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The Eritrean Year of So Many Alis

[This edition of Negarit was first published on Nov. 29, 2010. I wanted to write about the Ali-Salim-is-Saleh-Gadi Hmbleel. But since my victimizers of four years are flooding me with messages of apologies (the kind of Tegagyom agagyomna–I think it will take me a week to read all their telegrams), I decided to publish this piece as an appetizer before I delve into reconciling all the accounts of the last four years. I have hired an investigator to help me sift through all the dongolatat and pebbles of defamation that are amassed in my house.] ___________________________________________

Ali Copter

When the helicopter first appeared in the Eritrean lowlands, the people mispronounced its name. It became Ali Copter. But that presented a problem to women who were married to men named Ali since tradition dictated that they not utter their husband¹s name under any condition. They had to improvise and they did: Gabsha is a nick for Ali; therefore, the helicopter, which had been renamed Ali Copter, now became Gabsha Copter.

Eritrean Burhan Ali, Albanian Mohammed Ali

Maybe tradition doesn¹t allow Egyptian ambassadors from uttering the name Burhan Ali: the outgoing Egyptian ambassador to Ethiopia was unhappy about what our own Burhan Ali wrote regarding the Egyptians’ attitude towards the River Nile, but in an interview protesting Burhan Ali’s article at, ‘Nile Politics: Egypt’s Kiss Of Death’, the ambassador never mentions his name. He didn’t even call him Burhan Gabsha.

A little background.

Since the Albanian Mohammed Ali Pasha founded modern Egypt, Egyptians consider Egypt Mother To The World (UmmeDunya), consider the Nile their mother whose tits they have to suckle mercilessly. The Egyptians want to maintain a 1929 agreement on the use of the Nile, an agreement which, as Burhan explains, was negotiated between the island of Great Britain and, well, the colonizer Great Britain. But most Nile riparian countries want the agreement revised. Only Sudan is an the exception, it needs Egypt now more than any time before. Egypt’s support is vital to Sudan in facing all its problems: in the Darfur region and the South. But so is Ethiopia¹s support. Sudan has to balance its relations with both countries; and that requires diplomatic skills and tact. I fear the unfortunate Sudanese government’s foreign relation policy with Eritrea would be duplicated with other regional powers, and Sudan would dig a deep hole for itself—itself meaning the National Salvation Front’s government. But no one should worry.  Isaias has a solution.

The Eritrean tyrant has threatened to dig a canal in the Gash region and pump the 8% of the Settit River waters that some say belongs to Eritrea, and divert it to Rahya Abay. He will import Israeli technology to plant orchards in the Barka deserts. By doing that, he hopes to decrease Ethiopia¹s share of the Nile water from 85% to 77%. The Atbara River will dry out in Hamdayet and then the Eastern Sudanese, forced by water shortage, can migrate to Barka, if they so wish.  Anything that diminishes Ethiopia¹s role is Isaias’ political tool; and Eritrea has been engaged in a cold war with Ethiopia. I don¹t know about the Ethiopians, but Eritreans do not need this kind of foreign policy, one that is solely based on giving Meles a bloody nose. That is Isaias’ foreign policy, to hell with the welfare of Eritreans.

Burhan Ali addressed Egyptian selfishness, its contempt for Africa’s needs, and how Isaias Afwerki, as always, is so focused on what benefits him personally and is willing to fan the flames of conflict.

When Ambassador Assem Ibrahim returned to Egypt after serving in Ethiopia, Roz AlYousif, an Egyptian magazine, conducted an interview with him. He was asked about the River Nile, and the ambassador took umbrage at what Burhan Ali said to an extent that he posted a rebuttal to Burhan’s “violent” article in an Ethiopian website and this is what he said to Roz Al Yousif Magazine:

“I had to respond [to a] seriously violent article that appeared in the Journal of the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry and a website, [written] by an Eritrean author, the gist of which was that Egypt’s policy toward the [Nile] basin states is good for Egypt [and…]  evil for the Nile Basin countries and vice versa and that Egypt wants these countries to stay in backwardness and in conflict so that they do not focus in development schemes of power generation, farming land and the exploitation of resources, etc., because that affects the economies of Egypt negatively.”

