the failure of an emperor
Posted By: child of maafa-x
Date: Saturday, 15 August 2009, at 11:33 p.m.
Marcus Garvey : the failure of Haile Selassie
THE FAILURE OF HAILE SELASSIE AS EMPEROR
Editorial by Marcus Garvey in the Black Man - London March/April 1937
When the facts of history are written Haile Selassie of Abyssinia will go down as a great coward who ran away from his country to save his skin and left the millions of his countrymen to struggle through a terrible war that he brought upon them because of his political ignorance and his racial disloyalty.
It is a pity that a man of the limited intellectual calibre and weak political character like Haile Selassie became Emperor of Abyssinia at so crucial a time in the political history of the world. Unfortunately, Abyssinia lost the controlling influence of a political personality of patriotic racial character like the late Menelik, whose loyalty to his race and devotion to his country excelled all his other qualities, to the extent that he was able to use that very strength to continuously safeguard the interests of the Ethiopian Empire. What he did so well to preserve, a cringing, white slave hero worshipper, visionless and disloyal to his country, threw away. This is the impression the serious minded political student forms of the conduct of the ex-Emperor of Abyssinia.
EVERY NEGRO ASHAMED
Every Negro who is proud of his race must be ashamed of the way in which Haile Selassie surrendered himself to the white wolves of Europe. These statements may be considered very severe, and in fact, they are. We could have been otherwise apologetic and sympathetic, but that would have been only if we were dealing with a Coptic Priest or a Religious Monk and not a[n] Emperor who held and presided over the political trust of twelve million people of his own country, and the political destiny of the entire Negro race. This little misguided Emperor could not realise that he held in his hands the political trust of the hundreds of millions of Negroes of the world, men and women, who were looking up toward the firm establishment of political sovereignty, and that Ethiopia, like Liberia and Haiti were to them prizes of glory to be perpetuated and strengthened in the maintenance of the dignity of that black race that other men have claimed to be incompetent, inferior and unworthy, which every black man must disprove.
LOOKED WITH HOPE
When the war started in Abyssinia all Negro nationalists looked with hope to Haile Selassie. They spoke for him, they prayed for him, they sung for him, they did everything to hold up his hands, as Aaron did for Moses; but whilst the Negro peoples of the world were praying for the success of Abyssinia this little Emperor was undermining the fabric of his own kingdom by playing the fool with white men, having them advising him[,] having them telling him what to do, how to surrender, how to call off the successful thrusts of his Rases against the Italian invaders. Yes, they were telling him how to prepare his flight, and like an imbecilic child he followed every advice and then ultimately ran away from his country to England, leaving his people to be massacred by the Italians, and leaving the serious white world to laugh at every Negro and repeat the charge and snare - "he is incompetent," "we told you so." Indeed Haile Selassie has proved the incompetence of the Negro for political authority, but thank God there are Negroes who realise that Haile Selassie did not represent the truest qualities of the Negro race. How could he, when he wanted to play white? how could he, when he surrounded himself with white influence? how could he, when in a modem world, and in a progressive civilization, he preferred a slave State of black men than a free democratic country where the black citizens could rise to the same opportunities as white citizens in their democracies?
TELL THE TRUTH
The truth must be told so that the white world will realise that it was not the pride of the Negro that surrendered in Abyssinia. It was the disloyalty of a single man who was too silly to take pride in his race, who played such a game as to disgrace the political integrity of a noble people. The Negroes of Abyssinia and of the world are satisfied however that Abyssinia was not conquered by Italy and the European forces of Mussolini. Abyssinia was only conquered by the black levies of Italy. The Askaris have really been the victors in Abyssinia. [Rodolfo] Graziani only marched into Addis Ababa after he had made sure of the advanced guard of the Askaris. Every battle that the Italians won in Abyssinia resulted from the advanced charge of the Askaris. It was black men fighting black men, and this was made possible in Abyssinia because the regime of Haile Selassie had given a bad taste to the mouth, not only of the blacks of Abyssinia but of those of the surrounding territories. They felt that they had a cause against the Amharic white loving Emperor who liked to chain and flog black men, and whose brutality to them gave Mussolini the cause to fool the world that he was bestowing a blessing upon the people of Abyssinia by freeing them.
It was a piece of impertinence to suggest that black men should be held as slaves. We must admit that we glorified Haile Selassie when the war started, fought his battles to win international support, but we ever felt deep down in our hearts that he was a slave master. We had hoped that if Abyssinia had won that we would have forced the Government of Abyssinia to free the black whom they held as slaves. We would have preferred this than seeing the country taken by Mussolini or any European power; but now that the country is temporarily lost and the Emperor has cowardly exiled himself, the truth must be told.
WHAT RIGHT HAS HE?
The future freedom of Abyssinia must be built upon the highest principles of democracy. That is why it is preferable for the Abyssinian Negroes and the Negroes of the world to work for the restoration and freedom of the country without the assistance of Haile Selassie, because at best he is but a slave master. The Negroes of the Western World whose forefathers suffered for three hundred years under the terrors of slavery ought to be able to appreciate what freedom means. Surely they cannot feel justified in supporting any system that would hold their brothers in slavery in another country whilst they are enjoying the benefits of freedom elsewhere. The Africans who are free can also appreciate the position of slaves in Abyssinia. What right has the Emperor to keep slaves when all the democratic sections of the world were free, when men had the right to live, to develop, to expand, to enjoy all the benefits of human liberty[?]
