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Eritrea Creates A Second Somalia Government In Eritrea
By Gemeda Humnasa
Going along with its promisingly successful East African destruction Foreign Policy, the Eritrean government has created, harbored & armed yet another non-Eritrean institution in its capital - Asmara. As expected and as feared by many regional analysts, a fresh political faction was formed by the Asmara government once again, adding to the several Ethiopian, Somali, Sudanese and other nations’ political groups that the Eritrean government has already financed, formed or armed in attempt to destabilize the entire region.
On March 15, the Somalia government in Somalia condemned the formation of a second " Somalia government" residing in Eritrea and asked the Somalis in Eritrea to stop this ludicrous action & return back to their country. Naming 42 Somali high ranking pro-Islamists in Eritrea, the Somalia national lawmakers and legislators condemned the dissidents & described the legal measures to be taken against them.
According to various analysts and reports, this technique by the Eritrean government continues to create instability and a potential for chaos all around East Africa. Currently, the Eritrean government has duplicated, created or financed various politician groups and militants against Ethiopia, Sudan and Somalia. As United States Ambassador Vicky Huddleston said, “ Eritrea’s hope to destabilize Ethiopia by using Somalia’s conflict failed” last year, but Eritrea’s recent defeat in Southern Somalia will not stop the Eritrean government from continuing another East African destruction project. In a flagrant violation of Somalia territorial integrity and without the permission of the Somalia Transitional Federal Government (S.T.F.G), the Eritrean government armed the ICU rebels and trained other militants in Mogadishu to attack the Somalia government & Ethiopia - but fortunately it failed. It was the second direct attack against Ethiopia since the Eritrean government airbombed an Ethiopian school full of children nine years ago. Other Eritrean provocations like the Eritrean government's war against Yemen and conflicts against Sudan have validated America's condemnation of Eritrea as well as Eritrea government arming Sudanese insurgents, Tahaluf militants, SLF & NDA rebels against Sudan have harmed the Sudanese government's capabilities & stirred the Darfar issue even more. Also It wasn't that long ago when the Eritrean government absurdly wrecked the Sudanese embassy in Eritrea and after kicking out the Sudanese staff, Eritrea comically replaced the embassy building with anti-Sudan rebels and militants. Not a lot of national governments in the history of our world have carried such an outrageous act. In fact, the way the Eritrean government works and what it has done so far, it makes Hezbollah look like an angel. And if we look at the recent kidnapping of European & Ethiopian civilians and the way the Eritrean government exploits the Afar land issue, who knows, maybe Hezbollah can be the student the next time around and take a few lessons from the Eritrean government.
Just against Ethiopia; in a far outcry from Eritrea’s EDA that enjoys zero military & financial Ethiopian support, currently there are MORE than 13 major groups that are heavily armed, trained and financed by the Eritrean government to attack Ethiopia from every direction of East Africa, including from southern Somalia. These Eritrean financed, trained & armed groups against Ethiopia include:
-Islamic Courts Union (ICU)
-Oromo Liberation Front (OLF)
-Tigray People’s Democratic Movement (TDPM)
-Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF)
-Southern Ethiopia Peoples’ Front for “Justice & Equality”
-Gambella People’s Liberation Force (GPLF)
-Ethiopian Patriotic Army
-Somali People’s Insurgent Movement (SPIM)
-Al-Itihaad al-Islamiya (AIAI)
- Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (AFD)
-Ethiopian National Unity Front (ENUF)
-Kinijit International Leadership (KIL/CUD)
-Sidama Liberation Front (SLF)
-Ethiopia People’s Patriotic Front (EPPF)
-And various armed clans in Afar other regions
What is ironic in its support for rebels and political organizations against other nations is that the Eritrean government helps groups that are themselves opposing in their nature, in their policies and missions. And this technique is a well calculated Eritrean government tactic to cause endless havoc in East Africa for those ideologically already divergent groups which the Eritrean government supports will eventually fight each other again - if in case or AFTER they succeed in wrecking the countries currently targeted. For example, the two opposites; the pro-centralization of power, pro-cultural hegemony party KIL/CUD of Ethiopia and the pro-decentralization of power party Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) are both the lucky aid recipients of the Eritrean government. These two Eritrean supported groups are already trying to create a totally opposing & conflicting governments and constitution in Ethiopia. But that doesn't mean anything to the Eritrean government as long its interests are met, it will support all available dissidents. Certainly the goal of such method of Eritrean sponsorship in East Africa for opposing groups is not to bring peace but just to destabilize other nations and cook up a scenario where these nations are in chaos in the long term. According to the attitude of the Eritrean government; helping Ethiopia's KIL/CUD and Somalia's ICU armed groups – which are two important groups with policies eerily similar to the pro-centralization of power, expansionist and radical Ethiopian & Somalia governments of the 1980s – will bring peace to East Africa. Maybe the Eritrean leadership has had a memory loss. Or the Eritrean government must be trying to rewrite history since these two countries with those extremist governments were at each other's throats nonstop, attacking & killing each other while at the same time their people were suffering some of the most famous & historical humanitarian disasters of the century. History teaches us how radical governments with such intolerant, severely over-patriotic, expansionist & extremist policies of those decades created one of the darkest years in African history with more than a million people murdered by the combined state terrorism & genocide of the Mengistu and Siyad Barre regimes, with more than 2 million more systematically killed by famines and tens of thousands killed with the Ogaden war & civil wars. But don’t expect this to bother the Eritrean government’s support for those groups with the resurrected radical policies of the past - KIL/CUD and ICU.