The ambassador thinks that Egypt is naturally (and always will be) the house of science and technology while other Africans have to wait for natural resources to appear so that they will travel to Egypt for education and “touristic-medicine”, an exclusive term coined by the great Egyptians. Now you get the idea why they own every drop of water from the Nile.

The Ethiopians are no match for the sleek Egyptians. If I were an Ethiopian decision maker, I would run and claim the pyramids and the Sphinx to offset the Egyptian claim to the Nile. The Pharaoh Tutankhamun is actually from Adigrat, and his actual name, which the Egyptians corrupted, is Gereharyat. The famous Aida that is immortalized by Verde’s opera is originally from Gonder. Proof? Compare the number of Ethiopian and Egyptian girls named Aida. Ethiopia beat Egypt 5 – 1. If that doesn¹t work, ‘go Isaias’ on the Egyptians: move Lake Tana to Ogaden, and divert whatever excess water there is to Kenya and Somalia through the rift valley. Dredge Wabi Shebelle and give it a U-turn and take it to Wello. What will Egypt do? For one thing, they would call Isaias and give him the marching orders. They want to keep the Eritrean political orphan busy. They know he has so many tricks up his sleeve. If that happens, my dear Ethiopians, you are all alone, I can’t help you face the superman. Just pray. Pray a lot. Invoke the names of all the saints that you know to avert the wrath of Isaias; Egypt is easy.

American Mohammed Ali

According to the other Mohammed Ali (formerly known as Cassius Clay), the greatest boxer that ever lived was ‘Mohammed Ali.’  He was not very subtle, “I am the greatest of all time!” he used to say. Mohammed Ali also said of Mohammed Ali that he “floats like a butterfly, and stings like a bee.”  Would you say this guy is a clown, or would you say he really is the greatest boxer that ever lived?

It depends on THE RESULTS, doesn’t it? In the boxing world, Mohammed Ali is considered one of the greatest, if not the greatest, because of his RESULTS, not because he was running his mouth.

Let’s now go to Eritrean politics.  For 8 years now, we have had our Ayni Brur who have been telling us they are the greatest. If politics was a boxing match, the Ayni Brur would step into the ring and talk for hours and hours about the art of boxing. They would lecture on how to box. They would be criticizing other boxers. They would be complaining about the neutrality of the referee. They would give instructions on the proper way to cheer and to boo. But they would never box.  And when people start walking away from the arena, the boxers who don’t box would be blaming somebody or something—maybe the lights, the parking lot, the seats, or some imaginary enemy who rallied the people to leave. But it would never occur to them that it is their own damn fault.

According to them, nobody is a nationalist, they are. Everybody else is a tribalist and a jihadist. Nobody cares about the fate of Eritrea, they do. Everybody else is a regionalist and provincial. Nobody is allowed to go to Addis Abeba, because it is the capital of our enemy state. But they can. And when they go, Addis Ababa is the capital of a brotherly state. What about Article 3 and Article 4? What about the Constitution? Should we have armed or peaceful struggle? Should we go to Ethiopia or not? Shouldn’t we take a stand about the border ruling? For eight years, they embroiled us in a meaningless confusion. For many of them, it was all a long interview they were having with some NGOs, and many of them have now landed their gigs. Hello! Any other job openings at the good-for-nothing NGOs for the good-for-nothing boxers so they could just leave us the hell alone?

Really, and now I am addressing the pair that Ali Salim once called the Tom and Jerry of the Eritrean Internet: people will allow you to think that you are special, that you are the greatest, that you actually float like the butterfly, that your stink smells like sandalwood if only you will deliver results. But you haven’t been. All you have done is give lectures on the importance of growing, while you have been in front of our very own eyes, shrinking and now you are just a skeletal figure. Worse, you seem to have been assigned the representatives of your groupies. You can’t deliver, and you really aren’t Mohammed Ali, are you? You are just another distraction.

