The words of Haile Selassie when he visited Jamaica in 1966:
“You all have come from many tribes; you have encountered many difficulties. But you have always had confidence. It is my hope that with that confidence you are going to continue to overcome your difficulties and march towards prosperity and progress and unity.”
HIM visited every land that Africans were dragged to during the European slave trade. He was as I said before to extend his right as regent to all his subjects; even those scattered.
He loved his people and wanted deeply to express that love and provide (especially to those scattered) with a knowlegde of themselves, their history, their language...The Holy Church. He knew that Africas heritage is ancient and diverse. He also knew that modern Ethiopia had and has power that no other African country has....the true heart of the African people. Ethiopia had-has the power to unite all Africa under its banner.
Ethiopia today is still the symbol of Pan -Africanism and unity of the black people. She pocesses the key to the true African pass. Ethiopia today is a microcosm of the entire black universe. This is due to the fact that this country has never been colonized or conquered by Europe or anyone else....at anytime in history. Today Ethiopia is the headquarters of the African Union headquarted in Addis Abebe Ethiopia.
Nearly all African countires use the green, gold and red in some form on its national flag which is the green, gold and red of Ethiopia.
Som modern Ethiopians today do not appreciate the "globalised" use of 'Ethiopia' and "its" national symbols among the various black nations and peoples; they feel that Ethiopia is for Ethiopians. I agree with this modern view only in a sense.
But what my compatriates are missing is that the Pan-Ethiopianism started by HIM regards the larger ancient empire which many of todays Ethiopians no little about. Thus Ethiopia is for Ethiopians....from all over the world!!
HIM hired Aftrican-Americans to help build the country up after the 2nd world war. He saw them as the most highly educated block of (Ethiopians) blacks in the world at the time. and that they also had 400 years of experience dealing with Europeans and western ideas. Not that he placed them above lets say Jamaicans or blacks in other places. If a person looks carefully at the time and circumstances; like it or not he was correct. It worked.....
African Americans packed and left in large numbers. They established the first flight school which today is called "Ethiopian Airlines"...Yes! started by African Americans. Nursing schools, trade schools and political idealism which helped to develope an awareness of what is really meant by western influence.
When the US State Dept began to see this; much pressure was placed on HIM and his floundering goverment. Rules were established to prevent African Americans from serving the Ethiopian government. This is a huge point and I can not explain it here but much was lost due to the US policy which was basically racism.
HIM had one last thing to stand on which was actually the first thing he established among diaspora (Ethiopians) blacks. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahadu Church.
HIM wanted all his people to have what he called "their church given to them by God through the Holy Spirit". This was said in stark contrast to the various prostestant religions heeped onto the diaspora (Ethiopians) blacks by their white slave masters. HIM respected the fact these slave descedants kept the faith in Christ through these racist churches over the years and created something meaningful for worship out of them. He did nevertheless want the Ethiopian Church to be choice. Especially for those whose hearts were hardened against the church due to the slave/racist christainity of the prostestants. ....It worked!
The first property owned by The Ethiopian Church outside Ethiopia and Jerusalem was purchased by African and Caribean Americans. Ethiopian Clergyman that served these churches learned english FAST and in accordance with HIM all people were to be called "English speaking" or "western born" to indicate (indirectly) the 'Ethiopianess' of the people. The Church of Ethiopia brought people to God most importantly and provided away back home after 400 + years of slavery and degradation ( sadly the 'degradation' part is still in the world for blacks today).
Another response to the racist US policies was the establishement of The Ethiopian World Federation. It was established in England while HIM was in exile by royal decree. At the side of the emporer were 4 African Americans and 3 Ethiopian nationals. 1 national was made his attache and head of the organization. This organization had offices and chapters all over the United States in no time. All the members were African Ameicans and Caribean (or diaspora Ethiopians). There is much more to this story.
I must note that what is known as the 'Ethiopian World Federation today IS NOT the same. This current organization is trying to keep the organization alive. Sadly it is in name only. The emporer is not living so he can not obviously run it. Some of the people who are trying to keep this alive believe that HIM is still alive so maybe this is what drives them. This is very very unfortunate.
I just want to demonstrate that HIM Haili Selassie saw "Ethiopians" all over Africa ....all over the world and he intended on cementing 'his' Ethiopia back together. This was not some narrow minded concept or way of thinking like "Ethiopia is for Ethiopoians" like you might here some unfortunate Ethiopain nationals say lately. HIM was blessed to see the bigger deeper point of humanity and that his country is really a true world power with the Church at its head of course. He knew you can not have power without God allowing it.
He just needed to collect his people.
He even established an entire provence (Sheshamaneh) to be for re-settlement of blacks (Ethiopians) from all over the world; from the USA most specifically for reasons stated.
He did good. But he had new problems emerging at his capital....with very sad results.
I am happy for his vision.
Today the Ethiopian Orthodox Church is the largest Orthodox community in the world (where 2 or 3 gather so will I Be....so we are humbled and exalted in few numbers as well...Amen); thanks to God and the blessing he sent on HIM Haili Selassie.
I hope this info will help other to get a lttle understanding of what Ethiopia is especially with her love for God.
We are Orthodox yes. And as such have been working to help retrieve & repair a damaged race; damaged by unfathomable tortures of the mind body and spirit. A race that has endured being the largest single forced migration of human beings in the history of the world. Who would care..
Some people think "well they (African descendents) are doing fine now with great political power in the USA, Caribean, Africa etc. We have educated them well and given them christianity and good opportunities"
This kind of person would also think it good to keep a bird and its descendents in cage just because it has from birth only known "the cage".
Ethiopia said: "teach the bird to fly so that it can see the world (its life) the way God meant for it to see the world; it does not matter how well it has adapted to the cage and how it has progressed within
Ethiopia after all the Godless greed filled wars of the west had ended went out to find her lost sons and daughters.