The fact that both KIL/CUD and ICU had complete support from the Ethiopian and Somali capital cities, just as the former military states of Mengistu's & Siyad Barre' extremist governments had such similar support in the 1980’s, was no coincidence at all. The pro-Amhara dominated Addis Ababa, the pro-Amharization interests of some Urban Ethiopian cities and the "Greater Somalia" thirst of Mogadishu shows us the ghost of the 1980's is still knocking on our doors. Only this time around, it is wearing suits & tie and holding a big "Liberal democracy" mask in Addis Ababa and it is riding the radical Wahhabism bandwagon in Mogadishu. Actually it isn't just KIL/CUD but also the E.P.P.F. militants also have sympathizers in the Ethiopian capital. Such indicators were one of the many "DANGER" warning signs to the people of the Horn of Africa reminding them of the resurrection of the 1980’s governments. Even worst, it was mentally very easy for the militant "democratic" group E.P.P.F's former airforce pilot, named Colonel Tadesse, to airbomb Ethiopian schools during the Eritrean-Ethiopian war (1998-2002.) In fact this E.P.P.F. leader was employed in the 1980's Dictator Mengistu Derg government's Airforce which dropped bombs on north Ethiopian market places that were full of civilians and children. As the saying goes, "old habits die hard" and the capital cities, both in Ethiopia and Somalia, are certainly showing that as they continue to support groups with policies eerily identical to the past extremist governments. It is Déjà vu for those who managed to survive the bombardments of Mengistu. Peace, development, multiethnic co-existence, religious tolerance and other mostly universal values were ignored in the 80’s governments but the Eritrean government can successfully resurrect new groups like KIL/CUD, EPPF and ICU with similar old policies of those 1980’s Ethiopian & Somali governments. Which are of course old policies, for Ethiopia – bringing Amharization of Ethiopian cultures & languages, “privatization” for the benefit of the Amhara wealthy populace, endless wars for seaport lands & of course removing “succession” from the Ethiopian constitution in a slap to the face for the other 80% of Ethiopian population who would be terrorized by these pro-Amhara policies hidden in the name of democracy. And for Somalia it would be bringing the same endless wars with her neighbors, being sponsors of Pro-Al Qaeda groups, sponsoring of various Ethiopian rebels to hinder any dialogue & peace inside Ethiopia, discriminating against non-Muslims (however few they might be), more cutting off legs & arms by Islamic extremists because of “sins” and of course unending Ogaden wars. It is not like such crisis has not happened under the pan-Ethiopia & pan-Somalia extremist governments of the Horn of Africa before. Thanks to the Eritrean government, history can repeat itself in the horn of Africa.
In full rage against the Eritrean government’s actions, the deputy Speaker of the Somalia Parliament, Osman Elmi Boqorre, criticized the Eritrean government last week and called Eritrea the “ Somalia national enemy.” Maybe Mr. Osman Elmi Boqorre wasn’t paying attention in the last 15 years because the Eritrean government has deaf ears and never cares what happens to Somalis, as long as its interests are fulfilled. Maybe the deaf ears and stubbornness comes directly from their “President” Isayas Afewerki and according to one of his friend who knew him in college & high school, Mr. Afewerki never knew what compromise meant and championed the use of violence even during his young days. ELF's Mr.Wolde-Yesus Amaar said Mr. Afewerki “was always rude and not a man of compromise” & remembered Afewerki failing in his first year in college as well as his “belligerence” to everyone including randomly attacking a Peace Corp teacher. Maybe it wasn’t just Mr. Osman that wasn’t paying attention because it seems like the whole world also wasn’t paying attention as a violent dictator was being born many decades ago. Now Mr. Isayas Afewerki's Eritrean government; which was absent from the recent African Union (AU) meeting and allegedly attempted to set off bombs in the African Union headquarter, has also condemned the African Union’s decision for a peacekeeping mission in Mogadishu. In all honesty, how can anyone in his/her right mind be surprised about Afewerki's statement? Despite the peace and stability of most of Somalia, including Somaliland, Puntland, Baidoa, Kismayo and other regions; the Eritrean government randomly claimed that Somalia is in a state of “civil war” and “destruction.” It is not rocket science to figure out what Mr. Afewerki is upto. Also, compared to the past when Somali warlords fought each other for many years, even the usually unstable Mogadishu has witnessed on average two or less incidents everyday and a national reconciliation conference is due to make the whole city stable. Most of all, Somalia now has a leadership that will respect international boundaries, Mogadishu has not become a duplication of Eritrean capital - Asmara - and Somalia will not break Isayas Afewerki’s Eritrean record as the number one destabilizing & rogue state in Africa.
