity” brkuta alata or what 🙂


    • Eyob Medhane


      I told Sal that there seems to be some sort of informal talk going on. (Scroll down a bit, and refer to my comment to Sal). In Ethiopia, we say to such things አለ ነገር: አለ ነገር::
      ተራራውን ዞረን ወንዙን ስንሻገር 🙂

      • haile

        Selam Eyob

        You see, we live in an era of “where is the evidence” (hmmm…wonder where that came from:). Otherwise, one would think that given there has been propaganda hostility between both sides, the Ethiopian side would have said something to counter what IA said. Instead, one of its high ranking official and elder has announced of plans to meet the parties in Addis and Asmara. But we have been so “brain washed” 🙂 to the point of trading our speculative faculty for a “where is the evidence” ON/OFF button 🙂


        • Eyob Medhane


          Let me give you the scenario. (I know, I know, Sal is gonna call me a crazy conspiracy theorist:-) ) But, here it is. President Girma’s term will be expired this month. After that, he is a private citizen. After that, “As a private citizen, he can do what ever he wants”, the Ethiopian government would say. “If he wants to travel to Asmara, it’s on his own and not as a government representative. he’s no longer a president, but a respected elder”. And as he said, Asmara is a place, which he lived in before. For all we know, as a retired man he is revisiting his old friends there to hang out 🙂 That would open a door to break the ice, which Issu Chisu, gura bekisu really wants. This retired, (very nice guy, by the way) elder would be a face saving cover for both parties. Interesting to see how this would play out. (Please, rate my scenario) 😉

          • Salyounis

            Selamat Eyob:

            If you came to the conclusion because you can’t read Tigrinya or you ipad (damn ipad) doesn’t support Geez, then I give your scenario 5/5.

            If you came to the conclusion by actually reading the news piece in Tigrinya (because that is what it says), I give your scenario 5/5–for the ability to summarize what it says.

            Very generous to you… consider it your New Year present.


          • Araya

            “President Girma’s term will be expired this month”
            Eyob, why do you sound like there is an election and as of Ethiopia is ruled by constitution?
            “Term expires” what the hell are you talking about. I can kill someone in your country and I can walk away. That is the truth. You may fool the likes of Haile and SAAY but not me. The level of corruption in Addis is beyond comprehension, thanks to the weyane.

            Even if PIA to talk with Sibhat Nega, who else, there is nobody out there, except him. The old man is back to power, so, if PIA wanted to talk and gets what he wants, so what? We all know Melles died trying to talk to PIA.
            Sibhat Nega will have no problem getting out of badime.

          • Eyob Medhane


            No my ipod does not support Geez. (My reading ability of Tigrigna is not that great either) so I’ll take 3/5…But still, it might work 😉


            Presidents in Ethiopia, DO NOT get elected by the public. They are elected by the existing Parilement. They also refrain from party politics and membership of being a ruling or opposition parties. They serve only for two terms, and the parliament elects another one at the end of their term. With the current Ethiopian constitution, President Girma W/Giorgis is a second president, following President Negasso Gidada. It is believed the third one will be a woman. Again, it’s up to the current parilament to elect President, not the public. The public in turn votes for the parliament and a party that the public voted to get a majority will assign a Prime Minister, which run for election every five years. Now, this is called parliamentary system. Araya, please hurry and tell PFDJ and Issu that there are such things called Parliament, constitution and a system. They need to know… Thank you~

          • haile

            Selam Eyob

            saay has beaten me to rating the scenario you presented, not possible to favorably re-evaluate it because he has awarded the maximum points available.

            Ato Girma are an 88 year old elder. If they were to be re-elected, they would have to be 100 by the end of two more terms (the FDRE Presidency is six year term). Now, if Ato Girma can handle the stress of mediating between one of the most intractable conflicts in Africa (possibly the world), we wish them well. Ato Girma are from Oromia and may be considered young in their region. Dhaqabo Ebba, another Oromo farmer who just turned 160 years ( would also make a great candidate to be part of the deligation 🙂 Ato Dhaqabo Ebba are approximately half a century older than the modern day Eritrea and Ethiopia, and hence can be a great person to share their wisdom of the boundary that was created when they were approaching retirement 🙂


          • Saleh “Gadi” Johar

            Haile, you are in a very good mood. This is the first time I read the translation of the formal “he=they” (Ato Girma “are”) is cute but I do not think you wanted it to sound cute. 🙂

            Ato Girma said in a VoA interview that they are well known in Eritrea. I am afraid those know them have already been replaced by two generations–if not three. I think they were bitten by the “Gle Ngber” virus… if they cannot be elected because of age, as you mentioned, even if the constitution allowed, what makes them a candidate for mediation? I would tell them, retire, man!

          • haile

            Hello Sal

            Yah…I heard that some of our Ethiopian friends are really offended when we address the elderly “NSU”…we’ll try “NSOM” next time 🙂

            You reminded me my problem…even me, I find that every time I go to Eritrea, those who use to know me really well (even from previous visit) are no where to be found 🙂 I guess it goes with the territory 🙂


          • Sabri

            Why did Ato Girma said at this particular time? It seems it is the way the government of Ethiopia gave positive response to Issayas’s recent opening through its unofficial channel, Ato Girma. Then if Ato Girma is able to mediate or not is not important.

    • Bini

      Haile, thanks for sharing that VOA article. The point of the matter is that this rogue governement in Asmara has had the opportunity for 22 years to prove its worth in leading the great people of Eritrea post independence. They have failed miserably in every sector and in every way, shape, and form. So normalizing relations with Ethio only extends its life and then our suffering continues probably at a worse rate because Ethio might turn away our youth as they flee from Eritrea. I know you are aware of this full well but I hope some naive Eritreans do not fall for this trap. DIA and HIGDEF need to go now. Leave A..holes!

      • Eyob Medhane

        Gash Saleh,

        You know what, I did not get it, when Haile said ‘they’. Damn it Haile, that’s ….(I don’t know what that is.. 🙂 )

        Come on give the old man a chance. In almost all of his interview, he always talked fondly of his time in Asmara. Believe me, if he were to go, Isu would make him a good excuse to normalize relations with Ethiopia, which he seems itching lately. 😉

        Gash Saleh,

        No Ato Girma will not be reelected. He already has secured his retirement house and everything already. I know Haile will ask a proof of that, and here it is..

        • Kokhob Selam

          I am sure NSU is having hard time reading the comments here. be kind men, let him sleep till Savina wakeup him.

  • Abe

    Thanx for the summary.

    The dictator uses the curious tigrinja word “Filset seb” for “human trafficking” which betrays his involvement in this dirty affair. The correct corresponding English word for “Filset seb” is “Exodus” which is not a crime. “Human trafficking” in tigrinja is “Nigid seb” which is a crime. (If you remember the call “independent press” “BiHitawi gazieTa” fully knowing that the correct word is “Natsa gazieTa)

  • Kokhob Selam

    Zeritu Getahun-Enkutatash (እንቁጣጣሽ)-The timeless hit of Zeritu Getahun ..እንቁጣጣሽ እንኳን መጣሽ በአበቦች መሃል እንምነሽንሽ

  • Ali_PaPa


    It is better to leave people to to entertain their bosses who fold and mold them like as they wish for little pay! It is time not to be serious about people who have failed to grow after they have failed to convince the Eritrean people that their enemy is really their friend! Eritreans have lost whatever it is that they think they had and they toying with their old enemy to deliver them from the monster that they have created like slaves both form inside and outside! In one way or another, Eritreans are to blamed for the pathetic state of social, political, economic, religious, ethnic, and the like problems that have created for themselves and cannot get out of it by themselves for they have proven to be utter failures who can produce nothing but useless noises here and there! It is time for Eritreans to give up their dream of ousting their master Esaias who played them like fools and cowards and brought them to the miserable state of existence they find themselves in cahoots with is Weyane cousins!

    People who feed from the hands of them that deported, dispossessed, humiliated, and pained the very people that they claim to struggle to liberate cannot be expected to liberate themselves let alone liberate others! Anyway, what was good in Eritrea is already dead and that which remains is either a slave of one or the other enemy that one can’t expect anything good coming out of except lies and more lies and hypocritical cries about a people who have been betrayed beyond repair by the enemies of the Eritrean people from both sides of the Mereb River one of whom they call a friend and the other, the enemy of their enemy who, in reality, is the worst enemy of Eritrean unity and sovereignty as Esaias is an ailing and dying dog who will soon expire and go to his ugly grave on his way to hell to meet his god and and the god of his Weyane cousins and their white masters. Weyane was, is, and will still run the show of the toothless and useless Eritrean opposition to DIA’s demonic rule as it it folds, molds, and feeds them like beggars and keeps them at bay from going anywhere!

    All there is in a Eritrea is a people quietly dying by the parasites it hosted as pare cries fleeing and them making noises at their former boss and clapping for their new beggar friend who is really a former beggar that earns his beggar wages by running errands of death and destruction for his masters! Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me, is an apt adage that describes the state of utter uselessness Esaias and his Weyane cousins have put Eritreans in and they still don’t get it! We live we see and it is time to take it easy and just watch a former beggar making beggars out of failures and cowards!

    • belay

      Ali papa,
      You are so good at it,do you do that for a living?

    • Ali_PaPa

      [Moderator: please improve your language and make your points without innuendos and insults. Your comment needs cleaning and thus rejected. You may want to revise it and post it again]

    • bukretsion

      Ali papa
      all what u have now is hate nothing more nothing less.

      • Ali_PaPa

        I hate the lies that fly around here and there to hide the death and destruction of a people that have been betrayed by their own and their friends! Perioe! How does one talk about liars, murderes,robbers, traitors, and the like such as DIA the blood-sucking demoniac and his wicked and backbiting Weyane cousins and their stooge and hired bellies that make much noise here and elsewhere? Go figure!

  • T. Kifle

    Dear SAAY
    I admit I am ignorant of the functioning of the Eritrean opposition- their internal squabbles, mergers, splits, swapping of camps etc. You are telling me that the encroachment t of TPLF into these groups has been so intense to the extent of rendering them useless. And I am saying, if that is the case, they were not worthy of their names and uncommited to their stated goals to begin with.
    You said, “When you read both critically, it is clear that the TPLF had very strong opinions on how Eritrea should be liberated and governed.”

    The contents of the “Qalsi H’zbi Eritrea: kabey nabey” was part of the curriculum of TPLF cadre school then finally lumped into a book as we know it today. I am also aware of the long interview conducted by PH in 1989?(of course after being published much later) . The Eritrean question was central to TPLF’s political goals not in order to primarily influence how to liberate and govern Eritrea but was a matter of life and death to govern Ethiopia and strictly speaking is yet to be solved in the eyes of the ultra nationalists as we speak. I suspect TPLF lacked the grasp of regional dynamics, which in essence can be understood fully when one is in power, to foresaw one day, EPLF could turn to an enemy. Though the characterization of EPLF was accurate as is revealed in the book, the security threats it might pose later was totally negated based on TPLF’s ideological premises that goes to the effect ” A conscious front like EPLF couldn’t commit a suicide”.

    The other aspect of the book is elucidating the difference between achieving liberation and nation building. Eritrean independence could have come out of ELF or EPLF. In principle, TPLF declared to stand with the Eritrean people in their aspirations and fight for independence no matter who was in the Battle Mountains of Nakfa. It was pretty clear that neither of them was capable of building a vibrant Eritrean state because they basically shared common attributes that render them intolerant and impervious to liberal values (even by TPLF standards).

    SAAY, you should also take into consideration the timing of its publication where the r/s between the two fronts was at all time low. So at the time, TPLF felt explain the bad relationship with the fronts had nothing to do with the true aspirations of Eritreans for independence which means TPLF’s support for independence was unconditional to ifs and buts.

    While EPLF strolled with jubilation in the streets of Asmara, TPLF/EPRDF had a hard time to convince the frantic ultra-nationalists that Ethiopia-less-Eritrea would be better off and peaceful. On another front, EPLF and Eritreans residing in Ethiopia turned unhelpful to the plight of the EPRDF leadership in the early years of independence. They involved themselves in all forms of evil to exploit Ethiopia. EPRDF turned a blind eye in the face of all conspiracies at the time for fear of the mercurial EPLF could jeopardize Ethiopia’s access to the sea.

    Finally, I am the opinion that had EPLF was as tolerable and as principled as TPLF/EPRDF, the quality of life of our two peoples would have been in a much better situation. And my apprehension is many Eritreans are yet to see the big picture and the contributions and sacrifices of TPLF/EPRDF made in the political front while sandwiched between the aggressive EPLF vociferous ultra-nationalists at home and in the Diaspora. Of course, I am also aware of the Ethiopian counterpart’s venomous rants against the state of Eritrea and its people.


