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Ethiopia: Atse Haile Selassie and Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah

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02/13/12

  11:56:23 pm, by admin, 3205 words  
Categories: Ethiopia

Ethiopia: Atse Haile Selassie and Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah


Ethiopia: Atse Haile Selassie and Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah


By Msmaku Asrat

I was reluctant to write on this subject since many have written about it exhaustively. I am writing this from a personal perspective which makes it slightly different from what has been written before
According to Nkrumah the first encounter he had with Ethiopia was while walking the streets of London and seeing the headline of a newspaper “MUSSOLINI INVADES ETHIOPIA. “ In his Autobiography he writes about this moment where he says that he felt that a spear has just pierced his heart. He felt dizzy, sad and dejected. He also doubled his resolve to fight the scrooge of Colonialism which has now encroached the only independent Black Country in the world which has given pride to the entire black race when Menelik the Great scored brilliant victory over the White Race (the same Italians) at the famous battle of Adwa.

Subsequently the Emperor went into exile in London where he met such Pan African luminaries as George Padmore, Azikiwe, Nkrumah , T. R. Mekonnen (who took his name after Ras Mekonnen, father of the Emperor and Hero of Adwa) Marcus Garvey (with whom he has a falling off) and other Africa and Caribbean leaders
The next encounter is in 1958 a year after the independence of Ghana, an All-African Peoples Conference was organized in Accra. There were only eight independent African states, but 28 countries were represented. It was the biggest gathering of its kind and there were over 300 delegates, prominent among whom was Patrice Lumumba. Ethiopia was represented by Prince Sahle Selassie, the Emperor’s youngest son. This was also the beginning of the Emperor’s brilliant moves regarding African Unity. In his impeccable Oxonian accent the prince announced at the conference that Ethiopia has offered 200 college scholarships for African student with immediate effect. In 1960 when I joined the University College of Addis Ababa, I was going in with the third batch of African scholarship students (it was spread over 4 years - 50 students each year)

Another important thing is for the Emperor to be the first African leader to invite Nkrumah for an Official Visit. On arrival at the airport Nkrumah demanded that a goat be slaughtered and he step on its blood when he came out of the plane. The demanded has been communicated earlier to the Emperor and he has graciously relented even though it was an affront to his religion. Dressed in his magnificent golden robes Nkrumah was a sight to see. An air show at Debre Zeit Air force base was held in his honor and I was fortunate to find a place at the tribune. I was sitting at such an angle as to observe the obvious delight of Nkrumah. One hitch was that the protocol put the throne of the Emperor so high that the Emperor was visibly angry when he arrived and saw that. But Nkrumah did not seem to mind perhaps because he thought that it is the right protocol for monarchs (it is said that those who arranged this were relegated from their post soon after.) It was a fabulous air show and the acrobatic of one pilot was remarkable. Nkrumah wanted to meet him. He was presented at the end of the show and I was the one to be surprised. He was my neighbor as well as classmate in elementary school in Tafari Mekonnen Lt. Tigineh. I was thrilled. (Tigineh became a Colonel. He later transferred to the Ethiopian Airlines and is currently a senior Captain. I met him in Washington DC recently and we had reminiscences about his old air acrobatics). Nkrumah was the first African leader to visit Ethiopia and his presence was so high profile, that for many years afterwards every African person (visitor or students) was referred to as a “Ghanaian.”

