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HomeEthiopian NewsAdwa Victory 128th anniversary celebrated ; Gov't Prohibited Celebration Near Emperor Menelik...

Adwa Victory 128th anniversary celebrated ; Gov’t Prohibited Celebration Near Emperor Menelik II Statue

Adwa Victory 128th anniversary _ Ethiopian News
Adwa victory 128th anniversary celebration event organized by the “Defense Force” at the newly inaugurated Adwa Museum (Photo : PD)

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The 128th anniversary of Adwa Victory is celebrated in Ethiopia. On March 2, 1896 Ethiopia under the leadership of Emperor Menelik II won a decisive battle at Adwa – in the Tigray region of Ethiopia – against the invading Italian colonial army.  The emperor himself and empress Taitu – commanded the Ethiopian army at the battle front. 

Normally, Adwa victory celebration attracts hundreds of thousands of crowds in the capital Addis Ababa and the place for it used to be near the majestic Emperor Menelik II Statue in front of St. George Church . Not this year. This year, the Ethiopian government deployed police to prohibit residents from the city from celebrating it there. Whether the arrangement is just for this year or a permanent one is unclear. In the past few months, the government has been making arrests in the city on alleged grounds of security concern and anti-government protest. 

Reports on social media indicate that police detained twenty-five journalists – apparently from state-owned media outlets. They were  reportedly barefoot in celebration of the Adwa victory ( apparently this is the fifth year for them to celebrate it that way). Elias Meseret , a journalist who worked for the Associated Press, said the journalists were wearing a green t-shirt with a mark “Adwa” and taking pictures together near Sidist Kilo when police from Gullelie rounded them and were taken where they were detailed until 7 p.m. local time. They were detailed around 7 a.m. in the morning. Elias indicated that there were other similar detentions in different parts of the city.  

The government designated the newly inaugurated Adwa Museum as the only place in the city for Adwa Victory celebration. Government organized an event in the newly inaugurated  Adwa Museum and it was the Defense Force that was in charge of it.  A military parade was part of the ceremony. 

The celebration this year seems to be designed in a way to fit in with ethnic-nationalistic narratives at the expense of those who espouse rather an Ethiopian nationalism. Addis Ababa – even historically during the five year occupation of fascist Italy  – was a place where ethnic politics got no room. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration seems to be changing it. In on of his latest remarks, Abiy Ahmed said “Ethiopian Nationalism does not have constituency.”  

Reports from local sources indicate that many residents of Addis Ababa had to go to St. George Church which is close to Emperor Menelik Statue. 

Defense Chief of Staff, Field Marshal Berhanu Jula, made a speech during the event. He highlighted the political situation in the country – relating the armed movement in the country to foreign powers who are enemies to Ethiopia. He made it clear that he was “hallucinating to control Addis Ababa within 48 hours.” He gave credit to the defense force and security apparatus for not letting that happen. 

Adwa in Adwa 

Adwa was celebrated in many other parts of Ethiopia including in Adwa – Tigray where the battle took place. President Sahlework attended the event in Adwa. She lamented about the mountains where forefather made history. “In the mountain where fathers made history, their children are killing each other,” she said in an emotional tone indicating how bitter the ongoing civil war in the country is. VOA Amharic cited her as saying that priority should be given to peace. 

Sahlework was speaking in Adwa in the presence of senior TPLF officials including Debretsion Gebremichael. “Let us renew our unity. Let us reconcile with our history,” was her key message. 

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3 COMMENTS

  1. I have been celebrating this glorious since I heard and read about it several decades ago. But since 50 years ago that has been one side of me. The other side of me has been sad by the fact that the grand and great grand children of those gallant countrymen and women have lost their ways by choosing violence to settle disputes among themselves. I have been crestfallen to see brothers and sisters going at each other’s throats for issues that could have been resolved peacefully. That has been the case for the last 50 years especially since 1991. It seems that they have refused to learn from their stupidity for starting horrendous bloodshed in which millions perished. It seems that one horrific bloodshed is a precursor of another one to follow. On that battleground of Adwa where thousands of our forefathers sacrificed their Allah blessed lives to protect their Allah given land and liberty, their descendants had chosen to butcher each other as sworn enemies. It was in Ogaden before that and now it is in Amhara and Oromia regions after that. Woe! Woe!! Woe!!! May The Almighty Our Creator The Merciful Save My/Our People!!!!!

  2. You know me by now that I have nothing but love for you countrymen/women of The Horn of Africa. I am here to let you hear from me something that is very special for me both as your dear countryman but also as a man of color. That story and the day I am sharing with you is that glorious day etched in stone never to be concealed or left forgotten. It is that day that sends megawatt volts of pride all over my high mileage body every time I think or read about it. It is that glorious day, that day my and your grandparents marched into the hills, ravines and fields of Adwa knowing that it would be their last day on this good earth. They did that because no one had to tell them that it was their Allah given rights to defend their Allah bestowed domiciles from murderous bigots. No one had to tell them that heavily armed ‘KKK thugs’ were there to shoot and hang every ‘n-i-g-g-e-r’ in sight. They were in complete understanding that the enemy they were facing at that place on that day behooves them to be calculating and also well prepared. They understood very well that a vast network of intelligence must be in place to play that heathen on their doorstep. And they played him very, very well.

