Is China Really a Friend to Africans? By Amanuel Biedemariam

July 2nd, 2011 Print Print Email Email

Over the last decade China has received a favorable PR on the way that it deals with Africa. The perception is that China’s a-political approach of engaging Africa is good for Africa. It is also deemed that China’s economic investments are positive for Africa. The low bid contracts by Chinese companies are seen to be good alternative from the West that traditionally strangulated Africa with debt. China is helping African countries develop some capacities in various fields. These are amongst some of the advantages China provides African countries.

In November of 2006, China organized probably the largest gathering of African countries outside Africa a “China Africa Summit”. The gathering was hailed by African leaders because they believed it to be a good sign for future China-Africa relations. There were press accounts detailing satisfaction of African countries because they perceived that China was looking to partner with African countries. The very fact that China held the gathering was a big deal, a-first for Africa and, a knock at Western nations that treated Africans with utter disrespect for generations.

China’s involvement with Africa has its critics and supporters. The most glaring objection is that China is dealings with countries that the West claims-have bad human rights records. China is accused of encouraging corruption and corrupt leaders. China is criticized for not focusing on governance and human right issues. And for systematic denial of African countries from manufacturing their own products because of China’s insistence on selling products produced by China. In a nut shell this is the extent of the critical view China gets from the West.

China is the “anti West” in the way that it deals with African countries. For example in Ghana, a $270 million loan facility to carry out expansion works at the Kpong Water Project was agreed upon between the government of Ghana and China. What is different about the loans China provides Africa is the fact that these countries can use their resources, in effect bartering in exchange for projects, goods and services that these African countries need in this case, water. The Chinese have a lot of dollars that they must dump. This is leverage that Africa never had with the West.

What does it mean when we say is China a friend of Africa? How should friendship between China and Africa be defined? How deep of a friendship is China cultivating in Africa? How good of a friend is China to Africa? What does China’s friendship mean to African countries? And the main question; is China a friend of Africa?

For a layman and according to various dictionaries, a friend is: a person whom one knows, likes, and trusts; an acquaintance; an ally in a struggle or cause; a comrade; one who supports, sympathizes with, or patronizes a group, cause, or movement and, a member of the Society of Friends.

Using the basic understanding of the meaning of friendship, can Africa trust China; consider China as an ally and be confident that China is a comrade in the struggle towards economic emancipation and development? Can Africa “trust” China to support and be the party that stands for the security of Africa?

The attention China received for her dealing with Africa collectively was partly accentuated by China Africa Summit in other words self made. One thing that needs to be clear however, Africa is not one nation. Therefore, it is impossible to paint China-Africa relations with one brush and as such; fair to ask some basic questions in order to have a common-basic understanding of what China means to Africa. It is also important to look at history of relations of other nations for example, Great Britain and the US as a standard. It is important to see the historic interaction of UK and US in the realms of economic cooperation, cultural relations, friendly ties, political/diplomatic co-ordinations and importantly on national and global security matters as a guide…

Is there a country in Africa that has ties with China that remotely resembles the example above? Does China have allied countries in Africa? During the Cold War, the alliances were almost clearly defined. The countries that were pro-West received support from the West led by the US, and vice versa. Can African countries count on that type of support from China? While the author is not an advocate of Africa divided based on the interests of super powers; it is important to note that countries enjoyed qualified diplomatic and military support during that era from one side or the other. However, while the current world is considered to be multi-polar, the main powers are the US and China. These are veto wielding powers capable to impose their will on any nation around the world. Ironically, while the US is clear on whom their friends are and her interests; it is extremely difficult to gauge China’s intentions. And absent of any pronounced friendship with any country in Africa it is nearly impossible to say where China stands with any nation.

