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A Little Knowledge Is a Dangerous Thing – Deceptions of the Eritrean Quislings League
July 8, 2014
By Sophia Tesfamariam
If you are a member of the Eritrean Diaspora, you are probably participating in several cyber discussions on whether the European Union should provide Eritrea with development aid or not. While majority of the Eritrean Diaspora have welcomed the EU’s proposals, not surprisingly, members of the Eritrean Quislings League (EQL), who are determined to scuttle any progress in Eritrea, whether it is social, political and especially economic, are on a writing frenzy, pleading with the European lawmakers not to send any aid to Eritrea. This is not the first time that they have done that. These un-democratic members of the EQL have appointed themselves as spokespersons for the Eritrean Diaspora and have fraudulently used the names and information of unsuspecting Eritreans in order to carry out their evil campaigns against the Government and people of Eritrea. Their fraudulent activities and that of their cohorts will be exposed later.
It should be recalled that in 2001, they ran a similar campaign. Here is what they said then:
“…Eritrean-Americans will need to organize and petition the US, EU, other governments as well as non-governmental organizations, including Amnesty International, as part of a sustained political, diplomatic, and economic campaign…For Eritrean-Americans, a good place to start with respect to the new struggle against the injustice perpetrated by Issaias Afwerki and his advisors is the Asmarino.com database that houses contact information of the approximately 5000 individuals that signed two major petitions this year…Like-minded Eritrean-Americans with a firm dedication to democracy will need to build an informal and consequently formal network that is action-oriented … Through this network, letters will need to be drafted, finalized, and distributed to US government representatives, World Bank, IMF, Amnesty International and other organizations…”
Today, they are once again polluting the cyberspace with their stench…
Not to be left out, Daniel Mekonnen, who operates a National Endowment for Democracy (NED) funded “human rights” and “democracy” outfit, also wrote to the EU echoing the sentiments of his treasonous colleagues in the West. Since the site welcomed comments from the readers, I responded to his article. Here is my response to Daniel Mekonnen:
“…First of all, Daniel Mekonnen is one of the beneficiaries of the Government of Eritrea’s (GoE) magnanimity. The GoE borrowed 50 million dollars from the World Bank to educate Eritrea’s youth and sent Daniel and his cohorts to South Africa. Instead of returning to the country and people that sacrificed to educate them, they turned their backs on them and now use “human rights” to justify their actions. Pay the people and government of Eritrea what you own them before you start bad mouthing them with your fancy legalese. It does not impress anyone.
Daniel Mekonnen and his group are also recipients of funds from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the same group that financed Paulos Tesfagiorgis’ treasonous activities in Eritrea. Daniel Mekonnen and his group are also recipients of funds from Dan Connell and Grassroots International, which decided to take away funds that it used to give to Eritrea and decided to give it to Daniel’s “human rights group” instead. Connell was grooming this group to replace the hapless “opposition”. The group was also courted by the US State Department and given $30,000 to translate Albert Einstein manuals on how to overthrow governments. So this mercenary traitor is no position to talk about democracy, human rights or anything else.
The Eritrean people are sick and tired of all the lies and the pretentiousness. Daniel Mekonnen and his cohorts keep telling us about what EU can and cannot do; what EU cannot do for any Eritrean is give them their self-respect. The kind of self-respect no Euro can buy!
Peace, sustained development and respect for the people of Eritrea cannot be gained by bootlicking; it comes with hard work. The people of Eritrea are the ones who will decide what they want and what they do not want. Whatever the runaway reformers and their coteries are in the eyes of the EU, to Eritreans like me, they are defectors who abandoned their posts, traitors who are committing economic treason, deceitful in their presentations and their agendas and not worthy of my trust or respect.
Eritrea will never relinquish her internal or external sovereignty; it is high time that the EU respects that. As for Daniel Mekonnen and his cohorts, they remind me of the many African “educated elite” who sold out their people for a few crumbs.
A little education is indeed dangerous….