You have wasted eight years of our political lives, staring at the mirror and imagining a giant when there is only a reflection of a dwarf. You are being abandoned left and right, and you are being rejected, not because of conspiracies, but because of your poor decisions and arrogant attitude. You have pushed many overboard and you created an island of quick sand for yourselves. You are like the proverbial donkey loaded with sacks of salt and jumps to the river to lighten its weight. For almost two years you have been targeting one man, never bothering about the PFDJ, as if attacking is your sole goal in the struggle. If people want to be called backward, regionalists, reactionaries, Jihadists, they can get it from PFDJ, they don’t need you—you are not even original. You have dirtied the ground and the rest of us are left to clean after your droppings. Now this paragraph is too generous to address you. That is all I can offer. From now on, until you regain your senses, you do not exist as far as I am concerned.

And speaking of the PFDJ, which is never short of people who claim they are the greatest, we have had the calmest summer in a long time. The festivals were muted: I didn’t hear any Mklkhal Hager meetings save for the few clandestine meetings of the PFDJ cubs. The money launderers and the peddlers are all quiet, while the Y-PFDJ is being groomed. It seems like the international economic crisis was coupled by political bankruptcy. All the festivals, the excuses for binge drinking and people walking in zigzag smelling of dung and talking in slurred speech, are all muted. So long wild Dankera!  At least until the Y-PFDJ reaches drinking age. But wait: I heard there were some drug related arrests at the last meeting in Virginia.

Tom & Jerry’s Ali Salim

Another Gabsha, this one goes by the name Ali Salim. He came in 2009, like a cowboy with a double barreled shotgun. Hooray said those who had found in him their voice. Damn, said those who think Eritrea is glasshouse ready to shatter at the slightest high decibel noise. just said water rises to its level, and ideas will sink or swim based on their acceptance. Writers come, and writers go. But that was, which is an entity. The one who took all the abuse for the Ali Salim phenomenon was yours truly. And spearheading the campaign (which almost became a party program) were Tom and Jerry with the blessings of the Deacons. But commitment to freedom of speech cannot be selective: I can’t keep repeating, “Damn! I am not Ali Salim!!!” To those who want to believe, no evidence is necessary; to those who don’t want to believe, no evidence is sufficient. I left it to time and time appears to be saying that Ali Salim could have fired all his bullets and is done, or replenishing. I have no idea.  If Ali Salim has something to say he will come again, and if someone has an opposing viewpoint, they are welcome as well. But the water will rise to its level.

Now it is up to yours truly and my fellow compatriots to pick up the droppings. Left for me to try to repair the damage done to my friends and fellow fighters. Is that unfair? Yes! But no more unfair than all the droppings we have to pick up from all the wanna be Mohammed Alis.

They sting like a bee, but they do not float like a butterfly.  They just suck your blood and at some point, you have to squash the annoying ants.

Ali Gebremariam, Sorry, Adhanom Gebremariam

Got carried away…too many Alis today. But anyway, last time I told you Adhanom was sick and in hospital. Now all the plumbing in his body is repaired, the protruding tubes from his belly are removed and he has taken a Sano certificate from the Presbyterian Hospital of Columbia University in New York. Five months and three operations and many ICU weeks later, he is doing fine. I asked him for an interview and he promised to do that at a later stage, “I need sometime to recover and update myself on many development,” he said. Until then, his friends and colleagues can call him and have their own one-on-one interview. Keep it a secrete, Jerry might get mad!

Prof. Ali Mazrui

ali_mezruee2On November 13, 2010, I was in Berkley in a party organized by Eritreans in the San Francisco Bay Area. I do not have words to express my gratitude but I can say and I do say: Thank you all!

On November 21, 2010, I had a short but enjoyable discussion with a few gentlemen in San Francisco. I attended Dr. Bereket’s insightful and excellent speech (it was a classroom lecture and they should have assigned credit units to it).

That day, the rain that fell on my back as I walked four blocks from the parking lot to the hotel to listen to the speech was not in vain. I entered all wet and shook the drops off my body like a wet fury animal and sat down. I really enjoyed Dr. Bereket’s educational speech.