It is important to ask these questions of China considering the extent of China interaction with Africa over the last thirty years. It is even more crucial in light of the resolutions United Nations Security Council (UNSC) produced over the last ten years that profoundly impacted many countries in Africa. In 2005 alone, nearly 80% of the 70 deliberations and decisions the UNSC made were related to matters in African countries with the Middle East coming far-second and Third World countries such as Haiti and Bosnia Herzegovina filling-in the blanks. The reality is 2005 is not an aberration it is the annual reality in the UNSC. And the problem is the fact that the UNSC is making all these decisions without the affected parties having a say and a fighting chance against decisions that are affecting these nations in some cases altering the social landscapes violently. Moreover, the role China played or lack thereof is by far the most perplexing.

One needs to look at some of the recent developments in Africa pertaining to Libya, Sudan, Eritrea and others vis-à-vis Security Council decisions that the West and particularly the US perused in the region. China went along with decisions when it seemingly could impact its national interests. These decisions raise some serious questions about Chinese intentions and dealings in Africa.

China has been in Sudan for decades and it is one of the reasons why Sudan remained viable. China has heavy investments in Sudan primarily in the oil sector. China imports an estimated 7% of its oil from Sudan. Moreover, China has a sizeable human-resources invested in various sectors. In other words China’s investments in Sudan are numerous, extensive and took decades for China to build it that level. Yet, when we look at the future security and stability of Sudan, the West led by the US appears to be on the driver’s seat basically dictating terms while weakening Sudan and nailing wedges designed to fragment the nation into pieces. It is ironic because the US pushed measure after measure using the UNSC that China can stop using its veto power.

Moreover, if one is to add Eritrea into the mix it makes one wonder what China’s underlined interests are. Nearly all of China’s goods from Sudan are channeled through the Red Sea. Eritrea owns a large and strategic lane on the Red Sea. Eritrea is also bordered by Sudan. If Eritrea is to be what Ethiopia and the US wanted to be (an entity under their control in whatever shape or form); then Sudan would be encircled by countries that are propped by the US and, the US would have assumed control over the entire eastern part, the Horn, and the Northern parts of Africa.

The US is in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda and Egypt. The only countries left are Sudan and Eritrea. If the US is to succeed by accomplishing what they planned for Eritrea after World War II, then Sudan would have no fighting chance because it will be encircled. Moreover, US and her allies would have controlled the entire Red Sea territories namely Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti on one side and, Saudi Arabia, Yemen on the other. They will have the chokehold for any shipment that sails through that area. A good example to glean from is the Suez Canal and Iran. Eritrea controlled by the US can potentially limit China’s access to the area and give US the upper hand in the region.

It is with this background in mind that the author questions China’s role. Why is China allowing the US to pass measure after measure to pressure Sudan and Eritrea? The US, on Xmas Eve of 2009 imposed a sanction measure, by concocting lies and fabrications in the most brazen way that disregarded the existence of the people of Eritrea. They used a mechanism and methodology that denies Eritrea a say and moved along with a sanction.

In Libya when the UNSC authorized the No Fly Zone, this is the statement by China’s Ambassador to the UN LI BAODONG:

“The continuing deterioration of the situation in Libya was of great concern to China. However, the United Nations Charter must be respected and the current crisis must be ended through peaceful means. China was always against the use of force when those means were not exhausted. His delegation had asked specific questions that failed to be answered and, therefore, it had serious difficulty with the resolution. It had not blocked the passage of the resolution, however, because it attached great importance to the requests of the Arab League and the African Union. At the same time, he supported the efforts of the Secretary-General’s Envoy to resolve the situation by peaceful means.”

“The UN adopted Resolution 1973 (2011) by a vote of 10 in favor to none against, with 5 abstentions (Brazil, China, Germany, India, Russian Federation), the Council authorized Member States, acting nationally or through regional organizations or arrangements, to take all necessary measures to protect civilians under threat of attack in the country, including Benghazi, while excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory — requesting them to immediately inform the Secretary-General of such measures, to establish a ban on all flights in the airspace of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya in order to help protect civilians.”

