Tag Archives: Independence

** May 25th – 🌍 – Marks, African Liberation Day **

Greetings in the name of His & Her Imperial Majesties Qedamawi Haile Sellassie I & Itege Menen Asfaw,

This is another one of the many interpretations of the Scriptures from the light of Ras Tafari by, I, Lidj Yefdi (pronounced Lij, Yef-dee).

With that said, today marks a special observance throughout the world that is a growing phenomena coined as,……

“Africa Day” (formerly African Freedom Day and African Liberation Day) is the annual commemoration of the foundation of the Organization of African Unity (O.A.U.); (now known as the African Union) on 25th of May, 1963. It is celebrated in various countries on the African continent, as well as around the world.

The Organisation of African Unity (O.A.U.), was established on May 25th, 1963 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; with 32 signatory governments. One of the main heads for O.A.U.’s establishment was none other than Kwame Nkrumah.

Organization of African Unity founding members’ (heads of state during 1963)

The OAU’s founding by the then, African nations that had the main aim of bringing the African nations together and resolving the issues within the continent.  Its first ever conference was held on May 1st, 1963 in Addis Ababa; In that conference, the late Gambian historian, and one of the leading Nationslists & Pan-Africanists at the time — Al-Hajji Alieu Ebrima Cham Joof delivered a speech in front of the member states—in which he said:

“It is barely 75 years when the European Powers sat round the table in Germany each holding a dagger to carve up Africa for its own benefit.… Your success will inspire and speed up the freedom and total independence of the African continent and eradicate imperialism and colonialism from the continent and eventually neo-colonialism from the globe… Your failure, which no true African in Africa is praying for, will prolong our struggle with bitterness and disappointment. I therefore adjure that you ignore any suggestion outside Africa and holding that the present civilization, which some of the big powered are boasting of, sprang up from Africa, and realising that the entire world has something earthly to learn from Africa, you would endeavour your utmost to come to agreement, save Africa from the clutches of neo-colonialism and resurrect African dignity, manhood and national stability.”

The First Congress of Independent African States was held in Accra, Ghana on April 15th, 1958. It was convened/proctored by then, Prime Minister of Ghana; Dr. Kwame Nkrumah and comprised representatives from countries such as: Egypt (then a constituent part of the United Arab Republic), Ethiopia, Liberia, Libya, Morocco, Sudan, Tunisia, the Union of the Peoples of Cameroon (which is now a Republic) and, of the host country Ghana.

The conference showcased progress of liberation movements on the African continent in addition to symbolizing the determination of the people of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation. Although, the Pan-African Congress had been working towards similar goals since its foundation in 1900, this was the first time such a meeting had taken place on African soil.

An archived Invitation Letter to the First Known Pan-African Conference at Westminster Town Hall in July, of the year 1900.

The Pan-African Congress, following on from the 1st Pan-African Conference of 1900 in London; was a series of meetings, held in 1919 in Paris (1st Pan-African Congress), 1921 in London (2nd Pan-African Congress), 1923 in London (3rd Pan-African Congress), 1927 in New York City (4th Pan-African Congress), 1945 in Manchester (5th Pan-African Congress), 1974 in Dar es Salaam (6th Pan-African Congress), 1994 in Kampala (7th Pan-African Congress), and 2014 in Johannesburg (8th Pan-African Congress), that were intended to address the issues facing Africa as a result of European colonization of most of the continent.

Fifteen African countries were represented. Their goal was to change the way Europeans governed Africa, with the eventual goal of African independence. Their second goal was influence the Versailles Peace Conference at the end of World War I.

The Pan-African Congress gained a reputation for being known as a peace maker for decolonization in Africa and in the West Indies, areas of the world.  The P.A.C., made significant advances in the advocacy of the Pan-African cause. One of the demands was to end colonial rule and end racial discrimination, against imperialism and it also demanded human rights and equality of economic opportunity. The manifesto given by the Pan-African Congress included the political and economic demands of the Congress for a new world context of international cooperation.

But, in any odds, five years after the Conference of 1958 in Ghana, on 25th of May, in 1963, representatives of thirty African nations met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, hosted by Emperor Haile Selassie.  By then, more than two-thirds of the continent had achieved independence, mostly from imperial European states. At this meeting, the Organisation of African Unity was founded, with the initial aim to encourage the decolonization of Angola, Mozambique, South AfricaandSouthern Rhodesia. The organisation pledged to support the work conducted by freedom fighters, and remove military access to colonial nations. A charter was set out which sought to improve the living standards across member states. Selassie exclaimed, “May this convention of union last 1,000 years.”