The soaking was worth it; I had the chance to meet Prof. Ali Mazrui, one of Africa’s greatest treasures.

Ask me who Ali Mezrui is and what he means to me, and I don’t even know where to begin. You know what? You check him here on wikipedia. He is an extremely nice person and I am elated for meeting him in person.

friscoI drove to San Francisco again the next day, Sunday morning, and the people I came to meet chose to take me to a restaurant for breakfast. I only eat breakfast when I visit DC or Dallas where they serve an imitation of Keren foul mdemmes. Dr. Tekle, His wife Dr. Victoria, Dr. Bereket Habte Selassie and my friend Kassahun Checkole (whose publishing company, Red Sea Press, is also distributing ‘Of Kings And Bandits.’) seemed comfortable with eating breakfast and I didn¹t know anything on the menu but omelet. I ate one that came in a tray the size of a car tire; I didn’t eat for five days.

And there you have it, 2010 in a nutshell for me. So many Ali’s on the way. All the Gabshas, the greatest, the failed boxers and the nuisances, all sharing a life with me. It is a great life!

About Saleh "Gadi" Johar

Born and raised in Keren, Eritrea, now a US citizen residing in California, Mr. Saleh “Gadi” Johar is founder and publisher of Author of Miriam was Here, Of Kings and Bandits, and Simply Echoes. Saleh is acclaimed for his wealth of experience and knowledge in the history and politics of the Horn of Africa. A prominent public speaker and a researcher specializing on the Horn of Africa, he has given many distinguished lectures and participated in numerous seminars and conferences around the world. Activism was founded by Saleh “Gadi” Johar and is administered by the Awate Team and a group of volunteers who serve as the website’s advisory committee. The mission of is to provide Eritreans and friends of Eritrea with information that is hidden by the Eritrean regime and its surrogates; to provide a platform for information dissemination and opinion sharing; to inspire Eritreans, to embolden them into taking action, and finally, to lay the groundwork for reconciliation whose pillars are the truth. Miriam Was Here This book that was launched on August 16, 2013, is based on true stories; in writing it, Saleh has interviewed dozens of victims and eye-witnesses of Human trafficking, Eritrea, human rights, forced labor.and researched hundreds of pages of materials. The novel describes the ordeal of a nation, its youth, women and parents. It focuses on violation of human rights of the citizens and a country whose youth have become victims of slave labor, human trafficking, hostage taking, and human organ harvesting--all a result of bad governance. The main character of the story is Miriam, a young Eritrean woman; her father Zerom Bahta Hadgembes, a veteran of the struggle who resides in America and her childhood friend Senay who wanted to marry her but ended up being conscripted. Kings and Bandits Saleh “Gadi” Johar tells a powerful story that is never told: that many "child warriors" to whom we are asked to offer sympathies befitting helpless victims and hostages are actually premature adults who have made a conscious decision to stand up against brutality and oppression, and actually deserve our admiration. And that many of those whom we instinctively feel sympathetic towards, like the Ethiopian king Emperor Haile Sellassie, were actually world-class tyrants whose transgressions would normally be cases in the World Court. Simply Echoes A collection of romantic, political observations and travel poems; a reflection of the euphoric years that followed Eritrean Independence in 1991.

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  • AMAN

    What I find it so hard to understand is, Is it the only and best way that Eritrea should be defeated so as to be a Federal part of Ethiopia ?
    Can’t there be any other different option ? Like a transformed new Ethiopia rise to new political heights to acknowledge and accommodate the achievements, demands and new realities and successes as a result of long struggle for justice by Eritreans and the rest of justice seeking Ethiopian peoples.

    If Ethiopia has really changed and transformed it should not have to expect or seek from Eritrea just the way the old backward narrow regimes used to seek – that is expecting and seeking subjugation and submission first instead of acknowledging the rights and histories of the people. Otherwise the present woyane regimes are continuing that past unjust war(stick) in a different (carrot) form than to engage the reality for the right solution. So to change the scenario of 1991-1998 period and try to gain cheap sale by militarily reducing Eritrea in an all out war first then to try to draw unjust consensus under duress is nothing except not willing to acknowledge the struggle and sacrifices of the people of Eritrea and tells only the not yet ready to accept the truth in Ethiopia by even the new rulers.

