No, it’s not a football match. Our July issue featured the story “Shake Djibouti: Eritrea Crisis Destabilizes Imperialism’s Horn of Africa Beachhead” by Sarkis Pogossian, on the brief war between the two states in June. Pogossian writes: “While Eritrea increasingly poses itself as an anti-imperialist vanguard in the region, much smaller Djibouti remains a de facto Western protectorate, hosting both French and US military forces for policing the region. Despite a halt in the fighting, the crisis has not been resolved—and France has already jumped into the fray.” Our July Exit Poll was: “Are you rooting for Eritrea or Djibouti?” We received the following responses:
From Margery Coffey in Rosalie, Nebraska:
I’m for disarming the nutballs, dismantling the heirarchies and giving the world back to the peasants.
World War 4 Report replies: We share your sentiment. But we’ve a hunch that Eritrea’s Isaias Afwerki would argue that his populist programs are in fact returning land and freedom to the peasants. We also have a hunch Eritrea’s peasants might have reason to dispute this.
From Donovan Ritch, seemingly somewhere in Canada:
First of all…my commendations go to Sarkis Pogossian for putting together such an interesting and info-packed article.
My initial reaction was to ‘cheer’ for Eritrea, due to its anti-imperialist stance and desire to be weaned off foreign aid, following along the lines of Chavez in Venezuela or Morales in Bolivia.
However, at a deeper glance, there is no way Afwerki can be put alongside either of these two Latin American leaders: as mentioned in the article, he is apparently a repressive dictator who was brutalized opposition groups repeatedly (not to claim that Chavez and Morales are above reproach themselves).
To me, Afwerki resembles more closely the likes of the ex-Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo: a man seemingly passionate about his own country’s progress yet ruthlessly paranoid of falling (or being pushed) from his perch of power.
In the end, I can’t envision myself as wanting to ‘cheer’ for either country in this conflict. What I am cheering for is that it comes to an end and that the peoples of both countries are neither killed nor maimed in the process.
World War 4 Report replies: Amen.