LI BAODONG statements are very troubling. Firstly, he stated that China wants the situation to have a peaceful end. And secondly China is against use of force. He continues, his delegation had asked specific questions that failed to be answered and, therefore, it had serious difficulty with the resolution. The most troubling statement however is, “It had not blocked the passage of the resolution, however, because it attached great importance to the requests of the Arab League and the African Union,” and passed a resolution with a vague and open-ended language that allowed NATO to destroy Libya in the name of protecting civilians.

The Irony, first of, the African Union was disregarded. And secondly, this was taking place in the most turbulent times in the history of the Middle East when countries were embroiled on their internal civil struggles. China passed the resolution not to protect the best interest of the people of Libya but to satisfy a nonexistent or a nominal Arab League and African Union. It is even more perplexing considering the number of Chinese that worked in Libya and the amount of investment that China had in Libya.

This begs the question; why is China allowing punitive measures against nations that are friendly; nations that are doing business and, nations that have accepted not only the diplomatic core but the Chinese people all around Africa? Why is China allowing the US and Western nations to take advantage of UNSC resolutions for their hegemonic objectives. The No Fly resolution was just a hook because soon after the decisions were made the French, UK and US did bait-and- switch, called for a regime change and escalated the operations including sending advisors into a civil war. The people of Libya are being terrorized by the most intensive bombing campaign the continent of Africa has ever seen. The people of Libya are being exposed to depleted uranium; Libyans are suffering and not better off. And contrary to China’s wish of peace, Libya is ensnared by violence of the brutish NATO forces. In short, China’s repeated abstentions do not absolve it from the responsibilities.

Conclusion

Dambisa Moyo and others have said a great deal of good about China’s economic programs in Africa. However, no-economic success means a-whole-lot unless coupled by peace. Africa’s problems are chronic by design and they continue because the West is intent on keeping Africa crippled. China was Africa’s first and best hope to counterbalance the negative role the West continues to play in Africa. Instead, China is tacitly accepting the label of new colonizer of Africa. On a setting that resembles a Hollywood’s scary witch-movie, Secretary Hillary Clinton stood on a dark room on a podium in Ethiopia and warned Africans to beware of the new colonizers that do not care about Africa. Her statements are evidence that Africa has effectively turned in the dinner table of hyenas and lions fighting for a carcass only this time; it is with the impending holocaust of the African continent.

The question is what can Africans do? The UN/UNSC is an organization designed to benefit the five permanent members at the expense of the world. The UNSC has literally turned the international order into that of the Jim-Crow laws that punishes without representation, due process and to send a message. They have established systems they can manipulate as they wish like the ICC that they are using to petrify leaders such as Beshir to get what they want. They are penalizing the people of entire regions based on their national interest-considerations and denying them the right to live in peace. Moreover, these are people that have never been able to establish institutions that can sustain them in bad times such as draught. The continuation of this holocaust is reaching biblical proportions. Yet, they are escalating these strategies.

The reality is there is no recourse for these transgressions and deliberate injustices. Therefore, the responsibility befalls on those countries that are being negatively affected by the injustices. Hence, the only solution is for nations to abandon the defunct UN and disqualify its purpose and create a mechanism to deal with world matters. Moreover, united vigilance of the people is far more important than ever because they are openly returning Africa back to the colonial era. China could also assume the just role of defending African because ultimately that will serve its interests in the right way.