    • Salyounis

      Selamat T.Kifle:

      I only mentioned the book because you said that these organizations didn’t talk about each other prior to 1991; and now you are saying that, actually, “Qalsi hzbi Ertra: kabey nabey….” was taught in the cadre school before it became a book which makes the point even more forcefully that they did talk about each other. One of the things the EPLF and ELF concluded (before the TPLF did) was that there is no legal/moral legitimacy to “liberating” Tigray from Ethiopia as Tigray was part and parcel of Ethiopia. The TPLF reached this conclusion in 1990 after its famous “dewta” (standstill) as it polled the people of Tigray on whether they wanted to be an independent country or a part of an Ethiopian federation. Just kidding: I mean as it “oriented” the people into accepting the change of mission from Tigray liberation to Ethiopian democratization.

      The other aspect of the book is elucidating the difference between achieving liberation and nation building. Eritrean independence could have come out of ELF or EPLF. In principle, TPLF declared to stand with the Eritrean people in their aspirations and fight for independence no matter who was in the Battle Mountains of Nakfa. It was pretty clear that neither of them was capable of building a vibrant Eritrean state because they basically shared common attributes that render them intolerant and impervious to liberal values (even by TPLF standards).

      Hmmm… is there an English phrase for “sey kota.” Come on T.Kifle, you and I know that the core of the TPLF was MLLT (Marxist Leninst League of Tigray) which considered Enver Hoxha, one of the weirdest products of communism (and communism produced quite a few nutcases) a hero and his country, Albania, a good model. How could such an organization render judgement on the “liberal values” of other organizations?

      Tigray is a monolithic state (predominantly Orthodox Tigrinya) and how a product from such environment can pass judgement on multi-ethnic, multi-faith organizations was always the epitome of haughtiness. The true test of how well a front will govern is when a front liberates a land. Specially when it is administering a multi-ethnic, multi-faith land. And, in this regard, the grievances against the ELF are few and far in between. Still, the TPLF chose the EPLF as its partner and join in the Eritrean civil war–which it vehemently denies in the book “Qalsi hzbi Ertra…”

      I don’t disagree with you on your assessment of the Eritrean opposition groups. This is what happens when people forget how great they once were–specially if they are constantly reminded by the host that they are no more than refugees who occasionally wear suits and ties.


      • T. Kifle

        Dear SAAY

        “Tigray from Ethiopia as Tigray was part and parcel of Ethiopia. The TPLF reached this conclusion in 1990 after its famous “dewta” (standstill)…”

        Sal, once I read in your rejoinder to Eyob M. the advantage Eritreans have over their Ethiopian counterparts: while Eritreans know both Eritrean and Ethiopian history, the Ethiopians only know their Ethiopian.

        When I read your reply on this thread, I just thought in similar line. We have this advantage over you: we know TPLF, EPLF and the late ELF but you know only your ELF (both new and old) and your EPLF but not TPLF or EPRDF.

        The above quote of yours is one of the wildest, gross misinformation ever I read from the persona of SAAY whom I have an immense regard. It’s not that you have a sinister motive to misinform but you didn’t do your homework to know more about this front to help you remain objective.

        The infamous “Tigray Manifesto” was a sudden pop up in the middle of 1976 and had a life of 6 months. The front criticized itself for that blunder and corrected its mistakes. It wasn’t a secret at all but taught to new inductees in training centers as one of the grave mistakes the TPLF leadership had passed till 1991(end of the war)on year end. The concern of ELF and EPLF regarding that manifesto at the time was also part of that history. The two fronts opposed the move albeit for a different reason. They thought it would jeopardize their fight for independence. They didn’t care about the unity of Ethiopia and no one expects them to be so. The manifesto didn’t ground its premises on history either which renders their criticism irrelevant. It just stated that it is the right of the people to decide their own fate. As bad as it might have been, it was short lived. The 1989/90 “Standstill” had nothing to do with the claim of TPLF for an independent state even though at the end of the day it boils down to leadership failure to for failing to appraise the level of consciousness of the tegadelties and the wider populace, it was particularly grass-root issue for a perceived notion of paying sacrifices beyond their fair share. The appraisal was made in subsequent times that the sacrifice the Tigreans made anywhere in Ethiopia was not to liberate other Ethiopians which would be simply an insult but to liberate themselves. That’s a part what makes TPLF different.
        You also said, “you and I know that the core of the TPLF was MLLT (Marxist Leninst League of Tigray) which considered Enver Hoxha, one of the weirdest products of communism (and communism produced quite a few nutcases) a hero and his country, Albania, a good model. How could such an organization render judgement on the “liberal values” of other organizations?”

        That’s the riddle Sal. Inspired by Marxists for the good deed they have done in many ways (or simply you may call it naiveté or “brainwashed” in IA’s parlance), TPLF was liberal within itself and in relationships. It was a dynamic front, always on the move and learning to find ways for inspiration and achievement. It mercilessly criticizes itself when things go wrong and never hide it them from the public knowledge. was not a sacred cow but a means to a bigger end. When it saw that it no more was an icon it relegated it to a dustbin of history embraced capitalism and moved on. What never changed along its trajectory is its central objective “building a cohesive, social, political and economic society” which benefits itself and benefit from others in an interdependently mutual win-win basis. Still, daunting challenges in governance, but believe me the old TPLF has completed its mission successfully.


        • Salyounis

          Selamat T.Kifle:

          Kubur Tegadalai… iti mutual respect ab bot’u inkelo… I remember the last time we debated this (contents of Qalsi hzbi Ertra kabey nabey), a book I read when it first came out and then, for insight, after the 1998 war broke out, you flat out told me that nope, I couldn’t have read it. I don’t think your assessment of TPLF is remotely objective. The thing of it is that most of us who admired one of “our” fronts from that era have reconciled ourselves to the fact that they were flawed organizations but the Weyanai (compliment, not derogatory term in my book), holds on to a view of an organization that objectively could be assessed as confused and confusing but chooses to call it dynamic.

          My assessment of what happened during Dewta–the period between Weyane Tigray’s liberation of Tigray and the collapse of Mengistu–is based on Alemseghed Abbay’s “Identity Jilted Or Reimagining Identity.” (Note to Eyob: Alemsghed Abbay is a Tigrayan scholar.) In my favorite chapter of the book, (Visions of Identity) the author takes a survey of 28 Tigrayan (including TPLF leaders) and 28 Eritreans (including EPLF leaders) and asks them 4 questions: Who is the historical enemy of Tigray/Eritrea? What is your fatherland? What is your view of intermarriage? In a hypothetical match up between two teams, which one would you support? Remember this was done in 1994, at the equivalent of the Honeymoon Suite and it is as close as we can get to a “candid camera” moment. Here are the answers (excerpted from a polemical piece I wrote during angrier times):


          1. Historical Enemies/Nationalism

          Ethiopian myth continuously reminds us that fiercely proud Ethiopia has slain dragons from Turkey, Egypt, Sudan, and fascist Italy. We are told that this proud history was achieved through the unity of its diverse people. So, if you ask Tigrayans who their “historical enemy” is, they would of course tell you fascist Italy and Mahdist Sudan…right? Wrong. Asked to name who they consider their “historical enemies”, 82% of his sample of Tigrayan citizens answered…. . Amhara (Shoa). (p. 154). Asked if they would trust an Amhara doctor, 64% of Tigrayans said they would not. (p. 155).

          The author asked the same question to a sample of Eritreans and EPLF members. All except two Eritreans expressed no fear in trusting an Amhara doctor. Asked to name their “historical enemy,” the EPLF sample talked in classic nationalistic answer: its enemy was all the colonialist powers beginning with the Turks and ending with the Derg.

          2. Patriotism/Loyalty

          What do you consider your “Adi abo”–your “fatherland”? This question was posed to Tigrayans and Eritreans. 64.3% of the TPLF sample, which included Sebhat Negga named Tigray (not Ethiopia) as their Fatherland. To 71.4% of the EPLF sample, “Fatherland” meant Eritrea and those who did not mention Eritrea did NOT say Hamasien or Seraye, etc. To Eritreans, notes Alemseged, “fatherland” does not mean the land of the forefathers; it means the land that their children sacrificed their lives for: Eritrea.

          3. Intermarriage

          Sociologists tell us that the ultimate test of “acceptance” is intermarriage–marriage outside your own caste, ethnicity and/or religion. When the TPLF leaders were asked what is their preference, 46% said they would prefer “intermarriages with the Kebessa [highland Eritreans] to the Amhara, fellow Ethiopians, or the Kunama and Afar, fellow “Tigrayans”” (p. 161). Asked the same question, 64% of EPLF leaders “prefer all intermarriages to take place among Eritreans alone, regardless of ethnicity and religion. Intermarriages with Tigrayans became a distant second choice. “(p. 162)

          4. The Hypothetical Match up

          Suppose you are watching TV and you come across a boxing match. You don’t know any of the fighters but one is black and the other is white. Who do you root for? Unless you are one of the tiny fractions of people who have managed to totally subdue all their atavistic allegiances, it is natural for you to take sides with the one who most resembles you. Alemseged takes a variation of this by asking TPLF leaders of a hypothetical soccer match up between an “Eritrean” and a “Shoa” soccer team. “Almost all evaded the question”, writes Alemseged. Of those that responded, only 14. 3% would support a Shoan team. One of the few who answered the politically correct way was General Mohammed Yonus (“Samora”), who said, “…In the past, I used to support the Eritrean team. Now, I am changed. In the past, emotions dictated me; now I am led by reason.”

          The most surreal question was saved for EPLF. EPLF leaders were asked who they would support in a hypothetical war between the TPLF and the “Amhara. ” Get this: 85. 7% said they would help the TPLF. One of the interviewees* said, “We will go to Alewaha and defend the TPLF. Should there be any more wars, they would have to be fought beyond Alewaha.” (p. 167)

          Since its inception in 1975, the TPLF had sold two mutually exclusive goods to two audiences. The people of Tigray were told that the cause of their misery is Shoa, Ethiopia; that their lives would never improve unless Tigray seceded and declared itself a Republic. To the rest of Ethiopia and the world, the TPLF preached a strange brew of Albanian revolutionary language. In the early 1980’s, the EPLF called TPLF’s goal of secession infantile and one that was based on “narrow nationalism. ” In 1989, when TPLF liberated the entire state of Tigray (with a little help from EPLF), it no longer could maintain its dual and ambiguous goals. By then, the TPLF clearly wanted the Ethiopian throne. But how do you sell this to the Tigrayans who, for 15 years, were told that the Shoan is their enemy? In classic TPLF style, it took a one-year break to orient the people on the New Way: Shoans are not your enemy; Mengistu was and he will be gone soon. Harboring views of secession, it told Tigrayans, was “narrow nationalism. ” This one-year period 1989-90 is called, in TPLF parlance “Dewta”–standstill, in Tigrinya.


          So, kbur T. Kifle, you can dismiss all of the above as ancient, almost 20 year old data. You can say that the “dynamic” TPLF has changed again because it is a growing organization. What I am telling you is that the “narrow nationalism” it has always been accused of, is the lens through which it sees the world–and that includes the Eritrean opposition. Every Eritrean organization that ever existed until 1999 had the name Eritrean in it. In 1999, the Eritrean opposition changed its base from Sudan to Ethiopia. Ever since then, there have been an endless stream of ethnic-based (Saho Liberation, Afar Liberation, Kunama Liberation…) I am sure it is all a coincidence.


          * the late Saleh Mekki used to say many in-your-face statements. Although Alemseghed does not disclose the name of his survey participants, I am fairly sure that it was Saleh Mekki who said that quoted statement.

  • To Alemayehu : Next time you might consider writing your own opinion as Hail has done….”Leave Reply” in this site does not really mean write a term paper… Eritrea will always be a thing you will have to deal with now and tomorrow and Same goes for Eritrea regarding Ethiopia as well….open your eyes a bit further beyond the mountains and your mind a lot deeer down to our spine… Happy New Year (Not Ethiopian not Eritrean – it is Ge’ez new year….) – you are in luck since I do celebrate it as well….

    • Joseph,
      To me Alemayehu’s comment seems pretty average in size, unless the bitter truth made it long for you..Truth hurts, specially when it is a long one!

  • ooops sorry, correction, please ignore the first comment

    First of all It is good that PIA realizes he is better-off giving his people some ethiopian hydro-light than begging destruction-money from his Egyptian masters.. just hope he will not attempt to pay Ethiopia in Nakfa.