The next encounter with Nkrumah was when he came for the May 1963 OAU Conference. The OAU was opened in the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA)building which was a gift of Ethiopia to the UN. It is also the far-sightedness of the Emperor to bring that important regional organization to Addis Ababa in 1958, which later became a magnet for bringing the Headquarters of the OAU. The main conference hall called the “Africa Hall” had a huge mural of stained glass windows depicting the Past; the Present and the Future of Africa the work of the world famous Ethiopian Artist Maitre Afework Tekle. In the main conference hall was an oil painting of the portrait of the 32 Heads of states and Governments attending. One place was vacant – that of the assassinated leader of Togo, Sylvano Olympus who was assassinated a couple of months before the meeting. Nkrumah was the prime suspect in his assassination (years later, in 1972 I met his son in Hotel D’Ivoire in Abidjan by accident. He was living in exile in Cote d’Ivoire and he firmly believed that Nkrumah had his father assassinated).The assassin was Sergeant Eyadema who ruled Togo for 38 years until his death in 2005 the longest ruling military dictator in Africa.
In 1963 I was a third year student in Addis Ababa University College and also in the last year of a 2-year experimental program in journalism. Our American professor was determined that his student attend the conference as journalists. He begged and cajoled the Minister of Information and was finally granted three tickets one of which I was lucky enough to get by lot. It was the most important day of my life up to that point. With my priceless press badge proudly hanging around my neck I literally lived in Africa Hall for three days only returning to my college dorm to sleep. The Press was allowed every access and the meeting was open except for behind the scene negotiations. It is generally agreed that it was President Seku Toure of Guinea who convinced Emperor Haile Selassie to bring the Casablanca and Monrovia group together (I will recount later what he told our delegation years after the event) Ethiopia has no Foreign Minister then but a Minister of State and for all practical purposes the Prime Minister, Tshafi Tezaz Aklilu Habtewold, who used to be a former Foreign Minister and now a de facto Foreign minister was in charge. He had assembled ten or more officials, most with legal background, and they were working on a legal draft drawn up by Chilean and some say Colombian jurist. This draft was supposed to be the framework for the Charter of the OAU. These officials were hovering around the Ethiopian seat at the conference, only two of them I know before as family friends. Most of the rest I met when I joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs a few years later. If there is one person who was to be picked out of the Ethiopian delegation it should be the Tsehafi Tezaz. However, I think it was a group affair. The Prime Minister was also the only one besides the Emperor who addressed the Heads of States while refuting an accusation by the Somali President.

Africa Hall was in a festive mood. Something momentous was in the air. On the second day all the Heads of States and Governments planted a tree each in the small park in front of the ECA. At the evening reception the Emperor had the stroke of brilliance to bring the famous South African singer Maria Makiba to electrify the assembled guests with her music. After the conference we invited her at the University College and she gave a memorable concert. What makes her appearance significant is because Ethiopia together with Liberia had taken South Africa to the International Court of Justice asking it to relinquish administering South West Arica (later Namibia). However, they had lost the case. No other country has fought against Apartheid in its press like Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Herald carried at least one Editorial a week condemning Apartheid which it did for many years. We all know that Ethiopia has given military training to Nelson Mandela.

News was filtering that the experts had reconciled the draft Charter and it was rumored also that the Emperor had given an impassioned plea that Africa would be the laughing stoke of the world if the leaders depart without an agreement. The meeting went on and until 3:00AM when it was announced that the Charter was going to be signed. The mood in the hall was electrifying. Everybody including the Emperor looked fresh, even at these wee hours of the morning. Nkrumah looked happy and was writing something and beaming broadly at everybody. Then cheering and clapping when it was announced that the Charter has been agreed upon and will be signed by the African leaders momentarily. Applause after applause when each one signed one after another, the loudest and most sustained for the Emperor. Then it was announced that President Nkrumah will read a poem that he has compose on the spot. It was short and beautiful. A copy of it was distributed to all in the hall by the UN staff. I treasured that copy for a long time until I could not find it when I searched for it among my documents a few years ago. (a copy could surely be found in the AU) But I could not forget the refrain which runs thus:

ETHIOPIA LAND OF THE WISE
ETHIOPIA SHALL RISE

Everybody clapped enthusiastically. It was read again and again by the secretariat. That became the slogan of the meeting until the Conference was formally closed. Ethiopian including myself could not be more proud than this moment of historic achievement. Ato Kifle Wedajo became the Provisional Administrative Secretary General of the new Organization of African Unity (OAU) and he essentially established the office from scratch. Halfway during the year he was replaced by Dr. Tesfaye Gebre Egzi. The next year the first Secretary General of the OAU. Mr. Diallo Telli was appointed by the Heads of States. It was the logical choice.