awetnayu@hotmail.com

  1. amazing
    | #1

    Well, finally talking about African nations. I am surprised you didn’t talk negative about Ethiopia how we are weak and Eritrea is strong. That being said, there is a war going on… the Western nations are clearly showing and are determined, the hegemony of white race over the rest of human race. This clearly shows the Nato, EU and North Amrica (US and Cananda) The only reason they may not agreeing with Eastern Europe is because their value might be different however, Poland and Russia are now very much go along with the rest of Western nations. They do belive that the survival of white race only works the demise of every other race. NATO from now on is going to be very dominating as it has shown its muscles blatantly in Libya. There is no turning back now. Indeed if they are dominating the world it is because they continuously day and night work on it. Of course, China itself is very afraid obviously and trying to calm down situation while amassing resources and strengthening its army. Eventually, the West is going to come after them sooner or later and China very much knows that and is buying time. In the mean time, as we like to say ourselves, “poor” nations are going to suffer. It is mind boggling to think oursleves as weak and poor nations because we accept it to be. Here is the one you don’t like me to mention Edemariam, despite its poverty, Ethiopia has challenged Western hegemony and as a result we got respect under past kingdoms. Guess what, Eritrea hated that because Eritrea was under Italy’s colony and Ethiopia is not and Eritrea wanted revenge and campaigned very much against Ethiopia (the hand that was feeding Eritrea after Italy left them cold dry)through the help of the Arab leagues, our neighbors, West and they did indeed succeed. Eventually there will be Karma as the Hindus say and Eritrea will suffer the most than Ethiopia and that will be remained to be seen. Believe me, as an Ethiopian I am not even wishing that but the universe will give what ever one deserves based on each one of actions.

    Long live Ethiopia.

  2. ECONOMIC GENOCIDE
    | #2

    Right Mr. Amanuel,Africans should abandon the UN and all other its sister organizations like IMF because they were created to control,exploit and oppress them.China is indeed the biggest hope for Africa just because of its presence now as rising superpower.That is why Obama got elected and HIV/AIDS is a less serious problem.China stood also on the side of Zimbabwe.

  3. Mussie
    | #3

    African leaders need to wake up. Africans don’t need to abandon Gedhafi, Africans need to abandon the west.

  4. YEHUDA
    | #4

    Mussie:

    You are right since Africa’s problems should be solved by Africans alone, if possible. The West using World Bank and IMF had terrorized and is terrorizing Africa by economic war to this day. Only the bennficeries, such as slave African “leaders” deny this material facts.

  5. Bedasso
    | #5

    Let me get this straight; you want China to veto UN sanctons against your tyrant is Eritrea, don’t you? When are you going to start caring for the African people who are fleeing from your Prison State and stop worrying about what’s going to happed to tyrants? You’re right: China is not gonna tell your tyrants to hold democratic elections and respect human rights. As for the constitution, forget about it.

    Africa has a once in a lifetime chance to rid itself of dictators for good. Now is the time to embark on good governance and liberal democracy in Africa.

  6. Anonymous
    | #6

    abugida i need a big fevour please take out birtukan pecture from this web site when i open the web i became frastrated and stress becouse of her and her friends a lot of innocent ethiopian poor kids killed by jugle regim of weyane tell her if you dont like a heat dont inter a kitchen goshu welde {former derg forein miniter) was . caltural revolution first then change.

  7. Sheger
    | #7

    Sir I think you are ontradicting your self,what ever the case.

    If China works with Basher, Egypt, Ethiopia Libia Gambia and So on , what do you mean that Ethiopia and bla bla
    Are under us or what ever? When we say under this under that what does it mean? Each country suppose to have just
    One friend or partner in development or what ever relations? May be we should not have Embassy as such then.

    Or are you saying that China and America are not Friends?…..but hoe ever I am not saying that a lot of what you said
    Is irrelevant.

  8. kentu
    | #8

    nowdays some fool people even educate gave a credit for meles becouse he creat abbay dam but for me it is big ziro this kind of dam it is 500 years ago was good but now it is usless you pay 20 dollars put in your rood you get eletric city withen 20 minnites installation so every ethiopian household get withen 20 million withen one month but abby dam west mony and time. afterall i blame italian salina campany for this robery . they now technology more than any body but they cheat the poor country

