Are Eritrean refugees legit?

This is a legitimate question given the polar opposite answers out there. “There are two sides to a story” the saying goes, but in the case of Eritrea it is more appropriate to say “There are two stories,” period.

On one side, the Eritrean government and the Iranian State television (Press TV) tell us that Eritreans choose to leave their country for economic reasons. For better jobs, bigger salaries, etc. On the other side, many nations, many more humanitarian agencies, and the immigrants themselves tell us that Eritreans are forced to flee their country because of extreme government oppression. Continue reading

ውዲት ‘ተቓወምቲን’–ንቕሓት መንግስትናን

ገለገለ ኤርትራውያን ነቲ መለለይ ፖለቲካዊ ባህልና ዝኾነ: “ተወፋይነት”: “ሓቦ”: “ኒሕ” ዝብል ቃላት ገዲፎም: መሰል ዋላ ዴሞክራሲ ክብሉ አዝዩ ዘሕዝን’ዩ:: መንግስትና ነዚ ውዲት ምዃኑ ብኣግኡ ስለዝተረድኦ: ነዚ “መሰል” ዝበሃል አብ ሃገርና ከስገድድዎ ዝፍትኑ ዘለዉ ኣምር ንምእላይ ክሳዕ ሕጂ ዝምጎስ ተበግሶ ክገብር ጸኒሑን ይገብር አሎን::

ሓደ ኣባል እዘን ተቓወምቲ-ጉጅለታት ዝኾነ ኤርትራዊ: “ዴሞክራሲ ኣብ ኤርትራ ይተግበር:” ኢሉ ይጭድር ይኸውን: ነዚ ተቓዋማይ መልስና ሓጺር’ዩ: “ስለምንታይ አሜሪካ ሎሚ ብዛዕባ ዴሞክራሲ አብ ኤርትራ ተገዲሳ:” እዩ:: እዚ ንናጽነትን ንዴሞክራሲን ኢሉ ኣዝዩ ነዊሕ ዓመታት (ማለት 30 ዓመታት) ዝተቓለሰ መንግስቲ: ብዛዕባ ጉዳይ ዴሞክራሲን መሰል ወዲ ሰብን ንዓለም ምመሃረ እንበር: በንጻሩ ክንምህረካ ኣይምተባህለን::

መብዛሕትኦም እዞም ‘ተቓወምቲ’ ኢና ዝብሉ ኤርትራውያን: ብ ዘይኤርትራዊ አተሓሳስባን ባህልን ስለ ዝተበገሱ:-

(ሀ) መብዛሕትኡ ጥርዓን እዞም ‘ንቃወም ኢና’ ዝብሉ:- “አብ ሃገርና ቅዋም ይተግበር”: “አብ ሃገርና ዴሞክራሲን ፍትሕን ንደሊ”: “ናይ ሃይማኖታት መሰል ይተሓሎ”: “ናይ ምዝራብን ምጽሓፍን መሰልና ይተሓሎ”: “እሱራት ይፈትሑ” ወዘተ. ዝብል: እንተተግቢሩ አዝዩ ሓደገኛን ንህላወ ሃገርና ኣብ ሓደጋ ዘእቱን ሕልምታት እዩ:: ብመሰረቱ:

(ለ) “ዴሞክራሲ”: “ሰብኣዊ መሰላት”: ወዘተ ዝዓይነቱ ስነ-ሓሳባት አብ ሃገርና ከስርሕ ዘይክእል (አረ ናብ ቋንቋና ክትርጎም’ኳ ዝኸብድ): ምስቲ ክቡር ባህልናን ንቡር አሰራርሓን መንግስትና ዘይከይድ ባዕዲ ዝኾነ ምዕራባዊ ኣምር (Western concept) እዩ::

(ሐ) መብዛሕትኡ ዘልዕልዎ ኣርእስቲ: ህዝቢ ንሃገር እንታይ ክገብረላ ይግበኦ ዘይኮነሲ: መንግስቲ ንሃገር ንታይ ክገብር ይግበኦ ጥራይ እዩ (ብርግጽ ተቓውሞኦም ንመንግስቲ እንበር ንህዝቢ ክሳዕ ዘይኮነ ንተግባራት መንግስቲ ጥራይ ኣተኩሮም ክዛረቡ ንቡር ክኸውን ይኽእል እዩ: ይኹን ደኣ እንበር እዚ እኹል ምኽንያት አይኮነን):: ብተወሳኺ:

