ካብ ውልቀ ምልኪ ናብ ዴሞክራሲ

“መለኽቲ ብዘይ ናይ’ቲ ዝገዝእዎ ህዝቢ ሓገዝ ፖለቲካዊ ስልጣን ክዕቅብዎ አይኽእሉን እዮም::

” … ብካልእ መዳይ: ጨቆንቲ: ህዝባውን ትካላውን ደገፍ ከም ዝስእኑ ምግባር: ነቲ መሰረት ህላወኦም ዝኾነ ምንጭታት ፖለቲካዊ ስልጣን የጉድሎ ጥራይ ዘይኮነስ ጨሪሹ’ውን ከሰንፎ ይኽእል እዩ:: ብዘይ እዞም ምንጪታት እዚአቶም ድማ ጨቆንቲ ይዳኸሙን ይወድቁን:: …”

”From Dictatorship to Democracy” ዘርእስታ መጽሓፍ: ገና ቀዳማይ ምዕራፍ ኣንቢበ ከይወዳእኩ እንከለኹ’የ:- እዚኣሲ ኩሉ ኤርትራዊ እንተዘንብባ! ኢለ ተመንየ:: ቅድሚ ሓደ ሽዱሽተ ወርሒ’ዩ ኔሩ:: ሎሚ ምሸት ጽቡቕ ዕድል ኮይኑ ብ ቋንቋ ትግርኛ ረኺበያ:: እምበኣርከስ ካብዛ ብ ዳንኤል ረዘነ ብ 2003 ናብ ትግርኛ ተተርጒማ ዝተዘርገሐት መጽሓፍ: ስዒቡ ንዘሎ ምስሊ ብምጥዋቕ ነታ መጽሓፍ ኣብ ኮምፑተርኩም ጌርኩም ወይ ውን አብ ወረቐት ሓቲምኩም ከተንብብዋ ይዕድመኩም::

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Download link >> DictatorshipToDemocracy_Tigrigna

Eritrea abandons “Shoot-to-kill” border policy

A top official of the Eritrean youth Union claims that the Eritrean government is no longer pursuing its shoot-to-kill policy on civilians trying to flee the nation.

In a tweet exchange with Mr Paul Dillane, a Refugee Specialist and former Refugee Researcher at Amnesty International, Ms Rahel Weldeab, an official of the government run youth Union, claimed that Eritrean army no longer has a standing order to shoot and kill citizens trying to flee.

Rahel reasons that the Jihadists and border conflict with Ethiopia are to be blamed for the governments shoot-to-kill border policy; probably insinuating that the shoot-to-kill order was not put in place as a means to discourage refugees from fleeing (life being a good incentive to stay). In that case the fact that the policy did discourage ‘illegal’ border crossing was just an unintended effect.

The fact that an Eritrean government official admitted there ever was a “shoot to kill” policy led many to focus less on Rahel’s justification why the government was ‘forced’ to implement that policy.

Eritrean borders “Hot” for illegal border crossing

Rahel promptly re-stated her statement with a more politically correct wording for “shoot-to-kill”,

11 plus a few others

Rahel also admitted that there were political prisoners but that the number claimed by Amnesty International (over 10,000 prisoners of conscience) was inflated,

And that some of the prisoners were even charged with a crime,

Bealfan T, a former editorial staff of the Eritrea’s only newspaper run by government, now an asylee in the US reply Rahel and tweets,

The conversation was getting # ‘boring’ for Rahel,

His phone battery running low and probably having sacrificed his lunch break, Paul Dillane ends the conversation thanking Rahel for her honesty.

The {Real} Rahel

Rahel Weldeab, is the Head of Foreign Affairs at the youth arm of the Eritrean government, the “National Union of Eritrean Youth and Students (NUEYS)”. Rahel also holds at least three other full-time positions in the same organization including being Vice-President of the Pan African Youth Union (PYU) for the East Africa/Indian Ocean Region. But her popularity  among Eritrean diaspora groups soared when she appeared (via telephone) on Al Jazeera’s The Stream program on August 2011 and defended the government in a way that infuriated many Eritreans abroad. Responding to a question from the program host, Derrick Ashong, “Why are people trying to escape?” Rahel explained the reason for the exodus of Eritrean youth is “economic reasons” and expounded that saying:the_stream

“…You know the Eritrean youth are not alienated from the effects of globalization. We all like our iPads and iPods and Air Jordan’s …we like our movies as well. The youth do look towards the West and like what they see in the movies.”

