Fearless Afwerki the Bravo (PART II)
Dedicated to President Afwerki
by Fetsum Abraham
Books: From Feminist to Rapist//The Curse of being and Living It//AMAZON BOOKS
From the Diary
It was in September 1990 few months before independence when the DERG was taking punches left and right in Eritrea and in Ethiopia, staggering for survival like an intoxicated man walking in zigzag. The emotional discharge, the unity, the heroism, the excitement and the dedication experienced by Eritreans for the cause anywhere in the world was just unforgettable to say the least. Put the WEDITIKUL and WEDISHEK styles of Guaila and Eritrean RAGGAI into the momentum, you were looking for double trouble; add GUAL ANKERE behind the Bass guitar articulation of my beautiful sister SENAIT DEBESSAI to the spark, the world was simply on fire!
Any challenge in the ground was taken care of by our selfless fighters at home, and any supply requirement of the struggle promptly delivered by the most united and determined people of the time on earth; the highly nationalistic Eritreans in Diaspora, who were materially squeezed to the last drop by the EPLF obediently, willingly and happily. It was then, when an opportunity to serve the motherland came across immediately magnetizing me to involve (MAETOT) in EPLF financed Microwave Network Communication installation project in SAHEL.
I flew to Khartoum from DC, with my two comrades and reached PORT SUDAN few days after in our way to SAHEL. Sitting down in our room at the Community Center with Fikre (a brother in the group of 3) in the evening, in September 22, 1990, Tsehaye, the head of the group came from outside and instructed us to get ready for dinner with management. A small car then took us somewhere in the City and dropped us in a house, where we were invited in to sit in a small waiting room inside.
It was about 8 PM in the evening by then when a tired and dusty looking slim, tall and handsome man entered the room alone and the door was closed behind him. That was the then EPLF General Secretary Mr. Issaias Afwerki, the man I used to consider the Messiah of a wounded society; my role model of sacrifice, endurance, justice, determination, emotional strength and spirituality at large. I was frozen there with intense emotion through out the engagement; about 20 minutes of his time, chatting a bit and welcoming us to the broken motherland with impressing modesty. That precious Afwerki then left promising to visit us in SAHEL in his return home with a beautiful smile: The rest is history!!
To share my idea here, there is nothing in between the people and you except Eritrea. You think Eritrea is all yours and we don’t. We are against your system not against you though you are responsible for its performance by fair verdict of ordinary intelligence. We cannot detach you from your system that has become the pain of the Eritrean society! You are the only one who can change your situation easily because no one forced you to be you. Poor Eritreans likewise, must and will change their situation. You voluntarily created your condition by refusing to listen or to move on but we are confronting our condition involuntarily, and we will keep doing what it takes until the people start living like human beings in their country. It is your rigidity to resolve the stalemate that has made you the target of the resistance by autonomous choice; that also made us the victims of your injustice without choice.
I think your perception of the TRUTH walks upside down vis-à-vis how it is conventionally conceptualized by ordinary commonsense. Please do not apply your subjective truth in today’s Eritrean reality because the obedience of yesterday has become the unflinching Resistance of today. Don’t you think you can make it a lot easier for all of us, including your self and your family if you understand what I am saying? The universe is full of excitement especially for those with a little money in the pocket like you. You’ve got to see that this is over! I do not think you can return the wheel of history for it is moving forward out of your control. You cannot impress the society otherwise after you already impacted it one way or another for 22 years. You have over lived your philosophy more than your share. Why would you take the chance any more?
Be practical my brother! It is extremely hot out there! Use the FORTO crisis as means of your transformation to a better man, cause of your exit to normal life. Your ego has gotten you this far; please don’t let it dictate your decision until it is too late.
In “The light inside the dark”, John Tarrant says something in a person must die before a new way permeates the person’s life.
In other words, life must hit rock bottom before awareness takes place because failure is the most effective source of higher consciousness. Being in darkness is the best cause of healing for those who relate to life rather than dictating it.
Please apply this wisdom to defuse the flame that is burning in your compound. Relate to us for a solution to the stalemate so that we can try to help rather than competing with the unstoppable struggle for freedom with guaranteed destination.
Let me now represent one of your advisers believing that they would tell you what I would tell you in transparent communication environment.
Your Excellency; everyone else may have a chance of survival in fair justice system except you if you hang on to the end. REMEMBER that you are the only one who will certainly face the worst reaction of the people when it over, should you fail to listen this time. Please stop here and read me back again: this may save and change your life if you give it a chance in this do or die situation of yours.
You see, time and the momentum of resistance are running against you; there will never be another chance after this one; here is no room for vandalizing this last opportunity on the table. Please cease moment for your own sake.
I would focus on possible ways to negotiate with the people for my safe exit to live life at its best elsewhere if I were you. You may not see what we are seeing from distance, but I would really look for peaceful retirement with all the luxuries I need elsewhere, if I were you. But to continue sticking to power depending on this ridiculous absolute dictatorship at the expense of fear and stress, specially after witnessing Kaddafi’s and Sadam’s missed opportunities for survival is foolish and scary; don’t you think? No one wants to deal with your over-dozed philosophy any more, nor can you have another chance in the country even if you suddenly grow democratic.