Now I go forward to 1972 when I was the Deputy Head of Delegation to the 4th African High Command meeting in Conakry, Guinea. Ethiopia was Chairman of the High Command and our leader of delegation was Lt. General Haile Baykedagn. At that time Amilcal Cabral the first president of Guinea-Bissau was assassinated and his brother, Louis Cabral, has taken over with the help of Seku Toure. In order to boost his moral Guinea has asked him to come for a State Visit. Both Lt General Haile and Louis Cabral became honored guests flanking Sekou Toure in all official functions and ceremonies and we likewise were close at hand. At some moment our delegation was transferred to the palace of Nkrumah which Seku Toure has kept as a museum (the circumstance why we went there I will not go into detail here.) Soon after Sekou Toure wanted to see our delegation. He asked if we liked our accommodation, that he was making this exception for us because he loves Emperor Haile Selassie “as a father”. The palace was Nkrumah’s. When Nkrumah was deposed while he was on a State Visit to China, Seku Toure graciously offered him to become Co-President of Guinea. But this did not work so he retired to this magnificent palace built on the edge of a cliff facing the Indian Ocean. In this peaceful seclusion Nkrumah was able to write over 29 books. All his documents were in place while we were there Nkrumah died in Bucharest, Rumania where he had gone to undergo medical treatment.
This is what Seku Toure told us about the establishment of the OAU. When the Casablanca and Monrovia group increasingly became separated. “I thought that only Emperor Haile Selassie could bring them together. I flew to meet him in Asmara; I did not even wait until he returned to his capital city Addis Ababa. The Emperor was gracious and agreed to send invitations for African Heads of States to meet in Addis Ababa. I for one promised him that I would convince the Casablanca group (we were few) to attend. Throughout the conference in Addis Ababa I was beside him working for unity final victory was achieved. My love and respect for the Emperor is everlasting.” What he told us is most probably true, more because nothing in writing is found in the files of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding these negotiations. Some of those involved are still alive. I hope any one of them could write about. Since Dialo Telli of Guinea was elected to become the first Secretary General of OAU what Seku Toure said gives added credence. The next day Dialo Telli came to visit us together with his two children, a boy and a girl, who had grown up in Addis Ababa and spoke impeccable Amharic. Diallo was a Minister of Justice then and his two children were with us until we left. They have such a love of Ethiopia which is not even found among Ethiopians of comparable age. I was also glad to meet the incomparable Maria Makeba and her husband the fire brand American revolutionary Kwame Toure (formerly Stocky Carmichael). They were political exiles in Guinea.

Another final note about how African leaders love and respect Emperor Haile Selassie. The year was 1973 and the OAU Conference of Heads of States and Government was held in Rabat, Morocco and I was a member of the Ethiopia delegation. At this meeting Emperor Haile Selassie was nominated unanimously to be called the FATHETR OF AFRICAN UNITY. I have written about this elsewhere and I am not writing about that now. King Hassan of Morocco held a Garden Party partly in honor of the Emperor for his recent elevation and partly for the Heads of States during their weekend. It was in one of the magnificent palaces of the king in the outskirts of Rabat. ONLY FOUR MEMBERS FROM EACH COUNTRY WER INVITED TO THE PALACE. The Emperor and his party have already left and some of us, junior members of the delegation, were at the hotel lobby just talking. Then one of us brought an idea. Why can’t we four pretend to be from an African country and go to the party? We encouraged each other, summoned the delegation car with a flag and four of us (F.T.; H.W.G., K.B.B.; and myself) went to the Palace, our limousine flying the Ethiopian flag. We were greeted at the top of the palace stairs by the powerful Interior Minister and Chief of Security, who murmured that we were very late and ushered us in. It was an impeccable garden and the food was sumptuous and exquisite. The others have already finished eating and were congregating on one side of the garden. We could see that the Emperor was the only one sitting and the only one formally attired with his military uniform all the others were in casual attire.

After we ate we went closer to the Heads of States to see and listen. The leaders were urging him to take off his jacket which was richly decorated with military ribbons, as it was a hot summer day. He politely demurred. General Gawain mockingly proceeded to help him in taking off his coat. The Emperor gamely resisted. Then King Hassan offered a compromise and said he would loosen the tie of the Emperor and unbutton the top buttons of his shirt. The Emperor relented all the while speaking in impeccable French as well as in English. We were astonished. We have never seen (nor has any Ethiopian ever seen to our knowledge) the Emperor so relaxed, so charming and at the same time so majestic. Some of the leaders were sitting on the grass before his chair. All roared in laughter whenever he spoke. He gamely smiled and was polite and captivating. I think that our curiosity has got the better of us and we inched closer to his chair. Then out of the blue our Foreign Minister Dr. Minasse Haile came and summoned us to follow him. He asked us how dare we came, how we were able to pass security, that we have brought shame to our country. What will Tshafe Tezaz say if he saw us (he was referring to Tefera Work Kdane Wold, the Minister of the Palace) He then told us to go out immediately and we did. There is wisdom, a charm, a fascination and above all unreserved love and respect which other Africans see in the Emperor which has escaped Ethiopians. The love, affection and respect these African leaders showed to the Emperor is a testament to the reverence he enjoys in the rest of Africa.