    Secondly I would like to agree with Tazabi, all Ethiopia needs is Eritrea’s stability and viability unlike what some paranoid Eritreans express..there is just no logic behind ethiopia wanting another failed sate in the north that only produces refugees and trouble makers..It is unfortunate that there are still Eritreans who want to use disproved and outdated war time propaganda such as “ethiopians want our port but not us” as an excuse for their disastrously failed dream of proving myths… After almost 23 years, any sane Eritrean should by-now know that Eritrea needs Ethiopia’s custom more than Ethiopia needs the entire Eritrea. Ethiopians should not have any problem with eritreans choosing to push themselves to a corner and making their country an unattended backyard of the region..Indeed there are also some ethiopians who argue that having access to the sea is not only a matter of port but a matter of security for ethiopia. But i would personally disagree since there is a limit to how far eritrea can go when it comes to directly provoking ethiopia or allowing it’s territory to be used by external force without jeopardizing it’s own security..If anything, Eritrea can be seen as a voluntary fence that for better or worse chose to politically and economically detach itself from Ethiopia. As far as the people are concerned, it is a proven fact that Eritreans are better handled as independent entity even when they are hostile than as part of Ethiopia in anyway or form. there is just no evidence to how eritrea’s independence makes Ethiopia less secure than it was when it had Eritrea..having said that, a stable and viable eritrea is of course better than unstable eritrea as long as they come to terms with the fact that Ethiopia is no more the ethiopia they knew prior to 1998..As Abdisaa rightly put it, there is just too many stakholders in ethiopia even for the likes of Bereket Simon to freely favor his cousins at the expense of ethiopians..It will simply mean another round of WAR but we hope there is that realization from Ethiopian politicians of all walk.

    As far as the ordinary ethiopians are concerned, Eritrea is a thing of the past and whatever they thought in the past should not be seen as anything more than psychological attachment to the people and the land of Eritrea given the fact that most part of Eritrea shared a long cultural and historical bond with Ethiopia. “Eritrea woyim mot” also it played it’s part in misleading both population as it gave eritreans an exaggerated sense of self importance while it left ethiopians with exaggerated fear of loosing Eritrea. Other factors such as post colony urban Eritreans with some technical know-how coming to feudal ethiopia also had it’s share on the way many ethiopians of Haileselasie and mengstu era viewed eritrea and Eritreans..Italian Asmara became something of attraction for most ethiopians who knew nothing more than a few unplanned mud cities in their vast country. Many rural Tigrians, perhaps due to proximity and language saw Asmara as their only choice for urban economy and constantly fled to Eritrea at the expense of their dignity..But the detrimental and disturbing part of all is the impact it had on the minds of urban Eritreans mainly the so called Tigrigna who took the relative but borrowed(superficial) “advancement” as their own and chose the the destructive path which to-date affects their judgment, despite the fact that alot has changed since their good old days.

    Today Mekele is booming and becoming a major economic hub in the north while other better planed cities such as Awasa, Bahirdar and Dire are emerging leaving Asmara as a desolate colonial town where no sane eritrean would want to invest let alone for ethiopians to think of it as they once did…Irronically more eritreans are moving back to Addis than they do to Asmara. Unlike in the past Eritreans in ethiopia today are known either as refugees or at best as Ethiopians of eritrean origin who have to keep low profile of their identity for obvious reason. generally Eritrea’s(specially the so called Tigrigna) long adventure to prove supremacy myth has turned in favor of ethiopia that the last thing any sane ethiopian would want is turn the clock back. Many Eritrean elites including the owner of this site once argued that eritreans would rather perish than allow a “colony advanced Eritrea” join “backward ethiopia. the same applies here, there is no reason why ethiopians would want to spoil their self-made relative achievement be spoilt by spoilers…Thanks and happy ETHIOPIAN new year.

    • haile

      Selam Alemayehu

      Happy Ge’ez New Year!*

      Things quiet never settle down well, when one try to be all opinion about those with whom they form a party to a conflict. Any Eritrean can only change the nouns in your piece into Eritrea (i.e. replace Eritrea for Ethiopia, birr for Nakfa…) and end up with equally opinionated piece against your side. I am sure you can understand how immature that would be. Eritreans are people who are dealing with a challenging dictatorship, just like your country did under Mengistu. when one try to dance to an unfamiliar tune, it is natural to observe confused movement.

      Check it in this special Kunama song for the Ge’ez New year


      * The orthodox church calender is based on Alexandrian calender (or Coptic Calender). This in turn was based on Ancient Egyptian calender. The first to use this calender were ancient Egyptians. Reformed by Julian Calender it was used as calender in most of European countries, America, etc. While all countries shift to Gregorian calender, only Ethiopia is left with this calender.

      • Kaddis


        An Ethiopian historian was on air in a local radio, 97.1 ( check it if its online) was arguing – the Ethiopia calendar is not Alexandrian nor Julian at all. He said – historians tend to give every African inventions to Egyptian civilization but he said it’s purely an Ethiopian invention. The Egyptians started using this calendar when Ethiopians was ruling Egypt or its surrounding, according to him. He was actually complaining even official tourist guides in Eth refer our calendar as Julian but its wrong. I am not into history but I found his argument interesting with the fact that there are a lot of new year celebrations and calendars specially in the southern part of Ethiopia in the month of Meskerem ( Sep Oct ). Not necessarily began on Meskerem 1st but later in the month. The Sidama’s Chembelala, Hadiya’s, Wolaitas…all have their own date to celebrate. Just sharing.

  • haile

    Selamat saay

    Teyayit ente wedi’Eka, haz bel enka…:-)

    How do we square off the above classified information? Your turn 🙂

    • Salyounis


      Very easy.

      Add the language of this agreement with the language of the SEMG Report (from 2012 and not 2013) and you have…what? He agreed to the Qatar initiative just to buy himself time and get Djibouti off the checklist (50% of the reason for the sanctions) then once he did that he completely ignored it. Not much to do for Djibouti specially when French elections dictated that the French must believe there is a “peace process” in Djibouti.

      He asked the Qatar guy to help mediate with Ethiopia (not exactly Ethiopias best friend)only so that when the balloon is floated, he can puncture it and appear superman.

      With Isaias, everything is tactical: its never “what do i do with the can on the ground” but “how far do I to kick the can until next week?” Sometimes that works (Djibouti was a non issue in the 2013 SEMG report: there is a “peace process”; UNMEE was forced out of Eritrea thru pin pricks); most of the time it doesnt. That’s why there is no budget, no 5 year plan, no institution, nothing which cannot be erased and replaced. The key is: be unpredictable and confound your subordinates. Have you noticed that a lot of times interviewers questions are basically them repeating back his words back to him (the only safe thing to do) and him either contradicting them or clarifying what he said?


      • haile

        Hi saay

        “…either contradicting them or clarifying what he said.” You are indeed right. In fact, he has probably started his answer to every interview question that he was ever asked by starting with “No…”

        Interviewer: Kbur President people think that you are handsome, what is the secret?

        IA: No. It is all relative. I call this things comparative. The main issue is not whether I am handsome or not, rather why it is that I need to be handsome. We can look in history, many aspiring politicians who run for the highest office in so called elections (if there is ever such thing as election) that are controlled from Langley, have lost the race for minor asymmetry in their upper lips. Mine is fully covered with well trimmed mustache, this is not new for us however. We don’t like surprises. I am always surprised why these people talk behind my back.

        Interviewer: WOW…Thank you kbur president!

        • Salyounis

          Selamat Haile:

          In your satirical piece, the journalist asks:

          Interviewer: Kbur President people think that you are handsome, what is the secret?

          Actually, the interviewer would not be even that bold. Remember, every question has to begin with the interviewer quoting back the words of El Presidente. So:

          Interviewer: Last year, ab Hade agatami, people were talking about grmaka and you said (looks down at his notes) “the Arabs have a saying “the monkey looks like a gazelle to his mom.” Now (and here the interviewers voice begins to fade slowly as he awaits for the reaction from the prez) when you said that, some may have been confused, can you…elaborate…a..bit..more..about.. (Mouth totally dry, interviewer can’t say anymore, he swallows his words, as he waits for the thunderstorm…)

          IA: well. (ewe) We can talk about gazelles and monkeys. And the various varieties of chimpanzees and how in some cultures monkeys are considered better looking than gazelles… And whether the decision by the UN not to name the gazelle an endangered species was political in nature.. (Interviewer nods head attentively listening to Solomonic wisdom…) ane bzaEba zi bzuH kzareb aydelin iye (meanwhile thats exactly what he does…and the clock ticks on…and on…)


          • haile

            Hello Saay,

            I guess this would need practice 🙂

            Next question:

            Interviewer: Hiray kbur President, abza ‘endangered species’ zbelkaya, as it is well known the government of Eritrea has long recognized locusts as endangered species and has been doing great work towards conserving them. However, the UN (being an instrument of special interest groups) has been behind acts of spraying locusts with poisonous chemicals. Do you think the US and its allies would succeed in this latest ploy to undermine the Eritrean government’s resolve to preserve locusts in our region?

            IA: what locusts?…this is not new at all. We need to see this situation in the right context. After the end of the cold-war, our region entered a new period. The first thing that we did was to set up IGAAD; ezi nay anbeta tkal. However, the special interest group took over its decision making powers, and now turned it into an instrument that is used to destroy anbeta populations. I always say why? why do you need sophisticated Arial control and delivery systems against such endangered species? eti chinqet azyu zgerm eyu…ab kemzi zbele meqan a’Etina knrEyo yedli…ab zena ewn medeb anbeta seri’Ekum keteguasagusulu yhaysh ybl ane…


          • Salyounis

            Selam haile and Ghezae:

            Next question:

            Interviewer: Hiray, kbur president. On the occasion of Fenkil, you had said (later described by shabiat as “salient words” because everything you say, kbur president, is salient) that the father of Fenkil is Haile Derue and he is still in prison…No, I mean you said the father of Fenkil is gTem and its offspring is DerEm. Could you elaborate to…our viewers…what you meant by…(fade out)

            His Excellency: Uhhhhhhhhhh. Iti guday intay diyu? Sometimes when you sit back and think of it, you say znnnnnn. What happened during Fenkil is something that you can find out from historians, or those who call themselves historians because in this time and age of nexela gundi (unipolar) world where the hegemonic powers set the rules, it is hard to tell the difference. Yigerrem iyu. For us, it is not about one battle, or war, or conflict, or conflagration or hostilities, or other words that mean the same thing that I am saying just to exhaust your patience; and it is not about shopping for weapons in catalog or what has nowadays become moda, fashion by the hegemonic special interest, the use of zeynakes tebaEtai nhbi (“drones” yblwom)… It is about self-confidence and….


          • Ghezae Hagos

            Hi Sal and Haile,

            Good one…The closest IA (as per Haile:) has talked about himself was in special ‘Hiwyet’ magazine around 1994. He was asked if he called himself Asmarino. You know how he would answer…”What is Asmarino? do you need to know each and every streets of Asmara or what..what are the standards..” etc…

            To add to the great answer of SAAY on Haile’s hypothetical question, IA would add one made-up word as per his innate mission to amend, destroy, reprogramme everything Eritrean, primarily Tigngina language; hence instead of using the word ‘M’ruuy’, he would ‘coin’ a mangled word called ‘Keteme-xotawnet”…meaning “metrosexual”…Go figure!

            As in ‘melmeja hulet’ of derg era Amharic classes, ‘arefte-neger sira’

            ” Ane kemzom keteme-xotawnet bgdam kireayu zdelyu aykonkun….”

            Happy Geez New Year..kdus Yohannes was my late father’s favorite holiday…”Ge’at tesmi eto….Amete Fikri’n Selamn N’Eritrea!’

      • Sabri

        Selamat Sal,

        You wrote “With Isaias, everything is tactical”. would you say Issayas’s newly announced complementarity policy will never materialize?

  • haile


    Happy New Year of the Ge’ez Calender and ST John’s day to all fellow Christians.

    In the spirit of complementarity and good will to man kind, let me chose this popular song of wedi tikabo and Selamawit Gebru Gu’e leminey 🙂


    • bukretsion

      Happy New Year of the ge’ez and ethiopian calender and ST John’s day to all fellow ethiopia and Christians eritrean.

      • haile

        Thanks bukretsion, the same to you too (I still need Badime back though, we can discuss it after the holidays 🙂 )

    • Araya

      Haile, when are you coming out and tell us how PMMZ was a democrat leader. you are beating around the bushes.
      what is the point for you to bring the Great wedi tikabo and the one who stole his work on this forum?
      You are clearing your throts, aren’t you?
      Come clean man. no wonder why the likes of Aman, Hayat and the rest of the weyane lovers love you.