    So it is from these stand point ( war diplomacy ) that I reject and condemn some Tigrayan supporters of Woyane and its war agendas against the people of Eritrea instead of positively engaging them for true solutions. They are hailing woyane too much just because it adopted a war agenda and Cyber-war against Eritrea and the people
    of Eritrea for 20 years and nothing else. Is it Girigir Leleba Yimechal………..?

    • Binyam

      I don’t if you are aware of what you are talking about! What else do you need from Ethiopia ? Woyane had/has done that couldn’t! Thousands of woyane fighters fought along Eritrea fighters during the red star & selahta…! ኣባሃህላኻ ተረካቢ ይዓድዮ ድዩ ወይስ ብውነኻ ኢኻ ትዛረብ ዘለኻ? Tigrian tried to do everything possible for the sake of the brother people on both sides of the river? Why don’t blame Isaias for the misery that Eritreans are passing through?

      For your knowledge , Woyanes are working day in day out & have acvplished so much , especially in the last 13 years! They have built 33 universities, they developed Ethiopia’s electric power from 300 MW to 2000 MWs, sugar factories ..,.,! Make a peace with yourself & Ethiopia has been begging for peace for a while now..! There is no reason to blame woyane ናተንስያ ነሓማተን ኣይግበሮ! ኣብክንዲ ነቲ ከምዝዓበደ ከልቢ እንዳሓለፈ ንህዝቡ ኣይገድፍ ንጎረቤቱ ዝናኸስ ነቲ ኩሉ ዝካኣሎ ዝገበረ ነቲ ዎያነ? ኢዶእ!

  • AMAN

    To tell Eritreans about wisdom, heroism courage, struggle and dedication to the
    struggle of justice and so on is like the daughter tries to teach her mother childbirth !

    • Binyam


      The teacher is still a teacher , nevertheless , his students has become professors,fine deplomates , engineers, fine military strategists!

      The daughter ….blah blah blah! Don’t you know the daughter who graduated from nursing school can teach her mom how have a safe birth?

      This what some Eritrea problem is! Do you know what woyane said in 1984 ferenji! They told the leaders of shabiya(PFDJ ) ” if you don’t change your attitude & mindset you will free Eritrea because you have guys , but you don’t have any idea what to do with Eritrea after independency! Is there any justice, dedication ….in Eritrea now? You still don’t understand what you are talking about at all! Did I try to teach anybody here though?

  • yohannes

    If we had 100 eritreans wise like you, the cuntry have already changes, but the country is full of Alis and alies, . Eritreans lack wisdom in thier deed, but some times they are not even intelligents.
    For no reason they can destroy everthing and lough, they put aside the logic and they are absorved only by negativity. Eritreans could not reason far even for thie owen benefit. ‘ANEWE TEBEL ANEWE TEBEL’ .May be It is bettercto specify the Alies from kebessa, I don’t think all the eritreans havectge same behevier of of the kebesa.
    I grow in Abashawel , I have seen several Mohamed Alies, every evening was Derguagua, when I was in italy as student, the mohsmed Ali of Asmara they immigrat fir no reason, they found the work with HEZBAWI HAIKITAT Hafasit Awatat behem zibele ytahagom.
    If you say ‘EWAE’ the asswer was ‘ ENTAI ADEKA KUNIKA’ A then at the end the word changed ‘ Ewae ‘ to ‘ ESHI’ From the civiled word ‘ ESHI’ it was Changed to ‘ Eshi Hrai’
    Wise words wise presentation you have present the antagonistes like Anterat Like REZENE UKET’ he was the boss of asmara.
    and off course ‘ we are the people of Eshi Herai Goitana that what we are and will never change even if there will be a regime change. The actual regime reflects the beheviore of all eritrean Alies .
    spescially the kebessa Alies are the worest alies, the word GOITANA
    Is tigtigna word I don’t think it is so used in the other eritrean tribs