  9. Yosief
    | #9

    Can anyone please ask Amanuel Bidemariam what he meant by “Dambisa Moyo and others have said a great deal of good about China’s economic programs in Africa. However, no-economic success means a-whole-lot unless coupled by peace.”?????
    All along, the author had been barking Eritrea needs only economic success [sic] and NOT civilian/constitutional administration and political plurality; and now suddenly he is turning 180 degrees and pretends to care less about Economic development and more about human dignity. I invite anyone reading this comment to google this guy’s name and see what a puppet of a suppressor/dictator he himself is. And guess what, it is stupid people like this guy who drove Isaias Afewerki insane to the extent of pondering on the idea of bombing US ships in the Red Sea (see yesterday’s wikileaks article at http://www.aftenposten.no/spesial/wikileaksdokumenter/article4152454.ece ). As a consequence of such blunders and in addition to sponsoring al-shabab or hizbul islam terrorist meetings in Asmara in 2007; and disturbing the peace of Djibouti in 2008 (which is being mediated now by Qatar although the insane dictator at times deny it); and more importantly after having been watched igniting a fully fledged sense less war with a neighboring country Ethiopia, the whole world took a concrete step to sanction Eritrean leaders (not Eritrean people as this author claims!). This was long awaited; and we Eritreans hope this will deter our insane dictator from opening new war fronts with anyone mainly Ethiopia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, etc.. Trust me the dictator is so out of touch, he can go to war with anyone. What can you say when you see wikileaks article about him pondering to bomb US ships? I just hope God stops him before we see his body burned to hell by US bombing.
    At last let me remind the author clearly that what the totalitarian brutal dictator Isaias Afewerki whose a** you do kiss day in day out; has brought to Eritrea is
    1. Neither economic development,
    2. Nor political pluralism and constitutional administration;
    3. BUT rather suffering of the youth, mass fleeing of the youth to Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Libya, Egypt, Europe, North America, and ets….
    For this reason, Eritrean leaders deserve to be sanctioned and will soon be refereed to ICC for their crimes against humanity.
    Here is my 2 cents to the author: If you encounter two assh** in a day; the odds are you are probably the assh***. Similarly, when you claim IGAD is defunct, AU is defunct and UN is defunct; then the odds are you are probably the defunct; and not these institutions.

  10. Anonymous
    | #10

    well written article. colonialism never died

  11. Qilin
    | #11

    Let me start by saying China is one of the best thing that happened to Africa since Africa got its independence. Is China perfect? No. Will China solve all of Africa’s problem? No. But they are a stepping stone for Africa to develop and industrialize itself.

    What is wrong with the world, especially Africa, is that they have been brainwashed into thinking that the west is the mecca of civilization, the birthplace of freedom and the standard for human moral by which all nations should be measured.

    It is with this attitude that they hate China. God forbid a nation of people that do not share their skin color should lead the world. I would however like to point out two things.

    First, from which moral high-ground is the west accusing China? How can the west who colonized Africa for 500 years against the will of the people, subduing and killing them with modern weapons, accuse China of ill intentions when China has never come with a sword to Africa, even since its first contact? How can the west decide and mark the boundaries for each country in Africa, dividing it into pieces that suits them then accuse China of anything that resembles colonization? How is it that the west that took African slaves of men and women and children like cargo, folded in a ship with no bathroom to relive themselves, think that they have a better plan for us than China? Were our brothers and sisters taken to work plantations and build buildings and roads for free in China or the west? Under who’s whip did the Africans toil? Did the Chinese rob us of our language and force us to speak Chinese, or is it not true that many African countries official language is English, French, Portugese, German, Dutch…

    So, I would kindly request the west and Hilary Clinton to not use the term “colonization” lightly. The success of China, which has become the worlds most wealthiest creditor nation, was achieved without enslaving one black soul. Without looting the gold and resources of other nations by wars and weapons. Without replacing a single regime or using covert agents to destabilize foreign countries.

    Who was funding Mubarak a billion dollars a year? Who is funding almost all of African dictators? Is it not the west? With which clean hands are they wagging their fingers at China for? Who has been dumping subsidized agricultural produce like rice and cotton, completely destroying local markets and industries in Africa, the west or China?