Your Excellency; you need to die out of Afwerkism by checking out your ego in this extremely critical time!! Please design a different setting completely out of Eritrea’s political life before your philosophy withers away with your life. I mean, Kaddafi could have influenced you to stay in power for so long but you cannot be that naïve to scuffle it to the end like him and loose everything: life and power. To be honest with you, no miracle except resignation can change your situation for the better.
You really think you will learn from the FORTO uprising to be stronger in the future as you said in Eri-TV? This is a terrible mistake Mr. President! How more absolute can you be than ranking the worst on the narrative and how much more of you can the society take any longer? There is no future for you in Eritrean politics: you have exhausted your unfair share of dictation and beyond for 22 years. There is no room for being stronger from now on and there is nothing to learn any more. You had already reached the pinnacle of strength through which the people have exhausted their patience and hope. The next move is downwards in respect of nature. This is time to EXIT not to contemplate for rebound. It is not worth the consequence after the foundation of your power, the people decided to move on beyond your political philosophy. It is like committing suicide to think of absolutely dictating the society in the face of all the demonstrations for change internationally; I warn you to realize that nothing will stop this resistance until it achieves its goal and the only way you can secure your life and at least modify your broken legacy is by peacefully leaving the society alone.
As complex as the situation has been for every one of us, Louis Michael (a frustrated European Parliament representative on the question of Dawit Issac) in my opinion explains your Excellency’s extremely self-destructive mentality very well. In “An Afternoon with Louis Michel in the European Parliament” the gentleman “drew a striking comparison between the tendency of the Eritrean president and what he has observed in the behavior of Fidel Castro during his last months in power. The common element is that they live in a state of mind which suffers from utter denial of objective reality, rejecting real problems on the ground and saying that everything is alright. I understood the explanation to mean that the Eritrean president is utterly suffering from a high level of idiosyncrasy [“An idiosyncrasy is an unusual feature of a person. It also means odd habit. The term is often used to express peculiarity“].
To be frank, your situation and Fidel Castro’s are different from one another: Castro did not have slaves like you. He was a visionary dictator who produced the “highest number of Medical Doctors in Latin and South Americas”. Cuba has one of the highest life expectancy rates in the region, with the average citizen living to 77.7 years old.” Further, ” there are almost 47 universities in Cuba. “
Cuba is a nation twice as populated as our country (11,222,665 in 2011), my brother. Castro’s achievement would translate into at least 23 Universities for a population comparable to that of Eritrea’s. Do you see why Castro was tolerated in Cuba, at least from the angle of education and health?
Let us talk a little about your performance in relation to what has been academically and technologically going on in our neighborhood while you were infatuating with Al-Shabab, KINIGIT and the mercenary group from Tigrai at the socio-economical and political expense of our society.
About 160 colleges and universities exist in today’s Ethiopia for 85 million people (one for about 2 million people). There were at least 10 accredited Universities in Libya for a population size of 6,423,000, in 2011 (over 82% of the population can read and write), a minimum of 54 Universities in Iraq (80 percent literacy rate), 27 active Universities in Sudan for 31 million people (about one university for 1.1 million Sudanese) and 13 million people enjoy 16 universities in today’s Zimbabwe (one for about 0.8 million people). There are 17 Universities in Kenya (one for 2.4 million people), 6 Universities in Somalia, 11 of them in Uganda, and one in Djibouti for less than a million people and 36 of them in Egypt.
Can you see the difference between you and Meles at least in this case? He inherited one University and multiplied it by 160. You, however, closed Asmara University (inherited from the Ethiopia), an accredited institution since 1958 for undisclosed reason.
Do you see Mr. President, why our situation is so urgent that we cannot sustain your destruction anymore? Doesn’t your action embarrass you in this regard when you surf the INTERNET to see an empty page on information about higher education in the country? Don’t you, Mr. President now wonder about your making Eritrea the only country without an accredited institution in the world? Can you see how much catching up our uneducated society will have to do as of today? 20 years behind our neighbors ((-20) in educational time)and probably that long to get to where we were, you have literally created about 40 years of academic void induced disaster in the Eritrean society vis-à-vis our neighbors.
Yet; reality tells me that it did not click; you still expect people to accept your ridiculous leadership. No thugs showed up after a ploy to resist your socio-political illusion in your last visit to NY as you implied to your audience: they were Eritreans who decided to challenge you on the merit of your social input. Similarly, there was no enemy in the popular support of FORTO uprising; for the same reason. We are now a united front inside out, at least mentally trying to pull out our country from the cavity of your destruction: people who have no more time to entertain your Afwerkism.
My question to your Excellency in conclusion: Do you think it is fair for some Eritreans to call you “WEDI MEDHIN BERAD”? Don’t you think the poor grandma has been abused unfairly by this offense? Don’t you think this was an act of hooliganism? I tend to think so. By the same token: Don’t you think it was unfair for you to call the Eritreans in solidarity with FORTO “bankrupt enemy quarters” and to use bad expressions against them such as “senef, znedeye, zTefeshe, wduQ, Harich ab nfas, etc? Do you see how Afwerki is destroying Afwerki through this reality? Would not this make you a hoodlum like the abusers of your grandma in view of logical consistency? See you next time soon.