The charter was signed by all attendees on 26 May, with the exception of Morocco.  At that meeting, Africa Freedom Day was renamed Africa Liberation Day.  In 2002, the OAU was replaced by the African Union.  However, the renamed celebration of Africa Day continued to be celebrated on May 25th, in respect to the formation of the O.A.U.








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May Day – Independence Day – 05.05.1941 (Imperial Ethiopia)

Greetings in the name of His & Her Imperial Majesties Qedamawi Haile Sellassie I & Itege Menen Asfaw,


Ras Tafari Renaissance writes to give perspective to the on the Imperial Ethiopian Independence day commemoration.  Imperial Ethiopia, should be the parallel path that any Ras Tafarian should look to walk(trod).  His Imperial Majesty Haile Sellassie I and Her Imperial Majesty Menen Asfaw, showed the poise of ice cubes, while their country was yet, cleverly planned on being relieved of his(Haile Sellassie I’s) guidance, by unnatural powers.  But, by the impeccable strategy, honesty, courage, & just cause-and-effect action….Ethiopia, has remained an Unconquerable Land to the colonist regime, to this date.  So, here on 5th of May, Imperial Ethiopian celebrates its Independence as a memorial, and triumph over the Fascist, & colonial ex-ruling powers.

Haile Sellassie I, raising the bandera(flag of Ethiopia, commemorating Ethiopia's celebrations of continuing their millennial length Independance.

Haile Sellassie I, raising the bandera(flag of Ethiopia, commemorating Ethiopia’s celebrations of continuing their millennial length Independance.

On 5 May 1941, exactly five years after Addis Ababa fell to Mussolini‘s troops, Emperor Haile Selassie was re-installed on the Ethiopian throne. He reentered the city through streets lined with black and white soldiers, having fought his way back against a determined Italian army with Major Orde Wingate’s Gideon Force and his own Ethiopian ‘Patriots”.



Haile Sellassie I, had made an impassioned appeal to the League of Nations on 30 June 1936, which gained great support with the United States and Russia. However, many other League of Nations members, especially Britain and France, continued to recognize the Italian occupation/possession of Ethiopia.

Ethiopian Patriots

– photo provided and edited by Adam Simeon.

In 1935 Italian soldiers commanded by Marshal Emilio De Bono invaded Ethiopia in what is known as the Second Italo-Abyssinian War. The war lasted seven months before an Italian victory was declared. The invasion was condemned by the League of Nations, though not much was done to end the hostility.

ethiopian patriots during italian invasion

During the conflict, Italy used mustard gas, ignoring the Geneva Protocol that it had signed seven years earlier. The Italian military dropped mustard gas in bombs, sprayed it from airplanes, and spread it in powdered form on the ground. 150,000 chemical casualties were reported, mostly from mustard gas. In the aftermath of the war Italy annexed Ethiopia, uniting it with Italy’s other colonies in eastern Africa to form the new colony of Italian East Africa, and Vittorio Emmanuel III adopted the title “Emperor of Abyssinia.”

ethiopian warriors3

On 10 June 1940, Italy declared war on the United Kingdom and France, as France was in the process of being conquered by Germany at the time and Benito Mussolini wished to expand Italy’s colonial holdings. An Italian invasion of British Somaliland, in August 1940 was successful, but the war turned against Italy afterward. Haile Sellassie I returned to Ethiopia from England to help rally the resistance. The British began their own invasion in January 1941, and the last organized Italian resistance in Italian East Africa surrendered in November 1941. The British restored Ethiopia’s independence.



Haile Selassie Enters Addis Ababa (1941)

Patriot’s Victory Day (Shared Between Ethiopia & Mexico)

Greetings in the name of His & Her Imperial Majesties Qedamawi Haile Sellassie I & Itege Menen Asfaw,

I welcome you all to a yet another posting here Ras Tafari Renaissance on what should be known hence as the “Patriot’s Victory Day.”  In Ethiopia, Patriots’ Victory Day is an Ethiopian public holiday that marks the end of the Italian occupation which was the prelude to World War II (WWII).  It commemorates those who died during the occupation and honors the veterans of the resistance movement.  This holiday is celebrated on May 5th annually, as to commemorate the original dates.  Ethiopia, was the only African country to retain its sovereignty & not become a colony. However, its independence was interrupted by the Second Italo-Ethiopian war and invasion of Italian Fascist regime that started in October, 1935.  The war resulted in the military occupation of the country.