(መ) ኩሉ ጥርዓናት ናይዞም ተቓወምቲ-ጉጅለታት ከምኡ ውን ተቓወምቲ-ውልቀሰባት በቲ ግቡእ መሳልል መንግስቲ (proper channels) ዘይኮነሲ: ብኣግባብ ዘይብሉ ጫውጫውታን ድፍረትን አብ ፈቐዶ ጎደናታት ወጻኢ ሃገራትን አብ ናይ ኢንተርነት መርበባትን እዩ:: “ሕቶን: ርእይቶን” አብ ባህሊ ውድብና ካብ ሜዳ አትሒዙ እንሰርሓሉ አገባብ እዩ:: ሕቶ ዘለዎ ብኣገባብ ንዝምልከቶም ጨንፈራት መንግስቲ ወይ ከኣ ንኤምባሲታትና ዘይውከል?

እዞም ንመንግስትና ክቃወሙ ዝፍትኑ ግና ብናይወልቆም ተበግሶ እዩ ኢልካ ምሕሳብ የዋህነት ኮይኑ ይስመዓኒ:: ብምዕራባውያን ሃገራት ተዘይ ተነጊርዎ: ሓደ ኤርትራዊ ሰብ ከመይ ጌሩ ባዕሉ “ናጽነት” ወይ “መሰል” ዝብል ኣመራት ከልዕል ይኽእል? ስለዚ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ: ኩሉ እዚ ዝግበር ዘሎ ናይ ባዕዳዊ ኣተሓሳስባ ጎስጓስ ብትሪ ክቃወም ሃገራዊ ግቡኡ እዩ::

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Hello PressTV man/woman. Sorry to disappoint but you can’t use this article in your news as I am not associated with the real ONION News.

Protest for freedom. A duty.

Oakland California. August 13th, 2011. I joined about 50 other Eritreans as we  stood protesting at the entrance gate to a PFDJ organized party event. The event was disguised as a cultural and non-political event. This trick is still effective on many unsuspecting Eritreans. The event place was decorated with large posters with slogans. Most of the posters expressed praise to the Eritrean government and the rest of the posters expressed anger and accusation to those that think otherwise about the government.

We held our signs up high and distributed flyers with the message calling Eritreans to boycott government sponsored events and ‘vote with their feet’ by not attending. Some of the chants we were saying include: “stop abusing our youth!”; “enough is enough – 20 years is enough!”.

Some government supporters, particularly young second-generation Eritreans, were actively taking our photos close up, often nodding with a sinister smile. Their implied message was, “we’ll report you to the Eritrean government. You will be sorry you did this.” Such incidents reaffirm my belief that no government supporter is innocently misinformed. They don’t doubt swift action will be taken against those who dare voice a different message – even in foreign countries.

I also noticed with horror how heartless some have become. I asked one of the pro-government people that was confronting us and telling us to go away. She was probably in her late 40’s. I asked politely if she knew that Eritreans are imprisoned in shipping containers to which she replied firmly, “If they break the law, yes they should be locked up!” She was holding a sign that read ‘We will never kneel down!’.

Another older woman replied, “it’s their fault, their decision. They decided to leave Eritrea.” when she was asked how she felt that her grandchildren were perishing in the Sahara and the Atlantic. A certain man threatened to throw his car keys at me when I approached him to offer a flyer. These people have learned nothing from the society they lived in for decades.

And then, of course, there were the success stories. Many people, those with a conscience, were ashamed. They could not look at us in the eyes while entering the event. I could read their embarrassment. They knew they were on the wrong side of the crowd. No doubt many of them are held hostage by these cursed houses they bought back home in Eritrea. The government threatens to confiscate all assets and refuse all services to those who fail to comply with every demand the government makes. Not attending a government hosted event raises questions.

This experience was the first time in my life to ever loudly express my opinion about the tyranny back  home. It was a liberating experience. I can’t wait to see the oppressor gone, my friends finally free in their own land, families reunited, …

"Enough is Enough!" we chanted.

Outraged we shouted, “Enough is Enough!” as the pro-government crowd confronted us to force us to go away.