The Emperor who has been exiled in Europe must have seen the civilization of Europe. In England where he lives he sees that men are not flogged and chained and kicked because of their colour or because of their condition, but where true human liberty guarantees to every man the happiest pursuit he can bring to himself. It has been reported that he is leaving England for Syria, where a large number of Abyssinian refugees are living. There is an interpretation that the decision to leave England and to live among "his people?" in Syria is to perpetuate his divine majesty in the presence of that king worship that he doesn't get in England, where men look at others as equals and not as masters by divine right. In truth, the Emperor is out of place in democratic England. He wants to be once more in the environment of the feudal Monarch who looks down upon his slaves and serfs with contempt. Except he changes the attitude of thinking himself better than the Negro who constitutes the larger number of Ethiopia and profit by the experience he has gained, he should not be a fit person to be in authority in the very country in which he was born. After all, Haile Selassie is just an ordinary man like any other human being. What right has he to hold men as slaves? It is only the misfortune of the slaves that causes him to be a slave master. Negroes who have the dignity of their race at heart resent the impertinence of anyone holding the blacks as slaves. Haile Selassie ought to realise this and abolish his foolish dream of being an Emperor of slaves and serfs and try to be an Emperor of noble men, and for him to be that he must himself be the noblest of them all. He hasn't proved his nobility in the war between Italy and Abyssinia. Ras Desta proved to be the Lord, the Nobleman of Ethiopia whilst Halle Selassie proved a cringing coward!
(RE-UP : http://www.ethiopianreview.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=14370&p=78658 )
I am not a Negro at all; I am a Caucasian' the Emperor Menelik told the West Indian pan-Africanist Benito Sylvian who had come to Addis Ababa to solicit the Emperor's leadership in a society for the 'Amelioration of the Negro race.' Haile Sellassie confirmed that view in a declaration to Chief H. O. Davis, a well known Nigerian nationalist, stating that the Ethiopians did not regard themselves as Africans, but as 'a mixed Hamito-Semitic people
Menelik is also again on record telling the then Italian representative to Ethiopia, Count Antonelli,
"that he loved Italy so much that he felt 'half Italian and no greater wish that to go there and see it"
Chris Prouty, Empress Taytu and Menelik II page 57
Here's the whole quote of Menelik's identity issues and his claims as the Italians as his friends:
""i love italy and I love it so much that almost I feel myself Italian, and I have no other desire than to go if it were possible, I myself (want) to see this Italy, to which many years of friendship bind me.
Look at Menelik asking the Italians to occupy Eritrean highlands.
"Via Antonelli's courier, Menelik informed the King of Italy that he would like the Italian soldiers to occupy Asmara, in order to discourage the imperial pretensions of Mengesha Yohannes (the son of Emperor Yohannes)." "There after," added Menelik, "God will give me the throne that for many years I have had the right to have."
Chris Prouty, Empress Taytu and Menelik II p. 6
Menelik II also had wrote to King Umberto of Italy and said, among other things, that this region was theres to share with:
"I beg Your Majesty to defend me against every one as I don't know what European kings will say about this let others know that this region is ours."
Chris Prouty, "Empress Taytu and Menelik II," p. 54
When Haile Selasie, the emperor of Ethiopia, was interviewed by the Nigerian
Daily times about Ethiopian racial identity in the 1930s, he said, "That
Ethiopians were not, and did not regard themselves as negros [sic], as they
were a Hamito-Semitic people"
Fighting Against the Injustice of the State and Globalization By Asafa Jalata, p.96
When Haile Selassie fled to London, Gravey tried to contact him
but was snubbed, and it was reported that
"the emperor did not desire any contact with 'Negroes."
The New World of Negro Americans By Harold Robert Isaacs p.153
Menelik II and Selassie both agreeing they are not Africans but rather in Menelik II own words as a "Caucasian".
Some say the fastest Ethiopian track star that ever lived is none other than Haile Selassie. When Mussonlini invaded Ethiopia, Haile Selassie, their general (that never seen war), ran away and fled for his life faster than any long distance star.
"In his desperate act to hold power, Haile Selassie now made a secret peace overture to Mussolini, sending a former Ethiopian Minister in Rome to contact the Italian consul in Djibouti. He offered to sell a large part of Ethiopia to Italy for one and half milliard Lira and to appoint six Italian advisors to direct the policy of his government. Mussolini sent sourteous reply to the intermediary, expressing his pleasure that the Negus had at last decided to negotiate directly with him; but he said the offer was unacceptable."
J. Ridley, p. 270
ASKARI ETHIOPIANS: Menelik was the biggest Askari but here are some honorable mentions:
Ethiopians Admiring Mussolini Poster
Original caption: 11/19/1935-Ethiopia-Natives of a captured Tigray province pay their respects, Italian fashion, to a huge likeness of the "Great White Father."
Ethiopian Woman Wearing Soldier's Fez
A barebreasted Ethiopian woman, representing the native Ascari soldiers fighting for Italy, is photographed wearing an Ascari fez in order to motivate the Italian soldiers.
Abyssinians Who Guard The Italian Legation in Abyssinia.
a west African pan-Africanist, Benito Sylvain, who went to Addis Ababa to enlist his support for a society for the 'Amelioration of the Negro Race'. Menelik replied, 'Yours is an excellent idea...The Negro should be uplifted....I wish you the greatest possible sucess. But in coming to me to take the leeadership, you are knocking at the wrong door, so to speak. You know, I am not a Negro at all; I am a Caucasian.
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