Carefully avoiding words with negative connotation to the government like “refugee”, and instead preferring the more descriptive “deciding to go towards the West”, She emphasized the need not to give any special attention to the issue of Eritreans fleeing their country:

“I don’t think when we talk about youth deciding to go towards the West we shouldn’t see it as a new phenomenon or a phenomenon that is only taking place in Eritrea.”

Alek Wek is raising awareness for refugees and returnees in her home country, South Sudan.

Alek Wek is raising awareness for refugees and returnees in her home country, South Sudan.

Alek Wek a South Sudanese British model and philanthropist who was a guest at the program, described Rahel as “trying to sweep the problem under the rug” And expressed strong disapproval:

“…its quite insulting to say that’s why they’ve left. I think there is a fundamental reason why you go

and seek refuge, having been a refugee myself. You can’t say that you want to come out

from your own country. I mean people were like halleluiah when the country got independence. I think it is insensitive…”

Two days after the interview, Rahel started her personal blog TheRealRahel (perhaps inspired by Alek Wek’s similar twitter name). In her first blog, Rahel explains that this interview/debate: “has inspired me to start up this blog to talk about the real issues and why real revolution will not be twitted.”

Well it might be true one can’t tweet a real revolution into existence, but unless you are careful you certainly can twitter yourself into one of Eritrea’s many labor camps.

________________________________

Minor language edits: June 25 2013

e-Book: Romanticizing Ghedli

“the whole nation is targeted as dispensable material for its sustenance… when [the revolution] started, it was to serve the nation; by the end, the nation is made to serve the revolution.” – Yosief G.

Click image to download PDF

Click image to download PDF

Romanticizing_Ghedli

I decided to share it in an e-book format (with permission from the author, of course) with the hope to reach a wider audience, and also with the hope it will be easier to print or keep in a collection.

I remember when this article by Yosief Ghebrehiwet first got my attention. I was still in Eritrea under the claws of the beast. This article was passed on to me ‘under-the-table’ with great discretion by a friend (now safely in Europe). It had created an unforgettable impact and was the subject of discussion for a long time among my friends then. Reading this article recently, I was reminded how enlightening its message is. A must read article!

Below is an excerpt, and a reason why everyone should read. [Note that “Shaebia” is a common name that refers to the ruling party, formerly EPLF and now PFDJ].

“Shaebias disrespect for the Eritrean masses has no parallel in history; it neither discriminates nor knows any limits. There is not a single population group that has been spared from its contempt. All that one needs to do is compare its acts with those of previous government to see the alien nature of Shaebia.

“…It holds all religions in Eritrea in utter contempt. It stops at nothing in order to bring the main religions under its control, bans all minority religions and imprisons thousands of their followers, demotes and arrests the Coptic Patriarch and even conducts “giffa” [conscription by abduction] of priests and deacons in monasteries. To see the extent of contempt that Shaebia has for the Coptic Church all that you have to ask yourself is when was the last time the last two incidents ever happened to the Church. Neither Haile Selassie nor Menghistu ever contemplated it. And when it comes to the forceful recruiting of priests into the army, it never occurred in the 1,700 history of the Church in the region!

“… Now think of all the trauma the Warsai [young] generation has been subjected to: the deliberate destruction of the educational system; more than a decade of slavery (which includes the sexual slavery of many women); a senseless war that killed tens of thousands and maimed more; an exodus of epic proportion, one that has emptied the land of its youth; etc. And to add salt to injury, their parents have been subjected to unheard of cruelties for acts committed by their adult sons and daughters.

“Again, to assess the extent of contempt that Shaebia shows for the youth of the nation, ask these questions: When was the last time you heard a nation dismantling the only university it has ever had in order to contain its youth? When was the last time the Eritrean parents had been subjected to such atrocity? When tens of thousands of the youth flocked to mieda [to join armed rebels], neither the Haile Selassie government nor Derg ever arrested or penalized their parents. Only an alien entity like Shaebia that has no values whatsoever would ever entertain to take such steps.”

Note: I know this article is not kind on “Jebha”. Although I find this article’s analysis of the Eritrean civil war convincing, I personally shy away from Jebha-Shaebia arguments because, (a) I don’t have enough knowledge on that topic, and (b) it is often too emotionally charged.