Writer: Seedahmad Khalifa
Translated by: Abuelgasim
To avoid being stinged from the hole of Afwreqi twice .
From Aboard passing by Almahdi then Nimari and the salvation government there were fatal mistakes .
Yes I have presented in 1988 the question that angered the two parties .
By Saydahmad Khalifa Editor in chief of the Sudanese Alwatan news paper .
No one who knows inside and outside political work stands against steps of normalization conciliation and understanding between the political forces playing on the international regional and national political theater .
According to this simple understanding the steps of normalization of relations with our neighbor state ( Eritrea )is a great and appreciated work, but it should be conducted under terms and conditions that should be specified from the beginning so that midway we feel negotiating according to honest, and honorable intents while the second party ( the Eritrean party ) represented in president Isias Afwerki negotiates and intends to improve his relations with our country according to some agenda which last goal is to harm this relation in a bad way .
The historical background of dealing with a deeply rooted case such as the Sudanese Eritrean relations is an important matter, because speaking about history it should be built on the past which accordingly with the present build the future .
The objective behind this background is to help in building a new reality in the Eritrean Sudanese relations, which change in the reverse of people expectations and has led to disasters Following the independence of Eritrea people of the two. Countries have paid the price of this differentiation which took a decade of time .
For the benefit of players on the Sudanese and African arenas we will begin with a summary showing how Afureqi has come to power in this small country in area and population, but strategic .
The story from the beginning
At the end of the nineteen sixties and beginning of the nineteen seventies of the 20th century, differences awoke inside the ranks of the Eritrean liberation front which became strong both, militarily and politically inside and abroad for the benefit of the case of liberating Eritrea from the Ethiopian colonization according to a vivid popular willpower, despite lack of some elements and components of internal unity because of the existence of a Christian sector sympathizing with the Christian Ethiopian empire .
In the furnace of that Eritrean difference which was a complete reflection for the mere internal status quo .
Within the framework of the time and place of that difference the current of Jsias Afwerki the current president has emerged .
Divions and differences have crystallized and Eritrea has emerged through a number of currents most prominent of these of course was the Eritrean liberation front – the mother and the base – then the people's liberation forces by the leadership of the historical Eritrean hero Osman Salih Sabbi who believed in Eritrea's Arabic and African affiliation .
Amidst these two national currents and on the Eritrean heights of the dominating Christian population, a small current emerged led by a small affiliate of the Eritrean revolution, who is Isias Afwerki the current president who had left people to their differences – he is basically a dissident – where with nine of his soldiers have stayed on the region of Eritrean heights near the capital Asmra and inside its mountains after a short period contacts and agreements were reached between the currents of Afwreqi and Sabbi. On his part Sabbi was looking for a Christian representation whatever small it is inside his organization while Afwreqi looked to enter inside a national Islamic depth of Arabic orientation to grow his political capacities and obtain the support which Eritrean factions never get except from Arab world because all the west was against the independence of Eritrea and its cession from the Christian Ethiopian empire despite on international resolution that calls for a self determination of Eritrean and acquiring independence as the other Italian colonies following the second world war that ended with the conquer of Italy and the well known Nazi axis states .
The unity of the two contradictions
Unity matters between the two organizations of Sabbi and Afwerki went in a good way for a number of years until the regime got momentum inside and has broaden its relations abroad with Arabic and Islamic states through Sabbi, who made great influence on Eritrean history and reality . All national Eritrean forces have benefited from these relations except the current of Afwerki which had an other strategic goals .
In 1975 or before that a minor difference occurred between Sabbi and Afwerki where the first was the head of foreign organization mission and the second was the head of the military council in the inside and the trust worthy field commander .
Arabic support was intensive for the Eritrean revolution which became strong in the inside, the matter that made Afwerki fabricates differences with his political leadership abroad and the two organizations seceded and here emerged the popular front for the liberation of Eritrea, under the leadership of Isias Afwerki who took power after a big military overthrow against the leadership of Sabbi . Then the other organization which took the name of the united organization continued its work after it has joined Eritrean groups, entities and characters from here and there .
