Home African Development African Education Theories & Empirical Data
FundraiseScholarship Awards Links Contact Us Contact Us

World Wide Solidarity for the Crying Eritrean Mother 
IDEA, Inc. Editorial
November 7, 2013

The Institute of Development and Education for Africa (IDEA, Inc.) is calling upon every human being with conscience to extend solidarity and sympathy to the crying Eritrean mothers, epitomized by the courageous mother Weizero Asgedet in the Rome demonstration that came to our attention by Assena Radio. Weizero Asgedet vented on the powers-that-be, who are indirectly the cause for the death of the 365 Eritrean victims at Lampedusa; she was angry, forceful and eloquent, and in just few minutes she reached out the world by her megaphone; she was not literally crying while talking but there is no doubt that her heart was bleeding. She told the world that these Eritrean youth that perished at Lampedusa were in their mothers' wombs for nine months and piggybacked on their backs for three years. She tried to dissuade those Eritreans, who performed music and dance upon the Lampedusa tragedy, to stop what they were doing. She said, "It is not in our culture" to perform music when people are ought to cry when death occurs or during funeral processions. But can they listen to this crying mother?

Asgedet also emotionally attributed the feast of the fish on the Eritrean victims in her resounding protest. We at IDEA can understand the metaphor and common parlance of the "fish eating humans", but we like to use this opportunity to dispel the misconception behind the fish and mankind relationship. We strongly believe that fish don't celebrate on human remains; the fish eat other fish and other aquatic animals; the killer whale eats seals, and sharks are inimical to humans because the latter provoke them by swimming or basking on the sun on the beaches that is their habitat; otherwise, the sea creatures are not after humans. Moreover, if there were dolphins around were these Eritreans drowned, by virtue of their affinity to human beings, they would have attempted to rescue them. If dolphins can do that, why is that we humans cannot or unable to do it? Ironically, it is humans that are after humans! Humans normally don't eat their own kind, but they perform political cannibalism by subduing the powerless, by destroying the vanguard of human rights advocates, by assassinating individuals who courageously articulate their principled stands, and by wantonly massacring revolutionaries along with the masses who support their ideals. It is humans that eat humans. 

Now, Asgedet and her compatriots in the Rome demonstration have challenged our humanity. We are starkly naked now! Are we up to the challenge? Can we do our part or are we going to be silent? Should we suffer from compunction or should we opt for remorseless human entity without soul? If we laugh, joke, dance, and/or sing upon the Lampedusa tragedy, our humanity is compromised and questioned; on the other hand, if we cry and weep on the death of the Eritrean victims, then our humanity remains intact.

Beyond sympathy and solidarity, however, we humans, especially those who are educated and are equipped with political consciousness and moral conscience, should have a mission to fulfill. Sometime in the early 1960s, the brilliant revolutionary Doctor Frantz Fanon said, "Each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfill it, or betray it." With the challenge that came from Asgedet and company, thus, we either fulfill our mission by extending sympathy and solidarity with the Eritrean mothers or betray them altogether. Those of us who suffer from compunction will choose the former and deride the latter. 

We at IDEA believe that pathological liars are smart at deception and they may attempt to obscure relatively complex political issues and hide their sinister motives, but the Lampedusa incident is abundantly clear and it could not be mythologized or mystified; it is simply death on the sea! For this apparent reason, thus, unless we come up with some diabolical rationale, that is, cold and frigid reasoning, as humans endowed with conscience, we must cry for the victims of Lampedusa, and reach out and console their families, and at the same time reassure that the Eritrean mothers would not cry again.

We cannot be so sure as to the end of crying by the unfortunate mothers, but we can make exhortations in an effort to stop the causes of forced deportations and emigrations by reluctant refugees who encounter enormous difficulties, including rape and killings. Some of these emigrants seeking refuge in other countries end up being swallowed by the dessert sand dunes or the seas devour them. We must attempt to deal with the root cause of refugee crisis and focus on the culprit system that breeds it. We at IDEA are not interested, at least in the context of the Lampedusa incident, in condemning, criticizing, or directing vituperation to the powers-that-be. Our aim, at present, is to arouse world sympathy and solidarity in favor of the crying Eritrean mothers. While IDEA calls upon the world audience to honor the Eritrean dead at Lampedusa, we want to make it clear that we are doing it only because 1) we are humans with conscience and as such we have an human obligation; and 2) Eritreans are part of the African fabric, the world, and the universe. Otherwise, this same editorial, by extension, would apply to all humans that have suffered at the hands of their fellow humans, or more appropriately at the man-eating political machines. World history is replete with atrocities and human sufferings and the repertoire is extensive, but suffice to mention the following: The lynching and killings of African Americans during Reconstruction and at the hands of the KKK; massacre of Armenians by the Ottomans; the Jewish genocide by the Nazis; the indiscriminate massacre of Ethiopians by the Italian Fascists; the wholesale massacre of the people of Kampuchea by Pol Pot; the massacre of South Africans by the Apartheid regime; the wholesale slaughter of Ethiopian youth and EPRP sympathizers by the Derg military junta; the Rwanda genocide by their own brethren; the Kosovo massacre by the Serbs; the Darfur massacre by the Janjweed backed by the Sudanese government; and the DR Congo endless killings and raping of women by their own people etc.

We must exhibit world wide solidarity with all crying women all over the world and by doing so redeem our humanity and salvage our world from further destruction!

On behalf of IDEA, Inc.
Ghelawdewos Araia, PhD

All Rights Reserved. Copyright (c) IDEA, Inc. 2013