Excerpt from  Past and Present, Eritrea’s Leadership is to blame. Does Eritrea really learn?

Negarritt-Gazette 89E (NG89E) January 01 2005



C. Can GMH tell the Eritrean people about the selection criteria of squads in

organising the process of hujjum wars in the past? Who made decisions on who

should go to die (similar to euthanasia: involuntarily sentence to death)? Who was

allowed to stay to serve the interest of the leaders within the EPLF? C1) Can GMH

tell us today, whether those Eritrean fighters were, in reality, suicide bombers or not?


C2) Did they give their consent when they were asked to do the job of ‘hujjum? Were

they voluntarily giving their names to go for ‘hujjum’? Or C3) were they forced to do

so because a democratic right of questioning and answering was not an issue at all and

that there were no criteria at all? Or C4) as the EPLF exploiting and commanding

motto insists, ‘do the job first and then ask’, or face a military discipline’.

That means someone asks when he dies. Such a military exploiting measure was

barbaric, unrealistic, impossible, immoral, unethical, and inhumane despicable and

inexcusable act.


By the way, what is hujjum? Hujjum is originally an Arabic word. It may have a

different meaning than this version. However, according the Eritrean EPLF military

use, experience and perception of it, it means that a soldier fights the enemy in an

open way by giving his / her life to be martyr. In its practice, it was a forced martyr

and not voluntary because the soldier was chosen by the leader to act in such a

manner to accomplish the military message with great probability of dying. If the

chosen soldier did not accept the command of his / her leader, he / she should face a

military action. Even today this behaviour is exercised in the battle field. The

evidence is the recent border war with Ethiopia. The only difference to the past is that

today an individual is not chosen but a unit or units (gantain Tigrigna) as a whole.

One ‘ganta’ has three units. Each unit has 16-20 members. Three units make up one

ganta’ of 40-60 members of fighters. One ‘ganta’ from a company or battalion is

chosen respectively, for every necessary occasion to be a martyr, for example, to clear

away a mined area to create a loop or a passage for use to run away from or attack an

enemy position. Such a circumstance, obviously, presents and demonstrates the

occurrence of deliberate death with great probability.