Time to Dismantle Ethio-Eritrean Despotism to its Demise – By Alex Birhanu

February 10th, 2009 Print Print Email Email

Under Issayas Afeworki, the despotic god-father of pirates and terrorism, Eritrea succeeded to enter into a series of conflicts with all its neighbors indiscriminately since 1994; while at the same time internally skirmishing aggressively with the soul freedom fighting Afar peoples along the Red Sea Coastal areas.

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Under Issayas Afeworki, the despotic god-father of pirates and terrorism, Eritrea succeeded to enter into a series of conflicts with all its neighbors indiscriminately since 1994; while at the same time internally skirmishing aggressively with the soul freedom fighting Afar peoples along the Red Sea Coastal areas.

To add insult into injury, the conflict between Eritrea and Djibouti is still lingering on the desks and files of the Security Council of the United Nations in New York without getting its due response.

Currently, due to persisting misfortunes both at home and abroad, Issaias Afeworki’s tyranny is temporarily ailing its political stance beyond repair and only counts the arrival of its doomsday. All its Machiavellian tactics of governance by using spy soldiers at home and by spreading terrorist tactics using voluntarily allied foot-soldiers have collapsed and all its cards are likewise burnt-out. The arrogant fascist branded totalitarian dictator – Issaias Afeworki’s Shaabia regime has gone to the extent of harboring fundamentalists and dashed into Somalia simply to simply quench the desires of his fund raising friends among few Arab governments but in vain. By now, Issaias knows it better that he is just buying time; he knows it well too that he can no longer collect Diaspora funds through Eritrean youths spread all over the globe. Obviously, the totalitarian mantle and dictatorial road which Issaias Afeworki’s despotic regime has chosen to move on may buy him a little while; but definitely his tyrannical tyrant regime can no longer continue tossing terrorism until his ultimate downfall is realized sooner or later.

Deceitful Political Deal

What was invented, willed, devised and kept alive for their strategic alliance since 1975 between God-father-Issayas Afeworki and his junior-Meles Zenawi was exercised more so in a reversed order between 1991 and 1997. As such Zenawi became the foremost runner on Eritrean secession matters while Afeworki pretended as his subordinate until he secured the momentum for acquiring most of what he initially aspired for. The inept excuses these two despotic principal dictators gave for their step-by-step actions of the time were mainly two-pronged: (1) that of the emergency situation of the aftermath of war in both countries as a priority issue to be given due attention.; and (2) the need for a transitional charter in order to endorse the de facto independence of Eritrea as equally crucial.

To this effect the July 14, 1991 conference in Addis Ababa was led by Dictator Zenawi who tirelessly pressured on TPLF / EPRDF partisans to adopt a new ‘Charter’, wherein he made it clear to participants that “… no individual, group, or party, including the TPLF / EPRDF itself, was there because of democratic mandate from the Ethiopian people. No one was deputized by the express will of the people but because of martial victory or support thereof. Hence soon after the Conference TPLF / EPRDF issued the “charter” with the primary aim to endorse the de facto independence of Eritrea; while at the same time to introduce its own ethnic-federal rules within Ethiopia” [For details see 2 & 3].

At the time, Herman Cohen who brokered the 1991 soft-landing of the TPLF / EPRDF in Addis Ababa and that of the EPLF in Asmara told the Conference stating: “… by not allowing Ethiopia a country of 70 million people access to the sea – if this is not the crime of the century then it is the biggest mistake of the agreement”. In the conference room, Herman further took Zenawi aside and told him: “… look you got to negotiate access to the sea. For the interest of the country you are going to lead, for your name and for the name of the group that you lead, it is very important you do that.” All Zenawi did was: look straight into Cohen’s face, smiled and vanished into the conference room [For details see 2 & 2.1].

Also, Jimmy Carter, the ex-president of USA, who had known Zenawi as a close friend, also made further efforts in clarifying the crucial importance of bringing Ethiopia’s access to the sea to the negotiation table. In his words: “Look Mr. Zenawi, you got to bring this issue to the table. It doesn’t matter weather Eritrea agrees on it or not; … put it on the table and leave it there. A future generation of the two countries will deal with it. At least you will not be responsible for land-locking 70 million people. For Christ sake you got to do it”. Again Zenawi looked into the eyes of former President Carter and remained speechless [For details see 2 & 2.1].

