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The Eritrean flag slowly moves in the wind above an abandoned lookout made of stone and dirt walls. A few soldiers sit underneath a sheath of fabric below a string of dugouts, abandoned themselves. They do not believe a new war will happen. It was an obvious victory for us. If Ethiopia would just follow the decision in the International Court of Justice ICJ and cease their occupation, the conflict would be over, according to the soldiers.
Today, 14 years after the end of the war, the soldiers believe the biggest threat to the peace rests beyond the rocky field, where the enemy is. The outside world wants us to bend, crawl and bow for them [Ethiopia], but that will never happen. Young and old from all over Europe flooded the square with the famous three-legged chair, carrying drums, megaphones and banners. Many of the participants had wrapped themselves in the Eritrean flag. One of them carried an umbrella with the text: Near the loudspeaker equipment, and under whipping flags and banners, Eritrean-Swede Fthawi Mehari chitchatted with the other demonstrators.
Under the hashtag HandsOffEritrea they had mobilized thousands of people in just a few days. One can easily believe that Eritreans in exile would be an oppositional force, but the diaspora is divided and the rhetoric between the different groups is hostile. Fthawi Mehari told me that he and thousands of others had wanted to contribute their testimony to the UN investigation—but were never interviewed. A fate they shared with companies that invested in Eritrea as well as foreign embassies.
The Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea has also received criticism in diplomatic circles and from scholars because of their one-sided use of testimony by refugees in Ethiopia.
On the question of whether it was a little peculiar to demonstrate against the UN, an organization with a fairly high degree of credibility, Fthawi Mehari shook his head. In the report that the demonstrators are gathered to protest, Eritrea was described as a totalitarian state with torture and forced labor from which 5, people are fleeing every month.
Young people testified that they had fled the country to avoid indefinite, compulsory military service. The report also described a widespread surveillance society, where neighbors and family members were forced to tell on each other, or were held prisoners without knowing what they were accused of. After reading the pages of reported violations against fellow humankind, it was hard to understand the anger amongst the demonstrators on the square. Would all of these testimonials, hundreds of them, be fabricated?
He and the other demonstrators felt that the report was part of a campaign by the outside world to weaken and destroy the current regime. In their opinion, Eritrea had proven it could rebuild a nation without foreign aid. He also admitted that it was true that some young people did flee to avoid the military duty, but that media should explain why Eritrea has compulsory military service. In the background, the music got louder and the rhythmic sound against the drums made it hard to continue the interview.
When the music stopped for a short moment, Fthawi Mehari continued:. And even those who come to Sweden, quickly become part of the community, they sign a document at the embassy, in which they apologize, and then they can return for vacation.
Despite the demanding questions, Fthawi Mehari seemed to appreciate our discussion. He says that when Eritrea was discussed in media, nobody ever called him. Having grown up in Sweden, he considers himself a strong supporter of free elections and democracy and meant that was the plan, long term, for Eritrea too. To stand up for Eritrea in Sweden, a country where most of the reporting of his home country is about an imprisoned journalist was strange, he admitted.
Most Swedes only know of Dawit Isaak, and I take it as my responsibility to tell them about all the other things that are Eritrea. He should have been given a trial. They seem to be held under different rules or expectations. A short distance away, closer to the street that separates the demonstrators from the UNCHR building, stood a young woman, wrapped in the Eritrean flag, like a shawl.
When we demonstrate, nobody writes about it. We are a majority, whom with pride, pay two percent of our earnings to Eritrea in tax. Why are we not invited to debates? Why is Dawit Isaak worth more and the 70, Eritreans who were expelled from Ethiopia and cannot return to their lands? Is a person with a Swedish passport worth more than one without? Now that we again are attacked, and our existence is at stake, when the UN threatens to eradicate our country, then you have to look at whose life is worth more.
Next to the woman I spoke with, stands an older man, looking to be in his 50s, and listens curiously. To him, this is nothing new. A resume like his is not unusual among the demonstrators in the square in Geneva. What makes him stand out is that his brother was one of those imprisoned. It will get solved sooner or later. Even my brother, Dawit Isaak, will one day be free.
Now is the time to support them with all means we have. I also know that he will be released, so I am not stressing over it. Nobody has a right to do that, aside from my family. It just gets worse. The more I listened to them who were defending the regime, the more intrigued I became.
I really wanted to try and understand this country. How did they end up here? How could the picture of Eritrea be different? In all my conversations I also detected that there appeared to be confusion over Eritrea as an idea and the current state-building. To be a patriot was synonymous with being loyal to the sitting president.