Now the present crops of African leaders, who are also keptocrats like Meles and dictators to boot, have slighted the Emperor in not having his statue but that of Nkrumah. As the Bible says “no prophet is welcome in his hometown” Mengistu Hailemariam one of the most brutal murderers of the 20th Century is reputed to have stifled the life out of the feeble and old Emperor and had him buried in the lavatory next to his office in Menelik's palace so that he could sit over him every time he goes to the toilet. It is a macabre and bizarre voodoo magic practiced by a brute who professed to be a follower of Scientific Socialism (or Marxism-Leninism.) This evil vermin and alley rat is thumbing his nose at us from his comfortable exile in Zimbabwe a fugitive from justice. The other little man who drove Mengistu away, the tin pot dictator Meles, has no regard to Emperor Haile Selassie whom he hates vehemently. When this monstrous building of the AU was inaugurated he never mentioned the Emperor. His Deputy Prime Minister was only interested in the nomination one Hodam Amhara for one of the seven vacant posts of Assistant Secretary General. The African Union building is 99.9 meters high signifying the date, and year (September 9, 1999) when the OAU voted to become the AU.

Without the presence of the statue of Emperor Haile Selassie we can justifiably call this ugly building the sarcophagus of Africa. It is built by China with 200 million dollars, which African countries could easily afford but did not want to spend. They were not even able to fully utilize their yearly AU budget year after year and could have used that. But they are thoroughly incompetent and inefficient. Most posts in AU are vacant. However, Africans are beggars, led by the beggar par excellence, the leader of Ethiopia. The amount of money these kleptocratic leaders amass from Equatorial Guinea to Ethiopia is known to the Western World who do not even stop them from begging but happily comply by feeding their habit. And hiding their loot. After all they do not expect Africans to behave like themselves and be responsible. Meanwhile, the musical merry go round continues. Africa is dying “a little every day” - a phrase of that giant African Revolutionary, the Algerian leader Ahmed Ben Bella, when he implored African leaders at the OAU conference in 1963, to do so if they want to make themselves free. This African death is the opposite of that. Africa is dying by its blood sucking vermin, its unelected leaders.

25 comments

Comment from: obsa [Visitor]
obsa

It is a pity that there are still some Ethiopians who have feudal sentiment. There is no doubt that the author of the above article is a feudalism fan. As far us the oppressed people in Ethiopia (specially Tigres, Oromos, Somalis, Afaris, Sothereners)are concerned the king was a brutal and dictator leader who was running always after his fame at the cost of the mass. he was treating poor Ethiopians inferior to his palace dogs. Thanks to God the emperor died shameful death. His wrong doings will continue to be told from generation to generation.

Viva Mengistu!
Viva Meles!
Dawn with feudalists!

02/14/12 @ 00:26
Comment from: Ethiopia Hiwot [Visitor]
Ethiopia Hiwot

Who ever wrote this, I love you! I have so much respect for you. You are sincere, honest, and brave! Thank you for the history! Well done!!

02/14/12 @ 00:44
Comment from: Gerrit [Visitor]
Gerrit

Why they don’t like Selassie,because he knew to much about things like the prophets going through all stages and untill the color of a man skin. People you better be fearing for the day of His wrath,because the second coming he will come with the sword. Remember Moses lived 120 years and how old will His Majesty born in 1892 be this year? Repent from your sins

02/14/12 @ 02:48
Comment from: samnv [Member]  
samnv

I learn something very important thanks.

02/14/12 @ 04:15
Comment from: Extraterrestrial [Member]  

You started the article with a good constructive spirit and went all the way keeping and upgrading it until you came to the final two paragraphs. On the final two paragraphs you show your true Ethiopian color: hate mongering and biased. I was really enjoying it until I reached the last two paragraphs.