      • haile


        PMMZ WAS NOT a democrat leader. 🙂 Is that enough for you or would you like a Testa to go with that? Just kidding 🙂 that is just cheap asmarino talk. You see, Araya, unlike you, it is pointless for me to take position in Ethiopia’s internal affairs. I am too Eritrean to fool any Ethiopian to pretend to know better than themselves. kebalebietu yaweke buda new 🙂

        • Eyob Medhane


          I always find it a HUGE task to agree with you on….eh…anything. Well, I guess I found one now. It’s Yenkutatash miracle. You’re absolutely right. Kebalebetu yaweqe buda naw…I like your response to Araya. Melkam Addis Amet…

          • haile

            Melkam Addis Amet Le’hulachin Eyob,

            Knowledge of one’s own limits (saay has the video:) is a process that I learned overtime. Araya has a background and existing attachments that have blurred the line for him. It will be the day when he wakes up to realize the bitter truth one sunny morning though!

      • Hailat,

        Man! You are “Melsi bi kissu” though I disagree your position on certain issues. cheers.

  • Kokhob Selam

    dear all can we have Jebena today ? ……….ሒቕታ!!!!…………….. is ready.

    • Dear Kokhob Selam,
      I have read about Jebena many times. What does this word represent?.

      • Kokhob Selam

        dear Meretse,
        it is a coffee pot but traditional made from Clay- this may describe it better but I have seen metalic Jebena also in Sudan.

        dear all, may some one give us more detailed information?

        • TiETiE( Shiro bubble)

          Kokhob Selam:
          The name by Mereste Asmelash seem very confused individual. He may not looking the exact word of Jebena. I would call him SQUIRREL.
          So I try to answer
          Jebena – coffee time, and relaxation and enjoyable moment. Though while it is coffee time it is also the best time to chat and explore several topics personal and group that covers daily life. The Jebena time boost ideas for hot discussion while it is break while these main points discussed at time of jebena are regular work at regular time are not considered source of energy drainers – they are refreshers. During Jebena time these issues are covered – backstabbing, jokes, Halewa Kemey WeAle, Dehay Haba…..

          • What did you say? Sorry I did not hear you well, because I was buddy cracking my nuts. You know about my sharp teeth. Anyways, don’t drink “awel boon” without me, and thank you for breaking the code. For sure next time I know how to reach you.

          • Correction: bussy please instead of buddy

          • Kokhob Selam

            thank you brothers,

            now that you know the use and description of Jebena, please visit our Jebana page and have a nice cultural cup with me.

  • The simple question of whether our people want to control their own lives, destiny, future, energies, and national resources for their own ends as one of a democratic nation , or whether they are to be salve like subservient to the interests of DIA and his cronies that forcibly control our people life , this has been with us from day one of our independence the beginning of the journey . that the winner take it all still practiced .The strong forceful and coercive power willing and blinding impulse and imposes to advance DIA interests by controlling our people is clearly be traced to our Sawora cultural of the time at earliest time of the creation of EPLF
    DIA is good in identifying causal connections so as to be able to plan for economic well-being, his habit of blaming others nothing new.DIA never take any responsibility for the failed nation. his twisted clever mind have conceived increasingly sophisticated ways of playing upon the fears of eminent war and uncertainties of our neighboring countries in order to gain total power over docile people .
    As long as the lies are propagated and reinforced by DIA supporters and cronies and with regime spoke person face. the sale out few personality and of intellectual respected by naive general public – and with such esteemed writing and voices are always to be found within the halls of his subordinate dominant in his institutions of propaganda – any fact, correspondence to truth is rarely mentioned or questioned. As the truth being dismissed and wrongly disseminated .As the DAI falsehoods and exaggerations widely spread, so do the opposite and adverse consequence spread , bringing more disorder to which the DIA respond with more false fact, distortions and contradictions as case always is.


    we have more Eritrean Kidemti in Rome and the Middle East than Tigrean Kidemti in Eritrea. Reminder for the illegal boss:
    Kidemti is a Job which have to be done and it served EPLF well financially.

    • L.T

      Atleast Kedmti in Roma they are proud to eat Pasta:-) and their heart are inside Eritrea always .We love ours and Nisu is us and we are Nisu.Over deki Tigria in Eritrea have no any lust to give you respond but one are sure they are to be in little bella Roma.I like to italiano than to be Habesh.

    • well said Sidabdu, my 54 years old anti lived most of her life as a maid in Italy supporting Shabia from the start until now… She complains about everything in Eritrea, but when asked why she can’t stop supporting shabia, she says she doesn’t know how..basically she is like an addicted gambler who doesn’t know how to stop..ours is even the worst kind of Kidemti..

      happy Geeze new year, i am comfortably celebrating it at a risk of being disowned by Shabia..

  • T. Kifle

    Dear Haile
    ቀስ ብቐስ ዓወተ ስታፍ ኮይንካ:: ግርም ጌርካ ቀጽለላ!!
    After much of the hoopla made out of the televised interview all over the social media, I decided to sit and listen to what IA had to say. Actually, I used to watch his past interviews almost in totality. I didn’t expect he would give interviews on this part of the year though.

    On his first two days (I am taking about the serials uploaded on from part 1 to part 3), I can read the change in tone on the matters we know him he used to speak about in the yesteryears.

    Towards the end of part 4, however, everything seems precipitated down to status quo. He made it clear that Weyanes are not people worth of taking his valuable time in talking or discussing about. So, I am afraid if there is any semblance of change of heart as far as Ethiopia is concerned. Simply he is tired of it.

    There is a possibility of coming up with some kind of plan which renders him some maneuvering intended to placate the international community in a hope to loosen the sanction if it were tightened anyway. He cared less to reconcile his plans for developing Assab and Massawa in the very thought of serving the region and his loss of appetite to engage the leaders in the face of such marketing endeavors. Yes, he appeared like he felt the consequence of his past actions like keeping a huge active army beyond his means. To ease this safety valve he had to scrap down the issue of the border and bring about his plan of substituting the standing army by a reserve force.
    The fear of SAAY and others that IA would reconcile with his archrival to south, therefore, is a premature speculation. Still he looks comfortable at every discomfort of the Eritrean people. He sees no much reason for giving-in at the battle of “the soulless”.

    This man is really funny. Electricity? What electricity, water, health services, governance, private investment and all?( ናይ ጽርጊያታት ዘረባ:: Much to the delight of Saleh Y., ጽርጊያታት is tinglish version of Wall Street). For him, Eritreans quest for medication in foreign lands is not necessarily to receive better services but for the heck of it, just ቅብጠት. And you have the journalists where their heartbeats could be discernibly counted from distance. They looked totally choked off with fear and asphyxiated. He doesn’t care about state protocol and unashamedly declined to be interviewed on Sunday.

    What should be done? I am of the opinion that there is little that can be done to oust him out of office. Probably, the communiqué of the Bologna conference would probably have it. It adopted a peaceful means of struggle a well calculated move to keep the struggle as far away from home as possible. There ends the meddling of Ethiopians and probably paves a way for Eritrean oppositions to operate under unified force capable of rendering loud voices in the western cities and supplicate to their God undo this evil man so sooner.

    • Salyounis

      Selamat T. Kflu:

      This must be a bad week for people to understand each other. Where did you get this?

      ” The fear of SAAY and others that IA would reconcile with his archrival to south, therefore, is a premature speculation.”


      • haile

        Selam Saay and T.Kflu,

        It was interesting that I also thought the same as T.Kflu regarding the last part of the interview (but “complementarity” deals normally allow for cooperation without resolving the conflict hampering normal bilateral). At any rate, let’s not mis-understand each other as saay said (have I understood you right saay?) 🙂 Regardless of by whom or under what circumstances, I am absolutely on the side of the threat of war and other miseries be lifted off the Eritrean people. IMO there can’t be a single morally acceptable way to wish a threat to peace and economic well-being be placed on the Eritrean and Ethiopian people under any circumstances whatsoever. I would hope that the regime’s claim that it has entered into and signed an agreement with a yet undisclosed party on “coplimentarity” treaty involving Port and Electricity would be welcome for the Eritrean people (as far as the reduction of thethreat of war, there is no economic benefit for them under the parasite and cruel regime). Yes, this would postpone the border resolution indefinitely, but we can always deal with that once there is a government in Eritrea (the current one is really a group of skunis). So, just to register that I have no worries on that.


        • Salyounis

          Selamat Hailat:

          I have been given the gag order by some dude named Haile, so I will wait and say my piece– perhaps in longer form.

          For now though: I would caution against using as the explainer of Isaias policy. They may not have intended the same thing you mean by complementarity. This is a website that is still struggling with the proper usage of “would” and “will” and, despite the fact that it is THE official media outlet (can’t get more official than “ministry of information”) occasionally begins news pieces with qualifiers like “reports reaching us from Zoba maekel indicate..” It probably thinks that having 4 state media employees interviewing Isaias makes the interview 4 times free (or truthier)compared to one interviewer. Of the 4, and I hope I don’t get him in trouble, Solomon was the only one who looked like he wasn’t going to have an anxiety attack and die of fear.


          • haile

            Hi Saay

            neti “gag order” zbehal zelo ngize’u awenzifna, btemalala’E (or complementarity) mengedi knzerareb nkhEl ena 🙂

            I thought in the same way about depending on too. However, let me list a series of exhibits that is giving room for doubts.

            Exhibit A

            “President Isaias pointed out that Assab and Massawa ports are the nation’s priority, taking into account their domestic, regional and international importance. In this connection, he stated that the necessary plan and contract documents have been drawn up…” (, September 6, 2013)

            Exhibit B

            “President Isaias Afwerki underscored that Eritrea’s foreign policy is anchored on complementarity and stable neighborhood.” (, September 8, 2013)

            Exhibit c

            Throughout the whole interview, repeated references were made in relation to the concept of “complimentarity“, even the department of Tinglish has lend a hand to translate it into “temalala’E“. What is the chances that you would make a mistake on something that you worked hard to try to translate carefully?

            Exhibit D

            When IA made the remark that he could buy electricity from Ethiopia (listen just to that part), here is how he put it:

            …Ok the border issue can wait as it is, if the electricity is on the market and the price competitive, I can buy from the sale generated by the millennium dam. When we say “complementarity” at the end of the day it means contributing to each other’s infrastructural development endeavors…

            So, it may be that the use of the term was a misnomer on the part of staffers, or may be that the regime is really trying to announce the results of the meeting between the Eritrean Ambassador to Qatar Mr. Ali Ibrahim Ahmed and the Qatari chairman of parliament on September 1, 2013. The meeting was said to focus on “issues that would enhance relations of partnership and bilateral ties between the two countries” according to reports that reached ERiTV from the Eritrean Embassy in Doha city 🙂


          • Salyounis

            Hail Haile (stolen from GH):

            Let me play Tebeka diablos…and evaluate the exhibits and propose a theory.

            Exhibit A. The necessary plan and contract documents have been drawn up…” (, September 6, 2013)

            But Hailat, I read the same thing when Isaias Afwerki returned from his travel to Iran, after his meeting with Ahmedinejad. (That’s when we learned that Eritrea and Iran have long-standing historic and fraternal relationship because (and I wish I had the direct quote) Ayatollah Khomeini used to include Eritrea in his Friday prayers during Ghedli.) They signed an agreement on May 20,2008 (Google: Eritrea, Iran Sign Trade, Investment Agreements,” Eritrean Ministry of Information, May 21, 2008; “Iran, Eritrea Call For Expansion Of Economic Ties,” IRNA, May 20, 2008.) Most of the links are 404s so you have better luck than I did.

            There was promise for more: the sky is the limit:


            Then, all the countries that pay attention to countries which befriend Iran (the West and all Arab countries) took note and the backpedaling began, particularly after the imposition of the sanctions:


            Extra bonus: in the above interview, IA says that it was the US that begged him to establish military base in Massawa and Asseb. This is because we all have amnesia and we don’t remember that he had hired an American lobbying firm, Greenberg Traurig and, over a 12 month period (mid 2002 to mid 2003), spent $600,000 USD ($50k per month) to beg the US to establish a base in Eritrea. I think the Organization of Eritrean Americans were also in on the begging.

            Hade beleley.

            Exhibit B. I am ignoring Shabait’s exhibit because as the Latin said when they said such things: Res ipsa loquitur. (Eyob, that means: The thing speaks for itself. You give us the Geez version)

            Klte beleley.

            Exhibit C. I concede the point. Unless, and hear me out on this because I am serious, temalalae could be the word of the day just like many other words before it which came and had their time in the sun. This suggest temalale comes with a built-in expiration date until another meter-as is found.

