Eritrea’s path is clear, only possible through dogged struggle by squashing, clearing every little pesky, stony and thorny scrab along the way. Yesterday, 12/13/2015, Ambassador Girma Asmerom Embassy of Eritrea held a public seminar in Washington DC.
The Seminar was very informative and essential. We have not had such a meeting in a long time, so it was a timely and desperately needed seminar. It addressed some critical issues that have to do with our communities. Ambassador Girma talked about individual responsibilities and how we can participate in making our lives and, most notably, the lives of the people in Eritrea successful.
To sum it up the Seminar:
Ambassador Girma said Eritrea is fighting an existential fight. The enemies do not want to see us succeed, and the US is leading it.
Weyane is an eager servant that jumps super-actively at every assignment. The dispute between Eritrea and Ethiopia is serving Djibouti well, using it to make money.
The US and the TPLF have tried all that they can to undermine our independence. After the war ended and failed to accomplish its goal, it was clear that they would move to the next step. That is why they pursued the sanction even if Somalia had nothing to do with it. The Arms embargo, therefore, was designed to tie our hands while they occupied our land.
Hence, we designed our diplomatic efforts to expose the lies and challenge them with facts. Legalities and justice are none existent. They base everything they do on their interest.
Eritrea is lucky A)to sit in one of the most critical strategic waterways B) Eritrea is prosperous. Without mentioning the other abundant resources, we can sell fish and live on it. C)Eritrean people are the most dedicated, brilliant people. That also makes us a target; hence, we must be careful about how we move forward.
We are the masters of our destiny. How they try to define us is not what we are. We have our history, legacy, and own stories to tell. No one can defend our rights; it is only us and by us. These people that claim to be concerned about Human Rights in Eritrea are part of the strategy designed to undermine our very existence. Human Rights are a tool they want to use to deter others from doing business with Eritrea to make our economy irrelevant and ensure that Eritrea does not become viable as a nation. They also want to vacate Eritrean youth and stop them from building and defending Eritrea.
Their campaigns are multipronged and consistent. It targets the president because they feel if you get rid of the head, the body will fall apart. President Isaias Afewerki has been and remains a target. By attacking the president, they are attacking the values and history associated with it. They attack our history, our ways, culture, customs, and values. They have manufactured a fictitious culture and picture of Eritrea that does not look anything like Eritrea. They are trying to portray Eritrea as a country that accepts rape. They are lying that anyone who uses the internet or watches TV goes to jail. They are lying aimlessly and endlessly. They are also trying to make the global migration issue Eritrea specific.
Therefore, our diplomatic goals aim to counter their lies, and we pursue matters our way. Firstly, everywhere we go, we talk about Ethiopia’s occupation of Eritrean territories. Everything else is “Chew Berbere, ጨው በርበረ,” or spices. In other words, neither here nor there. Secondly, we talk about the illegal, immoral sanction.
The Role of the Diaspora is well defined and must be played effectively. It requires us to understand our responsibilities and roles. The aim is to kill our economy. Our part must be to support Eritrea’s economy however we can. We have to promote, sell and buy Eritrean products.
They have targeted our music, cultural riches, and arts. When Eritreans release a new song, the TPLF illegally copies it and sells it. Piracy of Eritrean Music and videos is prevalent on YouTube. It is done deliberately to A) to frustrate the artist and render their work worthless. It has economic implications as well because these artists are denied the fruits of their labor. It is done to frustrate the artists and push them to quit.
Music was a tool during our liberation struggle. During our struggle, music was one way that we communicated. By killing Eritrean musical voice, they aim to destroy our message. Hence, we must fight piracy to save our legacy. It is our responsibility. We have to protect and defend Eritrean products. We also have to play an active role in developing and marketing our products with pride. For example, in the coming New Year, Eritrean women are urged to buy Eritrean Zuria to help the Eritrean economy.
Ambassador Girma urged Eritreans to play it smart and challenge these hostilities while building their nation and developing the economy. Stop Hawalla practices. It is not smart. To trade dollars for Nakfa from a country of dollars is not good for our economy. We have to be smart about how we transfer money. Also, we need to ensure that we open accounts in Eritrea with dollars. It could be a thousand or $500, which will go a long way to fight their attempts and help ensure our economic viability.
We have to send the messages however we can and meet the challenges with stronger united zeal no matter what they do. We have to write the Commission of Inquiry on Eritrea (COI) and tell them our stories. Let them know that the 500 people they interviewed to craft the history and life in Eritrea are not representative of our life. It does not reflect the realities in Eritrea. We have to write to reach not only the COI but all involved. That is our responsibility what we owe to our martyrs.
We are in a good place as we have laid the foundation to a significant economic future that sees past the Millenium Development Goals (MDG’s) of the world. As we usher in this new era, we must understand that our challenges are going to mount. But we need to realize that only Eritreans can solve Eritrean problems. One of the most critical points is that Eritrea owns her issues, and that must never change!
Action day at ECCC DC 600 L St. NW to write letters this Saturday, December 19, 2015, all day. Sunday if Necessary