My question for you is that if you think Mengestu was “evil vermin and alley rat” and Meles ” little man … tin pot dictator” what do you think I am supposed to think of the last Emperor? This is where is the problem of our country. We tend to demonize others while we portray those who belong to our small circle as angels and those who oppose us as demons.

Why do you think Mengestu and Meles should respect the last Emperor, isn’t the rule of the game for Ethiopians is belittling and detraction of each other, isn’t that same belittling and hate mongering you attempted to achieve in this supposed to be a remarkable article, do you think the hearts of minds of those who respect Mengestu and Meles change their attitude because they read your article, what is that you are trying to achieve by this article, outlet your anger?

You wrote a very interesting article of history with a reflection of priceless personal experiences concluded with a mark of typical Ethiopian style thought process: hate mongering, recklessness and hopelessness.

The article would have served its purpose very well if you have omitted the last two paragraph, by adding the last two paragraph you left your constructive parameters and justified the action of those who demonized the Emperor, by doing so you are not any different, but you were supposed to be an example by avoiding demonetization when you oppose demonetization.

“Show don’t tell.” Henry James.

P.S. Please don’t leave this planet without writing your rich personal experience of the Emperor, there might be no one to tell that story, I will definitely love to read it if you write. CHEERS!

02/14/12 @ 06:00
Comment from: zerayakob yared [Member]  
zerayakob yared

ትላንትናዎች፣

“its unelected leaders.” በሚለው መደምደሚያዎ ላይ፣ ነገሩ በስነስራዓቱ ይከናወን ዘንዳ፣ “except those elect of GOD!? የሚለውን በመጨመር ልተባበርዎት ፈቃድዎ ይሁን!! KI..KI..

ምክኒያቱም በምድረ ኢትዮጵያ ህዝብ መሪዉን ሲመርጥ ለመጀመርያ ጊዜ የታየው ( በፈረንጅ ) 2005 ላይ ነውና። ይሄኛውም ቢሆን “እድሜ” ለቅንጂት እና ለማሌሊት ተጨናግፍዋልና!!

ከዚህ በላይ ግን፣ እናንተ ራባት ላይ ስትጋበዙ የትግራይ ህዝብ በርሃብ ባይረግፍ ኖሮ፣ ትግራይና ወሎ ሲራቡ ሃይለስላሴ ጠብደል ውሾችን በሃረር ሰንጋ ስጋ እየቀለበ ለፈረንጆች የእዩኝ ፖዘ ባይቆም ኖሮ፣ ርህሩሁ የአለም ህዝብ የትግራይ ህዝብ ተርብዋል ተብሎ ሲነገር ስለሰማ በመርከብ የላከለትን ስንዴ፣ የትግራይ ህዝብ ግማሹ እስኪያልቅ ጊዜ ድረስ አሰብ ወደብ ላይ ሃይለስላሴ ባያነቅዘው ኖሮ፣ የሃይለስላሴ ሚኒስትሮች ወሎ ስለተራበ እየተሰደደ ነው የሚለውን ወሬ ሲሰሙ “ወሎ መሰደድ ልምድ ሆኖበት ነው እንጂ ተርቦ አይደለም” ብለው ባያሸፉ ኖሮ፣ ጎጃምና ትግራይ በገዛ ሃገራቸው እንደ ሁለተኛ ዜጋ ባይታዩ ኖሮና፣ እንዲሁም ወዘተ፣ ወዘተ፣ ጨካኙ “ስዩመ እግዛብሄር” የአፍሪቃ አዳራሽ ሲከፈት ይወደስ ነበር !

አትጨክኑ ጨካኞች እንዳይገጥሟችሁ፣ አትፍረዱ ይፈረድባችኋል! የሚለውንና የመሰለውን ለዚህ ነው ማክበር ያለብን! ችግሩ ግን የዛሬዎቹም አያከብሩትም!!

በመጨረሻ ግን አንድ ጥያቄ፣
ለመሆኑ ግርማሜ ነዋይን ያውቁት ኖሯልን ?


02/14/12 @ 08:47
Comment from: I_hate_Ehadig! [Visitor]
I_hate_Ehadig!

Impressive! You wrote it well!

