The two books, displayed the same aim and spirit in spite of their difference in language and style.
It is impossible for one who reads and compares the two books to escape concluding that one is, definitely, a re-arrangement, rephrasing and compression of the other.
Ahmed Teyfur’s life was terminated in 1966, long before his actual death from thirst and hunger, three decades later.
He escaped straying and roving the deserts of North Sudan, trying, in a moment of desperation, to leave the country heading for Egypt, where he may have hoped, to melt away in the human waves of Cairo, forget himself and be forgotten in a village or a town of that country.
This article is a detailed story of a book which, in its time, influenced the Eritrean National Movement in a deep negative way and caused schisms which kept developing, morphing and clustering until today.
It details the story and the circumstances that led to the appearance of the book and the reactions which followed its publication.
But, before elaborating on and resuming the story, it may be helpful to step back a little, and have a look at the relations of Sudan with its two neighbors to the East, Ethiopia and Eritrea.
There is no need to go as far back as to the Mahdiyya and the slaying of Emperor Yohannes IV[ii] but a good start may be the arrival of Emperor Haile Sellasie to Sudan, escaping the troops of Mussolini, which at that time had overrun Ethiopia using its colony, Eritrea, as a springboard, on the eve of World War II.
The second was an insider job, an effort from within the national movement itself, a manifesto, said to have been authored by Issayas Afeworki, Titled “Nehnan alamanan”.The battles of the valleys and highlands of Anseba and Keren–which were immortalized in popular songs–and the martyrs and the wounded of the Sudanese battalions were only testimonials to this fact.And when the British forces accompanied by Sudanese battalions[v] entered the Eritrean capital, Asmara, they were escorting Sudanese teachers, engineers, nurses, musicians, singers, and craftsmen ready to open schools and construct canals, roads, heal wounds, restore life-beats and manifestations.Ahmed Teyfur’s sun rose in the newspaper (“October 21”), which was being issued by Saleh Mahmoud Ismail, one of the most eminent personalities of the Nationalist Unionist Party, and the Minister of Information in the October era[i].Teyfur was the first reporter to enter Eritrea accompanied by its rebels, crossing, under the veil of night, the hills forming the border between Eastern Sudan and western Eritrea at the Hafera region, neighboring the town of Kessela.