  • Aman

    Also I do not accept the trick that PFDJ, WOYANE affiliates and others
    are trying:
    That is 1- Trying to steal the ownership of the ideas and struggle from the
    people and from those N’Fithi scholars who articulated and voluntarily represented
    the voices of the majority and voiceless or silenced by trying to steal,separate and/or
    divorce the scholars from their ideas under smear campaign or some pretext of their
    personal and professional lives and their hardships and struggle in life in exile.
    It is designed either to silence his opposition or steal his writtings and ideas and
    ownership of it by creating pretexts of accusations. This might also happen to many
    others who wrote and lead the opposition struggle brilliantly and with dedication by
    some few power hungry and self serving opportunist shady figures.

    • Binyam

      Don’t compare the incomparable! Woyane & PFDJ are a lion & a hyena respectively! Look at what woyane has accomplished & PFDJ ? Woyane is leading a very complex society to a better position while PFDJ destroyed the people who was united & ready to role in the building of their country! I think you can be better than this !

      Eritrean has a good reason to oppose but the Ethiopian opposition!
      Don’t you know how to compare equal things?

  • Aman

    Justice must be done and prevailed first in order to move on. Otherwise moving
    on before justice is done is running away with tails behind legs…
    And I think that is what we have been fighting for for over 20 years. N’ Fithi…
    Now show me the justice first so that I move on !

  • Eyob Medhane

    Gash Saleh,

    I agree with those in this forum, who told you to move on. You, in my book are a big man. (I meant not in size. Since you stopped tre sga, you’re doing good in that department :-)) Honestly though, look at yourself. When it was not fashionable, but, condemnable, you got on the front and told the truth that the bademe war was senseless. That is called courage and conviction. You got a big tongue lash for it. Yet, that hasn’t moved you. The cheap, nasty, downright gutter punch that you had to take from Sofia also didn’t move you an inch. That also should earn you big respect to be listened to. With all the beatings you have taken, you stood still. Such people in Oroomiffa (also in Amharic) called ‘Gomtu’. People who earn to be called ‘Gomtu’ are people, who are elders that others go to seek their advice and respect their decisions. Before they get there, though, they go through a lot. Those, who would go to them try to intimidate them, so they would rule in their favor, by rustling their cattles, Killing their pets, beating up their children, socially isolating their wives, burning their crops, poisoning their horses. At the time of the hearing, if they rule justly an impartially, withering all these they would earn the respect and they get to be ‘gomtu’. Then they got to lead. Their judgment get to be ‘final and binding’ 🙂 Now, you are getting there. Just leave it behind. Write. Teach. Preach. Advice. Lead. To future….. That is what I think…

  • Abinet

    I’m sorry to what happened to Eritreans at that time . At times it was a little bit too much . However, there was a lot of anger among us because of the attitude of most of if not all Eritreans .we as a society did not expect that much arrogance from the people who lived with us in good times and bad times .remember derg was an equal opportunity killer .
    Now, tell me as to what happened to the Ethiopians who used to live in Eritrea in 1991? Do you think they are children of the lesser God?
    Learn to move on we have.let us not relive those days . We get no where . Talk about our future . We have a long way to go together .

  • Tsega Abe

    God owns the universe, sky, water and earth. He gives to mankind for good stewardship. If rain falls on Ethiopia, it is for a reason. Thus, the people of Ethiopia are to use the water for good which includes feeding their citizens. God would also like Ethiopia to share their resources with neighbors. Yet, some neighbors feel that water belongs to them without rain…a very selfish idea. For many years, Egypt has taken a majority of water when Ethiopians have had starvation. Egypt did not help with the water or food as a good neighbor should…does Egypt owe water of past decades to Ethiopia(yes)so it’s time for Ethiopia…so

  • Haqi

    Goog read gadi nebsi. Pls never stop writing but stop take it easy on the cigs.