02/14/12 @ 09:09
Comment from: mesfin_b [Member]  
mesfin_b

The Adwa “Mandrill Baboon” had gone “apes” LOL!!!
The lunetune meles the Shifta had betrayed his “Ethiopianess” since the day he had arrived at Arat Kilo.
The main manifesto of Meles Seytanawi is to loot with any type of lie, deception and escape the country. One thing that is keeping him awake is the fact that he can’t hide as was Gadafi, Mubarek.
United we shall topple the shifta regime and build Democratic Ethiopia.

02/14/12 @ 10:51
Comment from: Haile Sela-Sissy [Visitor]
Haile Sela-Sissy

Haile the Sissy ran away while Ethiopia was being bombed with mustard gas and the brave resistance fighters fought to the death in the mountains around Addis Ababa.

This midget dictator ran away like a chicken to Jerusalem via Djibouti and left the country to colonizers. That’s like running away from your home because a man is raping your wife. Haile the Sissy didn’t even plan to come back to Ethiopia, he only got lucky because the Italians allied with Germany and declared war on the UK, US, France, and allies.

If Italy, under Musolini, allied with the United Kingdom, Ethiopia would be an italian speaking country and we might still be under colonization.

Then when Hale the Sissy returned to Ethiopia due to his british masters evicting Italy from Ethiopia and Eritrea, he killed and jailed many resistance fighters and continued his dictatorial rule for 30+ more years.

This midget dictator is a disgrace to Ethiopia especially after the 1974 Wollo Famine which exposed his corrupt elitist regime.

When the derg was overthrown, we found his wretched bones buried under Mengistu’s toilet. GOOD RIDDANCE!!!

Ethiopia Tikdem!

02/14/12 @ 11:43
Comment from: koster [Visitor]
koster

What do we expect from Banda Meles Zenawi. He is for sure the only one in the world who hates the country he rules and the people he was supposed to serve. Say no to woyane state terrorism and ethnic politics. Had it not for the disunity of the oppositions, Meles would by now left Menelik palace to the International Court of Justice.

02/14/12 @ 11:45
Comment from: one Love [Visitor]
one Love

I think Meles got this right and the only group disagree with him is chauvinist. as for me I rather have meles for ever than to have G7 and chauvinist ever again in Oromia/Ethiopia.Endargachew, Ethiopia review, and Ethio-media are the worse enemy of Ethiopia and Ethiopian future.
P.S I never agreed with meles but his thoughts sometimes make sense better than telephonists’

02/14/12 @ 12:26
Comment from: Skndr [Visitor]
Skndr

The question is why they did not opt for statue with all pan-african founders like in the US. Including Selassie, Nukruham, Lubumba and other prominent figures of the time.

02/14/12 @ 12:43
Comment from: toga [Visitor]
toga

I am no politician, but this is the B8iggest Blunder Melesse Zenawi has committed yet. African Union being symbolized by anyone other than Haileselassie is the epitomy of Zenawi’s hatred for Amharas. I was astounded to say the least. on top of that that I don’t like Haileselassie made me question my sanity. WOW. OAU is the brain child of Haileselassie. Other domestic issues aside, HS undisputably championed the decolonization of Africa. He became a moral argument for those who demanded equality for blacks everywhere.
Melese thinks he knows history, and shamelessly lectured his parliament on how Kwame represented Pan Africanism. Jesus Christ! Kwame was a young student in London when HS was on a horseback fighting Italians @Maichew. Melese, for God’s sake, read Ethiopian/African/and European history. In many ways Haileselassie defined being black, african and how that should relate to equality, liberty, sovereignty, and more. Shame on you. Nothing you have done disturbed me so much. While Kwame was a pan africanist, he was also a dictator. That howver does not diminish his contribution to AU. My only beef is the disrespect bestowed to the man who deserved all the respect when it comes to African liberation and Unity. If Kwame desrved to be honored by AU, Haileselassie needed to be Worshiped. That much is the difference. It just made me sad.