    What about China’s human right violations? Yes, that is something China should work on. But then again, with what right does the west have accusing China of any violations? Was it not in the ‘democratic’ west that Blacks, especially Black Americans were being lynched by the thousands, burnt at the stakes, forbidden by law to learn how to read and write, forbidden to sit in front of the bus, or sit on a chair in church, or own land or property. And yet the west was hailed, even then, as the hallmark of civilization.

    When Africa received it Independence it was not the benevolent act of civilized nations. It was the uprising of the African people. Which brings me to my second point. Africa was never really decolonized. Yes, the military presence of the west left but no one ever really walks away from the cow that gives you free milk. Through Debt, we are slaves once again. China is now presenting to Africa a way towards development without the mechanism of making ‘Debt-Slaves’. Without Debt, Africa can free itself from its colonizers who never left. The west does not want this. To truly understand how much they don’t want to and will not help Africa, contemplate this: The US Government spent well over $700 billion, on the war on Iraq. That means instead of paying all that money on ONE country, they could pay off the debt of TWO African continent. They also spent $400 Billion on one country Afghanistan, which they could have used to release Africa from debt and still have 100 Billion dollars in change. Or they spent about $310 Billion dollars in 2008 to bailout only ONE Bank, Citibank. When they could have bailed out one whole continent suffering unjustly from bogus debt.

    When Africa turns to China, no new debt is added to western financial institution meaning they lose their leverage in dictating African economic policies with Structural Adjustment Programs(SAP) through the IMF or issuing threats of embargo by the World Trade Organization(WTO). They don’t want to loose their cow, so they attack China. Why is it news that China is in Africa? How about China in America, yes China has a almost 2 trillion dollar investment in America. How about China in Australia, China has invested more than 40 billion dollars in Australia. Why can these countries deal with China with out a scandal and not Africa?

    Neither the west or China will save Africa. Only Africans will save Africa. But this western drama of crocodile tears and pity has to stop.

  12. Saleh
    | #12

    Biedemariam is one of those ungrateful immigrants who should be deported back to that hell-hole Eritrea to be with his beloved comrads in crimes against humanity.

  13. sissay
    | #13

    @Qilin

    Qilin :
    Let me start by saying China is one of the best thing that happened to Africa since Africa got its independence. Is China perfect? No. Will China solve all of Africa’s problem? No. But they are a stepping stone for Africa to develop and industrialize itself.
    What is wrong with the world, especially Africa, is that they have been brainwashed into thinking that the west is the mecca of civilization, the birthplace of freedom and the standard for human moral by which all nations should be measured.
    It is with this attitude that they hate China. God forbid a nation of people that do not share their skin color should lead the world. I would however like to point out two things.
    First, from which moral high-ground is the west accusing China? How can the west who colonized Africa for 500 years against the will of the people, subduing and killing them with modern weapons, accuse China of ill intentions when China has never come with a sword to Africa, even since its first contact? How can the west decide and mark the boundaries for each country in Africa, dividing it into pieces that suits them then accuse China of anything that resembles colonization? How is it that the west that took African slaves of men and women and children like cargo, folded in a ship with no bathroom to relive themselves, think that they have a better plan for us than China? Were our brothers and sisters taken to work plantations and build buildings and roads for free in China or the west? Under who’s whip did the Africans toil? Did the Chinese rob us of our language and force us to speak Chinese, or is it not true that many African countries official language is English, French, Portugese, German, Dutch…
    So, I would kindly request the west and Hilary Clinton to not use the term “colonization” lightly. The success of China, which has become the worlds most wealthiest creditor nation, was achieved without enslaving one black soul. Without looting the gold and resources of other nations by wars and weapons. Without replacing a single regime or using covert agents to destabilize foreign countries.
    Who was funding Mubarak a billion dollars a year? Who is funding almost all of African dictators? Is it not the west? With which clean hands are they wagging their fingers at China for? Who has been dumping subsidized agricultural produce like rice and cotton, completely destroying local markets and industries in Africa, the west or China?
    What about China’s human right violations? Yes, that is something China should work on. But then again, with what right does the west have accusing China of any violations? Was it not in the ‘democratic’ west that Blacks, especially Black Americans were being lynched by the thousands, burnt at the stakes, forbidden by law to learn how to read and write, forbidden to sit in front of the bus, or sit on a chair in church, or own land or property. And yet the west was hailed, even then, as the hallmark of civilization.
    When Africa received it Independence it was not the benevolent act of civilized nations. It was the uprising of the African people. Which brings me to my second point. Africa was never really decolonized. Yes, the military presence of the west left but no one ever really walks away from the cow that gives you free milk. Through Debt, we are slaves once again. China is now presenting to Africa a way towards development without the mechanism of making ‘Debt-Slaves’. Without Debt, Africa can free itself from its colonizers who never left. The west does not want this. To truly understand how much they don’t want to and will not help Africa, contemplate this: The US Government spent well over $700 billion, on the war on Iraq. That means instead of paying all that money on ONE country, they could pay off the debt of TWO African continent. They also spent $400 Billion on one country Afghanistan, which they could have used to release Africa from debt and still have 100 Billion dollars in change. Or they spent about $310 Billion dollars in 2008 to bailout only ONE Bank, Citibank. When they could have bailed out one whole continent suffering unjustly from bogus debt.
    When Africa turns to China, no new debt is added to western financial institution meaning they lose their leverage in dictating African economic policies with Structural Adjustment Programs(SAP) through the IMF or issuing threats of embargo by the World Trade Organization(WTO). They don’t want to loose their cow, so they attack China. Why is it news that China is in Africa? How about China in America, yes China has a almost 2 trillion dollar investment in America. How about China in Australia, China has invested more than 40 billion dollars in Australia. Why can these countries deal with China with out a scandal and not Africa?
    Neither the west or China will save Africa. Only Africans will save Africa. But this western drama of crocodile tears and pity has to stop.