            4. Exhibit D would sound like a slam dunk unless you consider that the man says wildly contradictory things depending on the time of day, day of the week and the month, and that what he say is always categorical. The last time he got the hardcore PFDJ’s heart on fire is when there was a rumor about reconciliation with Ethiopia (brokered by Qatar) and he said that prior to border demarcation, there never was, there never is, there never will be talks with Ethiopia.

            Now, in the words of Samuel Jackson, allow me to retort.

            A. In the interview, you noticed Isaias was sitting on an ergonomic chair.
            B. This is because he suffers from chronic back pain (Our friends at wikileaks told us that: “Isaias still plays a mean game of ping pong, according to some observers, when his chronic lower back pain permits.”
            C. Chronic pain requires pain killers.
            D. Pain killers (specially for people who indulge in the ocassional Maotai–53% alcohol by volume Chinese drink–have side effects)
            E. Side effects include drowsiness (lack of alertness, slurred sounding speech), decreased reaction time (not understanding questions asked), impaired judgment (running a country to the ground.)

            Its just a theory.


          • Hailat,

            Assuming the four Exhibits as presented by you and uttered by DIA and/or disseminated by, do you think these just for public consumption? or do you think a change of mannerism emerged from unconscious behavioral speech?

          • haile

            Selamat Aman

            It could be for public consumption, i.e. in as far as one thinks IA has invented this notion to give the people a false hope. However, I doubt such is the case because:

            1 – His supporters love him, he doesn’t love them. Actually he despises them and hates their guts. The recent interview is my exhibit on this:)

            2 – This involves Ethiopia, thus his claims would have easily been quashed by media/press reports from the Ethiopian side.

            3 – The UN invoked chapter VII on grounds that the regime’s activity is a threat to international peace and security, regional destabilization is given as the main issue. Claiming that there is an agreement on the bases of “complimentarity” with Ethiopia may serve the political objective to hoodwink the regime’s tormentors.

            Hence, too early to predict. If you follow “who wants to be a millionaire show” I would ask the audience. AT may help us by putting out a survey and we can see what the public thinks of it.


      • T. Kifle

        Dear SAAY

        You said, “This must be a bad week for people to understand each other. Where did you get this?”

        Not at all. This is a perfectly fine week and a week of Ethiopian New Year at that. If I misconstrue your arguments in the other threads under SG’s Bologna speech, I apologize.

        We were discussing issues regarding “the unprincipled flip-flop” of the Ethiopian government by constructing layers of meanings out of IA’s talk( and probably from other sources too). The argument was not whether normalization is imminent or not but how the government failed to live unto its words(from a policy of regime change to unconditional negotiations). This was the basis for the mention of your name in the sense of the statement attached with it.

        ሰናይ ሓዱሽ ዓመት

        • Salyounis

          Selamat T. Kifle:

          Happy New Year to you.

          When you wrote “The fear of SAAY and others that IA would reconcile with his archrival to south, therefore, is a premature speculation” it gives readers the impression that (a) I believe IA will reconcile with EPRDF and (b) this is something to fear. So, yeah, you misunderstood me. Let me try to be clearer on what I believe:

          1. If IA wants to reconcile with EPRDF, we won’t hear it in an Eri-TV interview. It will just happen and it may continue to be denied while it is happening. Example: the Djibouti-Eritrea mediation agreement is still not published/disclosed anywhere in Eritrean state media. Or, it may be explained as “nothing new, this has always been our policy.” (Oceania has always been our ally, we have always been at war with Eastasia…)

          2. If IA reconciles with EPRDF, it will be only because it lengthens his rule and it will have nothing to do with alleviating problems Eritreans face. The clues are not in the long lines for water, in the absence of electricity*, or in the complete failure of virtually every sector in Eritrea. The clues can be more readily found in the Somalia Eritrea Monitoring Group reports and subsequent UNSC votes.

          3. IF IA takes steps to reconcile with EPRDF, the hardest-core EPRDF supporters (who have been telling us that Isaias can’t be reformed, only regime change is the way) will embrace it (this is really what you and I have been discussing in a different thread.) Similarly, the hardest-core PFDJ supporters (who have been telling us that there is nothing to talk about until Ethiopians withdraw from Badme) will embrace it too. (This is my other thread: it requires some talent to be able to convince people to follow you whether you are going East or West.) Since 1982, the engine that drives the Eritrea-Ethiopia dynamic really has been the relationship between the core of PFDJ (Isaias Afwerki) and the core of EPRDF (TPLF.) So, this would not surprise me one bit: it would be a continuation of a 32-year dynamic. If you want to understand the complete meltdown of the Eritrean opposition (from merely incompetent to an unsolvable riddle) it can be traced to Ethiopia’s decision to “pursue regime change” and then to form an Eritrean opposition group (based in Mekele) in April 2011. (The SEMG has a report about how PFDJ infiltrated this group.) There is probably a similar dynamic at work for the PFDJ dumping all its Eritrea-based Ethiopian opposition group in favor of DemHit.

          4. If IA takes steps to reconcile with EPRDF, an element of the Eritrean opposition will blame itself for forcing poor EPRDF to choose Isaias over them. There will be a “we did this to them!” wailing.

          5. If IA takes steps to reconcile with EPRDF, actually reconciles, and this results in tangible changes to the quality of life of Eritreans (cheaper and readily available food, electricity, water), I will welcome it–because I am not doing what I do because I have political aspirations. I won’t think, damn, there goes my chance to be in power. But I will completely understand Eritrean politicians who will feel that way (it is the nature of politics.) As I did when the two parties were soul mates (1995-1997) I will exercise my right (from exile) to oppose the things that will not change as an outcome of the reconciliation–Eritreans civil liberties (no free press, people in prison without a day in court, people being tortured, people living in total fear of a totalitarian state.) I will be in the company of men and women, thousands of them, seeking justice. And it won’t hurt that some of them will, at long last, have their eyes opened on how the world works and they can rely on nobody but one another.

          That’s enough IFs for now…


          * my favorite line from the kids at FB: Eri-TV should interview Isaias Afwerki every day. Because this will guarantee Eritreans electricity supply for the duration of the interview.

          • Eyob Medhane


            Now I feel abandoned. How come there is no happy new year for me 🙁

            I found something I agree with you over. IA has a habit of denying doing something, while he was doing it. Your citation of Djibouti is a good example. It looks like he was reaching to Ethiopian authorities in some informal manner, though. An acquaintance, who is an Ethiopian diplomat and participating in Ethiopian diplomats annual huddle sort of clued me in that at their meeting in Addis, Tedros Adhanom sort of slipped in and said he talked to an old friend from Asmara, who is in PFDJ diplomatic circles. He did not let anything out further, but to me that indicated some sort of back door contact. It is somewhat an indication that Issu is inching to abandoning his decades old bravado ‘we are self reliant’ and about to sing ‘I wanna be a nice guy’ (old baby face song). If that is the case, it will be something we will see very soon, perhaps, when PMHD comes to NewYork for UN Gen. Assembly. By the way, did you know that PMHD is scheduled to speak on the second day of the assembly? That would put him right with the big boys. I’d say to that ‘…we’re movein’ on up, to east side, in a delux apartment in the sk….y….movin’ on up, we finally got a pice of the p…” ( sorry. I am a tone deaf singer…. 🙂

          • Salyounis

            Happy new year Eyob

            Ethiopians and Eritreans are talking about damera/inqutatash/St John/qudus Yohannes…and you are singing the theme song to The Jeffersons?

            I was going to celebrate the day by sharing with u a revised edition of Teddy Afros Gize Lekulu, but, nope. Your Habesha ID is revoked…


          • T. Kifle

            Dear SAAY
            To begin with, I thank you for the New Year wish.
            I never doubted your intentions in doing what you are doing though all intentions do not necessarily entail consequences congruent with the best interest of the Eritrean people.
            I am afraid if I would buy your rule number 1. No, he can’t both have and eat his cake on this particular domain because the Ethiopian counterpart lacks constitutional leverage to negotiate and normalize relations with Eritrea under wraps. Any matter connected to Eritrea is hypersensitive and EPRDF will not venture to pay any price anymore by letting out the genie of ultranationalists if not out of respect of the Ethiopian people.
            I completely agree with your number 2.
            3 might be partially plausible but many Ethiopians will have less apprehension if reconciliation starts tomorrow. The reason being, the government has been consistently calling for unconditional talks including at the legislative level. EPRDF has no burden of convincing the Ethiopian people whether reconciliation with Eritrea benefits Ethiopians (because they know it will) but it is incumbent upon the ruling party to ensure that the negotiation is transparent and whether final agreements reached as a result are based on win-win. If you ask, my stand on IA’s incapability to reform his party and himself, it certainly predates the recent war. I still stand by my conviction. It’s not in his political nature to act otherwise. Any sort of assuaging IA only delays the inevitable. As to the alleged Ethiopia’s role in weakening the Eritrean opposition, I have nothing to say except stating what I believe an existential l challenge of this magnitude is essentially intrinsic. If external entities render them irrelevant, it’s imperative that you check what kind of grit these oppositions are made of. The EPLF-TPLF dynamics, I believe, is the least understood and gravely misconstrued part of history mainly the fronts did say almost nothing about themselves and their relationships especially prior to 1998 and when they do after that, it turns out to be controversial. Few others (you included) tried to make up the gap but with their own excesses and omissions at times marinated with consequential conspiracy theories which, I believe among other things, had contributed to the bloody border war and incessant hatred all along.
            As regards to 4, if there happens to be reconciliation (from EPRDF’s view) it would be absolutely grounded on the interest of Ethiopia. It wouldn’t be a matter of choosing one from the other. One thing, there is no guarantee that the opposition will be better than IA. Even if they really were, there is no practically convincing means of struggle that enables them topple IA. The “wailing” is already started and indeed it has been quite some time for some of them in doing so.
            5 is spot on.


          • Salyounis

            Selamat T Kifle:

            You said:

            “The EPLF-TPLF dynamics, I believe, is the least understood and gravely misconstrued part of history mainly the fronts did say almost nothing about themselves and their relationships especially prior to 1998 and when they do after that, it turns out to be controversial.”

            I see your point but…

            There is a brick-red book called “Qalsi hzbi Ertra: kabey nabey”, a TPLF critique of EPLF, ELF and the so-called inherent fissures of the Eritrean society. In keeping with the zeitgeist of the times, there is no author but its generally believed to have been authored (in 1983) by the late Meles Zenawi.

            There was also a series of “conversations” between Paul Henze and MZ that were conducted in 1990 and republished in 2011 after Henze passed away.

            When you read both critically, it is clear that the TPLF had very strong opinions on how Eritrea should be liberated and governed. And it’s only natural that it acts on this belief, particularly when many of the opposition groups in Addis Abeba were mostly off-shoots from a group it disdained (ELF.) All the groups it had varying levels of enthusiasm for were either from EPLF (after 2001, if only they could be cured from their “chauvinism”) or groups that had no profile during the armed struggle (Red Sea Afar and DMLEK). Since the numbers don’t work in their favor (combined the Afar and Kunama account for 10% of the population), it went on a series of mix-and-match Lego game to varying levels of disaster. In 2011, when it settled on “regime change”, it decided that it was tired of the merger and acquisition (M & A) model and decided to go for a Do-It Yourself (DIY) model to disastrous consequences. Simultaneously, everybody who had a pulse was encouraged to open a franchise.

            King-making is really difficult: even the US with practically unlimited resources can’t pull it off. So the odds already favored failure. What the “Qalsi hzbi Ertra…” and the Paul Henze conversations suggest is that the Ethiopian government is just not interested in the neighborly function of protecting your national interest by making stability and lasting peace the sole requirement, but some zealous drive to prove a point: that only the vision as outlined by TPLF can work for Eritrea.


  • Come down guys, Isias Afewerqe has always deep down known the unsaid truth that Eritrea’s future can only be through Ethiopia.(refer to his pr-referendum interviews by “western journalists”). The man was simply trapped between fulfilling his people’s distorted ego and fulfilling their basic needs..He failed on the later simply because he chose to try the former in order to please Eritrean elites(mainly the Kabesas)who saw Ethiophobia as an ultimate solution to their dream of supremacy..The trouble now is it may be too late for Isais since the current or future political arrangement in Ethiopia might not allow the kind of unfair pro-Eritrea policy PMMZ practiced between 91-98 which eventually led to a disastrous war..with too many stakeholders in Ethiopia it will just be too risky even for the most pro-Eritrea regime to fulfill Eritrea’s distorted sense of entitlement (it is an unfortunate fact that even the most sober Eritreans suffer from “Eritrea yegil, Ethiopia yegara” syndrome. But unfortunately as someone once said on this blog, that train has not only gone, but in fact it has been blown never to be used again as it proved to be too dangerous even at the best of times when TPLF and EPLF were hand gloves…As a British regional expert from Chatham house once said, “even if relations return to normal, nothing will be the same”..So perhaps as late as it seems for Isais, his realization of the bitter truth might not change anything since the identity he formed and the minds he leaves behind can not comprehend the bitter reality of Eritrea one way or the other having to depend on Ethiopia…..As controversial as I might sound, I sometimes feel sorry for Isais Afewerqe because he is like a cult leader whose disciples forced him to bite more than he can chew.