The alienation drew people closer, gave meaning and an identity in a rapidly changing Europe. The following day, thousands of demonstrators from Eritrea gathered again, and accused Eritreas long-standing president Isaias Afewerki of being a dictator and urged the UN to take strong measures.
To get closer to this mystery, I had to go to Eritrea. I decided to apply for a VISA to the closed country. I wrote a long letter to the Eritrean Ambassador in Stockholm and told him that I wanted to experience Eritrea. Neither write positively nor negatively, just doing my job. It was from the Eritrean Embassy, inviting me as one of the keynote speakers during an Eritrean festival for the loyalists.
Late summer, the grass was wet and the dandelions had long since bloomed. Already in the distance I could hear the buzzwords. As I rounded some bushes, I saw about people who had gathered to protest at the annual festival, arranged by organizations with close sympathies with the Eritrean state.
Eritrean flags and banners fluttered in the wind. During the summer, the UN Refugee Agency had reported that more than , Eritreans, or nine percent of the total population, had fled. While I made my way across the muddy field, I thought that they probably wanted to test me, see if I dared to speak at this event.
Behind a kilometer-long fence, on the actual festival grounds, a few thousand people had gathered. On the other side of the fence stood about demonstrators. In front of them stood a paddy wagon. Tumult had erupted as some of the demonstrators tried to storm the festival and had clashed with the festivalgoers and the police had to interfere. We demonstrated for your release from prison, and now you do this? Before I had a chance to respond, a young woman added: Are you really going to talk for them?
This festival is political in every way. Arranged by the only political party in Eritrea. They are using you. I also believe dialogue is important, but to what price? Not at the expense of my people.
Their two main incomes are the two-percent tax, and these kinds of festivals! The announcer for the demonstrators saw me and I gesticulated to him that I wanted to say something. But sometimes you have to take advantage of an open door. My plan was to hold an uncompromising talk about the importance of journalism and freedom of speech. But I also believed they held the answers as to why Eritrea is the way it is.
I walked over to a tent, where the sound system was, grabbed the microphone in a tight grip and looked out over all the people. Behind them, the fence and a towering a circus inside the festival area. I recognized several of the faces in my audience from freedom of press events for Dawit Isaak. Many of them wore scars on their bodies from torture and imprisonment.
I wanted to tell them that I had applied for a VISA to visit Eritrea, and gotten an invitation to speak at the festival in response. But it was too soon. There are many imprisoned journalists in in Eritrea. Just when I was about to duck underneath the police tape, I saw Meron Estefanos, who stood, stone-faced, staring at the Eritrean flags. From an apartment in a Stockholm suburb, she works fulltime, reporting on Eritrea for the opposition radio station, Radio Erena.
After the tragedy outside Lampedusa in October , Meron Estefanos caught the attention of the world, and she has been a link between the desperate refugees on the Mediterranean and the Italian Coast Guard for several years now.
Here Eritrean-Swedes had gathered from around the country. They had worked for several years, trying to outlaw the festival, by reminding the landowners that they are renting their property to a dictator, but so far nobody has responded to them. The guard at the entrance had a firm handshake and wore a brassard of the Eritrean flag tightly tied to his upper arm. Once inside, a more festival-like mood took over; it was family-oriented, festive and sold-out. According to Fthawi Mehari, 5, people visit the festival every one of its four days.
There was a large tent for big lectures and meetings, a barn for the smaller ones and small tents for business meetings or for use by different Eritrean organizations were sprinkled throughout. In the middle of it all stood a clown, flown in from Eritrea, to entertain the little ones.
They have a right to stand there and protest, making life miserable for people who are entering the festival. You only hear what they yell in Swedish, but what they say in Tigrinya is even uglier, meaner. They target women who walk by and say things that make people sick. But it is okay, everyone is entitled to his or her opinion. As you can see, there are a lot of them here. But none of the journalists will mention the festival mood, they will stay over there by the fence.
Those who are there [anti-regime] will get all the attention. It was already packed inside the large tent, and people of all ages sat tightly squeezed, shoulder-to-shoulder, on the wooden benches. The sun was bright and I was wondering if my pictures would be visible on the screen. Behind it was an enormous Eritrean flag. I had met him once before when I submitted my visa application. His family lived in London and he was quite new at the job in Stockholm.
I declined on the spot. It would probably have been a great material for my story, but it felt like getting too close. I saw how the incumbent presidential adviser, Yemane Gebreab, sat down close to the podium.
He has a substantial influence over politics in Eritrea. Beforehand I had asked Johan to film my lecture so nothing could be edited out or changed. It was so quiet in the tent, you could have heard a pin drop. Both the organizers and I were nervous. But this time everything felt different. I saw how several people in the audience fished out their phones and began filming as I began speaking:.