Italian troops entered Addis Ababa on the 5th of May 1936, then hoisted the Italian tricolor bandera (flag) in front of the Italian legation.  Thus, the occupation of Ethiopia began.  At the early stages of WWII, the British forces helped patriot Ethiopian fighters liberate the country.  Some French, Soviet, a few numbered among the Swedish were accounted for in the assistance during that period of time; but, probably of the most overlooked contributions to the WWII African Victory were the advances made by the Afro American & Afro Caribbean communities.

Nicknamed the “Brown CondorJohn Charles Robinson; became a pilot in America & during the time Second World War made his services available for the King of Kings of Ethiopia. Robinson not only known for being a teacher/trainer of many of the Tuskegee Airmen but, helped to start the training and education process of the first pilots for the now well-renowned Ethiopian Airlines, established by Haile Selassie I.  ; (one of the original logos in background)

Emperor Haile Sellassie made his entrance into Addis Ababa on May 5, 1941. He had deliberately chosen the date because the capital had fallen exactly five years earlier. Patriots’ Victory Day was declared to commemorate the end of the occupation.

On the occasion of Patriots’ Victory Day, solemn wreath-laying ceremonies are held at war memorials and monuments throughout the country. The main ceremony takes place in the capital of Addis Ababa, it is attended by government officials, military leaders and diplomats as well as representatives of patriot associations and city residents.

wreaths being laid upon John C. “Brown Condor” Robinson’s gravesite in Ethiopia.

Benito Mussolini had been eyeing Ethiopia (also known from Italian coinage as “Abyssinia”) as an economic colony to be added to Italian Somaliland, in East Africa, since the 1920s. He hoped to resettle 10 million Italians in a unified East Africa.

Britain and France, both fearing that a general war would be harmful to their collective security, proposed secret negotiations with Italy, wherein Italy would be offered territory in Ethiopia’s northeast; in exchange, Mussolini would end his aggression. Ethiopia would only be told of this negotiation after the fact; should Selassie reject the terms, France and Britain were off the hook, having made a “good faith” effort at peace. They could then oppose further sanctions against Italy, even propose that the ones in place be removed, thereby sparing themselves a confrontation with Mussolini. But the plans for the secret negotiation were leaked to the press, and both Britain and France were humiliated publicly for selling out a weaker League (i.e. League of Nations later become United Nations) partner.

HerbertBlack EagleJulian ; Trinidadian-American, whom also contributed to the startup of the training of Ethiopian Air Forces, also serving in the Ethiopian Imperial armed forces in WWII.

Today, also marks the Mexican celebration and commemoration of what is known as Cinco de Mayo.  This day for those of Mexican heritage that is celebrated for the victory of the Mexican Army over French forces on May 5th, 1862.

the Battle of Pueblo (1862) on the 5th of May, Mexican forces earned a victory over the French occupation under the leadership of Mexican General Ignacio Zaragoza.

In the United States, Cinco de Mayo has taken on a significance beyond that in Mexico having its variations in the sense of how it is memorialized.  Cinco de Mayo, is also most times confused with the Independence Day of Mexico but, in actuality its symbolizes more of the maintenance of Independence in defense of one’s country.  Mexico had already been liberated since September 18, 1810.  Now, one may ask why are these two countries mentioned here…? But, there significance in relation is closer than ones might think.  For starters, the African presence is a hidden one but once discovered its undeniably attached to African just as much as the African presence in North America.

Gaspar Yanga led a successful slave revolt in Mexico circa 1570; after his escape somewhere around 1545-1570. He is hailed as the “1st liberator in the Americas,” & is enshrined in Veracruz, Mexico.

Ones tend to forget the African presence in such places as Mexico seeing as how it has been suppressed from the view of many in the known world.  San Lorenzo de Los Negros was officially recognized by Spanish authorities as a free black settlement.  It would later be referred to as Yanga (or Nyanga), named after its founder.

His Majesty Haile Selassie I also made a diplomatic visit to Mexico in where there was not only gifts exchanged but, a since of culture, language, historic relevance as well as comradely among the Mexican and Ethiopic heritages.  Ethiopia holding its significant place in antiquity being known by most high lettered scholars as the genesis of what would become the Nubian & Dynastic Ancient Egyptian empires showed its flashes of greatness from pre-historic times with ties deeply rooted in the Meso-American peninsula.  Ethiopian diplomats along with Selassie were taken on tours around Mexico to the step-pyramids, the holding places of the Olmecan relics and much much more.  This all showing and providing the instances that Mexico, as a entire country would be the only country in all the world that supported the defense of Ethiopia from Fascist Italy during the time of WWII.

