Eritrea’s celebratory and commemorative month will soonbe upon us. This year in 2015, thecities of Winnipeg, Manitoba and London, Ontario were the first ones out of thegate to book a venue and announce their Independence Day plans on the Dehaiboard. A big shout out to the proud EritreanCommunity in those two Canadian cities. As Eritrea prepares to celebrate its 24thIndependence Day next month, its former detractors in the West led by theEuropean Union have come to see the light. On their own initiative, they are now reversing their destructivepolicies toward the State of Eritrea and have come to recognize therighteousness of the policies of the Government of Eritrea. While preparing to celebrate their country’sbirthday, Eritreans at home and in the diaspora can take justified pride intheir young state and its myriad accomplishments and successes. Eritrea’s independence was earned and defended with a lotof blood, sweat and toil. The armed strugglefor independence exacted a very high price in terms of the number of fallen,and Weyane’s invasion has only added to that. Our martyrs’ sacrifice is the backbone on which Eritrean independence isformed. Therefore, independence has aspecial meaning in Eritrea. It can beargued that Eritrea is one of the most truly independent countries on earth.More independent than the developed and powerful ones. For instance, America owes China trillions ofdollars in loans. Technically, China canbring the US economy down to its knees. ManyEnglish seaports are now under Arab ownership. No country has that kind of sway over Eritrea. Several deadlines were given for the collapse of theEritrean economy but it never came about. In fact, Weyane and the experts advising it thought that if they starteda war under the pretext of a border dispute, expelled tens of thousands ofEritreans from Ethiopia and dumped them at Eritrea’s feet in order to pressurethe Eritrean economy, stopped using Eritrea’s ports, then the pressure would betoo great to overcome and the Eritrean economy would collapse within sixmonths. That was seventeen years ago!!! Then they revised their estimate to ayear. Then two years. Then five years. They kept waiting for Godot but it never cameabout because the national character of the Eritrean people wouldn’t allow it. Eritreans too can take justified pride in their country’sfavored bottom-up approach to development. It was recently reported that the much ballyhooed growth rate Ghana reportedlyexperienced in the 2000s and 2010s was nothing but a top-down mirage that hasgone poof with the decline of commodity prices. Economic growth that doesn’t emphasize fulfilling basic social servicesand infrastructure as its foundational blocks has been proven to be meaninglessand not long-lasting. Eritrea with its bottom-up approach todevelopment is indeed on the right track to having sustainable development withstrong foundational blocks. As usual, this year in 2015, Eritrea’s national holidayseason that starts with Independence Week in May and continues until Martyrs’Day in June will be celebrated with lots of spirit and patriotism. Eritrean flags will be hung from city streetlampposts and public buildings, as well as from many private homes and carsduring these weeks. There will be lotsof unabashed flag-waving, partying, dancing and carnivals at publiccelebrations held by most municipalities across the country. In the diaspora, there will be lots ofpicnics, barbecues and outdoor festivities at various parks across the globestretching from Australia to the Middle East, Africa, Europe and the Americas. But nothing beats the nighttime festivitiesand rubbing shoulders with Independence Week revelers in Asmara. Approaching its 24th birthday, Eritreacontinues to show deep unity, the spiritual sense that we are “One people, Oneheart.” To an Eritrean, love of country hasalways meant never having to say it is sorry. Zelealemawi Zikhri Nswuatna.Awet n Hafash!
Received on Sun Apr 26 2015 - 23:09:25 EDT