    • Bogale

      I fully agree with Abdissa Aga .Eritreans must also start to appreciate their Ethiopian heritage in order to live in peace and harmony with we Ethiopians that are their brothers and sisters. The first courageous action that they should take is change or call for a change of the name of their colonial venomous identify called ‘Eritrea’ and reinstate its historical name Bahere Negash. We say this not out of chauvinism. We say this out of respect for history and the region belong also to us who are the decedents of Bahre Negash. I last time call for the joint administration of Asseb port in order to pave economical and political integration between Ethiopia and preferably Bahre Negash and it seems that things are moving in that direction. Both those from Bahre Negash and Ethiopia need to struggle for the rule of law, democratic governance in that part of Africa..

      • tazabi

        I completely disagree. Eritreans do not have to do any such thing. They do not owe us anything and we do not owe them anything. In my opinion most Ethiopians do not want to re engage with Eritreans in terms of Eritreans are Ethiopians line of rhetoric. Most Ethiopians want Eritrea to be stable and prosperous that is not obsessed with the idea for it to win Ethiopia has to loose. There is too much suspicion and mutual distrust between these nations. The best solution is for each nation to focus on putting its house in order and let time heal the rest. There is a saying in Amharic “Ye raswa eyarere ye sew temaselalech” ” roughly translated Stirring some one else’s stew while yours is burning”. Ethiopia has more problems than it can handle let alone add the problems of Eritrea whatever they are. Besides all talk of we are the same people, we share culture, we are brothers etc have not brought peace between these two nations.

        • Paulos

          Amen to that brother….well said!

      • Mussie

        Dear Bogale

        If you insist Eritrea must call by its ancient name Bahri-Negash you must also insist that Ethiopia should call by its ancient name Abyssinia. my friend there is no one way street, it is a double edge sword and don’t try to sit on it. try to learn from past experience to dig past history.

        • Girma

          Abyssinia is not Ethiopia’s old name. Ethiopia’s old name is Ethiopiq.

          • Mussie


            Please know the Ethiopian history right.

            When Did Abyssinia Change Its Name To Ethiopia?
            Historically the country was always known as Abyssinia, but during the Scramble for Africa, Abyssinia with the monetary and weapons assistance of Italy and Great Britain invaded and conquered the southern and eastern peoples (Oromo, Ogaden, etc).

    • Ali_PaPa

      Abdisa Agaa,

      The dictator choice as he chooses because of his tuwisted harted and retarded heritage like his Weyane cousins!

  • sara

    i need some on to help translate this arabic word to english, al adu alwoodud, that is what it is ethiobia for many eritreans, regardless of how you analysis the
    presidents interview in regard to relations with ethiobia.

  • Kaddis

    So, Ethiopia suddenly become a prize to take home – ) Well, gud saysema (sorry) aytebam. Happy Ethiopian new year and hope to see some of you here in Addis in 2006 ( as Isu’s delegation) and settle this Ethio Eritrea stuff once and for all ( maybe over kitfo depending who is paying)

    • tazabi

      Kaddis I do not know whether you are Ethiopian or Eritrean – I assume you are Eritrean if not forgive my assumption anyway – I wish you a Happy Ethiopian new year too. My main point – I would like to invite you to my house in Addis so we can have Kitfo together to solve this age old Ethio-Eritrean issue. If you can not make it to Addis then I offer you the new Ethiopian invention the cyber Kitfo version 2.0 – which is a virtual version of the real deal. Happy 2006 – Zemen Markos

      • T. Kifle

        Dear tazabi

        You entered a deadly deal. Kaddis is indeed from Addis. You know, he has already insinuated invitation to kitfo depends on who pays the bill.

        መልካም አዲስ ዓመት ይሁንልህ!

        • tazabi

          Is that so

  • haile

    Selamat Sabri, saay and all

    I am saying that the regime is trying to fend off the looming threat coming to it from the international community. It is being checked under chapter VII and and it knows there is only so far it can go by refusing to allow UN investigators into the country. THERE IS NOTHING that it can do about it. The world wants to know more when you appear to be hiding something! A Somali citizen, Dahir Aways, who was under the UN terrorist wanted list was a long time resident in Asmara until he was killed recently in Somalia during a shootout. This is a serious matter [UN call for investigation] that there is no way around it.

    IA could be trying to wriggle out of this fix, but it appears a fatal position of checkmate move in any direction. By re-structuring the party owned business enterprises, his plan might be to clear the deck prior to an eventual investigation. He said he was going to buy 50MW extra electricity and this would be used to supply the work of the soon to be re-established companies by dedicating it exclusively to them. He said that the people need to put up with the existing conditions. So he wouldn’t give a hoot about reform.

    The news today from the regime’s mouth piece was that its foreign policy would be “anchored on complementarity”. The policy of “complementarity” requires the involvement of two entities. For example, Armenia announced sometime ago that it would enter into “comlementarity” with Russia, because of accute food and energy shortages. Russia and Japan have “complementarity” policy in effect with each other. So do Italy and Brazil… Some form of “complementarity” may be implied by virtue of being a signatory, such as the ICC or the Rome Statue. EU members (especially in the legal spheres) work on the bases of “complementarity” with the EU. Therefore, when Eritrea is said to be entering into a policy of “complementarity”, it is natural to ask with whom. The regime made it appear as if “complementarity” is some sort of generalized approach that is used in diplomacy. It is not. IA said that “the border issue can be put aside and he can buy electricity from Ethiopia” that screams an agreement on the basis of “complementarity” between Ethiopia and Eritrea.

    For the policy of “complementarity” be applied, there have to be two entities, both need to have something to offer the other and there usually is something that hampers normal bilateral relationship. So, the regime made a laughable statement today, by appearing to declare “complementarity” as a blanket foreign policy! That is like saying it is contemplating to marry with everyone out there:)

    These acts of the regime are desperate measures of survival and nothing to do with a change of heart towards the Eritrean people in any shape or form.


    • bukretsion

      what u gonna do about badma? r u gonna stick to ur principle?

    • Sabri

      Yes, Haile. The new policy is complementarity with emphasis on stable neighborhood. That implies a lot.

    • Ghezae Hagos

      Selam Haw Haile,

      “…it appears a fatal position of checkmate move in any direction..”

      I was going to ask you to change one vowel so that you have better word there. fetal to fatal:) Being more proficient and a wiz-with-words, I just have to quote you. Hail to Hail(e)..another vowel:)


      • haile

        Haha Ghezae…Nice one!

  • abe

    Ethiopia was created after the second world war???
    By our famous Historian,economist,politician,scientist,general,….etc.reminds me of his type,Megistu.

  • Seyoum

    Most of us need a paradigm shift, no doubt about that. Eritreans, in general, helped rid off both the the feudal and the military fascists from the face of Ethiopia. It was done by giving shelter and military training to the brothers and sisters south of the border. The new leaders of Ethiopia did a smart move- they created a federal system that is by far fare to all nation and nationalities, and proved to the world it is working beyond imagination. Therefore, the smartest thing to do, in my humble opinion, the leadership in Asmara and the opposition,to humble your not so healthy ego, clear your mind filled with hate and discrimination and join the already formed Federation. This is the only way smart and educated Eritreans can help transform the region and the whole of Africa.

    • bukretsion

      what about arab wannabe eritrean according to ethiopian constitutions they can not use foreign language(Arabic) in regional government besides we don’t want live with them,they don’t want live with us too they r the root cause of the problem they r hater. the HABESHA and the afar eritrean anytime welcome
      the wannabes can try Darfur.

    • Tamrat Tamrat

      Ya, ya. We remember all the help we got in a form of killing million Ethiopians. That is the gift we got from shabia. As to the feudal and facist miltary it seams irony because still you have in Eritrea. So if you could help the enourmous ehtiopia then how come you end up With a systme you abolished it in Ethiopia. The first step is i think for many of People like you, see yourself in the Mirror and tell Your self stop this hypocracy. the shabian war since the beginning of the cairo declaraiton of elf, what it has done to ethiopia is an excuse to prolong the progression of Our different governments in relation to the People demands. Dont flatter yourself With this ‘helping’ ethiopia. If you stop hurting ethiopia is a big help by itself.

      As to the federal system of Ethiopia, kunama and afar are ready. And the other ethnic Groups may make an Eritrea With out the extended arm deep into ethiopia or they follow afar kunama some joining sudan some ethiopia. isayas siad this ‘we may join sudan, Djibouti or yemen’ in 1991 to sho his irritation about the question of the secession of Eritrea. The irony is he has been doing all what he said subconsiously With the help of hix x-cario commrades who live scattered all over the world.

    • Ali_PaPa

      Keep your beggar Ethiopia to yourself and leave Eritrea to Eritreans istead of trying to elevate Weyane’s Etobia after we helped it climb in the seat of power in the land of the Burned and Murderous Face!

  • Salyounis

    Selamat Haile:

    Thanks for this great service: I would like to thank you on behalf of awate and Awatistas.

    I am not sure that I agree with your or Sabris conclusions (actually i am pretty sure i dont agree:) but that’s a different posting. For now, thanks!


    • haile

      Thanks Saay, kabana nabana endyu, tsegem zebehal yeblun 🙂

      P.S. Don’t disagree with my point yet, I still have to add few things. anta sebAy tqlTf alokha 🙂


      • Salyounis

        Haile the great,

        mmmmkay. I will hurry up and wait.


  • Haile I am about die from laughing my head off is this really ” oppositions” and now you critisizing doctors carying guns or AK47 to defend their country and treat their own kins for close to nothing! and you are using 8 foot ladders to climb pots and pans of your masters in the west and arab countires to wash so that you can earn below surviaval wages that you have to supplements with foood stamps? Get real and a life – check with the Israelis and see all professionals serve their people from where ever they are – it is called self pride and dignity..

    • haile

      Michael Solomon

      The ideas that you put forth are, frankly, ignorant and pathetic. Israelis do not carry guns in the way you describe.

      In Israel, there are very limited people who are able to own a gun. There are only a few tens of thousands of legal guns in Israel, and the only people allowed to own them legally live in the settlements, do business in the settlements, or are in professions at risk of violence. Ten years ago, when Israel had the outbreak of violence, there was an expansion of gun ownership, but only to people above a certain rank in the military. There was no sense that having ordinary citizens [carry guns] would make anything safer.


      Another pathetic thing is that you don’t even understand the fact the “do not deliberately harm a life” is the fundamental tenet of the medical ethics. A gun is an instrument that “does deliberately take away life“.

      Please don’t underestimate Eritrean diaspora as low lifers. There are more Eritrean doctors outside of Eritrea than inside. There are more wealthy Eritreans outside of Eritrea than inside. There are more Eritrean professionals outside of Eritrea than inside. There are more Eritrean_____________outside of Eritrea than inside. Only because a bestial regime has turned the country into a living hell.

      ahhh…you just have to keep laughing like a baby I guess. it is all IA’s fault 🙂

  • In most cases the so called opposition (aka Weyane foot soldiers like need to grow up. The summary by the writer or if he just posted it on behalf of Wayane it is far from the truth – the power shortage is for those who do not understand as the stated by IA and any one else who visited Eritrea in the last 10-15 years – so is the water and sewer system. Fossil fuels are very expensiive even for the west and Eritrea does not have it’s own resources.

    As far as food it may be expensive but Eritreans are producing enough food to feed themseves unlike your masters the begger super powers in the south!

    I am not writing for the government but as a true witness who regularrly goes to Eritrea.

    Go take 2 shewate……

    • Ali_PaPa

      Michael, Eritrea is dying and you are still creating excuses for DIA the wacko who is hell bent on destroy Eritreans and creatin a state of parasites that killed the host! I think you are confused with the whole Eritrea issue for Eritrea is ailing to death and DIA is still not done with sucking its blood dry before he goes to his ugly grave on his way to his god in hell:-) Wake up and smell the death and destruction that is going on in Eritrea while people party and whine here and there as fans of DIA or his retared and wicked Weyane cousins! We live and we see and we will see more of the same crap both in Eritrea and Etobia untill the thieves, liars, and murderers of the Eritrean people from both sides of the Mereb River are put in their right place or expire and go to hell!