A gift of pre-historic insurmountable value given by the officials of the Mexican government to the King of Kings Haile Selassie I & Ethiopia as a whole; an Olmec relic.

At the League of Nations, Mexico was one of only five member-states to condemn the Italian invasion and occupation of Ethiopia.  A few years after World War II, diplomatic relations between Ethiopia and Mexico were established in 1949. In 1954, Emperor Haile Selassie became the first ever African head of state to pay an official visit to Mexico.

Mexico was opposed to all the points within the proposition, and withdrew/removed itself from the reunion.

A plaque in the honor of Haile Selassie was erected in Mexico that still stands to-date the visit of Ethiopia. Ras Tafari of Mexican decent, and many others visit to recollect the solidarity between the two countries until this day. [Plaza de Ethiopia was intern also given reciprocation with a naming of a street in Ethiopia in the Old City in a section of Addis Ababa as Mexico Square.]

June 19, 1954 The Emperor Haile Selassie I made his visit to Mexico and was interviewed by Mexican leader Lazaro Cardenas.  Ethiopia does not forget that Mexico denied recognition of the acts commited by the Italian forces, and that it raised the voice in defense of the reason, of truth, of justice and of right, we employ the word “Brothers” with the most upright exactitude when reffering to Mexico and to all Mexicans.”

The commemoration of Mexico’s assistance to Ethiopia during its occupation by Italy; Ethiopia named a center square in Addis Ababa “Mexico Square”.  In 2010, the Mexican government donated a replica of an Olmec colossal head to Ethiopia where it was placed in Mexico Square. On the 22nd of June, 1954, a traffic circle in Mexico City was named “Plaza Etiopía”, under which in August 1980, a metro station in Mexico City was built and named Metro Etiopía.

In 2014, two-way trade between Ethiopia and Mexico amounted to $5.9 million USD. Mexico’s main exports to Ethiopia include: landing gears, knives and electronic equipment. Ethiopia’s main exports to Mexico include: sesame seeds and industrial equipment to make shoes. Between 1999 – 2011 Ethiopian direct investments in Mexico amounted to $2.5 million USD. Ethiopia is Mexico’s 141st biggest trading partner globally.

Now, another hidden historical fact of the significance of Mexico, America, Haiti & Ethiopia is one yet to be publicized in mass for people to give honor to.  This is the story of William Henry Ellisthe Moor/Moore” [also translated to the Spanish Guillaume Enriques Ellesio].

(1st Afro-American Emissary to Ethiopia) ca.1903

William H. Ellis

William H. Ellis, whose name also was, Guillaume Enriques Ellesio (Guillermo Enrique Eliseo), nicknamed The Moor/Moore/Mor is reportedly and supposedly to be a Haitian-Cuban-Mexican-African American businessman. He is known for being one of the first to attempt to develop links between African-Americans and Ethiopia in the late nineteenth century.

Ellis was born in Texas in 1864. He worked as a cowboy in Texas and Mexico before entering the University in Tennessee. He entered the business world as a wool and leather dealer in San Antonio in 1886.

In 1889, Ellis announced America’s ambition to “colonize” Mexico with but in the wave of that episode of history took many black Americans,  many seeking liberty in the after math of the American Civil War also the Emancipation Proclamation, founded a colony that was more like a commonwealth/communtiy near Mapimí or Tlahualilo, in the Durango, Mexican state (respectively) in 1894-95, aside from the attempted colonization of Mexico at that time; but, in time, that ambition fell short of completion. Ellis, then moved to New York in 1897 where he became Agent Exchange on Wall Street.

Documentary series that highlights the African ancestry among Latin American countries of today.

In 1903, W.H. Ellis arrives in Addis Ababa accompanied by Benito Sylvain who was from Haiti, with a double objective: provide refuge in Ethiopia for African-Americans, and there develop business and development plans. Ellis knows he can find opportunities in Ethiopia. As a wool and leather salesman, he speculated that Ethiopia sell almost a large amount of its production to the United States.

