Heroic life of G15 in Eritrea – By Mohammed Barkay
Whenever September comes there are two events always remembered, the Eritrean Armed Struggle starting day by our hero Hamid Awate, and the arrest of our nation’s founding fathers - G15. As any African nation Eritrea
Whenever September comes there are two events always remembered, the Eritrean Armed Struggle starting day by our hero Hamid Awate, and the arrest of our nation’s founding fathers – G15. As any African nation Eritrea and Eritreans suffered a lot under various colonizers and it is this fact that made us to fight back. We paid high price and we won. However, we are not left without scars.
I found a group of Eritreans somewhere in Europe discussing the arrest of our heroes. Most of the arguments were that G15 had been arrested because they tried to overthrow the government by force. I felt so sad to hear that from young men and asked permission to join their discussion and I was allowed. The discussion took regional trend and could not come to positive conclusion. Sadly we departed without agreement. I felt that many young Eritreans do not know about G15 anything therefore I would like to highlight some points.
G15 are our corner stone and without mentioning them our Eritrean history is incomplete. These people paid the highest price for our sake. Firstly, in the field they tolerated all those years the heavy equipped Isyas Afwerki and his malicious behaviors for the sake of Eritrea. Isyas Afwerki and his well trained secret guards were baptized by Emperor Haile Silase to destroy Eritrea and Eritreans. He was well equipped, well funded, provided with security expert personnel, given modern communication instruments, granted travel means, and all support was given by foreign powers. Therefore, G15 and others tolerated all his odds so that we could achieve our independence. Haile Weldetinsae once said “This problem is not new but since long time we tolerated.” It is true, if they confronted Isyas at that time we could have been ended in an unkown situation. But it was prudence from our heroes to say mEnti Mogo Tehlef Anchewa. Isyas and his group never even for a second thought about Eritrean independence but rather spent their time in planning on how to destroy the revolution and its founders. The man who never shot a single bullet to the enemy directed his bullets towards his comrades. Isyas Afwerki and his clique killed Eritrean heroes under different pretexts. The men whose identities in question intimidated and killed our heroes from the back.
The only objective of Isyas and his clique is to scratch and take away our nationalism through different mechanisms. He has strong hatred and bigotry towards the people who fed him and protected him, and gave him their children. Many nationalist such as Abraham Tewelde, Haile Jebha, Solomon Woldemariam, Haile Garza, Musie, Mahmoud Hasab, Ibrahim Afa, wedi Ali, and many others were killed by Isyas Afwerki. When a group of highly educated fighters known as Menkae raised the issue of injustice and requested the leadership to reform the organization, they were regarded as regionalists and all killed. Isyas Afwerki the man whose identity in question undermined our nationalists. Imagine G15 came to Asmara by overcoming all those problems and achieved independence. They controlled their emotions, spent their energy, poured sweats and blood, stayed tight lipped, calculated cost-benefit, and finally brought us to the light.
Secondly, Isyas Afwerki is a man who lives by sucking blood of innocent people and so soon after independence started attacking the neighboring countries to find a reason to stay in power. But when Yemen, Sudan, and Djibouti did not go into war with Eritrea he planned a different way. G15 still then tolerated the notorious behaviors of Isyas until the referendum was done.. Because Isyas is a man who exploits situations towards his own advantage, thus G15 kept silent until we achieved our independence through referendum.
Thirdly, Isyas Afwerki designed new tactics to stay in power for unlimited time and therefore he invaded Ethiopia. It was another conspiracy against the Eritrean people. He wanted to divert our attention towards the war and so that we never think of our domestic issues. Until June 2000, things went smoothly with Isyas. But later on there happened two strong events that shook Isyas Afwerki’s throne – these are the war of Aseb and question of G15. Isyas gave orders to evacuate Aseb, but our army commanders in Aseb defied the orders of Isyas and fought to the end. Why do you think Isyas ordered to surrender in Aseb? Because he wanted to buy time and to prolong his kingdom and to kill bigger number of Eritreans. That time G15 found out that it was the right time to confront Isyas Afwerki. Yes it was the right time because they gave us independent country with full recognition. Therefore, it was their obligation to question that blood sucker and they did so. As usual Isyas invents pretexts and digs out sentiments to stir his few supporters, and he accused our heroes of regionalism. He wanted them to polish his shoes if they wanted to survive. But these were not the type Isyas likes, they were bitter pills for Isyas to swallow. They preferred prison to selling their nation and dignity. They were imprisoned in inhuman conditions and without charges.
Most of the G15 members are believed to be dead. However, they are dead in flesh but not dead from our hearts. Isyas Afwerki, Alamin Mohammed Seid, and Yemane Monkey and their collaborators betrayed G15 and the Eritrean people in general. But G15 will be remembered forever. These are the real heroes who gave us independent nation. When martyr wedi Ali and his group occupied forto, Isyas and his group called it Islamic movement. Imagine whoever stands against Isyas Afwerki is either an islamist or regionalist! Nevertheless, our struggle to bring Isyas and his group into justice is in progress. One day the sun will shine again and our people will judge all the criminals.
Peace to our country!