The new divisions have aimed to weaken and tear the big Eritrean current which had established the revolution which is – the mother Eritrean liberation front .
A new organization dubbed the popular liberation forces emerged but Afwerki has cut the road for it followed by a military and political organization which does net bear the germ of absolute Arabic, Islamic and African affiliation and does not declare openly the Arabism of the red sea .
We have to draw attention that Israel the first station which Afwreqi had visited after independence is the basic player on both arenas of Eritrea and Ethiopia for it didn’t contradict the independence of Eritrea only but it supported Ethiopia and without limits .
The western and Israeli approach against the independence of Eritrea was quite clear but what was not clear is that Israel and the west were preparing for the independent Eritrea under a leadership that rejects all slogans of absolute Arabism, or even the distinguished relation between Eritrea and Arab world or the African circumference which was liberated once from the Israeli existence where many African countries had severed their relations with Israel after June war in 1967 .
After the Eritrean status quo
This was about the Eritrean status quo which came before the actual independence in1991 and was declared practically in 1993 after the western British and Americans and the internal state of affairs have prepared a new leaderships for both Eritrea and Ethiopia, where a small regime took power in Ethiopia ( Tegray front organization ) which has managed to create afterwards a big entity comprising small marginal allies which joined the Tegray front against Mangesto .
In Eritrea and according to the western created reality which benefited from the inside reality the Eritrean people's liberation front under the leadership of Afwerki has took power along with others who cancelled their self entities, ideas and old affiliations have handed over all this and that for a one thinking mind leadership but it was not mysterious in goal at all .
The Sudanese – Eritrean – relation has made absolute support for the Eritrean revolution .
A support that even seemed politically sentimental and ambiguous since the regime of Abood 1958 – 1964 but it was a strong and strategical support for the Eritrean revolution which might not have achieved support and strength without the big assistance of Sudan during the regime of Abood and afterwards a number of faults and big practices took place against the Eritrean revolution, the motive and objective of this is to seek an Ethiopian neutrality in the problem of south Sudan which mutiny has gained strength during the May regime which has become completely submissive to Ethiopia and its regime where Dr. Mansour Khalid as a foreign minister in the Sudanese government and thinker and theorizer of the May regime along with the late Dr. Jaafar Bakheet had never showed any rejection or enmity for the independence of Eritrea .
The great event came after the October revolution 1964 when the Eritrean arms were confiscated in the suburb of Buri, because of political party's differences between the democratic unionist party which sympathizes with the Eritrean revolution and Umma party which strongly rejects the independence of Eritrea .
After south Sudan agreement
Amidst slogans and chanting of the first regional autonomy agreement 1972 Eritrean leaderships were chased and some say even handed over to Ethiopia where executions were carried out on the borders .
Spontaneously the Ethiopian support for south Sudan has subsided and even the Eritrean existence in Sudan was chased and punished with imprisonment expulsion or handing over .
In 1983 and with the collapse of Addis Ababa pact 1972 and emergence of ( SPLM ) with the leadership of the late Dr. John Garang and the appearance of a military socialist leader in Ethiopia succeeding the Emperor Haily Salasi the Sudanese – Eritrean state of affairs has changed and May regime began to look for an Eritrean existence in Sudan facing the South Sudan existence in Ethiopia .
Following the Sudanese uprising 1985 the Sudanese – Eritrean relations began to recover its health and glitter but the worsening of relations between Afwerk's front and the ruling Umma party led to the occurrence of an strange if not we didn’t say a suspicious relation between the Sudanese National Islamic front ( NIF ) under the leadership of Dr. Turabi and the popular front for the liberation of Eritrea under the leadership of Isias Afwerki.
