“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”
Martin Luther King
Today most of the war torn countries such as Libya, Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Afghanistan, and Yemen becomes a fertile ground for planting the seeds of terrorism. The “international community” has been shocked by the inhumanity, sadism and atrocity of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The group is killing both innocent Christians and moderate Muslims alike by stoning, flogging, burning, and beheading. I hardly believe that it is happening to human beings when I see it is happening in the name of Islamic religion. In fact the styles of slaughtering are being done intentionally to convey a clear message of terrorism to the whole world which stands against ISIS mission and its homicide.
At this moment the Horn of Africa becomes the most vulnerable place than any part of the world as the place has been in conflict for more than a hundred years. However, for centuries history indicates that the Muslims and Christians live in peace and harmony in our region though there was a bloody war between Muslims and Christians almost before 600 years. Indeed Islam has a long history in our region, emerged with the coming of persecuted followers Prophet Mohammed who were forced to seek refuge in Christian Kingdom. They built a Mosque, called Al-Sahaba, in Eritrea along the coast of the Red Sea which is believed to be the oldest mosque in Africa. And they are living in peace until this day…
Accounting the current political dynamics and religious radicalism- the growth of ISIS in North Africa; the impact of Yemeni Houthi and Al-Qaida along the Red Sea Coast; the unresolved tension between high militarized Egypt and Ethiopia over Nile River; the swift military intensification of Ethiopian opposition forces in Eritrea; the fragile Ethnic based politics in Ethiopia; the multiple organ failure of PFDJ and the fluid peace in Sudan, South Sudan and Somalia put the Horn of Africa at cross section more than ever before. Nonetheless, the political leaders seem to be idle or at least negligent to develop collective efforts to overcome the wider security problems that could possibly emerge in our region.
The “International Community” should understand that the most source of destabilization in the Horn of Africa is both Eritrea and Ethiopia as they have been engaged in proxy wars for the last 15 years. The “International Community” has sanctioned and isolated Eritrea, because of its stand on the side of the Islamic Court, from playing a constructive role in the region where as it has awarded Ethiopia with unconditional “hot cake” though there is a high record of gross human rights violations upon its citizens; an allegation of arming war-lords in Somalia; and violence of the final and binding of Algiers peace agreement made with Eritrea.
Seriously speaking, the “International community” has not taken a serious action to address the existed problems between Eritrea and Ethiopia which causes a wider range of tension, militarization, poverty, violence and exodus. Currently, Europe is shocked by flowing of huge number of refugees; by consolidated ISIS threat in Libya and by increasing destabilization of Yemen with the rise of Houthi rebels as stated earlier.
What measures the “International Community” should take considering the new political and security developments of extremism, militarism and mutualism:
At this moment Eritrea and Ethiopia have strong mutual benefits if they can manage their difference wisely- opening Eritrean ports for bulky Ethiopian agricultural and mining exports; working to secure Eritrean interest in Renaissance dam, and stopping cultivating rebel groups to disturb each other. Largely, it is beneficial for all countries engaged in international trade along the Red Sea. Otherwise, the Horn of Africa will be in bleak… and it will be an equal bleak for the rest part of the world as terrorism is a global challenge.
Peace For All!
Feb. 21st , 2015