Still even the most optimistic Ethiopian government officials have swallowed their pride and have admitted that the Somalia government has not quickly pacified Mogadishu by using the sword or by using the “justice” of cutting off the arms of rebellious Mogadishu Somalis, just like the Union of Islamic Courts did. But, fortunately, It doesn’t seem like the Somalia government needs to copy ICU's system of terrorizing its people by cutting off limbs just to bring "peace." The slow but necessary progress and the Somali government’s tolerant values still have already impressed many people around the world. Already it seems like cargo planes are for the first time landing in Mogadishu airport and trade deals & developments have been initiated between Somalia and other nations. But why should the Eritrean government care about any of these positive changes anyway?
The talk of the town & people in Ethiopia is if you have any problems or any simple dissatisfaction in Ethiopia; however small and minimal it might be, you would have no financial concerns & no worries because the Eritrean government is always ready to finance & arm your “struggle.” Eritrean President Isayas Afewerki is always there for you - ready to arm you and sponsor your projects as long as like. The Eritrean government is always ready to help you achieve your personal goal, even if it is ethnocentric or if it is historically proven impractical; and however selfish and dreamy it might be; however violent, provocative, radical or ethnocentric it might be, and however easy it could be to solve with a healthy dose of dialogue & negotiation. According to the current Eritrean government; there is no need for of such dialogue, there is no need for any “give and take” policy or for any compromise because even some of the most narrow, ethnocentric and impractical interests of every 80 ethnic groups inside Ethiopia can all be magically achieved as long as you arm yourself for the Eritrean government and join the Eritrean government against your own country. This is the promise the current Eritrean government has made to the dissent people of Ethiopia and to most in East Africa.
Only if the Eritrean government was this compassionate or only if it was this generous to its own citizen, then Eritrean protestant Christians (outlawed) would not have been persecuted, tortured and killed. Only if the Eritrean government was this polite & generous to its own people, more than a hundred Eritreans per a month would not have been forced to flee to Ethiopian refugees camps. And Eritrean government would not have had to imprison & torture various Islamic groups including torturing numerous Muslims belonging to the peaceful foundation, Islamic Awqaf. It also would not have become one of the only governments to make a peaceful & large group of its society - tens of thousands of Protestant Eritrean Christians- outlawed and illegal to breathe or live in Eritrea.
Despite all of this, you know that the Eritrean government is smart and experienced at its job when its capital city Asmara, a place where private media has never existed, ironically becomes the safe heaven for one of the numerous Ethiopian private media stations who was dissatisfied enough on the low level of journalism freedom in Ethiopia to qualify for an Eritrean scholarship to Asmara. You know that the Eritrean government is very smart at its wicked job when an Eritrean government that has never held a multi-party election becomes the safe heaven for one of the eleven political parties in Ethiopian parliament that abandoned the parliament and became unsatisfied with its share of election votes enough to qualify for another scholarship to Asmara. And now we can include Somali dissidents to that list. No wonder why the Eritrean government is making weekly trips to Libya and Iran - to get economic and military support - just to feed all these foreigners it entertains and arms. The Eritrean government certainly has more mouth to feed than it can handle – only if the innocent Eritrean people, who are only fed with empty patriotism propaganda, knew that they have so many foreign guests in their backyard sharing their scarce resources.
Now the world can add a phony Eritrea based “ Somalia government” to the list of Eritrean government’s successful inventions & Eritrea's scholarship recipients. But now that you are an Eritrea scholarship recipient; you better start attacking innocent people in other nations, because otherwise, President Isayas Afewerki will put you in prison & torture you, just like he did to the former E.P.P.F. rebel leader Lieutenant Abere Ademu.
Islamic Courts Union (ICU), your Al-Qaeda friends and dissident Somali MPs ... we realize you were defeated in Somalia but CONGRADULATIONS and WELCOME to Eritrea – the land of opportunity – opportunity to wreck East Africa.
Source: American Chronical