At the July 1993 National Conference for Peace and Democracy spear-headed by the TPLF / EPRDF regime, both the late Professor Asrat Weldeyes and the late Dr. Mekonnen Bishaw expressed their resistant reservations about the mandate or legitimacy of the conferees to make such principal and fundamental decisions involving the severing act of component parts of the people and territory of Ethiopia. These two gentlemen questioned two basic faults being committed at the time, namely: (1) the tactic in which the Conference participants were selected; and (2) the decisions passed regarding the eventual Eritrean cessation. Procedurally, they reiterate resiliently the equivocal need for a national referendum conducted both by the Ethiopian and Eritrean people alike, but in vain [For details see 4].

Notwithstanding several appeals and requests made by senior personalities in defense of Ethiopian interests and rightful proprietorship on key resources, the TPLF / EPRDF regime decided to bring its agencies into play to engage in lobbying, facilitating and in taking active steps to urge the international community and key agencies including the United Nations to make the Eritrean myth and dream come true; so that the new Eritrea could acquire its de facto independence from Ethiopia. Meanwhile, in such crucial national matter, the war weary Ethiopian people were never consulted by the contemptuous TPLF / EPRDF regime. Instead they were told that the government was taking essential steps for Ethiopians’ own good; in Meles Zenawi’s own view, with independence of Eritrea, Ethiopia could safely put its own home in order and do its own business of nation-building made as the result of the peace and tranquility with Eritrea [For details see 3].

Connecting to Cut-off

In the next four years stretching between 1993-1997, Eritrean citizens were heavily engaged in their own nation building while at the same time using the Ethiopian currency to conduct both Eritrea’s domestic and foreign businesses; the Ethiopian air lines became its de facto air carrier; and true to form, Eritrea, a country that didn’t grow a single coffee tree, became the main coffee exporter of the region. To one’s dismay, Eritrean citizens were provided more access to major Ethiopian public and private business resources than ordinary Ethiopians within Ethiopia. Afeworki, the Eritrean strong man, the architect God-father known for setting-up of pirates and politico-business kiosks within Eritrea for all sorts of so called liberation fronts(LFs), was hailed as the persona of wisdom and vision whose intelligence was so compelling that those very close to him and benefited from his mentorship needn’t worry about acquiring university education! This period was remarked as a grand period for Eritrea’s short-lived progress [For details see 3].

As far as Eritrean independence is concerned, the conspiracy, the frictions and factions that have been taking place endlessly during the last 18 years are all remaining in limbo. To this day, there has never been any official border demarcation laid on the ground between Ethiopia and Eritrea. (1) The de facto independence waged by Afeworki and his tyrannical junta through coercion on his people stating: “if you vote red you will be dead”; (2) the give-away action taken by Meles Zenawi and his despotic fascist-fed-army through denial of the right to the Ethiopian people from participating in the process of referendum; and (3) the continued suppression being made by Meles Zenawi’s dictatorial regime on Ethiopians not to reclaim Assab Port as Ethiopia’s rightful outlet to the sea; are all implicitly null and void; and a matter of time to revert.

Amidst all these geo-political chaos, both Ethiopian and Eritrean peoples are suffering due to the despotic, tyrannical regimes holding the government seats by force.

Suffice to mention what the well-known modern history professor, Dr. Tekeste Negash, time and again has pointed out: “Myths in whatever form they appear do more harm than good. Unfortunately Eritrean nationalist thought and practice is replete with myths; … and in the process of myth-building, Eritrean myth-builders were actively assisted by the present government in Ethiopia.” [For details see 4].

Obviously, the myth telling about Eritrean state shall decompose by itself soon and come to the fore for as long as Ethiopians are united and stand firm not to buy the false myth being propagated by TPLF / EPRDF and EPLF alike. More so Ethiopians should be careful of the gangs of Ginbot-7 who once were voluntarily ganging-up and dancing to the pipe tune of Meles Zenawi. Now these wolves and gangs of G-7 have resorted to gang-up with and dance to the pipe-tune of Eritrea’s Afeworki. Unless we are hand-cuffed and blind folded, the gang of G-7 will never succeed to draw us into the already failed Afeworki’s camp of totalitarian tyranny. We should no longer contemplate to look into the Meles and Afeworki’s conspired camps that ultimately resulted in breeding and spreading reign of tyranny, fascism, totalitarianism, contemptible despotism in the region. Rather we should look for other options to liberate Ethiopia from the yoke of tribally laden totalitarian and tyrannical regimes we face today.