  • danny

    My family was deported to Eritrea by the Ethiopian government in 1998. Once in Eritrea, my young siblings were rounded up and were taken to Sawa against their wish, of whom, two have escaped and fled Eritrea for which my parents were detained and were fined hundred thousand Nakfa before they were released. After the Ethiopian govermnent apologized for what they have done to Eritreans who lived in Ethiopia, my father went back and reclaimed his property that was returned to him with minimal up and down. My family was victimized by the Ethiopians in 1998, there is no doubt about it, but we accepted their apology, got our property back and moved on. But the same family continues to be victimized by the Eritrean government. We dont expect an apology from the Eritrean junta any time soon. Apology by a government which is used to a culture of victimizing its population is a big, fat No i suppose.

    • SelaliA

      danny, This is just false. Apologies are cheap! Apologies don’t mean anything once the damage is done. Apologies never bring back your loved ones killed by Weyane. Apologies never give you back the time you lost as a result of Weyane’s evil actions. Apologies are cheap! And meaningless!

      • danny


        What is false? That my father was given back his property? That the Weyanes have apologized? What do you feel is false from my story above?
        I don’t know in your world, but in the world of politics apology goes a long way. Political entities don’t offer apologies that easily because the implication is great. So my friend, apology in politics is not cheap; it is in fact a big deal.

  • SelaliA

    Dear Saleh,

    When you ask, “Is it fair for my victimizers to move on as if they did nothing?”
    I don’t really know much about your particular circumstances, but that is exactly what the Eritrean victims of Weyane ask themselves each and every day. Those who were brutally kicked out of Ethiopia with their properties illegally confiscated and left penniless. Those who had family members get killed as a result of Weyane’s invasion of Eritrea and its desire to take over Eritrea.
    The answer is a big, fat NO.

    • AMAN

      Woyanes expulsion of Ethiopians from Eritrea to Eritrea has had more damage
      on the identity, political freedom and citizenship than the material and wealth
      they loot. The material wealth might have replaced and returned but I am quite
      sure that the former civil and political freedoms,citizenships and identity are not
      and logically cannot happen in a one regimes period of time or era.
      For this to happen it is a must that the woyane regime is entirely removed as a
      minimum requirement and minimum demand for true justice and prevalence of law.



  • Saleh Johar

    Hello all,
    I want you feedback here: is it fair for me to pay back for the vilification and personal attack that I went through for four years? Is it fair for my victimizers to move on as if they did nothing? Would not taking them to task encourage them to continue polluting the Eritrean political scene because there is no consequences to their transgressions? What do you say?

    • Semere Andom

      Hi Gadi:
      I say it is not worth an atom of your energy. The truth set you free, but it humiliated them. I think, no words, rebut can speak more eloquently than the exposed stupidity.
      I say choose your battles and make sure to win them. I know they still vilify you even now and it is tempting to pay back, but not worth it, I think.
      About your joke to GH the other day that his defence was 4 years late, I agree with GH, it never crossed my mind Ali Salim was SG. Look at your profile, when everyone was cheering the war, you did not at the risk of the livelihood of your kids. there reason it never crossed our mind was I think intuitively I knew if you wanted to say what AS was saying there is no need to have a pen name. So please, the silence of our friends rule does not work 🙂

      • Abu Yara

        Dear Ghadi,
        Keep on writing and don’t worry of some who hallucinate of something and believe it as a reality. Now that the truth is reviled, that even should make you legitimately stronger upon your opponents who are now weaker ashamed for being in the wrong side. Keep us enjoy with your beautiful writings and comments. I think who ever criticized you for being “Ali Salem” they should wear the dress of shame….

    • AOsman


      It will be easier for us to say forgive, forget and move on, as it is apparent when discussing Post-PFDJ Eritrea many are saying it to the victims of HGDF with no other options left for recourse to justice and what is deemed public good, I believe the victim should be given the option and not knowing the extent of public and private vilification you receive, I will quote the Quranic advice:

      16:126 And if you punish, punish with an equivalent of that with which you were harmed. But if you are patient – it is better for those who are patient.

