Eritreans at a Martyrs’ Day ceremony in Wake Duba remember their soldiers who died in the 30-year battle for independence from Ethiopia. (AP Photo /Jean-Marc Bouju)

At this time I am too busy to write the type of reflective and historically rich post to celebrate today the way I would like: May 24th, 2006 – Eritrea’s 15th Anniversary of Independence. However, I will post the email I sent to (as I called them) ‘the highly selected few’ – now they are not so highly selected, are they?:

To the highly selected few:

I just wanted to take this opportunity to celebrate with you Eritrea’s 15th Anniversary – independent after 30 years of armed struggle on May 24th 1991. In celebration pls let me share a favourite quote by one of the most influential educators of the 20th century – in fact, Eritrean educators used his philosophy of educating the poor in “Bet timhirti sewra”, our “Zero” or Revolution school in the liberated zones during the struggle:

“The absence of hope is not the normal way to be human, it is a distortion[…] For this reason, as human beings, one of our struggles should be to diminish the objective reasons for that hopelessness that immobilizes us.” (Paulo Freire, ‘Pedagogy of Freedom’, p. 69-70)

I have republished my blog with the time zone settings in Asmara, Eritrea for today. It is 6:55am there so people are just waking up as I am about to sleep. We can all join them today, at this brilliant hour and waking moment on May 24th 2006, in remembrance and hope! 🙂