  • Araya

    Haile the “Kedemti” was a reference for your master, the dead brutal dictator, PMMZ.
    Haile, when is PIA gov callpsing again?
    there is a saying
    “Amed Be Duqet Ysqal”
    just asking, do you a life?

    • haile


      the “Kedemti” was a reference for your master, the dead brutal dictator, PMMZ

      hmmm….jib kehiede WUSHA chokhe!

      when is PIA gov callpsing again?

      hmmm…moN’E sew lelitun yemaynega meslot beteNabet ytsedadal!

      just asking, do you [have] a life?

      hmmm…do you know what LIFE is? Click n Take A “Test Yourself If You Know Life”

      • Paulos


        I doubt Araya understands the Amharic proverbs. Don’t forget it is a language of colonial master.

        • haile

          Selam Paulos

          Araya is actually amechie (I say that in a nice way:) He was born and raised in Adiss Ababa, he vacations there and speaks Amarigna and and his family are there. His misunderstanding is ‘me’ not my amharic. I am born and bred Asmarino, learned to speak amharic in Eritrea and have little knowledge, if any, of Ethiopia.

  • yegermal

    DIA’s emissaries mum about his interview and are busy doing anything but talking about their boss’s flip-flopping. Here is today’s twit by metakiet gual tesariam where she challenges UNDP for transparency and she gets not one but two instant “JOBAE”s, and she had no choice but to retreat in shame. Imagine if anyone had asked her to provide breakdown about Eritrean budget….She would had done kolel melel and blamed weyane for the missing budget papers.

    ” 1.UNDP Live tweeting ‏@UNDPLive 6h We have supported governments to produce 400+ national & sub-national Millennium Development Goal reports – @HelenClarkUNDP #UNDPEB

    2.Sophia Tesfamariam ‏@stesfamariam 6h @UNDPLive @HelenClarkUNDP How much of the “aid” is used 4 Administration-how much went 2 work directly related to #MDGs?Breakdown please 8:18 AM – 9 Sep 13 • Details

    3.Helen Clark ‏@HelenClarkUNDP 6h @stesfamariam not so – look at my statement and all documentation for this Board meeting on our website.

    4.UNDP Live tweeting ‏@UNDPLive 6h @stesfamariam @HelenClarkUNDP you can find the “Annual review of the financial situation, 2012” here:

    5.Sophia Tesfamariam ‏@stesfamariam 6h @HelenClarkUNDP Thank you…will do “

  • Thank you for bringing the interview issue up front. Right after his interview, I was a bit surprised to see people going after his new words usage rather than its contents. Indeed, I was even expecting a quick response in the form you tube; but that was only a good personal wish. Apart from that you must be credited for stating and analyzing his interview right on time.
    A. For may of us this is not a surprised move, especially after the late Prime Minister of Ethiopia, and the sudden relationship of Quator. In other words, Iseyas is telling to his supporters that he had already started a relationship with Ethiopia and forget the Badme issue.
    B. As you have stated above he also read in day light the death certificate of self-reliance.
    C. As usual, there was also don’t blame me issue. He swear that he has nothing to to do with the current crisis, with a little fingerprinting to his ministers (scapegoating). To fool the public that he is not even better than than his journalists, NO TIE PLEASE.
    D. Be aware for new shift of ministerial change and expecting to his leadership as long as he is alive, that indeed might be considered a mighty change by his bystanders.
    F. Eight months ago his supporters were called for the so called “symposium” that too is outdated.
    G. Lastly, the so called OPPOSITION ORGANIZATIONS should be surprised by his unexpected move from unexpected person. Well to their information this is the nature of this guy and for so they should prepare to swallow their pride.

  • Ghezae Hagos

    Selam Dear Haile,

    I thank you for doing an amazing job with the summary notes of tv interview of IA (you prefer IA with no affixes, I reckon.)

    It may appear that something is in the offing as you alluded in the “Gone are the” permanent fixtures in any given IA’s interview.

    But, I am of the opinion that we shouldn’t read too much into this. I don’t think IA is ready for rapprochement. I don’t think he will initiate normalization of relations in any substantive manner. I think he will stay the course for the foreseeable future.

    Ghezae hagos

    • haile

      Selam Ghezae

      Thanks. One way I look at it (rather than away from it) is if this whole thing is part of series of U-turns such as: recognition of Somalia govt., claiming that the National Service is no more, taking proactive measures (albeit gimmick) as regards to the human trafficking issue… all designed to deflect the call by the UN for the regime to open up for investigations on SEMG and UNSR fronts or a real attempt at mending fences? For the latter to be the case, you would hear similar movement on the Ethiopian side. To date there has been none, and leaves the matter open to speculation.

      In any case, it is not that I don’t believe the regime is ready rather I doubt it is that it is capable of doing so. All in all, this is a huge political gambit that IA has only taken after careful cost benefit analysis. It may cost him some diaspora support, but that doesn’t mean much. Currently, most of the financial transactions from the diaspora are frozen (2%) and slowed down (other collections). Hence, he wouldn’t mind displacing some dead weights from its rank of diaspora supporters. Domestically, the people would only react suddenly in popular uprising and he calculates that this may not be a trigger, in fact may even slow down the process by projecting a false hope that things would soon get better. Regionally and internationally, it doesn’t matter what he does, he is totally isolated. Overall, it is a case of taking a guess and waiting to see how this whole thing would play out.


      • Sabri

        Selamat Haile,

        If I read you correctly you seems to allude that Issayas want to reform his administration. As I said before Issayas gave rare sudden interviews and when he does he always come with some important messages. This time if we see some of the unusual words he uttered in his interview like transparency, Ethiopia instead of woyane, goblel instead of kedami, and those gone are lists you mentioned in your summary, it all does indicate he wants to implement some kind of changes. Plus he openly admits, even though he didn’t use the word, wofri Warsay yikalo, the whole project is failed. Change or not, there are some points to consider. Last year at this time he said we are now in a better condition and will change gear (Marsha kinkyir Ina). At that time my understanding of his message was this: Eritrea’s economy is in a good condition and the development process will accelerate under the same structure. When he held two seminars for investors at the beginning of this year it looks like (at least on the surface) things are going in line with his Marsha kinkyir Ina. Now he told us everything is failed and gave some hints for introducing some kind of changes. Perhaps, that was in his mind when he said Marsha kinkyir Ina last year?

        In the post 2001 period inorder to fortify his position he has given big power to his corrupted generals and colonels. I believe they still have great amount of power. According to my understanding in the current political scene of Eritrea, Issayas can’t do anything without coming in agreement with his generals. I don’t believe his generals are simply puppets. As much as they need him to survive he equally needs them. Thus, before planning call it reform or U-turn keeping their interest is paramount important.

        Having said that it is apt to close by your statement “Overall, it is a case of taking a guess and waiting to see how this whole thing would play out”.


  • haile

    Selamat Awatians

    What is most surprising, if at all, is the mute reaction of to IA’s weekend bombshell. It is understandable that the pro-regime websites are still fazed out by IA’s surprise goal scored against those presumed to be playing on his own side. But, whatever happened to the real-time [seber-zena] tabloid over at meskerem? 🙂

  • Zahra

    At a time, he is blamed for condoning the crimes committed by his generals. At a time, he is accused of collaborating with human traffickers. At a time, our people are accusing him of all economic failures. He has to find someone who would tap him on his shoulder and tell him words of reassurances. He turns right and left. He doesn’t see there Gadhafi nor Mubarak. What’s in front of him only the Arab Gulfers. And, the Arab Gulfers are not principled like Gadhafi and Mubarak. So, they would tell him, “Here’s another game,” a game of netting with Ethiopia. I am going to stop at this point, like Haile did, and I am not going to tell you about post- netting for reasons of sensitivity of the information. The issue here is not about Isayas says every now and then, the issue is whether he is in control of the country for a person with such behaviors cannot be trusted. Cannot be trusted because every minute he comes up with surprises, even surprising the people around him.

    The conclusion is,
    if children are not born with a code of conduct,
    And, if Isayas does not have any code of conduct,
    Then, Isayas is still a child.

    He doesn’t want to grow up. Melles once told him, “Don’t waste our time – if you have anything, the shortest distance between two points is a straight line.” That was back then. Right now, what is needed from him is to tell frankly, “Eritrea and Eritreans, I’m sorry I failed you again and again. I am tired, I just want to go to my house [if there will be any for him] and take a long sleep.” That will let the people deal with their problems.

  • Ali-PaPa

    Selam Hail,

    Nice summary and thank you for taking the time to write up a summary of the dictator’s interviw. This insane of a despotic leader is on his last breath as he blubbers utter nonsense about all the problems he and his regime of eray-mray have created for the Eritean people.

    You have now an opposition that can’t do without the wicked and backbiting Weyanes and an a wacko dictator romancing his hold moma Etiobia:-) Eritreans are done for and will not get out of the mess they have put themselves: An opposition that depepends on the violator of the sovereignty of the Eritran homeland and a despot who rules and ruins their lives while at the same time romancing his Ethiopian kins to kiss and make up:-) Delusion, illusion, and confusion reign when people betray those who have fallen to liberate them form colonization and befriend or romance those who were and are bent to reduce them to nothing and scatter them the world-over! What a farce of!

  • Hi wedi hidrat,

    It is very funny, I suspect the puppets are in session trying to mould on how to say in line to the call of their falling tree. It is sad, what else can we expect from “reformists” who are unable to see that there is nothing to reform.

    Let’s flash back. Wedi dimu kem qedemu.


    • Ali_PaPa

      Korakur Weyane are better than reformists, uh? Get to grips and snap out of your delusion:-)

  • belay

    PIA said(Qeadem),long time ago ,there was no boarder issue with Yemen,Digubiti and asked him self,why now?May be he was saying,don’t ask me about Badme.
    Any way,what we are after is normality and every body can concentrate on development.
    PIA is a risk taker he outsmarted the opposition.Now,what are the opposition going to say?
    Then again You got to watch PIA,haven’t you?

  • Kokhob Selam

    thank you Hailat,

    the question in mind is – is there still alive supporter of PFDJ? by now there should not be.

    • belay

      Do you mean,the hate was the unifing factor between Nesu Nehna?

      • Kokhob Selam

        no i don’t mean so.

      • Kokhob Selam

        dear Belay,

        he is the sole owner of PFDJ and he can say or do what he wants or what ever he think is good for him. so what for some one has to be supporter?

        • belay

          dear Kohkob Selam,
          IA always does what he likes,and says what he likes to the poor Eritrean people ,and he wasn’t in short supply of followers,no matter how rude,and cruel he was to the people of Eritrea.
          what is different now?he is still the same Nesu who was draging the Eritrean people from war to war.
          what is different now is his tone towards Ethiopia.He is getting to close too fast,that is more worrisome for us.Eritreans are flowing to Ethiopia every single day

          • belay

            Which they are most welcome any way.
            I think Nesu supporters support him more for his personlaity and are brain washed long time.
            Therefore,they will still support him,if they didn’t,it is because of the hate he instilled in them,for Ethiopia.I am only talking about his supporters only.
            That was I was referring to, Kohkob

          • Kokhob Selam

            Dearest belay,
            It is me (Kokhob Selam) who is thinking that by now there should not be single supporter. Yet, I will not say you are wrong. Why I have to say so when in fact there were always supporters? But don’t forget in every interview I notice he keep losing some supporters (this is my observation for the last 10 years). And now there is one big step taken by him and this big step unlike other steps may let supporters wake up and let them say “hey, someone is making big noise while I am in deep sleep” may be? For me it is just not “may be” but it should happen. How the hell he makes a slogan that is opposite to the slogan of the past and let me pay all those years and still think to follow him. Due to this interview It is easy to notice the game he is trying to play and easy to let someone making inventory of the past.
            Anyway, for us those who knew him earlier, this interview just show us how much he is weak and demoralized while we are not still ready to handle Eritrea.
            Dear belay, anything that comes as an event is a massage and his interview for me is a massage on what to do. One of the smallest things to do for me is inform if there is any supporter to wake up and listen to the interview. And the biggest job is informing the opposition that we are late and we need to come to Asmara. my call is Don’t spend your time in talking “violent, nonviolent” or “Eritrean case by Eritreans”
            01. Yes, for violent- struggle against the dictator and yes for -nonviolent- for those innocent but who are taking wrong road.
            02.Yes for “Eritreans problem by Eritreans” but – no- for “rejecting support from others”
            03.Don’t blame any single creature just work within for peace and democracy. Make a common system to be followed in each phase. Etc.