02/14/12 @ 16:24
Comment from: Imperial Body Guard [Visitor]
Imperial Body Guard

“But though that has been said and written and done in these years, there runs a common theme. Unity is the accepted goal. We argue about means: we discuss alternative paths to the same objective; we engage in debates techniques and tactics.
But when semantics are stripped away, there is little argument among us. We are determined to create a union of Africans. In a very real sense, our continent is unmade; it still awaits creation and its creators. It is our duty and privilege to rouse the slumbering giant of Africa, not to the nationalism of Europe of the Nineteenth Century, not to regional consciousness, but to the vision of a single African brotherhood bending its united efforts toward the achievement of a greater and nobler goal.
Above all, we must avoid the pitfalls of tribalism. If we are divided among ourselves along tribal lines, we open our doors to foreign intervention and its potentially harmful consequences.” Selected Speeches of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, Father of African Unity, A call to African leaders, O.A.U Summit, page 246

“It is important, however, to remember that leadership does not mean domination. The world is always well supplied with people who wish to rule and dominate others. The true leader is of a different sort: he seeks effective activity which has a truly beneficient purpose. He inspires others to follow in his wake, and holding aloft the torch of wisdom, leads the way for society to realize its genuinely great aspirations.
You have learnt from your study of history that the story of nations is often told in terms of the accomplishments of individuals. In every significant event in history, you will find a courageous and determined leader, an inspiring goal or objective, and an adversary who sought to foil his efforts.” Selected Speeches of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, page 14

“The true leader is one who realizes by faith that he is an instrument of God, and dedicates himself to be a guide and inspirer of the nobler aspirations of the people. He will kindle interest, teach, aid, correct and inspire. Those whom he leads will co-operate with HIM in maintaining discipline for the good of the group. He will instruct his followers in the goals towards which to strive, and create in them a sense of mutual effort for attaining the goal.” Selected Speeches of HIM Negus Haile Selassie I, page 17

Long Live the Constitutional Monarchy!
Long Live the Organization of African Unity!
Long Live the Charter of the United Nations!
Fire Burn down the neo-colonial witchcraft star of ethnic federalism
Rise with the Lion of Judah!
Gasha for Ethiopians!
Long Live Ethio-Eritren Oneness!
Long Live Independent Ethiopia!

02/14/12 @ 17:28
Comment from: Lula tessema [Visitor]
Lula tessema

Dear Msmaku Asrat

I appriciate for your article,it helped me to know more and motivated me to go further. I think it is time to collect petition and challenge the AU.Please, we need to act now before it becomes too late. I am one of the Volunteer

02/14/12 @ 18:11
Comment from: Degitu [Visitor]
Degitu

Dear Dr. Mesmaku - As the Ethiopian saying “Man Yemesker Yenebere - Man Yareda Yekebere” your piece is right on target, and thank you. Ethiopians and Africans owe Atse Haile Selassie a lot. But look what he got in return. Not a single road, not a single building, not a single park, not a single school, not a single hospital, not a single airport, not a single building, not a single square in the entire Ethiopian nation -Addis to Harar, Dessie to Gonder - is named after him. This breaks my heart - especially after seeing how my lovely America is deeply committed to cherish or remember every piece of its own history. Even Haile Selassie’s undisputed role in the creation of African Union is diminished and tarnished thanks to Meles - the current Ethiopian leader. Haile Selassie is still revered and glorified by everyone – the exceptions are in Ethiopia. That makes Ethiopian leaders the most ungrateful, unsympathetic, poisonous and revengeful groups. Ethiopia is the only country in the world that doesn’t respect its best, that can’t pay tribute to its own history; work hard to tarnish its own image … Azuro Mayet Yemayechel Anget Yetegonasefen Hezeboch …

02/14/12 @ 19:37
Comment from: Shewarega [Visitor]
Shewarega

man yawega yenebere, man yarda yekkebere.

02/14/12 @ 22:34
Comment from: Woletteselassie [Visitor]  
Woletteselassie

Thank you for sharing this important information that can be used to remove the weeds from around the feet of Atse Haile Selassie I.

02/15/12 @ 12:09
Comment from: belete [Visitor]
belete


Without the presence of the statue of Emperor Haile Selassie we can justifiably call this ugly building the sarcophagus of Africa.”
….
O’really. i hope the “we” here is not the ethiopian people but the remnants of the feudal lords who enslaved them for centuries. in that case you can call it all you want.

