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A History of the Flag of Eritrea

Flags represent individual nations (or in multi-ethnic societies “super-nations” that represent the joint identities of more than one nationality) and, as all symbols are, often subject to careful analysis. Eritrea’s flag, to the casual observer, is bursting with the vibrant colors common of many African flags; to one having more than a passing familiarity with Eritrea’s history, the flag is clearly representative of shared national identity and history of the land called Eritrea.

Mamdani Wrong on Eritrea

Mahmood Mamdani in a paper discussing citizenship and South Sudan uses Eritrea as evidence. Unfortunately his evidence is deeply flawed, and although it does not fundamentally alter the basis of his conclusions, they show tremendous oversight on his part. Of course, his contention regarding unity is critical, “Anyone interested in creating unity must recognise the importance of politics and persuasion … “1

  1. Transcript from talk given on 17 March 2011