Guests Arrived at The Windy City
usual, the PFDJ groups who see Eritrea and its politics through the eyes
of Isayas have been busy distributing pamphlets trying to intimidate
Eritreans living in the vicinity to prevent them from attending the
festival. They use their usual fear tactics of: íf you attend then you
will not be able to go back home or build a house’. They do not have
confidence in their policies and so that is the only way they know how
to keep the people in check. They had also attempted to preempt the
festival by trying to rent the hall where the festival is being held.
There is no much substance to their propaganda other than the usual name
calling which does not bother the steadfast democrats who have vowed to
establish a democratic Eritrea.
note speaker had arrived on Wednesday. Other EDA officials and
members of the ELF-RC leadership had arrived either on Thursday or
Friday. Many others continued to arrive even as the festival
progressed on Saturday.
lesson PFDJers have not learned is that the organizers and the guests of
this festival care about their people and love their Eritrea so much
that the insults and name calling do not mean much and it is not going
to impact what they do. The “minor privileges” they are so afraid of
losing like visiting back home and buying a property should have been
their given right in the country they paid heavy prices for its
Eritreans from all corners of the United States and Canada have arrived
at the windy city by now. Guests who are looking forward for an action
packed day used all means of transportation to get here. Many drove
long distances which take tens of hours of driving to be part of the EDA
sponsored 4th Eritrean Festival to be held in Chicago for the
first time. Many (much more than earlier years) have chosen to fly so
that they can work Friday or avoid the long drive.
Saturday morning, it was time to head to the hall of the festival. The
organizers and members of the preparatory committee were already there
to greet guests. Many cities have been represented. Just from my
memory who I greeted, the following states and cities have been
represented: Chicago, Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Philadelphia,
Houston, Dallas, Seattle, Minneapolis, Indianapolis, Rochester,
Columbus, San Diego, Michigan, San Hose (a lot of Bay Area cities) and
many more cities/states of the United States and Canada.
the usual hugs and greetings of those who came from different corners of
the U.S. and Canada, it was time to start the program of the day of the
4th Eritrean Festival. The number of youth who got there
early was larger than previous years and is an encouraging sign that the
festival is getting more popular and will get bigger and better.
musicians were busy testing the sound system and testing their
number of the people flowing to the hall and the mood with every one
busy to put a final touch of the cultural items to display gives of
feeling of success. The hosting branch serving ‘himbasha’, tea, and
coffee for those who may not have had breakfast reflected attendees
ready for a busy day.
reportage coming soon