    i like this articl very much !

  14. Anonymous
    | #14

    @Qilin
    My friend you have no idea what chinese people are made of. Trust me for 7 years, i slept, drank and ate on the same plate with them. One thing is certain, if China topples the US as the strongest world power, then God help us!

  15. amazing
    | #15

    Beidemariam just wants to bark on the wrong tree when in fact he has to look himself in to the mirror first the blunder the likes of him, Isayas and their cousin Meles and Co. created hoping to make Eritrea like “Singapore” with the blunder of Ethiopia. How things turn out to be the opposite of our anticipation. No one will go forward with the mind and heart of wishing others ill. Even I am saying this about the work of Eritrea however, I always wish them to turn from hate to love only then their life will turn to the right way. Many Ethiopians think Eritreans are still their brothers and sisters and even sacrifice their nationalism to be with Eritreans. Learn from the true Ethiopians who are sad but don’t hate

    That being said, I wouldn’t want to hope that China is a miracle for Africa either. How naive we are we haven’t learn from yesterday, any foreigner, like dictators are smooth until they tighten the rope. It is not a good sign also the chinese opening small businesses in Africa and driving out Africa’s small businesses. So I wouldn’t count or welcome China either. Over all, Africans must learn from their past lesson. It is Africa’s people who are giving away their freedom by allowing dictators to control them, even if dictators are controlled by West and others to oppress their people for self interest. It is still the responsibility of Africans to bring change, to say no to dictatorship and outside aggression by sacrificing themselves for their nations and to refuse to be divided among their ethnicities and tribals, religion, etc.. That is how dictators and outsiders win because they know of our differences in religion, ethnicitiy and tribes that they use that to control us. We should be knowing this by now and refuse and if there is a problem, we should strife to solve the problem later and take the priority to save their nation from war, economic bluner and oppression. That takes priority than our difference.

  16. qualebicha
    | #16

    No! China is going to be the preferred destination for the soon exiled Zinawianrobbers.But we trust in God and Ethiopians that Zinawi will be captured and be prought to the justice and receive the punishment that he deserves for all those weird and wicked crimes that he committed on Ethiopians.

