Now juxtapose that to 20 painfully long years of lost opportunity due to TPLF’s shortsighted and destructive policies. It is worth repeating here – lest people like Minister Mass attempt to rewrite history – TPLF’s aim was clear: regional hegemony of which isolating, demonizing and destroying Eritrea was just one part of its game.
For 20 years all forms of communication were cut off, diplomatic relations were sabotaged, people lived under constant fear of a renewed conflict, scarce resources were diverted away from national projects and plans, free movement of goods and people was made impossible and expensive due to baseless sanctions that have yet to be lifted, and the list goes on and on.
In fact, it is not only Eritrea and Eritreans that suffered – although probably they bore the brunt of this twisted and sick game. Every country and peoples in this region suffered immensely – one can even dare say that the only ones that did not were the few at the helm of the TPLF and those closely affiliated with them, from each country.
What is worse is that this suffering was prolonged by external powers, including many in Europe – and Germany played its role very well. The TPLF regime was in fact emboldened and encouraged to wreck havoc in the region through huge financial largesse and other critical support from these powers. The people of Eritrea, on their part, may choose to forgive, as they always do, but will never forget.
All of the above considered, this new era of peace that is upon us is here to stay and the people of the region, most especially Eritreans, find it absolutely hypocritical and downright precarious for anyone to be raining on their parade.
As far as Eritrea is concerned, the majority of Eritreans – and, in the grand scheme of things, that and nothing else is what really matters – see that phenomenal accomplishments were made in a very – very – short period. They also know that this peace was a key requisite, and will probably soon prove to be the only requisite, to move every people and country in this region up the development ladder, economic and political.
Indeed, pronouncements of cooperation based on complementarity, and a declared vision of a region that wants to put an end to, inter alia, poverty, insecurity, ethnic and religious based divisions, catastrophic external interferences, unsafe migration, are slowly but surely seeing the light of day. No one can deny this.
Obviously, those invested in crisis “management… conflict resolution… and preventive diplomacy”, whatever that means, are hell-bent on derailing this wave and they are apparently already busy crafting nefarious ways of trying to achieve this.
The good news is that the people of the Horn of Africa, in complete unison, have said: GAME OVER.
Game over to “influencing developments”. Game over to “maximum public pressure”. Game over to the politicization of human rights and democracy. Game over to petty threats. GAME OVER to pretty much every prescription forced down our throats that guarantees nothing but conflict and mayhem.
In fact, just so we are clear: the Government of Eritrea owes no explanation to Germany or anyone else for that matter. Its strategy and trajectory of national development – in its broadest sense – is squarely a matter of a social compact with its own people; the sole proprietors of this country that was built on immeasurable sacrifice and an unwavering commitment to peace.