Not surprisingly, instead of responding to Daniel’s commentary, the EQL came out swinging in defense of their man in South Africa. One of them, Simon Weldehaimanot, responded with this:
“…Some of the commentators here are apologists who are hired to defend the regime at any rate. They do not argue and debate matters in forums where facts matter most. In cyber space, they submit gross misrepresentation of facts. A tangible example is Ms Sophia Tesfamariam’s indication that the author of the main article (Dr. Daniel R Mekonnen) has little education which she contended is dangerous. For the reader, Dr. Mekonnen holds Diploma and LLB in Law; LLM in human rights law and LLD in international criminal law and transitional justice. A formerly Judge of the Zoba Maekel Provincial Court (Eritrea), currently Post-Doctoral Researcher at the Human Rights Centre in Ghent University, he is a brave young lawyer who, in collaboration with others, have challenged the regime in court of law on violation of the very principles the Cotonou Agreement is aimed at protecting and promoting. Such apologist and the regime have not dared to debate matters in legal forums with facts and evidence…”
Aitibkeyi induy zebkieni zelo!
The comment had nothing to do with the good Dr.’s academic credentials; it is a commonly used phrase to describe the lack of common sense in folks like Daniel and Simon. It’s an affliction that is quite common in the Eritrean Quislings League, where a small amount of knowledge can cause people to think they are more expert than they really are. It comes from a phrase used in Alexander Pope’s Essay ‘An Essay on Criticism’. Here is the excerpt:
“…A little learning is a dangerous thing; drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring: there shallow draughts intoxicate the brain, and drinking largely sobers us again…”
I believe in Tigrinya there is a similar saying, probably more fitting that goes something like this- kab mihro e’imro…I don’t have any issues with Daniel remaining in South Africa or any other midre genet of his choice. He can go, Daniel keydo, kalie Daniel yimeSi’. He is not the first son to betray Eritrea and he will not be the last. One day, he will realize what a big mistake he is making that after the NED and his handlers use him, they will dump him because he has made himself a disposable commodity…just like my wet wipes.
Simon, who offers no evidence for the crimes that he has been accusing others of committing, wants facts and evidence from me about what I wrote about his colleague. Unlike the EQL, I do not write about anything I can’t back with facts and solid evidence. Allow me refer him to the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) site. Simon believes that the NED is providing “educational grants”. Allow me to share a little about what the NED is really about.
” “…NED, which also has a history of corruption and financial mismanagement, is superfluous at best and often destructive. Through the endowment, the American taxpayer has paid for special-interest groups to harass the duly elected governments of friendly countries, interfere in foreign elections, and foster the corruption of democratic movements…” (Barbara Conry, Cato Institute in Washington, D.C)
” An organization which often does exactly the opposite of what its name implies. The NED was set up in the early 1980s under President Reagan in the wake of all the negative revelations about the CIA in the second half of the 1970s…Seemingly every other day there was a new headline about the discovery of some awful thing, even criminal conduct, the CIA had been mixed up in for years. The Agency was getting an exceedingly bad name, and it was causing the powers-that-be much embarrassment…Something had to be done….What was done was to shift many of these awful things to a new organization, with a nice sounding name-the National Endowment for Democracy. The idea was that the NED would do somewhat overtly what the CIA had been doing covertly for decades, and thus, hopefully, eliminate the stigma associated with CIA covert activities. (William Blum)
” The misnamed National Endowment for Democracy is nothing more than a costly program that takes US taxpayer funds to promote favored politicians and political parties abroad. What the NED does in foreign countries … would be rightly illegal in the United States. The NED injects soft money’ into the domestic elections of foreign countries in favor of one party or the other. (Republican congressman from the Texas Gulf Coast, Dr. Ron Paul)
So now that we are clear about what the NED does, let us see what it says about these folks and the grants provided:
” Grantor: NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY (NED)
Grantee: Fund for Peace
Sub grantee: Regional Centre for Human Rights and Development of Eritrea
Subject(s): Human Rights; Rule of Law; Education
Grant Awarded: 1993
Program Summary: To enable the Regional Centre for Human Rights and Development based Asmara, Eritrea, to strengthen its program of support for institutional developments of the local NGO community, publications of and independent newspaper, monitoring the referendum on Eritrea’s independence, and increasing popular participation in the development of Eritrea’s constitution. [This is the human rights center that Paulos Tesfagiorgis opened in Asmara]
” Grantor: RIGHTS & DEMOCRACY
Grantee: Steel Workers Humanity Fund Paulos Tesfagiorgis
Country(ies): Eritrea Ethiopia
Subject(s): Human Rights; Labor
Grant Awarded: 1992
Amount: $28,615 – 24 months
Program Summary: The Steel Workers Humanity Fund is a labour-based Canadian NGO created in 1985 in response to the famine in the Horn of Africa. This project is an exploratory mission to examine the current situation in the Horn of Africa, particularly with regard to laws and regulations, human and material resources in the setting up of a new NGO to help avert human rights violations and development failures. The work will initially focus on Eritrea and later expand to other parts of the region. [Seed money?]
