23rd anniversary of Operation Fenkil is being commemorated from February 8 to 10 in a colorful manner. This commemoration constitutes a glorious national history for which the Eritrean freedom fighters demonstrated heroic feats on the land and sea with few equals on a planetary scale. Deemed to be one of the world’s military feats for its remarkability of military strategy, scale and thunderbolt tactics, Operation Fenkil is a great event of which Eritrean generations should forever take due pride and commemorate. The operation, further than uprooting the vital lifeline of colonization, spawned the country’s full independence while at the same time heralding the inevitable demise of enemy forces.
Fenkil was an operation born out of years of standoff with the enemy as the large-scale military assault was a very significant and strategic one for which Eritrean freedom fighters had already sacrificed a great deal of perseverance and time. Thus, Operation Fenkil was a cumulative result of 12 years long standoff of Eritrean fighters in the mountain chains of Nakfa, the northeastern Sahel front, Barka, as well as guerrilla warfare and hit-and-run attacks elsewhere in the nation, to which colonial Ethiopia and the superpowers behind ultimately succumbed.
It is crystal clear that national history that symbolizes national consciousness together with moral and cultural values is the defining characteristic of a society. In light of this fact, all countries do not equally satisfy the aforementioned benchmark, but rather, diverge on account of the challenges they face and the values they cherish in doing so, past experience and the heroic feats they exhibit. Indeed, Eritrea is a land of endless heroic feats.
Commemorative events similar to Operation Fenkil are essentially meant to renew pledges to preserve glorious history. Having realized Eritrea’s unmatched liberation struggle for sovereignty, the huge sacrifice paid for the glorious history the nation has vindicated entrusts the country to renew its pledge to further maintain these long-cherished national consciousness and values and hand them down to posterity. The grand vision and goal of the martyrs of Operation Fenkil and all our fallen heroes is but full emancipation. National independence is only one chapter of Eritrea’s national goals and objectives, but not an end in itself.
National independence only serves as a springboard spurring the stage towards ultimate national goals. Eritrea’s ultimate national goal is the attainment of equitable political, socio-economic and cultural development, where the aspiration for spiritual and material needs of citizens could fully be satisfied. Such aspiration could as ever be realized through our endeavors. That’s why, our unremitting endeavors forge ahead up to the last mile reinvigorated by the fount of our glorious history.
Glory to our fallen heroes, who bestowed on us national dignity!