In Tekeste’s own words: “Gone are the days when Eritrean partisans believed about the strategic and economic importance of Eritrea to Ethiopia. Also the myths of Eritrean economy and Eritrean entrepreneurship have been greatly weakened. … Eritrea is a resource poor country, and as long its resources remain what they are, Ethiopia will remain as the most important partner. This economic argument does not take into account the common history and culture. … The political and economic realities of an independent Eritrea are quickly leading to a revision of earlier perceptions. During the war of independence it was commonly believed that Eritrea was more important to Ethiopia. As the negative impact of Eritrean secession on Ethiopia does not seem to be so noticeable, one can argue that Ethiopia is far more important to Eritrea.” [For details see 5].

These critical national issues are still without proper replies. The sooner an all out unity of Ethiopian political groups is formed to take over power, a lasting justice will be done to matters left lofty by the two contemptuous and despotic dictators that keep on tossing a one-man-show on each side of the Ethio-Eritrea isles.

Conclusive Comments

In conclusion as regards Eritrea, Afeworki can no longer continue to fool Eritreans in Diaspora. No matter how much Shaabia is trying to deceive all eyes watching Afeworki’s single-handedly led totalitarian regime, Eritreans are alertly observing the troubled, drained and domineering EPLF regime; and are taking it with bitter salt. Some are even daring to air-out by waging enough is enough.

At either side of the isles, corrective actions must be operational without any delay; the voices and choices of the people must be given the upper hand to take their fate in their own hands. The ever growing and ongoing – one man show – and protagonist political platform, characterized for the most part by brutal dictatorial governance and despotic polity within the Ethio-Eritrea bounds must be clogged once and for all.

In particular, as regards the current situation in Ethiopia, let me site from the recent message of Professor Alemayehu G. Mariam: “If we want to see a more just and equitable society in Ethiopia, a country where the rule of law is supreme and where government fears its people, each one of us must act. Every Ethiopian is a power for good or evil. We have to make the choice to be a force for good. By every thought we contemplate and act we perform, we can bring about greater unity and harmony among the people. This is a burden of responsibility we carry for ourselves now, and for the next generation. The power of one for good or evil can not be underestimated. We have seen for nearly two decades how one man with a small group of henchmen has been able to destroy an entire nation. What we must also see is that many individuals working together can heal the wounds inflicted upon our country and set it on course to its glorious destiny.” [For details see 6]. In all fairness, we need a leader who will balance the power base and will bring lots of prosperity and dignity to Ethiopians of all walks of life. Afeworki and Zenawi have been in power for so long and enough is enough. No one should be more equal than the other. We need egalitarian and democratic framework to start with and leadership that is ready to serve the nations and its peoples vested interests harmoniously. Indeed, we have come a long way and sacrificed dearly in dispensing with the 2 despotic Ethio-Eritrean dictators. Don’t let new tyrants from the inner circle of Afeworki or Zenawi come into our lives any more.

Foot Notes

[1] Source: Mekonnen Kassa, Ethiopia – It is all about access to the sea – 01/24/07 http://nazret.com/blog/index….&tb=1&pb=1
[1.1] Source:
[2] Source: Agere Aleme, Time to regain the hitherto lost political chances – Dec. 27, 2006. www.ethioforum.org/For…t=681.html
[2.1] Source: Indian Ocean Newsletter N° 1208 17/02/2007
[3] Source: Professor Negussay, Commentary On the 12/12/00 Ethiopia-Eritrea Algiers ‘Peace’ Deal; http://www.ethiopians.com/Views/Commentary_on_AlgiersDeal.htm
[4] Source: Prof. Tekeste Negash – Eritrea and Ethiopia: From Cooperation to Competition; May 2, 1998. http://www.geocities.com/~dagmawi/News/News_Aug18_TekesteNegash.html
[5] Source: Ibid. http://www.geocities.com/~dagmawi/News/News_Aug18_TekesteNegash.html
[6] Source: Prof. Alemayehu G. Mariam, Ethiopians United Can Never be Defeated!
http://nazret.com/blog/index.php?blog=15&title=ethiopians_united_can_never_be_defeated&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

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