  • Abe z minewale

    Eritrean flag is waving all over Addis for the coming visit of head of state for picnic .I hate to see YA reJe Anbessa Yezimb MeChaWecha YhoNal

  • Teshome Wagaw

    If a so called government cannot fulfill the basic needs of its society : water, electricity, fuel, food, right to express themselvs, travel, but most of all security, it is most definitely illegitimate in front of its citizens, the international community, and of itself. This regime has proven that it is incapable of implementing even the constitution it helped write, while it wants to compare itself to Britain that does not have a written constitution. What galls.

  • Hailat,

    Excellent summary. The five “gone’s” are right on the mark. As the tyranny changed his discourse his puppets will continue in full swing with him without noticing what they were saying. Watch the Asmara’s, Hizbawi’s, Araya’s and the rest. They will not even question him why he kept our nation secluded from economic interaction in our region and beyond. good job.

  • Akile Mille


    Your effort to summarize the interview is commendable. I still have to come to terms if this is the manic or the depressive episode of the monster’s bipolar infliction. If one is to take away anything tangible from the interview, it is the monster’s ability to calibrate or measure with a bench mark the limitations of the notable personalities in this forum. He has managed to throw them off track as they entertain how much he has contributed to the enrichment of the Tigrigna language. The “change of heart” he seems to have fostered particularly about Ethiopia is a smoke-screen which amounts to nothing but a lollipop the likes of Saleh Younis to suck on. What baffles me the most is the fact that we can’t possibly see with clarity that the guy is sick. He is incapable of understanding what normalcy is. He is incapable of internalizing sympathy or empathy. He has set in motion a year supply of “talking points” where people are jumping onto them in an orgy till he defeats them when a complete reversal of the “talking points” come into effect. If seriousness is to be pulled back into the epicenter, the struggle to remove him shouldn’t lose a sight as he tries to desensitize it with his supposed wand to put the rest of us into a comatose state.

    • Salyounis

      Selmat Akile Mille:

      Two references to candy in a row; I think you are in danger of sucking your lollipop dry. Your criticism is of me (which I will address), so there is no reason to drag the “notable personalities in this forum.”

      Unless people have drank the Kool-Aid (worse than sucking on lolipop) and want to fool themselves, clearly Isaias Afwerki has SOME supporters. The Eritrean commentariat generally dismisses them as “Hitler Youth”, “chauvinists”, “puppets”, etc and I am trying to go beyond that and look at what the pull and push factors are for this group of Eritreans to remain loyal to Isaias Afwerki (not to his party, not to his programs, but him in person.)

      I will say more about the push and pull factors, time permitting. I think his communication skills are part of the pull factor.

      Beyond that, I don’t see the cause for your irritation because I agree with you that Isaias announcements are just talking points which will not amount to anything–as I have been cautioning others from reading too much into them.


      • Yodita

        Fear and brainwashing do not factor as loyalty. It is doubtful there exists any genuine loyalty for Nsu. It is too constructed (or fabricated to use his own expression). It is astonishing you see any shadow of loyalty in the horizon. At the end of the day Nicolae and Elena Ceaușescu had zero loyalty from their compatriots.

        As regards his communication skills, you yourself expressed, more than once, how it took a monumental patience on your part to go through his monotonous and boring monologue which I could dig in the archives for reference and to say it is his pull factor has, I am afraid, revealed yet another dimension to the credibility of intellectuals and their ability to use facts to suit their argument of the time.

        You may want to see the number of people who access his you tube interviews and speeches. Not so many for it to be a pull factor. He is not an engaging speaker by any standards, thank God! You should be the first to note and criticize his coinage of new Tigrigna words as an instrument of intimidation and confusion. Instead you claimed that you love it. You are of course free to do that and no one has the right to make you change your inclination but please spare rubbing it on us. To some of us, his monologue of 17 minutes to answer one question is (in tone and content) too choreographed and boring.

        • Salyounis

          Selam Yodita:

          * if you find the statement that Isaias has followers “astonishing”, you are easily astonished and it is outside my scope to help deal with people’s astonishment register.

          * I find listening to Isaias speeches a chore and I actually look for the Tinglish to stay awake. But I am not a supporter and I am not trying to understand why I find his speeches boring and pedantic, I am trying to understand why others don’t. Because the usual explanations that are offered to explain why (hooligans, bigots, greed-heads)are not persuasive to me. The explain part but not the entire constituency)

          * As I alluded earlier to another angry person (his name escapes me for now), there are pull and push factors for why a sizable number of Eritreans have not joined the movement for change. A lot of the commentary is about the push factor–what scares Eritreans away from the alternative to the Isaias corner– and it involves us discussing how weak the opposition is, how poisonous the Neo Andnet are, how disastrous the self-serving and cynical moves of the Ethiopian government is, how the Islamist and ethnic rights groups scare some Eritreans, is, etc etc. occasionally, I like to think of the pull factors. And if that doesn’t interest you, instead of doing the “spare us” (as if it is a compulsory class you are attending) just skip it. That is, if you don’t have an argument. If you do, bring it. But I consider “my feelings are hurt” * a statement, not argument.


          Btw, Why does a wholesale assault by Eyob on Eritreans not hurt ur feelings, since u appear to be easily offended?

    • TiETiE( Shiro bubble)

      Akile Mille:
      I hate your comments and the way you are writing. Be clear on all your sentences – putting too much thoughts for interpretation is useless because it is not the readers wish. When you are in writing competition you can do that to show your writing potential. Therefore I urge you to write clear, concise, and direct. When you keep writing this way it is unclear what is your stance besides, it seem coward way. All readers may not know what you mean.

  • Gebre

    Hi EveryBody!

    I am all tired of this messy Ethio/Eri politics. Let’s put aside this dirty politics and talk about sports.

    Last weekend (Sept. 7, 8) there was the usual yearly fight (sport competition) between Sweden and Finland. In Sweden, they call it Finnkamp (Fighting Finland); in Finland they call it Swedkamp. This year Sweden won, both men and women.

    Brothers/sisters, when are we to inaugurate the start of EthioFight/EriFight in sports so that we have the fight every year ad infinitum instead of a stalemate at Badme?

    Prepare for the FIGHT!
    God bless you all.

    • Horizon

      Still better Ethio-Eri music festival!! Has no casualties. Music calms the nerves and brings people together.

    • TiETiE( Shiro bubble)

      Infact people like to do sport but few people like to watch sport. Besides its few followers sport is greed I mean to win you have to act like the character OF hyena or lion. Sport is protected and regulated fighting if no regulation or guard there will be death, or cheat. Think how many people died of sport caused conflicts. Furthermore there is no lesson from sport nor ideas to recycle/reuse it is like evaporation and only benefit these winners the rest is lazy or waste time watching or hooked for nothing. There is nothing I can discuss about sport except if I am going to make money out of it or have sport career.
      So politics is greater than sport Why?
      1. It touches daily life of individual
      2. It teaches you sociology, psychology, politics, economics, challenges, solving challenges, group work..
      3. Everyone can participate.
      4. Politics rule the world sport does not.
      5. Shapes personal life – cognitive development.
      I myself, I am not fun of sport but I like to do my own all type of sport for reason of health. But I don’t care who win or loose.

      • Gebre

        Dear TiETiE (Shiro bubble)!

        I am sorry to say that you have completely missed the whole message behind my short comment. I can deduce from your commentary that he wouldn’t hesitate to organize a Ferrari racing through the streets of Merkato in Addis Ababa.

        You see, brother/sister, there are almost always things we must do first before engaging in the real task which we want to accomplish. In Merkato, you would first build wider streets for the race. Similarly in politics, a more conducive atmosphere for talks would be needed to carry out fruitful discussions with your allies and adversaries. Sport is a good instrument for bringing adversaries to the discussion table. It also brings nations together and strengthens trust, respect, and communication among them. The ping pong policy between the US and Communist China was the means that opened the door to ease tensions between the two giants in the 70s. In addition, sports like game theory, teaches people how to win in every aspect of life.

        And much more, but enough for this discussion. Please read about the goals of the Olympics sports.

        • Gebre

          Correction: — he wouldn’t hesitate should read — you wouldn’t hesitate

  • wediere

    Regarding water shortages in the capital and environs, the president contended that it is the people who need to go to where the water is and not the other way around.


    Thanks for the summary, usually I don’t check what DIA has to say in his usual interview, SAAY also provides what is needed to know with one or two new tinglish to take home.

    This one sounds interesting, I am tempted to check it out, especially with your “His responses to such questions are omitted here.” you left me wondering.

    Anyway, considering DIA advice I think we need to go back to mamma Ethiopia, both enegy and water come in one bunddle. It is time to say “Yiqirta” to Eyob if we have upseted him in the past :).


  • yegermal


    Cool summary! And here is take on the lengthy “Fikir eske mekaber” address to Ethiopia : “President Isaias Afwerki underscored that Eritrea’s foreign policy is anchored on complementarity and stable neighborhood.” Read ‘Charlie, sakran ambassador Stiph, papagallo wedi Gerhatu,mad prof Gideon, and metakiet gual Tesfamariam are banned from ever mentioning “Weyane, minority regime, crime, illegal occupation, and mekete santions” in the same sentence. They can focus on Syria while I complete the deal with comrade Hailemariam, Bereket and my good friends Emir of Qatar John Kerry. And you people of the land called Eritrea entay aflitukum askutu yake!’

    A country with no government and no people that care?

  • welde

    He nailed it. The opposition must have lost for words and are left to comment on the president’s interviews…. This must be the saddest time to be an Eritrean opposition!!!

    The main difference of Isayas and the opposition is, he has the guts and courage to say and do what he wants, and the people still love him for it, and he knows that. He acts the oppositions react.

    I think from the interview you can deduce that he was strategising his rule of Eritrea for the next 20 years. On the other hand the opposition squabbling about Ethiopia, he is positioning himself to shake hands with Ethiopia.

    Wow! What happen to the border issue….? The opposition where shouting left and right about the border issue and Badme… Isays haven’t mentioned it as a subject. Unlike the opposition he is not going to abandon the people of Tsorona. And the people of Tsorona will remain confident as long as Isayas remains at the helm of power.

    Tsorona have no confidence in the opposition, period, and do not expect to regain either, without the unequivocal stance of the position of the opposition on the border ruling.
    Are you willing to exchange us for the people of Badme? Tsorona deserves better than what has been so far. Its Eritrean credentials could not and should not be questioned by anyone.

    Tsorona believes in Isayas’s leadership, but not the opposition!

    The Ethiopians position is clear- they do not want Tsorona to be part of Ethiopia because they, unlike the opposition, believe Tsorona to be inside Eritrean territory.

    What about you? Do you think Tsorona is part of the Eritrean territory?

  • ttecle

    Thank you Haile for the summary. I listened to parts of the interview, but couldn’t stand to listen to all the parts. His changed stand towards Ethiopia is very noticeable. I wonder if it has anything to do with the opposition new wave of Eritrean problems need to be solved by Eritreans (some are talking complete disengagement with Ethiopia) or his realization of the desperate economic situation in the country.
    All in all the interview was about complaining, blaming, belittling Eritrean efforts in anything. I am convinced that this guy not only is a cruel dictator but also hates Eritrea and Eritreans.

  • L.T

    It was the most important interview I listen from north wall to church post base that natural common sense on which our faith is built..God sent him to us.Isaias ‘si neberelna dea!

  • johnny

    Ladies ans gentlemen,
    The last dance must be coming to the end.the country is falling apart right in front of his eyes.there is nothing he can do except run or get caught face justice.the tugs do not have a place to hide anymore.face justice or being hunged.
    Let stay united with love and respect among ourself with our differences that we have.

  • Seare

    PIA as usual contradicts his own statements: Here is an example:
    – He advised people to go to where the water is
    – Later he stated that the 3 government owned companies will start building residential houses in Asmera, the city with chronic water shortage
    – PIA criticized previous housing projects of the government
    – Later he stated that the three newly formed companies will first start their practice in the central region before their deployment to their final destinations. So how will this project be successful if it is executed by apprentices.

  • L.T

    Eritrea is a better place than the “We are the World”kiosk and will be the best paradise to only Eritrean.
    Tigria is still in choas specail economy and cultural stander,on the way to pest high avarage low life.
    Eritrea is the promise land and are floursh everyday on the eye of her people….minrals,agricultur,trusum….

  • Hayat Adem

    Nice summary, good pointers!

  • Sabri

    Goblel do kibleka dermas. Your summary is superb.


  • WELL DONE Haile , you saved me hours and I suspected he was going to answer it like that because he will never blame himself!

  • Goitom

    The most boring interview ever made by the president.It took him more than 17 minutes to answer the first simple question about food security and dams.What a pity….You can’t call this an interview, it was halewlow….

  • Danny

    Thanks Haile for the summary of the dictator’s interview. I would not have the patience nor the time to listen to his nonesense rumblings for six hours. What a disaster Eritrea has been under his dictatorship.