” Grantor: NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY (NED)
Grantee: Eritrean Movement for Democracy and Human Rights (EMDHR)
Country (ies): Eritrea
Subject(s): Conflict Resolution; Human Rights
Grant Awarded: 2005
Amount: $30,000* [supplemented by the US State Department]
Program Summary: To promote social healing and reconciliation in Eritrea by increasing civic awareness and tolerance of divergent views. EMDHR will produce and distribute 2,000 copies of an educational manual on human rights, democratic principles, and methods of nonviolent protest to Eritreans residing in East and Southern Africa, Europe, and North America. The manual will be supplemented by the distribution of 2,000 newsletters per month.
The “revolutionary manual” used in Serbia, Ukraine and Georgia is written by Gene Sharp, of the Albert Einstein Institution in Boston. Sharp’s book, a how-to manual for the color revolutions, is titled From Dictatorship to Democracy. It includes tips on non-violent resistance – such as “display of flags and symbolic colors” – and civil disobedience. That is the book that Daniel and his partners were paid to translate in to Tigrinya and smuggle into Eritrea.
In an Asian Times article, F William Engdahl writes this about Sharp:
“…Sharp’s book is literally the bible of the color revolutions, a kind of “regime change for dummies”. Sharp created his Albert Einstein Institution in 1983, with backing from Harvard University. It is funded by the US Congress’ NED and the Soros Foundations, to train people in and to study the theories of “non-violence as a form of warfare”. Sharp has worked with NATO and the CIA over the years training operators in Myanmar, Lithuania, Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine and Taiwan, even Venezuela and Iraq…In short, virtually every regime which has been the target of a US-backed soft coup in the past 20 years has involved Gene Sharp and usually, his associate, Colonel Robert Helvey, a retired US Army intelligence specialist. Notably, Sharp was in Beijing two weeks before student demonstrations at Tiananmen Square in 1989. The Pentagon and US intelligence have refined the art of such soft coups to a fine level. RAND planners call it “swarming”, referring to the swarms of youth, typically linked by short message services and weblogs, who can be mobilized on command to destabilize a target regime…”
I believe this will suffice for now.
Just so they don’t feel left out, let’s take a look at the EQL groups that are financed and harbored by Meles Zenawi’s minority regime in Ethiopia. Since the regime’s financial records and that of the opposition are unknown, the best we can do is rely on press accounts from those who are the regime’s avid supporters.