    We wish the chinese officials and Zinawians have a farewel party at the courtyard while Zinawi is standing in a prisioner’s box for the first and last trial.Amen.The trial will last 13 seconds.

    It is going to be more complicated than that .While dinner is being served,a head and hands on a platter,Zinawi will narrate his life story to the chinese in a cronological order while the jurors are ready to read assortments of crimes from the chargesheet Zinawi committd for the last twenty years.

    The trial will last 13 seconds.Azeb Golla Mesfin will be rushed into the courtroom and stands by her partner in crime on the other side to the left of Zinawi in a prisioner’s box.

    Will Azeb Golla Mesfin whisper to the ears of Zinawi and say this,I told you so or say this,till death do apprt us?

    We knew who they were before the husband and the wife,Zinawi Legesse Meles and Azeb Golla Mesfin the then known bandits,the now robbers from among men and women criminals who entered Ethiopia disguising as Ethiopians.

    On that last day,the day of judgment,the chines will have the last quick glance at Zinawi and it will be the last one for them;never will they be allowed back to Ethiopia.On that trial day,the chinese adage GIVE BEFORE YOU TAKE will not work for the first time in history because there will be nothing Zinawi gives,rather,he will take a swift and burning punshment;Azeb Golla Mesfin,too.

  17. Lutheran
    | #17

    Eritrea was only a region of Ethiopia and it doesn’t need to be independent and feed terrorists or bad people in this world where we all live once. In one life we live, we wish for the best for our families and the world. Reunite Eritrea with Ethiopia and if not take it, take it. Coming from a 100% Eritrean. This man, or Eritrean leader, is a drama. We do not need drama, but to live our life. Who is he? someone breeding his kids to reign after him and tell lies to the world. He has siblings, who avoided him for life, because of his psychological problems and he still tries to feed them with bullshit in this world. Honestly, I am Christian and I wish the best to everyone the best, however, some persons need to go for humans to live without threat or grief. Let the PFDJ (already defunct) and the YPFDJ sink. God bless America!!! Africans should not talk about colonialism because the US never occupied you. This beautiful US was there helping and still is. Like JOHN 3:16 someone who never left you, are you going to regret it when He leaves you? I pray for the happiness and the best, but sometimes I’m never understood because I knew the truth.

  18. itsyonathan
    | #18

    With all due respect, countries cannot be “friends” in the true sense of the word, although they can be allies. For example, one of the definitions of “a friend” that you cite attributes it to membership in a religious organization, the Society of Friends. This defeats your argument, as such friends do not have enemies as they see that of God in every person. Plus all definitions you cite imply individuals with flesh and blood, not generalized, abstract entities. Based on the weak premise that you base the essay — a flawed understanding of friendship — I cannot hold your writing as an exercise in clarity, but rather obfuscation. Still I chuckle at the humor, as unwittingly implied; see here: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/07/04/opinion/20110704_OPART.html?hp

    Please rewrite: “Allies,” not “Friends.”

  19. ray
    | #19

    @amazing
    Great comment!!!! you are re-writing the history. when did the arabs & west help eritrea

  20. Abel
    | #20

    Most of comments were written without understanding the essay and resort to criticism. Most of the responses are nonsense. It is mind bugling that some of you sick and unhappy people. Please read, understand and be a critic to the articles objectively. Spell check is very important too.

  21. thechosenone
    | #21

    Indeed you have eyes that see and a heart that does not shy from the truth. Remember though, we must differentiate between principles and principalities, from people of a nation and those few that run the nation. However,the people of the pale race are guilty by association and for benefitting from the pillage and not doing anything. Not all, but He (the one and only) knows who is truely innocent!I do agree that Africa must wake up without the smell of coffee…as it is that specifically (coffee) that diters their vision and clear hearts. Please keep educating the meek and blind, for we need people that can see far beyond what the eyes can see. God keep you safe…

    JLG

    @Qilin

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