When all the prisoners, hundreds of them, had been accounted for, the metal doors closed behind them again.
The first screams were always the worst, that scream before the first hit, and then toward the end, the prisoner had gone quiet. I told them about the realpolitik, about the Horn of Africa, about the situation in Ogaden. Then I showed a picture of Reeyot Alemu, a journalist who sat in the next cell over, and how she during many times in her year-old life had been faced with a choice.
She could have chosen a simple life. But her love for the truth, for Ethiopia, for her fellow humans and for journalism, inspired her to become one. She stayed and wrote. She showed what journalism should be, but all too often is not. She paid the price for coming generations, a high price. She paid with her freedom. Representatives for governments will always say that the freedom of press has to be balanced against other values such as stability, economic growth and regional power balance.
But in countries where journalists are imprisoned, nobody is free. After Johan and I were released, we have often been asked if attention helps those who are imprisoned. I would like to think that it is more important than bread and water. To know that you are deprived of your freedom for a good cause. To target a journalist should be like barbecuing a panda.
It should be a crime against humanity. It may sound bold and grandiose, and I am really not neutral in this question. Freedom of the press is the freedom upon which all other freedoms rest. Without the freedom for journalists to do their job, the world will turn mute.
As soon as I stopped, I looked at a forest of hands. Some people were so enthusiastic that they stood up. The first question came from the politicians in the first row. The questioner thanked me for my lecture, summarized what I had said and then wondered: Someone else asked why Swedish media and media in the rest of the world had such a skewed picture of Eritrea when Ethiopia got away with everything.
The exchange at times got heated, but was straightforward. During a full 30 minutes we discussed the war against terrorism, the change in Swedish foreign policy, Olof Palme and Dawit Isaak. All who asked questions were polite, well-informed, intellectual and reasonable. As IFSI clearly states at the bottom of the linked page and in its statutes , it is a member of the Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe FIOE , which is generally acknowledged as an umbrella organization for local Muslim Brotherhood groups from all over Europe.
We have a good close relationship. The situation is considered acute". Rinkeby subway station was recently categorized as too dangerous for subway personnel to work there, unless escorted by the police, due to the security risk created by stone-throwing and hostile gangs. When the police work there, they work as the military defense would". Sweden's Islamization of itself barrels on.
Google and these 4, employees embody two terrible traits: Moral idiocy is the ability to be brilliant in any area of life except the single most important area of life, morality. With regard to morality, such people are fools. The United States has been the greatest force for liberty and goodness in world history. It has been so by modeling a free society and through the power of the idea of freedom, and even more so by force — brute physical force.
Through force of arms, America imposed democracy and liberty on West Germany and led to the dissolution of East Germany. Through force of arms, America was able to impose democracy and liberty on Japan. Through force of arms, America liberated Asian countries from the Nazi-like Japanese imperialists. Through force of arms, America enabled the majority of Koreans to live free rather than under the most totalitarian regime in modern history, North Korea.
Through force of arms, Israel has survived 70 years of Arab, and now Iranian, attempts to annihilate it. Only a moral idiot does not understand the moral necessity of weapons of war being in the hands of decent countries. Which brings us to the second trait of Google and its employees: Google and its employees live better than almost any human beings in the world.
They do so because they live in the freest and most opportunity-giving country in the world, the United States of America. That Google and its employees refuse to work on the military defense of their country is an expression of ingratitude not to mention absence of patriotism that is simply breathtaking.
How did we produce such foolish and ungrateful people? They are the products of left-wing education and the left-wing media and of living in the left-wing cocoon of northern California and its tech industry. Woman begs Christian picketers to leave her alone as they urge her not to enter an abortion clinic It should be noted that when picketers do succeed in dissuading an abortion, the mothers are usually grateful afterwards that their child was saved Footage has been posted to Facebook of a woman harassing patients as they enter an abortion clinic.
In the first video the protester is seen approaching the doors of Options Clinic in Spring Hill waving a foetus sized doll and exclaiming 'Medical facts say they have a heartbeat from 18 days, please don't terminate your baby. The patient goes inside and the woman returns to her place on the sidewalk. Before the video ends, she turns to the pro-choice volunteers and addresses them. This legislation, introduced by Labor MP Penny Sharpe, was passed a week ago and protects patients from harassment and intimidation by protesters with metre zones around the clinics.
The pro-choice young advocacy group Young Queenslanders for the Right To Choose posted the video to Facebook in hopes to spread how traumatic the experience can be Following New South Wales, Queensland is set to become the next state to legislate safe access zones.