02/15/12 @ 14:07
Comment from: HAYELOM [Visitor]
HAYELOM

I read with a patience your article.It was intended with the highlight of what the emperor has done to the formation of the OAU and later the role he played in the role he played in african politics. However your article with any standard has missed the point of argument, Kwame Nkrumahs’ statue is there not because he was the one of the founding leaders of OAU but because he was the proponent of panafricanism which is a very big concept for your feudal mind to understand. The only ugly thing I haveseen sofar is the ugly words you write to undermine one of the best child of africa. In case you didn’t understand nkrumah you should go back to your computer, google panafricanism and read, thn only then you understand how many years you are lagging behind.

02/15/12 @ 20:44
Comment from: Tekle B. [Visitor]
Tekle B.

That gave me the nostalgia I’ve never imagined. It is so much engrossing and pride inflicting.
OHHH Lord!, after all what have we thy ethiopians become!

The writer him self is a treasure.
He needs to write more and reach out more with such historic and awareness.
Thank you!

02/15/12 @ 21:08
Comment from: EPRDF is Corrupt [Visitor]
EPRDF is Corrupt

Dear, Asrat

Thank you for your magnificent tribute to one of the Emperor Haile Sellasie’s forever living honoring history. This is a piece of great history to keep.

The great peaceful, humbling and civilized period in Ethiopia has ended with HIM. After his death all what we see in Ethiopia is the downfall of Ethiopia.

Of course I never expect the Emperor to be honored by a murderer and looter with no identify.

Meles the faceless hater doesn’t even like himself. His heart is engraved with betrayal and deceit. His Woyane father and banda mother have failed to teach him love and dignity but stealing and cruelty.

The saddest chapter of Ethiopian history will be remembered with the murder Mengisu and Meles Zenawi.

These two are two peas in a pod. Although they hate each other they are identical. Murderer Mengisu is remembered for his slaughtering millions of people.

Meles will also be remembered for the Genocide of Gambellas, Oromos, Amharas, Gurages and for the lootings of billions and billions of dollars including selling and transferring land and wealth from Ethiopians to foreigners and Tigrea looters.

02/15/12 @ 21:15
Comment from: one Love [Visitor]
one Love

Body Guard, you are pathetic
LOL!!!!!!!!!!
dead deal with dead, go deal with your dead symbol and as for us we will never see that again have not to talk about dead person

02/16/12 @ 00:49
Comment from: mengistu haile [Visitor]
mengistu haile

We Ethiopians are our own enemies; we don’t like anything that associates ourselves to our dignified HISTORY.

We always adore other cultures, other ways of life, other people’s history, other people’s wives, other people’s country and leaders.

We love to accept disgraceful names and identities given to us by our current getoch’s the Arabs, that is why we prefer the name habasha’s, mixtures or better said BASTARD’S.

Bastard’s don’t know their father and therefore not like to acknowledge or respect HIM.

Because we don’t like to be called sons and daughters of true national figures and patriots, but like to kiss ass of others.

What a disgrace and shameful generation!

This was a given opportunity to rise against the current leadership for not fighting to preserve ETHIOPIAS place in history,the role it played in the establishment of a home for the people of Africa.

Mengistu or Meles were not there at the time.

Haile Selassie has done more than any Ethiopian leaders for the continent.

We Ethiopians (not the Habesha’s) thank Emperor Haile Selassie for placing our country ETHIOPIA in the international arena and its people to be known as Ethiopians, and also be known as the carrier of the independence torch that was lighting the whole of the African continent, from north to south and east to west.

There is nothing to be ashamed of HIM.

02/16/12 @ 00:56
Comment from: obsa [Visitor]
obsa

All statues which are erected in Finfinne and which has no meaning for oromos will be destroyed one by one, let alone erecting a statue for the stupid king HailesillassieI:

Signs of the End of Ethiopian Empire and the coming of OLF:

Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming I am OLF and will decieve many. You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see it to that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen but the end is still to come. Nation will raise against nation and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various palaces. All these are the beginnings of birth-pains.

Then you will be handed over to be persecuted by HABESHAS/WOYANES and GINBOT 7/ and put to death, and you will be hated by all Habeshas because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith(KAAYYOO OROMUMMA) and will betray and hate each other. And many false OLF will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of the wickedness the love of most oropmos will grow cold but he who stands firm to the end will be saved(LIBERATED).

All these history of Oromia will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations and liberation will come!!!!!!!!

Oromia shall be free!
Anything less we donot agree!!!

02/16/12 @ 01:13

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