The recent buzz about European Union’s plan to offer cash aid to a tune of 122 million Euro to the Eritrean regime brought to sharp focus the subtle divide that exists within Eritreans, who vehemently oppose such a brazen move. We cannot allow the Isaias regime to pull this off.
The responses in the link above run the gamut: The divide is not as much on individual level as it is on the collective. Individually one can clearly see the majority of Eritreans in Diaspora, the only people who can freely express their views, showing in unison their opposition of any cash advances to the Eritrean regime.
In fact, when one reads carefully, the comments in the link above one will have this erroneous assumption that there exists a political force behind the scene prompting and prodding these individual Eritreans wishing to influence the outcome of the debate – as it were - to drown out the minority who are in support of such absurd idea of monetarily assisting the Eritrean government.
However, behind such massively angry yet well reasoned responses there lurks hollow and empty rhetoric that has no teeth to bite because there is no organization that can represent all these myriad angry voices airing their frustration. There is no channel through which all these energies can be put to good and effective use.
Therefore, the question remains how best to bring the individual Eritreans into the collective tent, a tent from which their voices of opposition can have an exponential effect. As it stands right this moment, individually one can scream from here to eternity, it will only remain that hollow voice with no echoing power to reach its intended target. Prior to proceeding to the question of how does one go about in bringing the individual to the collective tent…one has to find an answer to the why. Why doesn’t the individual want to belong to any political opposition group? To answer this question one must revisit the past Eritrea’s Political Landscape (EPL).
Eritrea’s Political Landscape (EPL) as a mode of analysis has had no effective model that one can use for the current predicament. Historically, the only political group that had opposed one another were during pre-independence era and that was done at the barrel of the gun, hardly conducive for the present day Eritrean Diaspora to unseat the Eritrean regime.
Thus, EPL as a mode of analysis has no model that one can use to take corrective measures against the modern day erratic regime of Asmara. The fluid nature of EPL, its unpredictable shifting, is why the opposition groups and individuals find themselves vacillating from one mode of analysis to another, none of which seem to have worked so far. This kind of incoherent opposition is ripe for the Eritrean regime to stay on the offensive while the opposition remains in the defensive. This endless offensive coming our way from all directions we know we must oppose but we lack cohesive tool in how to attack.
Granted, we Eritreans in Diaspora are bent out of shape to find one cohesive opposition group that can potentially unseat the regime in Asmara. The next best thing short of that lofty idea of unity is to narrowly focus our attention to the few tangible goals that we can all agree to and achieve together. Here is what the majority of individual Eritreans would rally after.
- Let us be proactive and stop any hint of aid before it gets discussed. We must use the power of the vote to effectively lobby to the powers that be; we must let it be known that as constituents we will vote based on our interests and that, those that represent us in our respective communities must be made to listen to our concerns and heed to our suggestions. We should use the power of the number when it comes to voting, thereby, influencing the outcome to our favor.
- Identify individual Eritrean leaders from Diaspora that will be able to serve as, not only, the messengers who would be able to convey to those who are going to give us the helping hands, but also create a shadow government in absentia that can temporarily take over (till a smooth transition to the people’s choice is made) in the ostensible event of Eritrean regime’s failure.
- We should be able to convince the International Courts, the same way in which it's reached to the conclusion on its own accord on the President of Sudan. The President of Sudan has now been served and allegedly indictable of war crimes and crimes against humanity punishable by International laws and that Isaias is no different than his neighborly dictator – we can seize this momentum now than ever before.
The list can go on…
Eritrean Europeans, Eritrean Americans, and Eritreans living in the Middle Eastern countries as well as in any Third World countries should proactively deny Isaias from getting any wherewithal that would possibly prolong his stay in power. Irrespective of our individual differences those of us who are in Diaspora the world over must begin to think on the issues that can galvanize and mobilize us in collective fashion and that would only come if we are willing to look to our past and find continuation and ways in which to evolve from.
The stated goal, the objective – without any equivocation – should be the same: the annihilation of the current Eritrean regime. The framework that bore this post independence political reality springs from pre independence political climate that was left intact and unexamined. The corollary effect of such negligence can be clearly seen in how it has left the opposition Eritrea’s political groups in state of paralysis lacking capability to attract new membership.
Ghedli was not only a political force but also cultural entity that had its values and principles whose adherents through coercion or otherwise were made to abide by. Ghedli’s utility should have been rendered null and void no sooner than independence was realizably in the horizon.
The interlocking nature of ghedli culture with the past and present makes it difficult to ignore, but it would have to be seen as a continuum for the future understanding of the kind of society one wants to build. This is simply a process at work and our understanding of this can only help us evolve to the next level of social and political awareness that we sorely need to march forward to.