The posting of this article in is necessitated by the fact that these days the same feint and malice that poisoned the Eritrean national movement’s environment long time ago, is now, rearing its ugly head and trying again to stir racial, religious and regional divergence for the purpose of derailing the struggle for justice and democracy, and steer it away from its true and honorable objective, into a different delusional struggle, featuring internecine feuds and self annihilation.Perhaps, the usefulness of reading this article is in its suggestion to the new Eritrean readers of asking themselves a question their predecessors and brothers avoided asking long time ago, at the distribution of the two venomous books: who benefits from this ? : Eritreans are going to celebrate the silver jubilee of their independence which came after a bitter struggle in which they sacrificed the dear and the precious, unimaginably countless martyrs, the blood which run like rivers, the innocent who were forced to abandon their homes, and the children who saw death by their own eyes calling their parents with no response.
Thus the fascist invasion of Ethiopia proved to be the knockout blow which finished the crippled organization once and for all.
When the War broke out, the lot of the Sudanese troops in defeating Italy’s fascist armies in East Africa was the greatest and the most honorable.
And as his pen quickly and brightly glowed, it was quickly extinguished, like a meteor rising at the break of dawn, unnoticed –except by nighthawks and late worshipers.
The Sudanese journalist Ahmed Teyfur was a victim of the frivolities of spies, the betrayal of fellow co-workers, and the disgrace and weakness of rulers.
This article is a detailed story of a book which, in its time, influenced the Eritrean National Movement in a deep negative way and caused schisms which kept developing, morphing and clustering until today.
It details the story and the circumstances that led to the appearance of the book and the reactions which followed its publication.
But, before elaborating on and resuming the story, it may be helpful to step back a little, and have a look at the relations of Sudan with its two neighbors to the East, Ethiopia and Eritrea.
There is no need to go as far back as to the Mahdiyya and the slaying of Emperor Yohannes IV[ii] but a good start may be the arrival of Emperor Haile Sellasie to Sudan, escaping the troops of Mussolini, which at that time had overrun Ethiopia using its colony, Eritrea, as a springboard, on the eve of World War II.
Ahmed Teyfur’s life was terminated in 1966, long before his actual death from thirst and hunger, three decades later.
He escaped straying and roving the deserts of North Sudan, trying, in a moment of desperation, to leave the country heading for Egypt, where he may have hoped, to melt away in the human waves of Cairo, forget himself and be forgotten in a village or a town of that country.
Nevertheless, the Eritrean National Movement have, ironically, fallen, at a time in its history, victim to two contaminant books and got infected and negatively affected to the core thereby.