    It was written that the mad as hell patriotic chief from Tigrai was sending ‘secret’ messages to Baratieri his intention to defect to his side and he was waiting for the Italian chief to fire the first shot. It was also written about the ‘secret’ messages the emperor’s cousin Mekonen along with chiefs Haimanot and Mika-il(Ali) were urging him to come and kill their common enemy, the emperor. It was written that they were ‘telling’ Baratieri that the emperor army is getting thinner and fewer by the day that he was thinking about cutting and run for his life. They pondered!!! They lured!!! They lured and lured the monster from Rome until he was well inside their compound. When their single and double envelopment war plan is firmly on the ground they lured him again to fire the first shot. Dabormida might have sent a message to his wife that the very next day he would shoot a photo of him surrounded and being served by 3,000 ‘n-i-g-g-e-rs’. What he did not know was the fact my Barentu ‘grand uncle’ and his Amhara, Tigrai and many other ethnic groups were watching his every move and primed to show him and his partners-in-crime how lethal an Ethiopian could be when his pride is touched by outsiders and ready to teach him a lesson or two how to conduct a conventional warfare, Alula style, Mekonnen style, Taytu style, Haimanot style, Mika-il(Ali) style, Balcha style, Dinagde style leaving him no counteroffensive option! None! None except for Baratieri to cut and run like a scared witless rabbit or rather like a high noon bank robber chased by blood smelling vigilante mob!!!! But for my n-ig-gaz information or rather misinformation was part of the game.

    You think that misinformation was started by KGB and CIA during the cold war. No!!! It was my and your grandparents who perfected and used from the bottom of the deck to their advantage. They painted themselves as if they were deserted, far and few when their rank was swelling by the day!!! They presented themselves as people who love to run naked or have naked and did not have any clue what warfare is or how it was supposed to be conducted as an organized army. They even sent him fattened cattle, honey and milk to make him think they were still like his Neanderthals ancestors who were incapable of distinguishing friends from enemies. By now the Baratieri’s ego was so built up and emboldened by the news of potential desertion at the outset of war ordered the commencement of the battle. But his worst nightmare was awaiting him. His worst nightmare, a n-i-g-g-a with a Hotchkiss gun on his lap was all around him even before finishing his recital to the Roman gods. He could hear that thunderous scream of that fire spitting woman named Taytu admonishing those soldiers of the fainted hearts who tried to withdraw prematurely from the battle fronts!!!! He could hear her telling them that she did not bring enough skirt for them to wear!!!! And he could hear them telling that roaring Taytu like ‘Don’t talk to me like that, woman! I am going back!’ Baratieri saw those incensed men turning into killing machines, their fainted hearts gone in a flash!!! Now the earth and sky were laminated all around him with little leeway for folding back or escape.

    Now my Barentu grand cousin and his comrades in arms started playing the complicated mancala game in the middle of the battle. On one of their moves they led the arrogant Dabormida and his entire battalion plus army right into the welcoming arms of my Barentu grand cousins. When the carnage was over Dabormida was dying squealing like untidy pig. Now arch angels Jibril and Mika-il were in the mix. They were in the mix because that land of Maryam Magdalene and Bilal ibn Rabah was being desecrated by ruffians. They were in the mix because that land and its people were put together there by Allah at the beginning of times no matter the numerous and unabated travesties they had to go through. It is because it was the land where the two major religions, Christianity and Islam, had taken foothold there without the need of an all out battle. The battle Baratieri started on that day did not even last the entire length of the daylight. For all intents and purposes it was over by the mid day. At 12 high noon, it was over. Now Baratieri turned around and ran like a scared deer from the Chercher Mountains!!! One of my grand cousins along with his Tigrayan and Amhara friends were in hot pursuit after him. But his horse was still fresh and not like their battle fatigued ones. But they stood on top of one the hills and told him who he really was. Oh Boy!!!! They were telling him using all kinds of words in their profane dictionary. No, I am not telling you what they yelled at him. No, no this is a family show. But I can tell you one so mildly. All three of them thundered at him like ‘You, the son of a thousand biscuits!!!!’ It seems he heard it all slammed into his bigoted ears carried by the drifting wind.

    How do I know that? You may ask. That is because I was teleported to that day!!!! I saw that thunderous lady Taytu telling off the retreating soldiers!!! You should all read more about her. Now some of you misogynistic pigs may doubt her role just because she was a woman. I highly suggest that you don’t say that around Lia bin Tadesse, Alemtsehay bint Wodajo, Birtukan bint Mideksa, Meaza bint Ashenafe, Muferiat bint Kamil, Aisha bint Mohammed bin Mussa and others in their posse who have been giving chauvinists like you that deadly stare of death. For now this high mileage, beyond-repair Afro-Ethio-centric ni-gg-a has been having a serious bout of an attitude since yesterday!!!!!

  3. You are making two grand mistakes. 1/ Those outside Addis and overseas cannot celebrate Adwa victory because they are far away from statue of Menelik 2/ You seem to be suggesting that Menelik and Adwa victory somehow belonged to Amhara only. That is a stupid mistake. Calm down. Menelik was the king during battle of Adwa; Menelik was not the only one during the battle of Adwa. He was a wise leader. But he was assisted by many warriors some of whose statue is shown in the new Museum. Stop acting stupid. Stop dividing us. Adwa is a uniting history. Tigrayans also played a significant role.

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