” “…Ethiopia has hosted meetings of various factions of the Eritrean Liberation Front, trying to bring the ELF-Revolutionary Council and the ELF of Abdullah Idris together. It has offered support to three small Eritrean Marxist opposition parties, and to an opposition Kunama party, and has recently set up an Afar Red Sea Democratic Organisation to try and build up Afar resistance to the Eritrean government…”-(Patrick Gilkes, BBC News 2 March 1999)
” “…Ethiopia has given support to the opposition Alliance of Eritrean National Forces (AENF), now based in Ethiopia. It anticipates that this will be able to mobilise former Eritrean Liberation Front supporters, and Muslim critics of the present government…”- (Patrick Gilkes, BBC News 19 May 2000)
” “…In May 2003, Herui Tedla and the Eritrean National Alliance were brought to Ethiopia and provided with “material support” to set up a military wing to attack strategic targets such as television and radio centres. (BBC 2 May 2003)
” “…Eritrean Democratic Alliance launched a six-day congress here on Thursday…EDA is Eritrea’s opposition umbrella embracing 13 sisterly political organizations…”- (15 February 2007 Ethiopian News Agency)
” “…Eritrean opposition groups are beaming television programmes into the country using technical facilities provided by the state television network in neighbouring Ethiopia. The transmissions began in late February . They are produced by the Eritrean Democratic Alliance (EDA), an umbrella of 13 opposition groups in exile formed in January 2005…” (BBC Monitoring reported the following in April 2008)
So, if the shoe fits…
Daniel and Simon remind me of the wazungo waeusi (black Europeans)-also known as Oreos-brown/chocolate on the outside, and white on the inside. These are the African elite who get a “western education” and, instead of giving back to their countries of origin and their people, as the Israelis, Indian and other Diaspora do, they become aliens to their own cultures and peoples and end up propagating and advancing agendas that will result in Africa’s marginalization.
Daniel and his colleagues have been led to believe that the Eritrean Diaspora supported their illicit agendas. This email that I received earlier today, which relates to Daniel Mekonnen’s post, will show the Eritrean Diaspora and others what the anti-Eritrea campaign is like, and who the desperate shameless individuals behind it are. The author of the email, Mehret Ghebreyesus is a member of the EQL Daniel Mekonnen’s treacherous comrade:
From: Mehret Ghebreyesus
To: Mehret Ghebreyesus
Subject: FW: Petition on Asmarino and Awate
Date: Thu, 26 Mar 2009 14:02:18 -0400
Please, please sign the petition on Asmarino and Awate and ask your friends and family to do the same. It is very important that we have more numbers than the government sponsored petition that is going on.
Also, please see the attached — we are getting a lot of support from the media and NGO’s in Europe. The US State Department has also protested to the EU Secretariat that the money should not be given to Eritrea.
If we manage to stop this, it is a signal to the government and others that there is a united and strong opposition to its rule.
Please sign and make sure at least 10 other people each one of you know sign – added altogether it will be a show of force!!
From: Mehret Ghebreyesus
Sent: Saturday, February 21, 2009 12:55 PM
Subject: URGENT PROTEST NEEDED – Commission plans to provide aid to Eritrea despite political and practical concerns –
As you can see from the message below, there is an urgent need for all of us to post our protest by going to the link given further down in this message. The comments should be strong and brief.
We have been doing a lot of internal work for this package not to be given without any conditions. Our request was that they should offer it strictly under the condition, among many others, that the government agrees to democratize and function with transparency – including the treatment of everyone detained for religious and political reasons.
Now, it may be that they will just sign off on the package, not only with no pre-conditions but also knowing fully well that they will not have access to monitor how the funds are used.
Most Eritreans believe that to protest against aid money is depriving our people from badly needed food and other assistance. The fact is the government uses such funds only to strengthen its security apparatus and may be feeding the youth in the trenches so that it can stay in power indefinitely. These are some of the points that must be made clearly.
But, there is a good chance that they will re-consider if a big number of Eritreans protest. You will see once you go to the site, that pro-government voices are by far more than those opposing the package.
PLEASE POST YOUR COMMENTS AND ASK OTHERS TO DO THE SAME.
By the way, you can post several separate messages.
to give your comments!
Subject: European Voice article / Eritrea debate
The heated debate on Eritrea on the European Voice website triggered by an article last week is still going on, with the pro-regime side gaining momentum.
I cannot stress enough how important this article and those comments are in shaping the minds of Parliamentarians and in influencing the European Commission’s decisions. So if you haven’t commented so far please use the link that has been provided to you with, read what has been said, share with your friends within the community and with any supporter of a democratic Eritrea and place a comment ASAP.
Ms. Mehret and Ms. Florian want to deceive the EU parliamentarians by sending more bogus names to beat the “pro-regime” side. What a shameless duo. I she has learned the how-to for rigging votes…
The people and government of Eritrea will prevail with their dignity and self respect intact!