Queenland's Law Reform Commission is set to hand down a report into legislation within the next month. Kate Marchesi, the volunteer who posted the video told Buzzfeed News that she wanted to show how traumatic the protesters could be.
The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: It would be a dictatorship. Email me John Ray here. Posted by jonjayray at Newer Post Older Post Home. I think she was. How incorrect can you get? Kristina Pimenova, once said to be the most beautiful girl in the world. Note blue eyes and blonde hair Enough said A face of Leftist hate: She seems a pleasant enough woman, though What feminism has wrought: There's actually some wisdom there.
The dreamy lady says she is holding out for someone who meets her standards. The other lady reasonably replies "There's nobody there". Standards can be unrealistically high and feminists have laboured mightily to make them so Some bright spark occasionally decides that Leftism is feminine and conservatism is masculine.
That totally misses the point. And in the Presidential election , Trump won 53 percent of white women, despite allegations focused on his past treatment of some women. Political correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners Political Correctness is as big a threat to free speech as Communism and Fascism. The problem with minorities is not race but culture. For instance, many American black males fit in well with the majority culture.
They go to college, work legally for their living, marry and support the mother of their children, go to church, abstain from crime and are considerate towards others. Who could reasonably object to such people? It is people who subscribe to minority cultures -- black, Latino or Muslim -- who can give rise to concern.
The leading cause of death among young black males is attack by other young black males Leftist logic: There are allegedly no distinctions between groups of humans, yet we're still supposed to celebrate diversity.
Identity politics is a form of racism 'White Privilege'. That was abundant in the Irish potato famines. And in the Scottish Highland Clearances. And in transportations to Australia. Psychological defence mechanisms such as projection play a large part in Leftist thinking and discourse. So their frantic search for evil in the words and deeds of others is easily understandable.
The evil is in themselves. Leftist motivations are fundamentally Fascist. They want to "fundamentally transform" the lives of their fellow citizens, which is as authoritarian as you can get.
We saw where it led in Russia and China. The "compassion" that Leftists parade is just a cloak for their ghastly real motivations Occasionally I put up on this blog complaints about the privileged position of homosexuals in today's world.
I look forward to the day when the pendulum swings back and homosexuals are treated as equals before the law. To a simple Leftist mind, that makes me "homophobic", even though I have no fear of any kind of homosexuals. But I thought it might be useful for me to point out a few things.
For a start, I am not unwise enough to say that some of my best friends are homosexual. None are, in fact. Though there are two homosexuals in my normal social circle whom I get on well with and whom I think well of. My late sister was a homosexual; I loved Liberace's sense of humour and I thought that Robert Helpmann was marvellous as Don Quixote in the Nureyev ballet of that name. Bible references on homosexuality: After 13 years of Labour party rule they have become highly politicized, with values that reflect the demands made on them by the political Left rather than than what the community expects of them.
They have become lazy and cowardly and avoid dealing with real crime wherever possible -- preferring instead to harass normal decent people for minor infractions -- particularly offences against political correctness.
They are an excellent example of the destruction that can be brought about by Leftist meddling. I also record on this blog much social worker evil -- particularly British social worker evil. The evil is neither negligent nor random. It follows exactly the pattern you would expect from the Marxist-oriented indoctrination they get in social work school -- where the middle class is seen as the enemy and the underclass is seen as virtuous.
So social workers are lightning fast to take children away from normal decent parents on the basis of of minor or imaginary infractions while turning a blind eye to gross child abuse by the underclass Racial differences in temperament: Chinese are more passive even as little babies The genetics of crime: I have been pointing out for some time the evidence that there is a substantial genetic element in criminality.
Some people are born bad. See here , here , here , here DOI: Using it otherwise is just another politically correct distortion -- though not as pernicious as calling racial discrimination "Affirmative action" Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!
Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.
So why do Leftists say "There is no such thing as right and wrong" when backed into a rhetorical corner? They say it because that is the predominant conclusion of analytic philosophers. And, as Keynes said: Juergen Habermas, a veteran leftist German philosopher stunned his admirers not long ago by proclaiming, "Christianity, and nothing else, is the ultimate foundation of liberty, conscience, human rights, and democracy, the benchmarks of Western civilization. To this day, we have no other options [than Christianity].
We continue to nourish ourselves from this source. Everything else is postmodern chatter. Because for all three groups their only God is their penis" Pretty offensive, right? So consider this one: They are both religious fundamentalists" The latter "joke" is not a joke at all, of course. It is a comparison routinely touted by Leftists. Both "jokes" are greatly offensive and unfair to the parties targeted but one gets a pass without question while the other would bring great wrath on the head of anyone uttering it.