      The first gives the right to recourse to justice and the second part gives you the opportunity for self betterment and to be an example in society.

      Remember the story of Yusuf and his brothers, In life Patience and Magnanimity is to be encouraged, the fruit of that is success.


      • Lbona

        How about this man start to stop turning the forum to Madrassa. I believe all religious books are books of wisdom be it the bible, Quran or the ones that are used by Hindu OR Buddha or the tales of the animists or what have you. It is best if one keeps it for oneself. Some of us if not taking it offensive but certainly consider it inappropriate.
        Please respect the diversity of the people who use this forum.

        • Saleh Johar

          If as you say it yourself, “…all religious books are books of wisdom…” What is wrong with sharing the wisdom? Would you be offended if someone quotes Socrates, Pluto or one of the many philosophers and thinkers who are repetitively quoted in this and other forums?

          If you are against quoting anything, I would understand. But quoting the Quran, Bible or any source, particularly when it aims for a positive outcome and inspiration, I don’t think you should be offended. Quoting Karl Marx doesn’t make this forum a communist cadre school. That applies to everything quoted here. I believe the assault on religious values that started during the struggle era, that adopted communist teachings, must come to an end. Live and let live.

          • Lbona

            Many thanks for your clarification, Salih. Yet I beg to defer with your idea.
            By way of example, what is the point of quoting from Quran to a Christian in a forum that is shared by both? or the reverse?

            I know Quran is for Moslems and bible is for Christians and therefore their ideal place, to live and let live, would be for each in their own respective forum and not on the common one. Interested persons of one or the other book can do their study on their own time and place.

            If you kindly wish however, you could survey (awate poll) among the visitors of the site as to what they think about it. Your democrat right? not a communist or a dictator.
            I am not offended and my comment had nothing to do with the era of struggle.
            Thanks though once again and I guess no further clarification may be needed. Rest my case.

          • Saleh Johar

            If you a Christian person was in a wedding and he blessed the Muslim bride and Muslim bridegroom, “Kem Saran Kem Saban kunu,” . Should they be offended? And if a Muslim man heard of a Christian neighbor who just had a child and he said to him, “ishaaAllah ab tHti tselalkum yeEbe,” Would that person be offended? Stopping faith based discourse would be erasing the culture and identity of the people. My question: why is quoting atheists, ancient and contemporary philosophers fine but one shouldn’t act based on his religious identity? You really think we need a poll for this? I think you should reconsider your position.

            Thank you anayway

        • AOsman


          Madrassa! Is sounds something from the Taliban land :). If you knew a bit about traditional schooling in Eritrea or understood what it meant you would not have used it.
          Quoting the Bible or Quran ain’t a problem, nor should those who feel like quoting be told to keep it to themselves. The Eritrean people are religious, time to understand that and learn to tolerate it. Also chill out and don’t buy the nonsense that tells when when you socialise act Marxist and when you go home be Godly, better wear whatever hat you want to, but keep it one as a schizophrenia in personality ain’t good for the soul.


    • Rodab

      Follow the adage that says ሕኒኡ ዘይፈዲ ወዲ ኣድጊ or else you’ll embolden them for doing more of the same.
      On separate topic, what is yg talking about when he said he will respond to you on relations with Ethiopia?
      Our relation with Ethiopia must be a relation of respect, cooperation, and mutually beneficial to both countries. I don’t know what is there to disagree about.

    • Amanul9

      Selam SGJ,

      I will ask you to heed the advice of AOsman. Once you vindicate and won the “war of identity” that Ali Salim is not Saleh G. Johar, which is the only reward in politics, then you move on. Politics has an abundant of pain and it comes with different facets and this one of the many. You get your “EfoyTa” you are free from entanglement.

      BTW you are an excellent story teller. What a gift. God bless you.

      Amanuel Hidrat

    • The minimum fair thing to do is to identify the organizations and personalities that attacked you wrongly. Besides, it is fair enough for the mean natured souls to pay at least in terms of lost credibility. Go ahead, do what you have to do, let them pay their dues.

    • Abou Yara

      Take them to Lahay!