That time I was surprised from the alliance between the two regimes one Islamic and the other Christian Marxist and Israel ( what is this strange, suspicious alliance has Afwerki become a Muslim or has Dr. Turabi become an unbeliever ) .
In 1989 and under the shade of the intimacy between the Sudanese National salvation revolution and the Eritrean front the alliance between the two fronts became more strong and durable until it became a harmony that led to the independence of Eritrea according to what the western entity and Israel like . The Islamic Sudanese (national salvation revolution ) support for Eritrea was strong and decisive in two matters, strengthening the grip of the Ethiopian and Eritrean regimes under the leadership of Afwerki and Zenawi in the two countries for whom the salvation regime and with the agreement of western states and particularly Israel – had presented military, logistic, economic, technical, security and administrative support .
In 1994 and in the beginning of the appearances of the big divorce between the Sudanese salvation regime and Afwerki regime in Eritrea the Sudanese ambassador to Asmra, my friend Jaafar Hasan Salih asked me about the future of the Sudanese government relations with the Eritrea of Afwerki, I said its expected roof is the ferocious war between the two regimes because of the contradictions between an Eritrean Christian Marxist front led by a dictator (Afwerki) and an ideological Islamic regime led by a dreaming or an deluded leader who is Dr. Turabi who has been infatuated with the power hypomania and the ideological dream that made him think of becoming an international Islamic polar as a substitute for the Soviet polar which began to collapse when Turabi easily took power in Sudan, the mater that made him think to become a leading substitute for the socialist bloc in the confrontation with the western American bloc .
What a big illusion it was which has cost Sudan many years to build and correct and until this time and without achieving crucial results in the internal turmoiled situations of Sudan .
After tension and enmities
I don’t want to say after more than ten years of tension and deterioration in the Sudanese – Eritrean relations what I have said had come true . The most foolishness in the history of diplomacy had been committed by Afwerki when he took the Sudanese embassy in his country and gave it to the Sudanese opposition national democratic alliance ( NDA ) which thought if even for a period of time that Afwerki would be an ally and partisan for forces that claim regaining freedom and democracy in Sudan and we say ( could you give what you don’t possess ) .
Now that things have crystallized ( NDA ) has come back from Asmra and practically Afwerki has lost his papers of pressure on Sudan . The question is what has really happened ?
A current calling for good relations between Sudan and Eritrea has immediately emerged .
The National Democratic Alliance ( NDA ) wants to pay the invoice of Eritrean support and assistance throughout struggle with the salvation regime .
The Eritrean party wants to say that his allies in ( NDA ) have come to power with his support which opens the door for relations with the new salvation government with the guarantee of ( NDA ) who returned and reconciled with the salvation regime which wants to achieve an Eritrean neutrality in Darfur and an Eritrean support for the peace in South Sudan and the unity of the Sudan .
All these were just and rational wishes and demands but the Eritrean opposition with its active human cadres and its historical leadership should not pay the price of this improvement of Sudanese – Eritrean relations .
The Eritrean regime has played a role and presented support for the Sudanese – Sudanese agreement, reconciliation and understanding therefore why should we not do the same thing and through ( NDA ) the partner of the salvation regime in power and the friend of Afwerki .
Consequently why don’t the salvation regime with ( NDA ) make the same thing in Eritrea in the side of concurrence and reconciliation between the ruling and opposition Eritrean forces however between the Eritrean people whom half of them left the country after independence and the Eritrean regime which transformed the inside of the country to a big prison .
I tell the Sudanese government and say don’t commit the strategic fault and historical dishonor by chasing or driving away the Eritrean opposition outside the country or think to commit the biggest and dangerous crime by handing over this and that of the Eritrean opposition leaderships for a guillotine of a man dipped in blood and violence .
Please consider the matter in a correct way .
If you take the path of freedom and democracy with Afwerki you will have to exercise big and dangerous rounds because there Israel is the basic player on the arena of the red sea and south Sudan .
Please remember this speech because recollection make believers benefit .