Mexico’s older borders approx. 1819-1835 also within the past Imperio Mexicano [Empire of Mexico]

Menelik II, who knows his companion Benito Sylvain, receives Ellis. A prominent physician from the West Indies; Haiti to be specific, & Dr. Joseph Vitalien, also journeyed to Ethiopia and eventually became the Emperor’s trusted physician.  Although Ellis parte before its commissioner, Skinner arrives in December 1903, he played a key role in the negotiations, returning in 1904 with a signed agreement. Menelik II granted land concessions Ellis for growing cotton. But the dream of Ellis was not realized. In 1906, the Emperor suffers a hemorrhage and becomes disabled; he died in 1913.

Bénito Sylvain was born in 1868 in Port-de-Paix (Republic of Haiti) and declared himself the representative of the Africans and Afro-descendants colonized by France. One can therefore consider it as one of the pioneers of pan-Africanism.
In 1887, Bénito Sylvain finished his studies in Paris at the Collège Stanislas and then at the Faculty of Law where he obtained his bachelor’s degree and then his doctorate. He was also known to be Emperor Menelik II’s along with his family’s personal physician.

In one of his communications, Ellis relates a conversation with Emperor Menelik II on US President Abraham Lincoln and his struggle to keep the country united and, in the process also open the way for the legal manumission of slaves.  “Tears came to his eyes,” says Ellis, as Emperor Menelik II heard of “the liberation of slaves…” in America, and he exclaimed, “What a great man!” More importantly, a theme that was to become the basis for relations of amity, trust and mutual respect between the United States and Ethiopia were the slogans, “America for Americans,” “Europe for Europeans,” and “Africa for Africans.”  The Emperor loudly acclaimed the last refrain, Africa For Africans, telling Ellis to repeat that for him. Ellis says that he successfully conveyed the idea that whereas “other nations (Europeans) came to Africa to take the land, America was alone without land in Africa and wanted none. She only wanted liberty and trade.”

Emperor Menelik II

It is not known if Emperor Menelik II and Ellis talked about Liberia, which was a sort of stepchild of America; also with such inner workings had the cryptic appearances of a colonial attempt especially since the ACS or American Colonization Society was at the helm of the proposed repatriation of African slaves back to their land of ancestry.  Even mores, seeing as many of the seemingly first elected officials were of mixed decent even with the initial first elected president of Liberia having a heavily mixed heritage with possible allegiances that may or may not have gone unspoken of.  At any rate, the belief that the United States did not wish to conquer or colonize Africa remained a guiding policy premise of successive Ethiopian rulers for the next three quarters of a century.  It was, as we shall see anon, reaffirmed and even sanctified by Emperor Haile Sellassie I, for over fifty years right down to the end of his era in 1974.

links ;



The Line of Liberty: Fugitive slaves and Peons on the Texas-Mexico borderlines by James David Nichols.












The Battle of Adwa – (March 1, 1896) – አድዋ

Greetings in the name of His & Her Imperial Majesties Qedamawi Haile Sellassie I & Itege Menen Asfaw,

RRR - prototype (2015-16)

Ras Tafari Renaissance writes to give perspective to the Ethiopian commemoration of the Battle of Adwa.  A history changing event that shocked the world to its core.  At the time of the Battle of Adwa, the African continent was nearly colonized at every angle. due to to the “Scramble for Africa“.  The only two countries that hadn’t been colonized by European countries were Ethiopia & Liberia.  But even with all of this in the forefront, Ethiopia had defended itself well against Italian forces; saving the whole of Africa from total colonization.


The valiance of the Ethiopian people, in defense of their country, became a phenomenal example of unity, belief, heritage, & pride.  The Ethiopian people; men, women, & children, in some cases, banded together the banner of the Ethiopian flag: red, gold, & green to put aside their differences in ethnic origin, tribe, religion etc., to secure a future that would include all of them, on their own land.

contemporary artwork displaying the courageous acts of Empress Taitu Betul; wife of Emperor Menelik II & Ethiopian Empress.

contemporary artwork displaying the courageous acts of Empress Taitu Betul; wife of Emperor Menelik II & Ethiopian Empress.

The Treaty of Addis Ababa, formally brought an end to the First Italo-Ethiopian War, (in which the Battle of Adwa, was the pinnacle) whereas Italy officially recognized Ethiopia as a independant and sovereign state.  This treaty has been said to be a secret agreement, for more than scholars’ obvious reasons as Italy would eventually attempt to colonize Ethiopia again, in the coming Second Italo-Ethiopian War. [Treaty of Addis; Oct. 23. 1896]

Emperor of Ethiopia Menelik II: Negus Nagast ze Ethiopia